Pantheon? In pro play?
The Spartan hasn’t been seen at the highest level of competition since Season 11, where he was mainly played in the jungle and flexed as top, mid, and support.
This Season 12, among the major regions, he was only used once in the LCS Lock In 2022 by Team Liquid’s top laner Gabriël “Bwipo” Rau, who picked him into Jayce.
Since the champion hasn’t made a dent this year, Riot Games buffed three of his abilities including his ultimate in this pre-MSI 2022 patch, and lowered his base health regen to balance them out. While these improvements may seem significant, they are unlikely to impact his pro play pick rate in the current meta.
Pantheon buffs in League of Legends patch 12.7 — but are they enough?
- Base health regeneration decreased from 9 to 7.5
Q – Comet Spear
- Tap Q length increased from 550 units to 600 units
- Tap Q width decreased from 150 units to 120 units
E – Aegis Assault
- (Removed) Steadfast shielding: Pantheon is no longer slowed if moving backwards while E – Aegis Assault is active
R – Grand Starfall
- (Updated) Crash landing on you: Pantheon now crashes down on his destination 0.25 seconds sooner
Comet Spear is Pantheon’s only poke ability, and its range has been buffed while its width, nerfed. This gives him even more of an edge during the laning phase against melee champions due to the extra 50 units.
The removal of Aegis Assault’s slow also lets him disengage better, while his ultimate is slightly more reliable.
Despite these buffs, analyst and content creator Nick “LS” De Cesare is not convinced that this will bring back this champion to the competitive scene.
“These are not the things that are gating Pantheon,” LS explained in his patch 12.7 rundown. “He doesn’t have enough damage or durability even with Aegis Assault […] to reliably engage upon opponents.”
“His dependency on items is so much greater than other champions who are supposed to be on a faster famine playstyle. Even when Pantheon is feasting, he’s not really feasting.”
To illustrate his point, LS gave examples of Talon and Qiyana jungle, two champions that do not need that many items to nuke a target. However, Pantheon does because his full combo does not “tap you with one rotation”. Plus, he’s not as mobile as these assassins, and can be countered more easily.
Overall, his base stats and items in the current meta do not favor him, so unfortunately these changes may end up making him slightly better in solo queue but absent in competitive play.