With so many new champions coming to TFT, some of the older units have been hung out to dry. Aphelios in particular is a unit that has seen very little success over the course of the set. After a strong first week, Riot nerfed him and he really never recovered. Now that Akshan is in the game as the premier Ranger carry, Aphelios is outclassed in TFT Reckoning.
To combat this, the TFT development team has elected to give Aphelios a mini-rework. His ability is still the same but everything else from mana cost to damage has been altered significantly. With Riot letting the changes rock over the weekend, here are the details players need to know when playing Aphelios on the PBE.
Aphelios TFT Changes
To understand the changes the key thing is to note what Aphelios’ ability actually does. Dark Vigil states that Aphelios launches attacks simultaneously, one at his target and the rest at enemies nearest to them. These attacks deals a percentage of Aphelios’ attack damage plus bonus physical damage on top of that to each enemy hit.
The problem that Aphelios currently has is that he does not do nearly enough damage to enough units to justify making him a primary carry. These changes look to change that.
The first change is to his mana. Instead of needing 90 mana to cast, Aphelios will now need 150. This is a huge nerf and a huge cost. However it is needed due to the other changes.
Aphelios’ percentage damage has changed from 140/150/180% to 250/275/325%. This effectively means that on cast, Aphelios will do double the damage he used to do for about double the mana cost. His base damage has also doubled as well from 125/150/300 to 250/350/750.
The other big change is his number of targets. Instead of targeting four units, he will target five. Essentially for a little under double the mana cost, Aphelios is doing a little more than double the damage. The trade off is the bigger wind up time for big time damage. The intent is to give Aphelios the opportunity to be a big AoE nuke for the Ranger composition.
When it comes to item priority on Aphelios, one item comes to mind instantly, Spear of Shojin. With the ridiculous mana cost he now has, Aphelios is going to need a way to get to his ability cast as fast as possible. In TFT attack speed equals mana. The faster one attacks, the faster they gain mana. Spear of Shojin helps by gaining even more mana on auto attacks.
Rageblade also fits this theme as it makes Aphelios attack faster. However, its unclear if Aphelios needs to build an attack speed item since there are ways to give Aphelios AoE attack speed with items like Zekes Herald and even the new Radiant Zephyr. Not to mention the Ranger trait is an attack speed steroid.
To make his ability cast payoff count, Aphelios is definitely going to want some added damage. Items like Deathblade and Giantslayer are fantastic choices. Infinity Edge could work too but Giant Slayer and Deathblade play around items like Brambles Vest better.
Finally, healing items should be considered. For Aphelios, these are Hand of Justice and Bloodthirster. Both are fine but Hand of Justice can give Aphelios some extra starting mana as well as some more damage too. Players should try to have one damage item, one healing item, and either Spear of Shojin or an attack speed item.
A sample Ranger composition and layout. | Provided by Riot Games
In this build, Aphelios does not need an attack speed item since the four Ranger bonus is active. Simply having four Rangers and a Zeke’s will give Aphelios the attack speed he needs to charge Spear of Shojin. Instead focusing on damage, healing should be the priority here. Deathblade and Hand of Justice are fantastic options to fill those needs.
Aphelios takes full advantage of his Nightbringer trait in this build. The Nightbringer trait gives units in the trait like Aphelios a shield when they dip below a certain health point threshold. The trait also gives them increased damaged for the remainder of the round at the same time too. In this variant, since there is only the two night synergy instead of the four, attack speed is needed more. However, the trade off is that healing is needed less. The Nightbringer trait gives Aphelios the survivability needed to be the primary carry.
These changes are already live and are experimental. Stay tuned to Upcomer for more updates regarding Aphelios and all the other changes being made in TFT.