Everything New in TFT Set 4.5: Festival of Beasts
TFT Set 4.5 is releasing soon on the PBE server, and in this article, we’ll be going over everything new as well as provide some first impressions. This mid set update is quite substantial compared to the one we had in Set 3.5, so expect a good amount of experimentation before the meta settles down.
Keep in mind that at this current moment, we don’t have all of the information on the mid set update. Our website will be up to date with any information we learn, so be sure to check out the Champions Page to stay updated on any changes.
Everything Leaving Set 4
Before going into the new champions and traits, here’s a quick rundown of all the champions and traits leaving Set 4.
- Dusk: Vayne, Thresh, Casseiopeia, Riven, Lillia
- Moonlight: Lissandra, Aphelios, Sylas
- Tormented: Kayn
- Shade: Evelynn, Kayn
- Hunter: Aphelios, Ashe, Warwick
- Dazzler: Ezreal, Lux
- Other: Nami, Hecarim, Xin Zhao, Jhin, Jinx, Ahri
Above lists all the champions as well as the 6 traits being removed. However, there are four champions returning that now have different traits to compensate for the removal of their old trait.
- Diana: Moonlight to Spirit
- Zed: Shade to Slayer
- Kindred: Hunter to Executioner
- Morgana: Dazzler to Syphoner
The Festival of Beasts is replacing the 6 old traits with 7 new ones. For a better look at all the synergies and up to date information, check out the Synergy Page on our website.
Bonus: After participating in combat, Blacksmiths will begin forging an Artifact item. The higher their star-level, the faster they work. Once the Artifact is complete, it will be able to bestow upon an ally. An ally may only equip one Artifact.
Bonus: Executioner’s basic attacks and spells always critically strike targets below a certain health threshold.
Champions: Kindred, Kayle, Xayah
First Impressions: Executioner is quite a powerful trait that is very similar to the Valkyrie trait from Set 3. These units will likely be very strong carries, and Kayle was quite the fan favorite in Set 3, so it’s nice to see her again.
Bonus: Slayers gain Lifesteal that increases at lower Health, and deal bonus damage that increases based off their target’s missing Health.
Champions: Pyke, Zed, Olaf, Darius, Tryndamere, Samira
First Impressions: Slayers definitely have promise, but their reliability is hard to assess as we don’t know exactly how much lifesteal they gain or how well they will perform in game. Even still, bonus damage and lifesteal is quite a nice bonus as it makes them have good survivability without the cost of an item slot.
Bonus: All allies heal for some of the damage they deal with spells and attacks.
Champions: Morgana, Vladimir, Nasus, Swain
First Impressions: Giving all allies lifesteal, even if it’s a little bit, can be very powerful. Celestials were very strong in Set 3, and I expect Syphoners to be quite decent in Set 4 as well.
Bonus: Daredevils seek the thrill of the battle, dashing after every other attack. After every dash, they shield themselves for 20% of their max health and their next attack fires two shots, gaining Style. At max Style, they cast their spell. Base Style rank increases star level.
First Impressions: Daredevil is a trait that is unique to Samira. The trait works in tandem with her ability, so it’s hard to get a good grasp on her power without trying her out in game. It will be interesting to see her carry potential, but Riot will be sure to try and balance her before the update goes live.
Bonus: At the start of combat, the highest health Dragonsoul ally receives the Dragon’s Blessing. While blessed, the unit gains bonus stats, and every 5th attack fires a blast of Dragonflames, dealing a percent of their target’s maximum health in magic damage. On death, this blessing passes to the closest Dragonsoul ally.
Champions: Tristana, Brand, Braum, Shyvana, Olaf, Aurelion Sol, Swain
First Impressions: Dragonsoul is reminiscent of Dark Stars from Set 3. However, this time, the buff only goes onto one unit at the start. The buff is quite sizable, and a team with multiple carries can make decent use out of this buff. It will be difficult to control where the buff bounces, however, as the units will move around a lot during combat.
Bonus: Fabled champion’s spells gain an additional effect.
Champions: Neeko, Nautilus, Cho’Gath
First Impressions: Fabled is interesting as it’s bonus is tied with the champion’s abilities, giving them bonus effects. The bonus effects are quite nice, but none of these champions look to be main carry potential. Fitting all three of these units in one team can be difficult, and picking up a Chosen Fabled may not be the best choice unless you are running one of these units as your carry.
New Champions: Tips, First Impressions, and Positioning
In this section, I’m going to give a brief rundown of all the new champions. As of writing this article, we don’t have the stats on every unit, but once the servers hit PBE, make sure to check out the Champions Page for any and all updates.
We’ll be giving basic positioning suggestions for every champion to get the ball rolling for you, but remember that positioning is incredibly contextual in TFT and to always adapt to the situation at hand.
The terminology we’ll be using in this article will be frontline, midline, and backline.
Following this key, you’ll be able to understand the rows that champions should be placed in general.
Brand – Dragonsoul + Mage
First Impressions: Brand has a decent ability for a 1 cost unit, and can be a good item holder for a late game carry. He also has good synergy with Aurelion Sol as they are both Dragonsoul Mages.
Tips: Brand might not deal good damage in the late game, but his ability can be clutch against enemies with high attack speed as that is who he will target. If you’re playing against Brand, you want to try and make it so he casts away from the rest of your team.
Nasus – Divine + Syphoner
First Impressions: Nasus’ Wither ability is quite strong, but it might not always cast on the target you want. He likely won’t cast on an enemy frontline unit, so it will likely be random which of the remaining enemies he will cast upon.
Tips: Nasus isn’t a particularly complicated unit, but in the early game, he can be useful to likely cast on enemy backline units once the frontline units clash.
Tristana – Dragonsoul + Sharpshooter
First Impressions: Tristana definitely seems to be a potential 1-cost carry. She attacks very fast with her ability, which also will activate the Dragonsoul trait.
Tips: If you’re running Tristana as a carry, you will want to make sure she receives the Dragonsoul buff. If she doesn’t have the highest health of your Dragonsoul units, you will want to have your other Dragonsoul units die quickly so she can receive the buff.
Braum – Dragonsoul + Vanguard
First Impressions: Braum’s ability is very unique in that he can protect your team from a lot of damage. A lot of the strongest teams have at least one ranged carry. With Braum’s shield up, ranged attacks and abilities deal very little damage.
Tips: Positioning Braum is much more important as you want him to block ranged attacks and abilities from enemies. Putting him in the front is a simple solution, but you also want to make sure that he blocks important abilities, and not just soak up damage in the front.
Nautilus – Fabled + Vanguard
First Impressions: Nautilus is coming back, and his ability is quite decent. Against melee units, his ability can be extremely strong as he constantly will knock up enemies. However, he can be somewhat lackluster against enemies that are mostly ranged.
Tips: You will want to place Nautilus wherever the largest clump of enemies is. This way, if he is able to cast, he can knock up multiple enemies.
Rakan – Elderwood + Keeper
First Impressions: Rakan is coming back with a slightly different ability than he had before. His ability packs a lot of utility into a 2-cost unit, so he will likely be a strong unit to use in the early and mid game.
Tips: Rakan dashes to the furthest enemy within his attack range. Because of this, try placing him on the side that enemy carries are on. This will increase the likelihood that his ability will cast toward the enemy carry and CC them for a few seconds.
Vladimir – Cultist + Syphoner
First Impressions: Vladimir’s ability is very simple and isn’t very special, but Syphoners in general have interesting potential. Giving the entire team lifesteal is quite a strong ability, so even if his ability is a bit lackluster, his trait could potentially make up for it.
Tips: Vladimir likely won’t be a main carry in a team comp, so you can put in him the middle of the board to use at protection for your main carries.
Darius – Fortune + Slayer
First Impressions: Darius is coming back with his usual dunking ability. In Set 3, Space Pirates were an all in type of playstyle that relied on high rolling Gangplank. This time can be a very similar situation as he has the Fortune trait to build up gold, and Samira is a 5 cost unit that shares the Slayer synergy with Darius.
Positioning: Frontline / Midline
Tips: Darius will do better toward the front, but you don’t want him to be a primary tank. As such, you can place him on the sides of the front or in the middle so that he doesn’t draw the inital aggro from a fight.
Neeko – Fabled + Mystic
First Impressions: Neeko has interesting potential. Fabled bonuses are quite decent, and having a Mystic trait means that Neeko could be the replacement for Ahri in the 4 Vanguard 4 Mystic comp.
Tips: Fitting in all 3 Fabled units can be difficult as Brawler and Vanguards usually aren’t put into the same team. You will likely have to decide between running Cho’Gath or Nautilus and using a Chosen Fabled. You could run all 3 and have one of the synergies not utilized, but that would only work if the Fabled bonuses are strong enough.
Shyvana – Dragonsoul + Brawler
First Impressions: Shyvana is back with her transformation ability and it’ll be interesting to see how players use her. There are a lot of carry options for Dragonsoul comps, so investing into a 3-cost unit might not be the best choice. In Brawler comps, she will definitely be a strong addition, but she may not deal enough damage to be worth investing into.
Tips: Interestingly enough, Shyvana will fly away from her target when she transforms. This means you can probably place her in the front to cast quickly, allowing her to cast away from danger.
Sivir – Cultist + Sharpshooter
First Impressions: Sharpshooters are already a very offensive bunch of units, and Sivir gives them even more of an offensive boost. For Sharpshooter comps, Sivir will likely be the mid game carry until you are able to find Samira. She also will probably be a consistent carry for Cultist comps with the removal of Jhin.
Tips: Sivir plays a very similar role to Jhin as they are both Cultist Sharpshooters. This means that the comps will likely play very similarly as before, just without Dusk in the mix.
Aurelion Sol – Dragonsoul + Mage
First Impressions: Aurelion Sol’s ability seems quite strong to me. While Ahri’s ability largely relied on one shotting enemies, Aurelion Sol has a huge benefit to the mage trait. By casting twice, his ability will deal more damage the second time. This makes the damage reduction from Mage 3 less noticeable, and makes the bonus from Mage 5 and 7 quite strong.
Tips: Aurelion Sol will cast toward the furthest enemy, so it will be beneficial to be place in the corners of the map. He can be susceptible to Aatrox this way, so be careful where you place him.
Cho’Gath – Fabled + Brawler
First Impressions: Cho’Gath’s ability is very strong, and his Fabled ability seems to be very strong. My main issue with Fabled is that it may be difficult to fit them all into a team. Even still, if his Fabled ability is strong enough, people will find a way to make it work.
Tips: You usually will want Cho’Gath to take a lot of damage early so that he casts quickly. Because of this, you want him to be one of the main tanks of the team by being in the very front.
Kayle – Divine + Executioner
First Impressions: Kayle was one of the best carries in Set 3, and it’s very possible that she will be very strong in Set 4 as well. However, she had the Blademaster trait in Set 3 which greatly helped her attack speed. In this Set, the Divine trait is also quite strong, but we will see if she lives up to her name.
Tips: It will be interesting to see what items players decide to go for, but since she is very similar to her appearance in Set 3, players will likely use similar items as before.
Olaf – Dragonsoul + Slayer
First Impressions: Olaf was always a fun unit to use as his ability allowed him to be immune to crowd control. His trait also gives him lifesteal, making him quite the carry to build around. Dragonsoul looks to be quite a strong synergy with carry options like Olaf and Aurelion Sol.
Tips: In most games, you want Olaf toward the front, but you don’t want him to take too much damage early on or get CC’ed before he is able to cast. You can put him more toward the side to prevent this from happening. You can also use an item like Rapid Firecannon to keep him at a safe distance from enemies.
Tryndamere – Warlord + Duelist + Slayer
First Impressions: Tryndamere has three traits, making him both powerful and flexible. His ability is quite powerful, but he can run into danger by spinning toward enemies. If his damage output is strong enough, he will make an excellent carry.
Tips: Tryndamere spins toward the largest clump of enemies, so he will definitely be in danger. Try to balance offensive items and defensive items to ensure he doesn’t die instantly in fights.
Xayah – Executioner + Elderwood + Keeper
First Impressions: Xayah is another carry with three traits, making her a flexible carry. In League of Legends, Xayah’s ultimate is very powerful as you can dodge any ability or attack with it, but in TFT, it may be inconsistent. You won’t be able to cast whenever you want, but it could be a strong defensive move to drop aggro from units like Assassins.
Tips: Depending how long it takes to cast her ability, Xayah could be a backline carry that doesn’t need protection around her. If her ability cast is long enough, she could reliably drop aggro from enemies before they can kill her.
Ornn – Blacksmith + Elderwood + Vanguard
First Impressions: Ornn can potentially change the game in a huge way. Depending on how powerful his artifacts are, it may make him an instant buy on any team. Of course, he will be stronger on teams that can utilize his traits, but his artifacts may be worth adding into any team.
Tips: Keep in mind that Ornn targets the furthest enemy with his ability. You can use him as a frontline unit, but you may want to move him toward the side opposite of the enemy team or their main carry.
Samira – Daredevil + Sharpshooter + Slayer
First Impressions: Samira definitely has potential to be an extremely strong late game carry. She already has lifesteal with Slayer, so an item like Hextech could be a wasted slot if she just needs more damage. Her Daredevil trait and ability synergize together to make a unique unit.
Tips: The wording on Daredevil is a bit difficult to fully understand without playing her in game. What’s for sure is that she will be constantly dashing around the map. If fast enough, enemies might not even be able to hit her if they are melee.
Swain – Dragonsoul + Syphoner
First Impressions: Swain’s ability is so long it broke our image. Jokes aside, Swain also has very good carry potential as he also has lifesteal as a part of his traits. You may not need an item like Hextech, but more lifesteal and a shield won’t hurt.
Tips: If Swain is like his previous appearances, his ability will cast through his resurrection animation from Guardian Angel. If that’s not the case, you should look to build other defensive items or even an offensive item.