Adjusting to the new patch will be the key for the 10 teams in the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Pro League (MPL)-Philippines Season 6 as they look to improve their respective positions in the heated race to the playoffs.
Game developer Moonton made sweeping changes in ML through its latest patch dubbed as Project NEXT, which was released just three days prior to the start of the MPL-PH Week 6 tomorrow.
The new update encourages a meta of dedicated jungle and lane heroes in the early stage of the game.
Jungle weapons received an additional damage of up to 40% to creeps (jungle monsters) and an increase in extra EXP gained from 15% to 25%.
However, only players with retribution can purchase jungle items, which will cause them to gain only 40% EXP from minions in the first three minutes. Junglers are also expected to play solo as hitting creeps with multiple heroes make them more durable (15% damage reduction per hero).
Dominating the early laning stage will be crucial with the introduction of the gold and EXP lanes. The first seven siege minions on the lane near the first Turtle area (top lane for the blue side, bottom for the red) possess 50% extra EXP while those far from the Turtle (bottom lane for the blue side, top for the red) have 50% extra gold.
Outer or first turrets now have a shield in the first three and a half minutes, which also grants gold to nearby heroes hitting it.
Another modification targeted the infamous feeding Diggie strategy as killing an enemy hero consecutively gives 30 EXP and 50 gold.
These major tweaks are expected to shake up the MPL-PH standings, with eight big matches to be played in Week 6.
Undefeated BREN Esports (7-0) will take on No. 2 Omega (5-3) in Group B tomorrow at 6 p.m., with BREN only needing a point to secure a playoff spot. Crowd favorite Execration (3-3) will look to lock up a playoff slot against the winless Blu Fire (0-9) in Group A at 7:30 p.m.
On Saturday, two-time defending champion and Group A leader Aura PH (7-1) (formerly known as Sunsparks) will clash against No. 2 Blacklist International (4-3) at 6 p.m., right after the Group B tussle between Omega and Cignal Ultra (3-5) at 4 p.m. Last season’s runner-up ONIC PH (5-3) will square off with Group B cellar-dweller BSB (1-7) at 7:30 p.m.
Capping off the week is an explosive triple-header on Sunday headlined by the match between BREN and Nexplay Solid (4-5) at 6 p.m. Blacklist will battle BSB at 4:30 p.m. while ONIC will duel Execration at 7:30 p.m.