If I remember correctly, you correctly predicted the creation of Aether Wisp before it happened. Why was that item needed at the time? I checked back in Patch Notes 4.5, it was only used for 2 items, with Censer added later in 4.10.
2 items is enough to call it a pattern. Before the shenanigans with free CDR out of nowhere on Adaptive Helm, Abyssal Mask and the new Banner of Command, there was no such a thing as "stats out of nowhere" on the Tier 3 item. Right now we have the free CDR and also the %MS on Trinity Force, which is a remnant of the Zeal component.
Basically the idea is that completion of the Tier 3 item shouldn't provide such a steep power spike. Riot said it themselvs the final items should be all about the special effect (hence identical statlines on some new item sets such as Kircheis, LW upgrades, Cowl items, and now even Duskblade).
I was also lobbying for better access to MS on items for mages, to match Zeal stacking. Riot actually did it with Luden's Echo, so that's nice. What's not nice is that I wanted more MS for immobile mages, not assassins :D
I'm not sure I follow. Lich bane and Twin Shadows existed for years before the introduction of Aether Wisp. There was also Frozen Heart gaining 10% CDR out of nowhere. So why would they bother finally implementing Aether Wisp after living with those oddities for years?
But whatever. My question had an ulterior motive. I'm working on some rework to Mage items, in order for them to have more structure and more logical build paths.
Like, if you look at ADC, you have Core Items built out of BFSword, Multipliers based on Zeal, Defensive based on Vamp Scepter, and the Last Whisper family. Each component has a clear purpose and solve a specific problem in early to mid game, and you can delay your choice of what full fledged item you want until later into the game, where you actually have more information to choose the right special effect according to the situation at hand.
This kind of structure is totally lacking for AP items, though, and I'm trying to solve that, but there is an over abundance of components with no clear purpose, and no real "family" for the full items.
My goal isn't to provide entirely new items, just organize the current ones more logically. Stuff like: "you want to trade regularly in lane? Buy a Hextech Revolver. You'll decide later if you prefer bigger procs on your basic attack (Lichbane) or procs on your spells instead (Ludens)." or "you know you can't win lane, so you just want to weather the storm and wait for teamfights? Take a Catalyst, and you'll decide later if you want more defensive utility (GLP) or some playmaking potential (Protobelt)". Obviously, it's easy to have a few isolated ideas that make sense, but putting everything into a cohesive whole is where it gets tricky.
Anyway, Aether Wisp is one such component without a clear purpose, it's just stats, and I was considering removing it entirely and keeping only Blasting Wand. Maybe even removing Needlessly Large Rod, as it's not clear why we should need two big AP components, possibly adjusting the numbers on Blasting Wand. AD just have Long Sword and BFSword, why should AP get 3 different tiers. What do you think? (Mostly about Aether Wisp, but I'm interested if you have some ideas about NLR too ^^)