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The Psychology of Solo Queue - Priming

By Rilea

 

This week, I’m going to take a look at breaking down some of the psychology of solo queue. League of Legends is an extremely complex game, and your mindset is an important aspect of this. Using psychological knowledge and theories, there are some steps you can take to improve your mindset in game, such as using the priming theory.

 

What is Priming?

 

Priming is the theory of making somebody think in a certain way, which subconsciously affects their behaviour. For example, one study found participants took longer to walk to an elevator after listing either words associated with the elderly (such as “lonely” and “slow”) compared to listing neutral words. The participants had been primed to think like an elderly person, and this unconsciously affected their behaviour to walk slowly (Bargh, Chen & Burrows, 1996).

 

 

Another study found participants who were primed to think like a professor answered more general knowledge questions correctly compared to participants who had been primed to think like a secretary (Dijkssterhuis & van Knippenberg, 1998)

 

How is priming used in League of Legends?

 

One of the most frustrating instances of priming I experience in solo queue is when somebody has been searching up our opponents, and types in chat about the insane win rate an enemy has on the champion they are playing. Not only does it instantly put people in a negative state of mind if they know they are against a very strong opponent, it primes teammates into having a losing mentality, and this subconsciously affects their play.


My advice is to simply not look up the information, and more importantly, not share it with your team. Conversely, you can also prime you team into a positive mindset, by typing how confident you’re feeling about the game or how certain your team will win the game; it may seem silly, but subconsciously, it can greatly benefit your team’s play!

A redditor investigated a similar experience after priming a teammate to believe x player is bad, causing the teammate to flame x player, before revealing x player was in fact the redditor - read more about it here

 

Final thoughts


Psychology plays a huge, yet undervalued, role in League of Legends, and the priming effect is one such example. Remember to avoid negatively priming your teammates, and instead, positively prime them into a winning mentality!

 

 

Rilea is a Diamond Support Player and a Psychology student, you can follow him on twitter by clicking here

Patch 7.12 Rundown: Doran Item Nerfs

Patch 7.12 changes brings us a ton of focus on Support Itemization and some champion rebalancing. Enchanter Supports are now rewarded for building their usual items, while Tank Supports will prefer going for items such as Locket and Knight's Vow. This Patch should reduce the prevelance of Redemption and Locket on every support as an almost mandatory two core item build.

 

Check out the full changes below and in our other post to get ready for the patch to hit live:

Items

 

Locket of the Iron Solari

 
  • Shield changed from 70-665 (at levels 1-18) to 65-434 (+2%~36% of your bonus health) (at levels 1-18)

Redemption

 
  • Health reduced from 300 to 200
  • Health regen decreased from 75% to 50%
  • Mana regen increased from 125% to 150%
  • Heal decreased from 65-490 (level 1-18) to 30-370 (level 1-18)
  • NEW: Redemption’s heal amount is affected three times as much by heal and shield power amplifiers
 

Zeke's Convergence

 
  • Name change Zeke's Harbinger ⇒ Zeke's Convergence
  • Total Cost increased from 2250 gold to 2400 gold
  • Ability Power decreased from 50 to 0
  • Armor increased from 30 to 60
  • Magic Resist increased from 0 to 30
  • Passive: Casting your ultimate near your ally surrounds you with a frost storm and ignites your ally’s basic attacks for 10 seconds (45 second cooldown). Enemies inside your frost storm are slowed by 20% and your ally’s attacks burn their target for 50% bonus magic damage over 2 seconds.
  • Passive Frostfire Covenant: Basic attacking a burning enemy ignites your frost storm to deal 40 magic damage per second and slow by 40% for 3 seconds.

Athene's Unholy Grail

 
  • Ability Power decreased from 40 to 30
  • Mana Regen increased from 75% to 100%
  • Cooldown Reduction decreased from 20% to 10%
  • Blood Earn Rate increased from 20% of premitigation damage dealt to champions to 25% of premitigation damage dealt to champions
  • NEW: Grants 5 ability power for every +25% base mana regen
  • No longer grants +25% base health regen for every +25% base mana regen

Banner of Command

 
  • Now Grants 125% Health Regen
  • No longer grants 400 Mana
  • Passive - Point Runner: Builds up to 20% bonus movement speed over 2 seconds while near turrets, fallen turrets, and Void Gates.

Knight's Vow

 
  • No longer grants +100% base health regen
  • Now Grants 10% Cooldown Reduction

Righteous Glory

 
  • Now Grants 30 Armor
  • Now Grants 10% Cooldown Reduction
  • No longer grants Catalyst of Aeon’s Eternity passive
  • Slow nova now automatically triggers if an enemy champion is within close proximity
  • Slow nova can no longer be manually triggered early

Glacial Shroud

 
  • Combine cost decreased from 350 to 250
  • Total cost decreased from 1000 to 900
  • Armor decreased from 25 to 20
 

Raptor Cloak

 
  • Total cost decreased from 1200 to 900
  • Armor decreased from 40 to 30

Talisman of Ascension

 
  • Total cost decreased from 2400 to 2200
  • Combine cost increased from 350 to 450

Doran's Ring

 
  • Mana return when killing minions is now UNIQUE

Doran's Shield

 
  • Cost increased from 400 to 450

 

If you'd like to check the full changes, make sure to click here for the official Patch Notes

 

Patch 7.12 Rundown: Champion Changes

Continuing our Patch 7.12 changes, listed below are the numerous changes to champions for the upcoming Patch.

 

Check out the full changes below and in our other post to get ready for the patch to hit live:

 

Champion Changes:
 

Camille


Passive cooldown reduced. Q2 damage increased.

What's New:

Adaptive Defenses (Passive)

  • Cooldown decreased from 20/15/10 seconds to 16/13/10 seconds

Precision Protocol (Q)

  • Delayed Second Hit Damage increased from 180% to 200%

Corki


Attack speed slightly up. Base AD slightly up. Autos do more magic damage rather than physical.

What's New:

Base Stats

  • Base Attack Speed increased from 0.625 to 0.638
  • Base Attack Damage increased from 56 to 58

Hextech Munitions (Passive)

  • Basic Attack Damage changed from 50% physical, 50% magic to 20% physical, 80% magic

Valkyrie (W)

  • Phosphorous Bomb and Missile Barrage can now be buffered during Valkyrie's travel time

Ivern

E damage decreased.

What's New:

Triggerseed (E)
  • Damage decreased from 60/90/120/150/180 to 50/70/90/110/130

Jax


W now grants bonus range.

 

What's New:

Empowered Strike (W)

  • If Jax uses Empowered Strike to empower a basic attack, it gains 50 extra range

Jhin
 

Q base damage down but scaling up. R base damage up.

What's New:

Dancing Grenade (Q)

  • Base damage decreased from 50/75/100/125/150 to 45/70/95/120/145.
  • Ratio increased from 30/35/40/45/50% Total AD to 40/45/50/55/60% Total AD

Curtain Call (R)

  • Base damage per shot increased from 40/100/160 to 50/115/180

Karma

 

E shield decreased. Mantra’d E shield on secondary targets decreased.

What's New:

Inspire (E)

  • Shield Decreased from 70/100/130/160/190 to 70/95/120/145/170

Defiance (R+E)

  • Shield on secondary targets reduced from 50% primary target’s shield to 30% primary target’s shield

Kindred
 

Base attack damage up. E mana cost down.

What's New:

Base Stats

  • Base Attack Damage increased from 54 to 57

Wolf's Frenzy (W)

  • Wolf Dash Speed increased from 1200 to 1400.
  • Zone duration now waits to begin counting down until Wolf reaches the cast location. Casting Dance of Arrows during Wolf’s travel time will still grant the reduced cooldown

Mounting Dread (E)

  • Mana Cost reduced from 70 to 50 Mana

Malzahar

 

Q and R damage reduced at later ranks.

What's New:

Call of the Void (Q)

  • Damage reduced from 70/110/150/190/230 to 70/105/140/175/210

Nether Grasp (R)

  • Beam Damage reduced from 125/250/375 to 125/225/325
  • Beam Ratio reduced from 115% AP to 110% AP
  • Quicksilver Sash and Mercurial Scimitar now properly purge only the suppression portion of Nether Grasp. Beam damage will continue to tick as long as Malzahar’s target stays in range (1250 distance)

Rakan
 

Passive shield now properly interacts with shield amplifying effects.

What's New:

Fey Feathers (Passive)

  • Now properly benefits from effects that modify heal and shield values (ex. Forbidden Idol line, Windspeaker’s Blessing)

Rek'Sai

 

Base AD up. Armor per level up. W unburrow damage up. R more reliably hits targets.

What's New:

Base Stats

  • Base Attack Damage increased from 55.628 to 57.5
  • Armor Growth Stat increased from 3.4 to 3.75

Un-burrow (W)

  • Ratio increased from 40% Bonus AD to 80% Bonus AD

Void Rush (R)

  • Void Rush is now much harder to dodge. Rek’Sai’s target should no longer be able to walk out of damage range without exceptional amounts of movement speed (or a dash/flash).

Rumble



Heat drains more slowly. Q cooldown higher early, damage increased, now does decreased damage to minions. W shield amount up, duration down. E slow and damage up.

What's New:

Junkyard Titan (Passive)

 

  • Heat Decay Start decreased from 3 seconds (4 if Flamespitter was used) to 4 seconds
  • Heat Decay Rate increased from 0.5 seconds to 1 second
  • Heat Decay Amount increased from 5 per tick for 5 ticks, then 10 per tick to 10 per tick

Flamspitter (Q)

  • Damage to Minions reduced from 100% to 75%
  • Cooldown increased from 6 seconds at all ranks to 10/9/8/7/6 seconds
  • Base Damage increased from 75/135/195/255/315 to 135/180/225/270/315
  • Ratio increased from 100% AP to 110% AP

Scrap Shield (W)

  • Shield Duration decreased from 2 seconds to 1.5 seconds
  • Shield increased from 50/80/110/140/170 to 80/110/140/170/200

Electro Harpoon (E)

  • Base Damage increased from 45/70/95/120/145 to 60/85/110/135/160
  • Slow increased from 30/40/50/60/66% to 30/40/50/60/70%

Xayah

 

Can’t attack while casting Q, W cooldown increased.

What's New:

Double Daggers (Q)

  • Xayah can no longer basic attack while Double Daggers is firing

Deadly Plumage (W)

  • Cooldown increased from 16/15/14/13/12 seconds to 20/19/18/17/16 seconds

Zac



W and E damage reduced

What's New:

Unstable Matter (W)

  • Damage decreased from 40/55/70/85/100 to 30/45/60/75/90

Elasting Slingshot (E)

  • Damage decreased from 480/130/180/230/280 to 60/110/160/210/260
 

 

 

If you'd like to check the full changes, make sure to click here for the official Patch Notes

 

 

What Does a League of Legends Analyst do?

By Cody 'Avin' Gerard

 

What on Earth Does a Professional Analyst do?

 

Analysts, they’ve become commonplace everywhere from the highest levels of competitive League of Legends such as LCK and LCS, to the national leagues of regions like Europe and Latin America South. Yet, despite the now almost total prevalence of this position across all high-level League of Legends, the role remains somewhat poorly defined in the public eye.

So, what does an analyst do? Most fans probably have an image of someone burying their head in massive amounts of numbers, and spitting out almost their conclusions in something that hardly sounds like English, or maybe they have an idea of someone who shouts buzzwords at a team like “rotations,” “wave control,” or “macro play.” While these are undoubtedly part of the most basic frame work of League of Legends analysis, the reality is much more complicated.  I’m going to try to paint the picture of it for you today.
 

Quantitative Analysis
 

To start with, there are two different styles of analyst. In my own work, I lean heavily towards these types one of analysis, so I talked with my friend, Samuel “Arrowhead” Moreno, former Head Analyst of KIYF esports in the Spanish LVP and current Head Analyst of Vega Squadron in the LCL who uses a very different style.

He described his job as “[working] with large amounts of numbers and data and [then having] to give [data] that a useful meaning that can be useful both for players and coach/coaches.”  He continued on to say that, “my basis are numbers and what I do is…make conclusions and recognize patterns in these in game numbers.”

Arrowhead is what I would call a Quantitative Analyst. Quantitative analysis focuses more on the raw numbers. These sorts analysts prefer to cultivate large sets of data and statistics and use the stories and trends found within those numbers to draw their conclusions.

They often collect this data using Riot’s API, which Arrowhead says can yield a remarkable wealth of data,



“When I work with the API I use [it] to pull out individual stats such as Gold and XP minute by minute, total damage to champions and the percentage of every player, [I] also [do] this for the gold. We can make comparatives [sic] between players and the EU/KR average and also [each] player’s role, [as well as] players position on the map. it's usually used for jungle proximity. Also to control support that have roaming tendencies in the early game.”



While collecting this data takes effort, the real skill comes in interpreting it. Anyone can learn to use Riot’s API to collect data, but knowing how parse through and interpret it, then in turn coming to correct and useful conclusions is the hard part. Not only is it does it take lot of work and skill with numbers to sort through this mass of numbers, but it takes a deep and strong knowledge the game to know which numbers mean what, and more importantly what patterns they reveal and what strengths and weaknesses they show.



An example of spreadsheet work from Arrowhead, which tracks the champion by champion solo queue statistics of a professional midlaner.

 

Gameplay Analysis
 

While Arrowhead’s approach is effective, I’ve largely preferred to use a different approach in my time as an analyst for Baskonia Esports, also of the Spanish LVP. I’m what I would describe as a qualitative or gameplay focused analyst. I prefer to watch VoDs, scrims, and even solo queue matches, to draw my conclusions then use numbers to either prove or disprove my conclusions. If the numbers do not line up, I then go back to the VoDs to see what I missed or got wrong.
 

While gameplay focused analysis is often not as easy to prove or backup as quantitative analysis, it does have the benefit of having its results based directly in what can be observed through gameplay. This means that the data is not only more relatable to what the players and coaches are actually seeing, but it is also more flexible. It can be not only be easier to identify patterns within slight deviations, but it can also be easier to view the game from a macro strategy perspective.

Instead of seeing the numbers, which often only show the end result, you get to see the push and the pull, the rotations, the warding, the plays, the mistakes, all the things that might lead to a massive team fight win, or a sneaky baron, or even something as small as a lane advantage or blue buff steal.
 

As well, gameplay focused analysis allows you to focus on certain numbers when you reference them. Now, this can be risky as it can sometimes cause you to overlook at certain stat that might help you or even occasionally contradict what you think you’ve seen, but mostly it allows you to focus on the numbers and statistics that you know can either prove or disprove your conclusions. The latter case is usually very frustrating, but often leads to you learning more than you thought you would have found in the first place.  
 

The biggest key to being a good gameplay analyst, much like a quantitative analyst is a strong knowledge of the game. This is necessary to spot the “rights” and “wrongs” of gameplay when you are reviewing competitive VoDs or scrims. That being said, the supplementary skills are much different. Instead of a strong understanding of statistics and numbers, you need to have the ability to quickly and confidently identify patterns, then figure out ways to exploit or play around those patterns. Additionally, you need an eye for detail in order to recognize the more subtle flaws in team’s game play as, when playing vs high level competition, the exploitation of these little flaws can be the difference between winning and losing.
 

What Analysts can do for a Team
 

Both sets of analysis have their merits, and actually complement each other quite well when done in conjunction with each other. When both are applied right, the data and conclusions they yield can be invaluable to a team. Analysts can do a variety of things. One of the most common things I have done is construct scouting reports about opposing teams. These reports contain information about the strengths, weaknesses and tendencies of an opposing team, as well as strategies, synthesized from the data, which should give a team an upper hand.
 


"Tracking Jungle Pathing is one of the many things an analyst can do to scout the opposing team"


Another major part of just about any analyst’s job is understanding the meta, particularly how it shifts with each patch. This can mean doing a bunch of math to understand how a change to an item or champion will affect their damage, tankiness, utility etc. It can mean breaking down the overall changes and predicting resulting meta shift, per say from a control mage meta in the mid lane to an assassin meta, or simply reordering tier lists around the myriad buffs and nerfs that happen in any given patch.

Lastly of course, analysts can help a team itself improve. The massive troves of data analysts collect, can help teams identify weaknesses that are not immediately obvious to the naked eye. As well, when sitting in on scrims or watching real matches, an analyst with a detail oriented mind can pick out mistakes or bad decisions, point them out to the players or coaches and let them know what needs to be done to fix them and/or what should have been done instead.

This variety of things that an analyst can do, as well as the raw value of any data or observations they may make, turn them of various kinds into critical assets for any League of Legends team hoping to compete at all levels of professional play.

 


Written by Cody 'Avin' Gerard

You can follow him on Twitter by clicking here

Pro Tier: Return of the Prince - Jarvan IV

For Jeon "Ray" Ji-won, it might just be another Jarvan IV lock in, one of his most played champions in his competitive career. But what was a pocket pick for Cloud9’s top lane sub has now become one of the most prominent meta picks in that lane.

Itemization now is very different from Ray’s earlier full AD Jarvan builds however. The Exemplar of Demacia will usually go for builds that feature items with more defensive stats, with an offensive 2 core to back it up.

Jarvan’s kit didn’t undergo any major changes to push him to the spotlight. The 7.7 changes to his shield were obviously a nice bonus for teamfighting, given that he gains a stronger shield depending on how many enemies he hits.

With that said, that buff alone wouldn't be enough if his laning, itemization and comp versatility weren't all in a very good spot currently, let's have a look.

 


Itemization changes and his Build

 

Typically, Jarvan’s build includes a Black Cleaver and a Titanic Hydra as the two core items, which give Jarvan plentiful damage, cooldown reduction, wave clear and a ton of health. With these two items, Jarvan hits a really strong power spike during the mid game.

While both of these items are seen as offensive purchases, the health they grant is enough to make Jarvan durable in skirmishes while he then itemizes for resistances to compliment what defensive stats he already has.

The introduction of Gargoyle Stoneplate in midseason fits this build perfectly. With 950 bonus health all Jarvan IV needs for the mid game is resistances, and what’s better than 40 of each, doubled when facing 3 or more opponents.

In addition, the damage reduction active (even though it states it increases health it effectively works as damage reduction - click here to learn more) is perfect for his play pattern in teamfights.

 

Gargoyle Stoneplate Cost: 2500 +40 Magic Resistance +40 Armor

UNIQUE Passive - Stone Skin: If 3 or more enemy champions are nearby, grants 40 bonus armor and 40 bonus magic resistance.
UNIQUE Active - Metallicize: Increases maximum health by 40% and increases champion size, but reduces the damage you deal by 60% for 4 seconds. If Stone Skin is active, instead increases maximum health by 100% (90 second cooldown).  
   



Jarvan IV has a lot of upfront burst in his kit. He initiates with his flag and drag combo (Demacian Standard + Dragon Strike) and then follows up with damage from his Cataclysm, first auto attack that will activate Martial Cadence and Titanic Hydra’s active.

After that he runs out of juice and needs to wait for his cooldowns to come back up, which is a perfect time to activate Stoneplate to buy time and tank up all incoming damage until his cooldowns come back up.

 

 

Top Lane Meta


Currently, the most popular picks include Galio, Shen, Gragas as the other 3 most picked top lane champions. Jarvan typically does well in lane and can then even split against these champions, as the armor shred from Dragon’s Strike and Black Cleaver can add up to close to 44% of an opponent's armor. This is useful both for dueling in a side lane and in teamfights, as armor reduction affects any source of physical damage to a target.

 


Versus carry matchups it’s a whole other story. Jarvan can’t stay in the side lane against Kled or Fiora from mid game onwards unless he’s significantly ahead, but he can lane just fine. Against Kennen and Rumble he might get pushed in, but Dragon Strike and Demacian Standard give him tools to farm from a distance and with Doran’s Shield it becomes hard for these two champions to punish his laning.
 

 

Overall, Jarvan is a solid blind pick, he does well versus most tanks and can hold his own against carries.

In addition, the need for a tankier AD pick is sometimes necessary, with the more contested picks in the jungle including AP junglers such as Elise, Zac and Gragas.
 

A Jack of All Trades


Besides being strong against tanks and in general a very decent blind pick, Jarvan is also a jack of all trades in the sense that he can fit multiple roles in a composition.


With his EQ + Ult combo it’s easy for him to force plays while covering a lot of ground, locking down targets, which makes him valuable for pick compositions.

Jarvan is not close to being the best in his role for initiation, damage or tankiness but he’s very respectable in all three of these aspects, which allow him to fulfill the role of the initiator, follow up initiation or simply playing as the back line threat due to his aforementioned upfront burst damage.

 

 

Synergy with Meta Mids

 

Finally and to round up the pick even more, Jarvan is a good fit with the some of the current meta mid laners, for Orianna, he’s a ball carrier facilitating shockwaves and dissonances in teamfights, not to mention the shield to initiate with more room for maneuvering without dying.

 

With Galio mid, he can be the initiator providing the forward position for Galio to follow up on with Hero’s Entrance and with Cassiopeia, Miasma and Cataclysm can completely lock down multiple opponents with no chance of escape.

 

 

A Look At The Upcoming Support Item Changes - Patch 7.12

By Rilea

 

After the introduction of quests for the support role and the improvements to end-game stats, Riot have been giving a lot of attention to supports recently. This trend continues with a slew of changes to many of the support items.

 

Overview


Ricklessabandon shared an overview of all of the changes on the PBE, with some changes being more important than others

 

Redemption

 

Redemption (Current) Cost: 2100 +300 Health +75% Base Health Regen
+125% Base Mana Regen
+10% Cooldown Reduction

UNIQUE Passive: +10% Heal and Shield Power   UNIQUE Active: Target an area within 5500 range. After 2.5 seconds, call down a beam of light to heal allies for 40 (+ 25 per level of target) Health, burn enemy champions for 10% of their maximum Health as true damage and deal 250 true damage to enemy minions (120 second cooldown).

Can be used while dead.   Half effect if the target has been affected by another Redemption recently.
   
   

Redemption (PBE - 7.12) Cost: 2100 +200 Health +50% Base Health Regen
+150% Base Mana Regen
+10% Cooldown Reduction

UNIQUE Passive: +10% Heal and Shield Power   UNIQUE Active: Target an area within 5500 range. After 2.5 seconds, call down a beam of light to heal allies for 10 (+ 20 per level of target) Health, burn enemy champions for 10% of their maximum Health as true damage and deal 250 true damage to enemy minions (120 second cooldown). Heal and Shield Power is 3 times as effective on Redemption's heal.

Can be used while dead.   Half effect if the target has been affected by another Redemption recently.
 
   


I am thrilled to see Riot (finally) adjusting Redemption – it felt strange and wrong to have supports with no heals or shields build Redemption because of how strong the active is. Though I still believe the damage component of Redemption is unnecessary, it’s great to see Riot encouraging the item to be an enchanter-exclusive item by making the heal scale drastically with the number of shield and heal amplifiers you have, and discouraging it from becoming a mandatory item for all supports.
 

Zeke’s Harbinger/Convergence
 

Zeke's Convergence Cost: 2400 +60 Armor
+30 Magic Resistance
+250 Mana
+10% Cooldown Reduction

 

UNIQUE Active - Conduit: Bind to an ally without an existing Conduit.

UNIQUE Passive: Casting your ultimate near your ally summons a local frost storm for 10 seconds. As the storm rages, nearby enemies are slowed by 20% and your ally's attacks burn their targets for 50% bonus magic damage over 2 seconds (45 second cooldown).

Frostfire Covenant - Basic attacking a burning enemy ignites your frost storm to deal 40 magic damage per second and slow by 40% instead for 3 seconds.

 
   

 

Zeke’s Harbinger, now called Zeke’s Convergence, has received the most drastic changes. This is a welcomed change – despite being a fairly good item in protect and buff the ADC comps for enchanters this season, the item has been neglected this season with the introduction of Redemption and Knight’s Vow, and the changes to Ardent Censer.

Zeke’s Convergence can work really well on champions with aggressive/engage ultimates who focus on protecting your ADC, such as Sona and Karma, but doesn’t particularly work with champions with defensive ultimates, such as Janna and Soraka.

Furthermore, the item works best with ADCs with strong burst, such as Jinx and Xayah, and less well with ADCs with an emphasis on poke, such as Ezreal and Corki. The cooldown is reasonable and often matches up with ultimate cooldowns, and the duration is very generous; typically lasting for the majority, if not all, of team fights and skirmishes.
 

Conceptually, it’s fantastic to see Riot provide an alternative item to Ardent Censer to buff ADCs; while Ardent Censer is a great item, the fact its active hinges on the use of shields and heals makes it centred around defensive abilities (though they can be used for offensive purposes).

Zeke’s Convergence, on the other hand, is centred around the use of aggressive ultimates, while also encouraging you to be in the fray. This contrast is fantastic to see, and accommodates for both offensive and defensive playstyles. Finally, Riot has made a great step forward in decision making for support items; the standard build of Redemption, Ardent Censer and Locket of the Iron Solari for enchanter supports has been too predictable for too long.

It’s great to see Riot add another viable option to the selection, forcing supports to adapt to the gamestate and offering a more aggressive, proactive item as opposed to the current plethora of reactive items.

 

Knight's Vow

Knight’s Vow seems to be a fairly underrated item at the moment - it sees some use, but is often neglected in favour of other buffing/protecting items (i.e. Ardent Censer and Locket of the Iron Solari). However, the shift in stats (removal of health regen and the inclusion of 10% CDR) makes this item much more favourable, particularly to the enchanter supports.

 

Knight's Vow (Current) Cost: 2300 +400 Health
+40 Armor
+100% Base Health Regen
UNIQUE Active: Designate an allied champion as your Partner (90 second cooldown). UNIQUE Passive: If your Partner is nearby, gain + 20 additional Armor and + 15% Movement Speed towards them.

UNIQUE Passive: If your Partner is nearby, heal for 12% of the damage your Partner deals to champions and redirect 12% of the damage your Partner takes from champions to you as true damage (healing and damage redirection are reduced by 50% if you are ranged).

(Champions can only be linked by one Knight's Vow at a time.)  
   

Knight's Vow (PBE - 7.12) Cost: 2300 +400 Health +40 Armor
+10% Cooldown Reduction

UNIQUE Active: Designate an allied champion as your Partner (90 second cooldown). UNIQUE Passive: If your Partner is nearby, gain + 20 additional Armor and + 15% Movement Speed towards them.

UNIQUE Passive: If your Partner is nearby, heal for 12% of the damage your Partner deals to champions and redirect 12% of the damage your Partner takes from champions to you as true damage (healing and damage redirection are reduced by 50% if you are ranged).

(Champions can only be linked by one Knight's Vow at a time.)
 
   

 

Locket of the Iron Solari

 

Ah Locket. Even with Riot’s attempt to make it less mandatory with the pre-season changes, it has crept back into every support build, and is once again the standard. The current changes, making the shield scale with bonus health, is another attempt to make it less mandatory, but definitely makes it more favourable for tanky supports, such as Alistar and Braum. Whether the changes are severe enough to make it more situational will be determined with time, but it’s a step in the right direction.

 

Locket (Current) Cost: 2200 +30 Armor
+60 Magic Resist

UNIQUE Active: Grants a decaying shield to nearby allies for 2.5 seconds that absorbs up to 35 (+ 35 per level) damage (90 second cooldown).

(Half effect if the target has been affected by another Locket of the Iron Solari recently.)
 
   

Locket (PBE - 7.12) Cost: 2200 +30 Armor
+60 Magic Resist
 
UNIQUE Active: Grants a decaying shield to nearby allies for 2.5 seconds that absorbs up to 38 (+ 22 per level) (+2%~36% of your bonus health) damage (90 second cooldown).

(Half effect if the target has been affected by another Locket of the Iron Solari recently.)
 
   

 

Closing thoughts

 

With the drastic changes to Zeke’s Convergence, it’s fantastic to see Riot mixing up the support items; for too long, Redemption, Locket of the Iron Solari and Ardent Censer have reigned supreme for enchanter supports. Zeke’s Convergence works well with all kinds of supports, and I look forward to seeing its usage (and the changes to support itemisation) in both pro play and solo queue.

 

 


Rilea is a Diamond Support Player and a Psychology student, you can follow him on twitter by clicking here

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