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News New Charts: Ranked Champion Bans

by Ashelia on July 6, 2012
Recently we were able to get the ban information for ranked games. It's always helpful to be able to see what bans players of higher elos are gravitating towards. We've taken the liberty of breaking them down by regions. 
We will be updating these charts weekly so we can get the most data possible!

In General

There were several trends in each region. From a fear of global ultimates to a universal dislike of Ahri, we've broken down the data with some analysis of what's consistent across all three regions:
  • Everyone's afraid of Shen (North America is afraid of Twisted Fate and Europe West is afraid of Karthus as well), proving why global ultimates are being nerfed next patch. Split pushing is hard to counter at any elo in a PUG situation.
  • Alistar is known as one of the better supports and junglers, and as supports like Janna and Soraka get hit with nerf after nerf, he only gets stronger in bot lane and banned more.  Plus you can't milk those--nor can you gank him easily, he's the king of zoning and protecting his AD carry from early aggression. It is worth noting that our champion popularity charts show him and Soraka neck in neck for popularity contests, but she's not banned out like he is. She's a lot easier to counter, though, and arguably not quite as useful in a team fight where Alistar's CC reigns supreme.
  • June's MLG was a tournament where Malphite top became mainstream. The bans reflect that: every region is trending toward banning him out. No top laner wants to deal with him and no AD carry wants to experience a Malphite sticking to them on a fight.
  • Morgana is a popular ban for all regions, but especially in Nordic East where she's the #1 ban, eclipsing even Shen. She's been an easy ban in any elo for a long time now; her ultimate is devastating in team fights especially combined with Zhonya's Hourglass. It doesn't hurt that she's an extremely good farmer and hard to gank.
  • Speaking of AP mids,  Ahri is a champion that's been consistently strong since her release. Though she's seen slight nerfs multiple times, her ability to escape ganks with her ultimate is tremendous and so is her damage output in teamfights. She also wins most match ups--or at least goes even--and is less counterable than some APs tend to be.
  • Everyone's afraid of Nautilus. He looked deceptively weak on release, not being too popular, and then everyone learned how to play him. His ganks are almost guaranteed kills if he can land a hook and his ultimate is great for disrupting the enemy in team fights as well as catching a person out of place.
  • Lastly, no region wants to deal with Darius. His ultimate is strong and he's a champion prone to snowballing. He's useless when he's not fed, but that rarely happens. Top lane is notorious for tilting hard in the other team's favor once one of the laners gets a kill--especially when that kill goes to a Darius--and that may be why Darius is being banned out.

North America

North America's bans shows a prevalent fear of the all-mighty "hook city"--Blitzcrank and Nautilus. Alone, either champion is notorious for fight winning  plays. Together, both champions can CC a team for an entire fight and kidnap players to automatically make any fight a 4v5. They also both are easy to misuse, especially Blitzcrank, who is famous for landing a grab on that Amumu--you guys wanted to lose the fight anyway, right?
NA players are also still fearful of Shaco and the disruption he can wreak on early to mid game with his ganks. He's also a strong split pusher. Much like Blitzcrank, Shaco can either be really good or really bad--so it makes sense he's banned out. No one wants to play with a bad Shaco and no one wants to play against a good one, so why not save yourselves the trouble at champion select by banning him out.

EU-West

EU-West's bans show some interesting champions other regions don't: Urgot and Karthus.
Urgot is an extremely difficult bot lane to beat and his swaps are great initiations in team fights. Karthus is a good farmer and his ultimate is annoying at best and deadly at worst; he also can become a game winning champion if the game goes on too long and his ultimate gets extremely powerful allowing him to hyper carry.

EU-Nordic

Kassadin comes up as the sixth most popular banned champion on EU-NE. He fell out of popularity somewhat after the blue buff changes a few months ago, but he's still a pretty solid counter to some mids, especially for shutting down a hyper carry liike Karthus--he's seen some tournament play recently at MLG, too.
Lee Sin is also banned out in EU-NE. He's a strong jungler, especially in early game where his ganks often lead to a first blood. He is one of the more popular champions, too. He's also a very annoying top lane, so he's a good pick if you don't want to reveal what role you have with your first pick.
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