I'm Gentleman Gustaf, and today, I'll be going with a slightly different style of post. Normally, my articles are about choices you should make. In this case, however, my post is more true to where I see my roots: information. My previous post prompted an argument about burst and damage, so I thought I'd make a quick chart of every (ok, I may have missed one or two) AP Carry, and make some graphs about their potential damage. So without further ado, let's dive in!
It's important to note that these numbers are not the be-all-end-all of your champion selection. No champion (ok Katarina, I'm looking at you!) is purely focused on damage; they tend to have some form of utility built into their kits. This can come in the form of shields, heals, CC, or things like stealth. As well, I have a few caveats:
- The numbers I used all assume PERFECT use of skills. Cassiopeia will miss a poison and not get her Twin Fangs off, Rumble will rarely get the full duration of his Q or his ult, and Brand will rarely get 3 bounces of his ult on one person, so the harder the champion is to maximize, the higher these numbers will be inflated.
- The numbers I used all assume A SINGLE target. The numbers are all provided, so if you want to calculate the dps for multiple targets, the numbers are there. However, a few skills have diminishing returns for multiple hits (like Ahri's W), and these small differences would have forced a number of graphs which would simply make this post uncomfortable to read. As such, use your own judgment in interpreting these numbers.
- There are a number of weird cases which I will address individually. For example, Ziggs E; how many targets? I took a rough estimate that 5 would be a reasonable number to hit, maximally. There may be circumstances where more than 5 might be hit, but while I am assuming perfect use of skills, I am not willing to assume an opponent dumb enough to hit all 11 bombs.
So here's the first graph dump: all champions, organized by Tier ranking as of Elementz last Tier List:
And what do their damage values look like? Well, we have to define a timeframe. Unfortunately, that's a bit harder than you'd think. You see, you can't really calculate spell dps the way you can auto-attack dps. With auto attacks, you get enough off (due to lower cooldowns) that onset time doesn't really matter. Let's say you have a spell with a 1 second cooldown. How many times can you cast it in 1 second? Well, actually, 2 (I mean, there's ping, and animation time, so maybe in 1.2 seconds). That's 2 spells per second. What about in 2 seconds? Well, you get 3 casts, or 1.5 per second. For any given spell with cd x, and any given interval with length t, you can cast that spell 1+ROUNDDOWN(t/x) times, and your dps is (1+ROUNDDOWN(t/x))/t. That is, dps is not a value of actual damage dealt, but of damage dealt per second as duration approaches infinity. With auto attacks, this is less of an issue, but it's huge with spells. On the other hand, we don't really WANT to calculate dps as time approaches infinity, because you don't cast your ult 1/60th of the way every second, you cast it, and then wait 60 seconds. Essentially, the lower your cds are, the better dps calculations model your overall damage. This is why they are very useful for AD Carries. However, most AP Carries have a long-cd ult.
So how do we approximate damage? Well, dps not counting ultimates is a useful value for lane poke, but it's not really what we're looking at. So we want to capture something specific: how much burst does the champion have in t seconds? Unfortunately, any randomly chosen t will screw over some So instead, I have chosen 3 different t-values, 5, 7, and 10:
So what do we notice? For me, these are the selling points:
- Cassiopeia's damage is downright broken. This is something people have known for a long time. But her actual damage will never quite hit her expected damage (and the stun on her ult is reliable against good players).
- Karthus is, of course, the next highest damage. However, what may be worth reiterating is that we are assuming ONE TARGET. Karthus absolutely destroys everybody else in damage, the more the longer the fight goes on. Often times, people think Karthus is OP because his ult changes the game. But his late game dps is, frankly, ridiculous.
- Syndra has crazy insta-burst, but it falls off the longer a fight goes.
- When looking at the top dps champions, we're also looking at people who have a hard time getting all of their damage off: Cass, Syndra, Zyra, Brand, Anivia, Malzahar, Rumble, Viktor, they all have something complicated in maximizing dps. I don't mean that they can miss skill shots, although that's part of it. I mean that their entire kit is made up of damage that can miss, and that if you miss some damage, you lose later damage. If you miss a Brand spell, you may not have the ablaze bonus for future spells. Syndra has to get 7 spheres out. Cass is Cass. Zyra has to manage plants. Anivia has to combo spells. Malzahar can be easily interrupted. Rumble wants to have landed his E to maximize his ult damage (the slow helps). Viktor is the poster-child for unreliability.
- Speaking of Viktor, I did not expect him to be so high (although he falls off as time goes on).
- Cho is pretty high for a beefy guy, and that's with me neglecting the bonus he gets from his ult being true damage. If his spells weren't as shamelessly advertised as GoDaddy.com, and he weren't melee, he'd be downright OP. As it is, this explains why he has remained a strong pick throughout most of the game.
- A lot of very viable mages have low damage, but they bring something else to the fight.
- I missed a few things that I don't really want to go back and change now, like Orianna/Diana's passive.
- I deliberately didn't deal with MR (another thing that would add too many huge graphs to this post). So champions like Karthus who have MR shred would be even higher. Did I mention that Karthus is sort of crazy?
- Same goes for Health; anybody with % health damage will do much more to people with more health.
- Don't shy away from low damage champions. TF is very low on both base damage and AP scaling, but his ult is basically the sexiest ability there ever was, and putting him mid lets him pressure every lane.
In case you're curious, here are the same values, but sorted by AP scaling, not base damage.
Try not to cry at how hard Annie scales with AP.
A previous post by VVinrar discussed how amount of CC played a role in determining Tier List Order. However, damage was swept a bit under the rug, with VVinrar saying that CC or low cooldowns were the contributing factors.
However, the fact of the matter is that looking at cooldowns or AP ratios alone is sort of pointless. Or is it? Turns out, it's not. Even when you adjust the AP and Base damage ratios of champions for their cooldowns, there are still no correlations between damage and ranking. Either this is because the data I am using does not correlate directly with the Tier List (which is a month and a half old), or, as VVinrar had previously proclaimed, CC is king. CC is King (well, and other utility)!
For more of my work:
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