Farewell to Season 2: Surge

Here's Lookin' At You

When Season 2 rolled around they brought out a new summoner spell, Surge. Remember that spell? It sure is not popular! In todays' meta, on-hit effects, attack-speed, and trying to get in a lot of auto attacks don't fit, and they haven't for a long time. Also, who uses both attack speed and AP? Hardly anyone. Turn this thing on and you get huge. It's a red alarm that more damage is being dealt, instead of simply a sound effect and muted visible effect, like when Irelia's W turns on. Even Malph's W has a smaller visible effect.

The crazy thing is that we don't know for sure if they'll even keep it!

 

So in memory or preparation, let's do some number crunching on the AP for everyone's favorite (hah) summoner spell, Surge! Here's a chart showing the number of bonus AP gained for 12 seconds when using Surge, with Ignite compared next to it.

Level Surge AP Bonus Surge AP Bonus with mastery Total Ignite Damage
1 10 11 70
2 14 15.4 90
3 18 19.8 110
4 22 24.2 130
5 26 28.6 150
6 30 33 170
7 34 37.4 190
8 38 41.8 210
9 42 46.2 230
10 46 50.6 250
11 50 55 270
12 54 59.4 290
13 58 63.8 310
14 62 68.2 330
15 66 72.6 350
16 70 77 370
17 74 81.4 390
18 78 85.8 410

 

Strictly AP (Examples: Anivia and Karthus)

For starters the ratio of AP to damage starts at 6.36 at level 1 and ends at 4.78, assuming you got the offensive mastery, and you should if you're taking this ability. At level 18 then, to get the damage equivalent of an ignite you need to have 4.78 points of damage per AP showing. The ratios will really need to stack with 12 seconds, then, eh? And that's at level 18! Again, if you use spells with the equivalent of 4.78 AP in ratios within 12 seconds, you will equal 410 damage. At a lower level it's even harsher.  Oh, and ignite's damage is true damage, and it also reduces healing effects for 5 seconds. So, add a percentage on top of that because your magic damage will be reduced.

A nicely landed Anivia Q and E have 1.0 AP. That's just 2. Her AOE has .25. Doesn't seem worth it, does it? If her Q hits two people perfectly, that's still 3.25. Maybe we should think AOE instead.

Karthus' ult has .6. If he hits all 5, that's 3. His AOE E has .25, and his Q is .6 single target and .3 two targets. At level 6 the ratio is 5.15. This means if he ults 5 people after he surges, he needs to get in just 2.15 more AP ratio's worth of damage. That's 9 ticks of his E, 4 single large Q's, or 7 targets total in a multi-hit lay waste within 12 seconds, or, say, 2 ticks of Defile on two people plus 2 lay wastes on 2 people. (2 x 2 x .25) + (.3 x 2 x 2). The more it surpasses it, the more Surge helps.

Remember to add 10-50% for all of the MR that reduces the damage done. If you don't have the penetration, it just isn't going to work.

Oh, and we have to get Karthus as our example to even make it work. Most AP champs do not have this kind of opportunity to repeat a lot aoe spells in 12 seconds. Cassiopeia might also work...

Strictly Attack Speed (Example: Graves)

With the mastery, you get 40% attack speed for the 12 seconds. That's a big boost. Graves' E gives him 40-80% from levels 1-5 for 5 seconds. Graves' base attack speed is .638 the addition of 40% AS makes for an increase of .255 attacks per seconds. At 12 seconds, if he is attacking nonstop the whole time (unlikely), he'll get three full additional attacks. Some nice footwork and he'll get two more. This doesn't take into the account the ability to move and shoot as AS gives you, which is also nice, but remember, we're comparing it to a ignite, which does not require us to stay.

At level 1, you have to deal more than 70 damage with your additional auto-attacks. At level 18, it has to be more than 410.

Pretty much junk.

Both (Examples: Corki and Jax)

Unlike Graves, Corki has some magic spells he'll be using. If he gets out one bomb and two non-big one missiles on two people each, that's (.5 x 1) + (.3 x 2 x 2) for 1.7 x the AP given from Surge. At level 6, ignite is 170, and Surge is 33. 33 x 1.7 for 56.1 extra magic damage. That's only 114 extra damage from auto-attacks he'd have to get in.

Jax's magic damage is all single target. Q, W, and E have AP ratios of .6, .6, and .7. At level 6, if Jax uses all of them and gets two of his third explosive hits in, that's 2.6 x 33 for 85.8. He'd have to get an extra 84 damage off of auto-attacks to equal an ignite.

Remember though: no healing reduction and the damage isn't true, it's facing armor and MR.

Why you don't take Surge Unless You're Trolling

Surge isn't good because it relies heavily on continued damage for it to be effective. Most fights are hit and run, not outright spammed damage. Few champions use AP and attack speed both. Few times can you manage to get enough AP use to get an ignite off. Under AOE circumstances, Surge will deal more damage in team fights. Why pick the right champ and play harder to capitalize on it? And what about the fact that most of the game isn't teamfights?

So yeah, in case you were wondering: Surge his horrible. This is why.

I seriously ask: was this ability tested? Was the math done on it? What were they thinking?

Best,
Old Man Eyebrows

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108

Comments

  • #5 Dondy1

    I think what makes surge less viable off a choice than Ignite is usually that IF you activate it the effect that you use it is shown extremely obviously. This usually leads to people simply kiting you until the effect wears off. Taking another summoner just to make use of surge (ghost) is kinda expensive and makes it really hard to use, since you waste two summoners for one.

    On the other hand, ignite goes into effect immediately AND is even usefull when it's down (giving you 5 AP/AD).

    Champs surge might be viable on would be something that's harder to kite and uses AS/AP - so it's pretty much only Poppy and Kayle (on the top of my head) but both are quite unpopular.

  • #4 Felsong

    Surge is good on Kayle/ teemo/Jax. That's about it. Altho I don't take it over ignite. I take both.

    Surge+Ignite as Kayle is usually an Easy first blood.

  • #7 FleurDeLiz

    Surge/Ignite as Kayle is a great way to be a free kill whenever your ult is down, and sometimes even when it's up.

  • #12 Felsong

    Its niche spell, that fits a small-medium category of champs. I think we should have more spells like it honestly.

  • #3 Zerglinator

    I think your examples of people who use both are flawed. More accurate examples would be Fizz, Elise, and Diana, or even Varus or Miss Fortune.

    Also, Trojan Horsing.

  • #6 supportking

    lol @ trojan horsing

  • #1 nochange

    I think surge would be a bit more viable if it perhaps had a lower cooldown. Right now it is like 30 seconds less than ignite, is less reliable, and is mitigated by resistances. It doesn't seem like upping the numbers is the right direction to take with the spell. If it had more uptime than live I could see it being used at least situationally.

  • #2 scruftypufty

    agreed, if the cooldown would be let's say 30 + sec lower than ignite i'd actually play my teemo with surge instead of ignite

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