Solo Queue Heroes: December 2012

Welcome to Solo Queue Heroes, a new feature. Today I'll be discussing some of the champs that I feel are doing really well in solo queue right now and why, with a focus on champions that didn't use to do well and now do, or champions you might not have considered. With Season 3 changes well underway I feel it's a good time to highlight who some of the pub stompers are right now.



Remember those “Talon mid” idiots? They are not so idiotic anymore. With Black Cleaver and host of other lovely damage items, Talon can now much more effectively jump on someone and kill them immediately, like he’s designed to. He can even do this if he gets behind now, whereas before if you started to lose, you couldn’t do anything for the rest of the game. Don’t take him lightheartedly.


She is not as frustrating as the pre-DFG nerf phase as last season, but she pretty strong stiil. The penetration and burst options, such as the better (but not retarded) DFG and Liandry’s, helps a lot. Even more, people are a little more lazy about map awareness because there are more wards. But Eve doesn’t care about wards, does she? 


Shrooms are going to be nerfed soon. Oracle nerf is a huge buff to him. No one is willing to buy it against him. Hybrid masteries are easier to set up. On-hit and attack-speed hybrid items that no one else cares about are better on him. He’s banworthy. He’s winning a lot of games out of laziness right now.


Subtly buffed by his Q range, I feel he benefits more from the bottle, and his penetration bash makes him hit a lot harder. He just seems more bursty and like it's easier for him to get to that smash your entire team hard phase. 


A lot of people are bad with him. But he has the ability that he had in Season 1 to really wreck a jungler’s day. Counterjungling is harder than it was in Season 2, but not for Shaco, putting him comparatively much farther ahead at simply owning in the jungle. If you can learn him, you can climb the ranks simply by repeatedly murdering the jungler, then aggressively killing lane towers.


Like Talon, this guy can burst down almost anyone, and with ease. The Black Cleaver nerf has helped the game but Pantheon still can use it to great effect. He’s great in mid as an AD-based Twisted Fate that can simply snowball the other lanes, he has a stun, and he has a lot of great matchups now. Penetration, Black Cleaver, other new items, flask, the damage/armor cost adjustments…all are in his favor.


Kayle’s double-shred passive and her high single-target damage and decent aoe damage make her a much better jungler, and she is still great at top. I don’t even have to try hard to get much damage done, even with minimal items. She’s also a great support in certain matchups and can easily burn down carries and supports in early level fights.

Xin Zhao

Xin’s passive hits a lot harder. I’ve played some armor pen Xin’s in Season 2 and in Season 3 and the speed with which he bursts someone down between levels 3 and 9 when people have low or moderate armor is crazy.


Wards are so much more common now, especially at bottom lane. Oh well, guess I’ll gank from golems again, whatever.


See above, though not quite as strong or easy. A few Rammus’ have crept in my games and I feel he has an easier time than he used to. While I wouldn’t say he’s top tier, he’s acceptable now and you can actually survive ganks and skirmishes because other junglers have to get machete and have +13-18 armor as opposed to last season’s 32-37, and you will have +58 armor while your W is on this season instead of 77. You’re both hurting for armor, but they’ll be hurting more.


Like Rammus, needs work, but all the health for cheap is nice for her. She's actually acceptable now as opposed to abysmal. 


I doubt he’ll be picked at top-level play again soon, but his ability to burst and hurt people at bott is much stronger. A lot of supports won’t have the armor from the defense tree, and with easier damage and better penetration he melts a lot harder.

Miss Fortune

If you get a Black Cleaver they will all proc quickly with he ult. Her ult is ridiculously strong at all stages right now; it used to be it would be sneezed at by some fed or buff junglers or tops, but that's the case much less often now. The premium on MR makes impure shots melt people even faster. 


Let me know what you think in the comments and whether you've got any stories to share about these or other champs. Also, send me your eyebrows! SEND ME THEM!


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