Damage Analysis - Blade of the Ruined King

Damage Analysis - Blade of the Ruined King

Welcome back to the Thursday edition of #VVinning!  Last week, I released an interactive model for calculating the damage of AD Carries and since I'm pretty proud of my final product, I thought I'd make a few posts in the coming week based on what we get from the model.  Today's post will be examining Blade of the Ruined King and when it is beneficial to build a BotRK against tanky champions as an AD carry.  You should be able to recreate all of the damage results in the public release of the spreadsheet while the graphs inside are from a modified private version that I use myself.

With the patch 3.02 buff to Blade of the Ruined King (40 AD -> 45 AD, 4% -> 5% current health passive), we see some interesting interaction.  Previously, BotRK was generally limited to being a bruiser item...but now, it looks like a viable and optimal offensive item on AD carries.  Although much of the information within this post could also be used in the context of optimizing AD Carry damage, the primary focus is on Blade of the Ruined King.  Read on for the mathcraft!

By now, I hope you guys have begun to assume the obvious for damage calculation assumptions but I'll restate them anyways because I'm nice.  As a sample AD carry, I will be using Caitlyn (typical AD bases and scaling, no steroid) with AD marks and quintessences and all offensive masteries except for Frenzy (bonus attack speed after crit) versus a Cho'Gath with all defensive masteries on, plus flat armor runes and no stacks on his ultimate.  Originally, I thought about including stacks but that would change the results if this was applied to other tanky champions without bonus health scaling.  Health regeneration will not be calculated, and all calculations are made with my AD Carry Interactive Spreadsheet.

There are also several considerations you should take in mind when reading my graph.  Damage over time is based on champion autoattack speed, so if two different item builds kill an enemy at the exact same time, you should check the last damage point to see which item combination actually does more damage.  Statikk Shiv is not in this analysis because its more of a poke-oriented item than pure DPS, which is what I'm focusing on today.  Finally, BotRK's active damage has not been included because I forgot (as hashinshin pointed out to me, everyone forgets it has an active).

For this example, I have used a two level difference between champions to show the difference between an ADC and a solo lane, as well as a Ninja Tabi to represent a champion that will eventually be itemizing against physical damage.  Note that I am using a filled Bloodthirster in this calculation, so kill time may be a little longer than the graph shows if you don't have full stacks.  I have also added extra damage items to the BotRK/BT lines to even out the gold costs.

As a rush item, Blade of the Ruined King has some interesting health interactions.  Versus an enemy with few hundred bonus health, the first major item you buy doesn't make a huge amount of difference in the speed it takes to kill.  While Blade of the Ruined King is actually much more effective than the standard rush items (Infinity Edge and Bloodthirster) while the target is above 50% health, it becomes less effective as the target drops to lower HP levels.  At this price point, your choice of first major offensive item should depend on what you are planning to build, not for early game damage.

As we prepare to buy our second major damage item, we should assume that we have gained a few levels between our first major item purchase and the second.  Both our ADC and solo lane have gained a few levels here and there, and the enemy Cho'Gath has also picked up an extra Runic Bulwark to negate some of the burst from your team's AP carry.  At this point, stacking defensive items in the midgame is still an effective barrier to AD carry kill time, and a properly itemizing tank should take just as long to kill as with the previous price point.

As opposed to the first offensive item choice, which barely changed the kill time on the Cho'Gath, building an additional Phantom Dancer begins to separate the strong offensive choices from the weak.  Bloodthirster starts to fall off here as it is a more sustain-oriented item.  Interestingly enough, Blade of the Ruined King, despite having heavy lifesteal stats, still has the same damage output as Infinity Edge -- which is a purely offensive item.

Note that with this example, Cho'Gath has an extra 1050 health from items.  Depending on the game situation, Infinity Edge may prove to be stronger than BotRK even if you include the active in damage calculations; however, against a tank that is itemizing health (Warmog's!) BotRK may prove to be a superior choice.

The third major offensive item is where the real fun begins!  By this point in the game, any items that the enemy tank itemizes begins to decrease in effective against offensive gains -- now, you should be able to increase kill time on tanks by building additional items.  We'll assume in this example that Cho'Gath hasn't been getting too many kills in teamfights, but has managed to buy a new Glacial Shroud for himself.  Additionally, both Caitlyn and Cho have managed to reach level 18.

As you can see above, the IE-PD-BotRK combination gets you decently strong stats -- not as strong as a pure offensive Last Whisper build, but enough to justify the slightly reduced damage for extra sustain through lifesteal.  Now, let's take a step back.  If we take a Blade of the Ruined King as our first item, it stays relevant in damage to an Infinity Edge up to the 10k price point despite the fact that it gives lifesteal.  It creates some interesting possibilities -- if there are multiple tanks that are stacking Warmog's to stay tanky in teamfights, it might actually be worth it if you can anticipate this and rush BotRK.  Take what you will from this graph, but to me, BotRK is definitely looking a hell of a lot more viable as an AD Carry item rather than being the noob trap it was last patch.

Since I am Captain Hindsight: Gentleman Gustaf would like to point out that the IE-PD-BT combination will give you a kill time of 12.63s, which is approximately the same time as the IE-PD-BotRK combination.

In the rare scenario that the game lasts long enough to build a fourth offensive item, we will assume that Cho'Gath is actively trying to shut down the AD Carry and has upgraded the Glacial Shroud to a Frozen Heart.  Meanwhile, we will be assuming we are making a final offensive choice to round out our damage output.  Since IE-PD was the dominant build in the previous graph, I have included derivation builds from this base below.  Note that kill time is increased from the last graph because of Frozen Heart's passive aura.

At this point in time, the best offensive item, hands down, is an extra Phantom Dancer.  Adding a Last Whisper to the IE-PD-BotRK build or a BotRK to the IE-PD-LW build will get you close to the previous damage point but at this point, it'll probably be more useful to have that extra attack speed and mobility.  A combination of IE/PD/LW/BotRK is the worst choice of all -- by this point, extra AD doesn't help too much and the time-to-kill is much higher than combinations shown in this graph.

Is this the new counter to the Warmog's meta? Intended or not, the new buff to Blade of the Ruined King seems a tiny bit too strong to me.  Previously, this was an item with optimal use limited to bruisers, but now, its decently strong on an AD carry to chunk down tanks while keeping sustain.  While it still doesn't provide quite as much damage as Infinity Edge-based builds on tanks, the damage loss is more than made up by lifesteal -- and don't forget, these graphs don't even include damage from BotRK's active, which will add another 200-odd damage up front.  In cases where you're fighting low health targets, BotRK gives you a sustain and damage point in between that of Bloodthirster-based builds and Infinity Edge-based builds.

Note that all calculations made here were made against a tank who was actively building health items and had a Ninja Tabi, which all happens to help out Blade of the Ruined King.  Against lower health targets, the item obviously isn't as effective, but at the same time, it's still very strong against non-tanks.  The buff to Blade of the Ruined King has made a huge difference in making the item viable -- perhaps, it might even be too strong.  Compare this graph of the 40 AD/4% damage iteration of BotRK to the same graph above.  Damage output has increased by a huge amount and has even made it viable for AD carries.  In the future, if you see one or more Warmog's being built against your team, you should know what to do.



I hope you enjoyed reading today's edition of #VVinning!
Please comment with your thoughts below or join the discussion on reddit!
-- VVinrar

For more of my work:

To contact me, come to the "A DIFFerent View" chatroom (NA) or drop a line at [email protected]




  • #13 corallein

    Your conclusion doesn't seem to match the data? From what it looks like, BotRK does about the same damage as a Bloodthirster (a full stacked one, but it's much easier to keep get and keep full stacks now).

    This isn't taking into account BotRK's active, but nor does it seem to consider Bloodthirster's +55 AD over it and the extra damage that would add to abilities. It also doesn't compare the lifesteal of the two items, which is a point that should also be considered and one that I'm actually not sure which item it favors.

  • #12 imwithn00b

    I like BT because it's effective against towers, but I'll try BotRK :D

  • #11 ordosan

    ahh and here i was hoping for status with at least one warmogs. since people today tend to stack alot of mogs.

  • #9 stealthattack1

    really good article, i was recently looking at this item for builds for a bruiser or assasin, but good to know its viability on ADCs too.  

  • #7 CoolRoot

    On the last graph - if you already have a PD, is it really more efficient to pick up another one than to pick up a SS?

  • #4 ShadowMasterRP

    Correct me if I'm missing something, but Blade of the Ruined King is an item for melee AD champions, is it not?

    A ranged ADC is never actually going to be in range to use its Active (especially not Caitlyn, the longest range ADC in the game).

    As such, if you take Blade of the Ruined King on a ranged ADC, you're wasting gold on the Active, which means you're getting less stat budget for your gold.

    Even if you assume you might need the Active in tight spots to allow you to escape, that's still a huge waste of item budget on a very situational and rarely used Active.

    Why would anyone get an item that's intended to be used by melee bruisers/assassins/fighters to allow them to catch up to fleeing enemies... on a ranged ADC?

  • #5 scruftypufty

    just because you're a ranged hero that doesn't mean your never gona be in a melee fight, what happens if a olaf runs at u? are u still ranged when he's bashing at you? no you aren't you're gonna be thankfull to have this item in that case


  • #10 Jotakob

    heh ,picking olaf here doesnt prove the point, but i agree, as most other bruisers can indeed be stopped by this. imagine jax etc.

  • #6 Jolan

    I have to disagree here. BotRK's active ability is created with the intent that AD carries will use it, due to its effect. It's essentially a self-peel ability. That alone is an extremely powerful tool in the hands of an ADC and I think you're severely devaluing it.


  • #8 darkChozo

    The analysis isn't taking into account the active (see second to last paragraph), so the fact that it may be suboptimal on ADCs doesn't really matter. It's an added bonus to an item that (apparently) is as good as any ADC stat item.

    And, as above, just because you want to be at range doesn't mean you're always going to be. If you get charged by a bruiser, a short-ish range burst+heal+slow+movement speed seems to be exactly what you're going to want to kite.

    Last edited by darkChozo: 2/14/2013 11:06:22 AM
  • #23 xburiedalive

    Wat?  If melee can get into range to use it on the ADC, why can't the ADC be in range to use it on them?

    I've seen plenty of professional ADC's have to kite melee and chase people, you're making an incorrect assumption.

    And I'd back up that "huge waste of an item budget" claim with some hard numbers, because all the data I've seen so far shows that it's an incredibly efficient item without even considering the active.

  • #27 ShadowMasterRP

    Quote from xburiedalive »

    Wat?  If melee can get into range to use it on the ADC, why can't the ADC be in range to use it on them?

    I've seen plenty of professional ADC's have to kite melee and chase people, you're making an incorrect assumption.

    And I'd back up that "huge waste of an item budget" claim with some hard numbers, because all the data I've seen so far shows that it's an incredibly efficient item without even considering the active.

    It could be 10,000% more efficient than any other item, yet it would still be a waste of item budget, because if that Active wasn't there, the item would have more AD/Crit/whatever that's of actual use to an ADC in 99% of all situations (i.e. standing around and auto-attacking while the rest of the team tanks).

    A ranged ADC is nothing more than a glorified walking turret. Getting any items with Actives on a ranged ADC is a waste of stat budget. Even if you were to lose 1 AD to get the Active (not the case, because the budget has to be cut substantially to add any Active, but let's pretend), you'd still be better off with that 1 AD than with an Active.

    Every miniscule amount of base ADC stats is absolutely vital to a ranged ADC. Nothing else matters. Because at the end of the day, you'll die in 3 hits to anyone who actually dives you, UNLESS you have the sheer ridiculous damage to kill them in 2 hits yourself.

  • #32 darkChozo

    Thought experiment. What if IE had an active? Same price, same stats, same passive, but it does something else as well. Let's even make it a dumb active, maybe a targeted 10 + 1AP nuke or something like that. Would it be a worse item? Of course not. It still gives the same stats, costs the same, and you still do the same damage, plus you get an active to use. It's an objectively better item.

    Yes, active effects are generally bad on ADCs because ADCs scale so well off raw stats and actives typically sacrifice raw stats for utility. But in this case, according to the analysis, the stats it gives already make BotRK as gold efficient as other top tier ADC damage items. The active is just a bonus. Sure, it would be even better if the active was roughly equivalent AD or something, but that doesn't make the item weaker as a buy, it just makes it weaker than it could possibly be.

  • #34 ShadowMasterRP

    Quote from darkChozo »

    Thought experiment. What if IE had an active? Same price, same stats, same passive, but it does something else as well. Let's even make it a dumb active, maybe a targeted 10 + 1AP nuke or something like that. Would it be a worse item? Of course not. It still gives the same stats, costs the same, and you still do the same damage, plus you get an active to use. It's an objectively better item.

    If IE had an Active, it would cost more, were it to retain the same stats as now.

    Alternatively, if it retained the same price as now, the same stats as now, and somehow gained an Active, that means its cost efficiency was reevaluated. That in turn means that you could take away the Active and and replace it with more AD/crit/AS.

    Any Active or Passive takes away from the base stats on an item. It has to. That's just how item stat budgets work. As such, there can't be a "free" Active on any item. Even if it were suddenly added without any stat cuts, that means the item could have instead had a stat buff to its primary stats instead of the Active.

    ADCs are already weak as hell early and mid game and must gather as much damage as possible as soon as possible all the way to the end of the game to be effective. The last thing you want to be doing at any point is getting an item that wastes stat budget on an Active.

    Last edited by ShadowMasterRP: 2/15/2013 3:32:35 PM
  • #35 darkChozo

    I think we're mostly on the same page, but the point I'm trying to make is that the fact that it has an active doesn't make it bad. Riot doesn't have a concrete "stat budget" when they make items, they just have guidelines about how much stats should cost, vague estimates about how much effects are worth, and adjustments based on item tier and general meta context. Even then, they have free reign to do whatever they want with the item, which may or may not result in a balanced item.

    In this case, evidence points to BotRK being an item that would be good even if it didn't have an active. You're not really "wasting" money because you're getting the damage you're paying for anyway, as compared to other common AD carry items. The active doesn't detract from that, it just makes the item better than it would be if it just had stats.

    I agree that it would probably be a better ADC item if the active were traded out for crits  or something, but that's a rather pointless comparison to make. Every item could be made better (by the metric of damage for your money) without changing the "item budget" by redistributing stats to better fit the exact combination of AS, crits, and AD to maximize your DPS. The important comparison is between BotRK and other items that you could be buying instead, and that comparison seems to be in favor of the item, or close to it, in spite of the suboptimal active.

  • #3 airbagtelex

    great article, I'm going to start trying this item out over BT. Thanks!

  • #1 RoakOriginal

    Item 3 - BotRK/LW/PD/Greaves aint mentioned, cuz it's even worse, then those u calculated?

  • #2 VVinrar

    forgot to include that item combination yet again, but it gives around the same damage as BT/PD/LW

    Last edited by VVinrar: 2/14/2013 10:44:43 AM
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