It’s been a while. A very long while. In fact, it’s been such a long while that I have decided I need to completely re-do... well, everything. This list is still really, really, rough and not everything--in fact, nearly nothing sits well with me on it. This is in part due to the fact that as the preseason has just begun, itemization is completely out of whack. The Blackfire Torch, which was the farewell torch has had it’s throne usurped by the Black Cleaver. Well, less usurped, and more combined. From what I hear, they’re going to get married in about a week.
What does that mean for us in this lovely, lovely preseason patch? Your defenses mean nothing! Armor, and to a lesser extent, magic resist, are practically meaningless. Not only are they more expensive, but the sheer amount of flat penetration available means that armor amounts in excess of 300 can be reduced to nearly 50. In fact, in most games, armor is a null stat until it breaches values of 100. This means that gold and item slots are literally being spent on nothing.
In conclusion, until our Riot Overlords strike down this new authoritarian regime, long live our lieges, the fair, the majestic, the Blackfire Cleavertorch!
Incidentally, this actually means that HP is the best defensive stat in the game right now. This means that characters like Lulu, who were already extremely powerful are able to contribute even more, and other characters, like Renekton, who was not viable because of his inability to effectively build up rage, have begun to weasel their way into the scene.
This is something of a catch-22, however. Because armor is worthless, magic resist is harder to get, and health is the new go-to defensive mechanism, this further empowers an already dominating item: the Blackfire Torch. For this reason, characters who are able to effectively apply many, many stacks of this foul item have perpetuated themselves into the highest tiers of desirability. A single mushroom from Teemo (though he has more recently become known as the God-King of Yordles), for example, can easily drop 1400-1500 health, at which point the poor victim becomes easy fodder for the rampant AD assassins like Kha’zix and Talon.
Thus, the optimal itemization path is clear: build damage. In some ways, Dominion has become more of a twitch based shooter than anything else for the damage values on absolutely everyone are so high. In many cases, the first player to begin inflicting damage will be able to win that duel, regardless of positioning.
Fortunately, in the next patch, itemization will be fixed. Until such a time, have fun with perhaps the most static itemization metagame that League of Legends has ever seen.
Top Picks / Bans - Teemo, Kassadin, Kha’zix, Jayce, Lulu, Pantheon, Wukong, Ezreal, Amumu, Poppy, Jax, Rumble, Darius, Xin Zhao, Nunu, Malzahar
Frequently Picked / Sometimes Banned - Maokai, Brand, Riven, Lee Sin, Jarvan IV, Singed, Blitzcrank, Olaf, Swain, Garen, Diana, Annie, Ahri, Zyra Malphite, Renekton, Rammus, Sona, Talon, Nidalee, Alistar, Yorick, Kayle, Janna, Urgot, Evelynn, Katarina, Elise, Miss Fortune, Rengar, Nocturne, Fiora, Morgana, Syndra, Hecarim, Mundo, Ryze, Fizz, Taric, Trundle, Ziggs
Sometimes Picked / Rarely Banned - Vayne, Le Blanc, Fiddlesticks, Karma, Leona, Orianna, Corki, Warwick, Nami, Kog’Maw, Cassiopeia, Lux, Twisted Fate, Vladimir, Varus, Gragas, Mordekaiser, Sivir, Shaco, Twitch Udyr, Akali, Skarner, Irelia, Gangplank, Caitlyn, Cho’Gath, Graves, Galio, Nautilus, Tristana, Shen, Master Yi, Soraka, Ashe, Anivia, Heimerdinger, Udyr, Shyvana, Karthus
Never Played - Tryndamere, Nasus, Volibear, Kennen, Xerath, Zilean, Draven, Sion, Veigar, Viktor, Sejuani
Stay Positive Tier - POOTERSS
HUEHUE Tier - Wawix, I love this guy so much.
Hard to Place on a Team - Elementz. Just kidding -- the king of the Bench returns! Grats, Cody, you’ve hitting harder than Rocky as of late!
I am actively looking for support and ideas in putting together the new, updated list for Season 3. The fundamental problem with any tier list in League of Legends, or any other MOBA for that matter, is the sheer number of intangibles. Thus, how does one quantify what is impossible to quantify?
In the current state of the game, nearly everything has a counter*. Thus, the inherent value of any one character is in a constant state of flux based on the team which you have assembled yourself, and the team which the enemy has assembled. Even if one were to eliminate that constraint, different styles of play mesh together in such a way that most things can still be beaten.
For example, an AoE team will any equal footed teamfight against a team that has opted to bring more single target damage to the field, provided they can drop down all of their AoE down at the same time. However, a team which opts to bring more single target damage will defeat an AoE team if they can pick people off with their high single target damage burst, or force the enemy team to expend some of their cooldowns in order to survive.
For this reason, in previous renditions of the tier list, Talith and I based as much as half of place value on how strong of a pick certain champions were: that is, tier-1 contained champions that rarely made it past the ban phase, and if they did, they were snatched up quickly. However, CaptnBuwberry, for example, was able to utilize characters like Swain to such a potential that many of those tier-1 pickups were unable to do their jobs.
Post-ramble, I suppose that I can condense of all of this down to a few sentences: Please comment on the following -
- What is misplaced?
- Given the multitude of intangibles and variables, what should the placement criteria be?
- Why am I a wonderful human being?
* “HAHAHA, ELALYA, WE ARE KASSADIN AND TEEMO AND WE MOCK YOUR STATEMENTS INDEFINITELY!”
-Kassadin and Teemo, OP Convention, Winter 2012.
And as always, if you have any questions for me about specific placement or general advice on anything, just shoot me a comment below. I get back to as many as I can.
Thanks for sticking with me and reading!
About the Author -
Elalya is a really cool cupcake. She plays for the Blind Pick Banditos in the DominateDominion tourney, hosted each Saturday at 1700 PST. She also enjoys cupcakes, kittens, and running track. She is currently attending UC Berkeley, and loves eating food. All in all, she is arguably the perfect human being.
The Blind Pick Banditos' DominateDominion Record -
- Dominate Dominion #02 Champions
- Dominate Dominion #04 Champions
- Dominate Dominion #10 Champions
- Dominate Dominion #12 Champions
- Dominate Dominion #13 Champions
- Dominate Dominion #14 Champions
- Dominate Dominion #15 Champions
- Dominate Dominion #21 Champions
- Dominate Dominion #26 Champions