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[Vi] An Average Player's Guide to Averagely Punching People in their Average Faces

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Nea De Penserhir

Senior Member


Dispenser here.

The latest addition to the League is arguably the best we've had in a long while. Not for effectiveness, or originality (Punk Chicks punch people. This is not news.), or even for introducing new and exciting mechanics.

She is the best because she incorporates what we, the internet dwelling audience, have desired for the longest time.

The ability to do nothing but PUNCH SOMEONE IN THEIR FACE across the internet, and she talks plenty of smack while doing it.

Vi is, simply put, an amalgamation of awesome. Let us list the ways in which she is awesome.
1. She punches people IN THE FACE.
3. She has several interactions that are pure comedy gold.
4. She shouts "GET DUNKED" when she dunks someone into the ground.

This guide will go over a few common tactics when employing her in various positions as she is quite versatile in what she can do.

Table of Contents

I. The Specs of Vi - Her kit and role.
II. The Natural Habitat of Vi - Where she's most at home.
III. The Gear of Vi - What compliments her ability to punch people in the face.
IV. The Punching of Vi - How to approach different encounters and maximize ability use.

I. The Specs of Vi

Vi at the core is an AD ability based Fighter with a focus on Single Target Damage with some cleaving potential. She possesses the following mechanics;

A) A channeled Charge; more range / damage as it's channeled.
B) A small-aoe mini-disable; A slight knock back connected to her charge.
C) Scaling %health PDamage Sliverbolts style that can stack on multiple people.
D) An empowered Auto Attack reset that has a substantial cone effect.
E) A targeted gap closer with a nuke / stun with a strong knock aside to those in the way.
F) A passive shield activated through ability use.

Her kit is versatile, combining many elements in moderate amounts . She excels at nothing, compared to other champions, but she can fulfill many different needs.

Vi is capable of performing the following tasks
A) Peeling. Two very significant ways to stop someone from killing a high priority ally.
B) Picking. Vi's ultimate ignores all terrain and charges through until she hits someone. it places Vi on the opposite side of her engagement, allowing her to utilize Vault Breaker to push them back a little farther.
C) Bursting. While not phenomenal burst, Vi still packs quite a wallop for the squisher champions, or higher health, low armor champions.
D) Ambushing. Fully charged Vault Breaker can clear almost any wall in the game.
E) Soaking. Her kit as a baseline has enough damage to allow her to build enough beef to take an opening Volley, along with a shield that should have no issue being activated at least twice over most standard team fights.

While capable, it is still best to focus Vi on a single role.
II. The Natural Habitat of Vi

Vi is most at home in the solo lanes or within the Jungle. Her kit is fairly mobile with high sustained damage, both for single target and in small aoe bursts. (Psst. Creep camps.) Her early dueling potential is also significantly higher than most standard junglers, however, champions like Lee Sin and Shaco would likely still be able to invade her with impunity if she is unassisted.

While she has a strong kit with many elements ,she is relegated out of the support role because she still requires gold to scale, and there are not many support friendly items for AD based champions. It is never a good idea to rely on champion kills / assists to stay afloat, and so she is best not used as an offensive support, nor does she have any abilities that might exploit the sightstone.

In a duo lane, she would likely work exceptionally well with Lulu, Janna, or Zyra. Sona, Taric, and Soraka are safer choices.

Like most Fighters with a gap closer, Vi poses a credible threat to most traditional ranged champions, and her toe to toe fighting lets her fight with most Fighters as well. However, it's still too early to know her weak match ups, but I will state from personal play that I find trouble with the following when played well.

-Lee Sin
-Hard CC / Roots ( Cancels Vaultbreaker)
III. The Gearing of Vi

Vi has a fairly standard approach to optimal gearing - As a Fighter, she wants to focus on AD with a mixture of survival stats. However, unlike some Fighters, Vi maintains better than average scaling from attack speed due to Dented Blows. While not a primary focus, having one single item that improves it and other stats (Such as a Wits End or a Triforce) isn't too bad if you're doing well.

There is little reason to deviate from the opening, however, of which you have a few choices.

Safety - Flask, pots, and a ward.
Aggressive - Long Sword + Pots, or Boots + Pots.
Defensive - Cloth + Pots

From there, on your first buy back (or as you get the gold, the first 1500g or so), you want any choice of the following.
A) Brutalizer - Primary choice. ArP, AD, CDR.
B) phage - If you need that health.
C) Hexdrinker - If it's a tough MR match up.

Plus boots. While boots aren't as necessary anymore, they aid in chasing down an enemy and not hindering your speed too much during a vaultbreaker charge.

Your core items on Vi are going to be minimal, at least for now, as she's a champion with many needs but limited slots.

Core Items
Boots - Tabi, Merc Treads, or maybe even Swifties.
Black Cleaver - Health, AD, ArP, CDR. Armor shred works nicely with a few of her ability rotations.

Situational AD Items
Hexdrinker-> Maw of Malmortius. Shields upon shields upon shields.
Phage -> Frozen Mallet / Triforce. For sticking power and durability, or the wtf towercrush
Ravenous Hydra. Hey bro, I heard you liked aoe on your basic attacks, so I put some aoe on your aoe attack so you can aoe while you aoe.

Situational Defensive Items
Guardian Angel - Never a bad choice of an initiator who also deals damage.
Randiun's - If you need that personal protection. Also sticking power.
Atma's Impaler - You can't deeps with health, UNLESS YOU HAVE THIS.
Banshees - Never a bad idea to ignore the first spell that's going to land on you after you charge.

No Bulwark?
Vi is a fairly high priority target. It's not through her disruptive capability that she's a threat but her actual raw damage combined with it. She punches people in the face, and people don't tend to like that.

While the bulwark and other aura items are fairly effective on most Fighters, Vi is among the Fighters with whom it may not be the best idea (at this point in time at least, as everything is still changing) to put too much budget into an item that has most of its efficiency towards aiding your allies. Which requires you to be alive.
IV. The Punching of Vi.

Vi isn't complicated; She's very straight forward. However, like a few other champions, her kit has a few nuances and intricacies for her ability combos. The basic combos are fairly easy.

Basic Combos
Auto, Auto, Excessive Force - A one, two, Denting Blows combo for a quick bit of burst.

Breaker, Auto, Excessive Force - Close the gap (preferably hitting breaker), punch, dented blows punch in short order. Activates your shield, allowing you to retreat back for minimal retaliation.

It's when you start taking into account the mechanics her abilities bring in addition to damage that you can form combos that are a little more interesting.

Vaultbreaker Nuances
-Over rides other charge effects against Vi. Lee Sin's kick, Shyvana's hop. Likely other similar abilities such as Wukong's Nimbus Strike. Further testing for others such as defensive charge against Leona hooking a carry, or Jarvan is needed.
-Applies dented blows regardless of charge time.
-Does a mini-disable regardless of charge time.
-Has a fairly narrow hit-box. Avoid perpendicular charges when able.
-Capable of clearing almost any wall (the thick one near the Tri-Brush

Excessive Force Nuances
-Auto Attack reset
-Long (500ish?) 30 degree cone.
-Increases base attack range to 175.

Assault and Battery Nuances
-Targeted Gap Closer. Moves through Terrain.
-The CC immunity stops once she reaches the target, not after the dunk completes.
-Is awesome
-has a moderately powerful stand-aside knock back.
-places Vi on the opposite side of her engagement

So the first intermediate combo is simply an extension of a basic.

Intermediate Techniques
Breaker, Auto, Excessive Force -. Assault and battery, Auto, Excessive Force, Auto
-A fairly standard "I'm going in for a kill" dueling combination. It's possible to fit one more auto in before the enemy breaks away, but YMMV. A/B puts you between them and their escape, letting you get another three hits through autos and Excessive force with ease.

Auto, Excessive Force, Auto, Auto, Breaker, Auto, Excessive force
-A counter-engage combination when you don't need Breaker to escape. Generally short engagements are common, in which case a basic Auto, EF, Auto is probably as much as you'll get. Someone trying to trade a bit harder, however, will stay in just a second longer and that's all the time you need. With the Denting Blows attack speed, you'll get your next auto quickly. Tapping Breaker builds another stack and gives you the small knock back, which lets you auto and EF quite easily and walk away. With Blast Shield, the trade should be in your favor, if not even.

Flash + Breaker
-YMMV. Flash + Breaker gives Vi a huge initiation range, either for duels or getting this !#% started. Just don't miss.

Well this is all well and good. You'll punch one person real good. But what if you need to do something other than punching?

Vi, as mentioned, is quite adept at taking heat off of other allies as well as applying to her enemies. She has fairly excellent counter-initiation, though it's not the easiest to pull off.

Advanced Ability Use
Through Denting Blows, Vi can hurt even the beefier members of a team for substantial amounts of damage though just auto attacks, so her engagement abilities can be used for other purposes.

Operation: Protect the Carry
Breaker is used to counter engage the enemy team if the allied Carry gets out of position and dived. Her ideal target is the enemy AP or AD carry for the breaker. This will have a varying effect based on how the enemy reacts, but you're generally working up a small delay so that this particular engagement doesn't go as poorly.

If you score the knock back; Good job, that was your intent. Now turn and peel.
-If you score the knock back ~and make them shoot you or run away~, good job, you just did real good. Turn and peel. (Or kill them, if they're squish enough.

You can also use breaker to simply set up an ideal position for a protective Assault and Battery.

Consider this following rule - The quickest way to Point A from B is a straight line. What does Assault and Battery do? Home in on a target and knock aside anyone else in a straight line while also dealing damage.

So if your carry is being dived, you assault and Battery the person directly on them. Position well and you knock one or two enemies aside while doing it. You then dunk the person on them, ~and put yourself between them and your carry~.

Operation protect the carry, successful.

Operation: Jungle Ambush
In the twisting turning lanes of the jungle, Vi's ambush potential is just sexy. There are two approaches to this, one for attacking and defending. Both very similar in the overall effect.

Vault into the enemy front line from over a wall. If you can angle an EF here for maximum damage, go for it; Otherwise, immediately A/B the furthest, squishiest target in range and proceed to rambo your way through the enemy team. Dunk the target, blow your load, and your team should be able to clean up.

Vault into the enemy backline from over a wall. Feel free to hit once or twice if your team isn't in immediate mortal danger. If the enemy carry escapes or allied carry is about to die, immediately A/B to the most dangerous target directly on them. See; Operation: protect the carry.

That's all for now! Hopefully enough to get people punching people in the faces. I may update this as I come across other little nuances for punching people in the face.