[Guide] Ashe: The Team Queen

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Eledhan

Senior Member

12-03-2010

Ashe: The Team Queen

CAUTION!!! PLEASE UNDERSTAND THAT THE INFORMATION THAT FOLLOWS IS GOING TO BE ALTERED DUE TO SUBSEQUENT POSTS POINTING OUT BETTER OPTIONS. UNTIL I CAN FINISH FINALS THIS WEEK, I WILL BE UNABLE TO UPDATE THIS GUIDE. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN A GUIDE FOR ASHE, PLEASE CHECK OUT THE OTHER POSTS IN THIS TOPIC, SINCE THEY ARE VERY INFORMATIVE, ESPECIALLY STARTING ON PAGE 2.

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Contents:
1. Introduction
2. Summarized Format
3. Pre-game
4. Early Game
5. Middle Game
6. Late Game
7. Closing
8. Appendix A
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Introduction
So I was perusing the Ashe guides (she’s my favorite champ so far), and I found that all but 2 of them (Guide 1 and Guide 2) are more than a year old, which makes them terribly out-dated. Even the two mentioned above are 6 months or older. Just in the last few weeks, we’ve had some interesting changes via patches (such as the addition of Hexdrinker and the change to Doran’s Blade) that I believe impact Ashe’s play.

In addition, I have discovered what I believe to be the most effective method of playing Ashe after trying multiple builds posted by others. Please note that what follows below is simply my preference. If you would rather play as more of a support player, then by all means, proceed to do so. However, I have found that as a support (low cooldowns for Enchanted Crystal Arrow), she’s nowhere near as effective as she is when she’s built to handle many different situations.

This is an exceptionally comprehensive guide, one that will probably take a long time to read, so if you prefer the short and sweet, focus on the section that follows for a summarized format of the build and read whatever strategy tips you want to from the remainder of the guide.

Strap on your seatbelts…it’s gonna get a bit bumpy! I choose to do things differently than the majority of Ashe players out there… Perhaps that is why I win against other Ashe players, perhaps not…either way, my team will win the game as long as I play middle lane and the side lanes can just keep from feeding until mid-game; at which point my early game strategy hands my team the victory through shut-downs, chases, and baits…not to mention high damage for team fights & pushing turrets!
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Summarized Format

Runes
Marks = 9x Armor Penetration
Seals = 9x Mana Regeneration Per Level
Glyphs = 9x Cooldown Per Level
Quintessences = 3x Armor Penetration

Spells
Heal and Ghost

Masteries
21 / 8 / 1
Offensive = Critical Chance & Magic Pen
Defensive = Improved Heal, Magic Resistance, Health Regen, & 1 piont of Armor
Utility = Improved Ghost

Skill Order
1-Volley
2-Frost Shot
3-Volley
4-Frost Shot
5-Volley
6-Enchanted Crystal Arrow
7-Hawkshot
Then: Arrow > Volley > Frost Shot > Hawkshot

Items
Doran’s Blade & 1 Health Potion
Boots of Speed & BF Sword / Pickaxe
Pickaxe / BF Sword & Boots of Swiftness
Finish Infinity Edge
Zeal
Cloak of Agility
Finish Phantom Dancer

Up to this point, put any extra 435 gold you have while building other items into another Doran’s Blade, unless your inventory is full. Sell them back if doing so allows you to get the next item on the list. But hopefully, you were able to go get the items in the most desirable order.

At this point, you now have the following:
1x Doran’s Blade
Boots of Swiftness
Infinity Edge
Phantom Dancer

From here on, you simply choose what to get based on 3 factors:

If facing casters, get a Banshee’s Veil or Hexdrinker
If facing tanks*, get Last Whisper or Madred’s
Anything else, get more damage with either Bloodthirster or Black Cleaver

*If facing tanks using Randuin’s Omen or Thornmail, you will not be able to attack them and survive…consider other enemies to determine which items to purchasee, and ignore those tanks in combat (except for your Arrow).
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Pre-game
League of Legends is just as much about pre-planning as it is about performance on the field of battle. If your pre-game setup is off by even a small margin, then you have essentially doomed yourself to failure against a competent opponent.

Runes
The best choice for Ashe is Armor Penetration Marks & Quints to enhance her attacks and Volley. This is undisputedly the best choice for her, since any other Marks will not enhance her Volleys. Choosing any other rune for Marks is silly, sense they either don’t work every time you attack, or don’t work on Volley…Armor Pen works on both! There are alternatives to Quintessences, such as movement speed, health, and more cooldown reduction, but I find that Armor Pen works just fine for me. Use what you prefer, though!

I choose Mana Regen per level Seals because Ashe already has plenty of defense in the form of her slows, as I’ll indicate later. These Seals keep her firing off her abilities with ease. I can’t tell you the number of times that I’ve been solo mid, let my regen runes do all the work for me, and have enough mana left after Enchanted Crystal Arrow is back up to fire it off again (followed quickly by Volley).

Cooldown Reduction per level Glyphs are the best way to go in my opinion, although I wouldn’t say no to magic resist. I just don’t think that Ashe should be dealing with opponents hitting her too much…better to stay near the back and let your cooldown reset so you can pop another Arrow.

Summoner Spells
I have had others ridicule me for this, but I stand by its effectiveness. I go with Heal and Ghost as my Summoner Spells. I will show some specifics about how to use these well in the game later on.

However, I will go ahead and clue you in a bit…Heal, if used properly, is a FANTASTIC means of baiting your opponent into attempting a kill when they have slightly more HP than you do. Pop Heal on yourself, and then laugh as you finish them off while they try to run… Heal also has saved my buddies countless times in team-fights. It is superior to Flash, because it NEGATES the damage already dealt to you…allowing you to get right back into the fight in many cases. Flash will occasionally save you by getting you out of reach by flashing through a wall, but it really has limited uses in a lane or team-fight, where walls are of little importance.

Ghost is a great tool when combined with Heal…if you get jumped middle (as you most certainly will half-way through the game if you’re doing well), you can heal (which negates damage, remember?) then ghost to get much further away than Flash would ever allow. In addition, as Ashe, you should really not be initiating, so that part of Flash is really out the door. Ghost allows you to chase better, though…which is Ashe’s bread and butter tactic.

Masteries
I grab the appropriate masteries in each category, using a 21/8/1 format. Some notables are the 15% magic penetration in Offense, Improved Heal in Defense, and Improved Ghost in Utility. It’s really a toss-up for where to put the 8 points…Defense or Utility? I choose Defense for the extra magic resist & health regen based on mana pool. I throw the 1 extra point leftover in defense into the extra armor. Of course, the above summoner spells would be kinda useless if I didn’t include the respective masteries, so that’s why those are in there.

I’ve had people tell me that Utility Ashe is so much better, but I disagree. The reason is this…if you want utility, there are so many better options to choose from. Ashe has really only 1 utility spell (Arrow), and they would have you believe that it makes sense to get all those c/d and mana masteries that allow you to spam the Arrow. Sorry, but someone like Sona, Morgana, or Anivia is more suited to that role. Ahse is a damage dealing champ with a dash of utility.

Yes, Ashe is an initiator, but really, how often does she need to initiate? If she initiates, and her team loses, she won’t need to cast Arrow again until 40 seconds or so anyway. If she initiates and her team is winning, she needs to be able to pick off the stragglers. Utility Ashe doesn’t help in either situation, which is the only time utility is required. Offensive Ashe helps in the first scenario by increasing the damage of her Volleys and attacks and helps in the second in the same way. What does Utility Ashe do? Sit there and wait for her Arrow to come back up…not cool…

Communication with Team
Be nice…but don’t back down. Call mid. EVERY TIME!!! I usually start off with “I’ll mid, unless the team has an issue with that…” Usually works, even when there might be a “better” alternative available. The reason for this is that although a mage might be better suited for mid in his mind, he doesn’t really need the extra boost to experience or gold to become useful. Ashe, on the other hand, truly does. If I get mid, it’s usually a win for my team, unless they totally fail on the sides. If they do, but I can pull off a stellar performance mid, I might be able to carry the entire team (and have done so on several occasions), but it’s not normal. Obviously, if you can’t get mid because your team is simply thick between the ears, go lane with a tank, support, or disabling champ. They’re your friends!
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Early Game
Hopefully you were able to get solo mid, but that doesn’t always happen. The Appendix of the guide will discuss what you can do to enhance your team’s chances of winning in the event you end up not getting solo mid.

Start off the game with a Doran’s Blade and 1 Health Potion. These items will allow you to remain in the middle lane farming for a very long time if you play correctly. Speaking of, let’s go ahead and jump into how to play solo mid for the first several levels. Get Volley followed by Frost Shot, and alternating them until you get to level 5. Get Enchanted Crystal Arrow at 6, and get Hawkshot at 7 so you can check the river for ganks.

Now, unlike with Utility Ashe, you will need to pace yourself and how often you fire Volley. You have the ability to regen your mana once you get to 8 or 9, but until then, you’ll need to be really stingy about the use of your Volley spell. When attacking the minions, target one near the minion your creeps are attacking…at low levels, you should reduce your target’s health to about the same as your creeps reduce their target. When both are low enough, fire Volley to get the gold for both. This is one of the times you should use Volley.

The other time is when you are able to land a last hit on your opponent without them retaliating. This takes practice, but it shouldn’t take you long to figure out each opponent’s tendencies. I usually try to follow Volley up with one auto attack to drop their health even lower, but I’m not always able to. Continue doing this and auto-attacking creeps as often as possible to keep your health up (using the life steal from Doran’s Blade).

You should stay in the lane as long as your health and mana stay up or until you have either 1325 or 2200 gold. Make sure you use your potion at about 30% health (unless you’re being attacked) and save your Heal for when your opponent tries to jump you. Once you hit level 6, save up your mana until you get enough for an Arrow and one Volley. Wait until the creep waves are small, then launch the Arrow, followed by Volley as soon as you can get the shot. Then chase them until they get to the turret, popping ghost if you need to. Don’t forget to check for MIA’s before attempting this.

If you don’t kill them and you still have plenty of health, run back and continue auto-attacking their creeps until you have enough mana to attempt again. Even if they go back to their base, at this low a level, your HP should have almost fully regenerated, and you still have Heal in your back pocket. Attempt to kill them again, and if you fail, no worries…keep farming until you get to 1325 or 2200 gold. Attempt the kill each time your Arrow is up, if you can.

If for some reason they are beating you in the HP race, go back to base. Better to lose out on 30 seconds of farming than to give them a kill and lose out on the farming anyway. If you have 2200 gold, get a BF Sword and Boots of Speed. If you have between 1325 and 2200, grab yourself a Pickaxe and Boots of Speed. If you have less than 1325, get Boots of Speed and another Doran’s Blade. If you have less than 785, get a Doran’s Blade.

As a matter of fact, ANY time you have to make a trip to base and don’t have enough gold to get the next item on the list (until you finish Phantom Dancer), grab a Doran’s Blade instead. It’ll keep you going better than nothing, and you can sell it back later.

From here out, only go back to base when your mana or health level is preventing you from safely contributing to the team. Usually, that begins when the teams start jumping lanes looking for ganks. Time for the Middle Game.
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Middle Game
Due to the back and forth nature of players jumping between lanes, you should be the Queen of your team by now. You should already have a BF Sword or Pickaxe as well as Boots of Speed to help you keep mid pushed back. Your job during the ganking phase is to stay in middle lane and keep the enemy from taking your tower. Of course, if you get the chance to jump your opponent and get a kill, take it! You are still trying to conserve your mana and farm, but don’t waste any opportunities to hit your opponent with a Volley followed by an attack. That BF Sword hurts…badly…and they will not like fighting you.

Unfortunately, Middle Game is sort of a lull for Ashe, as she really hasn’t developed any new skills, and hasn’t really been able to farm enough gold to truly hurt people, but this is a great place to mention the tactical uses of the tools available to you in this build.

First, you want to continue your cycle of saving mana for the one-two punch of Arrow followed by Volley. In addition to that, you need to be ready to bait your opponent into over-committing to killing you when you still have Heal available. If you can pull this off, you can turn the tables on them and get a kill out of it.

Depending on what you got in your first trip to the store, you should go back whenever you can afford Boots of Swiftness and the other damage item left for Infinity Edge. So, if you got BF Sword first, go back once you can afford either Boots of Swiftness or Pickaxe or both! The opposite would be true if you had to get Pickaxe first. Again, use Doran’s Blade to fill in any gaps of extra gold.

Keep this up until you get your Infinity Edge finished. Then work on Zeal. Once you have Boots of Swiftness, Infinity Edge, and Zeal (along with any leftover Doran’s), you’re set to roam the map to wherever your help is needed. Don’t let this sway you from helping prior to this point, but you should focus on mid until you have Zeal, because that’s when you can really start helping your team.
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Late Game
I feel that the sections of each game are really based on what is going on during that game, not the time on the game clock. Early game is considered to be when all the champs are either laning or jungling. Middle game starts once champions begin jumping lanes trying to get ganks. Late game is when attempted ganks turn into both teams posturing for a team fight and tower pushing.

Once the first team fight starts, you should abandon all the tactics mentioned earlier and switch to team mode. On the item side, this means you finish your core build as soon as you can. Make sure you get Boots of Swiftness, Infinity Edge, and Phantom Dancer. Once there, it’s time to consider how the game is going.

Before I jump into where to go from here on items, though, I want to share a bit about the tactics you should be incorporating into your play. First, you need to understand your role. Your job is to initiate with Arrow, shut down enemy ultimates with Arrow, cover retreats with Arrow and Volley, and chase enemies with Frost Shot. If at any time, you don’t have enough mana to do your job, you should not be anywhere near the front lines where you can easily be killed.

To initiate, you want to try to hit the weakest/most powerful person on their team. This can sometimes be difficult to determine, and if so, ask your team who they want you to go for. A good opposing team will keep these primary targets safe. If that is the case, you will not want to use your Arrow to initiate. Rather, you want to revert to stopping ultimates and stealth attacks, such as Warwick, Nunu, Katarina, Twitch, Evelynn, etc. Let your tank/offtank initiate, and then blast the champ who starts up their ultimate.

As the results of the team fight become clear, throw in a couple Volleys and jump in with auto-attacks. If your team is losing, be prepared to cover the retreat with slowing Volleys. If you are winning, get ready to chase by turning on Frost Shots and start auto-attacking the weakest member of the other team.

Using the above tactics, I rarely ever need a Banshee’s Veil anymore…However, if there is a Lux or Morgana, you might want to consider it, as their binding abilities really put you in a bad spot. A good alternative to Banshee’s is Hexdrinker…extra damage, resistance, and shielding against magic damage is nice! Plus, it’s very cheap. Against tanks, you are going to want to get either Madred’s Razor (HP-based tanks) or Last Whisper (Armor-based tanks). However, if the tank has either Thornmail or Randuin’s Omen (or if it’s Rammus), you would be better off ignoring the tanks and letting your casters kill them, since those two items will get you killed. If neither casters or tanks are issues (not getting crowd controlled, and can still do decent damage), then by all means, boost your damage with your preferred item. Sword of the Occult, Black Cleaver, Bloodthirster, and just plain old BF Swords are all good choices.
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Closing
Now you know how I play Ashe...It's been a great build and strategy for me and every team I play with. I'm going to reserve the second post in this thread to post some analysis about laning partners and opponents to be aware of.

Please post any thoughts on this guide so I can consider including them in the guide, in which case I'll give you the credit. Happy Summoning!


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allforone bLitz

Member

12-03-2010

Heal.. oh well, i prefer exhaust over it, its way more versatile.

On the PD, I find it cost-wise not a great item, you already have the movementspeed 3 from swiftness... I usually go with a LW, no armor will be left to hide them.


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Nzo

Senior Member

12-03-2010

Definitely Flash over Heal. Heal is a crutch.. Flash is a lifesaver.

Exhaust is important if your team is lacking CC to shut down those annoying melee like Tryn.


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Eledhan

Senior Member

12-03-2010

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Originally Posted by blitzjeh View Post
Heal.. oh well, i prefer exhaust over it, its way more versatile.

On the PD, I find it cost-wise not a great item, you already have the movementspeed 3 from swiftness... I usually go with a LW, no armor will be left to hide them.
I find that Exhaust on Ashe is useless... If she's close enough to cast it, then she's too close...

And besides...Exhaust only really works well if she can afford to stand there and shoot at her targets...which she usually cannot.

As for the Phantom Dancer...The bonus to critical chance and attack speed is really what you're going for here...the movement and dodge bonuses are just icing on the cake. Yes, you could get good stats elsewhere, but this item combines several things in one for Ashe.

Last Whisper is pointless unless they have stacked at least 2 top-tier armor items. And then, it's really better to go with Madred's, unless they're also stacking a lot of resistance as well... As Ashe, you really shouldn't be focusing too hard on tanks anyway, which are really the only champs I ever see building armor.


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Eledhan

Senior Member

12-03-2010

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Originally Posted by Nzo View Post
Definitely Flash over Heal. Heal is a crutch.. Flash is a lifesaver.

Exhaust is important if your team is lacking CC to shut down those annoying melee like Tryn.
I've tried Flash for probably 50 games or so...I still say Heal is better when solo mid.

Granted, Flash lets you jump over a wall, but how often is that happening for you when playing as Ashe? Basically, if an enemy is so close that I have to use Flash to get away, they're too close...

And as I mentioned in the original post, Flash doesn't restore health, it just gets you out of combat (hopefully). Heal, on the other hand, keeps you alive longer, and can even turn the tide on your opponent. Think what you want, but I'll keep taking Heal and beating Ashe opponents who take Flash all day long.

As for Exhaust...

In the example you mentioned of Tryndamere... If he's close enough to smack you with his sword, he's already too close, and you're dead... Exhaust won't stop him, because he'll just spin to cut you off...by then it's effect is over, and you still get 2-shot (squishy Ashe is too weak to take it). True, you might save a buddy every now and then, but Heal is useful in almost EVERY situation, and against ALL champions, not just the auto-attackers.


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Fahgettaboudit

Senior Member

12-03-2010

Phantom dancer is a terrible use of money on ashe.

I've posted this a million times if i've posted it once. this is a top10 elo players build, and the one the best ashes in the game (e.g. grandjudge) use.

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Originally Posted by locodoco
dorans+pot unless u see trist or kat at loading then redelix and 5pots
l1boots
iedge (bf->axe->cloak)
double elixar (green+red)
last whisper
ga if game not over
Exhaust is bad on ashe. Summoners are almost always ghost/flash, alternatively occasionally cleanse/flash. If doing bad pad way to iedge with MOAR DORANS.


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Eledhan

Senior Member

12-04-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fahgettaboudit View Post
Phantom dancer is a terrible use of money on ashe.

I've posted this a million times if i've posted it once. this is a top10 elo players build, and the one the best ashes in the game (e.g. grandjudge) use.
If you don't feel like posting the reasoning behind skipping Phantom Dancer, please direct me to a post that explains it. I would love to hear the reasoning.

However, I feel like the extra crit chance and speed of PD is much more cost effective than Last Whisper. Besides, after running the mathcrafting for the two options after infinity edge, I've found that PD is much more consistent against the average armor ratings in the game.

Besides, if you're running Armor Pen runes, you're getting about 35 Armor Pen from runes and masteries...this reduces the effectiveness of Last Whisper, at least according to the math. I have found that it would require about 2 or 3 top tier armor items on the average champ before Last Whisper is more effective (not necessarily cost effective) than Phantom Dancer.

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Exhaust is bad on ashe. Summoners are almost always ghost/flash, alternatively occasionally cleanse/flash. If doing bad pad way to iedge with MOAR DORANS.
Well, I agree completely with this part! Exhaust makes absolutely no sense on her, as its range exposes her too much in order for her to use it.

As I mentioned in my guide, buying Doran's while building IE is the way to go!

As I said, please enlighten me as to why PD is less effective than LW...I'd love to hear it.


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Subdue

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Senior Member

12-04-2010

The thing is, you're basing the effectiveness of Heal almost entirely on the first 5-10 minutes of the game. Mid Game and later, Heal will not save you from situations that Flash will save you from.

As for the effectiveness of Phantom Dancer, your main issue is the use of Armor Penetration Quints. If you use Flat Health Quints instead, you'll be the dominant champion in your lane, and you'll dictate how the laning phase goes. Without the additional Armor Penetration from Quints, Last Whisper starts looking much more valuable. It's also over 1,000 Gold cheaper. If you think about it, the difference in price is comparable to The Brutalizer, and if you look at Last Whisper + The Brutalizer + Health Quints as opposed to Phantom Dancer + Armor Penetration Quints, this is how the modifiers stack up:

Last Whisper + The Brutalizer + Health Quints
Cost: 3302

Health: 97
Armor Penetration: 40% + 15 Flat
Damage: 35
Cooldown Reduction: 10%
Attack Speed: 40%

Phantom Dancer + Armor Pen Quints
Cost: 3395

Armor Penetration: 10 Flat
Attack Speed: 45%
Critical Strike: 30%
Dodge: 20%
Movement Speed: 15%

So basically you're trading much higher Armor Pen, Life, 35 Damage, and Cooldown Reduction for 5% Attack Speed (negligible), 30% Critical Strike (Nice, but hardly necessary due to your passive), Dodge (again nice, but likely won't save you), movement speed (Negligible, since Frost Arrow + Boots 3 make it possible for you to chase and run from just about anyone.

If, as you said in your guide, you're looking to do the most damage, clearly the Last Whisper build wins out.


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Eledhan

Senior Member

12-04-2010

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Originally Posted by Dominatius Maxim View Post
The thing is, you're basing the effectiveness of Heal almost entirely on the first 5-10 minutes of the game. Mid Game and later, Heal will not save you from situations that Flash will save you from.
This is true...congratulations on being the first to successfully point this out!

However, I still would rather get the heal to win the battle at mid. If I win, then the other team is down to a 4v5, unless they have some kind of tough guy mid (Mordekaiser comes to mind). Flash vs. Heal really comes down to personal preference...and as such, I prefer Heal, and have had wonderful success with it. It's especially useful in games when I have to side lane with someone, and I can save their butts also

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As for the effectiveness of Phantom Dancer, your main issue is the use of Armor Penetration Quints. If you use Flat Health Quints instead, you'll be the dominant champion in your lane, and you'll dictate how the laning phase goes. Without the additional Armor Penetration from Quints, Last Whisper starts looking much more valuable. It's also over 1,000 Gold cheaper. If you think about it, the difference in price is comparable to The Brutalizer, and if you look at Last Whisper + The Brutalizer + Health Quints as opposed to Phantom Dancer + Armor Penetration Quints, this is how the modifiers stack up:

Last Whisper + The Brutalizer + Health Quints
Cost: 3302

Health: 97
Armor Penetration: 40% + 15 Flat
Damage: 35
Cooldown Reduction: 10%
Attack Speed: 40%

Phantom Dancer + Armor Pen Quints
Cost: 3395

Armor Penetration: 10 Flat
Attack Speed: 45%
Critical Strike: 30%
Dodge: 20%
Movement Speed: 15%

So basically you're trading much higher Armor Pen, Life, 35 Damage, and Cooldown Reduction for 5% Attack Speed (negligible), 30% Critical Strike (Nice, but hardly necessary due to your passive), Dodge (again nice, but likely won't save you), movement speed (Negligible, since Frost Arrow + Boots 3 make it possible for you to chase and run from just about anyone.
I'll post my calculator to show you my point once I get back to my office on Monday, but I base all my decisions on the median armor values of the champs, plus the number of top tier armor items they might have equipped. Essentially, I wanted to go for the most well-rounded build, not the one specifically designed to counter a particular champ class. I developed a spreadsheet to compare builds, and I'll put yours and mine next to each other, and I'll let that speak for itself...until then...see the following...

In addition, I also focus on which item grants the highest average damage per attack and also the highest average DPS. I realize that the build you have mentioned might do better on either end of a spectrum (squishy to tank), or it might be better at DPS, but I was going for the highest average damage per attack (assuming that the passive is not available each attack).

Much of my decisions are mathcrafted to get the concept, but I've had great success with this build, which leads me to believe that it's solid. Have I played ultra high ELO? No, I haven't...but I still find the concepts here to be solid.

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If, as you said in your guide, you're looking to do the most damage, clearly the Last Whisper build wins out.
I did say that didn't I? However, a Last Whisper doesn't do you much good against the carries/mages. And if their tanks have built Thornmail or Randuin's, you're only going to be able to auto-attack the carries or magies. In that case, the APen Marks and Quints with a Phantom Dancer is the best way to go, as any armor those champs may have is going to be too low for LW to have an effect.

Please remember that I'm going for the best damage against the median opponent, not tanks, not squishies, but the median.

I do believe I allowed for the alternative of HP/level Quints in the guide...something to consider


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Subdue

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Senior Member

12-04-2010

Quote:
I'll post my calculator to show you my point once I get back to my office on Monday, but I base all my decisions on the median armor values of the champs, plus the number of top tier armor items they might have equipped. Essentially, I wanted to go for the most well-rounded build, not the one specifically designed to counter a particular champ class. I developed a spreadsheet to compare builds, and I'll put yours and mine next to each other, and I'll let that speak for itself...until then...see the following...
That's just it, Last Whisper + The Brutalizer cost almost exactly the same amount of gold as Phantom Dancer, so they fill the same space in your build. The only advantage Phantom Dancer has is the higher crit chance. Last whisper + The Brutalizer + Health Quints has FLAT armor pen in addition to Last Whisper's 40% than Phantom Dancer + Armor Pen Quints. And yes, I'd use Armor Pen Marks with the Last Whisper build as well. That makes you able to pierce armor of Squishies, Tanky DPS, and Pure Tanks alike.

Edit:
Out of curiosity, who exactly do you consider to be a "median" opponent?


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