[Guide] Why is Leona a crossbreed between a machine and a monster?

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HungryKarnage

Member

07-21-2011

Hmm... I did expect someone to point out that support is bad, tanks should build pure tank and be done with it. I tried to explain why in the guide, but it was not adequate. I'll elaborate further here:

I will outline the optimal tanking scenario. Let's say that in every team fight, you have a tanking item that works like this - once activated, you are invulnurable to all damage types, but you can still be cced. Very similar to Kayle's ulti, but it's permanently on. It wears off only after all your allies are dead, then will they be able to hurt you.

What will smart players do? They will treat it like you have Kayle's Ulti. They will ignore you almost completely, perhaps tossing some soft cc to keep you around while they clean up your team mates. And if you have little to no CDR, then as Skyllian mentions, you will only be able to do your spell combination once in a team fight. Assuming that you first targeted a carry and caught him, what needs to follow up? Allies coming in to proc your Sunlight to help out with your damage output. Who will they target? The ally that is coming to proc, not you again. Because you are invunerable. Why would they waste their time with you? You can't proc Sunlight on your own. But the ally who has to do it for you is extremely vunerable, so let's go for him/her instead. You have to latch on (you can't Zenith/Daybreak to save your carry, it's on CD), you don't give up, you keep auto-attacking that carry you tagged. But your damage output is so low that there is no way for you to kill the enemy carry on your own before 2-3 of your team mates are dead. By which time it doesn't matter, because they will have almost killed the last remaining member and you have to retreat before your invunerability wears off.

I will admit, at lower ELOs, a pure tank build would work well, because people down there have a knee-jerk tendency to focus the nearest target, rather than the optimal one. In fact, my build will give you a harder time at any ELO less than 1400. However, if you do want to rise in playing skill, and smarter build sets, you need to break out of the traditional tank must build tank items, range must build range items, and instead build more on particular champion strengths and find ways to circumvent their weaknesses. Your builds in game also needs to be adaptive to the situation, and there may be jumps in the order you get items just to keep up.

I want my guide to give people a better sense of what we think about at the higher levels. Now now, I'm not saying I'm uber high elo (I'm currently in the 1600+ bracket), but at my level, people will be looking at item builds. Whenever we notice a tank building pure tank, we will actually inform the other members of the team to actively ignore the tank during team fights. Unless you are a tank with extreme disruption, or incredible initiation, (neither role which Leona truly shines at sans items) then you become deadweight. A walking, tough rock that we will only chink away once we have safely dealt with the real threats on your team.

Pure tank builds work great as long as your spell damage makes you a threat to their team. You are optimal at around the level 9 mark, where you have at least one maxed ability, and therefore will be able to pull off kills. Once past level 12-13, your threat will drop significantly as IEs and DCs have hit the table. If by level 15-16 you don't find some way to increase your threat again, then that is where all the ignoring will be truly noticable.


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Hobocop

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Senior Member

07-21-2011

I see tanks as another kind of support role. There's no reason why you shouldn't get more items with actual utility as opposed to raw tanking stats because these utility items tend to have stats that benefit survivability anyway. Tanks also tend to be the ones least likely to die first, so having these support items on them greatly increases the chances of such items having an impact throughout an entire fight.

Shurelya's is a great example of this. While it lacks Armor/MR, the health and hp/mana regen is nice and helps you sustain yourself longer without having to base so you can continue to assist your team and have a presence on the map. It also has a good chunk of that all-important CDR. The active is also really underrated in my experience. It can be used to assist in initiation, chase down fleeing enemies so you can tag them with E+Q and secure that kill, and also to help your team reposition itself if you get caught in a less-than-ideal position. All this on a 1 minute cooldown, so it has a good chance of being up every fight.


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iwannatwirrl

Member

07-21-2011

excellent guide.
leona is a great support-tank. and with an ad carry, can run a very dangerous and aggressive bot-lane.


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Anomandar

Senior Member

07-21-2011

I've basically been playing Leona since her release and have tried almost every build I can think of on her. So far I think a combination of tanky, dps, cdr items are the best option on her. Going for all tanky items is really a waste due to the 70 armor/magic from W and with 30%+ cdr you can basically have it up all the time. Lately I've been trying the following:

Starting items:
Regrowth + Pot

Early Game:
Philo, Boots (merc), HoG

Mid Game:
Avrice Blade, Sunfire, Sheen

Mid/Late:
Ghost Blade, Shurelya Reverie, Negatron

So generally buy the end you should have the following:
- Shurelya Reverie
- Ghost Blade
- Sunfire
- Sheen
- Mercs
- Negatron (sell HoG)

If the games goes really late then I finish up a FoN and try for Tri-Force if possible. But I find sheen is fine for the most part. I really love having Ghost blade and Shurelya Reverie for chasing or escaping. Also the ghost blade is great for towers. Especially with sheen procs too.


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HungryKarnage

Member

07-22-2011

Bump for further discussion/comments.


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HungryKarnage

Member

07-26-2011

Final Bump.


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Naitavi

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Senior Member

07-26-2011

Quote:
Originally Posted by HungryKarnage View Post
The best advantage of Leona is that she doesn't get banned at all in ranked. So if Alistar and Amu get the shaft, you can always fall back onto.... The Radiant Dawn!
That makes me sad :'(


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HungryKarnage

Member

07-27-2011

Quote:
Originally Posted by Naitavi View Post
That makes me sad :'(
That's kind of vague. Are you sad because no one ever bans Leona meaning that they don't consider her a threat? Are you sad because Alistar and Amu gets banned all the time (and Amu will get ever sadder)? Or are you sad because Leona is going to marry her childhood buddy Pantheon and that shatters all your dreams (I feel your pain!)?


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Kreicus

Senior Member

07-27-2011

Maybe he's really Amumu moonlighting as Naitavi?

So, I've been using your guide more or less. I like it. The Phage addition with the possibility to upgrade to Trinity Force is nice. I tried it before but the conditions you have make it so I'm able to stay tank while including that slowly. Getting that after a good early game can help you maintain that lead, because good early games can still be lost.

It's been working for me


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iwannatwirrl

Member

07-27-2011

leona is a lot of fun, but holy **** is she dependent on a carry worth a ****.
with sona or soraka i can just screw around while the carry face-fails their way through the laning phase--and generally still keep them upright and successful.

Not so with leona. A poor carry down bot w/ you will make your early aggressiveness come to naught. Or, they'll charge in themselves instead of letting you initiate...then get harassed down super low and hide by the tower for forever.

Just fair warning, Leona bot with a talented AD carry...very, very scary. But you need that DPS support to pull it off.


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