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"Pure" Tanks

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IntFam

Senior Member

10-17-2010

So, today, I played a game as jungle Nunu and found myself getting burned right into the ground. Painful to say the least. In a bout of low morale, I considered abandoning Nunu and trying a "real" tank (as the idea was set in my head), and as I cruised the champion list, I realized that 100% tanks are actually pretty few and far between.

Some consider a good number of characters with the tank label to actually be beefy dps (like mundo and morde) or (in the case of Nasus, it seems) "off-tanks." Others seem to think every durable melee character under the sun is a tank (like Xin and Garen often seem to be mislabeled as.)

My feeling of "omfg nunu not tnak!" eventually faded, but the thought still lurked in my head; what exactly defines a true tank? I figured I'd take to the forums and get the Guides and Strat community's views on the matter. I thought about putting it in the Champion Feedback forum, but that seems more like something focused toward the developers than players themselves.

So, the question here I'm asking is "What qualities define a champion as a "true" tank and which champions, in your opinion, carry the tank label the best?"

My thoughts are this; A tank must...

-Be durable and have a growth curve that emphasizes it.
-Have a reliable way of staying alive built into them like damage reduction skills, self-heals or "controlling" (pushing, pulling, dispersing enemies) skills.
-Have a reliable way of keeping enemies off more fragile teammates or diverting enemy fire (pushing enemies away like Gragas's ult, or taunting like, well, Rammus.)
-Above all else, a tank needs to have strong initiation skills. If he's the last one to the party, no one's going to attack him, and he's not filling his role as well as he should.

Under these specific conditions, I'd say it's a toss up between Rammus and Shen for "tankiest tank."

By all means, debate. I really want to see some focused discussion instead of the usual "Garen's not a tank" we occasionally see as a kind of in-forum aside :P


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fazisi

Senior Member

10-17-2010

Rammus is best pure tank.


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Sad Faced Panda

Senior Member

10-17-2010

Ability to initiate determines how good of a tank a champion is.


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UselessAsshole

Senior Member

10-17-2010

a tank is anything capable of forcing people to attack them even if they dont want to.


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Kroghar

Senior Member

10-17-2010

I think the 100% pure tank champs, where they pretty much entirely revolve around focusing attention on themselves and not dying from it, are Rammus and Shen. Rammus is a little more geared towards Armor, while Galio is a little more geared towards Magic Resist. I didn't mention Galio earlier because Galio is different in that he's only meant to tank for limited amounts mostly, he's more of a tank/support/nuker, with emphasis on the tank.

Shen and Rammus are the hardest to drop, both can focus entirely on Armor/Magic Resist and still force the opponent to focus them and hardly do any damage. Shen is a little better at getting away if he does start to eventually get burned down, while Rammus can deal some AoE damage.

Amumu is worth noting too, but he has more mana issues to worry about, and takes a longer time to get up to full tanking potential, he's more worthwhile for his stuns and AoE damage than his tanking ability.

I'd give a nod to Taric too. He's Tank/Support, if you go straight defensive and Aura build he'll be very hard to drop with his heals and ultimate. He can't pull attention like the other guys, but with chain-stunning and heals and all the Aura goodness, your opponents can't really ignore him either.


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Kroghar

Senior Member

10-17-2010

Oh, just to clarify, the other guys above my post are right, in this game Tanks are normally considered tanks because they can 100% draw attention to themselves. My post was more talking about the straight sturdiness of champs, and ability to take fire, since you seemed let down by Nunu's ability to stay alive.


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Techlo

Member

10-17-2010

Does everyone always forget that Alistar has the "tankiest" ultimate? It gives him physical damage, reduces magic AND physical damage by 75% for its duration AND removes crowd control on him.


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fazisi

Senior Member

10-17-2010

As everyone has discussed, Rammus and Shen are the best at this. They both have taunt and they both have defensive abilities (DBC and Feint) that make them pretty darn hard to kill. When you see a late-game Rammus tank the fountain tower for his team to dive you, then you know he's a boss tank.


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DoransTroll

Senior Member

10-17-2010

I want to add to Kroghar:

What sets true tank apart from other role is that they have a way of extending their lives, like damage reduction, or shield.

However, there are different type of tanks out there:
Alistar is a protector--he excels at keeping people away from your team. Don't expect him to contribute a lot of damage, or draw too much attention by himself. He's great when your team is full of squishies.
Rammus is a steamroller--he's slow, but once he's in, he's doing some really huge damage. He doesn't have too many ways to protect his friends though. He's best played very offensively.
Shen is a kiter--he has the ability to build a distance between his enemies and his team easily. He excels at tanking a lot of melee champs at a time.
Gragas is similar to Rammus. He causes large damage, can scatter the enemy team, and he can keep on chugging.


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JuanBarco

Recruiter

10-17-2010

IMO tanks are simple people that can protect your squishies.
In LoL there are many different tanks. For example Ramus, Shen, and galio draw attention to themselves getting themselves focused so your carry can destroy the other team.
Also tanks generally disrupt the other team, this is usually done when they initiate, good examples are are amumu, and malaphite.
these are more classical definitions of tanks, but for me there is one thing that defines a tank, it is that if they get focused they causing the other team to lose the fight. Becasue of this I do think Morde and Garen are a tank because they don't actually deal tons of damage like a carry or dps, but if you focus either one then your team will die. Both can finish people but neither actually deals a ton of damage in a team fight, thus people consider them not tanks and they both also have very strong laning phases becasue they are difficult to kill but, but in the end late game they protect your carry becasue no one is gong to run past garen to get ashe they will get destroyed by the other team, and thus doing their job by protecting the carry even though they dont have very many disables or iniation moves.