Friday, February 22, 2013

Season 3 Items: Ditch or Grab?

Best and Worst Items of Season 3:

Now that it has been several weeks into season 3, I will share my opinion on some of the new items. For strictly organizational purposes I have divided them into sections (support/non-support) for easier digesting. To view the previous article you can click this link:

Statikk Shiv - A really cool item. It replaces Ionic Spark but more importantly, it builds out of zeal now. Zeal Items were amazing on ADCs but with season 2, your only options were Phantom Dancer or Trinity Force. It's not particularly abusable but it is stronger than Phantom Dancer on certain champions like Ezreal or Twitch. Twitch has the chance of it being absurd, due to his ult applies on-hit effects to everyone in a line. Possible damage on 1 champion in a minion wave is 1400 off the unique passive, because remember, the magic damage can also crit now.

Iceborn Gauntlet - Really, REALLY strong. Everything Trinity Force was supposed to be, almost killing it. I feel the armor it gives is way too high.

Tiamat/Ravenous Hydra - I recently found out it has an internal cooldown of .05 seconds. This means it is not abusable on Shyvana's double strike/flame breath. I feel they did that on purpose. Other than that, it's a really strong snowball jungler item.

Mercurial Scimitar - Haven't seen enough of it. But QSS was already a poor buy compared to GA in season 2. The last nerf taking away its MR and increasing the cost hurt it. At least it upgrades into something though. Final upgrade is 6th item, but get QSS earlier if it calls for it.

Sword of the Divine - A really funny item. IE+this can make for hilarious plays. I've toyed around with it in ARAM on awkward champions such as Rengar/Malphite with some success. But I think it was intended for Master Yi, or other AD assassins who build lots of AD and not a lot of crit. The attack speed seems wasted on the champion's though. Would optimally be built out of AD for maximum efficiency.

Runaan's Hurricane - A noob trap. No really. It's just not strong enough on most champions to warrant it. Occasional awkward builds work with Kog'Maw/Teemo but is still subpar compared to a defensive item. PLS DO NOT BUILD THIS ON VARUS.

Zephyr - very situational Jax/Irelia/Kayle item. Haven't seen enough of it to see it outside of closet cases. Which is good/balanced I guess.

Manamune/Muramana - Not strong enough to warrant it on anyone who didn't already build Manamune in season 2, but a good change nonetheless.

Ohmwrecker - An absolute flop. No one builds this item and it's a pretty bad concept that can be overcome by team composition and/or proper tower juggling. Somewhat of a support item since it has Philo Stone, but possibly the worst the item in the game.

Archangel's Staff/Seraph's Embrace - It's nice it has an upgrade, it's sad there's no more stacking Archangel's abusiveness. Really strong shield.

Liandry's Torment - A trap item 90% of the time. It made me sad that the #1 burst caster item (Haunting Guise) and it's upgrade turns out to not help them excel at that job at all. DFG was more designed for that.
I wrote this up before the last change and the new changes to it made it so it is pretty decent on a lot of casters. It used to be instant-AoE damage was the worst for this so Gragas, Ziggs, and the like felt crippled against the Warmog's changes, but now it seems stronger.

Hunter's Machete - Such a good item. Best jungler item of all.
Spirit Stone - Too expensive, would rather Philo Stone 99% of the time.
Spirit of Lizard/Golem/Wraith - Too expensive to be a midgame item, not cost effective enough to warrant a slot late game.
I wrote this up before the last change. Spirit stone is now correctly costed for it to build into items. Spellvamp Spirit is ridiculous on AP jungles and I would even consider getting it on AP mids who can use the spellvamp, even with the "gold tax" on mana regen. Spirit of Lizard seems really strong now since they brought down the costs, but not anything outrageous. Spirit of Golem is okay now too. Tenacity allows you to get Ninja Tabi which seems increasingly more useful.

Not new items but changes:
Doran's Blade - 5 hp per hit seems really low. Old Doran's was 3% lifesteal which makes 167 damage the crossover point, probably more since lifesteal calculates on armor as well. The only problem Longsword builds into everything in the game now and you likely wouldn't get this unless you were having a tough time in lane.

Doran's Ring - The new mana-on-kill addition really helped things out. It's a really strong item now.

Doran's Shield - Very underrated. An anti-auto attack which makes it really good in some toplane match-ups, in addition it's really good in ARAM.

The Black Cleaver - So the first season 3 incarnation of this item was a little ridiculous. But it seems to have died down. It gives a response to armor-stacking, but is becoming less and less relevant against HP stacking. Which you would just get Bloodthirster for anyways.

Warmog's Armor - Even though the old warmog's was more slot-efficient, this one is much easier to get. It's the primary defensive choice option on basically everyone, including AD carries.

Athene's Unholy Grail - Used to be the rush on a lot of champions (Orianna, Ziggs, Anivia) but now seems more situational with the decrease in AP. Morellonomicon is looking a lot stronger actually.

Blade of the Ruined King - When this was first introduced in 3v3s it was okay. It was a bruiser item that's a counter-bruiser item.

Lichbane - Not much has changed except the base damage, making it a better rush. The cross-over point is 200 AP, but they did nerf the lategame power of it. Old lichbane did 800 AP as 800 damage but the new one does 800 AP as 650 damage. The switch from physical to magical also helped a lot.

Boot Enchants - Really hard to say. Homeguard boots are amazing on defense. But you really wouldn't want any of the others. I always hear things like:
Furor - ADC
Captain - Initiator or Supports
Distortion - General Purpose for Flash
Alacrity - Really good on bruisers and melees

And for the most part they are true, but it just doesn't seem worth the gold in stats 70% of the time and it's better to just save your gold. But that still doesn't make Homeguard king of all enchants. You can win games because of Homeguard, you can only make your advantage bigger with other enchants, which you could have won with real items too if you put your money towards them.

Well, thanks for reading my article this week. I'll bother Lolzor to make his post now.

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