This article is going to be split into two; reason being, it grew a lot longer than I originally intended. This first part is going to talk about my favourite supports to lane with. In the next one, I’ll discuss… Everyone else, basically.
So, let us begin!
My preferred supports
I’m just going to put this out there. I love Draven. This is likely not news to regular readers.
What this means is that I’m not going to be impartial here; I prefer a few certain supports, and think poorly of a few others. That is likely due to my inexperience with them; I’m sure that many support I don’t expand on greatly can be played to great effect, but I personally prefer a few select supports. If you disagree with me (as I’m sure many will) simply argue against me in the comments either here or on reddit.
Draven loves kills. I mean, not just lore-wise, I mean he loves early game kills. As mentioned in my prior relevant article, Draven needs to use the early advantage his kit gives him to snowball the game quickly. For that reason, the supports I tend to prefer are tanky as all hell and/or have the capacity to engage the enemy for me, enabling me to win trades or straight out murder the enemy laners.
So, here’s my little list:
Leona: God damn, I love her. Fantastic engage and disengage. She has so many stuns in her kit that they almost go to waste. I want to engage; Leona, go fetch. She E’s, Q’s and then they’re basically done for, because (if I’m playing right) I’ve already taken most of their health.
You get caught by Leona, you’re done for.
One thing I love about her besides her engage is her fantastic disengage; she’s no Lulu, but she has the ability to control the flow of any trade thanks to her stuns and the tankiness that her W gives her. Ezreal engaging on you? She’ll stun the crap out of him and tank his Q’s with her W.
Without a doubt, she’s one of my favourites to have in lane.
Lulu: Ah, the purple princess. You know what, scrap that, she needs a new title; Queen of the disengage, and princess of poke. Lulu pokes your enemies down like nobody’s business, weakens the enemy enough to ensure they’re too frightened to trade properly.
Her disengage is her greatest strength, however. Say the enemy jungler comes for a gank at the exact unfortunate moment your wards run out. The enemy ADC and support are just above half their health from poke from both you and Lulu, but the jungler coming down makes the enemy duo think they can have you. Lulu disagrees. She ults you, making glorious Draven the size of a Cho’gath; then, the enemy jungler becomes a delightful cupcake (or squirrel, whatever skin takes your fancy). You may then joyfully feast on the enemy ADC and Support, leaving the jungler to either die as well, or run away to lick his wounds.
Laning with Lulu is like a free pass to a won lane, if Lulu knows what she’s doing and if the ADC remembers that, even in an unfavourable situation it can easily be turned around by Lulu’s ult. Don’t just keep running away from them, like when a friendly Shen ults you and you just run away, panicking and not knowing what’s going on, screaming “OH GOD WHY IS MY HEALTH BAR PURPLE I’M TOO YOUNG TO DIE”. Don’t do that,okay?
Taric: You know what he is. Do I even need to say what he is? Come on now, you know. He is Taric. Armour is nothing to him. The enemy ADC CS’ing is unimportant to him. He will engage, Shatter and Ult the enemy to oblivion, leaving you to mop up. If I can get him, I love him. There… is a problem, however. People see Taric as easy mode. They think they must insta-lock him first pick whether or not they know how to play him. Please don’t do this! So, so many Tarics simply walk up and stun the first enemy to get in their range. Even a half-brained enemy support will know to just walk in range of Taric when you’re not ready to engage, waste Taric’s stun and basically make you two useless for a good while. If you want to play Taric, bloody well learn the best times to engage and when to stun. Read my previous article if you like. Just for god’s sake, stop wasting it…
Another minor point that’s a mildly advanced tip, don’t use your W (Shatter) too much when it’s not an all-out engagement, as it unnecessarily pushes the lane leaving you more vulnerable to ganks. So, yeah, please don’t do that.
Nami: Kinda like Lulu, but with healing, higher mana costs and a skillset that requires the ADC to pay god damn attention. With Nami, it’s very difficult to actually plan what’s happening in lane except for both healing the adc, and damaging the enemy. Damn I love that bouncing W she has…
The strength of Nami’s kit is that she is an odd mix of engaging, sustain and poke. Each suffers somewhat though:
– Her engage is damn hard to hit. Anyone intelligent will simply move away from it. So, it requires the knowledge of knowing where the enemy is going to go rather than where he is, similar to Blitzcrank in that regard.
– Her poke is great, but it… it has a tendency to steal kills. Too many kills. The Nami will be attempting to heal you in a fight, but will instead utterly steal the kill from you… That sure is fun…
– Her ult serves as a fantastic disengage, as well as a follow-up engage from some other form of CC. I also love her E, empowering me to deal more damage.
In short, I do love her, but any Nami player needs to damn well understand her abilities.
You know what? Another great maxim to observe: Learn your champions abilities. Stop going into a ranked game with two custom games and a cursory knowledge of the ability effects of the champion under your belt. You need to know a champion through and through to play it successfully! Learn everything you can! Test it! Learn.
Those four are my most loved and treasured supports. I love them because they work well with my play style, and the champions that I typically play as well. However, I do not know everything; I have developed these preferences through my experiences with supports, and also through the supports my friends played with me – thus, I grew to enjoy the champions the people who duo’d with me played.
In my next article (this was originally meant to be a single article, now it’s going to be in 4 parts!) I’ll talk about the other supports commonly seen in bottom lane, my reasons they didn’t get put in this article, and my feelings about the support meta at the moment.
Many thanks for reading, as I said earlier if you have any perspectives you wish to share, please do write in the comment section below!