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League of Legends Item Choices: Factors You Should Always Consider

League of Legends can be overwhelming for beginners who have to learn about item choices and builds. There are lots of items in the game that players either rarely build or just don’t know about their existence. While this post is not a guide based on champion class, it will give you all you need to correctly itemize in all your games.

Most players stick to building the same items on champions regardless of several other factors in the game. This is bad as no two games are ever the same and team matchups will always differ. We will be exploring five factors that you should always consider for League of Legends item choices.

From playstyles like split-pushing or pick-offs to attributes like healing, you will find it all here.

Champion Playstyle

There are over 130 champions in League of Legends and they all have varying playstyles. For example, the way you will play Kennen will differ from the way you play Camille or Yorick. The former shines in team fights while the latter both excel at split-pushing. Playstyles are important factors for League of Legends item choices.

Split-pushing

This is a style that centers on playing apart from your teammates but not being independent of them. It refers to pushing the top or bottom lane while others are grouped up elsewhere. 

Champions that do this are mostly top laners and they pick teleport to show up whenever their team needs them. They are usually able to hold their own in case an enemy tries to pick them off. It will be important to build items that help you fulfill the role better when you follow this playstyle. 

The first item that comes to mind is Hullbreaker, it is strictly for split-pushers (bruisers) as its passive is only active when a champion is alone. Other items that you should build depends on your champion.

Hullbreaker

+50 attack damage

+300 health

+150% base health regeneration

Passive

Unique – Boarding Party: While no allied champions are within Range (1400 units), gain 20 − 60 (based on level) bonus armor and bonus magic resistance and deal 20% bonus damage against structures. Nearby allied siege minions and super minions gain 60 − 180 (based on level) bonus armor and bonus magic resistance, +10% bonus size, and deal 200% bonus damage against structures. Bonus resistances decay over 3 seconds while allied champions are nearby.

Team Fights

You will agree from reading the previous section that an item like Hullbreaker has no place in team fights. For champions with ultimates like Kennen or Diana, the need to catch as many champions as possible becomes important.

To meet this need, an item like Zhonya’s hourglass synergizes perfectly with keeping them alive long enough for allies to follow up. What I am trying to say is that once you have a selected playstyle, build items that will aid you in fulfilling your role.

Team Composition

League of Legends Item Choices

One of the things to look out for during the champion selection phase is Team composition. What champions make up the opponent’s team? Who are you laning against? What champions make up your team? These factors are important for item choices in League of Legends.

Your answers to the above questions will play a crucial role in deciding the items you will build. For example, as an ADC against a tanky team, Kraken Slayer into Blade of the Ruined King (BorK) is a sound plan. As a Mage in the Mid Lane up against a tanky team comp, Liandry’s Anguish into Demonic Embrace should get the job done.

Healing

This factor and the subsequent ones could be grouped under Team Compositions but for better clarity, I’ll address them one after the other.

There will be times when you will go up against a team that has a lot of healing. Whether it comes from the utility champions or it’s just a part of a champion’s kit, it doesn’t matter.

Champions that heal allies include:

1. Soraka

2. Nami

3. Yuumi

4. Sona

5. Taric

Champions that have healing abilities in their kits:

1. Dr Mundo

2. Vladimir 

3. Viego

4. Darius

5. Volibear

At times like this, make sure to build an anti-heal item or healing-reduction or grievous wounds.

Items that fall under this category are:

1. Mortal Reminder (Executioner’s Culling) – for Marksmen in general

2. Morellenomicon (Blight Orb) – for Mages

3. Thornmail (Bramble Vest) – for Tanks and Bruisers

4. Chemtech Purifier (Blight Orb) – For Mage Supports

5. Chemtech Chainsaw – For Bruisers or Assassins

All of these items except Thornmail inflict grievous wounds on opponents as soon as you damage them. Thornmail only inflicts the wounds when the enemy attacks you or if you immobilize the enemy. It also reflects a percentage of the damage you receive back to the attacker. This attribute makes it the ideal item for tanks and Bruisers

Shields

In League of Legends, there are champions who excel at granting shields to allies. A shield prevents or reduces any damage sustained from depleting the receiver’s HP. Look at it more like an extra overlapping health bar. 

Champions like Lulu, Ivern, Karma, Lux, Orianna are excellent at shielding allies. Other champions like Diana, Ekko, Garen, Riven have shields in their kit.

Also, there are items that empower shields and others that grant shields. Yes, this factor can decide team fights.

Items that empower shields given or received:

1. Ardent Censer

2. Staff of Flowing Water

3. Mikael’s Blessing

4. Redemption

Items that grant shields:

1. Immortal Shieldbow

2. Steraks Gage

3. Gargoyle Stoneplate

4. Locket of the Iron Solari

When you go up against a shield-heavy comp, Serpent Fangs is the answer. The item reduces the amount and strength of shields granted to your opponents.

Its only drawback is that it offers AD stats only. This means that it is of no value to Mages. So, AD Bruisers, Assassins, and Marksmen are good to go.

Serpent Fangs:

+55 attack damage

+18 Lethality (11.2 − 18 (based on level) armor penetration)

Passive

Unique – Shield Reaver: Dealing damage to an enemy champion injects them with venom for 3 seconds, reducing any Hybrid resistances icon.png shields they gain within the duration by (Melee 50% | Ranged 35%), and if the target was not already afflicted by the venom, reducing all of their active shields by the same amount.

Crowd Control (CC)

Crowd Control (CC) refers to any ability that disables an enemy champion in any way. It is divided into several types.

Slows

Target has his/her movement speed significantly reduced.

Example: Nasus’ Wither (W), Malphite’s Q, Lulu’s Q, Karma’s empowered Q, Orianna’s W effect on enemies, etc.

Roots

Target is held at a spot but able to cast any ability or attack that doesn’t involve movement. So, you can still attack an enemy while rooted. Although, you’ll have to do it from a designated spot for the duration of the root.

Examples: Morgana’s Q, Lux’s Q, Karma’s W (both empowered and ordinary), Etc

Silences

Target is unable to cast any ability, summoner spell, or item active for the duration. When silenced, you can still move about although you won’t be able to cast anything.

Examples: Garen’s Q, Fiddlesticks E, etc

Fear

Target is forced to slowly flee from you for the duration. During a fear, anyone under the effect will be unable to do anything but run away from you slowly.

Examples: Fiddlesticks Q, Nocturne E, Urgot’s R execution, etc.

Charm

Target is forced to move towards you for the duration. When charmed, you won’t be able to do anything other than move towards the one who charmed you.

Examples: Ahri’s E, Evelynn’s W, Seraphine’s R, Rakan’s R.

Polymorph

Target is turned to a harmless critter for the duration. Lulu is the only champion that has a polymorph in the game.

Knockups

Target(s) become airborne and unable to move or cast abilities for the duration.

Examples: Malphite’s R, Poppy’s R (tapped), Vi’s Q, etc

Suppression

Target is held at a position unable to do anything for the duration. The difference between suppression and stun is that the former needs to be channeled.

Example: Malzahar’s R, Warwick’s R, etc

Sleep

Target is put to sleep after a duration.

Examples: Zoe’s E and Lilia’s R

Blind

Target misses all auto-attacks for the duration

Example: Teemo’s Q

Nearsight

Target(s) become unable to see beyond the immediate area around their champion.

Example: Quinn’s Q, Graves’ W, Nocturne’s R.

Taunt

When you taunt an enemy champion, the target is forced to attack you for a short duration.

Example: Rammus’ E, Shen’s E.

Stuns

Target(s) is unable to move or cast any ability during the time.

Example: Amumu’s R, Leona’s Q, Viego’s W, Pantheon’s W, etc.

While Dr. Mundo has a passive that makes him immune to CC once every couple of seconds, others have to rely on items or the Cleanse summoner spell to get by.

Quicksilver Sash (QSS) and Mikael’s Blessing are the answers to a CC-heavy comp. QSS can only be used on yourself and it releases you from any form of crowd control, even Mordekaiser’s Ultimate.

Mikael’s Blessing on the other hand is built on supports. It frees any ally champion you cast it on and grants a short buff after.

Enemy’s Build

This section is just to point out a few things. If the enemy is building a lot of Magic Resist, build more Magic Penetration. Don’t rely only on Sorcerer’s boots, it only gives a flat amount of Magic Penetration.

If the enemy is stacking Armor, Armor penetration should do the trick.

Conclusion

Well, I didn’t start this post with the intention of making it long. However, this is what we do at SenpAI.GG; making sure you get the right information and knowledge to improve your gameplay. Now, you know the right factors to consider for League of Legends item choices.

Thanks for reading!

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