Like all tanks, Swain deals a ton of damage, heals for a lot and offers good amount of CC.
I’m a plat player with 66% winrate. I played 100+ games on swain this season and the season before.
Let’s dive in that crow changing healing tilting beast.
You can play him top lane and mid. I have tried him in the support role and it was okay, I guess. The cc, zoning and early damage specially if you can land WQ combo is a nice level 2 spike if you have a good early game ADC. Be sure to try it in ranked.
The Early Game:
Your Q is your bread and butter ability. If you get top lane, try maxing Q first. For mid lane, be sure to max Q first. If you get jungle, be sure to dodge. Your W CDR reduces per rank and root duration increases so opt to max this second. Your E has a very low base value compared to your W and it has 100% ap scaling and the increase in damage is constant in all ranks.
Try to CS as much as possible since the meta now is shifting towards poking laners like Viktor and Xerath. Get as much CS as possible, pray for a gank and get your Rod Of Ages as fast as possible.
I prefer to take Dark Seal and pots as starting items because the extra 100 mana is useful for more mana restore with your passive and the extra ap on kills and increased pot duration makes you very very durable in the lane and since you’ll have one extra pot vs your opponent with doran’s ring and 2 pots, you can go aggressive and use that extra pot as an opportunity to make a play.
Personally, I think Swain’s mid game is one of the best. Your Zhonya and ROA power spike is immense and by the time you get them, you allow yourself a high chance of a comeback.
By 25 to 30 minutes at worst cases, you should have your Zhonya and ROA. Always opt to get those items with your boots of choice. I personally like to get Ionian boots because of the CDR on summoners spells as well and for the ultimate after the nerf ofc, thanks riot.
Now, Why Zhonya even vs ap champions? The utility that Zhonya offers is a lot. It lets you dodge vital spells ( Syndra’s ulti or Zed’s for example) and keeps you immune for a good period. Even if you’re feeding, you’ll still manage to just stand in the middle of the fight dealing a whole lot of damage while being untargetable and tanking so much for your team to carry you.
Try to roam if you’re ahead. And use your teleport for bot lane ganks or if you’re forced early to back because of heavy poke match ups.
If you’re the only tanky member on your team try to go for the fight when you land your snare on a low health target (adc, mid laner or supp) Your EQ and ulti on that target will have enough damage to take him down before the fight even starts plus you have zhonya if screw it up putting your a team in a very good position to win the fight. Unless you decide they decide to leave you behind. It happens.
If you do have tanks on your team then you can follow them and either peel for your ad by CC-ing whoever comes near him or if you trust your support, you can go for their key targets. Leave a comment if you trust your support.
Try to utilize your build to the best each game. A final late game build would be Ionian boots, ROA, Zhonya, Spirite visage. From here you should associate your build with what you’re facing.
If they have a lot of HP, Go Liandry’s.
For slippery , ezreals and vaynes and rivens, go Rylai’s Crystal Scepter.
And if you’re snowballing hard, you can go Rabadon’s and kill everyone.
Your basic combo should be EQW-R and don’t forget to basic attack. Your AA range matches most of the ranged champions for a last crow and AA to secure a flash away target plus it tilts them ^^.
CS-ing with swain is very easy. You should get QW at level 1 and 2 respectively and WQ the ranged minions. At level 4 with 2 ranks in your Q, it’ll be enough to clear the 3 castor minions.
Your AA is also almost instantaneous so it shouldn’t be hard for you to CS with it very easily if you take the increased attack speed mastery. Yes, I’m fine taking the 4% increased attack speed and sacrificing the increased 2% damage in ability damage for increased 20% CS score.
Tips and Tricks:
Your Q targets Your E’ed target so if your opponent walks into your Q circle while Beatrice, your crow, is targeting a minion, cast your E on him and smack him with a basic attack while being slowed.
Be smart in 1v1 or 1v2 with your zhonya. Bait them to 1v1 you even if they’re strong specially fighters and adc-s. Snare them with your W then EQR and zhonya. You’ll be dealing damage, healing and they’re snared and can’t go away allowing you an easy kill to put your lower plat montage.
Try to kite away. If you land your snare, please walk away a bit to stay away of their melee range. Trust me, it saved me a lot.
Masteries and Runes:
An example of a passive rune page:
This part may vary from one to another.
This is my rune page.
I take the 3 attack speed seals because swain has a very fast AA animation and they help smooth out the animation even more for both CS-ing and early trades.
You can change scaling hp runes with armor against AD laners.
Now, go there an apply what you learned on the rift and Have Feeders 🙂
For any suggestions, please leave a comment below.