Unsung Heroes #3: Tear Gas and Tazers
Mon 10th Sep 2012 - 5:24pm: League of Legends
Unsung Heroes 3: Tear Gas and Tazers
A large part of the role tanks play is utilizing crowd control to allow your team to get kills or to save their lives. Understanding how these effects work is pivotal to knowing how to apply them properly or prepare to counter them when the enemy uses them.
How tenacity works with crowd control was looked at in the previous article, but a quick recap is needed. Each point of tenacity reduces the duration of roots, slows, stuns, silences, blinds, fears, taunts, charms, and polymorphs by 1%. It has no effect on knockups, knockbacks, or suppress. It stacks multiplicatively with any other CC reducing effects such as champion abilities, the final Defense mastery, or the lingering effect of cleanse.
For all crowd control other than slows, there are no diminishing returns or differing of effects if the target is already under the effect of that CC. This means that if a no tenacity target is stunned for 1.5s and another stun with a 2s duration hits the target at 1s into the first stun, then the target will be stunned for a total of 3s, or a loss of .5s of stun. For this reason, maximum CC time is achieved by waiting until current CC fades away, but chaining CC so there are no moments a person can act is best for ensuring kills and escapes.
The Hardcore: Stun, Airborne, Suppression, Silence, and Forced Movement
You will often hear people refer to “hard CC.” This means that the CC will stop channeled abilities when given. Channeled abilities are usually quite dangerous, such as Katarina and Nunu’s ultimates, so picking a tank with hard CC can greatly help you keep your team safe.
The second strongest CC, stunning almost completely stops a character from acting; they cannot move, autoattack, or use abilities. A stunned champion is still able to use most summoner spells, meaning they can use Cleanse to remove the stun. They will not be able to use flash.
Making a target airborne is one of the most effective CCs currently in the game, largely due to its inability to be mitigated. Combined airborne abilities also have an interesting end result, as the duration of the target’s airborne time becomes higher if the target is already airborne. This can make it particularly effective on champions who make themselves airborne naturally, like Caitlyn’s E or Tristana’s Rocket Jump. Alistar and Blitzcrank are famously known for utilizing airborne-inducing afflictions
The forced movement branch of CC includes three different effects: taunting, charm, and fear. Taunt is used by Galio, Rammus, and Shen. It forces the afflicted to move toward the giver of the affliction and autoattack them continuously for the duration. Charm is only used by Ahri, and it makes the enemy move towards her, but they will not attack. Fear causes the target to be slightly slowed and move about randomly, which makes it less dependable even if it does always break channels.
Silence will stop a champion from using abilities and will interrupt channels. It is extremely useful on mages, since it will effectively remove them from the fight for the duration. It can also be used for stopping carries from using escape abilities, such as preventing Ezreal from using his Arcane Shift.
Suppression is the most powerful CC in the game, and also one of the rarest. The only things that will remove suppress are the quicksilver sash and Gangplank’s Remove Scurvy. It blocks all movement, attacking, abilities, and summoner spells. The last item is of important note, since it means cleanse has no effect. It also is not reduced by crowd control reduction effects. Malzahar, Warwick, and Urgot utilize suppression in their ultimates.
Secondary Tank CC: Slow, Entangle, and Snares
This group of CC is a mixed bag of weaker effects and less common ones for your typical tanking champions.
Slowing is probably the most common CC in the game. Over half the champions have slow in their kit, and the Frozen Mallet and Rylai’s Crystal Scepter will add slow to the rest. When slows are placed onto a champion from different sources, the numbers are combined multiplicatively. The slow ratio is applied to the derived movement speed of the champion, so simply use their displayed movement speed when estimating how much effect a slow will have. There is also a soft cap as speed becomes too low, preventing it from ever going below 110 unless snared, so having too much slow from different sources can be a waste.
Slow is useful for both keeping people away from your carries, disengaging from fights, and chasing down enemies. Since the methods of applying slow means it is frequently able to be kept up indefinitely, it becomes more useful as fights progress.
Entangle and Snares
Entangling and snares both completely inhibit any movement by the enemy champion. This includes any abilities that might move them, like Leona’s Zenith Blade or Graves’s Quickdraw, and the Summoner Spell Flash. Entangling has the additional effect of stopping the afflicted from using autoattacks, but the only ability that currently gives it is Amumu’s ultimate. You will see snares on Leona, Maokai, and Nautilus, as far as tanks go. Snares are commonly seen in mages (Ryze, Lux, Morgana, Zyra, LeBlanc, and Swain), and it is also given by Caitlyn’s traps and Varus’s ultimate.
Non-Tank CC: Blind and Polymorph
While these crowd control do not appear often on your average tank, they are included for the sake of completeness and since you will see them in game
Blind’s sole effect is to cause a champion’s autoattacks to miss. They can still autoattack, but there will be no effect. If blinded, it is important to focus on using abilities and using the time to position.
The newest support, Lulu, uses polymorph to prevent a champion from attacking or using abilities. They still have control of their movement, so it is used best for breaking channels and stopping attacks.
The “Non-CC” CC: Cripple, Grievous Wound, and Shred
No CC in this group is reduced by tenacity or anything that lowers the effect of CC. The effects can be removed by a quicksilver sash. Cripple will slow down the target’s attack speed. It is given by champions like Malphite and Nunu and also by items such as Frozen Heart and Randuin’s Omen.
Grievous Wound causes all healing on the champion to be cut by half. It can drastically hinder any champion that relies on healing, such as attack champions with tons of life steal or Dr. Mundo. The Summoner Spell Ignite, the active effects of Executioner’s Calling and Morello’s Evil Tome, and a few champion abilities apply the effect. Shred is anything that reduces the armor and magic resistance of the afflicted. Kayle’s passive applies a shred to anything she hits, and items like the Black Cleaver and Malady apply it.
This should give you a good basis for understanding the various crowd control effects. Knowing when to utilize them and when to expect them can only truly come from game experience. For the next article, we will be taking a look at the items that help a tank do their job.