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BUILD GUIDE: Counter picking, Team Compositions, Draft Pick, And you. by Snap

by Snap (last updated over a year ago)

71,411 Views 24 Comments

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Unknown Section mastery

About the author

Hello solo midders! My name is Snap. I have been playing League of Legends since July of 2010. I play pretty regularly when I have time. I mainly play supports currently with a team that I play with regularly. You can add me on my current account that I play on if you want to play a game or something @ SnapBackKilla on NA servers.

Guide Changlog

10/7/2011 Added: Urgot, Malzahar, Nasus.
10/3/2011 First guide draft released.

Introduction ***DISCLAIMER***

FIRST OFF: THIS GUIDE IS NOT COMPLETE, IT WILL CONSTANTLY BE UPDATED AND CHANGE BASED ON CHANGES BETWEEN PATCHES. I WILL CONSISTENTLY BE ADDING CHAMPIONS SECTIONS THAT ARE NOT COMPLETED.
Second: I am always open to suggestions. If you can make a convincing argument that disagrees with any of the information I have provided, please tell me!
This is going to be my first guide here on solo mid. It is going to be a generic guide on counter picks when you are playing normal draft or ranked draft pick. This guide will contain counter picks to every champion when it is released. Eventually this is be a comprehensive guide containing all of the champions. For now, most of the champions will do.

Current champions that are difficult to counterpick

This section is a list and a brief description of why these champtions are difficult to counterpick.
This does not mean it cannot be done. Generally, the champions in this list are difficult to counterpick because they can fill out almost any role on a team.



Oh Gangplank. Gangplank is an amazing champion with outstanding utility. The main reason why Gangplank is hard to counter is because of his dynamic lane positions. If somebody picks Gangplank, you never quite know which lane he is going to go in. Gangplank can literally fillout any role on the team;
Jungler, Solo top, Mid (in some cases), Support GP (as displayed by RS now Dignitas), or as an AD carry with support bot. Because Gangplank is so dynamic with his lane position, you can't definitely counter pick him.
In the current build, 1.43.11_09_23_18_01, Banning Gangplank if you don't have first pick is a good idea.




Kayle is difficult to counterpick due to her dynamic laning as well. Kayle, Along with Gangplank, Can fullfill any role on the team. Because of this, she is also very difficult to counterpick. HOWEVER, that said, kayle typically is sent solo top. Only 1% of all Kayle players will use her to her full potential and send her to another lane to counterpick another lane.



Maokai, along with Kayle and Gangplank, can fill out any role. Maokai can be played as any of the following: Ap carry mid, Bruiser top, Support bot, or Jungler. Because he can fill out all of these roles, it is very difficult to pick a definitive counter for him.

Countering an AOE team

AOE is an acronym for Area of Effect. If a team contains 2 or more of the following champions:




Consider the following counter picks:



Alistar can headbut champions in their AOE ultimate away from allies such as;



Trstana with her ultimate can also push back heavy damage dealers in their ultimates away from allies.


Maokai with his ultimate reduces 20% of all damage inside of his circle. If a team relies on all of their damage to be burst AOE. Maokai with a good ultimate will make the opposing AOE team cry.


Gragas with his ult can blast away enemy AOE from allies.



Janna with her ult can blast away enemy AOE damage and heal at the same time.

Akali


First off, as a rule of thumb, Akali snowballs very, very heavily if fed. If you are playing solo queue. Consider banning Akali. Akali stomps so well at lower levels of play and snowballs very well, that a ban against akali is a good one.
Akali must get kills to be useful. She does not have any outstanding farm abilities. If you do not trust your mid to play safe, go ahead ans ban her.

Good counter picks:

Generally, tanky champions that akali cannot burst down from full to none are good picks.
Cho is a great pick because of his great sustain, and supreme tankiness the moment he hits level 6.
Also:
Many Akali players can be caught off guard when they try to jump you and get exhausted, turning the fight heavily in your favor. If you are playing a squishy AP caster against Akali (which is a bad idea) Carrying
exhaust is a wise choice.
Additionally:

is a great choice for Akali. Garens tankiness and high damage output early game can deny Akali early game kills and farm which will make Akali fall off later in the game.

Alistar


Alistar is an aggressive support. Typically, Alistar will try and net his carries in lane early kills.
Bot lane:
AD carries with a long range/built in escape are great picks.

These champions bot lane are great picks due to their ability to farm outside of Alistars Headbut+Pulverize range.
Top lane:
If you want to be a real dick, Pick Cho'Gath top lane. Cho'Gaths ultimate Feast Scales with AP and deals true damage. Cho's ultimate negates the damage reduction on Alistars ultimate. It's good for taking out a low health alistar.

Amumu


Refer back to the AOE section, Anybody with a knockback is good for amumu.
Mainly:

Amumu is very vulnerable in the jungle. A great counter jungler such as:

Is a good pick against Amumu.

Anivia


TO BE ADDED

Annie


Annie is a tricky one. Annie is similar to akali in the way that she is really easy to play, snowballs really hard, and destroys people in lower levels of play. A ban might be appropriate if you do not trust your mid to do well against Annie.


Akali is a pretty decent counter to Annie. If the Akali has half a brain and only jumps her when she doesn't have a stun, Akali is sure to win.

Also:

Is a pretty strong pick. His ability to clear creep waves from a distance and stack MR so Annie cannot burst him down is a nice combo to lane against Annie.

Ashe


TO BE ADDED

Blitzcrank


I cannot stress this enough, IF YOU ARE AN AD CARRY AND THE ENEMY TEAM HAS A BLITZCRANK,
BUY A GODDAM
In lane: If Blitz is soloing top lane, your bruiser up top should be able to rape him. If blitzcrank is playing an aggressive support bot lane, consider picking safe AD carries such as:

Consider picking the following supports against blitz:

If blitz is playing support, the lane will have no sustain so Sona with her great early game harass should be able to essentially zone that lane as long as she doesn't get caught by a pull.
Soraka has a free silence. Since there is a lack of sustain in the enemy lane, a consistent silence can protect your ad carry from a pull.

Brand


The ongoing theme for AP carries is to counterpick with:

Galio does so well against so many AP carries he is a great champion to learn.

Other tips against brand:
Start with boots and x3 health pots.
Boots are essential to dodge brands pillar of flame.
Many champions are an even match with brand.
Consider picking:

Caitlyn


Caitlyn has a very long range and therefore has a supreme amount of lane control and a very safe farm.
Consider the following counter picks against Caitlyn:

Tristana and Kog'Maw have the longest range besides Caitlyn. Taric might be commonly paired with a Caitlyn. This combo can be deadly if you get in the range of a Taric stun so other long range AD carries are good picks.
You also might consider picking:

Urgot also has a supreme amount of range that is comparable to Caitlyn.

CassiOPeia


TO BE ADDED

Cho' Gath


Cho needs a very large amount of farm to be successful. He is also very vulnerable pre-6.
Some good picks to counter Cho might be:

Cho must be in melee range to farm and sustain. This combined with his squishy early game makes him a prime target for a spin to win at level 2.

Since Cho will want to AFK farm top lane for as long as he can, Nasus might be a good pick to counter cho. Nasus is the KING of AFK farming. A farmed nasus is scary, and if a Cho lets a nasus farm up top, the nasus will have a much better late game over cho.

Corki


TO BE ADDED

Dr. Mundo


Mundo has obvious counter and downfalls. I do not discount him as a useless champion though.
The obvious counter to Mundo is:

However, champions with healing reduction such as:

might be great picks against Mundo.

Evelynn


In this current patch, Evelynn is underwhelming. She can easily be countered early by a quick pickup of a by your humble support character.
Other then that, Don't be dumb and overextend.
The only time Evelynn will be scary is if she gets fed by people that consistently overextend.

Ezreal


TO BE ADDED

Fiddledicks


Refer back to AOE section in the start of this guide.
Summary:
Champions with knockbacks counter fiddle pretty hard;

Galio


Refer back to AOE section of this guide.
Champions with knockbacks counter galios ultimate.

Also, hard CC such as:

And:
Bear stance will cancel Galio's channel if it is active.

Gangplank


Refer back to section: "Current champions that are difficult to counterpick"
Summary:
Gangplank is very a very difficult champion to counter because of his dynamic laning, his sustain with oranges, and his insane utility with Raise Moral + One of the few global Ultimates that still exist in the game.

Garen


Garen is mostly a counter pick to champions that need farm to be successful and need to be in melee range to do this.
Anybody with a large range that can farm outside of Garens zone in the brush does extremely well. Garen relies on getting fed to be useful. Otherwise, he falls off pretty hard mid-late game.
Consider picking the following champions that can farm at a distance:

Also, anybody with a large amount of sustain can handle garen pretty well.
Consider picking the following sustain champions:

These are not the only champions that are good picks against Garen. The general rule of thumb is to pick a champion that can farm without getting into range of Garens silence + spin.

Gragas


TO BE ADDED

Heimerderper


TO BE ADDED

Irelia


Irelia is not tanky until she gets a few items and a decent amount of farm.
Condsider picking:

to shut her down extremely early as Irelia will be in silence + spin range to farm.
HOWEVER if the Irelia is smart, she will rush a wriggles against a Garen top lane and will eventually win the matchup.

Additionally, A strong pick against Irelia is:

Jax is the king of bruisers, I would venture to say, in a prolonged fight, Jax is THEE best 1v1er in the game. Jax can also get a decent amount of farm against Irelia where Jax would hurt early game due to harass of ranged opponents.

Finally:

Cho's supreme amount of sustain and tankiness is too much for Irelias burst.

Janna


Janna has a lack of sustain in lane.
Because of this, consider picking:

as your support. Sona has a great amount of burst damage at levels 1-6 due to her power chord passive.
Due to the lack of sustain in lane with Janna, champions with a large amount of poke and range due well against Janna.
Consider picking these champions as your AD carry:

Jarvan4


J4, due to his recent nerfs in these past couple months, has a really bad laning phase, underwhelming damage, and decreased utility due to the amount of flashes being used today.
Consider picking bruisers that succeed with a large amount of farm such as:

Jax


Jax is commonly played in 3 roles on a team, Solo top, Ad bot, Junger (more uncommon).
When you see a Jax picked in draft mode, first try to determine which lane he will most likely be in.
As a general rule, champions with a hard stun exceed against Jax.
Consider picking the following AP casters with a built in stun:

Also, consider picking:

as a counter pick.
Some general tips about fighting with Jax later in the game:
Burst him down. Jax can't get his ultimate stacks when he is stunned/dead.
Have your support/jungler build a
ALWAYS have your AD carry build a
If your AD carry has not built a sword of the divine yet, DO NOT AUTO ATTACK HIM.

Karma


TO BE ADDED

Karthus


Refer back to AOE section at the start of this guide.
Champions in lane that exceed against Karthus are:

Most other AP casters are pretty even with Karthus.
Also, consider picking:

as your support. Her heal will out heal his ultimate at all stages of the game.

Kassadin


TO BE ADDED

Katarina


Katarina is hard countered by hard CC.
Pick any champion with hard CC.
For example:

Kayle


Refer back to section: Champions that are difficult to counterpick.

Kennen


Kennen only gives certain champions trouble in lane. A caster that can farm from a long distance usually does well against Kennen.
Consider picking:

These champions have a great ability to farm from a great distance away which allows them to farm effectively without getting in the danger zone of being hit by a shuriken.

Kog'Maw


Kog'maw has a great ability to farm at a great distance. Because of this, he usually does not put himself in a position to easily get ganked. If a Kog'maw is picked on the other team, don't expect to get kills in your bottom lane. Instead, try to pick a champion with a large range as well.
Consider picking:

Make sure at least one champion on your team has a hard stun. It also is a good investment for your jungler/support to buy a

Lebleh


Leblanc has very high, single target, high cool down burst damage. Because of this, Tanky casters have an easy time with leblanc.
Consider picking the following against an enemy Leblanc:

Leblanc relies heavily on kills early to snowball out of control early game because her damage starts to fall off late. These tanky casters will deny Leblanc kills and scale much better into late game offering more utility as well.

Free win


TO BE ADDED.

Leona


Leona going bot as a support role poses the problem of sustain. You need to exploit that problem. If and enemy picks Leona as support, consider picking:

as your support. She has quite a lot of burst damage early game which can bring an enemy Leona pretty low.
Also, consider picking:

As a support. He has great harrass in lane and can wither down an enemy Leona in lane.

Consider picking the following AD carries:

as both of these champions have high harass and high range making the them an optimal choice against Leona.

Lux


TO BE ADDED.

Malphite


TO BE ADDED.

Malzahar


Most of Malzhars damage comes from his Ultimate + Pool + Malefic visions combo. Malzahar is very strong in lane, and good at 1v1'ing squishy champions because of his ultimate. Try to carry any of the following champions with hard CC to stop the channeling of Malzahars ultimiate:

Essentially, any champion with a hard stun the can stun malz at the right time will drastically lower Malzahars damage output.

Maokai


TO BE ADDED.

Master Yi


TO BE ADDED.

Miss Fortune


TO BE ADDED.

Mordekaiser


TO BE ADDED.

Morgana


TO BE ADDED.

Nasus


Nasus relies on a MASSIVE amount of farm to be successful. Nasus also has to be in melee range to get the effective farm to stack his Q. Therefore, Champions that have a high amount of harass do well against Nasus.
Consider picking:

As Urgots high amount of harass can effectively zone Nasus away from farming his Q.
Also, Consider picking:

I cannot stress how much of a great pick Garen is against Nasus. Garen has such a high damage output early game that he also can effectively zone Nasus.
Overall, try and choose a champion that will shut down Nasus early so that he won't be a threat early game.

Nidalee


TO BE ADDED.

Nocturne


TO BE ADDED.

Nunu


TO BE ADDED.

Brolaf


TO BE ADDED.

Orianna


TO BE ADDED.

Pantheon


TO BE ADDED.

Poppy


TO BE ADDED.

Rammus


TO BE ADDED.

Renekton


TO BE ADDED.

Rumble


TO BE ADDED.

Ryze


TO BE ADDED.

Shaco


TO BE ADDED.

Shen


TO BE ADDED.

Singed


Most of the time, a Singed lane will be a farm fest.
He most likely won't get aggressive on you unless there is a gank or you are playing real stupid.
In this case, if there is a giant farm fest, consider picking the KING of AFK farming:

If you want to keep Singed away from farm, consider picking an AD carry to go top such as:

AD carried top counter Singed pretty well in lane.
To counter pick an AD caster against Singed, your best bet is to use:

Kennen can keep Singed away from farm pretty early.

Sion


TO BE ADDED.

Sivir


TO BE ADDED.

Skarner


TO BE ADDED.

Sona


TO BE ADDED.

Soraka


TO BE ADDED.

Swain


TO BE ADDED.

Talon


TO BE ADDED.

Taric


TO BE ADDED.

Teemo


TO BE ADDED.

Tristana


TO BE ADDED.

Trundle


TO BE ADDED.

Tryndamere


TO BE ADDED.

Twisted Fate


TO BE ADDED.

Twitch


TO BE ADDED.

Udyr


TO BE ADDED.

Urgot


Urgot is a champion relies on his massive range and in lane harass and deny farm to enemy AD carries. Urgots do well against lanes with no sustain. However, if a lane has any sustain such as:

they can heal up Urgots harass pretty well to not make him a threat in lane. Soraka would be the optimal pick as the 125 armor buff at level 5 heal makes Urgots blades seem like pillows.
Overall, pick a champion or a support that has some sort of sustain to heal up Urgots harass.

Vayne


TO BE ADDED.

Veigar


TO BE ADDED.

Vladimir


TO BE ADDED.

Warwick


TO BE ADDED.

Xin Zhao


TO BE ADDED.

Yorick


TO BE ADDED.

Zilean


TO BE ADDED.

Comments

April 14, 2012 - 10:40 AM #1

MEOW

January 2, 2012 - 02:10 PM #2

I was looking for a guide like this, focused on draft mode and counterpicking. But i disliked this guide because in my opinion is just too simple.



There are so many counterpicks for certain champions that you don't even mention in this guide, it seems to me that you don't know about them.



Add me on LoL and I'll give you some feedback.

January 1, 2012 - 02:28 AM #3

sona caitlyn garen/nidalee everywhere lulz

December 16, 2011 - 03:25 AM #4

So no update? :(

December 12, 2011 - 01:59 AM #5

Heimerdinger can be counter picked with a nunu... nunu consume(Q) can easily one shot his turrets

November 5, 2011 - 06:29 AM #6

Most of this looks pretty good. Keep it up.

October 26, 2011 - 08:31 AM #7

Also, Irelia doesn't have a hard time with cho, but he does with her. Her W does a lot of true damage to him and during laning phase she can wreck him. I've not watched or played a matchup where Irelia lost to cho 1v1.

October 26, 2011 - 08:24 AM #8

Just started reading, but "AKALI" is hard countered by Lee Sin. If Akali is picked Lee Sin is guaranteed to make her moot.

October 19, 2011 - 05:32 AM #9

Please update! thank you

October 10, 2011 - 03:07 AM #10

Nice guide bro!

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