Roaming is a rare style of gameplay in which your champion spends the "laning phase" of the game roaming across the map rather than spending it laning or jungling.
Roamers are generally champions with high base stats, are not dependent on farming/items, set up ganks well and/or gank well themselves. Roamers often focus on ganking lanes, clearing wards, counter jungling or even killing the enemy jungler.
Having a roamer allows each teammate their own lane, giving them a level advantage. With a jungler, there will be three solo lanes. If your team contains a roamer your team should have a champion that can hold their own against two champions by themselves, or roaming can become a liability rather than an asset.
Many of the concepts of roaming have become an integral part of some junglers, including Riven and Maokai. Rather than farming the jungle, some junglers are more suited to counter jungling and roaming.
- Ganking early can grant your team kills while jungles are still clearing camps (most people don't expect a gank in the first or second wave of minions)
- Counter-jungling can help against gold and experience problems by clearing enemy neutral monster camps or scoring a kill against the enemy jungler.
- Distracting the enemy jungler by preventing him from farming can greatly benefit teammates.
- Early gold and experience problems can also be mitigated by killing Dragon with your team's jungler or invading at the begining of the game.
- Roamers can help give your team map awareness at beginning of the game.
is an important item on roamers as it allows them to counter enemy warding, and make ganking easier.
- This can also assist your team's jungler by increasing their chance of a successful gank.
- Roamers should often set up their runes and masteries to focus on sustain, movement speed, gold income and experience.
- Roamers should coordinate ganks with their team's jungler, in order to improve efficiency.
- This may include ganking straight after a previous gank, to surprise the enemy.
- Roamers should continue to gank lanes while the jungler is farming, in order to keep up pressure.
- Roamers can also help protect the jungler from counter-ganking.
Due to spending most of their time outside of a lane and, therefore, away from gold, experience and enemies, Roamers make good use out of items which provide benefits when out of combat such as:
- Health and Mana Regeneration (to recover between encounters)
- Gold generation (to make up for their lack of gold and experience from minions)
- granting mana regeneration, health regeneration and gold income while in lane.
- is more useful for roamers who spend less time in lane, or focus on fighting the enemy jungler.
- is sometimes useful for roamers that tax lanes and it also grants a small healing effect.
- High movement speed (to decrease time outside of lanes and to help facilitate ganks)
- or .
- It is often worthwhile to get or .
- and for increased map control.
- CC items to improve ganks
- grants a slow and deals more damage, scaling with base stats.
- Support items like can improve the roamers effect on teamfights.
- If your team does not have a roamer, your team will have at least one 2v1 lane, allowing this lane to focus on zoning and harassment.
- Early warding and map vision can cripple a roamer since good map awareness can deny a roamer any successful ganks.
- Similarly, good map awareness from spells like Hawkshot or Clairvoyance can drastically reduce the success rate of a roamer.
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Roaming champions befit greatly from high base stats and being less dependent on items. Champions with CC abilities have stronger ganks and champions with high sustain and movement speed also make for good roamers. The following are some examples of roaming champions:
- High base damage on her combo
- Defense steroid means she doesn't need as much gold to be effective
- Good CC means easier ganks and better teamfights.
- Speed burst and upgraded passive from Traveler's Call
- High mobility from Magical Journey to gank from unexpected positions
- Can stun/slow up to 2 targets with Cosmic Binding to set up easy kills
- Caretaker's Shrine allows for sustain and support for lanes
- Long range Tempered Fate and relatively low cooldown to save/ set up team for engage/
Champions that can hold a 1v2 Lane
When using a roamer in place of a bottom duo lane, it is important to have a champion that can hold their lane without much difficulty. Generally, these champions are bruisers that modify their build for easy sustain and wave clears. A jungler/roamer can then gank when they have the advantage of levels.
- Easy clears with his skill set, good sustain once he gets chalice
- Hard to dive because of his ult
- Good sustain due to his passive
- Good clear from his scream and spikes
- Passive gives decent sustain
- Requires AP to clear waves effectively
- Good sustain
- Has CC and various skills
- Hard to gank or kill
Trivia / Notes
- Roaming was once a popular strategy in high ELO games during season one.
- was a popular buy on roamers before season four.
- Season four changes to gold income items have made it increasingly difficult for roamers.