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Thoughts and suggestions regarding Summoner Spells

SirAston August 8, 2013 User blog:SirAston

Greetings, citizens of the Internet!

Many people have blogged about specific Summoner Spells or at least thought about them and I'll join them now. Not for specific ones, but for all of them. I do have to say that I'm not a professional player in the slightest (I don't play ranked), so my ideas for certain Summoner Spells is more about "getting away from Ignite.png Ignite/Flash.png Flash in Normals and lower division plays", but I'll try to not screw up the higher division plays (there will be a major exception for Flash, though). And in the end, I just want to write my thoughts down and maybe get some brain juices in the community flowing.

Of course, you're welcome to disagree with me in the comments, different heads will think differently. Also, I would like to hear comments from more experienced people who knows the game in and out.

Barrier.png Barrier is a fine spell in itself, but outside of ARAM I have the feeling that it gets overshadowed by Flash for non-tanks when Barrier is sometimes better for escapes (Flash may counter a burst, but Barrier is better against sustained damage and generally everything that's not combo-dependent).

Clairvoyance.png Clairvoyance is a good addition for most supporters even with Sightstone and gives you a "second chance" when the enemy destroys the ward before Dragon/Baron. The downside is his relatively high skillcap, as Clairvoyance is best used when you know the routes of both junglers and the timer for buff camps, meaning you need experience as a Jungler to be good with Clairvoyance (and most junglers won't equip Clairvoyance because they need Smite and a tool for ganking/escaping/fast movement. If you're dedicated to counter-jungle, though...) My only problem, and correct me if I'm wrong, is that it seems to not give you an assist if you reveal an enemy and he gets killed within seconds, making it less attractive on the two roles who could use as many assists as possible. Still, you can drop the CD of Clairvoyance down to almost 40 seconds and even unmodified you can drop a pseudo-ward every minute.

Clarity.png Clarity is, in my book, the ultimate underdog in normals. It is seen as an utility-spell, but it is more offensive than most people may think. Instantly getting mana allows you to turn the tide of an extended teamfight or chase even better when you have movement skills. It's also good for indirect sustain, because the more defensive supporters can heal/shield. How useful it is depends on the kits of the whole team, which is why it doesn't get used that much, compared to the no-brainer Exhaust.

Cleanse.png Cleanse... Well, I can see why it doesn't get more love in normals, because Cleanse is more of a counter-spell and therefore more useful in Draft Pick. It also needs some skill to use it right and QSS seems to be so much better compared to it. Still, for a situational spell, it's in a good spot afaik.

Exhaust.png Exhaust has become a popular spell for supporters in S3. Of course, it can be used when the marksman chases and when he gets chased. Mastered Exhaust also reduces defensive stats and is generally the bane of everything that needs AD and AS to dish out damage (mostly marksmen, what a surprise). While it is a good spell in the hands of aggressive supporters, it is often paired with Flash in normals when supporters can have spells that are so much more desireable... But in itself, no problems. Could get used more often by fighters, though.

Flash.png Flash... How can you talk about LoL without thinking about this spell? Everyone gets this sweet spell especially in normals because it gives you a second chance. But exactly that makes Flash not that desirable for people who still have to learn about the game (and reaching level 30 is just "getting out of elementary school"). Flash is good if you are in a bad position, but after reaching 30, you should learn to not let yourself be in a bad position, but how can you learn about positioning when you have a spell that practically says "It's cool to be in a bad spot, I'm there for you, buddy"? Flash has other uses, of course, but most of the time in normals, it gets used for a cheap escape. I would remove Flash as a spell, but reintroduce Yordle Stompers item.png Yordle Stompers as Tier 2-boots with a lower MS than other T2s, but having Flash as an active. This way, more space for spells, Flash becomes situational (as it should be) because of lower MS and you can still get Alacrity item.png Alacrity or Distortion item.png Distortion (when Distortion will have an effect on the active, of course). Just a suggestion.

Garrison.png Garrison is used only in a mode I'm not playing that often, so I can't tell if this is over- or underused, but it looks fine to me if you're more of a defender in Dominion. Aggressive uses are also fine if you want to kill some champs who are hugging a turret.

Ghost.png Ghost is pretty nice for Junglers and, really, a good alternative to Flash for everyone else. Why? Because Ghost (and Exhaust, for that matter) counters Flash because you can travel further than with a Flash. In certain situations, even flashing over a wall in the jungle will not help you from the wrath of a ghosting Chaser. Some champions profit even more from Ghost than others, Master Yi Master Yi and Hecarim Hecarim for example.

Heal.png Heal, now that's a difficult one... Most people in the lower divisions assume that this belongs to a supporter and I can see why, but it's somewhat wasted, sadly (not completely). Toplaners can use this for more presence and sustain, mastered Heal will also give a bit bonus health, up to +90 health at level 18. In the current meta, everyone wants to stack health, but everyone also get countered by stuff like Vayne Vayne and Blade of the Ruined King item.png Blade of the Ruined King, also known as "Team OP" in normals. Since Heal does not scale with health, one could assume that Heal is stronger when building Armor/MR, since it then gives you so much effective health on the fly. Heal is very situational and even Vladimir Vladimir doesn't want Heal all the time (well, he is a midlaner, after all...)

EDIT: A possible solution for health is to heal a base value that scales with missing health (the bonus is independent for each healed champ). Half of the heal will be granted instantly, the other half over time.

Ignite.png Ignite is the burning hot spell that causes everyone to flame when they notice their escape will be in vain. At least in normals and lower division plays. But I'm not here to be pun-tastic, Ignite is pretty damn strong in games where people tend to make mistakes because they still have to learn the finer details of the game (I know there are enough counters to Ignite, but still). A fellow Wikianer suggested to make the damage non-lethal, which is one of the most awesome things I've ever heard from a LoL-player (I'm serious). It's unfair that a spell is such a reliable finishing tool and, be honest, when do you feel more badass, when your wits and skills pulverises the enemy of if a generic spell does what you couldn't do in this fight? Making Ignite non-lethal means that it's better as a initiation tool, gives you a slight leeway when you make a small mistake and... well, how about the reduced healing that would have more weight if used for initiation? The champion controlled by a Summoner should kill, not the Summoner itself, it is somewhat like cheating.

Revive.png Revive, the most hated spell in the whole community. It can lead to the rare (and quite sad) "Legendary Kill" and you have to sacrifice a spell slot for a very situational spell with a very high CD. Yes, it gives MS for 12 seconds (that decays...) and mastered Revive grants you bonus health for 2 minutes, an amount between +220 and +560 health, depending on the level. Currently it's only used in more obscure build, like for Karthus Karthus and Dr. Mundo Dr. Mundo. A possible solution would be to reduce it's CD by 1 whenever a nearby unit dies, making Revive a tool to give yourself an edge and reward you for playing aggressive/defending without dying.

Smite.png Smite works good, simply enough. For junglers this is a key tool to get their early routes fast (and helping with smiteless buff camps should lead to counter-jungling, which is new territory for most people who are learning the Jungle) and secure/steal primary targets like Dragon and Baron. Mastered Smite gives you more gold on use, always welcome for Junglers. If I have to change every Summoner Spell but one, Smite would be the exception.

Teleport.png Teleport is pretty nice for ganking, for defense, for laning... pretty much everything. Mastered teleport is kinda meh, though. While 0.5 seconds can make a difference in a game like LoL, mastering it doesn't feel good. Maybe giving a small shield or increased Armor/MR for a short time after using a mastered Teleport?

So, yeah, that's it, folks. Feel free to comment. Even if you don't want to, I hope you had a good read and I could motivate you to think about the current usage of summoner spells.

Please remember: My thoughts are not about things that would change the whole game (with the exception of Flash, of course), it's just how to make normals and lower division plays a little more varied in their choices for summoner spells. Constantly using Ignite/Flash without thinking should not be the way to climb the ladder out of Bronze/Silver.

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