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(Champion Rework) Olaf, the Berserker

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Statistics
Health 597.24 +93 Attack damage 65 +5
Health regen. 8.51 +0.9 Attack speed [*] 0.694  (+ 0 +5.9%)
Fury 315.6 +42 Armor 26.04 +3
Magic resist. 32.1 +1.25
Melee 125 Move. speed 350


This is a tentative rework for Olaf, the Berserker. Olaf's been a problem champion for years now: back when he was strong in Season 2, he was really strong, as well as impossible to balance properly, which caused Riot to nerf him so hard that Olafing is still a term used to describe balance changes that completely sink a champion. He then received a rework in Season 3, but those changes were simply done to "fix" him, i.e. remove the aspects of him that made him so snowbally (namely, his personal Atma's Impaler item.png Atma's Impaler passive on his W) and try to make his build options a bit more interesting via an AD ratio to his E. The end result is a champion who, while not expressly unhealthy, feels consistently underwhelming, and who still has a lot of issues affecting his own power: Olaf is a ball of stats, offering little that is unique to him and relying on items instead to make his contribution as a tanky DPS champion, and a huge portion of his kit's strength is shunted into various stat steroids, some of which are redundant (he has 7 different steroids in total). Despite being a champion who thrives in the middle of combat, he has a tough time entering fights, which even the recent movement speed boost on his ult doesn't help too much with, and in general he doesn't have that many options at his disposal to deal with kiting. He also doesn't make too much sense as a mana champion, but mana is the only adequate gate to his on-demand healing, which needs to be on-demand because of his self-damaging E. There's a whole system of internal contradictions in Olaf's kit that are preventing him from truly fulfilling his fantasy as a berserker.

I think the answer here wouldn't be to just try to fix Olaf, but to find a way for him to genuinely fight like a berserker, and do so in a manner that would be completely unique to him. A big reference for this is the Warrior class in World of Warcraft, specifically Fury Warriors, who are all about getting enraged and firing powerful abilities as soon as they can, and I think Olaf would be able to work along a similar paradigm, building up Fury in combat and unleashing it the moment he can do so against his opponents.

Abilities

Berserker Rage
Berserker Rage

Fury: Olaf generates 5 Fury every half-second and 10 Fury with every basic attack.

Berserker Rage: Olaf gains 1% attack speed for every 1% of his missing health. Regaining health only lowers this bonus once he leaves combat.

Ability Details
Berserker Rage is a self-buff.

Additional Information:

This I feel is one stat steroid worth keeping on Olaf, as it meshes really well with his theme as a berserker and allows him to become a lot more powerful in high-risk situations. I also added a specific clause preventing the boost from dropping in combat because having his healing lower his own DPS is a massive case of anti-synergy. Olaf should feel confident that healing himself shouldn't come at a cost to his damage, nor should outside help either.

Along with this, I massively buffed Olaf's attack speed per level to 5.9% from 2.7%, as I feel he should be able to attack pretty quickly as a baseline, and also buffed his attacks to Juggernauts levels, increasing his base AD to 65 from 59.98, and his AD growth to 5 from 3.5. I also switched him to a Fury system and removed all of his cooldowns: the premise to this kit would be that the only true gate to his ability use would be his Fury generation, so he'd be able to use his abilities as soon as he'd have enough of his resource to do so. This is also why I want him to keep his attack speed steroid: since his Fury generation would rely on his autoattacks, attack speed would be the gate to his strength, and so his innate would open up more and more power the lower on health he'd get.


Undertow
RANGE: 1000
SPEED: 1600
COST: 50 Fury
Undertow

Active: Olaf throws an axe to the target location, dealing physical damage to all enemies it passes through and Slow icon slowing all enemies hit beyond a minimum distance for 1 second.

  • Physical Damage: 20 / 40 / 60 / 80 / 100 (+ 100% AD)
Ability Details
Undertow is a linear pass-through skill shot.

Additional Information:

Undertow is an ability with a couple of interesting effects, saddled with a couple of issues: the first is that its relatively high early damage means that top lane Olaf often ends up using the ability for poke, instead of exploiting its crowd control for an all-in, and the second is that its crowd control and quick refresh always puts Olaf at risk of perma-slowing enemies close to him. Putting the slow beyond its minimum distance and reducing its early damage, while leading up to the same late-game damage, would make Undertow Olaf's foremost tool for closing the distance between him and his opponent.


Vicious Strike
RANGE: 250
COST: 50 Fury
Vicious Strikes

Active: Olaf's cleaves the arc in front of him, dealing physical damage to all enemies he hits, and healing himself for 5% missing health per enemy champion and large monster hit.

  • Physical Damage: 20 / 40 / 60 / 80 / 100 (+ 100% AD)
Ability Details
Vicious Strike is a point-blank area of effect ability.

Additional Information:

I'm not a fan of the current Vicious Strikes: the attack speed steroid is redundant with respect to Olaf's passive, his life steal is too easy to obtain and use on minions, and the whole ability just has nothing that is too exceptional. I think it could be worth changing the ability to something more instant: I still kept the heal and made it potentially a lot stronger, as I think Olaf should have a certain soft barrier to death when low on health, but I also focused the ability onto a cleave, which would allow him to farm a little better. The advantage to a more immediate effect is that it would allow it to be spammed a lot more often, which is one the overall goals of this rework: Olaf should have access to powerful, spammable abilities that each accomplish a specific function (Q is for CC, W is for healing, E is for extended damage), which would put a lot of emphasis on properly choosing each ability for the right situation.


Reckless Swing
RANGE: 375
COST: 50 Fury
Reckless Swing

Active: Olaf deals true damage to the target enemy.

  • True damage: 20 / 40 / 60 / 80 / 100 (+ 100% AD)
Ability Details
Reckless Swing is a unit-targeted ability.

Additional Information:

I feel Reckless Swing's health cost is generally not that meaningful most of the time, as Olaf tends to naturally build tanky anyways, but when it is it's also counterintuitive, as I feel Olaf isn't about measuring the pros and cons behind any specific ability. Rather, I think the choice here should revolve around which ability to use immediately: Olaf would still be super-spammy overall, but his choice paradigm would be about which ability to use, rather than when to use it.


Ragnarok
COOLDOWN: 150
Ragnarok

Active: Olaf instantly removes all crowd control from himself and nearby allies, and becomes temporarily immune to it.

  • Duration: 4 / 6 / 8

For the first second of Ragnarok, Olaf and all affected allies gain bonus movement speed when moving towards nearby visible enemy champions, with his allies also benefiting from his crowd control immunity for the duration.

  • Bonus Movement Speed: 50 / 75 / 100%
Ability Details
Ragnarok is a self-buff.

Additional Information:

Over time, Ragnarok's been saddled with a ton of different effects, none of which I feel are that interesting on Olaf, even if they're useful. Bonus resistances and AD don't make for the most visible or unique power, and those effects don't really represent the core choice to his ult. Instead, I kept his CC immunity and bonus movement speed, but also made it apply to nearby allies, allowing him to support his team by breaking them all out of unlucky CC and evade wombo comboes. On top of this, the brief window of mobility and allied CC immunity is meant to give his entire team an incredibly powerful charge towards the enemy, allowing them to advance unimpeded. Olaf would still be a very self-focused champion, but would naturally provide a huge benefit to his team, one that would secure him a niche beyond just his ability to deal and survive damage.


What's your opinion on this? What do you think of Olaf now, and what do you think he's lacking in, if anything? How would you go about reworking Olaf? Is the above Fury system healthy and well-adapted for him? Let me know in the comments!

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