The State of Worlds – Week One

Oct 7, 2015
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In the first week of Worlds 2015, more champions have been seen than in the entirety of Worlds 2014. But several champs have been cropping up repeatedly. With our predictions of the Juggernauts being dominant in mind, let’s delve into which champions have seen the most play at Worlds this year.

Darius, the reigning solo-queue champion, has made a strong showcase in worlds with 7 bans and 14 picks over 24 games, leaving him with an overall pick-ban rate of 87.5%. Mordekaiser, another champion expected to see a lot of play time now shares the title for most banned champion, being banned 21 times, and picked in two of the remaining games. This leaves him with a pick-ban of 95.8%. Skarner has seen play in only two games, with no bans, and Garen has not been shown on stage whatsoever.

However, the champion who has been fairly unanimously agreed upon as the strongest champion thus far is not one of the Juggernauts, but Gangplank. Gangplank’s recent rework has left him in an extremely dominant position for those who have mastered him. However, the level of skill required to dominate on him has meant his solo queue debut has not been nearly as strong as the Juggernauts. The professionals, of course, don’t have this issue, and Gangplank shares the title for most banned, being banned 21 times and picked the other 3. This leaves him at a 100% pick-ban rate, and also a 100% win rate for those three games.

The 100% pick-ban rate is shared by only two champions. One being Gangplank, and the other is Elise, who is widely regarded as the most dominant jungler by the professionals. She was banned in 9 and picked in all of the remaining 15 games. Her jungle pressure and ability to 1v1 most other junglers, as well as her strength in taking Dragon alone leaves her as an extremely strong jungle pick. The fact that she has such a strong stun as well as a gap close makes her an excellent ganker as well, leaving her in a very dominant position as strongest jungler.

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Another very well respected pick was a bit of a surprising, being banned or picked in all but one game, was Lulu. Tying Mordekaiser for third most seen champion, Lulu was banned 15 times and picked 8, leaving her with a 95.8% pick-ban rate. The reason behind this is largely due to Lulu’s versatility. She is what is referred to as a “flex pick”. She is picked up early and then she can go to either middle or top lane, allowing her team to plan around the other team’s champions accordingly. She is also very good at controlling a lane, using her Glitterlance to clear the waves quickly and making use of her shields and mobility to outmaneuver any opponent attempting to kill her. She can then use this utility to keep her team’s carries in strong positions throughout team fights, allowing the team a lot of possibilities with their champion selection and playstyle, knowing that their carries will have much higher effective health through Lulu’s support.

Those five champions, Gangplank, Elise, Mordekaiser, Lulu, and Darius have been dominating the Worlds scene so far, taking up a lot of the picks and bans, and causing many lanes and team compositions to be designed based around them, regardless of whether they are ally or enemy. Darius is the best example of this, as in a full six of his fourteen picked games, he has been put up against a Gnar, a champion widely regarded as strongly countering Darius. The other team’s composition was immediately set to countering Darius simply because of his status as such a dominant champion, a trend we’ve been seeing with all five of these champions.

There are several other champions that should be mentioned as well, with Rek’Sai coming in at a 79.2% pick-ban rate, Kalista at 70.8%, and Braum at 66.7%. While not as dominant as the aforementioned five, these champions have certainly been favorites, and should be watched in the coming weeks.

The first week of Worlds has finished! Now, with the knowledge of how each champion was received and how each performed, the question of whether this set of champions or an entirely new set will emerge as dominant over the coming weeks. One thing is certain, the competition at Worlds 2015 is intense!

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Stephen Draper
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Stephen has a degree in English from Brock University. He grew up playing video games and card games, always having an affection for strategy. He picked up League of Legends in early Season One and has since achieved Diamond rank multiple times. He also picked up Hearthstone in Beta and has since achieved Legend consistently. When he isn’t reading, writing, or gaming, he’s probably watching other people game.
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