Understanding Team Compositions: The Wombo Combo Composition



Tue 11th Jul 2017 - 11:01am

The wombo combo composition is perhaps the most recognised team composition in League of Legends; popular with both fans who like big exciting team fights, and pros looking for a composition with a well-defined and simple to execute win condition. A wombo combo can be defined as follows:

A combination of attacks in a video game that is so perfectly timed that it cannot be escaped or avoided, taking the competition to complete defeat in seconds.

In League of Legends, the wombo combo is often characterised as the chaining together of a number of high impact abilities, often area-of-effect crowd control, leading to massive damage and multiple kills. Samsung Galaxy demonstrated this perfectly in game two of their Worlds 2016 series versus Cloud9.

Kennen's three-man Slicing Maelstrom locks up the C9 squad long enough for Orianna to follow up with Command Shockwave, deleting Cloud9 and turning the fight in an instant. A well-executed wombo combo can be devastating, winning games off of single team fights.

Core Picks
Now we've seen the wombo combo composition in action, let's begin to break down some of the core picks and how they interact with one-another. A running theme for the core picks in a wombo combo composition is to have high-impact area-of-effect damage or crowd control.

Orianna often forms the core of many wombo combo compositions due to her massively impactful ultimate, Command Shockwave, and the large amount of area-of-effect damage in her kit. This pick really shines when you pair her Command Protect with a champion with solid dive potential, creating a ball delivery system for Orianna's ultimate.

Champion Synergy: Wukong
Wukong is perhaps the most well-known pairing with Orianna, their kits synergising perfectly to lock down and deal massive damage to the enemy team. A large part of Orianna's unreliability comes from the brief cast time on her ultimate. Attaching the ball to another champ that can initiate mitigates a key weakness in her kit.

Typical combo
Orianna: Command Protect cast on Wukong

Wukong: Decoy

Wukong: Nimbus Strike

Wukong: Cyclone

Orianna: Command Shockwave

This combo is the quintessential ball delivery system. Wukong is able to get stuck into the enemy team with Decoy and Nimbus Strike, following up with an easy multi-man Cyclone. While the enemy is briefly knocked-up Orianna can follow up with Command Shockwave, chaining their crowd control and allowing the rest of their team to clean up the fight.

Kennen is another staple wombo combo pick, able to put out considerable burst damage and keep that damage sustained in a fight. Although we have seen a meta shift away from AP Kennen to a more utility focused AD build, Kennen's role in the wombo combo composition remains the same: land a five-man ultimate.

Champion Synergy: Shen
Kennen's presence in team fights comes from his ultimate, Slicing Maelstrom, but he needs to be in the thick of it to catch as many enemies as possible. Shen's Stand United can provide Kennen with just enough durability to survive the initial focus and get off a huge engage.

Typical combo
Kennen: Lightning Rush

Shen: Stand United

Kennen: Slicing Maelstrom

Shen: Shadow Dash

Combining Lightning Rush with Shen's Stand United, Kennen gets a massive boost in durability; gaining a big buff to resistances hugely increases the effectiveness of Stand United's shield. This enables Kennen to manoeuvre into the middle of the enemy team, setting up Shen to land Shadow Dash on any priority targets.

Out of the three core picks listed here, Malphite is the most simple to play. While Orianna and Kennen are more suited to following up an engage with their own crowd-control, Malphite's role in the wombo combo composition is purely as an initiator with his ultimate, Unstoppable Force. With this simplicity comes a tradeoff; failing to land impactful ultimates can render Malphite useless and put his team at a big disadvantage.

Champion Synergy: Yasuo
The synergy here is obvious, and one many solo queue players have probably experienced: chain ultimates and make carries weep. It can be difficult for Yasuo to land an effective Gathering Storm, hitting multiple members. This synergy combines Malphite's game-changing point-and-click ultimate with Yasuo's huge team fight damage.

Typical Combo
Malphite: Unstoppable Force

Yasuo: Last Breath

Malphite: Ground Slam

Malphite: Seismic Shard

The core wombo combo is simple, chain together Unstoppable Force and Last Breath, but the debuffs applied by Ground Slam and Seismic Shard (a slow and cripple respectively) give Yasuo and his team extra fighting power in the follow-up.

Supporting Picks
While it may be tempting to run a five-man CC composition (like this) and dominate your ranked games, it's important to remember not to put all your eggs in one basket. Here we'll take a look at some picks that complement the wombo combo composition without necessarily being defined by that playstyle.

Kalista fits into the composition as a solid AD Carry. Her natural itemisation of Runaan's Hurricane enables her to put out consistent DPS to multiple targets in team fights, while her ultimate, Fate's Call, provides another layer of crowd control to pile on in team fights.

Braum's Q, Winter's Bite, combined with his passive, Concussive Blows, provides some serious sticking power for any enemies fortunate enough to survive the initial wombo combo. His ultimate, Glacial Fissure, can lay down a potent slow to set up the combo or provide some much-needed disengage if things go sour.

Jarvan IV
Stacking high crowd-control tanks like Malphite and Amumu can lead to a team lacking in damage or pick potential. Jarvan IV can make some powerful picks with his Demacian Standard / Dragon Strike combo and provides some potent lockdown and engage with this ultimate Cataclysm in lieu of a more typical engage champion.

Final Thoughts
The wombo combo composition is a well-defined team composition with a simple to execute win condition. Because of this, the composition is relatively easy to coordinate in solo queue and can be an effective way to climb out of the lower divisions. While the composition is easier to play around in higher divisions and pro play, high-impact picks like Kennen and Orianna are devastating when an opportunity rises and remain staple picks.


[1] DrDragun (2013) Urban Dictionary: Wombo Combo: Combo ↩
[2] digested oddshot (2016) C9 vs SSG - Game 2 - Wombo combo teamfight: ↩
[3] League of Legends Wiki (2016) Orianna | League of Legends Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia: ↩
[4] League of Legends Wiki (2016) Kennen | League of Legends Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia: ↩
[5] League of Legends Wiki (2016) Malphite | League of Legends Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia: ↩
[6] League of Legends Wiki (2016) Kalista | League of Legends Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia: ↩
[7] League of Legends Wiki (2016) Braum | League of Legends Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia: ↩
[8] League of Legends Wiki (2016) Jarvan IV | League of Legends Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia: ↩

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