A Guide on Support Items with a Purpose
Tue 10th Nov 2020 - 6:00pm
League of Legends brings an array of items that many champions can use. Typically, each role has their own ideal way of building, yet in those roles they use the same items because it offers optimal stats. As a support player, there is a straightforward way to build which depends on the support you are playing. Though, sometimes you may need to switch things around and use an item that you rarely use. I refer to these items as underrated items because we avoid them, since they are situational. Regardless of that, you shouldn’t be overlooking these items, but consider in potentially using them to aid your team. As a support player, I will focus on support items that are both fun and situational.
Today the support role is often overlooked by ignoring support champions such as Soraka, Janna in place of carries like Pyke and Brand. The typical build that comes in building a support when playing a champion such as Soraka or Janna comes with an already established build. An already established build is not bad, but understanding how your enemy team is building it is a smart tactic to include items that will help your teammates. The game has created many champions with abilities to cc and most champions do not build to protect themselves against those types of abilities, that even the summoner spell cleanse gets ignored. Which is why Mikael’s Crucible is a good item to consider adding onto your build.
Mikael's Crucible isn't an item you would think of having in your initial build. In fact, this item is very situational, because of its use effect; removing stuns, roots, taunts, fears, silences, and slows while granting the target a 40% movement speed boost. It is a great item to consider mid to late game because you can adjust your build to best benefit your team. Mikael's Crucible is also the only support item that offers 20% heal and shield power, so it is a good item to consider if your support uses healing or shields. The downfall to this item is that if the enemy team stuns you, you cannot use it on yourself. Because many champions won't carry the summoner spell cleanse or buy an item that has QSS built in it, Mikael's Crucible is an excellent alternative to have as part of your support build.
Twin Shadows works very well to scout enemy champions. This is an item to consider mid to late game. Once the lane phase is over the focus will shift in teamfights and killing dragon and Baron. Twin Shadows is the perfect item to not overextend in warding, especially when playing mage supports who are very squishy. The benefits of Twin Shadows is that it summons two untargetable ghosts that seek the enemy for six seconds, revealing them and slowing them upon contact. Other than scouting, it is also good in securing kills, especially when combined with Glacial Augmentation under the Inspiration rune page for extra slow magic. Another note to use this item is when the enemy team has champions that can stealth, Twin Shadows will seek the closest enemy champion, allowing to catch that stealth enemy by surprise. Twin Shadows is beneficial when understanding how to use to benefit the team.
Fun fact about Shurelya's Reverie is that it provides the second highest movement speed buff from an item when activated (10% less than). Also, when activated it spreads to not just allied champions, but also pets and minions. Shurelya's Reverie has useful benefits, the advantage it provides a team when starting or exiting a teamfight. Shurelya's Reverie is a good item you can combine with Blitzcrank or any champion that has a grab ability. The quick movement in potentially starting fights by catching someone off-guard adds value in singling enemies out.
Knights Vow is an item that is not limited to just tank supports, other tanks can use it to protect your carry. This item has some interesting passives that allows you to be aggressive as long as your carry stays alive. As long as you are near your carry you will have extra armor and extra movement speed. You will heal for 12% of the damage your carry does and redirect any damage your carry takes back to you. A unique mechanic, but provides that extra support towards your carry, which makes sense why a tank would buy this item. You can buy this item early in the game, because its effect can work amazing during early game fights, as long as you stay near your carry. This item isn't only for support champions, any tanky champion can use this item to protect your carry.
The game offers a wide variety of items to use, so do not be afraid to experiment which one's might work well. Understanding how to itemize isn't something you can accomplish overnight, but when you understand the power some of these items can have, it can definitely change the outcome of the game. As support our job is to support whether it is to shield, heal or even peel, our primary focus is to support in whatever means possible. Always look at the enemy team and think of items that will benefit the team in preventing the enemy team from coming out on top. Sometimes you will have to change your choice of items, but remember we make these choices to get our carry stronger. Regardless of what champion you play as support, that is your role, it is to support.