The "How to" series is aimed at players who enjoy competitive gaming and are looking to improve their experience, whether through gameplay tips or advice. The information is provided at the time of publishing, and does not account for changes to the game or meta over a longer period of time.
So you want a step-by-step guide to climb to Challenger. Don't worry, I've got you.
If you watch a lot of Wild Rift professional games, you might be confused when your favourite players from different teams buy different items.
Let's break down why pros buy certain items and how they decide which builds to use, starting with offensive items.
Attack Damage Items
Let's start with Attack Damage items. We can categorise them under critical items and on-hit items. The general gist is that critical items scale well into the late game, and get stronger as you buy and stack more critical items. On-hit items, on the other hand, are much stronger by themselves and help you achieve a stronger power spike with only one item.
A good comparison is Blade of the Ruined King (on-hit item) vs Infinity Edge (critical item). Blade of the Ruined King is a cheaper item that also gives you all the stats you need — Attack Speed/ Attack Damage/ Physical Vamp. Infinity Edge only gives you Attack Damage and 25% Critical Chance.
It is important to choose based on what your team needs and how long the expected game time is.
Let's say you're playing Ashe, and that your team composition has many early-game champions that require snowballing early leads to win the game (Lee Sin, Fizz, TF etc). In this case, buying on-hit items to be stronger during your first or second items would be more beneficial than buying critical items to be stronger after 2-3 items.
This is also similar to Mage items, where there are two lines of builds: sustained damage builds and burst builds. They're both centred around your first item as a mage.
Typically mages building for burst will build Luden's Echo for the extra damage from the passive and high amount of Ability power.
Mages who would rather go for a sustained fight would go for Archangel's Staff, which gives more cooldown reduction and much more mana to spam your spells in a longer, more drawn-out fight.
After which the burst build might go for something like a Rabadon's Deathcap into an Infinity Orb, whereas the sustained build would go for Liandry's Torment.
Understanding these themes which champions can follow is extremely important.
Why? Here's an example.
Let's look at Ziggs. Ziggs can be built for both the burst build AND the sustained build. They both have their PROs and CONs so how does he choose what to build?
If we analyse it and break it down simply, versus squishier champions, a burst build might be better, and a sustained build would be better when versus multiple tanks.
At the end of the day, what's important is the goal your build is supposed to achieve.
Do you want to be a sustained DPS, or do you need earlier item power spikes because the enemy team composition out scales you?
All of these things come into factor when choosing what kind of offensive items to build.
Let's finish off with gold efficiency. What is gold efficiency and how does it impact what you choose to buy?
Gold efficiency is an evaluation of how worth or 'efficient' buying an item is based on the stats it provides.
Here are examples of popular items with low and high gold efficiency for their stats.
Blade of the Ruined King (Item Cost = 3100G):
20 Attack Damage = 833.3G
35% Attack Speed = 1166.6G
10% Physical Vamp = 366.6G
Total Gold Value = 2366.6G
Gold efficiency = 76.34% Gold efficient
Infinity Edge (Item Cost = 3400G):
55 Attack Damage = 2291.67G
25% Critical Chance = 1250G
Total Gold Value = 3541.67G
Gold efficiency = 104.17% Gold Efficient
So just based on stats, Blade of the Ruined King would not be not a good offensive item to buy.
Yet we still see many pro players buy it, why is that so?
That's because it doesn't take into account the passive of the item, which is the main reason why players buy it.
So whilst gold efficiency is an important stat to look at, understanding why and when to buy the items for their passives is essential.
You can find gold efficiency stats here, by clicking on an item and click 'more' at cost analysis.
Hopefully this has given you some insight into how esports pros plan their offensive itemisation in games. Good luck and happy climbing!
Glaceox is a Singaporean Wild Rift coach with five years of coaching experience spanning across League of Legends PC as well. He also streams and makes community guides for Wild Rift.