Drafting 101: Hero Relevance, Power Spikes and Synergies (5V5): Carries (Part 1)4 min read
Hello Vainglorians, did you know that there are 21 carry heroes on VainGlory (as of 3.9)? Well, for that reason, I’ve divided this post into parts 1 and 2 so not to stuff this entire page with TLDR. If you don’t know yet, I’ve been doing a series on 5v5 Drafting (check out the rest of the posts in this series). This time, we’re looking at carry heroes: their relevance (early, mid, late game or stable throughout), power spikes and their synergies with other 5v5 roles with the goal of drafting a comp that has the higher advantage in winning the game.
For each hero, power spikes are listed down for item and level-specific spikes. Click on the hero below to jump to their section.
Elusive assassin who’s very squishy and potato early game. Needs constant early game support to be relevant in the late game or at least until she gets her core items. She has a built in reflex block (ability that makes one invulnerable to CC) and a teleport (blink) which makes her very slippery and good against mages.
|CP Lane, CP Jungle|| - Level 6 when she unlocks her ULT (invulnerability / reflex block)
- Level 8 when she overdrives her B for massive damage. This is her poke ability, so it's a must to max this first.
- Level 11, when she overdrives her A for huge range increase and a much lower cooldown
|Captain||Adagio, Lorelai, Flicker, Lance||Anka needs a captain that can keep up with her mobility and can help her potato early game; someone that can poke and harass enemy and help her farm.|
|Top||WP or Utility Ardan, Adagio, Lorelai, Reza||Anka works well with either a utility or damage dealing top laner.|
|Laner||WP Baron, WP Vox, Gwen, Kinetic, Blackfeather||Anka is single target focused and can be more effective with another laner that can AOE and has some form of mobility (and CC immunity) to keep up with her or someone, although single target, who can burst enemies down as fast as her.|
|Jungler Synergy||Grumpjaw, Tony, Glaive, Fortress (if her top and roam are both utility heavy)||Anka with almost no utility and being single-target focused, relies on heavy CC to peel for her in team fights, to get a kill before she dies. Being really squishy, she needs tanky utility jungler to work with during team fights.|
Relevance: Early to Mid
Utility mage who has all tools to peel for teammates and for himself, but immobile with just acceptable damage. He can be easily focused in team fights and fades in the late game. Also, starting an engage with a Baptiste, you better commit and get the most out of it or he will be left with nothing and will then be an easy kill.
|Jungle, Top (CP / Utility)||- Level 2, when he unlocks his B (stun)
- Level 6, when he unlocks fear
- Level 8, (CP Baptiste) when he maxes his A for huge damage
|Captain||Lyra, Ardan, Churnwalker, Grace, Lance, Lorelai||Baptiste has no form of escape so he needs a captain that can help him escape or peel for him, or a captain with utilities to compliment his.|
|Top||Ardan WP, Reza||A jungle Baptiste works best with a damage dealing top laner. He already provides utility but lacks in the damage department so bursty damage is good with him.|
|Laner||Vox, Gwen, Kinetic, Idris, Blackfeather, Ringo||Baptiste's kit makes him great with single target heroes so, as a utility jungler, he works with almost all bot laners but best with burst and mobile heroes or those with high attack speed to get a kill before all his abilities go on cooldown. He can also work well with assassins.|
|Jungler Synergy||Alpha, Joule, Krul, Ozo, Petal, Rona||As a top laner, he needs a jungler that has good damage output. He can provide the peel for his team, but needs burst damage for the kill. He can also work with sustain damage junglers that need some utility.|
The walking turret. He can nuke anywhere on the map and has CC immunity with the highest basic attack range in the entire game (with maxed ULT). He has great damage and AOE but is really slow and needs core items to be relevant.
|CP Laner, WP Laner||- Level 6, unlocks global ULT
- Level 8 (WP) with maxed B for immunity to CC
- Level 8 (CP) with maxed A for massive damage
- Level 12 with +2 basic attack range (highest among all heroes)
|Captain||Lorelai, Lyra, Adagio, Grace, Flicker, Lance||Baron is a late game hero and needs some early game peel to be able to farm for his core items. He has very low attack speed so he needs to be built before he can be relevant. A good captain for him has early poke and utility for peel.|
|Top||Flicker, Ardan, Grumpjaw, Lorelai, Reza||Baron needs a utility top laner. Although some form of damage can be beneficial too, especially in the early game.|
|Laner||Celeste, Vox, Skye, Varya, Gwen, Kinetic, Silvernail, Ringo, Saw||Baron has high damage late game but very little utility. He needs a laner, either bot or mid with some form of utility to work with him. This can be traded for a massive AoE mid laner (if he is played as a WP bot laner), however, as long as top laner or jungler has some peel for the carries.
If he's played as CP mid laner, he will provide the AoE damage so a high attack speed, or a high burst single-target bot laner works with him too.
|Jungler Synergy||Glaive, Tony, Krul, Grumpjaw||If Baron is WP bot laner, he needs a jungler with utility and peel. Damage can be secondary in exchange for peel against gap-chasing enemies.|
Relevance: Mid to Late
Slippery assassin that has good sustain (though not as tanky as warriors) and invulnerability. He is good for eliminating squishy mages. He can also go against tanky heroes because of his barrier to sustain him as long as he lands his B and uses his ULT to escape disables. However, he has low to 0 utility.
|Laner, Jungler||- Level 6, when he unlocks his ULT (invulnerability)
- Level 8, when B is maxed for extra range (matches Celeste's A)
- Level 11, when A is maxed for huge dmg based on missing health
|Captain||Adagio, Ardan, Grace, Lorelai, Fortress||Blackfeather is an assassin who excels at diving the backline and being slippery. He needs a captain who can either dive in with him, or single-target heal or buff him.|
|Top||Ardan, Flicker, Grace, Grumpjaw||Both CP and WP scale incredibly into the late game. A top laner with good protection and utility, or a hero that can restrict the enemy’s movement, helping him in getting to the backline, is a good fit with his kit.|
|Laner||Malene, Varya, Samuel, Celeste, Baron, Vox||Mid laners with some sort of lockdown (utility, which he lacks), or an ability to be as slippery as he is, work well with him. Mid laner who can AoE from the back also works with him as long as he has other utility heroes in his team to peel for them (cause he can't)|
|Jungler Synergy||Baptiste, Glaive, Inara, Malene, Fortress||A jungler with both damage and some utility helps in his early game. Being a melee, it'll be hard for him to farm against ranged enemy laners (Adagio, Lorelai) so a jungler with some poke ability also works with him. Fortress has great synergy with him but need his other teammates to be utility heavy for them to work in team fights.|
Relevance: Mid to Late
Back line mage with safe range and massive AoE damage plus an AoE Stun. Relevant as soon as she has enough range to stay safe as she is very immobile. With proper positioning, however, and with the right comp to protect her, she’s almost untouchable. And she’s really pretty.
|CP Laner, Jungle||- Level 6, when she unlocks her global ULT
- Level 8, increased range for her primary damage dealing ability (A)
- Level 12, massive ULT damage
|Captain||Ardan, Grace, Catherine, Flicker, Churnwalker, Lance||Celeste has early game poke and amazing zone control. While she is immobile, she can stay safe during the laning phase. A good captain for her is one that covers her immobility, but doesn't necessarily have to be poke-type. She also needs a captain that can prevent dive as this is her weakness.|
|Top||Lorelai, Adagio, Reza, WP Ardan||If her captain doesn't have poke, a perfect top laner for Celeste should have poke ability to help her keep up in teamfights. If no poke, trade for pure damage.|
|Laner||Vox, Kinetic, Gwen, Blackfeather, Idris, Skye||Celeste is best at mid lane and a good bot laner to pair her with is one whose strengths are her weaknesses: mobility and attack speed. So, single target heroes with high mobility and attack speed (utility is a plus) work well with her massive AoE and range.|
|Jungler||Glaive, Grumpjaw, Krul, Rona, Ozo, Tony||Celeste has the damage and some form of utility. She works well with most junglers but best with extra peel being squishy and slow as she is.|
Relevance: Early to Mid
Mid range burst shooter with immunity to negative effects and a speed boost, as well as a long-ranged and long-duration stun. While she’s squishy, she’s quick to take down other squishies. She also has vision and great minion wave clear.
|WP Laner|| - Level 1, when she unlocks her reflex block or her A for slow, AoE and vision
- First core item, as soon as she gets her first high damage tier 3 item (SB), with her perk, she has massive power spike
- Level 6, when she unlocks her stun
- Level 8, when she can max her B for much shorter cool down of her own CC block
|Captain||Lorelai, Phinn, Lance, Lyra, Flicker, Grace||Gwen generally works with all captains. Being a bot hero, she will need a captain that can peel for her in a team fight, when she exhausts all her self-peel (slow, reflex block, stun). She is an aggressive early game fighter who can take care of her own, but will need utility in team fights to be able to do damage and survive.|
|Top||Ardan, Lorelai, Flicker, Grumpjaw, Reza||Gwen has speed boost, an escape (or chase) ability and a long stun. This makes her work with both damage-dealing and utility top laners. However, since she specialises in bursting down heroes as fast as possible, she works best with utility heroes that can help pin enemies within her range, or make her run even faster.|
|Laner||Varya, Vox, Baron, Skaarf, Celeste, Magnus||Gwen, as well as all most bot laners, needs to work with AoE mid laners as she is a single-target hero. She has burst damage so both sustain and burst damage mid hyper carry work well with her.|
|Jungler||Glaive, Krul, Baptiste, Tony, Ozo, Grumpjaw, Rona||Gwen's perk capitalises on stutter-stepping so she needs a jungler with some utility to help her do that and some peel when things go wrong for her. She has enough damage to burst down anyone easily with the right support-type jungler.|
Relevance: Mid to Late
Assassin with some serious mobility, invulnerability, high attack speed and team-wide massacre potential. Really squishy tho and needs proper positioning (avoiding stuns and damage) long enough to get to the backline and kill hyper carries.
|Laner, Jungler||- When he unlocks his perk (100 WP or 100 CP)
- Level 6, when he unlocks his ULT (invulnerability)
- Level 11 or 12, when he maxes his second ability (A is good for WP and B for CP)
|Captain||Adagio, Lorelai, Grace||Idris is weak early game and needs a captain that can poke enemy laner during the laning phase to keep them off his back. A captain that can dive with him in the late game also works.|
|Top||Ardan, Flicker, Adagio, Lyra||He has great damage in the late game so as long as his captain can help him get there fast, his top laner doesn't have to be full damage-dealing. He works better with a utility hero that can help him dive in or keep him alive long enough in team fights.|
|Laner||(Mid) Celeste, Magnus, Skaarf, Varya, Vox, Baron|
(Bot) Kinetic, Skye, Silvernail, Gwen
|He is single target focused and works best with an AoE mage if he's playing WP bot carry.
If he's CP mid carry, he needs a bot laner with some utility to lock down enemies.
|Jungler||Fortress, Inara, Ozo, Grumpjaw||He works best with junglers that have mobility to keep up with him. Even better with heroes that have some utility to peel for him if things go wrong.|
Requires high skill to make him work (especially this patch), but rewarding if played right. He’s both a tank buster and a mage killer. All his abilities can be gap closers and he has an AoE stun. His kit makes him a counter to almost all heroes but he has a very bad early game and needs to be far ahead in gold to be relevant. His CP path can be as good as WP Celeste.
|WP Laner||- Level 6, when his AoE stun (ULT) is unlocked
- Core build unlocked (4-5 core items)
|Captain||Lorelai, Yates, Lyra, Adagio, Grace||Kensei suffers early game against poke heroes so he needs strong early game captains that can respond to that.|
|Top||Adagio, Ardan, Lorelai, Flicker||Kensei has both utility and late game damage. He only needs a top laner who can help him lock down enemies during team fights.|
|Laner||Skaarf, Samuel, Celeste, Malene||Kensei needs a good early game (or stable throughout) mid laner who can keep the enemy busy while he farms through his irrelevant stage. In the late game team fights, AoE damage is the only thing he will need.|
|Jungler||Malene, Fortress, Glaive, Koshka, Reza||A good jungler for Kensei is a strong early game hero who can poke enemy carries and baby sit him until he's built or one who can dive with him in the late game.|
Relevance: Early to Mid
Ranged skill-shot master who goes invisible and leaves a trap that stuns and damages enemies foolish enough not to buy vision. She is very squishy and immobile, however, and falls off hard in the late game. So it’s snowball or throw.
|CP / WP Laner, Jungle||- Level 1, when she unlocks her A which has massive early game damage
- Level 2, when she unlocks her stealth and trap or she upgrades her A for more pressure
- Level 6, when she unlocks her global ULT
- 200 WP / CP, when she unlocks perk (WP stealth while taking dmg or CP prolonged stealth)
|Captain||Lorelai, Adagio, Flicker, Grace, Phinn||Early game captain that can support her monstrous early game and peel for her late when she starts to fall off.|
|Top||Reza, Flicker, Lorelai, Adagio||Kestrel's team needs to capitalise on her early game harassment. She needs a top laner that has good early game too and can push (and not just hold) top turret, or be aggressive enough to help push mid lane early.|
|Laner||Varya, Celeste, Vox, Baron, Magnus||If playing bot lane, she works well with massive AoE hyper carry, to help with her late game fall off (late game hyper carry beasts). She is very squishy and immobile so a mage with extra utility also works well.|
|Jungler||Flicker, Glaive, Baptiste, Tony, Grumpjaw||With her immobility, she needs a good utility jungler to peel for her and help lock down enemies in the early to secure kills.|
High attack speed shooter with a dash and an interrupt plus a powerful sunbeam. While she’s squishy, she has some utility and mobility to stay safe or chase enemies down. She stacks BP really fast and is very strong if not focused asap. Her stuns are also very annoying to channeling heroes (Adagio’s Ult, Grace’s Ult, Magnus’ Ult).
|WP / CP Laner||- Level 8, when A is maxed for damage and lower cooldown (useful for her perk)
- Level 11, when B is maxed for interrupt (stun)
|Captain||Lorelai, Lyra, Flicker, Grace, Lance, Yates, Phinn||Kinetic's mobility is limited so a roam that can speed her up or slow her enemies down will work well with her in team fights. Someone who can peel is is a requirement for all carries.|
|Top||Lorelai, Ardan, Flicker||In team fights, with her ability to stack so fast, she will usually be focused first so she needs a top laner that can peel for her.|
|Laner||Varya, Celeste, Skaarf, Magnus, Samuel, Vox, Baron||Kinetic has the damage, utility and some mobility. And being relevant all stages of the game, she works with all hyper carries.|
|Jungler||Malene, Reza, Glaive, Petal, Krul, Rona||Again, with her kit that has a bit of all, Kinetic works with both utility and full damage jungler|
The rest of the carries will be for my next post in the series. For comments or suggestions, drop me a message below or DM me on Twitter. I hope this is helpful in your journey to VG green.
Thanks to my sister for the awesome thumbnails.
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