When it comes to choosing the perfect rune for your assassins, there’s always a debate between First Strike and Electrocute. Both deal burst damage, both do wonders for assassins, and both are exceptionally good for short trades, but which one tops the other?
In this article, we will be comparing First Strike and Electrocute to gauge exactly what makes both runes so good, and how one fares with the other. Without further ado, let us plunge headfirst into the mystical realm of these runes!
What are First Strike and Electrocute?
Before we delve into the differences between the two runes, let’s first define their workings so we can e can more effectively scrutinize their unique attributes and draw sound conclusions regarding their relative superiority!
First Strike is a keystone rune in the Inspiration tree that allows you to deal bonus damage to enemies for the next few seconds after you hit your first attack. The bonus damage is based on your attack damage or ability power, whichever is higher.
The keystone calculates the damage amassed in the next three seconds on the proc, and grants bonus gold based on that damage. Therefore, it’s often used as a farming keystone.
Electrocute, on the other hand, is a keystone rune in the Domination tree. It allows you to deal burst damage to enemies when you hit them with three separate attacks or abilities within three seconds.
The burst damage is based on your level and bonus attack damage or ability power, whichever is higher, and is portrayed in the form of a thunderbolt.
Differences Between First Strike and Electrocute
The main difference between First Strike and Electrocute is the way they deal damage. First Strike deals bonus damage after your first hit, while Electrocute deals burst damage after you hit the enemy three times within three seconds.
First Strike is a good choice for champions who rely on quick, bursty trades. It is especially effective for champions who have a lot of attack damage, as the bonus damage scales with your damage. However, it is important to note that First Strike has a shorter max level cooldown than Electrocute, which means you can use it once every 20-15 seconds.
Electrocute, on the other hand, is a good choice for champions who have a lot of burst damage. It is especially effective for champions who can quickly hit their enemies three times in a short period of time.
However, it’s important to note that Electrocute does not offer value for a continuous brawl after the initial combo. Consequently, you won’t be getting any bonus gold either!
When to Choose First Strike?
If you’re playing a champion that relies on quick, bursty trades, then First Strike may be the better choice for you. This rune is especially effective on champions who want to carry the momentum of their initiation.
Here are a few examples of champions who may benefit from using First Strike:
- Lux – She loves to poke around champions in her lane. However, she has mana issues, so this keystone is only suitable when picking her as a support for some supplementary income.
- Gangplank – Leveraging the mostly-melee champions in the top lane, Gangplank can now leverage his poke to earn a fat stack of cash while dealing damage with his gun and barrels.
- Katarina – Behold! A sleeper pick. Katarina is a champion that unleashes a torrent of daggers with her ult that can most likely one-shot most enemies. With so much ADS and Damage, the First Strike holds the potential to ner her 1000 gold or more per ult.
- Ezreal – With the loss of Kleptomancy, Ezreal has kind of struggled to find his identity, but with something like the First Strike, that void can now be replaced. You have your insane range to poke opponents and earn lots of gold in the process.
- Ziggs – With his E being near-unstoppable, Ziggs’ low cooldowns, insane range, and devilish poke is already pretty strong. Adding First Strike as a cherry on top makes him downright depressing to play against.
When to Choose Electrocute?
If you’re playing a champion that has a lot of burst damage, then Electrocute may be the better choice for you. This rune is especially effective for champions who have insane damage on their abilities and can hit them in succession.
Here are a few examples of champions who may benefit from using Electrocute:
- Zed – His kit allows him to easily proc Electrocute with his abilities, particularly with his W-E-Q combo.
- Diana – Electrocute can help amplify her burst damage, which is particularly useful when trying to take down squishy targets. Diana can easily proc Electrocute with her Q-R combo, and the added damage can help her secure kills.
- Malphite – Electrocute can provide extra burst damage on top of his ultimate, making it easier for Malphite to secure kills and take down high-priority targets.
- Kha’Zix – Kha’Zix can easily proc Electrocute with his Q-W-auto attack combo, making it a strong choice for him.
- Ekko – As a melee AP assassin who excels at diving into enemy teams and taking down high-priority targets, Ekko can easily proc Electrocute with his Q-E-auto attack combo, and the added damage is always a cherry on top.
Why First Strike is Overpowered!
Now that we’ve established the differences between the two runes, let’s dive into why we believe that First Strike is overpowered and the superior choice.
First and foremost, the shorter cooldown of First Strike means that it can be used more often in combat, allowing you to deal more bonus damage to enemy champions over time.
In addition, the preponderantly scaling nature of the rune culminates in a formidable power surge as the game progresses, thereby empowering the wielder to inflict even more damage during the late game where the stakes are astronomically high and team battles are rife.
Another pivotal advantage of First Strike is its unparalleled versatility, enabling a more extensive repertoire of champions to wield it with unparalleled efficacy, unlike Electrocute which is predominantly tailored for burst mages and assassins.
This means that you can use First Strike to enhance your damage output with more champions in your roster, giving you more flexibility and versatility in your gameplay.
In conclusion, while both First Strike and Electrocute can be effective runes in different situations, our analysis has shown that First Strike is a superior option for most scenarios.
Its increased early-game damage and ability to scale well into the late game make it a versatile choice for a variety of champions and playstyles.
However, this only works if your champion’s kit is compatible with First Strike. Therefore, something like Zed might not work as well as Katarina and vice versa!
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