League of Legends is packed full of items that are immensely hard to deal with. This is especially true with those items that most Champions of a particular class rush almost every game. They can be devastatingly strong early on and stronger still in the late game. One such item is the notorious Blade of the Ruined King, an AD option that can cut through steel.
There are a myriad of Champions that love rushing and building BOTRK. Contrary to other Champions that might have a mixed or fresh build game after game depending on the situation, this bunch just loves their BOTRK a bit too much. In this guide, we will take a look at the most popular BOTRK Champions and how to Lane against them effectively.
What you will learn:
- All about Blade of the Ruined King and what it does.
- Tips on Laning against BOTRK Champions.
- The Author’s many unwarranted self-inserts.
Rundown of Blade of the Ruined King
BOTRK is a legendary item in League of Legends mostly geared towards AD Champions, and particularly those that can land several attacks in quick succession. Think of it as a Burst addition to a Bruiser build. It packs a significant punch, especially in the earlier stages of the game where its Siphon passive can outright butcher a guy. Let’s take a look at its stats and passive effects:
Stats: +40AD / +25% Attack Speed / +8% Lifesteal
Unique Passive – Mist’s Edge: Basic attacks deal bonus physical damage on-hit based on the target’s current HP–12% for Melee and 9% for Ranged Champions.
Unique Passive – Siphon: Attacks against Champions stack and proc after three stacks, dealing bonus Magic Damage, slowing the target and granting you bonus movement speed equal to the slow.
Even on its own without the passives, Blade of the Ruined King is a magnificently gold efficient item granting its wearer a bunch of useful stats. However, it is precisely the passives that make the item so dreaded in the first place. Mist’s Edge gives a massive boost to your basic attacks. While it is a diminishing effect as the target gets lower on HP, the bonus is never insignificant. Siphon is a powerful burst tool to get that initial bit of damage in, especially if you’re playing as a Champion that can attack several times quickly (Akshan, Fiora, Renekton). It will reclaim potentially lost HP and genuinely siphon the target’s life out of them. Overall, BOTRK is a fantastic item and it is for that reason that we see it so often in matches.
Laning Against BOTRK Champions
Blade of the Ruined King is a legendary item and generally expensive for the early game. However, we will still look at its performance and impact on the Lane and figure out the most effective way of offsetting its many strengths. There are also case-specific tactics that you’ll employ to get the most out of your Lane. Therefore, we will also look at the most common and popular BOTRK Champions individually.
When it comes to countering and dealing with BOTRK, you’ll need to remember four keywords: Healing, Shields, Armor, and Grievous Wounds. These are technically five words, but bear with me. These four horsemen of the BOTRK apocalypse will usually be all you need to defend against such an item.
Healing is your best bet. If you can heal more than the opposing side, you’re going to be safe. Picking Champions like Garen into a BOTRK matchup might be a good idea. You could also go for a BOTRK Champion yourself, such as Warwick, whose insane sustain and healing is unmatched in League of Legends. Healing Potions are also a good idea. Just make sure not to spam them as you could burn a ton of gold unnecessarily here. The most cost efficient Potion is the Corrupting Potion which will give you solid sustain, is refillable, and even boosts your damage.
Shields are the universal defense tool in League of Legends. So long as you’ve got one, your HP and Health Bar will remain safe. This is also where your Champion pick comes into play. If you take something like Malphite who has a passive Shield and also a ton of Armor, you’ll most likely survive anything the enemies throw at you, including Blade of the Ruined King. Camille and her amazing Shields and aforementioned Healing is also a good option. You could also go for Tahm Kench or any of the usual Tank Champions that get a ton of damage mitigation by default.
Armor is the one thing directly counteracting BOTRK. The item grants bonus physical damage on-hit, and Armor reduces it significantly. Having a ton of Armor will help you disable the item’s passive on-hit effect. While it doesn’t help with the second passive that deals Magic Damage, Armor is key to helping you survive BOTRK’s onslaught. Champions with Armor stacking are fantastic here. We’ve mentioned Malphite before, but there’s also Ornn, Galio or even Rammus that are all viable options. We’ll get into the items later on.
Last but not least is the Grievous Wounds effect. It reduces healing by 40%. In the early game, it isn’t worth too much but it’s still nice to have. There are some Champions that can apply Grievous Wounds through their abilities but you’ll most likely be getting it from items. This leads us into our next section where we’ll summarize all the best items to pick up against a BOTRK matchup.
Recommended Items Against BOTRK Champions
Depending on the class of Champion, there are several items that work wonders against Blade of the Ruined King.
Bruisers and Tanks have the following options:
Warden’s Mail: Grants the player 40 Armor and incoming basic attack damage reduction. This is a cheap early game component item that builds further into Frozen Heart and Randuin’s Omen. It’s excellent if you don’t want to go full Armor just yet but require some extra protection in case your enemy already built BOTRK. It’s generally a must-have for Tanks against AD-dominant rosters.
Frozen Heart: Gives a massive 90 Armor, Mana and Ability Haste. It has the same passive as Warden’s Mail, with the addition of slowing enemies’ attack speed by a huge 20%. It’s the definitive item against BOTRK as it offsets both its bonus damage and attack speed bonus.
Chain Vest: This is a component option for those Champions that don’t want to build Frozen Heart at all. It gives the same 40 Armor as Warden’s Mail does, only without that extra passive and is only cheaper by 200 gold. In my opinion, this isn’t the right option for early game BOTRK mitigation but, if you have no choice, you might as well get it.
Bramble Vest: Gives 30 Armor and returns some damage to the enemy while also applying 40% Grievous Wounds on them. This is exactly what you’re looking for as a Tank or Bruiser. It adds to your defenses and tremendously reduces BOTRK’s healing aspect. Nevertheless, it’s a bit shallow compared to Warden’s Mail as damage reduction is much more valuable than Healing reduction. Having both is the perfect scenario.
Thornmail: Basically Bramble Vest on steroids, it grants 70 Armor and a solid amount of HP and features an upgraded version of Bramble Vest’s passive. It deals much more damage to attackers and is a fantastic option against basic attack-reliant Champions. Combined with Frozen Heart it has the potential of completely invalidating BOTRK Champions, but they too have options of circumventing Armor and physical reductions.
Champions of all classes can pick up any of the aforementioned items. Keep in mind that sacrificing a core item slot for one of these situational solutions will impact your damage output. For ADCs, the only solid option therefore would be Plated Steelcaps which grants Armor and attack damage reduction. Anything else is a compromise to the integrity of one’s build and only if there is no other choice should situational Tank items be picked up.
AP Mages can look at the following items alongside the ones above. Conversely, these won’t compromise their builds or integrity:
Seeker’s Armguard: Arguably one of the best component items in the entire game, it grants extra Armor that also stacks with minions killed and some AP. It builds into Zhonya’s Hourglass, a core item for most Mages out there. The extra Armor provided will be a solid early game defense tool to offset BOTRK Champions.
Zhonya’s Hourglass: Grants a solid 45 Armor alongside AP and Ability Haste. It also has the most broken active ability in the game: Stasis. Stasis makes your Champion entirely invulnerable, but disables their movement and actions as a result. Despite the latter, Stasis can save you from most situations, especially burst attacks that BOTRK is most famous for. All in all, an excellent item.
Archangel’s Staff / Seraph’s Embrace: Grants a massive amount of Mana and AP, but where it most shines is its upgraded form that gives you an incredible Shield. We’ve mentioned Shields being one of the most important tools in dealing with BOTRK Champions, and scarcely will you find one better than Seraph’s Embrace. It does take a while to stack up, but having Tear of the Goddess on you from game start will help with that.
Most Common BOTRK Champions
We’ll take a look at some of the most common BOTRK Champions individually so we can provide additional advice on how to Lane against them. It all boils down to matchups, but having that extra bit of knowledge on countering their builds instead of the Champions themselves will aid you in emerging victorious.
You’ll meet Twitch most commonly on the Bot Lane and BOTRK is one of his core items. This means that he’ll rush it almost every single game, except for when he has no choice but to opt out. His high base damage and range allow him to pummel you down from a vast distance and BOTRK only makes things worse.
To counteract BOTRK Twitch, which is arguably one of the most powerful ADCs ever, you’ll need to pick up a couple of those defense items we’ve discussed above. Also consider picking a Tankier Support that has the means of going on and stopping his barrage of arrows. If Twitch gets the chance of sneaking up to a good position, he’ll most likely be done with his carnage before you can react. Therefore, keep a good eye on him and pick a Champion that can actually go against him.
On the Bot Lane Twitch generally loses hard to Nilah and her projectile-removing spells; Miss Fortune with her heavy hitting basic attacks and AOE damage; and Veigar who can stun him from a safe distance and promptly delete him off the map.
A Marksman who loves the Top Lane more than anything else, Vayne heavily relies on BOTRK for her early and mid game damage. She spikes significantly after picking the item up, being able to shred through Tanks like butter. This also comes from her passive True Damage that, combined with BOTRK and its bonus on-hit physical damage, can be quite lethal.
Top Laners need to be wary of her shredding capabilities. Picking up extra Armor will help with mitigating BOTRK itself, though it won’t do anything against her True Damage. Stack HP and Armor and try to pick a Champion that can all-in her safely. Vayne has the means of escaping with her low-cooldown Q, but her mobility is generally limited, making her easy to pin down.
Vayne Top is really weak to Teemo and his blinding darts; Aatrox and his insane Patch 13.14 power; and Malphite and his defense-stacking. Malphite in particular is a fantastic pick on the Top Lane against BOTRK and any other item of the sort. He’s simply too bulky to be bothered by such items.
Akshan is usually found on Mid, with the occasional Top Lane spell. BOTRK is one of his core items, primarily due to his passive double-shot. What takes most Champions three basic attacks to proc, Akshan can do in two. He can continuously spam basic attacks and apply both the bonus on-hit and the burst damage.
His high mobility means that pinning him down and fighting him is near impossible. He has long-range projectiles, quick attacks, and that grappling hook that should be entirely removed from the game. Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean Akshan is invulnerable and there are more than a few counters to him. AP Mages seem to be doing well when faced with him, and so the items we’ve mentioned above will do wonders for you.
At the current patch, Akshan does extremely poorly against Anivia and her ice shards; Diana and her Crescent Moon; and Vel’Koz and his long-range void laser beams. All three are direct counters to Akshan and should be considered whenever you come to Lane against him.
Author’s Take on the Blade of the Ruined King
I’ve been playing League of Legends ever since 2012., which is over a decade now. That’s scary to say, let alone think about. For all that time, Blade of the Ruined King has been a core item for a variety of Champions and has been an inexhaustible topic of discussion. It has gone through many changes over the years but has never become obsolete. On the contrary, I think it’s more relevant now than ever. It makes me happy that at least some of the items of yore remain in League of Legends as Riot Games love removing them.
BOTRK is also dreaded more than it deserves. As a seasoned Top Laner, I’ve faced and purchased BOTRK more times than I can count. It’s really not that strong of an item once you get past the 20 minute mark. Most people will build up extra HP, Armor, and Magic Resist and there’s nothing BOTRK can do against those basic defenses.
Naturally, one could purchase more items to mitigate their mitigations and that can go on to infinity and eventually BOTRK simply becomes a cog in your build machine. I like it for the nostalgia factor and the early game bonuses, but it’s genuinely just another item that people can easily counter if they know what they’re doing.
Thank you for tuning in for our guide on Laning Against BOTRK Champions. We cover much more on our website, so be sure to stick around and check out our other content. Stay safe and good luck on the Summoner’s Rift!