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Top Champion Picks/Bans At IEM Hannover

By Nicholas 'Arthix' Ewing
Mar 9, 2012 19:31


ImageWhich Champions will become the next ‘Flavour of the Months’?

Many players know that as champions are popularized through heavy use in the competitive scene, it is reflected within solo queue matches as a FotM, or ‘Flavor of the Month’. FotM is a term that describes the short-lived but consistent usage of a specific champion.

League of Legends currently contains 94 total champions available for players to use, but only about 10 - 20 champions monopolize the majority of the attention in the competitive scene. Due to such a small percentage of champions being used from the pool of total champions available, there seems to be an illusion of choice from a seemingly large selection. Keep in mind this is specific to the top-level competitive scene. Overall every champion in League of Legends is viable in some way, shape, or form, depending on several variables such as average skill level of players in-game, skill of a player with a specific champion, different team compositions, etc. Although, it is generally accepted that some champions are simply better than others.

The upper echelon of champions receive emphasis for many reasons. Generally they are less item dependent, have role flexibility, or they bring tons of utility to their team. Some are even used because they are easy to play in comparison to how effective and useful they are. There are many variables that make a champion a top pick or ban, professionals League players know a significant amount of them, or at least many more than the average player is aware of. Aside from that, we will take a look at some numbers associated with the champions that were the center of focus in the ongoing competitive scene at IEM Hannover.

All numbers are sourced from the spreadsheet linked below. The compiler of this data is unknown. If anyone is aware of who should receive credit for their hard work, feel free to drop a comment below, or contact the SK staff.

Champion Picks and Bans Spreadsheet for IEM Hannover

This analysis will be broken into two sections; Group A picks/bans, and Group B picks/bans.

Group A:

The top three champions that were picked or banned the most within all games of this bracket are, in descending order, Shen, Shyvana, and Janna. Shen was banned in twelve out of fifteen games, and in the three games that he was picked resulted in a victory every time for the team with Shen. Shyvana was banned six times, and was picked seven times. Out of those seven picks for Shyvana, four out of the seven games were won. Finally, Janna did not receive a single ban throughout all the matches of Group A, but was picked thirteen out of fifteen games. Of these thirteen, seven games were won and six games were lost.

There is definitely an interesting pattern from these observations; those who got one of these champions were more likely to win the game on average. What makes these champions so popular though? Shen has been used due to his increased viability from his recent rework, and even after a nerf he has still been heavily used. Shyvana is typically played as a jungler and excels in high damage output without having to rely on mana which makes up for her lack of crowd control. Janna’s popularity has definitely increased after some changes on Soraka and some nerfs on Sona. She can protect a champion while increasing their damage output at the same time, and has good disruptive ability on top of her global movement speed passive.

Of course there are many other factors that determine a champion’s viability, but these are the most general knowledge. One could go further and do calculations of the percentage of win rate if they had Shen and Janna, or even all three of these champions on their team. Despite this statistical trend, many experienced players will point out that numbers only work to an extent.

If you have an inclination of why these champions received the most attention in this bracket, then comment and let us know!

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Group B:

There seems to be an interesting addition to the top three in this bracket. The top three picks or bans were, also in descending order, Shyvana, Cassiopeia, and Shen. Shyvana was banned eight times, and obtained victory in four out of the seven games for the team she was used by. Cassiopeia was banned a total of twelve times, and won two out of three games. Shen was banned nine times, and lost in all five games he was used, a complete reflection of what happened in Group A. Aside from that, Lee sin and Janna had some eye-opening win rates with a 100% win rate for Lee sin in nine games and a 91% win rate for Janna in eleven games.

Back to the top three, Shyvana and Shen were explained earlier, so let’s take a look at Cassiopeia. Cassiopeia has been recently popularized by ESCarlos 'ocelote' Rodríguez Santiago as he streamed while using Cassiopeia for many of his matches and continuously asserted how powerful she was. Also, he tends to personally prefer her since it compliments his aggressive play style very well which he stated during IEM Keiv. Generally, Cassiopeia has become popular due to her insane amount of sustained damage output, high mobility, and ease of use for her ability Twin Fangs. Team players must be taken into consideration as well to explain the amount of attention on Cassiopeia. Group B contained Team SoloMid, and Team SK Gaming.

These two teams contain Reginald from USTeam SoloMid , and Ocelote from EUSK Gaming , arguably the two best Cassiopeia players in the world. Naturally, no one wants to let a good player get Cassiopeia without a way to respond to it in-game, hence the large amount of bans on her within the bracket.

We will most likely see new trends appear as this tournament continues to unfold. League of Legends tends to reward players that have certain champions as opposed to others. Could this pose a problem and create stale predictable line-ups in competitive matches since only a handful of champions are actually acknowledged? Some may agree while others may disagree. One thing is certain though, using or banning specific champions could significantly increase your chances of winning, this does not mean insta-locking a Shen will guarantee any success for your team though. At the end of the day crunching numbers and blindly following the meta can only go so far within a game based on skill, strategy, and communication. This is why players and spectators love League of Legends.

Feel free to discuss or contest any points made in this article in the comments below!


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