The chain warden is probably one of the most versatile supports in the game. It is a champion that has some very aggressive ways of playing and also some very passive playstyles. That put down, we’ll look at the human values that most professional thresh players either use or take advantage of to win games. These are the biggest threats this champion realistically holds.
Well not really threats, just general advice on how I feel you can play this champ better. Apologies in advance if I’ve offended anyone.
Picture yourself as a really squishy Vayne, safe under your turret. You see the thresh walking around like a stunted koala bear. You know what he’s trying to do. . . he’s looking for a good hook. Behind him is the entire enemy team. You do not have a QSS and their mid laner picked Morgana. Undoubtedly, if he hooks you you’re dead. You do your best to avoid his hook by matching movement with him staying just out of range. The enemy wave crashes into the turret. You’re so engrossed in staying alive that you don’t notice the entire wave die to the tower. Maybe you even do notice but you need to stay out of his hook range and can’t step up to kill even the melee minions. This heavy zoning keeps you from getting that farm and maybe eventually from the tower defense, ultimately surrendering the tower.
This is the best virtue that many thresh players tend to use. The way to do this is to save your hook. I know, 45% CDR can be very tempting at times but control yourself. Saving your hook and building up the tension on one meager 5-second first ability can often be enough to get your team ahead without really doing anything.
See that article above? What happens if enemies don’t respect your cooldowns and directly walk up to grab some farm putting themselves into your hook range? Simple. Hook them and let your team clean up. While fear is a virtue that works best when you’re ahead, overconfidence is a virtue that comes into play when behind.
While fear provides constriction of mobility, overconfidence allows too much mobility. Sometimes bringing the enemy to the depth of your team without even needing to do anything. This time the abilities you need to save are your lantern and flay since the prime reason someone will jump into your team is to kill the carry. Your job as thresh now is to protect them with all your summoners and items ensuring they do not die.
This is probably the most important virtue of all and again, there are two aspects to this quality.
Patience for landing the correct hook:
This is the reason those Madlife hooks exist. Just because you can land a hook doesn’t mean you have to. Be calm and wait for that one hook that will seriously cripple the enemy and either ensures death or chunks them out pushing them out of the lane and team fights.
Patience when you aren’t landing a single hook:
Everyone has rough days. You will too, there may be days the adc flames you to the brink where each and every hook you land misses. If you’re new to the champion, it’s probably just additional practice that’s required. If you are usually good with thresh its more of a mental block in that case. In scenarios like this, its highly unlikely your mind will magically clear up. Play safe, wait for that hook that you just can’t miss unless you’re as blind as a lee. Land that hook and if its worth it commit your cooldowns.
Now that we’ve cleared up the base mentality lets move to the next part.
This is its passive that gives the warden stacks everytime a unit, be it minion, champion or nashor himself drops when they die. Collecting this gives him additional armor and ap. As the game goes on, these numbers can really stack up providing a large chunk of armor and at times dissolving the need for an additional defensive item. There’s nothing here really. Some armor and ap is really nice though. Thanks, Rito! 😀
It’s such a nice name, isn’t it? What’s even more satisfying is landing one of these onto the enemy and the sound when the chain connects. ( So long as you don’t snag in a minion) .
Jokes aside though, this is a critical part to your kit in the early game. This could be your first ability under certain cases or flay in others. Your ability costs mana so while it isn’t favorable to keep randomly flinging them it can be quite useful to land punishing hooks once in a while. For this ability, in particular, you might want to pick 45% CDR (We’ll show you how in an itemization article coming soon) as soon as you can so that you can cast them more often.
Tips on landing your death sentence
The most critical part of your kit when on the aggressive is your death sentence. This has a cast time of 0.5 seconds. In this time interval, thresh lasso’s his chain before lashing out in the said direction. This means the enemy team has half a second to react and if they’ve seen you approaching, that’s plenty of time for sensing the gravity of the movement as is.
One way to land a hook is to surprise your opponent. Give them the exact 0.5 seconds and not an instant more. Tends to make life harder for them. You can do this by hiding in the fog of war, appearing when they’re in range.
Another strategy you can employ is deny them the windup time altogether. Do this by concealing yourself in unwarded bushes and casting your sentence within the bush itself.
While this windup can be a drawback in certain situations, this also means the opponent has 0.5 seconds to decide where to go. If you can predict, before casting the spell their direction of movement, landing the death sentence is still possible, all the more rewarding and a critical blow to champions with limited mobility since they would mostly blow flash to leave their current position. ( Shyvana, Morgana, Lux etc.)
How to predict.
This is slightly tricky since there can be no sure shot way to know for certain the direction, the enemy champion will move. It’s always a gamble you’ve gotta take and the odds of landing your hook often improve the more you play the game and watch common escape movements.
Take this clip for example. It’s a very simple situation and a relatively easy one. Theres a dead Sion, with very high mobility, and a thresh thats almost out of Q range. Kassadins immediate priority is avoiding Sion till the time runs out. In this case, we know for sure that he will follow the shortest path that builds the maximum distance between him and Sion. We can also see that he has no mana and all his motion is pure movement. These two predictions are more than enough to land a hook that has a 100% chance of landing as can be seen in the picture.
Another instance is the one as shown. As can be seen in the picture, there is no vision on thresh and therefore a max range hook becomes all the more easy, as a large portion of the hook is mainly invisible. The end of the chain ( portion which travels into tower vision is visible giving the opponent less than a quarter of a second to react. This makes it virtually impossible for anyone to dodge this hook.
There are plenty of other cases. Some locations you get a higher hook landing percentage are tower crevices, the jungle area between the Dragon/ Baron outer wall and the Buff wall, and any narrow openings really.
Guess what, this wasn’t called Lantern. Next time use the correct jargon, please. (Just kidding)
The dark passage can be used both passively and aggressively bringing your damage dealer to an unsuspecting enemy or saving your teammate from a sticky situation. Apart from this it acts as terrain and can be used to make traditionally wide paths narrower allowing you to land your hook more often.
Traditionally this ability requires an understanding between you and your carry and in solo queue that is a surprisingly herculean requirement. What you can do to increase the probability of saving your teammate is to throw the lantern in the direction they’re headed so that they accidentally click it while right-clicking for motion.
The dark passage can also be used to get vision in risky spots and in many cases, the small hp shield it provides can also come in handy. All in all a really cool ability that you usually pick third and max second.
Flay is your interrupt ability. It may be used to push enemies back into your team or simply interrupt some channel of the enemy champion. Flay can be your follow up to the death sentence since getting close enough to flay them in is risky and might end up with you getting more than what you bargained for. In the early game, however, the autos due to flay really pack a punch and therefore it can be your first ability but its traditionally better to level it up last.
How to interrupt?
In case you’re fairly new to the champion, the way the interrupt works is you aim your flay in the direction the enemies hitbox will be the very next second. In doing so you pull them out of their dash and render that ability useless. This, however, cannot work on untargetable channels such as Maokais twisted advance or Fiora’s Riposte.
Finally coming to his ultimate, the box. This is a really cool ability that spawns a pentagon and enemies that break the wall of the Pentagon are slowed heavily. The enemy that breaks the first wall also takes a certain amount of magic damage. This is a really nice constriction you have as a followup to your initial Q, E combo.
The box is an ability that will keep the enemy team in one place if a team fights going south and give your team enough time to make a break for it. It can also be used offensively allowing you to slow down runners and to clean up after a won team fight.
Speaking about cleanups, if you’re the guys getting cleaned up, the box is an excellent tool to slow and provide a decent disengage to save your team from a fight gone awry.
Well, that’s about it on the tips for this article, there’ll be a couple more articles though. In case you liked this article and would like to read more do let us know in the comments! To check out more league of legends articles click here. Thank you and see ya on the rift!