Example Final Build #1
Example Final Build #2
Table of Contents
- TL;DR Why Vel'Koz Support
- TL;DR What I Need to Know
- Pros / Cons
- Summoner Spells
- Ability Explanation
- Ability Sequence Order
So why play Vel'Koz support?
- 52.0% win rate in Ranked across all regions and ranks in the month of December 2016 (top 15 highest win rates)
- Fairly easy to learn and master (positioning, landing skillshots, and understanding the champion)
- Very fun to play, and you can still feel powerful in a support role
- Can carry a team through a number of different outlets (utility, CC, damage, poke, kiting)
- You can spoon feed your ADC kills in lane (E>W combo; E>W>Q>ult combo)
- Tons of damage to the enemy team (AOE ult, true damage passive, long-range poke)
- You can provide a moderate amount of CC and utility in team fights
- Still valuable even if you fall behind
- You can kite people like a boss
- He's an alien invader weirdo, with a dope battlecast skin that makes you feel like you're on the front lines of WW2
How is this a great way to climb out of elo hell?
Here are some core principles that will help you be successful with Vel'Koz support.
- Aggressively poke the enemies in lane
- E>W combo is your powerhouse. Ult instantly after landing it, if possible
- Always Thunderlord's Decree
- Always Exhaust
- Almost always Liandry's Torment
- Always 30% or more CDR
- Know your limits, play your role (squishy long-range mage), keep appropriate distance
- Try to give the kills to the ADC, you will be fairly strong with or without the kills
- You can often kite a champion and do enough damage while running away to turn on them or kill them (similar to Ahri)
- Know how you synergize with your ADC, and know how the enemy bot lane can expose your weaknesses (gap close / hard engage onto you)
- Roam once or twice during lane phase. You can gank mid-lane using your slow and knockup, but don't neglect your ADC by roaming too much.
Welcome! This is a guide for Vel'Koz: the hidden God-tier support. In this guide, I provide my opinion on the best way to build and play Vel'Koz in the bottom lane, attempting to be as concise as possible. I strongly encourage, and appreciate, feedback and comments. Thanks for reading, and TEAR it up on the Rift!!!
P.S. Please support my stream @ www.twitch.tv/jdawg20201
+ Great at kiting
+ Long range poke
+ High base damage
+ True damage
+ Massive AoE damage
+ Strong E>W>Q and E>W>R combo
Vel'Koz has two abilities that slow Plasma Fission and Life Form Disintegration Ray, along with a knockback Tectonic Disruption. As a result, he *can* provide great peel for the AD carry and insane CC in teamfights. All of Vel'Koz's abilities have very long range, second only to a few champions such as Xerath. The low mana cost and high base damage of Vel'Koz's abilities result in spammable long range poke, that HURTS. His true damage passive is fairly easy to proc, as landing the tear and explosion of Void Rift provides 2 out of 3 stacks. Lastly, all four of Vel'Koz's abilities are Area of Effect (AoE), sans his Plasma Fission which is multi-target. Following this guide will lead you to doing consistently high damage all game and proving to be one of the most useful supports out there!
- No escape
- Vulnerable when ulting
- Unimpressive scalings
- Can't always peel for ADC
Being a long range mage, with three CC abilities, Vel'Koz was justly made pretty squishy. And while you have fairly strong peel, anyone with a strong gap closer such as Akali or Irelia will melt you instantly. This is because you have no escapes (besides Flash, if it's up). So I recommend keeping an appropriate gap between you and the enemy champion(s), while aggressively poking them down. As far as your ultimate ability Life Form Disintegration Ray is concerned, there are two things to be wary of. First, it is a channeled spell that can easily be interrupted by any hard CC (silence, knock-up, stun). Second, while ulting Vel'Koz is completely unable to move, and therefore left very vulnerable. Overall, positioning and timing is key with this champion, but these two thing will come fairly easy to you in just a couple games.
Thunderlord's Decree is a no brainer here due to it's instant proc with an E>W combo. I think the 6-18-6 mastery setup is highly underrated. As an AP support, I think the second tier of Ferocity tree gives you no great options. And while the summoner spell cooldown reduction is quite good in the Resolve tree, I think stratifying your remaining 12 points into both Expose Weakness and Tough Skin gives you a good combination of damage potential and survivability.
Expose Weakness is a great way to add to your value as an AP support. Since you will be damaging several members of the enemy team with your AoE and multi-target abilities, you can "support" your team by giving them more damage >:D
Wanderer is a solid pick on Vel'Koz. Although I do not suggest roaming more than once or twice during laning phase, the slow from your Q and the knockup from your E can result in some great early lane ganks to propel your team ahead.
Meditation helps with Vel'Koz's early struggle with mana, and promotes spamming of his abilities. With 5 points in Meditation , you don't need to heavily focus your build path on mana or mana regeneration.
I choose Intelligence on Vel'koz because of the 5% CDR level 1, and due to the increased cap to 45%. Almost every game I get 45% CDR to maximum passive procs and number of ults I can get off.
Thunderlord's Decree is especially good on Vel'Koz because it will proc after an E>W combo. Stormraider's Surge is a good alternative, and has actually proven surprisingly effective on Vel'Koz.
Tough Skin is helpful, especially in the early laning phase. If you get hard engaged on, this mastery along with some of your defensive runes, will help to keep you alive.
I am choosing runes that allow me to absorb a bit of damage, while still dishing out a ton. Fairly standard runes here: AP, health, armor, and scaling MR.
The Patch 4.5 Greater Seal of Armor nerf and corresponding buff to many other runes such as Greater Seal of Health allows for a much more versatile rune selection.
- Greater Quintessence of Ability Power: Purchased to supplement Vel'Koz's high base damage for maximum poke lethality.
- Greater Mark of Armor: Getting armor mark's even though they are secondary, so I can get flat health seals. Note: Armor marks only have 0.09 less armor than Armor seals.
- Greater Seal of Health: Took advice from one of the comments on this build. Seems appropriate to get these on Vel'Koz given his squishiness, especially when playing against a lane with hard CC and/or strong burst.
- Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist: Fairly standard here. Usually don't need a ton of MR until after the laning phase, which is why we get scaling instead of flat.
Barrier: Barrier is awesome on Vel'Koz mid, but if you are going support, you almost always want to run Exhaust. Note: you can pop Barrier while ulting, which can end up making a huge difference!
Flash: An ABSOLUTE NECESSITY as for Vel'Koz, because you have no other forms of escaping! Coupling this with Ionian Boots of Lucidity is optimal for escaping sticky situations.
Exhaust: Exhaust is a great way to add some utility and peel for your ADC and for yourself. Especially given the current meta, I would rarely choose anything besides Flash and Exhaust as support Vel'Koz.
All four of Vel'Koz's abilities are either AoE or multi-target skillshots. In addition, three of the fouralso proc Liandry's Torment's passive, which is why it is an essential item! An important thing to note is that every one of Vel'Koz's abilities has a distinct delay. Familiarize yourself with this delay, and you will be landing his skillshots left and right, and likely doing the most damage in the game. High skill cap on this champion, but he is very fun to play (especially in bot lane) and fairly easy to get the hang of.
- Organic Deconstruction: Glorious true damage passive that is relatively easy to proc. An easy combo to proc this passive is to land your Tectonic Disruption, then follow it up with a Void Rift or your ult Life Form Disintegration Ray.
- Plasma Fission (Q): Heavy 70% slow with good damage. Branches off into a "T". Shooting this ability off at a 45 degree angle will result in a ~1.41 times longer distance (geometry, wow!) compared to shooting it straight ahead.
- Void Rift (W): The secondary explosion does more damage than the initial tear. Landing only the initial tear is acceptable for in-lane poking, but landing both is much more desirable.
- Tectonic Disruption (E): This is a fairly hard knockup to land, very similar to Nami's Aqua Prison as far as mechanics are concerned. However, unlike Aqua Prison, Tectonic Disruption is NOT a stun, merely a knockup. It will disrupt enemy channels, and landing this move is a tell-tale sign to GO ALL IN.
- Life Form Disintegration Ray (R): Great ultimate ability that applies a slow, therefore Liandry's Torment, AND Organic Deconstruction! Leaves you extremely vulnerable though, so position and time it carefully. I often bait the enemy bot lane into chasing me, Flash away, and then ult both of them in the face! Synergizes well with AoE CC such as Amumu, Malphite, Orianna, Wukong, Yasuo etc.
I start with Plasma Fission, but max Void Rift first for a couple reasons. Plasma Fission is more appropriate level 1 since it has a much longer range and also applies a slow. However, I max Void Rift because it is often much easier to land than Plasma Fission, does more damage than Plasma Fission if you place it properly, AND has the potential to apply two stacks of Organic Deconstruction to multiple enemies. Next, get Tectonic Disruption if the enemy lane is pushing/harassing a bit; or Void Rift if you are pushing their lane and want some additional harass. Max Plasma Fission second followed by Tectonic Disruption.
Great for the CDR, and recently added Summoner spell CDR. Sorcerer's Shoes is certainly still a valid pick if you feel like you need additional pen.
An essential item for your build. Provides utility (Grievous Wounds), a big hunk of AP, 20% cooldown reduction, and some good mana regen for only 2550 gold.
Frost Queen's Claim has a new, much less clunky, active that makes it worth getting. You can use the spooky ghosts every 1 minute, either offensively, defensively, or instead of face-checking.
I go with Ruby Sightstone because I prefer Frost Queen's Claim's new active compared to getting Eye of the Watchers. Ruby Sightstone is definitely not an item that you need to rush, but its nice because it gives you an additional ward, more health, and 10% active item CDR.
Three of Vel'Koz's abilities apply the passive on Liandry's Torment. Plus Haunting Guise gives you some early health and magic penetration. An absolute must!
This is a great utility item with an aura to help out your team! It's pretty cheap, and very effective against MR-heavy comps. Upgrade to Banner of Command if you seek a bit more damage, or Locket of the Iron Solari for more utility.
This item is pretty good on Vel'Koz against AD-heavy comps, especially those with melee fighters that can dive and burst you like Irelia. I buy this mainly for its active and for the armor it provides.
Great item for even more magic penetration! I get this item fairly often, whenever I am ahead, and encourage buying it for TONS OF DAMAGE. Remember: NEVER buy Abyssal Scepter; its fairly short-range aura is not very compatible with Vel'Koz.
Get this item late game, if at all. While it provides tons of AP, there are much more appropriate utility-oriented items, that end up being more effective.
Vel'Koz, while maybe not completely accepted as a Season 6 support, offers much to almost any team whenever played in the bottom lane. The general playstyle for Vel'Koz support is most analagous to that of Lux support. He has great poke potential, massive range, consistently high damage throughout the game (if built properly), and some pretty decent peel. However, always keep your distance from high-threat enemies and stay in the back, because the gap between you and the enemy is usually the difference between life and death. He has a relatively high skill cap, but surprisingly only takes a few games to get used to his abilities and general playstyle. He brings CC and MASSIVE AoE damage to the team, which I believe is often more useful than what a "traditional support" has to offer. I highly recommend playing this champion as an AP support for these reasons.
Vel'Koz support synergizes best with champions with AoE CC and strong engages, such as Amumu, Galio, Malphite, Orianna, Wukong, Yasuo etc. Good bot lane synergies include bursty champions like Graves, Quinn, Twitch, and Vayne. Also, Caitlyn works great with Vel'Koz due to their ult synergies. Aces-for-0 are not uncommon with team comps like this. Play around with this guy, I think you will really enjoy him =)
Special Thanks to jhoijhoi for the template, which you can find here
P.S. Watch my stream @ www.twitch.tv/jdawg20201
- Greater Quintessence of Ability Power: Purchased to supplement Vel'Koz's high base damage for maximum poke lethality.