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Thresh Build Guide by b00tywarrior

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League of Legends Build Guide Author b00tywarrior

Thresh Support In Depth

b00tywarrior Last updated on January 11, 2017
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Ability Sequence

2
9
10
12
13
Ability Key Q
3
14
15
17
18
Ability Key W
1
4
5
7
8
Ability Key E
6
11
16
Ability Key R

Masteries

Fury
 
 
Sorcery
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Vampirism
 
 
Natural Talent
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Battering Blows
 
 
Piercing Thoughts
 
 
 
 

Offense: 0

5/
Wanderer
 
 
Savagery
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Merciless
 
 
5/
Meditation
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Precision
 
 
Intelligence
 
 
 
 

Defense: 12

Recovery
 
 
5/
Unyielding
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Runic Armor
 
 
5/
Veteran's Scars
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Swiftness
 
 
5/
Legendary Guardian
 
 
 
 

Utility: 18


Guide Top

Introduction

Welcome to my in depth guide to Thresh gameplay. I will go over how I play thresh (I've been playing the game for four years and regard Thresh as my main). He's a very fun champion to play, he can pull off some really cool combos, his moves are highly versatile and adaptable to many situations and he has the ability to make game saving or turning plays. If played correctly, Thresh has the capacity to beat almost any bot lane matchup, you just have to play him well.


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Runes

x9.

GREATER GLYPH OF SCALING MAGIC RESIST

I prefer to run scaling MR (magic resist) as opposed to flat MR because I find that magic resist can be hard to find on support items later in the game. Also, I typically don't run into heavy magic damage until later in the game, and by that point the scaling glyphs are already giving me as much if not more MR than the flat glyphs. If you are laning against a mage support it would not be a bad idea to run flat MR for an early advantage.

x9.

GREATER MARK OF ATTACK DAMAGE

Thresh's empowered auto attack from flay scales off of attack damage, so with these Marks your attack becomes that much stronger and chunks them a bit more. To me this is the only mark that makes sense on Thresh.

x9.

GREATER SEAL OF HEALTH

Thresh is a squishy champ early (and to a degree late) so I take flat health seals to give him another bar of health early to help him absorb more retaliation from lane opponents when moving in to poke with my autos.

x3.

GREATER QUINTESSENCE OF ARMOR

This just rounds out thresh's tankiness to me. In my opinion you should not go bot lane without flat armor early because you're dealing with at least one source of physical damage and armor runes can go a long way to giving you an early leg up on that.q


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Masteries

Masteries
5/5
1/1
5/5
1/1
5/5
1/1
5/5
1/1
5/5
1/1

I run masteries that maximize my tankiness and roaming ability. I opt for anything that boosts MR, armor, and Health and also movement speed.


Guide Top

Pros / Cons

PROS
-Very large amount of CC (both single target and CC)
-Gives your ADC an extra escape tool/Gives jungler an extra engage tool during ganks
-Has the ability to move other champs
-Ranged attack provudes good poke against melee supports
-Hard engage provides leg up against most support mages
-Passive gives armor throughout game, making him tankier as game goes longer

CONS
-Long CDs on abilities can be heavily exploited early
-Skill shots are easily missed
-Slow cast on Death Sentence
-Is fairly squishy for a front line style champion
-Bad positioning hurts his effectiveness


Guide Top

Matchups-Enemy support

In this section I will discuss how to play (and typically win) as Thresh in lane against enemy supports. I've played a lot as Thresh and with a competent support you can win most lane matchups and the ones you can't, you can outscale. I'll try to cover all common supports in this section, so unless you're looking for a specific matchup it may be a good idea to skip this read.

IMPORTANT NOTE--MINIONS: In each of these situations remember there are minions present. Never go in on a hook if the enemy has more minions than you, always go in (typically) if you have more than them (or if they are under your turret). Minions will have a huge impact on in lane skirmishes early so pay attention to them and don't let yourself lose a fight just because they had more minions hitting you.


This is one of Thresh's tougher matchups. He wants you to land hooks on him and if he plays well will try to body block them for his adc. If you do land a hook on him don't go in on him. What you want to do is abuse the fact that you are ranged and he is not, attack him frequently and when you can, charge up a Flay empowered auto attack. If you want to play defensively in lane then feel free but you don't necessarily have to. Tell your adc that you want to bait his cc on yourself, if that happens then the adc needs to go in on the enemy adc as Alistar will now be basically useless (with his Pulverize and Headbutt on CD he is very very weak). When this is the case, you should turn to his adc and flay them to you and lay auto attacks on them. If they wanna stay and fight then exhaust them. Shield yourself if you have it for a little more damage absorbtion and wait on your hook until they start running away or if you have a definite clear shot and can hit it during fight to CC. Basically bait Alistars CC on you and then win the engagement. This is a good lane to take Relic Shield over Ancient Coin.


Thresh does very well against mage style supports and even better against those with no sustain. You can land empowered autos on either enemy to get them low and they will have no way to heal that up. Annie will have more poke than thresh (maybe) but you can all in her early and win easily. Try to bait a stun off of her before you go in so she can't have one when your adc goes in to fight. Once she uses her stun you will want to land cc on her adc or her, whichever you can easily land a hook on just go on them. If the adc fights you, exhaust them but focus with your adc. The CC you lay out gives you an advantage over these squishies. This is a good lane to take Ancient Coin because I feel it gives you more regen to take extended poke from annies autos as you go in to poke her or her adc down.


I have minimal experience laning against Bard as Thresh (or laning against thresh as bard) but I feel as though you should definitely win as Thresh. Pay firm attention to where you are standing while trying to get in line for a skill shot as you don't want to stand in front of a minion or wall (in relation to bard) as he will stun you. His poke with autos will probably be more than yours as he has meeps and will run a Spellthief's Edge. However bard is squishy and you can hook him and all in, just don't line up with your adc. Keep in mind you can also hook him as he goes through a Magical Journey as this doesn't make him untargettable. Also since Bard is a roamer he will more than likely leave lane frequently, you should have river warded for this. When he does that's basically free kill or at least free zoning on the enemy adc. Since your engage is unreal, just land a hook on the lone adc, lantern your adc to you, flay and get the easy kill. Be wary of the Magical Journey for a flank as bard might bring roamers with him.


Ha. Thresh was basically built as a blitzcrank counter. For one thing you can counter his pull by lanterning your teammate back (though the pull definitely gives them the upper hand and you can't fight on this). You are ranged so you can poke blitzcrank down as he is not actually all that tanky, however you don't want to focus him as he has his mana shield. Basically you want to get yourself pulled so that the adc doesnt get pulled, and engage on that. If blitzcrank wants to get you closer to his adc so be it, that's where you want to be anyway. With the new nerf to his pull, you may be able to time the flay to keep him from popping you up (idk, haven't tried yet) but realistically you want to make sure your adc knows to go in once you get pulled. You will lay your CC onto the enemy carry and watch them melt as blitzcrank thinks he has the upper hand. Another good lane to get Relic Shield.


I've seen Brand supports recently so I figured I'd include this section. Just like Annie he is a mage support with no innate sustain so you have advantage. You can poke him harder than he can you assuming you can dodge his skill shots. Landing hooks on him or the adc will get the kill. You need to poke them down a bit with autos and then go in and you should win the exchange against the squishies.


Braum is one of Thresh's counters, he's a champion I like to play if Thresh is picked against me. He has a move that puts him in between his ally and you, thus immediately catching hooks that would otherwise hit an ADC. For this reason, try to make sure he is too far away from his ADC before punishing. Braum wants to scrap with you in lane so the more autos he can stack on you towards his passive the better, try to avoid getting caught where both ADCs are behind their supports (you and Braum), because he will put his shield up and get you stunned down, thus negating any effect your ADC would otherwise have and allowing him and his ADC to focus you down. Never focus the Braum as he is tanky and try to wait out cooldown windows on his Stand Behind Me and Unbreakable as this will give he and his ally huge damage mitigation.

If they don't have a super mobile ADC then your best bet is to land a hook onto them and lantern your ADC to you so you will both be on their ADC. From here, land autos on the ADC but save your Flay to keep Braum away. If you can position yourself between Braum and his ADC you can Flay along the area between them to cancel his jump, just make sure you time it right. If their ADC has an escape, do not go in and lantern your ADC in, just try to land quality hooks and poke the enemy down at range since Braum has no sustain.


I don't see fiddlesticks support much anymore but the good news is Thresh has a pretty big advantage against him. Make sure to always have a CC ready to cancel his Drain and try to distance yourself from your ADC when he throws his Dark Wind. Land empowered autos onto his ADC as he has no way to heal them, only himself, and punish his squishiness. Feel free to take Ignite in this matchup and focus him down in lane, as he thinks he will be able to sustain your damage.


Again not a common support (not even a commonly played champ) but hey, you might see him in a regular match. His poke is better than yours, so try to dodge his skill shots. His shield grants resistances and heals Galio when the shielded target takes damage. Basically don't attack who is shielded, as long as you land skill shots in this match up you should come out on top. At level 6, try to keep distance on Galio and get a free hook when he sits down to ult.


He's best suited as a jungler but I've seen him in the bot lane. He has a shield that explodes and slows, a snare linear skill shot with good distance, and can create bushes (while in bushes he has empowered ranged auto attacks). You want to control lane bushes in this scenario, keep in mind that most Iverns will aim a skill shot snare at you expecting you to run away, what I typically do is hug the wall harder to dodge it. If you don't dodge it, no worries, they will focus you. This is what you want as you are tanky, turn with autos on the ADC, save your hook for when they run away or if you start to lose, just open with flay on the ADC. Dodge Iverns snare if you are on the run and you can easily win this matchup. If he calls Daisy out, flay her away so she cannot chain auto attacks, and try to fight when his shield is on CD.


Janna is a pain in thresh's ***. Know that she will probably use a tornado to knock you up if you engage on a hook, and if you go in her ADC will get a big shield and take away a lot of your damage. You want to poke her adc with empowered autos, try to get the damage through before Janna can shield. If she shields, wait it out and then try to find a good hook placement. She is still very squishy so focusing her can pay off if you and your ADC are in sync. Just beware of her shield as it is easy to tell when a thresh will want to unleash his damage, don't play predictably and use her Cooldown window on the shield to your advantage.


Karma also has a shield {which turns out is a good counter against Thresh btw), plus she has much better poke than you with her Inner Flame. I've always found that move to be a pain in the *** to dodge, but if you don't you will probably lose lane. Again, try to go in when her shield is on CD. She wants to counterengage with her tether snare into an Inner Flame, this is hard for you to counter. You can use your W to get an ally out of her snare, but other than that you are at a disadvantage. You will come in handy later with harder CC, but try not to feed her lane kills and pay attention to how much mana Karma has, if she is 1/4 mana or lower then it may pay off to go in.


Unfortunately your lantern won't really come in handy much unless you place it absurdly well and your ADC has the reflexes of a mongoose. She can hard CC the heck out of someone before they get the chance to use the lantern. If she engages on you, perfect because she's used all of her CDs on the tank of the lane, and you want to use yours on the enemy ADC. If she goes in on your ADC, lay an Exhaust on the ADC and go in for the fight. If that isn't an option, make sure you hook the enemy ADC so they can't back Leona up, or at least a Flay. Her moves don't stack additional Sunlight debuffs, so if she lands three moves on a target without an ally to proc them, she will waste two of her moves and some good damage. Try to CC the enemy ADC while she uses her moves. Once her moves are on cooldown, you have about 6-7 seconds to lay in heavy damage while she can do basically nothing, but beware of her cooldowns coming back up. In a lane skirmish she will prob initiate with her spells and then have them back up as you and your ally approach 1/3 health, thus winning the fight handily. If she ults, if you are in a good spot (between your ADC and them), ult immediately to slow down the engagement on her long range ult. Never focus Leona as she is very tanky, just take out her ADC and then she is more or less useless.


Lulu is another one of Thresh's counters. If you are unfamiliar with her kit, her moves are Glitterlance Whimsy and Help, Pix!. She will want to polymorph you after a hook or perhaps before, thus negating your engagement. Keep in mind that this is the same move that speeds up allies so if you see her use it for that then you are in the clear on that cooldown window. She will still have a small shield to place on her ally, but you can burn through that. She has decent long range poke in lane, but it isn't nearly as damaging as Karma and she is very squishy. If you see her use Help, Pix! on a minion, she is probably trying to line up one of her Glitterlance. Take the poke. If she is trying to line a skill shot up, odds are she isn't focusing on dodging so this will allow for an easier hook. Since she is a mage support, feel free to focus her hard before killing the ADC.


Keep in mind that most Lux's expect you to run away when they cast Lucent Singularity, so they will typically throw it behind you (it has longer range than you think). When you see her cast it, simply run forward to dodge easily, thus taking out a lot of her damage. Try to scare her shield out of her before engaging, as it will proc twice and mitigate a lot of your damage. Dodging Light Binding is tricky as it can go through one minion, but keep in mind that if hit in the open, you can still cast spells and auto attack during it, so drop a lantern for an ally or throw a hook to counter engage (or both). If you think you have a lead, and her moves are on cooldown, try to catch a light binding as this will trick a Lux into overcommitting and killing herself. Again, she is a mage so you can pretty much burn her down.


The classic Thresh counter. You basically can't do anything to her ADC if she black shields them, so just throw it on her. Or wait for it to expire. Try to dodge her snare as it is stupid long, but if she hits you with it and a pool, you may as well look to go in soon as her cooldowns will be down for a brief period.


Pain. In. The. ***. She can CC you easily on your engage, and heal up any poke you put down. She can also speed her ADC up almost constantly, making it difficult to land a hook. Try to wait on going in on a hook, activate the pull at varying times (sometimes go in immediately, other times wait a second or two) so that she can't simply get a free bubble on you. She thrives in extended lane engages whereas Thresh thrives on all ins, so try to force her to do so. It will usually take 2 skirmishes, but don't let her heal up between fights too much. Try to land consecutive hooks and punish her.


It will be hard to get your moves around him to hit his ADC as he is enormous. Try to get him to use his CCs on you so your ADC stays high and dry to pepper them down. This matchup relies a little more heavily on how much your ADC will help you. Make sure they know that if you are being focused, they not only have a free window to auto, but definitely need to be autoing. Try to land all your CC on enemy ADC, don't focus Nautilus at all unless he is very overextended. Try to side step a hook from him if you are standing in front of a wall to make him pull himself to you without CCing you initially. He will make it almost impossible to get to his ADC but as it is a melee matchup, you can lay a lot of autos onto him.


You don't see many Nunu supports, but he is definitely viable. He can buff his and his allies attack and movement speeds and keep you or your ADC perpetually slowed. He can consume a minion to gain health. Basically you want an extended fight where you keep his ADC either CCed or running, as he does not have very much peel or sustained damage. If he ults, either hook or flay him out of it early to mitigate the damage.


Another pain in the ***, she can heal up all of your empowered auto attacks. Fortunately thresh beats her, as if you hard engage her and don't allow her to slip in and poke and leave. She's all burst so just hook in, and focus her down as she has no escape. You should be able to kill her before her ADC kills you. Go Relic Shield in this matchup. Also, try to go in after her heal shield goes away.


As in every soraka lane, don't focus her ADC as she will keep them alive. Simply focus her as she has little way to heal herself. Poke either champion in lane, as her heal will cause her to spend health, but if you go in on a hook onto Soraka you will more than likely win that skirmish.


Like Braum, he is a good skirmisher. Don't focus him in fights, but use your empowered autos to widdle him down as he can't retaliate all that well. If you slowly pick him down he loses a lot of utility from his gray health. Be aware that your engagements on an enemy ADC will get countered as he eats them, and he can even do so to protect them from a hook. Try to save your CCs for after he spits them out so you can continue to focus the ADC.


Taric has a small heal and a shield, both of which can annoy thresh. Again though he is melee, so use your empowered autos to your advantage, widdle away at he, or better yet his ally. Move erratically to dodge his stun, cutting a random direction at the last second to avoid it. If he ults, continue to do damage until the invulnerability starts, then use your ult and kite out the fight. Re engage with a hook if the fight looks to be in your favor upon return. Keep in mind that if he spaces his spells out (which he should) he will be dealing a lot of damage with autos throughout a skirmish, so it may be wise to simply hook an ADC and let your ally get quality autos to get them low before going for an all in.


He will out damage you in skirmishes, try to peel him off your ADC (shouldnt be hard as he has no gap closer). This can be done by simply flaying him back as you hook his ADC. Once you do this, simply run from the trade and wait for cooldown windows. He will heal up as minions die near him, so try to maintain focus on his ADC. You can hook through pillars so try to bait that out before hooking an enemy. Run from a fight if he ults.


Don't follow a hook through a stun wall and you're good. He is too squishy to survive an all in engagement from you. I would take Ignite to ensure early kills and establish lane dominance.


Same sort of matchup as veigar. He does heavy damage and has very good poke, and can cc you a bit off of him or an adc. If you see him use his knock back ability, just go in immediately. Try to step haphazardly in skirmishes to dodge his moves, but odds are you will take a brunt of damage. In either of these matchups, take flat MR glyphs to mitigate damage, and go with Relic Shield as they are burstier and deal magic damage. You want all in engages with hooks followed by flays on either him or his ADC, so look to play aggressive.


Take Ignite to use on his passive, flay him when he charges (or hook if flay is on CD, but flay is easier to hit, is just as effective and has a lower CD). Be careful of his damage, so just like with Trundle, flay him off of your ally and use your hook on their ADC. If you can make their ADC run away, simply turn and auto Volibear, but if the ADC stays, get autos onto them to get them low. A low health enemy is a dead one if you can land a hook. If volibear ults, you ult and get the hell outta dodge until it wears off. Try to proc his passive with autos before a skirmish so he loses effectiveness.


He can stun you and deal heavy damage at the same time if you follow a hook. He can also speed up an ally to dodge a hook. Catch only one bomb at a time and go aggressive after he double bombs (if you pick up two bombs, you're stunned). Aim hooks for whoever isn't sped up and try to wait out his ult (floating gold hourglasses) as this will grant an ally a free guardian's angel


This matchup is fairly variable. If she's good you will probably lose. Try to beat her to her seeds, if you walk over one it dies immediately but as you walk to them she will cast a spell to activate it. She relies rather heavily on her plants for sustained damage. If a plant or two is to surface, get away from it. If you manage to kill the seed before she casts the spell, go in with a hook. Careful of her plants getting in the way of your hooks, really focus on where seeds and plants are. Never underestimate her damage, but feel free to focus her as she is a mage.


Guide Top

Items


RELIC SHIELD

This is the standard build choice for Threshes as it provides tankiness, a shield later in the game and good sustain in lane. I don't like taking this on any support at low ranks as later in the game people simply don't let you proc it's passive. It is a good item to buy though if you find yourself in any matchup that I listed above as one of sustained skirmishes. The Ancient Coin is better for poking and disengaging and playing a tad more passively early. Keep in mind that Thresh's autos are ranged so you need to actually perform last hits to get the proc from this item (as in the auto attack from thresh has to be enough to kill the minion without help from this items passive). I prefer ancient coin in most circumtances as thresh can be a tad mana hungry, it provides easier gold, and you don't have to consume an empowered auto to get gold.


ANCIENT COIN

A lot of people say running Relic Shield on Thresh is the way to go. I've tried it, and personally I just don't like it, I find it hard to proc the execute with Thresh's auto and I prefer the mana regen, CDR and health regen that the Ancient Coin provdies. The way I see it, in early lane I'm going for quality hooks and empowered autos focused onto a squishy target. CDR means more hooks, and maybe even an extra flay in an extended engagement, mana regen means I don't have to back if I'm spamming moves, and the health regen on minion death really comes in handy if I've taken a little return punishment for my poking.


NOMADS MEDALLION

This is the first item I buy on first back (Typically I try to get a sightstone as well). It gives even more CDR, even more health regen and most importantly more gold. In my opinion it makes sense to upgrade gold income first as that will allow you to buy your other items quicker.


TALISMAN OF ASCENSION

I have this labelled as an aggressive early buy, this is because if you are behind or losing in lane it is usually a better idea to build tanky. However this item can come in handy then to, it provides armor plus an escape tool. I try to get it early, and with a 60sec CD on its active, you can actually use it to help roam faster, or to help a jungler gank a lane.


SIGHTSTONE

This item is a staple for any support. If you can't buy it on first back, you should aim to buy it on second back. You want to have this by level 7 or 8. I typically will not switch from yellow to red trinket right away with this item, unless your team is helping ward. The SS only grants 3 charges so if you stay out of base for extended time you will run out of wards, and it helps to have 3 wards out at all times. I will also note here that you should have a pink ward out at all times, in a priority location. If you're team has advanced and has a lead but your pink ward still lives in your jungle, buy a new one and place it further in the map.


BOOTS OF MOBILITY

These are the best boots for Thresh, they make it very easy to position his hooks in lane and they make roaming a very easy task. The only other boots I ever consider are Ninja Tabi against ad heavy teams. Sometimes I switch to these or Mercury's Treads late game for a little extra tankiness. I find the mobility boots come in handy if I pay attention to a laner overextending with no wards, I can head to them to provide a good Dark Passage that gets them to safety. Your teammate typically does not expect it and it can help with toxicity as you can literally save someones life by doing this.


AEGIS OF THE LEGION

If you're against a team with almost no AP damage, I wouldn't bother buying this item. If you have so much as a mid laner with AP damage, buy it early. The active shield you get from its upgrade plus the MR buff to teammates in early team fights are very valuable.


LOCKET OF THE IRON SOLARI

Get this item finished second or third and make sure you use its shield in every team fight.


RANDUINS OMEN

This item I will typically buy every game (unless going against Master Yi or Olaf because they are immune to slows). If I don't buy this item it's either because somehow the enemy team is almost entirely magic damage or because I opted for a Frozen Heart against an attack speed reliant comp. This item makes thresh's peeling so powerful, as long as you chain your own cc. Do not stack it with the slow from your ult, but use it as a second slow after your ult wears off. This can also be used to make it easier to hit a hook.


BANSHEES VEIL

Buy this item unless you are going against a severely physical damage heavy team. Thresh needs magic resist and sustain and this item has both. It provides him with good tankiness as a front liner and the spell shield can often times block a very important ability.


FROZEN HEART

I typically buy this only for AD heavy teams with a large reliance on attack speed champs. This is very effective against champs like Jax Xin Zhao Irelia Vayne etc. The only downside to this is that it doesnt offer the health that Randuin's Omen provides, but it does provide much welcome CDR to thresh's kit. I typically try not to include too many armor items in my build due to the passive armor I receive from thresh's passive (unless you're up against all physical damage. Then buy all armor and live forever). Also, I try not to buy this item if someone else on the team has bought it or will be buying it. The stats don't help thresh as much as other items in my opinion, but the passive to lower attack speed is valuable so at least one team member should carry this.


THORNMAIL

This item can make a tanky support a viable opponent to an opposing ADC. If you can play thresh correctly and keep yourself between opposing players and your ADC, they will usually decide to attack you since they can, and if you have this item it can end in disaster for them.


SUNFIRE CAPE

If I can get a lead in the early game I will sometimes rush this item if the enemy team has a physical damage champion doing well, it gives good tankiness as well as a damage source. Mid game team fights can be swayed by my being around a few of their champions with my aura and it will allow me to soak quite a bit more damage as a front liner for my ADC.


ZZ'ROT PORTAL

If you're up against a magic damage heavy team and foresee yourself needing an exceptional amount of magic resist, try getting this after Aegis of the Legion. This item is most effective the earlier it is purchased.


MIKAEL'S CRUCIBLE

If my ADC needs an extra cleanse then I absolutely buy this item. However, if no one on my team is doing exceptionally well and drawing a lot of focus, I typically hold off on this item and opt for other paths.


RIGHTEOUS GLORY

If your team has an early lead or has a mid game power spike, buy this item. It will make your engages almost unavoidable and force the enemy team into fighting you, which is something you want since you know your team will win most encounters under those circumstances. Otherwise, I would not recommend buying this item.


OHMWRECKER

Admittedly, I rarely buy this item. However, if you have an ADC that likes to push the lane or a jungler who is very aggressize early, and you foresee yourself diving frequently, go ahead and buy this. Make sure you use it to reset turret aggro (start the dive, tank a couple turret shots, use Ohmwrecker when whoever is tanking is near death, then as the turret reactivates make sure someone else provides first damage on enemy champion). If you don't see your team aggressively tower diving then don't bother buying this.


ARDENT CENSER

This item is for Thresh's with a very large lead, and a melee teammate who will actually take lanterns. The shield from your Dark Passage will give this passive to as many teammates that you shield, plus if you use the lantern to engage, it means that whichever champ joins you on the front line will have empowered damage as you hold down the enemy. As far as I know, this passive also procs on shields from Locket of the Iron Solari and Face of the Mountain. The trade off of this item is that it makes thresh very squishy so be careful with that.


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Summoner Spells



Always take this on Thresh. I typically run this on most champions, it just has too many uses. It is particularly useful on Thresh, as you play him more you can Flash + Death Sentence, Flash + Flay (very powerful if you're far from your ADC but the enemy fighters are on them), or you can even Flash + Dark Passage if you can time it correct they too can benefit from your flash (flash while they are still flying towards you).



I always run this as my second spell on Thresh. It makes fights in lane very winnable and is a great spell late to throw on someone attacking your ADC or whichever member of their team is most fed.



This move can be taken if you want to be a very aggressive laner, or if they have a champion with notoriously great life regen (aka Swain or Vladimir). I prefer not to take this as I find it less effective in the late game than Exhaust.


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Skill Sequence

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

This is the spell sequence I typically go with. I prefer the empowered poke in lane on the empowered auto attack provided by Flay. This is also Thresh's only ability that can hit both champions which means more damage if you land correctly. The Death Sentence I max second for lower CDs on the spell as I might need to use it multiple times in team fights. Dark Passage is mostly for the utility of the spell, as the shield typically doesnt block all that much damage, I rarely have to use it to reposition team mates more than once in quick succession during a fight so it gets maxed last. The Box obviously gets levelled up as often as possible. An alternate skill sequence would level Death Sentence first for extra damage and more hooks in lane. I'd only recommend doing this if you're confident on hitting hooks in lane.


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Spells



The passive is pretty self explanatory. You'll see little essences on the ground when some minions die (large jungle minions and siege minions ALWAYS drop one). Walk near these and Thresh will pick them up. If you cast your Dark Passage so that they would be shielded they will also be picked up. I try not to do this, even if they are not in a safe place to pick up, just because the cooldown on Dark Passage is fairly valuable especially early and it is a waste of mana. You'll find more souls later, you don't need to pick up ALL of them. Also, keep in mind that most enemies will be watching you pick your souls up and knowing that you'll be headed to that spot. Watch out for incoming skill shots or poke. Feel free to harass them a bit before collecting the soul. If you play in a way the enemy doesn't expect it will usually give you an advantage over your enemy.



This move takes a little while to master the timing. The cast and speed of projectile are both very slow as far as skill shots go. This makes it hard to hit when you start Thresh and it can also make it easy to dodge. Tips on using this spell, if an enemy has proven they can react to the hook as you play against them in lane phase, keep that in mind later. A good way to make sure you hook a champion is by paying attention to minions health (both yours and theirs). If you have a minion about to die they will probably come in to last hit. Throw your hook to the spot where they will stand to last hit, odds are they aren't going to be able to pay attention to every minions health AND you, this becomes increasingly effective the more low health minions you have in your wave. Pay attention to their minions' health as well, if one is about to die that theyre standing behind,throw the hook as your teammate (or your minions) take out that minion and hit the enemy where they think they are safe.

Also with this spell, constantly be moving around there minion wave looking for a place to hook. Move up through the bushes and you will watch their ADC reactively back off in fear of your hook, or pivot so that their minions are still between you and them. Try cutting across the minion wave (scoring autos on enemy champions when possible) so that you can line a hook up on the other side. More often than not you will not see a decent line in which to cast Death Sentence but if you can distract the enemy carry from farming intensively then it is still a small victory. While you're doing this try to make sure you don't take too much poke (any more than 3 autos or a spell and a couple autos and you should back off briefly to regen).

Another trick I like to use is casting it across a minion wave. More often than not if the minions are all clustered up it appears as though there isn't a clear shot at a hook. Pay attention to where the red minions are, usually there is a gap between the melees and the casters. Obviously your hook will pass through your own minions but somehow it seems like the enemy carries will sometimes forget this and stand out in the open across the minion wave. Cast Death Sentence diagonally through the minion wave (if you're in a brush it's even harder to dodge) if the enemy carry is standing in the open or seems to be moving towards the open.

This spell is also Thresh's initiation tool later in the game, you want to hook a priority target (a carry). If you hook a tank or a front line champion, DO NOT initiate on that hook if the enemy team is nearby. This will make your team inclined to focus that target which is something that enemy tanks want. If you hook a target that is isolated, take the hook, flay them back and watch your team melt them. Bear in mind even if you do hook a carry, you don't necessarily have to take the hook. If the enemy team has a lot of champions that require heavy peeling {most melee fighters with a gap closer) and your ADC will need assistance, try not to do anything that will put you too far away from them. Keep in mind though that if you do get separated from them, get yourself somewhere safe because you can pull teammates to you.

Overall this spell is very powerful and I find it very easy to land (but I've been playing Thresh for years now). Putting practice in and testing out the skill shot in regular matches will provide very good practice and you will see yourself starting to get the hang of it. Remember that in lane a missed hook, while bad in the sense that now you have to wait for a long CD, can be good if it scares the enemy carry and makes them less comfortable while farming.



This move can give a shield to everyone on your team in team fights (typically what I use it for if entire team is grouped). It is an incredibly versatile tool though, and you need to make sure your positioning as Thresh is good at all times so you can save teammates. If you notice a jungler coming for the enemy or if your carry is pushing without wards, stand back to be ready to escort them out. Make sure to lead them slightly so that they don't have to back track to get the lantern, but not too much so that they can't get to it. This move can also be used effectively to get people INTO fights, especially if you have junglers without gap closers in their own kits ( Volibear and Udyr come to mind).



This move is very effective, as long as you are staying near your ADC. You can use this move to move enemies into the walls of The Box. Typically I use this to move multiple targets away from my ADC to peel, sometimes it is a good tool to keep enemies from fleeing a fight. It should be noted that this move can interrupt opponents gap closers, as long as you hit them in middair (very challenging but with enough hours played as Thresh you can get the hang of it). That is peeling at it's finest. This move also briefly knocks people up, making it compatible with Yasuo ultimate.



This ultimate is a big zone controller. Try to set up shop somewhere between your ADC and the enemy team so that they have to fight through immense slows to even touch your carry. It can also be used aggressively in lane, once you hook to an enemy immediately use the box so that it appears around the enemy, either forcing them to be slowed or burn Flash. Keep in mind there is a third option that is stand still and fight, so if they are more powerful you may lose that fight, but you can use Flay to knock them into a wall to get damage in. If you use Flash + The Box the place it in the path an enemy needs to take it can lock down a for sure kill during a jungle gank. This move is incredibly helpful in choke points if you place it between ADC and enemy team as they will have to walk through it to get to your carry.


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Warding


Let's talk wards people. You may think wards are a waste of money, you may think wards aren't worth it, you may even think that wards are solely the support's job. You're wrong. Wards ARE important, wards CAN win games, and wards are NOT only the support's job. As this is a support guide though I am going to teach you how to ward (in depth, as usual). Each ward placement has a logic that goes behind it, and seeing as you can only have 3 sight wards down and 1 vision, you need to place them relatively carefully.

To maximize effectiveness with wards, I typically wait to buy my sweeper until I can upgrade my Sightstone and get four charges. In my opinion, in early game, it is more important to keep good vision on the map than it is to deny enemy vision. You will not be able to provide sustainable vision to your team with only a Sightstone.

Yellow Dots
These dots on the map signify where you should be placing your first trinket wards. Keep in mind the enemy jungler, will they be ganking early or do they have to wait for first back before ganking? Do they typically wait for ult before ganking? Don't know? Ask a teammate, odds are someone will. Basically you shouldn't need to worry TOO much about getting a ward in deep river, or river at all until you think the jungler will be around. A ward that reveals nothing for the first 3min of laning has little worth, when you already knew that no one was going to come. Your ADC will be helping you with their own yellow wards, so make sure you two aren't double warding anything (this means pay attention, if they are walking up to a bush, wait to see if they drop a ward). You will have very minimal vision early, but if you keep vision in the lane bushes, it will give you an advantage in the lane fights (and Vayne will thank you) and it will make it easier to dodge poke and deliver poke to the enemies.

Green Dots
These represent the Sightstone wards you will have. You can also put trinket wards at these locations (I tyically try to use all trinket wards available before spending a Sightstone ward, because the trinkets refresh slowly constantly, but Sightstone only refreshes when you go back). I like to keep these two locations warded at all times, no matter which side I'm playing on. You may think tri bush is safe if you're playing for blue/bottom team, but what if enemy jungler steals your red and comes in behind you to cut you off? Tribush ward warns of that and you can possibly escape up river. A ward by dragon pit alerts you of a mid roam (if they take river route. If they trek through jungle then tri bush ward will alert you) and it will alert you earlier than a river brush ward. Sometimes a river brush ward is not enough notice to allow you and your carry to escape quickly enough. If you want some advanced tactics (and this takes some getting used to), dont back off as soon as they pass through a ward. If you stay just a little bit longer, the mid roamer or would be ganker will think they haven't been detected. If you back off as they pass dragon pit they will turn back, thus missing less from their lane minions. If you can bait a jungler or mid laner to stay longer in your lane, it hurts the enemy team as those players are not off earning gold or xp from other sources. DO NOT die by using this method or it all goes to **** and you end up giving them an advantage. Also keep in mind that your wards are typically what your top laner will Teleport to so the deeper you have them in lane (tri bush wards typically hide TPs fairly well from enemy team) the more quality of a teleport your top laner will get.

Pink Dots
These are your vision wards. You'll want to get one on your first back. If you're on blue/bottom side, place it in your tri brush. If there's one there already, place it in the brush behind the Red Buff or in the River Bushes around mid lane. If you are on Top/Red(or is it purple?) side I typically will place it in the river bushes close to mid lane, or sometimes (if I can get there safely) I will place it deep into their jungle, at the spot above the bottom team bot lane inner turret. The spot on the map is marked by a pink and purple dot together. If you place it here, try to catch it on the edge of the brush so you'll be able to see their jungler doing red buff. **If you are in lane against a Twitch or a Vayne you may want to hold onto an estra Vision Ward for the sole purpose of dropping it when they stealth (this is a VERY good idea, at low elos they rarely expect it and will often give you the advantage you need to win). If you do this it is suggested you still try to get it into a lane bush if possible, but the immediate goal is to just get it where you can see the stealthed enemy and kill them.** If you have advantage in lane and are winning fights and will continue to win fights, try placing a pink ward in a spot where it will get found (ie tri bush if you are top side team, river brush, lane brushes) because the enemy team will instinctively want to get rid of that ward. As they go in to attack it initiate on them. You want to drop pinks in priority vision spots, because they not only provide vision for you but deny it for the enemy team, so you normally want to place them along the turret line (I define this as an imginary line drawn that connects your surviving turrets if you're losing, or connects the enemy's surviving turrets if you're winning. The turret line will either advance or retreat as you win or lose, and thus give you or the enemy more of the map to control). This means, if you haven't taken any turrets yet and neither have the enemy, The river and a bit of the jungle on both sides is the turret line. The logic behind this is that typically the enemy team won't have dropped vision all that deep into your jungle yet and if you put a pink ward deep into theirs, your team won't be able to capitalize on it and it will probably just get wiped out. If you have taken or lost turrets the turret line will move. If you lose turrets, the enemy will feel more comfortable to advance into your jungle near those fallen turrets. You will want to have vision wards a bit deeper into your jungle at these times (as you begin to lose it will become harder to keep wards alive, don't give up hope). If you have taken turrets, your team will feel more comfortable pushing into the jungle around those fallen turrets and you can place vision wards deeper into enemy jungle. I typically don't place vision wards deep into enemy jungle until we have taken at least one inner turret, because the enemy recall pad is closer to their jungle so they will have an easier time reaching and killing your vision ward. It will take you longer to run back to that location after recalling. For this reason I will typically place vision wards in or along river if game is even or if my team is winning, and will place them in my jungle if my team is losing. Check out all the pink dots on the map to get ideas on where good placement is, I have labelled only the bot side as this is where the majority of your pinks will go through the beginning of the game. Keep in mind vision around Baron is key later in the game so feel free to drop a pink in the river or jungle around there to clear some vision. Do not be afraid to place a vision ward if you have one still active, if you feel you need to place one in a higher priority location. You need to remember that the vision ward does not only let you see your map but it allows you to see a part of the enemies map--you KNOW that at the location of your vision ward, there is just fog of war on the enemies map.

Blue Dots
These represent aggressive ward placements for members of the blue/bottom team. If you are on this team and it starts getting a lead, these are good spots to place wards. You will typically start by placing them in bottom jungle, then as you begin to roam mid you can place them in top side too if you'd like. Try not to die while warding. If your team says "ward for dragon" this means drop at least two wards into the enemy jungle (we're still assuming you're on blue/bottom team). Your first ward goes in or around the brush by the enemy blue buff (there is a pink and blue dot on the map, place ward at either location). The second ward will go in the brush leading out of the river (pink dot on map) or the brush behind the blue buff and wolves (blue dot here). These are two priority locations and will alert you to enemy movements that would threaten your dragon. They also will be the spots you will most likely fight at if a dragon fight erupts. If you ward for Baron, you want to drop a ward behind red buff and one in the brush by the bird camp.

Purple Dots
These are aggressive ward placements for the purple (or red?)/top side team. Again, you will typically be warding the bottom half of the jungle since you are in bot lane, but I have put suggestions up for all over the map. If you start to win lane, ward up the enemies red jungle. This can help in getting picks on the enemy jungle (you may even make them tilt). If your team asks you to ward for dragon, you will want to have at least a ward in the brush behind red buff. It also helps to ward the tri bush adjacent to dragon pit and the brush by the bird camp, but only ward these if you know it is safe. If they ask you to ward for baron, you want a ward by their blue buff, a ward in the river bush, and a ward in the brush behind wolves and blue buff (it's a lot like warding for dragon on the blue/bottom side team).

You don't have to wait for your wards to expire before placing new wards. If your team is rotating around map and you have more wards, your old placements might become "stale" as they aren't revealing much and you have a good idea that the enemy is not near them. Place wards in spots where you think fights will probably occur (if you have a lead it will probably be closer to their base so place deep wards, if you are losing it will probably be closer to your base so ward defensively). If your teammates are chasing into a jungle or section of a map that you don't have wards in, ping them to back off (assuming that you haven't seen some enemies in at least 30s). They will probably get ambushed and just don't realize the danger they're in. If you have taken down turrets, feel free to ward inside the lane (with sight wards) just don't put them in range of turrets as they can see them.

A oool trick when sieging a turret is to drop a ward that you know the turret can see. If youve placed it in a spot where the enemy team can feel safe while attacking it, and your team has good engage ( Glacial Fissure Unstoppable Force Glacial Prison the list goes on) you can oftentimes catch an enemy sleeping as they try to get 3 autos on your ward. Only do this if you can get a good pick or if you know your team will survive a turret dive. If you have an Ohmwrecker this becomes even more effective. This method makes it very easy to land Death Sentence if your playing Thresh (especially if you throw your hook from fog of war).

If you're reading this and find yourself not playing support, that does not mean you should not ward. At MINIMUM you should always have a pink ward out. 5 vision wards is a lot of map vision to control, at low elos most people do not do this. It will give your team a HUGE advantage. Even if you are the only one dropping vision wards (your teammates suck and I'm sorry) that in itself is actually a huge piece of map real estate. One vision ward gives a lot of map advantage throughout the game. Mid laners should try to vision ward either river brush, or the brushes behind red camps. Top laners should try to get pink wards into the enemy jungle, either in the brush closest to krugs, the brush by bird camp, the brush by blue buff or the river brush or their tri brush. Junglers can put pinks wherever they feel they will get the most use from them in that game. Try buying a couple wards for your team and placing them anywhere on the map your team is lacking in vision at that moment. Even if you don't know how to ward well, as you start warding more you'll start to understand which spots work well and which don't. Lack of map vision will lose you a game and can definitely cause you to throw, if you have great map vision (which can only happen if everyone is warding) then you have a good chance to come back or press a victory. It is not a bad idea to get the Tracker's Knife or Sightstone as jungler in low elos because the vision will help you get picks on the enemy. If your carries get fed then you can easily win the game.

Pay attention to all this warding logic when using Sweeping Lens as well, try to use it on priority locations where you think the enemy will logically be warding. Also use that trinket to clear priority areas that you know a fight will occur in (ie setting up for baron/dragon).

As a support, stay warding all game, it's one of your main jobs and your team needs you to do it. If you don't people will get toxic, just smile and wave. Toxic teams lose game. Try to keep 3 Sightstone wards and 1 Vision Ward out all game and you'll be golden.


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Gameplay

EARLY GAME (levels 1-6)

I start with flay and immediately start laying autos on the enemy carry (unless there is a Soraka support, then I hit her instead). Keep in mind that with Ancient Coin you have less tankiness but better overall sustain in lane, as you will heal up quicker. This allows you to go in and use your empowered auto then back off and wait for it to come up again, it also allows you to heal up when waiting on CDs. Basically what I'm saying is you're free to zone off the enemy carry, don't go all out aggressive but feel free to move up lane, you can exchange autos because if they're hitting you they aren't last hitting. With that logic, if you time your poke so that there is a low health minion of yours at the same time, you force the enemy carry to decide to trade poke or to get cs (basically lose lose for them). Don't overextend because if you get locked down you can take a lot of damage (though if your carry is able to come in and damage them it can end up being a decent fight). The squishiness you have from Ancient Coin will tempt the enemy into focusing you, which means you might die in skirmishes. This is typically fine because I tend to get my adc a double kill when this happens. With three buffed potions and Ancient Coin thresh can exchange a large amount of poke pre 6 and soak in a lot of damage while regening it off waves.

Immediately I have my ADC push the lane so we hit level 2 first, I take Death Sentence and force the enemy off the minions, and have my ADC begin to freeze. If they decide to stay at level 2 I throw myself in and draw focus to myself. If you miss the hook at this point you must back off or you will lose. If you hook the enemy ADC that almost assuredly makes them burn Flash. As you continue laning, continue to poke with autos and hook when you can. You only want to take hooks in if your ADC is in a position to follow you quickly into the fight (don't use lantern to bring them to you, you want them far enough away to avoid damage). As a tanky support, it's ok if you die as long as your ADC gets kills. If you're being focused down, you're doing your job. Just land quality cc before you die. If you are the first to hit level 6 in lane, go in immediately unless you are very low on health (this is typically true for most lane matchups with any champ). Use all your CDs you still have up to get a kill on the enemy.

Thresh's kit in this stage of the game is also good at scaring the enemy into burning quality summoner spells. If this happens you should back off for a bit and then line up another engagement, if it's a flashless carry go in and make them pay, if it's and exhaust-less support, engage in combat if you have your exhaust still and force them to fight you.

EARLY TEAM FIGHTS

I consider these to be early roams to mid where there might be a 3v3 contension, early dragon contests, or early jungle counterganks/ganks (really anytime 1-11 where you are in a 3v3 circumstance). You want to use your Death Sentence to long range lock down a priority target so that your teammates can lay heavy damage on them. If you are against assassins or fighters that pose a big threat to your ADC, make sure you give good peel. Your Flay and The Box are great tools in doing this. If you find yourself far away and see your ADC struggling against an enemy, you can either hook to them, or if that is on CD Dark Passage them to you. You can use Dark Passage if you are in the lead of an engage (which you often will be, with Boots of Mobility and Talisman of Ascension) to pull a front liner to the fore front of the engage.

LATE GAME

Your number one priority is peeling enemies off of your carries. This is both your mid laner and ADC (unless mid can take care of themself). You want to position Thresh in the midground of a fight, not front line but between your carry and the enemy. This way you can Flay anyone who tries to pass you or use The Box to dominate that midground zone. In this area you can also use a quality Randuin's Omen and Locket of the Iron Solari. Keep an eye out for targets you can hook, you want priority targets but those are typically far away so it can still help to hook a front liner of the enemy team so that they can't CC your front liners. When it comes to peeling, I usually start the fight early with a well place The Box keeping my ADC safe. I then make sure I flay back anyone who tries to get close to them. I focus my hooks ahead of me, towards their carries so that my front liners can stick to them (unless I need all my cc for peel against a heavy engage team). Once The Box is gone and the enemy begins to move more freely I use Randuin's Omen to keep them slower than my adc, whilst continuing to flay. Once the adc has killed anyone who is an immediate threat to them, I hook into the front line fight to provide cc there (you can use Dark Passage to bring your adc in if you feel they won't get burst down immediately).



Thresh has the capability to control the tides of the battle, as he can pull teammates either into or out of the fight (or save them after the overextend) with his Dark Passage, he has the capacity to move any number of the enemy team away from priority targets with Flay, he has a position adjuster AND a prolonged cc/isolating move in Death Sentence and he has a slow zone which dominates a fairly large area of the battlefield. thresh is fairly squishy so keep that in mind in early fights, I use the term front liner a lot when he is really a middle ground fighter/position controller. Just keep in mind that your teammates will want to attack your hooked target if you engage on it so make sure you aren't guiding them into focusing a tank, or leaving your adc alone on the back line.