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Being an Actual Support (Soraka Support Lane) (8.13)
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Support Basics (Outdated, kind
Staple Soraka 8.13
Soraka Passive Ability
Threats & Synergies
Blitz is incredibly mean to you. His grab-punch combo will kill you. An extremely good Blitz will time his grabs when you cast spells, which Soraka stands still for. If you play Soraka supp, immediately ban Blitz. If you do have to fight him, just keep your distance and keep moving. If he hooks your ADC, Silence him immediately and heal your ADC.
Haven't fought against many Leona's, but I do know she has a stun and the power to knock you for a loop. But like most melee champs, just try to poke her when you can and keep your ADC alive. Hope for a jungle gank.
Bard, bard, bard. He's almost as bad as Blitz. If it's not his stuns, it's his get-away or gap-closer. It isn't the end of the world. Keep your distance and poke the ADC. Don't ever go for the healing wells he creates.
Brand hurts. Like, he isn't played much as a support, but be very careful with him. His fire also stuns, but he needs to be mid-range. Keep your distance and you'll be fine.
You don't have to worry about Janna all that often, but just be wary of her tornados. If you first back, rush your boots.
I've rarely seen Fiddlesticks in support lane for the time I've played, but based on his kit alone, you need to watch out for him. Try to keep a distance between you, your ADC, and Fiddle. Keep the bushes warded as well. Once he reaches six, KEEP AN EYE ON HIM. Once he starts channeling his ult, try to land your E as it'll cancel out the ult.
I used to main as Kayle support and she can be extremely pushy. Her E gives her range for her attacks, her heal also gives a burst of movement speed, and her ult can save lives. Her heal can only heal so much, so either try to focus her or the ADC.
Rakan is Rakan. He's not too much of a threat as his only way of healing is to land his attack first. If you can dodge that, he won't be able to heal his bot laner. Be careful once he climbs levels. If he tries to go for a knock-up, silence the area he dashes to or silence the bot laner to prevent combos. Be more wary once the ults come out as the charm can be deadly.
Sona is well known for being a great harasser and her ult can land a stun at the right times, but you out-heal her and like you, she's pretty slow.
Thresh is tanky. He might have a longer grab, but like Blitz, if he lands it and they combo on you, you're dead. If they attack your ADC, immediately fire off your silence to stop combos and get your ADC healed.
Like Sona, she's good at poking, but you once again, outheal her, though her kit does allow more follow-ups.
Tahm Kench is a mean monster of a tanky support. He has range, he has a stun, he almost never runs out of health, and he can protect his ADC from damage. If you're laning against him, try to focus on the enemy adc and if you time it right, land a silence on Kench to prevent him from shielding his ally. Other than that, be extremely careful. He is slow though, easy enough to land Q's
Nunu & Willump
Like most tanky supports, Nunu hurts and is hard to get rid of. If you get anywhere close to him, they will all-in you and end you. Just keep your distance and pop them with Starcalls.
Fighting against Ashe is actually tough. Her attacks just slow you down and if she lands that ult of hers on you, you're pretty much gone. She isn't that mobile, so you're able to land your Q's when needed.
Annie is usually just a hard Champ to fight against overall, but you do have something she doesn't: A silence. Sure she's got a stun, but she can only stun one of you. If she stuns you, she burns her stun and your ADC can go in and scare her and her bot laner away. If she uses it on your bot laner, throw your silence down on her to prevent follow-ups. Once she hits 6, be very careful.
Caitlyn is always a nightmare in lane. Her traps keep you in place, her poke is strong, just play super carefully. When she's not in lane, disable her traps as they don't do damage, just root you in place.
Draven sucks fighting against. His damage is insane. Pray for jungle gank and hope your bot lane at least keeps farm up.
Jhin is lowkey busted in lane, but you're playing as a support. Just maintain distance and keep away from his traps. Fun fact: When Jhin throws down his ult and you're not too far from him, throw your E at him and it cancels out the ult! You'll save lives and piss off the Jhin!
Jinx becomes a threat late game, but she does not have too many options to run away from attacks. She DOES hurt you a lot though, so if you're afraid of damage, build Knight's Vow after Redemption to help protect from her attacks and focus the support. If she starts getting kills and turrets though...
Ezreal is kind of slippery, and it's his speed that can get the jump on you. It's going to be hard to land your Q's on him, so if you need to, land your E on him and then follow up with Q's and auto's.
Same as Ezreal, but hurts just a bit more.
Veigar support has been a thing, and I should know, I like to play it once in a while. But as a support, he can't exactly heal his partner, which is more good news for you. He's just as squishy as you are, but be careful. Past 6, he and his ADC can kill you instantly. Buy Merc treads and avoid his E.
Weak early on, insane climb if you don't shut him down. Which case, it's going to be hard to. Once he goes invisible, keep a good distance from where he vanished from and try to silence him as he appears.
If your bot laner is playing Vayne, DO NOT PICK SORAKA. Soraka is a poor partner for a Vayne, and if they aren't and someone else banned Blitz, ban Vayne. She's a nightmare in lane and if she's fed, there's not much you can do as a support.
Alistar's a great tank support, able to set up, but he's a big meatbag, perfect enough to land Q's on and keep getting heals to your ADC. He may try to headbutt you away, but that's about all he can do.
He's not played much, but he's dangerous solely because of that stun passive. He lands an auto on you or his Q and his ADC follows up, you're dead without blowing your Flash. Keep him at a distance with your Q's and Silence.
Kalista hurts. Don't aim your Q's at her as she'll just hop away from them and build up damage on you.
Lulu's mean in lane. A good Lulu will take Ignite and that'll be hell for you in lane if they all-in your ADC and light them on fire. She's also got Polymorph and WILL blow it on you to prevent your heals. Unlike Lulu, she can't heal but throw shields on her ally. Your Silence is a deciding factor in-lane.
Soraka Passive Ability
Threats & Synergies
Alistar doesn't see much play nowadays, but he is not one to be underestimated. Though he is a big target to land Q on, so when he goes for his Headbutt-Slam-Stun combo, just silence him on the spot. Just play safe if he's got Jhin as a partner.
You almost never see this, but Amumu is no threat. He's only got one skillshot to CC you with until 6, and it's easy to stay out of his way.
Despite her short range, she can still be trouble. Just stay out of her range, and her stuns. Keep your ADC healthy.
Bard's poke hurts. He's got a heal that's not as great as yours, but his plays are devastating. Not to mention his ult can shut yours down if he aims right and times it correctly. Be absolutely careful with fighting Bard as he'll line up his Q to either hit both you and your lane partner, or you and a minion.
Ban Blitz if you want to lane as Soraka. He pulls your lane partner, they get out of your heal range. If he pulls you, you're dead. Perma-ban him if you want to Soraka. If you're forced to fight, just stay clear of bushes, and stay behind minions.
Brand is another Annie, only much more damaging and deadly. His abilities hurt and once he gets his combo off, you're either dead or can't heal enough to save your lane partner. Either way, ban if possible.
Braum is one of my favorites to play, but sadly, Soraka is one of his banes. You heal any damage he does, and his shield can't block your regen from the Q. Just be careful around 6 as you can't really stop the ult.
Just silence him if he manages to hook you or your partner. Big target for Q, rarely seen as support and more ADC.
Fiddle is a hard support to fight against. He also has an annoying Silence, damage, and an instant CC to stop you from doing anything for a second. He'll stay out of the range of your Q, so try to focus the ADC as he can't heal them. Punish his mistakes.
Poor, poor Janna. Due to the nerfs on her shield, she's not that great of a support anymore. You can overpower her even as Soraka, so just be careful of her Tornado or slow. And when she ults, Silence her as fast as possible.
Karma's kind of a bully, but you can heal most of her damage. Her shield doesn't last long, but it does increase movement speed, so just play safe and keep partner healthy.
Kayle has seen some support days, and I should know, I used to play this as support before I moved to others. Be careful of her poke, and once she hits six, she can make someone invulnearable, but they're still suspect to CC. Her heals don't heal that much, so you can outheal her.
Leona is still a threat, but silence her if she starts her combo. If she hooks you, you're done though.
Despite her nerfs, Lulu is still a threat. Be careful where she throws that butterfly as she can shoot her slow through it.
Her poke is annoying, just focus her or the ADC. Her shields are pretty big, but they can't last forever. You, can outheal her damage, though be careful of her roots.
Malphite is annoying to lane against, but all you have to worry about is his Q. Until Level 6, then his engage is devastating. But nothing you can't outheal, but be wary of jungler ganks.
Maokai is also a support not played often, but he can be trouble. All three abilities have CC, and be extremely careful when he all-ins. Ask for jungler gank to take him and his partner down.
I've seen probably a few MF supports, but she can be annoying. Be careful of her poke, and if she spams her slow, you can all-in her as that costs way too much mana to spam.
Morgana is a threat to most other supports, but not you. You heal all of her damage and can poke right back. Just tell your lane partner to not get rooted and you'll be fine.
Nami is probably one of your counters at her rate. Her heal acts as damage, she can empower her ally's autos to slow, AND she has a bubble. She can technically outheal you, so just play safe and try not to get caught. If she bubbles your ally, try to silence the ADC.
Naut is a rarely played support. His hooks are devastating, but they're not the absolute worst thing. He's a huge, lumbering target and when he hooks, just silence and negate most of his damage.
If someone else bans Blitz, always ban Pyke. He's just as devastating as Blitz, if not worse. He's got a quick hook, a stun, and a stealth. His ult executes low health targets, so save ult until the teamfights. He'll try to burn it so he can do what he does best.
Rakan's a great support and has an equally great engage. He'll combo his knock-up with his shield, but you can catch him offguard with the silence. Be careful of ult engages as there's not much you can do when that happens.
Shen is yet again, another underrated support, but his engage can kill if played right. Just keep a ward on him and poke when you can. And keep an eye out for junglers.
Sona is just as much of a bully as her ADC partner. She'll hover close to you, Q-auto, and then back off. Your best bet is to harass early, land those Q's, and make her burn her mana. Late game, her teamfight skill is much better than yours, so keep team healthy and buy Redemption.
Battle of the Soraka's. Q her first. That's it. Then get popcorn. It's going to be the most boring lane trade ever.
Taric got nerfed due to boosting strat, which is good riddance in my opinion, but he's still a strong-ish support. Be careful of engages and his ult can be devastating.
Thresh is as dangerous as Blitz, but his hook can be predicted. If he manages to hook one of you, Silence him immediately. And keep an eye for when he throws the lantern toward the jungle.
Veigar support, though rare in nature, is probably one of your bigger counters. It's not the fact that he has scaling damage, or a CC that walls you off, or a meteor that scales. Longer the game goes on, the stronger he becomes. Shut him down early and make him burn his mana before he becomes a threat. And try to avoid his Q. He'll aim it when you try to poke with your Q. Avoid trades at all costs.
Vel'koz support is one of those most hated supports because like Lux, he doesn't belong in support lane. Me personally, he's great. His poke? Hurts and slows. Has a knock-up, and has a low damaging floor move that stacks his own passive. And the worst part is you can't heal all his damage. Stay clear of a Velkoz support.
Xerath is just as bad as a Vel support. His poke outranges anything you or your lane partner can do. Has a wide AoE slow, and a stun if lined up properly. Pray for your jungler to gank when he's low on mana and try to shut him down early.
Zilean doesn't have much as a support. What he does have is a high damage CC bomb that he can chain easily. And mid-late game, this starts hurting like hell. And has a Guardian Angel ult. Keep allies healthy and stay out of his way before reverses time and puts you back in Bronze 5.
Zyra also hurts a lot, but as long as you're careful and watch for her plants, you can outheal her poke.
-Easy to pick up (450 IP)
-Very easy to play and learn
-Save lives with that ult
-Not banned too often
-Can't take a hit
-Heals can drain you quickly
-One of the more focused targets in a team fight
-Lack of damage without AP items won't help much in team fights (Though you don't want to build damage anyway) You're a support first, and not a team-killing machine.
80% of the time when you start off, you're most likely going to head to red buff or blue buff to help the jungle leash. Remember to start off with Starcall/Q and keep an eye out. If you feel suspicious of bushes in the river, throw your Starcall. When the buff does come, auto-attack it. Throw a few Q's at it and don't worry too much about tanking damage. If it's a squishy jungler like Twitch, tank a few hits. You'll be recovering most of it during lane phase anyway.
-As of 8.13, there might be a time where you actually want to start with Heal instead of Q because of lane being heavy poke, like Draven-Brand or Miss Fortune-Fiddlesticks. Starting with W is a bit more optimal so you can keep your lane partner alive and farming, but stay back.
Lane Phase: Starting off with your Q, just poke at the enemy team and keep an eye on their support. Once you hit Level 2 and get your heal, don't spam it so often. Remember, you lose health for each heal you do. Something ideal is to combo your Starcall with your heal as the regen effect gets passed on, doing the most healing.
Level 3 and up is where it really begins. You might be tempted to spam Silence, but your E burns through a lot more mana than your other abilities until you hit 6. Only use Silence for escapes or all-ins.
An example is if you're partnered with a Twitch bot lane and he decides to use his Camouflage ability to go in on the opposing team. Instead of landing it directly on your opponent, try to aim it a bit further up on their escape route. Remember, Silence stops them from using Flash and such for escapes. If you get lucky, you can root the opponents and secure kills.
However, a big thing to remember as Soraka: You don't do much damage at all. What you do is like a bug bite. Never start a fight as Soraka. You're far too squishy to do any damage. You're a Support role. You can however, throw down the Q and a few auto's to get some damage off.
Once you hit 6, however, this is where you can excel as a Healer. Your ult CAN save lives. When you do, keep an eye on EVERYONE's health bar, not just your own and your bot lane. If you see someone critically low or getting jumped by the enemy jungler, throw it out. Keep them alive longer. Or if you and your laner are getting ganged up on, throw it out. If your team gets kills, you get assists and exp to boot.
Mid Game: Once you hit 6, it's pretty much the same strategy as before. Stick with your teams at all times and keep any squishy champs healed. If you built the Warding item, try to not go deep into the jungle. Place wards close-by enough common paths. If you're afraid of going out by yourself in the Jungle, get the Farsight Alteration over the Oracle Alteration.
During mid game however, if you are demolishing your lane, you can start to wander a bit if you got the Ardent Censer, or at least the Wisp part to give you more movement speed. You could go give mid lane or top lane a hand or help secure jungle objectives. At this point, you should be warding at vital points in the jungle.
Late Game: This is where it starts to get pretty intense for Soraka. This is where you must position yourself behind your team at almost all times. Keep an eye on their health and heal them when necessary. Build the Warding item and take Oracle Alteration to take out enemy wards and place your own. Throw out your ult when needed. This is the biggest thing too: DO NOT GO ALONE. Always be with another champion when roaming or else you will get assassinated.
But instead of listing all the bad ideas, here's a couple things to look out for to have Soraka be the best support for that team.
-There needs to be someone who can engage a teamfight.
-At least a tank or a bruiser with great sustain such as Illaoi or Darius.
-At the very least, two forms of CC. (Remember, you don't have much CC. You virtually have no peel and are just a second health bar for your team.)
-If your team is auto-reliant, make sure to rush Ardent Censer. Remember, your ult also applies the Attack Speed effects to ALL your teammates.
If some of these conditions are met, Soraka is a good choice. But say if your team is full of squishies and the enemy team has an engage, you do not want Soraka.
IF. You are first pick, make sure to ban Blitz as top priority. He's by far your biggest counter. Whatever you do, do not fight a Blitz. If they select a Blitz, it's okay to dodge.
Also, a huge tip: Try to keep a careful eye on the mini-map for enemy engages once you hit 6. Your ult will save lives, but if you have it, not use it, you're gonna either get pinged, flamed, or worst case scenario, other lanes AFK at the fountain because 'you're not a good support.' Be careful of those types.
This has been Bronze 3 Perfectphoenix. See ya next time!
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