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Zyra Build Guide by Witwickies
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Runes: Default Runes
Ability Order Default Sequence
Threats & Synergies
The biggest problem while playing against Akali is fact, that plants, Zyra's main damage source, doesn't target Akali while she is inside cloud created by her W. As Zyra is very squishy, you can not let her come close to you.
Don't be overconfident if you will be outplaying him at early stages. There will come time, probably around level 9, where he will start winning. He can use R's dashes to dodge all yours abilities and then blow you away.
LeBlanc can simply kill you in no time. You can not do literally anything, as she can use her W to dodge your abilities. What is more, she doesn't have to come close to minions to last-him them, so poking is very hard.
She has decent waveclear, and can dash multiple times just to hit you with full combo. If you get hit by her E there is nothing you can do actually. Nevetheless, you can still outdamage her. Also, if you have many plants, they can absorb her E.
Dashes are most dangerous moves against Zyra. Katarina can either dash and blow enemies away. In this match-up you can find light by keeping track of her daggers. Keep distance to them and go with all-in only if there are none of them around.
Quicksilver Stash is must-buy item. You always have to keep attention to target of his E. His E and W deals more damage than your poke. Always remember to pop-out his passive before picking fight or before all-in. But remember! Without QSS never come close to him.
There is nothing you can do to him. We have to face truth - he can W from your all-in, heal all your poke thanks to Q, and at some point even kill you easily. Your role here is to slow down his power-spikes and burn his W as often as possible.
You both want to poke enemy and farm from distance. Nevetheless, Azir's all-in is harder to perform and, as Zyra, it's less difficult to set up ganks. Try to time Azir's E, as with it he has easy escape route from your R.
I think that it is skill match-up that can go either way. You can kill her, and she can kill you. Junglers presence can be crucial in this line. Just remember to try predict places where she will use her Q.
Yes, you can poke him as much as you can. But unfortunately, you will probably be unable to kill him. What is more, he has kit enablig to simply blow you away is you will get cought out of position.
You want to dodge her ball, she wants to dodge your plants. Even though your all-in and poke are easier to perform, she has some utility with E and speed-up from W. Also, she can tear plants easier than other champions.
Only difficulty when facing Diana is dodging her Q. If her ultimate is up and you got hit... you have a problem. There is always escape route with fast-clicking R and then Flash, but you can use it once per 5 minutes. Just poke her to death from distance and make hard to even farm.
Put seeds near him and poke, poke, dodge his R, and poke. He can also jump at you without ultimate, but this trade should be at least equal. There is actually almost nothing that he can do without help of jungler.
Just make it hard to even farm. If he comes close to minions - poke. If he is low - go with all-in. Unless you let him dash to you should certainly win.
You need to keep her at distance. If she will dash to you - you are probably dead. Just be cautious of her E, and make her lining phase hell. And never be near low-health minions.
Difficulty lies in foreseeing Yasuo's location after his dash. And, of course, dodging his tornado. As Zyra it's easy to just activate his shield once per while and simply poke him. If he has no targets to dash nearby, you can go with all-in. Take note, that his W can't block your Q, as you press button behind shield.
Vaigar is low health champion. It's very easy to burst him down or poke to death in early levels, when he also has problems with waveclear. Only danger here is yourself - your skills in dodging his abilities.
Unless you will let him come close to you, it should be easy match-up. Be aware of possibility of W+Flash, so when he uses W without reason, be careful. Just poke him to death and make unable to even come to minions.
This match-up is test of your skills at dodging skillshots. It all comes to this, and, as you have much better poke, you have to dominate line at first levels. Always be first to all-in and... it's pretty all here.
Champion Build Guide
|I always give credit to unusual picks. If I have to face champion, that I seldom see, I try to be very cautious. Why? Well, I lack experience in such match-ups and I am unable to predict behavior of my opponent. I am pretty sure, that probably you, and many other players feel the same as me. And that is one of reasons why I think that Zyra at mid-line in pick that is worth trying. Thing to note here is fact, that off-meta picks like Zyra are viable only if you are confident and you have practiced mechanics. If you are new to Zyra please play some normal games before you will eventually pick her at ranked.|
But again, why do I play Zyra Mid? Around mid-season a lot of AP Items changed. Current state of Morellonomicon, Liandry's Anguish or Spellbinder allows me to simply shred through enemy tanks and, if there is opportunity, one-shot carries. Please remember, that Zyra Mid is not champion that you should blindpick. I would even say, that if you start with her, you should count her as situational pick that depends on team compositions. More about this in later chapters.
Zyra either has some pros and cons. I would like to start with her disadvantages. Main one is fact that she is very squishy. Well played combo of most of carries can simply choke her in no time. What is more, her basic attacks almost don't hurt at all and, if you are not experienced, farming using her plants can be hard on early levels. Additionally, to go with all-in she actually has to come close to enemy champions, because range of Stranglethorns is not big.
On the other side, there are many advantages. First of all, she is able to poke enemies very hard, especially melee ones. Zyra also has good waveclear. Actually, the bigger wave cumulates, the better she clears it. In my opinion biggest advantage of thorn witch is her possibility to shred through first line and eventually one-shot enemy carries if they misspositon themself. She is very flexible between engagement and disengagement. At last, but not least, is fact, that her seeds e.g. from Rampant Growth makes vision in bushes etc.
As I mentioned in first chapter, in my opinion Zyra is awesome pick in some situations taking place in games with specified team compositions. And no, it's not all about Yasuo or Malphite in your team. I will start with short description of bad and good matchups for thorn witch. It will not take many lines, as a lot of them can be found in 'Threats' tab at top of this guide. After that I will mention perfect enemy team composition and conclude chapter with good Zyra's allies.
|There are two things that Zyra doesn't like. Of course I am not talking about gardeners. I meant bruisers and dashing assassins. If you are not ahead, then you shouldn't pick a fight against champions like Urgot, Illaoi or even late game Nasus. Why? These champions can shorten distance to you and simply kill you before you will decrease their health to 0. By assassins I actually didn't mean all of them. Dangerous are the ones, that can farm from distance like e.g. Akali, LeBlanc or even Ahri. Nevetheless all other champions that are famous of one-shoting ( Kassadin, Katarina) are very scary. To put it simply - Zyra doesn't like AP assassins that have dashes. Dashes are especially scary, when they doesn't have target like Distortion or Leap. I mentioned Kha'Zix's W because dashing or invisible junglers are another big threat to Zyra. I really don't like playing against for example Camille or Rengar. I hope that after reading this paragraph you will be able to find dangers alone.|
|Thing that is very important when playing as Zyra at Mid Line is possibility to kill enemy AD Carry as fast as possible. Easiest way to accomplish it is to land all-in on him. Unfortunately some ADC has escape tools in their kit. That is why Xayah or Ezreal are bad match-ups for Zyra. I would rather pick her while playing for example against Varus or other immobile squishy champions. In my opinion Zyra likes tanks. Of course unless they can dash to you and stun for eternity. That is why Galio or for example Maokai are easy enemies for torn witch. Actually I would even say that Zyra likes large enemy front line. If she can not blow away enemy ADC, she can blow away all melee enemies. Trundle, Xin Zhao and others are nice targets for entire rotation of Zyra's abilities. Squishy supports are also good to see. If you see Soraka or Lulu at enemy back line, you can find way to reach both support and ADC and... obliterate them.|
|In previous paragraph I wrote that Zyra really likes tanks. Yep, she doesn't mind play against them, and she loves playing with them. They can consume loads of damage and, what is most important, tanks tends to group enemies around them. If someone can hold many enemies in one place for longer time - he is Zyra's perfect ally. That is why Malphite, Shyvana, Ornn, Alistar, Rakan and many more champions are crucial for picking Zyra in Mid Line. Of course, there have to be some follow up. Popular ally that synergizes with every champion with knock-up is Yasuo. He, together with Miss Fortune are great champions to play with. But Lucian or Xayah etc. are are also wonderfull to work with. As for damaging partners playing other roles I would mention also for example Swain or Rumble. I am sure that you are able to come up with another champions that synergizes with Zyra.|
|To be honest, I dislike strict following one rune patch. I think that runes you choose should be dependent on situation that occured during champion select. Maybe some champions are not especially versatile in terms of runes, but as Zyra you are not especially limited. You are free to experiment!|
|Nevetheless I would like to tell you about some patches that I think are most viable. Most times you will be in need to consistently deal damage and will not strive for fast burst. That is why I usually pick Arcane Comet. In Sorcery tree I prefer Manaflow Band, as it gives loads of additional mana. It is especially important in match-up where you will try to constantly poke enemy. I would go for Nullifying Orb only when facing unfavorable enemy (e.g. LeBlanc) or someone with high burst (e.g. Syndra). As for other Sorcery runes I do not think that Transcendence and Scorch can be worse pick in their floor. Zyra really needs cooldown reduction. What is more, every single scrath from her plant procs Scorch, so it gives even better poke. As for secondary tree I am usually going for Domination and Cheap Shot hidden in that branch. Both Grasping Roots and plants created by it impairs movement. Large amount of true damage provided by this rune are crucial in fight against enemies with Magic Resist. As a second rune I chose between Ultimate Hunter and Ravenous Hunter giving slightly edge to first one. In my opinion Stranglethorns should be used as many times as possible.|
|Sometimes strange situation occurs - enemies have no tanks and you picked Zyra. What can you do then? Answer is simple - one-shot everyone. How can you take first step towards reaching that goal? Go with Electrocute. It's good for fast burst. As probably noone will go with Magic Resist I would go for Taste of Blood for extra healing. Thing worth to note is fact, that you can get small vision in bushes etc. by putting seed there and eventually change it to plant for better knowledge. That is why I would rather pick Eyeball Collection in second branch. As for last spot I still think that Ultimate Hunter is best one there. Of course for Zyra. I'm not sure if Sorcery would be best possibility for secondary tree, but I would go for that especially for Manaflow Band and Scorch. As bursting mage you don't need to have extra cooldown reduction, so Transcendence is not so important in this case.|
|Let's be honest. Items for mages are not hard to understand and it's easy to make some quick changes. As there are not many AP items, Zyra can actually build anything if it's necessary. Nevetheless I can't imagine another starter items set. I always spend initial 500 gold for Doran's Ring and two Health Potions. Of course you can experiment if you feel necessity to do that.|
|But what about next items? Well, I always start with Lost Chapter. Zyra is champion that needs mana at early levels. Second of her needs is cooldown reduction. After that comes need of AP. It's surprising that mentioned item provides all of that. It must be destiny. What is more, you can upgrade it into Luden's Tempest that gives you even more of these statistics! This wand's passive additionally makes your waveclear viable. If you like Everfrost you can build it, but be aware about consequences.|
|In my opinion shoes are not problematic question. I really like go for Sorcerer's Shoes mainly because of Magic Penetration it provides. Well, Zyra is very squishy champion and that is why I don't think that Ninja Tabi e.g. against full AD enemy compositions can change anything. Mercury's Treads can be usable but mainly to reduce CC when facing compositions without tanks.|
|Mid game is period of time, when Zyra doesn't have to to back to base many times. That is why it's easy to go straight for expensive Oblivion Orb, and upgrade it into Morellonomicon. With this item you can shred through tanks easily. As remainder I would say that thorn witch can deal with them easily. Not to mention fact, that with this item provides you also health and more AP to kill enemy carries easily. Usually I ten to build Morellonomicon as second major item.|
|Another expensive item is Haunting Guise. It is necessary item, as it is part of crucial Liandry's Anguish. Imagine fact, that every single scratch made by one of Zyra's plants activates it's passive effects. Every single hit from plants can deal up to 10% more damage. Also, Grasping Roots and every hit dealt by plant's by it, impaires movement. As you always starts with this ability, every skill hit after burns enemies for 3% of their maximum health. It's ulimate weapon against tanks that is good also against squishy enemies.|
|At some point Zyra needs to deal more damage. Yep, I know what most people think when they hear 'more damage'. Rabadon's Deathcap is one of possibilities, but in my opinion another upgrade of Needlessly Large Rod suits Zyra better. I tend to prioritize Spellbinder's active effect for fast erasing enemy carries. Or anyone, not necessary carries. There is also possibility to buy Rabadon's Deathcap later on.|
|If there comes a time, when you have to buy defensive item, you always should still go for some AP hidden in it. That is why, to me, Zhonya's Hourglass and Banshee's Veil are only viable items. Both of them provides cooldown reduction, some AP and important defenses against AD or AP assassins... or extremly feeded enemies. I don't recommend buying both of these.|
|There is always another possibility for last items. By it I mean Void Staff. But if you already bought Sorcerer's Shoes, Morellonomicon and Liandry's Anguish there usually is no need for this item. But if you are facing extremely tanky compositions, Void Staff may be needed. Of course, please don't try to not experiment. If you are sure that some items may be better always or in some situations, don't hesitate and purchase those items.|