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[UPDATED FOR 8.12] Reclaiming Toplane - A Tryndamere guide.
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I'm Toliam, a 21 year old Toplane main from England. I've been a high diamond main for multiple seasons now, specializing in Tryndamere, Singed and Jax amongst others. My main UK Toliam is on Euw, and can often be found streaming on twitch as well. In season 7 I had a 70% win rate on Tryndamere in Diamond 1 on my Dio account.
If you have any questions regarding Tryndamere or the guide, or want to suggest improvements, please leave a comment, drop me a dm on twitter @toliamwastaken or contact any of the other high elo tryndamere mains in the references section.
The guide will mostly be based on my experiences with the champion, but I will also comment on other playstyles done by various other Tryndamere mains, as in certain cases, they have already explained in detail certain concepts that i'll only be paraphrasing.
As a disclaimer this guide will not be able to completely teach you how to play tryndamere, as it is hard to convey years of experience in just words, and I encourage you to check out my stream whenever you get the chance at : www.twitch.tv/toliam
So, Rumble. I'd rate this match-up around a 4 in difficulty if he's a novice, but cranks up to a 7 if they are experienced and can manage their overheat correctly. With the Ignite build, if he is forced to leash level 1, starts Q, and you can get some early fury generation you should be able to force his summoners / kill him with an all in.
Rumble's w was buffed by a flat 20 at all ranks (and 0.1 ap ratio) , which coupled with its low cooldown and no resource cost, will add up to 2-3 auto attacks of extra shield throughout the lane phase. His ultimate also had a flat buff of 10 damage per second and .05 ap ratio per second, so he'll have a larger teamfight impact now.
So, the very early levels you might be able to kill him, but if you're unable to, start Doran's shield and teleport, as after level 3 he'll be able to outdamage, out shove and kite you. With resolve, you should be able to survive his harass; focus on farming and you'll outscale usually after Phantom dancer. If you land W he's a free kill after this point.
It's early to say, but if there is a rise in Elise be careful of her ganks level 3 onwards. Her stun is a nightmare to deal with, and if she's good and can land it you're in trouble, especially if the opposing laner can offer any form of followup. Later in the game her cocoon will be a deciding factor on whether or not you can 2v1 ganks, so play around it and don't waste E. For Kindred it's a similar boat, after level 3 their ganks are deadly, so be careful when you all in, and pay attention to who's marked and jungler position. If you're caught without E, you're dead.
Lee Sin, Sejuani, Poppy & Yorick also had some buffs, but their playstyles are fairly common and you won't need to alter your playstyle for that.
The final meta change is the shield change for support items, with shields now decaying over the duration on Janna, Karma, Lulu and Orianna, and the support items having stat nerfs. This will make it easier for you to 2v1 botlane (if adcs stay around/return), or to teamfight in general. Banner has been removed but that doesn't really impact Tryndamere, nor does the steraks change (base ad is now bonus ad).
Hail of blades has had a 25% bonus attack speed increase, but I still conqueror is better than 75-125% attack speed when first hitting enemy champions.
That concludes the 8.12 update, I'll be working on matchups to a similar detail to the Rumble one above, and formatting; but I really just wanted to get this one out there. If you want a specific matchups first leave them in the comments. I've included a direct link to the patch notes HERE.
How often have you seen mentioned that toplane has the least amount of impact in the game, and that for too long you are relying on botlane winning a coinflip to win, or that your jungler ganks, or that midlane doesn't feed. You've probably won lane a few times and lost because of influences outside of your control.
People are right.
Then again, a heavy majority of players aren't very good at the game, and are content ignoring fundamental flaws in their gameplay, because the easy excuse is to blame other lanes. It's easy to say games aren't carriable from toplane; to sit back and allow the dice to role, and allow others to decide the course of the game. Eventually these players get frustrated, complain 'Top has no impact' and stop playing league of legends because the only play style they're comfortable with is relying on others to carry them.
Don't be that guy. If you want to climb, learn to carry.
You won't win every game after reading this guide, but if it changes your approach to the game then in time you'll see results, and it'll be less frustrating.
However he is hard to play to that level, because winning hard games on this champion, does not rely on mechanical prowess or micro, but rather on macro decisions and the ability to understand and manipulate your opponents.
Kit built for mindgames
Scales very well
High gold income
Can outlane almost anyone
Can build to win any sidelane matchup
Can win games off a single coinflip
Able to make the game revolve around toplane
Some terrible matchups (TK)
Difficult to play to full potential
Can lose games off a single coinflip
Mistakes are heavily punishing
Riot changes your build every 6 months
If you're still reading at this point, first of all thank you, I'll actually start explaining Tryndamere now.
The passive grants 35% at level 1 when fully stacked. This allows you to win any level 1 fight so long as you are in melee range. Coupled with last stand this adds up to massive damage. The crit chance from passive is doubled by infinity edge, and attacks versus structures do not grant fury. Fury management will define any solo kills during lane phase, and as a rule of thumb, should you have the chance to stack fury for free, you should do so.
Later on his passive will grant 100% crit chance with infinity edge at just under 60% fury (after you get 20 crit), and will stack very quickly due to how often crits will occur. The only other source of fury is his ultimate. The league of legends wikia gives this passive a value of 2100g when fully stacked (60g per 1%).
Q : Bloodlust
Tryndamere's Q is a double edged sword and rewards correctly timed all ins. It grants ad the lower health you are, which synergizes well with last stand, his ultimate and his passive. The active part consumes all of your fury (if any) to heal tryndamere, the value increasing depending on how much fury is consumed. It can be cast anytime and will not interrupt auto attacks, his W, or his E. However it will stop recall.
Knowing when to consume fury in lane is directly correlated to how skilled a tryndamere player you are. The main way you'll learn this is via experience and being punished for improper use. However, in a lot of cases you won't be punished for improper use, and so always entertain not consuming fury in favor of an all in prior to do doing so.
In teamfights save fury consumption for either after your ultimate or after you disengage. I'm not a fan of consuming fury and then ulting, due to how unreliable it is to calculate the heal and incoming damage correctly, as well as not having Q back up at the end of your ult (with 40% cdr, the cd is 7.2s).
I max this ability first in every single game of tryndamere I play.
W : Mocking Shout
Tryndamere's W has a cast animation which stops movement and cancels any auto attacks for around half a second. So use it inbetween autos or prior to going in. It reduces the ad of anyone within 850 range (Think 1.3x E range), and if their backs are turned it further slows them significantly.
A neat trick to landing this is allowing an enemy to auto attack you, if they are in anyway skillful, they'll cancel the aa animation with a movement command away from you, so you can time w pretty reliably with that. When chasing someone down and out of range, E is good to get in range to w, but it's fairly obvious and they may juke you out. Flash offers less time to react. I max this ability 3rd by level 16, occasionally I'll put in a second point if the opposing champion does lots of instances of damage (ranged, irelia, yasuo etc).
E : Spinning Slash
Tryndamere's E does good damage, especially when at low hp thanks to his Q, and serves as his main gap closer and map mobility spell. The cooldown of spin is reduced by 1 second on minion crits and 2 seconds on champion crits, which works well with his passive. It does cancel any auto attacks so use it whilst they are on cooldown or to cancel the winddown animation. It is possible to flash mid E to reposition, and the damage will continue to the new location. I max this ability second in almost every single game I play.
With high cooldown reduction this ability makes tryndamere very obnoxious to escape from, as he can spin every other auto attack (if crit), but with my current build there is very little cdr, so if an error in judgement happens and you overcommit to a fight with E, you'll not be able to escape as easily. If E is on cooldown and you can't escape, start hitting whatever is closest to you to lower the cd.
R : Undying Rage
Tryndamere's ultimate is a very strong spell, and is arguably the main spell that allows you to snowball your lead. It prevents you from dying for 5 seconds and gives you a **** load of fury, although the fury part doesn't really matter. Timing the ultimate is very important, and damage foresight will allow you to get the most out of this ability. It will single handedly allow you to dive, and turn a lot of fights, as it will give you the full amount of ad from your q. You should q heal and spin away as it ends if the fight is not over.
This ability doesn't really scale well with extra points, with it giving you extra minimum health (30 to 70), more fury upon activation (usually you're full prior to pressing it), and 20s less base cd at max rank. Because of this I prefer maxing W and E over my ult, only taking it last.
There will be games where you forget to press it and you'll lose. It has a lot of uses ( dives, taking towers, turning fights), but due to being melee, you are prone to being kited. And his kit alone does not make his playstyle obvious, as you need to find ways in which to overcome his kite-ability, hence needing to mindgame and macro your opponents.
For me, this is the patch without CDR, which has meant that I've had to learn a more conservative way to use my E, in favor of a damage power spike a lot sooner. The main benefit this patch has brought Tryndamere is the ability to hard punish tanks and kill them very quickly, at the cost of his mobility due to not much CDR (I don't like other build paths and ER is now reworked). My build is very familiar to those of you who watch Fogged, as it's pretty much the same.
The Runes :
Conqueror into pretty much every match up bar cheese matchups (which I run either grasp or fleet). Conqueror beats pta in my opinion as you don't need pta for squishies, and conqueror damages tanks / bruisers more. It takes 4 seconds to charge up, and falls off after 3 seconds of not auto attacking. This means you need at least two auto attacks to charge it for a fight, which synergizes well with your passive, as it'll stack your fury prior to a fight as well.
Triumph restores health upon killing or assisting an opponent. The value is usually around 100-200 health, which coupled with q healing, will usually be enough to survive a fully ramped tower shot. It helps a lot with diving and is simply better than the other two options in the list. Overheal is bad because you rarely want to be full health due to Q + last stand giving you damage for having less health.
Legend Alacrity for attack speed, it's really good and you could argue the other options, but frankly i feel more comfortable playing with high attack speed, and tenacity / lifesteal on trynd is kinda meh at best.
Last Stand vs Coup de Grace. Last stand synergizes well with your kit, given how you'll be on low health a lot of the time. At 30% missing health it gives you 11% increased damage. Coup de Grace gives you 7% increased damage when the opponent is below 40% health. If you're above 50% health (7% dmg increase from LS) and the opponent is below 40%, you'll win regardless of whether you had coup de grace or not, and if you're below 50% health then last stand would just give you more damage. The other time they clash would be when an opponent has coup de grace and you have last stand. If its an even fight and they have coup de grace, which activates when you hit 40% hp, and you have last stand, you'll have a 9% increased damage, which is more than his 7%, and doesn't rely on you dropping him below 40%. This is a lot of numbers, TL,DR; GO LAST STAND.
Secondary Tree : Resolve versus Domination
These days i'm running ignite, and don't buy any penetration, so getting free lethality on top of all the true damage i'm dealing is really nice. It also only procs after I use E, and E damage will be increased, meaning it is off cd when I need it. Then Ravenous hunter for extra healing on my E, I find it more useful than the others, although you could argue having the ultimate healer option if you prefer it.
Resolve tree options are usually taken into ranged, and are second wind + revitalize, or occasionally colossus. IMO if you can afford to go colossus however, you can afford to go domination.
The Current Build
There are 3 main start styles for Tryndamere. The Doran's Blade + 1 Health Potion; Doran's Shield + 1 potion, and the Longsword + Refillable potion.
Doran's Blade + 1 Health potion : I take this build if i'm going ignite, in order to have a lot of damage early on. I'll hit the wave as soon as i'm able to in order to stack fury, and then all in the opposing champion. E level 1, Q level 2. This creates the opportunity for a solo-kill most of the time, and if I successfully force an opponents tp, they will not have it back by the time I hit 6 and dive him again with my ignite (which will be off cd). You do have to be careful of wave management.
Doran's Shield + 1 Health potion : I take this build if i'm going versus a ranged, or building bruiser with grasp. This along with Q and second wind allows you to shrug off all but the worst poke if you play correctly, and still gives you the easy of scaling. Take Teleport as well if you're starting these items, as it's rare that you'll solo kill the opponent, and if you do, ignite won't really matter. Farm and push.
Longsword + Refillable potion : I take this build if I just want to scale up and rush my tiamat. Usually coupled with teleport, I get tiamat and start taking jungle camps after a dagger. This allows me to increase my gold income, at the cost of my junglers and potentially theirs. It also forces my jungler to stay on the botside of the map, helping to prevent botlane from feeding. Understand if you take resources you need to use them.
Tiamat + Berserkers Greaves : Get tiamat as a first item in almost every game followed by greaves, bar the ones you want to freeze for a few waves (do double longsword, rejuvenation bead, greaves then finish tiamat in this scenario). This will allow you to clear waves and jungle camps very quickly, increasing the amount of gold income. Tiamat also gives you a ranged attack with the tiamat active, as well as passive aoe damage that doesn't draw minion aggro whilst farming, and hp regen into ranged. The attack speed boots give good movespeed for chasing, roaming to camps & more chances to crit and lower E cd. If even , you can fight and dive almost any lane should they misposition with flash, ignite and ultimate.
Phantom Dancer : This item is nutty. It gives amazing dueling and chase power, and has all the stats that Tryndamere loves. You get this item prior to IE, as you don't really need AD super early on, due to Q base stats, and building IE first feels really clunky without additional crit, and attack speed. If you can get this item, and would have an awkward amount of gold left over (600-1200), stay out for longer and get a bf sword on top of it, as it's efficient.
Infinity Edge : I've been loving this item since 8.11. It does a lot of damage to tanks, and grants you 100% critical strike when you hit 55% fury along with phantom dancer. This along with conqueror means you can ignore the armor that the enemy team are stacking to counter you, and you can fight pretty much anyone if you're even (you shouldn't be at this stage due to high gold income) and makes you a monster that can force the game to revolve around Tryndamere if you're ahead.
Guinsoo's Rageblade : Not going to lie, I wasn't originally a fan of this item, but after giving it a try and seeing other tryndamere players *cough* fogged *cough* I've really enjoyed it and see it's potential. It puts your damage through the roof, the crits count towards e cd (2/4 seconds off E every other auto), and makes you a tower killing beast. The build path is nice as well, with recurve bow into pickaxe into the finished item. The build is getting expensive now, hence the reason you need a high gold income, but the damage, power and scalability it gives you is crazy.
Ravenous Hydra : Goes without saying, that tiamat needs to be turned into something. In this build, its better to go for ravenous to give yourself more damage, and some lifesteal so you don't have to eat fury in order to sustain in sidelanes. Titanic can work, but its a lot better with grasp and in bruiser builds.
Situational Item : Trinity force / Blade of the Ruined King / Black cleaver / Youmuu's: These two items are expensive but give you a lot of final damage, and with the gold income you should have, it's actually fairly easy to obtain. Trinity force will give you more burst damage, chase potential and CDR; Blade will give you more chase potential and damage onto tanks, Black cleaver will give you CDR and chase potential, as well as armor shred, and youmuu's is a cheaper option that gives you less CDR, some lethality and a movespeed active.
There are various other builds and I'll add them / keep the guide updated in time.
Thank you so much for reading my first guide, if you want to suggest anything please do. I'm also open to debate any of the points you've suggested, and will open up a chapter with the FAQS.
Gl on the rift, sons of Zaun.
Minion wave management 1, 2 - Full credit to SoloRenektonOnly
Foggeds Matchup List LINK - Full credit to Fogged, his twitch handle is twitch.tv/foggedftw2
Champion kit images : leagueoflegends.wikia.com/wiki/Tryndamere
And Riot API for any icons or ingame assets used.