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Rakan’s Grand Opening into the EU and NA LCS

Splash art for Rakan and Xayah

Week One of the EU and NA LCS has been a professional unveiling of League of Legends’ newest support champion–Rakan. The Charmer lands on the Rift with his significant other, Xayah, as a bottom lane duo. The two have synergies that do not carry over to other partnerships, but they are still playable separately. Seeing as professional support players have already drafted Rakan into their team compositions, it is important to understand how this Vistaya fits into the game.

Rakan’s Kit

Rakan’s passive ability is called Fey Feathers. Rather straightforward, Rakan will occasionally gain a light yellow shield that scales with his AP. Damaging enemies reduces its cooldown.  This is a simple ability that helps him trade a bit in lane or gain some durability before entering a fight.

Gleaming Quill is Rakan’s Q ability. A skillshot, Gleaming Quill deals magic damage to the first struck enemy. Minions, monsters, and summoned pets (Tibbers, Daisy, etc.) can block this ability, but if Rakan’s Q lands on an enemy champion or epic monster, then a circular mark forms around him. After three seconds, Rakan heals himself, but if any allies step inside the mark, then they will be healed, too. Gleaming Quill is used to poke opponents in lane and receive health in return.

Gran Entrance is Rakan’s W spell. Using this play-making ability, The Charmer dashes, pauses for one second, then knocks up all enemies within the circle. LCS players utilized Grand Entrance to great effect in Week One. Rakan’s W is a serious crowd-control ability. When cast with Flash, supports can easily outplay enemies.

Grand Entrance does follow through over walls. It can be used as a heavy engage tool, but also as an escape. Most of Rakan’s gameplay revolves around this spell and its cooldown.

Grand Entrance can also be used in conjunction with Rakan’s E ability, Battle Dance. This ability allows Rakan to dash to his teammate, which shields them. Players can cast Battle Dance a second time within five seconds, even on the same target. Rakan’s E is similar to Lee Sin’s Safe Guard. It helps keep allies alive, and also allows Rakan to dash in and out of fights as needed. A common combo for Rakan supports is E towards the fight, W into the fight for the knock-up, then E back out of the fight.

Rakan’s ultimate ability is The Quickness. When activated, Rakan’s movement speed increases by 50 percent. After hitting an enemy champion, this bonus speed increases to 200 percent, then decays back to 50 percent. For the four seconds that the ability is active, Rakan charms every enemy that he contacts. The Quickness allows the support to corral several enemies into one spot and sets up allies for area-of-effect damage and crowd control.

Synergy with Xayah

Much of Rakan’s kit has additional effects when paired with Xayah. Their secondary passive, Lover’s Leap, allows them to enter each others’ recalls mid-animation. For example, Rakan can start recalling, Xayah can clear a few more minions, then click on Rakan’s recall to immediately follow him.

Rakan may also cast Battle Dance (E) from farther away with Xayah than other champions. Therefore, Rakan can travel more distance to shield Xayah, to set up for Grand Entrance (W), or to escape a fight. Finally, Xayah can grant Rakan bonus attack range and speed with Deadly Plumage. No other support gains this bonus.

Rakan’s Week One LCS Statistics

Teams in the EU LCS banned Rakan four times and picked him once, giving him an overall presence of 38 percent. The one game that Roccat’s Kim “Wadid” Bae-in played Rakan resulted in a win. He finished with a 14.0 KDA and 100 percent win rate.

In the NA LCS, teams opted to draft Rakan six times and ban him once. These picks and bans combine for a 29 percent presence. Cloud9’s Andy “Smoothie” Ta and Envy’s Nickolas “Hakuho” Surgent played him twice. CLG’s Zaqueri “Aphromoo” Black and Team Liquid’s Matt “Matt” Elento played him once. Out of the six games, only Aphromoo’s ended in victory, resulting in a 17 percent win rate.

So far, Rakan’s LCS play has not resulted in much more than flashy plays. Teams prioritized him as the fifth or sixth support pick, but only won two out of seven games with him. His performance overall was worse than other priority supports, such as Zyra, Thresh, Braum, Karma, Tahm Kench, and Bard. However, Rakan’s win rate did exceed Lulu’s. Hopefully these poor statistics do cause supports to shy away from picking Rakan in the future, because The Charmer is fun to watch, if nothing else.

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Video Highlights: Game Haus Vibby

Champion Statistics: Games of Legends

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