Home > Original Content > Advanced Strategies #4 – Draven!

Advanced Strategies #4 – Draven!

February 18th, 2013

draven banner final

 After a healthy delay I present to you the next guide in my AD Carry Series!


Draven is a high-skill, high-reward carry whose plethora of steroids and direct damage abilities make him a constant threat. His kit destroys most other carries in the early game. Draven’s only limit is how well you play him.



Farming, Harassing & Laning: Draven has a signature mechanic in lane and that is his axe-throwing and catching. He rewards actively moving and this is especially true during the laning phase. Spinning Axe, coupled with his passive, deals insane damage in the early game, easily overpowering most champions. Because a caught Q will not cost any mana to fire again, you have the opportunity to last-hit effortlessly. Exercise caution as this can easily push your lane as it effectively increases your last-hitting damage by 50%.

Blood Rush is a very straight-forward steroid; the only difference being that the cooldown refreshes if you catch a Spinning Axe. Use when kiting, chasing or escaping. Don’t spam it for no reason or you’ll quickly find yourself out of mana. If you want to run away with W, but feel that you are still safe from harm, consider firing your Q first. Draven can capitalize on mistakes very well. He can turn a potentially bad situation into kills, due to the monstrous damage of continuous Spinning Axes. Blood Rush is one of the best kiting mechanisms in the game, if you’re proficient with the champion.

Orb-walking, or moving while attacking, is a little more complex. Obviously you want to catch your Q to refresh Blood Rush, but don’t lag behind too much if an axe happens to land too close or even to the side. This is where Draven’s third abilitiy, Stand Aside, comes into play. As a chasing skill, it’s best used if your Blood Rush is on cooldown, as it has a casting animation. Failing your combo does not mean that the enemy will live as E is a deceptively long skillshot. As the axes rotate they slightly increase the hitbox of the skill.

Kill combos are extremely strong with Draven, putting champions such as Taric, Leona and Blitzcrank on his buddy list. Generally, any support who can play aggressively and provide crowd control is a desirable choice here. You can zone enemies easily with Draven, but don’t let this be an obsessive goal. Really, the only thing hampering his carry potential is the player’s skill level. He scales very well with items so play passively if aggression is just not working out for you.

Draven can be shut down by champions who can fully commit to a fight. Strong, constant CC in particular destroys any possible kiting attempts. He is also weak against picks that can punish him for trying to catch his axes. A well- played Caitlyn, Varus or Ezreal can put a serious damper on Draven’s laning phase.





Early and midgame: Draven scales incredibly well with both Critical Strike and Attack Damage. An early Bloodthirster is staple on champions who are consistently in the thick of things. An Infinity Edge will provide redonkulous damage if done by around the fifteen minute mark. Statikk Shiv is an interesting choice, seeing as Draven tends to move a lot. My recommendation is to leave Avarice Blade stacking gold for you for several minutes, perhaps finishing a BF Sword or a couple of Doran’s Blades before completing the item. Early attack speed items mean weaker Spinning Axes and Whirling Death, so try to delay them slightly, but do not ignore them after the twenty minute mark.  A build you’ll never go wrong with is a BF Sword -> Zeal -> Bloodthirster – greatly efficient on carries with solid AD scaling on abilities.

When playing Draven you need to understand that even though his mechanics differ, his role on the team is that of a carry. Always be aware of enemy gap-closers and dangerous spells when trying to catch axes. Also, never lose out on potential auto-attacks in order to chase axes that have landed too far away. With a fully max’d Q you can afford to miss out on a few. As with all global ultimates, Whirling Death is a wonderful finisher. That being said, if you have a clear opening on the enemy team, feel free to use it during the initiation. After getting rid of all the fancy stuff, you have your standard gameplay- keep assassins and bruisers away with Stand Aside and do everything possible to stay alive, using Blood Rush judiciously when left without Spinning Axes.




Carry potential: Draven is a unique gem for those who want to master a certain champion. His weaknesses are the lack of a decent escape and having relatively short range. He has very few hard counters if played well. His Spinning Axe transitions from a monstrous poking tool to a decent auto attack steroid, while Blood Rush and Stand Aside are both stellar carry skills. Having a global ultimate means you can always try to finish off low-health enemies, giving you solid team presence early on. He carries extremely hard with a competent team who can protect him and does well even without insane levels of farm.





 Useful tips:

    • Spinning Axe will not reset your auto attack timer, meaning you can charge it pre-emptively. It also won’t trigger Spell Shields, meaning you can demolish those pesky Sivirs with ease.


    •  Your passive is not wasted if you stack it twice before the 4 seconds are over, as it will just add more bleeding time to your opponent.


    •  Stand Aside and Whirling Death have wind-up animations, meaning you can auto-attack and then use them to limit idle time and increase your overall DPS.


    •  As the movement speed from Blood Rush fades during the spell’s duration, it should be used first in order to escape, giving you breathing space when the going gets rough. If you get ganked very early on, hit W first and only after the first few seconds use E as it takes time to fire. Sometimes, as a result, the enemy chasing you will not be in range to cast his most valuable skill, forcing him to either use Flash or give up the pursuit.


    • Stand Aside will interrupt Leona’s Zenith Blade, allowing you to disrupt her combo.


    • Draven’s ultimate is best used during hard CC or when your enemies cannot afford to juke. Much like Ezreal’s ultimate, it can be fired while stunned. Whirling Death also requires that you, your target and the axes themselves stand in one line. The further you are from your target, the harder it is to reposition yourself should the ability fail.


FAQ Section:


Q: Who are you?

I’m an avid player from EU West who’s been in the League since Season 1. My highest Elo is 1927 but I mostly play premade matches. In all teams that I’ve joined for various tournaments I’ve taken the role of an AD carry. I’ve played every champion in this category extensively, although special credit must go out to Vayne who is my personal favourite.

Q: Who is this guide for?

Mostly players who have decided to delve deeper into the role of AD carry.

Q: What can I find in it?

An overview of each AD Carry, its strengths and weaknesses, both in lane and in teamfights, as well as tips for synergizing with certain support champions. There are short lists of counters and allies, as well as more detailed explanations as to why that is the case.

Q: Should I completely agree with all your choices for counterpicks and good allies?

Of course not! I’ve based my opinion around general advice. Of course, players can always pull off something amazing that I haven’t mentioned, but this guide is aimed at providing the most solid and safe choices.


Why thank you. Next article will be all about Ezreal!


Good luck on the Fields of Justice!