Welcome to another edition of my advanced strategy series! This time we’ll be looking at Corki. If you haven’t checked out my previous guides, here is my latest one, where I covered Caitlyn.
Corki, the Daring Bombardier
Corki is an amazing carry, while he has lost some of his Season 2 fame, he is still a very strong pick. He brings tons of upfront burst damage to the table, as well as an amazing escape tool and plenty of poke. This moustache-wearing pilot is the jack of all trades, master of none among ranged carries.
Farming, Harassing & Laning: Corki can be an enormous threat in lane. While he gains most of his damage at level six, prior to that he is still capable of lethal bursts. His medium auto-attack range is somewhat alleviated by Phosphorus Bomb, which is almost impossible to dodge and does a decent amount of magic damage. This means he can retaliate against champions that out-range him, such as Ashe, Caitlyn or Varus.
Corki is versatile in lane, meaning he can be played offensively, defensively, or anything in between. He is extremely mana-hungry early on, so going all-in is preferable to sitting back. The best supports for him are your standard aggressive options like Leona, Taric and Blitzcrank. Of the three mentioned, Leona stands out as a top pick. Reasons? Gatling Gun’s damage ticks are so rapid that you’ll be able to proc every Sunlight burst. Sona, Nami and Janna are also excellent, as they can help Corki play more passively, while stile offering an offensive punch when needed. Follow the general rule when choosing a support- burst beats sustain, sustain beats poke.
Phosphorus Bomb will reveal hidden units, and since brush control is such an integral part of a successful bottom lane, it means Corki can easily assume zone control.
The most important tip for anyone laning with Corki is don’t waste Valkyrie! You can easily get baited into horrible situations and a lack of any crowd control means you’re very likely to be punished heavily for it. Corki is very mana-hungry, meaning you have to judge when using spells is appopriate. An example: you’re laning with a Leona and she engages the enemy Caitlyn, who manages to Flash out before being stunned. Is this a good situation to commit with Valkyrie and Gatling Gun? No! Huge mana loss that will set you way back.
Corki has insane burst, massive AoE and mediocre poke before level six. Put this together and you get a carry that is very potent in lane.
Midgame gameplay & Item Choices - Corki has one of the strongest midgames of all AD carries. He can easily poke down teams trying to contest dragon, decimate bruisers who don’t have a lot of armor due to Gatling Gun, and chase down survivors, snowballing his team into an early victory. His kit benefits mostly off raw AD, meaning items such as the Bloodthirster, Infinity Edge and Last Whisper can be extremely effective. There’s an interesting branch in itemization when around 4k+ gold and that is a Trinity Force vs Bloodthirster Sheen. The former provides utility through increased movement speed and a slow, while the latter gives Corki excellent sustain, harder poke and insane burst. Assess the game situation correctly and build appropriately, as both builds have their flaws and strengths.
We’ve already discussed support picks, now we’ll look at the team as a whole. Corki shines when he’s able to harass from afar, which means champions like Nidalee and Jayce are excellent partners. Hard crowd control helps our brave ROFLcopter-piloting Yordle keep enemies pinned under his Gatling Gun. Thus, anyone with a consistent stun or significant slow is a perfect match.
Corki is pretty straight-forward in his abilities, the only exception being Missile Barrage. It can be used as a:
- Cheap poking tool.
- Extra sustained damage by using it after auto attacks.
- Scary burst once you’ve prepared a Big One and are ready to commit to a kill.
A useful trick is to place your cursor immediately next to the champion you’re chasing when Gatling Gun is active. Doing so keeps Corki’s model straight, allowing the armor reduction to keep stacking. As your team’s primary damage output it’s your job to make sure you survive and have ample gold to spare on further items. Never be greedy with Valkyrie as it can end the game for your team if used incorrectly. Always make sure you save it until the last possible second, as its cooldown is massive! Its best used as an escape over a wall from assassins or bruisers or as a chasing mechanism after a teamfight.
Carry potential: Corki excels at all stages of the game and doesn’t drop off as hard as other carries with a strong early presence. He is an amazing carry with a steep learning curve that newer players should keep in mind. Corki brings both burst and sustained damage to the table. This allows him to absolutely demolish weaker champions, even when they’re fed. If going against a tanky team, he may not be the best choice however, even with Gatling Gun’s amazing armor shred. Reason being he simply has no attack speed steroid, making him feel underwhelming in an extended fight.
Corki isn’t so heavily reliant on his team, making him a good solo pick. With that said, he does have a solid place in organized teams who do well to protect him. He is versatile in the item department and is one of few ADs who can utilize Trinity Force to its full effect, as he tends to have low attack speed and relies on Sheen procs. Because Corki hits slower, stutter stepping (the act of moving between attacks) is huge on him. Practice microing as an AD and you’ll do wonders!
Despite his obvious versatility and strengths, Corki is neither a hard carry nor a good kiter due to Valkyrie’s massive cooldown and his lack of any hard CC spell. He has no trouble tackling assassins who can’t stick (Zed, Kha’Zix, Katarina, Nocturne, Pantheon, Renekton and Talon) but will be hard pressed surviving the likes of Irelia, Xin Zhao, Akali, Kassadin, Lee Sin, Diana and Evelynn. Corki despises harder carries than him who have done well and kept up with him on gold. An example would be Vayne, with her unmatched single-target damage output, Tristana, with her ungodly range and Kog’Maw for having both.
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.
I hope you enjoyed the third episode of my mini-series! In my next article I’ll be covering Draven!
Good luck on the Fields of Justice!