Home > Original Content > Shopkeeper’s delight – A review Of Season 3’s Favourite Items

Shopkeeper’s delight – A review Of Season 3’s Favourite Items

January 15th, 2013

banner items theorycraft

If there’s one thing better than watching Teemo die, it’s experimenting with alternate builds. And Riot have certainly outdone themselves this season to provide players with meaningful choices in the item department. Let’s look at why some have already garnered huge popularity, particularly Liandry’s Torment, Iceborn Gauntlet and Statikk Shiv!

Liandry’s Torment – An amazing upgrade to the otherwise underwhelming Haunting Guise: this mask triggers a burning effect after a spell hits, dealing % of current health as DoT damage over 3 seconds which doubles if the enemy’s movement is impaired. Champions with spammable spells and/or slows or stuns will find themselves purchasing this item a lot. An example of this would be Rumble, whose Equalizer and Harpoon Shot abilities both apply a massive percentage slow and is able to quickly refresh the effect with Flamespitter. Syndra and Vladimir can both deliver Liandry’s Anguish to multiple foes with their Dark Sphere and Tides of Blood spells respectively. Other champions who will appreciate some sustained damage versus both squishy and beefy targets and can maintain the burning passive indefinitely include Cassiopeia, Brand, Ziggs, Orianna, Singed and Zyra. Of course, Evelynn and Katarina are also great candidates for Liandry’s Torment, if they could avoid being constantly banned.

Liandry's Torment

Rumble mid is perfect! (for custom matches)

A mistake a lot of players make is to rush this item early on. Haunting Guise is a solid early and midgame pickup on its own. More importantly, spending 1415 extra gold on diminishing returns is not a sacrifice you should make. In order for Liandry’s Torment to be gold-efficient, the damage coming from the burn effect must be worth approximately 860 (849), which is the price of a Blasting Wand. So how much damage are you trading for rushing this item instead of investing in a Blasting Wand? We’ll use Rumble as a lab rat while we conduct our research.

Rumble’s damage combo (without Danger Zone) + Blasting Wand: Flamespitter + Electro-Harpoon x2 + Equalizer + 1 second Equalizer DoT = 122 bonus damage
The same combo with Danger Zone = 145.5 bonus damage

Whoa, that’s a lot of damage you’re missing out on. At levels 10-11 a simple Blasting Wand boosts Rumble’s DPS by around 12-15%. Now let’s examine the same situation with Liandry’s Torment as our core item. We’ll use a 3 second exposure to spell damage as our benchmark, adding 3 from the passive to a total of 6 seconds. We don’t take Magic Resist into consideration as it’s a percentile damage reduction, meaning all numbers would be reduced by an equal fraction. Keep in mind that as health is reduced, so are further DoT ticks from this item.

Level 10 Ranged Hero, 1200 HP: Liandry’s Torment total damage output without CC applied: 119 damage over 6 seconds.
With CC applied: 217.75 damage over 6 seconds.

Note that this is an extremely situational calculation of the damage output of Liandry’s Torment. The only thing considered is that every tick reduces the next in damage. Realistically, you won’t get 6 seconds of free reign over the enemy’s squishy champion when he’s at full HP, nor will you be able to lock him down for so long in CC. Naturally as enemies’ HP pools increase so will Liandry’s damage, which gives it excellent lategame scaling. A Blasting Wand opens the path to many core items for AP Carries; Rabadon’s Deathcap, Void Staff, Abyssal Scepter and Rylai’s, all of which will out-damage Liandry’s Torment in the midgame. However, there is an extremely uncommon pick that benefits from an early Liandry’s Torment. All I can say is she rides a boar and wears a bikini during winter.



Step aside, Trinity Force! Tons of damage < tons of utility.

Ezreal’s Gauntlet (will be renamed in the upcoming patch) – this item provides solid HP and armor bonuses, while giving certain champions easy access to additional CC. Champions who benefit greatly from the chilly punch packed by the Iceborn Gauntlet include Leona, Cho’Gath, Hecarim, Nidalee and Skarner. Of course, this item has become a must-have on Ezreal as its synergy with on-hit abilities such as Mystic Shot is simply amazing. Riot are taking action and will reduce the slow field’s strength, duration and AoE for ranged champions in the upcoming patch.

Not much can be estimated about this item as its uses generally revolve around the extra slow it provides. I look forward to seeing Gauntlet Diana after her revival, as she would greatly benefit from the tankiness, AP and slow field provided.


Statikk Shiv – one of the more unique additions to the store in that it forces Carries to become more active in order to take full advantage of its magic burst damage. Carries such as Varus, Ezreal and Caitlyn can commonly be seen going for a Statikk Shiv early on. The way it works is each 100 units of game distance travelled will add 5 charges, while auto attacks provide 10. At 100 the next auto attack or on-hit ability will unleash chain lightning that hits up to 4 targets for 100 magic damage. This can crit, leading to the bolt dealing potentially 800 damage in a teamfight or when farming the lane.

Statikk Shiv

Ezreal’s Q can proc even this! Is he Jesus?


If we consider that auto attacks gather roughly 12 charges every second (1.25 AS is the benchmark I used) and moving, 20, Statikk Shiv can be made to fire roughly once every 5 seconds. Battles, however, involve a lot less moving and a lot more shooting so we’ll say it takes about 7.5 seconds to gain 100 charges. In a 1 on 1 scenario this will boost the AD carry’s DPS by 13.3 magic damage, which after a 42 Magic Resist reduction equals 9.9. In a teamfight we’ll assume you’re hitting 3 squishy targets and a bruiser. When MR reduction is taken into account, this item can deliver a decent boost of 33.2 damage per second without critical hits, and 66.4 with five Phantom Dancers ^.^ Generally though you’ll experience around a 50 damage increase in a teamfight where minions aren’t tagged. Statikk Shiv provides champions with other benefits, such as a 6% movement speed increase, which amounts to 19.5 for most ranged carries, outperforming Tailwind (Janna‘s passive) and Movement Speed Quintessences by a small margin. The 20% critical hit chance and 40% attack speed alone are excellent for the 2500 gold price tag and have obvious synergy with Statikk Shiv’s passive.

An obvious advantage this item has over other common pickups such as the Bloodthirster, Zeal and Infinity Edge is that it’s built from an Avarice Blade, which rewards extra gold on every last hit as well as some passive gold generation. With that mentioned however, won’t it be worth it to upgrade to Statikk Shiv after a core item’s been purchased in order to maximize the use of Avarice Blade’s passive? Honestly, it’s up to player preference. Statikk Shiv goes a long way towards having good lane control but removes the bonus gold awarded from waiting. If you’re more of a passive AD carry, it’s best to stick to Avarice Blade until teamfights start to break out.