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Flavor of the Month: Explaining Guinsoo's Rageblade

An explanation of why Guinsoo's Rageblade is so strong and analysis on how to use the item effectively.

We're nearing the end of League of Legends pre-season 6, and it's looking like the infamous Rageblade will end up in Season 6 in its current state. Once the ranked ladders are reset and Season 6 officially begins, we're going to have to deal with this item in solo queue. I'm sure that most League of Legends players have already experienced how ridiculously powerful this item is, so I'm here to break down what makes it so strong and how Jax and Irelia are using it to melt your health bar. 

Why is this item so strong? (This is the wordy part)

Up front, Guinsoo's Rageblade gives you 30 AD and 40 AP. With the passive at its maximum of 8 stacks, the stats that this item grants increase to 54 AD, 72 AP, and +64% attack speed. The item grants another passive at 8 stacks, where basic attacks deal a percentage of your AD and AP to your target and enemies near it, similar to Ravenous Hydra. 

Elements of the game similar to Rageblade's unique passive, such as 3-hit passives (Vayne's Silver Bolts and Vi's Denting Blows), are balanced around the fact that you have to stay in the fight for a certain amount of time before the passive is useful. Until Vayne hits the third basic attack to proc Silver Bolts, the passive has no impact on the game. Rageblade bypasses this problem by giving you a steady amount of stat increases on every basic attack. The first basic attack that you land grants you stat increases that are available as soon as you can basic attack again, giving Rageblade's passive immediate impact on the game.

Additionally, passive stacks are granted when you basic attack anything, which means that you can go to lane with the item on a melee champion, basic attack minions 4 times to reach the max of 8 stacks (melee attacks grant 2 stacks per basic attack), and then jump on your lane opponent with 3000 gold's worth of stats that appeared out of thin air. Guinsoo's Rageblade gives you the benefits and stat increases of a multi-hit passive without the risk of having to commit to a trade before you have the max amount of stacks.

If you aren't already sold on this item, it also tears through minion waves and hits turrets like a wrecking ball. The bonus AD and AP help all your wave-clearing abilities do more damage, and the splash damage granted at max stacks makes pushing minion waves even more of a breeze.

Once you actually reach the turret, you can hit it with more bonus AD than a Tiamat and more attack speed than Phantom Dancer.

Which champions can use this item?

Right off the bat, Rageblade is much more effective on melee champions, because they stack the item twice as fast. There are a few ranged champions that can work with Rageblade, but stick to melee champions for the most part.

Aside from this, here are the questions you should be asking yourself when deciding whether or not to buy Guinsoo's Rageblade on a specific champion:

1. Does this champion do most of its damage through basic attacks?

                     

Guinsoo's Rageblade is an item built for champions you want to hit you over and over and over again. Don't buy this item on someone like Talon or Zed, who want to burst a target with their damaging abilities and slip out of the fight. Buying Rageblade is the equivalent of saying "I want to keeping smacking people until I'm dead or everyone else is."

This means champions like:

  • Jax
  • Irelia
  • Tryndamere
2. Does this champion have hybrid scaling (both AP and AD)?

                      

This question is pretty straight forward. Rageblade gives you a ton of AD and AP, so putting both stats to good use is ideal.

This means champions like:

  • Jax
  • Kayle
  • Udyr
3. Does this champion have an ability that resets their basic attack timer?

                     

Rageblade is extremely strong with champions that can get it to max stacks as fast as possible, and abilities that reset the basic attack timer like Jax's Empowering Strike (W) or Xin Zhao's Three Talon Strike (Q) can rack up stacks ridiculously quickly. A basic attack from Jax followed by an immediate cast of Empowering Strike will have Rageblade halfway to max stacks in a split second.

This means champions like:

  • Jax
  • Master Yi
  • Xin Zhao

Why do I keep seeing Jax?

If you're looking for the "best" user of Guinsoo's Rageblade, Jax is by far the king of this item. His abilities are littered with hybrid scalings, his passive ramps up exactly like Guinsoo's Rageblade's passive does, and his ult gives him bonus armor and magic resist which scales off of AD and AP. This includes the AP and AD given by every stack of Rageblade's passive. Imagine dueling Jax, and every time he hits you, he does more damage and you do less.

You know how Jax always says "imagine if I had a real weapon"? Guinsoo's Rageblade is as real as it gets.

Jax Art is from Riot's "A New Dawn" cinematic and by DrPh8.

Champion Icons are taken from http://lol.esportspedia.com/.

Item information was Screencapped from the ingame shop.

Published Jan. 11th 2016

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