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big brain swain guide (i main him top)


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So i have a very big love for Swain, he can be so annoying to play against, if you know how to play him - im not very high Elo but i have mastered swain - but not the macros yet. Swain is a combination between blitzkrank, zyra and Vlad, you get the annoying hook from blitz, dmg from Zyra and heal from Vlad - his role in a team fight is really big, you can hook opponents to keep them close, you can damage all the opppoenets at once with your ult and the more opponents youre against, the higher heal you get 
Noted: Swain can easily be played as MID, ADP and Support - he can player every lane !! (besides jungle) 
What is his spells? 
His Q 
is like a shotgun, the closer youre to your target, the higher damage you have - meaning when you hit a hook - try to move towards the target to get max dmg  
His W- 
Is a global spell (allmost)  which can be used in combination with his E, or help teammates in fights away from you - i personally like it since i can get easy stacks for my passive and dark seal 
His E
This is his "main spell", you hook opponents and pull them closer and gain stacks 
His R
Swain transform , and do very littlke dmg but heal alot, and try to stay within a enemey in order to keep the ult/heal up 
swain can get stacks from his E and W spells, which gives him approx 10 hp pr stack, meaning every 15'ish second you can get 20 HP, at the end of a match, you can easily have +1500 HP, which is 1-2 item worth of health so hitting your spell shots, is a high priority 

How to play swain ?? 

Lvl order spells 
lvl 1-3
E, W and Q
Lvl 3-16
Q, W, E 

Lane phase 

Swain is fun to play both in lane phase and in team fights, but in lanephase dont get too eager to get kills, what i do i just hold harass key (C) in order to last hit, but as soon as the opponent moves closer to cs, i hit him and gain stacks and take some of his health - if you dont hit your spell shots  back off!! swain is VERY vulnerble when he has CD on his spells, he not mobile at all, so you relying on  hitting you dmg, and the move away a bit 
IF you hit your spellshots, try to get a fulll combo with E,W and Q when close  - and a couple of AA's - you can take like 30% HP like this, while you heal from it. Just keep holding C, you will see the opponent starts getting afraid of you and stay back  - so if he starts moving towards you, is due to the jungler being close. so learn to look for this langauge in the game. BUT if you have ult up, and zhonyas - you can kill both the toplaner and jngler, if the toplaner is low - and if you do this i can qurantee, there will be a "rep toplane" from the opponents .. BUT BUT BUT  BUT, As stated Swain is squishy poro when CD on spells, espcially on ULT, so if you have ult down, but your opponent have it up be CAREFULL!! wait for ur R to be up. 
TLDR; Harass your opponent, make sure they dont get CS, dont force kills or chase unles the kill is sure - focus on getting that lead 
So what to build - i personally dont like Tanky build with swain due to his healing scales with AP and he gets health from passive stacks, so i would rather recommend an inbetween with some tannky items 
Items (in this order) 

  1. Liandrys (First back lost chapter )
  2. Plated steelboots (or MR boots if high AP team) 
  3. Zhonyas (to get the healing from the ult while in stasis) 
  4. Rylias Septer (lets call this the core build) From here you can either choose Demonic essence or Spirit vissage 
  5. Spirit (if ahead) 
  6. Demonic (if you want higher damage) 
  7. Sell boots and get Morellonomicon 
  8. Dont forget Dark seal if you see yourself destroy your opponents 

Remeber, dont blindly follow this build, the order can be changed, regarding what team youre against - and what role you play - but Liandrys is such a power spike for SWAIN 

As now i only have my E and W spell activated while harassing, and when i land a hook i hold space instead - because then i get to get my target closer before using my Q . I think this will be fixed later 

But my quick takes if youre lazy and dont wanna read

  • Hold C in lane phase , to harass your opponent but still get CS - you will have huge control of the toplane 
  • make sure your ULT is up when aggresive, if its up - youre allmost impossible to kill 
  • Time your Zhonyas 
  • Be carefull of too much CC 
  • Be carefull of how you opponent moves, if he stays back all game allmost, and suddenly moves toward you - highly chancwe their jungler is there , because you cannot kill a swain with ULT when you solo 
  • Swain is hard to play against Ranged champs or high mobility AND darius


I will try to update the guide following as more updates comes, but tbh i think swain is one of the best toplaners there's due to his high mobility and sustain





Edited by picklas
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