Some champions in League of Legends are just flat-out stronger than others.
For the marksmen and markswomen of League, or the ADCs, there are several types of champions to play. There are attack-speed-focused hyper carries like Jinx and Tristana, and then there are the face-melting high early damage carries like Draven and Jhin. Fortunately, the current ADC meta allows players to choose whichever one suits their tastes because they’re all mostly viable right now.
This list of top-tier champions can be affected depending on a number of things. Sometimes the meta shifts for no apparent reason other than players’ tastes, but usually there’s some kind of balance change behind it. It can be difficult to keep up on the flavor-of-the-month champs, so let us do that for you.
Here’s our ADC tier list for League’s season nine solo queue.
Champions in this tier are the strongest in the current meta and it doesn’t take much effort to carry yourself through the ranks of solo queue with them.
Jinx is the strongest hyper carry on Summoner’s Rift. Jinx boasts more cleave damage than any ADC in the game, so she’s great in teamfight comps. Her attack speed gives her a strong laning phase due to high push potential and her late game is exceptional. Jinx has a high range, a global ultimate, and the ability to siege towers with ease. Her crit can be AoE and she has two forms of CC that can help her escape or catch an enemy when needed. With all this power, Jinx is also very fun to play and quite easy to learn.
Since her release, Kai’Sa has been an extremely popular pick in both solo queue and pro play. There are several types of builds that work well on her, too, making her the most versatile ADC in the game. She’s remained at the top of the meta simply by adjusting her build to match whatever style is overpowered at the time. She’s gone full AD with crit, on-hit damage with attack speed, and even full AP. No matter what the meta demands, Kai’Sa can meet it—and she hits like a truck.
Caitlyn’s enormous range and headshots with a guaranteed critical strike always keep her in the meta as one of the best ADCs. It’s easy to last-hit minions with Cait while constantly poking enemies from a range that they can’t respond to. Her traps even provide zoning potential. She also makes positioning in teamfights simple since hitting enemies from the backline isn’t a problem. And in case one of them tries to escape, Ace in the Hole will get them. Caitlyn is simply one of the safest bot lane picks because she’s easy to play but very rewarding.
The second most powerful ADCs take a little bit more effort to play well, but when executed properly, they can carry a game just as hard as the best.
Jhin might not be as versatile as some of the other top-tier ADCs, but he hits harder than most. His AD reaches absurd heights since he turns both critical strike chance and attack speed into more AD, and his early-game power is almost unparalleled. With his ultimate, Jhin has great potential to initiate fights and control objectives from far away, along with providing incredible damage burst. But Jhin is also very immobile, which makes him vulnerable to ganks. His reload after every four attacks also makes last-hitting and timing engages more complicated.
Lucian has been going in and out of the meta over the seasons, but his high mobility and damage potential make for a great ADC, as often seen in pro play. Although he has a shorter auto attack range, Lucian’s kit allows him to quickly reposition and dodge CC aimed toward him. He works with most supports and can go against most matchups. Lucian’s biggest downside is hard scaling back to the game when behind, combined with the low range that makes poke in the laning phase reliant on a skillshot. He can also struggle to take down tanks.
Xayah spent a good portion of time on top of the meta, but she might not be at her best. This isn’t a bad place to be, though, because it also implies that she probably won’t be nerfed soon. Xayah is great in teamfights, but she absolutely needs peel to be effective. Her damage comes from dancing around the enemy team rather than sitting behind her frontline, so she’ll need one or two champions on her team that are good at getting to her to save her life when required.
This is an interesting tier because champions at this level aren’t exactly strong in the meta. But if you can learn how to play them well, you can still make them work to carry games. It might require a bit of extra effort to get there, though.
Vayne is an interesting choice in the current meta. She builds pure attack speed and on-hit damage with Blade of the Ruined King and Guinsoo’s Rageblade, but her range is still shorter than most other on-hit marksmen. That being said, no one can melt tanks quite as well as she can. She’s also very mobile, so she has some unique strengths. Vanye has something to offer both in teamfights and as a splitpusher. But she can be difficult to master and easily countered, and her low range can make positioning tricky.
Ezreal has been all over the place. There were times when he was at the top of the meta as a mid laner and times when he was popular in the jungle. Regardless of what gives Ezreal his strength, it’s almost always something odd that no other champion can mimic. He even went through a phase of building two Tears of the Goddess. He’s fun to play and has amazing poke, even though he fully relies on skillshots, which makes him difficult to master. But no matter what seems to happen to the bot lane, Ezreal holds on, for better or worse.
Draven is simply Draven—he just does it all. And once you put in the effort to master this ADC, he easily jumps to the top of this list. He has range, incredible burst potential with critical strikes, mobility, attack speed, and even a global ultimate. But learning how to play Draven to his full potential is a long process. His strength highly depends on your ability to keep at least one of his axes rolling at a time, which isn’t easy when you need to follow what’s happening in the fight as well.