How to play Ivern in the top lane like LEC pros

Use these builds and runes to empower your teammates and secure a clean path to victory.

Image via Riot Games

Ivern made his competitive debut in the top lane during the first week of the 2021 LEC Spring Split this weekend. Excel Esports and G2 Esports showed the power of this pick, which uses an interesting combination after the latest item rework featuring Moonstone Renewer and Staff of Flowing Water.

The Green Father was picked to empower other carries in the jungle, mid lane, and ADC role. Ivern farmed for his core items in the top lane before grouping up with his teammates to buff them up and provide a lot of shielding and healing.

Here’s what you need to know to play Ivern in the top lane like LEC pros.

Runes

Screengrab via Riot Games

Sorcery

Summon Aery: This is the best keystone for this tactic since you’ll be using a lot of healing and shielding on your teammates. Even during the laning phase, this rune acts as an additional source of damage to survive and reach your core items.

Manaflow Band: Manaflow Band is a great rune to solve your mana issues since you’ll be spamming a lot of abilities throughout the game. Having an extra 250 mana helps a lot and gives you the necessary resources to throw that extra shield in the teamfight to help your allies. On top of that, it restores one percent of your mana every five seconds.

Transcendence: Ivern relies on having a lot of ability haste to ensure he can spam shields and bushes as often as possible. The level 11 effect of reducing the basic abilities’ cooldowns by 20 percent is a nice bonus for later teamfights. It’ll help you spam your abilities even more often.

Gathering Storm: Gathering Storm offers scaling ability power to make your shields stronger as the game goes by. You don’t need Scorch or Waterwalking, so this is the obvious choice here.

Resolve

Bone Plating: This rune will protect you from unexpected burst during the early game and later stages of the game. The 30-damage reduction is impactful and can help you escape early ganks when you don’t have a lot of health or ability haste.

Revitalize: The additional heal and shield power is perfect for this tactic where you’ll be spamming shields and heals on your allies. On top of it, it increases your potential healing and shielding on teammates who have a 40 percent or lower health pool.

Bonuses: +10 percent attack speed, +9 adaptive force, +6 armor

Starting items

Screengrab via Riot Games

Doran’s Ring

This is the item you want to start with every time. It gives you ability power, health, additional damage to creatures, and restores your mana on creep kills, allowing you to spam abilities.

Health potion

With the 100 gold left after acquiring Doran’s Ring, the best option is to buy two Health Potions to make your laning phase longer. This will allow you to back later on when you have more gold to acquire your items.

Core items

Screengrab via Riot Games

Ionian Boots of Lucidity

This is one of the best boot options for this tactic. They’ll give you 20 ability haste, which is crucial for the plan to work. They can be rushed early on to grant additional movement speed to kite opponents better.

Moonstone Renewer

This is the core Mythic item allowing for this tactic to work. For the cheap cost of 2,500 gold, you can restore health to your allies on a low two-second cooldown. For each second in combat, this effect stacks up, increasing by 50 percent after four seconds. The stats it grants are great for its cost, but the effect puts this item on another level. On top of that, the Mythic passive gives you more ability haste for each Legendary item you have, allowing you to spam abilities as often as you want.

Staff of Flowing Water

This is the best Legendary item you can acquire to use this tactic to great success. For 2,300 gold, all your heals and shields will give you and your ally a movement speed boost and ability power. This effect is better the more ability power-oriented champions you have. It scales with your ally’s level, so using it on a jungler, mid laner, or bottom laner who will usually have a higher level is great.

Ardent Censer

The “original” Staff of Flowing Water, Ardent Censer offers the same benefits as its sister item except for the fact that it buffs up attack speed while granting on-hit damage. This combination of items will make you a great teammate to both AD and AP carries on your team, buffing their core stats and allowing them to destroy opponents in teamfights.

Game plan

Unlike traditional top laners who excel at crushing their opponent and using their threat to teleport and kill the bottom lane or splitpush to great success, Ivern excels at farming up for his core items and then grouping up with his team. You’ll then want to leave the farm for your carries since you don’t scale that well past those core items.

The extra gold on you should be invested into vision and perhaps other utility-oriented items, such as Mikael’s Blessing. On top of that, you can always acquire some extra Vision Wards to help out with vision denial or map coverage for your team.

In fights, your role is to sit close to your carries and buff them up as they destroy the opposing team. You can see how G2’s Wunder handled the Ivern top during their LEC game, using Ivern as a backline protector for Rekkles and Caps, who kept charging forward with all the shields provided by Ivern.

While it might require time to get used to playing this utility-oriented top lane style, it’ll pay off once you get some experience. With no nerfs in sight for this combination of items, they’re becoming more prevalent in all lanes. Most meta junglers have already started going for this combination since it’s cheap, gives plenty of stats, and the effect provides a huge stat boost to multiple teammates.


Make sure to follow us on YouTube for more esports news and analysis.