Yone, the Unforgotten, is League of Legends’ newest champion.
Similar to his brother Yasuo, the Unforgiven, Yone aims to cut through any frontline champions and punish squishy backline targets. Players looking to try out another mobile duelist can look to add Yone to their repertoire.
Here’s everything you need to know to best play Yone.
Runes and abilities
Conqueror is the most optimal keystone that synergizes with Yone the best. In most matchups where you have prolonged skirmishes against your opponent, the amount of extra damage that Conqueror can offer alongside its percentage healing can help keep you even or ahead. Depending on the matchup and your playstyle, however, there are a few other options you can consider taking to make the matchup more favorable.
Fleet Footwork is another Precision-based keystone rune that you can take if you feel you’re going to get out-poked by most ranged champions in lane. Fleet Footwork grants you extra sustain every so often and a burst of movement speed to give you a chance to trade back against your long-range opponents.
If you know you’re going to go up against a bulky opponent where you can’t stay in prolonged trades, Grasp of the Undying is a fair alternative to Conqueror. When you’re in lane with Grasp, you can prime the rune off an auto attack on a minion. Then, once it’s ready, you can dash up to the opponent with your third Q and hit them for the life drain and bonus max health.
Here are all of Yone’s abilities:
Passive: Way of the Hunter
Similar to Yasuo, Yone gains twice as much critical strike chance from every other source. But his damage dealt from critical strikes is slightly reduced compared to other champions.
There’s also a second component to Way of the Hunter. Yone alternates auto attacks between his Steel Sword and his Azakana Sword. Yone’s first attack with his Steel Sword is a normal basic auto attack, while every other auto attack with the Azakana Sword is evenly split between magic and physical damage. This allows Yone to potentially ignore portions of armor being stacked by enemies.
Q: Mortal Steel
Much like his brother, Yone’s Q sees him stab his sword forward, dealing pure physical damage and triggering on-hit effects. It has a ramping-up component over three stages. Every time Yone hits his Q on any enemy, he gains a stack of Gathering Storm. Once Yone reaches three stacks, instead of thrusting his sword, Yone dashes forward with a gust of wind, hitting everyone in the area and knocking up anyone affected.
The best way to use Mortal Steel before any big fight is to prime it twice on minions or jungle monsters. This way, when you battle against your enemies, you can start each fight with a knock up, which will let you land a combination of your abilities more easily.
Whether you’re playing as or against Yone, it’s important to know that with Mortal Steel’s third strike, the gust of wind hitbox extends a little past Yone.
Since the ability has a cast time, you can flash during the middle of the cast to increase your range and surprise your opponent to finish them off. Either the first two Qs or the third Q can be Q-flashed to extend its range.
W: Spirit Cleave
Using his Azakana Sword, Yone slashes in a cone shape, dealing equal parts magic and physical damage like his passive and ultimate. Spirit Cleave also has an extra component of damage that scales off of enemy maximum health, meaning it deals more damage to higher health targets. If Spirit Cleave successfully hits an enemy, Yone gains a temporary shield for one and a half seconds. The potency of the shield is increased based on how many enemy champions you hit with your Spirit Cleave.
Comparable to Yone’s Q, Spirit Cleave can be flashed during its casting time. The previous clip shows an example of a flash-W followed by a W-flash. The flash-W is much slower, which gives time for your opponents to react properly. Using W-flash is much faster and your opponent can’t avoid it by reacting. They can only avoid it by predicting it.
E: Soul Unbound
Yone leaves his original body behind for five seconds and temporarily dashes forward with his soul. Any damage that Yone’s soul clone deals will be stored until he returns to his body. Once Yone returns to his body, he detonates a portion of the stored damage that will be repeated as true damage. The longer Yone’s soul is unbound, the more bonus movement speed he gets over time. Yone can cancel his Soul Unbound at any time to return to his body early.
Yone’s E can serve as a tool to facilitate the chance to dive towers due to its returning ability. But when using this to dive towers, the return doesn’t disable tower shots mid-flight, so you’ll need to get out of range sooner than other abilities that are similar in nature. One major weakness of this ability is that while you’ll return to your body after the duration ends, if the enemy team can chain their crowd control properly, you won’t be able to return to your body until you’re free. This makes you vulnerable to getting bursted during that window.
R: Fate Sealed
After taking a moment to cast, Yone blinks in a targeted direction. Any enemies that are hit are dragged with Yone to the maximum distance, stunned, and knocked up at the end of the blink. As a long-range blink, you can use this to either start a fight from far away or save it as a finisher after your opponent uses their escape tools. Similar to his passive and W, Fate Sealed’s damage component is equally physical and magical.
But unlike his Q and W, it’s impossible to use flash while casting this to increase the range of your Fate Sealed.
Since Fate Sealed isn’t targeted, it can be used as an escape blink in a last-ditch effort for survival.
Item path options
While Yone’s kit incentivizes rushing critical strike items, there’s also a hidden importance to attack speed. If you’re ahead, an early Berserker’s Greaves purchase has a ton of value. They give you more movement speed to kite and catch up to enemies and lower the cooldown on your Q and W since their cooldown is lowered by attack speed and not cooldown reduction. They also let you auto attack more often, which in turn gives you more opportunities to switch in between your Steel Sword and your Azakana Sword. With more chances to swap between your swords, the more you’ll be able to ignore enemy resistances naturally. All of this together creates opportunities for Yone to duel enemies more efficiently and chase them down.
In terms of critical strike items, Infinite Edge is the most standard choice that you should purchase as soon as possible. Afterward, any Zeal-based item should be your second pick. Phantom Dancer is good if you want to survive more burst damage, while Statikk Shiv gives you more offensive stats and better wave clear.
After reaching a 100-percent critical strike rating with two items, you can adjust your build based on the game state. If the enemy team has heavy armor stackers, building a Last Whisper-based item will help improve your damage output. If there are a ton of magic damage dealers on the enemy team, a Wit’s End will give you extra resistances and sustain against them. If the enemy has multiple sources of crowd control, Mercurial Scimitar will negate that problem and allow you to remove the one weakness of your E.
Optimizing early laning, mid-game skirmishes, and late-game teamfights
To be efficient in lane with Yone, you need to understand if you or your opponent has the tempo at any given point. If you’re ahead, you can walk up behind the minion wave and dent potential farm and experience from your opponent. If you’re behind, you need to trade your health as a resource to get gold from minions to achieve your item breakpoints and become favorable in the matchup.
During the mid game, you need to figure out which part of the enemy team is ahead: their carries or their bulky frontline. If the carries are ahead, diving them to negate their presence in teamfights will help your team succeed. If the tanks are ahead, playing a more traditional front-to-back fight with your team will let you shred their frontline before going for the backline.
For the late game, once you have enough items, you can often just dive past the frontline and slice through the carries, no matter how fed they are. As long as you can land the first crowd control with your third Q or R, it’s hard for squishy carries to come out on top.
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