Riot Games isn’t satisfied with being a silly old games developer, even if it’s finally about to be a developer with a ton of cool games. Instead, it wants to be a comic book studio, an animated series production office, and, as revealed with the release of K/DA’s “POP/STARS” and not one, but two Pentakill albums, a music label.
The latest release in the music label field from Riot was revealed with a stunning augmented reality-infused live performance from hip-hop artists Becky G, Keke Palmer, Soyeon from (G)I-dle, DUCKWRTH, and Thutmose, who form a group called True Damage. “GIANTS,” the group’s song, is, just like “POP/STARS,” performed virtually by a group of League of Legends champions. True Damage is a collection of famous hip-hop artists from around Runeterra, including Akali, Yasuo, Ekko, Qiyana, and Senna.
As it turns out, both True Damage and K/DA have a lot of fans, with the former garnering its newfound fans very rapidly (it’s almost hit 10 million views on YouTube two days after release). And, naturally, fans of both League virtual music groups have begun to wage war on one another. Insults have been hurled back and forth across party lines and fans of both groups are ducking to avoid getting hit in the crossfire.
We’re going to settle the score. But we’re not going to debate on which group is better. Instead, we’re going to ask the real question: Which group would win in a fight?
Don’t forget, they’re all just champions
We’ll start by removing the actual musical artists from the debate. These groups are supposedly performed by champions, not real people, and the real people only serve to represent those champions. Sure, that may be underselling them a bit (or a lot, because they’re really talented), but for this specific debate, they don’t matter (sorry).
Instead, we’ll look at the champions: Yasuo, Ekko, Qiyana, and Senna on one side, with Ahri, Evelynn, and Kai’Sa on the other. We won’t count Akali because she’s on both teams. For anyone who cares about lore, Akali, as a member of K/DA, founded True Damage as a side project with Ekko. She’s still on K/DA, though, and asking her to fight either team would be unfair to her.
We’ll start by evaluating True Damage. Yasuo, aside from 2019 and short stints in 2018, has been a solo queue exclusive pick for his entire history. Qiyana is his opposite, being useful in pro play but never in solo queue, at least so far. Ekko has had very long runs in both fields, but currently exists as a solo queue extraordinaire, as his test run on the Worlds stage fell dramatically short. Senna hasn’t been out long enough to tell, so we’ll call her the rookie of the bunch.
Now for K/DA. Ahri didn’t really appear anywhere after the mage rework a couple seasons ago. She popped back up in solo queue toward the end of this year, but she’s still nowhere to be seen on the pro stage. Largely, she’s past her prime. Evelynn was useful in both fields post-redesign, but lately she’s a little more forceful in solo queue nowadays. Kai’Sa, on the other hand, has run the show in the bot lane in both pro and casual. It’s to the point where if you’re not playing Kai’Sa, you’re playing a worse champ, no matter the pairing.
So on K/DA, we have one champion that isn’t so great, one that’s only good in solo queue, and one great in both. And on True Damage, one is good in both metas currently, another is good in both but with a history of mostly solo queue, and one that’s only good in pro play, with Senna not in the conversation yet. By this test, True Damage wins. But that’s not our only criteria.
We’re all in this together
The second test is what we like to call the Synergy Test (a test that we’re making up specifically this debate and likely will never be used again). In the synergy test, we examine each champion’s kit and decide if they actually fit with their respective group.
This time, we’ll start with K/DA. Ahri and Evelynn are all about catching single targets out where they shouldn’t be, the second they step out of position. Kaisa is more of a solo punisher, too, but she does alright in teamfights, too, provided she can maneuver around the fight well with her shorter range. This is a team that can catch a person out of bounds and work together to blow them up and escape without a scratch.
True Damage, on the other hand, is a little bit of both. Senna and Yasuo both can support a healthy balance between single-target skirmishing and teamfighting, Ekko is all about single-target murder, and Qiyana excels in teamfights. The thing is, though, Ekko and Qiyana still have tools to work within situations that they aren’t necessarily the best at, while K/DA’s assassins can’t really adapt in the same way. Of course, True Damage does have Yasuo, who isn’t exactly the pinnacle of versatility.
Overall, we’ll have to give it to True Damage, though, because while K/DA would do single target really well, True Damage can do a lot more in a pinch. And with that, True Damage is up 2-0, and that means they’d beat K/DA in a fight.
This is the final ruling, and we won’t be accepting arguments at this time, thank you.