Out of favor : Syndra, the Dark Sovereign
[All credit go to raempire3000 for that FanArt! Here's a link to check him out! http://raempire3000.deviantart.com/ ]
Oh long gone are the days of the dominance of Syndra mid, aren’t they? After having a fairly regular win ration in solo queue, around the 50% mark, she dropped to a tiny 44% after the nerfs affecting her early game damage and more importantly, the tweaks that made her difficulty go up.
After being relatively untouched for the majority of season four, Syndra was known as a lane bully of most other mid lane champions, and all of them when put in the hands of an amazing Syndra player. In the end of the game, her ultimate, that get stronger with the amount of Dark Sphere you place on the ground first, could delete the ADC in one strong burst.
On patch 5.1, Riot fixed a champion that they judged over-powered; they nerfed Syndra main source of damage during the laning phase and tried to fix her sometimes buggy stun, Scatter the Weak. The main reason for her damage nerf was that Syndra had become more than what they intended to create.
Here’s the comment that they added to the patch notes : ” Syndra's strength as a single-target burst-mage makes her a valuable pick considering the field of assassins she's currently facing. While we're a fan of her strength in focused pick compositions, her ability to dictate the early laning phases of would-be counterpicks makes her more of an all-rounded laner than we'd like. Weakening Dark Sphere in the first few levels and making her Scatter the Weak stun line up better visually should decrease the frustrations of her lane without curbing too much of that untapped power (hehe)."
- And here are the tweaks they did to Syndra in patch v5.1 :
- Q - Dark Sphere
- BASE DAMAGE:
70/110/150/190/230 magic damage? 50/95/140/185/230 magic damage
- E - Scatter the Weak
- IF YOU CAN DODGE A SPHERE...: Dark Spheres knocked back by Scatter the Weak are now more 'strict' in their hitbox radius
While the damage nerfs have indeed reduced her early game dominance, let’s compare the Q damage to one other lane bully that relies on her q to deal damage, Annie. While Annie Q is a targeted spell, Syndra’s Q is a skillshot, augmenting the level of difficulty to actually bully your opponent.
80 md/4s/ (+80%AP)
50 md/4s/ (+60%AP)
Md : Magic Damage
AP : Ability Power
S: Seconds of cooldown
No, those champions are far from being built the same way, but their role in the laning phase is similar enough for me to compare the two. I didn’t include the mana costs of each spell, because while Annie’s Q, Disintegrate, costs more mana, you can refund the entire mana cost while farming with it. Until Syndra can level up her Q to level 3, she will lose on the damage trade if they trade blow for blow.
I believe that the damage nerf was a good call by Riot to stop Syndra from becoming “more of an all-rounded laner than we'd like”. I strongly believe that Riot should revert the tweaks they tried on Scatter the Weak, since it has proven to be less effective than before, to a point than even players having a great mastery of the champion before are having a hard time finding success with her. Those players still are able to put off great performances with her, but players under the elo of Platinum mostly can’t play the champion, and even those players with higher elo can’t improve her win rate ration by more than a mere 2 to 4 percent.
Right now, on patch 5.10, Syndra is a pick that is not recommended by the majority of players, websites and top lists. Here are a few examples where Syndra is considered as one of the weakest picks in the league: rankedboost.com, http://lol.metasrc.com, www.nerfplz.com and metalol.net. Those websites are basing their lists off things like win rate ration, average KDA that the players playing Syndra are posting, the average cs per games, and what they saw themselves trying out those champions. When the best ranking we can find for Syndra is “Needs Higher Skill/Knowledge Than Usual”, I think we can see that there is something wrong with the champion.
Some could argue that the meta doesn’t favour her, and I believe it’s true, she doesn’t have the same amount of targets to burst down than before. Her kit still provides the same utility than before (even if her stun is harder to hit than before), a slow and a stun can still prove to be useful, especially when both of these are area of effect abilities. In a meta like this where the marksmen mostly favoured are immobile, a stun from long range like Syndra’s scatter the weak could catch off guard a Jinx or an Ashe and create a pick opportunity to grab objectives.
Thanks for reading, i hope i gave you some insight on a champion that i love/loved!
Note: The stats and data used were found on these various websites:
-rankedboost.com (While I do not encourage elo boosting in any way whatsoever, the tier list presented on that website contributed to my article nonetheless.)