Riot Games’ take on the autobattler genre, Teamfight Tactics, was an instant hit for League of Legends players as soon as it was released. The game’s availability on mobile platforms and easy-to-pick-up nature made it the most popular autobattler around the block.
Though TFT has a rich meta like League, autobattlers can get repetitive quite quickly since there are only so many combinations you can try out throughout a season. Riot’s approach to new patches and sets have been vital to keeping that feeling of freshness in TFT, and the latest meta-shifting patch, Set four: Fates, recently became available.
Introducing many new champions, items, and synergies, TFT’s Fates update has affected the game’s core since the effect items had on the game was considerably nerfed. As good as the items were, the random nature of obtaining them rendered certain compositions useless. This doesn’t mean you can ignore items from now on, though, they can still make a difference, and some will even help you make game-changing decisions like going Red (Darkin) or Blue (Shadow) on Kayn.
Darkin or Shadow: Which one should you transform to with Kayn in TFT?
Kayn has arrived into TFT with the latest set, Fates, and he’s a five-gold/legendary champion that appears toward the late game. His Class buff “Shade” is all about boosting his damage output and turning him into a true assassin. His Origin buff “Tormented” grants him the ability to transform into his Darkin (Red) or Shadow (Blue) state after participating in three rounds of combat.
His Red form allows Kayn to restore 50 percent of the damage he deals with his ability as health, meaning he becomes a lot tankier like in League. His Blue form, on the other hand, buffs his basic ability to deal an extra 75 percent damage for the first 10 seconds of the combat.
It’s quite hard to make a gameplan around which Kayn form you could use from the beginning since you may not even get him at the end. Considering TFT revolves around rolls and luck, your ultimate decision on the color will be based on what items you’ve gathered until you picked up the champion alongside your existing composition.
Both forms have their ups and downs, and it’s impossible to declare one as better than the other. They both shine in different situations, and the items you’ll have available for Kayn will significantly affect your success rate with each form.
When to go Blue with Kayn in TFT?
If your lineup’s set on tanks and you find yourself in a position where you need more damage after you picked up Kayn, pay close attention to the following items.
- Infinity Edge
- Hextech Gunblade
- Jeweled Gauntlet
- Hand of Justice
- Blue Buff
- Any item that increases spell damage output
Having access to one of the above items or multiple is a clear sign that you should go Blue once your Kayn is ready to transform. Kayn has great potential as a damage dealer since his ability can get out of control if he can just get it off once.
Each listed item has a couple of things in common, and those are increasing Kayn’s overall damage and giving him a little bit of more survivability. With a frontline that can stall for a couple of seconds, Kayn can become online quickly and start slashing through the enemy’s composition like it was made of paper.
Consider your opponents’ positions as well since losing a high-value champ like Kayn early on can cost you dearly.
When should you go Red with Kayn in TFT?
With the right tools, Kayn can become an annoying part of your lineup that your enemy fails to get rid of. Though Kayn’s damage output will be significantly lower than his Blue form, going Red enables him to stay in the battle for a lot more.
In situations where your enemies are running multiple Guardian Angels on their core champions or running Zilean, Kayn’s early damage frenzy can go to waste since he’ll be outlasted. Luckily, he’s equipped with the necessary tools to play the waiting game and will restore 50 percent of the damage he deals with his ability, Reaping Slash, when he turns Red.
Items like Hextech Gunblade and Hand of Justice are also good item choices for going Red with Kayn, and any tank items will be a plus.
Here are the most popular tank items that benefit Kayn.
- Sunfire Cape
- Guardian Angel
- Titan’s Resolve
If you don’t have the items above, you can also get creative with any tanky combination you may have in hand to help Kayn survive throughout the battle. Once Kayn starts casting his spell in his Red form, it’ll be quite hard for your enemy to get rid of him, and it should give your cores some breathing room to dish out more damage over time.
Consider your lineup as well
As impactful as items are when it comes to deciding which road to take with Kayn, your lineup also plays an important role. Forcing Kayn into a lineup that he doesn’t fit in will simply reduce his effectiveness to zero despite his form.
A current build that’s been doing well in the meta is the Shade Spirit Bomb, in which Kayn is accompanied by champions like Zed, Ahri, Teemo, Yuumi, Evelynn, Kindred, and Cassiopeia. The composition takes advantage of the Spirit and Shade buffs at their maximum values, which enables both forms of Kayn by providing Attack Speed and increasing Magic Damage.
Two Mystic members of the squad also bring in tanky stats to the composition even if it’s by 35 Magic Resistance.
While this specific lineup enables Kayn to scale at both forms, his Red side can also shine in tanky comps that take advantage of Keeper and Mystic buffs. Enlightened heavy teams can push his Blue form to its full potential, but you’ll need to focus on keeping alive to get the most out of him in a more fragile lineup.