League of Legends champion profile: Soraka, the Starchild

League of Legends. Photo courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo courtesy of Riot Games. /
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Star Guardian Soraka. League of Legends.
League of Legends. Photo courtesy of Riot Games. /

Ability Description

Passive (Salvation) – Soraka gains 70% bonus movement speed when moving towards allies below 40% of their maximum health

This is what makes Soraka the ambulance chaser of Summoner’s Rift. She gets a massive movement speed boost when running towards low allies. Unlike lawyers, though, she isn’t looking to file suits when she gets to her injured comrade, but offer up some nice healing.

Q (Starcall) – Soraka calls down a star at the target area dealing magic damage and slowing enemies hit by 30% for 2 seconds. Hitting at least one enemy champion returns the stardust toward Soraka, granting her Rejuvenation for 4 seconds, healing her every 0.5 seconds and granting her 10% bonus movement speed when not moving towards enemy champions. While Soraka is Rejuvenated she can Rejuvenate other allies with Astral Infusion.

This is Soraka’s only offensive ability, so if you’re playing her in a position that isn’t support (or you’re just a Chad support player) you’ll max this first for the huge poke. However, in the traditional support role, this ability is how Soraka regens her own health since her kit is mainly built to heal others. As noted in the ability description, though, when you hit this ability that’s the ideal time to start throwing out the heals to your allies.

W (Astral Infusion) – Soraka heals the target ally champion. Astral Infusion cannot be self-cast, nor can it be cast if Soraka is Health icon below 5% maximum health.

This is Soraka’s main ability as a healer, and you’ll tend to max it first. As we discussed in her Q, this ability cannot be used to self-heal, so you have to use it on your teammates.

One thing to note is that this ability does require Soraka to expend 10% of her own maximum health to heal, thus the 5% max health threshold. Be careful that you don’t turn into the Giving Tree out there. Make sure you stay topped off with Q and utilize the bonus regen you’ll grant allies after you hit a Q to maximize the healing you can do.

E (Equinox) – Soraka deals magic damage to all enemy champions in an area and creates a zone within that silences enemy champions standing on it. After 1.5 seconds the zone detonates, dealing the same magic damage to all enemy champions within and briefly rooting them.

This is Soraka’s main crowd control ability, and also serves as her only form of engage/disengage. If you’re in lane and trying to set up a gank from your jungler, try to use this ability to zone your enemies from an easy escape route. Alternatively, you could drop it right on top of them to get the silence off so that they cannot use one of their escape abilities, like flash.

The root at the end is a nice bonus, but don’t try to drop it right on someone, hoping to get the root. It’s quite easy for an enemy to just walk off it.

R (Wish) – Soraka calls upon the stars, healing all allied champions, including untargetable allies, and herself, which is increased by 50% on targets below 40% of their maximum health.

This is Soraka’s global ult, and perhaps the most under-utilized ability in her kit. In lane, you can obviously use this to turn the tide for yourself and your ADC in a trade, by getting back that health in a trade.

However, you should also keep an eye on your allies’ champion portraits to see if any of them start dropping low. If one starts losing health rapidly and you feel safe in your lane, feel free to throw out your ult to heal enemies across the map. However, keep in mind the cooldown at rank one is massively long (160 seconds) so try and hold it for when your team is contesting an objective like Dragon or Rift Herald.

Types of Scaling

Passive – bonus MS
Q – AP
W – AP
E – AP
R – AP

Crowd control

Slow on her Q
Silence/root on her E

Game stage power

Strength in early game/laning – low

Soraka can be a surprising lane bully with her Q (one of the reasons she’s a bit of a fun, troll pick in top/mid lane), but she struggles against champions who can hard engage on her and blow her up.

Strength in mid game/skirmishes – medium/high

Soraka really shines in the mid game and shorter skirmishes, because her allies will get a lot more out of her kit’s healing. For one, usually, champions won’t be building items with Grievous Wounds (like Executioner’s Calling) until the second or third item in the game, meaning your healing will be at maximum power.

In addition, these skirmishes in tightly confined spaces – like in the jungle and around Baron/Dragon – make it easier to hit your Q on multiple enemies. You’ll also be easily able to cut off a lot of paths and zone enemies with your E in those tighter spaces.

Finally, since you’ll tend to be in less-coordinated fights your heals at this point will be more impactful. These fights tend to be less drawn-out than full-on team fights, meaning you will have more time to top allies off with heals. Since players will also tend to not have much life steal or have bought life steal items (like Vampiric Scepter) your enemies won’t be able to heal themselves after these quick engagements, giving your team a health advantage for the follow-up fights.

Strength in late game/team fights – medium

Once the late game comes, though, Soraka tends to struggle because of all of those advantages she previously had gets nullified. Teams have grievous wounds, shields, and life steal to either mitigate your healing or heal themselves up just as much.

In actual team fights, Soraka struggles because she needs to get close to her allies to bless them with her heals. As a result, she can easily get dove and blown up by assassins or fighters or get caught by tanks before the fight even starts. Without defensive abilities, escapes, or tankiness, Soraka also has a hard time advancing into areas without vision, making her a ripe target to get picked by an enemy team in the fog of war.

Having said that, Soraka can heal for a truckload in team fights and single-handedly turn those longer fights around if she can remain safe. When Soraka doesn’t have flash or her E for protection, though, she can get taken from 100 to 0 easily.