TFT: Teamfight Tactics Guide for Beginners Part 2, Gameplay

League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /
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In-game screenshot by Josh Tyler. League of Legends/Riot Games
In-game screenshot by Josh Tyler. League of Legends/Riot Games /

Step 6: Items

We mentioned all the ways that you can get items (the Carousel and from loot drops in the PVE rounds), but you might be wondering what the items are and how they work. Well, that’s a whole article by itself (coming soon) but we will address the key distinction between the two key types of items.

On the one hand, there are component items, which are simple items like BF Sword, Chain Vest, Giant’s Belt, or Needlessly Large Rod that give some stats like attack damage, armor, health, or ability power. On the other hand, these component items can be combined to form upgraded items. These upgraded items are far more powerful than the component items and give an extra effect on top of those stats that come with the two component items.

There are items that multiply your champion’s ability power (Rabadon’s Deathcap), brings your champion’s ability up more often (Seraph’s Embrace), heals your whole team (Redemption), or even brings your fallen champion back from the dead (Guardian Angel). There are several great item cheat sheets (check out this one from Pro GameGuides) that will show which components can be combined into the various upgraded items, but here are some general guidelines for which items are good for certain types of champions:

  • Beefier champions like Vanguards and Brawlers want defensive stats (health, armor, and magic resistance).
  • Champions who have very powerful ultimate abilities want stats that boost those abilities (ability power, mana).
  • Champions who auto-attack a lot or have abilities that do “on-hit” effects want to attack more (attack damage, attack speed).

Step 7: Combining Champions

In addition to equipping them with items, the other way you can strengthen your champions is to combine them and level them up. Every time you get three copies of the same champion, they combine and “level up” to a 2-star champion. If you get three 2-star champions, they will combine again to form a 3-star champion.

Champions at higher star levels have better stats and their abilities are more powerful, so it’s always a good idea to get a 2-star champion whenever possible and never turn down a 3-star champion. Any champion at these higher star levels should be the focal point of your team composition and you should try to get items onto them whenever you can.

Now, it might not seem that hard to get 2 or 3-star champions. After all, you only need three copies of the same champion to get a 2-star and nine to get a 3-star. However, it’s important to know that there are a limited number of copies of each champion per game of TFT.

That means that if someone else has taken seven copies of a champion you want to level up, there is a much lower chance that you will be able to level up that champion. In some cases, it might be actually impossible to get a champion to 3-star or even 2-star if enough opponents have them. Luckily, if one of your opponents sells a copy of that champion or dies with it on his team, that copy does go back into circulation, but knowing who is stockpiling your champions is a key aspect of TFT.

The more common gray and green champions have (as expected) more available copies, while the rarer purples and golds have fewer copies. Here is a breakdown of the number of copies of each champion will be available in a given game of TFT, broken down by tier:

  • Tier 1 (Gray) = 29 copies
  • Tier 2 (Green) = 22 copies
  • Tier 3 (Blue) = 16 copies
  • Tier 4 (Purple) = 12 copies
  • Tier 5 (Gold) = 10 copies

Since it takes nine copies to get one champion to 3-stars, you can see that it is almost impossible to get a Tier 5 champion to 3-star because if even two copies are taken by someone else you cannot get to nine. There is one item in the game, called Neeko’s Help, that you can use to create one copy of a given champion for free. However, you can only get Neeko’s Help through the loot drops, you cannot find it on the Carousel.

Step 8: PVP Rounds

So, now you know how to get the gold to buy champions and level up faster. You know how you’ll get items, equip them to your champions, and level those champions up. These are the primary building blocks to playing TFT and winning those crucial player-versus-player (“PVP”) rounds.

Next. Theorycrafting the Best Comps for Set 3 Release. dark

Now that you know the basic steps to play the game and you know how the game works from our initial guide, it’s time to show you how to form a proper team composition. Stay tuned tomorrow for our guide on team comps!