Garen Guide: 5 Things You Learn from Maining Garen

League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /
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league of legends
League of Legends. Courtesy of Riot Games. /

Our Garen guide will teach you tricks to improve your League of Legends gameplay!

4. Learn to Itemize

I did say that we wouldn’t be discussing specific itemization and runes for Garen, however, it deserves a special shoutout because Garen has a fairly linear, yet flexible itemization path. Garen usually builds one damage item before going full tank. Within that framework, you’re going to have some pretty standard “yes or no” decisions that will really help you learn the different basic itemization choices that will apply to all your games.

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For instance, Garen has a choice when it comes to boots of whether he wants Mercury Treads (which given magic resistance and tenacity, or crowd control resistance) or Ninja Tabi (which give armor and resistance to damage from auto attacks). Which boots you want will vary from game to game based on the opponent in lane you’re facing and the carries of the enemy team.

You’ll have to make similar choices when it comes to the damage item (Black Cleaver if you’re facing tanks and want the armor shred, Trinity Force if the enemy team has few tanks), armor item (Deadman’s Plate if you need the speed and extra damage, Randuin’s Omen if the enemy has a lot of critical strike damage), and MR item (Spirit’s Visage for straight-up healing, Adaptive Helm if the enemy has a lot of damage over time spells).

In my opinion, this is a fantastic way to learn itemization for a new player because there is no straightforward “I need this item” on Garen. He is built to optimize his items against the enemy composition, so he will teach you the basics of when to build which items.

5. Picking Good Fights

There are three basic types of fights in League of Legends: front-to-back teamfights, small skirmishes, and flanking teamfights.

  • Front-to-back teamfights are those where tanks set the front line, assassins and divers attempt to get onto the main damage dealers, who are in the back line outputting damage while protected by supports.
  • Flanking teamfights are those where divers and assassins have managed to get the angle on the back line via vision control or teleporting, or where one champion has the ability to disrupt this front-to-back teamfight by separating the team and leaving certain champions isolated.
  • Small skirmishes are instances where the entire team is not there to start the fight or are spread out. This allows champions to take 1v1 or 2v2 fights.

Garen wants these small skirmishes, does okay in flanking teamfights, but does not want to be involved in a front-to-back teamfight. This is because Garen has a lot of single-target, burst damage on his abilities, so he excels when he has one target he wants to kill and can kill them easily.

By contrast, in teamfights there is the potential that Garen will not even be able to get to those juicy targets like the ADC or AP Carry. Instead, he’s likely going to get crowd controlled and not use his kit effectively.

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Playing Garen will teach you to identify opportunities to take those advantageous fights in small skirmishes. Of course, if your team is engaged in a full-blown teamfight you can still help them, but you’re going to have to recognize that you have to adjust your playstyle based on how the fight is going.

What tips from this Garen guide did you find most useful? Let us know and drop any other Garen tips you think we missed in the comments!