Win from the Champion Select in League of Legends – Part 6

Protect > Split Push Composition

You can find part 5 here.

Diversification is the principle of spreading your investments and your resources. Similarly that is the core principle of the split push comp; the deviation starts when you have secured a “profit”, and when someone is ahead so then you can play more and more around your point of strength to systematically advance through the enemy territory while rotating fast, but safe.

You avoid teamfights and pressure for favourable trades of objectives. Successful variations of this comp can include a softer split push focus, with a Shen top lane, and a stronger carry, although the usual is a strong 1-3-1.

Winning Conditions: Early – Mid Late

This comp’s strengths and power spikes are mid to late, but at times can be early too, when you have stronger 1v1’s or 2v2’s.

Some examples of champion picks for the engages comp are (patch 8.23):

Essential Elements:

Skirmish, Disengage, Mobility

  1. Top               Fiora, Jax, Camille
  2. Jungle             Xin Zhao, Kayn, Nocturne
  3. Mid               Kassadin, Le Blanc, Yasuo
  4. Bottom            Lucian, Heimer, Ezreal
  5. Support           Alistar, Zyra, Morgana

Champions like Zed or Tryndamere work great as well, specifically on solo queue. The jungler should focus on the weakest enemy solo lane so that at least one of your split pushers get a lead. Disengage abilities are a must, so always have that element to this comp. Specifically for the three man group on your 1-3-1 that needs to be extra safe, that’s why player picks like Ezreal and Morgana are good.

Wave clear is important as well; Lucian can use his ult to clear the wave, providing more time for the split pushers. Play mind games with your enemies; force them to react, often without fully committing into one objective and, as a result, make them waste time running after your split pusher.

Vision control and a good understanding of the macro is essential, since you will be avoiding teamfights. Objective trades will be common, and those trades will determine how the game will proceed. In the mid game, when you have a split pusher like Jax that can potentially 2v1, your enemy will try to punish him. Help him ward to provide him safety and set up traps when you have a good vision control, and you’ll catch individual enemies.

Things you should avoid:

  • Under most circumstances, avoid teamfights.
  • Don’t split push recklessly; it is so predictable that you will be split pushing that they will often try to punish it. Don’t overextend, especially when the rest of the team is not forcing another objective.

With a scale 1 to 5, with 1 being completely countered and with 5 being the absolute counter against, let’s see the table below.

Interaction with Other Comps at a Glance:

Engages2Minor Disadvantage
Wombo Combo2.5Execution/Skill - based
Poke3Minor Advantage
Early Game3Minor Advantage
Protect3Minor Advantage

When playing Split Push vs Engages, your enemy is often stronger in the early skirmishes; respect that, and only engage when there is an advantage. If you can’t find opportunities to make something happen, just farm. The jungler should look for counter ganks at the solo lanes, because it is probable that they will get ganged up on.

Later on, you must rely on individuals to slowly progress through the sidelines. They will excel at picking up targets, so ward correctly and don’t overextend when you don’t have proper vision of all the enemies. Plan as many moves ahead as you can and try to attract attention in well warded areas, to allow some space for your split pushers to act.

It is important to have the stronger split pusher, because the later it gets in game, both teams will look to split push. Feed resources to your top laner for example, if he doesn’t get kills, getting extra waves and jungle camps might give him the edge.

When playing Split Push vs Wombo Combo, the match-up will tend to be quiet common. It involves some important decisions on your part, because you must often voluntarily give up important objectives.

You should try to get a lead in a lane as early as possible and only look for skirmishes, not teamfights. This will weaken the effectiveness of the enemies teamfight and they won’t be able to respond to your multiple threats. Nevertheless if you get a bit cocky, they will dive to your three man group and then advance forward. It is preferable for one of the solo laner to take the risks while your “trio” –  often the jungler, bottom and support – dance with the enemies and fight for vision control.

Obviously if they send three to five people to stop one of your laners, you should be decisive and either push or go for their baron. Intelligent opponents will focus on major objectives (baron, inhibitor), which will force you to react; you can send four members to contest and slow down the pace, and send one to split push. A base race might occur, so be aware of that, it’s preferable to initiate it, than have to respond to it.

When playing Split Push vs Poke, early in the game, look to punish when they overextend and push your laners to their towers. Be cautious, however; they may have warded correctly and counter gank. Your first goal is to reach your early power spikes safely, so then your laners can solo kill their opponents. Moving onto the mid game, you must exploit that you can focus multiple objectives at the same time.

They are stronger if you all group either mid or baron/drake, so instead try to “divide and conquer” and only pick up a teamfight when you have a clear window. If you identify the priority objectives and force them constantly while redirecting your resources efficiently, they won’t be able to group as five and try to siege. Never let them poke you; instead initiate or abandon the objective.

When playing split push vs early, your first priority is to survive their early pressure, while avoiding being trapped and if necessary, sacrificing some objectives voluntarily. Knowing that they will be aggressive and will be actively trying to create a play, deny them as much as possible. A poker analogy would be folding early, causing you to lose only your ante and blind. This is a fine strategy when your hand is not strong enough, especially since you know your “hand” is going to get better. Your jungler can powerfarm and only initiate in obvious scenarios, often counter ganking and protecting the lanes.

In some cases when the laner is low, the jungler can go and help the laner farm under the tower and stay there until the laner has safely recalled and comes back. Your second priority is to get at least one of your split pushers ahead. If you have to, wait for your ultimates, which is often your first power spike. You naturally outscale them, so during the mid game you can wave clear and take it slow; that will force them to take higher risks that you can take advantage.

When playing Split Push vs Protect, you can ban strong initiators that fit their comp at the champion select. You need to get your split pushers as fed as possible and apply pressure constantly; since their solo laners are often weaker, try to get a lead from the early, to establish a dominant mid game. Be aware that the enemies will focus on their bottom lane.

Going into the mid game you are to split push and avoid teamfights –  you never really need to teamfight, since their comp is build around protecting. It is quite challenging to go through their defenses and kill their carry fast; if you can do it by sacrificing one or two members, go for it, but in general, pressuring the sidelines and wave clearing mid as effective as you can will force them to react.

If done correctly, you can always be the one that dictates the objective trades while also deciding when and where to start a fight. If you can, create opportunities for traps, catching the support that tries to ward while their team isn’t directly with him or a member that will go alone to clear a wave. Divide and conquer, proceed methodically and patiently, and you shall prevail!

Team Compositions Are Complex

But with this handy series of guides, we make it easier for you to rise to the top and beat the competition. For a refresher on the prior team compositions, and a run-down on how to create the most powerful League of Legends team out there, check out the prior articles in this series:

This series was made in collaboration with Semper Solus.