The strength of certain champions can peak at different times throughout a game of League of Legends. Some pile on the pressure early to gain a lead, others develop better in the mid-game as the match opens up and then there are those who become absolute monsters in the late game.
These are the champions we’re going to be taking a closer look at in this guide. We’ve picked up a few of the best amongst a variety of roles, put together a few tips on how you can play them most effectively and taken a closer look at what it is that makes them some of the best late game champions in League of Legends.
Generally, ADC champions are all about building up to the late game. There are some that do well enough in the earlier stages of a match but it’s once their item builds are complete and the game clock is well on its way to 30 minutes that their true potential is seen. Vayne offers exactly that.
The Night Hunter is quite atrocious in the early game: a weak and slow champion who isn’t much of a threat at all. But, take your time, gather some gold and hold out for the latter stages of a match. Here she can tear through opponents and clean up during team fights. Abilities such as Silver Bolts make her especially effective against tanky high health champions and it chunks away at percentages of their HP rather than a flat amount. She’s a tough one to master but undeniably powerful when played well.
Speaking of champions who can be devastating once they’ve got their full set of items, Kassadin is frighteningly powerful in the late game. He's capable of obliterating entire teams while avoiding taking too much damage himself, thanks to his magic damage reduction passive.
Similar to Vayne, his early game is terribly weak, so you’ll want to play carefully and cautiously while focusing on your creep score and winning the odd trade with your lane opponent if you can. Once you’ve completed a few key items, though, you can start to play more aggressively and look for kills. Kassadin’s kits allows for some remarkable burst damage, especially if you chain together spells and absorb the spells of nearby opponents to cast Force Pulse multiple times. His Riftwalk is a big playmaking ultimate too, allowing you to warp around a team fight and hone in on some key targets whose deaths can swing the skirmish in your favour.
With some late game champions, you’re looking for someone who can absolutely destroy everything in a team fight as the game moves towards those types of engagement. Twitch offers that possibility. The sneaky little Plague Rat can blast through an enemy team before they’ve even realised he’s there – and all of this from a safe distance too.
The combination of Ambush and Spray and Pray enables this late game power spike. Twitch can begin a team fight hidden in camouflage and then activate his ultimate, which greatly increases his attack range and makes all his attacks for the next five seconds pierce targets. When he breaks stealth, he gains a huge attack speed buff too. Altogether that’s enough to obliterate everyone in a late game team fight.
In terms of straight up damage, Veigar can pump out ridiculous burst with a single cycle of his abilities that will immediately end the life of many champions if he’s well-geared and has built up many stacks of extra ability power through skill uses. The diminutive spell-caster doesn’t really bring much else to the late game except for this excessive damage potential, so he’s not always a great pick, but from a sheer numbers perspective, he can be one of the most impactful.
Phenomenal Evil Power is where a lot of his extra ability power can be generated, as it adds a specific amount whenever you strike a champion with a spell or score a takedown. Baleful Strike adds to this further, though the effect also triggers on minions and monsters too. Once you’re souped up with ability power, you can stun a target with Event Horizon and follow it up with Dark Matter, Baleful Strike and Primordial Burst to send the target to the shadow realm.
It’s true, he’s a very one-note champion, so if you fail to execute on his blow up potential then his effectiveness is greatly diminished. However, there’s no denying that a fully powered-up Veigar in the late game can deal out some serious damage.
Where the power of some late game champions lies in their ability to kill enemy players, others excel at simply becoming unkillable. Cho’Gath is perfectly placed to reach that state, while also causing some serious disruption within the enemy team that will enable his allies to clean up in team fights.
Cho’Gath’s immense late game power comes from his Feast ultimate. This ability enables you to do a huge amount of true damage to a target – meaning it ignores all armour and resistances – and also grants you a huge chunk of bonus health if it kills a target. Build that up over the course of a game and you’ll enter the late game with an intimidating health pool that very few champions will be able to handle.
There are also other late game champions who can fulfil other roles in the team outside of killing opponents or remaining unkillable. And while Jax can certainly fulfil either of those jobs in the late game, he also works brilliantly as a split pusher for a different strategic approach to the late game.
It is undeniable that a lot of Jax’s late game power is his ability to smack his way through weaker champions on the opposing team with the rapid attack speed gained from Relentless Assault and extra burst damage from Empower. He can easily win duels with many champions in one-on-one fights thanks to Counter Strike and secure kills with Leap Strike.
What you can also do, though, is solo push in a lane far away from where many of the team fights are occurring to try and divert the opposing team’s attention. Your opponents will then be left with a decision to either rotate and attempt to take you out or risk ignoring you while you secure free structures and win the objective game. With Jax’s kit, he has the potential to rapidly tear down turrets, inhibitors and more if left unchecked.
More League of Legends guides
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Combining some of the survivability of Cho’Gath and a split push potential of Jax, Nasus is another strong late game champion who can look for multiple ways to secure victory for his team – whether that’s being the big body as a distraction in team fights or focusing on the objective game as a solo laner.
If you decide to go for the latter, when opponents commit to chasing Nasus out of a lane, he has the ability to simply walk away while Wither steadily brings opponents to a halt, or he can stand his ground, activate Fury of the Sands and look to fight whoever challenges him. The latter is sometimes the right decision, especially with a well powered-up Siphoning Strike that gives Nasus a solid chance against many champions in a duel.
Azir is an interesting one for this list. On paper he’s a great choice as a late game champion – perhaps even one of the best in the game – but he is very hard to make work in practice and in the current meta that makes him a difficult to recommend pick. Nevertheless, he should be included on sheer potential alone.
He absolutely can be one of the most powerful ability power assassins and a serious threat in the late game – the challenge is finding a good and consistent way to reach it. He starts off with a very weak early-to-mid game, which means it’s very easy for you to fall behind and fail to have any impact on the match.
What Azir can bring to the late game if he reaches it is some obscene area of effect damage that will destroy everyone in team fights. Not only can you send out a wall of sand soldiers with Emperor’s Divide, but you can barrage enemies from huge distances with so much poke, burst and sustained damage. If his time comes around again you’ll want to pay attention, but don’t expect to enter a game and find he’ll crush everything in front of him right now.