League of Legends: Catastrophic Lionbility



League of Legends: Catastrophic Lionbility

By Jason Harper (Hhean), OnRPG League Reporter

Rengar is a bruiser that focuses on ambush tactics and surprise to get the drop on his foes. He is master and commander of all brush that he surveys. Beyond his bush hugging though, he’s a pretty basic bruiser, and shouldn’t take anyone long to learn. Much like his peers, he’s best suited to going top or jungle.

Pros:

Doesn’t use mana

Strong early game

If fed while carrying the Bonetooth Necklace, he can have a strong endgame

The stealth on his ultimate allows him to easily pick off squishy targets

Good burst

Competent jungler

Cons:

Fragile for a bruiser

Unless fed, his damage peters off quickly

Poor sustained damage

His gap closer is situational

Has some very poor top lane match ups

Other junglers can do what he does better

His ultimate is used for utility rather than damage

Very low utility for a bruiser (1 slow, 1 situational snare and a scouting tool)

Ability Summary

Unseen Predator [Passive]: While in brush or stealthed, Rengar’s next auto-attack becomes a targeted gap closer. This can make Rengar very sticky in the right situations. It’s completely useless in areas without brush though, and makes Rengar’s movements very predictable. Fighting around Dragon leaves Rengar with the option of using the brush just north of the pit, and that can easily be shut down with a single ward.

Savagery [Q]: Causes Rengar’s next attack to deal bonus damage, and increases his attack speed. The empowered version deals more damage and grants more attack speed while letting him reset his attack animation. This ability has exceptional attack damage scaling, but its base damage doesn’t increase much with level, so whether it’s worth actually levelling up is debatable if you’re going for any AD in his build.

Battle Roar [W]: Damaging AoE centered on Rengar that also gives him magic resistance and armour for a short period. The enhanced version also restores a percentage of his health. Given his frailty without the buff this applies, correct use of this ability is the difference between life and death. The enhanced version can give him some good sustain, both in the jungle and in the lane, while also being a great wait to heal for baiting your enemies.

Bola Strike [E]: Targeted slow that deals moderate damage. The enhanced version also snares the target. Probably his best laning tool currently, as it can be used as a crappier (but entirely free) version of Malphite’s Seismic Shard. If levelled last, the slow is pathetic, so just use it to gain ferocity stacks, but if levelled first, it can slow fairly well, and has a high amount of base damage.

Thrill of the Hunt [R]: Stealths Rengar, giving him a movement speed buff and revealing enemies in a large radius around him. While stealthed, he slowly gains ferocity stacks. Useful to catch an enemy by surprise, escape or act as a reset during fights. Its ability as a scouting tool is a nice addition to the skill, spotting people through fog of war in the brush, but shouldn’t be the main reason to use it.

Combos & Shenanigans

Every time Rengar uses an ability, he gains a stack of Ferocity, his unique resource. Once he reaches five stacks, Rengar gets access to the enhanced versions of his abilities, which have a separate cooldown from the standard version. This ability to double up his abilities, using a standard and enhanced version of the same ability twice in a very short timeframe, is where he will get most of his damage from. Most characters are encouraged to use their abilities at just the right moment due to limited resources, but Rengar is actively encouraged to spam his abilities as much as possible in order to gain more Ferocity. Once he has four or five stacks, he can look for ganks, or go in for a kill on his lane opponent. Treat him like a manaless, melee version of Annie.

When playing against Rengar, it’s very easy to simply watch his stacks and wait him out. Once Rengar is at four or five stacks, simply hang back and avoid the brush. Rengar has few ways of getting in on an opponent without jumping out of the brush or blowing his ferocity stacks on an enhanced Bola Strike to snare and slow his enemy. If he does the latter, it will greatly reduce his damage output or durability, giving you an edge in any fight that ensues.

Rengar’s basic combo is to wait until he has four ferocity stacks, leap at an enemy using his passive and hit them with Savagery before smacking them with another autoattack. After that hit you should choose how to spend his enhanced ability, either to reset his attacks and deal more damage with his enhanced Savagery, or to get some quick healing and added AoE with his Battle Roar. Usually the former is better when duelling a single target, and the latter is better when dealing with more than one foe. With your choice made, blast everything around you with a Battle Roar to survive any incoming burst, then slow your target with a Bola Strike as they try to make an exit.

His ultimate is the most versatile tool at his disposal. While it might seem tempting to always use it to stealth in on an enemy to get a gank, this should really only be used on a target with low health, or if you are desperate to trigger his passive for whatever reason. The best use of his ultimate though is to act as a reset during teamfights. If the enemy don’t have an oracle’s, you can leap onto a squishy target with four or five stacks, let rip with everything Rengar’s got, then stealth. While stealthed, you wait for his ferocity stacks to fill, and watch as his cooldowns return. When he’s ready to go once more, you can leap straight back into the fray and finish off any low health targets.

Rengar has access to a unique item, the Bonetooth Necklace. It functions similarly to other snowball items but rather than losing half of its stacks on death, it loses only one. This makes it a relatively low risk investment for Rengar, provided he keeps both his kills and assists above his deaths he can continue to gain bonuses as the game goes on. Given these bonuses are specifically tailored to benefit Rengar, it can be a worthwhile investment, even for the sort of person who prefers to avoid snowball items.

Conclusions

Thematically, Rengar works. He walks and talks like an anthropomorphised lion and his passive encourages his player to act like a lion, hiding in brush before pouncing out at their prey. His ultimate also plays into this theme, but the rest of his kit just feels like a generic bruiser.

That’s really where Rengar falls short compared to his peers. He tries hard, but ultimately he’s a bit dull. His kit is bland, with his double ability use being his only truly unique trick. Even that doesn’t make up for his lack of a true ultimate, which makes his damage fall off pretty hard compared to his peers.

He also suffers from the same problem that plagued Sejuani - Anything this character does, others do better. He doesn’t have anything really unique in his kit, and so unless he has the raw numbers to back up his bland playstyle, there’s just no niche for him to fill.

Final Verdict

Hold off on buying him until he gets buffed. Currently he specializes in nothing that isn’t outclassed by another champion.

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