This extremely unique design has opened up strategies never before seen in game, so we tested it on the PBE a few days prior to 8.11’s launch to create a full guide. so through this report we will give you full guide to play with new champion Pyke, including items build, Runes, abilities and gameplay.
Pyke is an assassin, but he’s also a support. Most assassins in the game can only access their very expensive high-damage items through farming, which is something Pyke cannot do as a support. That being said, he’s a little bottle-necked in terms of his item build. He needs high AD, but he needs to focus on the cheaper items to remain viable when he doesn’t have a zillion kills.
Luckily for Pyke, that’s still very possible. Here are the items we found to be the most effective with his kit and low budget, in order. Keep in mind, the further you get into any item build past the first couple of items, the more situational items become.
Thanks to Pyke’s passive, which converts all bonus health into bonus AD, he can still build sort of cheap and hold onto his high AD. It’s also because of that passive that you want to buy the Relic Shield as your starting item, as this passive transforms the Shield into the only starting support item that boosts his AD. After that, the Black Cleaver and Duskblade are the core of his build in most games, and here’s why.
The Cleaver is fairly cheap at 3,000 gold—way behind items like the Hydra or Trinity Force. Not only that, but the item’s meager 40 AD is turned into 68.5 on Pyke after the item’s 400 health is converted into AD, which is formidable. The 20 percent cooldown reduction also helps him out with his ridiculously high cooldowns.
The Duskblade is only shortly behind, however. He has an invisibility ability that also boosts his movement speed, which gives him a reliable trigger for the Duskblade’s passive. The lethality, high AD, and passive damage combine to add a ton of burst damage to Pyke’s kit, and he can’t have enough cooldown reduction.
The only real choice for Pyke is Electrocute, like most assassins. There is potential to take both Dark Harvest or Predator if you plan on roaming a lot, but Electrocute is largely more reliable than both of those options. This means you’ll almost always be in the Domination camp for your primary rune path.
In that path, you’ll also be able to pick the new Ultimate Hunter rune, which will work wonders for Pyke’s high-profile ultimate ability.
There’s room to choose where you want your secondary tree to go, however. You could go Precision to get the Coup de Grace rune, which is always extremely powerful on assassins. Alternatively, you can run Sorcery for Celerity’s movement speed boost. There is one very interesting choice that may just work for Pyke and no other AD assassin—the Resolve tree.
If anyone else runs the Resolve path alongside Domination, the AD provided by Domination is reduced and some health is tossed in for Resolve. Pyke, however, turns that health into AD, so he gets nothing but damage while still being able to choose defensive runes. He’ll be extremely squishy, on account of not being able to build health, so runes like Bone Plating and Second Wind can really be a lifesaver.
Personally, we love that strategy. Our favorite rune combination is Domination primary with Electrocute, Sudden Impact, Zombie Ward, and Ultimate Hunter alongside a Resolve secondary path with Bone Plating and Second Wind.
Pyke has very high cooldowns on all his abilities, so the first thing you want to look for in your first stacked ability is how much each rank reduces its cooldown. His Q, Bone Skewer, is the most obvious choice. Not only does leveling it reduce the cooldown by two seconds per rank, but it also deals some eye-popping damage. In the right circumstances, it’s also great crowd control. Always max this first.
The second ability to max is his Phantom Undertow. Although putting points here doesn’t reduce its cooldown at all, its base damage and stun duration are significantly higher with each rank. At rank five, this bad boy deals 235 base damage, and that’s before you even take the 80 percent bonus AD into account. At max, it can stun for 1.5 seconds, which is also great for locking down your victims.
Lastly, you’ll stack W, Ghostwater Dive, which is his invisibility ability. Putting points here reduces the cooldown by 0.5 seconds each time.
Pyke must arrive with patch 8.11 this week in League of Legends.
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