Lately, I have been playing a lot more League of Legends now that some old friends are playing it fairly regularly. I have really liked most of the changes they have made to the game since I started it all the way back in season one, so I have found myself drifting back into the game, deeper and deeper. I am reading various blogs from the pro players to get tips to improve my play and I even catching myself perusing the League main forums every now and again. Most recently though, I have been trying to break my reliance on playing Support characters.
It’s been pretty tough, considering my new found love for Nami. I have had some fun and some success breaking out Galio in solo top and sometimes mid. He was always one of my favorites in the other seasons, but outside of rocking an all AOE team to synergize with his ult, his value and ability to really contribute to a match have been up and down. I’ve also enjoyed playing Diana in solo mid. Her burst is awesome when you hit the skillshot with her ult, which makes her a lot more fun to me than the typical mid. In the past, I have stuck to characters like Cassiopeia with mixed results. With League’s newest champion out this week, I decided to finally learn how to AD carry properly.
I own a few AD carries, but the passivity of bottom lane given its stringent focus on just last hitting and farming often turns me away from the role. I’d rather be the Support who has to harass more and make sure my carry lives. Also, most AD carries I have tried are really boring to play. Ezreal is probably the best exception to the rule, but a major problem I have with him is his popularity. Yeah, popularity, that sounds really shallow and hipster of me. But I find that when everyone has a specific champion and plays that champion a lot, they are even more willing to give you tips and advice or yell at you when you do poorly. As someone so tied to skillshots, Ezreal is an easy character to do poorly on.
With that in mind, I decided to day one buy Quinn and Valor with some spare RP I had sitting around.
Quinn and Valor is a Demacian-based champion who utilizes a crossbow at a 525 range, which is about 25 shorter than the typical AD Carry. This is the exact same range as Graves, so if you have trouble playing him due to lower range, then Quinn’s range might be a real issue for you here too. And, thus far, it has gotten me killed a few times in the few games I have tried. She has no hard CC nor does she have a true escape, so the shortened range can get you caught in a fight you won’t soon leave. Her base movement speed and walking animation also make her seem pretty sluggish, so those don’t really help either.
Her passive comes into play periodically (something like every four seconds) when Quinn’s bird Valor marks a target. It can be a little luck based, but it does a good job of prioritizing whatever Quinn is focusing (which can help with last hits) or it will tag lower health champions. The key thing about her passive is that it’s the real heart to Quinn’s damage, and takes off chunks. Also, hitting the target your passive synergizes well with your W and can be placed automatically with your E. Also of note, your passive and your E can proc on separate targets and last long enough that you should be able to hit both for the bonus damage.
Quinn’s Q is a skillshot AOE blind that hits the first target it reaches and does a small splash. It’s incredibly useful for poking but can be difficult to hit, mainly since it won’t shoot through enemy minions. If you time it correctly though, the blind lasts long enough to get a free poke on the enemy ADC in bottom lane. Oh, and it probably helps that the missile speed on it is fairly fast, so tough to dodge unless at max range.
The W for Quinn is really cool for laning and not much else unless you have ulted. Passively, it gives you a pretty significant attack speed boost after hitting a target that has been marked with your Passive. When activated, it reveals a very wide area around Quinn. While Ashe can check more specific areas, Quinn’s vision is localized but still extensive enough to check the bottom bushes for free poke or other areas to know if you should commit. It also has no mana cost and a cooldown of a little under a minute.
Her E is one of the cooler looking parts of her kit. At max range, Quinn jumps to a target enemy inflicting some damage and slowing them briefly, before vaulting back away. If you do it further off, you end up being a little closer to your target once you vault back away. If you do it closer, you usually end at max attack distance away (again, 525). It’s a poor man’s escape, for sure, and it is slow enough that you can get hit in melee range while doing the vault away portion of the animation, but it just looks cool. Additionally, it applies your Passive to the target, so you can time Quinn’s burst if you get a Passive proc, shoot, use her E, then shoot again. While in the laning phase, this combo will shred almost any non-tanky target, but is pretty dangerous to do given the ranges and luck involved.
Finally, for her ultimate, Quinn’s R switches her with her bird Valor. While in this form, Valor is a melee-only champion, but some of the abilities change. Her Q becomes a point blank, area of effect blind, which helps when meleeing a melee. Her W still does the vision when activated, but the passive attack speed boost is permanent while in your ult form. It’s also significantly better while you are Valor, so it’s really easy to hit the highest levels of attack speed. The E becomes a straight dash and loses the dash away part, which makes your ability to stick a target far more potent. Additional to all of that, you get a significant movement speed bonus while out of combat, which winds down when you entire combat so that can catch most anyone, and once you reactivate her R or it wears off without Quinn dying, you strike in an area of effect with damage that scales based on amount of health missing (i.e. a typical Demacian execute).
There are a few things to note about her R, though. First, while it does last a significant amount of time, which helps with chasing, it also doesn’t provide any added protection or really any extra escape other than increased speed. It is also a fairly long cooldown (starts at over two minutes) and takes a big chunk of mana, so wasting it hurts a lot. Worst of all, however, is it does not reset your cooldowns. So, if you aren’t prepared to commit to using your ultimate, and you have your Q, W, and E on cooldown, then when you hit your R they will still be on cooldown. Their cooldowns are thankfully fairly short, but it does make the ultimate feel a little less fun that it could be.
Overall, Quinn is my favorite ADC that I have played, and I have really enjoyed her kit so far. I haven’t exactly done stellar with her, given that my ADC skills in general suck, let alone my Quinn skills specifically. Still, I wish I could change a few things about her. For example, I wish her W applied its passive portion (the bonus attack speed) whenever you activated the ability. Her W is a great steroid for her ultimate form, but it feels a little weak in team fights if you get unlucky with chaining her Passive procs. Also, I wish her R had a shorter cooldown, even if it came at the expense of some of the duration, and reset cooldowns (at least when the form ends). It feels great when you don’t die using it, but still feels a little lackluster.
As far as build, I run a typical 21/9/0 setup with AD marks and quints, armor yellows, and scaling magic resist blues. I almost always start Longsword and two health potions, and immediately start focusing on getting my Blade of the Ruined King early. I like to follow Blade with a Statikk Shiv, so I do often finish an Avarice Blade before laning ends, and finish the Shiv when pushing lanes to solo farm in the mid begins. Quinn doesn’t have much AOE, so the extra farm is nice, along with the stats. Assuming my Berserker Boots are also finished, and often switch up the fourth item based on defense or offense. Typically, I am getting either targetted or am taking too much damage to help in teamfights, so I’ll debate Warmog’s, Guardian Angel, or Frozen Mallet to fit what I need.
If you are desperate for an ADC, then Quinn is an excellent choice. Her kit is fun, feels unique and different, and she has a moderate to high skillcap to make playing her a lot feel different every time. However, if you already have a lot of ADC’s you like, I might hold off and at least try her before you buy her. I have read some people suggest her as a solo top, but I haven’t had a chance to try that out just yet, though I could see how her kit might support that role.
If you’ve played her or you’ve played against her already, let me know in the comments what you think!