The Roshan Toss #4 – A Quick Departure from DotA to talk Tanks

Posted: June 3, 2011 by kingofgob in General

Dear LoL general public,

Just because Rammus is the first one running at you does NOT mean he is your target in a team fight.  I don’t want to hear that he is “almost dead” or that you were “already attacking him.”

Sincerely

TRT

So let’s follow this open letter with some discussion of tanks and why you should not be attacking them (this argument also applies if you replace the work tank with Jax).  The goal of a tank is to protect its carries for as long as possible in a team fight.  Usually this is accomplished by some combination of cc, initiates and survivability.  Why would anyone help the tank by willingly attacking him (why are there no female tanks btw)?  Now most players know enough to not attack the tank in the abstract, but when the time for a team fight comes they often will ignore their good judgment.

“Look at the tank running in head first.  I don’t see anyone around so I’m going to go for the kill.”

This is usually the first trap that players will fall into.  They see a “harmless” Rammus rolling along in a lane and think he’s free gold.  Any good tank will tell you if it’s later than 15-20 minutes and they’re alone moving towards an enemy they are not actually alone.  One of my playing partners always says “Never fight fair ever” which should be a motto for all tanks.  Tanks will often set traps by running head first into enemies, waiting to draw some fire, making the enemies chase and then laughing as the other team /surrenders when they get aced.  This is especially true of heroes with a hard taunt like Rammus or for teams that lack a good initiate spell.  Harass is one thing, but harass does not mean chase.

“Oh he’s so low let’s just clean him up.” 

No No No No No No No!  And after that No again.  Just because the percentage of a hero’s health is low does not mean that hero is going to be quick to kill.  A quarter of a 4000 hp Shen with no items will take almost 2000 physical damage in order to finish off (Shen has the highest base armor at 18).  Even an insanely well geared carry would need 2-4 attacks before a killing him.  This is while their carries are taking the same 2-4 attacks on you.  This also is without factoring in any items at all.  A 4000 hp Shen with just 110 armor from items can take 12000 damage before keeling over.  Next time you go to attack a tank think not what his hp is but what his “effective hp” is to your type of damage.  Effective hp is the amount of damage of one type that must be done to a hero before that hero dies.  It can be calculated by multiplying a hero’s actual health with (100+Armor)/100 (and the same is true for magic damage and magic resist).  You don’t need to be a Heimerdinger to see that the health bar you see as “empty” is not a reliable gage.

What do you get out of killing the tank anyway?

Tanks as I said above provide 3 major services to a team:  cc, initiates and damage soak.  If you are in a team fight the initiate has already happened so the tank did his job there.  Chances are a good tank will use his cc before he can be focused down so there’s a check mark on that one.  And if you do kill a tank he has already soaked the damage you did.  Congratulations you just did the tank’s job for him so please click yes on the surrender vote and stop wasting my time.  Even after you win a team fight don’t try and kill the tank.  Just push him back.  I mean if the kill happens along the way great, but so many times I’ve seen teams chase around the tank for 20-30 seconds allowing for his team to get back up before a tower even gets pushed.  He’s not going to kill you as a team, he’s a tank not a dps.

So please.  For the love of Nuffle, stop attacking thee spinning death ball and kill Caitlyn standing right behind him.  You will win games just by doing this.

(I would like to acknowledge Lol wiki which is where I took the maths from.  If something has changed and is not up to date I appologize)

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