Welcome back to another edition of the ESFI competitive tier list! For those following this series, yes, there was no tier list for March due to unforeseen circumstances. But for interested minds, I went back and calculated the rankings for March of 2013. The tournaments surveyed for March were the NA and EU LCS, IEM World Championships, StarsWar, and the GPL – the rankings are on the bottom with all the raw data.
But enough with the old info and onto the new! April was a crazy month with tons of games and tons of implications. The Spring season of the LCS came to a close and the pros pulled out all the stops to show us who they really think is strong. On top of that, OGN The Champions started up again, filling the void of Korean gameplay for the last few months and giving us more insight to one of the best regions that play LoL, which gives us a more complete tier list.
For those new to this list, the ESFI competitive tier list is completely objective and based on the past month’s highest level picks and bans at premiere LAN events from around the world, not on the opinion of any one person. When the big money is on the line, these are the picks and bans you saw from the professionals. April’s stats come from the NA and EU LCS, NA and EU LCS Spring Playoffs, OGN The Champions, GPL, and the LoL Pro League (LPL).
The ESFI Professional League of Legends Champion Tier List is a representation of the recent picking and banning trends of professional level teams. The list itself is completely mathematically based off the usage and effectiveness (wins and losses) of the champions by professionals and not the potential usage and subjective strength of said champions. Several top end tournaments and leagues throughout all regions of the League of Legends playing world were surveyed with relevant stats (painstakingly) gathered from each of them. From there, each champion’s stats are put into a formula that spits out a rating that accurately represents the usage and effectiveness of the champion as seen under each portrait which is then used to split the champions into five main tiers which are accompanied by the biggest winners and losers in that tier from the previous month.
God Tier – Picked or banned in most games
|Sona; Jarvan IV|
Sona and Jarvan flip flopped with Kayle and Zed, but other than that the top tier stayed pretty much the same. Looks like the pros really stick to the ‘tried and true’. Twisted Fate continues to have absurdly high numbers – an even 80% pick/ban rate with a 69% win rate. Thresh took the most valued pick award, being picked or banned 88.8% of the time. Despite being highly valued, he only mustered a 41.8% win rate.
Top Tier – Often picked, commonly banned
Karthus this month was one of the more polarizing champions. He is either loved or is tossed aside without any consideration. North America, China, and Korea all love to play him with nearly a 100% pick/ban rate between these three regions. But if you combine Southeast Asia and Europe’s stats you get a little more than 7% pick/ban rate. To put that into perspective, Ahri has a higher pick/ban rate over all the regions.
Zed fell down a bit, possibly due to the tweaks given to him. Fun fact: Zed was picked only once in the NA LCS Playoffs (possibly due to the lack of Nickwu), but was picked or banned 100% in the EU LCS Playoffs.
Mid Tier – Uncommonly banned, sometimes picked
For the first time in three months, Kayle was knocked off her pedestal from the top of the tier list. But while champions fall, other rise. Jayce is kind of similar to Karthus this week. Most regions and tournaments play him fairly regularly but Europe wants nothing to do with him. In the EU LCS and EU LCS Playoffs he was only picked/banned 10% of the time while in the NA playoffs he was picked/banned 90% of the time (you can thank ZionSpartan for that one).
Personally I’m excited about the amount of play that Kennen is starting to get. Something about him is just enjoyable while watching competitive games. He has been a very valuable pick in Korea, but not as much around the world. We’ll likely see more of him around the world as Koreans tend to be one of the leaders when it comes to LoL strategy.
Low Tier – Situationally banned, common specialty pick
|Nocturne; Zac*||lol nope|
Well this is different, no one in this tier was any higher than “low tier” last month. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t fresh blood here. Nocturne, thanks to NintendudeX on GGU, Sense on MVP Blue, and watch on Najin Sword, has been seeing a lot more loving in the picks.
One of champions to watch is definitely going to be Zac. In February when Thresh first was available to play in a competitive setting, he immediately started getting picked and banned. Zac is starting to trend that way as well. We’ve seen him played a few different ways (damage dealing vs pure tank) in a few different roles (jungle vs mid), which just gives him more of a reason to be played.
Lower Tier – Situational and specialty picks
|Cho’Gath; Gragas||Xin Zhao; Nidalee|
Xin Zhao and Nidalee took a nosedive in the list, most likey due to the nerfs they got in 3.03
Other than that, its pretty interesting seeing three AD Carries in the same tier. Credit it to Riot for balancing or just to the scene moving away from the “Holy Trinity” of Ezreal, Corki, Graves that we saw in Season 2. There has been a healthy rotation of AD Carries being used in competitive play, the only three that haven’t seen a lot of competitive play is Ashe, Quinn, and Sivir.
Singed plummeted into obscurity after the tenacity was taken away from his ultimate and the damage was nerfed hard on his fling.
Next up on the list was Blitzcrank, who wasn’t seeing too much love until the NA playoffs when Daydreamin pulled (lol, get it?) out Blitz and reminded the world why he’s a gamechanger.
March 2013 Tier List