Gwen has finally made her entrance in League of Legends as the newest champion and players are hungry to play her on Summoner’s Rift.
The Hallowed Seamstress was revealed only a few weeks back and since then, players have had the chance to test her out on the Public Beta Environment (PBE). Now that she has made it to the live servers, players will have to figure out the best way to play the new skirmisher and start to climb the ladder. Right from the start, it looks like Gwen will be strongest in the top lane but that might change as Gwen and her kit is explored further.
While the perfect way to play Gwen is still getting figured out, there is no doubt that she will be able to cut through opponents on Summoner’s Rift and potentially be a new headache for top lane players to go up against. Here’s a look at how to play Gwen.
Gwen is a champion that relies on quick combos and correct positioning. As an ability-power skirmisher, Gwen isn’t the beefiest champion out there and will be vulnerable to burst combos or crowd control. This means that Gwen has to choose her fights carefully and only jump in when the timing is perfect.
Playing Gwen in big team fights can be difficult and will often require patience to find the right spot to enter the fight. If Gwen gets a good flank onto the enemy backline or waits until big cooldowns are blown, she can enter a fight and turn it around on its head.
Starting from the early laning phase, Gwen doesn’t want to play scared. Gwen wants to engage in skirmishes and be a bully in the lane, but not without considering potential ganks or bad trades. When moving in for a trade on Gwen, make sure to have Snip Snip! (Q) fully stacked. If this ability is stacked up and hits the opponent in the center, Gwen is almost guaranteed to win out on the trade.
After gaining a few levels, Gwen can start to pull out quick combos that many tanks or bruisers can’t keep up with. Start out by using Skip’n Slash to get in range of the opponent and start dishing out damage with its empowered attacks and Q. While completing the combo, Gwen can pop Hallowed Mist (W) to gain extra armor and magic resist to win the trade. Hallowed Mist will also enable Gwen to get away while dodging attacks, especially against ranged champions.
When hitting level 6, Gwen will gain access to Needlework (R) and be a real threat in skirmishes and even team fights. When using Needlework, Gwen wants to auto-attack the champions in between casts to get maximum damage output. Needlework applies Thousand Cuts (P) and will help Gwen chunk through enemies with bonus on-hit magic damage.
Gwen is an ability-power champion that relies a lot on auto-attacks. This is fairly unusual for an AP champion, so Gwen’s build will likely include items that many players aren’t used to.
For the first item, Gwen wants to get a mythic item. The best option so far will be Riftmaker, which provides Gwen with ability power, ability haste, and omnivamp to empower her kit. The Void Corruption passive on Riftmaker is also a great fit for Gwen, as she will build up extra damage the longer she damages an enemy champion. This has great synergy with her Snip Snip!, which also needs time and continuous attacks to stack up.
For boots, get Sorcerer’s Shoes for extra penetration. Right after, Gwen wants to go for her second item where Nashor’s Tooth is a great option. As mentioned earlier, Gwen relies a lot on auto attacks and on-hit damage and Nashor’s helps with both of that. Gwen can also go for more aggressive burst-heavy items such as Hextech Rocketbelt and Luden’s Tempest, but those choices will likely require a lead to pay off.
Later on in the game, Gwen can go for Lich Bane to get even bigger empowered auto attacks. With Lich Bane as a third item, Gwen will be very squishy and easier to focus down so it is with high risk. For a safer route, Zhonya’s Hourglass is the way to go with a potential follow-up of Banshee’s Veil as a fourth item. To round out the build, go for either Rabadon’s Deathcap or Void Staff.
The rune options for Gwen aren’t as straightforward as with many other champions. So far, there are a few options for viable keystones when playing Gwen. This gives Gwen players even more flexibility depending on which lane Gwen is played.
It’s expected that Gwen will be seen in the top lane most often, where the Conqueror keystone is the most logical choice. With Conqueror, Gwen will be able to take part in skirmishes as she is designed to do. Against beefy opponents, Conqueror will help Gwen chunk through resistances while sustaining.
In more aggressive matchups, it’s also viable for Gwen to pick Press the Attack. With this keystone, Gwen will be able to trade effectively with quick auto-attack combos. For the secondary rune tree, Gwen can go a defensive route with Revolve or be even more aggressive and take the Domination tree.
Right from the first reveal of Gwen, it was clear that Riot Games wants to work with Gwen as a top laner. As Gwen hit the PBE, it was also clear that she fits perfectly in the top lane as an ability-power skirmisher. Gwen’s damage and mobility make her a nuisance against tanks and even bruisers. There is a chance that Gwen can work in the jungle or mid lane in certain matchups, but she will likely need more time on the live servers for players to figure out the best fit.
Gwen was released to the League of Legends live servers on April 15, only a few days after Riot introduced patch 11.8. Gwen arrived with a Space Groove skin and a special Space Groove Gwen icon. The newest champion can be bought for 7800 Blue Essence or 975 RP.