Smite solo laners expand to Poppy and Bard, and this is why

By Nicholas James


Feb 11, 2022

Reading time: 2 min

Smite solo laners have been taking League of Legends by storm by abusing the new objective bounty system.

Originating with Janna top players that took Smite and fully abandoned their top lanes, the strategy has hit pro play and is already showing more options to be viable beyond Janna. Both Bard and Poppy were picked in professional leagues recently, with both picks taking home wins using the top smite strategy..

Why do Smite solo laners work?

Smite solo laners abuse the new objective bounty system by fully abandoning their lanes and instead adding global pressure to the map by constantly roaming, ganking, and taking enemy jungle camps. As the enemy laner gets a free laning phase and balloons their gold lead, objective bounties kick in. This allows the other roles on the smite solo laner’s team to get extra gold by playing with an extra support to secure neutral objectives and their accompanying bounties.

To begin, enchanters were the favored picks since they paired excellently with skirmishing junglers and needed very little gold of their own to contribute to the team. New picks have found their way into the highest level of play, appearing in the PCS and LJL regions.

In the PCS, Deep Cross Gaming’s mid laner Hsu “Nestea” Bao-Yuan picked Bard mid with this strategy. Bard is already incentivized to roam to collect charms, as well as offering significant mobility through terrain with his magical journey ability.

In the LJL, AXIZ’s top laner Yoshiki “YellowYoshi” Fujimoto pulled out his signature Poppy in the top lane. YellowYoshi was a well-known Poppy streamer before he went pro, so the strategy suited him well. Poppy offers tons of utility even with very little gold thanks to her anti-mobility kit and high levels of crowd control. Fans have laughed off the ridiculousness of the current meta with a post highlighting both games gained traction on Reddit.

Riot Games plans to nerf the strategy in the next League of Legends patch, but Smite solo laners are flipping the League of Legends meta on its head. Both AXIZ and Deep Cross Gaming walked away with victories following their picks, signaling the nerfs are likely well-deserved.


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