Akali hasn’t been a heavy hitter in League of Legends season 11 when it comes to win rates, but she is still a common champion in solo queue games through all ranks of play.
For a long time, Riot has struggled to balance Akali because of her mobile and damage-heavy kit. This has resulted in several meta states in which Akali has been a dominant pick, while other patches have had her at the bottom of the win-rate charts. Despite Akali’s varying strength, she is always a pick that many players will opt into in solo queue because of the high potential impact and entertaining play style.
Playing against an Akali can be hard at times, especially if she gets rolling. To help learn how to handle Akali in solo queue, here are the best ways to counter her.
Even though Akali is a slippery champion that can be hard to play against, there are quite a few solid counters to deal with her. The hardest part about shutting down an Akali is dealing with her mobility and invisibility from her Twilight Shroud (W). When facing a good Akali player, it can feel impossible to win trades and focus down the Akali in team fights because of her vanishing and endless dashes.
Luckily, some champions will be able to shut her down from the laning phase, while other champions can do it in team fights. As oppressive a fed Akali can be, she can struggle mightily after falling behind in the early game stage.
To counter Akali, it’s needed to look at her from a mid and top-lane perspective as she is currently seen in both lanes.
Counter Akali in the mid lane:
The most common lane to face an Akali in is mid. During patch 11.9, Akali is the sixth-most popular champion in the lane in terms of matches tracked. This just goes to show how popular Akali is despite her having a poor win rate of 47.79% at Platinum rank and higher.
Akali is a classic pick into immobile champions that can easily be assassinated. To avoid ending up in a situation where it’s impossible to get away from Akali, it’s important to have some tools to stay safe. This is why picks like Talon, Corki, and Kassadin are performing well against Akali.
Talon is mostly great because he has some of the same tools as Akali, but better. Talon ha a lot of mobility through his Assassin’s Path (E) and Noxian Diplomacy (Q). Talon can often execute an easy combo on Akali and bully her in the lane. This is why Talon currently wins 56.4% of his games against Akali in the mid lane.
While Talon is a good pick, other simpler champions are performing even better against Akali. The absolute best is Pantheon, who is known for being the ultimate bully at early levels. With constant poke from Comet Spear (Q), Pantheon is able to outtrade Akali throughout the laning phase to make sure she won’t get a lead. When taking on fights, Pantheon has reliable crowd control on Shield Vault (W) to shut down Akali’s mobility.
The last and perhaps safest pick against Akali is none other than Galio. The Colossus is a reliable melee mage in the mid lane with tons of crowd control. His mobility might not be at the top, but that doesn’t matter when three of his four abilities contain crowd control that can shut down Akali. While Galio can usually farm safely in the laning phase against an Akali, he will gradually be tanky enough to survive the burst.
Counter Akali in the top lane:
In the top lane, there are some other options to consider when running into an Akali. The best option when countering Akali in the top lane will be bruisers. Champions such as Urgot, Darius, and Kled are all good options to keep Akali from dominating the laning phase and ultimately outscaling her.
Akali wants to get a lead when playing in the top lane, otherwise she won’t reach her power spikes in time to be a true threat. Opting into these bruisers will secure a fairly even laning phase and maybe even a chance to get kill pressure onto Akali. In the later stages of the game, champions like Urgot and Darius will be too tanky for Akali to handle. This means constant side-lane pressure and greater value in team fights.
While these champions are statistically good against Akali, there’s always a chance that the Rogue Assassin gets the snowball rolling. This will often happen if she manages to get an early kill or two, so make sure to avoid playing too aggressively in the first levels. Against Akali, it’s better to have patience and to avoid playing into her all-in skirmishes.
Akali has seen better days in terms of win rate but is still a viable champion in season 11. Being played a lot in both top and mid lane, Akali can be a solid flex pick for players that are comfortable playing her. On patch 11.9, Akali only wins 47.79% of her games in the mid lane. In the top lane, the win rate is even lower at 46.93%. What has to be kept in mind is that Akali is a complex champion that newer players will struggle to play, while experienced Akali players can still have a big impact. With such complexity in her kit, Akali’s win rate can be hard to draw too many conclusions from.
Akali has always been mostly known as a mid laner can also perform reasonably in the top lane. Akali is often match-up dependent, which is why she won’t always be suitable for the top lane. In some cases, Akali can gain big advantages when playing top and carry the game. More than 50,000 games of Akali top have been tracked on patch 11.9, while over 135,000 have been tracked in mid for Platinum rank and higher.