As the first weekend of the LCS Summer Split is behind us, we now have our first looks at the new champions Gwen: The Hallowed Seamstress, and Viego: The Ruined King. Both champions were not available to play during spring split and MSI, but have been prevalent in the solo queue, so it was bound to happen that we would see them this past week. Let us take a look back and see how the champions did in their LCS debuts.
Gwen: The Hollowed Seamstress
Despite the hype around the Ruined King since the introduction of the item Blade of the Ruined King, the most popular champion of the two turned out to be Gwen with a 100% presence. According to gol.gg, Gwen has been banned a total of eleven times, five times on the blue side and six times on the red side. When she did manage to make it through the ban phase, she was picked four times, three on the blue side and once on red. The high ban rate from the red side seems to signify that teams are putting a high priority on her, or teams on the red side are scared of the first pick, something that Cloud 9 top laner Fudge did in the game against Team Liquid.
Through the four games where she was played, she managed to end the week with a 75% win rate and was only played in the top lane. In those four games, she finished with a combined KDA of 6.2, CS per minute of 8, gold per minute of 414, and damage per minute of 506. Her statistics at fifteen minutes were a CS difference (CSD) of -6.5, a gold difference (GD) of 520 and an XP difference (XPD) of 105. It is worth noting that the negative cs difference may be due to the game where she was played by CLG top laner Finn, who had a CSD of -46 at fifteen minutes, but in the other three games, she went positive.
Build wise there was not a lot of deviation. Her two constants were Riftmaker and Nashor’s tooth. After those two constants, her build deviated a little bit. For boots, the choice seemed to be going with Mercury’s treads, which had the same pick percentage as Zhonya’s Hourglass at 75%. In half the games played, she took a dark seal. Interestingly only one game had Gwen pick up Cosmic Drive, an item that gives her move speed 10-20 move speed, depending on her level, and twenty ability haste after having at least 160 ability power. This may be due to her movement speed built into her kit and already low cooldowns.
In terms of how Gwen as a champion performed this past weekend, a few things are clear. Outside of poor performance in one game, she’s oppressive in the laning phase and can translate her lead to late game, with most games ending with a positive KDA. Build wise, she is built like an ap bruiser, something that only Mordekaiser could fulfil in the same lane. She also has a safe kit, with her E ability being a dash and increasing her attack speed, her w giving her more armour and magic resist as well as making her immune to cc while inside of it. I can see her dominating the top lane until a direct change takes her out of the role.
Viego: The Ruined King
The other champion that saw the spotlight this past weekend was Viego: The Ruined King, the same champion in the lore that is behind the item of the same name. With the amount of hype surrounding him, how would his LCS debut go?
From gol.gg, his appearance was more subdued, with only a presence of 46.7%. In terms of picks and bans, he was only banned twice, none on the blue side and twice on the red side, and picked five times, twice on the blue side and three times on the red side. He finished the weekend with four wins and one loss, finishing with a combined win rate of 80%. In those five games, two were in the top lane, one was in the jungle, and two in the mid lane. His loss came from one of the two games in mid where he was played by Cloud 9’s Perkz.
Throughout his five games, he had the following statistics. He finished with a combined KDA of 5.8, CS per minute of 6.6, gold per minute of 378, and damage per minute of 413. His statistics at fifteen minutes was a CSD of -11.8, a gold difference of -501 and an XP difference of -794. It is worth noting that the only game where he went positive in those three categories was when he was played in the jungle by FlyQuest’s Josedeodo, every other game had him negative during the laning phase.
The build for Viego is something that you would likely not see in solo queue, as it was mostly draining tank Viego. His most popular item, at an 80% purchase rate was Immortal Shieldbow, where the most common item in solo queue is Kraken Slayer, an item that only showed up in 20% of his games. For boots, 60% per cent of his games had Mercury’s Treads, with the other 40% taking Plated Steelcaps. Only 40% of his games had him taking the item named after him, Blade of the Ruined King. The most surprising item with a high pick rate was Randuin’s Omen, with a 60% pick rate, an item that doesn’t appear on any build for Viego for solo queue.
In terms of pro play, Viego is an interesting case. Players don’t seem to build damage on him which is contrary to what is suggested for solo queue. Instead, they chose to build him as a tank and play for the late game. He does see more play across the map, letting teams flex him more and open up more matchups and composition diversity. He doesn’t have a strong early laning phase but does scale well into the late game. What should be interesting to see is if players will change up the build on him in the future, or if the tank build remains in meta in the LCS.
I’m excited to see what the future has for Gwen and Viego. The excitement that they bring to the stage is something that not a lot of other champions can muster. I’m curious to see if there will be any build diversity going into the second weekend of the split, also to see how many times teams use a ban on either of them. Regardless, I’m happy to see them in pro play after they had been disabled since their respective releases.