In the mid-lane, you’re going to find AP-scaling mages paired with bursty assassins. However, if you’re the type of player that likes to shake things up from time to time, this doesn’t always have to be the case. Today, we are going to give you a list of the best off-meta mid laners…
How do these off-meta picks work? We’re going to take a closer look at these LoL champions to find out…
Putting Cho’Gath under a microscope and analyzing him, we find that he has a little bit of everything running up his alley. Due to his passive ability (Carnivore), he has terrific sustain. Plus, he is super tanky because of his Feat ultimate stacks and overall good stat scaling.
When it comes to damage, he can use his Q (Rupture) to zone out enemies, or by using his W (Feral Scream), he can deal significant AOE damage – combine this with his E (Vorpal Spikes), and he’s almost unstoppable.
This champion is also equipped with CC due to the knockup on Rupture and Feral Scream’s AOE silence. With his ulti ability, he can deal focused single-burst damage.
What Makes Him Work?
Cho’gath is one of those LoL champions that you can place in any role, and he will do good. When you use him as an off-meta mid laner, he does have some early game mana issues that can prevent him from being a big lane bully, but those crowd control abilities make it so that he can make mid-lane ganks with ease. Combine it all with his epic lane sustain, and you have a champion that will continuously soak up experience and damage.
As a mid-laner, Cho’Gath lacks mobility. You’ll want to prevent targets from using their mobility skills, and for this reason, you’ll want to keep Feral Scream ready. Don’t worry, because you’re tough enough to take a couple of hits for your squishy partner.
Whenever someone talks about Caitlyn, it’s usually because they’re talking about a lane bully. She’s meta-pick in the bottom lane, her Q (Piltover Peacemaker) combined with the Headshot passive are harassing tools that cannot be passed up, as they can pass through minions. Her E (Snap Trap) ability is a great zoning tool that can prevent the enemy support and marksman from touching the minion lane. Then, you have her Ace in the Hole ability – she can use this to finish her enemies.
What Makes Caitlyn Work?
Range and Utility are her biggest strength. Down the mid-lane, she’s an even bigger lane bully that almost always tilts her opponent. While her harassing tools are useful in bot lane, they’re just as effective in mid-lane, especially since there aren’t any supports that can shield or heal her target. Yorle Snap Trap is a useful ability that she can place in the bushes to deter those enemy Junglers.
Caitlyn does well with Junglers that are CC-heavy – this is because of her ability, Yordle Snap Trap, that she can use on her opponents to hold them down.
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3) Master Yi
Next on our list of the best off Meta-Lane Champions, we have Master Yi. At one point in time, we recall Master Yi being a game-breaking meta mid-pick. However, Riot eliminated AP scaling from him, so he’s can no longer be played as a mage. Nowadays, he is one of the easiest high mobility Junglers that does a great job at snowballing and split-pushing.
What Makes Master Yi Work?
Lane Sustain and Mobility powers Master Yi. He’s no longer labeled an AP monster, but he does have some features that make him good in the mid lane. His Alpha Strike comes in handy as evasion and wave clear. Then, his meditate makes it so that he can shrug off poke damage. His mobility is also great, so he can make it to the blue camp, grab a buff for himself, and return to lane without falling behind.
Unfortunately, this champion doesn’t have any crowd control, which is a real bummer. Instead, you’ll have to put trust in your jungler and hope that he/she can lock down key targets. Master Yi is vulnerable to CC, so having support like Janna would be great for him. Since he is a big threat to the enemy, he’s still considered one of the best off-meta mid laners.
Lucian is another good champion that deserves a spot on this list. His damage comes from being able to manage his passive (Lightslinger), instead of auto-attack speed. His Q (Piercing Light) is great for poking past those minion lanes. However, like a traditional mage, he needs to save those cooldowns to move in with an intense burst. While his E (Relentless Pursuit) doesn’t really help him dodge those auto-attacks from enemy marksmen, it is still a useful evasive tool and gap closer.
What Makes Lucian Work?
Burst damage and mobility are what make Lucian tick. His main weakness in the bottom lane would be his lack of range. However, when playing mid-lane, he doesn’t have a lot to worry about because many opponents are either spellcasters (those ranged attacks are easy to dodge) or melee marksmen (he can outrange them). Using Relentless Pursuit is a good way for Lucian to avoid skill-shot based nukes.
Having a good jungler will help keep Lucian viable during the late game phase. This is an off-meta pick that is dependent on the teammates.
Surely you guys are familiar with Renekton – he’s a top lane bully that many know of. His excellent durability, combined with high burst damage is epic. Having full stacks from his passive (Reign of Anger), his Q (Cull of the Meek) will become a useful, spammable, sustainable tool. His W (Ruthless Predator) can rip enemy shields away while stunning them for a short time. His E (Slice and Dice) is used to stay near fleeing enemies, but it can be used as an escape tool. His ulti (Dominus) allows him to extend his combos as he’s working up his defenses.
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Mages, in general, have been strong lately, so a lot of the meta picks this season include burst mages with some sort of hard or soft crowd control effect. Ekko is one of those champions that are great at roaming, and his skillset really compliments that kind of mobile playstyle. His passive ability, Z-Drive Resonance, actually incentivizes moving around and being a slippery champion. Phase Dive and Parallel Convergence, his E and W skills respectively, work together well when you’re trying to make plays that involve a lot of dodging and side-winding. His W, in particular, can be used to slow opponents by 40% and gives you a shield if you decide to dash in and follow up.
Ekko’s signature move Chronobreak is what really makes him stand out. This is the spell that allows you to go crazy with tower dives or potential traps. Few things are more satisfying than jumping in, executing an opponent, seeing your health bar go red, then just zipping out with your health mostly intact. Just watch out for CC.
Corki is a champion who has been facing an identity crisis for a while now. While he was originally designed as an AD carry who focuses on auto-attack damage, he is slowly transitioning into an AP spellcaster (remember AP Master Yi from way back then? Good times). His attack range is terrible to begin with, and even more apparent when you compare him with champions that can also fulfill his role like Tristana or Caitlyn. However, by building AP, you aren’t as reliant on this range and actually have a lot of built-in AP in your kit when you build around that premise.
This is one of those times where picking this particular champion is decent most of the time and excels sometimes. Garen is a simple hero to use and is probably one of the first champions a lot of us got to familiarize with when we first started playing League. Garen does well mid the same reason he does well in the top lane, particularly when against melee champions.
His Q, Decisive Strike, punishes champs who come too close by silencing them and taking out a chunk of their health, all while removing slow effects and giving Garen himself a nice speed boost… The speed he gains from it ensures he will consistently be able to keep enemies within range of his Judgment (a.k.a. spin-to-win).
While Garen naturally hurts because of his kit, he also has built-in sustain and damage reduction, along with an execute as the cherry on the top. Building lethality on Garen mid makes him a nice pick because he essentially becomes a quick-moving mountain who mows down squishier champs. Later into the game, building tank items ensures Garen stays relevant and contributes to the clash.
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AD champs who depend on active abilities rather than auto attacks have been rampant around mid-lane for a good while now. While mages have traditionally been picked mid for AP and scaling, burst AD champions act as a sort of soft counter because of squishier mages lack of escape and armor. It’s why champions like Yone and Yasuo are considered meta in mid, and one of the reasons why we’re seeing a resurgence in Kassadin players. For that same reason, Pyke is a viable option for mid-lane, and when you consider the recent buffs he got from Riot in the recent patches, he has the potential to snowball into a monster. His Q, Bone Skewer, is a poke/pull with a relatively low cooldown with built-in CC.
Support champions tend to have a lot of utility in general, but Pyke is unique in the sense that Riot designed him as a true assassin while being put in the support role. Sure there have been burst “assassins” in the support role for a while now, but that’s mostly due to the ingenuity of the community rather than something done on purpose. Pyke’s skillset is designed to not be too dependent on gold while giving him all the tools he needs to take down enemies. His passive, Gift of the Drowned Ones gives him great sustain in lane, especially against champions that tend to harass you a lot.
He gains a portion of his health back through his stored gray health. What many people don’t realize is that you can also use this to check if a brush is warded. If you don’t regenerate even in the brush, then it’s warded. His W, Ghostwater Dive, gives him movement speed and camouflage. This is great for setting up ganks and positioning yourself by sneaking into the brush and other areas the enemy team wouldn’t even suspect. Worst case scenario, you can use it as an escape along with your E, Phantom Undertow.
If you’re starting to see a pattern, it’s because it is definitely there. A lot of his skills are versatile, dual-purpose skills that he can use to either position, assassinate, or escape if all else fails. His ultimate, Death from Below, basically works like Darius’ Noxian Guillotine. They even share the same cooldown mechanics. While it doesn’t stack with hemorrhage, the added benefit is that you and supporting allies get gold from it equal to a full kill. As a mid laner, you’re giving your jungler more incentive to come in for a gank. Lastly, Pyke is also an amazing roamer with his movement speed. This means that the recent nerfs on teleport actually benefit Pyke by hindering the roaming capabilities of other champs.
The reason Pantheon is on this list is pretty straightforward. He’s an assassin with good burst and poke, has a built-in CC, great roaming potential in the form of Grand Starfall, and benefits a lot in the hands of skilled players. His low mana cost from Comet Spear lets him poke and stab an opponent until the enemy mid laner is low enough for a full combo.
The best part is that Pantheon actually tends to survive initiations because he has a decent window of damage negation through your E, Aegis Assault. You’ll just have to make sure you position and time it right to get the full use of it.
What Makes Renekton Work?
Of course, counterplay is what makes Renekton work. He does a good job when it comes to eliminating those melee assassins. If a melee assassin were to get close to him, he would be able to shut down their combo using his ability called Ruthless Predator.
Renekton relies on counterplay, so you must pay close attention to your enemies’ abilities. Any LoL champion that is within range of his ability called Slice and Dice is a suitable target.
So there you have it, the best off mid-lane champions. Do you have a personal favorite off-meta mid lane pick that you would like to tell us about? Go ahead and leave us a comment.