Conqueror has been one of the most influential runes in League of Legends ever since its release. Truthfully, it has been a part of the Precision tree for a very long time. But its current form was only added during the start of season 8 in 2018. Before the change, Conqueror was just a rune that melee bruisers used to take to have more armor penetration. However, when Riot Games introduced its new version, the whole player base went nuts!
You see, what distinguishes Conqueror from most runes in LoL is its power potential. Any champion that picks up Conqueror has a secret weapon in its inventory. And if the player is experienced in utilizing it, you might have a problem defeating that enemy.
At the very start, Conqueror was used by every champion in the game. It was so powerful that even mages like Ryze and Cassiopeia started to favor it over their regular choices of keystones. And not only them but the assassins like Kha’Zix or Katarina made Conqueror their primary rune as well.
Why was that the case? Well, Conqueror offers two useful things – more damage and more healing! And so any champion that can engage in a prolonged fight could receive massive bonuses only after a couple of seconds in the process. It got to the point where Riot had to nerf its effects on ranged champions and left the benefits to melee champions only. However, many still use Conqueror as their keystone to this day.
Now let’s learn how Conqueror works in League of Legends and what makes it one of the most potent runes in the game!
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How Does Conqueror Work?
If we break it down, Conqueror is a very easy keystone to understand. Its idea revolves around stacks that you build by engaging in combat. The trick is to stay in combat as long as possible to rip its full powers. And it works like this.
Every time you attack an enemy champion, Conqueror grants you anywhere between 2 to 5 Adaptive force, based on your current level. On higher levels, you can get a maximum of 5 Adaptive Force per hit, which is really valuable. If you’re a ranged champion, each hit with an auto-attack or an ability counts as one stack. However, if you’re a melee champion, you’re granted 2 stacks per hit, so the value is doubled here. This lasts for 6 seconds only, but each attack refreshes this duration. Thus the idea of staying in combat!
Now, the maximum number of stacks that you can reach is 12. As you can see, melee champions can get to this stage much faster than the ranged ones. At full stacks, though, Conqueror fully unlocks and grants bonus healing based on the damage dealt. Melee champions get a 9% return in health when damaging an enemy on full stacks of Conqueror. Ranged only get 6%, but it’s still enough to give an absurd amount of healing during combat.
On paper, the keystone doesn’t sound so scary. But put in practical situations, it can break the game open!
What Are the Best Champions to Play with Conqueror?
Currently, there is a high number of Conqueror users in League of Legends. Understandably, it is still more favored on melee champions than on ranged. But the truth is that most picks can make this keystone work, depending on the situation at hand. Here are a couple of examples of champions that excel with Conqueror, no matter what is happening on the opposite side of the map.
Conqueror works fantastically on Akali since its fits her playstyle very well. Akali needs to apply her Q – Five Points Strike first in order to deal damage. She needs to combine it with auto-attacks and the rest of her abilities. Her ultimate Perfect Execution also takes a couple of seconds to be charged a second time. Each of these attacks grants Akali a stack of Conqueror, so she can fill the keystone up very quickly. And if executed properly, Akali can receive the full healing by the time she finishes bursting one target down, which is where it’s needed the most.
Yasuo is a similar case to Akali. He is a champion that combines spells and auto-attacks to deal the most amount of damage. No matter if it’s Steel Tempest or a tornado, everything will contribute to the Conqueror stacks. Yasuo naturally leans towards a crit and a lifesteal build, so adding a Conqueror is an actual recipe for domination.
Garen is another big user of Conqueror. With it, Garen can focus solely on a tank build and still remain able to assassinate the enemy carry. Another crucial thing to understand here is that Garen’s E – Judgement grants stacks of Conqueror with each spin, which isn’t the case with most similar abilities. So, with one combo, Garen can reach full stacks and unleash the full power of this keystone.
Among the ranged users of Conqueror, Ezreal is the most important one. Obviously, this champion needs both his abilities and auto-attack to deal damage, so filling up the Conqueror stacks comes naturally. Besides that, Ezreal is a very squishy champion, and the healing buff is nearly mandatory for him. And not to mention that all other keystones do little to help Ezreal in-game.
Katarina is obnoxiously powerful with Conqueror. While she doesn’t have that hit-and-run playstyle, her all-in combo can pay for everything. Similar to Garen, her spinning ultimate ramps up Conqueror’s stacks and grants her incredible healing in no time. Katarina is usually the focused target in most fights, so Conqueror gives her a chance to survive hectic situations.
There are many more champions that excel with Conqueror, though. Mordekaiser, Olaf, Renekton, Sylas, and Yone are the most notable ones, but the truth is that you can fit Conqueror in most playstyles. We mentioned the obvious choices here, but know that you can test this rune on most champions and be successful in it.
As a last piece of advice, we want to clear some confusion around the stacking of Conqueror. As we mentioned above, Garen and Katarina are the rare cases where abilities that deal continuous damage grant multiple stacks. Usually, Conqueror has a rule that any damage-over-time effect can only get you one stack of Conqueror. For example, Brand’s burning passive can’t trigger stacks on its own. Instead, only the initial hit of his ability will grant a stack and not the DoT that stays on the target.
Although a bit unfair, this is an excellent rule, in our opinion. Otherwise, we would have to deal with many more champions abusing Conqueror in the game. In the case of Brand, he would permanently have the 6% healing buff due to the nature of his abilities. And so this would become another problem that the game definitely doesn’t need!