Zed is one of those champions that you almost see every game in lower ranks. He often gets so fed, especially when your team consists of squishy champions. His playstyle has improved so much ever since the implementation of mythic items; one basic example of this is his basic combo that deals so much damage when partnered with an early Eclipse Mythic. So today, we will learn more about Zed’s kit, playstyle, item builds, and counter tips, so you don’t have to worry about some games where a Zed just runs around the map slaughtering everybody.
But before we start, think about this, playing a game of League of Legends is not just all about knowing how to play your champion, knowing how to kill your opponent, or just simply getting stronger through items or leveling; League of Legends is so much more than that. There are many factors to consider, like wave management, where you control the flow of minions so you can use it to push hard or to zone the enemy out of exp range or position the enemy near your turret so your jungler can easily gank your lane. Countering a champion with a certain champion is easy, but knowing how to counter a champion with anyone on the roster is the best way to play. So read on, and I’ll show you the best ways to counter Zed in season 12.
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- Passive – Contempt for the Weak – Zed’s basic attack deals bonus magic damage against champions with low health. This is perfect when laning against squishy champions.
- Q – Razor Shuriken – Zed throws a shuriken that deals damage to enemies hit, which gets weaker after hitting the first unit. This is Zed’s most used ability; he can use it to poke or burst you down.
- W – Living Shadow – Zed can cast this ability which puts a shadow on a designated location, which can mimic Zeds abilities. He can recast this ability to switch places with the shadow; it also has a passive ability that restores Zed’s energy every time they hit a target together.
- E – Shadow Slash – Zed slashes the area around him; if his shadow hits the enemy with the E ability, the enemy unit is slowed for a short period.
- R – Death Mark – Zed becomes untargetable for a moment and dashes behind the enemy champion and leaves a death mark on them; after some time, the death mark triggers, repeating a portion of all the damage Zed has dealt with the enemy champion during the duration of the death mark.
3 Best Champions to Counter Zed in Season 12
Zed is played primarily on mid-lane, so Kayle cannot really lane with him as she thrives in the top lane where she can farm in peace until the late game. Kayle counters Zed not in a way that you will kill him over and over again, so you’ll win the lane against him. The counter here depends on Kayle’s ultimate ability, which makes an allied target invulnerable for a short period and deals burst damage to surrounding enemies. Whenever you are in a fight, wait for the right moment before Zed uses his all-in combos on one of your carries; immediately cast your ult, so it shields them from Zed’s burst after he throws everything he is basically useless until his skills come out of cooldown and his energy gets back up.
Now here is a champion that can bully him in the mid lane. Zed relies on his basic attacks and Q ability to farm minions in the lane; with Orianna, you can easily zone him out of minion range with your ball placement along with its burst damage from your W. You can continue zoning him out, so he does not snowball and burst you down in one trade. As Oriana, you might be a little squishy when facing Zed, so rushing an Hourglass or a Stopwatch is very important. Oriana also has a shield ability which she can use to mitigate Zed’s Q poke.
One of Zed’s best counters is also an assassin. Thanks to his E ability, Ekko can easily counter Zed’s mobility skill; he also can out damage Zed in the lane as Zed is also a squishy champion. So the counter goes like this during the laning phase, bait out Zed’s W ability, so he is vulnerable; after his W is down, you can initiate a trade with him and continue doing this until you get Zed low enough to eventually win yourself the lane against him. If Zed proceeds to try and go with his all-in combo, you can just use your ult to get out of harm’s way or use it to heal all the damage he’s don’t to you back.
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How to Beat Zed in Season 12?
- Pick champions with great sustainability so that he won’t be able to burst you down in 2 or 3 trades. After a trade, it is great for you to have a lifesteal or heal to get your health back up.
- Use champions with lots of crowd control abilities.
- Avoid going on 1v1 against him when he’s already built his core items or mythic item.
- Make sure that his W is down before going in a trade against him.
- During the early game, pay attention to his level. He can surprise you with an unexpected all-out combo when he hits level 6.
- Try sidestepping his shurikens, as this would hurt if 2 or 3 hits you at once.
- If you are squishy, you should rush buying a stopwatch or Zhonya’s Hourglass.
Best Items to Counter Zed in Season 12
1. Stopwatch / Zhonya’s Hourglass
Playing a squishy champion against Zed can be challenging, so building an early Zhonya would counter Zed so hard. It gives you 45 armor and a huge 65 ability power upgrade. It also has the active ability to put you in stasis, making you untargetable for the next 2.5 seconds. But be careful when using it as it takes away your ability to move at all, which can give Zed an advantage instead if wrongly used.
2. Immortal Shieldbow
Ah yes, season 12’s Mythic item that almost all assassins hate. This item gives you a shield when you fall below a certain health percentage and gives you an extra passive ability of enhanced lifesteal you can use to make your health come back up just before the pop of Zed’s ultimate comes. If you didn’t manage to lifesteal your health back, don’t worry because the shield will handle Zed’s death mark damage.
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Zed might be a scary champion to play against but given enough crowd control and sustainability; your team can completely shut him out of the game as he falls behind in dealing damage and burst potential. Once stunned or rooted, Zed becomes very vulnerable for your team to take him out. Remember, any champion can play against any champion; there is no such thing as counterplay if you learn the game’s most important features. Thanks for reading; now you can confidently lane against Zed and win more games, GLHF summoner, see you in the Rift!