Thursday, May 16, 2013

League Analysis: Executioner's Calling

One thing I enjoy doing in a game that is lost for sure is messing with statistics by changing my item build at the last second. What I've been doing over the last month or so is targeting Avarice Blade and bringing its win rate down. While one upgrade to it is decent and used fairly often, the other three (two of which I have already gone over in previous articles) are underused and/or weak (due to inefficiency or some other reason). However, Atma's Impaler and Youmuu's Ghostblade are decent compared to the final Avarice Blade upgrade: Executioner's Calling.
This item's gone through some major changes since the Season 3 patch. While it was at the cusp of being a usable item prior to the changes with its crit chance, lifesteal, damage over time on-hit application, and healing reduction active debuff and lower cost, it baffles me that the item's cost was increased significantly with very little overall compensation of bonus AD to replace the lifesteal (and an arguably worse passive, since there is no more active effect and the old passive was replaced with the healing debuff application on basic attacks). 

With that said, the item clearly has some problems, but how many are there? Why is it used less than its equivalent AP caster item? Are the solutions as apparent?

The Issues

First, a comparison to the equivalent item, Morellonomicon, should be made. While the passive effects are different (besides the Grievous Wounds application), it helps to highlight why Morellonomicon is used while Executioner's Calling is not by checking their efficiencies. This is not taking passive effects into account.
Executioner's Calling
25 AD = 912 Gold
20% Crit = 986.8 Gold
Total Cost = 1898.8 Gold
Actual Cost = 1900 Gold
Efficiency =  99.94%
75 AP = 1581 Gold
12 MP5 = 720 Gold
20% CDR = 644 Gold
Total Cost = 2945 Gold
Actual Cost = 2200 Gold
Efficiency = 133.86%
As seen above, Morellonomicon, even without its passive accounted for, is a rather efficient item. In fact, it's about as efficient as Trinity Force is (this is accounting for the slight cost reduction Trinity Force received recently). Even if passive effects were accounted for, I highly doubt that Executioner's Calling's passive is so much better than Morellonomicon's that its efficiency would remotely reach the level that Morellonomicon would have with its passive (or even without).

However, this isn't the only problem. Another notable issue is that Executioner's Calling builds out of a gold per 10 item but the end product is effective early game due to its cost. While the Grievous Wounds passive is strong late game, the generally low gold and item slot efficiency make it unusable there too. Even its midgame use is limited considering there are other items (even upgrades to the Avarice Blade itself) that are better than Executioner's Calling, passive or not.

Finally, the item's stat budgeting is pretty strange. It gives a pretty large amount of Crit (especially since this item was recently buffed to have 20% Crit instead of 15%), but not that much Attack Damage to make use of it.

The Solution(s)

There are several potential ways to fix Executioner's Calling, most of which could be combined together to create an item on par with Morellonomicon (in the best case).
  • Firstly, increase the stats of the item. For instance, boost the Attack Damage of the item to about 45 or 50 at an increased cost.
    • This is to give the item better budgeting overall, both in terms of efficiency and stat balance.
  • If the passive is too powerful in conjunction with the new efficiency of the item, change it. For instance, the passive effect could either work like Morellonomicon's passive and activate on low health targets when damaging with physical attacks or bring back something similar to its old active effect (not the pre-season 3 one but before that) that, when activated, allowed the application of Grievous Wounds on physical damage for a short time.
  • To account for the new stats, Executioner's Calling should build out of appropriate items, such as a Pickaxe and an Avarice Blade. However, it need not build out of Avarice Blade. It could build out of an item like Cloak of Agility too.
  • Like Morellonomicon, Executioner's Calling could grant up to three different types of stats too. For instance, it could grant a bit of health, health regeneration, or cooldown reduction. This is largely optional and meant to make the item an attractive option for more champions while also giving another stat to allocate budgeting to in order to prevent over-budgeting in Attack Damage or Crit. Crit could also be traded out for a new stat as well.
Given all the solutions above, a new Executioner's Calling could look something like this:
Executioner's Calling (Legendary Item)
Cost: 2300 Gold (2075 Item Cost, 225 Build Cost)
Built From: Pickaxe, Avarice Blade, Longsword
Stats: +50 Attack Damage, +10% Cooldown Reduction, +20% Critical Strike Chance
Passive - Mortality: Critical strikes apply Lesser Grievous Wounds, reducing all healing and regeneration effects on the target by 20% for 2 seconds.
Active: For the next 5 seconds, your champion's physical damage causes Grievous Wounds, reducing all healing and regeneration effects on damaged targets by 50% for 2 seconds. 45 second cooldown.
Here's to hoping something happens. The recent buff this item got was kind of pathetic in the face of the harsh nerf it received. I would even want the old version back if it weren't for the fact Lifesteal budgeting is way higher (thus making the old version of Executioner's Calling overpowered).

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