Wednesday, February 19, 2014

League Analysis: Wit's End

Over a year ago, I wrote an article talking about certain attack speed items for hybrids. While Guinsoo's Rageblade didn't see any notable changes after the article was written, Malady was removed and its two passive effects were moved to other items. Nashor's Tooth. the third item covered in the article, received the bonus magic damage passive and while it didn't greatly increase in usage, it is probably in a better state than before. Wit's End received the Magic Resist shred effect of the item, which improved the item but while Nashor's Tooth has the "advantage" of clearly being an offensive item (just not one that is used much because very few champions benefit from the stat combination, for instance), Wit's End is somewhat confusing by design since it is suboptimal offensively for most champions that would benefit it and doesn't provide enough durability for fighters or tanks. However, this is only the beginning when it comes to issues with Wit's End.

The Problems

To further elaborate on the previous statement regarding Wit's End's confusing itemization, let us briefly consider the stats of the item in full:
+42% Attack Speed
+25 Magic Resist
UNIQUE Passive: Basic attacks deal 42 bonus magic damage on hit.
UNIQUE Passive: Basic attacks steal 5 Magic Resist from the target on hit (stacks up to 5 times.)
Assuming the bonus magic damage is the equivalent of Attack Damage (it's almost comparable at best, but since it doesn't help with ability scaling and the like, it's probably not that good overall), the item effectively provides two offensive stats and a single defensive stat. However, because the first passive provides bonus magic damage, it won't benefit from the armor penetration that most physical fighters or ranged carries would usually build, making the passive, despite the great synergy with the attack speed that some bruisers and most ranged carries benefit well from, not quite as useful (this is accounting for the second passive too). In terms of durability stats, Wit's End only provides 50 Magic Resist at best and while the Magic Resist shred that is applied will be far easier to keep up with a tanky champion because they'll survive long enough to maintain the stacks, it doesn't really justify the lacking tank stats.

Furthermore, the item isn't exactly great enough to take up an item slot. Consider the calculations below in terms of stats to gold:
Attack Speed: 33.33 Gold * 42 Attack Speed = ~1400 Gold
Magic Resist: 20 Gold * 50 Magic Resist = 1000 Gold
Attack Damage: 36 Gold * 42 bonus damage on hit from passive = 1512 Gold (maximum)

Total (minus shred passive) = 3912 Gold
Keep in mind this is the best case scenario and it assumes the Wit's End's first passive is automatically equivalent to Attack Damage which, as mentioned above, isn't remotely the case. While the efficiency is a hefty 163%, in a more realistic scenario the total gold value of Wit's End is far less. Also worth pointing out is that if the first passive is ignored and Wit's End's fully stacked stat is calculated, it is worth around 2400 Gold, which is the cost of the item itself. In short, Wit's End might be surprisingly efficient, but it certainly isn't comparable to other items that cost a little more. Considerthat Nashor's Tooth has 3614 Gold of stats when not accounting for the second passive and when treating the bonus damage from the passive as Attack Damage it's worth 4478 at the bare minimum while the item is only 520 more gold in price, making it far more reliable overall with the scaling effect of the second passive potentially resulting in incredible efficiency.

In short, Wit's End not only lacks the stats to be a useful item to most champions, but lacks the efficiency to be worth an item slot.

Solution

I feel Wit's End is an item intended for tanks and it should be designed as such. Firstly, because Wit's End costs 2400 Gold, the price could be lowered by about 200 Gold and the stats appropriately reduced (for instance reduce the Attack Speed from 42% to 35%). With the price lowered sufficiently to fit in another small upgrade, said upgrade could look like this:
Mindcrusher's Blade (legendary item)

Builds From: Wit's End, Ruby Crystal, Ruby Crystal
Total Cost: 3000 Gold (2950 Item cost, 50 Build Cost)
Effect: 40 Attack Speed, 375 Health, +30 Magic Resist
UNIQUE Passive: Basic attacks deal 42 bonus magic damage on hit.
UNIQUE Passive: Basic attacks steal 5 Magic Resist from the target on hit (stacks up to 5 times.)
It is worth noting the item now suffers from a bit of a stat bloat. However, I feel this is a necessity to emphasize that Wit's End and its new upgrade are intended for tanks. This also opens the possibility of making a damage-oriented version of the upgrade if needed in the future.

Regardless, I guess you could say I am at wit's end that this item has been left in the dust for so long.

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