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League of Legends: How to play Aatrox

Fierce, savage and cruel. The rework is a long past, and ever since Aatrox has been one of the most popular toplaners to play for beginners and veterans alike.

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Today we’re going to take a look at the very basics of how to play Aatrox, the Darkin Blade.

The Basics

Aatrox is what we call a spellcasting juggernaut. His kit lets him be a beefy frontliner with a lot of upfront damage, mainly coming from his spells. Since Aatrox revolves around healing from the damage he deals, it’s very important for him to deal as much damage as possible to survive longer. The most difficult part will be hitting your spells to do the massive damage you’d expect from such a big guy, so let’s take a look at how we accomplish this.

First off, his Q (The Darkin Blade) lets him smash down his sword three times, each in a different pattern. This will be the main source of most of your damage. In every smash, the pattern is different, so time your smashes correctly with correct positioning. Every smash has its own “sweet spot”, which is a special area where you’ll deal more damage and briefly stun the enemy, which is extremely important to land. In lane, using your Q to poke is vital to sustain and kill your opponent.

Also, your passive is a simple empowered auto attack that heals from the damage it deals. While not complex, it’s extremely powerful if you can land this on a champion, as you will heal obscene amounts from one auto attack alone, while also dealing more damage, based on their max health. Now, let’s talk about the real nitty gritty of Aatrox.

Umbraal Daash

Aatrox has one pathetic dash, which is on his E (Umbral Dash). The dash is laughably small, but it lets you traverse walls, and more importantly, redirect your Q position. The trick is to use it to guarantee your Q to land when the opponent tries to dodge it. Thus, our first combo of today is simple: Q+E.

Because the range of your second Q is short, we will often use this dash with the second Q. Your ideal short trade combo goes like this: Q > Q+E. By landing your first Q, you’ll be able to easily hit the enemy with the second one utilizing your dash.

Remember that your E has a passive that causes you to heal from all the damage you deal to enemy champions. Use this to your advantage to win trades simply by outhealing the enemy. Remember that not hitting abilities will mean you’re often just as squishy as an assassin, so using your E correctly is a top priority.

Hot Chains

Your W (Infernal Chains), is the last piece to the puzzle. It lets you lock down enemies to more easily set up your Q combos. Because the third Q’s range is extremely small, but comes with extreme damage, we can use our W to put the enemy in place, to guarantee it to land.

Enemies CAN walk far enough not to be pulled in by the chains, but we can cleverly use our second Q to stun them and make sure they’re still pulled in. Our full laning combo looks like this: Q > Q+E > W > Q. Because we use our W after our Q+E combo, it’s extremely easy to land. You can shuffle around with your E usage based on what you need, and you can use your auto attacks and passive ability in between casts, but this is your bread and butter combo for most scenarios. An alternative combo looks like this: Q+E > W (+walk up) > Q > Auto > Q.

How To End Worlds, Starring Aatrox

Finally, your ultimate, simply amplifies everything you do. More damage, more healing, and a short movement speed buff that lets you catch up to enemies. Use this when all inning, or when trying to escape a heavy gank. Your best targets are immobile carries that you can easily combo, so try to avoid diving onto hard-to-hit enemies, as not hitting your abilities also means you’ll die quicker.

In lane, focus on using your range advantage to poke down enemies before going for the kill with a full combo. Because your abilities have extremely long cooldowns, focus on short trades, as most toplaners can take you down in extended fights.

Always remember that clever usage of your E and minimizing the need for it is key when playing Aatrox. You often have only one dash, so using it optimally, like to set up a W, is extremely important. Using your passive effectively is what makes a good Aatrox player, especially in lane, so use it on units with high max health, preferably the enemy champion.

Now you’re equipped with all the tools to start ending worlds. The Godkiller is deadliest in the hands that master it to perfection, so let yourself be rewarded by your creativity and land as many sweet spots as you can. Now let the carnage begin.

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