I currently hold the opinion that if you were to wish to reach Silver or Gold Elo in League of Legends the fastest, you should play simple bully toplaners. They tilt the hell out of their enemies, which is a surprisingly effective strategy, next to having kits that allow them to quickly accelerate ahead of the opponent. Nonetheless, every single one of the champions ill cover here are different so they’ll require separated posts and another approach.

In this post, i’ll cover the basics on Swain. How to lane, how to scale and i’ll help you get into Swain thanks to an informational League player.

But he’s just a mage, how does he even lane well?

Swain has always been an odd case. He’s a really old sustained mage champion that Riot released forever ago. He’s shifted into the meta, most commonly when tanky AP items were on the rise (like RoA was built on everyone).

Currently, i would say Swain is the best magic toplaner in the game next to Vladimir. However, whenever i give this advice to players, many talk back about how “Mages don’t get through lane cause Fighters just collapse on them”. But that’s the thing. Swain himself, has a kit that will guarantee you get through laning phase if you play it right. The secret as to why he suddenly gained popularity is the following:

  • Swain has great mana sustain thanks to his passive. He can stay in lane with his spells for a good while before he runs out of mana and with catalyst, its even harder.
  • Swain has two CC spells and an ultimate that heals him. He’s a particularly hard to reach as he can lock you down before you even get to him.
  • Building on the first point, because of his above average mana sustain, he can go for a superdefensive starting build, get away with hit and essentially skip your weakest phase till you reach you peak power.

For laning, you really only just constantly harass them. Throw Q’s at them, auto attack them for every creep they get, base once you get Catalyst and teleport back to lane and keep your bullying up. If you can, practice lasthitting under tower, cause if the enemy pushes you under tower, it will be advantageous for you if you are able to get the cs.

The midgame bird guts the worm

Once Swain gets his Rod of Ages fully stacked and a Zhonyas next to it, Swain becomes a killing machine against squishies. While he wont be able to harm full tanks too much, any squishy will melt to your ridiculous damage in combination with your tankyness.

Swain is strongest when flanking from the side, so look for opportunities. Shove sidelanes, and rotate through the jungle to surprise your enemy backline and melt them, and when the enemy tries collapsing on you, just Zhonyas. Generally, if the enemy has a carry with Morellonomicon/Executioner’s Calling, taking those out first will allow you to stay in the fight for longer.

Even later into the game, Swain synergizes with almost all AP items and even some tanky items (Spirit Visage/Abyssal Mask) which allows him to itemize directly against the biggest enemy threats. Just be sure to pick up some source of Magic Penetration and you’ll have an impact.


For more information on Swain, i suggest you check out Quas. He’s the one who brought him back into the meta and watching his gameplay will show you just how strong Swain can be. Find how to itemize, what runes and masteries to run on his profile.

This would conclude the first post on the toplane bully gods. The next champion, my personal favorite of the bunch, is Vladimir. Stay tuned and good luck on the rift. 🙂