Champ of the Week: Gragas Wrapup


I spent most of my League of Legends time this week with Gragas, everyone’s favorite gigantically fat drunkard (to be fair to other fat drunkards, though, Gragas is our only option). It was a good week; as I mentioned in other posts, Gragas has great flavor, and some very unique tools for disrupting a fight.

It wasn’t all sunshine and flowing rivers of mead, though. Gragas has a very punishing kit compared to other casters in the game, and with so many skillshots, it’s easy to waste a few spells over the course of a game. This is actually where I think my proposed change comes in. I have to cheat a little, too. It’s not one thing, but I’ll call it one thing because, well, that’s what I’m supposed to do for this feature.

Gragas needs a responsiveness tuneup, across two mechanics in particular.

First, his auto attack animation needs to be cleaner and a little bit faster. I missed more than a few champion kills this week because I would Body Slam up to a target and get stunned, killed, or just start walking away before my auto attack animation had finished. That loping overhand swing just takes way too long to complete, and it costs Gragas a lot of damage, thanks to Drunken Rage.

His second tuneup skill is Body Slam. That skill seems to have the strangest hit conditions of any dash in the game. It also seems to suffer from variable speed depending on the distance of the cast, which can be extremely punishing if you miss your target. The animation also needs a cleanup, as it seems to lock you out depending on where the character stops along the animation path. It just feels a little too sloppy. Somewhat sloppy is okay for a drunk champ, but he feels painfully unresponsive at times.

There are some other things that I think could help Gragas out, like faster travel time on his ult, but the responsiveness changes would indirectly address some of his other issues. That feels like a fine fix to me.

If you haven’t played Gragas, I would highly recommend checking him out during a free week. He’s not for everyone, but he can be a lot of fun if you’re willing to spend your game time with an obese Scotsman with a drinking problem.


Champ of the Week: Fat Man Slam

So far the Champ of the Week has been going well. I’ve always enjoyed Gragas, mostly because of his flavor. His skills just feel very…drunk, or something. Really, there’s something about his Fat Man Slam and then throwing a bunch of barrels and causing utter chaos that just seems to fit with the sloppy drunk.

He can be as frustrating as he is fun, though. Gragas really does tend to cause chaos, and he deals big enough damage that people will do all sorts of things to avoid you. Flash hurts Gragas Especially badly because his three damage dealing skills are all skillshots. Miss them and you’re stuck waiting on cooldowns. As Kad mentioned to me part of the way through the week, smartcasting helps Gragas a lot. He feels much more responsive than with the click-to-cast alternative. It makes me wish there was a checkbox or a hotkey to toggle smartcasting for individual characters. It would make things much easier than the current menu rebind you have to do.

I promised I’d write up my build this week, so here goes. I start with a Sapphire Crystal and two potions for a little extra sustain. I try to stay in lane until I can afford a Catalyst and my base boots, but going back at Catalyst never hurts. I then move on to Rod of Ages, my ranked boots, and then Deathcap. If I’m really hurting for defense or playing a heavy harass team I’ll grab a Glacial Shroud or Abyssal before Rabadon’s. After Deathcap it’s pretty much your prerogative. I tend to prefer heavy AP builds, with an Archangel’s or Zhonya’s to really pump his damage, but that requires a solid farm. Lichbane could definitely work on Gragas, and I could actually see Deathfire as a solid item. He’s very versatile.

The basics, though, are Rod of Ages, Deathcap, and some sort of defensive item, be that Abyssal, Glacial shroud, or even Banshee’s. From there, it’s up to you.

Check back later this weekend for the wrapup. I’m pretty sure I know what my one change would be already, but we’ll see if something else comes up later in the week.


Champ of the Week: Gragas


I’ve been sneaking some Gragas games in with the final Blitzcrank wrapup, so it only seems fair to make him this week’s Champ of the Week. As anyone who watched Dreamhack can attest, Gragas has the potential to be one of the most disruptive characters in the game. And who could refuse the love of a gigantically fat, barrel-wielding drunk guy? I couldn’t.

I used to play a good bit of Gragas way back when. I wasn’t very impressed with him when he first came out, but shortly thereafter I started taking him mid and playing him…as tanky DPS. I know, for shame, but it was before tanky DPS was a thing, I swear! Actually, this was back when Trinity Force was rarely purchased, but I absolutely loved that build.

Now, though, I’m really enjoying AP Gragas. I used to think AP Gragas could only be viable with a solo lane, but I just rocked a game with a Skarner lanemate (who also rocked and may have had a couple kills stolen). Gragas plays like a much tankier version of, well, I’m not really sure who. Gragas is sort of unique in the game, which is part of his appeal.

So this week, I’ll be giving the fat man his due. If you have build suggestions or questions you’d like answered, drop them in the comments. As always, you can catch a game with me by adding me at “The Wiggin Boy.”


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