In Teamfight Tactics, there has been some mystery as to how mana for units is generated during the game. Luckily, we got some clarification from a QA team member giving us some insight. You can find that post here.
Here's the skinny. There are 2 ways that units can generate mana during combat. The first is by Auto Attacking enemies. The second is by taking damage. This obviously excludes abilities as being able to generate Mana, which should be avoided.
Hitting enemies with basic attacks has a maximum of 10 Mana earned per attack, except for SORCERERS and ELEMENTALISTS who have a 2x multiplier and therefore a cap of 20 Mana per attack. What's interesting about this is it, in my eyes, explains why Attack Speed items are highly valued in the current meta. Since the Mana per attack is capped, then dealing more damage (with an Infinity Edge for example) is limited and less effective than simply less effective than attacking more times. Especially for Sorcerers and Elementalists who have higher per attack Mana gains, attacking faster gets you mana faster. This is why Aurelion Sol, Brand, or Veigar do so well with a Rageblade or Rapid Firecannon.
All units generate Mana when they receive damage. However, the Mana gained is calculated off the pre-mitigated damage and not the damage actually received. This means that Locket, Knight Bonus, and Armor do not reduce the amount of mana you generate. So if you're attacking a Knight who has the flat damage reduction Knight bonus they will still gain the same amount of Mana they would if that synergy bonus wasn't in effect. I personally dig this strategy as it normalizes the amount of mana gained and prevents weird exceptions where placing say a Frozen Heart on your tank will make them ult less often, which is a weird interaction that might discourage item use in a game that is largely item-focused.
Additionally, misses and dodges generate no Mana for the defender. This makes sense if you think about the above paragraph as you technically received zero pre-mitigated damage as the attack was completely avoided. However, attackers do still receive Mana for missing a target.
Some units start the round with some Mana (even without items) and this is a balancing factor that is used to help some units get their first ability cast off but keeps their subsequent casts less likely since you reset back to 0 Mana but still have a higher cap.
There also seems to be a limiting function for a unit's star level, beyond just the fact that they will have a lower attack speed and attack damage stat. 1-star units tend to gain between 6 and 10 Mana per attack, while 2-star and 3-star will almost always hit the 10 Mana cap per attack.
I'd like to see a more balanced algorithm that includes damage dealt as a factor. I think hard capping the Mana gained weakens units like Assassins and items like Infinity Edge, Bloodthirster, and Gunblade. It also places a high value on Attack Speed as a global "always useful" stat, which may limit strategic options.
What do you think?
- Do you feel there are improvements to be made in Mana Generation?
- How do you feel about ability casting AI?
I welcome any feedback you may have on my content. Thanks for reading!
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