I would've simply posted this as a clip, but it's too short. I hopped onto the PBE, loaded up the practice tool, and bought penetration items on Aatrox, just to see if Aatrox would struggle into tanks in the coming season. I gave a dummy 10000 HP and 500 armor and magic resist, both values that are significantly higher than values that roughly 90% of tanks reach by the late game. (Ornn, Sej, Mundo, and Malphite are really the only ones that cross that threshold). Aatrox is commonly cited as the juggernaut with the hardest time busting tanks, and if he can do it, any fighter can, right?
I'm happy to report that he won't be struggling into tanks at all. In fact, pretty much any AD fighter, or AP champion that can buy Liandry's Anguish can pretty much punch through a tank without any trouble at all. Here's a demonstration.
AD fighters seem to currently have the easiest time with this. Let's break this down step by step:
- Black Cleaver grants 24% armor shred.
- Abyssal grants an additional 25%, reducing the dummy's armor to 285 when coupled with Cleaver.
- Divine Devourer grants up to 20% armor penetration.
- Legend: Destroyer grants 20% BONUS armor penetration.
- Serylda's Grudge grants 30% bonus armor penetration, totaling up to 64% armor penetration in total. Of that 285, we are now dealing damage as if the tank had 10k hp and 102.6 armor, a mere 1/5th of what it had 6 ability hits ago.
You'd think that speccing into so much penetration would be detrimental to your survivability, you'd be relatively squishy, deal otherwise low damage, etc. Nope. With Aatrox as my example, a build containing Divine Devourer, Cleaver, Abyssal, Grudge, and Sterak's Gage left me with 3560 HP, 119 armor, 113 MR, and 325 AD. As for haste, I roughly have the equivalent of 45% cdr. Aatrox isn't even the worst case scenario fighter here.
Champions like Mordekaiser and Darius can hit up to 79% magic penetration and 84% armor penetration, respectively. Darius had 3760 HP at full build, and Morde was the squishiest, with only 3080 hp.
In this scenario, Aatrox is more of a tank than the tanks are. Couple this with the higher sustain profiles that fighters have, and there is literally no reason to pick a top lane tank as of right now when fighters do everything except engage better. They're lasting longer in fights, soaking up more damage due to their higher sustain profiles, and overall providing more in fights. Tanks drop an engage and pretty much cease to exist after that, because a fighter will melt them all the same. You'd be better off picking a support engage tank, who goes in, dies, then lets the fighter do the follow up tanking.
Hopefully something can be done, because while tanks CAN be problematic, they don't deserve to be completely invalidated by another class building borderline full damage and doing their job all the same.
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© Post "The insane amount of penetration on PBE leaves tanks without much a niche anymore, especially due to the presence of fighters." for game League of Legends.
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