Swain is not in a good spot for both Mid and Top lane instead he is been played in Support role more often in patch 10.1. Swain support is currently sitting at a 48.14% win rate with a 4.36% pick rate, according to op.gg.
Currently, best Swain in NA server – Rank R expresses his opinion on the Swain support role. He has more than a 74%+ win rate with swain support in 45+ games.
Why Swain and why support?
I liked the direction Riot took with his rework both thematically and his gameplay, but as a jungle main, playing Swain into counter matchups in solo lanes feels like I have no impact on the early game. I saw people talking about support being his strongest role and picked him up and it seemed to fit my playstyle. Always wondered how people one-trick champs till it just clicked with me on Swain.
- Similar Topic: Swain’s Prophecies – what did we get and what we may get
First and foremost, DON’T BUILD Rod of Ages on Swain, specifically on support Swain as he does not require any mana, but I believe that it shouldn’t even be built on him mid in the current meta. I could see it being built on top Swain in some matchups, but for support Swain either rush Liandry’s or build Zhonya’s first into Liandry’s if the enemy has heavy dive and you, your team has good damage.
Electrocute > Conqueror . In my opinion, current Conqueror just helps Swain at what he already excels at which is all-ins with his ult and team fights. Electrocute on the other hand gives Swain kill pressure in the lane and allows him to play more aggressive without his ult. Again this is mainly for support Swain (support Swain should ALWAYS run electrocute) but I also see mid lane Swain prioritizing electrocute while top Swain can make use of conqueror.
Always max Q. Yes Q is pretty weak in the lane but around levels 8-13 when mid-game fights and skirmishes happen, having a 4 cd Q is way more impactful than having all your cooldowns on 10~ sec cd.
Start E and try to land an E pull auto combo to proc electrocute at level 1 (the 2 parts of E count as 1 stack of electrocute). Take W level 2 and try to land E place W between you and the enemy and pull them into it to proc electrocute. Try not to use Q much early game outside of procing electrocute, stack of spelltheif or pushing the wave.
E>W>Max Q>Max W is what I mostly did. Currently experimenting putting 2-3 points into W early for the lane but not sure how well it fares yet.
Basically a Swain lane looks like this, if the lane is in a state where when you walk up the enemies walk back then you will snowball and dominate lane as it is easy to land E, but if the lane is an in a state where when you walk up the enemies run you down…. go next. (note: Draven)
Learn the ins and outs of E. Its arguably the most important skill for the Swains laning phase. I can make a whole post about just this ability. Try to get a feel for it in practice tool.
W, on the other hand, is probably the most underrated skill. Learn how to place it to cut off enemy escapes, between your teammate and an enemy to stop a chase, get assists halfway across the river, and secure double buffs from jungle skirmishes and even get a vision of bushes and objectives.
Best ADC to lane with are Draven, Jhin, and Xayah (Caitlyn if she can consistently trap of Swain pull). Worst ADCs to lane with are Vayne and Ezreal (depends on the player but like um most Ezreals are uhh questionable).
From my experience, Swain is more dependent on the ADC he is paired with more than who he is against. A Swain Draven lane can win almost any lane 2v2 assuming equal skill. But if you aren’t paired with Draven then there’s this.
I always ban Morgana or Draven. Morgana because on paper she basically counters Swain. To be honest, I only had the privileges to play against Morgana once so I’m not really sure of the matchup, Draven on the other hand….
General Support Tips
Vision Vision Vision Vision (I can repeat it 100 more times to emphasize its importance). If you are pushed up and see enemy jungle on the top side of the map try to get deeper wards in their jungle.
Always have a presence in the lane. This can be by simply walking up towards the enemy ADC when they move up to the farm.
Sometimes holding onto your hook/CC applies more pressure than actually fishing for it.
Don’t be afraid to use summoners proactively. If you think you are going to all-in, drop ignite before the heal. If your jungler comes for a gank try to set up the gank with an aggressive flash. e.g Thresh flash flay, Naut flashes auto into Q, Blitz flash E, Morgana flashes point-blank Q. Not only does it make the kill more certain, but if they do flash away I found that showing the jungler you are willing to flash to set up a gank will make him more likely to repeat gank while their summoners are still down.
Most importantly, as support, I don’t see myself as a bot LANER per se, but I am responsible for the bottom half of the map. Any skirmish that occurs around bot I’d try my best to be the first to react. Even if there is a huge wave crashing bot, If I feel I can contribute to a fight I will ping my ad to farm it while I help out. If your ad recalls and you don’t have a base then look for a roam mid.