League of Legends Champions: Beginner’s Guide to Ashe
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Ashe is one of the first few League of Legends champions, and the template by which all other ranged carries are judged. Her versatility and strength – both as a carry and a disabler – make her a dangerous force on the Fields of Justice. As she is the basis for virtually every other ranged carry, she is quite easy for the new player while still being strong enough for experts to use. Once you’ve mastered Ashe, you will know how to take a ranged champion and turn them from a squishy target into the most dangerous force on the battlefield
Ashe is an attack damage (AD) carry. This means that she relies on her auto-attacks to be strong, and that her skills generally scale off of her auto-attack damage. Her skills make her essential for team fights (especially her ultimate), and her passive means that she can end up hitting extraordinarily hard when she takes the time to set up a gank. Her utility primarily comes from the fact that she is great at slowing enemies and can scout out an area for free every minute. Learn how to scout with her, and you can learn how to scout with anybody.
Ashe is almost always put in the bottom lane with a support, as she is easily killed during most phases of the match. Her laning phase is very heavily dependent on that support for utility and survivability. After all, her only real disable for a long time is a slow. If her support stuns an enemy, however, it’s almost guaranteed that Ashe’s frosted arrows will land her a kill. She also doesn’t have to worry about enemies in the brush thanks to her scouting ability.
Ashe’s problems in the fight at the same problems of every ranged carry: nukers and tanks. She has very low survivability and must rely on her teammates to protect her, which means that she is always a juicy target for whichever enemy happens to be nearby at the time. Taking down Ashe is always a priority for enemy assassins since it keeps her from getitng the farm and experience she needs to really be effective. With proper practice, though, you will become a master of evasion, and those annoying gankers will trouble you no more.
There are a lot of potential item choices for Ashe thanks to her role as ranged carry. Anything item that makes her hit harder or tough to kill is viable. Her best items are Infinity Edge, Phantom Dancer, Last Whisper, and Blade of the Ruined King. Blade of the Ruined King is particularly important, as it allows Ashe to dump incredibly high amounts of damage into enemy tanks.
Ashe’s skills are straightforward and easy, so you should have no problem learning how to play her. Here’s how you should set her up.
Focus (Passive): Ashe’s critical chance increases periodically while not attacking. This extra critical chance is reset on her next attack, and tops out at 100 percent.
Ashe’s passive is good, but it’s hardly a game-changer. You won’t see this passive a lot in the laning phase, as you’ll likely be using your auto-attack to last-hit minions. Once you reach mid-game, Focus begins to show its true colors. As you won’t be farming nearly as much, your critical chance will build up to devastating levels, and you will be able to start fights with massive critical strikes. The downside is that you have to not attack to make use of it, so don’t build you playstyle around Focus. It’s a nice bonus from time to time, but that’s all.
Frost Shot (Q): Ashe’s attacks slow the target. This ability is toggled (has a continuous effect at the cost of mana).
Frost Shot is a great ability, but only if you master its usage. It’s straightforward and simple: Your attacks slow down your target, but at the cost of mana per attack. This slow tops out at 35 percent – hardly insignificant – and since it is based on her auto-attack it can be continually applied to circumvent crowd control reduction. Ashe doesn’t have a very large mana pool, though, so this is strictly a “use when you absolutely need it” sort of ability. The most important thing you can do with Frost Shot is master turning it on and off for single attacks for maximum mana conservation.
Max Frost Shot second.
Volley (W): Ashe fires several arrows in a cone. Each arrow only hits one target. Volley applies Ashe’s current rank of Frost Shot.
Volley is Ashe’s main zoning tool. The arrows hit for her base damage plus a bonus, so it is akin to being shot by her normal auto-attack. It has a fairly low cooldown and mana cost, which makes it great for harassing and escaping from enemies. Despite the limitation of one arrow per enemy, do not underestimate Volley as a damage tool. It hits hard and often, and can often make the difference in any fight Ashe participates in.
Max Volley first.
Hawkshot (E): Ashe passively gains bonus gold with every kill. When activated, Ashe sends out a hawk spirit to reveal an area.
Hawkshot is one of the strongest utilities in the game. The passive component – more gold – increases Ashe’s ability to get the items she wants from farming. The active component – free scouting with a 60 second cooldown – means that Ashe is very difficult to gank from brush or the river if she plays right. It’s a win/win ability with no real drawbacks, and you definitely want to have it in your arsenal.
Put a point into Hawkshot by level 3, but max it last. If you are confident that you don’t need the damage from your other abilities, you can max Hawkshot first to get extra gold, but it is not recommended.
Enchanted Crystal Arrow (R): Ashe shoots a massive frozen arrow that stuns, slows, and damages the first enemy champion it collides with. This arrow can travel the entire map, and has a longer stun depending on the travel distance. Enemy units surrounding the hit champion take half damage and are slowed as well.
Ashe’s ultimate is a fantastic ability. It is an incredibly strong initiation and support tool, deals respectable damage, and can hit anywhere on the map. It is the best way to start a team fight, as the damage is quite high and the slow/stun virtually guarantees the death of the champion that was hit. Especially if the arrow was fired from a long way away. It is also a good escape tool for escaping enemies at point blank range thanks to the stun. Finally, it’s great for sniping enemy champions and setting your buddies in other lanes up for kills. Just don’t miss.
Level up Enchanted Crystal Arrow whenever possible.
As Ashe’s abilities don’t have a lot of synergy – and most of her damage output is through basic attacks – you don’t have to worry about skill rotation much. Instead, focus on the individual situations that a skill is useful to you. Frost Arrow, for example, is a skill that you almost always want active while you are attacking a champion. Hawkshot is perfect for scouting that bush or jungle before setting up a gank. Your ultimate? Fire that sucker across the map whenever you are confident you can score a hit. These are only a few of the situations. Practice as Ashe and eventually you will have a handle on how to maximize your threat to the enemy team