Sep 10, 2015

Weird Picks #29: Poppy Jungle

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Hi everyone and welcome back to another episode of Weird Pick Wednesday! Lately we've been going a bit too far off the mark lately with REALLY weird picks like Leona mid and Braum top, so I figure it's time to bring it back to reality. Today we have a pick that's actually fairly strong, but almost never played, with a pick rate of 0.52%

With only 44 active jungle champions, that's the second lowest in the barrel, so let's shine some light on it, dig deep, and see what we can uncover...

Introduction

Hi everyone and welcome back to another episode of Weird Pick Wednesday! Lately we've been going a bit too far off the mark lately with REALLY weird picks like Leona mid and Braum top, so I figure it's time to bring it back to reality. Today we have a pick that's actually fairly strong, but almost never played, with a pick rate of 0.52%

With only 44 active jungle champions, that's the second lowest in the barrel, so let's shine some light on it, dig deep, and see what we can uncover...

How to Play
Runes: Attack Speed Quints, Attack Damage Reds, Flat Armor Yellows, Flat Magic Resist Blues
Masteries: 21-9-0, AD Jungler Masteries
Abilities: Q, W, E, Q, then prioritize  R > Q > W > E
Core items: Devourer Enchantment on Rangers or Stalker's Blade, Trinity Force, Blade of the Ruined King, Ionian Boots

Why It Works

Massive Percentage Based Damage
Although her Q auto-modifier doesn't work with Sated Devourer's shadow hit (citation needed), Poppy's mid-game Trinity Force allows her to stick to and quickly burst down enemies until she can get Blade of the Ruined King (whose proc DOES work with sated Devourer). At this point, her items synergize extremely well with her natural 8% max health damage on her Q.

Unique Game-changing Ultimate
The majority of teams have at least one person who doesn't have CC, or is too important to be on peel duty. By ulting this one person, she can quickly wreck havoc on teams by instantly taking out the back line and then turning around to dispatch the tanky front liners as well with her percentage damage. In solo queue, organizing anti-poppy strategies is very difficult.

Pure Damage Tank
As a insanely powerful natural tank, Poppy's passive halves non-turret damage that exceeds 10% of her health, effectively doubling her health again the majority of champions. This makes her a much easier to use version of Ekko, as she can soak damage and then instantly become invulnerable to not only damage, but all CCs as well.

Potential Pitfalls

Weak Early Game
As a result of her limited set of tools at her disposal early on, Poppy jungles rather slowly. She's also prone to getting counter-jungled with little to no recourse, as she has no early game sticking power. Additionally, although her power spike is extremely strong, it does take a lot of gold to get there.

Weak Against True Damage
Although Irelia and Olaf are quickly falling off the popularity list, they do present hard counters against Poppy (Olaf especially). Against champions like these, her tanky stature means almost nothing without her ultimate to protect her.

Low CC
On a team with Poppy, she expects her teammates to keep up with her. However, if the team picks some low CC, low mobility, low burst champions, it may be very difficult to follow up on her engages. On the other hand, if that happens you've probably got a bad team composition with or without Poppy.

Conclusions

Poppy is currently an extremely powerful late game champion. With nerfs on a lot of early game invading champions and many jungler opting to play farming devourer mode, Poppy's weak early game ganks make a much smaller negative impact than before.

Suggested Rating: Tier 2

What do you think about Jungle Poppy? Comment below!


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