Mar 16, 2019

Counter Series #4: How to Counter Zed

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Too Many Shadows?

Zed is considered by most to be one of the trickiest outplay designation champions in the game. His shadows give him a massive amount of mobility, and his perfect invulnerability via his ultimate allows him to avoid otherwise devastating ultimates like Malphite or Sejuani. When you combine this with his massive single target and potential AOE damage output, it's no wonder he's one of the most banned champions in the game.


Too Many Shadows?

Zed is considered by most to be one of the trickiest outplay designation champions in the game. His shadows give him a massive amount of mobility, and his perfect invulnerability via his ultimate allows him to avoid otherwise devastating ultimates like Malphite or Sejuani. When you combine this with his massive single target and potential AOE damage output, it's no wonder he's one of the most banned champions in the game.

Zed Overview

Strengths:
  • High mobility 
  • Massive AOE Damage Spikes
  • No Mana Costs
  • Huge Spell Dodging Potential
  • Difficult to Avoid
Weaknesses:
  • Needs Damage Stacking After Ult
  • Low Poke Range
  • "Predictable" Gameplay
  • Slow damage proc

Beating Zed

Based on the weaknesses and strengths list above, beating Zed largely comprises of champions that can accomplish the following:
  • Heal through his ultimate;
  • Outrange and poke;
  • Go invulnerable during his ultimate; and
  • Sustain through his poke damage.
If you don't have any of these, then the following strategies work well too:
  • Picking up an early Seeker's Armguard;
  • Finishing Zhonya's Hourglass if necessary

    Counters

    • Malphite - Strangely enough, the champion that I just mentioned Zed can totally counterplay also has the highest win rate against him as a mid-laner. He can still build full armor (Sunfire Cape, Iceborn Gauntlet, Thornmail), which allows him to shrug off all of Zed's damage. Meanwhile, with no built-in sustain, Zed falls prey to Malphite's obnoxious poke damage. Lastly, Malphite's ultimate is much easier to hit than reacting to such a fast spell. 
    • Anivia - Zed mains generally don't think they have trouble against Anivia's slow-moving stun and low mobility, but the facts do show that Zed has the lowest win rate overall against her as a whole. She's not that good against him during laning phase, but is fairly unkillable as a result of her passive. Later on in the game, she zones off his team using her ultimate and ice wall, which results in forcing Zed into a solo-dive situation if he tries to engage.
    • Nocturne - Last but not least is the ultimate counter to almost every melee assassin mid, Nocturne. We've talked a lot about his strengths and weaknesses in this article, but against Zed specifically Nocturne's spellshield takes so much wind out of his sails. It's very easy to save for Zed's ultimate, and without that Zed can't deal much damage. 

    Got more tips for beating Zed or champions that work well? Comment below!


    Click here for more in this series!



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