Carries’ most important stat is attack damage (AD). Attack speed (AS) is an important stat also, but usually is secondary to AD as it doesn’t improve skill damage and its effectiveness is based on AD itself. Critical strikes (CS) shares a lot in common with AS, as it can be considered a secondary stat for carries. Both AS and CS depend on AD but they can each double the damage output of a champion if properly built.
There are carries with a certain affinity to specific stats, for example Ashe with CS. In case of such a build it becomes useful to know which items give the most critical strike chance bonus per gold cost. The table below has all the items that boost CS with their gold cost and cost effectiveness. That is, how much each unit of the bonus costs in gold. Clicking on the last header we can order the table by cost effectiveness and make an analysis.
|Atma’s Impaler||18||+45 Armor, UNIQUE Passive: 2% of your maximum health is added to your AD||2405||134|
|Avarice Blade||12||UNIQUE Passive: 5 Gp10||750||63|
|Cloak and Dagger||20||+20% AS, +35 Tenacity||1450||73|
|Cloak of Agility||18||830||46|
|Elixir of Agility||8||Click to Consume: grants 12-22% AS, based on champion level, and 8% CS for 4 min.||250||31|
|Executioner’s Calling||15||+18% LS, UNIQUE Passive: on hit, you cause 4 damage per sec. for 8 sec., UNIQUE Active: inflicts target enemy champion with Grievous Wound, causing 50% reduced healing and regeneration for 8 sec. (20 sec. CD)||1350||90|
|Infinity Edge||25||+80 AD, UNIQUE Passive: critical hits now deal 250% damage instead of 200%||3830||153|
|Phantom Dancer||30||+55% AS, +15% MS||2845||95|
|Trinity Force||15||+30 AD, +30 AP, +30% AS, +12% MS, +250 Health, +250 Mana, UNIQUE Passive: 25% chance on hit to slow the target by 35% for 2.5 seconds; on cast, your next attack deals bonus damage equal to 150% of your base attack||4070||271|
|Youmuu’s Ghostblade||15||+30 AD, UNIQUE Passive: +20 Armor Penetration, 15% CDR, UNIQUE Active: you gain +20% MS and +50% AS for 4 sec. Attacking enemy units with melee attacks increases the duration by 2 to a maximum of 8 seconds (60 sec. CD)||2687||179|
|Zeal||10||+20% AS, +8% MS||1195||120|
As is to be expected, basic items are the most cost effective. Considering that we normally want to build more powerful items, cost effectiveness experiences a steep decrease. Similar is the case of Avarice Blade, another item that while effective, is usually built into Yoummu’s Ghostblade; which is quite ineffective.
Cloak and Dagger does appear as a bit of a surprise, not only does it provide the always useful Tenacity but it also provides a nice bonus to CS. Executioner’s Calling doesn’t seem a bad investment as it’s lifesteal helps with survavibility and is an excelent choice against healers.
Phantom Dancer is the last item that is able to keep the cost per unit of CS below 100 gold. It really doesn’t need an introduction as it’s one of the most used items in carries. It is important to note that, if building CS, Phantom Dancer is a net improvement over Zeal. Stacking Zeals proves to be a worse way of improving CS than to build a Phantom Dancer.
While Atma’s Impaler, Youmuu’s Ghostblade and Trinity Force position in the table won’t surprise anyone. It does seem unexpected to find Infinity Edge so low in cost effectiveness; being a prime item for any carry. Fortunately, it does make up for it thanks to its unique passive and bonus AD; both bonuses greatly help in optimizing the damage from critical strikes.
In conclusion, Phantom Dancer and Infinity Edge are still the core of any CS based carry build. However, the analysis brings to light some other overlooked items that a carry can consider: Cloak and Dagger and Executioner’s Blade. It also shows that, Zeal being less cost effective than a Phantom Dancer, stacking Zeals is a poor choice for improving CS. Other builds have other requirements but as far as CS is concerned, the old classics remain on top.
– Acronyms: AD: attack damage, AP: ability power, AS: attack speed, CD: cooldown, CDR: cooldown reduction, CS: critical strike chance, Gp10: gold per 10 sec., Hp5: health regen per 5 sec., LS: life steal, MD: magic damage, Mp5: mana regen per 5 sec., MR: magic resist, MS: movement speed, PD: physical damage, SV: spell vamp
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