BLG3RNT BUILDS: The Complete Gwen Guide by BLG3RNT

BLG3RNT BUILDS: The Complete Gwen Guide

Last Updated: Nov 25, 2016
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Table of Contents Top

Introduction Top


I've been playing Vainglory casually since around 1.6 when Rona was released. I've always been a fan of VGF guides and they've helped me a lot through the game. I never felt my understanding of the game was good enough to create build guides, I just played.

I started collecting stats and compiled ways to understand the game, and what effects the builds truly have. Hopefully that will translate well to my build guides. I'm not a pro player, but I think I am pretty good with analysis, and I think my guides will contribute to other players enjoying the game further. If you've read my guides before you'll be familiar with the format. I try to keep them all similar, so enjoy!

A final note on my guides and guides in general: The author of any guide has a particular play style. I am no different. My guides reflect my play style. They won't fit everyone's style. Typically for my builds I look for different ways to build characters. There isn't a reason to repeat the same stuff over and over, but mostly I look for what works for me. So understand these guides may not reflect the typical thought process towards a character.

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Welcome to BLG3RNT BUILDS: Gwen

Change Log Top

Gwen is a new character there are bound to be several nerfs upcoming. I call this the "Complete" guide, but it's currently not complete. I'm releasing this very early so as my understanding of Gwen evolves so will this guide. Stay Tuned...

Added CP Boom Build
Updated Build Stats
Updated Abilities

About Stats and Items Top

Throughout this guide I will explain what this build actually does for your stats, how the items affect your build and abilities. It is my hope that this will help you better understand how swapping items effects your character. A guide is a exactly that, a guide. You don't have to follow this to the letter. Your game play is probably different than mine.

The reality of this, however, is that it's virtually impossible to cover every variation against every opponent. If there is something specific you are having problems understanding let me know in the comments and I'll try to help you out. I will say up front, that it is completely possible that I won't be able to answer every request. That circles back around to not being able to cover every variation.

All of the stats I give here are based on the characters lvl 12 stats

I will offer stats vs particular items. Such as "This build deals x damage vs Aegis. Since I cannot account for every character and every possible statistical build I will let you know what the stats vs that item are.

I generally math well, but if you see a calculation that might be inaccurate please, please, please let me know.

In general stats are rounded off rather than ridiculously long decimal numbers.

One final note I can think of: I searched for hours looking for basic attack speeds. I could not locate anything that stated what 100% attack speed officially meant. The closest I came to an answer was that at 100% attack speed a character would attack approximately 1 time every 1.3 seconds, so that's what I ended up using for my stat analysis.

Lore Top

Gwen's Lore is a comic. You can find it here.

Vainglory Spotlight Top

My Thoughts on Gwen Top

Here we are yet again. Another new hero on the Halcyon Fold. These are always exciting times for us Vainglory fans. The anticipation kills us. That's why so many, including myself, sit around and watch hours of goofballs (I mean that in a loving way) sitting around telling us about the update, and playing the game we can't play with all the cool new stuff we can't wait to try. But with each update comes the possibility of let down.

This is simply my opinion, but in recent releases Lyra and Samuel were home runs, out of the park great characters that have changed the game forever. You can tell that by how often they are banned or chosen in matches at the pro level. Baron on the other hand, was kind of a two-base hit. He brought exciting new elements to the game, a new way to play the game, but as of now I think he's still trying to find his place in the game, and he very well may become stuck in the same niche purgatory that characters like Ozo, Fortress, and Joule. Once in a while you'll see a play who is amazing with them, once in a while they will make an appearance at the pro level, but generally they aren't popular picks.

So here is the big question. What are we getting with Gwen?

Well on day one it's always risky for me to guess where she'll end up, but my understanding of the game (which is superior of my ability to execute) allows me to make an educated guess of where she might fall. Let me start by saying I think once again SEMC has done it. They have given us a character that is going to change the way we play this game. Dude, she's just female Ringo she's nothing knew. It's very possible you are thinking that, but in my opinion you'd be wrong. I'm actually surprised at the fact they were able to make a character that appeared like a cheap duplicate of a character they already had, turn into a completely different character. In order to master Gwen you are going to have to think of laning in a whole new way.

Here's what we get with Gwen

The 4th worst inherent health. Only Lyra, Celeste, and Petal have worse health at level 12.
The 2nd worst energy supply. Only SAW has less. (I do not include the 5 characters that don't use energy in this.)
The 9th worst Weapon Power.
Her attack speed is third only to Vox, and Fortress. (before you get excited understand that 11 of the 28 characters fall into this category).
Armor & Shield are the same 86 rating that almost everyone has.
Only Vox & Celeste have worse range (amongst the range characters). This is a bit misleading tho, because we know that Vox reaches further than his range by bouncing his attacks.
Only Phinn and Baron have a lower speed rating. Understand (and this is important) that this is misleading. Skedaddle grants Gwen movement bonus that makes her significantly faster than any other character in the game.

I'm going to save most of my insight for the game play sections below, so for now...

On with the show.

Abilities Top

Slot: Heroic Perk

After not attacking for 1.4s, Gwen's next basic attack is a Boomstick shot that deals bonus damage.
  • Bonus damage: 25-80 (+40% of bonus weapon power)
  • Additional attack speed increase the frequency of Boomstick shots.

This is going to be your friend in the lane. You will know when it's ready by the sound it makes, which sounds like spurs. When you hear that sound you know you're ready for an empowered shot.
Buckshot Bonanza
Slot: A

Gwen blasts enemies in the target direction, dealing weapon damage to all targets in a cone. Enemies hit by this ability are slowed and revealed for 2s.
  • Deals reduced damage to minions.
  • Maximum slow amount: 65%.

This ability is exciting and probably surprising and frustrating for enemies. Imagine trying to outrun the fastest character in the game, and they have an ability that applies a slow to you as well. This ability is surprisingly powerful with CP builds (especially early game), kinda loses it's luster with WP builds. This ability also can function as your own flare gun, which can come in really handy in the lane to check for ganks waiting in the brush. The only character in the game with this perk. Before you say Celeste, yes Celeste's basic attack reveals enemies, but if she can't see them she's can't target them. I think Baron's Ion Cannon might, but who's going to risk such an expensive ability, with such a long cooldown, just to check a brush?

One little trick when in the lane and on your opponents side of the map is to farm from above the lane minions, and occasionally use this ability aimed towards the opponents brush. It will damage the minions so it's not wasted, and will also reveal anyone waiting for a gank.

This ability is kinda reminiscent of Baron's Porcupine Mortar without the wait time, in that it applies a slow, is powerful with CP, and more like a slap in the face with WP.

I Overdrive this with CP builds, but not with WP builds.
Slot: B

Gwen gains a burst of move speed while instantly removing from herself any negative movement-impairing effects.
  • Blocks further effects for 0.5s.
  • Passive: Gwen gains 0.6 bonus move speed for the entire match. This effect is temporarily disabled for 5s upon taking damage from an enemy hero.

Goodbye, Koshka! Koshka is my nemesis, especially when using squishy characters. I suck with Reflex Block. This ability is Reflex Block for the reactionary challenged like me. If you are hit with a stun, a slow, a snare, or a silence it removes them. It will also block them like Reflex Block but with a much smaller window. You are generally better off letting it happen to you, and then using the ability. I always overdrive this. It's such a powerful escape option I want the shortest cooldown time for it.
Aces High
Slot: C

Gwen flings a card in the target direction, stunning and dealing weapon damage the first hero it hits.
  • The card damages everything it passes through.
  • Deals reduced damage to minions.

This ability is exciting. It's the only on demand stun on a sniper in the game. Celeste is a mage, and Kestrel isn't on demand, it's a trap. I will say the aim is off on the ability. I don't know if that's intensional or something they will fix in the future. The ability curves, much like if you were to try and throw a real card. Best I can tell is that is arcs and will end at what would have been a straight line when it reaches it's full range, but in the middle it's not on a straight line so you will have to learn how to aim with that arc. I usually make sure I tap near the bottom of the character I'm aiming at to ensure a hit. It will probably end up in some misses when you make long range attempts.

I overdrive this with WP builds because the damage is better than Buckshot Bonanza with WP.

One other note with this is that you can't use this to stun jungle minions. I know, all these different rules can be confusing, like Alpha who can use Prime Directive on jungle minions, but not lane minions (which is a good thing for this ability), and still there are some characters who have stuns that work on all minions. This ability is more like Krul's From Hell's Heart. You can use it to cause damage, but you can't use it to stun.

Build Stats Top

Here are the lvl 12 stats for these builds.

CP Slow
Basic attack with Boomstick perk 175
Health 1825 (450)
Energy 395 (0)
Crystal Power 230
Weapon Power 125 (0)
Cooldown 0
Energy Regen 0
Health Regen 0
Atk Spd 201 (65)
Armor 201 (115)
Shield 246 (160)
Range 5.1 (0)
Move Speed 3.6 (0.6)
(4.2) with Skedaddle perk
Crystal Lifesteal 10
Weapon Lifesteal 0
Shield Pierce 10%
Armor Pierce 0
Crit Chance 0
Crit Dmg 0
Sprint 2
CP Boom
Basic attack with Boomstick perk 175
Health 1775 (400)
Energy 895 (500)
Crystal Power 275
amp'd to 371 w/ Broken Myth
Weapon Power 125 (0)
Cooldown 155%
Energy Regen 11.5
Health Regen 0
Atk Spd 146 (0)
Armor 201 (115)
Shield 246 (160)
Range 5.1 (0)
Move Speed 3.5 (0.6)
(4.1) with Skedaddle perk
Crystal Lifesteal 10
Weapon Lifesteal 0
Shield Pierce 10%
Armor Pierce 0
Crit Chance 0
Crit Dmg 0
Sprint 3
WP Build
Basic attack with Boomstick perk 256
Health 1825 (450)
Energy 395 (0)
Crystal Power 0
Weapon Power 340 (215)
Cooldown 0
Energy Regen 0
Health Regen 0
Atk Spd 221 (85)
Armor 201 (115)
Shield 246 (160)
Range 5.1 (0)
Move Speed 3.6 (0.6)
(4.2) with Skedaddle perk
Crystal Lifesteal 10
Weapon Lifesteal 0
Shield Pierce 10%
Armor Pierce 0
Crit Chance 0
Crit Dmg 0
Sprint 2

Build Items Examined Top

Swift Shooter:
This is your starting item no matter which path you're taking. I like this item because it speed shortens the cooldown for Boomstick.
Alternating Current
Speed for crystal path. Synchronizes well with Boomstick. Also applies crystal damage to your basic attacks every other attack, which will synchronize well in just a minute.
This will theoretically increase the slow of Buckshot Bonanza, and with Alternating Current will allow you to apply a slow to every other basic attack.
This item is straight forward 150 WP.
Breaking Point
With an AOE skill like Buckshot Bonanza this item goes well. You can apply multiple stacks at the same time. It's also attack speed, which again lowers the cooldown on Boomstick
There are probably several WP items you could put in it's place. I like the speed for Boomstick and with the AOE Buckshot Bonanza I like being able to apply armor shred to multiple opponents at the same time.
Pretty simple, it's your protection against CP.
Atlas Pauldron
Why in the world would you pick this instead of Metal Jacket? I'm sure you're asking. I find the biggest threats to Gwen when I play are the melee characters, like Rona, who can quickly close the gap and attack. Gwen is fast enough to avoid most ranged players which is really when you want Metal Jacket. If you're at full health, and end up in a 1v1 with someone like Rona you can probably win the encounter if you slow their attack.
Journey Boots
I like these boots over the others because escape and kiting are huge parts of Gwen's game. A 12 second cooldown and the fastest boots on the fastest character are a good way to do that.

Optional Items Top

Some of the items I'd put on the optional list.

This item can go well with Gwen. She can often struggle to push the lane compared with other laners. This can help her clear, especially with CP. It also offers other benefits, which are missing from my builds, like energy regen and cooldown. This is a serious player in the Gwen build. I'm a ginormous fan of Stormcrown and probably try to use it too much, so for that sake I make it optional.

If you don't want the extra slow, you could use this instead of Frostburn.

Halcyon Chargers
This can give you the extra energy that you will often need. I prefer Journey Boots, but if you could choose to go with these instead.

Item Economics Top

When you are building your items, what is the best approach to building them? We often talk about rushing items, but is that the best way to do it? Let's take a look.

Let's say the first two items we are going to build are Shatterglass & Broken Myth.

To get there we know we have to build:

4 Crystal Bits
2 Heavy Prisms
1 Eclipse Prism
1 Piercing Shard

Before finally reaching our goal. For this example let's say we start the game with a Crystal Bit and 2 Halcyon Potions, as we want to keep one item slot always open for our Halcyon Potions, so we will be left with 4 item slots.

On your first trip back to the shop you've amassed 1400 gold, which would be enough to purchase a Heavy Prism (750 by upgrading the Crystal Bit), and a Eclipse Prism (650). That's a total of 85 CP.

On the other hand we could purchase 3 more Crystal Bits for 900 gold since we know we need a total of 4 for the Shatterglass & Broken Myth we are building towards. Then we could also upgrade 1 of those Crystal Bits to an Eclipse Prism for an additional 350. Putting our total cost at 1250. In this case we'd have a total of 95 CP for 150 less gold.

This still leaves you with 1 item slot open, which you could soon place Sprint Boots in or whatever other item you like to get in the early game.

In Vainglory the lower tier items often offer more bang for your buck, so to speak. Obviously eventually we have to upgrade because we have limited item slots. If you know your build well, and plan it out, sometimes building towards 2 items by stocking lower tier items first makes you more powerful early game, instead of rushing and pouring all of your resources into rushing that Shatterglass. Also keep in mind, that in this particular scenario the Shatterglass, which we are building towards first, has no special passive that benefits us if we get there sooner, it's pure CP. Take this into account with your build when deciding if you want to rush an item or stockpile smaller items first.

Item Progression Top

I'm often asked for a more in depth look at the build. What to prioritize, and what order to buy things. You may have noticed many guides that include stages in their item builds, such as "1st shop visit" or "mid game" or "by 10 minutes", etc. I do not. The reason for this is I play with the flow of the game. When I find a good time to shop I shop, what gold I have to spend at that time I typically spend. I always try to come away from the shop or respawn stronger than I entered. That being said I can understand the desire to understand the thought process behind someone's build, how and when they build what. So upon request I'm including this section to explain how I purchase to the best of my ability. Use it as a guide, adapt to your situation.

I include the above section in every guide I publish for a reason. To help people understand that you can get stronger faster buy purchasing several T1 items first. That's the approach I take to start the game, soon after you run out of slots and thus you can't always use that strategy.

For priority of the build I prioritize items in the order of the recommended build. That doesn't mean that I wait to build one before the other. That also doesn't mean that I wait to purchase any components of until that items turn.

My buying strategy is vastly different when I lane than when I jungle. As a jungle I have far easier and more repetitious access to the jungle shop since I can engage minions as I choose, and typically I have down time from the other opponents while they are farming in their jungle. In the following example I will demonstrate my typical lane buying strategy and order, you should be able to take away from it a strategy for jungle, just knowing that you'll probably purchase in far more frequent increments.

For this example I'll use my CP build as the example, but understand that I am pretty consistent regardless of the build, in the way I purchase items, it's simply a matter of what items I am purchasing.

I'd also like to say I try to avoid returning to base ever. If I'm low on health I'll use a Halcyon Potion or if it's available and my team will allow, I'll sneak down and take the front heal camp (meaning the one nearest the Kraken). If I have to return to base to heal I will, but it's much further from base to the center lane turret than it is from the jungle shop. I try to synchronize my shop visit with my jungle rotation so that I have protection when going to the shop. However that doesn't always happen.

Obviously starting the game I have Swift Shooter and 2 halcyon potions. I generally try to keep 2-4 potions in stock during the game, so when I visit the shop just understand I always add potions if possible.

With Gwen I prioritize items a bit differently. I'm able to rush my first item without having to spend part of my gold on boots. I eventually buy boots, but with Skedaddle I already have increased speed faster than any boots apply to other characters.

On shop visit 1 I prioritize Blazing Salvo and usually have enough for at least a Crystal Bit, but I'll get a Heavy Prism also if possible. If I have enough I'll buy another Crystal Bit as well.

Shop visit 2 I attempt to complete Alternating Current and get T1 boots.

Next, I'll begin building Broken Myth. Pick up items along this build path. If there is a particular character that is harassing me I'll pick up T1 defense against that build.

So at this point I'll have Alternating Current, probably 2 items towards Broken Myth, boots, potions, and a defensive items. If I have enough money on this shop visit I'll get another Crystal Bit in preparation to build towards Frostburn.

Depending on the momentum of the game I may upgrade my defensive item to a T2 item, but if I feel we are in control and they are struggling to threaten me then I'll focus purely on achieving that Broken Myth.

It's really a feel of momentum. I attempt to build all three T3 crystal items as quickly as possible, and boots are lowest on the totem pole as far as priority goes, because she's already the fastest in the game, and Skedaddle provides a means of sprint and escape. T1 boots are usually enough for the majority of the game.

This is my typical build path and strategy. I hope this helps you understand how I build my items and how they are prioritized. Again, remember I prioritize them in the order I put above in the item builds. However the flow of the game can change priorities.

Lane Gwen Top

In a way I think that Gwen may end up being well suited for the jungle. She can traverse the map quickly, which is somewhat wasted in the lane. Her short range plays itself well to the jungle, and her Buckshot Bonanza is very well suited to the confined areas of the jungle. That being said let's talk lane.

Gwen is a tough lane play. You are going to be out ranged by every laner in the game. As I noted in the beginning of this guide, only Vox and Celeste have a shorter range, however Vox will still out range you because of the bounce, and once Celeste overdrives Heliogenesis she'll out range you also. Furthermore Gwen's base damage is such that it will be difficult for you to push the lane faster than your opponent.

These challenges are what make Gwen a different play than any other character you may be used to. If you opt for the optional Stormcrown I mentioned it can certainly help with pushing the lane. So how do we overcome this?

Gwen's speed allows her to dance around and frustrate opponents. Characters like Skaarf, Baron and Celeste will watch as skill shot after skill shot fail to find their mark as Gwen was once there, but now she is gone. This dance is part of the beauty of this western themed gunslinger. Dodging opponent's abilities gives you the time for Boomstick to recharge, at which time you pop off a single shot to last hit a lane minion.

Yes, Gwen is going to force you to master last hitting. If you attempt to auto attack you will likely find your timing off and missing several last hits. Buckshot Bonanza isn't effective enough on minions to gain last hits regularly. Here's the catch. As you will quickly find yourself out pushed by an efficient laner, you are going to also have to learn to work with the turrets. You will fall quickly behind if you can't learn to farm with the turrets. A common strategy is to push the lane and force your opponent underneath the turret, because it's difficult to get last hits when the turret is raining down hellfire.

Learn to use the turret as a faster version of your lane minions, and here's how. A small lane minion at full health can take one turret hit, a large lane minion can take two. The new laser sighting on the turret makes it so much easier to keep up with who it's targeting. When the minions are pushed to your turret exercise patience. Allow the turret to hit the minion the afore mentioned number of times, and then hop in with Boomstick and finish the minion off.

I think you will find that while Gwen seems straight forward, and she surely isn't as game changing in her play style as a Samuel or Baron, playing her is a very different experience from your typical lane hero.

Thank You Top

Thank you for reading my Gwen build guide. If you enjoyed it, please consider giving it an up vote. If you are familiar with my other guides then you know you can expect more content to be added to this guide. Stay tuned.

I hope this build guide has helped you better understand Gwen, and I hope I don't have to face you when you're using this build. I genuinely would love any feedback you might have for my build. If you have any questions on this build, the stats and calculations, or would like me to run through any scenarios leave a comment and let me know. I will do my best to answer as many as I can, though as I said earlier I can't handle every single scenario this amazing game can produce.


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