The Complete Lyra Guide (CP and Support) by Pasu

The Complete Lyra Guide (CP and Support)

By: Pasu
Last Updated: Nov 21, 2018
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Lyra

Build: CP Lyra

Ability Path

Principle Arcanum
Heroic Perk
Imperial Sigil
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Bright Bulwark
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Arcane Passage
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12

Threat Meter

Threat
Low
High
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Threat Hero Notes
1
Adagio A weaker Lyra. Dodge his ult if you're on fire and you should be able to auto him to death.
1
Celeste Teleport behind her and B + A. She has zero mobility so that should deal with her as long as you avoid her stun.
1
Joule CP Joule has only her ult that can hit you. Teleport behind her when she does so and B + A and she'll be dead in no time without her perk (which only reduces damage from the sides and the front).
1
Kensei Ever since he was nerfed he's almost disappeared from the ranked ladder, and for good reason. Kite him to death. Use your B when he uses B, he will try to ult you and it will get blocked.
1
Malene Her only threat to you is her root, and her short range really makes her an easy target for killing.
1
Petal I last saw Petal in ranked around two years ago. Your B blocks her jump and although you have similar range to her, your second attack does way more damage than her minions could ever do.
1
Rona On the same page as Petal, have not seen her in ranked for about two years. Teleport out of her one gap closer (and the ult that is likely to follow), and auto her to death.
1
SAW The meme of vainglory is here. Step out of his B and auto him while he is a sitting duck. If he tries to run, teleport to kill him.
1
Vox WP Vox is a joke. They deal literally no damage unless they are really fed, and his bounces do very little damage as well, making him perfect snowball material for Lyra. Oh, and did I mention his super-short range?
2
Churnwalker Avoid his hooks. However, Churnwalker is no good unless the enemy has pitch perfect coordination.
2
Flicker Just a mere annoyance, don't get rooted and teleport out of his B.
2
Idris WP Idris has only one gap closer. Auto him and he'll be dead long before he reaches you.
2
Lorelai I've only seen a Lorelai once or twice in ranked this season, and she poses very little threat to Lyra as you can teleport straight through her pools and hit her. Just avoid her stun.
2
Ozo Your B blocks two of his three abilities, and pretty much shuts him down. Just in case he ults you while your B is down, bring reflex block.
2
Phinn Oooh look, free dragon's eye stacks! Dodge his pull, and if he does manage to pull you, reflex block the A that almost certainly follows.
2
Reim More free dragon's eye stacks, but this time he can do some damage if he stuns and roots you. Auto him from range as he has zero mobility.
2
Samuel MASSIVE damage... but only when he hits his A. Which he can't do if you're behind him. Teleport behind him and B + A to kill him.
2
Silvernail Silvernail's main purpose is zoning, which doesn't apply to Lyra. Teleport behind him and B + A. He does less damage than Gwen and Ringo so he should be a rather easy matchup.
2
Skaarf Your teleport really messes up Skaarf's ult when you go behind him, making him miss most of it. Avoid his spitfire and minions that are on fire, and teleport and B + A when he ults.
2
Skye CP Skye is no threat to Lyra. After she uses her A, teleport behind her and most of the time she forgets to cancel her A, leaving her at your mercy. Her stun is also simple to dodge.
3
Alpha CP Alpha isn't a problem for Lyra, avoid her when she explodes and she's free dragon's eye stacks for you.
3
Anka You probably won't even see her because she's banned 99% of the time, but just in case: when she hits her A, place your A on yourself and reactivate it when she appears. Use your B and auto her to death.
3
Fortress Predict his A and use your B when you think he's about to. If he gets caught, he's dead meat.
3
Inara She does little damage compared to other junglers, and has limited ganking potential. However when she stuns you, she can still deal a decent amount of damage so try to avoid that.
3
Kestrel Teleport to a place slightly in front of where she went invisible and B. She will be hit and auto her to death. She's not Taka, so teleporting where she went invisible is a death sentence.
4
Ardan Most people pick Ardan as their support, and after the recent round of nerfs he really isn't that good. Use your ult to escape his gauntlet and auto him from outside.
4
Baron The number one target if on the enemy team. He stays on the backline, so ult behind him and kill him ASAP. Dodge those mortars and you'll be fine.
4
Grace Use your B when you think she will dash at you, and don't get hit by her stun. Auto away after she has used both of those abilities.
4
Idris CP Idris is a small threat with his chakram and range, but you outrange him. Auto him to death.
4
Koshka I wonder what Koshka did to SEMC to deserve such crippling nerfs. Onto the main topic, B when you think she is about to ult or A. If she's caught, she's gone. But if you don't think you can predict that, bring a reflex block.
4
Lance A good Lance can be dangerous, however, 75% of the Lances just want to show off their golden skin, and if they can't hit their root, they're free dragon's eye stacks.
4
Tony His taunt does nothing to you. The only thing you have to avoid is his stun on the third hit of his A, as you can teleport away after he ults you.
5
Blackfeather Much weaker since the nerfs, but be warned that his ult can escape your B, and if he gets full stacks on you his A WILL hurt.
5
Grumpjaw Your B can block TWO of his abilities, but if he has a brain he will ult inside your bulwark, so try to avoid getting eaten. But if you are eaten, immediately B + ult the moment you get out.
5
Lyra As this guide is mostly for ranked, you won't see a Lyra mirror match, especially as the few people who play her usually play her as a support, but just in case you do, the Lyra who hits her A first wins the fight most of the time.
5
Taka For when YOU are escaping; when he goes invisible, immediately B. You'll snare him and avoid massive damage. For when HE is escaping: teleport exactly where he went invisible and use your B. You'll catch him and auto him to death.
5
Vox His very short range means you can bully him easily as soon as you reach level 6. However, bully him as much as possible, because once he has a decent build, he is quite dangerous and should be prioritised if CP.
6
Baptiste WP Baptiste can deal some serious damage thanks to his stun. Bring a reflex block and build spellfire.
6
Joule WP Joule poses more of a threat due to her crit B. No matter what, do not get stunned. If you do, B + ult.
6
Varya A VERY good Varya can carry the team, and there's nothing you can do apart from try to block her dashes (but they still do damage). On the other hand, for a bad one, she will only charge up one dash, which means she's already gone.
6
Yates YES, HIS GRAPPLE DOES GO THROUGH WALLS. And there's nothing you can do to avoid it. Best solution is to stay at a distance. If you do get pulled, be sure to either teleport away or reflex the stun that will follow.
7
Gwen Can deal massive burst damage, and can shake off your bulwark, meaning you need your boots ready. Teleport behind her and B + A.
8
Alpha WP Alpha poses more of a threat due to sustain (aka 2 second B's). Do not engage alone.
8
Catherine Rather dangerous because she can stun and silence. DO NOT ATTACK WHEN HER SHIELD IS UP, IT WILL HURT (especially when you are CP)
8
Kinetic A good Kinetic can carry a team by herself. Always target her first (or second if there is a baron) by teleporting behind her, then B + A.
8
Ringo A sustain version of Gwen. Unlike other squishy laners, do not teleport and B + A especially if he has slumbering husk, he will out damage you and kill you.
8
Skye WP Skye is a completely different matter. Her movement around the battlefield is nigh unparalleled, and she does massive damage while doing so. Don't even try to use your A on her; just auto her and use your A for healing. Avoid any 1v1s.
9
Glaive DANGEROUS. REFLEX BLOCK HIS A AT ALL COSTS OR YOU WILL DIE. Avoid 1v1.
9
Reza A very challenging matchup. Your B does almost nothing to him, and his distance closing is second only to Blackfeather. His burst damage is insane and unlike Koshka or Taka, you cannot block any of his abilities. Teleport out of his ult or he will kill you, especially mid game to early late game.
10
Krul His nickname is the King of 1v1 for a reason. The most recent burst build poses a serious threat to Lyra, as none of Krul's abilities are blocked by Lyra's bulwark and if you're hit by his ult, you're already dead. Buy an atlas if he's carrying the enemy team. Avoid unless in teamfights.

Lyra

Build: Support Lyra

Ability Path

Principle Arcanum
Heroic Perk
Imperial Sigil
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Bright Bulwark
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Arcane Passage
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12

Introduction Top

Note: The threat lists above apply to support Lyra just as much as CP Lyra, except that with support you cast your Imperial Sigil on allies to heal instead of for damage, although if there is an enemy that you can kill with the damage from Imperial Sigil then go for the kill.

Hello guys, my name is Pasu and I have played Vainglory ever since 2014 on the SEA server. I first started playing when Joule came out, so I have been through a lot and although I did stop playing for a while in the middle (between when Idris and Grace were released), I have since then concentrated back on playing the game. I played casually before Spring Season 2018, but in Spring 2018 I decided to actually try to rank up after 5v5 came out, and in my last season solo queued to Simply Amazing Silver in 5v5 and Hotness Gold in 3v3 in solo queue. I currently stand at Hotness Gold in 5v5 and Credible Threat Gold in 3v3, as I have played a little less than the previous season due to work.

My stats on VGPro if anyone is interested: https://vgpro.gg/players/Pasu

What does Lyra do? Top

As mentioned before, I played casually for the first two years of my Vainglory experience, so I didn't really have a main. However, as soon as Lyra came out I fell in love with her ability set, and ever since have mained her through all her nerfs. She was way too broken when first released, and got nerfed very badly in the first patch following her release. Since then she has had her ups and downs, but the concept has pretty much stayed the same for this whole time, apart from the most recent nerf where they removed her slow but buffed her second attack crystal power. More on that later. But first, let's meet Lyra.

Lyra's perk is Principle Arcanum. If she stands still after basic attacking, she releases a missile that deals a scaling amount of damage at the cost of some energy, but Lyra can continue using these missiles even if she runs out of energy. After the last update she no longer has a slow when building her CP, but her heavy attack now does WAY more damage, so it’s a trade off that allows her more burst rather than sustain. Her slow when full build as support is similar to what it was before the update, so there is not much of a change there. A skill that must be learnt when playing Lyra is to cancel this by moving after you basic attack, especially when playing support as it can drain your energy fast.

Lyra’s first ability, or her "A", is Imperial Sigil. This is her main source of damage apart from her auto-attack, and it deals continuous damage as long as enemies stand inside the circle, so to maximise damage, wait until enemies are about to leave the circle then reactivate it. The main rule of Imperial Sigil is to use it for damage as CP and healing as a support.

Lyra’s second ability, or her "B", is Bright Bulwark. This is like a miniature version of Ardan's Gauntlet, except that it doesn't stun upon contact but still stops all dashes. The only movement abilities that can move freely in and out of it are Mirage, Jump Jets (when overdriven) and Rose Offensive. All other dashes are blocked, including some ultimates! These include X-Retsu, Path of the Ronin, Yummy Catnip Frenzy, Bangarang, and powerful abilities such as Feint of Heart, Truth of the Tooth, or Glaive's signature Afterburn. This is one of the most powerful abilities in the game that is not an ultimate, but use it wisely and time it right, or it will go on an 18 or 14 second cooldown (CP and support builds respectively).

Lyra's ultimate is Arcane Passage. Its passive increases by her range by 0.5, 1, and 1.5 per level respectively, and its active makes it the ability with the potential to move ANY hero (looking at you, Yates) the largest distance across the map, but comes at the cost of enemies being able to do so as well. However, if they are standing in your Bright Bulwark, they cannot use the portal until your B expires. Good Lyra's use it very well to escape from enemies, as well as to engage a backline enemy that deals tons of damage such as Baron or Kinetic. However, bad Lyra's can teleport an ally who is chasing an enemy back to where she started, or send a fleeing ally right into the enemy's hands. Arcane Passage is by far the hardest to use of Lyra's abilities and requires good positioning knowledge to be able to pull off the ultimate teleport.

Timing your abilities correctly Top

It really hurts to see your Bright Bulwark go down, but catch no one in the process. One second later, the enemy Koshka jumps you and you're dead. Timing Bright Bulwark is more crucial for CP Lyra because she has a longer cooldown, and is far squishier so her Bright Bulwark is more important to use at the right time. So here I will outline HOW to predict abilities (it's a lot like playing mindgames against the enemy).

So, how do we predict enemy abilities as Lyra? If you're good, the enemy will likely target you first as Lyra can do some serious damage if left unchecked. However, there will usually be more priority targets such as Ringo or Kinetic, so you should be still be able to protect them with your Bright Bulwark. Let's highlight one of the most dangerous heroes early to mid game, Koshka. With insane burst damage and the ability to stun a player for a MASSIVE 2.2 seconds, she is one of the most dangerous early game heroes, but once a Slumbering Husk is built, she really is more of an annoyance that a threat. Her Pouncy Fun is easy to predict: when she is rushing towards you, Bright Bulwark just after you see her coming your way. Since Bright Bulwark's circle is slightly shorter than the max range for Pouncy Fun, more often than not she will attempt to use it at max range and get caught. Immediately auto her a few times and she should either run away or die. If she is low enough, you can even Arcane Passage to her and Imperial Sigil her, most likely killing her.

Another example of this is Taka. His ult, X-Retsu, deals massive damage and applies Mortal Wounds to his target. This reduces healing effects of the hero, so don't think about using Imperial Sigil on yourself to 1v1 Taka. His basic attacks refresh the duration of the Mortal Wound, so you have to be able to block it. Luckily, there's a telltale sign for his ult; when he goes invisible, immediately Bright Bulwark. As outlined before with Koshka, X-Retsu's range is larger than Bright Bulwark's, meaning that if the Taka tries to activate it at maximum range, he will be caught on the barrier. Anything that is caught on your barrier will take a short time to react to being stopped, so use that to your advantage, immediately attack them and try to kill them.

Lyra's ultimate, Arcane Passage, is the only ability to move any hero, friendly or otherwise, a large distance from where they started. However, enemies can also use it unless they are inside your Bright Bulwark. This allows for some interesting escape strategies, such as teleporting into your turret or into your entire team. You might ask, where's the timing in that? Well, this applies more to support Lyra than CP Lyra as support daels way less damage and might not even be able to finish the kill that teammates are chasing off, but CP Lyra usually can. When you Arcane Passage, both portals can be moved through, meaning that ANYONE who goes into one portal will be moved into the other one. In other words, you can easily stuff up your teammates who are chasing an enemy.

For example, the final remaining hero on the enemy team is a Phinn, who has very little mobility and your teammates are already hitting him while he is running, trying to get an ace. However, from behind them, you use your Arcane Passage, and send your teammates flying back to where you started, but you don't have the damage to kill the Phinn as you are support, so you have just cost your team a very valuable time period to take important objectives (i.e. Kraken, Gold Mine, Turrets). This is why it is important to know when to use Arcane Passage. The best use of this is to engage if you know there are enemies in, say, a bush, and immediately place Bright Bulwark so the enemy cannot escape through the portal and for the rest of the team to follow through with you.

This applies even more so to CP Lyra as you deal massive damage, so you can teleport behind high priority targets (i.e. the ones that deal the most damage), and kill them instantly with the combo outlined in the threats list, B+A, which means to place Bright Bulwark so the enemy cannot escape, as well as slowing them, and then casting Imperial Sigil on them, which should be easy as they are slowed, and then auto attack them to death.

1v4 with Lyra Top

Outline of the above video (for some reason I can't put it there) Top

In the above video, I find the Baron farming by himself in early late game. I punish him for his insolence, and head over to where my team is getting absolutely wrecked. I rush over to where the teamfight is occuring with only the Ringo on our team left, and I instantly place Bright Bulwark down, slowing the Reza and Taka and allowing the Ringo to get some decent damage in. I then target the Reza, who is the bigger threat here, and kill him and get the double kill off the Taka. Then, I get stunned by Celeste's Core Collapse because I stood still to activate my Principle Arcanum. I stuff up my Arcane Passage slightly because I didn't see the Celeste use her Travel Boots as she was in a bush when she activated them, thus causing my teleport to be slightly off and require the use of my own Halcyon Chargers to catch her. I then engage the Krul, who is trying to take Blackclaw. Notice that I move close to the Krul for two reasons: (1), to deal damage with my Bright Bulwark, and more importantly (2), to reduce the stun time from the From Hell's Heart that I know the Krul will definitely use. Stealing Blackclaw was just a bonus in this clip. However, doing so requires extensive knowledge of all heroes' abilities so I would not recommend trying this unless you know exactly what abilities your opponents have and your limitations.

In this particular game, I took the overdrive on Bright Bulwark instead of Arcane Passage because they had three melee heroes compared to two ranged, as well as neither of the ranged heroes having any mobility abilities ( Celeste has no inbuilt movement ability, and I knew the Baron hadn't overdriven his Jump Jets. This video was taken a while ago, and back then I preferred to build Halcyon Chargers because they had the most passive move speed out of the three boots (all three have the same move speed boost now), as well as the fact that Lyra had an inbuilt slow. However, she no longer has this, so War Treads is a better option in the present day.

Advantages of CP Lyra Top

CP Lyra is far more difficult to play than support Lyra. Where support Lyra can just Imperial Sigil herself and she will pretty much heal herself for the damage dealt to her if she is fed enough, CP Lyra does not have that luxury as she is squishy at the cost of dealing far more damage. As a result, her abilities become even more important to time correctly, especially as when playing CP, you take the overdrive for her Arcane Passage over the overdrive for her Bright Bulwark as the increased range will allow you to kite from a safer distance. However, her cooldown on her Bright Bulwark goes from 14 seconds when overdriven to 18 seconds at level 4, so timing is even more important with CP Lyra.

However, with greater difficulty comes greater reward. Lyra can be played in both top and mid, and I personally prefer mid as it allows me to dictate the flow of the game - the mid lane is the most important lane. If farming correctly, you should deal upwards of 400 damage with your Principle Arcanum strong missile by the 15 minute mark, and absolutely shred anyone foolish enough not to buy Slumbering Husk to stop you. As a mid laner, you will get the most pressure and this is where Lyra truly shines, as she is able to heal both herself and teammates up with Imperial Sigil, something only Adagio before level 6 can do apart from her. As long as you win your lane and harass the enemy mid laner enough (hopefully getting a kill in the process), you should be able to carry your team in teamfights once you have Alternating Current, Travel Boots, and preferably Shatterglass, and as kills start rolling in, you should be able to snowball from there. Lyra's main source of damage is her auto attack, but her Imperial Sigil does pretty good damage too, so place that down as well after you've snared them with Bright Bulwark as this makes them far easier to hit.

CP Lyra's massive power spike comes when she hits level 6, and by massive I mean MASSIVE. Her Arcane Passage increases her range from being one of the shorter ranged heroes (at 5.6) to be able to rival the likes of Ringo, Gwen, and Kinetic, three heavy WP damage heroes without being in their attack range first. This allows you to be able to trade fairly with them, especially if you already have Alternating Current. The other massive perk is that you can overextend as much as you want without worrying about the consequences, because unless you get stunned and killed instantly, you can always teleport back to the turret, and the enemy ganker will often follow you and get themselves killed. Having said that, be wary if there is a Koshka enemy jungler, as at this stage you are quite squishy and once she locks you down with Yummy Catnip Frenzy and the laner comes to help, you're gone. Apart from Koshka there really aren't any other heroes you need to be careful of when overextending to get farm.

Arcane Passage, when maxed out, gives Lyra a huge range boost, from a lackluster 5.6 range (similar to that of CP mages with high-damage abilities that extend beyond their auto-attack range such as Celeste and Skaarf to an acceptable 6.1 range at level 1, similar to that of high-damage WP carries such as (as outlined before) Gwen, Kinetic, and Ringo. At level 2, you already have a auto attack range higher than most other heroes at 6.6, drawing level with SAW, surpassing Samuel and Varya, and with only Adagio having a longer auto-attack range than you. At level 3, you have the highest auto-attack range of ANY hero in the game (with the exception of Baron with a level 3 Ion Cannon, which increases his range to 7.4. However, as most Baron's tend to max both their Porcupine Mortar and their Jump Jets (because they are CP), you have the highest range of any hero at level 12 (which is where you will be for most of the game), meaning you can make trades without taking damage if you play Lyra properly.

If you're looking for a CP laner that deals plenty of damage without having to land any skillshots, Lyra might just be the right choice for you, as her versatility will benefit any team that has her on it.

Ability upgrade path / Build explained (CP) Top

CP Lyra's main damage comes from her auto attack, and sometimes her Imperial Sigil. Her Imperial Sigil is just so useful you should always take it as your first ability, and her Bright Bulwark is mainly for protecting herself. Thus, you should overdrive her Imperial Sigil first, and then overdrive her ult for the extra range over the decreased cooldown of overdriving Bright Bulwark. To level up fastest, remember to last hit minions. If all goes well, you should be able to get at least 90 CS in 10 minutes, and that should set you up for the game.

When playing CP Lyra, you should recall only when you’re either level 6, really really low, or have enough to buy Alternating Current and preferably Travel Boots. Alternating Current is your core item, allowing you to deal massive damage even extending into late game. Travel Boots just offer massive utility by increasing your movement speed, and allowing you to escape from a sticky situation. After that I tend to build Shatterglass unless the enemy team is really tanky, in which I build a Dragon's Eye. The reason I take Shatterglass over Dragon's Eye first is because at this point, most people are not very tanky and you can burst them down faster with Shatterglass. Following this I like to build Broken Myth to pierce those shields, and then some defense needs to be built. In most cases the best option is Slumbering Husk, as it offers both armor and shield, but if the entire enemy team are building crystal or weapon power, buy Aegis or Metal Jacket respectively. Your final item, depending on the situation, should be Dragon's Eye if you built Shatterglass earlier, or vice versa. If the enemy has lots of lifesteal (such as Baptiste, Reim, or Samuel) you could consider buying Spellfire to reduce their healing.

Why is Lyra the best support? Top

Currently the support list consist of: Adagio, Ardan, Catherine, Churnwalker, Flicker, Fortress, Grace, Lance, Lorelai, Lyra, Phinn, and Yates. Situational support picks include Baptiste and Glaive.

The most picked hero in this list is Ardan in the current meta, and most player I meet in ranked tell me to play Ardan when I indicate support. The thing is, Ardan is really not that good after both his Gauntlet and Vanguard durations were reduced, and is only picked so much because he is the easiest support to play, and most people who do not main support will play Ardan as he is the safest pick. As a support main, Ardan is almost never my go-to pick even if I am not playing Lyra, because the nerfs have really hit him hard and he is just not a reliable pick anymore.

There is a reason the support role is the hero that is to be targeted last... unless your name is Lyra, the sole exception to the rule, and the only reason I lose a teamfight is because I get targeted first (or my team is very far behind in gold and items). She is just so versatile that sometimes teams decide to target her first even as a support due to the utility she offers her team. The only hero in the support list above that can compete with Lyra in my opinion is Yates. His pull is just so powerful and his kit is so useful (apart from his ult) that it is hard to pass over him as a second choice, and if for some reason Lyra is picked or banned my choice would be Yates.

So, why is Lyra so good? The simple answer is that all three of her abilities are incredibly good and usable in any situation, and she does everything well; healing, repositioning, dealing damage, and stopping enemies' dashes. Her Arcane Passage has many uses, be it engaging, escaping, or chasing, her Bright Bulwark can stop any dashes without a significant cooldown, and she can deal damage while also healing with her Imperial Sigil. Now, let's take a look at Adagio. His Verse of Judgement is pretty much useless in teamfights because to hit it, you have to use Gift of Fire to slow the enemies first, and that means not healing your teammates. Ardan has a similarly useless ability in Blood for Blood, Catherine can't help her team with Stormguard, Churnwalker is almost useless unless you have communication with the team, Flicker falls off dramatically late game as he just gets killed before he can do anything, and his root on Binding Light is nigh impossible to hit without another cc ability, Fortress is more of a damage dealing support than one that actually helps the team, Grace's Divine Intervention almost always means sacrificing herself, Lance's Combat Roll does literally nothing apart from movement, Lorelai's Fish Food is easily avoidable, Phinn has zero mobility and can do nothing when seperated from his team, and Yates's Iron Mandate isn't very useful considering you should never engage while missing a hero anyway. The only thing missing from Lyra's inventory is a hard CC, such as a stun, root, or silence, but her slow on her Principle Arcanum in tandem with Bright Bulwark serves this purpose pretty well apart from abilities that MUST be stunned (if the hero in question is playing CP), like Dragon's Breath, Verse of Judgement, or Big Red Button. An example of this is outlined below.

A couple of days ago I played a 3v3 game with two random people in the same guild, and I was second pick on the left side. Initially I wanted to play Lyra, but when our first player locked in CP Vox and the enemy first and second picks were Krul and Skaarf, and our last player indicated he wanted to play WP Blackfeather, I knew we needed a stun to stop the Skaarf's Dragon's Breath, so I changed from Lyra to Catherine in an instant. By no means is this guide meant to force you to play Lyra; in that case, Lyra would have been quite useless as Krul is the hero highest on the threat list, and a Skaarf on the enemy team requires a stun on your team, which none of my teammates or Lyra has. We ended up absolutely curb stomping the enemy team, as the Skaarf could never use Dragon's Breath without me using Merciless Pursuit on him, which meant their main source of damage was reduced significantly.

Outline of what a successful game should look like and upgrade path for support Top

At level 1, you should always take Imperial Sigil first, as it is the most versatile (and quite possibly the best) ability in the entire game; it heals and damages at the same time. Because of this, most teamfights over the middle treant will go your way if your teammates are half decent; if you got the middle treant, good, but if not and you manage to kill at least one of their heroes and damage the other, steal their jungle farm! They're not going to come back for another 10-15 seconds, which is plenty of time to take both the healing treant closer to the gold mine and the two small bears next to the middle treant. After doing all that, you should be level 2 by then, and upgrade your Bright Bulwark because while it is not as good as Imperial Sigil in terms of versatility, having another ability is far better than having a more powerful ability.

Help the jungler clear your jungle WITHOUT using Principle Arcanum's powerful missile - you have no energy regeneration (as the jungler takes all the farm) and should the enemy jungler and support invade, you will be unable to heal or block their dashes, putting you at a massive disadvantage. And while clearing jungle, I cannot stress this enough. DO NOT TAKE THE JUNGLE FARM UNLESS THEY EXPLICITLY TELL YOU TO, that is, they use the green target ping on the minion telling you to take it. If you take the jungle farm without being told to, it will tilt your jungler and put you on a bad relationship, meaning they are more likely to make a mistake and thus lose teamfights. If you do by accident take a jungle treant, make sure to follow it up with either the sad face ping, or the "Sorry, my bad" emote in the top right corner if you're playing touchpad.

This process should go to level six with the occasional gank on the enemy laner - BUT ONLY IF THE JUNGLER FEELS LIKE IT. YOU DO NOT GO AND GANK BY YOURSELF. At around the 5 minutes mark you should be level 6, and have your abilities at level 3, 2, and 1 respectively. At this point you should shop at the middle shop, then ping your jungler to go and gank lane even if they haven't done so already, since your Arcane Passage and Bright Bulwark combo is so powerful that if the jungler takes the portal with you, the enemy laner has almost zero chance of escaping unless they are under the turret.

The stages after level 6, I have noted, vary a lot. Sometimes all three enemies decide to push lane, in which case you should tell your jungler to head for their jungle farm, and head up to lane to support the laner. Otherwise, if only the laner is in lane, continue supporting your jungler in jungle until level 8. This represents Lyra's second power spike in the game, as her Imperial Sigil is at max heal, meaning that another teamfight should be an easy win. Ping your jungler once again to gank lane, and use the initiate combo (ult + B) to kill the enemy laner, at which point the enemy jungler and support should come to defend their turret. Destroy their turret and kill the remaining two heroes, and with some luck, you should have an ace. Head for the gold mine and take it for an almost unassailable lead in gold, although be mindful of the laner who has respawned coming to try and steal it. For this reason, you should always tell either the jungler or the laner to stay in the enemy's triangle bush (the one nearest the gold mine) while you and the other hero take the gold mine in YOUR triangle bush. The hero in the triangle bush should be able to beat the enemy laner with ease as their items should be far superior to the enemy laner.

At level 9 you have the option of upgrading either your Bright Bulwark or your Arcane Passage. I have tested both and decided that Arcane Passage is the better choice, as the teamfights at this point usually last less than 14 seconds, meaning waiting to overdrive Bright Bulwark later is a better idea and that the auto attack range increase is more beneficial. You should then take the Bright Bulwark upgrades for level 10, 11, and 12 as the 4 second cooldown decrease on the final level of Bright Bulwark is just too good not to take, especially when playing support and the extra range doesn't allow you to do insane amounts of damage unlike CP. At this point, your team should have around a 3-4k lead in gold over the enemy team. Most games snowball from here, so this is what a successful game in VG when playing support Lyra should look like.

In 5v5 these rules should generally stay the same except that you are now following the MID laner around and not the jungler.

Build outline (support) Top

So, once you've decided to play Lyra, you need to choose your build. Your starting items should always include Sprint Boots if you're in jungle, just in case a fight over the middle treant goes pear-shaped and you want to escape quickly. However, Lyra's Imperial Sigil is so useful early that you should win nine teamfights out of ten early game, and snowball from there. Many of my games are already decided by the 10 minute mark, and only once have I lost a game that we were winning from the start. Your other item should usually be Oakheart to start amping up that slow on Principle Arcanum, as well as to build into Fountain of Renewal later on. However, less experienced players may choose to buy Ironguard Contract or Energy Battery instead if they don't know how to cancel Principle Arcanum.

Your first return to the shop should always occur when you have enough to buy at least Fountain of Renewal and hopefully Travel Boots as well, as that passive speed boost can really help you close the distance and allow you to slow your enemies with Bright Bulwark and allow teammates to catch them. The next two items to be built should be Crucible and War Treads, as both give bonus health to increase your slow, and offer great utility to the team; one blocks all enemy debuffs, and the other increases your entire team's movement speed, whether it be for fleeing or chasing.

The fourth item is where it gets tricky. Although these two items should always be built, the order really matters in deciding which one first. Personally, I prefer Alternating Current, as the extra damage it offers really allows you to make an impact in teamfights and deal some damage (indeed, a lot of the time I deal more damage as a support than the jungle does to enemy heroes), but if you find yourself in a losing position because your team just dies out too quickly, Capacitor Plate might be the better option to help heal more and increase the movement speed of your team. These two should always be your fourth and fifth item, and the build is nearly complete.

However, there are plenty of options for the final item. They include Dragon's Eye, Rook's Decree, Contraption, Atlas Pauldron, and Clockwork.


Dragon's Eye is the most offensive item here, as it build up your crystal power as you auto attack, allowing your abilities to deal more damage. This is most effective when your team has built some defense but as a result is unable to deal enough damage, and you can do some serious damage with Dragon's Eye in tandem with Alternating Current. A team with lots of tanks can also be a prompt to build Dragon's Eye, such as Ozo, Phinn, or Reim.

Rook's Decree is the other item I recommend in place of Dragon's Eye. This provides a massive barrier as all of your items bar Alternating Current give bonus health, and you end up with giving your teammates a sizeable barrier. If you feel that your teammates are doing enough damage but not surviving long enough, this item might just be the thing you need to keep them alive so they can get that ace.

Personally, I don't like buying Contraption, especially when my team is ahead in the game, as Contraption clogs up your inventory and doesn't help much in the area of attack, healing, or defense. Wards do a way better job at providing vision than those measly scout traps,so Contraption should only be picked as an item when your team is very far behind, or when the enemy have Taka, Kestrel, and especially Flicker on their team.

Atlas Pauldron is best for defending against enemies with high attack speed that are carrying their team, like Ringo, Krul, or Kinetic. This reduces their attack speed by a whopping 65% for 4 seconds, with a 45s cooldown. The best use of this is just to Arcane Passage next to the high attack speed and instantly use it, as it will guarantee the debuff short of it being blocked by Crucible.

The final option for this slot is Clockwork, as Clockwork can be built for the extra energy, the energy recharge, and of course, its cooldown reduction/passive, which reduces all your abilities' cooldown by 10% when you hit a hero, which can only occur once every three seconds. Clockwork has become a more enticing option following the build path of Capacitor Plate from Chronograph to Warmail, as the build no longer has any cooldown reduction items. However, it does nothing for the team and is pretty much useless if you're losing in teamfights, so I would only advise buying this when you are evenly matched or ahead in games. Because of this, it should only ever replace Dragon's Eye if you really want to buy it, and should never replace Rook's Decree, Contraption, or Atlas Pauldron.

AT THE END OF ALL THIS, DON'T FORGET TO BUY Crystal Infusion WITH YOUR EXTRA GOLD, YOU CAN'T USE GOLD AFTER YOU'RE FULL BUILD ANYWAY!!!

Why play support? Top

This bit is to boost the confidence of people to play support, as in all of my ranked games I have seen less than five people apart from me instantly indicate support (which almost always means they are really good at supporting), people who are forced to support generally save their Fountain of Renewal for themselves.

Although I am competent in any role, and can do well with pretty much any hero, my main role is support. Like many of the support mains out there, I was forced to play support because no one wanted to play it. I initially hated the role, and thought that it was pointless; however, after honing my timing on my actives like Fountain of Renewal and Crucible, I genuinely enjoy playing support. Some people think that the support role is a role meant for noobs, and that supporting requires no skill. In a way, this is true; the support is always the last to be killed, and is pretty much invincible unless all the enemy heroes target them. Furthermore, the support is the one who gets all the blame when a teamfight is lost (although I haven't had this in ages), and is often ordered around by teammates. You must also be willing to die to save your teammates, and block any skillshot or high-damaging, non piercing ability such as Spitfire, Forward Barrage, or Scorcher.

However, there is a reason the support is otherwise known as "captain". The support of the team initiates the teamfights, leads the team, and turns the tides of battle with their many actives they need to use at the right time. Imagine support as a role with twice as many abilities that have to be used at the optimal time. This is the main reason a team with a jungler, three laners, and a support (in 5v5) or a jungler, laner, and a support (in 3v3) will always beat a team with four laners and a jungler or two junglers and a support, BUT this only applies when the support is good and uses their abilities and actives when needed. Otherwise, the support is just a meat shield that offers up free Breaking Point and Dragon's Eye stacks.

Being one of the few people who instantly indicates that they will be playing support has quite a few advantages. One, if you don't steal cs, play properly and Fountain of Renewal on time, or use Crucible to block a teamfight changing ability such as Blast Tremor, Yummy Catnip Frenzy or Bangarang, your teammates will almost guaranteed honour you, and possibly even your enemies. Two, as long as you are friendly toward your teammates and after you ace them, give a thumbs up ping or something small like that, it will really bring up the team morale and spirit. Another advantage is the feeling you get when you turn a teamfight around with a single ability, and knowing that you were the reason your team won.

However, keep in mind that the support role is most reliant on competent teammates. The golden rule of Vainglory is that a good support cannot carry the team by themselves, but a good laner can.

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