The Elusive Temptress - A Solo Mid Build to QoP
June 22, 2012
Introduction - So Begins the Reign of Pain
Hey, I'm B3yondL bringing you a solo mid guide to Queen of Pain (QoP). I did an Invoker guide earlier, currently ranked #1. QoP is a very strong solo mid hero. She excels at controlling the runes since she can push creep waves with Scream of Pain and be extremely mobile with Blink. When ganking, Scream along with a Sonic Wave combo can nuke down both opponents in a sidelane. It can be relatively easy to land both because Blink provides her with effective positioning for a gank.
When you look at the skill build, you're probably wondering "What, Shadow Strike first? Blink at lvl 4? Leave ult till 8? Wtf is this?". Fret not, I will give a convincing explanation in the skill analysis section.
This guide is a little wordy, if you don't feel like reading that much it's fine, but I urge you to read the Shadow Strike/Blink/Sonic Wave section, as well as the Starting Game Items/Winning Mid section of the guide since I put some decent pointers there.
Let's take a quick glance at her pros and cons;
- Strong solo mid
- Great rune control
- Pushing capability
- Excels at positioning
- AoE burst damage
- Hard to kill
- No hard disable
- Mana problems
- Requires her to be close to the middle of the battle
Skill Order Analysis/Skills Usage
All right, so why level Shadow Strike
first? Because this is one BEASTLY harass spell. It does 200 damage total at LVL 1 (50 initial, plus 30 dmg after 3 seconds for 15 seconds), provides a 20% slow, and costs only 80 mana. The slow it gives will also help in landing a couple autoattacks as your opponent tries to flee. It's single target, so it doesn't push the lane when you don't want it to. You can basically keep spamming it whenever you have the opportunity and very soon your opponent is going to wear down. Absolute must to take at level one if you plan on winning your lane and setting up for a first blood. Later on it's your main disable for catching fleeing enemies, also providing with quite a bit of damage (425 total!)
Not much to say here, generic Blink
. Great for rune control, chasing enemies, or escaping. Can be used to position yourself well to land your nukes. I like leaving this until level 4. The reason for that is almost 99% of the time you won't be in a situation to use your blink before level 4. Pick up Scream instead because it'll be of better use to you for a first blood.
I then leave blink at 3 then finish it at level 14 because I can get by with a level 3 Blink. I like maxing Strike second because personally the damage and slow from it are often overlooked.
Scream of Pain
An AoE nuke with quite low CD. Definitely want to max this first. Great for clearing the wave so you can go for runes, and can be used to farm later game. Blink and Scream go hand in hand, the perfect combo for a gank, and then follow up with Strike/Sonic Wave.
is an AoE nuke that will completely annihilate an enemies HP bar when used in conjunction with Scream. Notice I don't level this up immediately at 6. To be honest, this is personal preference. You can go ahead and level it at 6. The reason why I don't do so is because the mana cost is absolutely huge. A lot of the times you'll find yourself not being able to use it anyway once you have used your Scream + Strike because your mana pool is not that big at level 6. Plus even if you do use it, your mana will be completely drained, leaving you useless/defenseless because you won't have enough for a blink. I believe it's better to be able to Scream twice instead of Sonic Wave + Scream. Screaming twice is more mana effective allowing you to use blink if needed, plus deals more damage too.
Later on, don't be so quick to use your ult. Positioning is everything when playing QoP. Try to hit multiple enemies in a team fight because the damage output is quite high.
Item Justification and Game Strategy
Pretty standard, the circlet + branch + mantle are going to provide you with great stats and the tango + salve will be your regeneration.
Starting out in lane you want to make your presence known and dominate from the very beginning. Make sure to get a good block on your creeps and not just stand around waiting at your tower for them to spawn. If you get a good block off, you'll have the elevation advantage. Once your opponent is in sight, immediately start off with a Shadow Strike. It's easy to land, quite cheap on mana and your opponent is going to be dealt 200 damage, along with a couple of auto attacks. Make sure to farm last hits and deny, and whenever your Shadow Strike is off CD and your opponent is close, go ahead and keep using it. You won't believe how easy it is to dominate mid with the continual use of Shadow Strike.
Once you hit level 4, you have a very strong chance of killing your opponent, assuming you harassed them with enough Shadow Strike before. A good blink in with Scream + Strike and chances are he'll fall. Knowing when your opponent is ready to be killed comes with experience. Whenever you go in for a kill, ALWAYS TANGO UP. What do I mean by this? When you're going in for a fight, eat a tree even though your HP may be high. What this does is make you more 'tankier' because when you're fighting your opponent, you will be regening faster, for example you at 8hp/sec and him at 1hp/sec. A simple yet very effective trick.
Once you have farmed your bottle, you're ready to begin ganking. Anything besides Illusion or Regeneration is perfect for a gank. If it's Invisibility/Haste, you don't need to blink in, simply scream when in position and use strike on the person most prone to dying. If it's DD, you might want to blink in.
If you get Illusion, don't use it immediately. Instead, wait until 1 minute for the next rune spawn so that you may place one of your illusions at a rune sight so it gives vision (if you don't already have wards). If you get Regeneration, harass the living hell out the enemy mid. Don't worry about taking the damage, you'll regen to full anyway.
Basically early game you want to secure runes and gank with the appropriate ones.
Mid game is where we have some mini team skirmishes. Don't ever initiate by blinking in and using Scream/Wave, you'll most likely get bursted hard. Wait for your initiator and then follow up. Don't cast Wave blindly, it does heavy damage so make sure to take that extra second to line it up to hit multiple people.
Continue controlling the runes/ganking and making sure to carry a handy TP. Even though I haven't put Wards in the item section, make sure to buy a couple here and there if your team isn't buying them.
Convert your Ult orb + Void stone into either a Hex or a Linkens Sphere. It all depends on how well you did, and how strong the enemy carry is whether you should build one or the other. If you did well and the enemy carry is not a threat, go ahead and make a Linkens. If not, a Hex is needed. I don't generally make Aghas ever, the recipe items aren't something I would buy but you can if you want. Only make Aghas after you have gotten your Linkens and/or Hex.
In a team fight, stay focused and wait for it to start out first. Once it begins, you may blink in (if needed) to land your scream + ult. If you have Hex, use it on the carry obviously.
When you're not fighting, always try to keep yourself busy. So what if the lanes are pushed and you can't farm them since you might get killed? Don't just stand around waiting for the lanes to push back, go in the jungle and farm. Stack Ancients for your carry if needed. Ward if your team isn't. Check on runes at the appropriate times.
That pretty much concludes all of the guide. I hope it has assisted you in playing her a little better. I want to again emphasize on how strong her solo mid game is. Shadow Strike is devastating early game and her pushing capability with Scream along with Blink make her control the runes very easy.
Also note I'm using old item icons so I apologize beforehand for any confusion.
This section felt a little small so I decided to add this fanart by choboroy