Teamfight Tactics Starter’s Guide
What is Teamfight Tactics and how do I play it?
Teamfight Tactics is part of a genre we currently call “auto chess”. This involves buying units, in this case champions, and levelling up so you can place more units. The champions will fight on their own but it is up to you to position them on the board as best you can, and upgrade them so they can become stronger. There are items which can make your champions stronger, some items working better with certain champions. All champions have an “origin” and a “class”, these are called “synergies”. When combined with like origins and classes, these champions will gain strong buffs that will make your team even stronger.
You can use a site like https://tftactics.gg/ to find out what each champion and item does, and what types of synergies there are. I recommend you play a bunch of matches and experiment with synergies and items to find out what works well in combination.
Champions, synergies and items
Every champion has a “tier”, or cost associated to it. This determines how much gold it costs to buy the champion and in many cases represents how impactful it can be to your team. Combining 3 of the same champion, by purchasing and having 3 of them in your bench and/or on your field, will increase its star level from 1 to 2. Likewise, combining 3 champions that are all star level 2, will create a star level 3 champion. Increasing a champion’s star level gives it more stats, like attack damage, spell damage, health and more.
You can give your champions even more power by giving them items. There are 2 types of items, component items and completed items. Component items, like Needlessly Large Rod, or B.F. Sword give base stats. For example, Needlessly Large Rod gives +20% spell damage and B.F. Sword gives +20 attack damage (keep in mind that Rod gives a % increase to damage, and Sword gives a flat attack increase). When component items are combined, they will create a completed item that combines the stats of the components and gives unique effects based on what component items are used. In this example, B.F. Sword and Needlessly Large Rod will create a Hextech Gunblade, which gives the added effect of “heal for 25% of all damage dealt”, as well as the base stats of both of its components.
Synergies are created when you have the required amount of champions with like origins or classes, for example if you have 2 champions with the “Glacial” origin, or 3 champions with the “Blademaster” class. There are a lot of synergies and combinations that can be made, and when combined with levelling up champions and adding items you can build strong team compositions.(edited)
Gold and income
Gold is incredibly important in TFT. All champions cost gold, their “tier” represented by how much gold they cost. You can reroll the shop to see new champion selections for 2 gold, and you can spend 4 gold to gain 4 experience. You gain a base amount of 5 gold (for the first minion rounds you get 2 gold, then 3 gold twice) for every round, win or lose. This base is increased by your interest bonus (every 10 gold you have will give you 1 more gold per round, max of 5) and your win or lose streak. After winning or losing several times in a row you will go on a streak, and this will earn you extra gold. Managing your gold is not an easy task and takes most players a lot of practice to understand. I recommend checking out #econ-guide once you feel you have a good understanding of the game.
Final note: Discovering your own playstyle
While guides are incredibly helpful for learning the basics and even more advanced core mechanics of the game, there are some things that come naturally with experience. My guides will explain the basic mechanics of the game, but I also strongly encourage that you play the game and learn from mistakes, developing your own personal playstyle that suits and works best for you. The best items, or the best comps are not only subject to change per patch, they are also situational and player preference can play a large part of this. Some players like to abuse early Zephyr, others like to stack multiple Locket of the Iron Solari for massive shielding rather than focus on damage.