Teamfight Tactics Mana Printer Challenger Guide
by The Great Lakes
It’s The Great Lakes, your favorite 1-tricking Challenger assistant principal. In this guide, I will explain how I climbed to Challenger from Master 0LP by gaining 820 LP in 4 days forcing my version of mana printer every game.
Gather around boys and girls and listen to my tale.
When patch 10.9 launched I dropped from Challenger to Master 0 LP. I don’t smurf, so I do all of my experimentation on my main and on the ladder. I thought I could figure out a way to keep 6 Star Guardians viable, but alas it was not the case. There were too many nerfs to Syndra, SG trait, and 3-starring the 3-cost units to keep the comp viable. As a result, we start this journey at 0LP.
Other Comp Attempts:
- Battery Void Brawlers: This comp interested me, but I wasn’t seeing a huge payoff for investing in the Void trait and Brawlers were getting hyper contested by Blaster Brawlers. The Sona – Velkoz synergy caught my attention though.
- Candyland: I found out that I was not cut out for the Candyland life.
- 2 Vanguard – 6 Sorc: I could get on board with this build, but the build was too volatile for my liking.
Final Comp – The Great Lakes Mana Printer:
I ended up combining Battery Void Brawlers with the Vang/Sorc comp and splashing in Mystic.
Outcome: I found out that the damage output is still amazing even without the void or 6-sorc trait, but the insane survivability of having both Sona and Soraka healing on top of the Mystic trait and a decently strong frontline allowed for me to outlast opponents in almost all cases.
Comments and Explanation:
1. What Do You Do If You Do Not Hit Perfect Items on Sona?:
You will not hit perfect items on Sona for most games. That’s alright. When it comes to carousel and first priority items, go for two chalices first no matter what. Even if it means you are taking a negatron cloak on the carousel because you have an unused tear. You will be dead in the water without the two chalices, but you can still win games without seraphs. You’ll notice many of my games Sona has two or three chalices with no seraphs.
2. Item Holders:
For this comp, I will have Poppy and TF hold items. If you hit an early Morellos, throw that bad boy on TF. GA components? Throw them on Poppy. These two units will help you get through early and mid game while adding to the SG and Sorc traits. Make sure you are only putting GA’s/Thornmails or other defensive items on Poppy. If you naturally hit Poppy 3, she is worth keeping in even though she’s an item holder.
3. Why Not TF for Chrono?:
When I first started playing this build, I was using TF over Lux for the Chrono trait with consistent success still. However, after a suggestion from CXLIX CXLIX, I decided to replace TF with Lux and the build really took off. Lux benefitting from a mana printer changed the trajectory of games with whole team stuns and backline snipes. Champions are casting more than auto attacking, so the loss of Chrono wasn’t felt.
4. Why Not 6 Sorcs?:
As stated earlier, the benefits from Mystic and having Soraka next to a mana battery has clear upsides that outshine the 6-sorc trait. Most games my frontline doesn’t even die after the build comes online due to outhealing the opposition and the extreme value that 2-vanguard give.
5. Leveling and Rolling:
I level to 7 at wolves and try not to roll at all before then. After hitting level 7, I’ll roll down to 20-30 gold stabilize and put together a team that can carry me to Raptors at least. Once I have the gold to hit level 8 with 20 gold extra, I’ll level. Sometimes this is immediately following the round 4 carousel, other times it is after raptors.
6. HP Goals:
I set a goal for myself to be at least 80HP by Krugs and at least 60HP by Wolves. If you can pull this off, you’ve had a successful early and mid game. Try to only roll before level 7 when you feel as though you are not on a trajectory to hit these goals.
7. What Do You Do With a Spat?:
Pray for another one, brother. However, if that 2nd spat doesn’t come SG trait on Vel’koz is never bad and if you only hit 2 chalice on Sona with no complete seraph’s, an SG spat on her isn’t a bad consolation prize at all.
8. Who Do You 3-Star?:
- 1-Costs: I only 3-star Poppy and Zoe if it happens naturally.
- 2-Costs: I will save Ahri and Sona and try to 3-star them as I roll down at level 7 and 8.
- 3-Costs: I don’t 3-star Lux, but you will see an immense power spike if you 3-star Jayce. He benefits from mana printer and 4 sorc allowing his ult to wipe teams. In most games, he is my #1 damage dealer once 3-starred.
- 4-Cost: 3-starred Vel’Koz is an obvious win condition. However, 3-starred Wukong is an underappreciated win condition. Have you ever read his description? It’s a 5 second stun that does a ton of damage. If Wukongs start showing up in my store, I’ll entertain the idea and save them until I am desperate on cash.
9. Other Good Items:
The build revolves around 2 chalices, a seraphs, and hopefully a morellos. However, there are many other items that perform very well in the comp.
- QSS on Vel’koz is game changing
- GA is as good as ever on a frontline
- Bramble and Frozen Heart are high performers
- I’m never going to turn down a death cap or Jeweled Gauntlet on Vel’koz either
- Theif’s gloves on Ahri have given me the edge in a lot of games.
- My advice is to avoid bows and BF swords as much as you can.
Watch out for Shrouds and well placed Zephyrs. Your build relies on positioning that is essentially predictable. If someone has a Shroud, they have to move 1 unit to have a high impact on your entire team while you need to move at least 6 units to dodge it as the comp relies on close proximity to Sona. This gives the opponent a huge advantage, especially if your Sona does not have perfect items.
Zephyr functions in a similar way. It’s easy to predict where your Sona will be and if you move her too much to dodge the zephyr, then she has a diminished impact for your team.