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The art of shredding tanks



Tanks. Those annoying champs like volibear or mundo that have so much hp you can barley dent them yet they are hard to ignore whether its singed poison trail or rammus' taunt nobody likes facing a good tank. So this brings up the question- how the hell do i kill them then. People have said different things ranging from using Madreds Bloodrazor to using insane dps but what is the most effective way to shred a tank? Well what it really comes down to are they a smart tank. There seems to be a misconception of a tank being super armored with 90% damage reduction or 9k hp but those are not real tanks, if you have 9k hp it will be destroyed quickly- especially if they have %hp damage and if you are super armoured you will be lacking any hp so true damage will DESTROY you and remember- ignite is true damage (520 at lvl 18!) .Also not to mention they have no sustain. So there is how to take out "tanks" but the real problem are the smart tanks who get 70% damage reduction and 5k hp so that madreds is only really doing 1% because of the magic resist and true damage wont be as effective because the have a lot of hp too. What must be taken into account is the EFFECTIVE health. If we do some basic math we can find their effective health which is how much damage you really have to do. Let's say the opponent Lux(why not?) is a troll and has 200 armor. That will give her 66% reduction from physical damage. if she only has 2000 hp it will still take around 6000 physical damage because your attacks are only doing 1/3 of the damage. This is why stacking pure hp is worthless, however, let's say our lux has 1500hp instead. Now she only has 4500 effective health! From just a 500 hp drop they lost 1500 hp in reality. Therefore a smart tanks even out the two values making him hard to kill so the big question is- how do you kill a smart tank? The awnser is simpler than you think-armor and magic penetration. Let's say you are Caitlyn and are doing 500 damage per attack if they have no armor. Against our lux it would take her 18 attacks to kill her and lux can do a lot in that time. Now let's give our caitlyn a last whisper (ignoreing the attack bonus) the enemy lux will have 120 armour aginst her. That gives lux about 55% damage reduction. Now that lux only has ~4300k effective hp which is only 15 attacks to kill her now. If cait only has 2 attack speed that is 1.5 seconds she is saving and that can mean the diffrence between life and death. Now you may think its not a big difference but lets go to a smart tank. For example, a singed with the same 200 armor has 5000k hp. Before the last whisper he has 15000k hp and after only 10000k hp! That is a 5k hp difference or a 10 attack difference. with MAX attack speed that is an extra 4 seconds. If he puts a mega adhesive down you are not gonna catch him so that 4 seconds in very IMPORTANT. So this is what i have to say about shredding tanks. Feel free to comment on my theory! :p


Great info, because not a lot of people know this.... I just wish it wasn't one big paragraph. :p

Some extra little miscellaneous info...

The damage Thornmail returns to you if you auto attack it is magic. If you find you're taking a lot of damage from Thornmail, MR is how you counter it.
The same is true for Madred's Bloodrazor and Wit's End-- it is magic damage on auto attacks just like Kog'Maw's W, so build MR.
And lastly.. Last Whisper and Black Cleaver rarely go together. Why? Because flat armor reduction calculates before penetration, so by auto attacking with Black Cleaver you're lowering the armor penetration you get from Last Whisper. I'll have to calculate and find out the "sweet spot" where this is no longer a waste.

Here's a nifty little (note: not actually little, it's pretty long) post about Last Whisper vs. Black Cleaver.


Thank you for the article although it was a bit hard to follow. :p Sorry about making the thing one large paragraph but there was a lot of information I wanted to fit in. Also, thank your for mentioning the building MR to counter thornmail and here is a interesting piece of information- thornmail does magic damage equivalent to the damage BEFORE armor reduction. This makes a wits end very valuable to any auto attack champ. As a final note about the black cleaver- last whisper- i suggest building a black cleaver and sell it for a last whisper late game when they have more armor however, do not forget the black cleaver gives attack speed and 15 more attack than the last whisper.


Stratics Veteran
I always thought you grabbed Last Whisper if they were over like 130 Armor or something like that. Anything lower was for Black Cleaver due to 40% may be less than the stacks you get from LW.