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We can agree on something about League of Legends; they know how to make champions. They know how to build something wonderful from very common concepts like half-animal half-human beings, and Rakan is great proof of that.
And yes, I can agree that concept-wise, Rakan isn’t the most creative LoL champion, but if you put all of what Rakan has (like his lore, gameplay, his synergy with Xayah), you’ll get a great result.
And if you don’t trust me and have some doubts about playing Rakan, let me talk about him. Let’s go!
Key Info Up Front
- Price: 6300 Blue Essence, 3780 Blue Essence with a Champion Shard, 975 RP.
- Role: Support.
- Difficulty: Moderate.
Lore and Story
Rakan, “The Charmer.”
Rakan was born in a deep forest in Ionia named Qaelin, in a place where the pure magic hasn’t died yet. Rakan is part of a small tribe of Vastayas named Lhotlan, and the Lhotlan doesn’t get out of their tribe as, for them, the exterior world is considered austere, desert, and devoid of magic. Just some of them dare to get out of the limits of the tribe, and one of them is Rakan, who is a traveler, explorer, and emissary of his lands.
In one of those countless exploring travels, Rakan ended up in a small town, and here’s where he met Xayah for the first time. Rakan isn’t an ugly Vastaya, and he was constantly attracting the attention of many women, both Vastayas or humans, but Rakan always seemed uninterested in them. But something on Xayah changed his perspective and made him instantly fall in love with her.
Rakan started his courtship dance in the middle of the village. Everyone there got amused by Rakan’s ability to dance, except for Xayah, who seemed cold and distant, but she was interested in Rakan. Out of all women he tried to charm, Xayah was the only one who didn’t fall for his tricks, making Rakan decide to stick with Xayah and explore the world with her.
Xayah and Rakan began to understand themselves very quickly. While Xayah was cold, she was cold, methodical, and cautious, Rakan was reckless, audacious, and dreamy. They made the perfect couple right away.
Rakan didn’t understand why was Xayah traveling until he found out that Xayah’s objective was to get the Vastayas the honor and position they had a long time ago when they lost everything thanks to the humans and their wars. Now they have a purpose in their lives and are together; nothing can split them.
Key Relationships and Quotes
- Xayah: She’s Rakan’s partner, and they explore Ionia to preserve Ionia’s natural magic from being dominated by humans.
- Zed: Rakan and Xayah fought Zed and his Order of the Shadow to prevent them from harvesting a magical grove for the Kashuri Armories.
“I can’t wait to get in there. I don’t know what I’m going to do, but I am going to get in there!”
If you are looking for a champ with a lot of mobility and a great Crowd Control presence, Rakan is for you. This champ is one of those new-era Supports that you can build full AP and will work perfectly as a Midlaner (Obviously, this isn’t recommended for ranked matches, but it is really fun to do!).
Here are some pros of using Rakan:
- You’ll have great mobility with Rakan. He’s fast and has some dashes, which is great to get out of sketchy situations and engage and disengage from battles whenever you want to.
- He has some good AP scales on his abilities so that he can work perfectly as an offensive champ.
- Rakan has a lot of engaging tools, not only his mobility; this means he’s perfect for starting team fights and getting out of there without any consequences.
- Lastly, Rakan has a very special synergy with Xayah, which means you’ll have a great advantage against your enemy’s bot line.
But nothing is perfect, and Rakan is not an exception to this rule. So here are some cons of using Rakan, and some things you have to be aware of if you want to play with The Charmer:
- Rakan is very weak in the early game. His mobility gets balanced with poor HP and Armor stats.
- If you are playing Rakan, you’ll mostly make a build with a lot of ability haste as his cooldowns in the early game are long.
- Rakan is highly susceptible to CC; it just needs a stun, and Rakan’s play is done.
- Rakan needs to be in sync with his teammates; otherwise, Rakan’s plays will not work.
As I said before, Rakan struggles against CC because Rakan is very squishy and weak, mostly in the early game. So, to avoid getting CC’d every time, here are some matchups you have to keep an eye on if you want to succeed with Rakan:
- Morgana: This is, probably, the worst matchup for Rakan. Every ability can mess up Rakan’s strategies; her Q will keep you constantly rooted for a long time, her E counters your engages tools, and she can deal a lot of damage while keeping you rooted to the floor. I strongly recommend permabanning Morgana if you are maining Rakan.
- Vex: Rakan’s entire kit consists of dashing in and out of the trades and team fights, and this is a problem for him when a Vex is on the opposite team.
Vex’s passive lets her deal big bonus damage to champions with dashes like Rakan, and she also has decent burst damage. Vex has lane pressure, so you should be aware of that.
- Rell: Rell has the same problem as Morgana; she’s a champion that relies on having her objective rooted to the floor. Rell’s Ult makes it hard for Rakan to engage in battles, and her Q is especially annoying as it can destroy the shields from your passive and your E.
My best recommendation is to be aggressive in the early game by playing around with her cooldowns and punishing her whenever she misses. Remember, if you avoid her skills, you’ll have the advantage.
- Poppy: It’s not common to see Poppy as a Support; nonetheless, she’s very common in the Top lane so she can be a serious deal in the late game.
Her W cancels your W and E and can ground you, meaning that it will be impossible to disengage, leaving you in a sketchy situation. She can also use her Ult to throw you out of the team fights. At least, if you get to engage in a successful team fight, Poppy can’t stop you. Rakan has a lot of synergies, and he’s perfect for using as an engager, so Rakan will be perfect for any team!
Obviously, his perfect companion is Xayah, but Rakan can work alongside any ADC and junglers. Rakan’s best teammates are Kayle, Jarvan IV, Diana, or basically every champion with CC that can make a combo with Rakan’s engage tools and ADCs like Kai’sa, Samira, Jinx, Tristana, and obviously, Xayah; all of them are ADCs that can follow Rakan’s engages perfectly. Slower ADCs like Jhin will have problems following Rakan’s tempo.
Related Perks & Special Abilities
Fey Feathers (Passive)
Rakan will get a shield that scales on 90% of his AP scaling; the more AP Rakan has, the bigger the shield will be. Nonetheless, the major problem with this shield is that it is very small in the early game and has a big cooldown of 40 seconds. However, Rakan can reduce its cooldown by one second every time he lands an attack or ability on an enemy; this makes Rakan always trading and engaging in battles constantly.
The shield gets pretty big in the late game, and this works perfectly as a protection to avoid getting burst quickly after engaging in a battle.
Lover’s Leap (Second Passive, only with Xayah)
This passive only works when Xayah and Rakan are on the same team. If either of them recalls, the other can move nearby and activate their own recall to join. Both of them will get to base quicker, and it can help Xayah save a lot of time on recalls.
Gleaming Quill (Q)
Rakan throws a magical feather that damages the first objective it lands. If the feather hits a champion or a monster, Rakan will heal his nearby allies after a 3-second delay, and if Rakan is touching an ally champion, the heal will be instant.
The healing part of this ability is not so useful, at least it can provide some peeling or protection to your ADC, but this is the best ability to poke your rivals and keep them far from you and your ADC. I usually max this ability last because of the poor healing it offers and because you are mostly using it in the early game.
Grand Entrance (W)
Rakan dashes to a target location, and after a brief delay, he deals some magic damage to all the enemies in the area, knocking them up in the air for one second. This is Rakan’s main engagement tool, and you should max it first since it’ll be your main tool to initiate battles.
Landing it at first is hard as you have to learn its timing, but you can safely disengage from team fights with your E if you get in trouble. Also, be careful when using it as CC can cancel the animation, resulting in you not knocking anyone up and getting caught in a compromising position.
Battle Dance (E)
Rakan dashes to an ally and shields them for 3 seconds. After that, Rakan has 5 seconds to recast this ability once with no cost. This is another great tool for peeling your allies, as you can shield two of them or even shield one ally twice. A great thing about Battle Dance is that the shield it provides scales with 80% of Rakan’s AP, and if you are aiming to use it on Xayah, you’ll dash from a further distance.
It doesn’t work only to protect; you can also use it to close distances with your enemies by using one charge to get closer and another charge to disengage. This can make them get into a battle in a bad position, which means an advantage to your team.
I recommend maxing this ability second.
The Quickness (R)
Rakan breaks into a sprint, gaining increased Movement Speed for 4 seconds. During this duration, Rakan deals magic damage and charms the enemies the first time he touches them, and the first enemy Rakan touches will give him a 150% movement speed increase that decays over time. The duration of The Quickness will increase by 0.25 seconds for each unique enemy champion it hits.
This ability is outstanding for engaging battles thanks to the CC it offers; you can use it after you have already engaged with Grand Entrance or use the charm part of it to secure a hit with Grand Entrance. It all will depend on the situation.
This combo is the one you have to learn to do the most damage when trading without risking much. It is perfect for the lane phase in the early game to engage a quick battle, so it’s way better if your ADC is in sync with you.
Start with Grand Entrance (W), then do an auto-attack and then a Gleaming Quill (Q) while the enemy is knocked in the air. After this, if you want to disengage, which is highly recommended if you are in a risky position, you can use Battle Dance (E) to get back. This will make you get safe while healing your ally since you landed a Gleaming Quill.
This combo works perfectly to start a team fight. Of course, it heavily depends on your teammates to follow your play, but if you land it correctly, all your targets will be charmed, and your team will have a big window to attack.
Use The Quickness (R) and quickly target your objective with Grand Entrance (W); with the dash of your W, the enemy you targeted will get instantly charmed, making the knock-up part easy to land and opening the door for higher combos with champions like Yasuo. Lastly, you can use Battle Dance to reposition yourself or to protect your allies so they can finish the job.
Runes and Summoner Spells
Rakan’s runes can vary depending on the enemy team’s composition. If you are not sure of what to use, it’s good to take a look at the enemy’s team.
This rune page is aimed for a more defensive playstyle, focused on taking care of yourself if you are playing against assassins or champions with a lot of damage, like Tryndamere or Sett. Guardian allows you and your lane ally to stay alive. Also, thanks to your E, applying Guardian to an ally is very easy. This rune keeps an ally alive once the enemy team starts an engagement.
Font of life works in sync with your W and R as it consistently gives your allies healing when you apply CC to your enemies.
- Tip: you can change this rune for Demolish if you play with an ADC that can push easily, like Tristana, Jinx, or Caitlyn.
Bone Plating is the best option for lane phases against melee Supports like Leona, Pyke, or Nautilus, as it helps you block a good part of the damage inflicted when they engage. But if you are playing against poking-based Supports like Sona, Karma, or Soraka, Second Wind is the best option.
Unflinching is good against heavy CC teams; take this rune against Leona, Rell, or Morgana. Nonetheless, if the enemy team lacks CC champions, you can opt for Revitalize as it will increase your shields’ power and healings. For the secondary runes, Zombie Ward gives you better map control while also offering adaptive damage that will increase the power of your shield and heal as they scale on your AP.
Ultimate Hunter lets you use your R faster as you’ll need it constantly to engage in battles; it is a strong and valuable asset for your team.
This rune page works better for a more aggressive and audacious playstyle, providing you a lot of CC for your team; however, if you are against a team with heavy CC and assassins, I recommend using the Guardian rune page. Glacial Augment provides CC and damage reduction that becomes useful against assassins. It is easy to apply Glacial Augment thanks to your W and R.
Perfect Timing will help you build Zhonya’s Hourglass, but if you don’t want to, you can use Hextech Flashtraption, which I don’t recommend, but it can let you do some interesting plays. Future Market is the best option from this row as it will help Rakan buy anything faster, make him get a big early power spike, and let you win lane (and, therefore, the game) faster.
Cosmic Insight helps you reduce the cooldown of your abilities, which helps you stay ahead if you want to pressure your enemies constantly. It also gives item Haste, meaning reducing the cooldown of items with active effects.
For secondary runes, I recommend not to change it from the first rune page; these suit Rakan perfectly.
And lastly, the rune shards. First, go with Ability Haste since this stat is valuable for Rakan, Adaptative Force to increase your AP and, therefore, your defending scales. Lastly, the defensive shard will depend on your lane opponents, but most of the time, you’ll be using Armor.
Recommended Summoner Spells
- Flash: You’ll need to use Flash in every single game. You can use it in combination with Grand Entrance to surprise your enemies, and, as always, it can help you get out of sketchy situations when you can’t do anything else.
- Ignite: Ignite has to be the company of Flash in your summoners spells in every game as it gives you kill pressure and a dangerous Level 2 power spike in the very early game if combined with Grand Entrance. It also works perfectly against healer Supports like Sona or Soraka.
- Exhaust: I recommend using Exhaust if you are against a team with assassins. You’ll want to take care of your ADC, and Exhaust is perfect for that as it has a 40% damage reduction.
- Heal: You should only take Heal if your ADC doesn’t take it or if you feel you’ll need it against certain matchups, but it is up to you.
Whether you are playing with Rakan, your impact in the match will heavily depend on how well you engage in battles so that the build can vary a lot, and it doesn’t matter if you use a tanky build or an AP one.
So, here are the items I recommend the most with Rakan:
This should be the mythic you will use in most cases as it provides a great utility for your team since the passive of this item increases the movement speed of you and your ally whenever you shield or heal them. Shurelya’s Battlesong also has an active that lets you enter or exit a fight easily because of the Movement Speed boost you can give to the entire team.
Lastly, Shurelya also gives you Ability Haste, an important stat for Rakan.
- Tip: if you aim for a tanky build, you can use Evenshroud instead of this item.
Ionian Boots of Lucidity
These will be the boots you’ll have to use with Rakan most of the time, as it has cooldown reductions not only in your abilities but also in your Summoner Spells. Nonetheless, I recommend using Plated Steelcaps if you are going against a heavy AD composition and using Mercury Treads to play against heavy-CC threats, like Leona, Morgana, or Rell.
Rakan’s CC can use the passive from this item, which will help the linked ally do decent damage on team fights. A great option if your ADC is Twitch or Kai’sa.
Staff of Flowing Water
I would recommend building this item quickly in the match as it grants you AP and Ability Haste every time you heal or you put shields to an ally, and it also gives you AP, and Mana Regeneration, which is always useful to have.
This item is more of an anti-healing option against champs like Sona or Soraka and, in my opinion, a way better option than Morellonomicon since Rakan will benefit more from the anti-heal buff he gives to his allies once he shields them and also has the Ability Haste that Morello doesn’t have.
This is a solid item for Supports in general and way better for Rakan as it increases his healings and shields by 20%. Also, Redemption’s active can deal damage in area to your enemies, which can help you turn the tides of a certain fight.
Question: Is Rakan a bird?
Answer: I can understand the confusion, but no, Rakan isn’t a bird. Instead, he’s part of a race named Vastayas, half-human, half-animal beings.
Question: How good is Rakan?
Answer: Rakan has been an important part of teams during high-elo tournaments because of this versatility and the engaging tools he has; nonetheless, playing Rakan requires precision and a great understanding with your team; otherwise, things can get complicated. Rakan is a great champion, but if you have enough experience playing. If you don’t want to start playing Support or don’t know where to start, I recommend Nautilus.
Question: Can Rakan play in Top or Mid?
Answer: Well, I don’t recommend doing this as he’s very squishy, and even if you have great damage and shields with Rakan’s scalings, it’ll be hard to poke big Top laners like Yorick, Nasus, Sett, Urgot, and more.
In Mid, things can also get sketchy as there are a lot of matchups where Rakan will lose, mostly against assassins like Katarina or Talon or mages that just can delete Rakan like Ahri or Swain.
You can play Rakan there, and he can make a great role there, but for doing this, you’ll need to control Rakan perfectly; otherwise, you’ll get constantly ganked.
Rakan Guide: Conclusion
Rakan is part of the main meta of the game, and his moveset skills, adaptability to any build, and the things he can bring to the table in the team fights are outstanding and make him deserve a spot in the highest tiers of the competitive ladders.
Rakan is a strong option if you want to try different Supports, but you have to know that it’ll be hard to learn and play it properly at first as you need to be in sync with your teammates. If you have a bad time playing Rakan, ask for a friend to play with you as your ADC; that will be helpful!