When playing League of Legends you will hear a lot of people talk about “countering” or “you can counter them”. What this refers to is when you pick a champion which is specifically good against another champion. This is beneficial in draft or ranked as you can see what the other team has picked and you can counter pick them.
Remember countering is not always a great strategy, you may win your lane but you could lose team fights if your champion does not synergise well with your team mates. Team work will ultimately win you the game.
Top Lane Champion Counters
Yorick is an incredibly strong champion. He has good sustain, high burst and can be very difficult to deal with. Good counters to Yorick are champions with good sustain or the ability to shut him down. Cho’gath is generally a beast top lane, using him against Yorick with his silence, spikes and good health will make your lane more comfortable.
Irelia is an extremely strong top laner, she can farm like crazy. A good counter to Irelia is any one who can deal ranged damage and has enough sustain to keep up with her. Champions like Yorick and Cho’gath are good, along with Olaf who can sustain and poke with his axe.
Singed is a disgusting champion to play against… literally. When you lane against singed you require a way to either slow him down, or move him around. Jayce is a good choice with his jump, speed boost and knock back abilities and being able to poke at range. Nidalee is a good pick with her spear and sustain, plus her escape in cat form. Teemo can be effective with his slowing mushrooms and ranged poked.
Riven has very high damage with a good stun and shield dash. Countering Riven means countering her high damage output. High mobility champions who can escape Riven’s initial damage are a good choice, Olaf with his sustain and slowing axe can be good. Garen is a strong champion to use as he has good sustain with his health regen and can be hard to catch.
To counter Kha’zix you need very good sustain or the ability to poke from range. Yorick is an excellent choice as he can sustain himself and poke with the same ability. Lee sin is a good choice with his high sustain and shield, along with his great damage output.
Jayce is a horrible champion to lane against, he has a lot of varying abilities. His main weakness is his lack of sustain. Yorick and Cho’gath are good choices as they can poke from range and sustain in lane quite well. The key to laning against Jayce is being able to keep him near you to do enough damage.
Olaf is a very strong top laner, he has a good poke and slow, strong sustain with his lifesteal and massive damage with his true damage ability. Teemo can completely shut down his lifesteal and stop him from being able to sustain himself and Yorick can counter his lifesteal with his own sustain whilst poking Olaf from range.
Lee sin is one of the strongest top laners, his crazy mobility, high damage and good sustain can make him difficult to counter. Darius and Garen can be a good choice as they can build up their heavy tank items and grab/chase Lee sin to get their kills. They also have high damage.
Along with Lee sin, Cho’gath is one of the strongest top laners, he has very high health, silence, spikes and a massive damaging ultimate which makes him even stronger. Good ways to counter Cho’gath is using percentage based damage and magic resist. Irelia can usually farm without too much trouble and can be a good choice against Cho’gath. Warwick’s Hungering Strike is a very strong ability against Cho’gath, it can do massive damage, especially once Cho’gath is larger.
Mid Lane Champion Counters
Because of Ahri’s high mobility you need to be able to burst her down before she even knows you have. Fizz is a great champion with his dot and dash which do the majority of his damage. Leblance is a good counter as you can unload your heavy damage probably faster than any other AP carry. Ryze is also a strong counter because of his cage and ability to burst faster than most AP carries.
Talon mid can be devastating against the usual AP carries, to counter him you will need to counter his stealth and heavy AD damage. Malphite and Cho’gath are generally good mid counters as they have high health and can soak up a huge amount of damage, especially Malphite.
Fizz has high mobility and needs to get close to enemy champions to unleash his damage. Ryze is a very strong counter to Fizz as he can cage and then unload all of his abilites, he can also stack some pretty decent health with negates some of Fizz’s heavy damage. Another good counter is Mordekaiser who can soak up Fizz’s burst with his shield and then return some good close range damage.
Morgana is a very strong mid champion, she deals a lot of damage, has a spell shield and has a great AoE stun. Talon is a good counter to Morgana, as long as you can keep up your farm. He can silence and deal his heavy damage then escape or finish with his ultimate. Ahri can be a good counter as well with her high mobility which allows her to dodge Morgana’s binding.
Anivia can deal a lot of damage, the key to countering Anivia is to dodge her stun and heavy AoE damage. Fizz is a great champion as he can dodge pretty much anything. Kassadin is another good champion with his silence and flash ability, allowing him to dodge Anivia’s stun.
Orianna’s damage comes from her ball, dodging this is key to countering her. Fizz is a great counter with his dodging capabilities, along with Evelynn’s high mobility and Diana’s ultimate.
Galio is a strong champion against most AP Carries, so to counter him you will want to run an AD champion like Talon. Being able to deal out heavy AD damage against Galio will counter Galio’s main mechanic, build magic resist for ability power.
Akali is a strong assassin, being able to stand toe to toe with Akali will make your lane easier. With Lee Sin being one of the strongest bruisers you can counter Akali with him, although personally I would go for some one who can negate a heavy amount of damage, like Mordekaiser or Diana.
Evelynn is extremely strong in Season 3 now, she has some great burst damage, a decent slow and a good escape. Ryze is a good counter to Evelynn as he can unleash a lot of damage, farm from range and has a decent health pool. Mordekaiser is a good counter again as he can stop Evelynn from causing too much damage with his shield.
Gragas relies on dealing damage with his rolling barrel, it is fairly slow so you can dodge it if you are quick enough. Champions like Ahri and Fizz can help you dodge his barrel and dodge his ultimate which can get him a lot of kills if used correctly.
Karthus is a fairly standard AP carry apart from his ultimate. He has a potentially game changing ultimate and the best and probably main way to counter it is to use Soraka in support and AoE heal everyone either before his ultimate goes off (if they are low) or after if he is weakening them for an attack.
Kassadin is a very strong AP Assassin who can silence, dash and deal a heavy amount of damage. Kassadin relies quite heavily on playing against a standard ap carry who uses spells. Using a mid character like Talon or Fizz (who uses few spells to get his damage done) can counter Kassadin quite effectively.
Brand, Annie (Other standard AP Carries)
The majority of your basic AP carries can be countered by most of the same champions. Galio is a great counter with his high magic resist. Kassadin is also another good counter with his silence and disgusting damage. Katarina is another good counter who can do a crazy amount of burst before you even know it.
Bot Lane Champion Counters
Attack Damage Carries
Graves is probably one of the strongest, if not the strongest ad carry at the moment, the main key to countering Graves is to out range him and bully him out of the lane so he is not able to dash in and unload his abilities on you. Good champions for countering Graves would be, Caitlyn and Tristana, they both get great range and can poke away at him.
Tristana is a fairly strong champion, her jump is great although it isn’t as fast an escape as Ezreal or Graves as it moves you in arc rather than a straight line. Tristana doesn’t have any skill shots, she relies mainly on her basic attack and speed boost to take down champions. Ezreal is a great pick as he can escape from Tristana’s main damage and then come straight back in once it is on cooldown to unleash his skills, Taric is also a good counter as he can stun when she activates her speed boost.
Corki is a strong champion with some great skills, he also does some scary early game damage with his 10% true damage passive and his armour reduction ability. Countering Corki is usually a case of not getting caught in the machine gun, it does decent damage and reduces your armour, playing Graves or Ezreal will give you the instant dash/escape to stay out of range of Corki’s machine gun.
Vayne is an ok laner but a very very strong mid/late game champion, she uses her ultimate to unload a huge amount of damage late game. In lane you should be able to counter her with most solid champions and a good support, they key is to try and bully her out of lane. Ranged champions will find it easier, although champions with a dash and a support with stun will make Vayne a lot easier to deal with.
Blitzcrank can be one of the most frustrating supports to play against, the only thing you need to worry about is his grab. Staying behind minions will get you most of the way to countering Blitz, but Sivir’s shield and Ezreals flash are awesome counters for Blitzcrank.
Taric is a very strong support, unlike Blitz you can not hide behind minions to save you from his stun and this is his best ability. Sivir’s shield is a great counter, along with anyone who has an escape, aslong as you are quick enough to use it before you are stunned.
Sona is another great support, her ultimate is great but the main difficulty you will have against Sona in lane is her poke and sustain. Longer ranged champions will find it slightly easier to deal with. A good way to counter Sona’s poke and sustain is to have a support like Soraka, Taric or Alistair, they all have great sustain and can stop Sona for you to escape. Alistair is a great choice as he can sustain you and take advantage of Sona being less tanky than other supports.
Leona is currently one of the best supports (if not the best). She has an amazing tool kit and an amazing initiate. Against Leona you will want to run a heavy poke and sustain team, Sona and Caitlyn would be a good choice, along with Alistair and Tristana. Do not get caught near the brush or she will be on you before you know it. Poking and sustaining will bully the opposing enemies out of the lane.
Jungle Champion Counters
Amumu is an incredibly strong champion, a great way to counter him is with fast junglers like Shyvana. If you have a strong team and can steal his blue early then move back to your blue to defend it, he will be behind heavily. In team fights try and pick champions with good range and keep spread out.
Shyvana is an insanely fast jungler, she has strong gank potential and can move very quickly. To counter Shyvana you need to be able to constantly CC her or you will never catch up to her. Olaf with his axe slow and sustain is a great counter to her as he can consitently slow her, plus keep himself alive. Cho’gath is a good choice as well because he can silence and chuck her up in the air for team mates to attack.
Udyr is a good jungle with some great abilities. He deals primarily attack damage so any champion who can build armour is quite a good counter. Rammus can be a good counter with his taunt and armour, as well as his ball. Udyr is extremely fast aswell so any champion that can slow him down is a good counter.
Skarner can deal out a decent amount of magic damage and his ultimate can change a team fight. Getting magic resist is important against Skarner, so the hexdrinker is a good item. Lee sin works well with a hex drinker. Nocturne is a good counter too as he can fear Skarner and stop him from generating too much health.
Knock back is quite strong against Maokai as he will want to launch himself and root you. Cho’gath again is a good choice as he can silence and launch Maokai into the air. Lee sin is also a good choice (again) as he has a strong knockback, plus he can reduce the attack speed of Maokai, reducing how effective he is at healing himself.
The reason Nautlius is so strong is because of his shield. Dealing true damage to Nautlius can bring him down a easier. Olaf is a great choice for his large true damage strike. Nautilus will also want to get you close to him using his anchor. Shyvana has an ability which speficially launches you into champions and when she attacks she prolongs the effect, this makes her a nice counter to Nautlius. Shyvana can also steal some of his jungle because of how quickly she clears.
Fiddlesticks key ability is his ultimate, he can clear out team fights using it. Alistair is a great counter to Fiddlesticks because he can headbutt fiddle away from the team when he has his ultimate up. Xin Zhao is also a good counter because of his ultimate along with Lee Sin.
Volibear is a strong tank and his weakness is not so much champions. Use ignite and certain weapons to reduce Volibears passive, this will help you take him down faster in a team fight.
Mundo is very similar to Volibear in that he is countered quite heavily by ignite. If you want to stop mundo from rampaging then make sure you have ignite or a weapon that reduces Mundo’s regeneration.
Nocturne relies on launching in with his ultimate and then fearing his opponents whilst dealing heavy attack damage. Lee sin is a perfect counter as he can give himself extra armour and he is so mobile that he can get out of range of fear. Jax and Fiora are also good counters as they can dash out of the way of his fear.
If your loving League of Legends and the new season 3 changes then check out this video back from season 2, a crazy combination of Sona ultimate, Brand ultimate and per ownage.
If you have any other counters you would like to see then either leave them in the comments section below. This is not intended to tell you what to play when, but to give you some ideas around what champions work well against others. Good luck and keep on gaming!