Sometimes a champion can seem so overpowered that you may find yourself thinking that they have no counter. That Riot has broken the game. That you need to start playing games which are actually balanced and give this up. Listen here, sonny: There is no such thing as a champion in the League of Legends which cannot be countered. Every single champion can be played around or against.
Counterplay is always necessary
The stats don’t lie in League of Legends. At high elos, Shen’s win rate against Sett is much higher than average. High elo players know how to utilize Shen against Sett. They have the wisdom to itemize, lane and teamfight against a Sett. How can you play Shen like a Challenger and take out The Boss in every game? Read this article.
It all starts with the laning phase, where mechanics meet mechanics. Knowing how Sett works is a good start, if you don’t have the slightest idea check out his champion spotlight. You can’t counter Sett with Shen unless you know how both work.
Playing with Qs
All Sett’s abilities can be played around, especially by Shen. Sett deals a lot of his damage with his basic attacks, especially when they are empowered by his Q. Timing of Shen’s W, which blocks all basic attacks from champions, will come in handy when trying to mitigate as much of Sett’s damage as possible in 1v1 situations. When Sett speeds up while running towards you, it means he has activated his Q. If you can block his empowered attacks in the short period of time that your W lasts, while landing your own empowered Q attacks, then leave the fight with your E, you will have won the trade and Sett won’t be able to catch up to you due to his lack of gap closers besides his Q.
It’s important to run short trades against Sett. Sett almost always runs conqueror, meaning if he fights for long enough he will start to heal off damage on champions. He regenerates health faster the lower he is on health, and short trades also mean playing around one of Sett’s strongest abilities: His W. Sett’s W gains damage based on how much damage he takes in a fight. It does the highest possible amount when his secondary bar, which you may have noticed isn’t mana, is full. Sett will use his W either when the trade is over or when he has max “grit”, when he lights up and starts to look like a super saiyan. Use your E to dodge his W, which does true damage when it hits champions in its centre, while simultaneously escaping and ending the trade before his conqueror stacks get out of hand.
If the opportunity arises, positioning will play an important role when your jungler ganks. Sett’s E, Facebreaker, can only stun you if he hits enemies on both sides of the ability. Make sure you don’t let Sett land a double stun on you and your jungler, it will shift the tide of the gank. Sett can stun you even while you dash with your E, so be careful. Be conscious of the fact that your Q will do far more damage if the sword goes through an enemy champion on its way to you.
Keep trades quick and painless and you have a good chance of being successful in the laning phase when playing as Shen against Sett.
You can’t forget about what you’re going to build if you are going to counter Sett with Shen. The most common keystone that people run on Shen is Grasp of the Undying, a fair choice which provides lane sustain and 1v1 potential. In this case you aren’t going to be needing sustain, because you shouldn’t be letting Sett harass you, and neither will you need 1v1 potential because you will always lose anyway if your fight lasts longer than a few seconds. You need to run a keystone which will up the damage of your quick trades while also providing utility in the late game. You need Press the Attack.
Your goal in lane will be to proc Press the Attack in trades and get out as soon as possible. PTA will also help your jungler gank you as it increases the amount of damage enemy champions take from all sources. In the late game it will help your carries burst down the enemy team as you weaken their defenses with 3 simple basic attacks. It doesn’t have a cooldown if it’s being used against different champions, so try to proc it on as many as possible in teamfights, even better if you can do it while landing empowered Q attacks.
Your build should depend on how your lane is going as well as the damage output of the rest of the enemy team. You should almost always go for a Sunfire Cape, just because of how well it works on Shen and against Sett.
If you’re finding Sett’s healing to be a pain or there’s just a lot of healing in general on the enemy team, pick up a bramble vest. Sett deals true damage, physical damage and % Max health damage. Be safe and pick up both armor and bonus health. Ninja Tabi should be your choice of boots. It gives protection against basic attacks which are a lot of Sett’s damage.
Teamfighting against The Boss can be difficult if he catches you or your teammates out of position. Don’t give Sett the opportunity to nab one of your carries out of the fight with his ult. Be mindful of the fact that the damage his ult does scales with the bonus health of his primary target. He will be doing the most damage in a teamfight when he grabs you or another tank and your team and slams into everyone else.
Remember that Sett will always slam straight in the direction he grabs the champion that he ults. He is capable of ulting you over a wall if you are close enough to it. A well positioned W will stop him from dealing damage which isn’t his ult or his W to your teammates. Peel the damage for your teammates, proc Press the Attack and position well and you will be doing your part in teamfights. To counter Sett with Shen in teamfights is not impossible.
A champion may seem broken, but there is always a way to play against them. It might be time to consider to stop banning Sett, and to start playing Shen. If you need any other counter advice, click here.