To my huge joy my six year old has taken an interest in game design and creation rather than plying them. He started with an app called geometry dash and now using scratch.
I’d love for him to have all tools available to him but also for him to start with something that isn’t too overwhelming or me pressuring him into loosing interest, so preferably something I can just introduce and then let him decide and if there are YouTube tutorials it would be awesome. He’s just gotten his own laptop for this purpose but I have a strong pc for whatever is needed too.
I’m able to setup what may be needed of software or gitlab or whatever. I only know yaml and batch and a touch of python so I’m not really able to help / show him how code anything remotely complex.
Any suggestions really appreciated!
Azzapp's Challenger Vel'Koz guide
I’m Azzapp, a streamer content creator primarily focused on Vel’Koz. I have been playing league since s1, played competitively amateur scene s5/s6. I’ve played Vel’Koz since he came out in season 4, and have done many guides/coaching sessions on him. During season 9 I have hit Challenger on 3 different servers and 3 different pings. EUW(~70), EUNE(~60) and NA(~150). My Tiple Challenger AMA post : https://www.reddit.com/leagueoflegends/comments/c9x4em/hi_im_azzapp_and_ive_reached_challenger_season_9/
I have always found characters with tentacle badass [insert tentacle hentai joke here]. That probably stems from the fear of the depths, underwater weird moving creatures, fortified by H. P. Lovecraft Cthulhu mythos. Anyway I believe he has one of the best if not the best champion designs in the game. Ever since I saw the First Contact
trailer I was hooked. Everything about this champion is awesome, incredible and unique lore, a trailer so good it gives you the goosebumps, voice that send shivers down your spine, mind blowing visual and particle effects design.
Those were my initial thoughts when I saw the champion get released. I prayed that he is going to be as epic as I had imagined in the game as well.
There I was finally playing my newfound favorite champion with a grin from ear to ear. I didn’t even realize the fact that the champion sucks. When he got release he had practically no AP scaling, he was weak and vulnerable and pretty damn complex to master. The fact that no one thought he was viable didn’t even phase me one bit. I was blinded by the champions design that I couldn’t care whether he is good in game or not. I just kept playing until I figured out a lot of tricks that make Vel’Koz pretty alright. I was very motivated to show people that Vel’Koz can actually be viable.
Vel’Koz is one of the most unique characters in league of legends. He is something between artillery and a control mage. His Q can be used in plethora of ways. 360 degrees to decide the direction and the ability to reactivate at any point in time. His initial Q range is 1050 and reactivated Q range is 1100. Due to the slight difference the maximum range is achieved with roughly 46.33 degree angle with range =~1520
. It’s also important to note that second stage Q is faster which comes into play with some combos. One of the first and most simple yet beautiful tricks is the Q+R combo.
We will go very deep into combos later on.
Vel’Koz runes since runes reforged have been pretty much stable. There are potential 3 setups I like to use. If you are a beginner you are interested in only one in my opinion. The most common one and the optimal one is Arcane Comet Vel’Koz.
Arcane comet is the best keystone for Vel’koz, it enables you to go Sorcery tree which has great synergy with Vel’koz. You will mostly be poking with Q which guarantees Comet damage. It just very stable and solid playstyle which is always useful.
Manaflow band/ Nullifying Orb
Manaflow band is the standard for laning. It has great mana value, stacks up quite easily and once stacked provides extra mana regen for more spam.
Nullifying Orb is the defensive option here, usually used if you are laning vs very aggressive casters like Fizz.
You are a caster with 4 skillshots. More W spam = more wave control., More Q = more poke and combo setup, More E = less downtime when you can play aggressive. More R = MORE DISINTEGRATION.
Scorch/ Gathering Storm
Scorch is used for early game domination. Has really good synergy with Comet poke. More suited for poking playstyle since it can proc only once every 10s.
Gathering Storm takes a while to get going and is completely useless for the first 10 minutes. That being said in an all in combo it outscales Scorch after only 10 minutes. After 20 it gives 500 gold worth of AP, 1000 at 30…
For secondary runes here there are 2 playstyles. You can go aggressive(Domination) and passive(Inspiration). To the Vel’Koz beginners I always suggest Inspiration since survival is #1 priority. You would be surprised how many champions will one shot you without any skillshots in current meta.
Magical Footwea Perfect Timing
All Vel’Koz skillshots are directly tied to his model so the faster you move the more you can land. Magical footwear provides great value and can also help you kite easier.
Stopwatch is an immobile squishy mages best friend. Getting one for free is great 10/10.
Cooldown reduction is one of the most useful stats on mid lane Vel'Koz. Any type of CDR is extremely powerful and increases your impact in teamfights.
Taste of Blood
If you decide to go the more aggressive snowballing route, Taste of Blood is great tool for short trades. Technically Cheap Shot would help you secure even more kills but the numbers are just not that great, so healing provides way more value.
Insanely fun to stack and gives you way more ultimate uses per game. Paired up with season 10 Cloud Dragon your ultimate can reach 21 seconds cooldown. Collecting ADC tears has never been faster!
Others are Glacial Augment, Dark Harvest.
Glacial Augment works great in difficult match ups such as Yasuo, Zed, Qiyana especially if enemy comp is mostly AD. It essentially crunches the skill ceiling making the champion easier to play but making it hard to distinguish good players vs great players. In that case you are more of a supporting character trying to control teamfights and set your team up.
Usual build would be corrupting -> dark seal, lost chapter -> GLP -> Sorcery boots -> Zhonya’s -> Morello.
For runes you would want Stopwatch -> Future’s Market -> Time warp tonic into Domination (Cheap shot/taste of blood -> Ingenious Hunter).
Dark Harvest is probably my favorite Vel’koz setup. On release it was incredible and a bit overtuned
. Then it went through 2 nerfs which made it barely viable, and only so on Support role. If you can manage 5 stacks per 10 minutes then it outscales the comet. Obviously the downside is a bit weaker early game but Dark Harvest having a reset on takedown can be incredibly rewarding for solo q.
Usual build would be Spellthief -> Dark seal, Boots -> Boots of Mobility -> Twin Shadows -> Liandry’s Torment.
For runes you would want Taste of blood - > Eyeball Collection -> Relentless Hunter into Sorcery( Manaflow Band -> Celerity)
Electrocute is decent for trading and it is the successor of the previously best rune for Vel’Koz “Thunderlord’s decree”. The issue with Electrocute is that it’s difficult to proc. It can work in some melee match ups depending on your playstyle but I’m not a huge fan.
Predator I used to use in jungle but with jungle changes for season 10 Vel’Koz has harder time getting to 6. Don’t recommend you do it... a lot.
There is also a viable Predator mid lane roaming playstyle. It works alright with the season changes and plates being worth less. In case you have a hard match up mid you would like to avoid completely you can use this build. Maxing out W and spamming it to clear waves fast then looking for roams.
Using an immobile squishy mage without flash is begging to get ran over by almost every champion in the game. Also flash is extremely potent if you want to prefix it with an ability(Q,E or R). More on that here![animation cancelling guide]
The most common one in mid lane and support. The sheer strength of barrier and low cooldown provide really good value and a dose of safety.
Heal is used as a different version of safety. Has a bit longer cooldown and less hp value then barrier but it’s used if it can make it up in movement speed or helping teammates. Usual match ups where I go heal instead are: Cassiopeia, Viktor, Orianna..
Skill order is one of the most debated things about Vel’Koz. Maxing Q gives you higher burst and kill potential but weaker wave management. On the other hand maxing W gives you better wave control but less kill potential. Over the years of playing Vel’Koz I have devised a skill order which I believe to be optimal in most cases. I like putting 3 points in W by level 5 which gives you just enough pushing power and helps you through the early game when Vel’Koz isn't the strongest and you wouldn't be going for kill anyway. After 3 points in W I proceed with maxing Q to increase the slow duration and burst potential. Obviously you will be getting points in R when available and after maxing Q you will proceed with maxing W.
Organic Deconstruction is an extremely important mechanic in your kit when playing Vel’Koz. To deal optimal damage you should be basing your trades around your passive. In the best case scenario you will land 9 stacks on the opponent which is 3 true damage rotations. For quick trades you should be looking to proc Organic Deconstruction at least once. People will rarely respect your stacks especially if you only applied one, but sometimes only 1 stack is enough to enable your play. You should check out the combo guide for more.
Q – Plasma Fission
Plasma Fission is the most unique ability for Vel’koz. Manipulating the reactivation of your Q open up a whole new world of play making. It is the catalyst in 90% of Vel’koz plays. However mastering the shooting and reactivation is only a part of it. Because of it’s geometrical/trigonometrical nature, Plasma Fission is directly connected to your positioning. Getting into good positions will make extremely difficult shots into check mate scenarios where your Q is impossible to dodge.
W – Void Rift
Void Rift is the only basic ability in Vel’Koz kit which has the potential to apply more than 1 stack of Organic Deconstruction. It is mostly used for pushing, wave management and follow up to Plasma Fission or Tectonic Disruption. It is extremely hard to hit both part of W on it’s own, but it boosts your damage output heavily if you can set it up.
E – Tectonic Disruption
Tectonic Disruption is the only form of hard CC Vel’Koz has. Landing E enables you to dish out your full combo but missing it can be devastating for your mana pool and pressure in lane. It is best to use it after landing Plasma Fission which greatly increases your chance of succeeding. Tectonic Disruption is also your only disengage ability and it is very crucial not to waste it against assassins because it will render you vulnerable for the next 10-15 seconds.
R – Life Form Disintegration Ray
Life Form Disintegration Ray is by far the most powerful Vel’Koz ability and it definitely packs a punch, but it is by no means overpowered. There are 2 keys to using your R properly. First you have to account for all the potential disruptions because you are extremely vulnerable during the channeling time. Secondly, to get the most out of Life Form Disintegration Ray you have to manage the stacks of your passive. It is best used just after the first rotation granting you true damage for the full channel and one extra proc of Organic Deconstruction.
Doran’s ring is the perfect starting item for Vel’koz It provides you with all the stats you need during your laning phase.
Dark Seal is a great item to get on your first buy. It will slow your build a little bit but it's value will skyrocket throughout the game. Since Vel’Koz is relatively safe champion and has to keep good positioning at all times it will be easy to get stacks. At 10 stacks it’s value is ~1000 gold which gives it 300% efficiency.
Lost Chapter is the core for Vel’Koz no matter your playstyle. Getting it with the Dark Seal on your first buy will set you up for any game. After that you can choose to upgrade it to either Luden’s Echo, GLP or Archangel’s staff or you can even delay it and buy items you desperately need at that moment, like Banshee’s Veil or Zhonya’s Hourglass.
Luden’s Echo is the optimal to rush as Vel’Koz. It has insane synergy with Sorcery tree and later on Liandry’s Torment. In the late game just hitting a minion near an opponent will dish out substantial amount of poke.
Archangel’s Staff is a safer counterpart to the Luden’s Echo. It has a bit slower powerspike so I don't recommend it in solo Q unless it is absolutely necessary.
Sorcerer’s Shoes are obviously the best boots in terms of the burst potential. That being said they are not always the optimal choice. Vel’koz damage output consists of ~20-25% true damage which makes the magic penetration only ~75-80% effective. Magic penetration is not the core for Vel’koz so don't be afraid to adapt with your boots. Ionian Boots of Lucidity, Ninja Tabi, Mercury’s Treads are all good choices depending on the situation.
Liandry’s Torment is a good second item to buy in terms of raw damage output if opponents don't have too many heals like Soraka or Vladimir In that case you are better off building Morello.
Morellonomicon works best in situations where opponents don't have too much magic resistance and/or they have a lot of healing/sustaining abilities.
Twin Shadows is an extremely cheap third item but it gives everything Vel’Koz needs. This item is a blessing against immobile targets and it makes your snowballing that much easier. It also helps you control the map providing pick potential and better control of sieges, dragon and baron fights.
EL SOMBRERO MORITFERO DE RABADON
EL SOMBRERO MORITFERO DE RABADON is obviously the best item in terms of raw AP and damage output, but it's very hard to build. It consists of 3 parts that are over 1000 gold and sometimes building it can take too much time without any powerspikes. You have to choose carefully when you want to get it, and if you do pick a good time, disintegration is assured.
Void Staff, despite it's name, it doesn't have the best synergy with Vel’Koz. We have previously stated that it will only be 80% effective than it would've on other chamnpions. That being said it is still a good 5th or 6th item if the opponents have plenty of magic resistance.
Zhonya’s Hourglass is in most cases built as a reaction to opponents. The stats it offers aren't that good for Vel’Koz, but the stasis effect can very often be the difference between living or dying.
Banshee’s Veil is yet another situational item. It gives a little bit better stats than Hourglass and the magic shield will allow you to position more aggressively and it might save you while channeling Life Form Disintegration Ray.
Mejai’s Soulstealer is a very underrated item and my favorite. It uses the similar logic to the Dark Seal. It's value becomes insane at 15+ stacks. I particularly like this item because when you buy it you instantly have to play better, it forces you to make less mistakes and die less in general.
In most cases at level 1 you will want to take Q. It is more reliable for farming early game, less mana consumption and you might get some poke damage.
Early game as Vel’koz you're pretty safe and you will most likely not get ganked before 3 minutes so you want to make as much as pressure as you can. You are at your best when you are pressuring enemy and holding him on the ropes.
In some match up-s like Azir, Xerath, Aurelion Sol, Taliyah etc. you will not be able to outpush so picking up W level 1 and minion dematerializer can save you from taking a lot of damage trying to control the waves.
Vel'Koz is a champion that scales very well with levels, so you have to try and take advantage of spikes for level 2,3 and 6 during the laning phase. If you are controlling the waves and having slightly more pressure than the opponent, that means when you get close to a level up you can get it way sooner than the enemy.
Level 2 spike will rarely kill since you only have Q and W available to you so in best case scenario you will get 2 rotations of your passive but it might just be enough to give you a good lead
in lane or even force a summoner spell.
Level 3 spike works in a similar way except you have access to your only hard cc ability making you more of a threat and better at setting up a gank. At this point it is possible to make enemy use Flash defensively.
Up until this point Vel’Koz was a relatively weak champion, even if you landed poke it wouldn't have been that impactful. From level 3 and on you gain more and more control.
Level 6 powerspike is definitely responsible for good majority of my solo kills in lane. When you reach level 5 and about 60-80% of experience one good trick
to use is zone them towards the wave with your Q and then prematurely drop your combo on the wave immediately leveling up your Life Form Disintegration Ray which is at least going to cost them a Flash and in many cases give you a kill.
At this point you will have 3 points in W which will enable you to out-pressure even the stronger pushers in the game. Use that lane priority to get deeper wards on enemy raptors or river. Many junglers tend to be careless in solo Q and they feel overly safe in their jungle. Using your vision and knowledge you may be able to get a long range kill on some unsuspecting junglers. If you are unable to force your lead in lane and get a kill, try using your map vision to devise a nice roam. Vel’Koz roams tend to work great on side lanes due to map curvature and geometry. In many cases you are able to get a kill or an assist from the edge of the river which will cost you hardly any cs.
Vel’Koz is a high range, high damage, unique control/artillery mage. He is not a mechanically demanding champion but he does require you to have a lot of game knowledge. Most of Vel’Koz plays are created in your head in advance rather than reactionary. Based on a particular game and what you have observed, you need to imagine what you are going to do in certain scenarios. Playing Vel’Koz is very similar to playing chess. It's all about mind games and predicting what are your opponents options and most likely moves. You are very vulnerable immobile mage
, so in order to survive and make the most damage possible you will have to be playing the "counting game". That means paying attention and counting every single dash, flash, jump, etc..
Many of players think that in order to be a good Vel’Koz player you have to be good at hitting skillshots, but it goes way beyond that.
In order to truly master the TENTACLE, there are couple of keys.
First and most important you need to work on your game knowledge.
Second, you need to work on your positioning, which directly ties into your game knowledge.
Third, you need to work on your skillshots, which directly ties into your positioning.
In teamfights Vel’Koz very often plays a similar role to that of an ADC but with slightly more range.
For beginners and even experienced players good rule to go by is just to NOT die 4Head. That is a bit harder than you think because you will very often overreach and try to deal more damage than it is possible in certain scenarios. First try to analyze the threats. Who on the opponent team can kill you and how. You need to know how close you can get without compromising your life. You have built in true damage with your passive so focusing the frontline is actually not bad.
Later on as you gain more game knowledge and experience you will be able to understand the win condition in almost every single game and thus modify your teamfight goal.
If you are doing an extremely good job in a specific game you will hardly ever have teamfights. In an optimal scenario you would be dancing right outside of the enemy team's engage range and dishing out poke.
Vel’Koz is insanely good at sieging turrets. If you maintain good position and you land decent amount of your poke, the opponents will be rendered useless under their turret. If they make a forced engage with low HP they will lose, if they back off they will lose the turret. Playing good poke/pick style will win many teamfights before they even start.
A lot of people don’t know this but Vel’Koz has an insane number of combos. Also yes, the Squid has animation cancelling, take that dirty Riven mains.
Your W is the only ability without casting animation and it can’t be used in a W+ Flash combo. But that makes it extremely useful as a prefix to other abilities. General fast combos are W+Q, W+E, W+R. There is a weird interaction between Q and E where if you cast it in that order Q animation can mask the E animation. So we can derive the absolutely fastest combo ever, W+Q+E+R done in that order. Shown how to do it in the video here!
Vel’Koz combos are a true art form and over the years I have found so many. I honestly spent a lot of time writing this but for the life of me I couldn’t match my combo guide video in writing form. You should definitely watch this, don’t mind my shit microphone and accent.
Season 10 tips
Season 10 seems to be more impacted by macro gameplay than Season 9. Vel'Koz is by no means a high impact champion or a hard carry champion but he can do a great job slowing the game down. Opponents will make mistakes. Your job is to not fall into desperation plays and further increase the enemy lead. You have to be the rock of your team, the anchor to slow the game down. If you manage to not die you can pretty much contest every objective opponents are trying to take. Biggest comebacks
with Vel'Koz happen through great defenses, big plays on Dragon/Baron fights and steals. You can contest these objectives from fairly long range.
Original is the best, Arclight and Battlecast are awesome and we don’t talk about the third one. 4+ years without a skin, my eyes are getting dry from all the crying, I don’t even know how I can see anymore. I glued myself to the wall and put suction cups on my arms pretending I am a squid in the dark.
Thank you for your time Squid enthusiast, I sincerely hope this guide was helpful and entertaining. It’s always a pleasure to convert people into Vel’Koz mains. Hopefully he gets a bit more attention from both player base and Riot in Season 10.
If you have any specific questions about anything I will try to answer here as much as possible, also I read every comment on my youtube and twitch.