Rek’Sai, the Void Burrower: Tunneling to a Rift Near You
Featured Image by Patrick "Zombienot" Young
League of Legends, now with 100% more land shark
It wasn’t a even a week since Kalista first hit servers worldwide when the League of Legends community was rocked by another sudden reveal. Riot Games really came out of nowhere when they dropped this bomb of an exquisite trailer:
As we would soon find out, the creature in this video was Rek’Sai, a void creature that terrorized the Shuriman dessert, bringing large portions of it to ruin.
On the Fields of Justice, Rek’Sai manifests herself (yes, it’s a girl) as a champion made for the newer and more unforgiving jungle of patches 4.20 and up. If you’ve ever thought to yourself “Hey, maybe Riot should do a mash up of Tremors and Aliens and put that in the game” then this champion is definitely for you.
Now there’s already a lot of info on her floating around the internet. We’re not going to bother you with a basic champion overview, because you can already find that and more on Riot Games’ website.
If you want to see the exact numbers behind the new champion, then check out this link. Note that Rek’Sai is still being tuned for release and that these numbers are subject to change.
Preparing for the Jungle
Rek’Sai has a good number of things going for her when it comes to jungling. First of all, she is manaless, meaning she won’t mind giving blue buff to any mana hungry mid laner, and won’t mind spamming all her abilities to her heart’s content. Speaking of abilities, Rek’Sai has more than four, seeing as her W, Burrow, changes her Q and E depending on whether or not she’s above or below ground. This adds more damage in the form of her two Q spells, as well as added mobility with Tunnel.
Her clearing is also aided by adequate amounts of area of effect damage, thanks to Queen’s Wrath, as well as passable sustain from her passive, Fury of the Xer’Sai. To see how her initial clear (without leashing) looks like, check out the video below.
Another note with her Tunnel ability is the fact that she can traverse the map in highly unique ways. You can have eight tunnels (that’s eight separate tunnels, not four pairs) on the map at any point, and they last as long as Teemo mushrooms, which as most are painfully aware is an ungodly 10 minutes.
Rek’Sai has the potential to bypass many wards with her tunnels, as well as create quick ways to get out of her base and into the jungle. And that’s not even counting her ult, Void Rush, which gives her a global range teleport to any of her tunnels, provided she gets a channel time off. This champion is clearly made to be mobile.
These tunnels are so versatile that they’ve become somewhat of an obsession with testers on Riot’s Public Beta Environment. Here’s a video on the many creative uses people have discovered using Rek’Sai tunnels:
In terms of the meta, it’s hard to say where Rek’Sai will ultimately end up as one, her numbers and maybe even the properties of her abilities are not final. Two, League of Legends is currently in preseason mode, and the huge changes to the jungle are still destabilizing what we know of Season 4. Still, it wouldn’t hurt to give some preliminary thoughts on what she could do for your team.
+ Counter jungling: Rek’Sai’s Burrow gives her Tremor Sense, allowing her to sniff out enemy movement in a large radius, even through fog of war. This is key for when you want to invade the enemy jungle to hunt for kills or to simply place wards.
+ Counter ganking: A long range teleport skill always means that counter ganks will never be too far behind, as is the case with Pantheon, Shen and Twisted Fate. So long as Rek’Sai has a nearby tunnel, she can provide aid instantly.
+ Map control: When jungle Shen was prominent in the metagame, it became increasingly difficult for opposing teams to control objectives against him. As long as his ult was available, he could be ganking top and instantly go down to Dragon to take it with his bot lane. Not to mention the split push potential. The same will apply to Rek’Sai, as long as a player is savvy with tunnel placement.
– Ganking: With only one form of crowd control, which is unburrowing to cause a knock up, Rek’Sai needs to get up close and personal to lock a target down. Aside from using tunnels to come from behind, her only option is running at an opponent with her burrowed movement speed boost. Good luck catching those pesky Rivens.
– Initiating team fights: One of a jungler’s main roles towards the mid and late game is to either single out an opponent or jump headlong into the enemy team and lock people down. Rek’Sai cannot effectively do this on the level that your typical Vi, Jarvan IV or Wukong can. On the bright side, her Tremor Sense can potentially help a team position for an ambush.
– Sticking to targets: As with ganking, her only CC is one knock up that requires her to be right next to a target. Chasing down priority champions on your own will be a daunting task, especially since using Tunnel as a dash is rather slow. As terrifying as Rek’Sai is, she’ll have nightmares when going up against a Vayne or Kalista.
Rek’Sai in Action
It’s still a ways off until her release, and maybe by that time a good portion of this preview will have been proven incorrect, but right now you can enjoy the fact that the League is getting its very own land shark of the Void. Can’t get enough of her? Check out the video below to see a full game of Rek’Sai play.
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