Kensei Playstyle Tips
Kensei 3v3 jungle and 5v5 botlane
Kensei 3v3 jungler
He can be played as laner too, but it’s better to play him in jungle since in lane the enemy laner can harass you really hard.
Earlygame: At the start of the match I always recommend building and if you are looking to build or if you want to build the more aggressive build with , but NEVER build nor . Start putting a cam in you kraken bush so you can see if the enemy is gonna invade your jungle or no (they usually take the old treant and that’s all), then start with your big monsters, treant and then, if you are safe, go to your small monsters.
Build always before .
Kensei is very weak in early, and any other hero can defeat him in 1v1 (except Baron and Varya?) so you should try to play safe and only rotate to lane if the enemy is pressuring, but just to help your laner to clear faster (do not steal their farm).
Midgame: Once you have your first t3 item you can star banking lane, and depending who is the enemy jungler, invading the enemy jungle, but you won’t be strong until you have 3 t3 items, so in midgame just be a little bit aggressive (if you can).
Lategame: once you have 3 t3 items you can start duel with almost every hero, so make sure you get some kills.
About when to build defense, I usually build it once I have and (always build before building raw damage ()), when basically you have enough AS to sustain during long teamfights.
For 3v3 lane, most 5v5 things can be applied, but one note: Range heroes can harass you more than a roam would do, so in certain situations, playing Kensei in lane is asking for a loose.
Early: Start, as in 3v3 jungler with and . Tray to p,ay safe, that means that you should try to play under turret and don’t try to kill the enemy, you won’t win that fight. The main problem here is fighting roams who doesn’t rely on skillshots (Yates, Grace, Flicker…) or range heroes (Lorelai), but you shouldn’t be afraid of fighting against San Feng, since you can dodge easily his B with your A or, if you are at melee range, you have enough time to get on his back. When farming don’t use your A, it deals low damage, so better keep it in the case they try to gank you, if that happens, use your B with one minion and your A to your turret to scape from them.
Mid and lategame: You are Kensei, which means that if you get your second t3 item, you can defeat in 1v1 most tanks, so don’t be afraid of fighting them. In most cases you have more range than them , so you can “poke” them to test your damage.
- Try to engage without using any hability, and when I say engage I mean just poking the melee heroes, usually tanks, until you have a clear opportunity to kill the enemy laner, use your B frequently, so the enemy can’t be sure when will you use your C
- If you engage with your C, don’t use all of your A charges, the A can be used to avoid skillshots or, in combination with your B to slow the enemy or scape. Use your A primarily to chat them if they try to scape.
- Thanks to the low cooldowns, he doesn’t need to go straight forward the enemy laner, so you can combine your B and A to move around.
- If you are playing Kensei in lane, it’s very possible that you need to buy early t1 defense, to make sure you survive.
- The B + A combo allows Kensei to go through most walls, so use it to move around jungle.
added by @VaKTaBi, update 4.2
Dealing with Kensei
If he is played as laner you just need to poke, that means that with you play a sniper, you can just AA Kensei when he wants to last hit, so he will be loosing his health slowly but eventually he will die, if you try to gank him, then would happen what used to happen with lane Glaive, he will just use his B + A combo to scape.
If he is played as jungler, you should invade him all the time, is not hard, he can’t kill you, so you need to steal all his jungle monsters, no need of killing him, so if he scapes, don’t chase him, just farm, kill bounties only gives you gold when the enemy is ahead or have a killed several times your team.
In draft, you can play against him in lane everything, in jungle… everything, but there are some heroes that can be more effective than others: WP jungler: Grumpjaw, he can snowball almost everyone in jungle, and Kensei wont be able to kill him untin he gets his 3 or even 4 offensive item, so you have a ton of time to snowball; CP junglers: Koshka, Skye (who can deal with Kensei in any stage of the game exceot mid ─ if they are paired in gold). Some heroes that works really well against him: Malene, Lyra, Magnus (his directional stun doesnt allow Kensei to go straight forward you nor chase), Caine (with his low cooldown dash and his A he can keep the distance and deal a ton of damage to him), Kinetic (her B + A combo gives Kensei a hard time dealing with you), Baron with his burst potential (however depends on many things like build, positioning…), and Silvernail with his tripwires. Except Malene all those needs a team that can help them (Ardan does this pretty good). You can always use a CC comp to shut him down, Baptiste and, specially Ylva, are greats against dives, so Kensei will have a hard time dealing with you, but your team needs to abuse your CC and chain their own CC.
In 5v5 he can only be played as bot alner, so you need a top alner who can deal with him, some options are: Grumpjaw, Lorelai, Malene, Adagio… but only in the very early unles you build CP or WP, which is not usually the case; Yates, some warriors like Joule or Glaive, Blackfeather… You need to harass him (which is not hard) and poke as hard as you are able.
During teamfights your team needs to keep together and try not to give BP stacks for free (most tanks are not close anought to their laner so he can penalize Kensei if he attacks your tanks), poke comps does extremly well against Kensei, and Lyra is a great roam against him.
Some general tips:
- Assassins does, in general gret against him, Reza can deal with him even in lategame if played well, and snowball him easily in early and midgame.
- Try to build , is more effective than building .
Mages (or Skye) can build to keep the distance, and it works really well against him.
- Bursty heroes are also great against Kensei (reason why Caine and Baron does well), so any hero who can abuse effectively can snowball and, potentially, win the match.
added by @VaKTaBi, update 4.2
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