League of Legend's new champion will push your micro skills to the limit

Josh Augustine at

Draven-thumb

League of Legends adds a new champion every two weeks, and most of them come with their fair share of novelties, like turning opponents into cupcakes or bouncing bombs over enemy lines. But this week's champion, Draven, is practically a mini-game in itself.

I've only played a few matches as him on the Public Beta Environment so far (you can try him out for free before he goes live later this week too--here's how), and I'm already convinced that everyone needs to try him--and most people need to buy him. Here's why.

His Q ability is Spinning Axe: "Draven's next attack will deal bonus physical damage. This axe will ricochet off the target high up into the air. If Draven catches it, he automatically readies another Spinning Axe. Draven can have two Spinning Axes at once."

How this works in practice is that you activate the ability and get a buff for about 5 seconds, and one of Draven's axes starts whirling in your hand. Your next attack during that period sends the spinning blade out to deal bonus damage and a rune appears on the ground--it's position dependant on your distance and angle from your target. If you move to the rune and catch the axe (or position yourself so that it will bounce right back to you), you get the buff again and can deal bonus damage on your next hit for free.

You can theoretically do this forever and once you boost up your attack speed, you juggle two spinning axes at the same time. It's a frantic pace of throwing, moving, catching, and throwing more. It's absolutely mesmerizing--I could sit there and grind creep waves for hours trying to one-up my previous high streak of juggles without dropping an axe. I'm not sure how well my brain will be able to handle that sort of intense micro under pressure of enemy players, but I love how high the skill ceiling is.

If you talk a big talk and think you're hot stuff on the Fields of Justice, this is the champion to prove it with.

Draven should be hitting live servers this week. You can read the full patch notes and, as always, download and play League of Legends for free.