As discussed in the comments of this answer, what is the difference between waveclear and pushing power?

  • Wave clear is clearing a minion wave(simple!), pushing is causing the lane to shift directions in your favor. One can wave clear to cause lanes to switch which way they're pushing. Either way the terminology use is debatable.
    – Brian
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 18:04

5 Answers 5


As its my answer you're linked to, I feel some sort of obligation to try and explain. Plus its a really good question.

I feel like a lot of people use them almost interchangeably, but there seem to be subtle differences between them.

According to this site,

Pushing is where you push the lane your in to the tower and kill all the towers and the creep waves that come towards you.

I think the other answerers and I will agree that wave clear is more along the lines of:

quickly clear out a minion wave, and NOT EXPOSED THEMSELVES TO DANGER WHILE DOING SO.

Regardless of if it is offensive or defensive (thanks GeneralMike).

Thus my short summary of differences:

  • Pushing is more of a threatening thing.
  • You need to be there to push, you do not to waveclear (example ziggs ult)
  • Wave clear is providing you the opportunity to do something or deny that opportunity from your opponent.

NOTE: You can most certainly be waveclearing AND pushing at the same time.

Example paraphrased quotes from recent games of mine that should help shed some light:

Defensive waveclear example:

Ziggs is so annoying to try to push against because he has such good waveclear. We never have a minion wave.

Offensive waveclear example:

If we siege, I (twisted fate) can basically one shot the minion wave now, you'll have free shots on the turret if you're careful.

Pushing example:

Let Yi push (he was at inner turret), if they dont leave soon, he'll take their base. When they do, we take baron.

  • 2
    I deleted my answer as this covers just about everything I was trying to say. I must not have noticed it while I was preparing mine. +1 Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 15:38
  • I would disagree that you need to be there to push, you only need to be there to shift the minion advantage and the wave will push itself, but then i guess my definition of pushing may be different. But then again the question asked for what pushing power was not pushing
    – Brian
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 17:59

In the context of the answer you linked, 'waveclear' is defensive, 'pushing' is offensive. A champ is said to have good defensive waveclear if they sit under their turret, quickly clear out a minion wave, and NOT EXPOSED THEMSELVES TO DANGER WHILE DOING SO. I suspect that last part is what was being referred to in the comment you linked. Since Trynd is a melee champ, he has to go out and meet a wave to kill it, which exposes him to enemy ranged champs who are seiging the turret.

In general, I've also heard 'waveclear' used to just refer to killing a minion wave quickly (usually through AoE or many-target abilities), without any implication of whether it was defensive or offensive. 'Pushing' always refers to the offensive capability of being able to escort a large amount your minion wave to an enemy turret and put damage on the turret. I'm unaware of any term that emphesizes purely defensive 'waveclear', which I suspect is why the author of the comment you linked just used 'waveclear'.

  • Waveclear is not defensive neither offensive, it's just the ability to kill all the minions in one or more waves if many waves merged. It can be both for a defensive or offensive purpose. Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 14:00
  • @JonathanDrapeau: In the context of the linked answer, I feel the author there was trying to differentiate between offensive and defensive waveclear, and used the term 'pushing' to refer to the offensive aspect, and just 'waveclear' to refer to the defensive. I agree that in general, waveclear is a bit ambiguous. I'll edit to clarify. Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 14:13

A champion that is said to have good waveclear usually have a skill (passive or not) that deals damage to multiple targets, making clearing a wave or merged waves easy and fast.

A champion that is said to be able to push is a champion that usually hit hard and can take down a tower fast.

A champion can push by also making sure a lot of their minions hit the enemy's tower.

The example given in the second comment of this answer about Tryndamere is a good example of a champion with pushing power but not good waveclear.

Caitlyn is a champion with good waveclear and can, with proper items, get good pushing powers.

Yi usually ends having both for example, with alpha strike to clear and hitting hard to push.

  • I don't think 'pushing' always has to refer to a champing dealing damage to a turret. A lot of time, adc's want to push their own wave into an enemy turret to make it more difficult for the enemy adc to last hit all the minions. In this context, the pushing champ is more concerned with creating a farm discrepancy than they are with actually dealing large amounts of damage to the turret. Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 14:28
  • No it doesn't have to but a champion with pushing power is usually one that does take down towers rather than letting minions doing it. Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 14:40

The other answers are good, to add one more thought to the mix though.

Waveclear is about damage to minions only. Champions with lots of area damage are excellent at wave clear. Pushing also involves damage to turrets.

Ziggs/Brand/Morgana/etc will clear a group of minions very fast but it will take them an hour to kill the turret as that can only be done with auto attacks.

Yi will clear the minions fast and destroy the turret in seconds, but he has to be in melee to do it.

Jax will take a while to kill the minions (he has to hit each one unless he has an unusual item choice) as will quite a few Nasus builds - but once they get to the turret they will take it down very fast.

Caitlyn and Twisted Fate (because TF builds Lich Bane) will both clear waves fast and destroy turrets fast and be able to do both from a safer longer ranged position.

  • Actually Ziggs can clear towers fast due to his passive Short Fuse: Ziggs' next basic attack deals 20 dmg - 160 dmg (+ 25 / 30 / 35% AP) bonus magic damage (150% damage against enemy structures). This cooldown is reduced by 4 seconds whenever Ziggs uses an ability. Since it is only on a 12 second cool down if he has roughly 300 AP and is level 18 he is doing 400 dmg with his passive to a tower every 4-8 seconds and that's not even including his base AD as well.
    – Halfwarr
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 17:43
  • Additionally damage against turrets also scales with AP. (or at least did so not long ago)
    – Vogel612
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 17:48

Pushing is how a wave is moving. A champion can push a wave by helping the winions kill enemy minions so the winions have the strength advantage.

Pushing power is the ability of a champion to quickly help winions push into objectives.

Wave clear is simply the ability to clear a wave, it can be both offensive and defensive.

Offensive wave clear: clearing a wave with the intention of shifting which way it is pushing to benefit your team.

Defensive wave clear: clearing a wave to avoid it pushing against you. One might do this to avoid allowing the enemy team to get shots on towers while the minions would be tanking.

A game without champion involvement will have both pushing and waveclear. I really don't think these terms have to be champion specific.

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