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Sometimes a ranked game hits 40 minutes. At this point most players on the enemy team have one or more sources of magic resist and this is extremely annoying to me as Xerath, Orianna or also when playing some other mages.

I feel that the game eventually turns into 5 v 5 off-tank battle and I don't have enough damage to actually kill anyone. Since I am a glass cannon with no defense and 800-900 AP, the enemy tanks can easily rushe me down, leaving my tanky teammates with no damage to slowly die and get aced. How do I deal with late game? What do I do when all enemies have 3k health and 100+ Magic resistance. I usually have the most important Ability Power items at this stage of the game.

  • first you want to do is not to target/ignore for the moment those tanky meat shields. then kill the least tanky of them, preferably the carry or enemy mage. and have a little faith in your team, cause usually the squishiest heroes of LoL are the most painful of all. – ken Oct 21 '14 at 5:57
  • What do you consider 'Most important Ability Power items'? With 800-900 AP I have a feeling you don't get the most important one of all (Void staff). It feels like you will likely be lacking some CDR also or instead of that penetration. Just building flat AP items is almost always a bad idea on any champion. Penetration is why to important to Ignore and CDR is often helpful as well. – dphil Oct 21 '14 at 17:33
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The most important part about playing squishy champions in lategame is positioning. You're not the super beefy frontline that just chases everyone down. Especially on champions like Orianna and Xerath where you have absolutely no escape spells. In (lategame) teamfights you should almost always use your flash defensively and/or to reposition yourself.

If you're playing these "classic mages" your main tasks are: crowd control, poking, waveclearing and killing the other squishies.

Crowd Control

You basically should use your Crowd Control Abilities to simply lock down everyone who is a threat. You can use it to peel for your other Squishies in the team, but also to secure a potential kill on a target that's out of position. If you're playing champions with AOE CC (like Orianna) you should also try to use your CC spells to melt down the entire enemy team at once. Usually in combo teams this allows for easy kills on high priority targets while after that your ADCs can kill the tanks.

Poking

A lot of classic mages can also poke really well. If you play one of those (like Xerath) you should simply spam your spells to bring the enemy team low before the actual teamfight begins. Here it's not as important as in teamfights to focus a high-priority target but it's still recommended. Also if you're fighting for jungle objectives like Baron or Dragon, you can completely change the outcome of the fight before it even begins simply by poking all the time.

Waveclearing

Usually Mages have really good waveclear and a lot of people forget how important this is. Obviously it's really useful for pushing but it's even more useful for defending turrets. If the enemy team has no minions an engage on you will be a lot harder since they cannot position that easy without taking a lot of damage from turrets (yes even lategame tanks take damage from turrets).

Killing Squishies

Of course this is basically your main job in a teamfight. This is essentially a combination of all of the above. Usually you don't even have the target directly but you can also force them out of a fight. To kill one of their squishies you'll usually have to find them out of position which isn't always that easy. If you can't do it (maybe because the enemy ADC positions himself very well) you can switch over to the next highest priority target that's in range or just bring some AOE damage/utility.

A last word: Most mages aren't that strong in lategame. They are mainly built around Mid-Game teamfights.

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  • The best "late game" mages hardly do any damage, but bring tons of cc to fights. Syndra, lux, and ori being a few of my favorites (Lux is also great for stalling). However, as a mid laner in an ideal situation you do not want to go past mid game because most of them fall off HARD past 30-40 minutes. Especially so if they lack cc (cough nidalee cough). – slow_excellence Oct 21 '14 at 10:15
  • Don't forget that even though your full combo may not kill anyone, it will deal enough damage to make the fight an easy win for the rest of your team. – Ender Oct 21 '14 at 11:09
  • I feel that even CC won't help. I often encounter teams that have 3 or 4 tanky members. They just do damage with base stats, base damage ap or ad and have tanky items. Even if you are viegar with 3 second stuns, even if their whole team is stunned, there is just no way to pump out enough ap or ad damage to ace the enemy team. – user2656801 Oct 22 '14 at 10:54
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On top of Jutschge's answer,

something you need to keep in mind is that you are not the only one in this situation. Your middle opponent should be in the same spot.

Also, having a massive amount of AP doesn't do everything. Of course it's better but if you can't survive 2 seconds, you won't be able to use them. For that you have different choices:

Position The most important part is the positioning, we will never say it too many times. And this is true for every single game. You might be squishy, but if you are positioned well, they won't be able to access to you without taking massive damage first.

Positioning is almost everything. If you position well in a team fight you will be able to deal massively more damage than if you were in a tight spot.

You should almost never get out of position to kill a carry, if you fail to kill him, and you get killed, you have probably made your team lost.

In theory, with a good positioning, you can go full AP and not worry (in theory). In practice, you will have a jarvan jumping on you and dealing massive damage while being tanky. This is why the items are for.

items

This is really dependant of you champion, THEIR CHAMPIONS too, your play style and in general of how the game goes but those might be useful.

Survivability

Get zhonya, its a must have for pretty much any late game and don't forget to use it!

If you can, Seraph's Embrace is really a good addition to zhonya late game and a big boost in AP too.

And other resistance items like guardian angel.

Damage

Getting damage over time as a % of their health? Liandry's Torment of course.

Getting penetration. If they have a lot of MR, you will even need it more.

Protect your AD carry

Your role in end game is (as the rest of the team) to protect the AD carry. (it actually depends on your champion, if you have an assassin for instance, it's pointless trying to protect someone, try to get their carries)

Why? yes you are a carry too, a damage dealer, but let's be clear, your time to shine is over, it's now his. So make everything you can to make him live

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  • So that's it? there is no one with magical shred like yi's true damage? I mine as well main adc then. – user2656801 Oct 22 '14 at 10:56
  • It's not because you can't massively carry end game that you shouldn't play ap carry. Ap carry will carry early/mid game. And the ADC will carry end game. So your role is to make sure you get the advantage the earliest possible. And if it's not over yet, your adc will help you! And also, maybe you can't 100-0 their tanky champions, but that doesn't mean you are not painful or useful, on the contrary. – dyesdyes Oct 22 '14 at 15:22
  • I'm in gold. All these baddies do is jerk their dick until 40 minutes, then when a team is aced for 70 seconds, they eventually push to nexus. most of my games end at around 35 minutes, some go on to 50. I think ill just main jayce mid. Full build jayce W can do some real damage. – user2656801 Oct 22 '14 at 15:32
  • In this case, it's not the champion the issue. If you feel that your team doesn't get the objectives (dragon, turret, inib etc), then you need to act as their "leader" and tell them (nicely!!!!!!!!!)(and why also) you should push mid etc – dyesdyes Oct 22 '14 at 15:48

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