How To Play Swain In League Of Legends

Interested in playing a versatile mage that can be flex picked into four different roles? Then you came to the right place! In this guide, we’ll show you everything you need to know to get you started playing Swain, the Noxian Grand General.


Like a lot of champions, Swain received a well deserved rework that changed his entire kit for the better. Thanks to his rework, Swain got a bunch of updated abilities that revamped his playstyle. He has excellent crowd control, good utility, and an overpowering sustain that lets him last longer than his opponents. This versatility also allows him to play every role except as a Jungler. 


Swain’s entire kit revolves around out sustaining his opponents and dealing strong damage in extended trades.

Passive – Ravenous Flock

Enemy champion deaths create a Soul Fragment that Swain can collect to restore health. Collecting Soul Fragment permanently increases Swain’s maximum health by 12.

Q – Death’s Hand

Swain unleashes 5 bolts of eldritch power that piece through enemies in the area. Enemies hit take magic damage, plus damage per additional bolt.

W – Vision of Empire

Swain opens a demon eye that deals magic damage and slows for 2.5 seconds.

Champions hit grant Swain a Soul Fragment and are revealed. Damage is reduced by 50% against minions.

E – Nevermove

Swain launches a wave of demonic power, dealing magic damage to enemies it passes through. Swain then commands the wave to return, detonating it on the first enemy hit. Enemies hit take magic damage and are rooted and revealed for 1.5 seconds. Swain can recast this ability to pull all champions rooted by it, gaining a Soul Fragment for each target pulled. Nevermove’s cooldown is reduced by 20% Demonic Ascension is active.

R – Demonic Ascension

Swain frees the demon within for 12 seconds, generating 50 Demonic Energy. Demonic Ascension lasts as long as Swain has Demonic Energy, decaying by 5 every 0.5 seconds, increased to 7.5 after 5 seconds have elapsed. Swain generates 10 Demonic Energy every 0.5 seconds while draining from at least one enemy champion, up to 50. Takedowns fully restore Demonic Energy.

Every second, he drains all nearby enemy champions, minions, and neutral monsters for magic damage, healing him for health (10% heal against non-champions). After 2 seconds, Swain can cast Demonflare, and does so automatically when Demonic Ascension ends.

Demonflare: Swain unleashes a nova of soulfire dealing magic damage and slowing enemies hit by 60%, decaying over 1.5s.

Runes and Item Builds

When it comes to items, your primary focus on Swain is increasing his already impressive damage over time as well as his durability and survivability.

Starting Items

Swain starts the game like any typical mage. Doran’s Ring is your go to starting item as it gives you everything you need to survive the early laning phase. From mana sustain, damage, and even a bit of health, you can be sure that this item has it all.

Mythic Item

For your Mythic item, you have two great choices: Liandry’s Anguish or Riftmaker. Out of these two, Liandry’s Anguish is the better option. Although both of them give similar stats, Liandry’s Anguish increases your overall damage and makes you a better duelist. Riftmaker is great for increasing your sustain so it is an ideal choice if you find yourself behind or against a losing matchup. In most cases, you should go for Liandry’s Anguish as your go to Mythic item.

Full Build

After purchasing your desired Mythic, go for tier 2 boots. Since Swain is a mage, the only option would be to go with Sorcerer’s Shoes for the bonus magic penetration. Next, you’ll need Zhonya’s Hourglass to increase your durability. After, go for Rylai’s Crystal Scepter to imbue your damaging abilities with a slow. At this point, you’ll have to go for Demonic Embrace to increase your damage over time. Finally, top off your build with a Morellonomicon to reduce the effectiveness of heals on your enemies. 


For your runes, go with the Precision tree and take Conqueror as your keystone. This will increase your damage in extended trades which Swain excels at. Next, take Presence of Mind for the mana regeneration, Legend: Tenacity to help you stick to your targets better, and Last Stand to deal more damage when you are low on health. For secondaries, take Conditioning and Overgrowth from the Resolve tree. Both of these runes will increase your overall tankiness, durability, and survivability.

Useful Tips

  1. When trading in lane, try to use Death’s Hand piercing damage to damage opponents from a safe distance or when they’re trying to hide behind minions.
  2. Swain is countered by Zoe, Yone, Irelia, Cassiopeia, and Zed. If you’re matched up against these champions, try to play it safe instead of being aggressive.
  3. For your summoner spells, you’ll run with Flash and Teleport most of the time. Depending on your situation and playstyle, you can swap out Teleport for Ignite, Exhaust, or Ghost.

So there you have it! That’s all you need to know about playing Swain in League of Legends. Be sure to check back with us again for more awesome guides on your favorite games. Have fun and we’ll see you on the Rift!