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Let’s guess Kayn’s opening win rate

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Stud or dud?

Update: This article has been updated with Kayn’s initial win rate at the bottom of the article.

When a new champion comes crashing onto the Rift, it can often times take a few weeks for players to get used to them. This usually results in a significantly lower win rate than is liked (Riot tries to balance every champ around 50 percent). There are some champions like Bard and Taliyah that have been extremely poor on initial release, and others like Camille that have emerged a wee bit too strong.

With Kayn coming out within the next week, the Rift Herald crew comes together try and guess where the Shadow Reaper will land early in his release patch. We’re guessing what his win rate will be upon Champion.gg’s first post-patch update.

Ryan: Normally, I expect most champions to end their first week around the 35 percent win rate mark. But ... um ... Kayn is really scary you guys. So I am going to aim high with 45 percent. I think we are going to see something a little different when it comes to this dude’s release. Kayn seems like someone who has a low skill floor but a high skill ceiling. However, playing against him is going to require some really good vision and awareness.

So everyone is doomed, basically.

With the ability to literally walk through walls, I fear that picking up Kayn is going to be far easier than playing against him. Every time a new champion comes out, someone in one of my games will say something like “what does that champion even do.” After kindly pointing them to RiftHerald.com, I watch them get destroyed over and over and over again.

When you are dealing with a champion like Ivern, you have someone who is harder to play optimally than they are to understand. Kayn is complex, but the first time he walks through the top lane wall and gets a kill, we are gonna see some rage quits.

Riot Games

Julia: Maybe I have high hopes for a complicated champion, but I think he’ll be at around 40 percent. I’m also going to go ahead and predict a mid-patch hotfix for at least one of his abilities, whether it’s a bug or a ratio change.

Again, maybe I’m being too hopeful for my own games, but I think because he’s a jungler, there’s a little bit of room for error for Kayn. Xayah and Rakan didn’t have that room because it was two important positions, but since Kayn can come and go as he pleases and have a bit of freedom, it shouldn’t be too bad ... right?

The last time we saw a champion hit the abysmal win rate of around 30 percent was Ryze’s most recent rework, if I’m remembering correctly. I remember that being bad, but I don’t think this will be as bad.

Pete: I’m gonna guess 38 percent, with the caveat that it will rise above 45 percent very soon after. I think players will have trouble adjusting to Kayn’s intricate systems at first, but his kit is so freaking loaded that it’s hard for me to imagine he won’t be an overpowering presence after the initial adjustment period.

In my games, though, Kayn’s win rate is going to be zero percent, because I’m going to be taking full advantage of the 10-ban system and keeping him the heck out.

Austen: There’s a concept as old as solo queue that goes by a hundred different names. It’s been called the Yasuo Effect, the Master Yi Theory or the Vayne Paradox. Whatever you call it there are some champions that seem like LCS smurfs when they are playing against you and a sentient dumpster fire when they are on your team. It’s rare to spot these kinds of champions so early in their lifespan — in this case, pre-release — but I think that’s exactly what Kayn will be.

So, I think he is going to have an abnormally high ban rate, even for a new champion, as both teams in every game seek to avoid the Kayn Conundrum. As for how he will do in the games he isn’t banned in, I’m thinking about 33 percent for the first week thanks to people panic locking him first pick when he isn’t banned.


So the crew has weighed in, and as it stands we have:

Ryan: 45

Julia: 40

Pete: 38

Austen: 33

Update: As of July 17, Champion.gg has Kayn’s win rate at 42.72 percent for the jungle! Was your guess close?