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Patch 7.21: Should I still buy Ardent Censer?

A step by step guide to living in a post nerf world.

Riot Games

Patch 7.21 has arrived, and with it, the long reign of the Ardent Censer first item meta is finally gone for supports. In-case you need a reminder, here’s exactly what got changed on the item:

ARDENT CENSER

Attack speed and on-hit damage reduced.

ATTACK SPEED BUFF :: 20-35% >>> 10-30%

ON-HIT MAGIC DAMAGE BUFF :: 20-35 >>> 5-20

But does that mean that the item is totally useless now? The short answer is, no, it’s not useless. Ardent Censer is still a pretty good support item, but only in exactly the right situation.

To make sure you always know when to build the newly nerfed Ardent Censer we’ve compiled a helpful list of questions you should answer before you build it in your next support game.

Which champion are you playing?

This is the easiest and most important question to answer, because it tells you how often you actually get to use the item’s effect. Champions like Janna, Taric and Lulu, get to shield, or heal, their allies far more often than champions like Morgana. Some of the champions that could previously have used Ardent just because it was strong might want to rethink that choice now that it’s a little weaker.

Who is your AD Carry?

This question isn’t much different from the first one. It basically comes down to how useful the attack speed is for the AD Carry you are playing with. Is your AD Carry Caitlyn, Tristana or Kog’Maw? If so, you’re in the perfect place to buy an Ardent Censer. If your laning partner is a Champion more like Lucian, however, it might be a better idea to buy just about any other item you can think of first.

How’s the game going?

This one’s a little trickier because it forces you to make a couple decisions on the fly. First of all, you certainly aren’t building Ardent Censer first anymore, and that means by the time you have the gold for it, the game could be just about anywhere. So, take stock of how your team’s doing. If your AD Carry works well with the item and is sitting on a two kill lead, pick up an Ardent Censer and snowball that Caitlyn to victory. If you lost lane and your Kog’Maw is getting jumped on every fight, maybe you’re better off buying a Locket of the Iron Solari or Mikael’s Crucible instead, helping your team stay alive a little longer.