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What’s Ardent Censer and why does it matter so much at Worlds

Yes, it’s really that important.

Riot Games

Chances are, if you have watched any of Worlds 2017 so far you have heard the words Ardent Censer tossed around quite a bit. If you made it this far, you probably already know that Ardent Censer is an item, and you may even know that it’s most often bought by supports. What you may not know is why it’s so important and why everyone won’t stop talking about it.

So, here’s everything you need to know about Ardent Censer.

What’s it actually do?

When a champion has Ardent Censer and they shield or a heal on an ally, that ally gains bonus attack speed, on-hit magic damage and healing. It also makes all shields and heals the owner uses 10 percent more powerful.

Why does that matter?

It matters because of the champions that are most popular right now at the AD Carry position. Right now, the role is focused exclusively on doing damage with most of the best champions falling into the hyper carry category. This means that they start the game weak, but once they have a couple of items they will deal tons of damage to whatever they are attacking.

The most important stat for hyper carries hoping to deal maximum damage is attack speed, and when they’re healed or shielded by an Ardent Censer support they get a bonus 25 percent of their current attack speed. That’s almost a whole extra item that AD Carries are getting for free every few seconds.

And that’s a big deal?

It’s an extremely big deal. First of all, it’s a big enough deal that both teams have to pick at least one champion with a heal or a shield during champion select. In fact, not a single support that doesn’t have one of the two has been picked so far in the tournament. And Ardent Censer is almost always the first item bought on any of these champions. In fact, some AD Carries are even picking up Relic Shield at the beginning of the game to help their supports get Ardent Censer a little quicker.

Giving a carry what basically amounts to a free item whenever they need it means they can start doing things at 20 minutes that they used to do at 30. Like take out an important enemy champion in just a few auto attacks, or kill the Baron in just a couple of seconds or maybe take inhibitor towers before their opponents can respawn.

All this leads to games that are moving faster and faster and mistakes that are being punished twice as hard. And it all stems from one little support item.