Originally Posted by Zardoc
Why exactly is Mal'zahar "hard to place on a team" ?
This is from the first page.
"Let's use Malzahar as an example for a properly-placed low-tier character that I think some players misunderstand. Elementz places Malzahar in the bottom tier/unwise choices bucket. Some players respond saying how they own with Malzahar, or how his ultimate can get kills easily, how his Q has a silence and how his DoT can push a lane really well.
While these might all be true, they don't address his location at the bottom of the list. People are aware how his skills work and how they can be used - that's obvious - what puts a character low in the tier list is how much value, in power and utility, the champion adds to the team.
So, in our Malzahar example, try to think of anything he brings to the team that is not bested by one or more other characters;
* Damage: a high number of champions offer more reliable, higher damage (both burst and sustained) than Malzahar.
* Crowd Control: most champions focused on disables do it better and more reliably. His Q is easily avoidable and his one stun is a long cooldown, stuns himself, and only effects one target. Compare this to options like Pyromania, Dark Wind, or Dazzle.
* Jungling: Malzahar is a poor choice for jungling, so this is less applicable in this example.
* Initiation: Malz is a squishy champion with poor initiation ability. Many champions perform this role better.
* Area-Effect: This is the one thing Malzahar can do, but it remains lackluster. His W takes a long time to reach any sizable damage, Q is slow and unreliable, and his DoT spreadis avoidable by paying attention.
* Pushing: Malzahar pushes better than many casters, but worse than dedicated pushers (while offering little else on top of it).
So, if we look at his value-add to a team comp, it's much lower than other champions. This puts him in low-tier, and makes him a choice that is constantly outshined by other options when choosing your character in a draft mode when your priority is strong team composition.
This does not mean he's not fun, or can't do ANYthing, or will always feed, or it takes a pro to get the most out of him, or any other such nonsense. He's a character who adds less value to his team than others do, and players choosing him should understand and accept the handicap they're putting themselves and their team in."