Dark Horses: Top Lane Urgot

By Luqi
In the previous installments of Dark Horses, we covered Jungle Irelia and Support Brand. Now it’s time to go to the top and bomb your enemies with poison and rockets with Urgot, the Headsman's Pride.

Urgot's abilities are key

Urgot's strengths are largely due to the great ways his abilities complement each other. If Noxian Corrosive Charge (his E) hits its target, his Q will lock onto and hit his victim automatically. If Urgot pops his W on top of that, he'll also apply a slow. Once Urgot hits level 6, he can use his ultimate to give himself additional magic resistances and armor while swapping positions with his enemy, which means he can trade damage really well. Also, Urgot's mana usage is fairly low when he's in "passive farming mode," in part because his Q refunds half its cost when he last-hits a minion with it, making it easier to farm safely from a distance. This means when Urgot's against a tough matchup in lane, he still has ways to keep up. If Urgot has an advantage in lane, he's got a lot of tools to make his opponent have a hard time.

Win trade, win lane, win game

Urgot has the power to bully his enemies around during the laning phase, mostly because his passive reduces an enemy's damage by 15%, which helps him win trades and makes last-hitting harder for his opponent. Against melee champions, Urgot can easily land his W+E+Q+Q combo for big damage, and his shield will also give him the necessary resistance to trade damage safely. While this ends up being very mana intensive (more on that in the tradeoffs section!), Urgot is still very strong against squishy targets, and his ultimate can put an enemy under an ally tower or make a gank easier for his jungler.

When do I pick Urgot top?

In general, Urgot is especially strong against squishy or melee enemies; he can use his ranged attacks to zone his opponent out of farm and experience, and he has the potential in early levels to go for an all-in trade at level 3-4 due to his high damage, or at level 6 when his ult will grant him the necessary resistances to engage. He does rely on Summoner Spells like Ghost and Flash to help him reach his targets, so if his team is on board for aggressive initiation and picks he'll be better off grabbing these over Ignite and Teleport.

(Re)building Urgot

Even though Urgot is an excellent bully, he needs some offensive items to really make a difference in the mid-game phase – Armor Penetration and Attack Damage are his key stats. Considering his recent changes, Manamune/Muramana can give you the power you need and also improve the power of your shield. Black Cleaver also helps a lot by granting you Armor Pen and CDR, allowing you to spam abilities to do a nice amount of damage.

Once you hit the mid-game phase, his power declines and he becomes kind of fragile, so in order to stay relevant and set up engages using his ult, build defensive items like Randuin's Omen or Frozen Heart to help Urgot engage/disengage and kite, or even a Sunfire Cape or Spirit Visage.

Breaking Urgot down

I know you're all excited to take Urgot to the top, but before you queue up for your first game, let's go over some of the challenges he'll run into up there.

  • Lack of sustain in the laning phase: Even though Urgot is mana-efficient while farming and his shield can deny tons of damage, if he loses too much health it will be really hard to stay in the lane because none of his abilities will help him get it back. Additionally, if Urgot spams too many abilities trying to harass his opponents, he may run out of mana very quickly.
  • Lack of movement speed: Urgot also has limited mobility, making him an easy target for ganks or hard-engages. His ult also has a short range at level 6, making it harder to follow up on team fights or picks if his Flash or Ghost are down.
  • Needs the right team: Urgot benefits heavily from a team that can aid him in getting to the enemies faster or follow up on his engages (Morgana, Zyra, Annie, Syndra and Lissandra) or from poke-heavy partners like Xerath, Caitlyn, Zilean and Janna.

Got your own Urgot tips or other Dark Horse picks? Share them in the comments!

4 years ago

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