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Ever since Sylvanus was released, I've been playing him a lot in Joust, and have been loving every minute of it. I think I do alright with him, too.
Frankly though, I rarely see anyone else build him similar to what I use, and what I have found viable at least for how I like to play him. He's a big, slow guardian, without a ton of damage, and he's definitely built more for support, but that doesn't mean you can't get a bunch of kills, either.
My ultimate goal when playing him is to build defense but don't go crazy with tanking... stay alive but don't worry about defense more than you have to. Sure, he's slow with long cooldowns, but he has enough crowd control (snare/pull/lift/DoT) that enemies are NOT going to hang around you. At all. Unless they're dumb.
So here's what I improvised to make him a faster, deadlier support that can help carry a team to finishing off many titans or causing mass F6s. This may not be the most in-depth guide, but it will give you a quick intro to how I've found success as Sylvanus.
Early game, as I mentioned, Syl is a big slow old coot that isn't worth much either as damage, tank or healing, but he can be built up pretty quickly. His cooldowns are long, his movement is extra slow, and about all he's good for is taking damage, but even that has its limits early on.
First off, build into your Shoes of Focus as quick as you can. You need the movement speed and the cooldown reduction. Period. Your teammates will need your wisps for healing and you'll need to be able to snare and pull and lift opponents to help secure early kills. You're no good standing around absorbing damage, so get to work on that.
Next, look at the opponents you're facing. If at least 2 of the 3 in your Joust match are magical, get Telkhines Ring next. If not, buy into Witchblade first if most of your opponents are physical. I always get both though unless the opposing team is all magical or all physical.
Why those two items? Well, you still need to be able to protect yourself and with Telkhines your AoE basic attack becomes a little more deadly to make up for your still-kinda-long cooldowns. With Witchblade, well, that teammate of yours who gave Baka a couple early feeds all of a sudden has less to worry about. Baka gets slower, you get to move faster and gain protections.
Now, if ALL of your opponents are physical or all magical, you can eliminate one of the previous items and go with something like Mystical Mail or Void Stone because both can help you boost damage and protections at the same time. Win/win.
Oh yeah, and start building up your Meditation towards Salvation whenever you have extra 300g increments when you return to base. The extra team heals get you the extra team kills, and thus more gold down the line, so don't forget it.
After your early game items, you have about 3 slots left. This is where you improvise a bit depending on how the game is going.
Top priority should be reducing your cooldowns the rest of the way, so get Chronos' Pendant stat. This is your mid-game must-have item. Buy it or regret it. If the opposing team has some fed physical players, you can switch this out for Breastplate of Valor to build a little tankier but still get the max cooldown reduction.
Dealing with a lot of crowd control from an Anubis/Artemis/Ymir opposing team? Pick up Magi's Blessing and move on with your life. If they're extra obnoxious, get your Greater Purification beads too.
Got an enemy combo of Ra/Neith/Sylvanus healing themselves all the time? Divine Ruin keeps them from healing effectively and gets your team those few extra kills to help take down that pesky tower for good.
If your teammates are good, and your team is rolling along and about to finish off the Phoenix, pick up Gem of Isolation to pull enemies and keep them pulled until they die. Less turtling, more slaughtering. Make it happen.
By this time, you should KNOW how the game is going. If the opposing team is hanging tough and you're fighting to keep your Phoenix alive, get Sovereignty and buy your way up to Spiked Shell and keep your team alive.
If you're finishing off their Phoenix, pick up Obsidian Shard if they're bulking up on their magical protections, otherwise maybe go Soul Reaver and/or Rod of Tahuti for the extra power.
Another great option is to make your basic attack even scarier with Demonic Grip and Polynomicon because on top of your already purchased Telkhines Ring you can just spam your auto attack AoE in between ability cooldowns and still cause wetness in the britches of your opponents.
Oh, and pick up the odd Potion of Magical Might to secure an extra kill or two. It's spendy, but you have extra gold to burn now, right? If you're playing well you do.
You are a damage machine masquerading as a big dumb slow tree. You must, however, be able to adapt to the game. There is no ONE build for Sylvanus that will work to get you kills every game, however, here's what a typical end-game build will look like for me:
Shoes of Focus
Gem of Isolation
Potion of Magical Might (buy one, drink it, then stock back up on the multi potion before you leave the fountain)
With this setup, I usually can easily keep my teammates healed and alive, the enemy assassin/hunter frustrated, and still pick up a handful of kills.
I'm open to whatever tips or alternate ideas you might have, so leave some comments and I'll check them out and reply/update this when I can.
Cheers, thanks for reading.
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