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The Master Tactician
Release Date: October 5th, 2010
Cost: 4800 IP 880 RP
Primary Attribute: Mage
Secondary Attribute: Fighter
Resource: Mana
Real Name: Jericho Swain
Health Mini Icon.png Health: 516.04 (+ 90)
HealthRegen Mini Icon.png Health Regen: 7.84 (+ 0.65)
Mana Mini Icon.png Mana: 354 (+ 47)
ManaRegen Mini Icon.png Mana Regen: 6 (+ 0.8)
MovementSpeed Mini Icon.png Movespeed: 335
AttackDamage Mini Icon.png Attack Damage: 52.04 (+ 3)
AttackSpeed Mini Icon.png Attack Speed: 0.625 (+ 2.11%)
Range Mini Icon.png Range: 500
Armor Mini Icon.png Armor: 22.72 (+ 4)
MagicResist Mini Icon.png Magic Resist: 30 (+ 0)
Northern Front Swain Released: 2010-10-05 / 750 RP
Bilgewater SwainReleased: 2010-10-05 / 520 RP
Tyrant SwainReleased: 2012-05-23 / 1350 RP


  • Current
  • League Judgement
The earliest account of Swain's existence comes from a Noxian infirmary doctor's notes. According to them, Swain limped into the ward without cry or complaint; his right leg was snapped in half, with bone protruding from the skin. A small, scowling bird seemed affixed to his shoulder. The doctor gawked in horror as the young adolescent answered questions about his health and age with a calm, even stare. Even behind the echoing crack as the sand counterweights reset his tibia, Swain's measuring gaze never flickered, nor did his eyes twitch from the pop of his fibula. He refused the doctor's recommendation of magical treatment for the leg's inoperable damage, requesting only a spare crutch before shuffling away. He next surfaced in documents from the Noxian military, although it is evident that they are incomplete. Normally a crippled boy would be turned away in shame from Noxus' proud legion, but the records indicate his first designation was that of a ranking officer.

The men who've served under him (and survived) have remained in his charge with unshakable faith and loyalty. He leapt through the High Command's hierarchy, often ascending when superiors requested demotions to join his unit. A cunning strategist, Swain was decorated after every battle he fought, regularly hobbling in contemplation at the front of the assault. His rise to power seemed unceasing until he was suddenly relegated to inactive status prior to the Ionian Invasion - a bewildering decision which reeked of bureaucratic subversion. If Swain was upset by the events which unfolded, he never belied it. His face was so implacable that it was popularly rumored to be a mask, disguising something utterly inhuman beneath. More controversy surrounded the bird that never left his shoulder, whose name he whispered only to it. When Demacia escalated its presence in the League, Swain was immediately returned to active duty.

"If you haven't yet lost the ability to ask, you may not yet ask for relief."

-  Swain

Candidate: Swain

Date: 4 October, 20 CLE


Swain arches his neck toward the words that hang over the massive double doors. “The truest opponent lies within.”

“How quaint.”

Swain’s voice sounds surprisingly robust for such a seemingly frail figure. His uniform – more robe than military dress – is wrapped tightly about him, especially around his face. He stands crookedly; he leans on a cane to support himself, but not overly so. It does not seem out of place to see a strange-looking raven perched on his shoulder. Perhaps this is to whom Swain is speaking.

“Let’s see who the League believes my truest opponent is – shall we?”

The raven nods its head in affirmation.

Swain deftly raps on the double doors with the head of his cane. They split, revealing blackness within. The engraved panthers along either side of the double doors point inward.

There is a slight smirk on his face as he enters.


The ink on the Noxian and Demacian armistice had been but a few years dry before the first “incident” took place between the powerful city-states. It was right in the midst of that botched mission, at the moment of execution, where Swain now found himself at. He could see the platform where the young prince was standing, his back turned, oblivious to his plight. The poison-bolted hexbow felt heavy in Swain’s hands.

“I am impressed. I didn’t expect it to be so real.”

He scanned the darkened balcony overlooking where the Demacian royals were standing. The cold night air was brisk. Swain breathed, inhaling deeply. “And accurate. This is nearly intoxicating.”

“What is, Swine?” A commanding voice mocked the Noxian. Jarvan IV, the Exemplar of Demacia, Crown Prince of the same, now stood on the balcony. His presence lorded over Swain. Jarvan was no longer the thirteen-year old child prince that Swain had been sent to dispatch. “How’s the leg?”

“You even know about that. Powerful,” Swain commented, raising his cane to his chin, “but, alas, not powerful enough for me, summoner. Enough.”

Jarvan looked stunned, and just a little bit confused.

“I do not play games – I make them. We are both aware of what I think happened during the mission you’re recreating here. You know how I truly feel about my weaknesses. You clearly know who I am, seeing as how you’re so blatantly ransacking my memories.” Swain happily leered at Jarvan. “Unless I am mistaken, this should satisfy half of your prerequisite needs for a champion’s entry into the League.”

“It does?” a less-commanding Jarvan asked. His countenance was considerably less Demacian now. He paused for a moment, and then nodded. “Yes, perhaps it does. We acknowledge your power, Swain of Noxus.”

The Demacian prince was no longer standing before Swain. Where he had stood there was now an older, strikingly beautiful woman in a purple summoner’s robe. The robe was highly ornate, unlike most of the other robes Swain had seen in his time. The female summoner bowed. “We would ask, however, that you please honor the League with a formal acknowledgement.”

Swain chuckled and nodded. “High Councilor Vessaria Kolminye – I am honored. I was not aware that someone of your stature conducted screenings personally. Is there a chance I could expect you to personally summon me into a battle arena?” Swain was clearly enjoying this exchange.

“Charming, as always, Master Tactician.” The High Councilor smiled thinly. “Your formal acknowledgement, if you would be so kind.”

Swain bowed deeply, kicking his cane out with a flourish. “Of course. With all due respect.”

The Noxian clutched his cane to stand straight. “You would ask of me how it feels to share my mind with a summoner. As you can see, I face little challenge in managing such a relationship. While my secrets are laid bare to the summoner that calls upon me, I know that they would not be used against me by the League. Such a violation of trust is against everything the League stands for... especially in these most tense of times when the League needs the cooperation of its client city-states.”

High Councilor Kolminye nodded approvingly. “Thank you, and yes – the knowledge exchanged in the bond is private between champion and summoner. You have nothing to fear.”

“Nor do you.” Swain bowed again, keeping his eyes locked on the High Councilor.

A tense pause was broken by the High Councilor. “Why do you want to join the League, Jericho Swain?”

Swain took the question in. The slight smug look that he had worn throughout the entire Judgment was gone. He stared straight into High Councilor Kolminye’s eyes. “To become the next ruler of Noxus, of course.” Swain pointed the head of his cane at the High Councilor. “The League will help me accomplish this.”

“The League does not arbitrarily choose sides in the matters of the city-states of Valoran, nor does it –”

Swain put his index finger to his lips. “You know what I mean... don’t you, Vessaria?”

The High Councilor paused once more. “Yes, I do. But you’ll have to earn the influence you need. It won’t come easily.” The High Councilor permitted herself the slightest of sneers. “Especially for you.” Her eyes were as two red embers, flickering intensely. “But that is not all, is it, Master Tactician?”

Swain nodded. “Indeed, it is not. Your Judgment... it is quite the ritual. It is more powerful than I had given you credit for.” He leaned in to the High Councilor’s left ear, a breath’s distance away.

Swain’s voice was soft, but every word hung on the air as he spoke. “I want to kill Jarvan IV, the ‘Exemplar’ of Demacia.” He smiled at the High Councilor, still close to her ear. “I will kill him too, Vessaria.”

High Councilor Kolminye locked eyes with Swain for one last time. She raised her right hand to his cheek. “We shall see, Jericho.”

A flood of light washed over them both, and Swain found himself alone in the chamber. A new set of double doors were in front of him, already opened. The League had found its latest champion.


PassiveCarrion Renewal
(Innate) Whenever Swain kills an enemy unit, he restores Mana. On a champion kill or assist, he regains an additional (9% of max Mana).
Mana Restored: 12 (+1 × level)

QDecrepifyBanshee's Veil.pngCleanseQss.png
(Active) Beatrice lands on the target area for 4 seconds and attacks the closest enemy unit prioritizing champions, dealing magic damage per second and slowing it. Deals 200% damage to minions and executes minions below 10 health.

Beatrice will look for a new target if the current on moves away or dies. If any nearby unit is afflicted by Torment then it will become Beatrice's target.

Cost: 60 / 65 / 70 / 75 / 80 Mana
Cooldown: 14 / 13 / 12 / 11 / 10 seconds
Magic Damage per Second: 30 / 47.5 / 65 / 82.5 / 100 (+30% of Ability Power)
Slow Amount: 20 / 25 / 30 / 35 / 40%

WNevermoveBanshee's Veil.pngCleanseQss.png
(Active) Swain marks a target area. After a short delay, mighty talons grab hold of enemy units, dealing damage and rooting them.
Range: 900
Cost: 80 / 85 / 90 / 95 / 100 Mana
Cooldown: 18 / 16 / 14 / 12 / 10 seconds
Duration: 1 / 1.25 / 1.5 / 1.75 / 2 seconds
Magic Damage: 80 / 120 / 160 / 200 / 240
(+70% of Ability Power)

ETormentBanshee's Veil.pngQuicksilver Sash.png
(Active) Swain afflicts his target, dealing damage to them over time and causing them to take 20% increased damage from Swain.
Range: 625
Cooldown: 10 seconds
Duration: 4 seconds
Cost: 65 / 70 / 75 / 80 / 85 Mana
Total Magic Damage: 50 / 85 / 110 / 140 / 170
(+100% of Ability Power)

RRavenous FlockBanshee's Veil.png
(Toggle) Swain transform into a monstrous raven, spawning up to 5 lesser ravens per second that strike out at nearby enemies, prioritizing champions. Each raven deals magic damage and heals Swain. Ravens can't attack the same target for 1 second.
Cost: 25 Mana + 5 per second
Cooldown: 10 seconds
Magic Damage Per Target: 50 / 70 / 90
(+20% of Ability Power)
Heal vs Champions: 20 / 30 / 40
(+12% of Ability Power)
Heal vs Minions: 8 / 11 / 13
(+3% of Ability Power)

Competitive Usage

In Premier Tournaments
Event Bans Picks Wins Losses Win % Picked/Banned in % of Games
LCS logo 25x25.png 2014 EU LCS Spring Round Robin 0 1 0 1 0 0.9
RpPoints.png Season 3 World Championship 0 1 0 1 0 1.6
LPL 2016 3D.png Tencent LPL 2013 Summer 0 1 1 0 100 1.2
RpPoints.png International Wildcard Tournament 0 1 0 1 0 5.9
MLG-Logo-Small.png 2012 MLG Fall Championship 0 1 0 1 0 2.8

Patch History


Q damage down. R healing down.

Swain’s incredible strength this patch is a matter of degrees. Okay, a lot of degrees. While we're happy with the improvements made to Ravenous Flock’s functionality in 6.10 (that is, MR not reducing Swain’s healing), it's opened up a build that allows him to leverage multiple pure-defense items while still dealing (sigh) tons of damage. Given our history with tank Ekko, we're taking steps to prevent tank Swain from becoming a thing. Compared to other mages, Swain is built to take a punch - but engaging him shouldn't feel like a lost cause. Reinforcing offense as his primary scalar should set Swain in the right direction.

Decrepify.png Q - Decrepify

DAMAGE : 30/50/70/90/110 per second 30/47.5/65/82.5/100 per second

Ravenous Flock.png R - Ravenous Flock

WHOOPS : We incorrectly stated last patch that Ravenous Flock’s healing scales with 0.1 ability power. The actual value is 0.12!

Health per level up. R heals more.

With that out of the way, let’s talk Swain. Simply put, Swain’s not being rewarded enough for his early-game successes, often being ignored or phased out as the game goes on. We’re looking to tackle this by reinforcing what he’s good at - taking hits on the front lines and being a sticky drain-tank, especially against teams with multiple tanks. At present, Swain’s healing is based on the damage dealt - meaning the more magic resist an opponent has, the less health. This means the burly tanks of the world that Swain’s meant to prey on in lane quickly turn predator, reducing both Swain’s damage and sustain through items. We’re flipping the script and letting Swain heal up on tanks with plenty to spare (as well as upping his own natural durability) to keep his fantasy of being contextually unkillable alive and well.



Decrepify.png Q - Decrepify

HUNGRY FOR WORMS : Now executes minions below 10 health
NOW THEY WORK : Fixed a bug where spell effects like Rylai’s Crystal Scepter and Liandry’s Torment weren’t applying properly

Ravenous Flock.png R - Ravenous Flock

HEALING VS CHAMPIONS : 75% of the damage dealt 30/45/60 (+0.1 ability power)
HEALING VS MINIONS AND MONSTERS : 15% of the damage dealt 8/11/13 (+0.03 ability power)
FLOCK TOGETHER : Now prioritizes targets closest to Swain instead of picking them at random (still prioritizes champions over non-champions)

5/9/2016 Balance Update

We're upping Swain's rewards for good Decrepify plays to help offset the loss of reliability. Just as important: his ult's no longer bugged to stop him in his tracks mid-combo.

Decrepify.png Q - Decrepify

DAMAGE : 25/40/55/70/85 per second 30/50/70/90/110 per second

Ravenous Flock.png R - Ravenous Flock

bugfix : Fixed a bug where Ravenous Flock's cast time wasn't instant


Despite his title, Swain’s largely failed to live up to his promise of a master tactician. Instead, Swain mains have come to embrace him as an unkillable teamfight-tanking monstrosity. Sometimes a champion having split identities can lead to balancing awkwardness (like Kalista, the solo outplay carry with insane teammate synergies), but Swain is more odd than problematic. Sure, ‘Commander Bird Monster’ is weird, but so is Shen being a tanky ninja. We’re not here to judge.

Rather than force one identity over the other, we’re looking at ways to enhance Swain overall. Regardless of why you play the Master Tactician, he’s a tanky mage with DoT’s and that’s not changing. Instead, Swain’s updates are about using his abilities in the right situations to overcome the odds. Careful optimization and placement of his bread-and-butter spells gives Swain the room to tactically outpace the opposition before morphing into an even-more-Ravenous-Flock for the teamfight checkmate.



Carrion Renewal.png Passive - Carrion Renewal

VISUALS : Classic, Northern Front and Bilgewater Swain have received new mana regen particles
FLAT MANA REGEN ON KILL : 9-27 (at levels 1-18) 12-30 (at levels 1-18)

Decrepify.png Q - Decrepify
Swain orders Beatrice to fly towards the center of target area foshort duration. While deployed, Beatrice will target the closest enemy, dealing damage per second and slowing it. Beatrice switches targets if the current target leaves or is killed.

COOLDOWN : 14/13/12/11/10 seconds
COST : 60/65/70/75/80 mana
DURATION : 4 seconds
SLOW : 20/25/30/35/40%
DAMAGE : 25/40/55/70/85 per second
RATIO : 0.3 ability power per second
MINION HATE : Deals 100% bonus damage to minions

Nevermove.png W - Nevermove

COST : 80/90/100/110/120 80/85/90/95/100

Torment.png E - Torment

DAMAGE : 75/115/155/195/235 50/80/110/140/170
RATIO : 0.8 ability power 1.0 ability power
DAMAGE AMPLIFICATION : 8/11/14/17/20% of Swain’s damage 20% of Swain’s damage at all ranks
TARGETING : If Swain afflicts someone with Torment, Decrepify will prioritize that target

Ravenous Flock.png R - Ravenous Flock
Swain spawns lesser ravens every 0.2 seconds, dealing damage to targets around him. Lesser ravens heal Swain upon returning to him. Prioritizes champions.

COOLDOWN : 8 seconds 10 seconds
COST : 25 mana + 5/6/7 5 additional mana per second 25 mana at all ranks
PECKING IMMUNITY : Lesser ravens can’t attack the same target fo3 1 second

W duration lowered at early ranks.

When Swain’s good, his dominance over the lane borders on abusive - and Swain’s pretty good right now, using Corrupting Potions and Deathfire Touches to terrorise the world. We’re making it so that Swain is priced into investing in Nevermove to get the same level of control on his prey.

Nevermove.png W - Nevermove

ROOT DURATION : 2 seconds 1/1.25/1.5/1.75/2 seconds


In a world without mana potions (and generally less early mana regeneration), we've identified a few champions for some emergency rations, giving early mana boosts until they can get their footing and purchase items to make up the deficit. This also means we can really understand which champions relied on mana potions as a crutch to limp through the early to mid game, and we can give additional love if necessary.


The following champs have +50 base mana and -3 mana scaling (net -1 mana at level 18):

v5.2 Mass Texture Rebalance (Part 6)

"We're continuing our comprehensive pass at the game's older character textures. As with previous installments, our goal is to improve parity with newer releases and make sure everybody looks at home on the newly-updated Rift."
  • TEXTURES : The following textures have been updated:

v3.13 Context: We saw Carrion Renewal as a place to add strength without significantly impacting the phases of the game where Swain already excels.

  • Carrion Renewal
    • Now additionally restores 9% of maximum Mana on champion kill/assist


  • Base Movement Speed increased by 25.


  • Basic attack ranged increased to 500 from 480
  • Decrepify
    • Range increased to 625 from 600
    • Slow increased at later ranks to 20 / 25 / 30 / 35 / 40% from 20 / 23 / 26 / 29 / 32%
  • Ravenous Flock cooldown reduced to 8 seconds form 10 seconds


  • Fixed a bug with Bilgewater and Northern Front skins that caused the game to hitch the first time Decrepify was used


  • Basic attack frame speed increased
  • Ravenous Flock upkeep cost reduced to 5 / 6 / 7 mana from 5 / 7 / 9


  • Fixed a bug where Swain had reduced mana regeneration while in Raven form


  • Ravenous Flock now prioritizes champions


  • Ravenous Flock now heals Swain for 75% of damage dealt versus champions, and 25% versus minions


  • Ravenous Flock now heals Swain for 50% of the actual damage he deals (instead of 50% of the raw damage he deals), but the heal is not reduced if the damage is shielded


  • Carrion Renewal now restores mana instantly


  • Decrepify leash range slightly increased
  • Torment range increased to 625 from 600
  • Ravenous Flock cooldown decreased to 10 seconds from 15 seconds
  • Updated Swain's recommended items


  • Decrepify
    • Ability power ratio increased to 0.9 from 0.75
    • Fixed a bug where it would slow through Highlander or Ragnarok
    • Fixed a bug where the damage portion sometimes would not stop after leaving the area
  • Nevermove ability power ratio increased to 0.7 from 0.5
  • Torment
    • Damage increased to 75 / 115 / 155 / 195 / 235 from 72 / 110 / 148 / 186 / 224
    • Ability power ratio increased to 0.8 from 0.6
  • Carrion Renewal regen increased to 300% from 250%

 Swain released

Additional Content

Champion Information

Related Lore

Journal of Justice


Champion Spotlight

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