Mid lane is one of the most fun roles in LoL, and for good reason. Since you’re in the middle of the map, there’s plenty of things to do beyond sit in lane and farm. Roaming, getting kills early on, and countering jungle activity are all in the cards. You also have to be more careful than most other lanes since junglers love to target mid whenever they can. Master mid lane, however, and you may be able to carry your team to victory match after match. See our list below for the most viable and best mid laners in LoL’s current meta.
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Mid lane is no easy position, and the pool of Champions available is representative of its difficulty. We’ve put together a tier list of the best mid lane Champions in League of Legends and then we dive into the 10 best of the best to help you find the character that’s going to get you and your team some more W’s.
Let’s get started!
Mid Lane Tier List
Following the list above, let’s go through the best mid lane champions and discuss what makes each one unique.
- 1. Katarina
- 2. Malzahar
- 3. Ahri
- 4. Fizz
What makes a mid laner an S-tier champion is a combination of strengths. Since mid is typically a place for assassins and AP mages, they must either fit into one of those categories or be strong against them. Katarina is one of the best assassins in the game, and her AP damage allows her to fill that slot on a team comp with ease.
Malzahar is the best Champion for shutting down assassins, so he always has a place. His ultimate can pick off any champion in the game, regardless of how ahead they are or how strong they are against him. Ahri is my favorite AP mage in mid right now, mainly because she’s able to stay away from the assassins and still do damage to them. And Fizz is in a similar ballpark as Malzahar, but he’s more focused on burst damage than shutting someone down.
- 5. Anivia
- 6. Zed
- 7. Ekko
- 8. Swain
The A-tier champions are excellent picks, and each has its own use. Anivia is a great mage with ridiculous wave clear, allowing her to push her lane harder than almost anyone else. Zed is an AD assassin that can kill individual champions in less than a second and escape without harm. Ekko has unique abilities that make him unpredictable, explosive, and fun. Swain is a difficult-to-kill mage that frustrates anyone who plays against him. All these champions can dominate their lane and offer very few downsides.
- 9. Galio
- 10. Yasuo
- 11. Talon
What I like about these three is their potential as counter picks. Galio is great against burst champions (so most AP mages), and he fills out a team comp nicely. Yasuo is good against champions with no way to protect themselves from his onslaught, and everyone knows that a fed Yasuo means game over. Talon is another AD assassin, but with the ability to roam well. If you need someone to help other lanes, Talon is your guy. None of the B-tier champions are bad, but they do fall into a more specific area than the ones above them.
- 12. Sylas
- 13. Qiyana
- 14. Twisted Fate
Here we begin to get into the champions I would consider “not so great.” They’re all risky picks, but they do have their place in the meta. Sylas has the unfortunate downside of needing to rely on his opponents’ abilities for his own, so he will always be a situational pick. Qiyana is in a bad place right now because she loses to most of the top meta picks, so I wouldn’t recommend picking her often. And Twisted Fate is always a risk because he’s so easy to kill, so any assassin takes him out with ease. If you’re going to play any of these, make sure the coast is clear before doing so.
- 15. Syndra
- 16. Zoe
- 17. Ryze
Unfortunately, none of these are good picks right now. They’re all underpowered and vulnerable to everything in the meta. Syndra can’t do anything against the other mages or all the assassins, and Zoe is in the same boat. And let’s be honest, Ryze is rarely good at lower Elos because of how much communication his ultimate requires. Don’t play these unless you’re very confident or have great team communication.
Top 10 Mid Laners in LoL (Worst to Best)
Now let’s take a look at the top ten Champions from our tier list. Here, I’ll go more in-depth on each Champion’s uses and strengths and provide statistics for each of the best mid laners in LoL.
Win Rate: 51.38% | Ban Rate: 18.6% | Counters: Seraphine (57.5%), Irelia (56.2%), Zoe (56%) | Countered By: Riven (43.1%), Annie (44%), Cho’Gath (45.3%)
Everyone in LoL either loves Yasuo or hates him. He’s either fun to play and has the potential to carry a game by himself or irrelevant and contributes nothing but feeds. Yasuo is the definition of a sink or swim Champion, which is a part of why he’s so popular. With Yasuo, you want to play aggressively, but make sure you don’t die too much.
He’s not easy to play, but if you can pull it off, he’s unstoppable. During early game, Yasuo can take pretty much anyone 1-on-1, and his performance in late game depends upon how well you’ve been doing so far. If you’re fed, you can take on most fights with very little help. If you’re not, you won’t do anything. Just do your best to get ahead early, but don’t become a liability.
Ability Order: Q-E-Q-W-Q-R (max order: Q-E-W)
Yasuo’s primary source of damage is his Q combo with his ultimate. Maximize his Q damage as best as possible.
Win Rate: 53.28% | Ban Rate: 2.01% | Counters: Azir (58.1%), Irelia (58.1%), Ryze (57.5%) | Countered By: Garen (45.4%), Yorick (46.3%), Zilean (47%)
Galio is hard to kill and can save his teammates from certain death. I don’t think that Galio is right for every game, but if you want to rely more on teamwork than stomping lane, then he’s a great pick. Don’t play too aggressively with Galio — your goal shouldn’t be destroying your opponents (but if the opportunity arises, do it anyway). Early game with Galio is relatively easy. Just play safe and farm minions. In late game, you want to focus on your teammates and try and save them whenever they’re in trouble. You want to make your main priority to be a great team player. You’re more of a support than a carry.
Ability Order: W-Q-E-Q-Q-R (max order: W-Q-E)
Galio’s Q is where most of his damage comes from, but his W gives him a taunt, so it’s the most important.
Win Rate: 54.35% | Ban Rate: 2.72%
Swain is an interesting pick in mid lane. His sustain makes him strong against a lot of the meta right now, and he also helps improve your team comp if it’s lacking. You’ll want to play aggressively with Swain since most champions can’t do anything to you. Moving into late game, you’ll want to keep this up. Swain can initiate a teamfight due to his ultimate, allowing his teammates (or himself) to rack up kills. I wouldn’t recommend picking Swain without having a good idea of the enemy team’s comp, but if you can make sure that it isn’t too dangerous for him, go for it.
Ability Order: E-Q-W-Q-Q-R (max order: Q-W-E)
Swain’s Q is a shot of damage that he can use against both enemies and minions. Use it as often as you can to keep your opponents low.
Win Rate: 51.73% | Ban Rate: 3.91% | Counters: Cassiopeia (60%), Syndra, (57.2%), Corki (56.9%) | Countered By: Yorick (36.1%), Riven (45.9%), Aurelion Sol (46%)
You wanna have fun in mid? If Yasuo isn’t your cup of tea, I recommend Ekko. His abilities allow him to make a serious impact on the lane, and his ultimate is so good that it alone could make him a viable pick. With Ekko, your playstyle will depend on who you’re against. Ekko can also roam pretty well, so if you’re against someone tanky who you can’t kill, just go bot and kill whoever you find down there instead.
Ability Order: Q-E-W-Q-Q-Q-R (max order: Q-E-W)
Ekko’s Q can be used both for damage and forcing someone to move from where they are. Its damage is great, but don’t forget to use it to zone as well.
Win Rate: 51.75% | Ban Rate: 36.61% | Counters: Syndra (56.1%), Lucian (56%), Azir (55.1%) | Countered By: Garen (45.8%), Nocturne (46.1%), Zilean (46.2%)
Zed is similar to Yasuo in that if you get behind, you’re absolutely useless. That said, Zed is so consistent at killing anyone squishy that it’s rarely a problem. With Zed, you can effectively kill anyone you want in early game, with late game focusing more on ADC and picking people off before team fights.
Zed is a dangerous Champion because he can come out of nowhere and kill someone in a second, so the enemy team always has to be on guard. I like Zed in team comps that already have plenty of DPS and sustain. If you pick him in a game with another assassin or a burst ADC, you’re going to have problems finishing a game. Of all the assassins, Zed is the one that feels most like a genuine hitman.
Ability Order: Q-W-E-Q-Q-R (max order: Q-E-W)
Zed’s Q is his primary source of damage. When cast, his shadow also casts it. You’ll want to make sure you have a shadow out before using it on an enemy, but don’t worry about that when killing minions.
Win Rate: 52.97% | Ban Rate: 8.88% | Counters: Nunu (66.7%), Vladimir (57.9%), Ryze (57.7%) | Countered By: Corki (46.6%), Veigar (47.7%), Jayce (48%)
Anivia is one of the only champions that can rival Malzahar (who we’ll get to later) in terms of wave clear. She isn’t the best at a 1-on-1 fight, but her wave clear and teamfight potential are so good that it doesn’t matter. I personally play Anivia somewhat aggressively, because while you won’t win most fights early, her passive allows for more scrappy behavior.
Even if you do overextend and get killed, the odds are that they won’t be able to finish you off. In teamfights, Anivia just wants to use her wall to block people off, then use her ultimate to drain anyone who tries to get near her. She’s a utility champion in general, so make sure she’s good for your team before you pick her. In the right team comp, Anivia is one of the best resources to have.
Ability Order: Q-E-E-W-E-R (max order: E-Q-W)
Anivia’s Q is just a point-and-click damage ability, but its effects are boosted against enemies afflicted with her “chill.”
Win Rate: 52.92% | Ban Rate: 1.39% | Counters: Nunu (58%), Renekton (57%), Irelia (56.5%) | Countered By: Zilean (44%), Malzahar (46.2%), Kled (46.4%)
Ahri is the best traditional AP mage right now. While many of the AP mages have fallen off due to how easily they die to assassins, Ahri’s ultimate allows her the mobility to survive them. She can dominate lane with her Q damage, push the lane easily, and escape when she needs to.
Her damage ratio is also really good, so she stays relevant throughout the entire game as well. Ahri is a champion who can play safe if she needs to, as she doesn’t have to get too ahead to be good. However, there’s no reason not to get aggressive from time to time. Watch out for burst champions, though, as her damage isn’t quick enough to out-damage them.
Ability Order: W-E-Q-Q-Q-R (max order: Q-W-E)
Ahri’s Q is a boomerang-like orb of damage. It’s best used against a charmed enemy that can’t dodge it on the way back to you.
Win Rate: 53.04% | Ban Rate: 3.3% | Counters: Nunu (60.2%), Irelia (60%), Zoe (59.2%) | Countered By: Nocturne (41%), Kled (43.1%), Annie (44.1%)
Malzahar is the king of shutting down assassins (or anyone really). He also has amazing wave clear, so trying to do anything in his lane is almost impossible. Malzahar plays aggressively without even having to try. Just push the lane, and at some point, his opponent will take a bunch of damage without him needing to be anywhere nearby. And since there are so many assassins running around mid right now, Malzahar can sit back and chill while stomping lane.
The only thing he has to worry about is getting ganked when his ultimate is down, but even then, he’ll probably survive. In late game, your main goal is to pick whoever is the biggest threat to the team and lock them down with his ultimate. It’s as simple as that. He’s good with most team comps, so you don’t even need to worry about that.
Ability Order: E-W-Q-E-E-R (max order: E-Q-W)
Malzahar’s E is what makes him so annoying. It’s a burn-like effect that will spread to the nearest enemy if the person holding the burn dies while it’s still active. It also makes his W minions target the holder.
Win Rate: 52.25% | Ban Rate: 12.07% | Counters: Irelia (58.4%), Syndra (57.1%), Qiyana (56.6%) | Countered By: Garen (43.2%), Yorick (44.4%), Sion (44.7%)
Fizz is a nightmare to play against, so I highly recommend playing him. He can dodge any ability with his E, and his burst damage is insane. Fizz has to be played aggressively, and there’s little reason not to. Just dive on your opponent and use all your abilities, and they should be dead. Having a long-range ultimate finisher is a massive bonus, and the knock-up effect it has is great in teamfights.
Fizz is great against burst mages and assassins, and he’s only really weak to tanks. I definitely wouldn’t play him against someone like Swain or Sion, but most other champions are simply a snack to Fizz.
Ability Order: E-W-Q-W-E-R (max order: E-W-Q)
Fizz’s E is his pole ability which allows him to dodge anything that comes his way. It also does significant damage when he leaves it.
Win Rate: 52.92% | Ban Rate: 16.79% | Counters: Syndra (59.7%), Ryze (57.9%), Zoe (56.9%) | Countered By: Kled (45.4%), Galio (46.8%), Garen (47.1%)
Katarina is the best mid laner right now. Her assassin nature is excellent against the current meta, and she’s just generally strong in any situation. She dominates lane, kills anyone within it, and can swing a teamfight easily. Her ultimate is deadly late game, making her one of very few assassins that can actually do anything late other than pick off enemies.
This versatility makes her an essential part of any team she’s on, and someone that must be respected. Katarina is aggressive and can kill anyone in seconds, making her the best mid laner in LoL.
Ability Order: Q-E-W-E-E-R (max order: E-Q-W)
Katarina’s E allows her to blink to nearby allies or enemies and do damage to the nearest target. Use it in combination with her daggers for max damage.
High Ground View
While mid-lane can be difficult to play, we hope you have a good understanding of how to pick a competitive mid champion after reading this. Make sure you practice with your Champion before heading into ranked, and remember to be a team player. And as always, have fun! Happy gaming.