Typically, the mid lane in League of Legends is home to mages and assassins. Since it’s a straight shot down the map, it’s the ideal stomping ground for Champions that favor skill shots and roaming. Players can expect to be ganked often by passing Junglers, or to be called on for help by teammates getting cornered or trying to secure an objective.

While there’s usually a meta for which Champions are best suited for mid lane, sometimes you just want to bring something unexpected to the game. Maybe you want to spice things up a bit, or maybe you have a game-winning strategy that hasn’t caught on yet.

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In this guide, we’ll be going over our picks for the 4 best off-meta mid-laners in League of Legends. We’ll discuss what makes each of our Champions so good in mid, as well as offer a few strategies to help you counter the meta picks and bring your team to victory.

Let’s get started!

Further Reading:

Best Off-Meta Mid Laners in LoL: Top 4 Champions

Before we begin, remember that your success with off-meta picks will still be dependent on how good you are with the Champion. No amount of theory crafting and planning will ensure success if you don’t have the skills to back it up.

Balance patches can also push a Champion into the meta or drive them further into obscurity, so keep an eye out on them and stay up to date.

With this in mind, let’s dive into our list of the best off-meta mid laners in LoL!

1/4

Aurelion Sol, The Star Forger

Aurelion Sol Splash Art
Image: Riot Games

The sassy space dragon god has always belonged to mid lane, but he’s an incredibly rare sight in any game these days. Despite having fantastic roaming and team fight potential, he’s often overlooked due to being difficult to master.

If you’re all about positioning and going all-in on your enemies, Aurelion can do wonders for you. Be the shining star of the game!

What Makes Aurelion Good

As Aurelion, you have fantastic mobility for roaming around the map. Your E allows you to completely bypass walls and quickly cut across the map to any location. If you’re paying attention to the map, you can respond to any team fight or objective right away.

Since Aurelion’s kit revolves around AoE presence, you’re incredibly strong in team fights. Your Q can grow to a massive size if you travel with it, letting you potentially stun an entire lane. On top of that, the three stars rotating around you can repeatedly hit multiple enemies and proc on-hit effects if positioned properly. Plus, your ult has a deceptively long range and width!

Screenshot of Aurelion Sol in action
Image: Riot Games via HGG / Jeffrey Hsu

Also, given Aurelion’s rarity and the unconventional range on his orbiting stars, most opponents will be unprepared to deal with you and will underestimate your range and damage.

Strategy

Landing the stun from your Q grants you a window of guaranteed damage from your W. Take advantage of poking your enemies often by expanding your ring of stars at random.

It’ll take a fair bit of practice to interweave your auto attacks in with your movement, but you can rack up a lot of damage. You’re especially dangerous in the early game, as a good Q-W combo can take out half your opponent’s health.

Anticipate where team fights will break out and head there with your E. Along the way, you can pre-emptively activate your Q to travel with it and turn it into a star-sized stun. Upon landing, keep up the assault and finish off enemies that are low or too close for comfort with your ultimate.

As Aurelion Sol can easily proc Electrocute by weaving auto attacks in with his rotating stars, you can put out a lot of surprising damage, especially in the early game. The sooner you can establish lane dominance, the sooner you can safely roam and help your teammates snowball in other lanes, hence why we recommend biscuits.

Since his damage is largely based on his rotating stars hitting enemies, movement speed is critical to Aurelion’s build. Night Harvester and Rylai’s will ensure you have control over your enemies’ positioning.

Zhonya’s and Morello provide more survavibility and utility to your team fight presence. If you’re snowballing, then Mejai’s will be fantastic, otherwise build Void Staff to ensure you don’t fall off.

Dark Seal ➡️ Sorcerer’s Shoes ➡️ Night Harvester ➡️ Rylai’s Crystal Scepter ➡️ Zhonya’s Hourglass ➡️ Morellonomicon ➡️ Mejai’s Soulstealer/Void Staff

Domination (Electrocute)

  • Taste of Blood
  • Eyeball Collection
  • Relentless Hunter

Inspiration (Secondary)

  • Biscuit Delivery
  • Time Warp Tonic

Side Runes:

  • Attack Speed, Adaptive Force, Armor

2/4

Heimerdinger, The Revered Inventor

Heimerdinger Riot Games Splash Art
Image: Riot Games

Next on our list is the mechanical genius yordle. An oddball of a pick given his reliance on his turret minions for the bulk of his damage, but exceedingly effective once you understand how to zone your opponent in lane.

If you enjoy dominating a lane by rendering it completely unhospitable, you’ll jive with what Heimerdinger can do.

What Makes Heimerdinger Good

If you can keep your turrets set up and positioned properly, you can maintain extreme lane pressure with relatively high safety. Opponents will usually have to burn abilities in order to kill your turrets, giving you a chance to retaliate safely. Additionally, enemy Junglers can’t safely gank you without losing HP to either kill your turrets or withstanding their barrage to reach you.

On top of all of that, you have considerably long reach with your rocket barrage and stun grenade. With an ultimate that can enhance your next cast of normal abilities, you’re incredibly flexible in approaching any situation.

Strategy

Get to lane early and start setting up turrets in a slightly spread out triangle formation. By the time minions arrive, you should have additional turrets ready to deploy if one falls.

Screenshot of Heimerdinger in action
Image: Riot Games via HGG / Jeffrey Hsu

Actively harass and punish your opponent every time they try to kill your turret with your other abilities and auto attack. If you get good at landing your stun, you can actively combo a rocket barrage with it to deal tremendous damage.

Save your ultimate for when you can assure a kill or expect a team fight to break out. A boosted turret or bouncing stun grenade can guarantee your team victory, while the boosted rocket barrage is fantastic for nuking down a single target.

Between Heimerdinger’s turrets and rocket barrage, you’ll be proccing Arcane Comet quite often. Even more so if you manage to land the stun grenade. You’re all about burning away your enemies’ health while kiting back through your turret field of death, which Liandry’s and Zhonya’s are amazing at doing.

The more often you have Zhonya’s up, the more likely you survive a fight, so Ingenious Hunter is critical in that aspect. As you approach late game, your burst from your grenade and rocket combo will reach incredible heights, while your turrets just shred everything. If the enemy can’t burst you before you activate Zhonya’s, then you win nearly every time.

Doran’s Ring ➡️ Liandry’s Anguish ➡️ Sorcerer’s Boots ➡️ Zhonya’s Hourglass ➡️ Morellonomicon Rabadon’s Deathcap ➡️ Demonic Embrace

Sorcery (Arcane Comet)

  • Mana Flow Band
  • Absolute Focus
  • Gathering Storm

Domination (Secondary)

  • Eyeball Collection
  • Ingenious Hunter

Side Runes:

  • 2x Adaptive Force, Magic Resistance

3/4

Kennen, The Heart of the Tempest

Kennen Riot Games Splash Art
Image: Riot Games

Kennen is the jovial energetic member of the Ionian Kinkou. With the power of the tempest coursing through him, he zips across the battle field constantly shocking his foes and stunning them with blasts of lightning.

If you want to constantly be on the move, punishing your foes with a flurry of attacks, and not having to worry about mana, then Kennen is a fantastic off-meta pick for the mid lane.

What Makes Kennen Good

Since Kennen is an energy Champion, you can constantly use his abilities to harass opponents without worrying about mana. Given the reach and low cooldown of your Q, this will be quite often. On top of that, your auto attacks are quite good and let you proc your W.

Hitting an opponent with your abilities three times will stun them, allowing for easy bursts of damage and ally ganks. On top of that, you can easily disengage or re-engage enemies with the speed burst from your E.

Screenshot of Kennen in action
Image: Riot Games via HGG / Jeffrey Hsu

You also have the advantage of transitioning extremely well into team fights, as your ultimate provides massive coverage and stuns across the board. A well timed Kennen ult can easily reign havoc to any enemy team’s plans and secure you victory.

Strategy

Get good at positioning and aiming your Q. It’ll be your main source of damage, poke, and building stun stacks on your target. Whenever the opportunity presents itself, you should use it.

Consistently auto attack to activate your W proc and use it on the enemy champion whenever available. If properly used with your Q, you should often stun your enemy and be able to get more free damage in.

Save your E to dodge or disengage in most cases. You can use it offensively if you’re confident you can secure the kill, but it’s usually better to have it for emergencies. It’ll also allow you to roam rather effectively to help gank other lanes and your jungler on demand. In team fights, you’ll often pop it to get to the center of the enemy team and activate your ult to start mass stunning.

Kennen can hit an enemy with pretty much his entire toolkit in a second if the opportunity presents itself. An empowered auto attack into a Q and W will reliably proc Electrocute in most cases, with his E serving as a backup.

While he’s already very mobile with his E, Hextech Rocketbelt ensures he can get within range to take full advantage of it and position himself nicely for his ultimate. On top of that, his ultimate will persist through Zhonya’s, allowing him to safely stun an entire team and reset his basic cooldowns.

You may not be building much in sustain, but his runes will often leave him with just enough health after his combo to retreat to safety or to finish off a low enemy by the skin of his teeth.

Doran’s Blade ➡️ Sorcerer’s Shoes ➡️ Hextech Rocketbelt ➡️ Zhonya’s Hourglass ➡️ Void Staff ➡️ Morellonomicon ➡️ Rabadon’s Deathcap

Domination (Electrocute)

  • Taste of Blood
  • Eyeball Collection
  • Ultimate Hunter

Sorcery (Secondary)

  • Gathering Storm
  • Absolute Focus

Side Runes:

  • Attack Speed, Adaptive Force, Magic Resistance

4/4

Renekton, The Butcher of the Sands

Renekton Riot Games Splash Art
Image: Riot Games

We know, we know. Renekton is traditionally a top laner. The deranged crocodile man is very much a bruiser: meaty and completely melee-oriented. However, his skill set and burst damage make him incredibly suited for mid-lane as well.

For those of you who want to completely disregard the established meta and terrorize mid lane with an unkillable ball of rage, then Renekton is the only choice.

What Makes Renekton Good

Despite being a bruiser, Renekton has fantastic mobility with the double dash on his E. Being able to close the gap immediately and pounce on (usually squishy) Champions in mid lane is huge.

Your main damage combo of stunning a target with W and following it up with Q also does considerable damage almost instantly while giving you a window to escape to safety.

Screenshot of Renekton in action
Image: Riot Games via HGG / Jeffrey Hsu

On top of all of that, you have fantastic sustain from your Q and bonus health from your ultimate. All of this combined makes you insanely meaty and difficult to cut down. With your early game damage, you’ll often secure a lead and just snowball out of control from there.

Strategy

Always try to have over 50 fury (half his resource bar) before engaging an enemy Champion, as it empowers your next ability.

Your Q will be your main source of damage and has a surprisingly long reach. Use it often to trade and try to be near minions when you do so to heal off them as well.

When you want to reach the enemy, use the first dash on your E to reach them and save the second part to disengage if possible. You should be able to get close enough to stun them immediately with your W into a Q before leaving. This is an incredibly safe combo.

In team fights, pop your ult and stick to your main target like glue. The passive damage you generate and extra fury generation will ensure you can shred through your opponents like paper while staying healthy.

Since you’re already going all in on the enemy if you’re playing Renekton mid-lane, you just want to deal big chunks of damage while staying just healthy enough. To that extent, Goredrinker is fantastic for getting in a burst of damage and healing on top of your Q before leaving.

As soon as you get Press the Attack rolling, which is extremely easy as your Q counts for on-hit and resets your auto attack, you become absolutely terrifying. Between Goredrink, Death’s Dance, and built in self-sustain, it’ll be incredibly hard to kill you.

Sterak’s and Black Cleaver will just make you straight up meaty and deal relevant damage. If they do manage to kill you, surprise them with Guardian Angel into more Q sustain and finish off survivors.

Doran’s Blade ➡️ Plated Steelcaps ➡️ Goredrinker ➡️ Sterak’s Gage ➡️ Death’s Dance ➡️ Black Cleaver ➡️ Guardian Angel

Precision (Press the Attack)

  • Triumph
  • Legend: Alacrity
  • Last Stand

Resolve (Secondary)

  • Bone Plating
  • Demolish

Side Runes:

  • 2x Adaptive Force, Magic Resistance

Join the High Ground

That’s it for our list of the best off-meta mid laners. If you think another Champion deserves to be on our list, leave a comment below! Don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter and follow us on social.

Happy gaming!