Over my time playing Ivern, I've seen a lot of confusion as to what Ivern's class actually is. Is he an enchanter? Mage? Specialist? Does he even fall under any predefined classes? In this article, I want to clear up this confusion and finally settle the question of how to define Ivern.
Note: This article will be centered around jungle, but can also be applied to other roles.
Which subclasses fit Ivern?
According to Riot, there are 13 subclasses in League of Legends. Most champions will draw a few attributes from 1-2 different subclasses. For Ivern, there are 3 that stand out:
The enchanter class is the easiest parallel to draw for Ivern due to his main ability being an allied shield. One of the key roles of an enchanter is to amplify the effectiveness of allies and directly protect them from incoming threats, which is something that Ivern clearly does.
If you look at Riot's official classification, Ivern is listed as a catcher. Catchers specialize in locking down enemies with ranged crowd control, which Ivern has an abundance of with Q/E/R. If I had to define Ivern by one class, catcher would make the most sense from how much of his kit is dedicated to CC.
The specialist class is for champions that have their own unique play patterns that don't quite fit the existing categories. Champions like Azir or Fiddlesticks fall into this category. Ivern has many champion-specific patterns like playing around W bushes or Daisy, so specialist would also be a fitting class for Ivern.
How this applies in-game
Now that we've established the 3 categories Ivern falls under, we can start looking at how this applies in actual games. What's interesting is that Ivern's identity significantly shifts over the course of a single game. Here's a rough breakdown:
Early Game (Pre-6)
70% Catcher, 20% Enchanter, 10% Specialist
In the early game, Ivern is mostly played as a catcher. This is because early game jungle activities like ganking and skirmishing value the aggression of his CC more than the protection of his shields.
The ratio between enchanter and catcher varies based on comp, with melee champions generally leading to a higher emphasis on enchanter abilities and vice versa. This is because Ivern can afford to play back and amplify a strong melee carry, whereas he relies more on locking down enemies for ranged allies).
Mid Game (Levels 6-13)
60% Specialist, 25% Catcher, 15% Enchanter
Once Daisy is unlocked, Ivern's playstyle gets completely flipped. The majority of what you do during this time will involve Daisy in some way, whether that be using her to deliver E slow in a gank or as a zoning tool around objectives. During this time period, there are many medium-scale skirmishes where you can greatly benefit from shielding Daisy and/or yourself over your teammates.
Because of how Daisy-centric this stage of the game is, Ivern can be considered primarily a specialist in the midgame.
Late Game (Levels 14+)
80% Enchanter, 10% catcher, 10% Specialist
At some point, the fights start becoming large enough where Daisy is easily dealt with. At the same time, any scaling champions will be reaching their big late-game 3/4 item spikes. For this portion of the game, there's a lot less room for aggression since you put yourself at much higher risk and are better off just peeling for the carries.
While the early and mid game playstyles can vary a lot based on comp, Ivern will almost always play like a full enchanter by minute 30. The only exceptions would be if the enemy comp has a hard time killing daisy (low single target dmg, low cc, etc) or if Ivern is very ahead.
What does this mean for Ivern?
It's important to remember that these ratios are only approximations of what will happen early/mid/late game, and the real amounts vary heavily based on ally/enemy comps, who's behind/ahead, your income, etc. Understanding how to apply Ivern's different strengths to the correct scenario is a big part of mastering the champion.
Another thing worth noting is that any item/rune that you pick will impact his 3 roles differently. For example:
- Boots of Mobility is an item that almost exclusively benefits the Catcher playstyle. The reason you buy it on Ivern is to stomp the early game from 4:00-10:00 by being in the right place at the right time more often. They tend to fall off in usefulness as Ivern starts shifting towards being more of a specialist and enchanter.
- Night Harvester is one of the best items you can buy for Specialist Ivern. It has extremely high AP and Ability Haste, and the passive has a lot of synergy with Daisy. Ivern with Night Harvester is best for controlling objective fights in the midgame, but becomes far less useful as Daisy gets easier to deal with.
- Moonstone Renewer is an item that benefits Enchanter Ivern by basically only influencing Ivern's shielding in teamfights. Since it only grants it's bonuses to shields on allies, Ivern doesn't get value when he shields Daisy or himself. However, if you position safely and shield your allies, enchanter items will provide immense value.
A big part of what makes Ivern cool is how many different things you can make his kit do. One of the biggest reasons I love Ivern is that with creativity, you can pull out different aspects of his kit to achieve far more than what anyone expects. I'd even describe him as a jack-of-all-trades disguised as an enchanter.
This is also what scares me about a potential future rework. Since Ivern can potentially do so many things, his kit also feels less focused than others. What would likely happen in the event of a rework is that riot would streamline his kit towards being an enchanter in every stage of the game, while taking away the other flavors of depth in the process.
Anyways, I know I say this every time but hopefully I can start posting on here more often. There are still many things I want to write about, especially with the new items in 13.10 and the Ivern changes in 13.11. Until then though, thanks for reading!