Welcome to the League of Legends Champion Spotlight, featuring Taliyah, the Stoneweaver. Taliyah was always a little different from the other kids in her tribe. The Shuriman teen was stronger and braver than the others, and she can manipulate and reshape the earth using her mind! As Taliyah’s powers grew, she began to worry that she might accidentally hurt someone she cared about. So, she left her family and the desert lands she loved to gain control of her abilities. Taliyah has now returned from her journey across Valoran, newly determined to protect her people from the dangers rising from Shurima’s sands. On the Rift, Taliyah is a traditional mage with cataclysmic, lane-altering spells and out-of-combat mobility that makes her faster than a rock-et. Taliyah’s passive is Rock Surfing, which gives her extra movement speed when traveling near walls.

The bonus drops off when she casts a spell or takes damage. Taliyah’s Q is Threaded Volley, which tears up rocks from the ground around her, letting her fire them in a target direction, dealing damage in a small area of effect. She’s then free to move around while firing, basically like a Lucian ultimate. All rocks in the volley after the first one that lands deal reduced damage. Casting Threaded Volley turns the area around Taliyah into worked ground for a few minutes.

Further volley casts over worked ground will refund half the spell’s mana cost, but yields only one lonely little rock. Worked ground doesn’t affect Stoneweaver’s allies or opponents, but it does give her a small speed boost when she travels over it. When trading in lane, try to leave patches of unworked ground in an easy-to-reach spot. When your opponent steps out of position, hopscotch over to the fresh dirt and start stoneweaving. Taliyah’s W is Seismic Shove. On first cast, she marks a target location which, after a brief delay, erupts, knocking up and damaging all caught enemies. Taliyah can recast Seismic Shove before it erupts to toss her victims in a targeted direction.

It can be hard to land Seismic Shove on mobile enemies, but don’t take the ability for granite. You might just need to swat away a sneaky spider. Taliyah’s E, Unraveled Earth, scatters boulders onto the ground before her, damaging and slowing all enemies they strike. After a few seconds, the field erupts, dealing a second wave of damage. Opponents who dash through the boulders blow up any rocks they touch. This also works if enemies get tossed into the field somehow, like by a Seismic Shove…

Or a Headbutt, for example. Plant Unraveled Earth to slow the approach of big, spinning juggernauts, or use it to block off a path so you can make your escape. Here’s the real reason you bring Taliyah to your team: Gigantic walls of impassable terrain from halfway across the map. When Taliyah casts her ultimate, Weaver’s Wall, she summons a massive wall of spiraling rock that tears through the Rift in a target direction, knocking aside enemies and blocking their movement just like a regular wall would. Taliyah can reactivate Weaver’s Wall while casting it to ride atop the wave as it emerges. Taking damage or inputting a move command in any direction while riding will cause her to hop off. If she doesn’t reactivate while casting, the wall will simply complete its trip without her. To collapse the wall early, you can hit that R button once again. Also, enemies will be able to see and hear the wall as it emerges, even through fog of war. Use Taliyah’s passive to surf within ult-range of an ally’s lane, then use Weaver’s Wall to blast in behind your opponents. With their escape route walled off, Kog’Maw and Soraka had a really rocky start to this fight.

Taliyah needs to keep one foot on unworked ground to deal maximum damage with her spells. Here, Taliyah engages just as this section of ground refreshes, allowing her to unload a full barrage of Threaded Volley onto Xerath. The movespeed buff she gets from the other worked ground in this lane lets her close in on the glowy blue dude. The flash isn’t just a dodge, it actually plants her on fresh, unworked ground just a stone’s throw away, which lets her kill him. Taliyah’s spells work best when she sets herself up with Unraveled Earth to make it easier to land a full combo. Taliyah slows Xerath with her E, then Seismic Shoves him back in. A quick Threaded Volley finishes him off. It can be difficult to land Seismic Shove on freely-moving enemies, so Taliyah’s often best off waiting for her teammates to engage so she can pile onto an easy target.

Here she zones out Volibear and Leona so Vayne can safely punch some holes into the midlane turret. When Morgana finally catches Volibear with a Dark Binding, Taliyah sees her chance. She lays out a queen-size bed of rocks in front of the bear in the big blue armor and tosses him to his doom. Taliyah’s wall is great for splitting up enemy teams, but she’s gotta be careful that she’s not screwing over her teammates instead. Any time you ult alongside your allies, remember that you’re actively creating terrain that blocks their path, which could completely lose your team the game.

Taliyah is excellent at flanking while her team sieges. Noticing a greedy defense by Kog’Maw and Soraka, a simple Weaver’s Wall removes all hope of escape without Flash. Because it’s a 4v2, there’s no need to put herself in danger, so Taliyah decides not to ride her wall and instead approaches her opponents via Rock Surfing. A quick Seismic Shove helps take down the Soraka before anyone else can truly defend them. Weaver’s Wall is good for setting up picks, but the strongest walls just leave enemies out in the cold entirely. When Taliyah sees Volibear thundering in for a Baron steal, she ults to block off nearly nearly the entire river. Some Unraveled Earth and a Seismic Shove plug the gap in the wall and keeps the bad guys at bay. Thanks for tuning in to the Taliyah Champion Spotlight. Click these links if you want to dig up a little more dirt on the Stoneweaver..

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