Among the the most fun compositions to play in TFT: Reckoning, is the Hellion comp. The Yordles may be back as annoying menaces, but that’s only if you play against them. When piloting this particular comp, the Hellions transition from being incredibly annoying, to amazing. With the mid-set update to TFT, the Hellion composition has been upgraded too. Tristana has joined the pack and as a result, the optimal way to play the trait has changed, but not because she is the main carry. In this Hellion guide, we’re here to make sure players understand how to play one of the most fun comps in TFT: Reckoning.
Overview: Win condition and how the comp works
The Hellion trait is a unique one in TFT. Although there is a blanket stat increase imbedded into each of the Hellion units, there is a core mechanic the Hellion trait gives that makes winning fights easy. While the trait is active, the Hellions on the board get increased attack speed, but also spawn a portal on the bottom right side of the map. When a Hellion dies for the first time in combat, a spawn of that unit will arise from the portal and continue attacking. Essentially, each Hellion has a second life.
While this mechanic is fun when it takes off, the real reason the comp succeeds is due to the attack speed steroid. With the introduction of Tristana in TFT Reckoning: Dawn of Heroes, the Hellion roster rose from six to seven. Because of this, the different bonus activations had to be changed. Before the update, the different trait activation points were at 3/5/7. Now, the trait comes online faster at just two units, but the trait also has four activation points that go 2/4/6/8. What this means is that players are going to want to hit the six Hellion activation point, as it gives all Hellions 75% attack speed. The trait is better in set 5.5 because of this. For one extra Hellion, they gain 25% increased attack speed which makes the comp playable even if a player doesn’t hit a Hellion emblem.
Now that the trait has been explained, it’s time to discuss its carries. The cool thing about the Hellion composition is that multiple units can be the star of the show. However, the unit that uses the attack speed bonus the most effectively, is Kled. The always-malding cavalier is an absolute menace with the right items. His ability, Violent Tendencies, lets Kled deal 200% of his attack speed on every fourth attack. Not to mention that he comes mounted on his pet Skaarl, which grants him a shield that once it pops, runs away and grants Kled even more attack speed. The goal here is simple, give Kled attack damage, let him hit multiple enemies at once, and make sure he lives long enough to abuse the attack speed steroids. If a player can do this, Kled can solo entire teams.
When it comes to item optimization, Kled is going to want Bloodthirster and Runaan’s Hurricane. The third item is flexible but something like Last Whisper allows him to tank shred faster. More damage like Deathblade and Giant Slayer are good options too. As for the supporting cast, its important to have Morello’s on Kennen and tank items on Poppy. Any mana and AP items can be thrown onto Ziggs and later Teemo, in which case Teemo will become the hidden boss of the comp.
Early Game (stage 2)
On the opening carousel, players will want to prioritize either bow or cloak. Cloak in this comp is actually pretty good as two of Kled’s items require it. It’s a component in Runaan’s Hurricane and Bloodthirster. Bow is also very strong since it builds into Hurricane and Last Whisper. When it comes to which item to shotgun first, priority should be on Hurricane since attacking multiple enemies at the same time is better than healing. Damage is rather low, so Kled will survive even without Bloodthirster in stage two. However, both are extremely important and should be prioritized before going after any other item.
When it comes to the early game comp itself, players should not be rolling any gold as this comp is a reroll comp, meaning players will want to save their econ and “slowroll” at level five. Players should be collecting every Hellion that appears in the shop. At level three, since players only need two Hellions to activate the trait, players should have a Kled and either Ziggs or Poppy active. As for the third unit, another frontline tank like Leona, or a Cavalier like Sejuani, are very strong.
At level four players can aim to throw in the four Hellion synergy. This is possible if they have found a Kennen and the rest of the one cost Hellions. The attack speed jump from 5% to 30% is a big one and since Hellions have an inherent extra life, throwing all the Hellions at an opponent can mitigate a lot of HP damage early. If players can’t fit in the four Hellions at level four, consider throwing in an extra two-star Hellion or another tank unit. The goal here is to most likely lose streak until Krugs, at which point a player should be at, or close to, 50 gold.
Mid Game (stage 3)
Now, players will start the slow roll process after Krugs. Slow rolling is the idea of spending excess gold above 50 to roll for desired units. Ideally a player will not dip below 50 gold because that would not give the maximum interest possible. Doing this at level five accomplishes two things. Starting off, this is the first time in the game that a player can actually slow roll with max econ. The other factor is that the chances of hitting low cost units in each shop goes down with each level. Being at level five is optimal at finding the Hellions a player needs.
Since the Hellion synergy doesn’t have a five unit breakpoint anymore, this is the optimal time to run four Hellions with a tank thrown in. Optimally this tank would be a Nautilus. Nautilus is good because he’s a knight that pairs well with Poppy, bringing some much needed CC into the comp. Players will most likely sit at level five the entirety of stage three. Players should not level to six until they get Kled to three-star. While this process is happening, players should also consider getting other Hellions to three-star as well. Poppy and Kennen are fantastic options to search for as they will be in the comp until the end of the game. while also doubling up as important frontline tools. Tristana and Ziggs are not as important here, since the main damage is coming from Kled, but it’s nice to have these units upgraded.
Towards the end of stage three, players might have found a Lulu and have maybe even upgraded her to two star. In an optimal world, the four Hellions that should be in the comp at level five are Kled, Kennen, Poppy and Lulu, along with a Nautilus. Ziggs and Tristana are fine replacements though, if players don’t have the other four upgraded.
As for the Radiant Armory, a Kled item would be amazing. The radiant version of Hurricane, Bloothirster and Deathblade are fantastic options for Kled, especially as a third item. If those are not available, then tank items are good too. Even utility items like Zeke’s or Banshee’s Claw aren’t bad either. Essentially, any item that will help Kled carry, should be priority.
After Kled three-star is found, players should level to six to fit in the six Hellion synergy. At this point in the game, the Hellion comp is its strongest.
Late Game (Stage 4+)
In this comp, late game starts at stage four as that’s when the comp truly power spikes. After hitting level six, players should look to hit level seven as soon as possible. This is because players will be way behind their peers in actual levels. That’s ok though, because they will also be ahead of their peers in power level. To mitigate the lack of total units, simply leveling to seven and adding another tank body works wonders. At level seven, Nautilus or Rell are fantastic options to pair with the six Hellions.
Rell is harder to find but has one of the best CC abilities in the game. She is also a Cavalier that pairs very nicely with Kled. However, Rell and Nautilus are interchangeable at level seven.
Level eight most likely won’t happen until stage five. When it does, players should simply throw in the unit that they didn’t insert on level seven. In almost every game, level eight is where this comp will stay. The investment to going to level nine is too much, for very little reward. Players will need to be looking to upgrade their boards at level eight instead. A unit to look out for at level eight is Teemo. If a player has a lot of AP and mana items, Teemo is actually the comp’s best carry option. At the very least, Teemo is the second best Hellion behind Kled in this comp, even without many items. This is because his ability slows the enemy units down, which buys time for Kled to clean up.
The final thing to note about late game is the use of Emblems. This comp can use many different Emblems to shake up the supporting end-game cast. For example, if a player stumbles upon a Cavalier emblem, turning Kennen into a Cavalier allows for a player to skip Nautilus and throw in another Cavalier like Sejuani or Hecarim, to activate the four cavalier bonus. This provides for the strongest frontline possible in this comp while also making Kled unkillable.
However, the best emblem for this comp is obviously the Hellion emblem. The 75% bonus attack speed at the six Hellion threshold is great, but the 150% threshold at eight is an auto win. Throwing in all seven Hellions and something like a Rell with a Hellion spat, makes for the strongest possible board at level eight.
Here are some final thoughts on what players should know with this comp. An early Morello’s or Sunfire cape can make the comp very strong in the early game. Static Shiv is also a solid option on someone like Ziggs or Lulu. If a player receives extra AD items, Tristana is a good secondary carry option. Finally, Teemo will save the day if a player fails to hit Kled items or a Kled three-star.
This comp is very strong and can definitely win games, especially if a player hits Kled three-star early. Have fun, good luck on the ranked ladder climb with Hellion and if you need more TFT: Reckoning guides, check here.