Tryndamere is one of the most overrated champions in League of Legends. This is not to say he’s a bad champion; he’s a strong pick in both Summoner’s Rift and Dominion. However, he’s considered by many players to be overpowered and nigh-unbeatable. He has a combination of two elements that contribute to this: He’s easy to play and hard to counter. An inexperienced player can get a lot of success by being a huge bully as Tryndamere.
I find this to be unacceptable! Tryndamere’s rage is hardly endless, and dealing with him is one of the best early matchups to learn. Once you know how to deal with his tricks, he’s much weaker, and you can walk all over him. People who rely on Tryndamere’s gimmicks to win games will be stopped cold once you’ve mastered the counters.
Tryndamere Champion Spotlight
The Tryndamere spotlight is old, but this will give you a good idea about his abilities and what they do. In particular, his Endless Rage ultimate causes a lot of rage all over League. Endless Rage renders Tryndamere unkillable for a few seconds, though he can be damaged and affected by negative status effects. The effect of the ultimate is simple: He cannot go below 1 HP for its duration.
The standard response for an unkillable champion is for people to cry “OP,” but the fact that he can be hit with negative statuses is a great way to handle him. A two-second stun will take most of the edge off of Endless Rage, and a big slow can often keep him from dealing meaningful damage during his ultimate. A snare is particularly crippling against Tryndamere as snares are plentiful among many champions and they tend to last longer than stuns. Just snare him and walk away.
Endless Rage also has a brief delay before it engages, so Tryndamere must activate it a bit early or risk death before he can use his ultimate. Listen carefully for the audio cue and hit him with crowd controls. Even if you have no other CC, Exhaust will blunt most of his Endless Rage by crippling both his damage and his movement speed.
Ignite is also a great way to ensure Tryndamere’s death. If you use Ignite midway through Tryndamere’s rage, it will significantly reduce any healing he might gain from Bloodlust and deal quite a bit of unresistable true damage after Tryndamere becomes mortal. Unless he gets a powerful outside heal, Ignite is almost certain death if used against Tryndamere late in his rage.
Perhaps most critical to dealing with Endless Rage is to remember its cooldown. It has a nearly two-minute cooldown at Rank 1 and goes down to 90 seconds only at Rank 3. While Endless Rage is down, Tryndamere is weaker than most melee bruisers.
Dealing with Tryndamere in lane
If you are laning against Tryndamere, remember that he is an extremely farm-reliant champion. He deals most of his damage from his autoattacks and is heavily crippled when denied powerful attack damage items. Champions with strong harassment can keep Tryndamere from successfully getting any farm. He has decent sustain, which actually works to his disadvantage at lower ratings. Tryndamere will often take an early aggressive stance and rely on Bloodlust to keep his health up, and safe harassment will often result in him losing health faster than he can get it back. At the higher skill levels, Tryndamere players usually know better than to bully before they have a decisive lane advantage, which should put you on an even footing.
If you’re having trouble with the Tryndamere matchup in top lane, you may want to practice playing characters who deal with him well. I personally recommend a good harassment champion with sustain like Yorick, Maokai, or Nidalee. Riven and Udyr can use their shields and stuns to soften his damage and get a strong life lead. Irelia is a good choice too, as she has good sustain and can often just beat Tryndamere in a straight 1v1 engagement. As unlikely as it might be, Teemo’s blind and poison DoT make him a very decisive counter to Tryndamere in lane. If you’re playing in a draft game, always consider counters to the enemy team and pick accordingly. Tryndamere is a good character to counter if he’s drafted because he can be easily shut down and is a strong contributor to his team if left alone.
I can’t stress this enough though: A fed Tryndamere is hard to stop, just like a fed Vayne or Tristana. Don’t let him get to the point that he has all of his power items. The battle against Tryndamere is a battle in the early game. Deny him farm and kills and you will defeat him easily.
Rage in the jungle
Tryndamere is a good jungler with a reasonably fast clear time. His Mocking Shout makes his ganks fairly powerful, and he can ambush with his Spinning Slash from behind a wall or out of a bush. Furthermore, it’s hard to deny Tryndamere farm in the jungle unless you are playing a jungler with a strong counter-jungle game.
As in the lane, Udyr and Jax can invade Tryndamere’s jungle easily and steal his camps or just make farming hard for the barbarian. Trynd might also choose to invade himself; be aware of the common entry areas to your jungle and ward them. You may even want to ward your own jungle if you know he’s being aggressive.
If you’re in a lane, you should place wards too! This is a common sense thing regardless of the jungler, so get used to doing it. Buy wards and use them! If you have a Wriggle’s Lantern, use its active to place wards. Put wards in his common approach areas and you will have plenty of advance warning. If you have wards in place, you can bait him into bad situations or just waste his time. Wasting Tryndamere’s time denies him gold and experience from the jungle, so ward defensively and play defensively. Use skills like Flash or Exhaust to escape from him or turn the tables, and if you know he’s coming, let your jungler know. If you pick him off while he’s heading in to gank you by pincering him between you and your jungler, you get ahead and he gets behind.
If Tryndamere does try to gank you, retreat for a moment, then turn to face him briefly to try and catch his Mocking Shout. If he shouts at you while you’re facing him, you won’t be slowed and can easily escape. Characters with dashes or blinks like Vayne, Ezreal, Kassadin, and Riven can escape easily even if he slows them. You can also try to stun, snare, or Exhaust him while his shout is up to assist in getting away. Tryndamere’s Mocking Shout also has a fairly short range. If he’s pretty far away, just keep running; if he Spinning Slashes to you, turn to face him as he will most likely shout to try and slow you down.
Dominating the Barbarian King
On Dominion, Tryndamere’s Endless Rage allows him to tower dive for an extended period of time. The best answer is simply to not regard your turret as a safe haven. Don’t hesitate to interrupt his captures with ranged attacks, but don’t hug your turret if you think his ultimate might be up. Always try to engage him at an advantage if you’re both alone; poke his health down, and as in Summoner’s Rift, play defensively.
If you’re in a teamfight, wait for him to dive in, then stun him and kill him. He can’t activate Endless Rage if he’s stunned, so use that time to cut him down. Silences from characters like Kassadin, Soraka, and Talon also prevent him from activating his ultimate and can turn his aggressive style into a huge liability.
Above all, avoid giving him free damage by letting him get into the center of your team with his ultimate up. CC him and back away or scatter; wear down his health bar. If you can’t burst him down in one stun, get his health low enough that you can.
In Dominion, it’s especially important to have a lot of crowd controls as they are incredibly useful in the frequent teamfights that occur on the map. Don’t be afraid to bring two, three, or more stuns to the party, regardless of whether or not there’s a Tryndamere on the enemy team.
Above all, Tryndamere is a melee target and highly susceptible to crowd controls. These are a bad combination of traits, so punish them! Don’t just let him ult and run over your team; make him feel as if he can’t engage at all without getting knocked around, stunned, snared, and slowed. Even silences work great and generally last a long time. Good luck and have fun!