Karma has been my favourite champion on Dominion mainly because of her mantra shield. With enough ap, the aoe damage to the enemy and the shield it gives often turns battles around. The wave (q) is very spammable and if you know how to use the bond (w) for damage, you have 3 nukes all together which gives you quite reasonable burst.
She works well with bruisers by allowing the bruiser to stick to targets (bond) and survive longer (shield) and does good damage herself. While she is not a 1v1 queen, she is definitely a strong pick for small skirmishes.
Pros / Cons
- Utilises Defense and Offense at the same time with AOEs, heals, and shields.
- Can provides the same amount of burst as other high tier AP Casters due to high AP Scaling
- Dominion negates Karma's need to farm
- Extremely effective team fighter
- Deceptively Tanky
- Decent defender and very good creep clearer
- Lack of understanding, meaning some people will try to kill you without realising that Karma won't die
- To be played at her best, she requires good team dynamic
- Better at close combat, less effective support on ranged champions
- Lack of Crowd Control effects
- Not the best 1v1 Hero
- Lack of understanding, you won't get to synergise properly with people who don't know how she works.
Karma has a very strong duo-lane. Due to the nature of her spells, she is able to play offensively and defensively at the same time. You can zone melee champions with incredible ease: Soul Shield can be used on minions, so you can deny them last hits AND damage them at the same time! It's wonderful, truly. :)
Your constant heals and shields let you and your partner last-hit freely, with much room for error. Your heals get stronger as your health gets lower, so you can recover faster from lower HP. The only problem is with mana: you can quickly run out of it. Same goes with Mantra charges.
You ALWAYS want to have at least one Mantra charge up, so you can use Spirit Bond to escape ganks. When Karma was first released junglers quickly realized to kill Karma they just had to wait for her to use her last Mantra charge. Make sure you don't make this mistake!
This is where things kick off. Hopefully you have Boots of Lucidity, Fiendish Codex, and at least the Needlessly Large Rod component of Rabadon's Deathcap. If so, you're good. If you have Rabadon's, then you're great! If you have Morello's as well, you're fed. :D
By now team-fights should be breaking out, and you want to always be there. Position yourself at the back like any good support. Most Karma's make the mistake of running into the fray like Soul Shield makes them immune to damage. Here's what you should do:
Use Spirit Bond on the one in front. The line it gives should hit allies and give them the speed boost, but don't worry about that too much. It will also hit enemies that try to jump in for your carries. If they do this, IMMEDIATELY hit your carry with a Mantra'd Soul Shield. This will cause significant damage and give them a powerful shield. Once you notice at least 2 or three people are below full, or someone needs a clutch heal, throw a Mantra'd Heavenly Wave.
Basically your job is to shield the ones getting focused, especially important carries, heal when a lot of people need it or one person REALLY needs it, and provide a speed boost for allies when you need to chase or escape.
Your job hasn't changed much, but you now deal a lot more damage. You should have your Void Staff by this point, and hopefully working towards finishing Banshee's Veil. You'll want to be saving Mantra for team fights, and follow the same routine you have been: Soul Shield important carries, heal your team when they need it, and use Spirit Bond to provide speed boosts or slow down targets.
You should realize that while you do deal a lot more damage, so do your enemies. Don't get ballsy and try to tank; stay in the back, play it safe, and save your allies. Continue buying wards for Baron, stick with the team, etc. Do NOT go off alone; remember that while you are carrying your carry, they are also carrying you. It's a give and take relationship: you protect them, and they protect you.
Back To Top Team fights won't happen 5v5 but skirmishes will happen all game. Your role in the skirmishes is to throw as many mantra shields as you can onto anyone taking damage, usually the bruisers. Spam your wave as often as you can and make sure to use your bond properly!
Proper bond use:
If you have a specific target that you want to hold down (any champ that relies on their mobility to stay alive) use your bond on that target. This way, the debuff will last as long as you can stay in range to the maximum duration.
If you have no target that you need to hold down, you may want to use it on an ally that needs to be in their face to be effective (almost any bruiser like Jax).
If you have no target that you need to hold down, you may want to use it for the damage. In that case, throw that bond to the farthest target you can hit and make sure the skewer as many enemy champs as you can. If you miss any, you can adjust by walking side to side to hit them with the line. (Of course, you only do this walking side to side bit if you've already used your other cooldowns, don't be walking around like a moron trying to hit someone for the damage from bond when you can just mantra shield or q them for more damage)
If you somehow end up in a 1v1 situation and you have to run, MANTRA bond to double the slow.
If you somehow end up in a 1v1 situation and you are actually doing well enough with enough ap that you stand a good chance of winning, position yourself to bond a minion BEHIND the enemy to make use of that damage.
A note on tower diving:
If you happen to be diving their tower with your team, after all your cooldowns are blown, it may be a good idea to start capping the point. When you are channeling, the tower stops attacking and you are saving your team unnecessary damage. When your cooldowns are back, decide whether it's worth it to break channel to cast or if your team is fine without you and you can continue to channel and take that point faster. In the fast paced dominion game, every second counts.