Darius’ early game pressure is notorious in the top lane, so finding the right Darius counter is pivotal to your success against him! Darius’ playstyle and easy-to-use kit makes him an incredibly popular and overwhelming Champion to deal with. In fact, across most players, Darius is often pointed to as the Champion most difficult to deal with, and it shows in his win rate since his rework being nearly always top tier. As such, every top laner, or League of Legends player in general, will need to know what to play against Darius.
The Best Darius Counters in Lane
#1 Darius Counter in Lane: Vayne
Although Vayne is traditionally played in the bot lane as the team’s Marksman, she can also take on that mantle from the top lane where she can absorb solo lane experience and farm freely in most top lane matchups. Against Darius in particular, Vayne will beat Darius with ease. Vayne can easily kite Darius and will get free trades as a result. Darius has two primary chances at winning the lane that Vayne must be aware of. At level 3 and 6, if Darius has full health, has Ghost available, and lands his Apprehend he should be able to chase Vayne and get the kill. If Vayne respects those two power spikes the lane is a guarantee.
How Vayne Wins:
- Play at max attack range
- Respect Darius level 3 and level 6 power spike
How Vayne Loses:
- Does not pay attention to when Darius is about to be level 3 or 6
- Does not keep track of Darius’ Ghost
- Does not save Condemn for risky situations
#2 Darius Counter in Lane: Quinn
Quinn is an example of a top laner made to counter Darius. The way Quinn is designed is to pressure her matchup until level 6 where she can then roam to impact the rest of the map. As such, when piloted well, Quinn ignores one of Darius’ power spikes that he needs to use to snowball. Before level 6, Quinn’s kit and range advantage make her an optimal counter like Vayne. Quinn is only slightly worse into Darius than Vayne because it is harder to avoid his level 3 power spike.
How Quin Wins:
- Play at max attack range
- Use range advantage to get lane priority
- Roam to other lanes at level 6
How Quinn Loses:
- Does not respect Darius level 3 all-in
- Does not respect gank threats
- Does not immediately roam at level 6
#3 Darius Counter in Lane: Wukong
Wukong is the best melee counter into a Darius by far. In general, Wukong takes Ignite into Darius and will absolutely win every time. As Wukong, if Teleport is preferred, the lane is winnable for Darius, so just take Ignite to completely shut down that chance. Essentially, with Ignite, Wukong will win fights at any level and doesn’t even need to particularly outplay Darius. Having access to Nimbus Strike and Warrior Trickster makes Wukong incredibly agile and hard for Darius to land his skills on. Wukong will always out damage Darius with his kit and can only lose the lane to a gank, so warding is vital.
How Wukong Wins:
- Take Ignite
- Use Nimbus Strike and/or Warrior Trickster to avoid Darius’ Decimate
How Wukong Loses:
- Take Teleport
- Don’t watch for ganks
- Don’t dodge Decimate
Honorable Mentions: Tricky Darius Counters
Darius Counter #4: Jayce
Jayce’s kit wields both ranged poke and melee damage that is a recipe for success against Darius. Overall, because of Jayce’s skill requirement to perform well he can’t be placed any higher on this list. What he does offer with his potential to bully Darius in lane is harder scaling into his items that can easily snowball to victory. Jayce must be cognizant of Darius’ laning strengths and avoid any easy Apprehends that Darius can hit. Keeping a distance and getting free trades onto Darius is a must.
How Jayce Wins:
- Stay out of Apprehend range
- Take free trades
- Respect Darius damage even when he builds tank
How Jayce Loses:
- Goes into melee range when Darius is healthy
- Takes prolonged trades that include melee range
- Doesn’t respect Darius gap close with Ghost and Flash
Darius Counter #5: Yorick
Yorick is another exceptional counter to Darius when piloted correctly. Compared to other Champions on this list, Darius has a decent chance to beat Yorick if he plays the lane correctly. Therefore, Yorick must make sure he does not allow Darius that opportunity and minimize those chances. Yorick will win any fight when he has his Mist Walkers, and Darius will win any fight when Yorick does not. This means that Yorick must land his Last Rites or his Dark Procession to know that he can win the fight.
How Yorick Wins:
- Saves Mourning Mist when Dark Procession cages Darius
- Activates Awakening when multiple Mist Walkers are available
How Yorick Loses:
- Misses Last Rites or Dark Procession
- Doesn’t respect Darius engage when Last Rites or Dark Procession are on cooldown