The introduction of Marci to CM gave us a very good idea of how to play the hero most effectively and how powerful she can be if played well. Strong repositioning tools and excellent mobility make for a very powerful support in the current meta of independent cores and today we want to discuss how to tap into this potential.
Marci is a strong laner, but she is an even stronger roamer. With her gap-closing capabilities, staying in one lane and repeatedly punishing it might not be the best of ideas. Instead, come minute six, Marci should generally rotate out and start being a threat. Doubly so if she is played as a position four, rather than five.
Regardless of whether you are laning with your carry or your offlaner, make sure that they have lane vision when you leave and that they can survive through a gank long enough for a teammate TP to connect.
Leaving an underfarmed, vulnerable late-game carry would be a bad idea in general, but doubly so in pubs and Marci is at her best when paired with independent cores. Luckily, most currently popular meta cores are exactly that: heroes like Juggernaut, Monkey King, Chaos Knight and many others even thrive when left alone for some extra XP. Especially in a lane that is most likely already won by Marci.
Marci is a little bit of an all-in kind of hero. She doesn’t come to her lane to break even: she knows she will either win it hard or lose it.
This mostly comes down to her not having amazing stats for trading. Being a melee support is generally harder, but Marci doesn’t even have a strong defensive play with a lot of extra HP like Omniknight does. She doesn’t have a crazy amount of free built-in regeneration, armor and constant harass as Ogre. Or multiple, life saving stuns like Nyx Assassin.
What she does have is a repositioning tool and a gap closer: a kit for a killer and a kill enabler. So stock up on regeneration and some extra stats. Get some extra sentries and wards as soon as possible to make sure you can pull your lane and the enemy can’t: lane equilibrium position is extremely important for kills.
Patiently wait for an opening, while lightly trading with the enemy and getting to level three. This is a massive power spike for Marci as her Rebound damage almost doubles.
Strike when you see one of two conditions being met: one is pretty simple: you can get somebody under tower range with no creeps around — go for Dispose into Rebound slow and damage. It is the simplest, most straightforward way to win the lane, but most opponents will be aware of that possibility.
Most of the time, therefore, your ideal scenario is jumping between two targets, catching both with the slow and damage, and then slamming one target into another.
The AoE on Rebound is pretty high and one shouldn’t underestimate how powerful the MS boost on the ability is. If you are in a stack, tell your lane buddy to perhaps skip early boots in favor of more DPS-oriented lane items, such as Glove of Haste, perhaps one stat-based trinket or the stat part of Power Treads. Marci will make up for the MS difference — the goal is to secure kills and have very high lane pressure.
It is the reason why even position four Marci players rarely get starting boots. It is quite common on a variety of soft support heroes, but in the vast majority of matchups Marci doesn’t have the stats and the trading potential to successfully utilize the extra movement speed. Come level two she can gap close anyways.
There is also a reason why most high-level players skip sidekick until the very late portions of the game. Technically, it is not necessarily always the play: you can be playing with heroes like Medusa and Gyrocopter who can really make use of the early +65 damage buff and who can completely change their playstyle from passive farming to aggressive teamfights.
However, once again, in the vast majority of matchups and lineups, you are better off with a second level of Dispose at level four, skipping a value point in Sidekick. Extra damage and extra stun duration will typically outweigh all the benefits of level one Sidekick, especially with the associated extra mana cost in mind.
Maxing out both Dispose and Rebound, while taking Unleash when available and maybe even skipping the level ten talent is the way to go. While +2 mana regen talent might look very appealing on a roaming, mana-reliant hero, Support Marci almost always goes for Arcane Boots into Aether Lens as her first two purchases, making the talent redundant. Instead, getting +5 Armor at level 10-11 against high physical lineups, or level 16 against low physical lineups is the way to go.
Late game Luxury items on Marci include Blink, BKB and if the game still goes on, Basher into Abyssal. Her job is initiating, zoning out or killing supports and creating chaos with her high mobility and survivability.
Marci is almost exclusively a support in the pro-scene and almost exclusively a core in pubs. While the hero does have her merits in core positions, we feel like there is definitely a lot to learn from pros when it comes to Marci. Her win rate in the EU regions and the NA is worryingly high.
The hero will most likely get nerfed some time soon, so get your free MMR while you can and share your success stories in the comment section below.