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O means "You can cancel the animation" and X means "Your movement is delayed until the next O" Each image represents 1 server frame (the server ticks at 30 fps)

Stutter-stepping is a movement technique utilized to increase a champion's attack efficiency. This is primarily practiced by Marksman icon.png marksmen because they need to output as many basic attacks as possible.

Technique

A basic attack consists of three animations: Windup, Firing, and Recovery. A movement command can be issued to cancel the current animation, except during the firing animation when the attack is launched (Ranged champions usually launch a projectile). When set to attack, a champion will automatically pursue their target if it falls out of range, but only after their entire attack animation completes. The time it takes is very dependent on Attack speed icon.png Attack Speed, which can be too long to keep up.

If a player manually issues a move command right after their attack fires, they will immediately cancel the recovery animation and start repositioning. There is no penalty to canceling the animation, but opportunities may be missed if it is allowed to be played. This is called Stutter-stepping.

Benefits

By repositioning during the refractory period of attacks, a champion is no longer locked in animation, and can react to new events. They can avoid danger, stay in range, and use their abilities. It also helps in farming efficiently while minions are dying very fast.

Stutter-stepping, Kiting, and Orb walking

Stutter-stepping is recovery animation canceling by moving right after firing an attack, kiting is the act of maintaining distance for a ranged attack, which may utilize stutter-stepping..

Orb walking only applies to DotA: Allstars, it's when attack modifier abilities are used to engage. It doesn't count as a basic attack so it wouldn't draw minion aggro. It's called an orb walk because the items that grant these effects (orb effects) are commonly shaped into orbs.

How to start Stutter-stepping

Champions that focus on Stutter-stepping (by difficulty)
Ashe OriginalSquare.png
Ashe

Ashe is a simple marksman, and relies heavily on safe positioning and kiting. By stutter-stepping, she is always repositioning to stay on point with Frost Shot Frost Shot.

Vayne OriginalSquare.png
Vayne

Vayne moves in with laser focus to pummel her target with Silver Bolts Silver Bolts. Since she cannot stack on multiple targets, she has maneuver the battlefield to keep the pressure on just one.

Udyr OriginalSquare.png
Udyr

Udyr is a Melee role.png melee fighter that builds Tiger Stance.pngPhoenix Stance.png stacks using basic attacks. Proper footwork ensures that he remains on target in order to deal damage.

Kalista OriginalSquare.png
Kalista

Martial Poise Martial Poise is stutter-stepping incarnate, making Kalista very fast and very hard to hit. A caveat to this ability is that she cannot cancel her attacks, so she'll feel clunky without an attack speed build.

Draven OriginalSquare.png
Draven

Draven has a special sort of stutter-stepping that is objective orientated. He juggles Spinning Axe Spinning Axe in a minigame that has its risks and rewards. Through mastering his mechanical movement, he can achieve a very high amount of DPS.