Recommended Final Build
End Game Consumable
Not Updated For Current Season
The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.
Threats to Vi with this build
|Warwick||Warwick is one of the easiest matchups. He leaves you alone, you clear faster than him, and you can gank more. Provided you get a lead, you can easily 1v1 him as well, even if he ults you.|
|Kog'Maw||Kog is really strong in the jungle right now, but he leaves everyone alone early game (for the most part). Once we get our jungle item and maybe a Caulfield's Warhammer we can squash him like the bug he is with a single combo.|
Hello everyone, Smartest2 here. I am a diamond League of Legends player, I was mid diamond in 5's last season as well. Vi is currently my main jungler as she is BROKEN with the right build. She is best played in the jungle, however she can make for some really fun solo lanes. This is my first official guide, so please give me some feedback and let me know what you all think. I carry consistently with this build in high plat, it allows you to have absurdly high damage while being pretty tanky. You should be able to 100-0 most champs and can out-duel just about anyone.
Patch 6.17 / Guide Updates
Riot has just released patch 6.17 and has for some reason BUFFED Vi!! Our passive, Blast Shield, and Q, Vault Breaker, now have reduced cooldowns at early levels! This is ridiculous! Also we now get TWO stacks of Excessive Force instead of one when putting the first skill point into it and learning the skill. All this means is faster clear times and a better early game for us! Thank you Rito!
Hey everyone I know I said I would add videos in this time, but I decided to add a ton of in-depth information in the later sections of the guide. I am working on getting those videos edited and up though!
Pros / Cons
- Fast Clear Time
- Insane Damage Spike
- Tanky Despite Damage
- Amazing Ganks
- Easy to Master
- Can EASILY Solo Carry Games
- Vulnerable to Counter Junglers Early
- Combo and Damage is Reliant on Landing Vault Breaker
- Getting Used to The Flash + Vault Breaker Combo Can Be Difficult
- If Played Incorrectly, You Will Fall Behind Very Easily
- Be Prepared For The Flame If You Have A Bad Game
Greater Mark of Attack Damage
Greater Mark of Critical Chance
Greater Seal of Armor
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed
Pretty standard runes for the most part. For marks, Greater Mark of Attack Damage for a bit of extra AD to help us clear jungle camps early. Make sure to pick up a single Greater Mark of Critical Chance, you'll see a couple crits caused by this as you clear camps, definitely worth the single mark. For seals, Greater Seal of Armor so that we have some armor on us to survive in the jungle early, those camps can hurt without any armor. As for our glyphs, I like to pick up Greater Glyph of Magic Resist which is pretty standard. The main reason you pick flat over scaling is that can help you win fights early game when you gank. If you want to swap out Greater Glyph of Magic Resist for Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist, that would work too.
Now for the twist, I see most Vi players take Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage, but this slows down our jungle clear considerably. Instead, I use Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed. The 16% attack speed gained from our Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed not only allows for more Denting Blows procs, but also allows us to apply gift of heavy hands more frequently which helps us take less damage in the jungle and survive longer. It also pairs well with our single Greater Mark of Critical Chance, while this is a very slight benefit gained, more autos means more crits. You'll also notice the extra attack speed very quickly in fights.
The mastery page I use is probably pretty standard. Maybe a little more offensive than most Vi players, but there shouldn't be too much of a difference. In the cunning section. we'll want to put 5 mastery points into Savagery as it helps us clear faster early game and pairs well with our Greater Quintessence of Attack Speeds. We'll want to drop a point into Runic Affinity so we can hold onto those buffs longer, it really does make a considerable difference. we'll also want to drop points into Merciless and Dangerous Game by default. They give us damage and some sustain on kills/assists.
In the ferocity section, we will drop 5 points into Sorcery as it increases the damage of our abilities (our main source of damage). We don't need the extra attack speed since we have plenty from our runes. After that drop a point into Feast for some added sustain in the jungle. At this point you can pick between Vampirism and Natural Talent . I personally like Natural Talent as I have not really noticed a need for the lifesteal / spell vamp, but if you find that it helps you drop those points into Vampirism . Next we will drop a point into Bounty Hunter since we plan on killing the entire enemy team and this will give us a slight damage boost.
at this stage we have 12 points in both ferocity/cunning, and you can pick for yourself where to go from here. I personally like to grab Precision and Thunderlord's Decree as it adds to the high burst damage you already put out. But another option would be to go for Battering Blows followed by Fervor of Battle . I suggest testing out the different options and seeing which one you personally like more.
Passive - Blast Shield
Blast Shield activates upon hitting an enemy with an ability and grants you a shield equal to 10% of your max health for 3 seconds and then goes on cooldown. This really helps you survive in the jungle and you should try and proc it as soon as it is up while farming early game.
Q - Vault Breaker
W - Denting Blows
Denting Blows is our mind game, tank shred, burst, and jungle clear ability. Every 3rd auto on the same target deals bonus damage that based on the target's maximum health, reduces the target's armor by 20%, AND gives us a nice auto attack speed buff. This ability is in reality what makes Vi so strong. It allows you to face anyone, tank or carry, and deal high amounts of damage to them.
E - Excessive Force
Excessive Force is our amazing auto attack reset ability. It resets our auto attack animation and applies extra damage to enemy, while also damaging enemies behind the target in a cone shape, while also proc'ing on hit effects like Sheen since it is both an ability and an auto attack. It also slightly increases Vi's auto attack range which can be very useful! This ability is what makes lane Vi a lot fun!
Ultimate (R) - Assault and Battery
Ahh... good ol' Assault and Battery. The ability that makes Vi, well.. Vi. This ability requires the selection of a target and then charges at the target, launches them up in the air, before smashing them back down onto the ground. No forms off crowd control can stop you during your ult animation, not even Malphite's Unstoppable Force! This ability works really well when focusing the enemy ADC in the midst of a teamfight.
Let's take some time to discuss this ability sequence in detail by looking at different stages of the game. This ability sequence is fairly standard except for the mid game section, but for any new Vi players, I will try and provide a detailed explanation on everything.
We're going to start hunter's machete as the life steal against monsters helps us survive in the jungle. Its passive gives bonus on-hit damage to monsters which pairs well with our attack speed runes and our Denting Blows attack speed buff as well. Also make sure to grab three Health Potions since we only need potions at the start. While Refillable Potion is nice, it doesn't heal as much as 3 regular Health Potions and again, we only need it at the start so there's no point in picking up a Refillable Potion and upgrading it into a Hunter's Potion. We'll also pick up a Warding Totem so that we can keep an eye out for the enemy jungler's movements, such as a level 2 jungle invade.
Personally, I don't really see many scenarios in which you wouldn't take this as your choice of jungle item. Stalker's Blade gives us chilling smite which deals some instant damage to a target enemy champion and slows them. This is extremely useful for when an enemy flashes away during a gank, or even to secure a kill on an enemy champion that is barely out of range with very little health. Stalker's Blade - Warrior is what gets us rolling. This item gives you a massive damage spike. It builds out of Stalker's Blade and Caulfield's Warhammer. Only Caulfield's Warhammer gives you attack damage, and it is only +25 attack damage. Upon completing Stalker's Blade - Warrior however, you get an additional +35 attack damage! Considering that it only costs 525 gold to complete after obtaining its components, it is a very powerful item for any burst based AD jungler.
I absolutely LOVE Boots of Mobility and have NO idea why Vi players don't build it. It allows you to move around the map quickly and apply large amounts of pressure. Boots of Mobility are wonderful for ganking as well, since you're coming in with so much movement speed that you can ideally position yourself to guarantee that Vault Breaker connects with the enemy. When ganks don't work out you can head to another lane immediately and make something happen, enemies have a hard time predicting your movements because you can bounce between lanes so quickly. since the movement buff only goes away when you're in combat you can use Vault Breaker to get from baron/dragon pit into the enemy's tri bush (depending on which side of the map your team is on) and rush the enemy from behind. It's also amazing when trying to escape, all you have to do is use Vault Breaker to gain some distance and then wait for the Boots of Mobility to kick in and you're home free! I really find Mercury's Treads (the only other real option in my opinion) to be lackluster when compared to the playmaking potential of Boots of Mobility. If you doubt me, play a couple games and build Mercury's Treads and then play a couple of games building Boots of Mobility.
At this point you should have reached your max potential damage (if you're not buying anymore damage items of course), and the goal now becomes to live long enough to be able to apply that damage. We have two item slots remaining at this point and from here it really depends on how the game is going. The only item that I recommend you always buy is Guardian Angel since it offers a good amount of both armor and magic resist, as well as a revive. However I usually tend to build Guardian Angel as my second tank item since it doesn't provide any extra health, and our health bar is a very important tactic that is easily overlooked by most Vi players. Let's go over a couple options depending on what the enemy team has.
(NOTE: the "Problem Champion" is the enemy champion who is fed and needs to be dealt with. If the enemy team has 3 AD champions but their mid lane Fizz is fed, Fizz is the "Problem Champion" that you need to worry about)
Items Not Worth Buying
If you see any other items built on Vi let me know and I'll probably add it to this section (lol xD).
The Jungle Carry Mentality: How to Carry a Game
NOTE: This section unfortunately is going to have to be a giant body of text, I will do my best to not make it overbearing but there is a lot of information here that will help you improve as a jungelr. There is no way to easily cover the the things involved in carrying a game as it incorporates such a vast area. I highly recommend that you read over this section thoroughly as it covers many important things about carrying a game form the jungle on any champion, not just Vi.
The first thing you're going to have to understand as a jungler.. well a couple things. One, you are going to get flamed. That is the life of a jungler. Even if you carry your team you will surely get flamed. It comes with the role, get used to it and move on. I can't say I don't flame back, but it's true that it won't increase your chance to win. The second thing to understand, is that you are going to get terrible teammates here and there (or all the time), that's just a fact. Oh sorry, I meant "teammates who are just having a bad game".. gotta keep it politically correct. And as a jungler, you are going to notice misplays or bad decisions much more frequently than you would as a laner since well.. it's kind of your job to watch over things. Do your best to not let this tilt you and focus on winning your game and improving your game-play.
Alright so let's get to the good stuff. I've been in every division between bronze 5 and diamond 3, so I've noticed quite a few things that helped me climb. I am actually a top lane main, however I have found that it is easiest to control a game from the jungle. Nothing stops you from gaining gold other than consistent counter jungling, and your course of action throughout the game has many more options. So, how exactly do you carry a game as a jungler? Let us first go over a couple things that are crucial in order to answer this question.
The main factor in winning is quite simple: How skilled are you in comparison to the enemy team? There are three areas that determine your skill level.
Skill Area #1: Mechanics
The first and most obvious/well-known is your mechanical skill level. If you are consistently just breaking the ankles of your opponents with jukes and plays, and killing your opponents through sheer outplays, you will obviously have a much easier time winning. If you find that you are outplaying your opponents in nearly all scenarios, chances are you are in an elo lower than where you should be, and another area may need some work.
Skill Area #2: Champion Mechanics / Champion Mastery
The second area is champion mastery. In other words, your skill level on a given champion. A Riven main is much more intimidating than a Maokai main playing Riven, I think most people can agree to this. Champion mastery (or "maining" a champion) to me means that you fully understand what your champion is capable of doing at all times. This means understanding when you can kill an opponent, or even when you can turn on an enemy's engage. This ties hand in hand with your mechanical skill level, but they are two very different things. Mechanical skill level is your skill level as a player. If two people play a new champion for the first time against each other using all the same runes, masteries, skill leveling order, and item build, the person with a higher mechanical skill level will win the majority of the time. Whereas someone who has mastered Tryndamere, a champion which is much less mechanic intensive, will know the right time to ult (or use any of his skills for that matter), when he needs to run, when he can fight, how he should play his champion in a given match-up, and most importantly how to play his champion when he is behind.
It can take a large number of games in order to master a champion, and that is why people recommend that players who wish to climb should limit their champion pool to a few champions. This is to allow for your skill on those champions to constantly increase.
Skill Area #3: Game Knowledge
The third and most important area is game knowledge. This is often times overlooked, but this the area that teaches you how to win. This area is what covers things like objective control, when and where to ward, how to freeze a lane, where the enemy jungler will next appear, prioritization of objectives, etc.
I like to think that these three areas work together in the following manner: Game knowledge tells you what you should be doing, champion mastery tells you how you can achieve that goal on your champion, and mechanical skill allows you to execute the plan to achieve your goal.
It is very important to accurately judge your current standing on all of the 3 areas. Diamond players tend to have a higher amount of game knowledge than lower tier players, master and challenger players have a high amount of mechanical skill on top of that, as well as champion knowledge. For the purposes of this guide I will assume that you wish to become a Vi main and will continue this section with that pretext.
The two areas to focus on as Vi are mechanics and game knowledge. Mechanics cannot be taught and can often times be linked to experience (or number of games played). There are however, certain things to focus on.
Game knowledge on the other hand, can be discussed and taught. Let's go over what all is involved in carrying a game from an analyst perspective.
So the first and most important thing to focus on is the early game phase. This is what sets you up for an easy win, a difficult win, or a guaranteed loss. As a jungler this phase of the game is more complex than any of the other 4 roles. Their job is pretty simple, win lane try not to die, care for the enemy jungler. The jungler on the other hand, has to pay attention to many different things that are going on in a game and make sure his/her teammates have as many advantages as possible.
There are a couple goals we have as Vi. It's very important that all of these goals be understood, as they all contribute to getting that victory screen at the end of the game.
Goal #1: Staying Ahead of the Enemy Jungler
The first and most important goal is to stay ahead of the enemy jungler. You will be surprised at how much further ahead you are in comparison to the enemy jungler if you use my jungle route. Vi has an amazing clear time and I often times end up hitting level 6 before or at the same time as my solo laners. The mistake that most junglers make is that they get caught up ganking and forget to farm their jungle. When you get a lead on the enemy jungler, you can control the pace of the game, even if the enemy jungler ganked 8 times more than you within the first 15 minutes of the game. This may seem selfish to most players, but you need to recognize what your goal is. if you're playing Sejuani then yes, you need to gank at level 2-3 and just rotate the map. But our goal is to snowball and carry the game. Champions like Master Yi and Kha'Zix might come to mind when you hear that, but it's not quite the same thing. We need to set ourselves up for success in the early stage. Vi is dependent on her first item, once we have that we're in business.
Goal #2: Dragon Control
Our second goal is to control as many Dragon s as we can. The dragon buffs have evolved into something unique, and are now very beneficial to us in multiple ways. The biggest and most important part about obtaining a dragon is the morale factor. It boosts your team's morale when you pick up a dragon, especially your top laner if he has gotten ganked a couple times. You can solo dragon very easily as soon as you complete Stalker's Blade - Warrior as long as you make sure to buy a pink, you don't want to get collapsed on and killed while taking dragon and lose the buff to enemy team. That has the opposite morale effect. After you get your 2nd or 3rd dragon the benefits do become noticeable and the edge is always useful, regardless of which buff it is. Don't ignore dragon just because it's a Mountain Drake or Cloud Drake and not an Infernal/Ocean. Demoralizing the enemy is a HUGE part of jungling.
Goal #3: Vision Control / Map Awareness
The third goal that we have is vision control and map awareness. This applies heavily to early game and lets us set ourselves up for mid-late game success. Always ward river bushes or river entrances to help scout for the enemy jungler. This is CRUCIAL! Always check your mini-map every 2-3 seconds when you're jungling. Watch for the enemy jungler, the SECOND that you see them, ping the hell out of them (don't really, 2-3 times is enough). Let the lane that they're going to know that they have company coming in while your teammate can still get away. If the enemy jungler seems to be committing, try and take advantage of that. You can gank a lane if circumstances allow for it, or you can go and take the enemy jungler's camps while they are busy wasting time. This will continue to increase the gap between you and the enemy jungler. 3-4 camps is equivalent to the gold gained from a kill, so taking 2 camps actually equals the gap of a kill. Wait what? How does that work? Well you gain the gold from 2 additional camps you wouldn't have normally gotten, and you denied the enemy gold form two camps that they normally would have gotten. Thus you create a 4 camp difference between you and the enemy jungler. The xp gained/denied is also useful.
Goal #4: Objective Control
Our fourth goal comes into play mid game. More accurately, once we finish building Stalker's Blade - Warrior and Boots of Mobility. Learning to push objectives is an elementary concept in League of Legends, but it is important to know what objectives to focus at what times. Sometimes you can't prioritize a certain lane since games are unpredictable. A 5v5 might break out mid lane at 25:00 into the game when you wanted to rotate bot lane with your team. As a general rule of thumb, go to the lane that is furthest away from the jungle objective you wish to follow up on afterwards. If you want to set up baron, try and push the enemy team's bot lane inhibitor. If you want to pick up the dragon that's going to spawn in 2 minutes, try and pick up the enemy team's top lane inhibitor. Try to not let the game become stagnant. You want to keep pushing towers down. Don't do something rash and uncalled for like randomly diving in, but if the enemy team keeps wave clearing it instantly (if they have an Anivia for example) try and switch it up by split pushing.
Goal #5: Picks
Getting picks is probably the most crucial part to playing Vi. It is incredibly easy to pick off a wandering enemy in the enemy jungle with proper vision. If you follow the build I use, you will find that it is very hard for enemies to get away from you (provided they somehow survive long enough). The second you get a pick, FORCE SOMETHING. stay in the lane and push uncontested if no one is coming for you. Trinity Force let's us take tower's easily with our Sheen procs when we use Excessive Force. We can probably kill the next champion that tries to stop us anyway. The beauty of this build is in it's raw damage and tanking capabilities. You can still be the tank your team needs while dishing out high amounts of damage.
Summary of Goals
Let's summarize our goals as Vi
- Stay ahead of the enemy jungler in farm, gold, and experience
- Make sure to ward for your allies, try and keep your trinket on cooldown at all times
- Keep an eye out for the enemy jungler and let your teammates know about his movements
- Counter gank as much as possible unless your laner gets insta-killed and neither enemy champions are low
- Keep control of the dragon
- Counter Jungle when the enemy jungler wastes too much time ganking a lane
- Go kill the enemy jungler in his jungle once you hit 6 if you have an XP lead
- Maintain pressure on objectives
- Split push if you need to, you don't always have to sit 5v5
- Keep setting yourself up for the objective you want (bot inhibitor if you want baron, etc)
- Always look for picks, Boots of Mobility let you rush to them in no time at all
Early Game Jungling
Early game can sometimes be a bit confusing for people who haven't picked up Vi yet, or are not used to playing a carry style jungler and/or build. Most people just think she has strong early game ganks, which is somewhat true. However the mistake that most people make, is that they try and force ganks. There is no benefit to this, the ganks are riskier, if forced, and there's a high chance you will die to get the kill, or just waste a lot of time. It's important to keep an eye out for EASY ganks, not forced ones. This is extremely important when playing a carry jungler. again, NEVER FORCE A GANK EARLY GAME.
You have a very fast travel and clear time due to Vault Breaker letting you jump over walls to camps that you would normally have to walk around, and Excessive Force giving us additional AoE and a nice auto attack reset. We want to abuse this and get ahead of the enemy jungler. I will discuss the jungle route in the next section. While it may sound selfish, sometimes you have to sacrifice jungle pressure in order to win games. It's all about understanding the best way to play your champion with the build you have selected. If we were going full tank Vi, we would need to be ganking, but we're going for the kill with our own giant hands.
Starting The Game Off / Early Jungle Route
After buying your starting items, immediately head to the entrance to your jungle by mid lane on the bottom half of the map to ward and watch for an enemy invade. If you're on the blue side, head to the bush behind your red brambleback camp, If you're on the red side, head to the bush behind your blue sentinel camp. Ward the bush that is in the middle of the river at exactly 1:20. You will ward the same bush regardless of which side of the map you are on. The reason you want to ward this bush at 1:20 is that it will alert you if an enemy jungler is trying to level 2 invade you while you're clearing your second camp (provided the enemy jungler isn't Evelynn).
Always start at the camp closest to bot lane and always start W, this will ensure that you get the best leash possible. If starting Gromp , I would recommend you save smite to kill it as soon as it hits 390hp. You tend to get a better leash if you don't start with smite since your bot lane tends to leave by looking at the hp of the camp. As soon as you kill your first camp, put a point into e ASAP so you start building up that stack. Pop a health potion as soon as you start red/blue and ward over the wall if the enemy jungler is someone capable of invading, such as Nidalee or Master Yi. After this take the next closest camp (raptors for blue side, wolves for red side) and grab q after clearing it.
This is the part where things change up depending on which side of the map your team is on. If you are blue side, clear wolves, clear Gromp , clear blue, then pick up river scuttle. But if you're on the red side, after wolves go PAST raptors and head straight to Krug , Q over the wall below them to get their faster and get some damage off. As soon as the big Krug is visible, smite it and use your e as an auto attack reset to stack up stacks of [gift of heavy hands] for the stun. The reason we do this is because we have very high attack speed for this early in the game due to w, and we have an auto attack reset with e. This allows for optimal use of Gift of Heavy Hands and lets us stay in the jungle longer by eating less damage. After krug , take red, then raptors, then river scuttle on top side.
You should now be level 4 with 2 points into q, while still having double buffs. Here is where we need to check if a lane is gankable, remember do not FORCE a gank. Look to see if the 2 lanes directly accessible to you are over extended and easily gankable. Do NOT attempt to gank enemies who have easy escapes or ways of stopping you unless your teammate(s) can bait a gank. If the enemy team bot lane is a full HP Sivir and full HP Morgana, I would not recommend ganking them early unless circumstances allow for it.
If there are no directly visible ganks possible without trying to force something, we return to our jungle. DO NOT BACK. From river scuttle, head back to the camp you first started at and clear the camps in the same order as the first run. If possible pick up the scuttle on the other half of the map. You should try and make sure you have at least 1300 gold before you back for the first buy. This lets us pick up stalkers blade and 2 long swords. That extra AD from the long swords is crucial for our damage.
Keep an eye out for the enemy jungler as you clear your camps. Once we hit level 5, we are a force to be reckoned with. You may be able to get a nice counter-gank off and pick up an easy double if you make sure to constantly check your minimap.
NOTE; never smite wolves or raptors the first time you clear them. Smite Krug and Gromp the first run. After that, it's all circumstantial. Use Smite to gain buffs you need. Using Smite on raptor to get true sight is usually the most beneficial after 2 rounds of clearing since it lets you set yourself up for ganks.