Lux Build Guide by CasperNox
Not Updated For Current Season
This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.
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.
Welcome to my first ever guide which will focus on my all-time favorite LoL champion Lux, the Lady of Luminosity!
I’ve been playing Lux since around fall 2011, she was one of the first 3150 IP champions I bought with Influence Points, I guess I was around summoner level 20 at that moment and still played Twisted Treeline sometimes.
I liked her a lot after playing the first few matches with her and she eventually became my favorite mid champion. My item paths and overall strategies have changed a lot since I started playing her, I’ve learned how to deal with pretty much any other mid champion and played her about 400 times (not certain about that number, though, it is definitely something between 300 and 500) so far.
Playing with these advices, items and runes/masteries will turn heads pretty quickly, make your opponents cry and your team shout “CARRY US FOREVER DEMACIAN GODDESS!” and so on, you know the drill.
No, just kidding, I can’t guarantee you’ll be winning every single game as Lux after you completely read this guide, but I’m pretty sure you’ll understand her mechanics better and will soon start to roflstomp most opponents with ease. :)
Unfortunately, English is not my primary language (it’s actually my third, after German and Russian), so this guide might contain a few grammatical or stylistic mistakes, I hope you don’t mind. :)
Now that we have checked the formalities, let us bring a bit of light in this, shall we?
Pros and Cons
- Solid CC
- Great AoE damage from a very safe distance
- Hard to gank as long as her Q and E are off cooldown
- Kites like a boss once she has enough CDR
- Incredibly fun to play once mastered, e.g. sniping with ult etc.
- Nukes pretty much everyone in a combo when fed, even whole teams when used properly
- Insane zoning and harrassing capabilities
- Her shield can completely turn tides in team fights
- One of the easiest champions for multikills
- has a 24-second-cooldown 1k magic damage AoE poke in late game
- Decent AP ratios
- one of the most attractive AP champions in LoL (after Ahri maybe) ;)
- Mana hungry throughout the game
- Useless if her combo doesn’t hit
- High cooldowns
- not the most effective AP carry in the game
- Needs auto attack range in the laning phase to use her damage to the fullest extent
- Requires a solid amount of skill due to all her spells being skillshots (doh!)
- Silences and Hard CC shut her down (much like every other mage)
- the range on her ult is high but not global, maybe 15% of the map size in 5 vs 5.
Skill Breakdown and Usage
Skill Order: Finales Funkeln > > >
: This one is a mini Sheen/Lich Bane (depending on level), it just charges your next auto attack with an additional magic damage proc for 6 seconds. Because it is so close to Lich Bane in effect, it stacks wounderfully with said item, but requires a somewhat risky range of 550 (Lux’ AA range) instead of the usual 600-1100 range you’ll keep most opponents on with your Q, E and R. The passive alone can deal some annoying damage pre-lvl6 and is also the reason why Lux’ nuking potential is so high once she gets her ult, because the ult consumes the passive if it’s on the target, resulting in about 20% bonus damage if Lux tagged the opponent with her passive proc before firing and hitting her ult. This also works for multiple targets and works both towards her mutikill potential and farming capabilities.
: A rather simple 2 second snare skillshot that penetrates the first enemy unit hit and snares the unit that is the closest behind it for half of the time and damage. The AP scaling and base damage on it is the best among her basic spells.
You can use it to snare champions behind a thin enemy minion line as well as to cut escaping champions off (quite literally, earned a heap of lolz pretty often when sniping someone blindly with Q through a wall or around a corner and getting the kill).
It is also useful for catching opponents who are out of position or gankers.
: This is the ability that makes many people believe Lux is best played as a support. It is basically a skillshot that doesn’t deal any damage, but instead protects any friendly champions “hit” by it from a small amount of any damage for a few seconds on the way to them and on the way back.
It is often hard to hit due to the somewhat low projectile speed (has been buffed recently and is still not quite high enough) and is best used when casted in the direction you are running.
I do not learn it until lvl 13 except I face a non-glass cannon Karthus (that would require him to start with an Ruby Crystal, Doran’s Ring, etc.) or a CC-lacking high damage jungler, in that case I learn it at lvl 4.
: This is Lux’ butter-and-bread annoying poke/farm/zoning tool. The base damage and AP scaling is smaller than on her Q due to the AoE nature of the spell.
It has an insane range of 1100, making it hard for most opponents to dodge at early levels and even later one if not cautious enough. It bullies opponents out of their lane pretty fast but also costs heaps of mana, just like Lux’ other spells.
Finales Funkeln: Nobody knows why Riot chose a german name for this spell (I’ve seen it with the name Final Sparkle in older drafts of Lux which would fit her better IMHO, but oh well, Riot probably had their own thoughts on this thing, I don’t know..), but still it is one of the most satisfying and fun to use ults in the whole game (much like most other high-range or global ults). Use it shortly after applying your passive debuff with your basic spells to an opponent for maximum damage output.
Some opponents will call you bad names for the usage of your ult (but hey, you’re not Yi, Trynd or Fiora, it’s k), while others will compliment you for the perfect sniping with it (most fun when people are running at like 90 degrees from your position).
You have to learn the exact casting time on it and get a feeling for the movement of other champions to use its potential to the fullest extent. Look at their equipment, movement speed, spells, etc.
If you do it right, they won’t have a lot of time to react due to the very brief casting time of your ult and will in most cases just run in it. If they don’t, they will usually have used a summoner spell to avoid it, like Flash, Heal or Ghost.
Solo Top: x You don’t have any kind of sustain as Lux (unlike Morgana, Ahri, etc.). The only thing you can do is harass your opponent out of the lane and deny their last-hits.
Mid: v You need a level and farm advantage over your opponents to nuke them efficiently, and mid lane is where you get both just for you. People might call you bad names for going mid as Lux instead of supporting or picking a “real” AP carry, just ignore them and walk straight up in that cozy duo-brush mid lane and illuminate your enemies. :)
Support: / If your team really lacks someone who wants to support the carry in bot, Lux can handle this job, and she can do it rather efficiently. She is not a healer by any means, but she has far more CC than most healing supports (except Taric) and should mostly be used to guarantee the carry’s kills - not to sustain him for the first 15 minutes. She does have a shield and it is a life-saver in many, many situations, but it is not a real sustain tool. If you can’t score an assist/kill in the first 10 minutes of the game, your duo lane will suffer much more than a sustain duo lane would.
Runes and Masteries
9x Magic Penetration = 8,5 flat Mpen.
This works perfectly with your Mpen boots, allowing you to penetrate more than 90% of your target’s magic resist around the start of mid game, when your combo nuke matters most.
However, if the enemy is a melee (mres gain per level) or just uses mres masteries or even runes, watch out: Your damage might be lower than you expect it to be.
9x AP per lvl / 9x Mana Regen per lvl
Force and Clarity both work out really well. Clarity brings you a lot of mana regen throughout the game, while Force just gives that extra little pinch of AP later on. Go with your habits and mana needs for those.
9x Flat AP / 9x AP per lvl
Again, this purely depends on your habits. I usually go with the Potency Glyphs, but Force glyphs work absolutely well for later engagements, so just decide for yourself which ones fit you best.
3x Flat AP
No discussion on those here, I just love the flat AP in the start, these badasses make your enemies cry and are more or less mandatory on most AP carries IMHO.
You can either go 9/0/21 or 21/0/9 here, depending on your runes (21/0/9 works out better if you have AP per level glyphs/seals) and your CDR habits. I personally love the 10% CDR right from the start, but if you feel like you need more dmg than CDR, go for the 21/0/9 version.
Flash: I find this one a must-have for Lux. Yes, I have seen a few Lux players picking Ghost over Flash, but due to her long-range-engagement, she doesn’t usually need Ghost as a prolonged escape spell and neither does she need it to stick to someone in a fight because she has to burst her opponent down in just a few seconds, either way.
There’s an easy way to get first blood as Lux on about half of all mids: Harass them with your E and sometimes Q as much as you can, throw some auto attacks in if they can’t retailate too hard and bring them to about 30% health.
Depending on their magic resistance (runes, masteries, melee champions) and whether they have a heal, you can now estimate the damage of your E-autohit combo and flash in directly for the auto attack, if they run away after the E explosion.
It takes some time to get the timing right, but it’s incredibly useful for first blood - or at least the first kill in your lane - and leaves your opponent close to no time to react (if you can do it smoothly enough, your E explosion and auto attack will be roughly at the same time).
Furthermore, Flash into Q or E can secure really difficult kills or even allow you to initiate on a carry who is out of position.
Teleport: This one is a really interesting choice. I’ve rarely picked it on her because you use it mainly when your lane opponent is dominating you and that’s usually just not the case with me, but I can see it working out well for ninja ults in bot/top lane or just as a time saver for late-game team fight arrivals. It's often my second spell now.
Clarity: I’ve taken this spell in 90% of all my rounds as Lux and I’m still somewhat fuzzy about it. First of all, people say that there are close to none champions that would need Clarity and Lux is clearly not one of them and they’re kind of right.
Second, you should learn to use her mana in a way that lets you have more than 200 left at lvl 6 (when your burst combo should be completely ready to cast) and ask your jungler for blue. Then, you won't need Clarity.
Ignite: I’ve tried this one a lot and I’m firmly sure that it is a really bad summoner spell for Lux. This is for those people who want to buy Lich Bane or Nashor’s Tooth for her, those people who just want to have an auto attack on their enemies each and every time, no matter how hard the opponents’ CC is.
I dislike it and do not recommend it, but if you feel like you can bear the range disadvantage that comes with Ignite, feel free to use it.
Cleanse: Usually, if your mid opponent has hard CC, you will die while you’re under its effect, either way (that’s why you are a long-range poke mage) because it also magically attracts lone jungler who would’ve otherwise just gone to their Red buff or something.
The cooldown is fairly long on this one, so consider a Quicksilver Sash if their suppresions (Malzahar, Warwick, Skarner, Urgot) or their ranged stuns (Sion, Taric) are hurting you too much in team fights.
Ghost: I’ve said it already in the Flash explanation, and I’ll say it again: Ghost is one of the chasing/1 vs 1 spells like Exhaust and Ignite, that do not leave you a lot of defensive options, but force you to fight instead an in most cases, risk your life.
If you feel like playing Lux a lot in direct 1 vs 1 engagements, feel free to pick Ghost, but I wouldn’t recommend it at all.
Heal: Even though it has been buffed recently, a lot of mid champions take Ignite and/or have a lot of damage-over-time, making this spell nearly obsolete.
Also, Lux is not much of a baiter, she can’t really do something surprising on low health (like Olaf, Trynd, Fiora or even Irelia can), leaving Heal a pretty poor option.
Clairvoyance. After the recent buff to Lux’ ult that now shortly clears Fog of War I personally find it somewhat strange on her, but it is a possible spell for her, mostly for duo lanes, though.
Exhaust: This one is somewhat similar to Ignite. You won’t engage those champions who you usually counter with it (Trynd, Yi, Olaf, actually most auto attackers) in a melee-range 1 vs 1 too often and it has the same range disadvantage as Ignite does, so leave it to your off-tank or carry.
Promote: I’ve tested this one a few times because I tend to roam a lot when playing Lux, leaving my lane pushed but without myself to push it. The huge minion that grows out of the spell looks impressive but doesn’t take the tower’s health in chunks and dies pretty quickly.
If the spell would get buffed a bit, it would probably be something to consider, but as of now, I don’t see it fitting anywhere in my usual summoner spell setup for Lux.
Surge: I have to admit that I didn’t test that one too much on Lux, and the few times I did, it didn’t work out for me too well. First of all, Lux doesn’t need the attack speed at all, unlike some other champions, who can possibly use it (Kassadin, Orianna..?). Second, the AP bonus is rather small and the cooldown of the spell is horrific.
Revive: You’re not Karthus or Master Yi.
Smite: You won’t jungle that much with Lux, she has no sustain at all and awfully slow clearing speeds (unlike some other chamions like Karthus, Kassadin and Cassiopeia).
This is the late game build. You should start with the recommended Doran’s Ring and move on to your Sorcerer’s Boots Deathcap, then take an early Rod of Ages for further sustain in lane and team fights and look at their team.
Their AD carries are crushing you in team fights? Pick up Thornmail, Zhonya’s or Frozen Heart.
Their AP carries are stunning, silencing, snaring and suppressing the **** out of you? Grab an Abyssal Scepter or a Banshee’s Veil.
The decision between rushing the Tome or the Cap depends on your success in lane and your jungler (assuming you have one). As long as you get a blue buff every few minutes, you can leave out the Evil Tome and head directly for the Deathcap. If you however don’t feel like getting enough farm and blue buffs dieing sometimes and just not able to bear the 3,6k gold for the Deathcap, buy the Morello’s first and then focus on your Deathcap.
Pick this if you see the enemy team lacks CC or is really stupid. It will give you around 700 AP in late game if you can keep the Mejai’s Soulstealer at full stacks (that’s where your Guardian Angel jumps in)
This build is sort of focused towards late game and will leave you somewhat squishy in the early game (because you will usually rush the Tear to get the most out of it by late game). Your late-game damage will be the same, you’ll just be much tankier than usual and have a worse early game.
Lux is not the worst initiator, she can snare people for two seconds (usually requires an approach in their back lines because the carry won’t stand in the front in most cases. If he does, flash-Q and hope your team does follow).
It is not the best build for her but it can work in the rare occasion when you lack initators.
Support: Shurelya's Reverie
Haste for your team and a slow for theirs, 4-digit shield for the whole team when things are getting cozy (i.e. your whole team is stacked up at one location and not separated at all), Spell Vamp or resistances for everybody (if your team is AD-heavy, consider a Zeke’s Herald).
This build is aimed at truly supporting your team, not being a half-support who just does a lot of damage (go for the Standard build if you’re aiming for this).
As you can see, Sorcerer Boots are mandatory on Lux. There are some people who believe that the work well on Lux, but trust me, the CDR from either Morello’s, Mejai’s, Frozen Heart or Shurelya’s Reverie (depending on which build you use) + masteries + blue buff/blue pot will cover all of your CDR needs, while not sacrificing a heap of damage (which you would have to do when buying CDR shoes). Please just don’t build CDR shoes on her, little cute panda babies will cry heavy tears if you do. :3
Other things you shouldn’t build are:
: There’s the same problem with this one as with Ignite and Exhaust: the range. While you can nuke people from around 1100 range with your normal spells, you have to get in a risky 650 range to activate DFG. It can work, mostly in mid-game but gets just way too dangerous afterwards.
Some people get it for Lux, I do not recommend it at all. The only slow you can proc from your spells is the minor 15% one, people won’t even feel it when it touches them. If you need a larger health pool, just get a Rod of Ages.
: You’re not Orianna, so you don’t need a Hybrid build to shine (I know Orianna also works perfectly well without any AS, I just like having it on her). The CDR is really good, but with your masteries and blue pot/blue buff you should reach the 40% CDR cap already with just a Morello’s, which gives you 5% less CDR, but instead 25 more AP and none of the AS bonus you don’t need either way.
: Mages usually get this one to have a bit of sustain in lane and survive prolonged teamfights for a longer time. However, most mages have at least some single-target spells and Lux just lacks those. It’s a bit like with Rylai’s here, you won’t proc the full effect with your spells.
If your ult does 800 damage (we won’t talk about magic resist and magic penetration now, those would change the values for a bit) in late game, and you fire it in 3 enemies, it will give you 2400x0.2x0.33 =158 health back if you own a Will of the Ancients. This amount is unbelievably small and does not change anything in team fights, even if you hit your full combo when you are low-life.
Laning and teamfight advices
You can harass most opponents easily from a safe range by exploding your E spell or hitting your Q spell (preferably with the first bigger cage, not the second smaller one). Only use auto attacks to get some more damage from your passive on your opponent if he’s critically low (Flash might be required in some cases) or if he’s not ranged and/or doesn’t have a lot of options to retaliate until lvl 6 (Akali, Kassadin, Sion, Fizz, Katarina, Teemo).Other than that, a quick Q-R-E combo (throw E at the moment you cast your ult), kills pretty much enemy who's below half health.
Care if your opponent in mid is a poke-based champion (Viktor, another Lux, Twisted Fate, Xerath or even Maokai) or has a lot of CC, which would help his jungler in ganks. Consider buying boots and 3 pots at the start in that case, just to dodge the skill shots and literally run away from ganks.
As for farming, it’s more or less easy with Lux. It’s easiest when you have a blue buff but it also works without it. Just fire an E in the back of a minion wave, let it there, hit all of them once or twice with an auto attack, let it explode and give all of them another auto attack. If you have the mana for it, you can just Q the two nearest of them, saving you the auto attack time. Also don’t forget to look at your tower’s damage and last hit minions when you see the tower’s next hit would already kill them and be enough for you to get the last hit.
Later in the game, you can clear whole lanes with just your ult, or large waves with an E-R combo and push lanes hard by doing that.
If you see someone fed the jungler really hard, or even worse, somebody like a Twitch, don’t hesitate to buy wards, not everyone in the game will call ss/mia, so you might just lose your awesome kill streak if a gank arrives.
Lux can gank any lane, and you should do so if your lane is boring and you see your opponent is either way too tanky or just plays too defensive and farm-oriented. However, she requires some CC in the lane, in the best case a slow and also some kind of vision on her opponents (Caitlyn, Kog’Maw, Nidalee, sight range or just a simple CV) to get the best results with her ult (which you’ll usually use while ganking). Don’t forget to check the remaining health and magic resist of your target(s), both might deny you the killing blow.
Try to hit a squishy with your Q. Once he is caged, throw your E and R in the same direction and let E explode right after the ult. Smartcasting (not having to confirm the spell’s destination) is highly recommended, because firstly it just looks much smoother and secondly, it can save you heaps of time and actually secure kills you wouldn’t have gotten without it because the confirmation took a while.
Anyway, if you hit the combo and the opponent didn’t buy lots of magic resist and health, he would be dead now if you did everything correctly and if his support didn’t heal him for around 600.
Also, be very cautious when sniping people with your ult, which is one of the critical things when playing Lux. Either your team mates will love you forever if you secure the hardest kills for them or they’ll flame you to death if you killed someone who they had an Ignite on or did a lot of damage to.
Of course, you can just fire it in if you see your allies need just a bit of damage to finish the opponent and your ult wouldn’t deal the killing blow. I’ve heard a lot of KS complaints on my Lux carreer, but that happens to anyone who plays champions with global/long-range abilities, so I usually ignore it and keep playing.
I just took this one as an example, I don’t play too many rankeds usually, but I’ve played heaps of them as Lux on that day. As you can see, my stats are usually highly positive, my average K/D/A in rankeds as Lux is around 15/4/10, as far as I remember at least.
March 18th - v1.0: Guide was written and published, saving this space for updates if needed!
March 18th - v1.1: Remade the coding, made everything easier to read (paragraphs, colors, correct icons), made a lot of tiny changes in all sections in terms of content, mostly in the Summoner Spells and Runes sections.
March 19th: - v1.2: Changed a lot in the Runes and Masteries section and parts of the item builds.
Sources (inspirational and informational):
I hope you liked the guide and didn’t get bored in the process of reading. :) I also hope it helps you to become a better Lux player or just to understand the mechanics of this incredibly fun to play champion better. Please leave some comments if you feel like it and don’t forget to criticize a bit, I’ll change or edit anything you want. ;)