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Shen Build Guide by Acarial

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Acarial

A detailed Shen guide coming from the shadows [ 6.16 ]

Acarial Last updated on August 23, 2016
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Ability Sequence

1
4
5
7
9
Ability Key Q
3
14
15
17
Ability Key W
2
8
10
12
13
Ability Key E
6
11
16
Ability Key R





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.



Masteries

5/
Fury
 
 
Sorcery
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
5/
Vampirism
 
 
Natural Talent
 
 
 
 
 
Bounty Hunter
1/
Oppressor
 
 
 
 
 
Battering Blows
 
 
Piercing Thoughts
 
 
 
 

Ferocity: 12

Wanderer
 
 
Savagery
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Merciless
 
 
Meditation
 
 
 
 
 
Bandit
Dangerous Game
 
 
 
 
 
Precision
 
 
Intelligence
 
 
 
 

Cunning: 0

5/
Recovery
 
 
Unyielding
 
 
 
 
 
Explorer
1/
Tough Skin
 
 
 
 
 
Runic Armor
 
 
5/
Veteran's Scars
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Insight
Perseverance
 
 
 
 
 
5/
Swiftness
 
 
Legendary Guardian
 
 
 
 

Resolve: 18



Threats to Shen with this build

Threat
Low
High
Show all
Threat Champion Notes
1
Akali Pretty easy matchup until she gets 6 then you should pay more attention, play agressive since your damage is higher and you can deny her Q auto proc with your W
1
Cho'Gath Same as Akali, is an easy matchup until he gets his true damage ult, the only issue is that he can sustain while farming so try to play agressive
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About me !

Greeting summoners this is Acarial from the Euw server and this is my first guide on mobafire in which I'll be presenting Shen
I'm at the moment Platinum 5 and since I experimented many matchups with Shen ( i guess :D ) I told myself that doing a guide on him would be a cool idea


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Why picking Shen ?

Shen is much more like a competitive toplane pick, you will generaly look into helping your team as much as you can with your ultimate while splitpushing, pick Shen also if you feel like your team has enough damage and needs a huge frontline or a good peeler, or maybe pick him if you just want to destroy your opponent with your great dueling potentiel :D


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Pros / Cons

PROS

-Advantage over mana users with Energy
-Tanky champion and even tankier with his passive Ki Barrier
-His Q Twilight Assault has high early base damage
-Built in escape tool with his E Shadow Dash
-Master baiter with your W Spirit's Refuge
-Huge map presence with his ult Stand United
-Be thanked for saving your allies :D
CONS

-Runing out of Energy during a fight will make you useless
-No form of Sustain in his kit
-Has weaker base stats compared to some other tank/bruiser champions
-Teleporting can make you lose your tower for that
-Possibility of doing a combo depends heavily on landing a good taunt
-Long cooldowns early-mid game
-Can be harassed by ranged champions
-Hard to lane against caster champions


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Runes

I mentioned earlier on the guide the rune page that I like for Shen so here's some more explanations :
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Runes

Greater Seal of Scaling Health
9

Greater Mark of Attack Speed
6

Greater Mark of Attack Damage
3

Greater Quintessence of Armor
2

Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage
1

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
9
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- Greater Seal of Scaling Health I honestly love these runes, you are a solo laner and you will likely splitpush 70% of the time, so taking these runes will make you benefit more of the fact that you will have an xp advantage over the other lanes
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- Greater Mark of Attack Speed After his rework, Shen's main way to deal damage is his auto attacks with his Q Twilight Assault so building some AS in his rune page will help landing the 3 buffed auto's easier
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- Greater Mark of Attack Damage and Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage for some Ad to make sure you can last hit easier if you don't want to use your Q
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- Greater Quintessence of Armor I like taking 2 of these to compensate the fact that you're putting health seals instead of armor ones to make sure Ad matchups won't be nightmares for you
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- Greater Glyph of Magic Resist I said before that a lot of Shen players take scalling CDR runes instead of MR ones, but keep in mind that when a Nidalee or an Elise will gank you she will hurt you so bad, so better take MR runes to prevent some of the damage you will take, also you will likely build items such as Spirit Visage, Warmog's Armor or Trinity Force that give a good CDR pull, so I find that taking scalling CDR runes is useless since they are oriented for late game when you can have one or two of these items
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Optional rune page


This is my second rune page when I'm against a hard AD matchup ( Riven, Fiora, Renekton ... ) :Composed of 2 Greater Quintessence of Armor, 1 Greater Quintessence of Health, 9 Greater Seal of Armor, 9 Greater Glyph of Magic Resist, 4 Greater Mark of Armor and 5 Greater Mark of Attack Damage


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Masteries

I found that going 12/0/18 is the best with Shen and I'll be detailing about every mastery I took :
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Masteries
5/5
1/1
5/5
1/1
5/5
1/1
5/5
1/5
5/1
1/5
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ON THE FEROCITY TREE
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- Fury or Sorcery ? To be honest both of them are good on Shen, I like Fury since it gives you extra AS making you tougher on 1v1's, but Sorcery is also viable because it will buff the damage from your Q and your taunt
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- Double Edged Sword or Feast ? After his rework, Shen lost one of his strenghts that was his sustain with his old Q Vorpal Blade so I prefer taking Feast to have the maximum possible sustain in lane so that I don't suffer the miss of the old Q and to handle some tough matchups
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- Vampirism or Natural Talent ? Same reason for taking Feast , sustain now is one of Shen's main weaknesses so I recommand taking it to make laning phase easier, also your Q Twilight Assault synergises well with both life steal and spell vamp, making Vampirism a good mastery
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- Bounty Hunter or Oppressor ? You will mostly go tanky Shen, meaning that you are not supposed to kill everyone on their team, Bounty Hunter requires doing that to have its maximum effect, while Oppressor is a strong mastery from level 1, especially in lane when you can land several taunts on your opponent and follow it up with some huge Q damage, I think that 2.5% bonus damage is better 1% bonus damage, no ? :D
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ON THE RESOLVE TREE
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- Recovery or Unyielding ? 5% bonus armor and MR from Unyielding ? humm ... let's pick up the calculator : 5% of BONUS armor and MR, meaning that it will buff only the armor and MR you get from your items and runes, not your base resistances, but in case you take it here you go : if you buy a Thornmail it will give you 100 armor which is not negligible, but your mastery will only give you 5% of it meaning 5 armor, pretty weak no ? so I think that this mastery isn't worth taking for whatever champ you will play. On the other hand, Recovery is a very good mastery since it will give you extra health regen in lane, also because Shen had his health regen nerfed recently, making this mastery a must take
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- Explorer or Tough Skin ? Explorer is a support mastery, you are a toplaner, don't take it. Tough Skin is way better since it will make you take 2 less damage from champions and monsters, imagine not taking it and your against an Ignite Kennen in lane, he will harass you all day all night until he flashes and puts his ignite on you, you will likely die, but if you take Tough Skin you could survive his ignite because you denied 2 damage of it and the Kennen will QQ in the chat : OMG SO LUCKY RITO PLS 2 HP
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- Runic Armor or Veteran's Scars ? You might say that Runic Armor will give more regen and sustain and empower the shield of Ki Barrier later on the game, but I love taking Veteran's Scars because 50 ****ing bonus raw HP at level 1 is so huge for a champion that scales very good with HP, it will give you more survivability against some champions that want to all-in early on the game like an Olaf or a Cassiopeia, this is the mastery I take the most with Shen but if you find yourself with a full healing/shielding team, feel free taking Runic Armor
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- Insight or Perseverance ? More like "have your flash and TP regularly" or "have more sustain in lane" . I like taking the first option and it's kinda obvious, -15% CD on your summoners that's so powerful, you will do more Taunt+Flash combos or have your flash fast to escape a deadly gank, you will also have your TP fast too which is very good since you will regurlaly leave your lane to help your mates, and you really want to go back to your lane as fast as possible so that you don't lose your turret, also having TP regurlaly means that you can splitpush more ( even if you already have a built in TP )
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- Swiftness or Legendary Guardian ? In general melee champions are so vulnerable to CC's because they will simply not reach their target and damage it, so I prefer taking Swiftness for the extra tenacity, making you less vulnerable to CC and kite. Legendary Guardian can give you a maximum of 15 armor and MR, but hey you are Shen, your stats will likely be a 250 armor and 200 MR so who cares on a 15 pitiful bonus on them, while Swiftness will make you land a taunt much easier so that your teams follows up
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-Not even asking on this one, Grasp of the Undying is your best keystone choice, in addition to the on hit magic damage it gives you, it will give you SUSTAIN !!! which can make you win early trades, Strength of the Ages is a strong mastery if you're going jungle Shen and Bond of Stone is good if you're support, but in other cases always pick Grasp of the Undying


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Summoner spells

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Flash is the must have on Shen since it will give you more mobility, giving you a chance of survival from a deadly gank, an extra gap closer or to land the fancy Taunt+Flash combo :D
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Now that's optional but you will probably have it 80% of the time. Giving you the possibility to retun to your lane without losing much xp after taking a bad trade, teleporting to another lane to setup a gank, following your lane opponent when he teleports to another lane, or just returning to your lane after using Stand United so that you don't lose your turret
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Another optional summoner, if you feel like stomping your toplane opponent, Ignite is your best choice. It will give you more kill potential, a counter to every healing champion in lane, or just use it to secure kills :D
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In general you will take Smite only if you're going jungle. I tested it in lane taking Skirmisher's Sabre into the cinderhulk upgrade and not building Sunfire Cape but it wasn't worth it even it will give you more huge dueling potential
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Never tested these summoners because I don't find them worth taking on toplane, you might take Exhaust if you're going support Shen, Heal is useless since you are not a squichy champion and Ghost can replace Teleport but you will lose a bit of your global presence and it won't add much to your laning phase, but hey feel free to test them and tell me what you found about them ^^


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Skill Sequence

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
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Passive : Ki Barrier is the old Shen's W Feint but with a stronger ratio and a longer CD, it will scale with HP and its cooldown will be reduced each time you hit a champion with your abilities ( your Q or your taunt ). Try to maximise its effect so that you can proc it as much as you can in trades to win them
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Q spell : Twilight Assault is basically a triple Ki Strike, dealing damage based on your opponent's maximum health, and if your sword collides with him in its arrival it will deal more damage with increased attack speed. The damage of this spell is insane at early level, you win pretty much every level 1 trade with it, and since it's a % maximum HP spell you will be an anti tank until they get loads of MR. Try using it for peeling too since it can slow enemies that it collided with. Always max it first for more bonus damage and lower CD
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W spell : Spirit's Refuge is like Jax's Counter Strike in a larger zone effect, it will dodge all the autos and spells that count as autos, making Shen a bit of a counter to AA champions. You can protect yourself easily with it, only issue that it's a difficult spell to use correctly in a fight to protect your allies. Max it third because it's CD is relatively longer than the taunt's
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E spell :The famous Shadow Dash, a dash with an AOE taunt ( meaning you can taunt more than one champion ), the taunt was recently changed to affect monsters in the jungle too which will make jungling Shen a bit easier. Anyways max it second to reduce its CD and have it regularly for more taunt or more escapes, only issue is that if you miss your taunt you will be kinda useless and it can even bait your allies into a lost fight, so try to time it right
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Ultimate :Now here's Shen's main strength, his ultimate Stand United is a free teleport on any ally you want, giving them a huge shield ( not that huge on level 1 ) no matter how far they are, but you will need to time it correctly otherwise you will risk loosing your ultimate that has a huge CD early on, that's why you should always keep an eye on the map and the health bar of your allies. Also your ultimate can be canceled by any sort of hard CC so don't act stupid and teleport in front of your lane opponent. Always take it when available


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Items

Shen is more like a freestyle champion that could work with any item, but here's the best I found for him :
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DEFENSIVE ITEMS :
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- Sunfire Cape is your must have item, or at least it's Bami's Cinder if you don't feel the early need of the sunfire, but it's so needed because Shen's waveclear is so weak. It will give you armor, health and the AOE burn passive than will help you clear waves easier
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- Spirit Visage this is a great item on Shen too, more HP, a MR bonus, 10% CDR, 200% bonus health regen and the passive that increases all sorts of sustain you have. If you're going tanky Shen build this item second after Sunfire Cape
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- Zz'Rot Portal is such a cancer item, like you just put a portal in a lane and it will auto push, and your enemies will be annoyed and forced to search for it to take it off. It gives some nice stats with a movement speed buff and an extra wave, don't underestimate this item ( one big voidspawn = a super minion )
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- Dead Man's Plate I like taking this item since it gives loads of mobility in addition to its good stats, you will take it if you're being kited too much
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- Randuin's Omen against any champion that depends on AS and crit, such as Tryndamere, Yasuo or simply any ADC ( ADC building AS and crit, not those building Youmuu's Ghostblade and Duskblade of Draktharr )
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- Thornmail probably the same as Randuin's Omen, you'll need this item if their team got a load of AD damage, I've tested Frozen Heart instead since it gives that 20% but it's not the best since it has a higher cost and you won't benefit from the mana it gives
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- Guardian Angel I'm not a fan of this item on Shen, the stats it gives are nearly the same as Zz'Rot Portal, you are difficult to shut down in a fight so you will live enough to peel and save your carries. I take it sometimes when I stomp my lane and my splitpush ruins their game, so that I can handle some hard 1v2 or 1v3 until my team comes to help
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- Banshee's Veil Now that's your second MR choice after Spirit Visage, it got its HP bonus recently nerfed but it's still a good item since it gives a huge load of MR and that spell shield to cancel spells such as Veigar's Event Horizon or Ahri's Charm
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- Locket of the Iron Solari If their Ap carry is fed that he can assassinate your carries, take this item. But first ask your support if he's going to build it, because if he does take a Banner of Command instead : Nearly the same stats with a little boost of AP ( your ultimate has a 1.3 Ap ratio ^^ ) and the passive that can work pretty well combined with a Zz'Rot Portal. I also like to rush Banner of Command in laning phase against Heimerdinger since his turrets attacks are magic damage so that he can have a little trouble depushing
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- Warmog's Armor is for purely full AP teams, like you can stack MR and health and you will be unkillable. This item is so great on Shen since his passive Ki Barrier and his E Shadow Dash scale with HP, also because he is a tank :D
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OFFENSIVE ITEMS:
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****NEVER BUILD ANY OF THEM AS A FIRST ITEM, ALWAYS PICK AT LEAST ONE RESISTANCE ITEM FIRST***
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- Titanic Hydra is by far the best offensive item I found on Shen, giving you a good HP pull, some more AD and the passive makes wave clearing an easy task ( don't forget that the active of the Titanic Hydra is an auto attack reset, meaning that you can auto then right after use the active and it will cancel the animation of the first auto to do a second auto on a shorter period of time )
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- Trinity Force My second loved item on Shen giving some awesome stats for a dueling splitpusher, I like picking this item vs champions such as Jax Irelia Fiora. Also you will burst squichies and crush them so hard and they will cry on chat like : omg shen so balanced u full tank and kill adc
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- Blade of the Ruined King is another dueling item, giving you attack speed, sustain, and most of all the passive that works very good with your Q Twilight Assault and that will make you destroy any tank that wants to 1v1 you
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- Wit's End This item is both offensive and defensive since it will give you 40 MR, 40% AS and a 40 magic damage on hit. Also its passive works great on Shen since it steals up to 25 MR which helps dealing more damage and the majority of Shen's damage is magic
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- Frozen Mallet So this one is very situational, I call it "the calming tool" , it will calm anyone who moves so fast such as Riven, Yasuo or any champion that can kite you, or take it if your opponent is so annoying that you just want to all in him and kill him
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- Sterak's Gage As situational as the Frozen Mallet, Sterak is pretty much a late game item you want to take when you will have enough tankiness. It will buff your base AD which can work great with the Sheen passive of the Trinity Force . You will likely build this item to add more burst to your Trinity Force procs while having some good resistances so that its shield doesn't get popped instantly


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Tips for a better gameplay

Laning Phase :


-You will either play agressive in lane if you can and try to kill your opponent with your high damage from your Q, or play passive until you get 6 to make plays with your ultimate.
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-Use your Q for farming if you feel that you're missing a lot of CS.
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-Never engage with your E until you're sure that the enemy jungler isn't around toplane, otherwise you will likely burn your Flash trying to escape or even die.
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-Your basic combo will be a taunt, then pull your sword so that it collides with your enemy, then hit him with your buffed autos since he will be slowed if he tries to escape, if he wants to trade back don't forget using your W
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-After you get 6 start warning your allies when your ult is up ( the new pinging system : alt + spell )
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-Try to ult on the right timing to save your allies : like when your botlane is fighting and you see the enemy jungler coming, make sure that you will be in lane right after their jungler has appeared there
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-You can also set up ganks with your ultimate like going botlane on a 4v2 situation, making them rage at their team : omg 4 ppl botlane, and probably making them ragequit :D
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-You're not alone in your lane, your lane opponent will probably cancel you if he sees you tp'ing, unless if he has no hard CC
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Teamplay :


-If you got an advantage over your lane opponent try forcing the splitpush, you will probably annoy him and he will certainly ask for some help, leaving your team in a 4v3 or even a 5v3 situation ( if you can escape then TP to your teammates )
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-If your lane opponent is a splitpusher and you're far behind him, tell your team to force 4v4 actions so that you can TP to them and make it a 4v5, you will likely win the fight and take some objectives such as dragon or baron, making splitpushing for your opponent much difficult.
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-You're a tank but you're also a peeler, if your team doesn't have enough peel never be an initiator and stick to your carries otherwise their Yasuo will probably dig into your backline and kill them all.
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-Don't overestimate your tankiness, you can still be killed if you get a heavy focus, especially if their carries have items such as Lord Dominik's Regards or Void Staff that give huge penetration into your resistances.
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-Your ultimate Stand United isn't just a teleport but also a huge shield, don't hesitate to use it on your carries if you see the need of it on them even if they are near you.


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Summary

Well that's it ^^ Hope you liked this little guide about Shen in which I tired to explain pretty much everything. Be sure to leave a comment and tell me what you liked/didn't like about my guide.
Also don't mind contacting me if you want some more informations, see ya :D