Build Guide by Ace Ventura
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A Guide to the Competitive Vladimir
Your flesh is mine,
Your neck so sweet.
My mouth fills with blood,
As my fangs rip your meat.
Welcome to my Vladimir, the Crimson Reaper guide. As I start I want to apologize for my mediocre English, but it is understandable. In this guide I will try to go into details and put some effort.
Vladimir is a high tier nuke and it is very different from other casters. While he can still do heavy damage, he is tough for a caster. He fits well into most team compositions and he excels at mid lane. He is banned in most ELO games as people considering him OP. It may seems so, but he requires practice. Lets get to know Vladimir...
-- This passive is quite good, you know. While you builds ability power, you getting survability. This is reason why is Rylai's Crystal Scepter extremely good item on Vladimir. It will boosts your stats and without worrying too much on survability we can build damage.
-- One of the strongest harassing/last hitting tools in the game and thing that keeps you in a lane for a long, long time. This should be maxed first, always. At max level, cooldown is that low that is ridiculous. This ability got no cost and that is one more reason why I love Vlad.
-- This thing is purely amazing. It allows you to towerdive like noone else. It makes you untargetable and it slows, damage and heals you while you are under someone. However, you will be still affected by overtime spells like Ignite, Drain or Soul Shackles while going into pool. Also it boosts your speed by somewhat 35% while in it, and it is affected by Ghost. One of the best escape tools in the game. What is there not to love.
-- This thing is quite good if you know how to use it for most benefit. It can be casted without enemy targets nearby. Keep your stacks up before any teamfight and it can result into turned battle into your favor. It can be used to increase effectiveness of a Health Potion if used prior to activating it. Also to mention, it works fairly well as farming ability later in the game.
- Extremely cool ability and very powerfull. As cooldown is kinda long, it should be used only in teamfights. Use it as a first ability, because you and your team will deal increased damage to them, until it explode.
Vladimir's skill order should be always same. Transfusion is thing that must be maxed for first. That is what keeps you in a lane forever and damage like hell, and at rank 5 cooldown is extremely low. Sanguine Pool starts out with long cooldown, but we need it badly off cooldown as soon is possible. As you rank it up, you getting lower and lower cooldown. So, it will be maxed out second. Tides of Blood is a good damaging ability, but it eats your health quite fast as we want keep stacks. So, it will be maxed last. Put a point in Hemoplague whenewer you can, obviously.
I found these 2 spells as the most usefull for Vladimir. Ghost is self explanatory. With it you can chase, you can evade and you can use it while going into Sanguine Pool to increase movement speed through the roof. I find Ignite as a extremely good combination to your combo, expecialy while using Hemoplague. This is like a cherry on top of an ice-cream. Also Ignite will reduced healing and regeneration by 50% on characters like Warwick, Dr. Mundo, Fiddlesticks etc. Flash is also a very strong option, but I listed these 2 as best. Find what suits you better and role that.
Greater Mark of Insight -- All of your abilities deal magical damage. Ability power is easy to stack, but magic penetration options are rare. This is what make you hit hard, realy hard. Penetration can penetrate only what is there, so it canno't go bellow 0. These are a must on any Vladimir.
Greater Seal of VitalityGreater Seal of Vitality -- Extra health per level is really good. These are high tier runes and thanks to your passive, they boosts your ability power a little bit. Survability can never go amiss.
Greater Glyph of Focus -- Cooldown reduction is what every caster must have. You want your abilities off cooldown as soon is possible. These are fairly good at their current state and should be used on any caster, at last most of them.
Greater Quintessence of Fortitude -- I use these in 99% of game no matter who do I play. I consider these quints to the best in the game and they are never bad. They are very basic runes and every player should have them. As Vladimir our abilities cost health, and these runes makes a huge difference.
There are 2 good options for your masteries. Going 21 in defense for increased survability or going 21 into utility for decreased cooldowns. I prefer utility as cooldowns are very important to any caster. You also get increased movement speed, faster leveling and health regeneration, increased buff duration and few more. With utility you will be able to deal damage faster, means more damage. While health, armor and magic resistance are great in defensive mastery, dodge is kinda useless on Vladimir. I belive that dodge should only be used on tanks or dodge bests like Sivir or Jax. Reason why i don't go into Archaic Knowledge is because flat magic penetration reduces effectiveness of % penetration. As we are going to get very high magic penetration, that mastery is useless. However, point in Burning Embers benefits you a quite a bit more.