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Shyvana Build Guide by datnh

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League of Legends Build Guide Author datnh

A shy top lane guide *UPDATED 3.11*

datnh Last updated on October 5, 2013
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Ability Sequence

3
8
10
12
13
Ability Key Q
1
4
5
7
9
Ability Key W
2
14
15
17
18
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

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Executioner
 
 

Offense: 9

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Honor Guard
 
 

Defense: 21

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Pickpocket
Intelligence
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Nimble
 
 

Utility: 0


Guide Top

Introduction

Some words before we start


I haven't seen a decent top lane Shyvana guide in a while so I've decided to make one. If you feel like I've missed something or you have something to add feel free to do so in the discussion section! <3 I've underlined parts of the texts for those of you who don't like reading :)


Why Shyvana?


Shyvana is incredibly fun to play, Has a lot of outplay potential and why wouldn't you want to be a rad dragon? She is one of the best counter-jungling top laners out there, and with the recent changes she is a very good late game pick. She deals Tons of Damage while being tanky. She can initate fights well with her Dragon's Descent, or can split push quickly due to the clear speed of Burnout.

Why not jungle?


Shyvana is a very versatile champion, she has amazing jungling capabilities aswell, but the current popular junglers like Nasus or Jarvan IV outperform her. She has good clear speed, but as shyvana you'd rather aim for shutting down the enemy jungler instead of helping your lanes. This requires strong laning phase from your team, which in solo queue, is not always there.

Will she fit in my playstyle?


If you like taking full control of your lane from the beginning or just simply playing passive early then surprise your opponent and crush them into the ground and below, she will. Playing her also rewards good farming. When playing top lane you should always aim for not dying, or if you do die make sure your other lanes gain out of it. (eg. Bot gets turret or your team takes dragon.)


Guide Top

Pros / Cons

Pros

+
Safe laning phase
+
Deals hybrid damage
+
Good initiate
+
Insane base resistances
+
Counter-jungling machine
+
Amazing teamfight capabilities
Cons

-
No innate CC
-
Kited easily with CC
-
No innate sustain


Guide Top

Before you jump into the game

Note:


If you are looking to just have some fun with the Dragon lady, feel free to skip this part, But if you want to have great games and stomp with her I strongly advise reading this.


To play Shyvana to the best you have to know what are you capable of.


Decision making is more important than anything else, even last hitting. Make sure you know the champion you're playing, learn by practice, trial and error and watching vods. Without knowing your champion you WILL lose your lanes because you don't know when you can be aggressive and when not. Shyvana is a very tanky champ who deals decent damage. However without 1-2 defensive items she's vulnerable.

Let me quote my favourite top laner, Wickd. "You always need to play like the enemy jungler isn't there. If you don't, you lose the lane" This is what I follow, after learning my champion of choice, I know when can I go for a dive, and then if the jungler is there I can escape.

Many people struggle with playing when behind


When you fall behind, get ganked, forced out of lane or just fall behind in minions or levels, just aim for survival, don't do anything stupid because you think you can turn it over. If it isn't obvious, don't go aggressive when losing lane. Wait for your jungler and get a kill. If your jungler doesn't come, you have to farm under turret.


Guide Top

Summoner Spells

The 101 uses of flash, safe laning phase, flash ulti for insane gap closing, repositioning. Must have.

You might say: why take cleanse? This sounds stupid. The reason why: Against heavy CC teams Shyvana struggles hard. You ult in, they CC you,and you're done. With cleanse they absolutely HAVE TO focus you down (this means blowing a lot of their CDs) and then your team is at an advantage, or their adc is on their way to die. So it basically makes you an unstoppable bruiser/ability sponge. Also very useful for escaping ganks without burning (or even taking) your Flash!

If you aren't running cleanse, Ignite is the perfect trading tool/finisher, also useful for denying heavy lifesteal carries.

Exhaust is a very underrated summoner spell. It can easily turn the tides of battle and for Shyvana, it makes up for the lack of cc early game. Take it if your teammates aren't running exhaust.

Good summoner combos:



Guide Top

Masteries

Masteries
1/5
3/1
4/1
1/1
3/5
4/1
1/1
2/1
2/1
1/1
1/5
3/1
3/1
1/
Masteries
4/1
4/1
1/1
1/5
3/5
4/1
2/1
2/1
1/1
1/5
3/1
3/1
1/
Masteries
1/5
3/1
4/1
1/1
1/5
3/5
4/1
2/1
2/1
1/1
1/5
3/1
3/1
1/

For the bruisers like Shyvana you want to have 9|21|0 so she doesn't just blow up when 5 people start attacking her and can get an ADC out of the fight or soak up enough cooldowns to help the rest of the team win the fight. Juggernaut will give you about 200 hp late game, depending on your build. Decide if you want it or not, I usually take it, but you can ditch it for other masteries.
As for Fury I think 3% cooldown reduction is worth more than 3% attack speed, but if you insist, you can go for it.
Get your Summoner's Wrath to empower your Ignite or Exhaust, health and health regen, and what is absolutely important: Slow and cc reduction. For Cleanse obviously take Summoner's Resolve .


Guide Top

Runes

Recommended runes:

Runes

Greater Mark of Precision
9

Greater Seal of Armor
9

Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage
3

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
9

Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist
9

Viable quintessence choices:

Runes

Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed
3

Greater Quintessence of Health Regeneration
3

Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed
3

Greater Quintessence of Precision
3


Guide Top

Abilities

  • Dragonborn: One of the reasons why Shyvana is a very strong laner. It gives extra armor and magic resist, starting from level 1. Every time you level up your ultimate, the number increases. When you're in dragon form the passive's bonus is doubled.
  • Twin Bite (Q): Shyvana's burst damage ability. It deals physical damage depending on your current attack damage. It resets your auto attack so it's most effective when used right after an AA. Each time you AA, it's cooldown is reduced by 0.5 seconds which makes attack speed items quite good on her. This ability is also useful when taking down wards as AA+Q-ing wards take all 3 bars of health.
  • Burnout (W): The most powerful ability in my opinion, it gives you insane wave clear, and a movespeed boost which can mean life or death.(both yours and your enemies') Burnout deals Magic damage, and scales off of AD. It's her second main damage source next to her auto attacks, a very good ability for trading in lane and clearing the jungle quickly. Each auto attack extends Burnout's duration by 1 second up to a total time of 7 seconds.
  • Flame Breath (E): Your ranged poking tool in lane. Deals Magic damage, scales AP. It's damage got nerfed but it's still good for starting trades due to the 2% maximum health damage you get from it. Following it up with an AA+Q combo chunks quite a bit of hp on lower levels. The % hp damage allows you to build full tank and still be viable late game.
  • Dragon's Descent (R): Basically this is her teamfight form. It doubles your passive Armor and MR which gives you insane tankiness, it closes a huge gap (most likely between you and an ADC) it has the fear factor of a hard initiate like Malphite's Unstoppable Force and it transforms all of your abilities into AoE. It also deals 200-400 Magic damage and scales with AP. Due to this burst it might work as a finisher when tower diving, etc.. It is vital for escaping sticky situations when your Flash is down. In dragon form you always want to use Burnout to chase down the enemy carry, use Flame Breath to hit the most targets possible and use Twin Bite the same way.



Ability Sequence Order

> > >
> > >

Max Burnout first, then get your spells according to your opponent. Against melee laners Max Twin Bite second, against ranged bullies max Flame Breath second for lane poke. Take your Flame Breath at level 1 against poke lanes like Kennen and Elise.


Guide Top

Items

Core Items


The core items for shyvana top are:
Very important item, as Shyvana has no innate cc. This will allow you to stick to your target like glue and never let go. It greatly helps at peeling too since you will slow their divers. After Blade/Hydra, I usually get Giant's Belt first, then Pickaxe and finish it.

Easily the best defensive item for bruisers/peelers on par with Sunfire Cape but Shyvana's abilities already make her own "Sunfire Cape", and the active from it is just amazingly good. Shyvana already has a good amount of armor but I find taking randuin's is the equilibrium between health and armor.

Every bruiser should have this. The active +heal, MS steal is just ridiculously strong on an anti-carry. Also the % health passive applies twice on Twin Bite which is just way too good, the attack speed and life steal helps quite a lot, this is the best offensive item you can have.

It's a better sustain item than BotRK, the active from it is like a second aoe Q. It works when there are multiple threats. If there's only one threat, Blade is a better choice.

Choose between Blade and Hydra depending on the game, but Mallet and Randuins are must buys.



Optional Items


Youmuu's Ghostblade + zeke's herald:

Replace your Blade of the Ruined King or Ravenous Hydra with Youmuu's Ghostblade but it will leave you without sustain so it is advisable to take zeke's herald with it. You can also buy Avarice Blade on your first back to help you get your items even quicker, but this will delay your initial build, and most importantly your Frozen Mallet. This combo will leave you less tanky.

Boots of Swiftness:

It's a high-risk high reward item as you don't know the enemy carry might pick up a triple kill and get so fed that you will miss your Ninja Tabi very much.

Maw of Malmortius:

You can take it instead of Wit's End but I find it less useful, as attack speed is more useful than attack damage. If you feel like you get damaged early in a fight and you take a lot of magic damage, pick it up it'll help you more.



Item combos, synergies:


Zephyr vs Mercury's Treads vs Spirit of the Ancient Golem

The 3 tenacity items, you'll take one. For which one, it depends on the game. If you're facing an AP top you'll go for boots, if you want to deny their jungler, go for the golem spirit. If neither of these apply and/or you rushed Hydra, go for zephyr as it lets you deal Tons of Damage.

Blade of the Ruined King vs Ravenous Hydra

Both are very good items, and it's only the enemy team composition and your team composition which determines which item is better. There's only one big threat who's fed and you want to remove them asap? Blade. You need more teamfight presence or they have multiple threats? Hydra.

Zephyr vs Wit's End

Your AS items. Both are very powerful, Wit's End passive applies twice for Twin Bite and Zephyr has just all the stats you could ask for. If you take Wit's End then take Mercury's Treads because you will need the tenacity. For Zephyr take Ninja Tabi as the 10% damage reduction is vital against hard hitting AD carries.

Randuin's Omen

Basically, a counter item to carries. People say that Sunfire Cape is better, yet I disagree because Shyvana's burnout is just a better Sunfire passive and randuin's gives more stats, an amazing passive and an amazing active. Much much better than sunfire. It works with anything, take anything with it you can't go wrong.

Spirit Visage/ Banshee's Veil

Spirit Visage grants +400 hp, +20 health regen and a great passive that benefits your life steal (Blade/Hydra) and any health regen you have (Hydra/Warmogs).
Banshee's Veil however, gives 50 more health, can be an invaluable laning asset, and it's amazing against ranged cc/skillshot dependent champions like Lux or Lee Sin.

Warmog's Armor

The best defensive stat you can get from items is hp. Welcome to the league of warmog's. If the enemy is massing Blades and Liandry's it might not be a worthy pickup. You can never go wrong with hp, just that the %damage counters building hp.

Wriggle's Lantern

The life steal and damage got buffed which is useful, only take it when you want to destroy the enemy jungler, and give up a bit on laning.

Trinity Force

With the new passive, this could be a great replacement for Blade/Hydra, or if you feel fed, you can get it with one of those. Movespeed is an amazing stat to have, finishing Triforce early can snowball the entire lane and game aswell.



Enchantments:


Enchantment: Furor

Pretty straightforward, hit enemy and catch up when they dash/flash away.

Enchantment: Homeguard

This should be self-explanatory

Enchantment: Captain

Although being one of the more expensive enchants, captain on shyvana does pretty good since you're the one who dives, goes in first and your team is going towards you. Also helps with split pushing.

Enchantment: Alacrity

It's a niche enchant as shyvana already has great movespeed, but pairing it with Ghost and MS runes can yield something hilariously overpowered.



Some numbers behind the builds.



The core build (labeled as BotRK/Tank vs AD) costs a grand total of 15,330 gold.
It gives you 16180 Effective Physical health (this is the amount of health you have with all damage getting reduced by your armor)
and it gives you 10263 Effective Magic health (same but reduced by mr)

Item Sequence











Frozen Mallet
3100

Randuin's Omen
2900

Ninja Tabi
1100

Spirit of the Ancient Golem
2000

Warmog's Armor
2850

The Hydra+Zephyr build costs_16,280 gold, which is a bit more than the others but it's far better dps-wise. Using this build you get 14557 physical and 9233 magic health. As you can see, you give up on your tankiness but you gain a lot of damage from it.

Item Sequence











Randuin's Omen
2900

Ninja Tabi
1100

Warmog's Armor
2850

Ravenous Hydra
3500

Zephyr
2850

Anti-AP Hydra build: For about_15,825 gold, it gives 11796 Physical and 13481 Magic health.
More damage-oriented.

Item Sequence











Randuin's Omen
2900

Ravenous Hydra
3500

Mercury's Treads
1100

Wit's End
2500

Spirit Visage
2800

AP Tank build:
This is a very expensive build reaching_16,155 gold full cost, but it gives you 14317 Magic health with 14781 physical. This is the most tanky build against mixed compositions.

Item Sequence











Randuin's Omen
2900

Warmog's Armor
2850

Mercury's Treads
1100

Blade of the Ruined King
3400

Spirit Visage
2800

All numbers are calculated assuming that you're in dragon form.


Guide Top

Lane Opponents

Total lane counters are true damage dealers like Olaf, Master Yi and Irelia, and hard lanes are ranged top laners and hard hitting melee carries/bruisers like Jax and Renekton. Here's a few of them explained:


Yi is a strong lane opponent due to his Alpha Strike harass and true damage from Wuju Style. Whenever his Wuju Style is on cooldown, which you can see if his sword is glowing or not, it's safe to go in for a trade. If it's off cooldown you'll probably get demolished if you start fighting.

*haven't played against since the rework, this info might be outdated.* With the recent changes shyvana can dumpster olaf if played correctly. Although it takes one mistake and you're dead. Go for short bursty trades and you should win.

You can get her very early because she's not that powerful. She still packs quite a punch and true damage really hurts in trades. Poke a lot with your E and bait her stun out.

People are afraid of yorick lanes because he just harasses all day long but shyvana can dish out a lot of aoe damage which can quickly get rid of the ghouls and then you can just chase yorick out of the lane. Play aggressively and don't take minion damage. With the new
E you can trade with yorick effectively.

I hate this little squirrel because he can just blind you every time you go for cs. A way to beat him is to interrupt his Move Quick and close on him with your Burnout. The initial duration of Burnout lasts longer than Blinding Dart so you can get off an auto or two to extend. The first one to get Phage/Mallet wins the lane.

You can destroy elise until she gets her damage items, and then either build a Spectre's Cowl or Mercury's Treads to dodge those deadly Cocoons.

You will take a lot of harass early, so go towards armor early and wait for him to make a mistake. You can't win when you are both equal. The fact that he has no active ultimate lets you abuse yours when he's weak. 3.9 notes: With cloth 5 you can basically chase him out of lane because he can't win melee trades anymore. Just don't take too much ranged AA harass.

His burst can quickly take you down if you are not careful. Bait him into using his rage then chase him out of lane. Even a decent Renekton player will know how to hold onto their rage, so you might have a hard time baiting it out. Just make sure you (literally) jump at the chance. 3.9 notes: with cloth 5 you can still trade renekton when he has 50+ fury, but stay away from him if he has his bar full.

Playing against a good Jax will definitely get you killed or make you play very passive. The magic trick is to bait out his Leap Strike, and then run away from his stun with your Burnout. Experienced Jax players will either use Counter Strike then leap for an instant stun or just never leap until you use your burnout. 3.9 notes: Use E to harass, cloth 5 will make you indestructable.

Play aggressive with your Burnout off cooldown, play defensive while on cooldown. He will outsustain you almost every time, so don't count on making him back first. 3.9 notes: Cloth 5 will help you win trades, just make sure you don't trade him long when his rage is full. Ninja Tabi is the single most solid item against Tryndamere.

If you catch him before he hits 6 you've already won. When you are both 6 don't let him stack the bleed on you just quickly poke and run away. Long trades will get you killed. 3.9 notes: Cloth 5 will now make you indestructable for darius pre-6 so abuse that.

She will try to deny the cs from you. Use your E to get some and don't take free damage from her. You can't really trade her unless she uses one of her cooldowns up. Whenever Riven blows her Broken Wings or Ki Burst just go in, you'll probably win. Against a skilled riven you'll definitely need your jungler's help.

With the new Flame Breath you can answer his poke, but you should be careful not to get stunned. He'll escape your chase with his Lightning Rush, so don't count on killing him in lane. Mercury's Treads is a solid item choice against kennen.

You shouldn't have problems against other top laners since shyvana is very good at sustained dps and escaping ganks.


Guide Top

Laning

Shyvana is a pusher.


Abuse this fact and shove your lane when your enemy is missing. After shoving you either back to buy, go roam mid, or take some of the enemy jungle or maybe even find the enemy jungler alone and destroy him. Shyvana is good at last hitting since she has a good amount of attack speed and an AA reset on her Twin Bite. You can easily get creeps out of reach using her Flame Breath and clear big waves with Burnout in seconds.

Warding



You'll almost always want to pick up 2 wards when you recall, and here is where to place them:



The wards marked with red are the "Selfish Wards". These will guarantee safe laning. When your turret is down it's mandatory to put at least one in one of these places. You can alternatively place the middle one further down the river but if you don't have good map awareness you might miss the enemy jungler walking into the bush and die horribly.

The wards with the blue circle are the "Selfless Wards". These will indicate the position of the enemy jungler to your whole team, but the jungler can slip past when ganking your lane

The purple ward is a midgame ward. You put it in the small circular bush at the baron pit. When your team gets a turret either mid or top lane, this ward will reveal anything trying to cross the river.

Escaping ganks


Important: If the enemy jungler has strong ganks, (lee sin, udyr) make sure you start with atleast one ward.
If you have a ward placed you are definitely ungankable. It doesn't matter what huge gapcloser the enemy jungler uses you can just always use your Dragon's Descent to get back to safety, or take Cleanse and simply walk away with your burnout on. Make sure to only use your ultimate aggressively if you have Flash available.

Counter-jungling


First of all let's see why we would counter jungle in the first place.

Pros
  • You can get more gold and experience by killing jungle creeps.
  • You can deny your enemy jungler from gold and experience.
  • You can get buffs for yourself and deny the enemy jungler from these buffs.
  • You can gank mid lane really easily from the enemy jungle.
Cons
  • You need to buy more wards.
  • You'll be more vulnerable for ganks in the enemy jungle.
  • You need to be able to push (and win) your lane in order to counter jungle.
You can make up for the ward costs by killing the jungle creeps and if you do everything right both the first and second point of the cons won't be valid anymore. If you are not sure, just take a pink ward with you.

Split pushing


She is a strong split pusher because she can get from one lane to the other very quickly. I personally do not advise that you commit to this tactic, but if your team is hopeless you can keep pressure. Pick up Guinsoo's Rageblade if you are desperate.

Trading in lane


Open up with your Flame Breath. If it hits, you should go in for the trade. If you are kited turn back ASAP so you don't take too much free damage. Use bushes to surprise your opponents and chunk them down.


Guide Top

Teamfights

In teamfights you have two simple roles. Initiate if you haven't yet and then either Peel or Dive. You can soak up loads of damage and with your items you can cripple your enemies despite having no CC abilities.

Diving is simply using your gap closer and get into the enemy ADC's face and force their team to focus you down.

Peeling is the counter to diving. You "peel" the enemy attackers off of your carry using crowd control or just pure damage. They will thank you later.

When to Peel

  • Your carry is more fed/farmed than theirs.
  • They have a dive comp.
  • You know that your team can't peel for your carry otherwise.
  • They have high burst damage bruisers/melee carries.

When to Dive

  • Their carry is more fed/farmed than yours.
  • They have a poke or passive comp.
  • You know that your support or jungle can peel for your carry.
  • You know that your carry is a safe teamfighter and can take care for themselves without peeling.(rare)

Shyvana is more efficient at diving than peeling but with her items she can force bruisers away from your carry. If they don't stop your dive with either CC or tons of damage, you will definitely get their carry and win the fight.


Guide Top

Team composition and synergies

Shyvana is an initiator and tank. She can be built for damage aswell but she doesn't have the tools of an assasin type champion to get away with it. She is very good with AoE mid laners, zoning champs such as Jarvan IV or Rumble. You can run an assasin jungle with a tank support or a tanky/bruiser jungler with her.

Synergies


Guide Top

Some notes

I'll collect some of the things here I've seen people do on top shyvana and tell you my opinion about them.

Greater Quintessence of Life Steal: People take this for sustain. Why not? Health regen is more reliable. If things turn sour you won't be able to life steal effectively while hp regen is always there. If you are confident you can dominate your lane, LS might work well.
Sheen: Can be useful to pick up while building towards Trinity Force.
Guinsoo's Rageblade: Aside from split pushing, I don't think it's better than any of the other offensive items.
Iceborn Gauntlet: The passive is the best thing ever happened...no, all stats are useless. Armor is not enough to be considered.
The Black Cleaver: This looks like a neat item for shyvana, it gives hp, armpen and damage. But yet again there are superior offensive items. If you're (god forbid) going for a melee AD carry shyvana take this.
Atma's Impaler: Waste of an item slot in my opinion. You might have a ton of health to begin with but I find that you're better off building something more useful.
Sunfire Cape: It would be a neat item if the passive scaled, sadly it does not. It's useless from the 20th minute, and you can get better stats from other items.
Mark of armor penetration: Hybrid is better. Your Burnout and Flame Breath deals magic damage.



Thanks to:

Jhoijhoi for the great template.
Sebaku for helping with the guide overall.




Thank you for reading my Shyvana guide! I hope it wasn't a pain to read and I gave you useful information. Go and melt some faces now! :)
This guide is a WiP and I'll try to update as much as I can, mostly adding pics and videos. I greatly appreciate constructive feedback, so please leave some of it under the discussion section!