Akali Build Guide by UKB3AST
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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.
Intro to The First of Shadows!
Akali is an Assasin burst dealing champion. She relies on her early game heavily! Basically Akali is a snowball champ.
I have been playing Akali since I was a noob really. About 7months ago, I think. She is so strong, agile and one of the best champs for tower diving or ramboing 3 low HP champs!
In this guide I will be explaining some of the ways I play Akali and how I get KD's of 25+.
I've played Akali for months and have about 120wins with her and about 90+ of them games were me carrying my team like an ADC :).
People say Akali is a really simple and easy champion but honestly she isn't. Early game is really difficult. Before I start going in depth with this guide make sure you check the counter page near the bottom of the guide because if you lane against these champs I can almost guarantee you will not be winning the lane. At least not with out a really good jungler :).
I suggest going middle because Akali's farm must be high. Her build is expensive and with her focused in every fight you need to concentrate on armor/magic resist or learn when to jump into the team fight and how to avoid CC.
Akali is a burst dealing assassin that delivers insane amounts of damage if she can snowball early game (1-2 kills ahead of the ADC opponent). I suggest having a pre made team when playing Akali because if your ally's want to win the game, they should give you 1/4 of the kills. 2/4 going to the ADC.
Kill steal is not a bad thing when playing Akali early game (unless you KS from an ADC) because you are an APC.
Remember that if you want to win the game its essential you help out your ADC and burst down enemy's to low HP and let your ADC finish them off. This should be your junglers job but if you are winning your lane then make sure you help your ally's. Akali excels in ganks because of her gap closing ultimate. Never be afraid to use it!
If anyone feels this section or guide needs more information about specific chapters please let me know in the discussion section.
Pro: Tower dives is her expertise.
Pro: The ability to juke and escape ganks.
Pro: Her ganking ability is quite strong at level 6. Use this to your advantage!
Pro: Fun champion that can lane very easy against 80% of middle champs!
Pro: Incredible burst damage.
Con: Extremely squishy, focused in teamfights!
Con: Shadow Dance often runs out when you need that last hit!
Con: Have to play safe until level 6.
Con: Countered by tanks and other burst dealers (early game)!
Con: Countered quite badly with magic resist!
Your first and main ability to unlock is your Q Mark of the Assassin). It is in my opinion one of the best ability's out there.
When you use Mark of the Assassin you will gain bonus damage on your next auto attack. This may sound like a small bonus but this will be your carrying ability. The bonus damage is the only way you will win your lane or even stay in it from level 1-5. It deals damage on impact which is good if you're laning against a strong ranged opponent, giving you the ability to last hit a minion or harras your enemy. You gain 45 damage from level 1 and when you auto attack the enemy you consume the mark and deal the damage it delivered on impact: 45/70/95/120/45 damage. This means at level one you will deal 90 bonus damage on one hit + your basic attack damage dealing roughly 120 straight off.
This scales with AP which is why Akali is so great AP. At level 18 with a 10/0 KD I averagely deal about 400damage with my Q and auto attack solo. That is without her gap closer (Ult) and Crescent Slash (E)
When you are in a 1v1 I do not suggest using your Twilight Shroud due to it is your only escape mechanism and Akali is built for 1v1's. She can solo almost anyone! When using your Twilight Shroud remember that although it is great protection it is your escape so don't sit around when being chased and sitting in twilight.
Throw it down somewhere you can juke. Basically between two hedges. Best way to escaping with this is running into the jungle and throwing it out between brushes or ways you can escape unnoticed.
You can run anywhere and almost always get away with your ult and twilight in proper use.[/color]
If you cannot escape then use brains to hold out until help arrives. Example: One of them runs to block your escape and you Shadow Dance on him and then Twilight Shroud and as the reinforcing enemy comes to kill you shadow dance to him and by the time he realises you just used him to escape and turns around to change direction you will be a safe 2 second distance in front and hopefully have ally's ready to jump in and kill the greedy opposer's!
Another example is using their minions to your advantage. Pushed too far in lane? Jungler juking your path to your turret? Twilight Shroud and wait for their minions to push to your tower. Shadow Dance onto the back minion (if time is with you) and then Shadow Dance to the front. Safely at home without giving them first blood.
If needed you can also Flash, of course but, Akali can escape a lot of the time on just Shadow Dance.
- Passive - Twin Disciplines: is Akalis passive which gives a lot of spell vamp mid-late game and a lot of bonus magic damage. This passive is rather self explanatory.
- Q - Mark of the Assassin: Her main ability. You will want to max this before any other. It is the perfect farming tool. Last hitting with this ability can be smarter if you are struggling in lane against some champs like: Katarina, Malzahar and Brand. When you are around level 4-5 you should begin to poke rather then last hit with this tool. Get the enemy low enough for when you get your ultimate at level 6.
- W - Twilight Shroud: Life saving and Akalis only major escape mechanic (unless you are smart with Shadow Dance). Conserve this until crucial or use it to slow down enemy's and speed up your self (can often save you and an ally from a cluster of enemy champions chasing you). Max this last how it may be worthwhile taking an extra point if you're struggling in lane against champions that don't have strong CC.
- E - Crescent Slash: Very good ability that has small AOE. This can be used to proc Akalis Mark of the Assassin. However much I like this ability for soloing opponents, I don't find it very useful in team fights. You should not be in the center of a team fight and should not be initiating. The AOE is rather pointless when looked at in this aspect, however, it does stack with AP and deals rather high damage. you have your twilight down! You will want to max this after you've maxxed Mark of the Assassin.
- R - Shadow Dance: The word ultimate was invented for this ability! Shadow Dance is what makes Akali 'OP'. With this ability you can escape almost anything! It is viable to harras with, however, when up against an experienced team it can get you killed for being greedy. It is very useful to gank, juke, gap close and burst.
This ability Has a fast recharge rate for an ultimate and in total takes 60 seconds to regain all three stacks! Max this of course as a priority at level 6, 11 and 16.
Counters and Enemy's
Red = bad to lane against.
Green = good to lane against.
Dark green = Even lane. Good chance to beat them.
Ahri: So people seem to think Akali counters Ahri... depending on your skill level with her (even I struggle against her) its not a smart idea to lane against an Ahri so make sure your jungler is nearby. Never Shadow Dance to Ahri when she is remotely near her tower. Make sure she pushes into your turret so you can shadow dance and harras when needed but the taunt will screw you over. That is the only reason she counters you. The burst damage + taunt wrecks you early game!
Brand: I would recommend you never lane against him because his AOE damage and brutal range/attacks will outlane you, farm and dominate middle. Try and swap with top if required or get constant ganks!
Mordekaiser: Personal opinion that he is the hardest to lane against as Akali and without a gank you will surely lose your lane. Caution must be used and hope that the Mordekaiser player is a noob!
Diana: I have never really lost my middle lane to a Diana. Not a threat because she is easy to dodge and pretty squishy. Just arrange a gank if you are being harrased too badly and cut her farm!
Darius: Almost never a problem due to him going top/bot. In Middle he isn't a problem. If you are going top/bot which I don't recommend then he is annoying. Again ganks from your jungler or work with an ally to end his life and then outfarm and take his tower. As soon as he loses his tower you should win the lane. Good luck :).
Malzahar: Very annoying to lane against. One of my personal dislikes, right up there with Mordekaiser :). Never tower dive him unless he has already used his suppress! Keep wards up on each brush vsing this guy. One suppress and a gank and you will die. Jungler is a must unless you can out farm and play passively.
Remember although some champs may counter you and you may counter some champions that player skill is a huge factor in the odds of winning/losing!
Teemo: He has nothing on Akali. You don't even need to outfarm so if you are pushed too far tower hug and last hit with your Q. Make sure he doesn't get more then 2 kills or he will be difficult!
Once level 6 he will die almost instantly and if not die, forced off the lane to heal while you out farm and take his tower! Basically you counter Teemo easy!
Veigar: Veigar is honestly no threat to Akali. I have never lost my lane to a Veigar, however, if he is a good player then you will most likely have a neutral lane until you are level 6. Bait his stun and after he uses it, gap close and kill.
Ziggs: No threat, easy middle lane. Wouldn't worry. Just dodge and strike at level 6 :).
Lux: This lane can go both ways. Its about an even fight. Lux only wins if she gets her skill shot stun on you. Even then her damage is pretty weak. Make sure she doesn't get first blood, even if that means recalling!
Vladimir: I Rarely lane against him, easy middle lane though. Sort of annoying but squishy and your burst damage wrecks him in a second.
Katarina: Not a good champion to lane against. Depending on the Katarina players skill it will be a 50/50 in the lane. Just stay back and harras with Mark of the Assasin. Engage at 6 with a junglers help. If you get first blood you shouldn't have a trouble later on but if you do arrange another gank. Preferably don't lane against a Katarina though!
Morgana: I rarely honestly lane against a Morgana in middle but when I have she is a pretty difficult opponent and therefore I don't recommend laning against her!
Kassadin: Much like Morgana but more OP :). Very annoying with his silence and constant blink. Avoid this champion at all costs! Focus in team fights or he will shut you down!
Cassiopeia: Annoying in lane with her poison and harras. I rarely lose my lane to her. Just play safe until you get your ultimate and she will back off. Two bursts and she will be dead or forced to leave lane and heal!
Fizz: I lose my lane against Fizz more times then I win it. It all depends on timing and the enemy players skill. If he times it just right he can dodge your Mark of the Assassin leaving him with a huge advantage if you don't have your bonus damage! When laning against Fizz, never fight head on. Harras and poke. Shadow dance to minions behind him to avoid his E and then shadow dance back and burst. Only recommend this lane for more experienced players!
Xerath: Simple enough lane. Just dodge his stun and skill shots. Only annoying thing is he counters your Shadow Dance with his stun if he can time it right. Play safe, dodge and play with caution!
Zyra: I have never really vsed a Zyra in mid but as far as I know Akali counters Zyra with ease. Still not my opinion so I would still recommend playing safe!
LeBlanc: Difficult opponent from level 2 onwards. Highly suggest not laning against her unless you're an experienced player! 50/50 chance to win the lane. Play safe and shadow dance after she has used her Distortation to avoid her "escaping" to her tower. Play with caution and dodge her Ethereal Chains and you should be okay!
Detail description of escaping
Okay so as I have explained before the main escape mechanic is Twilight Shroud and Shadow Dance. Below are some good spots to use your Twilight shroud that will often get you out of a sticky situation :).
Remember that you can always Flash if required. Below are examples that I have taken. I tried to do examples where you don't need flash. Something that I occasionally do is swap out a little AP for a sight stone or wards. Using them in locations like Wraiths, Blue, Red, Golems etc... will give you vision of the neutral minions and allow you to shadow dance to safety. This is not a part of your role though so only do this if dominating and would rather have the extra escape mechanic than burst.
The smartest choice would be to Shadow Dance to minions in mid or through river and towards our blue and into top lane.
Ally's could reveal Ancient Lizard Elder or you could run into lane above and shadow dance to the enemy minions.
Here I can Shadow Dance to golems with an ally's help or throw a ward over and do so. It is also viable to Shadow Dance to Red and flash over the wall.
Depending on the amount of enemy's chasing me I should run into one of the brushes and go bottom. They will be expecting you to go top. If their are too many I could Shadow Dance to the jungle monster and Flash over that wall.
Or run into the right brush and Flash over dragon . All possible escapes but it depends on the amount of enemy's chasing you and their locations. You should always know where your enemy's are so you can successfully avoid them and get away safely!
Never be afraid to use a Flash or Shadow Dance to escape!
Akali VS Akali
I don't recommend tower diving an enemy Akali because if she is good enough she can Shadow Dance to your minions while you take 2/3 burst hits of a tower and she dives back in for the kill unleashing a burst. Or throws down her Twilight Shroud as you dive for her and you get bursted down quickly giving her lane dominance.
Play safe and smart. Remember It is your junglers role to aid you in lane if you require it. Don't ever be afraid to ask for help! Good luck fellow summoners!
Increasing your damage by 5% when the enemy is below 50% HP. That may sound small early game but late game with 500 AP that 5% increases damage by 50. Durability for the increased health early game.
Greater Seal of Scaling Health
Greater Mark of Attack Damage
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power
Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
For runes you should take two greater mark of armor penetration and seven Greater Mark of Attack Damage, Greater Seal of Scaling Health, greater glpyh of magic resist. The reason I take these is because middle lane is commonly the AP caster lane so most champs that go mid deal magic damage. Taking magic resist will toughen up Akali!
Health will give you a little extra Durability in lane so you don't have to keep returning to your base. Magic penetration will penetrate magic resist for tanky mid champs. Like Gragas, Mordekaiser etc..[/color]
Attack damage runes will let you get your passive at level 1. Akali's passive is one of the best in the game. Well for her role. She gets a great amount of spell vamp and AP!
The reason it is so great is because of its passive which puts your champion into a statsis (gold statue) so you are unable to take damage. You cannot attack or deal damage while in this state but it will confuse your enemy's in a team fight causing them to either stop attacking (if they're noobs) and wait for you to come out of statsis or attack your team while you come back for a round two :).
For that reason it is a great item giving you armor, AP and a temporary CC .
- Lich Bane is my favourite item for Akali. I personally go for more CC items after my Lich Bane because its the best item for Akali. My personal favourite! It syncs with Akali so perfectly, almost as if it was made for her!
Here is why it is so perfect: Firstly it gives you a huge 80 AP, 250 mana (which has no effect on Akali) 5 movement speed multiplier so you can escape, chase and slice your enemy's with the edge your blade. But the main reason Lich Bane is so good is because of the Sheen passive which increases on Lich Bane giving you bonus magic damage equal to 50 + 75% of your ability power. That means your Q - Mark of the Assassin gets a HUGE bonus making Akali even stronger. Your opponents will fear for their life and turret hug, but that won't stop you ;).
- Rabadon's Deathcap I personally never liked this item on Akali. Its a great item, don't get me wrong. It gives you so much AP and 25% extra which is amazing.... but for Akali I have always seen better items that are more useful. Whether it be Lich Bane, Rylai's Crystal Scepter, Liandry's Torment. I never normally have 3200 for an item which I never really need. If I am fed I am already killing everything in 2 bursts maximum! It seems like a waste of a slot which could be used for more CC which you will actually need. That is my opinion but you are free to throw that in near the end of your build!
Games with Akali
When I was a bit of a noob at Akali I used to build Rabadon's Deathcap but I have learned my errors and now hope to teach you :3.
Level 30 games:
This guide will be continued until it is at perfection. Thanks for reading, please rep me to encourage me to finish it :3.
Reps are hugely appreciated and so are suggestions. If you notice any bugs let me know. Even if its a typo or something that should be BBCoded just let me know :).
Enjoy the guide, comment and if you have any suggestions they're welcome. I try to reply as quickly as I can!
Last updated 21/04/2013 - 14:34.