Build Guide by Lilwoody
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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.
I have spent the greater part of an entire day on this guide and hope you take the time to read through all of it so that you fully absorb and respect the concepts behind it and how to use it.
The following is a tank guide for Alistar that has a fair balance between HP, MR, MP, AP and Armor. It's core item build and runes should give you everything you need to have a powerful and balanced early, mid and endgame. Please, be objective with your vote and do not rate it down just because it's not the way you think Alistar should be built and played. Again, take the time to read through all of it and please do not vote unless you have tried out the recommended build of items and runes.
Alistar has changed a little with the recent update in the patch v184.108.40.206 (http://www.leagueoflegends.com/news/release-notes-v100116) the revamp has made Alistar quite the farmer, less dependent on movement speed, MP regen, and CDR items. The change in passive from Colossal Strength to Trample was obviously the most significant change and he now has a fairly powerful earlygame. I have only seen one other Mobafire member attempt a guide on Alistar since his new passive so, after some trial and experience I have taken the time to release my guide on the new trampling Alistar. In fact, Trample is so new I have to add it's description in here:
Trample: Whenever Alistar casts a spell, he gains Trample for 3 seconds ignoring unit collision and dealing 10-23 (+10% ability power) area damage per second (double damage to minions and monsters).
Note: The three builds I have listed above starting from left to right are as follows 1) Recommended Core Build 2) Recommended "Hard Tank" Build 3) Recommended AP Tank Build. All of which are discussed in greater detail in the items section.
Pros / Cons
Lot's of things I could say here about how great or ****py this champ and guide are, but lets be honest most of the champs are fairly balanced you just have to know how to build them and more importantly how to use them and the build to your advantage.
ProsAlistar's new passive Trample and this core build allows him to farm minions better than most champs.
Alistar can heal himself and allies.
This guide has good defensive attributes.
This guide has good offensive attributes.
A little bit of HP goes a long ways on Alistar.
Your Ulti basically makes you invulnerable and allows you to sacrifice some defensive items for offensive items.
ConsThis build lacks MP5 which can leave you out of MP often but Clarity is an option.
The recommended AP build lacks CDR.
The above two cons leave you quite dependent on blue golem buff.
You are slow but most tanks are.
Skill Sequence and Uses
It's all about S.K.I.L.L.Z.Pretty straight forward max your Q Pulverize first so you can farm entire waves of minions with one crushing blow. Then max that W Headbutt so when you push people around it hurts and they won't want to come near you. Your E Triumphant Roar is maxed last but you may consider taking two points in it during the laning phase if you are being harassed quite a bit. Obviously, hit a point in your R anytime you get the chance.
At this current time I am only going to discuss Headbutt because in the Trample patch they also added an useful attribute it. You can now target minions and monsters with Headbutt. Occasionally, you are going to slip up on this and sometimes mis-click a minion when you were trying to hit an enemy champion. But, overall this was a great addition to the spell because it can make for a good initiation. Consider two champions near your turret or anywhere in the lane for that matter. Oh what!?!? They are both right next to that minion Headbutt minion > Pulverize. Although, you used a lot of MP to Headbutt one minion it put you in position to land Pulverize on two enemy champions, which should be enough time for your laning partner to do their thing and score you an assist. Headbutt can also serve as an escape mechanism. For example, you are chasing two enemy champs to their turret then things start to go bad and you need to make a hasty retreat. Turn around, target and Headbutt a minion in the wave that you passed up while chasing the enemies, this could give you just the distance you need to escape death.
I am currently running Ghost and Flash as summoner spells, which are probably the two most popular spells in the game for good reasons. The only other really viable combination I see is Clarity and Flash. Either anyway you cut it I cannot see Alistar ever picking any spell other than Flash. Below I have discussed Flash and some other useful spells for Alistar.
Absolutely a must have again I can't see Alistar ever getting away from this spell. It's an amazingly useful spell it allows you to start a Flash > Pulverize > Headbutt combo and can get you out of so many sticky situations. A little more difficult but still doable is Flash behind the champ Headbutt to allied turret or champion then Pulverize as they try to escape.
Another very useful spell. It's a good escape mechanism also a good initiating spell. Ghost to run into position Pulverize > Headbutt combo. Ghost to turrets that are under attack. Ghost to Headbutt enemy champs that are chasing retreating allies. And, Ghost to Pulverize fleeing enemies so your team can catch up and kill them. So many uses not enough time.
I'm yet to use this spell but I can see it's potential. I have found many times during the laning phase where I am just low on MP and you can't do much if you can't use your abilities. So, as an option in place of Ghost I am recommending Clarity. This spell will make the laning phase so much easier but you'll lose the great utility of the Ghost spell. Clarity will also add to your role as a support champ and relieve some of your dependency on blue golem buff.
I can recommend this because Alistar, like most tanks, is slow. Teleport spell can get you back to the lane fast after shopping, to the front of the battle field in a team fight when you are most needed, or to the front of a wave of minions that have reached a turret that is currently not being defended by an enemy champ.
I feel obligated to give at least one more recommendation for spells and that is Fortify just because tanks are usually the ones to pick this up. Kind of a cool spell that can save your turret or your *** when you are pinned to your turret and under attack. Fortify > Pulverize > Headbutt an enemy champ that is attacking you at your turret and they'll be wishing they had not!!! Also, remember if you take this as one of your spells to move a point from Defensive Mastery or Ardor (I prefer -1 to Defensive Mastery ) to Reinforce .
Alistar is a tank so let's pick masteries like a tank I recommend going 9/21/0. Pretty standard selection for any AP tank. You could put 9 points into the utility tree for experience boost and HP/MP regen but then you will lose the CDR, AP and magic penetration from the offensive tree, which is not a very fair trade. 15% magic penetration is so epic when you combine it with Sorcerer's Shoes, Abyssal Scepter, Mark of Magic Penetration and Quintessence of Magic Penetration.
All of the runes I have chosen are primary runes. I've put some thought into these runes and provided a few other options, but the recommended ones are the runes I have experience using and work well for my play style. Other than that I feel my choices are quite obvious and do not need much explanation or justification.
MarksMark of Magic Penetration the early magic penetration will make killing champs/creeps much easier allowing you to farm quite well and build a solid core for midgame. Magic penetration is just an all around good thing because your passive and 2 offensive abilities are magic damage.
SealsSeal of Scaling Mana Regeneration a MP5 rune that scales with level allowing you to sell Doran's Ring toward the end of midgame or beginning of endgame.
GlyphsGlyph of Scaling Magic Resist a MR rune that scales with level because your final item build lacks MR and scaling runes are better for endgame.
QuintessencesQuintessence of Magic Penetration again stack that magic penetration because nothing kills a wave of minions faster than standing in the middle of them with a Sunfire Cape and casting Triumphant Roar > Trample > Pulverize. You can never have enough magic penetration on an AP champ.
Other optional runes
MarksMark of Health or Mark of Vitality secondary runes that I have never used just thought they would be a viable option because you can never have too much HP on a tank. You may also consider Mark of Armor, Mark of Scaling Magic Resist and Mark of Magic Resist but seriously have more fun killing stuff with the recommended Mark of Magic Penetration!!!
SealsHonestly, the options here are really really thin and there aren't too many other viable picks other than Seal of Scaling Mana Regeneration. After you sell Doran's Ring if you don't have some sort of MP5 you will be a fish out of water or more like a champion out of MP and instead of Alistar saying "Nothing can hold me back." he'll be saying "Nothing can push me forward." I feel obligated to give you some sort of option here so I guess I'll recommend Seal of Scaling Magic Resist, Seal of Magic Resist, Seal of Defense, Seal of Scaling Ability Power, Seal of Health and the list goes on but again no mp means no abilities!
GlyphsA few good options here including Glyph of Scaling Cooldown Reduction, Glyph of Scaling Ability Power, Glyph of Magic Resist, Glyph of Scaling Mana Regeneration, Glyph of Health and Glyph of Vitality all for what I feel are self explanatory. Again, the recommended Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist is probably best because it's a primary scaling rune with a strong boost to MR at level 18 in a build that lacks MR.
QuintessencesLots of good picks here just take a look at all the optional mark, seal and glyph runes that I am recommending and I'm sure you can fill in the blanks. The only type of rune that I would recommend that is not listed in the optional mark, seal or glyph runes is Quintessence of Movement Speed but again make life easier and have more fun killing stuff with Quintessence of Magic Penetration for the win!!!
First and foremost this is a tank guide so all the the items I have listed below besides Sorcerer's Shoes and Rabadon's Deathcap will contain some sort of defensive attribute i.e. HP, MR or armor.
Going to the lane with Doran's Ring is a great choice. It has a lot of the things you need HP, MP5 and AP. All these are going to help you stay in the lane and farm longer. The MP5 is the most important of the attributes, just a little MP5 can go a long ways. Also, the AP scales quite well with Pulverize.
Once you have reached 860 gold it's time to buy Blasting Wand this is synergistic with your passive and 3 of your abilities. This item combined with the Doran's Ring will allow you to farm creeps quite easily (see farming section for details on creep scoring). Furthermore, by the time I've farmed 860 gold I'm low on HP/MP and need to return to base, but if you can wait until 1,210 gold you can additionally pick up Boots of Speed.
20 magic penetration hurts in early game and your abilities will cut right through enemy champs/minions. Other viable substitutes that I consider situational are Ionian Boots of Lucidity, Mercury's Treads, Boots of Swiftness or Boots of Mobility. Ionian Boots of Lucidity are quite situational. Earlygame you'll probably find that you are having MP problems, additional CDR complicates this even more, maybe stronger choice for endgame and if you decide to go with Clarity and the recommended hard tank items for your last 3 slots (discussed and listed below). Mercury's Treads a great choice throughout the game and very useful against heavy AP/CC teams but these won't help you farm or kill like Sorcerer's Shoes. Never actually bought Boots of Swiftness but have seen other Alistars' pick them up and do quite well so I added them in here, they are also quite similar to Boots of Mobility. You may find that Boots of Mobility are great for early and midgame but lose their usefulness during endgame when you are always in battle.
45 armor, 450 HP and a passive that will make tons of money, paying for itself and the rest of your build. Your passive Trample does a considerate amount of damage per second (10-23 +10% AP per second for 3 seconds after each ability). Trample + Sunfire Cape will land you many last hits and help keep the creep line moving forward. Also, the damage over time in team fights adds up because you are often the last to die. The passive range on Sunfire Cape is also slightly larger than Trample which could land you more assists.
Rylai's Crystal Scepter
Great item! 500 health, 80 AP and a passive that is going to add slow to all your abilities through your trample. Pulverize > Triumphant Roar can lock enemy teams up for a considerable amount of time. A great item that will make you very strong in mid game fights and the extra AP is going to give you a lot of CS and your abilities will be a tad bit more powerful. Note: the passive is effected by the number of targets since Headbutt is a single target the slow is more potent.
From here rest of the build becomes very dependent on the current game. You can become quite the "hard tank" with items like Force of Nature, Spirit Visage and Frozen Heart. But, in general I will stay with the current trend of AP tank with items such as Abyssal Scepter, Zhonya's Hourglass and Lich Bane because the AP synergizes so well with your abilities and you sacrifice very little armor and MR by going AP tank. I really favor the AP tank build because it's more fun and powerful but you should do fine with both hard tank and AP tank builds, try them both to see what works for you. The core is most important which should make your early and midgame quite powerful setting you up for a strong endgame too.
Recommened AP Tank Items
Not much to say about this item. Great aura, good MR and decent AP. Get this if you against mosty AP or a fed AP. Also, good if your team is mostly AP.
Decent armor, great AP and a weird active. Makes you invulnerable for 2 seconds but you can't do anything, not even run! Get this if you are up against mostly AD. Also, the active works well against Lux Finales Funkeln and Karthus Requiem where you can see their Ulti's channeling.
Probably the weakest of all the items I have chosen so far but it's the only other AP item that has some defensive attribute built into it. Rarely will the game ever make it this far but Lich Bane is a good choice for a little MR and more AP. It also has movement speed and MP so you can ditch your Doran's Ring. The passive is kind of cool but you need quite a bit of AP to make it useful so I reserve this as either my 5th or 6th AP/MR item. If you are in desperate need of MR Force of Nature is a good choice, Frozen Heart for armor, and you can almost never go wrong with Spirit Visage. When the game is total faceroll grab a Rabadon's Deathcap and go trololololol all over the enemy team.
Recommended Hard Tank Items
Force of Nature
Great item! Movement speed, massive HP regen, and tons of MR definitely a solid choice in almost any game.
MR, CDR and HP not a huge boost but it's a great cheap item. The passive is the selling point, it makes Triumphant Roar more powerful and increases the HP regen from Force of Nature.
A huge boost to armor, MP and CDR. A passive that is going to slow all the enemies attacks by 20%. Further allowing you to control team fights. If you are good with actives then Randuin's Omen is also a viable choice here but the CDR, armor and MP from Frozen Heart probably wins in the long run. Also, you don't really need the extra HP/HP regen from Randuin's Omen because your core already adds so much. Furthermore, Frozen Heart is cheaper and you'll be selling Doran's Ring to fill this slot so the MP on Frozen Heart is a better choice than Randiun's Omen. Tip: You can pick up the Glacial Shroud early for a nice quick boost to CDR, armor and MP.
Other Optional/Situational ItemsRanduin's Omen - The only spot I can see this going is in place of Frozen Heart but if you have no MR worries pick this up in combination with Frozen Heart or Thornmail.
Rabadon's Deathcap - A 6th item I would consider in place of Lich Bane of my final AP tank build or whenever the game is total faceroll and your team is destroying the game.
Banshee's Veil - One of the best passives in the game. Great substitute for Spirit Visage or addition to Force of Nature personally I like the CDR and passive from Spirit Visage and movement speed from Force of Nature.
Thornmail - If the team is heavy in autoattack AD get this and punish them for not diversifying.
Aegis of the Legion - An amazing cost versus benefit item would be good against a mixed AD/AP team but other items synergize better with your abilities.
Guardian Angel - Honestly, a bad choice because you are rarely focused and by the time you get through the core and an additional item you should be tough enough where you'll be the last man standing in a team fight, which either means your team won or your team lost in both cases the passive is useless. Get this if you are dying a lot or they are focusing you first...Trolololol at you being focused first.
Quicksilver Sash - Cheap and good escape item but if you tend to panic under pressure or in team fights you probably won't remember to use it's active.
Chalice of Harmony - Never gotten this but if you are having MP problems and need MR this is a good option but there are probably better choices.
Summary and Example BuildsBelow I have included some examples but it is not an all inclusive list of the different combinations of builds. There are so many situations that your final build will rarely ever duplicate itself. The core should always be the same but after that how, why, when and what you should build comes from experience.
Final Recommended AP Tank
The Lich Bane is sometimes fun but it's a weak defensive 6th item to chose so I have added this series of optional 6th items.
Tons of great items for the 6th slot and with enough experience you should know what is the right choice.
Final Recommended Hard Tank
Notice the option in boots here. Overall, the Sorcerer's Shoes is probably better for magic penetration on Pulverize, Headbutt, Trample, and Sunfire Cape, especially earlygame. But, after the laning phase you may consider selling them and switch to Mercury's Treads because you will not be stacking tons AP for your abilities with this build.
Final Hybrid MR
Final Hybrid Armor
Yes, farming 101 here. LEARN HOW TO LAST HIT!!! Holy **** I can't stress enough how important last hitting is. Your creep score correlates well with how well you do overall in the game. Typically players with low CS have a lower kill-death-assist ratio. That's because they didn't take the time to farm the gold to survive a bit longer or pack that extra punch they needed to land the final crushing blow. Here is an epic link on how and why last hitting is so important. Everyone should watch this video at least once.
So, seriously last hitting is a very important concept and skill but I have designed the core and runes of this build so that we are less inhibited by our slow movement speed and attack speed. The runes and items power up our Pulverize so much that we can nearly one shot entire waves of minions. My favorite combo is stand between the melee and ranged creeps then Triumphant Roar > Trample for a second or two then when you feel you can get most or all of the minions > Pulverize them. You can actually solo 2v1 lanes with this technique and it works quite well when you are pinned to your turret. Reasons why this works so well are 1) Trample does double damage to minions and monsters 2) Triumphant Roar has a low MP cost and is beneficial to yourself 3) until you have Pulverized enemy champs will not want to come near you 4) after you Pulverize you can still use Headbutt to say GTFO!!! 5) the death of enemy minions reduces the CD on Triumphant Roar by two seconds, which for all intensive purposes should automatically refresh the ability after landing a solid Pulverize. Note: It is often wise to retreat a little bit after this combo until you are off cooldown cause without Pulverize you are quite vulnerable to attack and gank. The biggest con to this strategy is Pulverize cost a lot of MP and is your main source of farming minions, which is why I can see Clarity as a very useful spell especially during the laning phase.
As long as I am a LOL player I will post updates on this guide and additions.
Soon to come!!!
- Screenshots of in game CS and KDA ratios.
- A more in depth section on skillz and abilities.
- A section on early, mid, and endgame play and roles.
- A section on team fights who, what, when, why and how?
- Continuous improvements with typos, grammar and flow of the guide.
- Other random things.
In conclusion, I hope you take the time to use all the helpful tips and tricks in this guide to further improve your Alistar game. I have many successful experiences using and I really have spent a great deal of time on the above guide. I honestly have tried to make it this the best Alistar guide possible so please feel free to hit the rate up vote button!
If you have any questions or concerns on this guide please feel free to comment or send me a private message. I don't want any trolling haters so please GTFO and grow up if that is your style.
I would like to take the time to thank some of my real life and in-game buddies who have made my game better and this guide possible.
B00stedmuffin - an amazing real life and in-game buddy who has save my *** more than once in real life and in-game. Just an all around great person. Thanks for introducing me to the game.
MagicPikachu - In-game buddy with some mad tanking skillz and a real concept of game strategy.
Garrolous - Solid in-game buddy that is always good for some pwn mode.
Graveyardsmk - For pumping my ego up so many times allowing me to solo mid on Xin Zhao and carry countless games! So much fun to kill fools with you!!!
And anyone else that I may have forgotten and yet to add...Thank you!
Until next time, "Mess with the bull and you get the horns!!!"