Alistar Build Guide by dafunkiedood

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League of Legends Build Guide Author dafunkiedood

Alistar (Tank and AP)

dafunkiedood Last updated on February 10, 2012
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Tanky / Support


Ability Power

Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
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.



Offense: 0

Honor Guard

Defense: 21

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 9

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Alistar, The Minotaur

This is Alistar. I understand he can be played differently with different item builds and such but this is how i play him. Dont hate, flame, or be rude. Only leave comments with something productive to say on how i can do better.

I play Alistar as a tank and an AP.

Tank- High health, takes a lot of hits, and tactically enables the enemy team to take a lot of damage. You have two CC's, an amazing ult, and a constant healing mechanism. These three things makes Alistar a good tank. Throw on some Armor, Magic Resistance, and a ton of HP, and your a bad *** tank.

Ability Power- Can dish out massive damage, with your ult making you invincible and deadly. Awesome power plus awesome CC's and you got yourself an awesome, durable AP monster!

The support section is still in construction. Notification of when it is done will be given.

Through this guide i will be dividing the sections by TANK or AP in the section. Just go to your desired section and read up. Im new to the AP side of Alistar so helpful, non flaming comments is appreciated.

Leave a vote and a comment below.

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Pros / Cons (TANK)


Good base health
Lots of CC
Great fight starter
Ultimate makes him virtually indestructible
Has a constant heal every 12 seconds
Passive works on structures


Doesn't get many kills
Needs some time to get used to
Items are tad expensive
Cant run away that well
Needs to be with another champion to be REALLY effective

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Pros / Cons (AP)


Still not bad health (though the difference of 1500+ health is a big diff)
Lots of CC (still awesome)
Great fight starter (still awesome)
Ultimate makes him virtually indestructible (still awesome)
Has a constant heal every 12 seconds (amped up even more)
Passive works on structures (amped up even more)


Doesn't get many kills (can get some kills if played well)
Needs some time to get used to (this is extremely true)
Items are tad expensive (even more so)
Cant run away that well (still there)
Needs to be with another champion to be REALLY effective (depends on skill level)

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Runes (TANK)


The ever so popular Greater Quintessence of Health give your champion 26 health, with 3, a total of 78HP. This is awesome early game giving you much more durability than you would think and it can allow you to get a non tanky item like a Sapphire Crystal but still have some good starting HP.


The Greater Mark of Magic Penetration gives you magic pen. Now when we are talking about Alistar played as a tank there aren't a lot of suitable Marks for him, so we instead I decide, like many others, to use magic penetration as a slight ability enhancement.


The Greater Seal of Armor gives you 1.4armor per rune, with 9 runes making it a fancy 12.6 starting armor. Now i'm not saying to rely on this but for runes this isn't too shabby. Gives you some nice durability.


The Greater Glyph of Magic Resist gives your character some magic resistance. Keep in mind this is a tank build so all of these runes are based off of defense. With 1.5MR every rune and with 9 runes you get, 13.5 MR. Not shabby either.

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Runes (AP)


The very nice Greater Quintessence of Ability Power gives you in total around 15AP to start the game off, along with Doran's Ring for around 30 AP. This will give your skills an extra umpf that may not seem like much now but will be for that first blood.


The Greater Mark of Magic Penetration gives you magic pen. For this AP part of the build this is perfect. Your spells are just that much more effective. No change here.


The Greater Seal of Replenishment gives you mana per 5 sec, around 3.7 starting off, along with the 5 from your Doran's Ring, and your masteries of 3 mana per 5, giving you 11.7 mana per sec in the starting rounds. Will help amazingly with your laneing capability, and, when you get your Sapphire Crystal you will be able to use your abilities quite often.


The Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction gives your champion 5.85 CD starting game, and will top you off at 20% CD end game. I think this is valuable because it lets you use your oh-so-awesome ultimate a lot more often. Plus you can send enemies flying in the air constantly XD.

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Masteries (TANK)

Being a tank your masteries will want to be based in the Defense section.

Tier 1 - Take Resistance and one point on Tough Skin . Resistance will be good for any AP champions, and Tough Skin will help with minion toughness when you decide to harass or go for a kill.

Tier 2 - Take all the points to Durability . It will help mid to late game.

Tier 3 - Get Veteran's Scars for early game HP, and then Tough Skin and Bladed Armor . Veteran's Scars and Durability are a great combo, and Bladed Armor will again help when you are harassing or going in for a kill. Throw your fourth point on Hardiness .

Tier 4 - Get your points on Initiator and Siege Commander . Initiator will help you "initiate" a fight, and Siege Commander will help you take down turrets.

Tier 5 - Everything on Honor Guard . 1.5% less damage, its just a tank's happiness. Again, fourth point on Hardiness .

Tier 6 - Juggernaut anyone?

Then use your 9 masteries however you like. I use them in utility, and usually pick up Good Hands . Your a tank so if you die you need to be right back in the fight. Then get Improved Recall , which will help you return faster. Then tag Swiftness , for even greater speed.

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Masteries (AP)

Being AP based you will want a lot of your masteries in the Utility section.

Tier 1 - Get Good Hands and Improved Recall . This will make returning to your lane much much quicker.

Tier 2 - Getting Swiftness will help with moving around the map faster, and you need this to initiate fights.

Tier 3 - Your items are expensive. Greed will always be helpful.

Tier 4 - Oh my god, Wealth is a mastery i have been waiting for, FOREVER. This allows you to get an extra potion or 2 slightly more expensive items. Use the other two points on Awareness for some nice exp.

Tier 5 - Intelligence for the CD, and 1 point on Awareness .

Tier 6 - Mastermind anyone?

Then your 9 remaining masteries should be put in the offensive, getting Archmage's Savvy , Sorcery , and Archaic Knowledge .

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Items (TANK)

Here we go. This section should be of pretty big length. I'll go through all my items and ones that could vary depending on the game system.

, Oh how i love you. Great shoes. 15% CD which helps with your Pulverize and Headbutt combos that i will go into later. The real purpose for this is to be able to constantly keep your enemy carries under pressure. This CD reduction helps that a long. Alternatively, Mercury's Treads give you tenacity and some magic resistance. Nice for a tank, but i really prefer the CD. If your finding that you need to get to more places faster, or maybe if your chasing someone and you need that extra speed to Pulverize them and then Headbutt them back into your team, try out Boots of Mobility. If your chasing someone your technically out of combat, activating this items effect, and granting you more movement speed. You can then use your Pulverize Headbutt combo and tag either an assist or kill.

is a very good item for Alistar, given his abylities usually render your target open for a hit. Sheen's effect is that after you use an abylity your next attack deals double what it usually would. Now the common misconseption is to get Lich Bane after this item. Do not. Heres why. If you look at Lich Bane's description it says it deals 100% of your ABYLITY POWER along with your normal attack. We are tanks, not mages, making Lich Bane a nono.

Is a must have for any, and i do mean any, tank. It gives you armor, health, and a constant DPS around you. This DPS is also still in effect when enemies are in the air from your Pulverize. This item will also compliment your passive, Trample.Like i said, MUST HAVE!!! ***Be careful. This counts as damage around turrets and they will turn on you if an enemy champion gets affected.

or or . This really depends on the enemy team. Usually in games the enemy team will be weighted to either AP or AD. In effect, if they are AP heavy, get Force of Nature, if AD, Randuin's Omen. If they have a really AD heavy hitter like Tryndamere then go for Thornmail, as it needs those heavy hitters to get a good use out of its ability. But usually i grab Randuin's Omen and Force of Nature. Randuin's passive slows your enemy, has slight CD, and its active slows all surrounding units. Fabulous for chases or if the enemy stays longer than his welcome in a fight. Force of Nature is the best MR item for a tank. With some HP regen and .03% added onto that, you'll be granted a little bit of durability. Now as i said you need a heavy hitter for Thornmail so keep that in mind!

is an item that many think not a good tank item, for the fact that you need many kills (champions or minions) to achieve its full effect, being 1400 Hp. What they don't realize is that when you are pushing lanes or taking out turrets, your Sunfire Cape and Trample will be doing constant damage around you, killing and last hitting many minions, making this item a viable item. Now if you do think i'm wrong and decide to switch it out i recommend Banshee's Veil. It gives you Magic Resistance, Hp, Mp, and an unfriendly spell doesn't count. Nice item.

is the combination of Phage, Zeal, and Sheen, with all their effects. Its a wonderful item for many characters in the game. What i love about this item is that it has a chance to slow an enemy, AND it doubles your attack damage when you use an ability. Like i mentioned with Sheen, you will frequently be using abilities that render your target open for a hit. This item is very nice. If i don't grab this item i take a Frozen Mallet. It gives you a whapping 700 Hp, 20 AD, and your physical attacks slow your target by a huge 40%. This item keeps who you want close to you close to you, and lets your team chase a lot easier. Even the speedy Teemo wont be able to run!

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Items (AP)

, i used again in the AP side of things. Notice how you will need them to dish out more constant damage. This will still keep the enemy carries under pressure and also deal out more damage to said carries. Again, there is always an alternative, Sorcerer's Shoes can beef up your skills for more damage, however i value the Ionian Boots of Lucidity more so. Now as mentioned in the TANK section, Boots of Mobility are UN VIABLE. You either take Ionian Boots of Lucidity or Sorcerer's Shoes. End of story.

, gives you some Magic Resistance, AND it also decreases the enemy magic resistance, AND it gives you 70 Ability power! What a wonderful item! Since you will still be trying to CC their carry, you will still be somewhat in need of defensive items as you will be in the middle of the fights trying to take their carry out of the equation. Well while you are in the middle, Abyssal Scepter's passive decreasing the enemy teams MR by 20 will help your teams AP caster, ( Viegar, Malzahar, Anivia, etc.) to do more damage. Wonderful item. If you do switch out this item, get an Archangel's Staff. We are going to have close to 2000 mana by end game, with this and its passive, it should be freaking sweet.

, is good for a health needed AP. It gives you (in total) 630 HP, 725MP, and also 80 Ability power. What an item. The HP will help with keeping you able to be in the middle of the fights, again, going after their carry. The MP will help with you able to use your skills in succession, and the Ability Power, well, thats just going to help.

, in this part of the build is viable. Since you have so much AP (450ish end game), this item will help a lot. It has the same effect as Sheen, after an ability double your attack, but instead of doubling your attack, it just adds all of your AP. So if you use this items ability in between your skills, you will be hitting around 580 damage just from your physical attacks. Ho-ly-COW (get it, cow, alistar, no?, ok.)

, is the best AP item in this game. It just gives you 140 AP, then after that, again increases it by another 30%. This item is a must have in any sort of AP type build. I do mean ANY.

, isn't recognized as good in an Alistar build. But any sort of slowing and any sort of CC you can get on an enemy champion will help you kill them. This item's type of CC being a slow. 15% for a multi target spell (your Pulverize and Trample), and 35% for your single target spells (your Headbutt). Like I said, any source of CC you can get on a person is going to help you kill them. On top of that, 500HP and 80AP, make this item, i think, an awesome one. This item i believe can be switched out with Zhonya's Hourglass. Gives you 50 Armor, and 100 ability power, and its passive can save you at low health. Not a bad item to have, but i still prefer the 500HP.

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Skill Sequence (TANK)

Here is how it think of the skills in order from most important to least.

Unbreakable Will
Triumphant Roar

Now some may agree and disagree but before you do think again about how this is a TANK build. I think then you will understand my point of view a little more. All of the stats in the skills will be max level.

is Alistar's ultimate. Like any ultimate, it is your greatest weapon. This skill decreases any and all damage done to Alistar by a huge 70%, and gains 90 AD. Ho-Ly-****. I use this skill when i get into a fighter larger then 3, so a 4v4 or 5v5. And when i do use it its usually around half health. Reason being. Use it at the start no one will attack you. Use it too late and you'll die anyways. So, using it at half health is the best answer :D. Not much more i can go into with it.

is Alistar's Q. In an area around him, Alistar knocks up enemies and deals base damage. Its like Cho Gath's Rupture but without the delay. This move is a great move,
and i use the first point on this always. I also max this skill first.

is Alistar's E. It heals him for a base amount, and nearby allies for half that amount. This is good for when your minions are tanking the turret. If you use this ability right when they are about be hit for their death, then they will survive with barely any hp, and it gives you more time to knock down the turret. Also not shabby in team fights with how often it will be cooling down if there are nearby minions being killed.

is Alistar's W. It jumps Alistar to his target's position, knocks them back, and if they hit any sort of surface they are stunned (like walls or turrets). This skill i keep at lvl 1, and max last, because its cool down is naturally shorter then Alistar's other skills.

is Alistar's passive. When an ability is used you get a temporary DPS skill that delivers base damage to enemies or minions around yourself. Nice combo with Sunfire Cape and Pulverize seeing as both are doing damage to areas around you.

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Skill Sequence (AP)

Now again i will be showing your skills from most valuable to least, keep in mind this is the ABILITY POWERED part of the guide.

Unbreakable Will
Triumphant Roar

The only real change with this is that i moved Triumphant Roar down one level and Headbutt up one level. Since this is AP you will be focusing on damage output, hence this switch. However trample isnt good enough to be above Triumphant Roar seeing at your full build it gives you roughly 280 HP every use.

is still your ultimate, and is still at the top of things. It renders you basically indestructible, and should be used when in the middle of a team fight, at about half health. No real change here.

is still the ability i think is best. Since it deals damage around you and knocks up enemy champions, its still above Headbutt. It is also awesome for chases if you have some speed.

, again, got moved up because of its awesome damage out put. At full build, this skill will be doing around 580 damage (base) per hit. That is some awesome sauce. Add on how it jumps you to the enemy character, knocks them back, and potentially stuns them if they hit a surface, and oh my goodness, awesome skill.

, as i said, got moved down because this is a damage out put guide. But i still value its healing of 280HP every usage, and being to use it every 10 seconds, and healing your team for half that amount. Like i said it got moved down only because this is a damage output guide, I still value this skill.

just doesn't have enough damage output to be up higher in this ranking. Only gives you 10% of your ability power, and is only active when you have a skill going. Its still a useful passive, it just isnt more valuable then your other skills.

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Summoner Spells (BOTH)


Flash, Ghost, Ignite

is good because it teleports you to your cursors location with no channeling. GREAT to get out of a tight spot if used correctly. Still just plain good to run if your in a lane and cant flash to a different level ex, if your above baron flashing down to baron then proceeding to get the hell out.

is good for 2 things. Running, and Chasing. Running because if your behind a many minions you can slip past them quite easily. Chasing is exactly visa versa, if your needing to get through minions to take OUT a player.

is awesome because if your just starting a game, and you got your opponent down to like 50 hp, just pop Ignite and it will grab you that First Blood everyone loves to have.

Not too bad:

Clairvoyance, Teleport, Fortify, Cleanse

Is nice because at the start of the game you can use it to view your enemies platform and see who is going where, thus planning teams to best beat them. This skill I don't use too much because using Ignite for first blood, and having Flash or Ghost to get out of a tight spot i think is more valuable, but if you want this go for it.

Is fancy because it lets you get places WITH MINIONS OR ALLIED TURRETS faster. Now i bolded those letters because they are the reason this skill goes in the "Not too bad" section. Early game this skill will be fabulous, being able to go back to your base and then again to your lane in a matter of seconds is crucial, but late game there has to be some sort of minion to teleport you to the enemy base. Still not a bad skill.

is nice because it guards your turret's with an indestructible forcefield, deals splash damage, and attacks twice as fast. This is nice if your turret is being attacked by a huge wave of minions because of the splash damage, and its also nice in team fights around your allied turret because of its double attack speed. The reason this is in "Not too bad" section is because of its insane CD. It takes way too long even for its wonderful effects.

removes all CC effects on you like binds, snares, stuns, all of that EXCEPT for suppresses (suppresses disables your summoner spells as well). I put this in the "Not too bad" section because you can A, get this effect in game through Quick Silver Sash, and also because i weigh Ignite and Ghost or Flash just more valuable.


Heal and Clarity, Smite, Revive, and Rally.

and are no no's because mainly they are used as crutches for beginning players. Just...No...

... Clearly this build doesn't say jungle...

If you need this skill you are dying way too much...Just...NO!!!

is pretty useless...JUST NO!!!!

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Team Work (TANK)

Remember Alistar is a TANK (at least in this build) so he should be played according to the next 3 rules. Follow these and you should be pretty awesome.

1. Do not chase (situational)
2. Focus on the enemies carries
3. Never go solo

Rule 1. Do not chase. (situational) My definition of a tank is the character that takes all the damage from the enemy team and tries to focus it on himself. Hence, you must be in the middle of the action in order to accomplish this. If you take off chasing a single character then your role as tank has gone down the tubes, and you will most likely lose the fight. The exception to this rule is that if your team pushes the whole enemy team back then you can chase the WHOLE TEAM. But who exactly do you concentrate on when you are in the fight? Rule 2 goes over that.

Rule 2. Focus on the enemies carries. Following this rule hinders the enemy team in two ways. Number one, when you do this, their carry is out of the way, and most of their DPS is now put on a crutch. Number two, this sort of "forces" them to focus on getting you off their carry, allowing your team to come in and do some major damage. This rule is a huge one.

Rule 3. Never go solo. All of the ****py tanks are the ones that are off doing their own business solo. How can you start a fight, take out the carry, or take any concentrated damage if your off doing your own business? Your the tank! The backbone of the defense in your team! Act like it and be in the fight!

These three rules set up a basis for a good tank. Follow them and you'll be alright.

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Team Work (AP)

In this part of the guide Alistar is an AP/Melee dude. Again i haven't played him much as an AP but i have come up with 3 rules again that can make you not terrible.

Rule 1. Dont be over aggressive/bearing
Rule 2. Get a lot of use out of Headbutt
Rule 3. Dont be afraid to rely on allies

Rule 1. Dont be over aggressive/bearing This rule is kind of the same as the TANK's rule, do not chase. But with this one it means to not think your indestructible and take on 3 or 4 people at once. Given you have a lot of HP for an AP character, you still shouldnt take on more then 2 people at once. You just dont have that shock and awe type of power a player like Annie has.

Rule 2. Get a lot of use out of Headbutt. is your most powerful skill (1v1 damage wise). You should really get the most use out of it. So when you are 1v1, use your Pulverize to get positioning, and really take time to think where you should Headbutt them next. Weather it be into your team, towards a turret, into a wall, just think strategically when you use this.

Rule 3. Dont be afraid to rely on allies. You have 4 other people there to help you dominate and win. Dont be afraid to say "hey i need help at bot" or "hey Corki come help me push this turret". They want to win too. Most players are all high and mighty and think that only their way works, so be open to advice and strategies your team uses as well.

These rules have been set up so you can be a valuable asset to your team. Follow them and you will be.

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Skill Useage (BOTH)

Now i've gone through your role in teamwork and how you should be able to add to the team, but i haven't gone through how to use your skill combos. This section of the guide will do that.

Alistar really only has three in depth skills. Unbreakable Will, Pulverize, and Headbutt.

I've gone through how you use Unbreakable Will at half health in a team fight because of either way it could go. Use it too late and you will die, use it too early and you'll waste it. I wanted to say that you should also be in the middle, and focused on when you use this skill, to get its full use. Be taking a lot of damage and THEN use this skill.

Now there are two ways to use Pulverize and Headbutt. You can either lead with Headbutt into some sort of wall or turret and stun them, then come up and pop them up. Or you could Pulverize them up, position yourself, and then Headbutt them back into your team or into another surface for another stun. Really it is going to be based off of the situation.

Situations to use then :
When waiting in a bush
When your turret is under fire
To help a friend escape (if you are RIGHT behind them)
To knock the enemy back into your turret
To take the heavy hitter of their team out of a fight

Situations to use then :
When in the middle of a fight
When up agaisnt another melee character
When helping an ally escape (when your behind the chaser)
If they are running from your turret at low hp
To get positioning on your knock out target (usually lowest health)

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Change Log

If you have suggestions for my build, or you see typo's, let me know in the comment section.

Oct 29/2011: Build created!
Oct 30/2011: Added Boots of Mobility and Randuin's Omen as optional items, thanks Khair ad Din!
Oct 30/2011: Added Pictures
Oct 30/2011: 1,000 VIEWS!!!
Nov 02/2011: Added the whole new section of Ability Power!
Nov 03/2011: 2,000 VIEWS!!!
Nov 05/2011: 3,000 VIEWS!!!
Nov 07/2011: 4,000 VIEWS!!!
Nov 10/2011: 5,000 VIEWS!!!
Nov 25/2011: 10,000 VIEWZ!!!
Dec 11/2011: 20,000 VIEWZ!!!
Dec 28/2011: 30,000 VIEWZ!!!!
Jan 06/2012: 40,000 VIEWZ!!!!
Jan 13/2012: 50,000 VIEWZ!!!!