Annie Build Guide by D3US
Not Updated For Current Season
This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.
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.
Pros / Cons
- I choose AP quints ( Greater Quintessence of Ability Power) because Annie is a mage so she needs ability power. If you're questioning this, you're probably not at the point where you should buy runes yet anyway. (Don't buy runes till level 20, otherwise it's a waste of money.)
- I choose magic penetration reds ( Greater Mark of Magic Penetration) because Annie is a mage and thus needs magic penetration. This is, again, not debatable. Now what IS debatable is what to choose for yellows and blues.
- I choose mana regeneration per level yellows ( Greater Seal of Scaling Mana Regeneration) because Annie needs a little bit of mana regen help because she is a mage and you should be spamming her spells, especially to get her stun up (which i'll talk about later.) The reason I choose per level is because in the early game, the main spell you're going to be casting is your q, which the mana cost is refunded for if you kill an enemy unit with it.
- I choose ability power per level blues ( Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power) because you probably shouldn't be wasting too much of your mana early game harassing anyway, and as soon as you hit level 6 or so the per level blues outweigh the flat ap blues. Thus, your combo will hit harder.
- Summoner's Wrath because I use ignite.
- Mental Force because you need AP.
- Sorcery because you want low cooldowns to work up your stun.
- Arcane Knowledge because you want to cut through magic resist.
- Havoc to increase damage output and it's the only one that makes sense at this point in the tree.
- Blast for moar ap
- Archmage see above
so Tibbers can finish burning off those squishies.
- Summoner's Insight because I use flash.
- Expanded Mind because she is a caster and needs mana.
- Improved Recall because why spend 1 more second recalling?
- Meditation to help with mana issues.
- Runic Affinity for the gift that keeps on giving.
- Ignite to finish off your laning opponent or to finish a carry in a team fight. Goes well with Tibbers burning.
- Flash for two reasons. Annie needs an escape mechanism, and you can also use it to reposition yourself for a good stun.
- Smite is something your jungler has. Don't worry about it.
- Surge the ability power boost is not enough to make this viable.
- Revive NO!
Just go with flash + ignite. Seriously.
Pyromania is Annie's passive. After casting four spells, she gets a stun. You can see the stacks at the bottom of the screen, along with any other buffs on you. When the stun is up, you will see wind swirling around Annie. You can spam Incinerate and Molten Shield to work up the stacks on the stun even when no enemies are around. The important thing to know about this spell is that you can use any offensive ability for the stun, so if a team fight if a team fight is coming up, definitely save it to use with Summon: Tibbers or Incinerate so that it hits more than one person. Keep in mind that this passive gives Annie her ability to combo.
Disintegrate is Annie's q. This is a fireball. It is a target ability, not a skill shot. You have to get close to use it. This can stun people if your passive is up, but it will only stun one target. The important thing to know about this is that if it kills an enemy unit, the mana cost is refunded. This is how you farm. Annie's auto attack animation is pretty slow and awkward so don't rely on that unless disintegrate is on cooldown. You can also use disintegrate to harass the enemy champ without having to have a clear shot (like skill shots need), but be wary of your mana consumption.
Incinerate is Annie's w. This shoots fire in a cone in front of her. This is a good way to stun multiple people when Pyromania is up because of the fairly large AoE. If Tibbers is not up, then this is your only AoE stun. Combo this with Disintegrate for a very strong nuke.
Molten Shield is Annie's e. This puts up a shield around her, giving her increased armor and magic resist and dealing magic damage back to anybody who uses basic attacks on her. This is not too effective in the laning phase since most of the people you will lane against won't attack you with basic attacks, but it can still be useful for getting up your stun at a low mana cost. You should put this up before going in for a combo so that you come out on top.
Summon: Tibbers is Annie's r. This summons a giant bear to destroy all who threaten Annie. Wait until the enemies are grouped together for the initial nuke. Use Pyromania to nuke their entire team with Tibbers and Incinerate. After Tibbers has been summoned, order him around by pressing r, making sure to try to make Tibbers attack the carries and be in the general vicinity of most of their team so that they take damage from his burning.
Max Disintegrate first for easy early farm and the ability to trade off favorably if the enemy comes in to harass. Max Incinerate for easy farm (use this on the ranged minions to clear them immediately) and also for a strong nuke in team fights. Of course, get Tibbers whenever possible. I max Molten Shield last because it is not as useful in the laning phase and it's pretty important to max Incinerate to win those early team fights.
Sorcerer's Shoes are a very good pick for pretty much every mage. I don't see any viable replacement for these on Annie.
Rabadon's Deathcap is also very necessary, especially considering the rest of your build is AP. Whether or not you rush this depends on the situation, but I'd save it for after you got kage's lucky pick and Tear of the Goddess.
Rylai's Crystal Scepter is debatable. Yes, i know Annie has an AoE stun and thus doesn't need the passive for effective crowd control. Your stun isn't always up, though. Also, if you chain your AoE stun into an AoE slow, it makes for a very nasty situation for the enemies. Also, without this in your item build you would be very squishy unless you made up for it with something like Rod of Ages.
Deathfire Grasp is pretty much core in my opinion. It's like having another Disintegrate, and who doesn't want that? Oh. The enemies. That's right.
Archangel's Staff is something I haven't seen in many other Annie builds. I find that I'm spamming spells anyway to get up my stun, so why not have the added bonus that I get more AP while I'm working up my stun? Of course, it's really not worth getting until after you get enough extra mana from the Tear of the Goddess.
Zhonya's Hourglass is a very nice pick for a last item if you don't know what else to get. A lot of AP here and if they start focusing you, just pop the stasis and pray that your team (and Tibbers) goes to work on them.
These items are for a general build and should not be taken as the best way to respond to every situation. If the enemy starts getting magic resist, for example, then you want to respond with either Abyssal Scepter or Void Staff. You should probably replace the Zhonya's Hourglass if you need a situational item like this, as the other items are pretty key to Annie's gameplay. Also, yes, you can replace the Rylai's Crystal Scepter if you really feel like Rod of Ages is the way you want to go to help your squishiness.
Situational / Alternate Items
If you are going against a team with a lot of crowd control:
- You may want to consider Banshee's Veil. This will give you a spell shield to help fight CC. You will also be getting a little hp and magic resist here which will cure a little bit of your squishiness. ALSO you get more mana, so if you get this item do NOT replace Archangel's Staff with this. The extra mana from the veil will go quite nicely with the passive AP increase from the staff.
- Another option to consider is the Quicksilver Sash, which will just give you magic resist with basically cleanse, to remove any debuffs on you. I personally think banshee's veil would be better if you can afford it.
- Moonflair Spellblade is viable because it gives you ability power and tenacity to keep you from getting cc'd to death. This is an alternative to Mercury's Treads, which would also give you tenacity, but you would be giving up the magic penetration from Sorcerer's Shoes for it.
If your enemies are building magic resist:
- Abyssal Scepter is a VERY nice choice. I almost always go with this item if the enemy is getting magic resist. Annie has to get close to use her spells anyway, so the enemies she is attacking will always be in the vicinity of this debuffing aura.
- You may also choose to go with Void Staff, which gives you a nice amount of ability power and magic penetration. This is almost always a better option than Haunting Guise.
- I must mention Haunting Guise, however much i prefer void staff to it. If the enemy starts building magic resist early against you, or they pull a scarra and just go flat magic resist runes on you, this may be a good choice for early game. I would replace this with void staff as soon as possible.
- If you need more mana regen or lower cooldowns because your jungler isn't giving you blue for some reason, then you may want to consider getting Athene's Unholy Grail. I would not recommend getting Morello's Evil Tome, because Annie relies more on burst damage than sustained dps, so the active goes to waste.
- Will of the Ancients is a nice item to get, so you can have some sustain if the enemy has champs with good harass.
- Don't get Mejai's Soulstealer. The AP is nice, but it is such a risky item and Annie has no escape mechanism. If you really feel like the enemies just can't touch you, go ahead and get it, but don't blame me if Nocturne decides he needs to ult you to make sure you don't get those stacks.
Okay so I don't want this to be a huge block of text that nobody reads, so I'm going to try to be as short and sweet and to the point as possible.
- Use Disintegrate to farm minions early game. It doesn't cost mana.
- After level 2, use Disintegrate + Incinerate with your stun Pyromania to do some work on the enemy champ.
- When getting wraiths, use Incinerate to stun, Disintegrate on the blue one, and make sure to turn on Molten Shield to clear them quick.
- Spam Incinerate and Molten Shield ALL THE TIME. This will not only help to work up your stun, but also helps to work up that extra mana and AP from Archangel's Staff.
- Let them see your bear Tibbers.
Tips for Specific Matchups
In this section, I hope to give you enough information from my own experience in mid so that you will know how to fight against most if not all of the people you will encounter as your opponent for the laning phase.
This should be a fairly easy matchup. Ahri gets owned by cc and high burst damage, which is what Annie excels at. If she throws out her orb past you, try to dodge it on the way back. Stay behind your creep to try to make it difficult for her to land her charm on you. Don't be afraid to walk up to her and harass her with Disintegrate if she gets too close.
Before level 6, this is too easy. Whenever Akali uses her Mark of the Assassin on you, just stay away until the mark is gone. If she manages to proc that, it will deal high damage. After level 6, she is able to pull some crazy stuff. If she puts a mark on you and then goes into her Twilight Shroud, back up. She is probably about to Shadow Dance to you. Harass her with Disintegrate and Incinerate a lot early on to deny her of farm and hope you can get your ult before she gets hers so you can finish her off before level 6.
This can be a nasty matchup. Anivia has a long range stun, which is strong against Annie. Just try to sit and farm for most of the laning phase. That's what he's going to be doing too, probably. If he comes in, don't be afraid to exchange hits. Most of the time you should trade off favorably if you get in close enough to use your skills on him.
Farm with Disintegrate. After you use it, back up just in case she comes in to harass you when you don't have it up. If you see her use Disintegrate or Incinerate, try to harass her. Follow my guide and you'll be fine! :D
Yeah Brand is a nasty counter pick to Annie. You're not gonna have fun if you have to fight him. His long range harass which can be combo'd into a stun is very nasty against Annie. Try to avoid this matchup if you are in draft pick. If you have to fight against him, then just sit back and farm. Don't get too close or he will own you. If he does manage to land a combo on you, then go in and trade blows in an attempt to come out on top. Just play safe.
Not Annie's favorite fight. Cassiopeia can harass at a long range with her poison. Just try to avoid her poison skills and farm. If she is foolish enough to get close to you without poisoning you first, then punish her. If you are poisoned, then BACK OFF. Her twin fangs will destroy you.
It is possible you might see AP Ezreal in mid. If this happens, then don't bother trying to stay behind your minions because he won't level up his q anyway. Just farm and if he blinks to you then stun him and make him pay for it. Try to deny him of farm by zoning him (aka have your stun up and walk around the creep to make it dangerous for him to be around them).
This matchup isn't too bad since he has to get close up to drain. His e will be bad because of its range, but unless he levels it up first, it shouldn't be too much of a pain to you. Just farm and punish him if he gets too close.
Easy peesy. Don't underestimate his burst, and definitely expect him to try to poke at you a lot. If he q's, you q. Trade blows with him if you have to and then back off. Just remember that Fizz becomes more effective as the fight wears on because his Seastone Trident deals damage based on how much HP you are missing.
Yes, I know Galio is not a very common mid. But I have seen it before, and it pretty much means that your lane is going to be a farming lane. Your harass pretty much does nothing, since he is an evil demon creature who has been designed specifically to be built so that your spells do nothing to him (magic resist on him gives him more AP). Just farm. Don't be stupid and try to kill him because your skills won't do as much as you think they will.
Meh. Gragas has some long range on his barrels, but he doesn't really have too much cc to worry about. I haven't played against enough Gragass to be able to tell you much. Just farm and keep an eye on your positioning. You don't want him to combo you by pushing you back with his ulti.
Well this cute little guy hates the same champs you hate! At least you can talk about that while you're busy farming it up. If he tries something stupid like stun + missile combo or anything else that would put him out of position, then just combo him with a stun like you would anybody else. It's not too hard to make him pay for a mistake. Just don't go in and try to kill him unless you're SURE you can do it and make it out alive. His turrets do a lot more than you think they would.
Be careful of his little red Lay Waste thingys. If you go in to combo, he'll probably turn on Defile, so keep in mind you'll be taking a little extra damage. He is all about sustained DPS, so quick burst in and out will be fine, as long as you stay out of range for the most part.
I personally don't like playing against Kassadin no matter who I'm playing as. However, as Annie you have an advantage before level 6. Make sure you harass him with your q whenever he comes to farm. You want to have more hp than him when level 6 comes around. Riftwalk is really annoying.
I love going against a Katarina when I'm Annie. I know Annie isn't a direct counter to her, really, since Annie's stun is not exactly reliable. Still, it's hilarious when she tries to ulti you and you just q her and she's done. After level 6, try to have your stun up whenever she is around as much as possible.
This guy has been seen more as a solo top recently, but it is still very possible to see him mid. If this is the case, then make sure to stay behind your minions so he can't q you. If you have a Mark of the Storm on you, then you probably want to back off until it goes away. If he comes in to stun you, try to stun him first. Then finish your combo and back off.
LB is a nasty mid. Try to just farm. You have to have quick hands for this matchup, and I personally recommend smartcasting if you do have to go against LB. If she tries to come in for a combo, stun her when she jumps to you. This is going to be much harder to pull off since they increased the missile speed of sigil of silence. Just be careful and don't feed her. Stay behind your minions so she can't land her Ethereal Chains.
Lux will try to keep you off your farm with her long range harass. Try to stay behind two of your minions so she can't land her q on you. If she does miss a q, then go in for a combo if you can. Not too hard of a matchup if you can do this.
This guy is a strong laner. If he uses his Malefic Visions on you, then he's probably close enough for you to combo. Keep that in mind. You may want to replace Ignite with Cleanse so you can escape his ulti.
He doesn't have to use mana to farm very effectively. Luckily, you don't have to either in the very early levels. He has to get up close, so try to q him every once in a while. Keep an eye on your mana consumption, though.
She farms like a boss. Try to q her to force her to leave the lane so you can catch up on farm. If you go for a kill, make sure she just used her Dark Binding so you don't get snared in an unfortunate spot. Stay behind your minions to dodge. You may also want to consider getting a spell shield or something like Cleanse.
She hates the same people you hate. You two and Heimerdinger should make a club. The "fu Brand" club. Anyway, just stay away from the ball as much as you can. Don't underestimate her burst, especially after she has moved the ball. They decreased the ap ratio on her q, but increased it on her w, so the heavy burst will probably come from the command:dissonance.
Hey, another one for the "fu Brand" club. If he snares you, then combo him because he is very close and probably about to q you. Not much to say about this one. Just farm, don't get out of position, and if he seems to be moving in on you then back off because he might be trying to snare you for a gank.
This guy is not too different from you. You'll both be farming with your q, you'll both be using a stun to combo, and you both are massive nukers with not much to say for escape mechanisms. However, his stun is more reliable and has a very different AoE than yours. It also has a much bigger range. He is a pretty good counter pick to you, so just try not to feed. Stay away from him because his stun combo hits hard.
Eh everybody hates Viktor. C'mon I mean he has a laser of death. How OP is that? Anyway try to dodge his little laser and don't be afraid to go in and burst him if he tries to mess with you. Besides that, farm it up.
I hate you Xerath. You and Brand can go make an "I'm gonna go die in a hole now" club. You two can have fun stunning each other at such ridiculously large ranges. Seriously, if this guy puts his mage chains on you then just back off as fast as possible. Also, if he goes into his "I'm going to sit here and have stupidly OP range" mode ( locus of power), then back off until he's done.
Ziggs is such a cute little guy. I hate his harass, though. If he hasn't auto attacked in a while, then stay away from him until he does on a minion or something. Don't engage him unless you have your stun up so you are sure you can land both q and w on him.
Thanks for reading my Annie guide! If you liked it, please say so by upvoting it at the top. Feel free to comment and ask any questions. I will gladly consider any suggestion!
Have fun out there! Make sure your Annie is okay!