I have a big problem with people taking the champion spotlight for champions far too seriously. Yes, Phreak is a great player. No, he is not very good at building new champs. This is why very few of the builds he creates are the gold standard in high elo play ... yet outside of high elo play, most people follow champion spotlights or riot recommended items ...
If you do this with Viktor, he will be terrible. All the rumors of poor survivability and low late game dps are true with the current 'gold standard' builds for Viktor. But, if you follow my build and guide, you will experience great performance in early game, mid game, and late game. Feel free to look me up in LoL if you want to see proof that Viktor may be the first hard carry mage.
Yes he can't nuke quite as well as some mages, but he can perform much better during extended fights, similarly to ranged dps carries.
After a ton of trial and error, I have found the best run results to be magic pen reds, ap quints, flat armor yellows, and scaling armor blues.
Immediately, you will notice this is very non-standard for a mage build, it is more closely related to a carry build. The reasons being, since E will be your main dps source, early AP and magic pen will help give you great early and mid game damage. The armor and MR runes help with Viktor's survivability problem in mid game and late game. He does not have escapes, unlike many other champs, so some toughness helps endless amounts.
My mastery choices also come from tons of trial and error. The dps tree is standard for mages ... but now the remainder of my choices are once again non standard.
The problem with Viktor once again is no escapes, so he needs to have decent survivability or he is a sitting duck. The flat armor he gets helps very much with early/mid/late game and the MR helps very much with mid/late game. Finally, the health has proven to be priceless. There is a noticeable difference in fight sustainability because of the points in scaling HP and the flat HP you get to start the game.
Notice ... I played a ton of games with him and just payed attention to his weaknesses. Then I built his runes/masteries around countering his early/mid/late game weakenesses.
The items go with the same theme of countering his weaknesses. For lord knows what reason, yellow and blue augmentation have become popular. But why get CDR when his damage is weak, and why get health and nerf damage when you can build health into his mastery tree?
The obvious choice for any serious viktor player that actually wants to get kills and carry his team is red augmentation. The item build order doesnt allow you to add augmentations yet, but you should get your red augmentation first, right after your meki pendant.
So start the game with meki to counter his slight mana regen issues. It is enough to sustain poking with E. Also try use E to last hit a minion while also hitting the person you are laning against. If you do this, the opponent will be low enough on health that if you happen to catch them with W, you can follow up with Q to finish them.
You will quickly farm the 1200g required for red augmentation. Buy it immediately. Now you can one hit all caster minions which makes your farm super easy. Fry all the caster minions and last hit the other minions. This will let you farm extremely quickly.
Get the boots and needlessly large rod next. At this point you will be strong enough to easily bully mid and go gank top or bot when the opportunity presents itself. This will be mid game and because you leveld E to max and have a decent amount of AP (plus the burn of red augmentation) you can easily kills anyone. Mid game is where Viktor really shines, so take advantage to up your farm so you can build the necessary items going into late game.
Deathfire Grasp is the next must. Because late game is a bit rough for viktor, the active ability is priceless. It makes nuking a target as easy as any other mage, and then you get all the benefits of his sustainability to keep the fight going on other targets.
Next Rabadon's and Sorc boots for obvious reasons. Then Voidstaff for the magic pen. At this point you are easily out damaging most other people in the game at this point with all the AP and magic pen you now have.
I personally recommend using zhonya's as the final item to up survivability since viktor is all about sustaining long fights and consistent high damage. Once you are in the fight, you will most likely not be leaving easily.
Unfortunately, Viktor's skills come with a high learning curve since most of them are skill shots ... so practice a lot, and once you get the hang of it, I recommend putting deathfire on 4 and zhonya's on 5.
Get used to leading with deathfire, then q, then laser, and they should be dead. That is the kill combo for viktor. Notice, w is not necessary for kills ... we will talk about w and its uses shortly.
E is your main dps ability and does great damage in early and mid game. You must level it first and get red augmentation. It is quite OP. One point in w is essential for defense. And the rest of your points should go into q since the shield will prove very helpful mid game and late game q will provide a great dps source (along with a great sustaining force ... notice the team ... sustainability).
The only summoner spells viktor can go with are exhaust and ignite. Once again it counters late game damage issues. Exhaust tougher toons and then nuke them. Ignite squishies if they are still up at the end of your kill combo I mentioned earlier. These are two easy counters to damage scaling.
Also, with all the survivability we have built into Viktor, flash proves to be unnecessary. That said, the positioning is very important. Your range on your e and w are excellent so use only those two until your team initiates. Then q and r come into play.
Alright, I will keep this simple.
Kill combo: exhaust>e>q or e>q>ignite.
Tower defense: Throw w up just on the far side of your turret. This will stun melee and ranged opponents attacking the turret, buying your team and your turret time. Immediately after, fire your e through the minions and opponents. This will send most of the opponents running and it one shots the minions, so that as the opponents flee, the turret shoots them. I have successfully defending turrets alone against up to 4 champions. I have yet to get pushed through.
Team fight role: Like I said, before initiation, your E will do great damage from a super safe range, so just poke with e. When your team initiates, try catch as many opponents as you can in w to help your team with the nuking process and drop r on the people caught in w. This is the only way to make r a decent damage doer. Once you get w and r off, q opponents near you who are low on health and poke opponents far from you with r. Once you finish this combo, q should be off cooldown so you can hit someone with q again. All the while, q will be keeping you alive, along with all the other survivability we built in. Throw up exhausts on tougher character before you nuke them, and ignite on fleeing squishies.
VERY IMPORTANT: Don't forget to use zhonya's to save yourself if you get caught. Don't forget to use deathfire on high HP targets before you exhaust them to nuke them.
For teamfights follow this attack pattern and quadra kills will become a common occurrence. I can't remember the last viktor game I had where I didn't score at least one trip kill.
Pros / Cons
Great survivability for a mage
AOE slow/ stun
Best poker in the game with E
Try this build, and you won't regret it. It finally makes Viktor viable. And not only is he viable, but I always get people crying Viktor OP. Or, I get people friending me after words asking if I can make a guide ...
So, to all those individuals who asked me for a guide ... here it is.
Viktor's laser use difficulty, 2 activated items, and 2 conditional dps summoner spells means viktor has s HIGH learning curve. But once you get the hang of him, he is an unstoppable force.
He has great survivability, sustainability, and team fight utility. Take advantage of all three to ensure VIKTORY.
Thank you for reading, and good luck ... I will be sure to periodically add photos and edit bits and pieces as necessary.