Brand Build Guide by Phil Collins
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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.
Hello friends and welcome to my Brand guide. You may remember me from my old Darius guide. I noticed that there is a lack of a good Brand guide on this site that actually puts out the right information, so I'm writing this. Enjoy
(OG Brand splash art is always king!)
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist
Greater Seal of Armor
Greater Quintessence of Scaling Ability Power
Because Brand is not a versatile bruiser like Renekton who can use multiple rune pages for different situations, your runes are mainly going to be standard.
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration because Brand relies on his base damage and Blaze for killing potential.
Greater Seal of Armor is a much better alternative to scaling armor because Brand usually gets hard countered by assassins with harass like Zed.
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist this is preference. Take flat MR if you're againstassholes such as LeBlanc.
Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
When it comes to other runes you generally want to tailor your runes to your own playstyle. If you find yourself being a passive farmer you may want to swap out the armor seals for Greater Seal of Health, etc. Find your own play-style and adjust accordingly.
Again, you are still not as versatile as bruisers so if you swap runes make sure they're focused on dealing more damage or surviving lane, not out-tanking your opponent.
Fairly standard 21/0/9 on Brand. As usual, the defense page is highly wasted on Brand if you ever decide to use it.
Brand's abilities set his targets ablaze upon damaging them, dealing 8% of their maximum health as magic damage over 4 seconds (capped at 320 against monsters), and empowering his abilities against them.
Great passive for Brand because it enables you to do damage without much damage items. A lot of Brands damage comes from his passive and no one actually realizes this. Obviously knowing how long your targets are set ablaze for is crucial for landing your abilities.
Brand launches a fireball in the target direction that deals magic damage to the first enemy it hits.
MAGIC DAMAGE: 80 / 120 / 160 / 200 / 240 (+ 65% AP)
If the target is ablaze, they are stunned for 2 seconds.
Simple one point wonder. While it does have the highest AP ratio, it is also extremely unreliable to hit because of its slow speed and short range compared to other skillshots. On the bright side, with 40% CDR, Sear basically becomes a free stun every 5 seconds. You must learn how to land the fireball because the stun can mean life or death for you.
- Pillar of Flame:
ACTIVE: After a 0.625-second delay, Brand makes the target area erupt in flame, dealing magic damage to enemies within.
MAGIC DAMAGE: 75 / 120 / 165 / 210 / 255 (+ 60% AP)
If the target is ablaze, Pillar of Flame deals 25% additional damage.
ENHANCED MAGIC DAMAGE: 93.75 / 150 / 206.25 / 262.50 / 318.75 (+ 75% AP)
Brand's most important skill. The fact that Pillar of Flame does a boatload of damage is already a good enough reason to max it first. Coupled with the fact that you can hit people behind minions or hit multiple people at once without setting them ablaze, makes Pillar of Flame the #1 skill for you to max.
A common full damage combo would be Conflagration -> Sear -> Pillar of Flame. This stuns the opponent, allowing you to hit them with an empowered Pillar of Flame.
ACTIVE: Brand sets the target enemy aflame, dealing magic damage.
MAGIC DAMAGE: 70 / 105 / 140 / 175 / 210 (+ 55% AP)
If the target is ablaze, Conflagration also spreads to enemies around the target.
Conflagration is maxed second because of the fact that while it is guaranteed damage (point and click), it is also the ability with the shortest range in Brands arsenal, along with a subpar AP ratio. With Rylai's Crystal Scepter, this ability becomes basically a free 40% slow.
Also a cool thing to note is that you can clear minions by Pillar of Flame -> Conflagration.
ACTIVE: Brand launches a fireball at the target enemy that bounces between nearby enemies up to four times, dealing magic damage each time.
MAGIC DAMAGE: 150 / 250 / 350 (+ 50% AP)
If the target is ablaze, Pyroclasm's next bounce prioritizes enemy champions.
A niche ultimate with a high potential of damage. The key thing to do here is to cast it when two champions are grouped together. This is why skirmishes with Brand usually don't end well. However, this ultimate is known for being unreliable because it may bounce to nearby minions. As such, you may want to set the target ablaze first if it is an option.
Flash/ Ignite for obvious reasons. To increase Brands burst damage while having an escape. All other summoners on Brand are wasted so to say.
Why not Barrier/ Heal?
First of all taking Heal in mid is a terrible rookie mistake because your enemy would most likely have ignite for you. It also reduces your damage by a significant amount because of your lack of finishing power. What are you gonna do, heal yourself for the extra movespeed and auto them to death? Barrier is slightly more viable but you shouldn't be getting a 2nd defensive summoner on Brand since you want to snowball into mid game, not farm to late game like ADCs.
Not recommended, but it works against pokers like Jayce.
Viable start if you're against a braindead assassin like Zed
I prefer these boots over sorcs purely because you can get 40% CDR without having to use runes for it. If you needed magic pen Void Staff would do you justice.
It's your choice if you want to use these boots. But keep in mind that flat magic pen sucks later on while CDR is good all game.
If you buy this at the right time this item is actually broken as **** against assassins.
Extremely broken on Brand because it's so cost efficient. Go to item to finish first. The CDR is great for dealing damage.
Great item for Brand because its passive synergizes with your passive. The magic pen is also tasty. Melting tanks has never been easier with this item.
Good item because it gives Brand self-peel and kite power, while also increasing the damage on Liandry's Torment. Great mid game item that you should look to finish very soon.
Not recommended because it limits your damage potential. But the bubble is good if your teamfights get messy due to the fact that it may block a random AOE stun from the likes of Sejuani.
This is usually bad but on the off-chance you're against a Kassadin or Fizz who likes to get in your face this may actually screw them over pretty hard. Consider wisely.
I don't know why so many people buy this item on Brand. This item is absolute trash on Brand, given the fact that:
1. He's not a skill spammer like Ahri.
2. The item is severely outclassed by Morellonomicon
3. It gives you defensive stats which is a waste of gold. Most mages get defensive items with benefits to their damage.
4. The upgrade, Athene's Unholy Grail, is not only overpriced, but it gives subpar AP and redundant mana regeneration passives.
5. Brand has no problems managing his mana because he doesn't need to use it to stay in lane unlike Swain or Karthus.
Good item but there is usually no room for it. Brand can clear waves with no problem and he does not have a long range ability to constantly proc Luden's Echo.
Great item to finish off your build if you are in no danger of being dived. Makes Brand melt anyone within Conflagration radius.
Complete waste on Brand because this item focuses on slowly ramping up power, perfect for late game tanks such as Maokai. Brand is a mid game burst mage, there is no room for defensively focused items.
Decent item but it would take you forever to get it. Double dorans would net you the same mana efficiency except with HP and damage.
Disclaimer: Matchups generally don't matter if you are genuinely better or worse than your opponent so don't take what you see below for granted.
Karthus sucks in lane and as a mage with huge burst, Brand can usually bully him out of lane. However you probably can't kill him because he will never be in range of your stun so just harass with Pillar of Flame and aim to out-cs him.
Kat loses to Brand because Brand has an on demand stun and if she Shunpos to harass you, you can just one shot her. However don't stand there like an idiot and take free Bouncing Blades or you may end up dying.
Kayle is way too squishy to deal with you, especially early game when she is slow as ****. You can usually get free Pillar of Flames on her if you play it right. As usual, don't get baited by her ultimate.
Kennen is basically the same deal with Kayle, where he needs to autoattack you to harass you, which makes him stops in place, perfect for a Pillar of Flame. He generally can't do anything against you because it puts him in risk. However he is a bit more dangerous because he can flash+ult you, forcing your own flash because if you don't, you're either going to get ganked or you will eat Kennens whole combo.
If you don't play ***** you win. Liss sucks against Brand because Pillar of Flame outranges her Q and you can still cast spells if she snares you with her W. Her autoattack range is also short as hell. Just don't get cocky or else you may get ganked and ulted by liss.
This matchup is easy as hell because Ryze has no pushing power and you can constantly pressure him since his main damage gets blocked by minions. Also he has no mobility so you can just stun him and kill this bald asshole.
TF has no mobility and mana issues early game so you can generally bully him. If you don't snowball however, he's just going to become a farm bot, while out-pushing and out-roaming you.
While Viktor may have the potential to out damage you late game, you outrange him and you have much better base values so you can win trades easily early game and snowball. Again, champs with no mobility sucks against Brand and Viktor is no exception.
While Zyra has the superior utility and range, it's also super predictable and require almost no effort to dodge. If their Zyra knows what he's doing this just becomes a farm lane. Otherwise, you can usually one shot her if your Sear doesn't get blocked by her plants.
Even or challenging lanes:
Brand can generally one shot Ahri, however she slightly outranges you and she can dodge all your skills and kill you if she plays it right. So the key thing here is to let her come to you, don't engage her. Remember that her Q is extremely predictable and she sucks pre-6 so take advantage of your damage during that time.
The good thing about Akali is that she gets bullied super hard pre-6 and she jumps in your face later on, which allows you to get a free kill. The downside, however, is that she can one shot you as well, but she can do it much easier because all her skills are point and click. Play with caution and remember to pink ward.
Smart Anivias will play the poke game because she outranges you. However dumb anivias would initiate on you, which means you can kill her because your stun comes out a lot faster than hers. When she hits 6 it basically becomes a farm lane. The thing here is to try to pop her egg and get your jungler to gank her because she is super squishy.
Annie is irritating because she is a low-risk high reward champion who gets to have a targeted stun and super high base damage. The good thing is that Pillar of Flame outranges her so you basically have to play poke in this matchup. When its 6 you better have some wards or else you'll get flash+tibbers and raped by their jungler.
Brand used to lose super hard against Azir because of his superior poke and CC, but now Azir is nerfed too hard so this lane has become a lot more even. Azir can no longer one shot you from afar and has basically become a poke champion. While he can poke you down with no effort, you can usually kill him if you land one stun because he is super squishy.
Ekko is bad against Brand because he's AP and he needs to farm in melee range. However the bad thing here is that he can dodge your pillar with a Parallel Convergence + Phase Dive combo and then kill you in 2 seconds. What you do here is walk towards him like you're about to harass him and bait Phase Dive before you start harassing him. Timewinder is super easy to dodge so don't worry about it.
Annoying and stereotypical ''i'll save the world'' champion. This lane basically becomes a farm lane unless the Jayce is stupid and jumps in with melee, in which you can just instagib him.
While Brand can harass Malzahar with no problem because Malzahar gets outranged, Malzahar can instagib you if you miss your stun. You can usually force Malzahar out of lane pre-6 when his E does no damage and he does not have his ultimate yet. When he hits 6 you're basically going to be farming the lane. Do not ever engage him if he has his ult because if you play aggressive it is super easy for malz to silence you and face laser you.
Swain usually loses to Brand in lane because Swain can't farm under tower and Brand just simply outranges and outdamages Swain in lane. However, if you let Swain snare and get a full combo on you mid-game you're probably dead. Swain does a **** ton of single target damage.
The good thing here is that Varus' main harass slows him down, which makes it much easier for you to harass him. However the deal breaker is that he massively outranges you and whenever his ult is up it's basically a free gank for their jungler. Pre-6 he loses the lane because of mana issues, however. You probably won't do anything to this guy when he has his tear though so just farm the lane.
Boring farm lane. Xeraths harass is extremely easy to dodge, but he also massively outranges you. You both won't be doing damage to each other so just try to out-cs him.
Same as Xerath except more annoying.
The snake woman counters you pretty hard because her harass does a **** ton of damage and gives her movespeed so she can dodge your skills. She also kits you super hard with her E and she does not need to get in position to stun you unlike your Sear. The one advantage you have against her is that you get to build damage earlier while cass needs to go Tear of the Goddess so get some jungle pressure on her.
Pre-6 this lane is easy but when she hits 6 it is so easy for Diana to just mash buttons and one shot you. The more annoying thing is that most Dianas rush Abyssal Scepter against AP mages like you which means she gets to instagib you and you can't do anything about it. However she does have no escape so don't hesitate to counterattack if you see fit.
Anti-mage. Kassadin is super mobile so you won't be killing him anytime soon. Coupled with the fact that he has a shield for magic damage and high base MR and base damage, you're just going to get poked out of lane every single time you come back. The good thing is that you can play the farming game pre-6.
Lux is just outright frustrating simply because she's super long ranged and she can set up ganks against you with little to no effort required at all. You should probably just push this lane 24/7 because if you don't Lux can just get free harass on you which hurts like a biitch.
Morgana isn't exactly hard to lane against but she's more of the kind of champion who just counters everything you do. She can also just spell shield herself and ult you whenever she feels like it and you won't be able to do anything about it since you have no escape. God forbid you get ganked. She also outpushes you super hard so you're probably going to get out-csed and raped later on.
Not only does Orianna massively outrange you, she also does more damage than you along with having a **** ton of utility to go along with it. Good Oriannas are able to zone Brand with the ball and kite you, which means you are unable to harass or go in and farm. You'll be playing from behind the majority of the time.
Syndra beats you easily because you have no mobility which means she can land her Q's easily and win the lane by pressing R. She also builds Chalice of Harmony naturally so she can endlessly harass you and stun you whenever she sees fit. But the good thing is that Pillar of Flame is easy to land against her so do not be taken aback by her burst.
You can harass Talon with no effort pre-6 but when he gets The Brutalizer he will just kill you everytime his ult is up. Rush zhonyas (tabi if you need it as well) against him. If you get first blooded it's GG.
Holy mother of god Veigar is so broken right now. Again, you probably won't lose to him pre-6 but it will get to a point where he can just press R and kill you. Just farm and never engage him if he has his ultimate. You can kill him if you successfully Pillar of Flame + Sear stun him from afar and just unload everything on him after.
While Vel'Koz gets instagibbed if he's too close, he massively outranges you and he can harass you safely while farming with his Void Rift. The icing on the cake here is that if you don't have flash he can just EWQR you and instagib you from far away. He's basically a better Xerath.
Brand has the damage to kill Yasuo but the thing here is that if their Yasuo is any good he can dodge all your skills and snowball super hard. Wind Wall is extremely hard to predict because it comes out way too fast compared to Sear. Your best bet here is to harass with Pillar of Flame and play the farm game. If you ever miss your stun you're dead.
What I do in this lane is take Conflagration + Sear at levels 1-2 because Yasuo doesn't take wind wall that early so you can stun him if he tries any of his dashing shenanigans.
Oh look an energy assassin who has 3 blinks and invulnerability with a super nuke Q. This champion is clearly balanced. Zeds harass hurts like a bitch and you can't do anything about it because you have no mobility. It's impossible to tell when his shadow comes out because the startup speed is so fast. You also can't harass him because he's super mobile and if you miss a single skill he will just juke all your skills and destroy you. Rush zhonyas against this guy or else you're going to be feeding all day.
If you see this guy you might as well AFK. Fizz can kill you starting from level 3 with just a dorans and he just has way too much mobility to dodge all your ****. Getting zhonyas won't help either because he's AP and even if he misses his shark he still does so much damage. Swapping lanes is highly recommended.
Brand support is generally viable because he acts as a 2nd AP carry and has tons of kill potential at bot lane. My take on support Brand is not exactly viable but I personally enjoy playing it this way.
Start with Spellthief's Edge, 2 health pots and 1 mana pot. You generally want to upgrade to Frostfang then build Sightstone. From there I start building him exactly like mid Brand. Late game you can upgrade your trinket to Greater Stealth Totem and sell your Sightstone and Frostfang for Void Staff and Rabadon's Deathcap. The reason is because support items suck on Brand and you would basically become a stun bot.
Don't upgrade your Frostfang to Frost Queen's Claim because you would have Rylai's Crystal Scepter later so Frost Queen's Claim would be redundant.
Max Sear first as usual since it costs little mana and procs spellthiefs extremely easily.
Otherwise, support Brand just becomes a 2nd AP carry and you're mainly playing just like mid Brand except with more attention towards your own ADC. You don't need special runes on support Brand because Brand is not a true support so if you go something like gold generation quints + armor marks you would become extremely useless.
While this guide is not as detailed as my past guides I hope you have learned something new about Brand in this guide. Hope you have fun setting people on fire.
- Phil Collins