Brand Build Guide by cyberskull
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Hey there! Welcome to my 3rd guide on Mobafire. I recently made a Katarina (click to go to that guide) guide and it got a lot of views and positive votes so I feel kinda inspired right now and I decided to try and make a guide for Brand, the Burning Vengeance
This guide might not be that detailed/long so I apologize for that but there is a reason why that might happen. In my opinion Brand is a straightforward champion and he doesn't require a lot of explanation. I'll probably add a match-ups chapter but it won't be now cause I'm still working on the match-ups chapter for my Katarina guide. Anyways let's get on with the guide.
Who is Brand you ask? Brand is a damage dealer with high burst damage, a stun and an Ultimate that bounces from enemy to enemy and is devastating in team fights. Brand is a champion I bought a long time ago. I've never really played him that much but every single time I've played him I've done good with him because he's a good champion overall. He does have weaknesses but they're not a huge problem. Okay..let's get started!
Pros / Cons
+ Very strong burst damage. Probably one of the strongest in the game
+ Awesome stun
+ Great farmer with blue buff
+ Multi-target Ultimate that bounces
+ A strong carry champion
+ A fire based champion if you like fire themed characters/champions/heroes in moba games
- Slow thanks to his small amount of Movement Speed (315)
- No escapes (excluding Flash)
- Only 1 form of CC (his stun) without Rylai's Crystal Scepter
- He looks like a hobo in his classic skin which might upset you if you don't have the RP to buy one of his skins. His other skins however are very good
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
Greater Seal of Scaling Health
Greater Glyph of Ability Power
Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
Magic Penetration Marks is just awesome on Brand because your main role is dealing as much damage as you can and these marks will help you do that. I can't imagine picking any other marks for Brand. These are just too good for Brand.
These are very good on Brand. I actually didn't plan on getting these but I was too lazy to switch my runes and since I had my Kat runes I just went with those and it turns out these seals are pretty good on Brand. At lvl 6 if you have 2 x Doran's Ring these seals will give you even more hp. And more hp means more survivability.
Substitute Seals: Greater Seal of Health - Well..I haven't really tried these on Brand but I guess they could work if you want more hp at the earlier levels. I prefer the hp per lvl ones cause they are cheaper and scale better into late game but you can get these if you want a stronger early game.
Flat AP Glyphs give you more power early game. Brand's early game isn't that weak but he can be mana hungry so I pick these in order to increase my damage by a little bit early on. That way it feels more rewarding to hit the enemy laner with 1 of your spells because you'll do more damage.
Substitute Glyphs: Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power/ Greater Glyph of Magic Resist The Ability Power per lvl glyphs scale better into late game so if you want more power late game you should pick them instead of the Flat AP ones. The flat magic resist ones make you more durable early game so if you want to focus on farming you should pick them so you can stay longer in-lane. I don't get them because Brand should farm but his main objective is to get kills and deal as much damage as he can in team fights.
Flat AP Quints give a really nice amount of extra damage early on so that's why they are so good and are a very common choice for Quints on AP Casters. There might be other viable Quints for Brand but in my opinion these are the best Quints for him.
Typical AP Caster masteries. You grab the magic damage masteries in offense to increase your overall damage. Like I said Brand's primary role is to deal as much damage as he can in fights so increasing his damage is a must.
The 9 points in Utility are for the early game. Brand can be mana hungry so you need the extra mana regen and the mana per level.
Flash - One of Brand's biggest weaknesses is that he doesn't have any escape mechanisms. Flash will help you with that. You should use Flash mostly to escape dangerous situations but it can also be used offensively if you're chasing someone and need to close the gap. I wouldn't recommend using Flash for kills but if you really need the kill then go ahead and do it. However I strongly advise you to always keep your Flash for when you need to escape.
Ignite - As I already said Brand's role is to survive and deal as much damage as possible and Ignite helps in getting kills. Pretty straightforward summoner just like Brand himself.
I wouldn't recommend other Summoner Spells for Brand. Other summoners could work like Exhaust for example but Flash and Ignite are in my opinion the best summoner spells for Brand.
I normally grab 1 point in my Q at lvl 1 simply because Q does the most damage at lvl 1 out of all of Brand's abilities. If I'm invading with my team or we're getting invaded I would put 1 point in my W because W is an Area of Effect Spell. At level 2 I'll put a point in W if I put a point in Q or 1 point in Q if I put a point in W. At level 3 I'll get my E so I can set up for my stun. After that I'll start maxing out my W because it's AOE and is the best out of Brand's abilities (it does the most damage when maxed out). Then at level 6 I grab a point in my Ultimate Pyroclasm and after that it's W -> Q -> E and R whenever possible.
Why Q over E you ask? Brand's Sear scales better into mid/late game so it's best to max it out before your E. In 1v1 duels with the enemy AP caster you'll want to stun him so maxing out your Q will give you more damage to your stun combo.
Brand's passive is really good cause even if an enemy barely escapes your passive can finish him off. Blaze is more useful early game but it is still helpful even in mid/late game.
Sear is what you'll be using to stun your enemies after you set them ablaze. The spell is a skill-shot so it might be hard for you to hit people with it if you're new to Brand. It does hit minions so it'll be hard to hit the enemy laner if he's hiding behind his minions. If you get ganked you can use E + Q on the enemy jungler to stun him. That way you can escape without wasting your Flash.
This is your main damage spell. It's AOE and it has good range. If you're new to Brand you might have trouble hitting people with it just like with your Q but with practice you'll get good at it. It's important to note that you can use this and Q after using it to stun your enemy but this spell does 25% more damage when your enemies are set ablaze so it'll be better to do an E -> Q -> W combo if you want more damage. This spell is also good for farming combined with your E so if you have blue buff or you have a lot of mana don't hesitate to use this for farming.
This is your weakest spell but don't be fooled cause it still does a lot of damage and it sets your target ablaze so you can stun them. If you use this on a target that is already ablaze the spell will spread out and hit nearby enemies. This combined with your W is awesome for farming if you have enough mana or blue buff.
Your Ultimate. This alone can win you a team fight. It does insane damage when the enemy team is piled up together cause it bounces. You can use this in 1v1 duels but it's more useful in team fights. This has a pretty short cooldown late game so feel free to use it often.
I start off with Boots of Speed + 3 x Health Potion for the extra mobility and lane sustain. That way I have a higher chance of escaping ganks and I can stay in lane longer. Doran's Ring is also acceptable to start with but there's 1 reason why I don't like it. It gives no extra mobility and that way you're more likely to use your Flash to escape an early gank. If you want you can start with Doran's Ring but you'll have to be very careful not to get ganked and also only go for doran's if you're against an enemy laner that doesn't have skill-shots that you need to dodge.
After that I'll grab 1 or 2 Doran's Ring for some extra early game power and the mana regen. From there I build my Sorcerer's Shoes and after that I go straight for my Rabadon's Deathcap the reason for that is simple. Brand is a champion that relies on doing the most damage he can in team fights. That's why you need more damage and Rabadon's is the item that will give it to you.
After Rabadon's I usually go for a Rylai's Crystal Scepter for the extra survivability and the slow. The slow from Rylai's gives you a 2nd form of CC (the 1st being your stun) which is why Rylai's so important on Brand. The extra survivability is also good due to Brand's squishiness.
From there I look at the enemy team and think about what I need. If I'm having trouble with Physical Attackers I'll get a Zhonya's Hourglass for the extra armor and the activation of the item. If the enemies are stacking a lot of Magic Resist I'll get a Void Staff for the extra magic penetration. If there are a lot of squishies that don't have a lot of Magic Resist I'll grab an Abyssal Scepter. If I need some more sustain during team fights I'll grab a Will of the Ancients for the spell vamp it gives. That way I'll survive for longer. If I need even more damage then getting a Deathfire Grasp for the activation won't hurt however I wouldn't recommend it cause it requires you to get close to your enemies and you don't wanna do that as a Brand. If you don't wanna risk it then going for a 2nd Rabadon's Deathcap might actually pay off.
Items that don't work well on Brand
In this chapter I'll explain why some items that are usually picked up for AP Casters don't work that well on Brand:
This item is good but it's not good for Brand. Why you ask? Well..it does provide some extra Magic Resist which helps Brand and it does provide extra Ability Power which also helps him but the problem is that due to Sheen this item gives you extra damage on your auto-attacks after using an ability. However you're an AP Caster that doesn't rely on auto-attacking and as Brand you will auto-attack only when someone is very low and you need to kill him. This item is better for champion like Lux or Fizz who rely on their auto-attacks for extra damage.
It's true that Brand is mana hungry early on but that is just for his early game. If you get 1 or 2 Doran's or blue buff you can get through early game without this item's help and that's why this item is more useful for someone like Galio who benefits more from it. Remember..as Brand your job is to do as much damage as you can so you need more damage and not extra survivability. The extra survivability comes later on after your Rabadon's Deathcap
Same as Athene's Unholy Grail. This gives you some extra damage and a lot of mana but you don't benefit that much from this. You would benefit more from a Rabadon's Deathcap. This item is more useful for someone like Ryze who relies a lot on mana or someone like Karthus who has a spamable skill and needs the extra mana.
This doesn't work on Brand only because of 1 thing. In order to make this item strong you need to get fed and that might not happen in some games. That's why this item is not that useful on Brand and is more useful on someone like LeBlanc who has high burst but also has escapes. Brand doesn't have escapes and it is more likely for him to die and lose stacks upon death.
If you get Hextech Gunblade on Brand no offense but...you're dumber than me. This item is for someone like Katarina or Fizz since they are melee. You are not melee, you have a slow auto-attack animation so you won't benefit much from the life steal. The activation and spell vamp are good but the activation require that you get closer to your enemy and the spell vamp can be gained through Will of the Ancients. Don't get this item on Brand..just don't.
This is good but there's 1 problem with it and it's the same with Hextech Gunblade. To activate the item you need to get a bit closer to your enemy. You can get this but I wouldn't really recommend it. It's just not worth it in my opinion. Deathfire Grasp also requires that you get closer to the enemy but the difference is that Deathfire gives you more burst and that's what Brand needs.
Don't get me wrong. This item is awesome on mages that require sustain like Swain but Brand is not one of those mages. Brand requires damage early on so you can try and get fed by getting kills. This item will help you with staying in lane for a longer amount of time but it won't help you with your damage. That's why I don't get this on Brand. Putting that aside this item is great for other mages.
Farming with Brand is easy if you have enough mana or a blue buff. Just W a minion wave and E one of the minions to hit all of the other ones and finish them off. If you don't have enough mana to do this just last hit. Brand's auto-attack animation isn't the best but it's certainly better than Annie's (the other fire based champion) in my opinion. Plus I find it funny to throw fire at my opponents.
Laning Phase and Team Fights
Laning phase can be tricky but your main objective is to harass whenever you can and farm while you do it. I normally go for a kill when the enemy laner is a bit low thanks to my harass (somewhere around half hp). If I can't harass and he's playing really safe then I'll just focus on farming and only go for kills when my jungler comes to help. Make sure you get the 2nd Blue Buff. You'll need it in order to harass, farm and stay in lane for longer.
Team fights for Brand may seem easy but if you're focused you might go down very quickly. Keep your distance and you'll be fine. Also try and ask your teammates to keep you safe. It's never a good thing if you die cause you were focused by someone and you died before doing anything cause your teammates didn't protect you. Anyways..Brand's role in a team fight is simple. Don't get killed and dish out as much damage as you can. Also if the enemies have a champion that has a channeled Ultimate try stunning him to prevent the champion from using it. Also make sure to use your Ultimate when the enemy team is piled up and they are very close to each other.
There are several combos you can use on Brand for different effects. In this chapter I'll explain some of those combos:
W + E - This is your farming combo. You use W on the enemy/neutral minions and then you'll use E on one of the minions. That way your E will hit the whole wave and clear it for you very fast.
E + Q + W (+R) - This is your damaging combo for duels or if you just want to destroy 1 person. You use E to set your enemy ablaze and damage him a little. Then you stun him and damage him even more with Q and finally you use W while he is stunned. That way your W deals more damage cause the enemy will already be ablaze. You can follow this up with your R if you're dueling the enemy laner and you need to deal more damage to him.
W + Q + E (+R) - This is a combo that deals less damage but for me it's quicker to use. Just cast W and Q right after that to do a high amount of burst in only 1-2 seconds. After that cast E for extra damage. You can follow this up with R if you need to do more damage.
W + E + R (+Q) - This is your combo for team fights. If the enemy team is piled up together cast a quick W + E combo to burst down all of them and destroy them with your R. You can use your Q after this combo to stun someone.
If you're new to Brand and want to learn more about him then keep reading:
- Brand was designed by Coronach.
- Brand is the Danish, Dutch, German and Swedish word for "blaze/fire", "burning" and "burned".
- Brand is the second champion to be based around a fire theme, the first being Annie
- The body that Brand is currently occupying once belonged to Kegan Rodhe, a seafaring marauder.
- Brand's ability, Sear has a similar in-game animation to Annie's auto-attack.
- Brand's auto-attacks also have the same animation as Morgana's auto-attacks, though changed in color from purple to orange.
Extras (not necessary to read)
Just a chapter for extras (videos on Brand for example):
A gameplay/commentary video by Sykkuno. My favorite league commentator:
Brand's champion spotlight by Riot. It can help you understand Brand if you're completely new to him:
Thanks for reading my 3rd guide. I hope you liked it but most importantly I hope I helped out new Brand players out there! Special thanks to Riot for creating Brand and to jhoijhoi for the Pros/Cons Template in her Getting Started Guide.
If you have any questions and/or want to talk to me feel free to use either the comment section or pm me here on mobafire. You can also add me in-game if you want. I play on the EU West server and my username is submit95. Once again thanks for reading and please leave me some feedback on the guide. See you in my next one! =D