Sona Build Guide by xxcoldsteelexx
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.
High Elo Sona
Core Build(in this order)
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.
Hey everyone, my name is Lance Hotchkiss, support main and support for my challenger team Yolo Queue Strats, currently ranked #7 on the ladder. I've been playing League of Legends for nearly 4 years now, and I'm here writing these guides to share with you what I've learned and help you to advance quickly with the knowledge I can share with you. I'm here today with a guide on Sona, the Maven of the Strings.
Sona is a very strong support champion with strong pokes, fantastic auras, and a fight breaking ultimate, and in this guide I'm going to be showing you how to maximize your success when playing her.
For Sona runes, I like to run:
Hybrid Pen Reds to maximize damage from Crescendo, and the active and passive damages from Hymn of Valor(Q) since it gives bonus AD/AP stats.
Armor yellows: pretty mandatory in most games, especially playing the bot lane
Magic resist blue x6 and flat mana regen blue x3: magic resist blues are fairly standard on most champs, its quite good on supports to avoid being blown up by the enemy AP champions, and I also take 3 flat mana regen blues to help with Sona's mana problems to help spam more
1 HP, 1 mana regen per lvl, and 1 armor quint: These quints help to accentuate the other runes in this page, mana regen per level to give good mana regen later as well as early with the flat regens, armor quint to help with trades in bot lane where the ADC and support will be auto attacking alot, and a health quint to add that extra bit of tankyness and make that 17 armor go the extra mile.
The top tier standard of support masteries is 1/13/16, and these masteries are my preferred skilling order. The main purpose behind these masteries is to get the block mastery 13 points into the defense tree which, when combined with 2/2 of the Unyielding mastery and a Doran's Shield, grants a total of 13 damage blocked per champion basic attack. What this amounts to is a much tankier support champion with a low price tag.
In the utility tree, going 16 points allows you to take most of the hardcore support masteries such as biscuiteer, explorer, greed(4/4) wealth(2/2), meditation(3/3) and mastermind(3/3), while also picking up improved recall and summoner's insight masteries.
Instead of venturing 1 point further for the pickpocket mastery, I opt for the offense tree's Summoner's Wrath mastery point, to improve on the effectiveness of the Exhaust summoner spell(-10 armor and MR for 2.5 seconds adds up to alot of bonus damage with 2+ people beating away at the target!)
On most supports(Sona included), you don't commonly get to finish a 6 item build. In fact, most 6 item support builds always leave a spot open for extra wards, and you will be expected by your team to continuously be buying wards and oracles elixirs from midgame and beyond to properly give vision and deny vision. But even still, there are some big common purchases Sona support should be getting at a bare minimum each game. Sightstone, philo stone/chalice, lucidity or 5 speed boots, and Doran's Shield are all your friends, cheap purchases that make you an effective support.
When you have accrued a bit of bonus cash after a teamfight or something like tower/dragon/baron, buying Shurelya's Reverie for your team can force engages, disengages, or help allies to reposition properly and chase enemies in a teamfight, espescially when combined with the movespeed from your E.
Locket of the Iron Solari, Mikael's Crucible, Twin Shadows, and Warden's Mail are also great pickups which make you tankier and provide good team auras or powerful effects.
You should be buying as many oracles elixirs and wards for your team as you can past 16 to 20 minutes ingame, stopping after every few oracles to let yourself splurge on a team aura item.
Sona's strongest aspect is her poke in lane. Because of this, you will be maxing your Q. Memorize the range, it is deceptively large. You will have this skill maxed by level 9. The passive of this ability is useful to keep up in lane because it helps you/your marksman with last hitting, pokes, tower attacking, and when you have 3 notes of your passive, the double damage auto attack from being in Q does ALOT of damage combined with the normal poking damage of this ability.
At level 2, you will take your W. If you get into a close trade with your oppposing bot lane, manage a kill and level up, skilling another point in W can save you or your marksman with the increased resistance aura and stronger heal, and it can make a big save, or force the remaining enemy bot laners/jungler to commit into a fight resulting in another kill for your team! At level 8 you will be skilling this heal for the second time, and you will max it second. The passive from this ability is useful to mitigate counterpoke, reduce damage from incoming tower shots and engaging enemy players, and after 3 songs, the 20% damage reduction you apply to a target enemy champion acts like a miniature exhaust onto engaging enemy assasins. Very powerful!
When you reach level 4, you should be skilling your E. Of the 4 of your abilities, this is the least useful, but it still has a strong role in Sona's kit. Her E gives herself, her allies, and nearby minions a speed boost, like a miniature Shurelyas. YES, this means when you are about to siege a tower you can actually run back to your incoming minion wave and speed them up, getting them to the tower faster for quicker hits on the tower. This spell is great also for walking back to lane, since it also gives movespeed passively, running away from ganks, and after 3 spells, the slow you can apply onto an enemy with your next auto attack is an invaluable tool for ganks. The slow is also decent at helping you gain some distance away from enemies trying to chase you down and assassinate you.
At 6, 11, and 16 you will skill your R, Crescendo. This is arguably the most difficult part about playing Sona, because the ability has a long cooldown, and if you miss the ability it can easily make or break a teamfight.That is an example of a near perfect Sona ultimate. She has her team right next to her to follow up, and it is hitting all 3 members of the enemy team in vision. Notice in particular, how Elise is hit with the Crescendo too. The hit box for the ultimate is actually very wide at the beginning and thins out towards the end, which will take some time perfecting.
Just try and think of her ult's hitbox as a vault box
When playing Sona, I like to run Exhaust/Flash for summoner spells.
Flash is a must-have, and with the 1 point in the offense tree, my Exhaust reduces the focus target's MR and armor by 10, which adds a lot of damage over 2.5 seconds of focus.
Ignite and heal would also make decent pickups, with ignite being used to burst down targets in lane or during ganks, and heal being used to swing team fights and add on to Sona's strong aura and AoE abilities.
In ranked games, Sona is one of the most powerful and versatile supports. Her kit makes her a very safe pick for poke comps, teamfight comps, and she does very well in lane with her versatile kit. I would even go so far to say Sona is one of, if not THE strongest support atm even with all the nerfs she has received(with Zyra, Nami, Lulu and Thresh being up there too)
Pros / Cons
Easy to learn
Amazing team auras
Strong kill potential at 6
Mana intensive(when spamming W or in teamfights)
Auto attacking to apply passive or otherwise can put you in harms way
Very positioning dependant
That will do it for my guide on Sona! Her kit is very strong and versatile, and allows her to be a strong lane bully with her mana bar as her only limitation since she is able to freely dish out damage and sustain poke back with her heal, escape with her E, and all in with her Crescendo. If you can keep wards up for your team, position properly, and play smartly, you will find yourself gaining much elo, and many friends :)
If you want to learn how, when, and where to ward, here is a link to my support warding guide on RoG: http://www.reignofgaming.net/blogs/guest-posters/other/25582-a-supports-guide-to-warding
To keep up with me, follow me on facebook at: www.facebook.com/lanceplayslol
And if you want to see me in action playing Sona, follow my stream at www.twitch.tv/lanceplayslol