Irelia Build Guide by mistermarshmallow

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.


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League of Legends Build Guide Author mistermarshmallow

Countering the Metagame with Off-tank Irelia Mid

mistermarshmallow Last updated on April 24, 2012

Ability Sequence

2
14
15
17
18
Ability Key Q
1
4
5
8
9
Ability Key W
3
7
10
12
13
Ability Key E
6
11
16
Ability Key R





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.



Masteries

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sunder
Archmage
 
 
 
 
 
 
Executioner
 
 

Offense: 0

 
 
 
 
 
4/
Durability
Vigor
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
3/
Honor Guard
Mercenary
 
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Juggernaut
 
 

Defense: 21

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Strength of Spirit
Intelligence
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Mastermind
 

Utility: 9


Guide Top

Introduction

Hello, fellow summoners. This is my first guide since not being a noob, so feedback (and up votes) are greatly appreciated :D

I'd like to inform all that this build and lane positioning is something I discovered while Riot's chat system was down, making pregame configuration between matched teammates difficult if not impossible. I was last pick in draft, and all but one of my most familiar champions, Irelia, was already chosen. I thought our Ashe was going to mid, but she didn't and I ended up in mid. So I started building an offtank Irelia, like the one I read here in this guide:

http://www.mobafire.com/league-of-legends/build/offtanks-the-new-metagame-79701#chapter20

Credit to DuffTime, his build really opened me up to different possibilities on all champions and I've been experimenting ever since. Anyway, we ended up winning the game at 43 min, their Rammus couldn't touch me and my true damage was doing a number on them, I didn't die once. Of course, like anything else, It's very true that this build and lane choice for Irelia doesn't always prosper, but it is another way to play that is unexpected and is very strong when played smart.


Guide Top

Don't be mean just to be mean, guys.

This isn't a surefire you'll always win guide, so don't expect to win the next ten games with this strategy. Don't be a jerk and downvote this just because you think it's weird or you think it looks funny. Come on, you're mature. If you have to downvote, I'd at least like a reason why you did so. Feedback is appreciated, but don't be mean.

I realize my choices may be disagreeable to some players, but I disagree with the ideology of disagree-ness. This is a guide in order to show a workable way to play Irelia in an uncommon way. You may disagree and I encourage experimentation, especially if the conditions seem to require it. Nobody ever said you had to follow a guide right down the middle.


Guide Top

THE WALL OF SHAME

THESE ARE COMMENTS AND FLAMES THAT I HAVE DEEMED UNREASONABLE DUE TO THEIR LACK OF CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM, EXTREME CLOSE MINDEDNESS, DOWNVOTING JUST BECAUSE THEY CAN (TROLL), OR OBVIOUS FAILURE TO READ ANYTHING ON THE GUIDE BESIDES THE TITLE AND THE BUILD.


Haven't seen any yet! :D Keep up the good work guys ;)


Guide Top

Pros/Cons

PROS

**
*You're in mid, so you will level and get gold faster. This means you will be tankier earlier*
**
*Much stronger than enemy in mid early game ( Q > W > E )*
**
*Has potential to zone out enemy while farming*
**
*Enemy can't touch you when you're so tanky so early*
**
*It's weird, the enemy will be like, "What DAFUQ?"*
**
*You can SOLO BARON after getting Warmog's Armor*
**

CONS




**
*Hard to master*
**
*Will not work against certain champions in mid (unless you are super pro)*
**
*Setbacks if you miss your Bladesurge on last hit minions*
**
*Setbacks if you die a lot or don't try hard enough to keep CS even or better*
**
*Early game might be god awful, so requires moderate to frequent ganks from allies*
**


Guide Top

Runes

M
A
R
K
S
You are more dangerous. For a tank, you are very offensive and destructive. That's the "off" part. Take Marks of Strength or Alacrity. Strength is self-explanatory, Alacrity will increase the frequency of your true damage from Hiten Style
M
A
R
K
S



S
E
A
L
S
You're building a tank, MR and AR is a must. Take either, I usually go MR because mid champs are mostly AP based nowadays.
S
E
A
L
S



G
L
Y
P
H
S
Cooldowns will help a bunch for all of Irelia's abilities. Take seals of knowledge if you find your playing style is kind of mana hungry.
greater glyph of knowledge
G
L
Y
P
H
S



Q
U
I
N
T
S
More health for early game (because it sucks for Irelia) or MORE ARMOR :D
Q
U
I
N
T
S


Guide Top

Masteries

The masteries I play with are either:

0/21/9

OR

9/21/0



Now, let's explain a couple things.

+I keep defense at 21 because the sustain you gain from it is a must. Irelia's early game is not the most favorable, and even less favorable against a champion with decent CC and some damage ( Lux, Galio, Akali). It could be just my playstyle, I feel that taking away from defense makes it harder and I have to recall more often. Experiment if you like. If you find something that works, feel free to comment and explain, I'm all about versatility with champions.

+I might take 9 in utility because Irelia can get pretty mana hungry without a blue buff. Most likely someone else on your team will need the blue buff, so take it if you need it.

+I'll take 9 in offense if I know I can shred everyone on the other team to pieces without having to try too hard, or if I can easily obtain the blue buff.


Guide Top

Items

Here I will explain common (and very reasonable) item counter-arguments some may have, and my reasons for choosing the items I do. HOWEVER, I'm not saying I suggest always doing. Everything is situational and I agree that items should be chosen accordingly.



COMMON QUESTIONABLE ITEMS


These are the items people always ask me, "Why pick that?"

Q: Why do you go Cloth Armor first? Wouldn't the Boots be better?

In some cases (against champions like Lux, Galio, or Kog'Maw), yes... Boots of Speed are the better choice at level 1. BUT, seeing as how knowing Irelia's early game sucks anyway, going cloth armor first will ease you from worry about the mid-early game AD ganks, and you have 2 more health potions then you would have with Boots of Speed.

Q: Why do you take Armor instead of Magic Resist when you're in mid? Wouldn't Mercury Treads be better?

Again, in some cases (against champions like Lux, Galio, Kog'Maw, or Veigar), yes... Magic Resist is probably safer for you. HOWEVER, if you're not up against one of those hard hitters that are ALSO hard to avoid, you must remember you still function as one of the tanks in your team. The 25 Armor and 10% basic attack reduction helps.


Guide Top

Unique Skills

Irelia is not a champ you'd normally see in the mid lane nowadays. I mean, (1) why would anyone do that, (2) her CC isn't exactly ideal for mid, and(3) [insert more reasons why you would flame somebody midding Irelia here].

Well, with much trial and error, Irelia does do quite well in some cases. Her sustain is amazing, and damage output is moderately high. When to choose Irelia to mid? Well that's your decision. Again, do what's best for the team.

She has some surprisingly good things about her and her abilities in the mid lane if you can grasp it and your left hand is pretty coordinated.



IRELIA'S ABILITIES

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18


BASIC RUNDOWN






+Bladesurge is her initiating move, and also her farming ability. When you kill a unit, it's cooldown refreshes and gives back 35 mana. I keep this at level one for most of the game. This ability allows to get surefire last hits on minions.

+You can use Bladesurge to harass or unexpectedly initiate onto the champ you're laning with by last hitting one of their closest minions and then targeting them. It happens all so fast, they'll either learn to stay back or risk being bruised up or even killed. this strategy combined with Irelia's true damage and slow/stun can really do some damage on the enemy.




+Improves lane sustainability for Irelia in most cases. The life steal lets you stay in the lane and farm when otherwise you would have recalled. When you get ahead, you get harder to kill because of the tankiness of this build.

+Because of it's active, when combined with the attack speed from Wit's End it can serve as a real damage dealer or a quick heal when safe. Max it out as fast as possible to gain the most benefit from it.




+Use it after initiating with Bladesurge, and follow up with Hiten Style. That's the basic's of Irelia.

+Kind of like a short ranged Exhaust. When it stuns, it's twice as nice.

+It's her only CC, even if it isn't the best out there, it's useful. It's real simple to use, too. If the the enemy has more percentage health than you, you stun him. (ex. You have 1/2 of your health and the target has 3/4) If he doesn't, it just slows him. (ex. The enemy has 1/2 of his health and you have 3/4)

+I realize some may have suggested/thought about maxing this out first instead of Hiten Style, but I find that it's not as useful in some cases, as enemies in mid will likely take MR. Getting in a couple hits at level 9 with Hiten Style active because of the slow or stun will do more than what a maxed out Equilibrium Strike in that case (in that phase of the game, respectively).




+Massive life steal compared to her Hiten Style

+Can save you in a disadvantaged fight (ex. 2v1)

+Ranged attack. Makes getting that random minion farm in your neglected lane faster.



Guide Top

Summoner Spells

SPELLS TO TAKE


If you want to dominate the map, take it. I get it 9/10 times.
If you're not an absolute newbie, there's no way you can't get a couple kills with this on Irelia.
Wall flashes, positioning errors, that last inch to get your Bladesurge.
Helps with early game, and since Irelia's early game sucks, you might want to take this if you're not exactly confident.
Good for ganking top and bottom lane when you have your lane fully under control. Synchronizes great with teleport this way.
Chase enemy through minions, clean up after a team fight, run when you think you're going to die.



SPELLS NOT TO TAKE


Not nearly as useful as any of the ones above.
Don't need it. Irelia's passive should take care of that, or getting Eleisa's Miracle.


Guide Top

Playing in mid

Ok, so playing in mid with a champion like Irelia who isn't widely accepted as "one of the best mid characters" may be challenging. There are a number of factors that may hinder your gameplay and ability to prosper in the mid lane. BUT, these factors are greatly reduced or are eliminated if you can grasp some key concepts about playing in mid with Irelia.

**The most prominent difference between playing Irelia in mid is that the ideology is different. With most other mid champs, the ideology is very similar. Use CC often. Use AoE or multi-target to farm, and kill when the other person makes a mistake with burst damage. For most mid characters, this is what subconsciously goes through your mind**




So, what do I need to think about?
Farming will be different, and you won't be able to a whole lot of it during the early phases of the game. Bladesurge is your main skill once it hits the point that you and your enemy are even in terms of sustain. You'll be using Bladesurge most frequently of all your skills.


I'm scared of being ganked
and I don't want to initiate since I have no decent form of CC.

Irelia's CC may not seem like the best, but if timed and used correctly, it is very effective. For example, if the enemy has lots of burst damage you know they will hit you with once you initiate on them, it may be a good idea not to use your Equilibrium Strike right after Bladesurge and instead use it if you are seeing that you may not survive what's coming. Remember that Equilibrium Strike stuns if their health percentage is higher than yours. Stun means they can't do anything.


Guide Top

Team Work

BASIC RUNDOWN





+You are (if not the only) one of your teams tanks. BUT, you are also one of the initiators and/or baiters (for more stupid opponents).

+Mid early game, if the enemy isn't focusing on you in a teamfight and your teammates can definitely handle the other enemy champions without you, you can target the tank. You'll be very effective with Hiten Style's true damage.

+If the enemy has no wards at baron late game, or they're stuck in their base defending, after getting force of nature (item #6), you can solo baron. Then teleport to wherever you need to be. However, it is a risk. Don't do this if one of the enemy has teleport and you think they might have wards. They can teleport to ward.
+Basic combo:


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