Riven Build Guide by CritiusZero

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League of Legends Build Guide Author CritiusZero

Dance Your Way to Victory

CritiusZero Last updated on February 16, 2012
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
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.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 9

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 0

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Riven is a lane dominant champion that has potential throughout the entire game. Shes a good pick almost all the time because very little champions counter her. Other than that, she can lane against most ranged (as long as you have flash) and most melee as well. The great thing about her is that she has so much mobility and damage combined into her toolkit. What I also like about her is that you can just build a bunch of Bloodthirsters and still benefit defensely from it since her shielding ability scales off AD as well. I like riven because she is so unique compared to other champions by having a very dynamic toolkit.

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Marks - x9 Armor Pentration: For extra damage when harassing that scales better into mid-late game.
Seals - x9 Armor: To take less damage from minions when harassing enemy in lane. Also from auto attacks from opponent.
Glyphs - x9 MR/lvl: Situational between flat and scaling MR. If I'm laning against someone who is focused on farming early (Irelia, Nidalee, Nasus) then I would get scaling MR. If laning against someone that does a lot of AP poking, then get flat MR.
Quints - x3 Physical Damage: Flat damage to last hit better and do more damage in laning phase while harassing. Also, all of your abilities scale off this, including your shield.

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These are the best masteries for Riven because she is DPS and not necessarily tanky, just a lot of mobility built in. These masteries will provide you with lane dominance and damage throughout the entire game. 9 in defensive for the extra HP and resistances just in case. Don't go 9/21/0, you lose so much because of that. Shes very mobile and needs that damage.

Also, I usually switch between 3 points in MR and 3 points in armor, usually depends who I'm laning against.

Be sure to grab improved smite if jungling/heal depending on your summoners.

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Summoner Spells

Ignite: To secure a kill, especially against those champions that heal like Nidalee or Mundo. Sometimes I would get exhaust over ignite if our team has enough ignites and you're going against a team with heavy AD.

Flash: You need it to make plays throughout the entire game. Use it to secure a kill, or to flash over the wall and safe your life. Or you can use Q+Q+flash+Q or flash+stun to surprise someone too.

Heal: This should be only used if you have extreme mastery of Riven. Heal/Ignite is very powerful if you can use it right. You should only take heal if you know you will not be pressured very much by the enemy jungler. WARD OFTEN IF TAKING HEAL.

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boots-of-speedhealth-potion3 OR cloth-armorhealth-potion5

I LIKE to start boots and health potions, but sometimes I'm forced to get cloth armor because I'm laning against something gay like gankplank or tryndamere. I don't turn cloth armor into lantern when I get it because it is a waste of gold. That gold could be invested into a BF sword, you know, something that you can use late game.

1st Back:

I want to get at least two doran's blade so I can farm a lot easier and have a little more HP in my lane. After I have boots and two doran's blades, I should already be pretty strong. Brutalizer is very situational because some people don't have enough armor and I already have money for a BF sword. Lately I havn't been getting brutalizer and going straight to Bloodthirster instead.

the-bloodthirster (mercurys-treads OR ionian-boots-of-lucidity)

Bloodthirster is your core item. Get this as soon as possible. I finish my boots generally after I get my bloodthirster because Riven's abilities make her hop around places, negating movement speed. I usually get Mercury's Threads or CDR Boots depending on the situation.


Are they getting armor? If so, get Last whisper. Are they not? Get more Bloodthirsters and roflstomp some more.

Are you worth a lot? Get Guardian's angel. And this would be my ONLY defensive item the entire game.

Get more bloodthirsters.

Maybe an IE.

But usually more bloodthirsters.

The last item is very situational.
Doing ok? Get a 3rd BT

AD Carry 3 shotting your team? Randiun's Omen or Thormail

AP Carry 1 shotting you? Force of Nature

Can't chase? Frozen Mallet

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Passive: Runic Blade

Riven's abilities charge her blade, causing her basic attacks to deal 5/15/25/35/45/55/65/75/85/95/105/115/125/135/145/155/165/175 (+100% of bonus attack damage) bonus physical damage. Riven's blade may be charged up to 3 times and expends one charge per attack.


A very strong passive that makes Riven viable because all of her damage comes from this. Max 3 stacks, 1 stack each time you use an ability (can use 3 times from your Q). Again, her #1 source of damage.

I restrain myself from auto-attacking something when I have no stacks of my passive. Since Riven constantly spams abilities, you should have no problem keeping these stacks up to auto-attack.

Q: Broken Wings

Riven strikes out in front of her in a short line. This ability may be reactivated 2 additional times.

1st Use: Slashes forward, dealing 30/50/70/90/110 (+60% of bonus attack damage) physical damage to all units she comes in contact with.
2nd Use: Slashes forward, dealing 30/50/70/90/110 (+60% of bonus attack damage) physical damage to all units she comes in contact with.
3rd Use: Leaps into the air and slams the ground dealing 30/50/70/90/110 (+60% of bonus attack damage) physical damage and knocking nearby enemies away from the point of impact.

Cooldown 13 seconds

Cost none


Basically a weaker auto attack, however, procs your passive so you can do even more damage. Q>auto attack>Q>auto>Q>auto. You can mix W or E into that whenver you can too, because all of your abilities proc your passive up to 3 times. Gap closer and can be combined with flash to surprise your enemy (3rd Q to knockback). The buff on this makes the later levels of Q do crazy damage.

W: Ki Burst

Riven's sword emits a burst of runic energy that shocks nearby enemies, dealing 50/90/130/170/210 (+100% of bonus attack damage) physical damage and stunning them for 0.5 seconds.

Cooldown 11/10/9/8/7 seconds

Cost none


Decent amount of damage and also procs your passive. AoE stun that can hit multiple targets. I usually use this ability whenever I am close to them by using Q.

E: Valor

Riven does a quick dash in the direction of your cursor and becomes shielded, blocking up to 40/70/100/130/160 (+100% of bonus attack damage) incoming damage for 2.5 seconds.

Cooldown 11/10/9/8/7 seconds

Cost none


This is what makes Riven viable even when you stack like a million bloodthisters. Her shield is based of her AD, so stacking AD is a win-win. I generally use this as a gapcloser to quickstun with W or to get away. Cannot jump over walls with this ability sadly. Also procs passive.

R: Blade of the Exile

Riven's weapon surges with spiritual energy for 15 seconds, granting her 20% bonus attack damage, increased range on her damaging spells and attacks, and the ability to use Wind Slash once.

Wind Slash: Riven fires a shockwave that deals from 80/120/160 (+60% of bonus attack damage) to 240/360/480 (+180% of bonus attack damage) physical damage to all enemies hit, increasing based on how much health they are missing.

Cooldown 75/60/45 seconds

Cost none


Like Vayne's ultimate, it is a steriod that makes her rape everything. Generally I try using this in a brush or out of sight before jumping on an enemy because there is a slight downtime when Riven activates her ultimate (but not all the time, situations vary). You need to wait about a second before using Windslash after activating your ultimate (doesn't show in the description for some reason, but ya it sucks). I smartcast Windslash because I feel like its a lot easier. Windslash is almost like Garen's ultimate, but it is in a ranged cone.

In conclusion, this ultimate will make you kill things a lot easier.

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Some of these combos depends on how far your target is and what the situation is as well. Here is a general list on what I use with riven.

AA=auto attack


Q+AA+Q+AA+Q+AA+stun+AA, then E away. If you can pull this whole combo off, then thats the biggest and best you can do. Sometimes I use the first 1-2 Q's to close in on the opponent, and auto attack however many passive stacks I have then E away from counter-attacks.

E+stun+AA. Using E to close in on your opponent is quicker than using Q. I do this sometimes to surprise them with a quick poke and then walk away or even Q away if hes counter-attacking you. You can also initiate with Q's, close in on E, stun, AA, then Q away. There are a lot of possible ways.

Team fights:

You should try to have flash up for almost every teamfight, because Riven is easily kited even with her abilities up. NEVER INITIATE. You are useless when dead so don't go in and die. You are not the tank. Go in after and continually disrupt the enemy team with your q knock back and w stun. Use your ult before you go in to maximize damage and survivability from your E. After you land 1-2 complete combos, or if you see the opportunity, start focusing on disrupting their AP or AD carry. Make sure they do as little damage as possible. Use R to clean up kills. Its really awesome when you use your ultimate and Wind Slash 3 people at the same time :) AoE Garen Ult OP

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Get Cloth Armor, 5 Health Pots

Start Wraiths, get a leash a RED.
Gank a lane

Jungle a level. Look for Gank. Jungle another level. Look for another gank.
rinse and repeat.

Don't forget to buy. Rule of thumb for me, b if i have 1500+g or if i have little hp.
ward Ward WARD WARD WARD dragon/baron.

You are basically there to gank and donate blue buff to your ap carry. If you see the enemy jungler on the opposite side of the map, go for an invade.

Example of Invade (they are blue team, you are purple team)
1) You see Udyr ganking top. You are bottom.
2) go into enemy jungle and kill wraiths. leave 1 small wraith alive.
3) Still have time? steal/ward red buff
4) more time? kill big golem. gank bot.

Invading is something you should practice and is usually only done in ranked games. It puts the enemy jungler behind you in terms of gold and levels due to the time lost waiting for camps to respawn.

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Stack Bloodthirsters.

Riven loves Three Stats
1) Attack Damage : All of her abilities (including her passive) benefit from AD. It makes her hit HARD and SURVIVE with her E. Getting 3-4 Es in a team fight is equivalent to having 600+ HP.

2) Armor/Magic Resist : This helps her survivability in lane and in team fights. Your job is usually to NOT INITIATE. You come in after the initiate and disrupt the enemy team with your q and w while doing insane amounts of damage.

3) Life Steal : Sustain in lane, sustain in team fights, massive heal late game. Many times as riven, you will reach late game. This is when you do around 700 Dmg with one auto attack if you have 2 bloodthirsters. This heals for <<<<350>>>> THATS A TON. Whether is healing up dmg after a fight, or getting an extra hit in for more hp, lifesteal is great.

Stack BloodThirsters

P.S. When beating your lane, push your wave up to their tower, then gank mid. Easy win.