Katarina Build Guide by PhantomDarkness
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.
Not Updated For Current Season
Driven by an intense killer instinct, Katarina uses her talents as an assassin for the glory of Noxus, and the continued elevation of her family. While her fervor drives her to ever-greater feats, it can sometimes lead her astray.
From childhood, Katarina displayed a natural gift for combat. As the daughter of a prominent Noxian general, many paths were open to her, but she rejected them all for the path of the blade. Rigorously trained by the finest assassins in Noxus, her father the best among them, it was not long before Katarina demanded her first assignment. The task they gave her was aggravatingly simple: assassinate a low-ranking Demacian officer. As she set to her work infiltrating the enemy camp, Katarina discovered an opportunity too tantalizing to pass by – the arrival of a Demacian General. Stalking him to his tent, she quietly dispatched his guards and slit his throat. Pleased with her impressive kill, she disappeared into the night. Katarina's elation faded the next day when her original objective, the Demacian officer, led his forces to ambush unprepared Noxian soldiers. Though the Noxians fought valiantly, they suffered heavy casualties. Furious at her mistake, Katarina set off to complete her original task. Returning to the camp, she spied her now heavily guarded target and realized a stealthy kill was no longer possible. Drawing her blades, Katarina swore the officer would die, no matter the cost. She leapt into battle, unleashing a whirlwind of steel. One by one blades flashed and guards fell, each strike bringing her one step closer to the officer. A final thrown dagger restored her honor. Bloody and bruised, Katarina barely escaped the Demacian forces, and returned to Noxus a changed woman. The scar she earned that night now serves as a constant reminder that she must never let passion interfere with duty.
"Never question my loyalty. You will never know what I endure for it."
Champion Skills :)
Katarina - Sinister Blade
RANGE: 675 COOLDOWN: 10 / 9.5 / 9 / 8.5 / 8
Katarina throws a dagger that bounces from enemy to enemy, dealing magic damage and marking each enemy hit for 4 seconds. Bouncing Blades hits a total of 5 unique targets (4 bounces), each striking the closest next target. Each subsequent hit deals 10% less damage. Striking a marked target with an ability or basic attack will consume the mark on the target and deal additional magic damage.
sinister steel RANGE: 375 COOLDOWN: 4
Katarina whirls her daggers, instantly dealing magic damage to all nearby enemies. If she damages an enemy champion, she gains movement speed for 1 second.
RANGE: 700 COOLDOWN: 12 / 10.5 / 9 / 7.5 / 6
Katarina teleports to target unit and gains 15% damage reduction for 1.5 seconds. If the target is an enemy, the target takes magic damage
RANGE: 550 COOLDOWN: 60 / 52.5 / 45
Katarina rapidly spins in place and channels for 2.5 seconds, throwing a barrage of up to 30 daggers at the closest 3 enemy champions within range. Each dagger deals magic damage and applies Grievous Wounds for 3 seconds, reducing regeneration and incoming healing by 50%. Death Lotus can hit a single enemy champion no more than 10 times.
Katarina's main combo is Bouncing Blades, followed by Shunpo into Sinister Steel. Sinister Steel's movement-speed boost is also effective in escaping retaliation.
If you are close enough, a safer alternative would be Bouncing Blades --> Sinister Steel (to proc the mark) --> Shunpo (escape to a minion, champion, ward or trinket).
When facing a team with healers, use Death Lotus in order to hit as many enemy champions as possible, hindering their healing capabilities.
Katarina can easily escape Bullet Time, Absolute Zero, Grand Skyfall, Cannon Barrage, Cataclysm, or even an enemy Katarina's Death Lotus by using Shunpo on a unit that's out of range. She can leave the area of effect of special abilities unless she is affected by an interrupting crowd control effect like a knockup, stun, silence, etc.
Katarinacan use Shunpo to Sight Wards, Vision Wards, H-28G Evolution Turrets, Jack In The Boxes, Demacian Standards, Noxious Traps, Zyras plants , Lanterns and trinkets so keep an eye on the battlefield and coordinate with your teammates to give you an easy escaping route.
Using Shunpo on an allied or enemy Sight Ward , Vision Ward or trinket will reveal the ward.
Shunpo will always place her on the opposite side of the target from her current location. This is a buff for chasing enemies, but can put you in some less-desirable spots as well.
With quick reactions, Shunpo can be used to dodge skill shots like Flash Frost and Enchanted Crystal Arrow.
When the enemy is low on health behind their tower, consider a Shunpo into Death Lotus combo, as very few champions can withstand the onslaught at critical health. Plus, you can Shunpo out again if your kill was successful. An inexperienced player may not expect the sudden tower dive, though a stun will shut you down quite quickly. Make sure you have enough health to make it out alive.
This strategy can also help you in team fights. If you see an enemy who has low HP, you can Shunpo in, kill them, and then Shunpo out right away. Be mindful of stuns.
A surprise Death Lotus can turn the tide quickly. This is best used in coordination with hard AoE crowd control, as not having any form of crowd control can leave Katarina vulnerable during Death Lotus. If your team can keep enemies from escaping, Katarina can put out tons of damage.
Remember that many forms of crowd control will interrupt Death Lotus, specifically any stun, polymorph, suppression silence, knockup, knockback or forced actions (taunt, charm, flee or fear) . Enemy tanks will save their crowd control abilities such as Shen's Shadow Dash or Rammus's Puncturing Taunt specifically to stop you.
Additionally, moving during the cast time of Death Lotus will also interrupt casting, so once commited to the casting, remain stationary for the full duration.
Try waiting until the other team is already engaged with your team before using Shunpo followed by Death Lotus.
Build Usage :)
Because Katarina does not use mana, any item that includes mana or mana regeneration is inefficient if built on her.
Rylai's Crystal Scepter is very useful due to her lack of other forms of crowd control. The 35% slow on Shunpo followed by an immediate Death Lotus makes it harder for enemy champions to leave her range before she's finished channeling.
Although two of her skills scale with her attack damage ( Sinister Steel and Death Lotus), all four of her abilities deal magic damage, so magic penetration is very useful.
Sorcerer's Shoes is therefore the preferred choice of boots, regardless of whether you're doing an attack damage or ability power build.
used to try and bait out hard CC that might otherwise interrupt Death Lotus and/or kill her.
Hextech Gunblade used to be one of best items available for Katarina, but reduced AD ratios and a shorter channel time have made it less optimal. It's still a very fun item on her, especially later in the game when its huge cost is less significant.
Voracity makes Katarina naturally snowball, so you probably don't need snowball items like Mejai's Soulstealer if you're doing well, and won't get much value from them if you're not.