Ahri Build Guide by denniscakes
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
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.
Hello and welcome to my guide for Ahri, the Nine-tailed Fox. This is a (as well as I could) comprehensive guide to Ahri and all you really need to know about her. The ins and outs, so to speak. When Ahri first came out and I saw her champion spotlight, I knew I had to get her immediately. After playing her for quite some time now, I feel confident enough to write this guide and feel like this could actually help people as well.
So what about Ahri?
Ahri is starting to become one of the top tier AP Carries and is also getting banned more often now in ranked games. Her Charm ability can be game changing in team fights by catching an opponent off guard. Not only this, once she gets Spirit Rush she becomes even more deadly to deal with, especially in the laning phase. If she is to get Charm to land, it's almost a guaranteed kill, assuming you can land all of her spells.
She's a difficult character to learn inherently because of all the skill shots she has, but the rewards are great in return. If you want to be able to dash around the map and be killing left and right, Ahri is your girl.
Pros / Cons
- Great CC. Charm is key.
- Great damage output.
- Very mobile with Spirit Rush
- Difficult to gank in laning phase.
- Variety of combos makes her difficult to predict.
- Great pusher and can farm minions well.
- Suffers from high mana costs. Runs out of mana easily.
- Once you blow Spirit Rush and Flash, very difficult to escape.
- Long cooldowns. Will have to go in and out of team fights.
- Most of her skills are skill shots. Will take time to learn how to aim properly.
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
Greater Seal of Mana Regeneration
Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power
Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
Many people like to build Ahri, rune wise, with tons of AP on both seals and glyphs in order to give that added damage for early game harass, but I disagree with this. Because of this recent nerf, Ahri definitely suffers from mana problems, and you will see this very quickly once you play her. Flat mana regen seals help fix this in early game laning phase where she is most affected by her high mana costs. This will help her laning sustainability significantly. Magic penetration marks help pierce through for added damage while flat AP quints are there for added damage. The glyphs listed can easily be changed for flat AP runes for early game harass.
Other Possible Rune Choices
Runes are really your choice and personal preference. I do not know extensive information about runes but I do know that these runes have worked for me thus far. A couple of other viable choices would be Greater Seal of Scaling Mana Regeneration for a possible seal choice. This grants more mana regen for late game; however, I feel flat mana regen is more useful for early game where Ahri really needs the mana. Another possible choice is Greater Glyph of Ability Power for a glyph choice. This gives Ahri an added 10 AP early game as opposed to AP per level. This is mainly for early game harass and definitely is a viable option for glyphs.
Why did I choose these specific masteries?
Pretty straightforward. For the most part, I'd say it's a very standard build for AP Carries to go 21/0/9. I want to point out that I did get Improved Recall and this is because that 1 second seriously has saved my life many many times. 21 in Offense tree helps to maximize her damage while 9 in utility is geared mainly towards getting her increased mana regen (she seriously needs all the help she can get in this department.)
Recommended Summoner Spells
Why these spells?
Ignite is a standard pick for many AP Carries. What it's especially useful for is to insure that you get a kill. The worst moment is when you blow all your spells on an opponent to have them walk away with 10 hp. No one wants that. You want that gold (and need it really.) It's used very often as that final damage, especially since it reduces healing.
While Ahri is very mobile after level 6, she's a sitting duck before level 6 and when Spirit Rush is on cooldown. Flash helps solve this problem. You need a way to escape and this is a more guaranteed way to save yourself (provided you don't slam into a wall which I've done many times.)
Are there any other viable spells?
Ghost is a very good spell and could definitely be used in place of Flash. Ghost helps make up for Ahri's slow movement speed and can be used to escape or chase an opponent so that you can charm him to death. I personally prefer flash just so I can escape by flashing over the wall if the case comes up, but if you feel more comfortable using Ghost, then by all means.
Teleport is okay. It's not GREAT, but it's not terrible either. You can save time by teleporting to your turret after you buy your items. I would say teleport is just okay and I would only recommend this maybe if you are just starting to pick up Ahri and you want to get back to lane in order to farm faster. Another positive of teleport is that you could easily teleport to a ward or another turret to save a lane and spirit dash in to give a great gank. Situational at best.
Exhaust is also just okay. It can be good to fake out your opponent into starting a 1v1 against you and you pull this out and kill them. Great for team fights to have an extra exhaust. Honestly, I wouldn't recommend this at all. I'm only putting it out there just because it really is a viable spell, but just under very rare circumstances would I grab this.
What do my spells do?Ahri gains a charge of Essence Theft whenever one of her spells hits an enemy. This caps at 3 charges per spell cast. Upon reaching 9 charges, Ahri's next spell will have 35% bonus spell vamp.
Not the best passive, but still definitely helpful. Once you get Will of the Ancients then this definitely could save your life many times. This really shines during the laning phase. You can trade blows with your opponent and heal some health back without having to go back to base. It allows for greater sustain and encourages farming by hitting all enemy targets to get faster charges.
Ahri sends out an orb in a line in front of her and then pulls it back, dealing magic damage on the way out and true damage on the way back.
Cooldown: 7 seconds. Cost: 70 / 75 / 80 / 85 / 90 mana Magic Damage: 40 / 65 / 90 / 115 / 140 (+0.33 per ability power) True Damage: 40 / 65 / 90 / 115 / 140 (+0.33 per ability power)
This will be your main damage output. I cannot emphasize this enough. This is the main reason you want to play Ahri. The true damage is definitely underestimated by many. If you can land both of the hits from this spell, your opponents will take massive damage. I suppose the only downside is that this is a skill shot so it will take practice trying to hit your opponent. But really, that isn't a downside. It just makes you a better player in the end. You can farm minions and push lanes quickly with this spell, harass your opponent from a distance, and kill all the things. And I mean, all the things. Side note: It's important to understand that there was a recent nerf on Ahri. While it seems like it wasn't a big deal to increase her mana costs, it definitely does affect some things. First of all, Ahri was already pretty mana dependent and by increasing the mana on this skill, you can't just keep using this skill. You need to be smart about when you cast this.
Ahri releases three fox-fires to surround her for up to 5 seconds. After a short delay after cast, they will target nearby enemies, always prioritizing champions, to deal magic damage to them. Additional fox-fires that hit the same target will only deal 50% damage.
Cooldown: 9 / 8 / 7 / 6 / 5 seconds Cost: 60 mana Magic Damage Per Fox-Fire: 40 / 70 / 100 / 130 / 160 (+0.38 per ability power)Maximum Damage to the Same Target Per Cast: 80 / 140 / 200 / 260 / 320 (+0.76 per ability power)
Pretty good spell. Auto-targets to the nearest enemy and the more charges that hit the same target, the less damage it will do over time. This can be very helpful once you have a Rylai's scepter since you can run after your opponent and these fox fires will help close that gap.
Ahri will blow a kiss that travels in a line in front of her. It will deal magic damage and charm the first enemy it encounters, forcing them to walk harmlessly towards her, while being slowed by 50% for the duration.
Cooldown: 12 seconds Cost: 50 / 65 / 80 / 95 / 110 mana Magic Damage: 60 / 90 / 120 / 150 / 180 (+0.35 per ability power)Charm Duration: 1 / 1.25 / 1.5 / 1.75 / 2 seconds
Excuse my language but damn, this skill is great to have and terrible to go against. In a team fight, you can pretty much guarantee a kill with this. If you have a ward in a nearby bush and you see the enemy team standing behind one character, you can easily pull one in and catch the enemy team off guard and initiate a fight. This is a great initiator and will help you pull off your full combo. This skill is the reason why mid AP Carries are scared of Ahri after level 6. I will talk more about her full combo later on.
Ahri dashes towards the cursor and fires essence bolts, dealing magic damage to up to 3 nearby enemies, prioritizing champions. In the next 10 seconds, Spirit Rush can be cast two additional times before going on cooldown. Each enemy can only be hit once per dash.
Cooldown: 90 / 80 / 70 seconds Cost: 100 mana Magic Damage Per Bolt: 100 / 140 / 180 (+0.3 per ability power) Max Magic Damage: 300 / 420 / 540 (+0.9 per ability power)
Very solid ultimate. I think the most important thing about this skill is that there is no skill animation before using it. What does this mean? Your opponent can't expect when you will ultimate. You can use this to initiate during the laning phase and close a gap to land an easy Charm. You just need to be careful using this in team fights. You don't want to blow this too early in a fight or else you're going to find yourself in the center of the fight without a way to escape.
Why do I get skills in this order?
I mean, really, personal preference. I'm a bit safer in my harass in the early laning phase. The reason I like to get level 2 Orb of Deception at level 3 instead of Fox-Fire is because I don't want to take the risk of getting up in their face and taking more damage than I should. Orb of Deception allows for a safe harass from a distance. I sometimes switch things up towards the end and trade off between maxing Fox-Fire and Charm because the added time on charm can be helpful.
Of course, as with this entire guide, this is just merely a suggestion. The only recommendation that I have to stress is that you need to max Orb of Deception first. The other two spells you can choose to fit your playing style better. But with the orb, I will keep saying this, this is how you will do damage and farm. So that has to be maxed first.
Fox-Fire is added damage for you. It auto-targets your opponent and can really do damage to follow up other spells. I would say you should max this first if you are a more aggressive player and find yourself closing gaps often or harassing very often.
Charm has an increase in time length when you level it more. It does do damage and while it does a nice solid number, that isn't the focus for this spell. By maxing it earlier, this means that you have more time to get spells hit on your opponent. If you want to play safer and have more time to land spells correctly and efficiently, max this first. Also, if you find yourself in team fights more, this would definitely be more helpful.
Will of the Ancients
Rylai's Crystal Scepter
Morello's Evil Tome
The reason for these items is to make Ahri a bit tankier than the average caster. Ahri has to get in their face using Spirit Rush and will sometimes have to stay in the middle of the fray and can't afford to just stack AP unless you want to die quickly. For her last item, this is all very arbitrary and up to your own personal preference. Will of the Ancients is definitely a good early game buy because of your passive. You basically want to out sustain your laning opponent and Will of the Ancients gets that job done.
Possible items for 6th item:
Void Staff: I would definitely purchase this if you see your enemy stacking MR.
Abyssal Scepter: A pretty good purchase. You find yourself getting hit a lot by AP Casters then I'd grab this. The passive is a great added bonus to it too.
Zhonya's Hourglass: You find yourself being targeted often in fights then this is the item to get. It gives you a bit of durability with the great active of being invulnerable for 2 seconds. The added AP is nice too.
Mejai's Soulstealer: You feel confident and say, "Hey, I think I'm going to rock this game." Grab this. Grab it only if you feel confident that you will snowball and win. Don't get too cocky though.
Why Boots of Speed first and not Doran's Ring?
Boots of Speed and 3 health pots is ideal to compensate for Ahri's slow movement speed. When I mean slow, I really mean slow. Even with a sorcerer's boots, she can be caught pretty quickly if you don't have any escapes. Not only this, what you are really trying to build early game is that Hextech Revolver. The key to early game is to farm as much as possible and Hextech Revolver will allow for great sustain. Does this mean you shouldn't get Doran's Ring? No, not necessarily. It's still a very good item to get first due to its mana regen and increase in health. However, I rather would focus on getting the spell vamp early on.
There's no real better of the two. They both serve different purposes, which is why I placed a Blasting Wand in my item sequence. Depending on your team, you may find yourself needing to buy one or the other and in rare cases, both. Rod of Ages is a great item. Gives you 80 AP when maxed and both mana and health. Rylai's Crystal Scepter allows for Ahri to chase opponents by using spells such as Fox-Fire to close the gap or Spirit Rush to make it easier to hit spells later on.
Which would I use on a typical basis?
I would say Rylai's Crystal Scepter. Ahri needs that extra CC to make her that much more devastating. The slow on her spells allows you to line up your skill shots easier so that you get as much damage as possible while still getting great health from Rylai's.
When would I use Rod of Ages?
If you find yourself spamming skills often or running out of mana very often, I would say go for the catalyst into Rod of Ages. Another important point is that I generally get rod of Ages if I see I'm against a very bursty team. For example, maybe I see Brand on their team or a Cassiopeia and I'm pissing my pants hoping that I won't die, then I'll grab that Rod of Ages.
How to Use Skills Effectively
How do I effectively land my skills?
As you know, all of Ahri's skills are going to be skill shots except for Fox-Fire. This is especially important for Ahri to land her skills because of her high mana costs. Every time you miss a spell just means that you are wasting mana that you could be using for other things, such as farming in early game. How do we go about trying to get these skills to land? It's all about prediction really. The key to hitting an opponent is trying to guess where they will walk to next. If they are stationary, of course you're going to just want to throw your skills in their general direction, but if you see them trying to constantly move. You have to understand that aiming where they will walk next is the most ideal place to aim a spell.
How do I start a combo, especially during the laning phase?
Well I suppose this all depends on the situation but there are a couple of ways to improve hitting your opponent. There is the safe way and the aggressive way. Ahri is great at switching up her skills depending on what the situation needs. If you need to catch up to an opponent, you can easily do that with Spirit Rush. If you want to just poke them a bit in lane, you can just use Orb of Deception and Fox-Fire to whittle them down.
You want to open up with Charm and go into Fox-Fire, Orb of Deception, and ending with Spirit Rush into an Ignite. This combo is what scares many during the laning phase against Ahri. Once she lands that charm, it's almost guaranteed that you can kill you opponent if they are not at full health. Even if they are at full health, it can at least guarantee that they will have to go back to base.
If you are almost positive you can bring in a kill, you want to just try to catch your opponent off guard by using Spirit Rush first into a Charm. Afterwards you want to try to quickly use Orb of Deception into Fox-Fire and end with an Ignite and a couple of basic attacks. This is when you feel confident that you will kill your opponent since you are blowing your Spirit Rush at the very beginning.
Remember that in team fights, you do not want to use Spirit Rush too early. This would mean that you A) don't have a good escape out and B) you're jumping into the middle of the battle when most of the crowd control spells are going to happen.
Overall, Ahri is a great character. She has good kiting ability, can avoid mid ganks quite well, and can kill most AP carries with her full combo, which is why she has started to become a top pick in many ranked games. Although she may not be able to burst down teams as well as other AP carries, she still makes a great pick and can easily push team fights into her favor.
I think I've said pretty much everything I can think about Ahri for the time being. If there are any questions, be sure to write comments and I can try to get back to you as soon as possible! Hopefully you enjoyed this guide and I hope this helps you. Send in pictures if you use this guide sometime and it works in your favor.
Thanks for reading!