Classic Annie Build
Late Game Options
Defensive Options (Chose one depending on game)
Classic Full Build
Against Heavy AP
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.
Threats to Annie with this build
|Yasuo||This is one of your best matchups honestly. I always pick Annie if the other team picks a Yasuo. His windwall can't stop you ult and you can poke the hell out of him in lane. Use your long auto-attack range to pop his flo shield and then keep using Q-W-AA combos to wear him down before going all in with your ult post-6. Be sure you always have a way to get your stun up if he has his tornado up because the second he ults you, you should ult him back and try to burst him down as fast as you can.|
|Karma||This is generally a very easy matchup as you have much more reliable damage and way better burst. She will struggle to farm efficiently until she gets an item or two and you can bully her really hard in lane. Her damage is completely reliant on hitting her Q but if you stand behind minions, you won't get hurt much at all. Just be careful that if she suddenly tries to go super aggressive and uses her bind, you're probably about to be ganked so keep that in mind.|
Well hey there! Thanks for checking out my guide on Annie!
Just a little about myself, I'm a member of team GP who mainly plays mid and support with my mains being Annie, Brand and Ahri. I have been playing since the end of season 4 and have enjoyed a lot of success this season so far in ranked.
Anyways, Annie is a fantastic champ who I have had arguably the most success on in my short career (except for maybe Ahri). She has crazy burst potential and great utility on any team. She is often played as a support as well but I really prefer her mid because of her damage potential. There is no better feeling in my opinion than landing the perfect Tibbers stun and 100-0ing your opponent in a matter of seconds. It seems like no one is ever ready for the damage that Annie brings to a team and even if you get behind early, people just forget about you and pay for it later.
This guide will teach you how to play Annie in almost every matchup, how to itemize correctly, and how to use your combos to poke, all in, and win teamfights as well as in lane. I have put a ton of work into this guide so I hope you enjoy!
Pros / Cons
Great at Farming and Sustain in Lane
Game-Changing Ultimate in Teamfights
Weak Against Ganks and Assassins if Stun is Down
Very Reliant on Landing Good Ult for Full Burst
Only Engage is with Flash
Runes and Masteries
Runes and masteries are nothing special, mostly just taking all the AP Caster friendly masteries and then Thunderlord's as our keystone. For runes I normally take Flat AP Quints, Flat AP Glyphs, Armor Seals for laning phase, and a combination of Magic Penetration and Attack Damage Marks. You can go with some magic resist or cooldown reduction if you want at the cost of some early AP but this is a pretty standard rune page for mid lane Annie.
I'm going to assume that you're not a complete rookie if you're reading this but if you are I apologize in advance as I will not be going into detail about what the items do really but rather how they work on Annie.
Rod of Ages
This item is pretty much a must-buy on Annie in 95% of games you'll play. You need the mana and the health because you're completely immobile so you can't be a glass cannon. You MUST buy it first if you're going to get it because it really needs time to stack. Overall its a great item that I recommend you buy in almost every game. I've played over 100 games with Annie in the past year and I've only gone without buying Rod of Ages maybe 5 times.
A definite goal for the early-mid game, this brings your burst to another level and gives you some much needed movement speed (hopefully you have boots already). The damage from the item itself (100AP) is pretty big and then the extra splash damage is huge when you land a great 2-3 man Tibbers stun. Another item I buy almost every game.
Annie is an AP caster so of course you're going to build a rab cap. I usually like to grab it third unless I'm waaaay ahead in which case I'll get it second for tons of AP. This item takes Annie's burst to new levels and serves to keep paying dividends later into the game. I buy this every single game that I can because your burst is just incredible with it. An R-Q-W will completely blow away a squishy.
Rylai's Crystal Scepter and Morellonomicon
This is where some deviation is possible as you can grab a Rylai's or a Morello's depending on if you want a little bit more health and a nice slow on your spells or some much-needed CDR. Both items are very viable on Annie and you can even purchase both if you forgo a Void Staff and thus some magic penetration.
You can either go CDR boots, magic penetration boots, or mobility but I normally grab the CDR boots and get Void Staff instead of Morellonomicon and just deal with the less CDR.
Okay so this is the important part ladies and gentlemen so listen carefully. Annie has two different functions as the game progresses.
For those of you who have never played Annie, your stun is the most important part of your kit. Your E (the shild) may appear to be useless but it is excellent on using to get a stack of your passive and get the stun ready for very little mana cost.
Again, I'm going to assume you have already seen or read what each of Annie's skills does. In the early game, it is imperative that farm well with your Q. It gives you free farming and you can get stacks on your passive very quickly. Every time you reach four stacks and get your stun, you should be looking to use the stun-empowered Q on your opponent and then if you stun them, hit them with a W and an auto-attack and that will trigger your Thunderlord's and take out a third to half of their health.
Combo: Q(stun) - W - AA - Thunderlord's(automatically)
Once you poke them down sufficiently, you should look to go all-in for a kill. A basic part of being good at mid-lane is knowing when to trade and when to engage fully. You should only go all-in when your opponent's spells are on cooldown. For example, if you're facing an Ahri in lane and she uses and misses her Charm and Orb of Deception, you should immediately go on the counter-attack as long as you're not too low because there is very little she can do to retaliate until her spells come back off cooldown. Your all-in combo is using your ultimate when your stun is active because your ult deals damage per second in the area around it and it sets up an easy Q-W to finish them. If you hit all three spells you'll also trigger Thunderlord's for a little extra damage. You may have to flash to land the ult bit it is worth it if you get the kill. You have to execute the combo quickly because your opponent will try to dash or flash away as soon as the stun wears off.
All-in Lane Combo: R(stun) - Q - W - E(for protection).
In teamfights your job is to catch two or more members of the enemy team in your ult stun and then try to blow up a carry as fast as possible. Your ult can be game-changing and can either save or throw games so use it wisely but don't be afraid to use it and end up dying too early before you can make an impact. The combo is the same as in a all-in lane combo but you'll have to use your flash most of the time to catch them off guard. You also HAVE TO go for a carry because using your combo on a tank is useless.
You HAVE TO use your flash aggressively most of the time so you can't be prudent with your use. Late game you should look to flash-engage whenever it is up if you don't have any other type of hard engage. Even in lane, a good flash-Tibbers will get an easy kill with very little counterplay.
Annie is a fantastic champion in my opinion and I hope you enjoy playing her as much as I do! I will continue to update this guide with more details, personal videos and statistics from my own games and any other tips I can think of. Please be sure to look at the constantly updated matchup list to see how to play against a certain champ when your opponent locks it in. Thank you very much and good luck on the rift!
"Don't be a scaredy cat!"