Riven Build Guide by SakuyaFM

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League of Legends Build Guide Author SakuyaFM

Epic Jungle Riven Time: Broken Wings, Broken Wings...

SakuyaFM Last updated on September 25, 2011
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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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 0

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 9

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If you are looking at this guide in the archives, please make sure you check out my more comprehensive guide to Riven. In addition to jungling, there will now be sections for laning and Dominion.

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Author's Notes and Miscellany

*This is a work-in-progress. While this text is present, the guide could undergo major changes. After that, I will only update for patch notes, and important build changes.

*I will specifically say if something is based off math (aka theorycrafting). These statements should be taken with a grain of salt.

*Use this as a guide, not a bible. Your own experience should help you decide if you are going to keep following this, or deviate any number of ways. This is not set in stone.

Version History:
25SEP2011 - Revised Trinity Force section, added damage calculations, revised item recommendations, added Videos and Scores pages
20SEP2011 - "The Build," "The Game," added to guide. 20SEP hotfix info added.
19SEP2011 - Started guide, "Author's Notes," "Introduction," added to guide.

Patch History:
20SEP2011 Hotfix:

  • Base Stats
    Attack Speed per level increased to 3.5 from 2.9
    Base Armor increased to 15 from 12
  • Broken Wings bonus attack damage ratio increased to 0.7 from 0.6.
  • Ki Shout cast time decreased to 0.25 from 0.5
  • Valor
    Shield increased to 60/90/120/150/180 from 40/70/100/130/160.
    Cooldown decreased to 10/9/8/7/6 from 11/10/9/8/7.
  • Wind Slash
    Cast time decreased to 0.25 from 0.5
    Missile speed increased by 10% to 2200 from 2000.

  • Broken Wings: Riven steps forward and lashes out in a series of powerful sword slashes. This ability can be activated up to 3 times in a short period.
    --- 1st/2nd Use: Deals damage to a small area in front of her
    --- 3rd Use: Jumps into the air and slams downward, causing a larger impact nova that deals damage and knocks nearby enemies back.
  • Ki Burst: Riven damages and stuns nearby enemies.
  • Valor: Riven dashes forward and gains a shield for a short duration.
  • Blade of the Exile (Ultimate): Riven's sword reforms, giving her a percentage multiplier on her total attack damage, extended range on her damaging abilities and basic attacks and the ability to use Wind Slash once.
    While Blade of the Exile is active, Riven can reactivate the ability to activate Wind Slash, emitting a large shockwave that deals damage to all units hit based on their missing life.
  • Runic Blade (Passive): Riven's abilities charge her blade, causing her to do bonus damage on her next autoattack. Riven can store up to 3 charges, but only expends one at a time.

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Introduction - Why Jungle?

First off, watch this video if you are confused at the rather cryptic title I gave this guide.

Now replace "Bacon Strips" with "Broken Wings."

Exactly. It's how you'll play as Riven.

Joking aside, this is my Jungle Riven guide. Now you might be asking, "Why should I jungle as Riven?"
1. Even though she has some sustain through a Regrowth Pendant and her natural regen, she cannot poke at champions effectively, nor does she have a fallback ranged poke in case she is denied.
2. With proper runes, she has decent ganking, though on par with Master Yi. However, instead of requiring red buff, she just requires movespeed in order to get in proper range of E->W.
3. She's tons of fun, and many people agree that she will be getting some usability buffs.
5. You might give other people a 100-ELO reduction if you gank them as Riven. Also, this is a joke.

With that said, at this state, she is NOT viable in eSports-level play at all. Then again, we all play for fun, too, don't we? DON'T WE?!

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About Trinity Force, Damage Calculations, Theoretical Builds

It's an option, but it's rather expensive for a single item. I'm not saying it's not a good item, it's just not to my taste on Riven.

On pricing, let's say you get Atma, Sunfire, Banshee, Mercs, TriForce, and Last Whisper. This offtank build with give you about 292 bonus AD + 52 AD on Sheen procs + 14 damage every second, and 7.5k Effective health for about 15.3k. An Atma, Banshee, Mallet, Mercs, Bloodthirster, and Last Whisper will give about 324 bonus AD and ~7k effective health for 14.8k. So really, it comes down to preference if you want consistent or periodical damage

If you are hellbent on getting it for Sheen procs, however, by all means do it. Just keep in mind that her LV18 base AD is about 104. Champs like Lee Sin have 113, Jarvan has 111, and Irelia has 112.


You can skip this part if you are not interested in TForce vs No-TForce calculations.

- Riven's Base AD @ LV18 = 104AD
- TForce Proc = 150%, 52AD
- Broken Wings R5: 110 Damage
- Ki Burst R5: 210 Damage
- Runic Blade LV18: 15 Damage

Valor -> Proc -> Ki Burst -> Proc -> 3x Broken Wings -> 3x Proc -> 2x AA

TForce: Valor -> (171) -> 210 -> (171) -> 110 x3 -> (171) x3 -> 104 x2 = 1603 Damage
No TForce: Valor -> (119) -> 210 -> (119) -> 110 x3 -> (119) x3 -> 104 x2 = 1499 Damage

Sample Builds with at ~6k effective health
Mercury's Treads, The Bloodthirster, Trinity Force, Last Whisper, Atma's Impaler, Frozen Mallet
5.7K effective health, 352 + 52 AD, 16165 Gold

Mercury's Treads, The Bloodthirster, Banshee's Veil, Last Whisper, Atma's Impaler, Frozen Mallet
6.7k effective health, 324 AD, 14810 Gold

Mercury's Treads, Sunfire Cape, Trinity Force, Banshee's Veil, Atma's Impaler, Last Whisper
7.4k effective health, 234 + 52 AD, 15240 Gold

Mercury's Treads, Sunfire Cape, Banshee's Veil, Last Whisper, Atma's Impaler, Frozen Mallet
8.5 effective health, 233 AD, 14420 Gold

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Summoner Spell Choices

Smite, Smite, Smite. Seriously. Bring this. You cannot be a jungler without this. You need it to run the jungle, and it makes grabbing Dragon much faster.

is what you should be running. Reinforcing that movespeed is big with Riven, as her skills have such short range.

is an option, especially if you like jumping over walls. However, your ganks won't be as strong. Taking Ghost over Flash is recommended because you have no significant burst to justify bring a single gap-closer to a gank.

I won't even recommend other summoner spells because they will keep you without an open escape mechanic. Even though you can cover a lot of ground with Valor -> Triple Broken Wings, these aren't always off cooldown.

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The Build: Runes and Masteries

21/0/9 is basically required for her when jungling. Attack speed and early armor pen + your AD runes is the only way she'll clear the jungle with enough speed that it doesn't kill her mid-trip.

Greater Mark of Attack Damage is a mainstay. Do NOT change these under any circumstance.
Greater Seal of Armor is a basic jungler rune. No reason to change these.
Blue slots are more flexible, and almost anything could be placed here. Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction helps a lot, because she needs CDR to be effective. Greater Glyph of Scaling Cooldown Reduction is also an option, and it means you can replace your Brutalizer for a tank item, your cooldown boots with Merc Treads, or even another damage item. Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist and Greater Glyph of Magic Resist works as well, and provide a tad bit safer ganks.
Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed is a big one, because of her skill ranges. You'll actually need to walk up to someone. At least champs like Master Yi have Alpha Strike, or post-6 Warwick with Infinite Duress. Riven needs these to be successful.

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The Build: Basic Item Purchases

Wriggle's Lantern
This is a staple item for most junglers. The lifesteal and 500 damage proc makes your jungle runs, as well as dragon kills, much easier.

Last Whisper
This feels like it's a required item on Riven, like pre-rework Pantheon.

Frozen Mallet
The Mallet usually the only tanky item you'll get, unless both teams decide to farm for 2 hours. Gives you a consistent slow, granting that target cohesion Riven needs coupled with 4 short dashes.

The Bloodthirster
This is the best BF Sword item for Riven. Black Cleaver and Infinity Edge are both made for autoattack champions that could get BC stacks easily, or attack fast enough to proc a lot of crits.

Force of Nature
This is one of your final items, with some much needed movespeed, as well as the MR from it.

Atma's Impaler
An Atma's may not immediately make sense because Riven won't exactly break 3000HP with this build, but breaking the 2250HP point will give you 45 AD, comparable to a B. F. Sword.

Remember to sell your Wriggle's Lantern if you are attempting to grab your 6th item (5th if you don't count boots).

A lot of people have been building her as a tanky DPS like Jarvan or Irelia, with maybe just a TriForce or a couple of damage items, the rest are tank items. It doesn't work. For starters, Jarvan has Martial Cadence and Irelia has Hiten Style. These provide them with enough damage to still be a threat when running tanky DPS. Riven doesn't do that. She has low base AD. She doesn't have anything that will keep her from being just an annoyance in a teamfight rather than an actual threat. Hell, she doesn't even have good base stats to start with compared to them. This is why she has to be built as an AD "caster" like Talon or Lee Sin.

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The Build: Other Item Purchases

Ionian Boots of Lucidity will be your preferred boots because of CDR. However, it's very rare that the other team won't have at least 2 hard CCs. However, with the recent cooldown reduction on Valor, you can actually opt not to buy these.
Mercury's Treads will most likely be your purchase if you are still new to Riven, or the enemy team is frontloaded with hard CC. God forbid the enemy has Leona, Annie, Taric, Ashe, and Udyr in the same team.
Shurelya's Reverie gives you some much needed HP and CDR, plus the active is great for chasing. Also, buying a Philosopher's Stone early game is crucial if you are not getting gank opportunities, such as if your lanes are pushed, or enemies have too much HP for you to get a kill in a gank.
Banshee's Veil is still a good replacement for Force of Nature, especially when you're going against someone who is combo-dependent like LeBlanc or Lee Sin, or even to avoid that Blitzcrank Rocket Grab. Plus, it synergizes with Atma's, though 7.5 AD isn't that much.
Hexdrinker is a good early game MR item. Taking advantage of the passive is great, but it loses effectiveness quickly, and delays your full build.
Randuin's Omen and Sunfire Cape provide good armor items if the enemy is AD-heavy. Both have good AOE effects (Randuin active slow and Sunfire passive damage). Replace your Force of Nature with one of either. Once again, these have some synergy with Atma's, giving you 7 and 9 AD, respectively.
Warmog's Armor is actually a nice counter to burst champions, and it provides the most health bonus to Atma's at 36.4 AD fully stacked. Beware of DPS champions with Madred's Bloodrazor.

Boots of Swiftness and Boots of Mobility are fun with the massive movespeed overload, but that's exactly what it is: overload.
Sword of the Occult is very hit or miss, especially for a jungler. I've never been a fan of snowball items. I always do something mid game to make me lose stacks.
Hextech Gunblade is a weird one. You don't use the AP aspect of the revolver, and the build itself is expensive. Your spellvamp isn't exactly going to be good, nor will your lifesteal. Still, if you wanna troll, be my guest.

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The Build: Sample Build Order

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The Game: Jungle Route

Safe Route:
Golems (smite) -> Wolves -> Wraiths (smite Blue) -> recall and check lanes for ganks -> Blue (smite) -> Wolves -> Wraiths -> Red (smite) -> Golems

Blue Buff Start (needs hard leash to half HP, otherwise risky w/ soft leash):
Blue (smite) -> Wolves -> Wraiths (Smite) -> Golems -> recall and check for ganks -> Wolves -> Wraiths -> Red (smite) -> Golems

Start with a Vamp Scepter, and run any of the two paths. When you first go back to spawn, make sure you check for ganks. If there is a potential gank, buy boots and a Health Potion. If there isn't, grab a Cloth Armor and as many Health Pots, and continue the path. Your next recall will be once again to assess. If you bought boots earlier and there is an open gank, grab a Long Sword. If not, buy Cloth Armor. If you bought Cloth Armor earlier and there is an open gank, grab boots. If not, buy Long Sword and continue your jungle. You may also try to invade their jungle, but it only works on certain champs that are susceptible to it.

Whatever you do, do not force a gank, ever. If you are getting underleveled terribly, just leech off your dominant solo lane, or keep some "lane presence" in a pushed lane. Let them know you're lurking just around the corner, and be wary of you. You'll also need to communicate with your team and ask them to see if the side bushes are warded or not because of your RIVEN GANKS~.

In summary:
Lots of Ganks - Vampiric Scepter => Boots of Speed => Long Sword
Passive Lanes - Vampiric Scepter => Cloth Armor => Long Sword

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The Game: Ganking with Riven

Ganking with Riven takes a bit of practice because of how short her ranges are. You won't be as reliant on Red buff as let's say, Master Yi. However, you'll need to start Red buff ganking when lanes grab boots.

Opening up with E > W > AA > Q > AA > Q > AA will usually be the case. You can also do E > Q > W > AA > Q > AA > Q. As long as you do not go over the 3-stack cap on your passive, you'll be fine. Stack management is like Lee Sin's Flurry, except this is more "spammable" to a point, without gimping your capacity to deal damage.

Remember, a successful gank doesn't always result in a kill. Having the other team blow summoner spells is also a good thing for that lane. Even if you had to pop Ghost, it makes your lane just a bit more dominant. Also, do not be concerned if you are not the one getting the kills. Feeding your team equally is better than feeding yourself every kill.

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**THEORYCRAFT** Experimental Build

Instead of getting big items for a single purpose, I'm thinking about building her up equally in terms of damage and mitigation.

Wriggle's Lantern to be replaced with Atma's Impaler lategame (break 2250 HP first)
Mercury's Treads
Tiamat or Last Whisper (Yes, Tiamat, though I'd never take it on Jungle Riven)
Frozen Mallet
The Bloodthirster