Fiora Build Guide by Sykan
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.
Welcome. I bought Fiora on the day of her release, and, after seeing a couple other build guides and experimenting by myself, decided to publish the build I think works best for her.
Fiora is a melee champion with a high damage output, whose playstyle rewards well-timed aggressive play. Fiora can be absolutely devastating, and is not too team-comp dependant, although all she really contributes to a team is damage output, given that she has no actual CC abilities. She makes up for this with pretty great damage combos and excellent chasing potential. All in all, a really great pick after you've gotten the hang of the game, and know how to jump in and out of battles. given that she lacks a high-survivability skill like Master Yi's Meditate or Tryndamere's Undying Rage.
I'll make this guide as detailed as I can and update it until I feel it's complete. I hope you enjoy it and find it useful, and thanks for reading!
Also, thanks to Searz for making a guide format available. I used it for a couple parts of this guide because it's really handy. You can find it here. Yay for plugs!
Pros / Cons
+ High damage output
+ Excellent at farming
+ High mobility in fights
+ Very hard to escape from
+ Can effectively deal AD burst damage
- No escape mechanism
- Very susceptible to CC
- No CC abilities
- Relatively poor sustain for a melee carry
- Likes to draw Teemo fan art
The masteries I take are pretty straightforward. 21/9/0 for the maximized damage output and some degree of early survivability.
You may take some points off of Vampirism and Demolitionist in order to max out Deadliness and get Lethality, but I personally don't recommend it. The change on Deadliness (from increased crit chance to a really small boost to AD per level) makes it much less viable, and with this build you're not focusing on critical hits in any case. Vampirism helps your sustain be bearable, and Demolitionist helps you poke turrets better with your Burst of Speed.
Main rune set
Greater Mark of Desolation
6 Greater Marks of Desolation and 3 Greater Marks of Alacrity
Standard AD carry marks and quintessences, so that armor is less of a hassle, both on champions who build survivability (Which would be a common result of you doing well) or champions who are naturally bulky (Like that Shen guy we all know and love, when we're about to get a kill and suddenly we get lolno'd with a shield and a taunt) besides the fact that flat armor seals are the most common pick, so we want a way to mitigate that as much as possible.
9 Greater Seals of Resilience
Speaking of these being the most common pick, we want these because they're overall very handy. Mitigating damage from basic attacks is pretty damn great overall, in lane or jungling, and they mitigate a little bit of enemies' armor penetration. They also let you either abuse your jungle if your jungler's roaming/ganking more than actually farming the jungle (Common with junglers like Shaco or Riven who rely on ganks and early game dominance) or counterjungle if you can afford to leave your lane for long enough (Remember to pay attention to where the enemy jungler is! You don't want to get caught in there by yourself, ever.)
9 Greater Glyphs of Alacrity
Attack speed is nice for your early game and makes it easier to last-hit, as well as the fact that you'll get a larger bonus from these runes later in the match when using your E, thus making it scale well throughout the match.
Greater Quintessence of Desolation
Greater Quintessence of Desolation
More armor penetration, for reasons already stated above. What's not to like?
Other runes worth considering
Greater Mark of Strength
Can replace the marks of alacrity for slightly easier last-hitting and harder poke. I don't quite recommend it, but it might help a lot depending on your play-style.
Greater Glyph of Shielding
You're melee, so you're going to have to get close to enemies in order to deal damage, and this puts you in a very hazardous spot. Having MR on top of the armor is never a bad thing, especially if you are going solo top.
Skills - Sequence and Usage
-> -> -> -> -> -> -> -> -> -> -> -> -> -> -> -> ->
I take Riposte at level 1 because an extra 15 AD makes last-hitting just so much easier. Lunge gets level 2 because it's our main positioning spell and having an early point in it is great, then max it last because Riposte and Burst of Speed are of a much higher priority for damage output.
Your Kit and How to Use It
In lane, it'll reward well-timed aggressive play, with heavy harassment whenever you see a chance. Go in, deal damage, go out, recover health. Profitable!
Always remember to issue a movement or attack command right after lunge, as sometimes it breaks movement and Fiora just sort of stands there after lunging, which can be a huge inconvenience if you're using it to chase.
Keep in mind that you can only target enemy units, so you can't use it as an escape mechanism unless there's a neutral creep or enemy minion within sight and range, which might be difficult given its relatively short range for a gap closer.
Lunge also serves as a good juking mechanism. When escaping an enemy, you can throw them off by walking into a brush, waiting until they get near it, then dashing to them and running past them. Time it right and you might get away from otherwise inescapable situations.
The active on it is also useful throughout the match. Remember that when a unit has targeted you for autoattacking, they get a little colored outline around them to tip you off, so watch for that and counter away. It can save your hide from 'that one last hit I needed to kill her'.
You can also use it to save yourself from those glaring next-hit abilities like Empower and Crushing Blow. Now if only it could block Parrrley...
Also use it whenever it's up when you're taking a creep camp or tanking dragon (Or baron, but really, you shouldn't ever be the one to tank baron).
The fact that is lasts for three seconds makes for such concentrated damage that you can effectively Lunge in, attack for the full duration of Burst of Speed, then Lunge back towards a minion or such, taking minimal damage while dealing tons of it. It also makes Fiora really effective at poking turrets. Great damage output over three seconds means you can sneak in massive damage on a turret whenever the opponent is not able to defend it properly, or before they can actually do something about it.
The fact that it makes you untargettable for a few seconds as you're jumping around and dealing damage can turn things in your favor when pulling crazy stunts, or if you're getting focused in a teamfight. Don't ever wait too long to use it, however- by the time you start it, you might already be dead. If you start taking damage and are approaching two thirds, maybe a half of your health, don't hesitate to use it to break their focus off of you. Just make sure that your team can pick up some of it so that they don't immediately focus you again as soon as it's over.
Starting with Cloth Armor can help you survive early poking by other AD champions, and we will build this into our Madred's Razors to help our farming as well as building into Wriggle's.
Boots of Speed
A solid alternative to Cloth Armor as a starting item if you are up against an opponent that you will need mobility against, for dodging skillshots and moving out of area-of-effect spells.
Three or five, depending on whether you took boots or cloth armor. These help you stay in lane longer and survive some poke damage until you get Wriggle's for some lifesteal-based sustain.
These things win games. You can pass on a potion or three to get one of these at the start if you are afraid their jungler will perform early ganks, or that their mid is going to roam too hard. If you feel like you need it, go for it. Keep in mind, however, that having less health potions means less lane sustain, so play smart and don't get too heavily harassed until you can get a Vampiric Scepter.
Early Game - Core Items
Great item for melee carries in general. It has everything you need, in lane or jungling- Extra armor to survive pokes in lane or take less damage from creep camps if jungling, lifesteal for sustain, a little bit of armor, and a free, 3-minute-long maphack. If you feel like you'll need to (Against bulky opponents, perhaps, who give you grief in the midgame), you can pass on getting this item and just getting the components ( Vampiric Scepter and Madred's Razors) to build into The Bloodthirster and Madred's Bloodrazor early. Bloodrazor can be incredibly useful in the midgame, so don't hesitate to pass on Wriggle's in order to get it if you have a feeling it'll help.
Attack damage to make every single hit with your E on hurt a lot more, coupled with decent early armor penetration, and to top it off, some cooldown reduction that will help us both use our regular skills with more ease and fluidity, chaining combos like nobody's business, but also make the cooldown on her ult much less of an issue.
Standard AD carry boots, these will boost your attack speed, thus increasing your damage output. Get these if you're doing well in lane and your opponents don't have much CC. Otherwise, skip these altogether and get Mercury's Treads early. You are melee, and you're probably going to be focused once teamfights start. The Tenacity can save your life, so don't overlook it.
A great damage item that also provides sizeable amounts of lifesteal, both of which are things we definitely want, and it grows stronger the more you farm. Ridiculously profitable, but also very volatile. All stacks are lost upon dying, and that can mess with your head when you engage in another fight and find yourself doing much less damage than you expect. Always be aware of how many stacks you currently have in it to prevent such a scenario.
Moving into Mid Game
Late Game, and the Need to Melt Faces
We'll want to upgrade The Brutalizer into this. It'll give us a little more Armor Penetration and Cooldown Reduction, which is always nice, as well as a small but present critical strike chance. Mostly, however, we will want the active on it. It's like a miniature version of Highlander, and we can use it both as an escape mechanism (pseudo-ghosting for fun and profit) or to further chase down enemies, as well as increasing damage output in a fight.
Upgrade for Phage. Even more health, to boost survivability by a little, as well as the slow passive becoming ensured for every hit. Perfect for making sure that enemies have an incredibly hard time escaping you, as well as making you a slight bit more durable.
Banshee's Veil can save you from CC effects, but it'll only really block one incoming spell. Mercury's Treads replace Berserker's Greaves now that our E is most definitely maxed out and we don't really have any attack speed issues. CC can really shut Fiora down incredibly hard, so it's imperative we get some manner of tenacity.
Too good to not build. Extra attack speed and damage, as well as a percentage of max health on every hit, which works beautifully with her E as well as her ult. Replaces Wriggle's Lantern. As mentioned earlier, you might want to pass on Wriggle's to build this earlier, or simply replace Wriggle's with it sooner, depending on the situation. Madred's is a good boost to your damage output and becomes devastating when coupled with your E and your R.
Viable replacement for Youmuu's against bulky opponents, or if your opponents decide that you're too big a threat and build some armor to shut you down. Will boost your damage output by a lot with the increased armor penetration.
Great counter if the enemy has CC which can pretty much ensure your crushing defeat. It's a relatively cheap item with decent magic resist and a free cleanse. Very nice mid-game item and viable substitute for Banshee's Veil during that phase. You can always sell it later and buy Banshee's Veil instead.
The Black Cleaver
People argue that this item won't give you as much damage output increase as Last Whisper would, as Last Whisper's ArPen grows as the enemy armor increases. However, this item can mean a world of difference in the early/mid game, especially against squishies. Armor Penetration cannot shred armor below 0, but it can be reduced below 0, which makes the Black Cleaver a beautiful item to get while the carries are working on their damage output and relying on their runes for survivability. It's also great when you have a bruiser like Wukong on your team, who will greatly appreciate the reduced armor for when he goes in for Crushing Blow.
Another underappreciated item, but can be extremely useful if you took Exhaust instead of Ignite and you find yourself in the need to shut down an enemy's lifesteal. Exhaust to negate their damage output, use the active on Executioner's to prevent them from healing up, press E, profit. The stats are also nice as it gives you critical strike chance as well as lifesteal. Can be a viable substitute for Wriggle's early in the game. Doesn't come with the free maphack though.
Relatively underappreciated item, but it can mean a world of difference during laning phase if you're against an opponent with good, long range AP harass such as Zilean or Lux. It can also save you, big time, if you're fighting against Karthus.
Sword of the Occult
Straight-out snowball item. Relatively good purchase if you feel like you can get early kills in your lane, but as a squishy melee champion you may have a lot of trouble keeping your stacks high enough to make a difference. If you manage to get 20, you'll get a nice speed boost which can save your life or end your enemies'. Only get this if you're confident that you will be able to get kills without putting yourself at heavy risk.
A lot of extra damage output, some more crit chance, and a passive that increases crit damage. This build doesn't focus on crit, but if the enemy team doesn't have very effective tanks or not many HP-bulky characters, and you feel like you could use a stronger damage otuput instead of the HP percentage damage of Madred's Bloodrazor, you can get an Infinity Edge to hit much harder.
Some attack speed, a little bit of magic damage for your basic attacks, and more importantly a little MR boost after a few attacks. Can be good if you want to be a little bit bulkier against AP opponents. Sell it later for Banshee's Veil or Madred's Bloodrazor.
Early Game - Farming the Lane
Prioritize last hitting, moving onto enemies for heavy harass with Lunge into Burst of Speed when possible. Gauge your enemies- If you can harass without taking too much damage, zone your enemy and keep them away from farm and experience. If they can bite back, focus on farming and play passively until you see an opening. Fiora can have incredible amounts of burst with her extremely concentrated attack speed steroid. Practice a little, see how much damage you deal on average with a combo, and use that knowledge to know when to move in for a kill on an enemy champion.
Also keep an eye on the minimap; Fiora has no real escape mechanisms, so she's vulnerable to early ganks from junglers like Udyr and Shaco. Showing up and CCing her when she's squishiest, and hasn't had a chance to build a bit of sustain? Yeah...
Make sure you get enough farm to get the items you'll need to be a substantial threat. Riposte makes your last-hitting much easier, and if necessary, you can Lunge to a minion you would otherwise not reach in time. Duelist gives her a decent amount of lane sustain, but don't rely on it. The health regen from it is largely negligible; it's there, and it does help, but you likely won't notice it. It's not particularly large.
All in all, get your farm, a couple kills if you feel like it's safe to get them, but make sure you can deal with skirmishes that will undoubtedly happen in the mid game.
Mid Game - Skirmishes and Turret Poking
It's hard to tell when exactly mid game is happening, and it'll probably be late game before you realize, but this is usually the point when people start leaving their lanes when they can afford to, in order to help or pressure other lanes. You have two main roles during this part of the game.
Skirmishes and Early Teamfights
If a teamfight breaks out, drop what you're doing, no matter what it is, and go help. You can deal plenty of damage while also breaking focus from you with your ult and negating at least one hit's worth of damage from their carry, who you should be targeting first, with Riposte. Don't leave your team to fight alone when they need your help.
Pushing turrets, ninja-style.
Enemies and allies alike start roaming, and your enemies may lack a bit in the map awareness department. Given Fiora's massive attack speed boost over just three seconds, it's easy to poke a turret for great amounts of damage, then leave. If your enemies leave their lanes, but your team can defend well or knows not to engage, you can take a turret or three and make the enemy regret allowing you freedom. Only do this when you know it won't hurt your team by not having you there for a fight, and keep an eye out for missing enemies. If they catch wise to your shenanigans, you might find yourself ambushed at their turret.
If you know where most of your enemies are, you can also sneak into the enemy jungle for some counterjungling. Prioritize stealing the buffs if you know when they're spawning (Especially checking for blue buff at slightly past seven minutes for most junglers, and red at maybe eight minutes). You can also get some creeps from your own jungle, but ask your jungler first- Junglers don't appreciate falling behind and they don't get any turrets to hug if they're being bullied. Always keep your jungler in mind before you get greedy with the gold because you really really want your bloodrazor.
Late Game - Legendary!
At this point you should be close to having your finished build. Teamfights are the norm now and you should never move alone. Always be with your team. If you get caught out of position, you're most likely dead, and your team is a carry short.
During teamfights, you want to hover around and avoid poke as much as possible before someone initiates. As a melee carry, you don't have any ranged poke, but you are too squishy to actually initiate a fight. Wait for the tank to jump in and soak up some damage and focus, then go in yourself and target the highest threat (usually the AD carry or the AP nuker). If you see yourself taking damage, use your ult to break their focus on you, and finish off the kills.
If the teamfight ends in your favor, you'll probably have killed at least two or three of the enemy team members, which puts you in a good spot to either push like mad, or get Baron with no intervention from the enemy team.
All in all, be in every teamfight, wait for someone to take the first few hits, then jump in and annihilate everyone to the best of your ability. You should be capturing the Nexus in no time should everything go well.
Fiora is a great AD carry, as well as being extremely fun to play and rewards intelligent yet aggressive play. This is far from being the only way to play her, but it's the way I think works best for her, and I hope this guide can help you discover and improve your own playstyle for her.
Thanks for reading! Good luck, have fun, and carry hard.
03.03.2012 - Fixed some minor wording issues, added Black Cleaver to items section.
03.07.2012 - Added Wit's End and Executioner's Calling to Items section.