Kayle Build Guide by User66six
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.
Threats to Kayle with this build
|Yasuo||definitely max e first and read early game strategy. Level 2 kills on yasou are relatively easy!|
|Fizz||Perfect counter level 1-3 and post 6! He will probably start a crystal flask 3 pots. between HIS levels 1-3, you should prioritise hitting him over actually farming|
|Zed||Kayle verse zed is nearly trivial. Remember to dodge with your divine blessing and post 6 to ult immediately after he ults to negate his amplified damage|
|Talon||Talon's silence just got wiped which was his only advantage on Kayle. Negate his evasiveness of his rake by healing yourself and reckoning him at the same time to score free damage. you should always be doing more damage than him unless he gets fed on roams.|
|Darius||Kite and ult when he ults. Free lane :) You will probably be top lane, taking teleport is a matter of preference.|
Hello all! I am Lordofpoonpound/Linthiaan/Apocalypse Meow, a diamond kayle main season four! This is the first guide I have made but I'll do alright ;) I am making this guide because I don't agree with the others out there I personally believe I can introduce the better guide for this champion. Kayle is a very diverse champion with a very powerful kit, even if you lose lane the utility of your speed and ultimate, as well as your amazing passive make kayle a very difficult opponent. Due to her passive and quite considerable range with e active, a hybrid build between attack speed, ap and attack damage is the most optimum choice (post patch)!
I play Kayle mid, jungle and top equally and have slightly different builds and strategies for each so if I get enough support I will consider making a jungle and top lane guide for Kayle too :)
Pros / Cons
- can lose lane and easily win game
- good farmer
- great utility
- fair escape mechanism
- easy to be ganked pre-boots
- vulnerable to ranged poke
- vulnerable to sustained damage
- vulnerable to silences
- exhaust op
There isn't much to say about this, post reckoning nerf, it is no longer as good to max Reckoning first, however there are some instances when maxing Reckoning will still come out on top (see Vs. Champions)
Note with dorans ring and maxing Righteous fury you will farm better and therefore have more mana to poke with your Reckoning(See farming chapter)
As of season four, these runes provide you with 8.55 AD, 19.26% AS and 9 armour.
Now for why I chose these over other picks. Some would argue hybrid pen is a greater pick for your reds and quints. I would agree with this to an extent, the problem is the early game ad scaling on your Reckoning is lacking by 9 damage and the general flow of your autoattacks are also lacking. Trading 13.5% attack speed for hybrid pen may mean the difference of up to 3 autoattacks and therefore 3 stacks of your passive. Hybrid pen is also only viable on a few champions and also happens to be very expensive, which I would say just is not worth it.
As for the flat attack speed glyphs I would only recommend you use scaling ap or scaling magic resist in place of the attack speed when you know you're going to lose lane (see Vs. Champions) because taking the scaling runes doesn't help your early game one bit, you'd basically be throwing your early lane in some instances where that tiny bit of extra speed is vital.
As previously implied, a good early game with your runes and masteries will give you the momentum you need to start your laning experience off well. This is why I invest in the rather specific 23/7/0. What you may question is the exclusion of points in archmage and warlord. Well, at level one, 3 points in warlord will give you bonus attack damage from 64.65 -> 67.9 and a bonus 3 damage on your reckoning. Combined with 3 points on archmage will give you bonus ap from 21.9 -> 23. This will give a bonus 0.65 damage on the reckoning (WOW!) or an extra 0.27 damage every Righteous fury autoattack.
Given this math isn't flawed (not my forte guys!) we can clearly see that the 6 points can be better used elsewhere. Now I'm not saying the 7 points in defence are ideal but from experience switching between 7 in defence and 7 in utility, I go better in more games with the defence.
Rule of thumb is if you are going top and/or are in a hard matchup with low killing potential take Teleport Flash and if you are mid take ignite flash. Few times will I deviate from ignite flash, but it all comes down to preference.
Now here is where we may get a lot of debait!
Personally through enough experience in moderately high elo games, I'm telling you on hit kayle is the best kayle! Lets go through my choice in items step by step.
1. Start Doran's Ring 2 pots. nearly a no brainer. The only times I will deviate from this maybe when I take teleport over ignite (in a losing lane; see Vs. Champions) where I will start boots with 2-3 hp pots and 1-2 mana pots (4 pots total).
2. First back Zerk's greaves. Given that you're maxing your E, you are getting more autos on your enemy and therefore applying more passive penetration stacks. It's like you bought the benefits of sorcerer's shoes and zerk's in one! Now think Vice versa - if you bought sorceror's shoes instead of zerk's you would be applying less stacks per second and would be 100G more poor. That is money you could have spent on a pink or nearly 2/3 hp/mana pots respectively. For more on first back, see subnotes at the end of this chapter.
3. nashor's tooth. A signature kayle item! This is truly an ideal item for any on-hit builder. 20% CDR provides little time between your E cycle, attack speed for faster passive stack building, on-hit effects for excellent sustained damage and 60 ap for a not-too-shabby buff in your divine blessing and Q. Get this first after your berserker's grievesboots and under no circumstances skip it straight to your runaan's.
4. Runaan's hurricane. "Why is this item so important for kayle?" you may ask yourself. Well let me explain why this is arguably the most important item for Kayle. This is the mid game power spike you need to thrive in team fights. This item gives you attack speed - more passive stacks per second, it gives you two BONUS targets to hit when you auto - go ahead and triple your passive stacks per second, and triple your flat on-hit damage from your nashor's tooth. every hit you dish out you are effectively "marking" three enemies to take extra damage from your allies - as well as yourself by up to 15%. Provided you get the smarts you need to position correctly in fights, you can call for your team to group as soon as you get this item.
5. Wit's end is a very cost efficient item when paired with Runaan's hurricane which is why you will build it immediately after. Again, it gives so many synergistic values to your champion and kit. attack speed gives more passive stacks per second, on-hit damage is tripled with runaan's hurricane and you can effectively strip 3(25)=75 Magic resist from the enemy team in a fight, making them more vulnerable to your team (but in particular you) This provides you with 25 magic resist as well, which patches the gap made by not having any MR glyphs
6. Void staff = slightly more buffed heals and reckonings and more penetration made all the more efficient by your runaan's. A no brainer item.
7. Your cores are down and it is at least 34 minutes in by now. Your last item doesn't really matter as long as you can position correctly. However, if I have attack speed buffers on my team such as a warwick, nidalee or even ezreal I will opt for a gunblade. This fits with the "ult on very low hp" strategy where you can deceive enemies with exceptional rejuvenation in less than 3 seconds. Most of the time, however, I will opt for the zephyr because it is just generally a great item for auto attacking champions. Some items I personally don't pick but would find okay for kayle are Guinsoo's Rageblade and lich bane but more on that soon.
8. After you have and only if you have bought some attack speed item for your 6th item, the berserker's grieves are no longer needed and you can replace them for sorcerer's shoes with furor bonus. Welcome to late game you unstoppable force!
- before 8 minutes or if your jungler isn't giving you blue buffs, a rule of thumb when you back is to purchase 2 and 3 health and mana pots respectively. Even prioritise this over buying an actual recipe item EG. a dagger.
- It is never ideal to purchase a second Doran's ring unless you are going to back twelve times (when the amount of money you should be spending on pots = the cost of another ring) before you get your nashor's tooth.
- When you get your Runaan's, if ever you can hit a squishy enemy champ next to a tank, you will choose to prioritise auto attacks on the tank! I know it sounds counter intuitive but The nature of kayle allows the squishy target to be hit with more net damage when you aren't actually "focusing" them! How does this happen? More on this later.
- "Why don't you fit lich bane into your build?" - see chapter on "Why you DON'T target their carries + teamfights" - I'm not saying Lich bane is a bad choice at all it just doesn't fit my style of play.
early game strategy
Level 1-3 is your best chance for an early kill. The strategy is to get level 2 the fastest. How? Do not activate your E until your lane opponent comes in range of an auto, when they do, you auto them as many times as you can, in most circumstances you will come out on top tanking 6 minions and your enemy champ just by autoing them with your e (thank you +9 armour!)
When they back off, use the rest of the time on your e hitting the caster minions and you will most likely need to use a potion. Your e is now off for another 5ish seconds, use that time to back off if your enemy comes close or to kill the melee minions as fast as you can (without missing out on gold of course)
The second wave should be coming in by now. In an ideal scenario, your enemy would have come in for round 2 of poke just as you are killing the first melee minion of the second wave. This gives you level 2 advantage! If you are relatively new to the game this next part may take some getting used to, but you should try to level your q as fast as you can with the default hotkeys (ctrl + q) and immediately all-in on your opponent, saving ignite as late as you can to ensure a kill.
If you cannot make a kill before level 5, it's time to swap tactics and play the farm game. Remember once you get that runaan's you will be an unstoppable force. Prioritise boots over the dagger for if you back early and do your best to dodge any skill shots your opponent may have. A good tip I have is to heal yourself (default alt + W) as your enemy tries to poke while you dodge because the speed boost it gives you will assist in your evasiveness.
Note - if you are in an easy lane (see Vs. Champions) aim to back when you have around 1,275G - the value of your boots, 2/3 hp/mana pots respectively and a pink ward (place in mid single brush)
Below is a normal game versus a challenger Azir demonstrating the above strategy
And here is a ranked game combining most of the above pointers which grants an easy kill.
Notice I went within melee range of talon. This is because I had no doubt I could kill him level 1 and therefore got as close as I could to counter flash when he did. To my surprise, he did tonne of damage and it was I that had to flash defensively. Notice the position I flashed to. I flashed well close to my caster minions just in case I died and he survived. Also notice the late ignite to make sure it isn't wasted.
Easy as that folks! Remember not to tank the minions for very long however!
-If you are versing an enemy that is being particular shy of you, try to spontaneously Alt-W-Q them.
-Another thing to try is hitting your enemies with your splash without autoing them. Because it splashes 150 range away from your target, you may hit a minion they are standing within 150 range behind of and suffer the splash damage.
Given that you're maxing your Righteous fury and have a
Doran's ring it will cost 45 mana to activate for 10 seconds at a 16 second cooldown -> 6 seconds between cycles.
in 16 seconds you will generate 16/5(3) = 9.6 mana from your Doran's regen.
If you can kill 5/6 minions you will get a further 4(5) = 20 mana
At level 3 Kayle's mana regen is 8.48/5(16) = 27.1 mana giving a grand total of at least 36.7 mana between cycles and at most 60.7 mana. This makes cycling your Fury self sufficient killing just 2/6 minons per wave.
This allows more mana to sustain enemy poke with your W and to poke them also with your q. Conversely, if you decided to max reckoning instead of your righteous fury, you would be missing more minions do to lesser waveclear, having to use reckoning more often to kill minions and therefore a probable less net damage on your enemy champion. This is why doran's ring and maxing righteous fury first is optimum for early game farming.
You will get the hang of farming pretty quickly with Kayle, 3 hits for casters and 3-4 for melee early game. If you are lucky enough to get an early nashor's, go for your wraith camps and even the enemies wraith camps given that you have the place warded! Farming is a breeze post nashor's! Below is an image of a "farm like crazy" game I had this season :)Please note I didn't subscribe to my own build by prioritising Deathcap over an extra attack speed item. As I have stated, your 6th item doesn't really matter!
Early -> Mid game dragon fights
I simply would not recommend fighting without at least your nashor's. It isn't worth you, your bot lane and the dragon dying just so you could attempt to contest dragon. Keep in mind the earlier a team dragons the less gold they receive, it isn't a massive advantage anymore. The best thing to do is ward dragon pit and get a timer on for next time. However, what I just wrote is a general rule of thumb! Such things are a call of judgement which only you can make. With practice comes experience.
Given this is mid lane kayle without teleport, you aren't going to have much time to roam given that post Runaan's you will be teamfighting anyway. However, if you have boots and are at least level 6 I wouldn't not recommend roaming. It is all a call in play style and judgement! Personally if mid lane leaves I would throw a ping for bot lane and push to the turret. Another thing about kayle is her amazing pushing power. Given 3 or so waves post- Nashor's you are able to take a turret and open the map for your team. post 6 you can likely win a 3v3 bot lane if you time your ult correctly and prioritise well enough but I would personally prioritise getting your runaan's as early as you can by pushing mid turret then helping bot lane.
mid -> late game strategy
Hopefully by now you have built at least your nashor's tooth and your Runaan's Hurricane. For the most part you are going to heal your allies when they need either health or a speed boost to initiate/disengage. Kayle is well paired with supports like Karma and junglers like Warwick because of their excellent engage made easier with the use of your Divine blessing and Invervention. Because you bought boots early, sometimes you will be able to bless yourself (alt + W) and apply a slow with your Reckoning on an enemy champ and disengage with the remaining speed your blessing applies. Think of this as a "pre-initiate" for your allies to do their job and jump in and sponge damage for you. Never waste your ult! Sure it would be good if that Warwick or Vi could survive the whole fight after she initiates with her Assault and Battery but her job of initiating the fight is over and it is now your job as kayle to capitalise on the lockdown your allies are making for you by applying your Runaan's damage. You will usually have to make a quick call of judgement if your allies are worth your Intervention because with your runaan's built you're likely going to be the greatest damage dealer and therefore it is most important for you to have your ult. Rule of thumb for when you are laning as Kayle is to call to group as soon as your Runaan's is built. I don't have any fancy calculations for you as of yet but from experience I can tell you that the runaan's gives you a significant power spike in teamfights But who do you prioritise? See the next chapter!
Why you DON'T target their carries! + teamfights
Given that the target you need dead fastest Eg. the enemy ADC/Mid laner is next to any other target Eg. the enemy top lane tank, hitting said other target will consequently deal a greater amount of damage to the target you aren't hitting. This occurs when there are two targets within 150 range units of one another (the range of your E Righteous Fury) because the target you aren't hitting is receiving the Runaan's bolt with on hit efects as well as the splash from your Fury. This may sound technical but is better understood watching
Note I have nasher's and Runaan's and that the melee minions you aren't hitting are suffering the most damage. Keep this in mind in your team fights!
Subnote- yes Runaan's will do more damage to the target you aren't hitting but you should still be using reckoning on the enemy carries!
Teamfights- Have the mentality of an adc in fights provided you aren't that fed. You are going to be (likely) the greatest damage dealer so save your ult for yourself or a high damage dealer such as Fiddlesticks. Peel for yourself with reckoning and kite with your Divine blessing. Keep in mind the ideal teamfight is when your enemies are clumped such as in the jungle or when they catch out one of your allies. Try your best to judge when and who to ult, you will get better through experience! Below is a teamfight where I had to call on ulting our adc or not. I will try to explain my thought process.
Corki was in the middle of the fight and copping a lot of attention from the other team. When you ult a low health ally that is taking a majority of the focus, chances are that for the duration of your Intervention, your enemies won't switch targets(as seen between 4 and 7 seconds) Another factor affecting my decision of ulting Corki was the position of our front line Sion as well as myself which was just right. A similar fight that game happened where I wasn't being focused and had to call who to ult.
As you can see, Sona was brought critically low and could have died which may have been the time to ult her. I'm sure we can all agree that she wasn't worth the Intervention, as she is a support and already ulted. So now the choice was only to ult Sion, but when? If I ulted Sion straight after the kill on Jax, the Vayne would have instinctively known to tumble defensively away from the fight. However, allowing sion to get that low worked well because it baited her greed and eventful death.
These are just some of the factors you need to account for when deciding who and when to ult in fights and will come with experience.
Also, in an extended fight it is wise to use your reckoning as late as possible but before your 6th auto-attack for maximum damage due to your Wit's end and Holy Fervor stacks.
When I get in the zone - What are YOU waiting for?!
Below is select parts of my match history this season. My current win rate for kayle is around 70% However. Please note the games where I horribly fed(third from bottom, second image) and still won. This is the wonder of playing Kayle. You can go so bad in lane and still use teamwork and your amazing kit to win!As you can see, it is nearly gg at champ select ;)
teleport if you are in a hard matchup.
-Go for level 2 kills and learn to quick-level abilities
-get 2 health pots and 3 mana pots every back until you have nashor's or until you get Blue buffs.
-Group after building Runaan's Hurricane
-Give up dragon if you don't have nashor's tooth
-Target low priority enemies in team fights if they are within 150 range of high priority targets
-You're better off not roaming
-Save your Intervention for high dps allies or yourself and use it just as they're getting caught out or just before they die.
This is only for when you are fed or need to defend objectives such as a turret or baron . You excuse the "adc mentality" of sticking behind your allies and go HAM. Here is an example of when this goes just the right way all because of good guy Thresh
In teamfights the all in strategy will only work well if the enemies are proximal to each other, you can definitely get your ult off, and your team can capitalise on everyone focusing you. I would recommend getting moderately experienced with this Kayle build before trying this strategy.