Katarina Build Guide by MrBombas
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.
This is my first guide. So any suggestions are gladly appreciated.
This is a relatively (yet!) unconventional style to play Katarina. However, I have used this build in many games, including Ranked games and have more often then not carried the team as an additional AP Burster.
In order to gain more acceptance of this playstyle and enable some of you to enjoy it, too, I have created this guide. So let's start explaining!
Pros / Cons
Bursty ganks = Even if you do not get a kill in ganks, you will most likely cause them to return to base for healing
No Mana = no temptation to take your blue buff
Gap closer for ganking
Relatively fast jungling speed
Extremely useful in Teamfights
Can counterjungle easily
Weak Early Game ganks
Ganks rely on good coordination until you get Rylai's or have red
Can be counterjungled
Team needs to rely on 1 tank
Occasional accusations of trolling
When to play
Katarina is very unique and therefore sometimes a very situational champion.
In the following setups, Katarina's potential can be maximized and you are encouraged to pick her:
Your team has an AD Mid
Your team has heavy AOE CC
Your team has a full tank Top
Your team needs you to be the Jungler
Enemy team has a relatively low amount of single target CC
You need to compensate Lategame Teamfight power
You are confident your team will have good teamplay
I usually start at the blue side, because it helps you with your early long cooldowns and red is doing slightly more damage, since you are squishy.
So the consequent route is:
Wolves --> Blue --> Wraiths --> Golems
Red --> Gank/Counterjungle
Counterjungle is very easy with Kata since she burst heavily.
What I usually do is I ward their Red or Blue and tell my mid to ward where the wraiths are. Once you see their jungler with less than half health, invade, wait in bush and attack once they got the aggro from the minions (some extra damage). I usually do this around the 2nd red (he is most likely alone and perhaps you already have your ult).
Items and Explanations
Common Jungling start
I get this first, because the armor helps your sustain in the jungle and reduces your need for health pots.
Plus the other upgrades of the Machete are not really useful since the manareg would be wasted money.
Pretty self-explanatory. Helps your ganking and jungling speed.
Essential Item for Katarina jungling, since it gives her the needed AP damage and the Spell Vamp for sustain. I get this as soo as possible.
Now your ganks will turn very dangerous since with every skill you use, you will apply slow to the enemy champions.
Core Caster Item
From here on, I choose the damage path when the laning phase went well and our team is prepared for teamfights.
I choose the defensive path when an enemy is relatively fed or I get too much focus.
I get CC when our team really has no CC (but then you should not have picked Katarina) or the enemies all have some kind of speed boost.
I have not required any specific Runes since I myself am using standard Melee Caster runes and it works well.
Quintessences: Ability Power
Marks: Magic Pen
Seals: Armor (or Ability Power)
Glyphs: Magic Res
Jungle Katarina is a VERY team dependent pick. From your lack of natural CC, it will not be easy for you to save a failing lane. If your team fails during laning phase, there is most likely nothing you can really do about it. However, if the game is going relatively balanced... then... GODZILLA POWER!!
Oh, and you will get the occasional ragekid when you play this, since it is still not very established. But hey, innovation has to come from somewhere, and you have taken the path less walked.
May you excell the gameplay of Katarina.
This spot will soon be filled with maginificient statistics: (When somebody tells me how to :))