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Vladimir Build Guide by GrandmasterD

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Not Updated For Current Season

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League of Legends Build Guide Author GrandmasterD

GrandmistressD's Vladimir - Kneel Before Vlad Revisited

GrandmasterD Last updated on December 7, 2012
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Top Lane

[VS]

Mid Lane

Ability Sequence

1
3
5
7
9
Ability Key Q
2
14
15
17
18
Ability Key W
4
8
10
12
13
Ability Key E
6
11
16
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.



Masteries

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Executioner
 
 

Offense: 9

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Honor Guard
 
 

Defense: 21

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Pickpocket
Intelligence
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Nimble
 
 

Utility: 0



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Vladimir is a tanky ability power champion similar to Ryze and Mordekaiser. He uses no mana and has incredible sustain on his Q ability; granting him an almost unmatched laning phase. Due to Crimson Pact he's among the strongest of the ability power champions once fully built.
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Quick Guide


Starting Items

___ x4

___ x1



Boots Enchantments




Core Builds



Offensive Items




Defensive Items




Situational Items



Synergies and Counters


Vladimir is good against:
Vladimir gets countered by:
Vladimir synergises with:

Summoner Spells

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Runes


Greater Seal of Vitality

Basic lane setup for when you don't need magic resist early on. The movement speed quints allow you to get in range for Transfusion and get out right before the enemy has a chance of retaliation. The Greater Seal of Vitality could be replaced by the Greater Seal of Armor but that's it.





Greater Seal of Vitality

Basically the same setup but here we choose to go for magic resist in the glyphs. You might not always need it against mages but against mages who are strong in the early-game; they are a must-have. Examples of these are Brand and Swain.



Masteries


21/9/0

This mastery setup allows for full-damage. It scales really well into late-game and makes you significantly more dangerous in the early levels. I usually don't use this in the top lane since it also makes you more vulnerable and we can't really use that against those nasty bruisers.



9/21/0

In top lane, we mostly use the defence tree instead of the offence. There are a couple masteries which are very important in this tree: Initiator , Durability / Veteran's Scars and Enlightenment . These masteries provide Vladimir a much better early-game and scale extremely well into late-game.



What's your opinion?

If you have any suggestions, questions or simply good scores to post. You can do that here:



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Lore

There is a temple hidden in the mountains between Noxus and the Tempest Flats, where the secrets of an ancient and terrifying sorcery are kept. The area surrounding the temple is littered with the exsanguinated corpses of those who have mistakenly wandered too close. These served only to pique the curiosity of Vladimir, when – in his youth – he trekked through these mountains during his flight from Noxus. A day earlier, the teenaged Vladimir had brutally murdered two boys his age, for no better reason than to enjoy the intoxicating scarlet bloom that surged forth. He realized immediately that he would never be able to suppress his murderous desires, and if he remained in Noxus, his foul deeds were sure to catch up with him. Without hesitation, he abandoned the city-state, and journeyed south.

The trail of bodies led him to a crumbling stone temple. Inside he found an aging monk who appraised him with eyes of pure crimson. Vladimir surprised the monk by returning the wicked gaze with zeal. Recognizing the boy’s sinister craving, the monk taught Vladimir how to manipulate and control the fluid of life, often practicing on passing travelers. When it came time for Vladimir to learn the final lesson, the monk warned that failure would result in death. Vladimir did not fail, but success bore a grisly surprise. During the ritual, every drop of the monk’s blood was drawn from his body and fused with Vladimir’s, imbuing him with his master's magical essence, and that of every hemomancer before him. Left alone and suddenly without purpose, Vladimir resolved to return to Noxus, demanding enrollment in the League to prove the supremacy of his craft. When the Noxian High Command observed the gruesome fates which befell the palace guards, they elected to avail themselves of Vladimir's unsavory talents.

"That which runs through you will run you through."
- Vladimir



Vladimir's Abilities


Crimson Pact
(Innate): Every 40 points of bonus health grants Vladimir 1 ability power and every 1 point of ability power grants Vladimir 1.4 bonus health. These bonuses do not stack with themselves.



Transfusion
__
(Active): Vladimir drains the lifeforce of his target, dealing magic damage and healing himself.

Transfusion Details




Sanguine Pool
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(Active): Vladimir sinks into a pool of blood becoming untargetable for 2 seconds and slowing enemies above him by 40% for 1 second. Additionally, he deals magic damage every half second to them and heals himself for 12.5% of the damage done.

Sanguine Pool Details




Tides of Blood
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(Active): Vladimir unleashes a torrent of blood dealing magic damage to all nearby enemies.

Each cast of Tides of Blood gives him an Empowered stack, which increases his healing and regeneration and causing his next Tides of Blood to deal 25% more base damage but cost 25% more health. This lasts for 10 seconds, and stacks up to four times.

Tides of Blood Details




Hemoplague
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(Active): Vladimir infects all enemies in the target area with a virulent plague which increases the damage they take from all sources by 12% for 5 seconds. After these 5 seconds, infected enemies take magic damage.

Hemoplague Details




Skilling Order


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1

___
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Q

2
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W

3

___
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Q

4
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E

5

___
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Q

6
___
___

___
E

7

___
___
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Q

8
___
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E

9

___
___
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Q

10
___
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R

11
___
___

___
E

12
___
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___
E

13
___

___
___
W

14
___

___
___
W

15
___

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W

16
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W

17
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R

18
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R


A skill sequence which requires some explanation -- Vladimir's ultimate is very hard to utilize in lane; because it rarely occurs that you will actually be able to burst someone down in lane. The best-case scenario you will have, is that you will be able to use Q, W and two times a fully empowered E. This is not only hard to get off, but it's also very dangerous to Vladimir himself as Tides of Blood and Sanguine Pool will drain his low health pool rather quickly. Taking additional points in E increases Vladimir's harassment, laning power and farming capabilities. Keep in mind that if a teamfight is approaching before level 10, that you should skill up his R (this tends to happen more often when Vladimir is laning mid).



Item Builds

How you end with Vladimir isn't exactly important; it's how you start that's gonna determine your entire game. Since Vladimir's early-game is very weak and delicate, it's important that you execute it well. A good early-game paves the way for a great mid-game and that leads to a devastating late-game.

Core Build Explanation



If you're pretty new to League of Legends it might be hard to establish a full item build all by yourself, despite having a good core start. Here are some full item builds for late game. In the left column are some full builds which started from the 'versus AD' core build while the builds on the right started from the 'versus AP' core build.

Full Item Builds




Strategy and Tactics

Playing Vladimir in general requires practice and enough understanding of what he can and can't do. However, there are a few basic tactics every Vladimir player must master in order to perform well:

Kiting

Knowing how to kite effectively is very important. The movement speed from Initiator and the Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed help you with that. Getting boots early on and maybe aquire a Rylai's Crystal Scepter does the trick. These are, however, just the aspects which doesn't really involve the player's actions. Kiting effectively means use the brush to make them unable target you and, most importantly, use Sanguine Pool to dodge skills and get rid of slows. It's really hard for enemies to chase you when you have Sanguine Pool since that slows as well.

Smartcasting Transfusion

It's practically mandatory to smartcast Transfusion; as this allows you to use it immediately after Sanguine Pool/ Zhonya's Hourglass. I'd even recommend keybinding it just to Q instead of SHIFT+Q in order to be faster and to make your life easier. (Hey! I'm learning you how to play Vlad, I'm not a gym coach.)

High Scaling

A pretty cool feature of Vladimir is that he scales so incredibly well. That basically leads us to the main rule of Vladimir: "As long as you can farm well, you're winning.". Also, as long as you don't get too much trouble in the early levels (i.e. 1 - 7), you'll probably win your lane.

Care with Tides of Blood!

Oh lord, I've seen so many Vladimir players throwing away their lanes because they use their E so freaking often. You should be careful when using it early on because it drains your own health which makes winning trades really hard. Also, you're basically hitting the minions with it as well which makes you push. A Vladimir who pushes early-game is in high risk of getting ganked as well get zoned which means: "you're gonna have a bad time."

This is not Twilight!

You're Vladimir! A very strong and feared mage; not some sparkling vampire! Basically, what I'm trying to tell you is that you shouldn't play too passive. Playing too passive leaves you with no presence and leaves the enemies farmed. Here are a couple of tricks how to make sure your enemies won't treat you as a doormat:
  • Don't use Transfusion to last-hit early on. Use it on the enemy champions and use your standard attacks to last-hit instead.
  • Once you hit higher levels, try to zone your enemies out.
  • At low health, it's very easy to bait in people when you have Sanguine Pool + Heal up.
  • At high levels; get wards and push them to the tower. Deny cs and Transfusion them even when they're under their tower.



Counters

Knowing Vladimir's weaknesses is also an important part of playing him well. Vladimir's counters are basically chain-cc and high burst. However, he can overcome this weaknesses; for instance, it's possible to lane against a Malzahar yet it's really hard. Notable matchups in the top lane he's very weak against are Yorick and Akali. He should avoid laning against these or get early ganks. Yorick is basically way too sustained and has very strong harass. Akali becomes impossible to lane against after she gets her Shadow Dance. Also, she is manaless as well so Vlad doesn't have that advantage over her.

In mid lane, he can lane against most but has trouble with Ryze and Mordekaiser. His hardest counter, however, is definitely Viktor. He has no way of trading with him and Viktor can burst him down after level six. Lane Fiddlesticks can also give you some trouble but nothing that a gank can't fix.



Epilogue

Well, that concludes my guide on Vladimir, The Crimson Reaper. I hope playing him will bring you as much joy as I have had so far. Vladimir is a lot harder to play than he initially seems, but with some practice you will already be able to perform well. Mastering him will take quite some time but he's most certainly worth to do so.

Happy Reaping,
GrandmistressD



Special Thanks