Tristana Build Guide by Vyken
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, this is my first guide (ever) and I thought it should be on a champion with unique abilities and play styles who I love. Having played Tristana for years now, her unique skills have made every match different (which is generally a good thing) and have brought in tons of victories. Tristana scales hard into the late game with her passive Draw a Bead granting her increased range. Her [W] Rocket Jump makes for an amazing initiate, chase, or escape if the fight is not going in your favor (in fact using her Rocket Jump and Buster Shot she is one of the only champions that can escape Akali without going invisible). So I hope you enjoy this guide and learn a lot about Tristana, the Megling Gunner.
Pros and Cons
[+] Great escape
[+] Second Ignite
[+] Useful passive
[+] Can go AP or AD
[+] Can Carry
[+] Underestimated often
[+ -] No skill shots
[+ -] Passive on Explosive Shot
[-] Slow movement speed
[-] Hard early game
I'm going to explain some of the items that I chose, but I encourage you to try out your own items as well.
The Bloodthirster - A critical item for most AD champions, this gives great lane sustain and 1 v 1 potential.
Phantom Dancer - This item gives a high critical strike chance, movement speed, and attack speed. I take this because all of these attributes are useful to Tristana
The Black Cleaver - The black cleaver gives quite a lot of good bonuses, including health which is important because most ADC's are squishy. It also provides armor pen. which tears through tanks and of course more attack damage.
Frozen Mallet - If you were to replace any item in this build this might be the one to replace, however I think you should read this first. Pulling your rapid shot with this item will lock a champion down and almost guarantee you a kill. It also provides a large amount of health and some damage.
Statikk Shiv - I like to take this item for the burst damage and crowd control it offers. This item also stacks well with the passive on Explosive Shot which is amazing when clearing minion waves. The attack speed and critical strike bonus are also pretty decent, the movement speed buff is small but every bit counts.
Greater Quintessence of Life Steal
These I think are more useful than Attack Damage or Armor Pen. because they allow for crazy lane sustain when combined with a Doran's Blade. However subbing this out for Attack Damage or Armor Pen. is not a bad idea either.
Taking attack damage marks is mainly for last hitting, however these can be subbed out for Armor Penetration if you want to deal more damage to champions. Attack speed runes I don't really agree with because you won't be dealing enough damage early game. Greater Seal of Armor
Armor seals are a pretty simple and obvious choice. If your going against an ADC try and block as much of their damage as possible. Scaling health seals are nice, but I personally think the armor seals are going to be a better choice. Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist
Scaling Magic Resist Glyphs are mainly because you shouldn't encounter the enemy APC until later in the game, in which case the scaling glyphs will be more beneficial in the long run. These can also be substituted for glyphs of ability power / scaling ability power if your looking to go all in damage, however realize that you will take a lot of damage from AP champs.
Tristana can be built a lot of different ways, however my favorite way to build her is by maxing out her Explosive Shot first which scales well with her passive Draw a Bead and is great for poking and clearing minion waves. However Rapid Fire is the skill to max first if you find yourself in tough 1 v. 1 situations against other champions. Either way make sure to pick up a point in Rocket Jump at level 3 or 4 and of course always get your ultimate ( Buster Shot), whenever you can.
When you bust a move on your enemies make sure that you don't Buster Shot them towards safety, try and use it to push them back away from their tower. Unless your going AP Tristana be very aware of how much damage your ultimate will do, because many times I have seen people Buster Shot through a wall and into safety.
Remember to always cast Explosive Shot on enemies on the run, its damage over time could end up killing them :)
Weird MasteriesTristana, but I'll explain all the reason why I like having these masteries and if I haven't convinced you I'll show you some more basic options. So I have 27 points in the offensive tree and 3 points in the utility tree. The extra points in the offensive skill tree are Summoner's Wrath , Blast , Mental Force , and Destruction . I like getting these on Tristana because her abilities scale AP heavily. I take Destruction because with this she can take a tower extremely fast with the use of her [Q] Rapid Fire . The points I take in the utility skill tree are for mana regeneration - Meditation . Now to look at more conventional masteries:
Destruction for wrecking towers in the offensive tree I also take Perseverance in the defensive tree for early lane sustain. In the utility tree I take Wanderer to combat the slow movement speed on Tristana and I also take Meditation for increased mana regeneration, allowing for extra pokes with abilities ( Explosive Shot).
Alright, so I'm not the most creative when it comes to summoner spells I'll admit that. However I love taking Ignite because when used with your Explosive Shot you can almost guarantee your opponent won't make it out alive.
Flash would actually be the spell I would replace for another if you would rather have maybe Barrier or Teleport. As long as you played passively in your lane until getting Rocket Jump you should be fine since it works pretty much like a longer ranged Flash.
If you did take Teleport you would could easily split push towers down using your Rapid Fire as long as you took the Destruction mastery point. You also have the full potential to escape a 2 or 3 person gank if your careful using your Rocket Jump and Buster Shot.
Tristana can make some crazy good plays for her team and for herself. One of my favorites is to Rocket Jump over an enemy and using Buster Shot to put them in tower range. Knowing how to use Rocket Jump and how far your Buster Shot can blow people is essential for this play.
Another clutch play is using Buster Shot to shoot your opponent through a wall and into maybe one or two other team members. This basically guarantees a kill. You do not have to ult people through walls though. With good positioning you can simply blow them into your team members.
One thing not many people realize is that Tristana has a slow, and it comes by using her Rocket Jump on people, or jumping away from them (while they are close to her). This can be used to pick up a kill or escape from being killed.
I'll talk more on this later, but the passive on her Explosive Shot can make it either very hard to kill creeps or extremely easy to kill creeps. Knowing how much damage your explosive shot deals is essential to good farming.
If you are fighting against champions who can heal, try and hit them with exploding shot before they can do so (or while they are doing it * Master Yi, Nunu, Swain, Rengar, Vladimir etc.) because her explosive shot will reduce that healing by 50%.
Hustlers Stick Togeva.
A.K.A Teamwork. I've seen tons of teams who win all of their lanes but go into a team fight and get dunked on (aced). How does this happen? Communication. Your not going to win without it. It's essential in every part of the game. As the ADC you should be communicating with your support at all times talking strategy so serious your getting wire tapped by the CIA.
Back to team fights. Once the lane phase is over you need to be in a group 24/7 ^Hustlers stick togeva. If you aren't in a team a 4 v 5 team fight will typically end in a quadra kill for the enemy team and if your lucky maybe the person absent from the fight got an outer turret. -_-
Excellent Questions to be asking at all times:
Where do we need vision? Do we have vision on every neutral buff? When should we get an oracles? Are they overextended? Are WE overextended? What is the other team building? Do we have the stronger team fight or do they? How aggressive are these people? Why is their Syndra legendary at 5 minutes in?
Playing the Blame Game:
So one of the things I love the best about playing League... is pointing fingers at other people and saying they are terrible and should uninstall right after this game.... That's going to get you no where. Not in that game, not in life, no where. What you NEED to do is consider what is going on. What could you do better. How can we eliminate the problem(s). Stay calm your elo will only drop back a bit farther in elo hell if you lose a game.
Playing the Blame Game on your support:
Your support's deaths are usually an accurate interpretation of how many mistakes YOU have made. Don't even start with the "OMG. Soraka you have f*&^&$% 7 deaths... you must be ******ed" try and remember the causes of those deaths and you will often find you both were overextended and while you rocket jumped to safety you left your support behind to be killed and sacrificed to the enemy ADC. Typically the #1 cause of deaths among our noble supports are getting caught out and sacrificing themselves for YOU to get away.
Why killing the support 8 times will start to not matter: Once your support has died a certain number of times (I'm not sure how many), the gold received for that kill would be equivalent to about 3 minions.
Explosive Farming is DANGEROUS. Often you might get angry as Explosive Shot passives will leave creeps with just enough hp for your minion to steal it from you. However good last hits can clear minions and push lanes extremely fast while obtaining creep kills you could have lost without Explosive Shot. I can only recommend experience. Start getting to know how much damage you will deal to OTHER minions when last hitting and keep calm for the first few games you play Tristana.
So I always recommend looking on LoL Counter if your not sure but personally these are some of the champions I've had be careful about in the bot lane:
Leona (support) - This is the craziest aggressive support you could have against you and honestly if you get caught out by her you will take crazy damage. Beware the lance (make sure your support has wards in EVERY bush). Depending on who she is partnered with you might have to play very passively. The easiest way to beat this type of champion is to keep up the poke damage without getting caught (be sneaky!), she has no heal besides pots so whatever damage you deal is likely to stick.
Elise (support) - So relatively new to supporting (at least from the time of this writing) I haven't seen all of her skill combo's yet however her Cocoon and Rappel would make her extremely hard to escape from.
Thresh (support) - Another crazy aggressive support you should be careful of. Avoid his pull and watch out for level 6 when he has The Box. If you can try and rocket jump over one of the walls (otherwise you will take damage and RECEIVE A 99% SLOW! Otherwise you should be fine :)
Thresh (ADC) - Some people might consider this a joke... this really is not a joke. He makes up for his short range with some crazy damage from his Flay. Be careful to not take his first hit when he enters a lane. ADC Thresh is also deadly when matched with Blitzcrank *cough cough* Troll Crank.
Draven (ADC) - Dealing absolutely absurd amounts of damage due to his Spinning Axe. Be careful because he has the potential to burst you down quickly and effortlessly. I often find him matched with Leona to make a devastatingly aggressive bottom lane. Try to dodge his ultimate ( Whirling Death) and alert your team if you see him throw his ultimate out of lane due to its global range.
Caitlyn (ADC) - I'm only including her here for her crazy early game. Don't die early and she will be a pushover, however in the early game her crazy range will be devastating if your not careful.
Amumu (jungle) - The constant threat in the jungle... this guy is crazy and is often banned out when playing Ranked or Draft however if you are unfortunate and have a game where he is in the jungle be sure to ward everything. His ultimate ( Curse of the Sad Mummy) is known for turning team fights around and a well placed Bandage Toss will be a hard stun to deal with.
Rammus (jungle) - So Rammus is pretty much the anti-adc in general, however when he is in the jungle his ganks will be crazy OP. he can literally taunt you out of the air when your trying to rocket jump over you. My best advice is that whenever you see Rammus cutting off your escape, jump to the side and if he is still getting closer to you, give him a Buster Shot to the face.
Typically with most enemy junglers you can simply use Buster Shot to totally disrupt their ganks ( Hecarim, Diana, Xin Zhao) and if that doesn't work a good Rocket Jump to safety usually ticks them off also ( Jarvan IV).
Most of the time you should be able to escape the enemy ADC, especially if you take Flash. Just be careful not to overextend and be patient!
So, that wraps up my first ever guide! I've had an amazing time learning how this works and I really hope I've hoped a lot of people learn about The Meggling Gunner. Please give me tons of likes and put this at the top of the list (that would be crazy amazing) Please feel free to send me PM's if you have anything you would like to ask or if you know of anything I could include in this guide! I'm also going to work on an AP Tristana guide because I think her versatility is amazing and her AP carrying is crazy.
5/23/13 - Added a section on teamwork
5/24/13 - Changed Items & Added Alternative Items (Removed Hybrid) Thanks for the comments!
5/25/13 - Added Rammus into "Dangerous Champions"
6/10/13 - Changed Core Items (added Statikk Shiv removed Blade of the Ruined King)