Riven Build Guide by PartyzantPL

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.

League of Legends Build Guide Author PartyzantPL

How to successfully mid with Riven

PartyzantPL Last updated on June 11, 2012
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Team 1

Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
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.



Offense: 9

Honor Guard

Defense: 21

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 0

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Hi! Im PartyzantPL, and today I will present you my first build - How to successfully mid with Riven. Interesting, isn't it? I call Riven an "AD Caster". Please note that I'm not perfect in English, so I could make some (or a lot of) mistakes.

Bring it on!

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Why mid with Riven?

Why mid with Riven?


-She does well on mid (can absorb whole/almost whole enemy's harassing spell
-She dominates AP Casters/AD Carries
-She needs frags to be powerful - mid provides those, when you will not fail :)
-Farm is all yours
-It's very funny when you play AD Caster on middle lane!

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In Noxus, any citizen may rise to power regardless of race, gender, or social standing - strength is all that matters. It was with committed faith in this ideal that Riven strove to greatness. She showed early potential as a soldier, forcing herself to master the weight of a long sword when she was barely its height. She was ruthless and efficient as a warrior, but her true strength lay in her conviction. She entered battles without any trace of doubt in her mind: no ethical pause, no fear of death. Riven became a leader amongst her peers, poster child of the Noxian spirit. So exceptional was her passion that the High Command recognized her with a black stone rune sword forged and enchanted with Noxian sorcery. The weapon was heavier than a kite shield and nearly as broad - perfectly suited to her tastes. Soon after, she was deployed to Ionia as part of the Noxian invasion.

What began as war quickly became extermination. Noxian soldiers followed the terrifying Zaunite war machines across fields of death. It wasn't the glorious combat for which Riven trained. She carried out the orders of her superiors, terminating the remnants of a beaten and fractured enemy with extreme prejudice. As the invasion continued, it became clear that the Ionian society would not be reformed, merely eliminated. During one bitter engagement, Riven's unit became surrounded by Ionian forces. They called for support as the enemy closed in around them. What they received instead was a barrage of biochemical terror launched by Singed. Riven watched as around her Ionian and Noxian alike fell victim to an unspeakably gruesome fate. She managed to escape the bombardment, though she could not erase the memory. Counted dead by Noxus, she saw an opportunity to start anew. She shattered her sword, severing ties with the past, and wandered in self-imposed exile - on a quest to seek atonement and a way to save the pure Noxian vision in which she believed.

''There is a place between war and murder / in which our demons lurk.''

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Pros / Cons

Here I'll explain in which things Riven is good, and so what are her weaknesses.


- Incredibly high burst and damage output
- Awesome farmer early, mid, and late game
- Good mobility
- Good sustain because of your health regen
- DOMINATES mid lane
- No costs (skills doesn't require mana or energy)
- Low cooldowns with this build, which means SPAM ALL THOSE SKILLZ!
- Low cooldown Valor (Free damage absorb and dash every 5 seconds? Nice!)
- Sexy as hell
- Blade of the Exile is very fun to play


-She depends on her skills and cooldowns
-Weak if she isn't fed/farmed (item dependent)
-CC kills her (silence = death)
- If you're finally doing some damage, they focus you
- They will laugh at you when you will say you are going mid with Riven (haha, fools)
But really, you need to argue in almost every match that Riven is good on mid.

WHOAH! That's a lot of pros and cons!

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Summoner Spells

Summoner Spells

Flash: A skill with one BILION uses. You can use it to gank, escape, chase, secure kill, ks, steal baron. The only barrier is your own imagination.
It's a perfect spell on Riven.

Ignite: This spell is awesome. A must-have skill against lifesteal/health regen/spell vamp/heal based champs. Helps you secure a kill. Cast it after you (or enemy) initiate the fight.

Ghost: Another good spell with one bilion uses, just like Flash.

Heal: Meh. Use it only if you want to troll the enemies, or if you are new to Riven.
It does heal low amount of HP late game.

Exhaust: If no one else have exhaust, pick one. I am not the lover of this spell. But it isn't all that bad.

Clarity: It's a joke, right? Meheh, not funny. Don't pick this, you don't have mana.

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So practically Riven is a tanky, low cooldown, high mobility, attack damage caster. What does that mean?
We need:

Brute Force - Extra attack damage. Do i need to say more?
Summoner's Wrath - 5 bonus ad when our ignite is on cd. Always nice.
Sorcery - Cooldown reduction. We need that a lot (but remember, you can't have more than -40%!)
Demolitionist - Helps you take down turrets faster.
Resistance - This will help you with ap casters on mid.
Hardiness - More armor, more tankiness.
Durability - Scaling HP. Get it.
Vigor - More sustain on lane. Health regen on Riven is OP.
Veteran's Scars - More health. Good.
Initiator - A little bit more speed. Helps you escape ganks or getting back to lane faster.
Honor Guard - Tanky, tanky, tanky tank.
Juggernaut - A solution for lots of CC. Also, more health. Niiice.

So that's it, masteries are done! What's next?

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Those little boosts.



Greater Mark of Attack Damage

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist

Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage

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Skill Sequence

Ability Sequence Order

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

> > >

So, we want to max out Ki Burst first. Why? It does high amount of dmg, leveling it reduces its cooldown, which means it will be more spammable. And it's a stun!
Second, we rush Broken Wings. Why not Valor? Simply: Because Valor gives enough shield at 1 lvl to block, for example, an ignite. You can only use it to close the gap between you and the enemy, escape and to block damage. Broken Wings does lots of damage when leveled up.
Lastly, level up Valor.
I think i don't need to say you need to max Blade of the Exile every time you can? No? Good.

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Skill Explanation

Ability Explanation

  • Runic Blade: Riven's abilities charge her blade, causing her to do 5 / 7 / 9 / 11 / 13 / 15 (+0.5 per bonus attack damage) bonus physical damage on her next autoattack. Riven can store up to 3 charges, and will only expend one at a time.

    -This passive works well with Riven. After every use of an ability, you gain stack of damage. Remember, you can only have 3 at once! The best way to utilize this passive is hitting with your basic attack after every ability use. Someone may spam all skills and then proceed with AA, but trust me, this works better. Note this DON'T work on towers, inhibitors or nexus.

  • Broken Wings (Q): Riven steps forward and lashes out in a series of powerful sword slashes that will damage all enemies nearby. This ability can be activated a second time within 4 seconds, and a third time within 4 seconds of that. On the third activation she will also knock nearby enemies back and have a larger radius of damage. All three strikes will deal the same amount of damage.
    Your close-the-gap-between-you-and-enemy-and-damage-him skill. If you can, hit one basic attack between each jump. Max it second.
    Note: You can't go through the wall with this skill.

  • Ki Burst (W): Riven deals physical damage and stuns nearby enemies for 0.75 seconds.
    AoE stun with low cd and great damage! This pwnz *** so hard, we need to max it first! Spam it when you can!

  • Valor (E):Riven dashes towards the cursor and gains a shield for up to 2.5 seconds.
    Another gap closer. And a shield. Use it before Broken Wings. Max it last.
    Note: You can't go through the wall with this skill.

  • Blade of the Exile (R):Riven's sword reforms, gaining 20% bonus attack damage, extended range on her damaging abilities and autoattacks for 15 seconds. She is also granted the ability to use Wind Slash once for the duration.
    Wind Slash: Riven can activate the ability to emit a shockwave in a long cone in front of her that deals physical damage to all units hit based on their missing health.

    EXTREMELY DEADLY skill and it's sooooo much fun to play! You need to activate it BEFORE you go into any battle. This will increase your whole attack damage, and so it will increase your spell damage! You also can cast Wind Slash, a shotgun-like burst of damage which bases on their hp - the lower they have, the more damage you deal. This makes Wind Slash soooo OP executioner skill.
    Note: This skill can damage enemies even through the wall!

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Main build

  • : Starting item. Nice HP, damage, a little bit of life steal. However, you should get Boots of Speed and 3x Health Potion if you're facing a champion like Karthus or Cassiopeia. You have got also your skills to evade theyre skills.

  • : Must-have. Get this and Long Sword (or two) + 2x Health Potion at your first return to base (if you didnt buy them at the beginning), depending on how well you are farmed.
  • : Nice dmg, cd reduction, armor penetration.
  • : It'll help you stay longer in lane.
  • : This boots works well on Riven. If the enemy team has got a LOTS of CC, buy
    Mercury's Treads. If the enemy is heavy AD, get the Ninja Tabi.
  • : Amazing item. Good stats, and very nice passive. It helps you push down turrets, chase or escape. Remember to activate this sweety.
  • : Now, we will build some more AD. Start with the bloodthirster. Nice lifesteal and attack damage. We want this.
    Riven farms well. Bloodthirster needs farm.
  • : Next AD item. Riven needs also attack speed, so here it comes with nice AD and amazing passive! This item is one of my favourites. Get it.
  • : This item will help you be more tanky. It's one, big HP steroid. Works purrfect with Atma's Impaler. You can replace Warmog's Armor with Frozen Mallet if you want to.
  • : Armor and crit chance are always welcome. But the true thing about this item is its passive. This will get you 40-60 attack damage based on your items.

    Situational items

    • : Against heavy AP team. If you have a Banshee's Veil fetish, get it instead. Another option is Wit's End. Your choice.
    • : Very interesting new item. It gives you nice survivability against AP team and it does not take your damage. Replace The Black Cleaver with this item.
    • : Buy it when you're facing a champion like Malzahar. The active is a pain in the *** for your opponnents. Use this to break irritating spells, like Ignite, Exhaust or Nether Grasp.
    • : Against heavy AD team. They will have a huge problem with you now.
    • : Get this instead of The Black Cleaver when the enemy stacks huge amounts of armor.
    • : You die a lot? Buy Guardian Angel. Second life. Problem, officer?

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Early/mid/late game


Welcome to Summoner's Rift! Grab your Doran's Blade, add skill point into Valor and run to your turret. Why Valor? You will dodge his harrassing spells at the beginning.

Early game could be hard if you will face champion like Mordekaiser.
If you will know that the game will be hard, or you are just loosing your lane (rare occassions) try to buy items from the second build here. This build will let you get tanky, but still having bunch of damage.

You want to play a little bit aggresive. You need to DOMINATE the enemy. Make him waste mana when you use Valor to evade his skills.

To harass, simply enter with Valor -> Broken Wings once -> Ki Burst -> Broken Wings twice BACK. Simple, isn't it? Stun makes them unable to counter your attack.
When your ultimate is ready, you can kill your enemy. Pop it, use your combo ( Flash if neccessary) and EXECUTE HIM with your ultimate like a boss. Then, depending on your health, you can gank top/bot or push the turret.

Mid game starts when the first teamfights on mid begin. Your place in teamfight is in the middle of fight, taking down the squishes and DPSes like Caitlyn, Annie, Xerath etc. You should spam your skillz with no mercy. Feel like they can't avoid you.
Try to hit all of the enemies with your ulti and when they're half/low hp.

Late game is when you want to take down inhibitor turrets. You are tanky now, and OP as hell! If you have completed your build BUY ALL OF THOSE ELIXILRZ!, and try to give frags to your teammates. Enjoy the pentakills with Riven!


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Playing against various champions


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Laning/Solo top

Riven is an universal champion. She fits everywhere: in lane, on mid, in jungle, she also holds top very nice. I saw tank Riven once.
So it's your choice where you go; where are you feeling nice. I prefer mid lane, because you can have easy kills and nice farm.
She works well in jungle. Her ganks are quick, because she has got nice mobility.
Solo top is also good, if you will be lucky, you could face noobs and even make double kills.


Know your enemy! If you have got support in your team, ask him to cast Clairvoyance on the enemy base. Then, with the knowledge of your lane oponnents, you can buy Doran's Shield if they're both AD or they have got strong harass.

Try to last hit well. You are not on mid, you have to fight for minions with your lane partner. The more minions you have, the more powerful you are.

Your harass is identical as on mid: Valor -> Broken Wings once -> Ki Burst -> Broken Wings twice back. Got it? Mastered it? Want it? Yes! HARASS!

If the enemy has got a jungler, both of you should buy a sight ward. It helps so much! As example, here is my "cool story bro". I once saw Lee Sin in the bushes, who wanted to gank us. Don't know why, but he had 1/4 hp, so i ulted him. Free frag and life saver for 70 gold. Worth it? It's your decision ;).


So, wanna be a holder, huh? No problem, sir. Buy Doran's Shield or Regrowth Pendant. I prefer Doran's Shield to Regrowth Pendant, but it's only me. I think health regen with Doran's Shield is just good, and Regrowth Pendant doesn't provide armor or health.

Investigate your enemies. Buy Ninja Tabi if they're AD, or Mercury's Treads if they've got lots of CC.

Try to block any incoming damage with Valor. You're a holder, but this doesn't mean you can't harass them. But be carefull! If you are facing hard CC champions like Volibear, Sion, Singed, please watch yourself! One mistake and you're dead!

Try to know where your jungler is. It will be gg if you will not help at jungler's ganks.
A successful gank decreases the morale of the enemies!

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Section under construction

Riven does not fear the jungle. The jungle fears Riven!

Jungling with Riven is quite easy and simple. Your starting item should be Cloth Armor and 5x Health Potion. All is explained in this video, made by lexiphanic009:

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Positioning your ultimate

Section under construction

Your ulti can take down low HPs very quickly and effective. It does go through the wall, so they should fear death from nowhere. You need to be SURE that your ultimate will hit the target. Remember, you need first to ACTIVATE the ulti, then you can cast Wind Slash:

You can also killsteal Blue Buff Golem, Dragon, Baron:

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My games:

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Section under construction

Thanks to:

-jhoijhoi for her AWESOME guide CLICK. It helped me a lot with my first (this) build. One more time - THANKS.

-Toshibler, BalboaPL, Kreol, Epileptus for reviewing my guide and telling me, what was wrong, and what could be nice.

-RaVi112 for helping me with screenshots. Thank you for your time! Dzięki!

-Gurkeh, for suggesting me to add a "Why mid with Riven" section. Good work.

-Whole team Wypiździeters. You guys are great, thanks for the support!
I will be editing this build, and I'll add soon some pictures, proofs, and the positioning of the ultimate. Cheers.