Poppy Build Guide by Elijia
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Not Updated For Current Season
The basis of this guide is this Skarner build. I tried it on Poppy, and was blown away by it's effectiveness. I decided to alter it slightly, as she doesn't need to be nearly as tanky. Her burst is amazing and her damage output is scary for how much health she has. Her job is to get in, do her damage and if you're lucky, get out. You're going to get focused. The way to deal with this, is focusing harder.
Pros / Cons
What I recommend on Poppy
- Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage Is a nice little boost to your AD in the early game. Helps with last hitting. A must in my books, but if you disagree, Play around and tell me what you feel would be better.
- Greater Mark of Hybrid Penetration is good because it will increase the damage output of your abilities before Sheen while maintaining steady damage after it. Sheen procs deal additive physical damage based on your current AD, so the trade of some physical damage for the larger chunk of magic damage is worth it. Even after getting Sheen, the magic penetration will still benefit your Devastating Blow and your Heroic Charge. Two for one makes sense to me, but different strokes for different blokes.
- Greater Seal of Armor has great synergy with Paragon of Demacia. Your lane choices are solo top or support bottom, and as such, you will be dealing with primarily physical damage on a regular basis. This also helps later, when you get tower aggro. And you will. As Poppy, if you don't get tower aggro at least once, you're doing it wrong.
- Greater Glyph of Ability Power is something I would recommend,
but I couldn't find it in the planner list anywhere. Any form of cooldown glyphs also work on Poppy. Her versatility when it comes to glyphs is quite astounding. I personally use Potency (flat AP) or Shielding (MR/level), but as I said earlier different strokes for different blokes.
Poppy's attacks all deal magic damage, and all benefit from AP. While your main burst ( Devastating Blow) will benefit most from how much AD you have, especially once you start Sheen proccing, having AP will increase your burst from your Heroic Charge as well as add to the damage of Devastating Blow. This is something that really shines for Poppy in the late game, when you really start nailing foes to walls. Your "1,2, Pawnchu" combo will melt them faster than they can react. The bonus AP makes landing your Heroic Charge against the wall feel a lot more rewarding as a result, as if you needed more incentive.
I recommend getting a Rod of Ages as the Health, Mana, and AP bonuses that it offers are far too good to ignore, but this is something I will cover in greater detail later on.
21 in the offense tree is a must. You are a damage dealer, not a tank. Your burst is far too immense to be ignored. I take both magic penetration and armor penetration bonuses, because it benefits everything Poppy does. She auto attacks, she casts. She rolls face.
But then, what about the other nine points?
I prefer the defense tree, as the survivability it offers gives me a sense of stability, however I also included my two utility tree choices. The movement speed from the first utility tree choice is nice, and the extra mana from from the second helps your early game, particularly in the department of harassment. It also synergizes well with your Philosopher's Stone.
I will say this time and time again,but this is all personal feel and flavor. Feel free to play around.
My preferred build
- 15/5 Health Regeneration. This will sustain you through your early game.
- 8/5 Mana regeneration. This will make sure that so long as you are not spamming, you will have mana to spare when push comes to shove. And it will get there fast.
- 5 gold every 10 seconds. This may not seem like much, but this is an additional 30 gold a minute. This means every minute the game goes on after you buy this, you have an extra Cannon Minion's worth of gold in your favor.
This item will become either a Shurelya's Reverie or an Eleisa's Miracle
This item either becomes Mercury's Treads or Berserker's Greaves
Devastating Blow in physical damage, thus making it a true hybrid skill, Dealing both physical and magical damage. There is no reason not to get this item. You should aim to have this item by level 6 or sooner, as this will optimize your damage output, but getting it from level 8-10 is understandable. The faster you get to this item, the better.
This item will become a Trinity Force later.
Catalyst the Protector
This item is also where your build will branch out slightly.
I digress. Her ultimate does not stop CC (Crowd Control) effects, thus making Tenacity mandatory. I personally like getting Mercury's Treads over Berserker's Greaves Unless I am doing extremely well. For me, that means about a 4 or 5 kill lead on my lane opponent. If I pick up Berserker's Greaves, I will automatically pick up Eleisa's Miracle as my next item. You should note that The tenacity is just as important as the move speed at this point in the game. As I said before, two for one makes sense.
Rod of Ages Is what will make this build into a hybrid build. It maintains the level up passive of Catalyst the Protector and adds on a passive that will scale you into the late game. Each minute will see you getting bonus AP, Health and mana. It also kicks up the damage of your Heroic Charge and your Devastating Blow. This item rocks on Poppy.
However, if you find yourself getting focused too much to handle, or in need of more survivability, Banshee's Veil will also work here. Surviving is more important than building hybrid, and your damage is still nothing to scoff at without a Rod of Ages. Worry about surviving first, and killing second. It's more important to deny them kills than to tunnel vision for yours. Tunnel vision does happen on Poppy, and it makes you a potential feeding hazard. Be aware of this and adjust your build accordingly.
Devastating Blow, as well as giving you an AD, AP, Attack Speed and Movement speed boost. It gives you health and mana on top of that. This item makes Poppy what she is. She would not be the same without it. If you get nothing else, this item is completely mandatory!
The Bloodthirster is the standard item that you get next in this build. Yet another burst in your AD, and then yet another 10% life steal at full stacks. You get this item if you are having a standard game. This will be built from your Vamp Scepter.
Infinity Edge is the item I get if I am doing exceptionally well. Bonus crit, bonus crit damage, and a hard AD bonus. This will be the larger damage increase of the two items, leaving you with roughly 40% crit chance on top of your Trinity force procs. (on a side note, the proc damage is not included in the crit, but is added on top. In my opinion, this is still worth building into this item.)
Infinity Edge and then build the Guardian Angel. This item essentially doubles Valiant Fighter's effect, making it so that your opponents must reburst through your last 750 health at half damage once more. It makes you sufficiently tanky and, by comparison to your other items, is an affordable 2600 gold.
Boots of Speed
Catalyst of Aeons
Rod of Ages
Talisman of Ascension
The Berserker's Greaves + Eleisa's Miracle Item combo is meant to exploit an early game gold lead. If you do not have said gold lead, it is not a good idea to go this particular item combination, as it will rob you of Philosopher's Stone's gold generation, but it does work.
Standard Skill Sequence (Even damage scaling)
This skill sequence allows you to scale smoothly into your late game, taking an early point in Heroic Charge for utility, and leveling Paragon of Demacia after your Devastating Blow for even scaling on your armor, bonus movement speed and AD. This build makes positioning and escapes much, much easier. This is most players preferred build, and I am no exception.
Higher Burst Sequence
This build allows you to reach your burst damage cap much sooner than one would normally expect. Taking this skill sequence relies heavily on a good start and puts the burden of positioning back on the player.
Both skill sequences start the same, but after level 6, they change. The change in play style and mentality between the two is vast. I recommend trying both to see which you prefer.
I prefer ghost on Poppy. So much on Poppy depends on movement and positioning. For me, Ghost fills that role more prudently. It allows you to ignore Unit collision and gives you a sudden burst of speed. This is wonderful on Poppy.
Other Viabilities, in no particular order.
- Heal - if Mastered
- Clairvoyance - useful for setting up stuns in your bush (Breaking a contain)
Another thing to note is that Poppy is a powerful ganker in her own right. If you are winning your lane outright, roam to mid or bot and put out a gank. You can then use Teleport to quickly return to your lane before you are missed.
Unique Skills, Farming and Skill Priority
In any engagement your priority will be as follows.
- Paragon of Demacia - Speed boost for sudden positioning.
Heroic Charge - In terms of farming, you can use this to last hit minions very effectively. When used in this fashion, skip step three.
- Devastating Blow - Sheen Proc FTW. This can also be used to last hit, and is your primary trading tool in top lane.
- Paragon of Demacia - Chase or Disengage and/or escape.
Keep an Elixir of Fortitude in your inventory, and pop it during a fight in your last 10%-15% HP. This will instantly restore 250 HP and reset your passive, Valiant Fighter. With Guardian Angel, this triples the benefit you get from Valiant Fighter. Any health restored while in combat will see added use out of your passive. Popping an Elixir of Fortitude for health restoration is not affected by ignite affects, similar to the health restored by Lulu's ultimate. (Big thanks to Siv HD for that tip. I am a huge fan)
Diplomatic Immunity can be used as an escape. Tag the support with it and then hit as many speed boosts as you have! You are almost guaranteed an escape.
Devastating Blow resets your swing timer. This can be used to push structures, and will proc your Sheen on the structure, but will not use the active effect of the skill itself. This can be useful when dealing with tower defenders or switching to minion waves.
On another note, although Devastating Blow procs on hit effects, like Sheen, it does not benefit from life steal. Instead, it benefits from spell vamp. Keep this in mind. I do not get spell vamp in this build because it sacrifices too much along the way and makes you vulnerable until you have Hextech Gunblade. If you feel like you need it, see if your AP mid does not mind getting Will of the Ancients.
Paragon of Demacia can be used for a free Sheen proc. Keep this in mind for close calls.
Warding and you
As Poppy, unless you have a friend supporting you in bot lane, warding will always be your responsibility. In top lane this goes without saying, but in bot lane, you are filling the role that would otherwise be filled by a full fledged support character.
Consider the following
In any lane you get:
- 1 minion wave every 30 seconds.
- 1 siege minion on every third minion wave, worth roughly 2 standard minions
Okay. That's all fine and dandy. Consider that sight wards are worth about 3-6 minions. However, consider that sight wards protect you for 3 minutes.
Time to Drop Dat Math on yo head!
1 sight ward will cover your lane for approximately 4 standard minion waves and 2 siege waves, for a total of 6 waves in 3 minutes, or 1 wave in 30 seconds.
6 * 6 = 36 (accounting for standard minions in this time)
2 * 2 = 4 (accounting for the worth of the siege minions in measurements of standard minions)
36 + 4 = 40
This means that for the cost of 3-6 minions, you secure your lane for about 40 minions.
Last hitting at a mere 60% efficiency will return:
40 * 0.60 = 24
Meaning that for the cost of about 3 minions, you earned 24. In fact, you would have to last hit at about 10% efficiency to not be able to earn your gold back for buying a ward. Keep this in mind, even when heading bot lane. It isn't the end of the world when you have to buy wards. You're simply paying for a safer one.
An unsupported Poppy is a dead Poppy. Maintain map awareness if you are away from your team. Call your MiAs/SS's/whathaveyous during your laning phase, and stay near your team for pushes.
Being the focus of the enemy team is a demoralizing as it is. What makes "Demoralizing" into "Bloody Awesome" is playing properly. Poppy is not a character that rewards the lone wolf mentality, so keep this in mind when you lock in as our favorite Little Blue Princess~
I would like to take the time to thank you for reading my guide. It was my first guide, and I thought this information would be worth sharing.
If you have any extra info that you think I should add, please message me about it. Write a clear topic as to what you're messaging me about and be clear and concise.
Big Thanks to jhoijhoi for his guide on... well, guides. It is found here.
Big thanks to the LoL and MOBAfire communities.
Big thanks to you, again! Thanks a lot for reading all this.
Please, try my build with an open mind and leave constructive criticism in the comment section. This is the way I've been building Poppy, and it's gone quite well for me, though admittedly, I don't play ranked games. If anyone is brave enough to try it out, let me know how you did.
20/06/2012: Hammering out the kinks, no pun intended.
21/06/2012: Found Greater Glyph of Ability Power In the rune planner. Added it and reorganized the runes section accordingly. Hammering out the presentation, pun intended this time.
24/06/2012: Added more depth, and math to the Warding and You section.
11/07/2012: Presentation fixes, as well as minor math corrections and clarifications. Expect A skill description section, as well as a full fledged farming section. I will be posting these as soon as I can get some good footage onto youtube.
25/07/2012: Edited the info on Philosopher's Stone to be accurate as of the mid-july patch. Also updated the Unique Skills, Farming and Skill Priority section. Edited the Items section grammar. Added a laning section with a youtube video for your viewing pleasure.
31/08/2012: Grammatical revisions. Love you guys~<3
24/01/2013: After much testing, and time taken after theft of old, and acquisition of new laptop, I have found this build unsalvageable. I thank you wonderful people for joining me in hybrid smashery and I hope you enjoy my future builds.