Build Guide by Mannerless
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.
Hello and thank you for checking out what seems to be an exciting and very real way of playing Irelia for maximum damage, to the point where your questionable survivability outweighs the chances of being killed.
Irelia is a wonderful champion but only when she is played well. If you play her incorrectly, she can aspire to be the worst possible champion in all of league. My build is based on some of the new changes and an extremely offensive play style. You won’t be a tank, not until at least end game when you’re able to steal more life then you loose.
This build is made for pure burst and huge spike damage with the ability to actually survive your engagements. There have been more then a few times where I have killed a full life enemy champion with barely 3 bars of life thanks to her E ability witch actually stuns when your enemy has more life then you, and with the help of her crazy true damage W ability.
Pros and Cons
Versatile champion with initiation ability.
High base damage attacks
Damage boosting ability
Health per hit passive ability
Great passive for escaping
Can control the fight with stuns or snares and high burst
Squishy early game
No real CC after initial engagement
Often relies on party
Overview of Skills
Irelia's first ability is Bladesurge, or Q. This is what allows you to engage or flee depending on your surroundings. Basically it’s a charge that brings you right to your enemy and sets up your next ability. This skill also fully resets and refunds some mana if it kills a target making it a wonderful last hitting skill when in lanes.
Her second ability is Hiten Style, or W. Basically this skill is your bread and butter for damage and lane domination through survivability. When it is passive, you gain life for every hit you do to any enemy, so it’s technically like a life steal effect. When it becomes active you loose the ability to gain life per attack, but instead gain an enormous amount of true damage for the next 6 seconds, witch makes activating this skill a timely maneuver.
The last normal ability is Equilibrium Strike, or E. This ability is the single hand of domination in team fights and in ganks. Setting this up prior to an engagement is crucial, so make sure its off cool down. Equilibrium Strike can also save lives in certain events, because this skill is a double effect ability. Not only does this skill have the highest damage of her burst attacks, but it actually snares your target for 2 seconds if their health is lower then yours, or stuns them for 2 seconds if their health is higher. Because of this, during early game I sometimes loose a fraction of my life so I can run into my opponent and stun them for mass damage or possibly a kill.
Irelia’s Ultimate ability is Transcendent Blades, or R. This skill will both damage a target and heal Irelia for exactly 20% of the damage it deals. When you activate this ability, you will get a period of time where you will gain four charges of the attack and this ultimate is completely based on where your mouse cursor is pointing and is used simply by pressing R every time you wish to throw a blade. Transcendent Blades also has a ridiculously low Cooldown timer, making it very good for farming mobs, ranged harassment or just plain healing.. The best use for this ultimate is chasing fleeing opponents, as this has a very fast attack speed and deals high damage, and you also gain four charges per ultimate activation.
This item is the standard boots for any AD DPS builds. It provides an early boost to attack speed witch will do great on its own, but gets better when there are later items introduced that also give attack speed.
Stark's is a wonderful life steal and overall survival maintenance item witch allows Irelia to heal even more when attacking. Her W already allows for healing and now its even higher, not to mention your entire party benefits from it. The added attack speed and armor reduction is very noticeable.
A must for added survivability, extra damage and overall slowing of enemies. You will notice that people like to run away from you when your beating them to death, this item just allows you to make sure their in your grasp.
Great item with a great proc, Sheen is a must for building the Trinity Force later on, but also has many great properties of its own. Not only does it increase your mana and add ability power but it also triggers additional damage every time you use an ability with a 2 second item cool down, and its a passive.
Another very useful item that is required for Trinity Force. This little cheap beauty allows you to gain some much loved attack speed, movement speed and additional crit to punch your foes in the face with.
The early Frozen Mallet. On its own its a decent little thing that's really only useful for a few hundred life and some minor damage, but its needed for Trinity Force.
The top of the mountain and with good reason. This item wreaths devastation upon your enemies allowing for additional damage, ability power, movement speed, attack speed and critical strike chance while also including 250 more health and mana to boot.
While it does also have a chance to slow enemies, your Frozen Mallet is taking care of that, the secondary proc how ever is the real shiner though witch gives you a chance to deal bonus attack damage based off of 150% base damage, witch at this point is very high thanks to your armory.
This big and awesome blade is here to do the Lord's work, if the Lord was here to destroy the other team that is. Huge boost to attack damage and increases your base critical strike damage by a ton. A must have, though I guarantee the game should be over before you get one.
If you have managed to outlast an extremely long game, get yourself one of these. Not only does it come with base extra damage and life steal, but it actually continues to add damage and life steal per mob or champion killed up to a maximum. This item, along with the others you have by now ensures that you are healing yourself more per attack then you are being hit for in most cases. You can tank Baron with this.
If for some reason your still playing at this point and you got a ton of gold for no reason, consider getting this item. Now since you already have 6 slots worth of gear you need to remove an item for it, I discard my boots. The reason for this is that this item also adds movement speed and so does your Trinity Force, witch is actually equal to the same as your boots. You also gain a lot of attack speed and crit chance to boot.
When you decide to engage, be it a gank or a team fight, the general combination of skills I use for maximum effectiveness is as follows:
W – Q – E – R – R – R – R
Remembering that you can also use Q first and then W, but I prefer to use W first because of the damage it adds and because there is less chance that during the engagement your target will get out of range for the E ability, witch is vital.
So you boosted your attack damage and you ran into your enemy for the shock and awe. Carefully judging where everyone is, and how everyone reacts is what will help you stay alive. You will want to make sure that most times, before you are fed, your team has already initiated the attack so that there’s less of a chance that you will be targeted.
At this point you will hit your E ability to either slow or stun your enemy and give a nice burst of damage. By now your W should be off active and so the damage bonus has finished. It is best now to assess the situation, meaning are your enemies fleeing or not?
If they are running, stick to a low life target within nice range and burst them down with R while preparing a possible Q rush if necessary. If your enemies are continuing to fight, witch is pretty stupid, wait for Q witch will be up any second now and repeat the burst again with W before E and then burst the lowest target down with R.
Irelia is for all intensive purposes a survival assassin. This means don’t think your some tank who can take hits for no reason. You need to plan your attacks and crush your enemies and then get out of the so you can do it again when your cool downs are up soon.
Please also build items based on the situation at hand, the build pattern does not need to be followed like a religious act, but as a guideline. If everything is going sweet keep to it, if not you will need to improvise. Although Irelia is basically magic damage, she seems to gain barely anything through AP stacking from all the tests I have tried, but instead excels with AD instead.
When you first enter the game, pick up the Boots of Speed, 2 Healing Potions and 1 mana potion and be on your way to a lane. As soon as you’re able to collect 570 more gold and you get a break, go and grab your Berserker’s Greaves and continue to lane.
At all times you should either be killing minions, neutral mobs or ganking players. Prolonged stasis will quickly diminish your danger level and possibly leave you very weak when the real fighting starts, so don’t do anything stupid.
As the money keeps rolling in, the next item is a Recurve Bow, witch adds 40% attack speed and is very good this early. You should have this by 5 or 6. Continue to complete Starks Favor however you see fit, but basically if you’re having some trouble in a lane, go grab the Vampiric Scepter and continue, or wait until you have 800 gold and grab the Emblem of Valor it’s self.
At this point your survivability is rather nice for the early game, thanks to your passive W and your 17% life steal; you can just stay put and grind, and even go off road for some of those neutral buffs.
If you haven’t already, start ganking because at this point your able to do some damage and you have holding power. You should be around level 6 or 7 and have all of the skills available to her for use. By the time you get to 10, you must start ganking if you haven’t done so already. All forms of caster classes are free kills for you, and you can challenge even some of the melee classes too. I strongly recommend you steer clear of tanks until later, as they can more then likely escape your grasp and run to assistance or safety.
The next set of gear you want to grab is Phage and then Frozen Mallet right after because this gives you the ability to hold targets thanks to the constant slow and you gain a nice boost of HP to aid you. The damage gain is large, so everything is a win. Now you’re going to begin making one of the best, if not the best item for Irelia, the Trinity Force.
Following the pattern I gave you through the sub items is best until you reach the Trinity Force its self, so start of with Sheen witch is going to give you your first bout of ability power assistance, and this comes from the proc. It also is good to note you gain some nice mana as well. Continue to build up another Phage witch will give you more damage and life until you finally have a Zeal for attack speed and movement speed. Now all you need is a measly few bucks and you’ve got yourself the Force!
At this point in the game you should be dominating ganks and the general flow of party vs. party fights. You should be around level 12-14 and have many kills under your belt, or at least assists if you get your kills stolen. Either way, its time to make yourself the item of domination, the one, the only, the Infinity Edge!
Not only does Irelia gain massive damage from this item, but her crits scale far higher now, showing nice numbers on all attacks. Usually at this point I am destroying anything stupid enough to even look at me wrong. You can 2v1 and even 3v1 if you know you’re Irelia when you’re as geared out as this.
If for some reason the opposing team has yet to surrender, go for a Bloodthirster to set the straight and win the game. Please also note that any games lasting even longer then this point give you the ability to choose your own items. Personally I build a Warmog’s and sell my boots, but you can go Guardian Angel or Banshee’s Veil as well.
Please also remember that you are not going to want to be greedy, but skillful instead. Greed usually leads to death, and death leads to a lack of money making witch ultimately leads to you sucking eventually. Please note that you are very squishy early game and that you shouldn’t challenge any classes until your at least level 5, but there’s always an exception to this, such as ganks or low life enemies who you can kill without dying.
Don’t try to be the center of attention during fights, instead if you can help it; make sure your enemies are already fighting your allies before you run in. Though eventually you can just destroy them anyway. I like to sneak around behind or to the side of my enemies and rush in for shock and awe.
You are building and playing and playing an offensive burst Irelia. You are not a tank.
Thank you for viewing my guide, it is the first one I have written so far and I hope it suits to turn some heads away from the ****py AP based builds I have found useless as all hell so far.