Build Guide by Toastia
Not Updated For Current Season
Not Updated For Current Season
"Holy **** Tiamat is awesome now."
This build is about fixing Ezreal's late-game issues - and generally making him ****ing awesome - by stacking the newly-OP Tiamat. It's pretty effective, and super-fun to play too.
Please note: this build is still pretty loose; runes and masteries and whatnot need tightening up a bit. Doesn't stop it being awesome already.
So up until the last patch the accepted wisdom was that Tiamat was **** and you should only ever get it on Tuesdays. Nobody used it, it was rubbish etc etc. I've seen lots of extensive proposed fixed floating around, all of which Riot ignored. Instead, they boosted the damage 8 points. Big woop, right?
I originally had a big-*** wall-of-text explanation here, but let me cut straight to the chase instead:
A BF Sword ( ) is 1850g. If we assume Riot have a sensible pricing scheme for items, then as a max-stat base item this should be pretty good value for money.
A Tiamat ( ) is 2070g, a 220g premium. Let's look at the three-Tiamat case, as it's what we want to aim for. Three BF Swords cost 5550g. Three Tiamats cost 6210, a 660g premium. They give the same damage output. They give some health regen that we don't really care about, and some mana regen that in a Manamune-less build ( ) we definitely do care about. They also allow us to double or triple our sustained damage output in a typical team fight.
3x damage (potentially 5x in best cases) for 660g is good. I'm going to leave it at that.
Armor pen because all your damage is physical, a bit of mana regen in case your clarity isn't up at a crucial time, and cooldown because it helps you spam your Q (). Movement quits because mobility is ****ing awesome if you're Ezreal and you're trying to get a nice angle for your Q. Swap for armor pen or whatever if you want.
It'd be nice to get the armor penetration masteries, but I like the Utility tree too much. I'm still trying to decide whether or not the 15% magic penetration is worth it, as it only really makes a difference for the ulti (in terms of damage output over the course of the game). The standard utility tree for mages is pretty much a given for me though, especially because it makes Clairvoyance even more awesome.
(Clairvoyance is awesome.)
Ok, so we start out with the two regen items from Tiamat, because it gives you a bit of lane staying power early game. They're both the weak end of the spectrum so they're not superawesome; stay back, last-hit with your Q () and try not to take damage. You should be able to get away without a healing pot if you play smart.
Boots of Speed are a good next choice in most cases, because mobility is king. If you're not worried about any kind of skillshots, placed attacks etc, feel free to swap in the Vampiric Scepter early, but generally I find the boots just more awesome. I'd usually try and stay in lane until I can get both, as it saves the need to make a decision :) Either way, get the boots and the scepter before continuing
Next, Boots of Swiftness. Boots of swiftness are awesome and I get them on pretty much every character I play. Yes, you could get Mercury's Treads ( ), or Berserker's Greaves ( ), or the Ionian whatsits ( ) or whatever, and these would all give you nicer stats on paper. However, LoL doesn't take place on paper, it takes place in a 2d arena where fights are generally controlled by the fastest character. If you move quicker you can dodge attacks, stay out of range on the defensive, close quickly on the offensive, and dance around until the right moment presents itself to strike. Speed is position, and position is control, and when you're in control you're halfway to winning. Ignore your lovely paper stats, get some Boots of Swiftness, and control your game.
After this we get our first Tiamat. Yay damage. Yay splash.
(Digression: Tiamat works with your Q. Tiamat splash does not proc effects. Tiamat splash does not lifesteal. Tiamat splash DOES stack, and stacks beyond 100%. Tiamat splash does get you gold from minions killed by the splash. Tiamat splash is based on the actual final damage you do with whatever physical, procing attack you make. If I'm using auto-attack and I have Infinity Edge ( ) and Madred's Razors ( ) and Trinity Force ( ) and I crit a minion with a razor proc and I have three Tiamats on a ranged character, I do base plus bonus plus 500 (razor) plus base and a half (triforce) plus base and bonus times two and a half (infinity), and I splash 105% of ALL of that damage. With a base of 100 and a bonus of 200, that works out at something like ~1600 splash.)
Then we build our scepter up into a Stark's Fervor, because lifesteal is awesome when you have this much physical damage output (Q lifesteals), attackspeed and regen are neat, and an armor reduction aura is handy when you have that much physical. Mainly it's for lifesteal goodness though. You could get a Bloodthirster ( ) instead if you think you can stay alive long enough, but it's a chunk more expensive and slows down your Tiamat stacking!
Then you just get more Tiamats. Yay.
Final item is up to you. Bloodthirster ( ), Infinity Edge ( ), Last Whisper ( ), Frozen Mallet ( ), Bloodrazor ( ), Black Cleaver ( ) - whatever you think fits the situation best. Or, y'know, an extra Tiamat ;)
Rising Spell Force
Ezreal's passive is kinda neat, given how much you're focusing on damage, but mainly for taking down towers etc. Your auto-attacks have a big range disadvantage compared to your Q, and range is generally life. This goes double when you're smart and you've bought Boots of Swiftness ( ) so you can actually maintain range, rathen than getting sucked in because you can't maneuver.
This is Ezreal's One True Ability. Learn it. Love it. Kill with it.
Mystic Shot is a skillshot, giving it lots of range. It does physical damage, which is sufficiently unusual on a ranged DPS champion that it might give you some advantages in terms of resistances. It's very handy for last-hitting minions early-game, as the chunky range keeps you well out of harm's way. Don't be fooled by the low damage numbers, because it adds your ENTIRE damage to its damage, not just your bonus damage. It reduces all spells' cooldown - including its own - by one second when it hits a target. Oh, and it applies on-hit effects, which includes life steal. And Tiamat, obviously :) Once you get two or three Tiamats stacked up, recommended useage is to fire it at anything with a red health bar, as often as you can.
We max this first because it is awesome.
Uh, what's good about Essence Flux? Well, it's a skillshot that doesn't hit minions, so you can harass champions with it, if you really want to. It also has a kinda high AP ratio, although why you'd get AP on post-patch Ezreal is beyond me. It does do reasonably decent damage, although the cooldown is nothing to write home about, and obviously it's useless for farming. The attack speed buff/debuff is pretty useful actually, and can make something of a difference in fights. Its best use though, is for pushing towers. If you can line up your entire team and hit them all with it, you give them all 40% extra attack speed, and you pick up four stacks on your passive, which gives you 40% attack speed too. Neat.
We max this last, because it's just not all that good in this build.
This is Ezreal's "lucker" ability, aka "use skill to killsteal and avoid dying". The damage is "neat", and can be used very effectively to catch and kill near-dead enemies who are trying to run away, but it's not really useful for consistent damage output, particularly given that you want it available as much as possible to avoid death.
What it's awesome for is what all low-cooldown blinks are awesome for: running away. Or, more generally, being in a good position at all times. Blinking over walls can not only save your *** more times than really seems fair, but also lets you hop into good damage positions really easily. The range isn't amazing, but in common with a lot of abilities of this type, if you manage to blink more than halfway through a wall, you'll come out on the other side.
The main thing to keep in mind with this, particularly when escaping, is to try and blink from a point that maximizes the enemy's run distance. If you're dying near the brush in the centre of Summoner's Rift, for example, draw the enemies right into the brush and then blink up to the high ground to maximize the extra distance they have to run. This can buy you a couple of seconds, which is more than enough to get away safely with your Boots of Swiftness.
Also, consider careful use of this spell in teamfights to get yourself out of any melee and back to the edges, where you can spam the **** out of your Q. And keep in mind that every time your Q hits, you lose a second of cooldown on Arcane Shift.
Finally, once you get good with it, and you learn other champion's attack animations, you can use it to lazily move out of the way of skill shots. For example, running mid against Anivia you can handily blink out of the way of her stun shot every time without having to worry about clicking and distances and stuff, and it should annoy the hell out of whoever's playing her :)
Not the world's best ultimate, but that's compensated for by Q being so awesome. Finally does decent damage now that it scales with your bonus damage (note: that's bonus damage - base damage is not included, unlike Mystic Shot), and can be used for some hilarious kills, but I find it a bit too hit-and-miss at long range. (Its range, incidentally, is effectively infinite - I've fired it downrange from my fountain before and killed an enemy that had just ported back to their fountain.)
So while you can save it up for ultra-skill shots at very long range (and while you should try to snipe people recalling at low health whenever possible), generally I've found the most consistent use is to treat it as a visual-range AoE damage burst. It clears minions off towers a treat in sticky corners, and if their whole team is piling into your tanks at close range, blast that thing in and do a nice big chunk of damage to all of them as you engage. It's not as funny as gibbing two or three retreating champions with a nicely aimed shot, but it does give your team a much better chance of winning the fight, killing a few bad guys and driving off the rest with minimal losses.
We get Clairvoyance because it's easily the best summoner spell. I said earlier that being in control was halfway to winning. Knowing what the enemy is up to takes you most of the rest of the way. Wards are really good. Clairvoyance is like infinite free wards but with a cooldown. If I can justify going up the utility tree on a champion, I always take Clairvoyance, I always take the mastery, and I always take presence of the master. This gives you a ten-second sight bubble with a ~35 second cooldown, which means you have 10 on, 25 off.
It's great right at the start when you can check for enemy junglers or counter-junglers, ID who's in your lane, and safely get in position in the side brush if you want to. It's great in the early game, at mid to spot incoming ganks and keep tabs on your opposite number, in side lanes to totally shut down any brush antics, and everywhere to keep tabs on the enemy jungler if you're hungry for ganks. It's great in midgame to just keep tabs on where everyone is, spot brush antics, spot ambushes, spot baron/dragon attempts, and give you an early warning system when pushing alone or trying to take a tower. It's pretty good lategame for keeping tabs on the enemy, watching baron, and keeping tower pushes safe. And it's great all game long for running down and killing fleeing champions. Which way did he go? Oh look, I have Clairvoyance - there he is. As I said in my Malphite guide, the only time Clairvoyance should not be on cooldown is when you can literally see all five champions on the mini-map. If you know where your lane enemies are, check the mini-map and see if you can spot for your team mates. They'll love you for it.
Fun fact that not everyone knows: Clairvoyance won't reveal stealthed units, but it WILL reveal units in brush within its radius, even if it's not cast directly in the brush.
Bonus strategy: "I took Clairvoyance, you guys buy all the wards kk?"
Clarity is the price you pay for not getting Manamune ( ), it seems. You end up with a very small mana pool and not a massive amount of regen, even later on with a couple of Tiamats. I find Clarity crucial early-game, and pretty handy late game, to make sure you can keep outputting damage. Remember that with lifesteal, mana is effectively (but inefficiently) health, too, if you can take an opportunity to gank some minions. Also, if you go for the mastery your team-mates will love you too, and it's always satisfying to hear "we need to pull back, we're all out of- oh, never mind, let's push". It's a bit of a crutch spell, but it's a crutch I find myself needing right now.
Other things you might get instead of Clarity, if you can manage your mana better than me:
Mobility is awesome. 'Nuff said.
Again, obvious reasons. You're a DPS character without any CC.
If you find yourself getting locked down and killed before you can blink away on a regular basis, try a) getting Cleanse and b) playing in a less risky manner.
Things that I specifically try to avoid getting:
Flash and Ghost ( / . Not just because you have a free flash, but because these spells are usually used as massive crutches to get around the fact that you're ****ing up your positioning. I usually get one or the other when learning a new champ, but once I've got the basics figured I drop them quickly. If your positioning and situational awareness are good (Boots of Swiftness and Clairvoyance are important here), you shouldn't get into a position where you'd need either of these spells more than once or twice a match - and Swiftness and Clairvoyance are respectively always and nearly-always useful, rather than being on three-minute cooldowns. If you really need flash or ghost to be effective, then you're ineffective for multi-minute stretches whenever you use them. This sucks.
Stacking Tiamats allows you to do a ridiculous amount of damage in team fights. It's awesome. Get three Tiamats. Season with your own choice of additional items, runes and masteries (or use the handy examples given here). Enjoy.