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Kassadin and His Badassidin *** Kickin Rifts
OVERVIEW: This is simply a basic guide. Playstyle and overall general game ideals I use with MY personal itemization, there is always room for change and by NO means is this a Guide to END ALL GUIDES...Masteries and Runes are all from killraven. That is not my area of well versed knowledge. I just wanted to share my thoughts and way I play Kassadin.
-Kassadin is a good fighter. He can put the hurt on in a 1 v 1 and excels at pursuit and escape. Not to mention he can provide an intense "OH ****" moment in a team battle as he rifts in and rifts out.
-His disables are some of the best in the game.
-He pairs well with most any other champion due to his disables.
-Hard to play
-Squishy in early to mid game (Gain some survivability in late game but still not a tank)
ALL RIGHT DISCLAIMER IN BOLD SO PEOPLE DON'T RIP MY HEAD OFF IS THIS THING FAILS(My first guide ever): This is not meant to be an "You'll never die" Build. This is a simple set up and how I generally have played Kassadin. A lot of it is borrowed but at its core it's more about what WILL happen in a match not what we want to happen. I don't have many games with the character (7-15 or less can't remember servers are down ATM) but when I get on a roll...Well let's say I make enemies cry and rage quit.
Cleanse- Get caught and need to remove some enemies spells like Exhaust? Cleanse it off.
Ghost- Either running away from an enemy or chasing them down, sure you've got rift walk but it's all about survivability. Can't build stacks for Soulstealer and can't get a kill or assist if you're dead. This is how I play and if I rift walk into an enemy to kill them then get jumped it's a long 4 seconds to hope I can get away.
Summoner Abilities Disclaimer:
It's about preference (so choose what you will) and in the start of playing as Kassadin I chose Clarity over cleanse to allow me to stay in a lane longer and to lure unsuspecting Yitards or any other kind of "get in, hit you quick, and run" characters into a nice simple gank.
Breakdown: Kassadin's DO'S and DON'TS
-Do play smart. If you're chasing someone down and over extend yourself IF IT IS NOT a sure kill for you then I suggest you rift walk in the other direction. Factor in enemy locations on your minimap, how much mana you have VS your preys health, and of course are your summoner abilities on CD?. IF you didn't kill them when you first opened the engagement then make a judgment call. SAFE IS SMART.
-Do harass your enemies (when safe), you don't always have to get the quick kill. A lot of players are unfamiliar with Kassadin and therefore will underestimate you. They don't know your able to port after them after getting level six. A lot of new players choose to lane and over extend themselves even when their HP is low be patient and kills will come. PATIENCE BREEDS SUCCESS.
-Do be aware of who you are sharing a lane with ON BOTH SIDES. If you're in a lane with a champion like Veigar you're both squishy but Veigar can set up his stun to allow you to rift in melt face and rift out. Opposed to pairing with a champion like Twitch. Twitch can hide out and let you die if he isn't comfy with puncturing your target's lungs with some poison arrows, or he can steal a kill. Not saying everyone is like that but it's an awareness of your lane partner's abilities that will help you dictate how you play. Opposing side is similar always be aware of whom you are in a lane against. Kassadin and Veigar vs Blitzcrank and Ryze: Very one sided to Blitz and Ryze. But that allows you to adjust and play more defensively leaving aggression for when a teammate slides away from mid to help lock down a target for a focus fire. BE LIKE WATER WET, SOFT, EVER SHIFTING, BUT WITH THE POTENTIAL TO CRUSH THE LIVES OF MILLIONS.
-Do KNOW THY ENEMY. Kind of a reiteration of the above but it has been my experience thus far that it is better to have an understanding of your opponent's champion then none at all. You may fall in love with Kassadin but you should always take the time to learn how to play other characters. Find their weakness and exploit it later on. (Of course no one plays the same character the same way all the time, keep that in mind.). KNOWLEDGE IS POWER
-Don't assume you will always have an out or be saved by your lane partner. Even as Kassadin and your badass rifting doesn't always mean you can get away. Always have an out. CAUTION DOES NOT MEAN WEAKNESS.
-Don't always assume you won't ever die. It happens, it's not fun but if you think you can die you'll go in thinking "I might need to run" -Rift in nuke him, but enemies aren't on the map RUN safe back at base with more gold and less time doing nothing- as opposed to thinking "Rift in Rift out what could possibly......AHHHHHHH -Trip ganked, now sitting in the gy for one minute while you see your nexus destroyed-
CONFIDENCE AND OVER CONFIDENCE KNOW YOUR LIMITS OR BE BURIED.
-Don't be afraid to trash talk. Psychology against an enemy you've killed 4 times in a row mean he/she will probably ask their teammates to focus you. Now their nexus is destroyed because they aren't in their base, they're chasing you.
TRASH TALK: WE ALL HATE IT BUT WE ALL DO IT.
KASSADIN BASICS(What works for me):
Kassadin is a disabler DPS. He can silence, slow, damage(or nuke)and pursue. Fair enough.
His 4 abilities are as follows: Null Sphere, Nether Blade, Force Pulse, Rift Walk.
Null Sphere: You're main source of harassment. It's a silence and hits pretty hard towards late game.
Nether Blade: Kind of nice when you're hitting a turret or need an extra oomf when rifting to an enemy to finish them. Not very flashy and slightly out of place in my mind for the mere fact I never find any viable rotation requiring me to use it.
Force Pulse: Boy does this bad boy make me smile. Rift in, silence, SLOW+Great damage. Requires 6 spells to be cast around you for you to use it so I generally start by rifting in the spawn after a death or recall to get more items allowing me to buid it up before I head out.
Rift Walk: Your ultimate and the thing that will have Master Yi's, Warwicks, and any other little annoying character that tries to kill you when you're wounded. ((Of course it works in reverse, you chase and pop it more damage and it charges Force Pulse.)) It's a teleport, an AOE, and a damage buff buff. Quite nice. One of the more interesting ultimates in my mind. Gotta love being chased down just to port through a wall watching my enemies in frustration retreat into the jungle.
MY ITEMS: Simple, these are things I seem to get regularly as Kassadin it's what I expect not what I necessarily get every time. Sometimes I get fed other times I don't, it just means you'll be happy when you see you have some more gold for another AP item later on if you get that far. I like Farie Charm first for the regen, it's not much and you will probably 0om early game any way but you won't have to recall out immediately to regen mana. Turn Farie Charm into Tear of the Goddess for the passive bonus to build your mana pool. I try for an Amplifying Tome then Soulstealer early so the stacks build early on. It fits my playstyle I'm happy with an assist it means I'm probably full healthed and ready to fight another enemy vs near death and hiding to recall. If you're just starting out with Kassadin I recommend skipping the soul stealer and grabbing something like the Hextech gunblade. Turn Tear of The Goddess into Archangel's Staff, then find your way to the Crystal Scepter IF you have the gold for it. The HP is mainly what it is there for in this build. If you don't see the scepter as an item you'll obtain in your game then by all means grab another AP or HP item of your choice that you can afford.
My playstyle is mainly Harassment and Patience. I don't always chase down people for the kill if I feel it endangers me or my teammates. One death for another death SEEMS fair but depending on group comp and your time dead it can change the tide of battle.
Early Game (1-6): Grab Fairie Charm and a Health Pot or mana pot if you want find your lane and wait at the turret for the minions to spawn, if your lane partner is a good fit then you can push up to mid and scout it out but BE CAREFUL. I generally don't grab the Health or Mana pot and still can be a presence there from levels 1-6. Harass your enemies constantly and melee minions as they come into range. Once you farm enough gold and hit level 6 or so this is when I first recall. I generally can grab my Tear of the Goddess and Sorcerer's Shoes (Mercury treads are an option if you face a lot of CC's). If you can only get the basic shoes that is fine and you'll just have to recall sooner during levels 6-8
Mid Game (6-12): Between levels 7-9 I have my Amplifying Tome and possibly even my Soulstealer, here is where I feel comfortable enough to turn harassment and patience into KILLS. Work with your lane partner to force one of your opponents to recall leaving their partner alone. IF you're facing a lane that has 1 stunner in it or even both you need to be even more cautious. In a 1 stun situation force the stunner to retreat in a 2 stunner situation force the harder hitting one to retrat. (Potentially harder hitting). This is where Kassadin shines, once you have a 2 v 1 situation on your hands harass your opponent with constant Null Spheres. Let your teammate hang back a little. When you're ready for the kill, rift in, slow your opponent and retreat as you retreat throw out your silence and then rift back in as your teammate joins in. Be aware of your surroundings, this situation happens when you and your teammate's champions compliment each other and coordinate ((Preferably over Ventrilo)).
Teambattles: Very good situations for Kassadin, you can rift in NUKE a target and rift out then rinse repeat. Careful not to be heading in when your teammates are heading out though. Focus on squishy opponent's first like Veigar or Annie.
Late Game (12-18): By now I normally have Archangel's Staff and any assortment of HP or AP items. I have sustainable damage and I'm running in and out of fights cleaning up or helping out. Also by now I'm being focus fired and chased down. If I get into trouble I generally Rift Walk through walls and don't stop until I'm hidden and recalling well away from where I was last. For me late game plays much like mid game but with more caution. I stick around at least one other person and I'm always in the back of the group as we push turrets until we get to them then I use Nether Blade and aid in dropping a turret. Always expect things to turn into a team battle and always be ready to run. Kassadin is a fighter but he won't sustain too much damage.
I'm finishing this guide at around 2AM, it is as complete as I can make it at this time and is more of a humble homage to killraven and the work put into that guide. With my playstyle, ideas, and thoughts thrown in and mixed around. Any Champion can rule the roost if played well. But it takes a committed person to realize their limits. Items I left out and order choice is up to you but this is how I've found Kassadin to work well. If you can get **** loads of gold and get Zhonya's Ring do it. If you need magic resist to aid in survival do it. Kassadin to me, and soon should be to the rest of you after you play him as; the Champion who got in, got a kill, and got out, just to Rift Walk through an enemy teams wall to get back in and finish off that "Annoying (insert champion here) who thought he/she was safe. ((Avoid tower diving unless YOU ARE ABSOLUTELY SURE you will get the kill))
Closing: Kassadin the Badassadin *** Kickin Rift Surfing Ninja is a character not too many people seem to play. Weather it be the fact that he is clearly Darth Vader and Darth Maul's secret love child (Apparently people want to look as badass as they think they are. Sad to say some characters look cool but are too lame and uninteresting to play. Kassadin is a mix of Cool and Fail (In appearance)) to me but it's the abilities and playstlye I use with him that makes it fun. OR the fact that they are too busy playing a character they see as flavor of the month ((Galio, Vladamir or Xin Zhao to name a few IMO)) Kassadin is a character no one should pass up especially when they might find him to be an enjoyable character to play. There may be a lot missing and it might not be the prettiest guide but it's what works for me currently.
Please +/- as you wish. Leave comments as you see fit and help me to better my guide writing abilities. If you have questions and or concerns about my reasoning behind anything, if unclear comment and I'll try to edit or remedy the problem.