Build Guide by roarfacelol

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 roarfacelol

Katarina - Got a WHOLE Lot of Long Swords There

roarfacelol Last updated on November 26, 2010
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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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 9

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 0

As many of you know, Kat is probably one of the squishiest and underpowered hero in the game, but when played right, she can definitely be an excellent damage dealer, whether you choose to be an early game ganker, an aggressive shumpo ulti player (not recommended in team fights, but doable :3), or just being the best cleaner upper there is.

Many people debate on whether she should go AP or AD; I personally go AD. As an AD Kat, not only do you have a higher damage output, but your farming ability is MUCH better than an AP Kat. For this build, survivability is quite decent and still holds a high damage yield. Some may argue that the damage shumpo deals makes AP outplay AD in damage. During early game, your shumpo has a high base damage but only takes 75% of your AP. Also, during early game, you won't have that much AP to increase shumpo's damage by that much. Even with AP runes, you are only benefitting one skill. On the other hand, with AD, you have magic penetration runes, which affect ALL of your skills. Also, you are still benefitting from the high base damage of shumpo along with BB which has a 1:1 ratio with your AD, which means you will be getting more damage out of BB rather than trying to increase shumpo's damage.

Early Game:

When starting with items, goingand 3is a great way for staying in your lane. This way you can Shumpo and BB creeps or enemy heroes and moving back quickly, and of course chase. One thing that must be understood is that Kat is a GREAT early game hero, and this portion of the game is extremely important and what keeps her on par, if not ahead of other heroes mid and late game.

First thing you should do, call MID! She is an EXCELLENT mid laner who can dominate the lane against many of the hero she's up against. Your first skill you should be getting is Bouncing Blades for last hitting creeps at a safe distance. Although you are playing an AD Kat, you should be maxing out Shumpo from that point on. Why? Because each point of Shumpo provides a higher damage increase and greater cooldown reduction than bouncing blades.

Early game, Kat's skills are extremely powerful, especially with your magic penetration. As Kat, it is VERY EASY to get first blood at lvl 3 or 4. The key is knowing when exactly to harrass. After the enemy has used a skill to last hit a creep, you then take that oppurtunity to Shumpo BB them. If you don't like waiting, then you can just shumpo BB when they come off cooldown. Of course you'll take some hits from enemy heroes and possibly creeps, that's what all the health potions are for. Continuously harassing keeps enemy heroes away from creeps and exp starves them. Remember: Be sure to activate Killer Instincts after your Shumpo for your BB to prevent healing.

If you're not doing so hot, then you have the option of using KI and BB and last hitting creeps from a safe distance.

Using your ignite and exhaust is KEY in getting your first blood. Be sure to use them when they are around 1/3ish of their HP. Shumpo in, then ignite exhaust and melee them down. Hold your BB incase they get out of range and they are about to escape to ensure your kill. Be sure to take note if they have flash or cleanse, which ruins your kill. However, it is still possible to get the kill even with the use of those skills, but very situation. Also, tower diving for Kat is VERY viable. Remember, if you can kill their hero, you can quickly Shumpo out of the tower range from nearby creeps after the kill.

If you have your ult, it is important to use your skills in the proper order. Of course Shumpoing the enemy hero is prime, but once you've landed that, exhaust them immediately then ult. During the time that you're ulting and they're running away, ignite them. Before the enemy hero walks out of range of your ult, throw your BB at them to finish it off. It is important to use exhaust before your ult because you want the enemy hero to travel the least distance as possible as you are ulting, however the transition between those 2 skills should be very quick for maximizing damage and will require practice.

Be sure to spend some of your attacks and skills on getting some creeps kills because your skills have a very low cooldown, so might as well use them if the enemy hero is being a major wuss.

There is no set point in the game where you should head back and get items during early game play. If you are doing well, and managed to kill the enemy hero, wait till your creeps are at the enemy tower. At this point, this is where you'll be getting the least exp and last hits over time, so take this oppurtunity while their hero is dead to recall and buy some items.

There are two ways you can go with buying items, but first, get your. This gives you 39 MP, which eliminates the MR factor against MANY heroes you fight against, and gives you a better chasing ability. If the enemy team has alot of magic damage, then you would definitely want to consider getting yourfirst. It is a great item that provides AD and some MR, along with an amazing ability that keeps you from getting ganked. Otherwise, get yourfor the nice damage and cooldown reduction. At this point, you should be heading into mid game.

Mid Game:

Your role when playing Kat mid game will be spending most of your time running between lanes, ganking other heroes and pushing. You must be very aware of what is going on in the mini map and be sure to look at how the enemy heroes are holding up in other lanes. If they are somewhat low on health, be sure to tell your teammates to be ready for the gank. Coming from behind is where you want to be. Have your teammates pressure the enemy hero to move farther behind the tower, then take that opportunity to shumpo in and devastate. It is always nice to have a tanky hero run in and take hits from the tower as you slaughter the other team, but remember you will have shumpo to save you once you have killed the hero so don't always rely on your teammates to take the hit for you. Be sure to choose wisely which direction to shumpo (after the kill) and be aware of what is going on in your minimap, so you know how to proceed with a smooth tower diving (and sometimes recalling) situation. You don't want to Shumpo a creeps to hide in a nearby bush to recall, only to have a enemy hero unexpectedly facerape you.

You generally want to target squishy heroes, or heroes that do not have ways of interupting your ult. However, you do not always have that option. If so, continue farming to keep up in items and level and gank ONLY when asked.

Before ganking, you should take sometime to get the blue and red buff if possible.

During mid game, you should invest your gold into the item you chose over during mid game, either the Hexdrinker or Brutalizer. They are cheap items that provide excellent bonuses for your hero. Afterwards, you should begin making your frozen mallet. Start off withand then into your. This item is good in its means to provide a very nice health bonus for Kat, along with a melee slow when your skills are on cooldown.

*(Here some may argue that this is an point where AP outperforms AD, in the fact that your skills, mainly your ult, slows the enemy team, over melee slowing. Its a good point, however, during team battles, enemy shouldn't really need slowing. In a team fight, there is a general area where the fight is happening. Your job as Kat is to wait for the right opportunity when the other team is somewhat distracted, and shumpo in and ult. Your hero isn't suppose to be really noticed when this happens because they are too busy focusing on the heroes they already used their skills on and want to kill. Why slow something (which is only a 15% slow) that doesn't really need to be slowed, when they're going to stay in your ult anyways? With your mallet, you can ensure a permanent slow when cleaning up, rather than waiting on your skills to slow and hoping that you are still in range of them when they come off cooldown. Also, the slow duraction from Rylai's is shorter than the duration of your cooldowns. With your mallet, your melee attacks will ALWAYS keep that 35% slow effect on your target.)

Late Game:

Late game play is generally the same as mid game. However, you will want to stay with your team more often and be sure to take the initiative to ward the map. Not only are you providing vision for your entire to for a perfect chance to gank, but you are giving yourself an escape route incase you get caught in a sticky situation. You can shumpo wards and get yourself out of a gank. It may seem alot, but placing 8 wards down in specific spots will go a long way. Baron river, dragon river, enemy lizard buff bush, enemy golem buff bush, the bush before the set of wraiths, the bush near the wolves and golem buff, and the three way bush near the first tower in bottom lane.

As shown above, you can finish off your build with 2, and even replace your Brutalizer with another Bloodthirster (I wouldn't recommend replacing your Hexdrinker with a Bloodthirster because that 300 damage absorption shield is still a very valuable bonus that can save your life. Only replace it if the enemy team is melee heavy).

Bloodthirsters are very good for Kat because it provides a high amount of AD, and provides her with some nice lifesteal while her skills are off cooldown (Some may say that Kat doesn't have time to melee, but oh.. TRUST ME, there will be LOTS of times where you will be meleeing your enemies down. Of course your skills makes the job alot quicker, but you won't always have access to them even with their low cooldowns and it's nice to deal extra 300+ damage per hit while waiting for you skills).

However, you don't HAVE to get Bloodthirsters to finish your build. You can always get defense items such asor evento make yourself mush less squishy or susceptible to enemy CCs. There are always those situations where you used your ult and died, then having your cooldowns reduced from the assists from your teammates. At these times, Guardian Angel is useful where you can revive, and unleash another Death Lotus, or just revive yourself to deal some more damage later. I would suggest only getting one defensive item over a Bloodthirster because you still need to dish out some damage.

Summoner Spells:

In my own experience, I found thatandare excellent summoner spells that really complement Kat. Ignite really helps deal that extra damage early game to finish enemy heroes off (ESPECIALLY VLAD!!!) and exhaust provides an EXCELLENT slow for your ult to finish its duration.

However, there are other viable summoner spells that fit for other people's play a popular one, where people use it for that extra teleport to get closer to Shumpo and execute their rotation, or just use it to escape a gank.
is also used by many, though I personally don't find it very useful because if you're chasing, you have Shumpo to reach creeps and if you're escaping your Shumpo is there to save you. You can say that Shumpo can't save you when you're in the forest, but chances are, if you facecheck a bush and the enemy is about to facerape you, you ain't getting away with or without ghost. However, the use of this skill is very siutational and can be useful.

Other summoner skills... yeah I don't really think they're good for her unless you can tell me a good reason why :3!


For runes, you shouldn't want to change your magic penetration runes because they directly affect ALL of your skills. Your seals however, can be changed. If you would rather play it more aggressive at the start and like that extra damage bonus, then go right ahead and use Greater Seal of Strength (I wouldn't suggest greater seal of might because the level bonus only becomes better at level 9, where that extra damage bonus doesn't really matter anymore). If you wanna feel safer, then use Great Seal of Evasion for that extra dodge. Both are viable choices. Greater Seal of Focus and Fortitude are also good choices, where cooldown reduction is great for spamming your skills more often, or that little extra health that keeps you alive after diving early game.

Thanks for reading my guide and good luck :D!!
I would also like to give credit to HeAt with the masteries, boots 3 health potion starter, and summoner spells!!