Katarina Build Guide by NicoletBullet

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 NicoletBullet

Katarina, the Queen of daggers

NicoletBullet Last updated on December 17, 2012
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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.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 9


Utility: 0

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Welcome to my first guide about my very favourite champion: Sexy, but dangerous sinister blade Katarina.
If you play her, you will show your enemies the real hell... On a mid lane, when you gang or in teamfights! She is still one of the most overpowered heroes in the league and just for 3150 IP? You would be fool, if you didn't give her a chance.

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Her role : AP carry

Assasin - she can pretty quickly kill enemy carries
Melle - her basic attack has no range
Mage - her spells deals mainly magic damage
(Only Sinister Steel and Death Lotus deal also physical damage. Mixed items like Hextech Gunblade and Guinsoo's Rageblade will give you bonus to both.)

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Pros and Cons

+ + +

    Easy to learn
    No mana!
    Very usefull passive
    Multi-target ultimate
    High mobility
    No skillshots
    Great farmer
    Amazing ganger

- - -

    Hard to master
    Extremly squishy
    1st targeted in teamfights
    Her ultimate can be interrupted by a stun/kick/silence/taunt
    Melee range on mid

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Skills, skill sequence and skill combo

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18


Every time you get a kill or assist, your basic spells are instantly refreshed, and your ultimate's cooldown is reduced by 10 seconds. It allows her to towerdive with Shunpo jump on a low-health target and after the kill she can use it to get back! Her other spells hit more targets, so it is very easy for her to get assists. And not much difficult to get kills ;)

Bouncing Blades

You throw a dagger which hits 4 enemies, the damage is reduced with each target. It marks your targets and another spell deals bonus magic damage. This ability is good for harass the enemy mage. The dagger will get to him because of bouncing through the minions, so you can low his health without hurting yourself by his spells - you are out of his range! By the time, when he is half wounded, you mark him again, jump on him and finish him off! It is also great for farming plus Sinister Steel. You are on mid lane, so you are not far away from jungle → wolves and ghosts are dead with this combo in 2-3 seconds. If your enemy pushes during your absence, give signal to your jungler and get him down together.

Sinister steel

You turn around with daggers in your hands and damage all enemies in the circle. You deal both magical and physical damage and it has a low cooldown - that is the reason why you should max this ability first!


You jump on an enemy target and you are protected by incoming damage a little. It is amazing for gangs or chasing. If you have Flash too, noone escapes! This ability can be used on you own minion or allied hero, when you are getting away. It deals no damage in this case, of course :D Bad thing is, that it has bigger cooldown than other your spells, so use it wisely. If you jump on the enemy, he won´t be alone and your Flash won´t be ready, it is possible that you won´t survive that...

Death lotus

You spin in circle, shooting out blades dealing like 2/3 magical and 1/3 physical damage. This ability now also applies grievous wounds, which reduces incoming healing by 50% for 3 seconds. Great against enemy tanks like Dr. Mundo, Volibear, Singed etc. But it has also some disables... Range is only 10, so enemies can easily flash or jump from it and then come back. And if you get stunned, taunted, silenced or kicked, the ultimate is over :( Best timing is when your tanks iniciate the fight and enemy use their disables on them, then you can safely jump in and spin around. If you apply your Bouncing Blades first, it deals to marked targets more damage for each dagger. The number of daggers you throw in you ultimate is 30! So that is a big reason to cast Bouncing Blades before you spin.

Combo 1v1
Bouncing Blades Shunpo Sinister Steel Death Lotus Sinister Steel Ignite when enemy tries to run, you just stay typing /laugh to chat and watching him slowly, but surely dying ;) If he has got Heal, Barrier or Cleanse and he survive, you can chase him and towerdive with Shunpo / Flash. Or you can just throw the final Bouncing Blades.

Teamfight combo
Wait for your tank(s) to iniciate the fight and let enemies waste their ultimates and disables on them. Your AD carry such as Graves/ Miss Fortune Caitlyn/ Ezreal are attacking them from the safe distance. Now it is your turn... Don't ever go first! You would be eaten alive. Bouncing Blades Shunpo to their AD or AP carry → Sinister Steel Death Lotus and do the ****ing PENTAKILL! :D Someone may ask: ,,How is it possible to do a pentakil with you ultimate, if it deals damage only to three targets?" Well, when you kill three of them, your cooldown on your ultimate will be refreshed! Dont't forget to your passive Voracity! You can spin again and finish those two who left ;)

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Summoner spells


It is great to escape or chase, when your Shunpo is not ready. It has helped me to kill and to survive many times.


I love this spell, because it deals damage and slows healing. It is great to finish someone when your cooldowns are not ready and you basic attack is not engouh.

Can be used:

If you are standing against AD carry this can be lifesaving, because it reduces enemy's damage dealt and slows movement speed.

Can be used:

It helps you to chase or escape by incrasing your movement speed, but i prefer flash, which allows you to teleport through the walls. I think, you will be fine without ghost, because you have pretty high mobility.


Great when you enemy has a hard CC.


You can bluff your enemy, who thinks you have low health. You wait for him to come close to you, heal yourself and kill him. Also you can cast it in teamfight and save your allied...


A role of jungler doesn't fit you. Your place is on mid lane. You can go sometimes jungle or gank, but you don't need it.


You have no mana!

For masters:

Amazing spell, when you have some skill and use it in the right time - before you ultimate! It impowers your champion, increasing Ability power and it will make your dagger much more deadly :P

I won't mention the other spells, because it is meaningless...

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With 21 points in Offense you incrase you ability power, magic penetration and you have lower cooldowns. With 9 points in Defence you have extra health, some magic resist and armor (I prefer Resistance over Hardiness , because on a mid lane you usually face another mage). And I go for 0 points in Utility... Yes, for Kat is usefull Transmutation , but unfortunatelly you don't have any points to spent yet...


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Greater Mark of Magic Penetration

Greater Seal of Ability Power

Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction

Greater Quintessence of Ability Power

This is my favourite pick according to the fact, that I build Katarina rather offensive than defensive, because i know when to fight and when to fall back.

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration All of your abilities deal magic damage, so it is good to get through enemy's magic resistance. However, it can be replaced with Greater Mark of Ability Power.

Greater Seal of Ability Power You are mage, you need ability power, nothing more to say... And when you combine this stats with Greater Quintessence of Ability Power your early-game spells will be more powerful.

Another great choice is Greater Quintessence of Spell Vamp which gives you spell vamp. With this rune plus Hextech Revolver (and a quite high ability power) you can heal yourself almost to full.

Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction Everyone wants to have cooldowns reduced and you are not an exeption. With your mastery points in Sorcery you will be able to literally spam abilities. And the best part? You will never get OOM :) Another posilibilty is Greater Glyph of Magic Resist in order to protect yourself against enemy mage. This rune will go pretty well together with your mastery points in Resistance .

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Early game

I always start with boots of speed and three health potions.

Boots are very important to chase your enemy, escape from ganks or dodge. Your health potions will keep you on line for a long time.

WARNING: Doran's stuff are not good choices... Doran's Ring is great for other mages, but you don't need mana. Doran's Shield would be fine if you go solo top and Doran's Blade is for AD carries. So never ever buy it.

Farm (but not push, do only last hits), harras the other mage with Bouncing Blades, if you have time - go jungle or gank. How to gank? Push your line a bit to get some time and go bot or top, but don't make it obvious to your enemy. Act like you are going to recall or jungle. And don't forget to give a signal to your allied and mark the target. When you get there, wait in the bush until the enemy steps into a caution or danger zone. You don't need to use an ultimate, you can rely on preponderance. It doesn't matter if you get a kill or assist, so don't argue about KS, just say GJ and go back to mid.

If you lowed during the harrasing your enemy's health on mid bellow 50%, jump on him and finish the job. Now try to push mid, but be carefull... Watch your map and chat, someone may call ss. If there is a chance, that you will be ganked, recall. Shop, because their mage have done the same and you don't want to be a stepp behind.

* You should have engouh money to buy Hextech Revolver. But don't try to finish the whole item Hextech Gunblade or Will of the Ancients first, save it for the late game.

* Sorcerer's Shoes should follow, because they give you magic penetration and they are the best boots for Katarina. However, if the other team has a lot of CC, take Mercury's Treads instead.


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Mid game

All champions (both allied and enemy) are waiting on the mid lane in order to destroy the other-sided turret. What now? Noone wants to towerdive... You wish you had Blitzcrank in your team to grab :D

However, Kata is not useless here. With Bouncing Blades you can deal damage from the safe distance, so do it a couple times. They are prepared to die! Your tank goes first taking some damage from the turret while the rest is killing enemies. It has to be quick!

After you scored an ace, destroy the turret. You still have a few seconds before your enemies revive, so kill the dragon, steal their blue and red buff. Then recall and shop again.

Rabadon's Deathcap and Rylai's Crystal Scepter are a matter of course for every AP carry! Ability power + HP guaranteed.


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Late game

Stay together as a team, move a lot through the lined and jungle, so enemies can't know where you are. Gank them, try to destroy their turrets and inhibitors. This is a list of possible items should purchase in the store before the final push all the way to their Nexus:

* Abyssal Scepter gives you more ability power and magic resist. It also reduce MR of your enemies!

* Zhonya's Hourglass will give you ability power and protect you from their AD carry because of armor. It has amazin passive, too! You become invulnerable for 2 seconds!



* If you are making a hybrid AP/AD build, finish Hextech Gunblade and buy also Guinsoo's Rageblade


* But... You can from your Hextech Revolver make Will of the Ancients which gives you more AP than Hextech Gunblade and due to its aura it gives AP and spell vamp to all your nearby allied!

* Does your enemy have a big magic resist? Void Staff is a solution. If enemy has some MR, but it is not so serious problem, buy just Haunting Guise if you already don't have Sorcerer's Shoes


* Mejai's Soulstealer Are you getting kills quickly and barely die? MUST HAVE!

* Deathfire Grasp When it is activated, it deals bonus magic damage equal to their health and your ability power.

Unfortunately, you have to forget this cool items: Lich Bane, Rod of Ages, Archangel's Staff etc. However, there is one champion very similar to Kata, melee mage, but with mana. I recommend you Diana :)

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My score

I enjoy playing Katarina very much, almost every time I pick her, we win. The only problem is my lagging PC so I have some deaths too, but when you have a good team it really does't matter :)

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The end

Thank you for reading, I hope you understood my english.

Don't forget to comment and vote. HATERS GONNA HATE!

your BulletNicolet