Not Updated For Current Season
Okay so this is my 1st build, and its working pretty well for me so far. LeBlanc is a great champion with lots of different gameplay choices, and this is the way I like to play her - AP facemelting.
THIS STILL WORKS POST-NERF.Her burst is still strong, and combos are still devastating to squishy targets, which is what she is designed to kill. Mana is now something you have to consider eary and mid-game, but late mid-game to late game, you will still have plenty of mana to do your job in a teamfight. Either get in there and smash a squishy, or mimic your stun to lock down 1 or 2 kill targets. Still an amazingly fun champ to play.
-great burst damage
-good escape mechanisms
-good mana late game (even after the nerf)
-overall great carry
-squishy (if you can catch her!)
-weak auto-attack (last-hitting is still fine, but not good for smashing towers)
-mana issues early to mid-game if abilities are overused, making it a concious decision whether to focus on creep farming or harassing
-complex ability combos for maximum damage and utility
Q - Sigil of Silence
LeBlanc projects an orb towards her target, dealing magic damage and marking the target for 3.5 seconds. If the target takes damage from one of LeBlanc's abilities, the sigil will trigger, dealing damage and silencing the target.
This is your main damage ability, and you want to skill it up first. The silence on it also gives it a lot of utility, and as if a silence wasn't reason enough to follow it up with a second ability, it also does more damage. Short cooldown. Awesome.
W - Distortion
LeBlanc rapidly moves to a target location, dealing magic damage to nearby units. In the following 3 seconds, she can activate Distortion again to return to her starting location.
Lots of different ways to use this to your advantage. Use it to proc your sigil, close the gap / chase, tower dive, escape, or just jump into a big group of enemies for some good AoE damage and then back out again without taking damage. Longest cooldown besides your ult, so use it wisely. Great ability.
E - Ethereal Chains
LeBlanc flings illusionary chains towards a target location. if it hits and enemy unit, it will deal initial magic damage and slow their movement speed by 25%. If the target remains shackled for 2 seconds, the target takes additional magic damage and is unable to move.
Skill shot on a fairly short cooldown. It has about the same range as Mundon's cleaver, Blitz's rocket grab, and behaves the same way - whatever it hits first, it chains - so don't miss and chain a minion, because thats just no fun. This is great for grabbing the kill target and ensuring that they take the full force of your face melting abilities, and later on in teamfights its still just as amazing. When you use this, you can still move and use your other abilities, so if they run, chase them to keep them in range so it stuns them. I usually only get 1 rank of this for the laning phase, and start skilling it up more aggressively once teamfights start breaking out.
R - Mimic
LeBlanc can cast a more potent version of the previous spell she cast.
This is what makes LeBlanc so awesome. By 18 its on a pretty damn short CD for an ult (like mid 20s), and it provides so many different opportunities. It does exactly as the description says - recasts your previous spell with more potency. This means you need to know what spell you will need to use it on for each situation. Mimic a sigil for big burst, Mimic a Distortion to cover a lot of ground very quickly or crush a large minion wave, Mimic your Etheral Chains to make sure whoever it is you're attacking isn't going anywhere.
A few good options. Personally I like to get Ignite - great for getting those early kills, and fits easily into LeBlanc's ability combos. Also works wonders later on for ganking those pesky health-regen champs due to the healing reduction it gives (Mortal Strike effect for you WoW players) - tell Warwick to suck it while you melt his face, completely negate most of Mundo's ultimate while your team finishes him off. Ignite is really a must-have for an AP LeBlanc.
Currently I roll with Flash, though I hear it may be removed from the game. Until then, I still love it. I like to dive in and out of battles a lot, tossing lots of Sigils around (since its cooldown becomes super short end-game), so this supports my aggressive behaviour :)
Other good options - Ghost instead of Flash, and I you could use Clarity early on to allow for more aggressive very early play, but by mid to late game its essentially useless. You'll get more bang for your buck out of other spells. Teleport is also a viable option for ganking mobility, and you can get away with it quite well because of the escape mechanism that Distortion provides.
Lots of different ways to go here. Start with Doran's ring and a health pot. Next is Sorcerer's boots. After that, you have to make a judgement call on how the game will go. If you are still unsure, get a Deathfire Grasp (fits into combo rotations, cooldown reduction) and re-evaluate after completing it. If things are going very well for you, grab yourself a Mejai's Soulstealer. If you're getting targetted first a lot, then skip it and get something else.
Item buys are dependent on how well the game goes and opposing team composition. After Deathfire I'll either go for Archangels or some magic pen with Void Staff or a Haunting Guise, and eventually a Zhonya's Ring. Other good items include Rylai's Crystal Scepter, Rod of Ages or even, dare I say it, a Banshee's Veil if you're really getting smacked around. Hopefully you're the one doing the smacking tho.. :)
The running theme for good LeBlanc play is making choices to fit the situation at hand. If you're wrecking your opponents without taking too much damage, just grab as much AP as possible. If you're being focused hard, go for a more defensive higher HP build with Rylai's and Rod of Ages. Adapt your playstyle too. If you're going full AP, continue to be (safely!) aggressive, erasing life bars as you please. If you're getting focused hard, try going defensive; LeBlanc still plays as an excellent support champion. Utilize your slow/stun and silence to turn the tide of team battles. You'll still hit hard and be a great asset.
Lane choice - as with most carries, a solo lane is preferable, but you can still cause havoc in a dual lane too. Don't 1v2, as you won't have the mana early game to use you abilities enough to keep the enemy minions and champions at bay. LeBlanc's autoattack is quite weak making lane pushing difficult early on, and it may take some practice to get those last hits going.
Mana - as with most mana users, you can't be too trigger happy with your abilities early on. Be somewhat conservative with your mana, and only use it to harass when you know it will be worth it. Once you start getting around lvl 6 and up, you can really start harassing more without too much worry about your blue bar.
Grab yourself a Doran's ring and a health pot, and go dance in your lane until minions show up. I like to play very passively from lvls 1-4 or so, focusing on last hitting and not taking any damage from the enemy champ. Around level 5, you should have 3 ranks of Sigil, and it will now start hitting quite hard. Begin harassing. The key is to move in closer than your Sigil range, so that you are in or almost in Distortion range. Sigil(Q) into Distortion(W), then hit W again to get out. If you did take any damage, it was probably minimal. Wait for your Distorion to come off cooldown, and repeat. By the time you get to lvl 6, you'll probably have them around half hp or lower. This is where LeBlanc's awesomeness shines - surprise destruction.
There are a lot of different ways to do it, but my preferred combo is one of these 3, and you have to select the right one for the situation:
If they don't really have an escape, this provides a high amount of burst
Combo 1 - if they are playing far back, already scared
Distortion(W) into range --> Sigil (Q) --> Chains (E) (silences and damages from Sigil, slows them too, chase them if needed to get the stun) --> Ignite --> Sigil(Q) as soon as it is ready --> Mimic(R) a second Sigil. This should kill them fairly often.
If you get part way in and see they won't die (they pop Heal/Flash/Ghost), just hit W again and teleport back, resetting, and try again when Distortion comes back off cooldown.
Combo 2 - If they are good escapers
Distortion(W) into range --> Sigil (Q) --> Chains (E) (silences and damages from Sigil, slows them too, chase them if needed to get the stun) --> Ignite --> Mimic(R) a second Chains --> Sigil(Q) again. Make sure you don't use Mimic right away (auto-attack once or twice first) - you want to time it so the second chains hits just after the stun from your first one ends, giving you maximum time attacking them.
Combo 3 - If they are still playing nice and close to you (not scared.. yet..)
Sigil(Q) --> Distortion(W) for damage and proccing the extra damage and silence of Sigil --> Chains(E) to hold them in place --> Ignite --> Sigil(Q) as soon as its ready. This really melts health bars.
If you get the kill, check your gold situation, as it may be worth going back to grab boots and start your Deathfire while your opponent is dead. Otherwise you obviously want to stay in your lane as much as possible.
You have your Deathfire now, and are working on your Archangel. Continue Laning, harassing, and killing your opponent. If you zone them properly you will build a large gold lead. When you get a kill, run off and go for a gank right away. LeBlanc is an excellent ganker, especially when coordinating with other teammates. Hide behind some bushes and wait for a poor unsuspecting enemy. This is where I like to use a different combo..
Combo 4 - Surprise attack from the bushes (even better if you have teammates around)
Sigil(Q) --> Chains(E) to proc Sigil damage and silence, and of course get the slow and stun so they can't get away. --> Ignite if its up --> Distortion(W) onto them when they're stunned, then W back out again if they might attack you, or you can stay in if you think they'll get out of your range --> Sigil(Q) as soon as it is up --> Mimic(R) for a second Sigil and almost guaranteed kill.
Stay to help kill the other one in the lane for a second, and if it doesn't happen fast, go back to your lane and get back to last hitting. Go and gank whenever you know its a certain kill and that your tower is not in jeopardy.
Teamfight time. LeBlanc is quite squishy, so let your tanks do the initiating. The only exception is you can initiate with Combo 4 (listed above) if your team is all in the bushes with you. Be careful with this. Try to float around behind the tank, running in and out tossing Sigils around. Squishy targets can often be completely wrecked and forced to Blue Pill or at least get back out of the fight by a simple Deathfire-->Sigil-->Mimic combo. That combo can often kill half hp or lower targets. Fun.
Combo 2 is great for locking down the kill target. Combo 4 is also good if you have more disablers on your team. Make good use of Chains, it can turn the tide of a battle quite easily.