Leona Build Guide by 3vilChipmunk
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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.
I have been playing Leona for a while since she came out, and have seen some very good, but also very poor players at her. Many seem to complain that she is not a very good tank because her base health is too low, or because she has no lane sustainability; these problems can be properly over-come through correct itemisation and adaptation in the lane. I think I have found a good build and playstyle for her, and would like to post it up to help all of you that are struggling to play her out there; I'd like to say now that she is BEST build full tank, and thus the build above. She is a great initiator as she can disable a single target (or even whole teams uuing her utlitmate) and she is also capable of soaking up a lot of damage using her (W) spell. Leona can also burst down single targets using her abilities, and so it is quite easy to get early kills with her if you know what you are doing. As she is new, I'm sure people will be finding more effective builds into the future, so don't hesitate to comment if you have and tweaks to the build but PLEASE don't trash it! If you want to know what my best score with her was, it was 8/0/31, where I was always tanking for my team but the opposition never seemed to be able to kill me with this build............
Pros / Cons
- Is able to soak up loads of damage in the late game
- One of the best tank initiators
- Has a wealth of crowd control effects to disrupt the enemy team
- Can burst down single targets using her normal combo
- Is a chick!!!
- Has quite low base health
- Can become useless with a lack of farm (which you should always be doing)/kills because she is very item dependant
- You need to be able to lead with your ultimate and skill-shot
I take magic penetration due to the fact that the majority of her damage comes from her abilities, and this means that she has quite a good burst potential.
I take flat armour seals as this means that you have 40+ armour at level 1, and this allows you to build magic resist items before armour items and now have a large impact.
I also take flat magic resist glyphs for the same reason that you can then build armour items without it having too much of an impact while you save up for your magic resist. This allows you to prioritise stats without becoming too weak against certain characters.
I think that it is a great idea to take flat health quints as this sort-of compensates for her relatively low base health at level 1, and allows you to tank more effectively during those early levels.
I go 9/21/0 and focus on magic penetration in offence and the standard defensive skills. I tend not to put points into utility as although she burns mana very quickly through her combos, this can be overcome through careful mana management, and you can even pick up a Philosophers stone if you need to (though I don't think it's worth the effort).
I take exhaust on her so you can make it your job to shut down the enemy carry using this spell while your team wreaks havoc on the enemy unhindered. I also find it useful to take teleport as she has very little lane sustainability so you can use this to get back to the b]lane after recalling, and is a great way to ensure a push continues by teleporting after having healed up the health you lost initially.
Always a good summoner spell to take on any character as it allows great escaping ability across walls etc......Look at this if you don't believe me. It can be especially good on tanks like Leona as they can use it to position themselves to land the desired skill shot, and I take it because of this.
Skills / Skill Sequence
Leona's damaging spells affect the target with Sunlight for 3.5 seconds. When allied champions deal damage to those targets they consume the Sunlight debuff to deal 20 / 35 / 50 / 65 / 80 / 95 / 110 / 125 / 140 additional magic damage. Leona is unable to activate the additional damage herself.
This passive is quite useful in the early game for allowing your lane partner to last hit more effectively and get his or her farm up as generally you will be babysitting the carry. However, its usefulness seems to degrade into the late game, where is only serves the purpose of allowing your team-mates to just snipe that fleeing enemy with and auto attack.
Shield of Daybreak (Q):
Leona's next basic attack will deal additional magic damage and stun the target for 1.25 seconds.
This is one of her best skills as it allows your to really disrupt the enemy team by disabling one of their members for a short period of time. It is great when used in combination with your (E), and I generally activate it as soon as I land the skill-shot. However, as the stun duration does not increase with levels, I find it only necessary to put a single point in here until later levels as it is not your main source of damage output and the low cool-down is not essential early on.
Leona raises her shield to gain bonus Armor and Magic Resistance for 3 seconds. When the effect ends she deals magic damage to nearby enemies and prolongs the effect for a bonus 3 seconds if any enemies are struck. The great part about this ability is that it gives you increased armour and magic resist for the duration, and does a significant amount of base damage when maxed. This ability, IMO, allows you to build health (such as Warmog's) before building resistances as this skill gives you high resistances in combination with the runes I take. The AOE damage is also nice in early fights as it will do significant damage to multiple targets as you have it maxed by Level 9.
Zenith Blade (E):
Leona projects a solar image of her sword, which deals magic damage to all enemies in a line. When the image fades, the last enemy champion struck will be briefly immobilized and Leona will dash to them.
This skill makes Leona such a good initiator as not only do you damage all enemies hit, but you blink to the LAST enemy hit. This means that you can actually go straight for the carry to disable him/her with your stun if you are already in the fight, or even just initiate effectively from range. You want to chain this ability into your stun, so as soon as you see the short disable effect before you blink proc, you want to activate your stun. This essentially means that you take their carry or at least one of their DPS (I hope you are not initiating on the tank :p) for a few seconds, which is quite influential on the outcome of a fight.
Solar Flare (R):
After a brief delay, Leona calls down a beam of solar energy dealing damage and slowing enemies by 80% for 1.5 seconds. Enemies in the center of the beam are stunned instead of slowed
This ultimate is great in that it can also be used to initiate fights if the enemy is grouped up, though this does require quite good leading and movement prediction due to the delay. It does a significant amount of damage, and it can be used to snipe enemies out from under a turret if needed, or can be used to tag fleeing enemies with the stun/slow to allow your team-mates to catchup, or even save an ally that is being chased by multiple enemies.
Well, I find that this is just the best starting item on Leona as it gives a needed health boost during those early levels, helps your regen as well as allowing you to have 40+ armour and magic resist at level 1. This means that harassment will do very little, and I prefer it to a Regrowth Pendant as it gives you a bit more room to move.
Boots Of Speed and Giants Belt:
If you have been farming relatively well, you should be able to pick both of these items up when you go back, and I prefer taking Giants belt over Heart Of Gold as it is only 300 gold more expensive, and thus gives you much better stats for its price.
Why not? These boots give you that early magic resist that you need, and the 'Tenacity' (crowd-control reduction) is great as a lot of stuns, slows and silences will be used on you if you are playing your cards right.
Now this is the part of the guide where you will all go "WWWWWTTTTTFFFFF????!!!!!! Warmog's first, you must be ****ing crazy of something. But let me explain. The main problem with tanking with Leona is that she is not squishy in terms of resistances, but in terms of health; she often doesn't have enough to make a difference in team fights. By getting Warmog's first, you have a lot of health to throw around as well as good resistances due to the runes I have chosen and the fact that I max her (W) quickly (meaning that you have 130+ armour and magic resist while the skill is active.....correct me if I'm wrong). It also continues being useful as you can get an extra giants belt worth of health by just farming up the stacks.
Force Of Nature:
This is kind of a must-have item on most tanks due to the great effects it has. It gives a large amount of magic resist, gives you great health regen to keep a push going as well as an extra 8% movement speed to help in chasing, running away or just positioning in a teamfight. Who could argue with that????
Even if the enemy team does not have many auto-attackers, this is still a great item to get for armour as for its stat boost it is VERY, VERY CHEAP. I get it most games as it gives you a
great versatility as means that people really don't want to auto-attack you.
Well, she wouldn't be the Radiant Dawn if she wasn't on fire......I get this as the passive effect is great for tanks as it either forces your enemies to get away from you (especially in combination with eclipse) or to take damage when you CC them to death. You can also swap this out for a Randuin's if you need the Warden's mail effect.
Rylai's Crystal Septer:
I don't get this item for the Ability Power as the measly amount you get from just this is not worth it. I get it for the Crowd Control it gives. This means that your Zenith Blade can slow all the targets it passes through, your Eclipse acts as an AOE slow (similar to that of Jarvan IV's) and you teamates attacking targets marked with sunlight are also slowed. This Crowd Control bonus is really worth the gold, but you can swap this out for a Banshee's Veil if you need the extra magic resistance.
You are the tank so you have to lane and teamfight like a tank. A small problem with Leona is that she doesn't fit into the current meta-game as she does not solo well and cannot jungle as far as I know, meaning that she has to play the role of the support to the carry in bottom lane. Of course in un-ranked play, she can really go wherever you can play her. In the lane, you just want to keep your farm on track to get Boots of Speed and Giant's Belt first time back, and support your lane partner in any engagements. If you want to initiate on one of them, make it crystal clear to them what you are going to do and when you are going to do it as most champions do not have a gap closer as you may find yourself unsupported for a while.
Later on in teamfights, remember that YOU ARE THE TANK AND THE INITIATOR, I can't stress that enough. You want to throw your (E) and then activate your (Q) as soon as it procs. This should give you about a 2 second disable on an enemy champion, allowing your team to move in. If they are bunched up, you can use your ult to do massive damage and stun/slow, but bear in mind that it is also great for chasing multiple fleeing enemies. Also keep in mind that you dying is better than your fed carry doing so, so don't hesitate to charge and stun that chasing enemy champion.
Leona, the first female tank to grace the halls of League of Legends, has a great amount of cc and burst damage available if played correctly. However, she is a very poor farmer, has low lane sustainability and low base health, but this can be overcome by proper itemisation and micro to leave your enemies thinking that next time they must really 'try to make a dent'. Please rate this guide and give me feedback; I'm always willing to change it.