Leona Build Guide by Revory
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Hey, I know your looking at this guide and wondering why I don't build Leona the same way everyone else does. As Triforce Tank is nice, I found that compared to this build, it really lacks substantial damage to force the other team into focusing you.
In this guide, I will show you how this build works and lay out how you should act in game with a few tips for Leona. Most of the knowledge will be common knowledge but as for the items in my build, I will fully explain myself, just hang in there and read before downvoting and calling me a noob for building AP Leona.
Remember, before it caught on, Alistar was simple tank, Mord was just a Tanky champ, and Rumble hit the game as a Tanky DPS where he is now a Carry. Please just check this out and try it out in your next game.
Pro's and Con's of AP Leona
Nicely Bulky Early Game
Abilities Hit HARD
Late Game Dominance
If your team has no damage you lose
Very Dependent on Team
Not very Mobile till Late
Unloads for Initiating (Building Lichbane
is for longer fights)
This setup of runes is what I like to call my typical Tank Rune Page. As most Tanks in LoL are built off of AP, it stands to simply have this built and use it as needed.
This is a solid boost of damage for your start. Many people run with Hp Quints
and Armor Marks or some mix but as this guide focuses on her not only tanking,
but also pulling your weight in team fights, you need the Magic Pen.
Simple Tank Rune, you can switch these out for Evasion, however I find that
Armor Runes help out better for the lane. It's personal preference.
I go for per lv MR Seals cause they are just better for my playstyle. Most
games I roll bottom lane and lately its been against a support or tank and ranged AD carries,
so by the time its team fight time, these have worked up enough to help me survive.
Cripple is taken cause of its reduction of MR and Armor plus the .5 seconds of added time with it. This will be used to slow that carry down, both their output and movement to let your carries get to them.
Good Hands is kinda self explanatory. 10% Less time dead is simply great. As a tank you may have to throw yourself in the way of your Carry dying, and thus taking one for the team, with this your back to the action so much faster.
Awareness is key to playing a full on tank in my opinion. I found through many games that if your letting your Carry, that your protecting in your lane, get all the last hits and trying to zone out the other team, you fall behind in Xp. This helps out, however try to farm after mid game as much as you can solo to catch up.
Haste is cause your slow, really slow. Until you get Lich Bane your gonna want to use this to get where you need to be. Whether its getting back to lane or rushing to a team fight about to spark, you need this movement.
Strength of Spirit , your building tons of Mana, this means your not going to need that Force of Nature so badly. You can still grab it up if you want, but with the above build you really won't need it unless its a full AP team.
Tenacity , when combined with your Eclipse and all the defense we are building, you won't take much if any damage in those long team fights.
Dropping Cripple for Greed if your not going to use Exhaust.
Dropping Cripple for Reinforce if your team wants Fortify.
Dropping Cripple for Spatial Accuracy if your rolling with Teleport.
Dropping Cripple for Mender's Faith if your taking Heal with you.
These are the spells I personally suggest for use on Leona in descending order for usefullness of your team.
However, Ghost really can't be taken out. You really need the movement, however Exhaust may be changed out for any of the others as needed for your team.
(Passive/Innate): Leona's damaging spells affect the target with Sunlight for 3.5 seconds. When allies 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.
Leona's passive is incredible for team fights or duo lane. The fact that she can't activate the additional damage herself, leads me to always duo lane and never solo her. If you choose to solo her, your missing out on so much extra free damage and thus wasting this passive in my opinion.
(Active): Leona's next basic attack will deal additional magic damage and stun the target for 1.25 seconds.
Cost: 45 / 50 / 55 / 60 / 65
Cooldown: 12 / 11 / 10 / 9 / 8 seconds
Magic Damage: 40 / 70 / 100 / 130 / 160 (+0.3 per ability power)
This is Leona's base stun. It is melee range only and thus you gotta be close to use it. I personally take 1 level in this at the start of the game in hopes of first blood with my lane partner, but I recommend only one rank in it the whole game till your forced to level it up due to stun duration not scaling.
(Active): 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.
Cost: 60 mana
Cooldown: 14 seconds
Armor & Magic Resist Bonus: 30 / 40 / 50 / 60 / 70
Magic Damage: 60 / 110 / 160 / 210 / 260 (+0.4 per ability power)
This is your "I'm a tank" skill. Jokes aside, this is by far my favorite Tank Ability in the game. Maxing this out first allows you to viably build your Rod of Ages first cause the defense boost is so great. Simply put this is your main skill to max due to the damage and all that sexy Armor and MR.
(Active): 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 immobilized for .5 seconds and Leona will dash to them.
Cost: 60 / 65 / 70 / 75 / 80 mana
Cooldown: 13 / 12 / 11 / 10 / 9 seconds
Magic Damage: 60 / 100 / 140 / 180 / 220 (+0.4 per ability power)
This is your Closer/ Initiator skill. There is 2 ways to use this, lane use and team fight use. In your lane your going to activate Eclipse then use this to jump on them and drop a bomb of damage. For team fights, your going to use this to get in their team, then activate Eclipse to ensure your survival longer.
(Active): 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.
Range to Center of AoE: 1200
Cost: 100 / 150 / 200
Cooldown: 105 / 90 / 75 seconds
Magic Damage: 150 / 250 / 350 (+0.8 per ability power)
This is what I call your "Tactical Nuke" seeing as with this build this hits like one. This is the only real good ratio'd skill Leona has, at .8 of your AP its the best your got, plus the damage on it makes this your "Tactical Nuke". Lead your Targets with this or after you initiate, drop it on the one you Stunned to get a quick kill for your team.
Tips for Gameplay
Sunlight can be activated by any skill including DoT like Despair, Malefic Visions, and AoE's like Spirit Fire and Defile.
The bonus damage of Shield of Daybreak still activates when attacking towers.
Zenith Blade can be used across impassable terrain, so you can use this very well to initiate ganks or chase down opponents (especially ones who use Flash to escape).
All of Leona's skills will pop Banshee's Veil. If your desired target for Shield of Daybreak has the spell block active, use either Eclipse or Zenith Blade to remove it. ( Zenith Blade is preferred for doing this, as it will still pull you to your target AND break the spell block). However, the skill that breaks the spell block will not apply Sunlight.
Remember that Zenith Blade does have a travel time associated with the projectile, so it is generally unwise to use the spell at the tip of its range since the enemy champion has time to dodge.
Remember that Zenith Blade always pulls you to the enemy at the end of the skill-shot targeting. If you're targeting a specific enemy champion you may have to pull yourself back so that it ends on the right target, or approach from the side.
It will however still damage and apply Sunlight to all other enemy champions in-between.
Since Zenith Blade can put Sunlight on multiple minions from a distance, your lanemate can farm easier and without risking yourself to move in for Eclipse.
Take care when casting Zenith Blade near enemy towers, as you can be pulled under tower and will immediately take aggro.
If Zenith Blade kills the champion it is used on, you will not be pulled toward them.
Place Solar Flare where it will stun the most enemies as possible. If not, its 80% slow is also significant.
A standard combo would be to activate Eclipse, dash to an enemy with Zenith Blade, stunning with Shield of Daybreak, which allows Eclipse to damage as well, then drop Solar Flare where it will effect the most enemies.
That being said, Leona's Solar Flare has a good Ratio with Ability Power, and thus why I have made this build. By building 100-150 Armor and Resistance and stacking Health and Ability Power you become a force to be messed with. I say 100-150 cause at rank 5 Eclipse adds 70 in both stats, so the build along with this guide gives you over 200 Armor and Magic Resist. All other Items focus on Damage and Health.
She has rather lengthy Cooldowns, this is why I build as much CDR as I can without ignoring her defenses. Frozen Heart provides not only 99 Armor, and an incredible passive, but adds 20% CDR. Shurelya's Reverie adds 15% CDR totaling 35% which is perfect on Leona.
Rod of Ages Provides a ton of Hp and increases with time as you build into your defenses. The Ability Power added into it plays a huge roll with your Solar Flare, Maxed out Solar Flare deals 350 Magic Damage and with just Rod of Ages your getting a bonus 80 Ability Power bump to it dealing a devastating amount of damage at the start of a fight.
Lich Bane is cause we are building Ability Power. We are not building a Trinity Force and Attack Damage, simply cause your centered around Magic Damage. After your Initiation your cooldowns come off staggered so anyone who is still up is taking a beating by the 80 from Lich Bane and 100 from Rod of Ages.
Shield of Daybreak resets attack timer and applies on-hit effects, so it will work with Sheen and Trinity Force and Lich Bane. However this is not entirely well recommended as Shield of Daybreak has a base cooldown of (12/11/10/9/8) seconds which is not very spammable. Alternatively, you can get plenty cooldown reduction items (the cap being 40%) to bring down Shield of Daybreak's cooldown to 4.8 seconds at skill level 5.
Due to being melee range, having subpar farming and normally being paired with someone who needs last hits more than her, Philosopher's Stone and Heart of Gold are fantastic on Leona. Kage's Lucky Pick can also be used but doesn't build into anything for a tank later on, thus its up to you, the 15 Ability Power isn't much.
It is recommended to build as much cooldown reduction as possible without hindering her survival items. The more CDR she has, the more she can spam her CC and tank for her team to clean up. Remember that the cap is 40% CDR.
Frozen Heart, Randuin's Omen, Soul Shroud, Spirit Visage, and Shurelya's Reverie fit this description perfectly.
If you build a Randuin's Omen make use of its Active Ability during your Eclipse, it will extend the Time on its ability by atleast .5 seconds at lv 3.
This is the section that I will quickly go over the items that you can mix and match with Leona and get solid results. I will touch on the whole Attack Damage route with her for those who think that is the only way to build her.
Ok so we have 6 slots available for items with every champion. "Pure Tanks" like Amumu and Shen will build nothing but Health and Resistances, however Leona has an edge for being a "Pure Tank" however you really don't have to focus fully on stacking 400 Armor and Magic Resist with a ton of Health to back it up. Leona doesn't benefit from her passive like Shen, nor does she have a constant percentage life damage like Amumu. So we have to look at building some sort of way to defend herself and be a positive addition to any team.
So this is where adding in Ability Power comes from. Sure I played her like everyone else and built HoG and Philo and then built defenses and a TriForce and Frozen Mallet, but found myself extremely weak when it came to 1v1 and just worthless in a 1v2 situation.
So lets define each Item Slot and why I Itemize as such.
Slot 1: Boots. No Matter what game I'm playing, I always grab Mercury's Treads for Leona. The Tenacity and the Magic Resist is perfect for you.
Slot 2: Health. Other builds will grab Heart of Gold and call that health, I grab a Catalyst the Protector. The passive on it is so much better, you stay in lane all day and get solid Health and Mana boost which allows you to drop abilities more if needed. This is built into a Rod of Ages for the 630 Health, which isn't a Warmog's Armor but if you really want it, build it later.
Slot 3: Armor. You have a few good choices here. You can build the Frozen Heart as in the build if they are more ranged AD, or you can build both the Randuin's Omen and Sunfire Cape for those Melee teams.
Slot 4: Magic Resist. Here I actually split this between 2 items on my build. Lich Bane and the Abyssal Scepter give you a grand total of 87 Magic Resist while handing you 150 Ability Power. So yeah...RoA+LB+AS=230 AP... Solar Flare is now a "Tactical Nuke" not to mention the auto attack afterwards.
Slot 5: Typical Tanks Build more Bulk here, Warmog's Armor or something of that nature. But slots 4 and 5 are Magic Resist and Ability Power in this build.
Slot 6: The final Slot for most tanks will be either an offensive item, or an item to "Max" out your defense in either Armor or Magic Resist. Here I focus on adding more Health and CDR in the form of Shurelya's Reverie. Its Active is perfect for after wining a team fight to rush to mid and down tower after tower, or rush to Dragon, or to Baron Nasher.
This is how you should look at building. If your into building the Trinity Force then use the same Idea for slots but your looking to replace MR/AP items for Armor/AD items like Atma's Impaler and a Warmog's Armor. Though I don't like building that way anymore. So its up to you.
Health Regen: 25 Hp5
Passives: 20% Chance when hit to slow Attack Speed and Movement Speed of attacker by 20%.
5% Cool Down Reduction.
Deals 35 Magic Damage per second to nearby enemies.
This combo is for those heavy Melee teams. With Rod of Ages your going to have a ton of health
and can build a Force of Nature for your Magic Resist if you want.
Magic Resist: 87
Ability Power: 150
Movement Speed: 7% increase
Passives: Reduces the Magic Resist of nearby enemy champions by 20.
When an Ability is used, your next physical attack deals an additional 100%
of your Ability Power in Damage.
This combo is your Magic Resist and Damage Combo. With Rod of Ages your going to hit for an additional 230 AP after you use an ability, and you help your team by lowering the Magic Resist of all the enemies around you by 20. This is so your Malzahar doesn't need to build Magic Pen cause you are assisting in that since you should always be in the middle of things.
So the 2 builds I have differ very little. First build has More CDR, Hp5, Mp5 and Mana where as the second build has more Armor and Health. I personally like the first build more, as it works better for me, but I've built this guide for you to try out your way of building your Leona.
If anyone has any questions, please post. If your just going to flame my page please just leave and stay close minded, and never progress. Don't mean to sound harsh but I'v had people downvote old guides just cause they had a guide that had a lower ranking and wanted to get theirs higher.
I hope this guide helps those who were in search of it, and expanded those who were looking for a new way to play Leona and I'll see you on the Field of Justice.