Leona Build Guide by Cinderos
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Not Updated For Current Season
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Hello everyone, thanks for checking out my Leona Tanking guide. I have been using Mobafire to learn new champions since early on in my League of Legends career, but I have just recently found my favorite champion: Leona. I decided to join up and create a guide for her so I can share my experiences with everyone interested in playing as an impenetrable force on the battlefield.
To start with I just want to clarify a few terms that I will use through the guide and some that you will need to know eventually, for those that might be new to the game:
AD - Attack Damage
AP - Ability/Magic Damage
Ar - Armor
ArP - Armor Penetration
Mr - Magic Resistance
MrP - Magic Penetration
Mp5 - Mana regenerated per 5 seconds
MP - Mana Points
Hp5 - Health regenerated per 5 seconds
HP - Hit Points
AS - Attack Speed
CC - Crowd Control: i.e. Stuns, Slows, Roots, etc.
MS - Move Speed
Gp10 - Gold per 10 seconds
CDR - Cooldown Reduction
AoE - Area of Effect
Let me know if I got some of the "official" abbreviations wrong and I will change them. Also, let me know if I missed any.
The quick guide at the top is what I would call my "Core Build" for Leona. I always start out this way and it has served me well so far.
I choose this to boost my early game survivability. The extra HP and Hp5 plus a little Ar makes you pretty durable right off the bat. If your health drops low hang back at your turret a minute or so and you will recover back to full HP quickly.
Ninja Tabi and Philosopher's StonePhilosopher's Stone:
I try to lane as long as I can and get both of these items on my first trip back. If that isn't possible, get the first and take the to help your Mp5 which will be lacking at this point. Why you ask? Well, I have a few reasons: 1. It's one of the cheaper sets of boots 2. Leona needs MS to stay in a fight or pursuit so the early MS rank 2 will help 3. Dodge is great, and even if you aren't fighting melee heavy champions, you will find yourself dodging a lot of minion attacks during harassment, which will trigger Nimbleness giving you a nice boost to your speed. Not sure on this but I also think that it is possible to dodge turret attacks since they deal AD. The Philosopher's Stone will give you Hp5 and Mp5 as well as Gp5.
Heart of Gold and Ruby Crystal:
These are plain and simple: a nice boost to Leona's HP as well as some more Gp5. Also these items will build into future items.
This gives another small boost to HP but more importantly gives some CDR and gets you ready to build your .
Force of Nature:
Combined with the other items thus far you will have a decent amount of HP as well as a ridiculous amount of Hp5. Finally, take into account the MS bonus and Leona's array of CC abilities, and she can survive almost any situation, as well as run down fleeing champions.
First of all, you will get a little more HP and some Mr The main reason for picking this item up, is the +15% to Hp5 and healing effects. Since I place a large focus on Hp5 in my build this item is extremely effective and is compounded if you are fighting alongside a support champion with a healing spell. The effect of is compounded with this item.
Shurelya's ReverireShurelya's Reverire:
Normally I grab this next, to further boost HP, Hp5, Mp5, CDR, as well as a nice team buff to help your all get away or run down an enemy champ fleeing to his base. Also if you are having a major problem with CC, get the Eleisa's Miricle instead, however I usually end up with the Shurelya's Reverire.
Next I pick up this item to again pad my HP, Hp5 and Ar, but mainly I take this item to get yet another AoE CC to slow the enemy team.
At this point in the match, you will have 6 items...
Now I recommend you choose another item that complements what you like in a tank, save up gold and sell your and replace it with something much better.
Some items I typically choose are:
: For those that love that deep HP pool
: Shut down those high AS attackers and further increase your Hp5 from max MP combined with the Strength of Spirit mastery.
: Choose this item if your team is steamrolling the enemy team, and you are good at not dying. The 20 stack bonus is AMAZING.
: This item is great when you have a lot of fast moving enemy champs constantly escaping. Huge boosts to HP, a little AD and a devastating slow.
Feel free to throw in anything you like. With the other 5 items you will already be extremely difficult to kill.
Gp10 and Farming
Leona is a tank, which means her first priority is defending her allies. As a tank, Leona does not need to focus on dealing damage to the enemies. The carries on the team fill the role of champion slaying. When laning with a partner you should let the carry get the majority of the last hits on minions. A fed carry means a fed tank - your carry will begin to kill enemy champs left and right, feeding you gold for assists. That's where my item build comes in:
Going for Philosopher's Stone and taking the Greed mastery gives you 11 additional gold generated every 10 seconds. This doesn't sound like much, but when you have both items have a look at your gold total and watch it climb.
Help your carry farm by using to damage all of the enemies and apply to make them take extra damage from your ally. When your carry returns to buy items or heal, use a combination of and to quickly rack up a few hundred gold. Once and are both around level 3, the combo should be enough to kill a lined up group of minions:
- Wait for minions to clump up or line up and blast them with then move to the top or bottom of the minion row and use to blast a whole line of them in one shot.
Also, when your lane is clear don't be afraid to hop in the jungle and kill a few creeps for extra XP and Gold.
Exhaust is great for shutting down any AS/AD champions or also helping your team keep up with a high MS champion. With this you have 2 stuns, a root, and 2 slows (outer ring effect from and .
I chose this skill to further increase Leona's odds of staying alive and or catching an enemy.
I have tried various skill orders and I seem to do the best with this one. Taking a level 1 gives you a nice boost to mitigation at the start of the match. It also allows you to immediately start applying to an entire group of minions for your carry to get some easy last hits. This skill is actually great for harassment as well - activate it then aggressively run into the minions toward an enemy champ and have your carry fire a shot or two at them as well, this will drive them back, Zoning them out of getting last hits and XP. In my experience after you do this enough times the enemy will start to hang back some and you can intimidate them into staying back with .
At level 2 go for and start combining and to rush champs for decent burst damage and have your carry move in as well to keep the pressure on.
Starting at level 3, pick up and tell your carry to play extra aggressive, dash with > (While in Flight) > . If enemy champs are not extremely cautious this will result in a lot of early game kills for your carry.
From then on Focus on Maxing and then alternating and
Of course always adding a point to when able.
Anytime Leona hits an enemy with a skill they are charged. The next time ANYTHING is done to them by ANY of Leona's allies they take additional burst damage. This works great when paired with a champ that can do AoE damage.
Shield of Daybreak
This skill is your bread and butter during a team fight. While the damage may not be high, its 1.25 second stun is a game changer when you land it on an enemy carry and he gets nuked down in less than a second. I chose to max this skill out last because what matters is the stun not the damage. Since some CDR items are in my core build, the CD is decent enough until the endgame where fights last long enough to get to cast it twice.
At max level this skill gives Leona +70 to Mr and Ar... this is like having an on command extra two pieces of gear, and after three seconds it explodes dealing AoE damage and applies to anything it hits (if it hits something, the shield lasts 3 more seconds as well). Great farming skill used in conjunction with .
My favorite skill to use in Leona's arsenal. allows you to hit everything in a line in the targeted direction, and then teleport to the last champion hit. There are so many applications for this skill.
1. Leona can teleport through walls and other obstacles if she can hit a champion of the other side of the wall. This is good for attacks and escapes.
2. Easy to get past a tank and jump to the carry he is protecting.
3. Great for ganks, early game kills, and catching fleeing champions to land a
4. The skill tip doesn't say this, but pay close attention when using and you will see that the enemy champ is rooted while Leona travels to them, usually resulting in about a .5 second root.
5. Great for farming with .
Great for turning the tides of a battle. Practice in custom games with the targeting and get used to the delay so you can be sure of a bulls-eye (landing the stun rather than just the slow)
1. Catch a fleeing champion from a long way away and close in for a +
2. Dive into a melee heavy team and when they rush you, drop right on you, stunning a bunch of them and allowing your team to chew them up while you take no damage.
3. Initiate fights against ranged champions with this skill. They end up with a 1.5s stun + .5s root (from ) and another 1.25s stun from .
Greater Mark of Warding
Chosen to beef up Leona's early game mitigation, since the majority of harassment at that level will be skill based and thus most likely AP based.
Greater Seal of Evasion
Since my Defense tree mastery includes Evasion and Nimbleness, these runes further add to Leona's dodge chance getting it near 20% once she has the .
Greater Glyph of Warding
More Mr for the early game, yielding a grand total of 22.1 Mr
Greater Quintessence of Fortitude
These give some much needed HP for the early game until, you collect the
I did not chose Ar Runes because the first final build item to aquire is the which give 25 Ar. Giving an early game bonus of +22.1 Mr and +25 Ar
Combining the + + + will help Leona easily survive the early stages of a match. She will dodge a good amount of attacks thrown her way and the ones that do land won't hit so hard due to her amazing early game mitigation potential.
Random Tank Advice
1. First in, last out. It's always better for you to die and have your team escape than for you to get away at the cost of a carry becoming underleveled. If you want to tank you must get used to this fact if you are to succeed.
2. In the early game stay with your teammate. You will have troubling killing anyone without them (usually) and you can keep them alive. Helping them outlevel and outfarm your opponent is crucial to gaining the upper hand.
3. Do not be afraid to run in to stun an enemy to help a teammate stay alive and escape... again as a tank, your job is to die (if necessary) so your team doesn't have to. With all of the Gp10 items you will have a steady enough cash flow to keep up until and are powerful enough for you to farm extra gold.
4. In a team fight, be sure to be the initiator, try to stun the carry or whoever gets through to your own carry. Also keep in mind pathing: Sometimes you can position yourself in such a way that the enemy will not be able to get close enough to your teammates to attack them.
5. In a team fight try to save for AFTER you have initiated. Generally the first instinct is to attack the closest target. If they are melee heavy, they will close in and gather around you... perfect time for an AoE stun.
6. If your team is dead, get away. Head to your turrets and wait. With all of her CC abilities Leona is quite good at fending off 2 or 3 champions when she has a turret pelting them.
6.In the late game you should never be alone
7.Generally, since you will be initiating fights, you tend to fall into the "group leader" position. If you are using a chat client (Vent, Skype, Steam, etc.) Everyone should listen to the tank, to be sure to focus correct targets. Also, it is good to tell them when you are going to die to guarantee the survival of the rest of the group or when they should come back to fight. Tanks must practice good judgement regarding champion positions (allied and enemy), terrain, skills available (he should learn as many champ skills as possible), so that he can tell "when to hold them, and when to fold them."
All of my experience from tanking in MMO's has definitely helped me tank in LoL. Getting used to dying more and not topping the kill charts is tough, but when you run into an unbalanced group without a tank, you will be able to see the difference you truly make in battle. Leona is my favorite champion by a long shot, and I play her in at least 90% of my matches.
I hope this guide helps players that want to learn to play not only Leona but the Tanking Role in general.
1.0 - Published Guide
1.1 - Modified Skill sequence slightly
1.2 - Changed summoner skills after further testing in combat
1.3 - Slightly modified item summery to reflect my "normal outcome" in 9/10 games.