Master Yi Build Guide by Kastrasz

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Kastrasz

Master Yi - Don't Run

Kastrasz Last updated on August 15, 2011
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Team 1

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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 9

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 0

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Introduction-Welcome to Wuju Style!

Welcome to my first guide on Master Yi. From the beginning, I fell in love with this Champion and his ability to not only destroy enemy champions, but also his ability to backdoor his way to victory. First and foremost I want to thank DEWO for his guide Cutting with Wuju Style. It was the basis for this guide and was the reason I was able to harness this Champion's potential and create this ultimate guide for the Master of Wuju Style.


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Build Changes

    Build Created-2011-08-14
    Added "Tank Killer" Build-2011-08-16

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Master Yi-The Tank Killer

This is the first addition to my Master Yi guide. The second build for the Wuju Bladesman is an in progress look at how effective certain items would be when used as Master Yi to decimate Tanks and 'high life' Champions. As I play with this build I will continue to add things about it when and if I consider it to be viable.

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Pros / Cons


    Great Damage and Attack Speed
    Great Chase Champion
    Fun to Play

    Easy to Harass
    Constantly have to farm
    Often Focused
Every Champion has their 'hard-to-kill' enemies, think of it like Rock, Paper, Scissors. Don't take this analogy too literally, but I hope you would agree that there are certain people that you just can't kill, or at least have trouble dealing with. The most annoying people to deal with as Master Yi are heavily armored and deal a lot of CC. ESPECIALLY BLIND. Blind effectively stops you from dealing any damage what-so-ever. CC such as Slow is something you should never really have to worry about, provided your Ult is not on cooldown, but we will get more into that with...

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Runes and Masteries-Damage Augmentation

When it comes to your runes, you want to not only gain a significant amount of damage from them but also you want attributes that will assist that damage. For the extra damage we are using Greater Mark of Desolation as well as Greater Quintessence of Desolation. giving you a significant amount of Armor Penetration, which is basically more attack damage. To assist this extra damage, you also want to be attacking as fast as possible. This is why we use Greater Seal of Attack Speed. There is another route you can take here, but I feel like it is the wrong route. You can replace your seals with Greater Seal of Evasion, however in my opinion being able to kill quicker will save you from more damage than a higher dodge percentage. Lastly, for extra critical damage we are using Greater Glyph of Critical Damage to augment the extra damage you will be doing with your Marks and Quints.

I have seen people build Yi with flat Attack Speed Seals and Glyphs with Armor Penetration Marks and Quints, but this severely diminishes your critical damage late game. I also tried this and where I would have been criting for over 1000 damage on neutral monsters, yielded about 100-150 less damage with this switch. Moral of the story, Critical Damage runes are greater than Attack Speed runes. One thing I have not tried, however, is using Critical Damage Glyphs AND Seals. Could be a possibility due to your high Attack Speed while Highlander is active.

As for masteries, I went with a simple 21/9/0 build, focusing on more damage and a little defense to keep you in your lane early game. Read what these things do and you will understand why they are important for you to have. I would also like to point out this is a direct copy from DEWO's Cutting with Wuju Style Build.

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Summoner Spells

Note: These skills are what I believe to be the best for this Champion. However, these can be changed around according to your own personal play style. Remember, these things are not set in stone. Experiment and use whatever you feel necessary to give yourself an edge.

Personally, I believe this to be a must have for Master Yi. Especially early game, where you can keep your enemy in attack range long enough to decimate them with Wuju Style. I suppose you could also switch this out for something like Ignite, or if you are having trouble staying in lane because of health or mana, switch to Heal or Clarity.

This is an ability that I love to use because it keeps you farming and also allows you to return to base for a quick buy. It shouldn't take you any longer to buy your things and start to port back than healing up. Port back, buy, and time your Teleport so that you arrive back within experience range for the most effective farming experience. Try not to leave your lane early game (levels 1-6) unless this is not on cooldown.

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Unique Skills-Your Tools of Destruction

Here we will be discussing the Wuju Bladesman's abilities, as well as some hidden ones.

Every 7th attack, Yi will strike twice. Pair this with Alpha Strike to deal that little extra damage to get that first blood. You need the gold more than your fail random laning partner.

This is one skill you DO NOT want to overlook. This skill will be your key to closing the distance on an enemy, wiping out large groups of minions quickly, and even Harassing. Though, I wouldn't call it Harassing exactly, Alpha Strike is more like Anti-Harassing. As you can see, this attack strikes up to 4 enemies and brings you back to the originally targeted minion or champion when it ends. (Please note the extra 400 damage DOES NOT affect champions) if an enemy champion is close to 2 or 3 minions and is threatening to push forward or even launch something towards you to keep you back, go ahead and use this on the minion closest to you. If done correctly, you will hit the minions, the champion, and land you safely away. Most of the time, your opponent will see you fly towards them and immediately turn to run away. This gives you a moment to farm some minions safely and also gives your laning partner the opportunity to also harass.

As you can see above, you really don't need to put anything into this until all your other skills are maxed. "But Kast, you can HEAL!" Yes, I understand that, however, to keep your damage relevant throughout early and mid game, this skill needs to take a back seat to your offensive abilities. If you are having trouble staying in lane, the only skill you need is patience. If the enemy is pressing you, coordinate with your partner for an effective way to push back, without losing too much health. This also means, NO TOWER DIVING!

This skill is going to get you first blood. This skill is also the reason why you don't need to pick up something with attack damage at the beginning. With Yi, you want to be fast and deal out as much critical damage as you can. Wuju Style is going to provide you with that extra bit of damage you need to land that last hit, or at least tear your enemy to shreds enough for your partner to last hit them. If you don't get your first kill (or assist) at level 2, you will most certainly get one when you level to 3 and pop that second point into it. With the latest patch, you can now pop this WHILE you are using Alpha Strike, effectively allowing you to close the distance, and smack that baddie back to his spawn.

Last but not least, your Ultimate ability. As you can see, this ability increases your movement speed and attack speed, allowing you to obliterate other squishy champions, and chunking down a tank's health with critical damage. In addition to this, killing a champion while this is active will refresh all your cooldowns, allowing you to pop over to another opponent with Alpha Strike and do the same to him. This is going to allow you to double, triple, quad, and pentakill. However, use this with caution. Someone using Tryndamere or any other champion that can become invulnerable can make you waste this ability, leaving you unable to escape if you can't land that last hit. Try targeting someone you can kill fast, so you can refresh those abilities and come back to the harder to kill ones. This will save you from dying too fast by 2 or more enemies attacking you while you try your hardest to kill someone who just can't die.

Finally, ladies and gentlemen, that hidden ability you have. Since this is an Attack Damage/Attack Speed based build on the Master of Wuju Style your ability to tear down towers will most likely be the best on your team. That's right, you know what I'm talking about; The Dreaded Back Door. Sometimes, your ability to destroy towers in a matter of seconds is going to be a game-changer. Yea, you heard me right, GAME-CHANGER! Coordinate with a tank or even a high health teammate and sneak down to one of those towers the enemy isn't paying attention to. While they take the brunt of the damage, you can take down that tower fast enough for them to survive and even push to another tower and take it down.

I don't recommend trying to push for another tower in that lane though. If you take the tower in the bottom lane, switch over to middle and down the adjacent tower there. Always be moving, either to another location for another tower, or back through the jungle towards your base. REMEMBER, a back door attempt where you and possibly your tank friend both die can also be a game-changer, just one where you are on the losing end. That being said, don't underestimate your ability to do this. When things are looking grim for you and your friends, this will undoubtedly save you from certain doom.

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Farming / Jungling

There are guides out there for Jungling with Master Yi and while I agree with the validity of these builds, I also think that you don't have to start the game with Jungling. If you can start in a lane and wrack up a couple kills before you hit level 6, you will be well on your way to dominating the game. Also, other players pay attention to what kind of Summoner Spells you bring with you during the loading screen. Smite is a dead giveaway that you are going to Jungle, which often leads to you being a target from the very start. This is especially true once you make it to level 20 and up gameplay.

However, like I said before, Jungling is something that you can do at any point in the game. As Master Yi it is something you need to be doing. Most of the time when you are fighting people in a lane or in a team battle, you are going to be popping your abilities repeatedly. Alpha Strike is extremely expensive and you will want to use this skill, as I have said before, to close the distance on your opponents. Grabbing that blue buff as quickly as possible is going to not only keep you from staving your Mana Pool, but also allow you to continuously activate your skills for multi-kills in team battles. The blue buff regenerates your Mana and also shortens the Cooldowns on your abilities. Cooldown Reduction isn't really the biggest gift you get from this buff, but it will allow you to wipe out wave after wave of minions to clear out a lane, where you wouldn't be using your ultimate.

To complete your item build and keep yourself relevant on the battle field, you are going to have to farm fast and farm often. As in, never stop killing things. Whether it be minions, neutral monsters, or other champions. Kill them all! This item build is expensive and you want to have everything on the list for that extra advantage over that impostor Yi on the other team. When you play Master Yi, you ARE Master Yi. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

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Game Phases

EARLY GAME (Levels 1-6)
This phase is probably the most important part of the game, especially for you. If you are impatient here and rush in for the kill, you will most likely end up feeding the other team and have your own team cussing at you. Don't do it. Let's jump back for a moment though. When it comes to a successful Early Game Phase, you are going to need to select an appropriate laning partner. Most of the time you will want a ranged Champion with you that can do some sort of Crowd Control. Silences, Stuns, Slows, anything that will allow you to do damage from up close by stopping your opponents from running away or going on the offensive against you. I personally like to lane with a Fiddlesticks or Ashe provided that they don't want to take the mid lane. Another choice is to take along a tank, preferably someone that can stun the Champions in your lane, allowing you to get that kill. I would suggest Taric for this role. Building a relationship with your tank could also be an important part to this phase, so if the conditions are right for some BACK DOOR FUN he can assist you. Also, try to take the lane closest to the Blue Buff. This will make more sense in Mid Game.

It is important to keep your enemies at bay by outleveling them. You can do this a couple different ways such as outright killing them, forcing them to run back after respawning. Another way is by controlling the 'experience zone' around your minions. Some of you might be thinking, 'wut?' But if you can keep the enemy champions far enough away from your battling minions, you can starve them of experience. Try to get some kills here if possible and last hit those minions for some fast gold.

If you are confident in your ability to play Yi you can try to assist mid if they are having trouble. However, if you attempt to gank mid, try to make sure you aren't seen heading there and make sure that the enemy champion dies in mid, whether you get the kill or your mid champion does. If you aren't sure, it's probably not worth risking the loss of experience. Last but not least, CALL YOUR MIAS!

As you progress through levels here, you may want to port back once and a while when your Teleport skill is ready to go. When you port back, remember to upgrade your boots to Berserker's Greaves and also work on either building or outright buying Zeke's Harbinger Once you hit 6 it's time to transition into...

MID GAME (Levels 6-12)
This is where people are going to start getting pissed off. The enemy is going to start trying to gank your mid, the other lane is going to be standing around somewhere still trying to kill the tower in their lane, and you are going hunting. With your ultimate, you are a lean, mean, squishy chasin' machine. Go down to mid and get behind that over-extended Ashe from the other team and Alpha Strike in there, pop Wuju Style and Highlander and watch as she tries to run. This is where the name of this build comes from.

Now, the trick here is to keep yourself constantly killing minions to continue building your items. If you aren't pushing minions in your lane, head into the jungle and kill off the wolves and get the blue buff from the Golem. This is going to keep you out and about in lanes and jungles by keeping your mana reserves full. Head into mid lane and help your minions there if they are close enough to be helped. Then move into the jungle to kill Phantoms, gain the red buff, and kill two other golems without buffs. Remember to frequently visit the shop to build your Phantom Dancer and Infinity Edge, adding to the devastating damage you do already.

At this point, with the red and blue buffs together are you in a perfect position to either gank that lone enemy Champ trying to catch up in levels by pushing some minions, or hop into a team fight and start obliterating people. The red buff gives your attacks a slowing effect and also produces a damage over time effect on your victim. Remember, you are a CARRY, you should get quite a few kills if you want to stay an important player. The downside to this, however, might lead to you being targeted if you are by yourself, or even in a team fight. Don't initiate team fights, Let your tank do his job. Mop them up, push those towers, refresh those buffs, and get ready for LATE GAME!

LATE GAME (Levels 12-18)
If you make it this far without the other team surrendering, or the randoms on your team failing you, farming becomes and even more important job for you. You want to finish up your item build as fast as you can so you have an advantage. Grab The Bloodthirster for extra damage and lifesteal and start wracking up more kills for the stacks. At this point, you can also start farming the dragon as you make your rounds through the jungles for your buffs. You gain experience from the dragon and your whole team gains and extra 190 gold each time you kill him, so you can also contribute to your team finishing up their items. For your sixth item, it's really up to you. Be smart about it and find an item that you NEED. For example, The Black Cleaver will help you shred heavily armored tank or tank-like characters who have a lot of armor. Frozen Mallet helps you gain some extra health for surviving longer, as well as putting a slow effect on your attacks.

Continue farming, ganking, destroying towers, assisting with team fights, and work your way towards that Nexus. If you team is going to go for the Baron buff, BE THERE. You still get the buff from him even if you aren't around him when he dies, but your amazing damage output will decrease the likelihood of the enemy finding you and stealing Baron from you and killing your whole team. Destroy that base, and victory is yours!

If things aren't going your way, or your team is getting beaten back into a defensive position, be ready to start using that hidden back door ability. Trust me, even when things look like they are really bad and you just want to surrender, don't. I have been in many games where I have nearly won the game single handed. All you need is a good tank that will assist you with taking down those towers and you will have the enemy rushing back to help in no time, when they decide to push again, be ready to back door again while your other 3 teammates are back and holding a perimeter around your Nexus. With a little luck and some insane damage, you can turn the tide with a few tower and inhibitor kills.

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Master Yi is a very fun champion to use and he's also not that hard to learn. Remember, Haters are going to Hate. Just because they think Yi is OP or for noobs, doesn't mean a thing. If you enjoy using him, by all means do so. Like I said before, this game is sort of like Rock, Paper, Scissors, there are certain people that are better suited to kill others and that's just how this game works.

Thank you all for reading and I hope this guide helps you to enjoy my favorite champion on League of Legends. And if you see me in a game, remember;