Soraka Build Guide by AmethystXIII
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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.
Hey guys, my name's Amethyst and this here's my first ever guide on MOBAFire.
Playing the support role was something I never thought I'd get into, since I'd been so used to tanking or playing AP carries. After watching Dreamhack I really wanted to do something about that. I chose Soraka since I had already owned her from one of the champion packs, and she looked simple enough. And she definitely is, provided you have the appropriate team composition and lane partner.
This is merely my way of playing Soraka. I know there are other ways of playing her, however I prefer this method, especially since she becomes a necessary part of team fights. I have taken some screenshots of scores from my match history.
Here's an album with more screenshots.
Obviously I'm no high ELO player (by no means), so constructive criticism would be lovely.
August 14, 2011
- Added another image in the album.
- Took out Thornmail in the build section, replaced with Zhona's Hourglass.
- Put a starting items section in the Items chapter.
- Put Archangel's Staff at the end of the alternate builds in the Items chapter.
- Almost done buying a set of flat CDR glyphs, so will do more tests with this.
Runes & Masteries Explanation
Now, everyone is allowed to look at me funny for having a 8/1 split in my Seals. That's fine. You can go ahead and do what you want, but I've done some simple math explaining why I only have 8 CD Seals.
- x8 Seals: 2.36%
- x9 Glyphs: 8.62% (at level 18)
- Sorcery Mastery: 3.00% (from Offense tree)
- Intelligence Mastery: 6.00% (from Utility tree)
- Morello's Evil Tome: 20%
Total Cooldown Reduction: 39.98%
Note: In-game it'll say 39.97%, but I guess the CDR runes have something after the second decimal, making it 39.97x, where x is whatever the last numbers add up to.
Another Seal would put you at 40.27%, thereby wasting an unnecessary .27% CDR.
Of course, you could swap around anything you'd like, runes/masteries/items, to get to 40% CDR. But this is the closest you'll get to 40% without going over.
Your x1 Seal can go in anything you'd like, honestly.
Why AP/lvl Quints instead of flat AP?
Flat AP quints would give you 15 AP in addition to the 6 from your Glyphs. This 15 would be the same 15 from level 1 up through level 18.
How about since I am barely going back to base to get items (usually only IF I get ganked and die), we keep a steady increase of AP in our hands? I've had games where I've not been able to base until level 12-14, because my lane is doing well and we've been ganking/defending mid or other lanes. Sometimes by the time I go back, I'm able to get boots and a Codex, other times I can get the boots and full Tome. (Or Mejai's if the game looks really good.)
Now, my masteries.
I go 8/1/21 for multiple reasons that are amazing for Soraka.
Magic Penetration is not necessary since we are focusing on healing, not Starcall harassment/farming. So a simple 8 in the Offensive tree works well with that nice Sorcery mastery giving the 3% CDR.
The Utility tree...
Good Hands > Perserverance. Soraka is not a tank. She's a necessary part of the fight. So she needs to be there for her teammates as much as possible. If for whatever reason the enemy team gets smart or some ninja/assassin/stealth champ rushes to the back and knocks me out of the fight at the beginning, I'm up in 10% less time.
Expanded Mind and Awareness are obvious. 5% more mana, and 3.75% more experience. You could also swap one point from Meditation to go up to 5% more experience if you want to.
Quickness gives 3% more movement speed, equivalent to two MS Quints, meaning you're just that much faster to getting to your teammates.
Intelligence gives that whopping 6% CDR that is necessary to reaching that 39.98%.
Presence of the Master gives a nice 15% CDR for our summoner spells, meaning our Heal is up 15% faster in addition to the 30s reduction from Mender's Faith.
- Swap out a point in the MReg Mastery for the full EXP bonus of 5%.
- If you prefer Clairvoyance as a summoner spell, you can swap out a point from Intelligence for that.
- This build is for maximizing your ability to support and continue to support. Meaning we are aiming for the max 40% CDR and nothing else. That's what I constantly check during the game. "How close am I to 40%?"
Note: I am in the process of testing out other possible runes, such as flat CDR glyphs.
Items, Gimme Dat SUPPORT!
I originally started with an Amplifying Tome every time I played Soraka, however I find lately that the Meki Pendant is more helpful, and you're able to get your tear the first time you go back.
First of all, is THE core of this build. It gives the 20% CDR, 75 AP, and 12 mana regen/5. This is a perfect item for Soraka since she needs AP and CDR. The mana regen is also a very nice addition.
is a hit-or-miss item since the enemy could start to get smart and focus you down as soon as they see it in your inventory (which has unfortunately happened in the past). If it gets to be past 25-30 minutes in the game and you have under 8 stacks, sell it. It's not worth keeping if you aren't keeping at least 10 stacks (15-20 in late-very late game). When I first started playing Soraka I never got Mejai's because I thought it was an obvious thing to focus down the support champs. However, if you have a good tank and/or melee DPS, Soraka is hard to reach when behind them. So I started getting Mejai's as soon as I saw I was having games with more than 20 assists.
An early makes giving mana to other people that much easier. I consider this a necessity since her mana pool seems somewhat low if you don't have any mana regen runes. I'll typically get this my first time at base, along with some boots if possible. If your lane is doing so well that you're not able to base until level 13 or so, skip the and go straight for .
is for running quicker behind your team while chasing or to quickly get back into lane. This is always great if you have a good tank that is good at staying in front, and you're able to stay in back of everyone.
or are good if you need some sort of survivability. The latter is for if there are mostly casters or the caster on the enemy team has the most kills. Either or is fine.
So, in summary:
If you find you're instantly being focused by the autoattackers, think about getting a . Otherwise a would be perfect.
Heal vs. Infuse
Soraka plays two huge parts as a support champ: healing and keeping everyone's mana up. She becomes especially useful for champions with channeling ultis or skills like
. Ranged AD carries like
who have constant mana problems will love her too!
I find it is easiest to lane with a tanky DPS champ, preferably one that does not need mana such as , , or . Most melee attacking champs make good lane partners as well.
I will say that laning with a tank is the most boring thing to do, EVER. You should never have to lane with one, since you'll have other squishy people that will either need your support or the tank in their lane.
Now that that's said and done, onto the debate: Which do I get (or max) first? Heal? Or Infuse?
I always get a point in Heal first in case of a level 1 fight in the side-lane brush, followed by Infuse at level 2. If you find the enemy team is more aggressive than your lane partner, get Heal first. If they aren't, go ahead and get Infuse.
Champions that have high mana costs on all of their skills will need more Infuse than Heal, so this is something to take note of. If they are constantly going oom (out of mana), be sure to constantly be giving them Infuse and level it up.
Otherwise, go ahead and level up Heal and be proud of being able to keep them at full health all the time!
Since you are playing a support champ, it is not for you to get creep kills. I repeat, DO NOT GET CREEP KILLS. Unless your lane partner needs to leave the lane and base, you shouldn't be last-hitting at all. This makes early game pretty boring, but you'll be on your toes as you heal/mana your partner.
I know I might get flamed at for saying this but after watching Dreamhack, I realized I wasn't the only person doing this. The only thing that they seemed to be doing differently was getting Gold per 5 items and stacks of wards. If I were to get any gold per 5 items, it would only slow down my , so I prioritize actual items over that. Of course, any extra gold I have when basing goes towards wards for the side-lane river bushes/dragon.
If you find that you really want creep kills at some point, wait until your lane partner leaves to take them. You'll get some solo exp as well.
If a wave of creeps reach the tower, go ahead and use that Starcall (at level 5) to beat them down, picking up any last hits you can. The bonus damage from having Fortify helps with this as well.
DO NOT FORGET TO BUY WARDS.
Typically after I have my tear, boots, and codex, I'll spend whatever remainder gold I have on a full stack of wards and throw them down in appropriate areas.
Well, if you've read all of this, I appreciate any constructive criticism you can give me.
I realize that not everyone plays the same way, and often times I'll get questions as to why I'm not getting creep kills or gold per 5 items. This is just how I play, and it works for me.
And so that concludes my very first guide. I hope it is clear enough for everyone to understand. Let me know if there's anything that bothers you and I'll be sure to clarify or answer any questions you might have.