Vladimir Build Guide by destrucshot
Mastery Tree Is Outdated
WARNING: These masteries are still using the old tree and have not been updated to the new tree by the guide author. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.
Intro to Vlad
Gday everyone, and thanks for taking the time to read my first guide on Mobafire. I've played Vladimir more than what is probably healthy for me and after testing variations of builds this is the build I use [which seems to work the best]. Ignore the stats the auto-detector provides, more accurate stat numbers of your completed build are at the bottom of the "Item Building + Game Progression section".
I will show and explain how I play Vladimir [which I do regularly] to great effect. Vladimir is not as scary or OP as he was on release, but he is still a fun champion to play and can be pretty viable if you have the right mindset and can farm well. Don't underestimate the power of Vladimir.
So I hope you enjoy the guide and that it helps you on your way to making yourself a better Vladimir! If you have any suggestions or comments please feel free to let me know so I can take onboard any advice. Also, please try my build before you vote!
Pros / Cons of Vlad
-Can sustain and harass quite well in lane.
-Great farming ability.
-Mid-Game power over 9000!
-A smart Vladimir can 1v1 most champions.
-His ultimate is great in team-fights.
-Strong AP to Health passive ratio.
-A tanky mage with a strong damage output.
-Great against squishy targets.
-Soo many puns.
-2/4 of abilities cost health.
-Short range on abilities.
-Weak early game.
-Extremely prone to silences.
-Lack of CC.
-He doesn't sparkle.
Runes and Masteries
Movement Speed Quints will help you keep up with your enemies since he has such short range.
7 Flat AP Blues and 2 Flat CDR Blues help his early game out with damage and the health conversion from his passive. Full Blue CDR runes are a choice for some but after Ionian Boots and Spirit Visage you'll have enough CDR to last you until you can start buying Elixir of Brilliance, then it'll be maxed out.
Flat Magic Penetration Reds are great as Vlad can be rather ineffective against champs who have a fair amount of Magic Resist.
I've revised the Yellow runes used on Vlad, and there is the choice between either Armor runes or Health runes. Personally I'd be using the Flat Health Yellows , but you could use the Flat Armor Yellows since you don't obtain any armor items in your build.
New Fizz Patch changed the masteries a ton, so now it is viable to go a 21/0/9 Vlad build.
However, I've seen variations of 21/9/0 or 9/21/0 [or split half-half in between offense and defense. I personally want to go with the damage but feel free to try it out.
Don't go with a 19/0/11 build [just for the spell vamp], it isn't as effective as the one I use, and the spell vamp is barely noticeable.
I recently changed this for my Vlad setup, since his abilities have a short range being able to keep up with enemies and get away from them aswell is extremely handy in many situations. Ghost + Sanguine Pool = getting out of almost anyone situation.
Works extremely well with your ultimate, and seems pretty staple for AP mages; grabbing that last tick which wins you your lane.
This is what I used to take [changed with Ghost]. It really does work great when solo-top. I see this as a viable choice for Vlad, especially if there are wards everywhere, where you'll have extremely map mobility.
A life-saver in some cases. This comes down to personal preference, but with Vlad's capacity to hold his own with his life-steal component Ghost seems more appropriate [and if you play it smart you can avoid a lot of trouble].
Every other summoner spell is not recommended on Vlad, but feel free to try them out and see what you like the most! UPDATE: I hear Heal works on Vlad as well, I will try it out. Very interesting if you ask me.
Item Building + Game Progression
"Welcome to Summoner's Rift!"
While I recommend hitting up top or mid solo-lane, going down duo-bot can work aswell [even moreso if your pal is an aggressive champ]. Going bottom can also help you become more familiar with Vlad before you go out on your own.
Start off with a [Boots of Speed] and 3 [Health Potion], as the speed increase will greatly help you in avoiding harassment and harassing your lane enemy from the start. Pulling off a quick Transfusion on your enemy and semi-retreating can make them play more defensively and be less inclined to attack you. [Remember to not get too caught up in harassing and forget about last hitting minions!]
Level 2 comes around, the next phase of harassment begins. The pattern which works best for me is Tides of Blood - Transfusion when putting the hurt on enemies. Remember that your Tides of Blood costs health so don't harass too much, and keep in mind it'll hurt minions aswell as you don't want to push your lane too hard.
If you get kicked out of lane from an early level grab an Elixir of Brilliance to keep up with your enemies for the rest of the laning phase. And remember to buy wards if they are needed!
By level 4 you should have a rank in Sanguine Pool, and your Transfusion should be at level 2. Hold your lane and be careful of ganks, trying your best not to over-extend but to keep the harass on your enemy laners. Sanguine Pool costs 20% of your entire health so think beforehand if the damage the enemy will inflict on you is better or worse then 20% of your health and an escape.
Level 6 hits and you've got your ultimate, Hemoplague. If you have been laning well and your enemy's health has diminished [and you have more than them], you can proceed for a kill. I would not recommend over-committing to an enemy unless you are level 9 [when your Transfusion is maxed]. When the enemy is at half health or so, jump them with - - - - - / - . If that kills them, good job! If it doesn't, don't worry, as you get more used to Vlad you become more aware of how much damage he is capable of. Again level 9 ganking is more suggestable than at level 6.
At this point if you have enough money for a Hextech Revolver , it'd be best to go and get it if you are not at risk of losing your lane's tower, then teleport back in.
You've hit level 9, your Transfusion is maxed, proceed with the step above ^. If your lane's enemy tower is gone, head back to base ONLY if you have enough money for a Hextech Revolver , then teleport back to your lane if the laning phase is not quite over yet. If your tower was destroyed, see if the other lanes have any easy enemies to pick off and keep an eye on your original lane if it gets pushed to the second tower.
Finish off your Ionian Boots of Lucidity after Hextech Revolver and press on.
Mid-game should be approaching/has started. This is where Vlad starts to shine. Harass enemies with your Transfusion in lane or go in with the kill, going - - - - [or [Tides of Blood] if they aren't running away] - - . This can pump out a lot of damage and can kill most enemies fairly quickly [your Ignite damage is affected by your ultimate]. At this point in the game you can stand your ground against most enemy champions, so don't be so quick to escape with your Sanguine Pool unless completely necessary. If you get ganked and you don't think you'll make it out focus on killing one enemy with the above formula, so atleast you'll guarantee yourself one kill before you go down [try hit as many as you can with your ultimate].
Finish off a Spirit Visage [or atleast grab the CD reduction item on it]. It is possible to grab a Rylai's right after your boots, but I feel a Spirit Visage provides great benefit to Vlad for how much it cost.
Laning phase is over; late-game is approaching and team-fights are taking place. You want to use your ultimate as early on in the fight as possible, as the bonus damage on enemies can increase the damage allies do significantly. Vlad excels due to his Tides of Blood at dealing damage to multiple enemies and his Sanguine Pool is not only a good escape tool but can make enemies panic in a team-fight or stop them from getting away.
If you are still fighting by this stage, I hope you are winning! Finish off your Rylai's and end it off with a Rabadon's Deathcap [Personally, it is not effective to try and rush a Rabadon's early game as you are slightly gimped when building gold to get it. However, if you are going extremely well in the match get the Rabadon's over the Rylai's first]. After these items get a Void Staff . After that, just buy elixirs!
- - - - - rinse and repeat, only using for the aforementioned reasons. Feel free to only use your if you are by yourself and trying to get your health back before the next team fight.
His skill rotation may sound boring, but it is actually extremely satisfying. When you've got all your CD reduction, using - makes them both pop up at the same time after CD and synchronises well. Make sure you try and keep your E stacks up to four most of the time, as it does tons of damage [lol] with four stacks.
Finishing off your items should give you almost roughly 700 AP and roughly 4k HP, maxed out CDR and a ton of Magic Penetration [I'll have to grab specific stats when I get to it as Mobafire gives the wrong numbers]. You are now a blood god.
"Victory!" :) GG! Welcome to Vladimir, enjoy your stay.
"Defeat." >:( Don't give up! Practice makes perfect with Vlad; the more you play the more you will understand his capabiliies.
Finished Item Build and Stats
Finished Item Build:
-[Ionian Boots of Lucidity]
-[Will of the Ancients]
-[Rylai's Crystal Scepter]
-To be edited soon-
Thanks for reading my guide, again if you've tried my build or and want to give me tips on how to improve the layout of my Guide, feel free to do so!
Vlad can be a domination if farmed well and given a solo lane. His ultimte make him fit into a wide variety of team comps, and he is a good counter to a LOT of solo tops, and he plays a good mid lane aswell.
To any down-voting trolls out there;
"Go ahead, be negative, you'll be just my type."
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