Vladimir Build Guide by RikudouDovahkiin

League of Legends Build Guide Author RikudouDovahkiin

Reworked Vladimir 6.23 DEPTH Guide : Kneel Before Vlad

RikudouDovahkiin Last updated on December 1, 2016
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R


Natural Talent
Battering Blows
Piercing Thoughts

Offense: 12


Defense: 18

Runic Armor
Veteran's Scars
Legendary Guardian

Utility: 12

Threats to Vladimir with this build

Show all
Threat Champion Notes
Pantheon Pantheon's last trump is his high damage potential against low hp targets. Since you will not even be near of 40% of your hp against him this will be not a threat to your presence at lane. As he throw his spear you will suck blood out of him with your Q. Don't use foolish E since it will help him to kill you. Its really easy lane when you become reconciled to Vlad. Not a much of skill matchup, you can win because you counter him, even if it was the very opposite of the situation, in the other hand Vladimir is a sustain monster, in a skilled hand you can destroy such a champion easily since he does not have any true damage nor percentage damage.
Sion Sion is an undead, and Vladimir as a member of higher vampires, he is count of undeads, actually Sion's damage may be a little bit problem at early game but he has to be tanky or you will melt him. Even with an ad build his damage cannot do much to you. Dodge his Q please. Nothing too much to worry about this match-up, easy.
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Hi I'am SirEagleEye Diamond 5 TR server player, sorry for my poor English. I'm here to post my experiences, combos and item building on Vladimir. If you are going to question my Vladimir skills, yes in my honest opinion I'm playing very well compared to other Vladimirs I have seen ^^. I'm here because, Vladimir's limits are still not known after many years, Vladimir is not a blood-sucking bat thing, atleast since Vladimir rework. He is potentially can absorb over 1k HP. So someone really had to tell that he is now more stronger than ever. Thats why I'm here ladies and gentlemen.

"With my guidance you will become a deadly instrument, striking terror in the hearts of mortals wherever you tread. Now, listen to my words and do as I instruct''


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In this chapter I will try to explain why we pick these masteries over other keystones, combinations. Of course every player has their own style, so you can stylize your own page with your decisions.

Sorcery is applies bonus 2% damage for spells that we cast for free. Its of course better than Fury since we are not adc nor yasuo, that one was pretty smooth.

With double edged sword we get 3% bonus damage for our normal attacks and spells, and we get 1,5% more damage in return but its not really that important since we are playing a tanky mage who is able to heal himself almost 3k with one Q. It doesn't matter too much we need that 3% for our late power. Now we have total 5% bonus spell damage for free.

You can ask why not Vampirism and natural talent. Let me tell you that Vladimir after rework doesn't benefit too much from spellvamp like old vlad, it does now healing percent missing hp that scaling with bonus ap, so more ap, more healing also we didn't get Savagery mastery in cunning tree so we can have a little hard times at undertower farming thats why we need a little ad bonus too that comes with natural talent.

Bounty hunter is our little ferocity keystone mastery like stormraider, its really one of most effective mastery in the game. For each unique champion kill you get 1% bonus damage so at 6v6 you can use these masteries to get total 6% bonus free damage. Some people take oppressor but since we are playing solo q its really hard to play lcs style, in 1v1 Oppressor would be better since our Tides of Blood and Sanguine Pool have some slow stats, it would make 1v1 easier but with bounty hunter you get 2x damage and you don't need to cc enemy to get bonus damage applied, if you are saying ''I'm playing Vladimir and i won't get kills like a support, or i cannot get kills because i have still not mastered at hero'' its viable but, also you can use this mastery to destroy your lane since 2.5% free damage is nice too but why would you take 2.5% when you could take 5%? So at total with other masteries until now, we got 10% bonus damage for spells, in other words you get a small rabadon with masteries which is totally awesome.

Wanderer is a must for me, because we will not need +5 single target damage to minions at late game, since after a few items you will turn into a lane monster, one of strongest lane pusher in the game which is a clue that you don't need Savagery also we have Natural Talent so it will make farming a little bit easier like Savagery, in the other hand Wanderer is awesome, with Sorcerer's Shoes you can still run at the speed of Boots of Swiftness at the out of combat which is awesome for roaming, chasing etc.

Assassin is an awesome mastery for those who play alone in the lane, free 2% damage with no down-sides, you will be alone most of time at the mid lane, in teamfights probably you will Ghost+ Sanguine Pool to chase and kill their carrys so you will be alone again, that makes you stronger when alone like real vampires. Also we don't need Runic Affinity since we are not jungle and Secret Stash is not needed if Vladimir plays correctly, you can still go with Secret Stash since it gives some juicy potion boosts, extra healings from potions.

Merciless is awesome, you will become more dangerous to targets that with low hp, you will hunt them easier with no downsides, its totally awesome and sometimes it can help you produce enormous aoe damage against low hp team. Also Meditation is not really useful on Vladimir since he doesn't use mana energy to cast spells like other mages. His power comes from his blood.

Dangerous game is changing the tide of the battle as an only one mastery which is horrible, after you kill their mid he will probably drop ignite on you and after you get kill your 5% missing health will be regenerated. So more dangerous its getting you will get more healing. In teamfights it can almost heal you for 700 hp yeah i'm not exaggerating, probably you can even achieve more healing than 700.

Intelligence actually why I'm investing cunning tree. Its really a must on Vladimir, its increasing your maximum cdr to 45% from 40 which is crayz.
Also Vladimir really doesn't need Precision to deal damage, assassin mids usually pick that mastery Vlad gains his power because of being able to spam his abilities for every 2-3 sec.

It is our keystone mastery which is provides great utility in teamfights to Vlad, your movement speed even leave behind Rammus when your keystone + ghost activated at the same time with Sanguine Pool. It goes totally insane, also it gives you some nice some sort of tenacity against slows. While Stormraider's Surge active, even deadly %99 slow for 6 secs of Nasus getting weaker something like 75-80% so you can get other 25% slow resistance with Boots of Swiftness to turn into something unavoidable.

Its not fitting in some ways as a keymaster for Vladimir, since you can get healing bonus from resolve tree too. Level 5 Runic Armor it becomes a little bit absurd and armor and mr bonus from Windspeaker's Blessing doesn't proc fully. So only thing you can get from this mastery would be 10% more healing from Transfusion, Hemoplague and Sanguine Pool, also Runic Armor gives some nice sustain like more regen etc. this regen bonus combining well with Spirit Visage. But you can make 12-18-0 mastery tree to get 10% damage from ferocity tree while having 10% more healings from skills. Because when you invest into resolve tree like 0-18-12 you will miss some damage mastery from ferocity tree with this system you will have both damage and healing, also you can get 10% faster spells from Ionian Boots of Lucidity instead of Insight this build is tested by me for months and its really awesome to use windspeaker 12-18-0 really balanced.

Its not something that fits Vladimir like Stormraider's Surge or Windspeaker's Blessing so I would not recommend this mastery. Its really not useful, Vladimir has designed to be more effective as the fight last longs, since he is not some sort of assassin this mastery will be not useful as it was useful on LeBlanc.

This mastery is really useful when you face against tanky teams, it will help you to deal more damage without building Void Staff as the first item. Also damage over time is useful since you deal area of effect damage, it will become more effective. Your opponents may die after your ultimate since deathfire touch's dot is awesome and scaling with your ap. But it has some downsides as well as it has pros too. It will be harder to dive under since your dot will draw agro so tower won't leave focusing on you even after using your W. It may cause your dead end because ou cannot dive with Deathfire Touch easily like Stormraider's Surge .

Its now new Vladimir meta at high elos. Bonus +350 HP is an upside since some of HP will turn into bonus AP which is awesome. But even you gain some juicy stats, this will not provide Stormraider's Surge 's utility, nor Windspeaker's Blessing sustain or Deathfire Touch 's damage potential. Its preferred usually because of its high tanky stats not sustain, combined with Spirit Visage it can provide enormous tankyness at early game against bursty opponents, but I personally wouldn't sacrifice Intelligence which is awesome since Vlad is a cdr hungry character, also after a few matches with Stormraider's Surge you will turn into a Vladimir monster who is not able to play without it, because movement speed is indispensable, also you can use this utility as both agressive and defensive which is far far more useful than you can imagine. But its a still viable option, but its not really that much easy to stack since you are not jungler.

This mastery will help you for early sustain, without this mastery you will have 2.6 health regen at early game with Doran's Shield with this mastery and Runic Armor it will become 3.2-4.0 health regen per second at first level. Its can be a life saver at early game.

Unyielding is awesome for who those stack resistances, but Vladimir, reworked Vladimir doesn't stack all armor-ap magic resist-ap items like before. It will be not really useful sunce Zhonya's Hourglass has been really nerfed hard as hell you won't benefit from this too much like Recovery

or Probabily I would prefer tough skin since its stacking with Doran's Shield it will protect you effectively. But explorer is awesome too, while fighting at baron or dragon pit you will have 15+ bonus movement speed which is really useful.

or Runic armor increases all healing, regenerative powers by 8% while veteran's scars add bonus 50 hp which also adds, 1-2 extra ap because of your passive, so with veteran's scars your E will do total +5 more damage but runic armor is much much better in my opinion. But can and must pick Veteran's Scars in case you take Strength of the Ages . Because only point of Strength of the Ages is the extra hp you get, you can take this bonus even further with Veteran's Scars but I usually prefer Runic Armor since its not only increasing regenerative powers, but also increasing self-healings too, which can be more useful at the every stage of game.

or With insight your flash cd will be 255 seconds instead of 300 seconds that can save your life many times, and your ghost will be 153 secs instead of 180, you can increase the cd bonus even further by building Ionian Boots of Lucidity so a person without these, can flash 4 times at min 20 while you can flash 5 times instead of 4. In the other hand Vladimir's Q getting crazier as your health goes low, so your average 300 Q healing will become 1-2k healing when your health is under a certain percentage, you will not even be able to make full use of this mastery fully like Insight which is absurd. I do not recommend taking perseverance over insight.

or I would say swiftness all the way, Legendary Guardian is not something you would want, you won't dive into a fight just to tank all 5 opponents, you are an ability power carry tanking is not a priority for you. Destroying one opponent/carry shall be your first priority also really, it won't be that much useful in lane since you will only play against 1 person, this mastery is useful at bot lane since you will probably always face 2 enemies, even if you tank 5, this will not make you immortal like Malphite, but Swiftness in the other hand, will give you total 15% tenacity and slow resist which is awesome for a tanky-ap carry. Since you will be first and biggest target of enemy cc.

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At this chapter, we will learn which runes we should pick as a Vladimir, also we are going to explain why not picking other possible runes.

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration:

This one is quite simply since you are not ad carry nor not anything different else than ap carry pick magic penetration for the sake of LOL.

Greater Seal of Scaling Health:

Vladimir gathering ap for every extra health points. While you are getting stronger as the game game gets longer this will make you more tankier while adding 30-40 bonus damage to your E.

Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power:

As I mentioned before since Vlad gains extra ap for hp and hp for extra ap its really stacking well for late game.

Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power:

Greater Glyph of Scaling Cooldown Reduction is awesome since it provides you a strategic advantage and max cdr chance at late game. You can build mercury instead of Ionian Boots.

Greater Quintessence of movement speed:

Vladimir's one of biggest weakness is his poor chasing ability, thats why we are picking movement speed quints here, also good for late game because 15 flat ap won't save you at early game. But movement speed will affect whole game, with that you will able to pick other than just boots of swiftness because these runes adding 15 movespeed, even with Ionian Boots of Lucidity you will be faster than another vlad with only boots of swiftness because of this awesome rune choice, while getting a nice boost to skill and spell cool-down reduction with ionian boots.

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In this section I'm going to tell you item priority, and why we are
building ''X'' item as 3nd item etc. Every champion has his/her own skill set so every champion get a different better use of items. I'm going to tell you ''Why Vlad using (x) item better than other mages/champs''.


Also note that every 500 extra health points will add 20 ability power to your stats and your E scales with extra health point. At total even without an ap stat on item you will able to get something like 100 damage from an item with nothing but only 500 health point stats.

Abyssal Scepter Its one of most powerful items because against an ap you gain like 20% magical def. with a nice damage boost. Vlad's low range spells fitting this item. Its almost give power spike to hero at early game. Its also really cheap with high stats and a must as a first choice against heavy ability power opponents since it does give really huge damage potential with aoe debuff and some nice ap which is nice since Vlad does need both AP and CDR at the same time also this item even have magic pen. bonus.

Hextech Protobelt-01 This item is probably created for Vladimir. It gives you additional damaging ability with its active. I don't even talk about the mobility you get from this item. Its a small version of Rylai with additional cooldown-reduction which is very pleasant. Also as a low-ranged mage you can burst any enemy carry with your classical protobelt combo. R > Q+E+W+Protobelt. Protobelt combined with your ulti almost does total 700 damage at short distance which is really terrible thing for adcs. A free damaging spell come with additional mobility. Delicious item. Umm. And also a little note, Rylai's slow effect work on Hextech rockets, it may be useful sometimes as an utility tool.

Zhonya's Hourglass This item's active is a life saver, also adding a new mechanic to your skill set too. So in teamfights you will able to buy time with spamming zhonya + 2 W also nice CDR and ability powers with a little def boost against attack damage carries. So you will be nearly immortal with well positioned R and Q skills also when your hp get low use R and combine with Zhonya's active to gather hp while being invulnerable to damage and cc.

Spirit Visage Firstly, this item have awesome stats like CDR that let you spam q more often. Also more health points to increase your survive potential and increase your E's damage lol. Can you even imagine it? A tank item increasing your E spell's damage like 50-100 while adding 10+ extra ap from your passive. And of course main reason of this item
is its own unique passive that increases regen, healing and drain abilities on yourself 25% ITS REALLY LIKE USING CHEAT INGAME. A Vlad player with 500 haeling on Q will increase it to 600+ with this item.

Rabadon's Deathcap Rabadons unique passive makes this item [Infinity Edge] for mages. Still need any more words to explain? Ok. Ty...

Luden's Echo Can be useful against Ashe, Hecarim since without magic resistance they are squishy so you can one shot them with E+3nd Q and a nice boost to movement speed will be useful ofc.

Banshee's Veil Against Ahri or Leblanc your magic resistance may be not enough after they buy some penetration, this item will provide a huge def. boost against them also you can pick it against Blitzcrank etc. its really useful in my opinion :) You don't have to pick Void and Rabadon every match you already have a nice damage also banshee provide a little damage too since it give 300 HP.

Randuin's Omen Its not useful as much as Thornmail or Sunfire on Vladimir but if opponent team's ad carries focus Vlady., you can give a try to this item.

Thornmail Vlad have awesome sustain with his kit, also reflecting extra damage will probably block life-steal against you since you have huge amount of damage with defensive items combined with thornmail's damage. As you take normal attack damage from enemy their hp will get damage with every single attack, you don't even have to attack to kill them. Only use your sustain spells well combined then adc is dead. Really nice item...
aka. Dravenbane* :D

Liandry's Torment Only buy this against only those who build and reliant on stack items.
Its damage will melt tanks, also will be useful against even the one that building only magic resist items. In the other situations it will cost item place probably.

Hextech Gunblade I have tried this item many times but its not useful as it seems. Only q is single targeted spell and others spellvamp effect will work 1/3 so you don't have to buy it since even only your Transfuison will provide huge sustain, Hemoplague can max your hp easily by hitting 5 champions, really you don't need to build this item, its not that useful. There are better options.

Guardian Angel If you want to become a ''Reaper'' buy it as sixth item combined with other defensive items. I have tested it too. Really useful if you need both mr and armor.

Locket of the Iron Solari Still not tested that yet. But in theory it will be handy against AoE mages. I really appreciate this item. You can buy it at every lane excluding ADC. Since it has some health point stats your damage will increase as well.

Sunfire Cape A viable choice since Vlad profit by health points for his E. That one have harming aura also a nice damage boost something like +50 to Vlad's Tides of Blood. Go with this one in case you face a lane pusher. Its pretty useful because as you chase your opponent aura will also damage her/him noticeable. Also its combining well with your Sanguine Pool.

Rylai's Crystal Scepter Ladies and gentlemen Rylai is bread and butter of Vladimir since first release of the hero and also is a must for every game cause it gives an huge boost to your damage while edges your mobility and sustain. 400 HP and 100 AP will change into 500 HP and 120 AP due to your passive. So in other words it will add total 150!!! damage to your E alongside with heavy AOE slow combined with your E. What an item. It will make things such as chasing and escaping much and much easier!

Void Staff I don't usually build this item in my item set. I find it as item waste most of times. If you are the only one who carries team against magic defence stacking monsters, go on. Buy it.

Sterak's Gage Sterak's Gage is an optional defensive item for Vladimir. Its unique passive is awesome since its getting stronger with more hp, stacking hp is child's play for Vladimir. You can get almost 1.5k barrier with this nice item. If you are tanking at teamfights as 1st tank it can be necessary.

Elixir of Iron Elixir of Iron is useful when you need tenacity against high CC team compositions. Its also increasing your damage due to your passive. 300 HP from elixir turn into bonus +12. That will add total 36+ bonus damage to your E while giving you some juicy tenacity. Maybe not strong as EoS but its allowing you to leave stuns etc. 25% more easily. Buy it when you have some extra gold.

Elixir of Sorcery Elixir of Sorcery is a classic for every ap carry in game. With Elixir of Sorcery your E will damage +55 more magic damage due to your passive and also +25 True damage for your spells thats is useful to melt enemies easier. Buy it when you have some extra gold.

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Almost a must on every champion, some players pick ghost instead of this blessing. You can do many things with that spell:

Dodge skills
Chase someone
Save teammate
Escape potential
And many many things

You can catch a great kill potential with ignite, its something like 5. spell. You can finish off a zed with low hp or decrease regen and life-steal of Volibear-Jinx etc.

You can focus more easily
Destroy enemy apc and use ignite on their adc

Its very popular on Vladimir, since its buffed as hell:

Easy positioning
Nice chasing potential
Escape potential
Low-cooldown ofc

If you are going to be lane pusher teleport will be handy to use at drake fights etc.

Back-door potential
Extra lane-pushing power
Also you can prevent a back-door
Free kill potential from bot-lane

You just don't need such a thing, but if you really do, however you desire, you can pick it.

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Pros / Cons



+High Sustain
+AoE Damage
+Only vampire in the game
+Greap escaping tool W combined with ghost
+Can make full use of some items compared to other mid laners

-Very immobile without spells
-Very item reliant
-Long cooldowns at early-game
-Squishy at early-game
-Need high understanding of algorithm for get more use of aoe skills in teamfights
-Your spells can kill you if used in wrong time

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Farming is one of most important things to do in top lane since its only 1v1 you should not miss any minion because more minion scores you get, you can finish cdr items more earlier.
Farming at early game can get a little bit complex while doing it undertower.

As a Vladimir, you have low auto attack damage and attack speed, so you will close your lack of aa damage at early game with your timing. Getting creep scores at the middle of the lane is up to you, but while doing it undertower you have to learn and use some extra strategies to not to miss any creep score because its really imporant.

caster minion Getting normal minions are OK since tower needs to fire 3 shots to kill a normal minion. You can kill a minion before 3rd shot even with such low auto attack damage since those 2 shots will leave
normal minions half-dead. But caster minions is getting killed by only 2 shots which is a little bit more hard to achieve. You have to land 2 normal attacks before the tower get the score. It may be a little bit hard due to your low attack speed. There is an easy way to solve this problem. You can land additional 1 aa before the tower's aggro is being drawed by caster minions, or you can use the weakest form of the Tides of Blood to make things a little bit easier. You should use your skills in a great harmony to dance with enemy top laner while not missing any creep score.

After a few CDR items your farming will be much easier. But at early game you don't have to poke your opponent with skills. Probably you will be able to poke only after minion waves. Because high cdr on Q and E will not let you trade with your opponent easily while farming.
Especially focus farming at early game please. Only a little practice will help you farming with Vladimir. Only good advice I can give about farming is slay minions carefully until you finish a few core items (CDR items) then you can start poking as you wish.

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Team Work

You will not have much to do about teamworking. Play basically Vladimir and you are good at teamwork. Since you are a close ranged mage you have to tank while being a carry for your team. The best thing you can do for team-work will be destroying enemy ap-ad carry. Also your ultimate skill will spread a plague that increases taken damage from enemies. Try to aim whole enemy team so your team will get a 10% bonus damage at teamfights if you use your ulti well. Also it will heal you for per plagued enemy champion. Immortal vampire :3
Your Sanguine Pool will slow-down enemy on it while restoring some of the damage dealt you can use this skill as a bait tool or slow movement-speed realiant heroes to lower their efficiency in teamfights. But be aware of your ult's healing time, you can miscalculate the zhonya and get killed without a proper combo. Always try to keep back your 3rd while tanking, cause its healing will be increased for every missing health.

eg. : At max hp q will probably heal you for 600+ points,
while at lowest hp, this healing will be probably over atleast 1.8k and, I did get almost 2.5k healing without even a full build.

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Unique Skills

As a Vladimir you have to know your Q's passive. Every 3rd Q will do 2x damage and will heal you percent missing heal with ap scale. With like 500Ap you will get something like 20% missing health healing. Thats how we will survive and win 2v1 fights. While doing 2v1 your first goal must be kiting them. Kite and run while spamming E and Q since with high cdr your 3rd Q will be ready every 7.5+ secs. That means 1k+ healing for every 10 secs so you don't need to be afraid of enemy jungler only problem is your mobility. Try to don't get catch by them while kiting and easy fight.

Ideal combo in lane shall be something like that :

> because Tides of Blood costs hp and transfusion getting stronger for percent missing health.

In team fights you can try this one to destroy one enemy carry with Hextech Protobelt-01's help.

>3rd or 2nd>>+> >

Also this long combo is fitting long teamfights :

>>>>>> >to be continued... :D

And an escaping combo for complicated situations : +

Also this combo is really useful for chaotic teamfights : >+

And this is my example video for a proper combo ; Use your Q before W and enter Sanguine Pool while stacking E. After learning this very basic combo of Vladimir you can discover your own advanced combos.
And the hardest combo you can achieve as a Vlad, also probably most strong for short teamfights : 2nd>+ ++> >, the main point of this combo is you will be using Tides of Blood + Hemoplague + Hextech Protobelt-01 in only 1sec so don't forget to hold and max E, since releasing E at earlier stages something not we want, more you stack the more damage you deal. Its really sometimes complex to do but your opponents probably will not be able to predict your E + R, because 95% or even more of Vlad players use R before combo, with this deadly combo your enemies cannot respond your combo, also yes, you can use Sanguine Pool and Hemoplague while stacking Tides of Blood, but using Transfusion while stacking Tides of Blood will disturb skill and release it instantly. So be careful when you have to choice between E and Q.

Also you can watch some of professional Vladimir players to get more information about actual gameplay at midlane at the every phase of the game. Not only playing, but watching and analyzing some players will help your performance to get better than ever.


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Update History

Further Plans :

    ~ A detailed video for how to really drain over 2k or even more than 2.5k- hp as a Vlad.
    ~ More detailed explanations for items and counters.
    ~ A few vampire game recommendations maybe for those who not already played them.
    ~ Perhaps a full gameplay video for one match, but I don't have such a program I think. Atleast for now.

Build firstly released : 14-16 June 2016
Addings :
-Little retouchs and more information at item section 19 June 2016
-Big changes on build since meta and items is incalculable changing 23 October 2016