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League of Legends Build Guide Author throatslasher

Runes 101: Beginners guide to runes

throatslasher Last updated on December 20, 2013
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- My other guides -


- A Short Overview -

>> Hi! I'm throatslasher, a Diamond player on the NA server. Today, I'll be bringing you a guide on runes. I see a lot of silly **** floating around amongst new players and inexperienced players. I smurf a lot and sometimes I'll turn down jobs because my clients don't have a single passable rune page, and I couldn't construct one if I tried. Sometimes people ask me how to get better, and a quick check of their runes prompts me to tell them, ''get 15000 ip and hit me up later". Having garbage runes will completely prevent you from playing optimally and the rune system can be confusing for new players without guidance.
>> In this guide I'll be telling you what runes to prioritize for what role.
>> I strongly encourage you guys to spread this guide around to brand new players or players with ****py runes.

- Disclaimer -

>> This is all technically my opinion, but I have been playing league for 3-4 years. I know what's up and I've helped a lot of people fix their runes along the way. If you think my advice is bad or have any questions, ask in the comments. If you don't want to, then go look at other diamond players' rune pages and see what they run :) ヽ༼ຈل͜ຈ༽ノ RUNES or RIOT ヽ༼ຈل͜ຈ༽ノ

- I'm level X and my runes suck. What do I do? -


>>If you are level 1-19, STOCKPILE AS MUCH IP AS YOU CAN. DO NOT SPEND IP ON ANY CHAMPIONS OVER 450 IP. Once you hit level 20, you get access to tier 3 runes. Once you hit 20, buy the 2 basic rune pages outlined below, or as much of them as you can.

>>If you are level 20-29, you are late to the party. Stockpile all the IP you can. Consider an IP boost and make sure you at LEAST get your 1st win of the day every day.

>>If you are level 30, STOP PLAYING RANKED IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY. Going into ranked with incomplete rune pages is a good way to be a bronzer for life. Hold off on ranked and/or your placements until you complete enough rune pages for you to feel comfortable. Also, refund those 6300 IP champs you don't play.

- How many rune pages do you recommend? -

>> Well, that depends entirely on your playstyle. If you are going to be playing a LOT of league of legends, I'd say the bare minimum would be about 5-6 rune pages. If you are a more casual player, you can get away with 4. If you're going to be ZOMGEY challenger pro, you might need 20. I think I have about 13, and sometimes I wish I had more. (ง •̀_•́)ง Ready to learn, sir! (ง •̀_•́)ง

- The 2 basic rune pages everyone should build -

||| 9 AD Marks

9 Armor Seals

9 flat MR Glyphs

3 AD Quints

||| 9 Mpen Marks

9 Armor Seals

9 flat MR Glyphs

3 AP Quints

>> These two rune pages are the most basic rune pages around. They share glyphs and seals to save on cost and probably 90+% of champions can be played at a basic level with these runes. A few notable exceptions would be some utility champs like Ryze, Skarner, and malphite, but even these champs can 'make do' in extremely basic play with one of these rune pages.

>> The versatility of these pages come in their simplicity. If you deal physical damage, take the AD page. If you do magic stuff, take the AP page. The armor seal and MR glyphs will ensure that you have a balanced defensive edge to your pages regardless of your lane or enemy comp in general. The reason why mages take magic pen marks over ability power marks is that ability power marks are extremely cost innefficient, where as the magic pen is very valuable at every stage. The AP quints are important because it provides you with a sizable spike in spell damage at level 1 and remains relevant even into late game. A lot of AD champions can makedo with the AD marks because it's applicable across all roles (top, jungle, adc, AD mid) and it will help you CS.

>> If you are a brand new player or none of your rune pages look like this, then you can go ahead and close the guide and WORK ON BUILDING THESE PAGES. Once you have these pages complete, come back to my guide and we'll talk about 'luxury runes'.

- Luxury Runes -

>> I call certain runes that are pretty specific to a champion or role 'luxury runes'. For example,
Greater Seal of Energy Regeneration. These runes are EXTREMELY EXPENSIVE and are very character specific (ninjas only, yo). That would make this qualify as a 'luxury' from here on out. Some simple luxury runes will be talked about below, but more advanced and expensive setups i'll call 'uber luxury' runes. Purchase luxury runes when they fit whatever playstyle you prefer. If you like ADC, you should pick up ADC luxury runes, etc.

Some very basic and IMPORTANT luxury runes are;

||| Movement speed Quints

>> I can't stress how important these quints are for certain mids, tops, and junglers. These aren't very applicable bot lane, so if that's your jam you can probably skip these runes. For dedicated Ryze players like myself, I would REFUSE to play Ryze while smurfing if they don't have these runes. Champions like ryze, hecarim, maokai, skarner, nasus, malphite top, and several others depend on these quints for a few reasons;
1. They are important for mobility (maybe no escapes, Vlad)
2. No other quints are very good for them (IE Ryze, Malphite)
3. They combo well with your kit or build (Skarner, Maokai)
These should probably be picked up first after your original purchases above, but they're in close competition with the next few.

||| Flat / Scaling mana regen Seals

>> I personally run these on a few mids when I need the mana and when I'm against extremely low AD on the enemy team (triple ap, adc, support). These will allow you to spam a bit more early game and can forge an advantage for you. These are pretty much mid-specific, so if you don't feel like dropping the dough, you don't HAVE to. Play a bit more conservative with your mana and maybe pick up another Doran's Ring or a
Chalice of Harmony early if you opt for the cheapskate armor seals. I prefer scaling mana regen if my mana usage spikes in the later stages of the game (IE Anivia). Be careful as most mid laners have very pitiful base armor values and getting harassed even by mages with a good auto attack can really sting, not counting
Xin Zhao sticking a spear up your ***.

||| Life steal Quints

>> Hoo, boy. These are priceless for ADC. These are totally in line with the meta, LS quints, dorans blade start, 21-1-8 or 19-0-11. If you don't have LS quints you can't start doras blade. I'm not in the know on adc, but when I play ADC, I strongly prefer using LS quints. These quints are also really good on some top laners like Jax and can warrant some playtesting with others. These are good and important for ADCs and certain bruisers. If you want to main ADC, these should be among your 1st purchases after you finish your 2 pages.

||| Scaling MR Glyphs

>> These are really important for bruisers, jungler, and sometimes even adcs and supports, but mostly bruisers top. Bruisers vs and AD opponent LOVE these runes because they don't need the 13 MR at the start and the scaling benefits really give them some protection late game. Junglers as well will sometimes run these since they usually don't have to worry about eating magic damage poke, except during gank. If you're against strong magic damage in lane, however, flat MR is the best bet. ADCs could possibly take this if they're against a non-threatening magic damage support like Soraka or Janna.

||| Armor Pen Marks

>> These can be extremely effective on some very aggressive AD champions like Garen, Pantheon,
Jarvan IV, Zed and others. These runes are typically used by bruisers top or AD mid champions if they predict that their opponent skipped armor marks. If your opponent DOES show up to lane with 35-55 armor, these runes get a bit less effective. They were nerfed in the past, so I'd say these are pretty niche. If you see a bunch of challenger kids running them and want to try them out, these runes are semi viable.

||| Health Quints

>> I find these quints very valuable on supports like Janna and Sona. In the new meta, supports get so much gold that gold genrating runes don't seem necessary anymore.

||| Armor Marks

>> These are important for just support. If you want to be BEST SUPPORT NA, you might want these seals. They would replace your magic pen marks and they give your ****py armor value a nice padding. These are very viable for support ONLY.

- Uber Luxury Runes -

>>These runes are really not NECESSARY on any champion. You can play them effectively without them, but for advanced strategies and min/max purposes, you can pick these up. I have DOZENS of full sets of runes that I haven't used in ages and regret buying them (see hp regen/lvl seals for Mordekaiser, hate u vman). Only start purchasing runes like these when you're drowning in IP and looking for an extra edge on your gold/plat/diamond opponents.
(I'm listing them in rough order starting with most viable and ending with least viable).

||| Hybrid pen Marks

>> I like these marks. They keep your Mpen at a respectable level while giving your auto attacks or any physical damage a little bit of a pop. I run these on Vlad top vs melee and on some ranged champs like Ziggs and Karma mid when I'm vs a melee opponent to help me harass them down with my autos. Some champions with mixed damage can benefit from them too, but don't go crazy. These COULD be ok on Teemo and Poppy, but they would NOT be good on champs like Kayle, Jax, or Nidalee. Just because someone does split damage, that doesn't mean these marks would be good on them as they're optimally played one way or another and NOT hybrid (IE AD Jax, ad or ap Nidalee, ap Kayle, sorry guinsoo lovers, hybrid is dead).

||| Magic pen Glyphs / Quints

>> I like these a lot as well. I run them every game on Shen and Elise top. I run these on magic damage dealers that have pitiful AP ratios or no ratios at all. If I had to run alternate quints on Ryze besides MS, I'd take Mpen quints. You can also run them vs a triple AD comp and you don't need any MR in your glyphs, although that's a rare case. You can run these mid vs champs like Zed and Kha'Zix. They are very expensive, but I think to advance players they can be worth the price.

||| AP Glyphs

>> Playable, but can't hold a candle to MR glyphs in 99% of situations. I run an AP glyph page vs 0 magic damage teams. These get extra value if you run these on specific champs where you rush Athene's Unholy Grail like Lux and Gragas.

||| Armor Quints

>> I like these quints as well. They give incredible durability and suvivability to junglers. They can also be utilized by some top laners when you absolutely have to not take much physical damage, although MS quints eek these out in overall utility and effectiveness. Rammus jungle, Malphite jungle, Nasus top and some others CAN play around with these quints, although you can swap out MS on all of them.

||| HP/lvl seals

>> These aren't awful on a lot of casters. Raw health is a pretty mediocre stat and a lot of casters pick up health along the way in the way of Haunting Guise, Doran's Ring, Rod of Ages, etc etc. I like these on vlad mid and top sometimes, but for top vlad at least armor can be very useful against the meta ad bruiser tops. Not terrible, but necessary for min-maxing.

||| CDR glyphs

>> These are necessary and very playable on some manaless tops like Shyvana, Dr. Mundo, and Renekton. They're run quite often in high elo and these are also useful on certain junglers. If you're a top main, these are worth picking up when you start min-maxing.

||| Gold quints

>> These were entirely necessary in season 3 on supports. Nowadays, I see these hardly run since offensive or defensive quints are king in this meta of rich supports. With all the new income streams for supports, I don't see the use, but keep an eye on the diamond 1 support mains' rune pages and see if these make a comeback. These are for SUPPORT ONLY. These are no good for any other role.

||| Armor Pen Quints

>> I would almost always prefer to run other quints on almost any conceivable champ, but if you feel like you can use a champion effectively that has low AD scaling, purely physical damage, doesn't need MS, etc, you can run these. I've experimented with Nasus and Garen, but since the armor pen nerf, I find them lackluster.

- Really ****ty Runes -

>> There are too many to name here, but I'll just run through a few that suck in a quick description.

||| Energy Regen (mainly Seals)

>> God these things are expensive and they give you nothing in return. The way to ninja supremacy is to abuse whatever mechanic returns energy to you, not by using these ****ty overpriced runes. I'm sad I own a few (thanks ego ignaxio). Take armor seals instead.

||| MR Seals / MR Marks / Armor Glyphs

>> Super cost inefficient, not worth it.

||| Spell Vamp Quints

>> For only 6% Spell Vamp, they are not worth 3 quint slots. They can be fun, but in a serious game they're not worth it.

||| Crit Chance / Damage (anything)

>> They only do stuff if you crit, otherwise they don't even exist.

||| Death Timer Reduction

>> Just, no.

||| Experience

>> Just, no.

||| AP Seals

>> Even vs double or triple AP, armor seals improve your trades and reduce creep damage.

>> There are just too many to name. Rest assured if I didn't include it top, feel free to ask in the comments section. If I forgot a rune, I'll quickly add it to the guide and give you credit below.

- Standard rudimentary pages -

AP armor as above, IMO optimal/playable on every AP mid except Ryze

||| 9 MP Marks

9 Armor Seals

9 flat MR Glyphs

3 AP Quints

15 AD, standard and playable with the bulk of the cast. Suboptimal on many junglers, tops, and marksmen, but playable in a pinch

||| 9 AD Marks

9 Armor Seals

9 flat MR Glyphs

3 AD Quints

Standard ADC page, very optimal on certain AD bruisers top, namely JAX imo, some junglers can start dorans blade if you run this page like trundle, but not amazing choice in season 4;

||| 9 AD Marks

9 Armor Seals

9 flat MR Glyphs

1 AD Quint

2 Lifesteal Quints

Movespeed, Magic pen, Lovely on Ryze, Malphite top.

||| 9 Magic pen marks

9 Armor Seals

9 flat MR Glyphs

3 MS Quints

Shen top, Elise top/support, have fun experimenting with other champs...(mpen mundo mid anyone?)

||| 9 Magic Pen Marks

9 Armor Seals

9 Magic Pen Glyphs

1 Magic Pen Quint

2 Health Quints

Standardish AD jungle page, playable on some AD tops and mids

||| 9 Armor Pen Marks

9 Armor Seals

4 Flat MR Glyphs

5 Scaling MR Glyphs

3 AD Quints

Dualpen + movespeed, fun on Teemo an vlad top;

||| 9 Hybrid Marks

9 Armor Seals

9 Flat MR Glyphs

3 MS Quints

25 AP EXTRA armor page, I take this vs 4 AD teams where I won't need MR for a long time, or against AD opponent and I'm rushing athene's;

||| 9 Magic Pen Marks

9 Armor Seals

9 AP Glyphs

3 AP Quints

My janky *** support page for passive-ish supports (sona, janna, zyra, maybe others):

||| 9 Hybrid Pen Marks OR 9 armor marks

9 Armor Seals

4 Flat MR Glyphs

5 Scaling MR Glyphs

3 Health Quints

So, here's a bad rune page...
Hey guize. I ripped this rune page from someone who's level 25. I have seen several people in ranked with similar rune pages. Lets stop this from happening together! Take a look at your friends' rune pages, and if they looks like this, just send them a link to this guide. We're in this together, lets stop people from taking bad runes to ranked!
BTW, I can tell this person is trying to fix it with some AD marks and armor seals. And I don't mean to call anyone out.

- Thanks for Reading! -

>> That's about it. Any other questions, please ask in the comments and I'll promptly respond!

>>Thanks to Veng Lmfao who coded the guide
ヽ༼ಠ益ಠ༽ノ UPVOTE OR DIE ヽ༼ಠ益ಠ༽ノ


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