Katarina Build Guide by ratmix
Not Updated For Current Season
This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.
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.
So this is my first ever attempt at a guide, any guide so if anything doesn't agree with you please take it with a grain of salt. Well, Katarina is by far my favorite champion on LOL. Reason being she's simple, does good burst damage, and is very mobile. This guide is still a work in progress, so I'll continue fleshing out the chapters with more info and personal perspectives in my free time. Now let's just get started.
So.. the most important thing in LOL outside of champ abilities and player skill is simply your gear. Equip your champion with the right items, know when and where to use those actives then relish in the flaming you will get from the opposing team. "Dat Kat!" "Kat so OP!" "WTF we had you!"
So first get:
Boots of Speed and 3 Health Pots.
Kat starts off doing good melee damage and along with your AP Quints and AP Masteries, offense is covered in the beginning (although AP still won't be all that scary at this early stage). Kat is a fast champion, the boots will ensure your mobile supremacy against most opponents. Now use that supremacy to play chicken $#!T and stay out of harms way. Remember Kat is uber squishy, especially early on so keep at a distance and just harass and farm creeps with your auto-attacks(aa) and Q. Otherwise, you're just feeding the enemy team.
So if things go well, you haven't died yet and might even have a kill, but you're all out of health pots. Keep staying your lane and last hitting creeps until your health is low then head back to base for items.
Now upgrade your boots to Sorcerer's Shoes and pick up a Hextech Revolver.
This is probably the most important purchase you will make during any game. Every champion more or less starts off on equal ground. Champions leading slightly in gold start pulling ahead for the rest of the game right here. As a carry, any carry, this is when you got to mobilize your offense. Buy Sorcerer's Shoes no exceptions. You get increased speed and damage, no other boots in the game offer anything for damage and only AP champions get to take advantage of this. Hextech Revolver is a solid second item that you can usually afford around this time. Some AP with spellvamp for sustain, and it brings you closer to your Hextech Gunblade. However, if you farmed like a fiend, got some kills and find yourself nearer 1600 gold then grab yourself a BF Staff instead. Wait 30 seconds for enough gold if you have to, it's worth it.
Come Mid game get Hextech Gunblade first thing. By this time you'll have your ult, accumulated some AP, and with Gunblade's active it's time to start assassinating. Be sure they can't CC you before initiating your combo. Save your Shunpo, lurk in the bushes or run around behind and right up to them: Q > Hextech active > Ult. They will flee, but right as they get out of Ult range: Shunpo(E) > W > aa > Q > Inferno. Only resort to Inferno if it looks like they're going to barely get away. You'll kill most non tanks without needing Inferno with that combo though.
I won't go into detail on the other items as they are pretty straight forward.
Just pick up the rest of the items piecemeal as best as you can afford. Spend as much gold as possible everytime you head to base. Think of this as an arms race, your best chance to win lies in always having more nukes than your opponent.
Mid and Late game, stay with your team, don't wander off alone unless you spot a jungler or an easy kill or kills. Your bane is CC, it always will be so let your teammates bait and you assassinate.
Riot has a grand history of adding powerful champion abilities then going back and nerfing em to hell afterwards. I'll be getting back to this point later. Let's look at Kat's abilities:
Voracity - All her cooldowns are reduced by 15 seconds with a champion kill or assist. This means when you kill or assist in killing any champion, your Q,W,E abilities are immediately usable again and your ult is 15 seconds closer. Compounded with the fact Kat doesn't use mana, this is how you rock the multi-kills.
Bouncing Blades - Kat throws her dagger that bounces to the 4 closest enemies. This is Kat's only safe distance attack, damage used to be decent but it's been nerfed multiple times. I used to max this first, but not worth it anymore. Put 2 points in it early then max it second.
Sinister Steel - Whirls daggers in a circle dealing damage. Kat's damage dealer outside her ult. This ability has a fast 4 second recharge, does good aoe damage, and increases her movement. Main drawback is that it puts you perilously close in harms way.
Shunpo - Teleport to and attack a target, also provides a bit of damage reduction for 1.5 seconds. Mediocre and dangerous as an attack, and slow to recharge. This ability is best used defensively to escape death. It does have offensive utility too such as for tower diving or chasing, but only do this if you know for sure you will score a kill. That way it resets immediately so you can escape with shunpo right away. Tip: Always shunpo followed by sinister steel.
Death Lotus - Katarina spins around throwing her knives for 2 seconds doing massive damage to up to 3 enemy champions. Level this whenever available. This is your bread and butter. Just sneak into the enemy midst, hex slow a weak one to secure you a kill and spin away! When they scatter, just shunpo onto the next weakest one, W, Q for another kill. Rinse and repeat until they daid!