Zed Build Guide by Didie9
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Exemple build against Malzahar
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.
Threats to Zed with this build
|Veigar||Veigar is a piece of cake EARLY game. He will try to farm; deny him or you will regret it late game. Just be careful, even though you ult him to pass through his cage, for some reasons you're sill stunned on the other side. However, he will keep his Q for farming and not harrassing you. If he does it: you win the late game. Late game, you will be squish, and he will be able ot one shot you, take some MR to avoid that payback with QSS or Banshee's Veil. Ou really need to bully him or he will manage to carry his team late game. For the laning phase, he's really easy, just to be too greedy and get killed by the enemy jungler.|
Hello everyone! Zed is hard to play, but has so much potential. I experienced both Zed styles. I also add a Support Zed Build, however it is not suggested for rank games, but it can be fun for normals. I hope you enjoy this guide. Thanks for voting!
Greater Quintessence of Armor Penetration are good since you never have enough Armor Pen on Zed. You must be able to one shot an off/tank late game.
Greater Mark of Attack Damage gives you some damage early games and it's well balanced with the armor pen from Quints.
Greater Seal of Armor gives you Armor for the early game when laning against AD.
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist is for the same reason while laning against AP.
Botrk VS. Ravenous Hydra
I play both style. I started with Botrk, because it's easier to master. I changed for Ravenous Hydra, but most of the time I forgot to trigger its active and I wasn't sure if it really hurts the target. Then, I came back to Botrk style and I got annoyed because you have to press like 5 times to make sure it really triggers. However, I mastered this style and it's easy to 1v1 anyone with it. You could get through that full armor Braum or Leona with it. I recently changed again for Ravenous Hydra and here I will discuss its advantages.
Blade of the Ruined King play style:
I've played Blade of the Ruined King for a long time, it's easier to focus your target and its slow allows you to trigger your triple blades more easily. However, it doesn't trigger that fast compared to Ravenous Hydra.
Botrk has so many utilities: You can slow your target to flee (combining it with Youmuu's Ghostblade is really efficient), you can slow to burst him more easily, you can instantly heal yourself with its active. You can't miss your target. Botrk is more like a 1v1 style. When you take it, you can't 1v1 anyone without your ult. It's not impossible, but it's more difficult. Also, Botrk active has a similar CD than your Ult, so if you use them separately, it can be on CD the next time you ult.
Ravenous Hydra play style:
Ravenous Hydra gives you more damage for your early/mid game. Even though its easy to farm with Zed, it's even more with Tiamat combined with Shadow Slash. This extra damage allows you to 1v1 anyone with or WITHOUT your ult. Since you are squishy like any assassins, you have to kill fast. This damage will burst down your opponent quickly. In these situations, if you had Blade of the Ruined King you trade that damage for attack speed. If you 1v1 a fed ADC without your ult, he will win, because he will burst you faster. In fact, you don't need your Ult to burst down anyone if you surprise them. So you can keep it for teamfights or target with a lot of escapes. Finally, this burst down potential allows you to burst down mages without your ult, this means you don't waste your ult because of their Zhonya's Hourglass. You just burst. Wait. Burst. Then go ult anyone else for a second kill.
I start with Long Sword and 3 Health Potion, because it gives me more sustain than a Doran's Blade. You don't AA that much, because you try to not get harrass and will farm with Razor Shuriken.
Ionian Boots of Lucidity allows you to Ult more and more. This way, you can roam and still have your ult ready in your mid lane not long after.
[bilgewater cutlass gives you sustain, a slow and more damage for your ultimate.
The Brutalizer is a strong early game, it allows you to bully your enemy.
Blade of the Ruined King is a must, it's free bonus damage on your ult, a slow, has a range to finish a target.
Ravenous Hydra If you choose this item, don't buy Botrk. Late game, Ravenous Hydra does more damage than Blade of the Ruined King However, it's easy to miss since you're in a constant movement between your shadows. You can still buy it as your last item, but you better be fast considering all those activated items and combos.
Youmuu's Ghostblade gives you more Armor Pen to burst down your target no matter how much armor he got. It's activated gives you movement speed to chase or flee, and kill towers faster. With Ionian Boots of Lucidity you get 25% CD Reduction and can Ult more.
Last Whisper is a must with Zed. It gives Armor Pen to keep bullying any target during the mid/late game.
Infinity Edge is a great item to buy when you see the enemy building a Quicksilver Sash (usually the adc). Its high damage and crit will burst the enemy fast enough, so you don't need your ult damages. You can still use your ult on them as a gap closer, extra damage with Q and shadow jukes.
The Black Cleaver You don't want this item, because it's based on aa. You don't aa enough in your combo to get its full potential. Also, once the ennemy has 100 armor, it has the same effect, fully stacked, than Last Whisper. Over 100 armor, LW is better. You don't buy both, because stacked % armor penetration counters the flat % armor pen. The % of flat armor pen is calculated on what is left after the stacked % armor pen is applied. Which means that the % armor pen is calculated on less armor, so it ignores less armor than it should. For example, you have BC and LW. You attack someone with 100 armor. You fully stack your BC so the armor's enemy is lowered to 75. The % of LW is applied on the 75 armor left, so it takes off 26,25 armor instead of 35.
The Bloodthirster gives you a lot of damages to end the game well. Its shield allows you to survive a little more in teamfights. Its sustain allows you to kill big minions wave without having to back and heal.
Mercurial Scimitar A late game item, unless you lane against Malzahar. It gives you a lot of AD that goes well with all the Armor Pen you got. It's activated allows you to don't get killed by a CC that brings the entire enemy team on you. Late game, when you get killed, it can means the end of the game.
Guardian Angel In some matchup, the enemy team will focus hard on you and you can't complete your combo. Guardian Angel gives you a second chance to flee with W, choose your target, and fight back with R.
Randuin's Omen is good when you are not getting especially focused, you have a lot of damage. But the enemy team is too tanky to allow you to kill them all quickly. I don't take it often, but it can be a good late game defence item.
Banshee's Veil is good when there's a Veigar or LeBlanc in the other team. They will try to burst you down, before you do the same to them or their ADC.
Contempt for the Weak It's not a big passive, but it's concept with the assassin role. It helps you to farm early game, even under tower.
Razor Shuriken It helps to farm without being harrassed. you can harrass your opponent with it and your W-Q-E combo. Remember that EVERY shadow throws a shuriken, which means you can hit a target with 3 shurikens at the same time. (Yours, your W's shadow and your R's shadow.)
Living Shadow is great to harrass early game, but use it wisely. Don't waste it to harrass when you overextend. In this situation, keep it to escape.
Shadow Slash It's a part of your usual harrassing combo (W-Q-E). Remember it only slows when your shadow hit the target. I also use it to farm quickly without missing any minion.
Death Mark All your assassin's power is about your ult. Don't fight without it. ALWAYS remember the position of its shadow (the shadow appears at the place you were right before you Ult the enemy), since it makes a big difference between good and bad Zed players. Try to make the most damage you can, since your ult damages are based on that. Early game, I suggest to ult halved target. Late game, just kill it.
There are a lot of combo to do with Zed. As I said, he has a lot of potential.
The most popular one is W-Q-E. you can harrass and easily clear minions waves. Depending on how strong you are compared to your opponent, you can go W-Q-E-W-AA and back. You can wait a bit before going in with W. Most of people forget your shadow once you did your combo and get close to it, then surprise him and AA-E, back and Q. Or you can simply wait and do a second E.
Summary of the previous paragraph:
At level 6, your ult adds so much more possibilities.
1. A simple one is R-Q-E-Botrk-AA-AA-AA-E-R. Really good and safe for towerdives.
2. When your target flees, you go R-Q-Botrk-W-E-W-AA-AA-R
3. When you want to play that "you can't touch me" game (or against, go for something similar as #2: R-Q-Botrk-W-W-E-R-Q-E. Make sure to make your W's shadow on the opposite side of you R's shadow. A straight line is always good, you have less chances to miss your Qs. To visualize that tricky play it does something like: You're in front of him, you're on him (R-Q-Botrk-W), you're behind him (W-E), you're in front of him (R-Q-E). This combo is good against champions you can handle, but can't stay close to them. Such as Yasuo and Riven.
4. This combo looks like the #3, but you use it against really dangerous opponent with lower cooldown than you. To be honest, it's a special combo for Katarina. You can either engage her wirh R and be sure she ult before using your R again to back, W on her (press once, you don't want to go back) and make your combo from distance. Or wait until she engages you and ult, then R, W away and finish your combo from distance. To summarize, when YOU engage you ult BEFORE her and Botrk, wait for her ult and R away, W once and do your combo. When SHE engages and ult, you ult AFTER her, W away and do your combo. In both cases, you finish your combo from distance. Be sure to W close to your tower. Since there are chances you are both low health, but not dead.
In the case she engages first keep in mind you can still R back in, ONLY if she's close to your R's shadow. Then AA-E to finish her. Your AA will do more damage because of your passive. In this case you might not had enough time/health to Botrk after your ult, use it to your advantages. (In most cases, Katarina engages first.)
When you engage: R-Botrk-(she ult)-W-W-Q-E.
When she engages: (she ult)-R-W-W-Q-E OR
Pros / Cons
Farming/ Laning phase
Most of the time, you farm with your Q. You can easily last hit under tower. Avoid getting harrassed by AA even if they are not really dangerous, don't let them get this little advantage. Keep up the farm. When you got no minions to last hit with Q, go for W-Q-E to harrass your enemy. Try to keep him halved until you hit Lvl 6 and kill him. Make sure to get the big minion, if your Q is on CD, use W-E.
When you towerdive engage with R, don't be affraid to stay undertower and AA as much as you can to burst down the enemy with your ult's explosion. Then just R away.
If the enemy jungler ganks, just back with W and try to harrass him with E-Q.
If the enemy jungler ganks, but you own the lane, go for a tricky play. Your mid laner will probably get closer to follow the gank. Take that opportunity to go all-in and R. Don't be affraid to towerdive. If your opponent flash, follow with W. The enemy jungler is sure comming to you, but as you chase, you get away from the jungler. Then just R back. If the jungler is too close from you or going to kill you, Flash away, but most of the time your W is back up in a second.
Control the bushes, use your W-Q-E combo to harass the ADC or the squishy support. Lvl 6, focus the squishiest one, but I suggest the ADC, so he won't kill your ADC. When you support, you don't farm, but don't be affraid to take kills. You will need them to make up your lack of farming. However, feel free to let some to your ADC, since he will need them too. After the laning phase, take any opportunity to farm, but still be ready to assassinate.
Try to roam when you can. Focus the ADC when you gank bot lane. Or kill the squish support when the ADC is out of range. When you gank top, be sure to slow the enemu (W-E-W) to allow your teammate to close the gap. Then ult and do your combos.
In teamfights, focus the fed and squishy one. Usually the ADC, or burst down the mage because he's a big damage dealer. However, a lot of mage will go for Zhonya's Hourglass so stop wasting your ult on them, just go for someone else. (ADC, Glass cannon top laner) You can still ult the squish support, but I don't recommend it. Unless the support is the MVP in the other team and completely deny your team. (it happens sometimes with Nami, used to happen with Soraka.