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Shen Build Guide by Yomalolo

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Not Updated For Current Season

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Yomalolo

Shen - Many ways lead to victory

Yomalolo Last updated on September 7, 2013
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Team 1

Ability Sequence

1
4
5
7
9
Ability Key Q
2
8
10
12
13
Ability Key W
3
14
15
17
18
Ability Key E
6
11
16
Ability Key R





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.



Masteries

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Executioner
 
 

Offense: 9

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Honor Guard
 
 

Defense: 21

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Pickpocket
Intelligence
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Nimble
 
 

Utility: 0


Guide Top

Introduction

This guide focuses on Summoner's Rift (5v5) and is stuffed with text.




1. Solo-Top




"I find them unworthy."

Shen, The Eye of Twilight, is a great Tank with marvellous supporting abilities. He is a viable option for Solo Top, because then he will reach level 6 earlier, so that he get's early access to Stand United. With this build you have two options: 1. Stay defensive, focus on farming and let your teammates take the kills or 2. Play agressive and kill kill kill.




2. Jungle




"From the shadows."

Having a Jungler in your team is always a big advantage, because of three simple reasons:
1. You have one additional solo lane (top) and the champion there gains more experience and can have all the minion kills, thus grows strong faster.
2. The Jungler can gank more successfully, because nobody can call "miss"/"ss"/"mia" for him.
3. He's the only one that makes serious use of Smite, which can be used to steal epic monsters like Baron Nashor .

Since the new masteries (Fizz patch) jungling with tanks has gotten even better. Early access of Butcher and Bladed Armor are only two reasons.




3. Support




"There is no dispute."

As a Support Shen never really was the best choice. But actually, since the Nautilus patch, he grew to a more useful one. In the first place that is because the amount of health reg from Vorpal Blade now scales with your max health. So if you build him with much health, you get a quite useful heal for the Carry!






Pros:

  • can't go Out Of Mana
  • persistent and versatile
  • taunt ability
  • global ult
  • great at escaping
  • is a ninja
SPACE

Cons:

  • needs to have an eye on all teammates
  • requires a calm mind and much practice
  • nobody knows what his face looks like
  • rather slow jungling
-
-
-





To boost my credibility:


Guide Top

Counter Picks

One of the joys of League of Legends is, that every champ has its ways to get countered. Although some are stronger than others, sometimes just one single adjustion to your strategy can help you with winning your lane. That's why I will explain 3 champs that are inferior to Shen and 3 champs who will most likely outplay Shen.



Pick Shen against




Pantheon

You are able to negate his Spear Shot with your Feint, which makes his main lane dominance tool useless. Also, you are able to counter his Grand Skyfall by just teleporting to where he is jumping with your Stand United. Another possibility to take him out of the game is to buy some armor early. All in all you should be able to prevent him from snowballing by preventing him from killing your allies, which will make him useless in the late game as he relies on items.





Kha'Zix

You are able to outsustain him by building armor and using the heal of your Vorpal Blade. Also, you can poke him with your Vorpal Blade while shielding his attempts to harm you with Feint.





Tryndamere

This one is complicated, because lately, AP Tryn has gotten a viable choice like AD Tryn always was. When fighting against an AP Tryn, it won't be easy to kill him, as he heals much with with his Bloodlust. Then you'll just have to try to outfarm him and dodge his Spinning Slash with your Shadow Dash.
When fighting an AD Tryn, you will build early armor and then annoy him with your Vorpal Blade while you wait for an opportunity to kill him. Be careful for his high level 1 damage though.





Be careful against




Yorick

You don't stand much of a chance against him. With his ghouls he can either push your lane hard or deny you from farming. Your only possibility is to sit back and wait for your jungler to gank.





Warwick

One problem is, that you have to get health for survivability and for your Ki Strike and Vorpal Blade heal. His Hungering Strike on the other hand deals bonus damage based on the target's max health. That is one reason why he will dominate you. Additionally he will outsustain you in lane and suppress you from teleporting with Stand United by just using Infinite Duress. Try to be passive, farm and wait for your jungler to gank.





Jayce

When in lane he will do more damage than you and try to deny you from farming. On top of that, he will stop you from teleporting with Stand United by using his knock-back ability Thundering Blow. Try to dodge his Shock Blast with Shadow Dash and use Vorpal Blade to farm while absorbing his ranged auto attacks with Feint.







Source: http://www.lolcounter.com/champ/shen


Guide Top

Shen's Abilities

Ki Strike (passive) : Extra magic damage (= 3.5 % of your max. health) on your normal attack every 8 seconds. When hitting this, you regenerate some energy. Its cooldown is reduced whenever you autoattack something.


It makes the lasthitting of minions easier and provides you a decent amount of damage on champions. Use this in combination with Vorpal Blade for max damage.




Vorpal Blade : Ranged magic damage, which marks the enemy for 5 secs. Any champion, who attacks such a marked enemy, regenerates health (= dependant on your max. health). You gain a flat amount of heal when you kill something with it.


The range is moderate, thus this one is good for last hitting minions and champions or just to harass the enemy. Use it with Ki Strike for max damage. Because of the healing powers (buffed with the Nautilus Patch) Shen got a more viable early Support. Heal your ally by throwing Vorpal Blade at a minion and letting him attack it.




Feint : 1.5 sec lasting, little damage absorbing shield. While active you regenerate energy with every autoattack. While active, the cooldown of Ki Strike is additionally reduced when you autoattack something.


Since Shadow Dash's duration is flat I'd rather max this second. If you choose to play Solo Top, this one is more useful because it can soak up nearly every damage that a single enemy can deal within the time of Feint's cooldown (9-8-7-6-5 sec). For instance it is also a direct counter against Karthus' Requiem.




Shadow Dash : Dash over a short distance, taunt and damage every champ in your way. While they're taunted, Shen takes reduced physical damage. On top of that you regenerate energy depending on the number of champions taunted.


This is a cheeky skill, that can be used many different (offensive or defensive) ways. You can taunt your enemies to stop them from running away or from attacking your allies, to make them walk where you want them to, to make an allied turret hit them or use the distance part to flee, to get through walls or to dodge straight line abilities like Ashe's Enchanted Crystal Arrow. Use this on an enemy when Ki Strike is ready to guarantee a hit. I max it last because the taunt duration doesn't get longer and its damage is not as useful.




Stand United (ultimate) : Has to be activated on teammates to give them a shield that absorbs some damage. After 2.5 secs you teleport to the chosen teammate.


One of my favorite ultis in the game. You use it to save the life of a teammate, to trap greedy enemies who won't stop following your teammate, to get away from sudden ganks or just to get somewhere fast. It has to be combinated with Shadow Dash for best possible use.


Guide Top

Summoner Spells

Most Viable




Exhaust :

Reduce the damage of an enemy to prevent him from killing your allies and yourself or slow enemies to ensure a kill.



Teleport :

You can activate Stand United to help a teammate and then Teleport back to where you were before. It's also a useful tool for when you think you will be playing against an enemy that's stronger than you. Then you will be able to get your kills on other lanes. In the late game this might also prove useful to push two lanes at once or to get to Baron Nashor in time to prevent the enemies from killing it.



Smite :

It deals big damage, that increases with your champs level, to minions and summoned beasts like Annie's Summon: Tibbers. Take this with you if you start at the jungle. I'd never jungle without it because it makes it faster, thus you can start ganking earlier. On top of that you might use it to steal Baron Nashor one day.



Ghost :

Having faster movespeed for some seconds is a nice advantage. You are able to get away alive or to chase down fleeing enemies. Why this is more useful than Flash? Simply because of the shorter cooldown in relation to the distance per time you can travel with them.



Flash :

With this one you are able to teleport over a short distance. That can give you the last hit for a champion kill or an escape out of a teamfight. Anyways, you as a rather tanky champ can't make full use of it, because the enemies will hardly focus you. But then again it's a good to position you for a Shadow Dash.



Clairvoyance :

Viable option for a Supporter. Enlightening an area makes it easier to counter ganks or to chase down fleeing enemies. This skill also enlightens bushes, which is very useful in the early game.





Semi Viable



Clairvoyance :

Take it as Supporter. Enlightening an area makes it easier to counter ganks or to chase down fleeing enemies. This skill also enlightens bushes, which is very useful in the early game.



Heal :

A heal may save your allies or your own life, is useful to stay on your lane longer or to trap an enemy in a 1vs1 situation. I don't take this one because of the relatively high cooldown.



Cleanse :

This spell removes all debuffs and reduces the time of new debuffs for 3 secs. It's good for escaping sudden situations or for chasing down enemies who try to get away by disabling you.



Ignite :

No doubt, that it's a good spell as it gives some extra damage and reduces the enemies healing power for some time. But in my opinion it's not the right choice for a tank, so I'd pick Exhaust instead.





Not recommended



Revive :

You aren't supposed to die very much so you don't need this.



Clarity :

You don't have any mana, you have energy.



Barrier :

For a very short time this spell gives you a shield. It's okay to last a bit longer in battle but not really worth taking, because the enemies will rarely concentrate their damage on you.


Guide Top

Masteries & Runes

1. Solo-Top



For single laning I choose 9/21/0 with focus on survivability and magic damage, as you are a tank and deal magic damage mostly. Arcane Knowledge gives you a bit of a stronger damage output with Vorpal Blade, Ki Strike and Sunfire Cape.




Greater Mark of Magic Penetration :

Magic Penetration provides higher damage infliction with Vorpal Blade and Ki Strike.



Greater Seal of Scaling Health :

More health means more survivability and more damage with Ki Strike. I don't take the flat ones because from level 5 on Health/level seals grant more Health than the flat ones would.



Greater Glyph of Magic Resist :

Magic Resist glyphs are the best choice for tanks. The flat ones are for laners because they might need it early and...



Greater Quintessence of Health :

Health quintessences give you the health boost you need early game and therefore more Ki Strike damage.





2. Jungle



The main tools for my jungling are survivability, Bladed Armor and Butcher , which results in 6/21/3.




Greater Mark of Attack Speed

With Attack Speed your Ki Strike will reload faster, which means more damage for faster jungling.



Greater Seal of Armor :

Armor is necessary, because it makes you more sustainable in the jungle.



Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist :

As a jungler you should choose the per level ones. I guess it's clear that you don't need MR earlyon because you'll spend your most time with minions that deal physical damage only.



Greater Quintessence of Health :

Health quintessences give you the health boost you need early game and therefore more Ki Strike damage.



Alternatives:


Greater Mark of Armor :

Armor is necessary so you are more sustainable in the jungle. You can use these even though they're not primary runes, because then you can go with a health boost for seals, so your Ki Strike deals more damage to the jungle mobs.



Greater Seal of Scaling Health :

More health means more survivability and more damage with Ki Strike. I don't take the flat ones because from level 5 on Health/level seals grant more Health than the flat ones would.





3. Support



When supporting, I go hybrid with survivability and utility mixing to a 1/11/18. You need the gold boosts because you won't get any gold through kills or minions.





Greater Mark of Magic Penetration :

Magic Penetration provides higher damage infliction with Vorpal Blade and Ki Strike.



Greater Seal of Scaling Health :

More health means more survivability and more damage with Ki Strike. I don't take the flat ones because from level 5 on Health/level seals grant more Health than the flat ones would.



Greater Glyph of Magic Resist :

Magic Resist glyphs are my favorite choice for tanks. The flat ones are for laners because they might need it early.



Greater Quintessence of Gold :

Through the gold gain you will be able to compensate for the kills you dont get.


Guide Top

Items [UNDER CONSTRUCTION since Bulwark patch]

Feature Legend:


Core: You have to buy these items before any other equipment, because they are the key to your success.

Followed by: These items are next after you've purchased the "Core" items. They are highly recommended as they function well in most situations. If you feel like not needing them, take the "Situational" items instead.

Situational: These items aren't as commonly needed as the "Followed by" items. But in some situations they may be the better choice. Items not mentioned in "Followed by" and "Situational" are not worth the cost and should not be bought!





1. Solo-Top




Core: > > Sight Ward



Boots of Speed :

You most likely want to start with simple boots. They give you the chance to keep a distance to enemy melee champions. That way they can't fight back when you harass them with Vorpal Blade. Additionally movespeed makes farming easier.



Health Potion :

Some additional hp is always nice, so you don't have to go back and lack farm.



Sight Ward :

This first ward should be placed at your river or tribush to spot the enemy jungler when he tries to gank you.




Followed by: Kage's Lucky Pick > > > > > > >



Kage's Lucky Pick :

With the early AP and gold per second you gain through this item, you get a bit of a stronger Vorpal Blade and Feint to harass the enemy succesfully and more gold to spend for items later in the game. It builds into Twin Shadows.



Mercury's Treads :

For MR and tenacity against heavy AP teams or nasty CC take these. Against heavy AD champions get Ninja Tabi. I like these boots more than any other because of the debuff reduction. Basically that is because I hate slows.



Sunfire Cape :

Armor and health give you more defense. The passive damage makes you more dangerous to enemies and lets you kill groups of minions faster.



Rylai's Crystal Scepter :

Besides health for more survivability and AP for stronger abilities, this item adds a slow to your Vorpal Blade which makes killing enemies easier.



Twin Shadows :

After you received some extra gold with your Kage's Lucky Pick it's time to combinate it to this. That way you get more MR and an active that slows and reveals the nearest two enemies. It is useful for spotting enemies that hide nearby and to get away or kill them easier.



Enchantment: Furor :

It gives you additional movespeed when fighting, which makes chasing down enemies more efficient. Take this only when you're about to win. If you're more likely to lose, take Enchantment: Homeguard.



Abyssal Scepter :

MR for survivability, AP for stronger abilities and an aura that decreases the MR of nearby enemies. That way your abilities and those of your teammates will inflict more damage. Aura items are always useful for the late game, where big teamfights take place.



Thornmail :

This armor item is just the tip of the iceberg that represents your equip. You gain more defense while reflecting some damage to enemies who auto-attack you. Unfortunately the reflected damage scales with your received damage which results in little reflection. Nevertheless this is my choice because it of all items it got the highest amount of armor, which is good for tanking turrets in late game.




Situational: / / / / / / /



Doran's Shield :

If you aren't quite sure wether or not you can hold the lane against your enemy, buy Doran's Shield as your first item. It's more expensive and you'll have to get more gold before you're able to buy your Mercury's Treads because you're missing the Boots of Speed, but it can help you alot.



Aegis of the Legion :

Take this defensive aura item when your supporter or jungler doesn't want to. The additional survivability is very useful for teamfights. It can (but should not always) be combined to Runic Bulwark.



Runic Bulwark :

As an evolution of Aegis of the Legion this item nearly does the same, except that it gives you additional MR. Purchase Runic Bulwark only when your enemies got heavy AP champs. Otherwise the spent gold is a waste.



Randuin's Omen :

This item should be taken against heavy AD teams. Besides boosting your defense, it slows auto-attacking enemies and can be activated to slow all nearby enemies movespeed. That can make running away and chasing down easier.



Frozen Mallet :

It functions like Rylai's Crystal Scepter but with auto-attacks instead of abilities. The additional AD is useful for destroying turrets and slowing enemies with auto-attacks last longer than just slowing them with your Vorpal Blade. On the other hand the range of your Vorpal Blade is sometimes necessary to bring enemies in range, before you can even slow them with auto-attacks, which is why I prefer Rylai's Crystal Scepter.



Warmog's Armor :

The health boosts your Ki Strike, your Attack Damage together with Atma's Impaler and your survivability. The health regeneration will be very useful to keep up good health in the late game, when you won't have the time to go back. You might wanna take this in case the enemies got evenly strong AP and AD champions or lots of annoying true damage.



Enchantment: Homeguard :

This boot enchantment can be very useful when the enemies are prevailing. When you visit the fountain you will get a massive movespeed boost for some time. That is useful for getting to anywhere on the map faster after teleporting back to base and more important to push the enemies away from your base.



Ninja Tabi :

This is a good alternative for Mercury's Treads when you want to be more durable while laning against the enemy AD carry or when the enemy team consists of heavy AD champs.



Vision Ward :

It functions like every good player's favorite item Sight Ward and adds true sight which reveals invisible champs AND wards. It is used mostly to destroy the enemy ward at Dragon or Baron Nashor which leaves them without a chance to steal it.





2. Jungle Tank





Core: > > Sight Ward > > >



Hunter's Machete:

This item is best for jungling. Some people like to get Boots of Speed but I stick to Hunter's Machete because Shen's jungle clearing speed is already slow enough.



Health Potion:

These two pots will keep up your health so you don't have to gank with low health. A low health gank would only result in a fail. One pot is enough for me, which is why I begin with one Sight Ward aswell. If you are not confident with jungling, you might also take 5 Health Potions and leave the Sight Ward.



Sight Ward:

This ward is my precious. You can either use it to ward the enemy red or blue to eventually steal it or use it to ward either your jungle to prevent counter jungling or one of your ally's lane to prevent ganks. If you are not confident with jungling, you might also take 5 Health Potions and leave the Sight Ward.



Madred's Razors:

This item builds out of Hunter's Machete and speeds up your jungling. I take this instead of Spirit Stone, because it would give useless mana regeneration.



Boots of Speed:

These boots will make running from lane to lane easier, which results in more ganks. Ganks are essential for a jungler, which is why I take them rather early.



Wriggle's Lantern:

Armor, Attack Damage, Lifesteal and sometimes big damage to minions. Additionally its active lets you place a regular ward. It's build with Madred's Razors.




Followed by: > > > > >



Mercury's Treads :

Movespeed, Magic Resist and Debuff Reduction. This does not grant you any feature for the jungle, but if nothing unusual happens the biggest part of the game will take place in the late game. At that time you won't stay in the jungle to kill minions very often anyway.



Wit's End :

Attack Speed, Magic Resist and with its passive some additional Magic Damage on every hit. Then you can clear the jungle faster, deal more damage to champs and survive longer. More attack speed also means faster reloading of Ki Strike.



Warmog's Armor :

The health boosts your Ki Strike, your Attack Damage together with Atma's Impaler and your survivability. The health regeneration will be very useful to keep up good health in the late game, when you won't have the time to go back.



Atma's Impaler :

Armor, Critical Strike chance and additional Attack Damage in relation to your max Health. It works perfectly with your Ki Strike and Warmog's Armor.



Enchantment: Furor :

It gives you additional movespeed when fighting, which makes chasing down enemies more efficient. Take this only when you're about to win. If you're more likely to lose, take Enchantment: Homeguard.



Trinity Force :

It gives you a bit of everything you need for physical damage, for example 150% additional attack damage after using an ability, speed for yourself and slow for the enemies, who get struck by your auto-attacks. The mana bonus is a waste indeed but that is no reason for me to leave the other useful effects.




Situational: / / / / / /



Banshee's Veil :

Although this item gives you mana which Shen doesn't have, its MR, health and passive spell shield can prove very useful when fighting against champions whose abilities rely on a full combo like LeBlanc or Annie.



Quicksilver Sash :

Just in case you lack a bit of Magic Resist against a heavy AP team or you get annoyed by the many CC they have. It can be build into Mercurial Scimitar to add some AD, which is very expensive. That is why I keep Quicksilver Sash almost everytime.



Guardian Angel :

This item is most useful on champions that get focused in every teamfight, because of its reviving passive. When playing tanky you won't get focused very often, which is why you might not need this. On the other hand the MR and armor are useful for you after all.



Blade of the Ruined King :

This relatively new but popular item grants attack speed, attack damage, lifesteal and an active, that absorbs an enemy's health and steals his movespeed for a short time. Additionally it works like the retired item Madred's Bloodrazor in regards of adding percental damage to your auto-attacks. All in all it is expensive but powerful. You might want to take this against very tanky enemies.



Enchantment: Homeguard :

This boot enchantment can be very useful when the enemies are prevailing. When you visit the fountain you will get a massive movespeed boost for some time. That is useful for getting to anywhere on the map faster after teleporting back to base and more important to push the enemies away from your base.



Ninja Tabi :

This is a good alternative for Mercury's Treads when you want to be more durable while fighting jungle creeps or when the enemy team consists of heavy AD champs.



Vision Ward :

It functions like every good player's favorite item Sight Ward and adds true sight which reveals invisible champs AND wards. It is used mostly to destroy the enemy ward at Dragon or Baron Nashor which leaves them without a chance to steal it.





3. Support


Core: > > > > Sight Ward >



Total Biscuit of Rejuvenation:

This one is provided by your masteries. Its use is minor.



Explorer's Ward :

This ward functions like a regular ward, except that it lasts shorter. Use it to just spot a place in the first minute or to ward the river, to save one minute before using your Sight Ward.



Cloth Armor :

Because according to the current meta you will face an AD carry on your lane, this item is the best choice to start with, so you can play more offensive. Additionally it only costs 300g, thus leaves enough gold for a Vision Ward and a Sight Ward.



Vision Ward :

As a ward prevents ganks you might want to use this one to destroy the enemy's river ward to leave them open for your jungler's ganks.



Sight Ward :

Place a ward that enlightens the area around it and stays for 3 minutes. You should always carry at least one of these (or Sightstone) with you. They're the main tool of a Supporter. Keeping the jungle and important paths warded is considered "map control". Therefore you can always react to where your enemies are and more important to where they're not.



Boots of Speed :

For your first base port, you might want to take these boots so you can poke the enemy AD carry more easily or, if necessary, retreat to your turret faster when the enemies try to gank.




Followed by: Emblem of Valor > Kage's Lucky Pick > > > >
> > Shard of True Ice > > >



Emblem of Valor :

This item should compensate for the instant heal you are missing. Its aura gives health regeneration. With this regeneration your AD carry can stay on your lane longer and farm more.



Kage's Lucky Pick :

With ability power your abilities get stronger which resuls in a stronger poke and shield. The gold per second will also compensate for the farm you're not getting. Taking this early will make best use of the gold boost.



Sightstone :

This item gives you more health and let's you place wards. Note, that it has 4 wards stored until you get back to base and that you can only have 2 of these wards placed at the same time. A 3rd ward placed by Sightstone will make the 1st ward vanish.



Mercury's Treads :

For MR and tenacity against heavy AP teams or nasty CC take these. Against heavy AD champions get Ninja Tabi.



Aegis of the Legion :

The additional survivability and the defensive aura are very useful for teamfights. It can (but should not always) be combined to Runic Bulwark.



Ruby Sightstone :

This is a better version of Sightstone, that gives you more health and has 5 wards stored instead of just 4 while you are able to place 3 wards at the same time instead of 2.



Shard of True Ice :

This item is combined with Kage's Lucky Pick. Its aura provides mana regeneration which is not useful for you but for your allies. It also gives you the ability to give one of your allies or yourself a movespeed slowing circle, that makes chasing down and fleeing easier, for a short time. You can take either this to keep the gold per second effect or Twin Shadows if you feel like you need more MR.



Enchantment: Alacrity :

It gives you permanent additional movespeed, which is useful for chasing down, fleeing and more importantly for placing your wards all over the map. Take this only when you're about to win. If you're more likely to lose, take Enchantment: Homeguard.



Randuin's Omen :

You will hardly purchase this as most games don't last long enough to get this. Anyways, it gives you health, armor and health regeneration, which make you harder to kill. The active lets you slow all enemies near you. That way you can chase down single enemies more efficiently or give the enemy team a disadvantage in teamfights. Aim for the most dangerous enemies!



Vision Ward :

I intenionally take only 5 equipment items so that I have one item slot left for a Vision Wards, which is used to keep the enemies as blind as possible throughout the late game. Your alternative would be Oracle's Elixir which is far more expensive but lets you get a 6th equipment item.




Situational: / / / /



Runic Bulwark :

As an evolution of Aegis of the Legion this item nearly does the same, except that it gives you additional MR. Purchase Runic Bulwark only when your enemies got heavy AP champs. Otherwise the spent gold is a waste.



Locket of the Iron Solari :

This item gives you more survivability and aids your team with an activatable shield. There is no critical reason for not getting this. I personally just think that other items are more useful.



Twin Shadows :

This one can be combined with Kage's Lucky Pick and serves as an alternative for Shard of True Ice when you want to have more MR. But other than Shard of True Ice it does not keep the gold per second effect!



Enchantment: Homeguard :

This boot enchantment can be very useful when the enemies are prevailing. When you visit the fountain you will get a massive movespeed boost for some time. That is useful for getting to anywhere on the map faster after teleporting back to base and more important to push the enemies away from your base.



Ninja Tabi :

This is a good alternative for Mercury's Treads when you want to be more durable while laning against the enemy AD carry or when the enemy team consists of heavy AD champs.





Don't forget:



"Why do I buy Oracle's Elixir?" might be your question.
There are two reasons: 1) If you want to use the moment of surprise.
2) If they got an invisibility champ.


"When do I buy Oracle's Elixir?" might be the next question.
There are two proper times: 1) When you think the time has come to make the enemies blind by freeing the jungle from their wards. No wards means no protection against ganks. I know 400 gold is much but an Oracle's Elixir can really decide the outcome of a match! Besides: Every ward gives 25 gold when destroyed.
2) When you want to take the enemy invisibility champ out of the game. Invis-champs regularly rely on that particular skill and if they lose it they're quite useless.

Note, that it is not permanent until death anymore but only lasts 5 minutes!


Guide Top

How to play - Early Game Laning & Jungling

Solo Top



Because of his defensive abilities Shen doesn't have much problems when being on his own. And for the sake of a good game, let a mate choose a jungler while you pick the solo lane.

When laning against a single enemy: Think about which champion you are facing. The key to not failing in lane is knowing what your enemy is capable of (check the chapter "Counter Picks" for some hints). If the enemy is stronger than you, stay defensive. If you think you can own him, poke him with Vorpal Blade and use Shadow Dash into Ki Strike to kill him. Don't forget to farm continuously.


When laning against two enemies: If the enemies got no jungler (that means no champion with Smite) you'll have to face two enemies on your lane. So if you aren't quite sure wether or not you can hold the lane against them, buy Doran's Shield as your first item. It's more expensive and you'll have to get more gold before you're able to buy your Mercury's Treads because you're missing the Boots of Speed, but it can help you alot.

Play defensive, use Vorpal Blade to kill minions and Shadow Dash to make your turret attack the enemies if they get in range of it. Absorb damage with Feint.

It is not a shame to stay at your turret and to loose some experience. The most important thing is that you don't die so your jungler can do his job efficently!





Jungling




0: The Blue Golem (1) spawns at exactly 1 minute and 55 seconds. Until that time you and your teammates from top and mid have to scout the river. This way you are preventing a gank on you when battling the Blue Golem (1). Your mates may return to their lane, when their minions have arrived.


1: Be here at 1:55. Don't attack the Lizards before the Golem is dead! Use Vorpal Blade on the golem and use it again, whenever it's ready. Use your first Health Potion directly after the first damage you've taken. Use Smite on the golem, when he has around 445 health. After that, choose Feint as your second ability and proceed to spot 2.
The Golem will respawn 5 minutes after he and the Lizards were killed! By that time your Caster might want to take it with your help.


2: Kill the big Wolve first! Use Vorpal Blade and Feint when they're ready. The next target is 3.


3: Kill the small Wraths with Vorpal Blade and Feint first. Choose Shadow Dash and either proceed the jungling at the the Golem spot (4) or start a first gank at one of your lanes (crossed swords). Initiate with Shadow Dash and deal damage.


4: Don't forget your Health Potion! If you decide to kill the two Golems first, head towards them. If you want to help mid first, do so. The gank is a success even if the enemy just flashed out. Then your next gank will propably result in his death.


5: Kill the big Lizard first and use Smite when he has around 525 health. If you did not gank yet, now is definately the right moment, because the slow effect of Red makes ganks devastating.



>> The rest of the game is up to you!

Note: This is just one way to jungle, which indeed seems to be the best imo.
But you should know, that Jungling is about more than just the Creep Sequence. If you want to know about more and deeper thoughts, pls visit Hahano's Jungling 202: Beyond The Basics (link).
Even if you think "haha, no need, i am a serious jungle pro, i know everything about it" - No, propably even you can learn more.





Support



If you play against strong early game champions: Just stay back and let the Carry kill the minions. If he loses some health you use Vorpal Blade on a minion and let him kill it.

If the enemy champions are in your turret range, use Shadow Dash on them. After they hit you once, your turret will target them.


If the enemy champions are weak for now: After reaching level 2 and choosing Shadow Dash, enter one of the two long bushes. Your enemies will now hold longer distance to you because they're afraid of getting taunted and hitted. If they stay in range, use your Shadow Dash, Vorpal Blade and Ki Strike on one of them. Return into the bush after that. Repeat this harrassing combo whenever they dare to get in range while your partner kills their minions. Unless your minions get in hostile turret range the enemies on your lane won't be able to kill minions.

As soon as you reach level 6 your real game begins. Teleport back to base and buy the right equipment, then get back to your lane or help the other lanes pushing. Keep an eye on all teammates (the portraits on the left side of your screen and the minimap are very useful tools) and be ready to activate your Stand United if necessary.


Where to place the Vision Ward:

Put it where the enemy has placed his ward to steal the vision he wants. The best choice would be their river ward, because then your jungler can gank the lane without them knowing.


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How to play - Late Game & Teamfights

Option 1: Push with your team



When most turrets are destroyed and ganks might happen everywhere, all 5 members of your team have to stick together. As the main tank you decide where to go. You may choose between two options.

If the enemies are "clever" enough to send somebody out solo, try to gank him by taunting him with Shadow Dash while your teammates do maximum damage.

If they are clever enough to stick together, only a teamfight can decide who deserves to win the match. For that you are the player that initiates. That means you decide for your team when the teamfight has to begin. You do that with Shadow Dash! It's best to get their Carry or Caster with it, because then you take the champs that deal the most damage out for some seconds.

If your party gets surprisingly attacked by the enemy party, your job is to activate Twin Shadows and to use Shadow Dash and Exhaust on the most dangerous enemies while your teammates bring them down. Be prepared to use Stand United if needed.

Be aware that you got only one try on Shadow Dash, because it has 10 secs cooldown, which is more than the important part of a teamfight usually lasts.

If you win the teamfight, chase down fleeing survivors and enjoy a push without annoying enemies. If you don't win the fight, make the best of a bad job and get away by activating Ghost if necessary.





Option 2: Push solo



Another option is to let your 4 teammates push together while you push a side lane on your own. Shen is one of the few champs that is able to do this properly!
Keep an eye on the minimap and remember two things - First: Be ready to activate Stand United to join a teamfight that might happen to your teammates - Second: If you see any enemy appearing near your location, run away. Likely the enemies will try to gank you, because they think single enemies are easy to kill. But you won't die because of your marvellous escape features. You can use Shadow Dash to get over walls, Ghost and Twin Shadows to be faster than your chasers, or (my personal favorite) Stand United on any teammate as your very last possibility to disappear before the enemies can kill you. Be careful for hard CC that will prevent your teleport though.


Both tactics work, so try them out and then decide which comforts you most.


Guide Top

General advice

The right use of your ultimate



Use Stand United if :

- there's a chance that your ally won't make it without your help,
- your team won't get a kill without your appearance.


Don't use it if :

- it seems that you'll die after being teleported to him,
- ally will die anyway, because the enemies make that much damage, that the shield breaks.


Ultimate rescue combination (if the enemies do very much damage) :

1. Stand United (think of how to use Shadow Dash)
2. Ghost (prepare for a run)
3. Shadow Dash (try to taunt all of them)
4. Run counter your ally (to pull the enemies away from him)





Buy wards!



A Sight Ward is a very powerful tool in League of Legends because Map Control is the key to a good game. So whenever you got an item slot free and too less gold to buy your next item, take some wards with you and place them at important places like Dragon or Baron Nashor (after 25 minutes you should always have a Sight Ward at Baron Nashor !).
If you don't know how to make the best use of them, i recommend you to read this simple guide to sight wards (link). It will help you alot!





Watch the Minimap



Not much to say at this point. Just do as the headline says. WATCH. THE. MINIMAP.!
Sorry for the Caps, but this is one major issue for a lot of fails. You can avoid a lot of moaning if you just watch the minimap (it is located at the bottom right of your screen, in case you haven't noticed yet).

Three Basic Rules: 1. No matter whether your mates called "miss" or not. If there's a portrait missing while you are laning, an enemy is propably heading towards you to catch you off guard.
2. Before engaging on an enemy while you are on your own, watch the minimap. If all the enemies are alive AND missing, stop right where you are, turn around and get back to a safe location. A lot of players get killed because they do not reckon that enemies plan an ambush while their ally is chased.
3. Never run out too far if the enemies are missing. The farther you are away from a safe turret the harder it is to survive. You better back up before getting surrounded by them.





A kill is more than just gold



A lot of people, espacially new players, just see a kill as some bonus gold. As a conclusion they see their death just as a little bonus gold for the enemies.
But I tell you, it is more than that. This happens when you are dead:
1. You miss from 30 up to 90 seconds of your game/farm time (that includes death time and the time required to get back to your lane or wherever).
2. Your enemies can push easier for 30 - 90 sec and might get your turret down because of that (+ 750 gold for them).
3. You can't help your ally that might get in a dangerous situation for 30-90 sec, thus secure a second (third, fourth, fifth) kill for the enemies.
4. You might loose the Red/Blue Buff and pass it to an enemy for at least 2:30 seconds.
5. You might give the enemies a 100% chance to kill Baron Nashor , because your team is too weak to steal it for about 30-90 seconds.

You see, a kill is so much more important / a death is so much more disastrous than it seems to be from the first view. The enemies won't just get stronger, you will also get weaker, so it will get more and more impossible to catch up with them again. Remember these words when you're having a 4-10-4 game the next time.





When the enemies do Dragon or Baron



What I've been experiencing lately is people that want to stay near Baron Nashor or Dragon while the enemies are killing it. That only results in them getting killed. What you have to learn is to let things go. If they are 5 and their jungler got Smite, then why are you staying there? You can't steal it but will only get yourself killed. So just retreat when you can't help the situation anyway.





Twisted Treeline



Some say Shen is among the Top 10 Twisted Treeline Champs. I know that his Shadow Dash should prove itself to be very useful because if there are only 3 enemies it's easier to catch all of them with one shot. But anyways, I don't play TF, so I have no evidence for that. If you do, please give him a chance and then tell me about it in the comments. Thanks :)


Guide Top

Update Notes

19-12-2010 :
20-12-2010 :
05-01-2011 :
06-01-2011 :
10-02-2011 :
02-03-2011 :
18-04-2011 :
19-04-2011 :
27-06-2011 :
^
03-07-2011 :
20-07-2011 :
01-08-2011 :
17-08-2011 :
^
19-08-2011 :
16-09-2011 :
24-09-2011 :
25-09-2011 :
17-11-2011 :
09-02-2012 :
11-02-2012 :
15-02-2012 :
10-04-2012 :
13-12-2012 :
15-12-2012 :
13-01-2013 :
20-03-2013 :
23-03-2013 :
29-03-2013 :
30-03-2013 :
31-03-2013 :
24-05-2013 :
02-06-2013 :
30-07-2013 :
Changed some minor details
Removed Leviathan and added Soul Shroud instead
Changed build design with the new Mobafire Guide Setup
Added AD-Offtank build
Changed build name
Now using Exhaust for both builds
Added a picture for Summoner Spells and a link to the Bible of LoL (by Condon)
Mentioned the importance of wards
Flash and Guardian Angel are now part of the build. (Thanks to PsiGuard)
Added the Jungle build
Changed some minor details
Added more detail
Added some colors
Removed AD-Offtank and added Offensive Tank instead
Edited runes (Thanks to Hahano) and layout
Finished the situational items
Now using Wriggle's Lantern when jungling
Added the Dominion chapter and renamed build
Changed the items for Dominion
Added the new masteries and summoner spells
Now using more Feint
Adapted abilities to the Nautilus Patch
Changed various details and added the Support build
Adjusted the Jungle items and the Shadow Dash change
New masteries and some item changes
Some text and many item changes
Items and runes texts changed
Minor detail changes
Finished Counter Picks
First attempt to finish the "Items" chapter
Changed some minor details
Removed Dominion guide
Changed runes and item texts (Thanks to Ravenholm)
Finished the item texts and changed Summoner Spells
Changed Solo Top masteries (Thanks to utopus) and items


Guide Top

Ending

If you haven't seen the Bible of LoL by Condon yet, you've missed a great work. It's teachful for newbies and amusing for experienced players.

You want to spice up your build? Read Making a Guide by jhoijhoi. It's a must-read for those who want to publish aesthetic builds.


Remember that as a tank you need to change your behavior and your way of buying items according to the enemy team.

Even though this is my first guide, I tried my best to explane everything. Thanks for reading! I am looking forward to read criticism and questions!