Shyvana Build Guide by Kostick

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.

League of Legends Build Guide Author Kostick

Shyvana - Ever Tried Slaying a Dragon?

Kostick Last updated on February 14, 2013
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
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.



Offense: 9

Honor Guard

Defense: 21


Utility: 0

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Shyvana is a melee champion who can be played in a variety of ways. The most common and my favorite is the tanky dps, she is also an amazing jungler, or can be played as a full dps carry. She has very high mobilty from her Burnout and a great escape / initiate with her Dragon's Descent. Her playstyle and build can be adapted to fit many positions depending on your team and the enemy team.

Shyvana does not use mana, instead she uses Fury (like Tryndamere and Renekton) so she can spam her abilities as much as you want as long as they are on cooldown. Unlike these champions though, she uses Fury only to activate her ultimate and gains fury over time as well as from basic attacks.

She is well known throughout the League of Legends for having a very fast jungle clear speed from her Burnout. Unfortunately she does not have any natural cc except for the small knockback given by her ultimate Dragon's Descent, so ganks are very hard to get kills from. Because of this it is common to take Exhaust while jungling to aid in ganking.

So before we begin I suggest you watch her champion spotlight to get a feel for Shyvana as a champion, it is kind of old but the gameplay is still pretty good:

SPACE SPACE /league-of-legends/champion/shyvana-86

Credits to jhoijhoi for the template, which you can find here, and to redwarewolf for his amazing Shyvana guide, which you can find here

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There are those few dragons in Runeterra who have mastered the intense magical energies that course through their unique anatomies, evolving into an elusive Celestial Dragon. These powerful and enigmatic creatures spend most of their time hidden away from the lands of men. However, there are those who find themselves drawn to civilization and who take on human forms to immerse themselves in the world of humans. Occasionally, one finds itself drawn to the spirit of a human and they have relations. Sometimes, in the slimmest of odds, the union will bear fruit and that offspring will be one of the few half-dragons to have graced Runeterra. Shyvana is one such creature, born to a simple Demacian farm-girl and her Celestial Dragon father. Left to be raised by her mother, her oddities were something that couldn't be hidden from her community, though she was protected by her family. Once her family had perished in disaster, she was left alone for the first time - truly alone. Shyvana quickly became an outsider and it wasn't long before the community's fear began to put her in danger. Facing mortal danger at the business end of an angry mob, she was rescued by the traveling noble, Jarvan Lightshield. The noble was a man who strangely knew exactly what she was and took her under his wing. It wasn't long before she was offered a chance to use her natural skills in the service of Demacia, as Jarvan initiated her as one of the elite guard. Following Jarvan into the League of Legends was only natural.

Shyvana is a fierce warrior, with the blood of one of the most powerful magical predators in all creation flowing through her veins. Unlike some of her fellows, she is a subdued personality - somber, cool, and collected. However, when the moment strikes, her draconian heritage manifests and there are few that can stare her in the eyes and not feel the primal urge to flee.

''By the blood of my father, I will end you!'' - Shyvana

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Pros / Cons



+ High damage throughout the game
+ Great mobility from Burnout
+ Amazing jungle clear speeds
+ Naturally very tanky
+ Uses no mana (only affected by cooldowns)
+ Turns into a DRAGON



- No natural CC
- Relies on melee basic attacks
- Easily kited
- Hard to successfully get a kill from a jungle gank

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Skill Explanation

    This passive is why attack speed is so important on shyvana. Your basic attacks will effect your abilities in different ways:
    • Twin Bite: Reduces the cooldown by 0.5 seconds. This is like energize except for just Twin Bite. This means that if you attack 2.0 times a second you can Twin Bite every 3 seconds.
    • Burnout: Extends the duration by 1 second to a maximum 6 seconds. With this effect you can extend the duration of your Burnout to 9 seconds giving it a 3 second cooldown. If extended to the cap in a fight you will deal 225/360/495/630/765 (1.8 per bonus attack damage) magic damage to everyone in the area, no wonder we max this first!
    • Flame Breath: Deals 15% of the ability's damage to debuffed targets. This means that when you basic attack someone/thing with the Flame Breath debuff you will not only deal bonus damage from their reduced armor you will deal an additional 15% of the abilities current damage as bonus magic damage (Tons of damage?)
    • Dragon's Descent: Attacks generate 2 Fury and Shyvana passively gains Fury over time while in human form. This means that when you basic attack a target you will gain 2 fury (even in dragon form) and while in human form you will passively gain fury to activate your ultimate. This can be used to prolong the duration of your Dragon's Descent or activate it nearly immediately after having it wear off. Twin bite is especially effective to this because you will gain 4 Fury instantly. (Note: this effect cannot be used to have your dragon form never wear off because with 2.5 attack speed you will gain 5 Fury every second while your dragon form takes 6 Fury every second.)

    This is the ability that gives Shyvana so many build options. Basically the ability is that you make 2 basic attacks instantaneously, it also resets your basic attack timer so if times correctly it will be 3 continuous attacks. It applies on hit effects for both hits, but only the first hit can critically strike. It applies procs from red buff and Sheen so this ability allows her to be built as a full dps carry. While in dragon form this attack will cleave and deal damage to all enemies in a small cone in front of her. This effect makes Tiamat an extremely popular item on shyvana and you can take it if you want.
    I max Twin Bite second after Burnout.
    Burnout is what turns Shyvana into Shyvana. This skill is a high damage dealing Aoe spell that surrounds you in a 325 range radius. It grants bonus movement speed that depeats slightly over time, making it a great chase / escape tool. It is the skill that allows Shyvana to have such amazing clear speeds. With your passive you can extend the duration from 3 seconds out to 9 seconds. This skill will allow you to counter jungle from a lane effectively and deal insane damage to minion waves and champions.

    While in dragon form Burnout will leave behind a trail of fire for 5 seconds after you leave the area. It can be very helpful to activate Burnout right before Dragon's Descent to leave a long trail of fire in your wake. Also it is a great escape mechanism because the flaming trail will deter enemy chasers (much like Singed's Poison Trail)

    Once Shyvana hits level 4 she has one of the most amazing melee pokes in the game: Activate Burnout then run through the minion wave and tag the enemy champion with Flame Breath then run up to them hit them with a basic attack and then immediately trigger Twin Bite, you can avoid retaliation from the movespeed from Burnout. This will give you 3 basic attacks + the damage from Flame Breath (and it's debuffs) + the damage from burnout.
    I max Burnout first
    This skill sends out a skillshot nuke at a range of 925. It will damage the first enemy it hits and apply he flame breath debuff to them. This debuff will reduce their armor by 15% and will last 4 seconds. The entire team can benefit from this armor reduction. Also because of her passive she will deal 15% of the abilities current damage as bonus magic damage with her basic attacks.

    While in dragon form this ability will spread out in a cone and instead of stopping at the first enemy it will just hit all enemies in the area and tag them with the flame breath debuff. This skill can be used to coat the entire enemy team in the damage and debuff and can be quickly followed up by the cleaving Twin Bite to deal massive Aoe damage.
    I max Flame Breath last because it is mostly used for the utility in the armor debuff.
    This is Shyvana's ultimate ability. It passively will give her bonus armor and magic resistance, which is great, and the bonus doubles in dragon form. That is a total of 40 armor and magic resistance with a third level ultimate in dragon form. Also this ability activates allowing you to dash to a location and turns her into a dragon. While in dragon form you get bonuses on all 3 of your other abilities. Also it damages and knocks back enemies that you pass over. It has a range of 1000, and can only be activated when you have 100 fury. This ability consumes 6 fury every second that you are in dragon form.

    This skill is great for initiating, escaping, chasing, or securing kills. It can be used right after the activation of Burnout to leave a long trail of fire in your path. Your dragon form uses 6 fury every second, but your auto attacks and Twin Bite can be used to extend the duration of the ability because they generate 2 fury every time you attack and 4 fury with Twin Bite. This skill is great during team-fights because it can get you to the enemy carry instantly and gives you a massive amount of AoE damage while in this form.
    Just like most ultimate abilities, I take a point in Dragon's Descent whenever I can at levels 6, 11, and 16.

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Skill Order

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

> > >

We max Dragon's Descent with the highest priority to maximize burst damage and the passive defenses. Next we max Burnout to farm effectively and exchange with the lane opponent. Next comes Twin Bite to aid in farming and burst damage. Finally comes Flame Breath because it is mostly used for utility and the armor debuff.

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Dragon Queen Shyvana by: Ylaziel
I went with a 9/21/0 for masteries taking the ad portion for offence and focusing on a tanky dps in defence.

Brute Force : Gives us a little extra AD for the lane phase
Butcher : Makes Last hitting a little easier, and to advance to the next tier
Alacrity : Gives bonus attack speed for duels, and to advance to next tier
Weapon Expertise : Armor pen makes you hit everything harder and scales very well into the late game when people build more armor.
Resistance : Some early MR
Hardiness : Some early armor
Durability : 108 extra health has saved me countless times
Vigor : Extra hp5 lets you stay in lane longer
Indomitable : Mostly reduces minion damage and dot. effects
Veteran's Scars : 30 health during the lane phase is huge
Initiator : Movespeed in ganks and helps give mobility to dodge skillshots during the lane phase, map presence for lane and late game
Mercenary : gives 24 bonus gold every kill or assist, in an average game it will be about a bonus 480 extra gold, and it gets better in a long or aggressive game
Juggernaut : the 3% bonus health is nice in the late game, but the 10% cc reduction really is what we take this for.
Dragon Queen Shyvana by: Ylaziel

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Summoner Spells

Shyvana will follow the same summoner spells as most solo top champions or junglers and is very limited to 6 non-troll pick spells:
Hi, I'm Teemo
This is my personal favorite summoner spell out there. It is the most reliable initiate / escape tool and will come very useful escaping ganks or unfavorable situations.
Just because I took this spell in the guide doesn't mean you have to. I usually take this spell while playing a tankier top lane champion, because it will allow you to take some punishment and heal up / buy with almost no damage to your gold income or champion level. This spell is especially useful on Shyvana because you can run out of lane, counter jungle a camp or two, recall and teleport back to lane without the enemy realizing you were ever in their jungle.
You should always have at least 1 exhaust on your team at all times. This spell will basically cripple an enemy for 2.5 seconds. It is especially useful in ganks and in team-fights to nearly negate the damage of the opponents' carry. You should replace Butcher with Summoner's Wrath if you choose to take this spell.
This is a very popular spell in normal games and people in solo que. It is useful in securing kills or dealing massive damage to a unit in the late game. It will deal it's damage as true damage over time, and you should replace Butcher with Summoner's Wrath if you choose to take this spell.
YOU MUST TAKE SMITE IF JUNGLING. Smite will allow you to speed up that legendary clear time and to increase jungle sustain or counter jungle effectively. You should use this spell to get the last hit on and jungle monster or boss to prevent it from being stolen. While we are o nthe spell: Shyvana will usually be unable to complete the standard jungle path to level 4 without smite even when starting with Cloth Armor and 5 Health Potions
If for some reason you hate Flash or despise it after it's nerf you should take ghost. It will give you a great amount of movement speed and the ability to ignore unit collision for 10 seconds. You should replace Butcher with Summoner's Wrath if you choose to take this spell.
Whatever spell you take will depend on the game, but any other spells will either be not very effective picks on Shyvana or total troll picks.

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I know the choice of multiple types of marks and glyphs might deter some people, but there is method behind this madness.
Note: Skip the following if you don't want a boring explanation

From the introduction we know that Shyvana relies on basic melee attacks to do most of her damage. Because of this we take Greater Mark of Attack Speed to attack faster. I take 5 of these because they scale so well with Shyvana's passive Fury of the Dragonborn, but what about the early game armor, it is so low yet still has a great effect on damage. For this we take 4 Greater Mark of Desolation to penetrate about 1/2 of lvl 1 armor and about all of the jungle creep's armor.

For seals we take 9 of the Greater Seal of Armor to have a tanky early game and to stay in lane / jungle longer then any other seal. I run Greater Seal of Armor on every champion because they are currently OP. Unless you know you will have an AP lane opponent these seals are a safe choice.

For glyphs I use 5 of the Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist because late game is when mages are most powerful and you will usually be laning against someone who relies on AD. Also to have some extra attack speed and clear waves / duel better we take 4 of the Greater Glyph of Attack Speed. These glyps are way outclassed by the Greater Mark of Attack Speed, but they will make you feel strong in the early and late game more then 9 of the Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist

Greater Mark of Attack Speed

Greater Mark of Attack Damage

Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist

Greater Glyph of Attack Speed

Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage
At the end of the day what runes you take are entirely up to you, but I have invested about 40 custom games just testing various rune pages and this oddball runepage is not a troll, it really works.

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The only reason most people read these guides anyway. So lets get down to business.

I love these boots and use them basically every game on any champion. They give tier 2 speed, 25 MR, but most importantly they are really the only practical item that gives Tenacity, which is like 35% CC reduation. Since shyvana is a very mobile champion she will benefit from being able to move around (who wouldn't)

This is probably my favorite item in the entire game. It gives you such amazing lane sustain and that bonus creep farming tool. Also the ward will come pretty close to paying for about 1/2 the cost of the item in a normal game if you use it. I Find this item irreplaceable until the very late game where it will be replaced by The Bloodthirster

This item gives you amazing damage output and tankiness. The attack speed and the base MR are only the tip of the iceberg with this item. Also your basic attacks will deal 42 bonus magic damage to your target and you will gain 5 bonus MR every time you attack capping at 20 bonus MR. This item is useful for every tanky dps champion but especially for Shyvana. Her Twin Bite works perfectly with the 42 bonus damage and the MR stacks.

This item is the item that will be most important to you for the passive slow. It gives a great amount of health and some attack damage, but the utility provided by the slow with every attack will allow you to destroy enemy targets. This item will be the only form of CC that you will have at your disposal, and it will make you very feared around the map. After the first basic attack they will not escape the "belly of the beast!"

This item will be the only major armor item that you purchase. It's passive will stack extremely well with your natural health, Frozen Mallet and Warmog's Armor This item will provide you with 45 armor, 18% critical strike chance, and AD equal to 1.5% of your maximum hp. This passive was recently nerfed from the 2% it originally was, but it is only 825 gold for the passive, which gives you anywhere from 45 - 60 AD depending on when you got it. When you buy it this number will be around 45 - 50 (if bought after Frozen Mallet) but will jump up to about 56 - 60 once you purchase Warmog's Armor.

This will be the item that will allow you to get out of almost any situation you put yourself into. It will make you so tanky that you will be able to duel against anyone with ease. This item will give you anywhere from 920 health and 30 hp5 to 1270 health and 40 hp5. It is reliant on farm to unlock it's full potential so you may choose to switch the purchase order with Frozen Mallet. Because of the passive on your ultimate, as Shyvana you can stack tons of heath items, and still get all the armor and mr that you need to support that amount of health. Not only will it put your health over 3.5k it will add about 12 - 15 bonus AD to your Atma's Impaler. Giving a total of about 56 - 60 damage to this item for 825 gold to get the passive

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Situational Items

Frost Shyvana by: Vegacolors
(get it, situational)

These are the items that I will buy if the other team is set up for it.

You're probably saying "WHY YOU NOT PUT THIS IN NORMAL BUILD?" Well there is an explanation to that. This item works amazing with Shyvana but I have not included it because I find that in the game I never am attacking people that have enough health to make this item worth it. As Shyavana your job is to get in the face of the AD carry and kill them, block them or in any way stop them from attacking your allies ASAP. This being our job the passive does not suit our needs and therefore I find it extremely rare that I actually find myself drifting to Madred's Bloodrazor. Also this item is such a pain to build, costing 3800 gold and the items it is built out of not serving much of a purpose on their own. Finally throughout my League of Legends career this is the only item I have found that actually loses something from the items it is built out of. (The 20 % chance to deal 300 bonus damage to minions is not much, but well ... I'm just putting it out there)

This is actually one of my favorite items in the entire game. It can really turn the tides if your team is behind in a fight because the extra armor and magic resistance is just glorious. I buy this item all the time on Shyvana because it makes you very tanky for not very much money. This item is the only item in the entire game that will give you all 3 defensive stats in a single item. With all of the stats calculated Aegis of the Legion will give you 30 armor, 39 magic resist, 8 attack damage, and 270 health. Your team will get the aura bonuses of 12 armor, 15 magic resist, and 8 attack damage. This item is truly everything that you need on any melee tanky character.

Ah, Trinity Force. The games most expensive item, and the item that gives you every stat that you will need to kill somebody (except cooldown reduction, I really think it would fit well.) This item provides health, mana, AD, AP, Attack Speed, Critical strike chance, movement speed, a Phage type passive, and an amazing Sheen based passive. Shyvana uses every single one of these abilities except the mana. The passives both stack amazingly with your Twin Bite. I love this item in general, but not really on Shyvana. This item gives you all of the bonuses that I mentioned, but it is such an expensive item and if you rely on the Trinity Force slow you will be disappointed because that will be your only CC. Also this item will only give you 250 health for so much gold and you will be very squishy for a large part of the game.

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Let me tell you the secret to winning almost any lane:
sight ward
"Buy a ward. Stop a gank. Save a life. Wards." -wowcrendor

OK, now that is out of the way (seriously there is a reason pros buy like 100 wards every game.) We start the game with Boots of Speed and 4 Health Potions. Now how 4, well if we recall at about 1:28 after the initial jungle defend / invade, we can purchase a fourth Health Potion and then use Burnout to get to lane without missing any cs.

While laning,

Shyvana is an amazing solo top laner and is a counter to most of the metagame, except dunking Darius, because he does more damage then you at early levels, but you will do more at level 9. While in lane spam your poke combo (melee characters poking ftw) of Burnout, Flame Breath, auto attack, Twin Bite, run away. This will get 3 attacks + Flame Breathand it's debuff + damage from burnout all in about the span of 1.5 - 2 seconds. Most people will not be able to do anything about that much damage is so short a time range.

Using the extra potion you will be able to stay in lane for 133% the time you would with 3 health potions after doing so you will need to recall, when you recall purchase Cloth Armor and a Vampiric Scepter or the entire Wriggle's Lantern as well as a ward and any pots you think you'll need. Teleport or run back to lane and continue laning. The Wriggle's Lantern gives you amazing lane sustain and you can put off your second recall until you have enough to purchase your Mercury's Treads and Phage.

By this time you can counter jungle as you please. (as long as mid is in lane and the enemy jungler isn't going to gank you.)

By the time the lane phase ends ~18-20 minutes in you should have 150 CS or more and you items will look similar to this:
sight ward

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This map will show you the best places to put your wards throughout the game. It is also just good laning to buy a ward or two every time you come back to base. Your lane should be warded at all times and if you are on the tribrush side (a.k.a. puprle for top lane and blue for bottom lane) you should be warding this too because the jungler will loop around into your jungle near mid and will kill you.

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Shyvana is an extremely fast jungler because of Burnout. Although her ganks are very poor and it requires the use of exhaust and/or red buff.
I do jungle occasionally and I can tell you that it is all about map awareness. I learned mostly from videos so I will just show you the two that I used to be good with Shyvana

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Counter Jungling


Shyvana is an amazing counter jungler from the jungle and even from a lane. To counter jungle is to go into the enemy jungle with the intention of stealing one or multiple of it's jungle camps to deprive the enemy junger of gold and experience.

As Shyvana your burnout will allow you to clear jungle camps very quickly. To counter jungle you must make sure that it will not end in your death. Make sure that if you are laning your lane is pushed and if you are jungling make sure all the lanes are in the lanes. Counter jungling can be anything from stealing the big blue wraith to Smiteing a buff over the wall to killing the jungler at his buff and then stealing every single camp on that side of the map.

Here is a good video about counter jungling with Shyvana

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Team Fights

In team fights you are an ok initiator, but it is better to let the full on initiator start the fight ( Skarner, Galio, Morgana etc.) In the team-fight it is your job to either kill the opponent's carry or protect your carry, depending on the enemy team. Irelia will target your carry so protect then while Malphite will probably protect his carry so try to kill them.

To team-fight offensively wait until it has started and the initiate is over, activate Burnout and then instantly Dragon's Descent over the entire team. This will do a good amount of damage to them and leave a burning trail over the team, as well as knocking everyone around. After this turn around and coat everyone in fire using Flame Breath, then go strait for the enemy carry. You should be able to take them down fairly quickly and if not will be able to chase them out of the fight and remove their damage from your team.

To team-fight defensively wait untill the team-fight starts and go strait for the enemy top laner and start pounding away at them with your Frozen Mallet. If they reach your carry activate Dragon's Descent to knock them away from the carry. After this keep fighting the enemy top laner until they are dead and then go and hunt down the enemy carry.

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Just for the LoLs

Teemo Is hiding somewhere in this guide and I challenge you to find him
Comment on what section and line he is in.
Reward: Bragging rights being the one to find Teemo.

Olaf counters Shyvana because he is Dovahkiin!!!
(bty olaf's model is not wearing any pants whatsoever so ... yeah RIOT)

Yes I know that in the math in the section titled: Skill explanation is a little off, and I have been told that with 2.5 attack speed and max Cooldown Reduction ( Nashor's Tooth ftw) you will be able to activate Twin Bite just enough times for you to be able to stay in dragon form effectively forever as long as you activate Twin Bite immediately when it comes off cooldown, and had a target to hit with 2.5 attacks every second for a long period of time (Baron ftw.) So ... I would be very intrigued if someone was able to do this and record it "Just for the LoLs."

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By: Elementb13
hiaz I hope that you all enjoyed my guide and have commented and voted. I am looking forward to the feedback that this guide will get. This is my first MobaFire guide ever and I am no BB code master, so if you see anything like [shyvana]] or [icon= Wriggles Lantern just let me know. (seeing how my most commonly said phrase in game is "/al gg".) All of your feedback will be appreciated and dont be afraid to send me pictures of this guide in action (and the max attack speed max cooldown reduction infinite dragon video.) Thanks for making it this far into this guide and amazing job by: corruptsoul for finally finding that pesky Teemo in section:(Summoner Spells) line:(4)
This is where Teemo is:

You can find it way easier by highlighting the section:

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Guide in-visioned

Guide (finally) published

9/19/12 (yeah I know)
Just for the LoLs section added and guide edited to help incorporate it a little better
"Hunt for Teemo" added for the fun of it and to try to cheer up some solo que-ers

There have not been any changes to Shyvana in the previous patches, so this guide still is totally legitament until further notice

Updated the Warmog's Armor and Atma's Impaler in the item section because of many controversial builds going around. Atma's was nerfed because it was OP, now it gives 60 AD for 825 gold, not OP at all.

Come get a glimpse into the belly of the beast
- Shyvana

By: Urusai Baka