Shyvana Build Guide by RaikuKawisa

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League of Legends Build Guide Author RaikuKawisa

Shyvana: Flames of the Dragon

RaikuKawisa Last updated on August 7, 2013
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Cheat Sheet


Shyvana Build

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: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 9


Utility: 0

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Hello fellow Summoners. I'm going to start off my guide with a little bit about me.

This is my first guide, but I've played with Shyvana enough that I have a nice feel for her now so I thought I would do I guide so others interested in using her would be able to get ideas, and also so people who are more experienced can give me pointers on how to improve my build. I've played League for a little over a month, so I'm still very noobish in a lot of areas, so bare with me if I say something that annoys the living hell out of the god-tier Summoners who wrote the book on how to play.

Now that you know a bit about me, lets get on with the important parts, namely about Shyvana.

Shyvana is a melee-based fighter who deals mixed damage. Her Basic Attacks and Twin Bite deal Physical Damage while Burnout, Flame Breath, and Dragon's Descent all do Magic Damage. Of course this means she is able to take on both Armor and Magic Resist Tanks. Overall, Shyvana benefits from a aggressive style of play, but one that must be tempered with caution. Once Dragon's Descent is unlocked, it is all too easy to lunge at an enemy within range of a turret. Or other methods of losing the advantage and turning your kill into a death.

Early game, Shyvana is very weak to Ranged champions and remains like this until she unlocks Dragon's Descent at which point she is now able to set up ambushes and rapidly get within Melee Range. Until then, harrass their minions or wait until they get out of position, at which point do as much damage as possible. Even if you can't get the kill, chasing them off to go heal opens up the lane for you to get Exp and Gold without getting shot until they return.

Once Dragon's Descent is unlocked, Shyvana excels at setting up ambushes, especially since she is capable of leaping over large walls. However, attacking from the bushes, or even flanking through the jungle, are effective means to surprise your enemy and to use Dragon's Descent to push them out of their realm of safety.

Shyvana Overview:
*Mixed Attacker
*Aggressive Style of Play
*Weak against Ranged champions (Early Game)
*Effective Ambushes (Late Game)

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(If you didn't notice, I skipped over Masteries and Runes. I am simply not proficient enough to give advice in those areas)

The Item build I have chosen focuses on Attack Speed primarily and then balances out her other stats.

Wit's End
This is the first item I make in game. The increase in Attack Speed makes getting kills much easier. The Magic Resist boost is also good for dealing with Magic Casters, since the Passive also removes Magic Resist AND deals Magic damage.

Sunfire Cape
A good item to have in any Shyvana build, though could be replaced with Warmog's Armor or another higher level item if you wanted to focus more on the Tanking ability than the AoE Passive that Sunfire Cape offers.

Ravenous Hydra
This is the pinnacle of this build. The Passives on this item effectively turns every attack into a AoE and deals damaged stacked with its high Attack Damage. This item also brings its own medic to the party with Life Steal and Health Regen. I would call this item a must for any Aggressive Shyvana build.

Nashor's Tooth or Zephyr
Depending on which attacks you prefer depends on which item you should get since both have the same +50% Attack Speed increase.

Nashor's Tooth is a great item for Burnout and Flame Breath since neither of them have the Cooldown reduction from basic attacks like Twin Bite does. Nashor's also boost their power with a +60 Ability Power increase.

I prefer to use Zephyr because it offers more for an aggressive play style. It still offers the Attack Speed, but it also increases Movement Speed and has the Tenacity ability, which is a godsend against stuns, slows and other abilities that would otherwise hamper Shyvana's ability to get close.

Guardian Angel
This item can be acquired before Zephyr or Nashor's Tooth if that is your preference. However I find having an item that helps me get kills and shut down the person trying to kill me, is more useful than having a item whose biggest ability doesn't take effect until you die.

Do not get me wrong. Guardian Angel is an amazing item with a solid increase in both Armor and Magic Resist, and it pays off when you come back from the dead to smite the person who thought they could slay a dragon.

Spirit of the Ancient Golem
This item is relatively cheap item that is good for a little extra boost at the end of a long game. With it, you are now sporting more Health and have a better Cooldown Reduction. This item is also good if you choose not to get Zephyr as it also has the Tenacity Ability.

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Skill Sequence

The reason Shyvana doesn't start off so well, is because she doesn't have full range of her abilites. However, once she gets started, she keeps her momentum.

Start off with Burnout. This AoE is good for farming minions and is your most effective close range attack until you have built up enough Attack Speed that the cooldown of Twin Bite is next to nothing. This will also help escape or close in on a fleeing enemy. Also do not be afraid to use this if you are returning to the front lines. The sooner you get back, the better.

Flame Breath is the next ability to unlock since it is your only ranged ability. The 2% increased damage is also nice, so mark up as many enemies as possible and then use Burnout to make full use of the damage buff. Also use Flame Breath to poke at ranged champions. The lower they are on Health, the less likely they are to pick a fight.

Twin Bite is more useful once you have some Attack Speeed built up, but it is powerful nonetheless. This attack counts as two hits for any sort of hit counter such as Wit's End Magic Resist Passive. The cooldown of this ability is reduced by .5 seconds everytime Shyvana lands a Basic Attack. Therefore a high Attack Speed means this attack will cooldown very quickly and can be used often.

Dragon's Descent is a great ambushing tool, allowing you to leap out from place that your enemies would have never expected. And once you are a dragon, Dragonborn's Armor and Magic Resist are doubled, making you a harder target to kill. Everyone of Shyvana's other abilities have had additional effects added to them. Twin Bite now strikes 3 targets in front of Shyvana. Burnout sets the ground on fire when Shyvana walks over it, and Flame Breath now deals damage in a cone allowing the ability to be used with less accuracy required and more targets able to be hit.

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Team Work

Teammates Supporting Shyvana:
Shyvana can work fine on her own. Her hardy stats make her tough to kill, and her abilities give her a powerful edge in close-quarters. However, she does need help when it comes to dealing with 3 or more champions. She simply cannot handle that many, unless they are all clustered together. She also could use help setting up ambushes. Having a teammate led enemy champions past Shyvana makes for a brutal awakening for the enemy, especially when their escape is blocked off by one pissed off dragon.

Shyvana Supporting the Team:
While the half-dragon may not need much help herself, she excels at supporting in a variety of roles. Most of the time it involves taking some heat off of an ally. An enemy champion might be willing to chase down an injured ally, but when Shyvana arrives on the scene, they usually think twice about pursuit.

Preferred Role:
Shyvana prime role is an Offtank. She can be the main tank with the right build, but her play style favors aggression over defense. Her job in a team setting is to pull enemies off the main tank (easy enough with Dragon's Descent) or to protect the ADC or APC until the real tank can get into position. She also works well jungling and counter-jungling, so don't be afraid to go exploring and cutting off support routes if your lane is doing well.

Laning Ability:
Shyvana, though to say she specializes in this would be a waste, is rather effective at taking out turrets and structures. Burnout does constant damage to the turret and the enemy minions harassing your friendly ones. And while twin Bite doesn't recieve cooldown from hitting the turret, it still packs a punch. Shyvana is even more effective once she has built up Attack Speed. All of this paired with her good defenses means she is able to withstand a couple blasts of the turret if it means taking it out.

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Tips and Tricks

These are a couple different tricks that I've picked up on while playing Shyvana.

Dragon's Descent Wall Jump /league-of-legends/ability/flame-breath-437 /league-of-legends/ability/burnout-436
This is a trick that most people don't know about. If you use Burnout before Dragon's Descent, it will set the ground on fire starting from where Shyvana started.

(Yes, all of these videos were done in a custom game on Twisted Treeline)

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Pros / Cons

Shyvana is a unique champion to use. Without having to worry about mana, the only thing preventing her from using abilities is the cooldown timer. She excels at close-range fights and minion control and an aggressive user will reap the rewards of using her.

However, she has problems facing ranged champions. Especially ones like Ashe who are able to slow and stun Shyvana, stopping the rampaging dragon in her tracks. It is also possible to be too aggressive, especially using Dragon's Descent. More than once I've found myself getting ripped apart by a turrent because I leapt too close to the stone guardian at which point I would have to retreat and have now wasted the ult.

*No Mana
*Excellent AoE and Close-Quarter Combat
*Able to execute devastating Ambushes
*Benefits extremely well from Attack Speed items

*Weak against movement-impairing abilities
*Punishes Recklessness
*Slow to start up

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Shyvana is a character that I originally choose because she was a dragon, however I have chosen to make her my prime champion due to how much my play style matches with her abilites. With her I can do massive amounts of damage without worrying about being a glass cannon. I would recommend Shyvana to any Summoner who tends to lean beyond the realms of caution. Besides, who doesn't want to be a dragon on the Fields of Justice!

In closing, I want to thank you all for taking the time to read my guide and I would love to hear feedback from you. Did my guide help you? Is there something I can improve upon? Again, this is my first guide and I hope that you all enjoy it.
~Raiku Out