Xerath Build Guide by Dathrio
Not Updated For Current Season
This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.
Not Updated For Current Season
The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.
So there is a lot of debate back and forth as to if Xerath is OP or UP. I for one think he is just right currently. In the right hands he seems very OP, but if you don't know him well he will seem very UP. I made this guide to show you how I like to play with him and I do not claim to be a professional player and this is my first guide so feel free to comment with questions or ideas to improve my build. I have been playing Xerath since his release and I believe I am under 5 loses with him (A few were because of AFKers/Feeders). (-.-) But last 10 games with him I am 9-1.
EDIT: Added another Build to show a variance I have been playing. Enjoy!
For Masteries I go 9/0/21.
I take the obvious 8 for mages in offense and 1 in to give me extra time early/mid game to slow the while spells are on cool down while i go in for the kill. Also useful for team fights and when the try to gank you.
For Utility I put 3 points in for the reduced death timer. Now you might ask, "Why not 3 in ? Since Xerath is so mana hungry early." Well this is why if you compare the 2 at lvl 18. Lets say you have 60 mana regen/5 sec. If you had the bonus 4% added thats now 62.4 mana regen/5 sec. YAY! 2.4 MORE MANA EVERY 5 SECONDS!!!!! -.- Whereas, with the 10% reduced death timer if you get killed in a team fight and you would be out for 60 sec. your now only out for 54 sec. still not much but if your team was able to hold the fight long enough this could save you an inhibitor.
I take the 4 in to help me lvl faster into the Awesome power Xerath becomes. I then take 3 in for a bonus 3 mana regen/5 secs. better then 2.3 at level 18 potentially. :P 1 in for blue buff and 1 in because I figure its better to have and extra 360 Gold in a 60 game then putting it in others. You can however place this one into as well your call. The last picks are clear CDR= Amazing and why not move faster?
As Far as summoner spells go I stick to
As stated earlier:
I take with mastery to give me extra time early/mid game to slow the while spells are on cool down while i go in for the kill. Also useful for team fights and when the try to gank you.
I take to set up a gank, quick repositioning, escapes, etc.
You could take however I feel it is useless with Xerath because He is an Artillery Canon, if you are charging them you will easily kill them with OR OR even Mage Chains especially went set up in Locus of Power before you will never be close enough to use . It would only be possible in your out of mana and/or they are low health still charging you which rarely happens. However you may argue, "Why not take since you take ?" Simple I use Deathfire active as an opener and lets say at level 18 you face a Champion with 2000 hp. would do 410 damage or 20.5% of there health. That's 50 right away and 42 each second following for 5 seconds and its a closer. however if you open with you deal 30% damage in 1 sec, that's 600 Damage! If its a tank with 3000 that's 900! While, Ignite is still only 410 on them.
Could be another spell to choose to get back into the fight faster or for ganks but I never pick it up.
For Runes I take:
9 Marks to give the extra umph early/mid game
9 To scale me well to for late game
9 ^ Same
3 To be more effective early game.
With this you get 17.43 AP to start with 8.55 magic pen. (not including your magic pen from skills). Not a bad start to harass while last hitting. By lvl 18 from just runes you will have 58.74 AP (Not including bonus if you have ) which, if you think about it that 860 Gold + some more AP from runes (860 gold for Blasting rod)
For Items I build him like a "Glass Canon" however the more Canon he has the more Armor he has from his passive. Plus you should not be fighting close on the enemies terms unless you have clear advantage. So I go as follows:
I Start with Because its a great starting item for Xerath. Now why no Pots? Well as stated above he has some bonus armor plus as a crazy range mage you should never get close unless need or clear advantage. So being long distance you can tell when they are coming in and worst case you have your and .
Then I go for my I get these instead of any other boots because I feel the the extra mapic pen. is the most beneficial especially early/mid. When I have enough mana for my combo with just these 2 items and i see mid come back i drop them so low they are scared to move anywhere closer then behind their tower.
Next I build Kage's Lucky Pick gives a little to my AP plus more Gold (even though Xerath is great at farming gold more never hurts). ;) Plus this item is needed for so why not get the bonus gold early?
Then I go to finish up my by getting . Why do I go with this item before my Deathcap? well 1) CDR 2) mana per 5 to help starving xerath plus more AP. 3) its active can do wonders I have seen tanks run at me to gank i hit that first and just them seeing 30% of their health drop mid/late plus the damage of my rotation they run away thinking twice if the get the chance to run away.
Lastly in my Core is This is just a given for Xerath More AP= More Damage and for Xerath more Armor, which equals less squishy.
Depending on how the game is going or who we are up against I may try to get early to help with mana problems and to build into but i only build this is i get Tear early.
I like to get +70 AP plus even more Magic Pen. if they are stacking MR so you can get back closer to true damage.
Another good choice is +50 AP +30AP to thoses around you and 25% spell Vamp to them too.
is another good item for him since it gives a good boost to health, mana and your AP from it at max is 80.
Need a bit more CDR to play how you want becuase you can't get Blue Buff? Grab a not to mention a shiny 75 AP to boot oh and did i mention more mana regen?
Want more AP while getting more Armor to help with those gap closer champs? Go for a +100 AP (one of the highest AP items) + the extra armor and a sweet ability to "disappear" for a few sec's while your team goes to work.
Having trouble with those pesty Mages? Go for a get a little bit of MR while not sacrificing AP, some mana, and WHAT? You move faster to kill or get away? O.o plus an awesome passive for when your blasting from the back and someone charges you auto attack for massive damage and run or kite or just kill on the spot.
I personally only really drop down into my Tripod aka Locus of Power to harass, kill a runner or if i can sit behind my team in a team fight and be safe. Yes you get more magic pen. by being in it but I tend to find that when you activate it 1 of 2 things happen:
1) they come in to gank waiting for you to start to plant down. 2) they see you start and run for their lives because you warned them saying, "HEY CRAZY DAMAGE COMING YOUR WAY!" So I usually find that for solo mid they do not expect you to get close to use normal range and get caught off guard. and you can prop down to get them running after you already bursted them down being closer.
One cool advantage of it costing 0 mana is if i have just enough distance from enemy team closing in to kill me and they are faster, you can activate super quick deactivate, only costing you 1 sec run time, and now you have a quick move speed buff to get a little more ahead. Plus if you build This free ability counts toward it.
How I start off I usually Solo Mid and I focus on farming last hits and when the enemy champ gets close enough i will harass with trying to hit as many creeps as possible while still landing it on champ. Once I'm level 2 that's when my real harass starts using Mage Chains follow quickly by
TIP: You can activate while Mage Chains is still in the air so as to landing them almost at the same time, timing it to be able to stun too.
Ones you have all skills and I get close enough to use then I hit them with Mage Chains can quickly stun them with my first . Now they are stunned I close the gap hit with then continue chasing while hitting them with my last 2 shots from . If they are still alive you are still close and then you go tripod Locus of Power and Mage Chains (If in range) and finish off with
TIP: You can also snipe runners from a fight, tower huggers by Locus of Power and in the jungle near them.