Not Updated For Current Season
Hello, everyone. This is my first guide, I decided to write a guide about Sona the latest champion of LoL. I am not a high ranked player at all, I reached level 30 with Sona some days after her release and play mostly for fun but this doesn't mean i don't have some good advices for new players or players like me who want to try out Sona. I will say it several times in the guide, what i write is not supposed to be the best and only way to play Sona, it's just my opinion and my play style. I hope that this guide can help you or at least give you some ideas on how to play her.
So what will you get when you play Sona ? First of all not a lot of kills ! She is there to support the team and to make a lot of assist by staying with the team but you will almost never have a lot of kills. In my latest wins I end up with 2-5-24, 3-1-10, 1-5-18, etc.
So if you love this game to kill champions and jump in the battle you will be disappointed with Sona and I suggest you to try another champion. On the other hand, if you want a different champion that can fully support the whole team and play a smart game then Sona is a good choice. Plus she is sexy.
This passive is great in laning phase to harass enemies or land the last hit on minions. But it is a passive you really have to master because it is so important when you play Sona to have that attack boost. Always keep an eye of the number of spells you used and don't waste your attack on a minion, try to harass an enemy. Also important to know how to use this when you are being chased or if you chasing. The combo Power Chord + Hymn of Valor can just get you that kill or/and avoid a certain death.
Hymn of Valor
This one is your main attack. It's the only real attack you have except the auto normal attack of course. It's not the best attack ever that's for sure, but you can still harass people with it and land some good damage. What you have to learn with it is the combo with Power Chord to hit a champion. Use it to charge the Power Chord and place yourself to attack an enemy. The combo does a lot of damage early game ! But you have to use it right and must train to find the range. It is not that easy especially because you have to keep ans eye on Power Chord. With practice you can become a very dangerous Sona early game and still play it safe. It is also the base of the super combo she has. When you have 2 stacks of Power Chord, engage the champion with Hymn of Valor, use auto attack (Power Chord), then use Ulti and then again Hymn of Valor. It's the best combo you can do I think and it does good damage and stuns the enemy. After that you can auto-attack, chase them with Song of Celerity and/or Flash and use Hymn of Valor again.
Aria of Perseverance
A spammable heal that helps your allies to stay out on battlefield a lot longer and not recall. You are a support champion, this is your job. You MUST always take care of your team mates and heal them as soon as it's possible. Especially when they are running away and are low health. Even if there is no danger around, heal, heal, heal, and heal them again ! The range is pretty good for the heal so you can even attack during laning phase and heal your partner who is low on health and stay a bit back.
Song of Celerity
Awesome support ability that can be useful in many situation :
- Use it to get back to battlefield as fast as possible, spam it all the time.
- Use it to catch up to your enemy to get a kill. Help your partners to catch up enemies.
- Use it to retreat, stay close to your partners and spam it. If you do good they will never catch you and you will be safe.
It's essential to spam it all the time when you can, this helps your team a lot and yourself too to get back to battle after recalling/death.
This ability is awesome. This is what makes Sona good in team fights because not only you help the team with auras, heal, etc but also can stun several enemies to win the fight or to turn th tide. How to use it ? :
- Early game in laning phase to get a kill. Tell your partner to attack and use it when they trying to escape to stop them and get an easy kill.
- Defending a tower against one or two enemies. It's not awesome for that but if you don't have a choice it just gives you a little bit time to kill the minions or for your team to arrive.
- In team fights, it can interrupt some other ultimates (channeled skills) like Galio, Fiddle, Katarina, Nunu, etc. Let the team commit first then use it. In most of the cases you will destroy the other team.
- To stop the escape of a team or champion. If you are late for a small or big fight you can still help. Use your movement boost, flash and then your ultimate to catch 1-2-3 enemies. Your team will arrive too and finish them.
One of the biggest mistake to do with this ability is to use it too early. If you do it too early the other team may escape because your team hasn't really engage them yet. Wait for them to commit and that all your mates are attacking the use it. Of course don't wait too long, you don't want an ally to die because you were too slow. So the timing is really important. We are not talking about a lot of seconds but more like a 2-3 seconds window. Yes that can make the difference between life and dead. You are very important in the team and Crescendo is even more. The team count on you to place it well to get easy wins/kills ! You can even tell your team when the ability is ready so they know they can engage. Especially good if your team is aggressive and wants to engage when there is still a 15-20 seconds cooldown. Just tell them to wait, that the ulti is ready in x seconds.
Masteries + Runes
You are giving her more AP early game to boost here attack, magic penetration and also mana regen so that you can stay in lane longer and don't need clarity. You could also try something more defensive with heal runes but it's up to you.
For the masteries I use a normal 9-0-21. See below. I use points for Flash and Clairvoyance, you will see why in the Summoner abilities chapter. I don't take the gold because it's just a waste IMO compared to the other useful things you can get like mana regen or max mana or CDR.
So not much to think about about. Always level Crescendo when you can, no debate here. Start with Hymn of Valor of course to harass and help maybe in a crazy first blood in lane. Second is the heal because you will need it a lot. Then it depends how you want to play her of if you have problems. If you or your teammate have problems then level your heal first, your attack later. If you are doing good level your attack first. For the speed you only need one level early, the rest late game. So the only think you have to decide is to level the attack or the heal and that depends on your style and on what is happening in each game.
Well for this it's pretty easy for me to choose but i will try to comment for every spell and explain why it's good or not. Only my opinion and how I like to play the game, not the ultimate truth.
For me it is clear that Clairvoyance and Flash are the best combo. Why ? Well Clairvoyance is really underestimated a lot but it's so useful. Basically you can anticipate ganks, know what your opponents are doing and even gank with it. As a support champion this ability is awesome for your team because you can just play safe early game and avoid certain death in a lot of situations. You are really squishy early game and each gank means most of time death for you as Sona... But you need to learn how to use it to be efficient and not waste it. Use it the first time after like 9-10 second and aim for the enemy base to see what items the other champions have and what lane they will take. Like that you can already prepare for a plan and be ready for them. It may also confuse them (of course not at high level, remember the guide is not for the top players). Then walk to your tower and use it in the middle of the brush to see if your enemies are there. If yes, stay to your tower or engage the battle (depends how you play her and what teammate you have of course). If no, walk in and take the brush control ! During the game use it as often as you can but don't waste it. If your mates tell you a lot of "miss" use the ability to check the brush and the river to find your enemies. You don't want to be ganked... A little map to explain the key points with Clairvoyance :
Blue : First and second time you cast it.
Dark blue : The brush to check often in early game when there is a miss or a jungler. Also check it if you push the tower to be sure you won't get flanked. It's just awesome to know everything is clear and not live in fear.
Red : Enemy creeps camp. This is where a jungler will be at the start.
Green : In the enemy territory the place to use Clairvoyance to see 2 creep camp at once. In the river the 2 brush to check often to avoid ganks.
Of course there are others spots you will check especially when you escape or if you chase to see where your enemies are running. In general all the brush are a spot to check if you feel something weird or just want to be sure everything is clear.
Second ability is Flash. Sona is squishy and the best way to save her beautiful butt is to Flash out. Because let's be honest, in all the game you gonna do some mistakes about positioning or getting too greedy. If that's the case, Flash will save you most of the times if use right. You can also use it to get a better position in team fight to cast your ultimate. The combo of those 2 abilities are, in my opinion, perfect for Sona. Play smart with Clairvoyance, always be quick to Flash and you will not only help your team but also avoid to die.
Clairvoyance : My choice #1, see above why.
Flash : My choice #2, see above why.
Clarity : Ok so for this one I have to explain why I don't take it and why i think it's not that great for Sona. First of all, the way I play her, I don't have mana problems most of the times. Of course in early game it's not that easy sometimes and you will have low mana but it's up to you to not push like crazy and to manage your mana pool. In other guides, people say to take it because you can stay longer in lane and also because you will restore mana for your team. Well it's true, but as time passes the ability is just getting worst. Now if you are low level of if you feel more comfortable with this ability go ahead and take it of course. It is not a bad choice, but for me it's not as useful as Clairvoyance+Flash. Especially after you take your first (or second) item with mana regen.
Ignite : Some people want to play her in a very aggressive way and take this but honestly I don't see the point. Sure you may get a kill early but this is just so not Sona... You could argue that with Ignite you give her more attack power to help your team which is true, but you would have to sacrifice another ability. I think it's better to have abilities for the team or to avoid death than to get an early kill.
Fortify : First you may think it's great because you not only support the team but also protect the towers, but again other abilities are just so better that this one can't compete. Even if you save a tower it will probably go down the next time with a backdoorer or a normal push.
Revive : No. And if you are new to the game or if you like this ability for whatever reason I just try to explain why you should NEVER use it. NEVER. Basically the goal in this game is to kill and to not get killed. If you take this ability it means that you are not good and know that you will die a lot which means most of the time that you and your team will lose anyway. If you die too much try to learn the game a bit more and play more defensively. Use another ability to help you to survive. Don't always engage fights, play smarter. Of course you will die sometimes but this ability must never be used.
Heal : It is a possibility, especially at low levels. The reason behind it is that you are a support champion and with it you can support the team even more in team fights. Also good if you being chased to heal yourself with it and then to use Aria of Perseverance to avoid dead. But again, Flash would do the job better. For me the combo Clairvoyance/Flash is just perfect but if you like the Heal to be more save why not.
Exhaust : Not really something you should get. It's a bit like Heal, you could heal better during a team fight with the combo Exhaust + Crescendo. But again this is not really suited for Sona.
Ghost : A poor version of Flash, and has been nerfed in a recent patch. Flash is more versatile, and to run away you already have Song of Celerity.
Cleanse : You should never be in a position were Cleanse is useful for you. If you are then you are not playing Sona the "right" way.
Smite : Just no. She must support a lane partner, not jungle. Don't take it, if you want to jungle they are so many champion that can do it. Stay in lane and help your teammate.
Teleport : It can be a choice i guess even if I don't like it. You can not defend a tower alone, you are not good with this. But you could join your team way faster like that and win a decisive fight instead of walking... In my build i use Boots of Mobility so I don't see the point in taking this.
Rally : It's a bit like Heal in the way that when the team fights start you could help your team even more by using this (in combo with Crescendo). But like explained above, others abilities are way better.
So this is probably the section you were looking for :) So before going into the details let's see the core items of the build i use.
The core items
The three core items are Innervating Locket + Boots of Mobility + Archangel's Staff
After those 3 items it really depends on the game and how you want to play. So I'm gonna add different set up for the items and explain why i choose them.
- Innervating Locket : I always start with this because it is perfect for Sona. You get health, Mana and support the team with the passive. With this items all your mana problems are gone unless you push like crazy for a long time.
- Boots of Mobility : I know that a lot of people will just tell me I'm wrong with this one but I'll explain later the choice of the boots.
- Archangel's Staff : Don't really need to explain I think ? It's a perfect item for Sona and give her everything she needs.
The starting items : Normal build
Start with Mana Manipulator. You will already be a perfect support with your aura and this mana regen for your lane partner. Of course go with someone who has mana. Later on your first recall take Innervating Locket. If you come home to early then get Sapphire Crystal first for your mana pool.
Next item to buy is Boots of Speed. If you doing good you can buy Innervating Locket and Boots of Speed on your first trip. Then before finishing the boots you will get all you need for the Archangel's Staff. Start with Tear of the Goddess then only Blasting Wand because we are still building our support power for the team fights that will come very soon or have already started. Once you have your Archangel's Staff finish your boots. I choose Boots of Mobility, I explain why in the next chapter. From here on, it depends on what you want to do. You can build AP and CDR items or go for Auras items.
The starting items : Archangel's Staff first
Start with a Sapphire Crystal and a mana potion. Your goal here is to get Tear of the Goddess as fast as possible for the mana regen and then go for the Archangel's Staff. It's better if you want to have a better attack early before building your other items but I don't like that build much, the normal build is better even if you are less dangerous.
The starting items : Aggressive style
Doran's Ring and Health Potion. Well this is if you really want to play aggressive in the laning phase. Before getting the 3 core items you get Dorans for the early laning phase and then build up the others. Basically you have everything you need to go for the kill, especially if you added Ignite... But with this start you really must get a kill early and take risks in my opinion, which is not the way Sona should be played. But it's up to you.
Choice of the boots
So i decided to go with Boots of Mobility. Why ? Because Sona is slow and you need to stay with the team all the time. You will be running a lot on the map behind your team to babysit your mates so this is why I feel more comfortable with those boots. Also Sona is about positioning and anticipation, not staying in middle of the fights. So in order to help you those boots are just better. If you have good position you shouldn't be in trouble too much especially with if you use Flash. A lot of other guides say that those boots are not good but for Sona i disagree, they help a lot to be a good support and run across the map.
But let's see the other boots :
Mercury's Treads : My second choice. You are even more sure to escape with those boots in combination with Song of Celerity.
Sorcerer's Shoes : Third choice. It's good if you are looking for a better attack and going for a heavy AP build too.
Boots of Swiftness : Useless. If you want speed take the boots I suggest, those shoes have nothing more than a +1 on speed.
Ninja Tabi : Useless for Sona. Unless you going for a weird tank/hp build without any AP.
Berserker's Greaves : Useless, never use them. Your auto attack is terrible, don't take items with attack speed.
Mid and late game items
OK so here it's a bit difficult because you have a lot of choices. I'm gonna show you items that you can use but it's up to you to choose what you want or need depending on the game, your allies, your enemies, etc.
Deathfire Grasp : is definitely an item you want to use. It has AP, mana regen and CDR. His active will help you to be a lot more dangerous in team fights !
Mejai's Soulstealer : A very good choice if you and your team are doing great. It's easy to see especially on your assists count. Sona must always have a LOT of assist, if it's not the case your whole team sux, or it's just you... If you are not doing great take another item that has more AP.
Aegis of the Legion : Nice if you plan to really be a true support champion. With that you help the whole team in the fights and gain some health/armor. Be sure no one has it before you take it.
Soul Shroud : Very good too if you play the support way. A lot of health for you and good aura for your team.
Stark's Fervor : Well just another aura item if you want to try this way. Especially good if your team has a lot of melee fighters.
Rylai's Scepter : Health, lot of AP and good passive. It is a good combo to get more survivability and more attack.
Abyssal Scepter : Not that great I think but if you have good casters and want to help the team with this kind of aura why not. But you must use this in combination with other AP items so that you too can help with killing.
Zhonya's Ring : Perfect for the last item if the game just doesn't finish. With that your attacks will get a huge boost and you will be able to survive if something goes wrong with its unique active.
Banshee's Veil : Awesome item against casters of course. And also adds health and mana. So this is important to get if they have some casters like Ryze, Morgana, Veigar, etc.
Guardian Angel : To be sure you don't die too much and have to run the whole map again. Better survivability for you so you can help the team. But I think that Banshee's Veil is better for you if you know to play behind the team and have good positioning because if they jump in you can survive.
Pros / Cons
- Awesome support champion
- You play an important role in the team and they really count on you a lot
- Different play style than other champions
- You can play her in different ways (full support, half support/half damage, aggressive early then support auras, etc)
- Awesome ultimate that is really important in team fights
- Very squishy early you have to play smart
- You can't defend a tower alone and can't clean minions waves fast
- You can't really creep or at least not fast at all
- Low attack power even if some combos are great
- Your team will blame you if they lose because you "don't do enough damage" or because you couldn't save an ally
- Some players will also blame you in small fights because they died and you are alive. They jumped in, it's suicide, total noobish, then they run away and die and blame you because you should have made a miracle and save them. But if you go, you die too of course which isn't smart... but yeah of course it's your fault, be prepare to hear that a lot. They think you have awesome healing abilities which will save them all the time.
Working in the team
You are a support champion. You HAVE to be with the team ALL the time. Your job is not to solo, creep, backdoor, etc. You mus babysit your team ALL THE TIME. You must be there for team fights, chasing, retreating, etc.
In early game try to lane with someone who has a mana pool if you take Mana Manipulator and not with champion who have energy or nothing... In team fights heal and land your ulti at the right time to get the win for your team.
STAY with your team, babysit them, heal them. Try to anticipate what will come especially with Clairvoyance, spam Song of Celerity to catch up, don't be late. The team will not forgive you if you are behind or soloing while the whole team gets crushed.
Solo / Farming
You shouldn't ! But oh well, sometimes you will be solo. If that's the case you better spam your Hymn of Valor to kill the minions and the creeps as fast as you can so you can go back to the team. Be sure that the spot is safe, if you get ganked, especially in the enemy territory you are dead that's 99% sure. So only go if you are sure where the enemies are to clean a lane or destroy a tower with very low health. Again, your job is to support the team so unless something happened, stay with your team.
You won't do farming much but like every champion, if you have a few second or if you a near a few minions try to kill them. Be just sure to not be late for the team fight because of that or your team will be unhappy...
I hope you enjoyed the guide and that i could help you a little bit with Sona. Again this guide is not aimed at high level players but more to players who play for fun and want to try out Sona. I do not claim that this is a perfect guide and that my way of playing Sona is the best. It is just MY play style and how I like to play the game when I choose Sona.
Cya in-game maybe !