Talon Build Guide by pepsiM4A1

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League of Legends Build Guide Author pepsiM4A1

Talon - One burst and he's down!!

pepsiM4A1 Last updated on October 30, 2012
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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: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 0

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 9

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Hello, I am pepsiM4A1 and this is guide that shows you how to play as Talon.
Talon is an assassin that deals all his damage by his skills.All his skills scale on AD so never take AP items on him. Glass cannon Talon works because as an assassin you should be able to take down your target and then run away. But however, who am I?
Well, I am not a pro, but in one year, I acumulated enough information in order to teach you something. In ranked, I did insanely well but my team always fed and it is a little bit hard to be the main carry with Talon...

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Why Talon?

Talon is one of the best assassin's in the game.In the first game I played him ,I didn't enjoy the game as much as I was with my main Xin Zhao.I didn't play Talon for weeks and then one day, I decided to go solo top with Xin Zhao.Everybody asked me if I don't have another champion.Then I started to play Talon.Playing him for months made me enjoy him but I don't have the chance to take him lots of matches since the enemy team usually has a tank solo top...
That's why I started to play him MID lane where he does really well. He has a several bad match-ups but other from that, he is invincible. I am really bored at lvl 1 and 2 since I don't have my whole burst but then I get stuck into the game.

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Where should you go with Talon

With Talon you can go solo top,jungle or you can go mid. Let me tell you how each lane works:
On top lane, the META counters Talon hard since solo top champions are tanks or bruisers which make your life a living hell. You can still do well but against a small amount of champions like : Fiora, Kennen, Vladimir.
On mid lane, you just zone your opponent after a certain level. You will deny his farm and you will get some easy kills on him. After this, you are free to roam and help your team or you can try to make a long laning phase so you will have a bigger creep score.
When you are jungling, you don't have a good clearing speed, you don't have sustain and you will drain your health potions. It is true that he has viable ganks but still, he needs a lot of farm for the The Bloodthirsters so going jungle means you won't have that huge creep score.
So, as you can see, going mid is most effective way to be a good Talon so that is what I am going to teach you.

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Talon's earliest memories are the darkness of Noxus' underground passages and the reassuring steel of a blade. He remembers no family, warmth, or kindness. Instead, the clink of stolen gold and the security of a wall at his back are all the kinship he has ever craved. Kept alive only by his quick wits and deft thievery, Talon scraped out a living in the seedy underbelly of Noxus. His mastery of the blade quickly marked him as a threat, and Noxian guilds sent assassins to him with a demand: join their ranks or be killed. He left the bodies of his pursuers dumped in Noxus' moat as his response.

The assassination attempts grew increasingly dangerous until one assailant met Talon blade-for-blade in a match of strength. To his surprise, Talon was disarmed and facing down his executioner's sword when the assassin revealed himself to be General Du Couteau. The General offered Talon the choice between death at his hand, or life as an agent of the Noxian High Command. Talon chose life, on the condition that his service was to Du Couteau alone, for the only type of orders he could respect were from one he could not defeat. Talon remained in the shadows, carrying out secret missions on Du Couteau's orders that took him from the frigid lands of Freljord to the inner sanctums of Bandle City. When the general vanished, Talon considered reclaiming his freedom, but he had gained immense respect for Du Couteau after years in his service. He became obsessed with tracking down the general's whereabouts. Talon's suspicions led him to the doors of the Institute of War, where he joined the League of Legends in order to find those responsible for Du Couteau's disappearance.

''The three deadliest blademasters in all of Valoran are bound to the house of Du Couteau: my father, myself, and Talon. Challenge us, if you dare.''
-- Katarina Du Couteau

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Champion Spotlight

Always look at the champion spotlight before trying the champion so you won't get dissapointed because you bought the champion.

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Pros / Cons


Counter of nearly all AP carries
Really strong burst
Hard to kill while ulti is not on cooldown
One of the best single target focuses in the game
Can gank lanes very well
Huge splitpushing potential

Weak against heavy CC team
Mana Hungry
Weak against AD in early game
Weak against bruisers all game
Supports can counter him

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Talon deals 10% additional damage with his auto-attacks to any target that is slowed, stunned, immobilized or suppressed.
Your passive is activated if you have a Frozen Mallet but I recommend you not to take one since you are an assassin, not a bruiser. It is not worth to use Rake just to trigger the passive. Don't forget that when you start your burst, the passive is active.
Noxian diplomacy
Talon's next auto attack will deal additional damage, and will make the target bleed over 6 seconds, dealing more damage over time and revealing their location to Talon for the duration.
Use this as second ability in your burst since it's damage is amplified by Cutthroat. Late game, it's bleeding will deal a huge amount of damage and it is applies life steal so you can use it to get bonus health from the lifesteal. Max this second since it is very usefull but not as much as Rake.
Talon throws a volley of blades in a cone ahead of him, which then quickly return back to him. These blades deal damage each time they pass through an enemy, and slow them for 2 seconds.
Don't use this to harras your enemy since it has a big mana cost.Use this skill when your enemy tries to flee. You can use this skill to farm as well. Usually, this skill is used to make your enemies run faster from your huge damage output but sometimes, it is just used for damage
Talon instantly appears behind his target, silencing them for 1 second and amplifying his damage against that target for 3 seconds.
Always start your burst with Cutthroat.It is a very efficient gapcloser so don't use Flash.Even the enemy is a little far away for you to cast Cutthroat on him,just cast it on an enemy minion nearby and then Rake him for the finishing blow.
Shadow Assault
Talon disperses a ring of blades outwards and gains stealth for up to 2.5 seconds while gaining 40% movement speed. When Talon emerges from stealth, the blades converge on his location. Each time a blade passes through an enemy, they take damage. Each enemy can only be damaged once at the start of the ability and once at the end.
You can use this skill either to kill someone or to escape.When you are lvl 6 you can easily burst down an enemy with Cutthroat, Noxian Diplomacy, Rake and then a Shadow Assault and a basic attack so the blades will hit the enemy.If you are sure the enemy won't die use your ulti but wait for the cooldown of Noxian Diplomacy and Rake and then attack.Don't wait for Cutthroat since it has a long cooldown .
Shadow Assault is a very efficient escape tool since you just get bonus movement speed.Since the enemy will know where you are because the blades are coming to you,go in the opposite part.

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Greater Mark of Attack Damage

Greater Mark of Armor Penetration

Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist

Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed

Greater Quintessence of Cooldown Reduction

Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage

Greater Quintessence of Armor Penetration
As you can see you have what to choose from but take whatever you think is neccesary but I will explain you what each and every one does:

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With Talon,I always go 21-0-9 focusing on damage and cooldown reduction.
Summoner's Wrath -The armor reduction during Exhaust synergises well with the 10% damage boost from the slow.
Brute Force -Gives you some attack damage which helps you.
alacrility-Gives you a small amount of attack speed which will help you throughout the game.
Sorcery -Gives you cooldown reduction which really is good on Talon.
Deadliness -Gives you a good amount of AD which will increase your basic attack's and your skill's damage.
Weapon Expertise -Not a big amount of armor penetration but still helps.
Sunder -Some more armor penetration
Executioner -This will help alot in late game.
Summoner's Insight -It reduces the cooldown of Flash and sometimes you will take teleport,and you will teleport faster .
Good Hands -If you are a good Talon player ,you won't die so much and you will start to be impatient and want to revive faster.
Expanded Mind - You need mana because Talon is mana hungry.
Swiftness -Will make you faster in early levels and it will help in late game too.

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Summoner Spells

I just use this skill to escape if I couldn't with my Shadow Assault.I love Flash and always take it with Talon
I use this skill to deal the finishing blow and I often use this to reduce healing effects like Sadism.
I use Teleport when I am in a hard lane and I know I must often recall.When I find a pushed lane I teleport to a minion to backdoor.
I take this skill when I am mid or I go solo against an ad carry.I use this before using my Shadow Assault too.

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Core build

This item gives you extra mobility.You should take Boots of Speed before Doran's Blade since you can juke skills and run from the enemy faster.
Every Talon player should take this item since it gives you that 80 health which will help to stay much more in lane.It gives you some damage and a little lifesteal which will again help you stay more in lane. In the first minutes you won't be able to get B. F. Sword.Thats why The Brutalizer is a very good choice since it has cooldown reduction and some armor penetration which will help you alot with your abilites.If you watched some Talon builds you will always see The Brutalizer because as I said,it is a very good choice. This item is a very good choice since it gives you damage and lifesteal.As you know,when you kill a minion it gives you stacks.Usually you will get this item in mid game where you will be able to clear a wave of minions only with Rake so getting stacks is really easy.With the lifesteal you can stay a long time without recalling.

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Other Choices

If you go mid,this item is a very good choice since usually AP carries go mid and their damage will be reduced.Even in the late game,a Talon against a heavy CC team without any tenacity will usually die.Thats why those boots are a great choice.
I usually take these boots since they have cooldown reduction and I really need that cooldown reduction.In late game,with his quints and masteries and his boots his cooldown reduction is 34.92%.This will really help with your burst.
These boots are really helping you if you want to gank all lanes.In the rest those boots are useless.

If their team isn't high on damage and they build more armor you can take this item instead of Frozen Mallet but you will be squishier and won't be able to go so fast in the teamfight.
If their AP carry gives you trouble ,instead of Infinity Edge, Maw of Malmortius is a great choice since you will have magic resist and the shield will help you too.And don't worry for your damage output, Maw of Malmortius gives you alot of damage.
You may take this item for the health and mana bonus and it's passive that will help you against the AP champions in their team. Take this item if you have problems against AD carries.Usually Frozen Heart> Thornmail since it gives you defence,mana and cooldown reduction.Overall Thornmail is taken by more players but I basically don't understand why. Thornmail is a very classic item against AD carries.But as I said before Frozen Heart> Thornmail on Talon but it is your choice. Thornmail is a great item too because it has that 100 defence and the carry will die by attacking you.
Quicksilver Sash is a great choice on Talon.However there are some players that always forget to use the active from items such as Deathfire Grasp, Wriggle's Lantern or shurelya's reverie.If you just forget to use the active,don't take it since it will be worse for you.

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Your role as an assassin

As Talon,you want to always focus the squishy targets since you won't be able to get any kills if you go for the tank.As Vapora said,if you take health items and one AD item you won't be able to deal enough damage.In my build ,I have used Frozen Mallet thinking the passive will make me deal alot of damage but as a caster you won't base on your bassic attacks.Again as an assassin you should kill the heavy damage dealers.That's why I removed Frozen Mallet.

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Rake vs Noxian Diplomacy

Both skills are very usefull but I recommand Rake since it is a much more usefull skill then Noxian Diplomacy because it can be used to farm ,to harras your enemy and the enemy can't juke this skill so easy.So this skill can be used from distance while if you want to cast you Noxian Diplomacy you must stay near your enemy and this may be a bad exchange.Don't forget that you may use Noxian Diplomacy on structures too but Rake has much more uses and it is the main skill even when you are jungling(tried it once).

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Why three Bloodthirsters?

Now ,A The Bloodthirster increases your burst with much more damage then a choice I always hear on Talon, Last Whisper.Take Last Whisper if the enemy is building armor.
Now with three The Bloodthirster you can stay much more in the game without recalling because your health is missing.Making stacks on The Bloodthirster is pretty easy too and you will get a boost of 40 damage if you have all your stacks.

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Frozen Mallet vs Trinity Force

So ,this is a topic that alot of people talked about.Actually neither of them is a good choice since both give you bonuses when you hit your target and both don't give you a good amount of damage.

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How to survive Solo Top against each champion

Going solo top as Talon is a good idea but only if you know to play him and how to play against his opponents.If you don't know how to play Talon, you won't do very well on top.


Riven is one of the best solo top champions.She deals a lot of damage and can go out of the fight really easy.Never use Cutthroat on her and then continue your burst since she will use her Ki Burst and then use Broken Wings.This is a really bad exchange.You should farm under your tower and ask for your jungler to help alot.


Gangplank is a very good solo champion.If he builds full AD after lvl 6 you won't have any trouble,but if he builds tanky it is a big problem.When you start your burst he may use Remove Scurvy and then he uses Parrrley and if it is a critical strike you drop low HP.
Bad exchange.You can burst when his Remove Scurvy is on cooldown but you must have your Shadow Assault to be able to escape before he can hit you.You can farm pretty well but if he gives you alot of trouble call for your jungler.
Difficulty pre level 6:Hard
Difficulty post level 6:Medium-Hard


An unskilled Wukong is very bad for him and very good for you.But if he is skilled when you come near to him he will use his Decoy and you will burn mana and he can use his Nimbus Strike and Crushing Blow on you and you will get low on health too.If you use your Shadow Assault ,a skilled Wukong will use his Cyclone and will go to your turret.Never forget that you aren't invulnerable while your ulti is on use.If he uses his ulti just go to the river,not your turret and you can survive.

Lee Sin

Going against Lee Sin isn't that hard but it depends on how is he building.I have seen full AD and offtank Lee Sin.Your real difficulty is when he builds offtank.He deals alot of damage but you will be fine when you stay in the back of your minions and if you retreat when he comes nearby.By the way,never Cutthroat Lee Sin since you will die if you do such kind of thing.Even if he is low never try since he has ironwill which will make him regenerate HP so fast and if he has his Dragon's Rage he will kick you away.



Renekton is a great solo top champion since he has alot of defence and damage from skills and can't be easily killed while he uses his Dominus.He is a great danger when he has over 50 fury since he can use his Ruthless Predator and then run with Slice and Dice if he is low.


Shen is a tank that is really hard to lane against since he has his Shadow Dash and if you get taunted, he will use Vorpal Blade.If you start your burst,you must finish it in one second which is impossible.And a skilled Shen player will use Feint when you head to them and your damage will be reduced.In lane with him,farm under your tower and when he comes to use Vorpal Blade, Cutthroat to him.Your only chance is when he uses his Stand United push his tower since Talon is a great pusher.


Nidalee isn't a very big threat for Talon but be carefull when she uses her Javelin Toss.If you stay behind your minions you will be safe.When playing against champions like Nidalee ,you should play as a bully ,always punishing her when she comes close.Since you won't have much trouble with your burst before level 6 when she takes her Aspect Of The Cougar,it will be a pretty easy lane.After level 6 ,always Rake when she uses her cougar form and if you are sure you can kill her use your Shadow Assault and try to catch her.


If you are going to lane against dr.mundo,always take Ignite as summoner spell since his Sadism will be affected by Ignite.Never go on a 1 vs 1 fight.You can only if he is lvl 3-4 and never recalled.Be carefull at his Infected Cleaver and always try to juke since his health will drop if he didn't hit anyone.Never start your burst when he has his Burning Agony activated.


Irelia is a champion that can still deal tons of damage even if most of her items provide health.Against this champion,even farming is very hard .Don't base on your turret since at lvl 6-7 she will have enough health to dive you .When you start your burst there are a few things to keep in mind:Irelia has long cooldown on her skills so once you see her use Equilibrium Strike you can Cutthroat, Noxian Diplomacy and then run.If she has a Phage, Rake in your back after she uses her Bladesurge so she won't be able slow you.If you both are low it is most likely that you will die and she would know that.When she chases you if your Cutthroat is not on cooldown,a fast burst should put her down but else,if she starts to use her Transcendent Blades,use your Shadow Assaultand go the river and from the river to the bush behind the turret.


Mordekaiser is a great pusher so thats why I recommand you to take Teleport as summoner spell.Don't use your burst on him since with his Iron Man and Creeping Death you won't deal much damage and you will get hurt from Creeping Death even if he doesn't use his other skills.The other problem is that you burn mana while casting your burst.Ask for your jungler's help and farm at your tower .If you are low on health don't stick around since Mordekaiser will use his Children of the Grave on you and you are dead.If you are low recall and Teleport to your tower if your lane isn't pushed.


Pantheon is a great solo top champion.Be carefull at his Aegis of Zeonia and Heartseeker Strike.When you use your burst on Pantheon,don't forget that your Noxian Diplomacy is blocked by his Aegis Protection.Thats why after Cutthroat you must hit him once and then activate Noxian Diplomacy.Since his Aegis of Zeonia has a big cooldown ,you can use your burst on Pantheon often.And when he casts his Grand Skyfall intrerupt him with your Cutthroat.Never forget to ward river and never try to burst Pantheon while his Aegis of Zeonia is off cooldown.


If the enemy team has a Vladimir solo top,you will have a very easy lane.Just farm and when he comes nearby ,burst him down. Vladimir stands no chance against Talon because Talon has Cutthroatwhich silences him and a silenced Vladimir is helpless.Never over-extend and always ward river or you will get ganked.


Never go 1 vs 1 against a Jax.His Counter Strike will stun you and you will usually die because of this.Even if you run with your Shadow Assault he can catch you with Leap Strike.Don't get aggressive since you will die in a fight.Farm as much as possible.When he comes nearby or when he activates Empower or Counter Strike run to your turret since he will Leap Strike to you.Ask your jungler to help as much as possible.


Laning against Fiora isn't that hard.Even if she is a very good duelist,you can burst her down very easy.In early game,after you burst her once ,don't let her attack minions since she will regenerate her health with her passive, Duelist.When you burst her,don't forget that her Riposte blocks your Noxian Diplomacy so use it after a basic attack.The range of her Lunge I think is the same as the range of your Cutthroat so instead of leaving her cast Lunge ,use your burst and she will retreat.Her Blade Waltz isn't stopped by your Shadow Assault so when she uses Blade Waltz run to your turret.


Malphite is a deadly counter for Talon.Never take Talon against such a beast.But if you go against Malphite,try to not get harrased and always stay at your turret.You should remember that his skills scale on defence...
If you get harrased,recall as fast as possible since you will get backdoored.Tell your jungler to babysit your lane.
Difficulty:Extremly Hard


In my opinion, Yorick is best solo top champion.You can burst him only when he has a little mana since he will burn alot of mana.Never think your turret can save you since his omens will tank the turret until he comes to kill you.Just don't take Talon against Yorick.
Difficulty:Extremly Hard

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Mid Talon

Talon is a very strong mid champion.He basically can't be countered mid .Never get too cocky or never over-extend since you will be ganked and you will die very fast.Always ward river .When you go mid you should usually take Mercury's Treads.As you see , Talon is a very strong mid laner.But usually your team won't agree with you and will call you a noob(happened lots of times). Talon is countered by bruisers and until now,I haven't seen any bruiser mid.

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Early Game

Even if you go mid or if you go top ,you should farm and try to keep your opponent away from your minions.If it is an easy lane ,try to jump at your target and burst him whenever it's possible.But if it is a hard lane,try to Rake to keep them away.When it is a hard lane for you,be sure your target will dive you and at that moment you should try to get your target. Cutthroat to him,then use Noxian Diplomacy, Ignite and if he tries to go back use your Rake but if he doesn't use your Shadow Assault and try to get him.Never over-extend if you are in a hard lane since your opponent will try to get a gank on you.

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Mid Game

In Mid game you should have your The Bloodthirster and possibly your B. F. Sword.Now in mid game,teamfights will start and you should be always there for your team.You must take down the damage dealers and your AD carry and your AP carry should take the other kills.Always try to backdoor but ask your teammates to tell you when someone is missing.Talon is a great pusher and he can use his Noxian Diplomacy on structures.He can escape hard moments when your team forgets to tell you when someone is missing.This is bassically what mid game is about.

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Late Game

In Late Game you should have all your items and you should be able to kill the enemy carries with only one burst.In late game,you will usually be focused since they won't have any damage dealer when you are alive so always miss a little when the teamfights start.A good trick is when you are focused or when you are being hit,use your Shadow Assault.Once their carry targets another champion Cutthroat to him, use your Rake and Noxian Diplomacy and as the title says,he's down!
In late game you won't have any mana problem so don't worry about spamming your skills.Even if you die and lose the stacks of the The Bloodthirster you can farm them back with your Rake.

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The End

So,that's the end !I wish you enjoyed my Talon Guide and if you did,please like and tell me how I can improve it by leaving a comment.
Special thanks to :JhoiJhoi, IceCreamy and KSS Awake for helping me make this guide.