Swain Build Guide by Dangerfield
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Not Updated For Current Season
Hey every body,
It's me Dangerfield back at it once more with the Swain Guide to end all Swain guides! These build for Swain is so powerful, that once it starts going around they will probably end up nerfing Swain into the ground. This tank build when used correctly basically makes you an immovable object in lane you recall on your own terms with this build, and can easily solo defend against up to 3 enemies early game under your tower(sometimes all 5 mid/late game). I don't play ranked often, but I still maintain a 95% win rate with this build. Solo que and ranked alike. Well lets get on with it shall we?
*edit* I have also added the burst swain build I use.
*edit* As of 12/13/11 the percent of bonus health on the heal mastery was reduced to 10% from 15%. It's still a useful spell with this build, but nearly as OP as it was before.
I also changed my guide to reflect both the tank and burst builds.
Tank Pros / Cons
Great in group fights
No escape spell
Exhaust/Ignite mess you up pretty bad
Blue buff dependant
Burst Pros / Cons
Pretty much assassin like damage once you acquire the DFG
Nice ability to constantly chain skills with blue buff.
Extremely blue buff dependent
tends to have to pick and choose when to go into a fight.
I got with the pretty traditional Swain Rune set up.
x9 magic pen reds
x9 flat armor yellows
x9 ap per lvl blues
x1 magic pen quint
x2 flat ap quints
About the only other variation i see is going all magic pen quints. If you know for a fact you're going against a right click heavy team aka Cait, Kog, Udyr, Volibear...etc you can go with dodge runes I suppose(might as well before they get ride of them lol). I favor flat armor yellows though.
This is quite a bit different than most Swain set ups. Most people go with 21/0/9, 9/0/21, or 9/21/0. I choose to go 0/21/9 because the benefit from 9 points in offense mastery is pretty minimal on swain. Controlling the blue buff and making it last as long as possible is key to this build. 21 in defense makes you hella tanky and the 9 in utility gives you mana speed to chase enemies and the all powerful point in Runic Affinity for shrine buff increase. Ill get to why it's key a little bit later on in the guide.
Standard start with hobo boots x3 hp pots. Early gaming farming is pretty vital on Swain. You must last hit creeps because it helps with his passive. You harass then kill creeps to recover your mana. First trip back you go with either Catalyst or the Blasting Wand and maybe a few more hp pots along with a ward or two. Next trip back should be to either finish your Rod of Ages or Sorc boots(sometimes merc treads are a must).
Afer that I usually go with Spirit Visage into hextech revolver then Deathcap. Once you finish Deathcap you'll want to grab the Deathfire Grasp and then finally build Hextech Gunblade from the revolver.
About the only time you'd switch this build up is against a heavy AP team with alot of burst. Then you might want to skip the spirit visage for a better Mres item like Force of Nature or Banshees. Also if they are stacking mres youll probably want to get rid of the spirit visage(sadly ;() for Void Staff.
Start with E because its your most damaging skill early game and you can spam it fairly well along with last hitting creeps. The reason I go with E or Q is that E is like a fire and forget you land it and it does its damage and you can keep farming. Q does a bit less damage and you have to follow the enemy and auto attack a few times to get the most out of it. When you do that you draw enemy creep aggro and end up trading even or falling behind a bit damage wise.
Swain's Ultimate is so powerful I can't believe they allow him to use it on such a short cool down. the damage it does isn't that great, but it damages while healing and when you are in bird form your auto attacks do more damage. It drains mana pretty fast so you have to use it wisely.
So...basically you max E first, Q second, W last.
Very untraditional spells that I use. Standard is Ignite Flash/Ghost. Nothing wrong with those at all they are very good choices ignite helps you get kills early. I go with Heal/Clarity because it gives you insane lane sustain. Get low on mana? BOOM pop clarity! Low on HP? BOOM heal. Once you are level 6+ along with your ultimate as long as you play smart you are just about unstoppable 1v1. Initiate with Q+E when they run pop W to snare them. Then use your ultimate run behind them and auto attack by then your Q is back up long with E and reapply keep trying to stay ahead of them as long as possible. Then when you get kind of low on mana pop clarity. IF they still aren't dead and you're getting low on HP pop your heal as well.
You should come out on top 90% of the time with this strategy. During my play time with this build the only time I died or couldn't kill someone going all out was when....
A) Went mid against Le Blanc and was careless
B) Traded evenly with a Fiddlesticks, BUT he had a blue buff and I didn't and we both ended up running away from each other. Neither one of us wanted to gamble anymore.
C) Went against a mundo and he pretty much out sustained me, because of his HP regen.
D) Went against a Brand and Volibear solo top. I played well, but brands early game damage was just too much.
Other than that I haven't had any problems 1v1 against anyone else.