Not Updated For Current Season
Clark Kent lied. Taric is the man of steel.
Well he's a tank and a support. Which means: He doesn't die, so the team support doesn't stop. Let's start with the skills:
Gives like 7.5% of damage dealt back in mana. Not an amazing passive, but useful if you need like 10 mana really quick for one spell or something. Also goes well with his ultimate.
Q: Heal - Not only does this heal the person you choose, but it also heals Taric as well. And it heals Taric for 125% if you're only healing him. With one rod you generally hit around throwing someone a nice 500 something health as this spell as a 1.1 ap ratio. It has a 14 second cooldown, however with each auto attack the cooldown is reduced by two seconds. Meaning, you can get a ****load of heals off during teamfights, meaning you don't die, and you teammates probably won't either. Just make sure to heal the squishies and people without lifesteal. Unless they're about to die. Also, watch our for teammates who have been ignited, have a grievous wound, or have had the heal summoner spell used on them. Your heal will then only give half as much health to them. If you can wait till that wears off to heal them, do it, as that saves mana. But it they're about to die, then obviously you should heal them.
W: Shatter - Taric's main damage spell. Does about 400 something and is aoe. Without activating it, it has a passive aura which gives nearby allies extra armor and Taric twice the armor the allies get. It's like having two aegis of the legions. However, on use the shatter will hit enemies with not only damage, but an aura that lowers their armor for four seconds, making it great for chasing one two or even three champions.
E: Stun - Taric's ranged stun. The farther away an enemy is, the longer they are stunned for, and the closer an enemy is the more damage this spell will do. At farthest away, the target will be stunned for 2 seconds giving teammates ample time to catch up and finish off a fleeing over overextending enemy. While soloing a lane with Taric (He is great with soloing, clarity + heal = tower never undefended) I actually wind up getting a significant amount of first bloods by stunning them under the tower.
R: Radiance - It's like Mundo's ult but awesome. This ult heals Taric 30/40/50 each second non stop until you turn it off. The mana cost to keep this on for a bit is surprisingly low. The ultimate not only does that but gives Taric 30/60/90 extra attack power making him an insane turret diver. Better yet, this ultimate also gives an aura, giving allied champions 15/30/45 extra attack power until you turn it off. With the clarity spell or blue buff or both, this ult is incredibly useful. At level 18, you can pretty much run under a tower with this on and not take any damage. Minus the enemy base turret of course. I know someone out there thought about it.
-Summoner spells to take-
Clarity: With this, Taric never needs to leave the lane. Mana regen and heal? Nice.
Ghost: Being chased by one person? Two? Three? The whole other team? Ghost + Taric's ultimate and stun damaging chasers to escape as well as keep healing yourself. If ashe is frost arrowing you, stun her and make your epic escape. Seriously. It's hilarious when 5 people are on you and you make it the whole way across the map back to base. Stun someone under a turret for a kill.
Exhaust: Being a support champion this is always a nice spell to have around
Ignite: Only if no one on your team has one
-Summoner spells not to take-
Flash: Taric goes too slow to make this useful.
Cleanse: Come on. You're a tank.
Grab Doran's for some early AP and mana regen, then chalice for the real mana regen Taric needs as well as magic resist. Sunfire cape next for armor, HP, and a little compensation for his low damage output and support in team fights. Abyssal Scepter is the magic resist item for Taric, as it gives him not only a lot of AP for his heal but also a good chunk of magic resist and an aura that reduces nearby enemy champion's magic resist. Next is warmogs to kick Taric over 4000 hp and finally a guardian's angel, making him pretty much unkillable with that extra bunch of armor and magic resist, and the super useful passive. If you are killed, when you revive the first thing you want to cast will be a stun on the nearest enemy. Stun them, THEN heal. If you heal first, they might be able to burst you down right through it before you get a chance to do anything else. After that run like a mofo. After completing the build which probably won't happen unless the game goes long or you get a lot of kills, buy all the elixirs and an oracles.
Force of Nature: You can argue this is better than Abyssal Scepter as it gives more magic resist as well as regen and some movement speed, but I like giving Taric some additional AP to maximize his heal's usefulness.
Randulin's Omen: If the opposing team is heavy attack ad/dps you might want to exchange sunfire or abyssal scepter for this. One, because sunfire cape doesn't give that much armor/any regen/that slowing active thing, and two because if the other team is all melee why do you need magic resist? I prefer sunfire cape usually though because shatter makes up for the difference in armor between randulin's and sunfire.
Ninja Tabi: For some extra dodge and armor if the enemies are heavy ad/dps.
Archangel's staff: Nice AP bonus for Taric if you can fit it in. Seriously, who doesn't like a nice 500+ hp heal? With this much AP it will even make a difference in Taric's other spells with poorer ap/magic ratio.
Aegis of the legion: I really don't like getting this item as the bonuses it gives are very mininal, however in the event your team is squishy as balls you might want to pick it up. Shatter + Aegis of the legion lends decent survivability to otherwise squishy champions. (Seriously, Ashe, wearing armor instead of a bikini might just help you live a little longer. But that's just me.)
RPG: Generally a one hit kill item, however the merchant who used to carry them got arrested for selling illegal weapons to the general public and was replaced with a pink pig orc Lord of the rings reject.
Greater Mark of Fortitude 9x
Greater Seal of Resilience 9x
Greater Glyph of Warding 9x
Greater Quintessence of Fortitude 3x
Put the first point in stun because that's a lot more useful for first blood than 77 hp.
1st level: Stun
2nd level: Heal
3rd level: Shatter
Max heal first, shatter second, ultimate third (obviously), and stun last.
This happened to me a couple of times at the start, right when I leveled up to level 2 I put the point in shatter because the enemy in front of me was about to die and I got the kill. Taric getting kills is funny. Taric on killing sprees is hilarious. Taric getting a triple kill is just trolling. That did actually happen to me once, scored a double kill with shatter then stun ks-ed with dazzle. Much raging came from the carries. No one ever appreciates the tanking/healing/stunning you do, all your support comes from the shadows, and then when you do get a kill you're raged at. This is why no one likes playing tanks.
Taric with blue buff is op. Taric with blue buff and clarity means your ult will pretty much NEVER TURN OFF.
With everything here, you're kicking a game off with over 800 health and a lot of survivability right from the start. Your stun is all about timing, catching enemies about to kill an ally/catching a runner/ grabbing an overextender for rape. 2 seconds is a long time. Shatter is also all about timing, the armor reduction and damage is nice but don't forget that maybe keeping the aura up for allies would be better. It's all situational.
Keep an eye on everyone's health, healing asap unless you're conserving mana. When teams poke at each other before a team battle, if you heal everyone then it's generally a full health team versus a bruised team. Having Taric at a team fight or not may decide who wins or not. You are a tank as well as armor aura/healer/stunner. Try to be at them whenever possible.
To do the Taric nuke, stun an enemy, run at them with radiance on, shatter then auto attack them with sunfire cape pew-pewing once or twice before they become unstunned and run. Having an abyssal scepter lowers enemy magic resist increasing damage dealt by your W and E a little, the Taric nuke does a decent amount of damage for not that much mana.
Initiate with radiance on, then run into the enemy team and stun a squishy. Move back out having taken the blunt of the damage, heal yourself or an ally for some quick HP and run back in.
If you see an ally being chased by a bunch of enemies, quickly check if they're about to die. If they're not, ghosting towards them and healing them, then stunning a pursuer may save a life. It really pisses people off to almost catch a fleeing teemo, only to see him get 500 extra hp and then they get stopped in their tracks stunned. Plus by just being there your ally will get an armor bonus from shatter, increasing their chances of successfully escaping. Beware though not to do this on people who are going to die. Running into a group of four enemies that just killed your squishy ally isn't advised.
I choose merc treads for the cc reduction as well as to balance his magic resist with his armor. At the end of the build and level 18, you're looking at 230 ish both armor and magic resistance as well as 4k hp and a guardian angel. Death? What's that again?
Taric is a surprising 1v1 champ just because HE DOESN'T DIE. Imagine you're all alone sitting in mid painting a picture of a rock. Suddenly out of the bushes comes running garen, determined to pound you into the pixels representing the ground. Radiance up = decent chunks of damage as well as continual healing. You shatter Garen and stun him. You heal yourself. The fight continues. You clarity yourself to keep your ult up. All of the sudden Garen is down to about 1/3 hp and you're still at full. He tries to run off but you stun him and your teammates who have all arrived by now rape him.
Something I like to call the awesome juke: You're being chased across mid by the whole other team. You break their sight and instead of running towards your base you run into the jungle and head towards the enemy base, recalling in a bush close to it. They'll never know where you went. EVERY TIME.
Recall in the bushes. It saves lives.
Taric is an solid yet underrated choice because he's a support that's hard to get rid of. He brings to the table survivability,a heal, extra armor and attack, as well as a stun. Other tanks just bring tankiness. Using him well will make a good team an excellent team. He is truly, truly outrageous.