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Volibear Build Guide by Tessier85

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.


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League of Legends Build Guide Author Tessier85

The Legendary Volibuild!

Tessier85 Last updated on December 4, 2011
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Ability Sequence

2
8
10
12
13
Ability Key Q
1
4
5
7
9
Ability Key W
3
14
15
17
18
Ability Key E
6
11
16
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.



Masteries

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sunder
Archmage
 
 
 
 
 
 
Executioner
 
 

Offense: 9

 
 
 
 
 
4/
Durability
Vigor
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
3/
Honor Guard
Mercenary
 
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Juggernaut
 
 

Defense: 21

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Strength of Spirit
Intelligence
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Mastermind
 

Utility: 0


Guide Top

The Glorious Introduction

Greetings Summoners, welcome to my Volibear guide. This is my first guide. I chose to write this guide because I spend too much time thinking about League of Legends strategy. Since Volibear was the most recent champion to come out, I've decided to make my mark. Through some calculation and no small amount of testing by me and my helpful friends, I think I have come to a build that maximizes Volibear's prodigious pros and minimizes his negligible flaws. By stacking the right amount of health Volibear becomes all the tougher, Chosen of the Storm gets that much better, and that oh-so-sexy Frenzy gets optimized. I really feel that with this build, Volibear will not only be one of the toughest champions to take down, but one of the toughest to take on.


Guide Top

Pros / Cons

Pros

Cons
  • Chase is severely hindered by slows
  • Enemies with Ignite ruin your lifesaving passive
  • Can be a tad expensive (though Frenzy can get you enough kills to cover this
  • Madred's Bloodrazors are also your worst enemy


Guide Top

Abilities

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

CHOSEN OF THE STORM
  • Once you drop below 30% health, you regain 30% health over 6 seconds
  • One of the main reasons to stack health, as more health = more regen
  • Can be crippled by Ignite or moves such as Seastone Trident OR Impure Shots among others
  • Long cooldown at 120 seconds

ROLLING THUNDER
  • For 4 seconds Volibear gains 45% movespeed when moving towards an enemy champion, and the first enemy he hits will take bonus damage and get thrown just behind Volibear
  • Take at level 2 and max second.
  • Very good for throwing an out of place enemy champion into your waiting teammates
  • Combos well with Majestic Roar for keeping targeted enemies where you want them
  • It does not last as long as it could, so timing helps
  • Can't be relied on for damage, as the bonus damage isn't great

FRENZY
  • Repeated attacks on enemies will grant Volibear a brief boost to his attack speed. Once he's attacked three times, he can viciously maul a target for a fair amount of damage that scales off of his bonus health
  • Take first and max first
  • This is the other reason to stack so much health as that is the only modifier to this attack, it is also the reason people will rage about your KSing
  • Much like Demacian Justice, this attack becomes stronger the lower the target's health is, increasing damage by 1% for each 1% the target is missing
  • While the range is short and three hits are required for activation, once an enemy get to a third or less of their health, a kill is almost guaranteed
  • WORD OF WARNING: Just because you can secure a kill, doesn't always mean you should. If it is clearly someone else's kill, don't steal. Frenzy's a powerful move. Don't be a ****.

MAJESTIC ROAR
  • Volibear damages and slows enemies in his vicinity for 3 seconds, as well as fearing affected minions and monsters for the same duration
  • Take a point at level 3 and max last
  • An awesome way to avoid minion and monster aggro at a bad time
  • Rylai's Crystal Scepter makes its slow all the better, as well as increasing its base damage

THUNDER CLAWS
  • For 12 seconds, Volibear's basic attacks are empowered to deal extra magic damage which can bounce to up to three additional nearby enemies
  • Like most ultimates, take a point in this wherever possible
  • An excellent tool for pushing a lane, or applying damage to as many people as possible in a team fight
  • Applies Rylai's slow, making it a very useful disabler in the event of a multi-champion brawl


Guide Top

Summoner Spells

Suggested

  • Heal - A useful spell to cast once Chosen of the Storm kicks in. Under ideal circumstances restores you to near-full health, otherwise a back-up in case your passive is still on cooldown
  • Ghost - With Flash's nerf, Ghost has become much more viable as a summoner spell. Additionally, with Volibear's tankiness the speed boost is much more useful and lends itself to chasing, fleeing or general mobility

Useful

  • Flash - Despite its nerf, Flash still has many uses. Mostly useful for surprise jumps in movement to gain a sudden advantage, not quite as useful as Ghost in the long-run
  • Exhaust - A sort of counterpart to Ghost, this spell is useful if you're focused on a single target. It's also very useful for massively reducing the damage output of a dangerous carry
  • Cleanse - As a tank and initiator, Volibear is expected to absorb as much of the enemy CC and damage as possible. Using Cleanse at the perfect moment to lead to the perfect comeback.

Possible

  • Ignite - A very useful tool for securing kills for non-Volibears. However, if a Volibear is within range to cast Ignite and inclined to use it, most of the time Frenzy is better. It is an acceptable replacement when facing champions with too much heal.
  • Clairvoyance - A useful way to avoid ganks, this spell also got nerfed, hindering its usefulness. Although it can be very useful, there are better choices.
  • Surge - The only useful part of this is the attack speed, but rarely will Volibear need the slight boost that this offers. The AP portion is neglible given Volibear's poor AP ratios. However, it does make Thunder Claws that much more dangerous, so not completely useless.
  • Teleport - As a tank Volibear is mostly meant to deter those pesky champions that are hoping to exploit a weak point. Teleport is useful for getting where you need to be fast, but to be blunt, you should already be there. An insurance policy, at most.

Not Recommended

  • Clarity - Volibear does not have high mana costs, with the exception of level 5 Majestic Roar and his ult. If you aren't spamming your abilities randomly for no real reason, you shouldn't need this spell. Only worth taking if a laning partner will really need it and can't take it for themself.
  • Promote - Mostly useful as a distraction, taking this spell would mean you've forgotten Volibear is supposed to be the distraction. Leave this to a squishier champion.
  • Revive - Not to be harsh, but I've only ever seen this spell on very new players. Plus, if you died playing a Volibear this tanky, you should probably take that revival time to think about what you did wrong.
  • Smite - Not a bad spell for junglers, but this ain't a jungling guide, baby.


Guide Top

Runes

Runes

Greater Mark of Attack Speed
9

Greater Seal of Scaling Health
9

Greater Glyph of Mana Regeneration
9

Greater Quintessence of Scaling Health
3

Greater Mark of Alacrity


Attack Speed is important to get Frenzy up and running, and in terms of damage from your ultimate, much more effective than stacking AP.

Worthy replacements?
greater seal of vitality

Greater Seal of Vitality


Health is the name of the game, sir. With these seals you'll have a very helpful late-game bonus. Almost essential.

Worthy Replacements?
greater glyph of replenishment

Greater Glyph of Replenishment


The only time Volibear has mana issues is near the start of the game, when his small mana pool is quickly drained by his abilities.

Worthy Replacements?
greater quintessence of vitality

Greater Quintessence of Vitality


Again, more health. The bonus this gives you will make you that much harder to topple late-game, as every bit counts.
Worthy Replacements?


Guide Top

Masteries

Masteries
1/5
3/5
4/1
1/1
1/5
3/5
3/1
4/1
1/1
3/5
2/1
3/1
1/


The idea here is that since Volibear is a tank, you focus on the health and damage reduction of the Defense Tree, while branching into the Offense Tree for the Improved Ghost, Attack Speed and Armor Penetration. Choosing 21/9/0 masteries would reduce the damage Frenzy could do, as the point of this build is getting as much health as possible. And there's no point going into Utility because you have your mana regen glyphs.
OFFENSE DEFENSE UTILITY
  • 0 points in EVERYTHING. I just included this part for completion. :D


Guide Top

Items

Here is where all your nice things are listed with explanations. Hopefully this section will help you understand the reasoning behind this build. Possible item alternatives are included following.

Doran's Shield


One of the best starting items for tanks, gives Volibear that much more staying power early-game, before he hits his growth spurt in mid and peaks at late. :D

Alternative: Ruby Crystal - Useful if you want to build a quicker Warmog's. Extra health isn't much, though. Also lacks the armor and health regen of the above item.

Alternative: Regrowth Pendant - The health regen can be useful early game when harass is an issue, and it leaves you enough money for a health or mana pot. Useful if you want to build a Philosopher's Stone, but means you don't start with quite as much health as you could.

Berserker's Greaves


A wonderful pair of boots for champions that have more to do with auto-attacking than others. These boots are the first item you get to make it easier to get Frenzy up, and will help wring more damage out of your ultimate.

Alternative: Mercury's Treads - As a tank, Tenacity has a lot of utility, and the magic resist doesn't hurt either. Worth getting if the enemy team has significant CC.

Alternative: Boots of Swiftness - I would suggest taking these boots if you expect to gank a lot. The extra movespeed from that, plus Rolling Thunder, plus Ghost means amazing chase game.

Warmog's Armor


The best health-stacking item in the game. Makes Leviathan look like an ironic t-shirt. Best to get this item early as it relies on kills to become fully-charged. Takes 100 minions kills, 10 champion kills or some mix of the two to hit max.

Alternative: Thornmail - While Warmog's #1 and #2 are what I'd consider core items of the build, in a hard-pressed scenario, it's sometimes worth trading in the second Warmog's for this beautiful substitute. Generally, though, your damage absorption will be high enough that requiring this will be rare.

Spirit Visage


This item is ideal for increasing the recovery gained from Chosen of the Storm, pays off especially well late-game when your passive can heal you for the most. The magic resist doesn't hurt, and the cooldown is very nice as well. Very useful item.

Alternative: Force of Nature - If you need that much more magic resist. The health regen is a nice bonus, and the additional movement speed is always welcome.

Alternative: Randuin's Omen - An excellent substitute if the enemy team has a lot of attack damage. The slow you can use on it is like another Majestic Roar.

Rylai's Crystal Scepter


Health? Always welcome. A slow? Don't mind if I do! Bonus AP? Well, that hardly hurts. :D Rylai's is effective for a lot of reasons. It makes your ult an AoE slow, enhances Majestic Roar and adds a slow to Rolling Thunder. You can never have too much slow or health.

Alternative: Frozen Mallet - Slightly better health, slow and a more consistent application, thereof. The damage bonus is negligible, although nothing to turn down. A better choice if there's a lot of magic resist on the enemy team.

Madred's Bloodrazor


The last item you need to build, this item is a tad expensive, but the benefits it grants you are well worth it. The damage, armor and attack speed are all nice, but the percentage damage means you can wear down pretty much anyone, and makes it all the easier for Frenzy to obliterate the unfortunate. And come on, a bear needs claws. >:D

Alternative: Atma's Impaler - Atma's is intended for high-health characters and gives Volibear a nice boost to his damage. It's the perfect item for certain situations, but Madred's is more useful overall.

Alternative: The Black Cleaver - Frenzy takes three hits to enable its active. The Black Cleaver takes three hits apply its full effect. A very good choice where no one is particularly tanky, it serves as good middle-ground between Madred's and Atma's.


Guide Top

Gameplay

Early Game

  • You're a melee champ. Remember that. Last-hit where you can. Buy potions if their harass is too much.
  • Before you get your Berserker Greaves, try to keep hitting the minions so you can use Frenzy if you have the chance
  • If you've been last-hitting well, you should be near your tower. Try to use Rolling Thunder to fling them into its range if they get too close.
  • Once you get Thunder Claws, wait until you have 3 stacks on Frenzy before you activate it. This way you're hitting at max speed to start and get the most out of it.
  • If you're fighting a champion who suddenly decides it's not worth sticking around, immediately use Rolling Thunder as it can often be just what you need to keep them around.


Mid Game

  • Start roaming; Volibear is a great ganker under fair conditions. Rolling Thunder into Majestic Roar will keep your target within range long enough for you and a teammate to wear him down.
  • Like most ults, Thunder Claws is much better at rank 2. Until level 11, save it for giving you an edge in 1v1s.
  • Frenzy should be near rank 5 by now. If you have your first Warmog's or close to it, you should be able to finish off any champ below half-health with a little care.
  • Rack up kills where you can, but remember you're a tank. Don't leave your squishies in a bad position unless you're sure it'll benefit the team more, i.e. a tower with a sliver of health or a high-priority target in a bad position.


End Game

  • By now you should be extremely tanky, and most champions will have trouble taking you down alone. Take advantage of this and jump on any enemies you find alone and away from help.
  • Be willing to tank turret shots for your teammates, if it means the tower will be destroyed. Though, try to limit this to when Chosen of the Storm is available, as you don't want to be left unhealthy.
  • Between Heal and Chosen of the Storm, you potentially have more health than is apparent, so don't be afraid to jump on otherwise dangerous targets like higher-damage targets. Always do so with caution, however. You are not invincible.


Guide Top

Teamfights

Your role in teamfights is a disruptor. You charge in with Rolling Thunder when you see an opening, throwing a champion that was too far ahead away from his teammates. If they Flash away, you've still gained an advantage. Once the real fight has started, activate your Thunder Claws, run into the group and use Majestic Roar. With Rylai's, this will slow most of their team and enable your team to find better positioning. The whole time you're hitting their team with your ult, watch for low-health champions and try to pick them off with Frenzy. The faster you can remove enemy champions, the safer your team will be. Feel free to use Heal if it will help allies stay alive that much longer.

Key points
  • Throw high-value targets away from their teammates with Rolling Thunder
  • Thunder Claws will deal a lot of damage if you manage to keep hitting for its whole duration.
  • Using Majestic Roar at the right time will prevent them from chasing if your team is trying to retreat, or prevent them from escaping if they decide they can't win.
  • If your health goes low, don't run. Chosen of the Storm will help you stay in the fight, and your continued presence will help your team more than running to lick your wounds.
  • Frenzy, Frenzy, Frenzy


Guide Top

Summary

Volibear is a beast of a tank (no pun intended). With high natural health, respectable damage output, and a miniature Demacian Justice, he can make a good showing of himself in nearly every scenario. By following this build and playing to Volibear's strengths, people will rightly fear the sound of your thunderous footsteps (pun intended). Thanks for reading, and more thanks to jhoijhoi for her extremely helpful guide guide. As always, suggestions are welcome, and helpful comments are encouraged. :D

~UBI VOLUERIT URSUS TONITRUI CACAT~

A Thunder Bear ***** Where He Pleases