prioritize early lane
Not Updated For Current Season
Threats to Sona with this build
General Rules and Tips
Hey everyone! This is my first guide and thus it's fairly rudimentary. It is also still under construction, so it'll be continuously updated here in the coming days.
I main Sona mid and support and LOVE her mid game but have had to basically develop it first-hand, as there aren't many guides that address the role. There are definitely pros and cons to playing her mid, but I've found with enough experience you can win most lanes. This is dependent on a few factors, namely your positioning, map awareness and personal rules of engagement.
Sona is extremely squishy, as we all know, and my preferred 'nuke' build doesn't give much in the way of survivability. First rule is definitely to ward your river and be mindful of jungler positioning at all times. With no real 'escape' Sona can easily be killed by a well-timed gank if you're lacking an ult or flash.
Second rule is to mind your mana pool. It's easy to stand on the front minions and Q spam your opponent out of lane, but you'll likely be dried up by then...and a Sona with no mana is just a minion. Pay attention! Don't plan a killing engage (ex. flash, ult, Q, chord) if you don't have enough mana for the ult/Q. That will look silly! I've done it. Also be aware of the math behind your burst. Don't burn your flash and ult if you won't kill. This will leave you extremely vulnerable. Extremely.
Third, pay attention to your jungler's movements. Sona at her core is still a Utility champion and pays big dividends when helping teammates, even with a vapor build. If your jungler is stealing enemy camps, watch him and go peel him out or help him kill if things get hairy. Also, if he finds an enemy jungler at his camp, it is in your best interest to go help him. If a jungler gets behind, he can't help your team win and definitely won't be interested in helping you later in the game if/when you need it. Most games that I snowball I've found I had an early 2-0 or 3-0 from picking off enemy junglers who weren't expecting my presence. It matters on every champ, now that I'm thinking about it. Do it.
Fourth, watch your spell stacks. Know which chord you need and use them accordingly. Proper chord usage separates regular Sona from Carry Sona. I rarely use W chords, not because it's not useful but rather I find the E chord to be pretty dynamic offensively and defensively, and the Q chord is used to execute or push an enemy out of lane.
During laning, stay at a safe distance and farm at will. Don't worry about 'pushing' because she can't. Just attack the minions freely while minding your enemy and their capabilities. Don't use your Q to finish minions unless it's a single minion and the 2nd missile is going for a champion (You'll learn the range with experience). Due to her Q and auto range, you can use both simultaneously if you're quick. This doesn't leave an opportunity for your opponent to step away and gives you that repeated empowered auto. It leaves a bruise and they'll hate you if you're constantly pecking their HP with a quick follow up auto-attack. When you have 2 stacks you should wait for your opponent to step in for a last hit (watch your minion HP bars). Once they do, E into range and chord them, then just follow with Q, empowered auto, auto. This burst is pretty substantial and with Thunderlord is horrendous on opposing laners. Then back off and lick your wounds with W if necessary and continue farming.
After you've pushed them out of lane once or twice, you'll get ganked. Repeatedly, based on experience. I usually start my roaming at this point, as staying in lane is just asking to be murdered. Go find a fight and finish it off. Again, your E chords are excellent for ganks. While you definitely need farm to itemize, kills and assists are worth the effort and again, staying in lane too long is asking for trouble.
This is where the new Sona shines. The trick is to be alive, which (again) requires good positioning in teamfights. EXPECT TO BE FOCUSED. Even as a support, many players focus Sona because she's got auras and she's easy to kill. As a nuke, they should be afraid of you and will likely prioritize your death. With your damage you'll want to poke when you shouldn't, so don't. If you make a mistake they will eat you. Stay safe behind your meat shields and heal them as needed, or lace into an opponent that gets caught out. Keep awareness of your stacks and be ready to E chord opponents trying to force engage (a la Volibear, Udyr, etc). Proper E chord usage can also facilitate chases, both solo and with teammates. Once you catch up, chord and destroy. It's really as easy as it sounds. Remember to hit and run though, as an animal in a corner is likely to lash out, and they typically look for the squishy nuke. It may seem like I'm being repetitive, but stay behind your teammates. Mind your position. It's very important, especially with Sona.
Tower pushing is no joke once you get a Lich Bane. Once you learn your cadence you'll be hammering towers like a Tryndamere. In this scenario always try to Q chord the tower for extra damage. If sieging a tower, try not to stand near everyone else, because if the enemy engages, you don't want to be caught in whatever it is. If you get hit by a Malphite, Wukong, Amumu, etc. Ult....you're likely dead if you can't flash out or Zhonya (which isn't in this build).
When taking dragons or Baron, remember to move around and envelop your allies in your auras. Q and W auras are especially useful in these situations. Also, never get pinned in a pit, either dragon or Baron. Stay at the entrance and flee to a safe distance when enemies approach. You may be brave but don't be stupid. You need to be alive. Briefly retreat, let the engages and counter-engages take place...and re-enter the fight, prioritizing healing/shielding allies while laying damage on the carries. Try to save your ultimate for multiple enemies (this is usually a fight-ender) but don't be afraid to use it on a single enemy to full combo and vaporize. The cooldown is surprisingly low and it'll be up before you need it again in most cases.