Irelia General Guide by Fantasm
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.
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.
A few things before you move on, please try the build/skill order and such before you rate the guide. It is my first guide, but never fear, I have a lot of experience with almost every champ, especially Irelia. This irelia build works (well) at 1600 elo, and has since the first time I used it, so my suggestion to all of you is that you put any doubts aside and just delve into my reasoning and strategy.
Credits to jhoijhoi for the template, which you can find here.
Important to Note
I will take special care to note that while I love my build (so very much), The format and order in which it is presented to you by this guide may be only partial. After you are through with
and all previous items, the order of build can be adjusted, but the final 6 items in general should remain similar, with minor variation (a later section)
Take care to build what you need, but try to stick to some close semblence of these items
I have played at many ranges of skill from norms to ranked (1200-1650), and there was one imposing problem that i felt: How do i continue to improve my play. For a while it stumped me, i had no problem going xx/x/xx consistantly and getting fed all day as any common solo top or mid, but all of the feeding seemed to fade as i stated playing against better and better opponents. Luckily for me, my stupidity cleared and i realized that people weren't going to fall for my early kill tricks forever, and about 1500+ ELO confirmed that. I spent a while trying to figure out how to improve my game past knowing my limits and the basics, and it occurred to me: minions. The game runs on cash, which you get through towers, minions, and champion kills. I realized that as i gained ELO, players got better, towers stopped falling before 10 minutes, but minions continued to die at a rate of six or seven every half minute, like clockwork. Maximizing my "farm" of these minions would be the key to my success. I would usher in the new era of my gameplay. Farming hard became my goal. The goal of this guide is not only to provide you with basic knowledge about Irelia, and even less basic item orders, but to instill in all of you the importance of gold maximization through reliance upon minions over champions.
Irelia was made for farming
Her skillset makes for a great tanky anticarry
She has just the kit and stats to allow for easy solo topping
She can have some problems laning versus SOME opponents
Quite item reliant (which is why you farm)
Not the best at getting early kills
I take this because the defensive tree is Irelia's core. She thrives on tankyness as her moves give her the utility and true damage that are delicious on a tanky bruiser. She has the damage, and the masteries (with her items) are the means that allow her to become that anti-carry, the one that is able to run thtough the entire team to kill the cait or graves
Runes Runes Runes
: These runes are you quintessential (ha) quint choice if you don't really feel you are missing much. They give you some nice early game strength, 1v1 ability, and quite often are the reason for some close call escapes.
- greater mark of Desolation: These are pretty much THE reds of choice for irelia, so don't worry much about anything but these
: These runes are fairly common, work on almost every champ, and offer some great stat effects per rune. The 24 mr allows you to put off building mr, or to substitue a FoN or something for a sunfire and still maintain extremely high MR.
- greater seal of Vitality: Because much of the item build focuses on hard mr and armor over health (FoN, GA, Wits End, etc) the health awarded by these can get you over that 3k health mark while maintaining 250 armor and mr.
- : These seals are if you are worried, or even cautious, of your laning phase. They are a solid choice as so many top champs are physical bruisers (gp, talon, nasus, udyr, etc).
[Ghost]: Ghost is one of those long forgotten since the times of "newb" spells in my opinion. People seem to always take flash and [ignite,exhaust,cleanse], but i feel like ghost is one of those key devices that irelia uses to become an anticarry. Ghost combined with her 70ish% cc reduction makes her almost as unstoppable as a Malphite ult!
[Flash]: Flash is one of those spells i feel like every champ should have. I know I already have ghost, but the mobility possibilities open to irelia with a flash for walls and unstoppable "momentum" makes for a real task for the enemy to deal with.
[Ignite]: Ignite is one of those preference spells. I believe you can take it if you are accustomed to its use, it is great in terms of shutting down a support assisting the carry you have chosen. I prefer ghost and flash simply because I focus on farm more than champion kills
On another note, depending on the enemy team comp, it can be very acceptable, even good to pick up if they have high dragon threat, or if they have some key ad carries such as Tryndamere.
Accent On Abilities!
- Ionian Fervor: Simple put, this is what allows you to anti-carry. You shrug off cc, and if you do your job, you will soak much of it whilst their carry dies. With merc treads the cc removal is 70% faster than normal in a teamfight
- Bladesurge (Q): Bladesurge is your mobility spell! You use it do dash to minions and champions, moving all over and through the enemy team. Max it second as it is key to sticking to the carry
- Hiten Style (W): This skill is your "bread and butter" so to speak. This is what outsiders to Irelia don't ever seem to fully comprehend. Max this first because it is so key to your playstyle. One important and simple trick is make sure you activate this, take a melee, then immediately dash into the enemy with Q. This quick .5s combo can net 150 true dmg +a few melees worth of ad in no time at all!
- Equilibrium Strike (E): This skill isn't really that important. It IS important, but its not really hard to use. Just spam on your target whenever its on cd, max it last, and your good-to-go.
- Transcendent Blades (R): This skill is another fairly simple skill that has many uses. You can farm a wave from safety, use it in combinatino with yuor other skills to burst down, or just spam it into a teamfight. Its important to remember the low cd of the spell, so in lane you can farm every other wave with it if you feel comfortable pushing so far. The upside to this is that you get an almost gauranteed 6/6 minions in that wave
Skill Sequence (A Recap)
This is the general order of things, but ALWAYS put your first level into bladesurge. Other than this, the order of importance is the key to leveling your skills appropriately. Max Hiten for damage and lane sustain, bladesurge for easy farming, and finally EQ Strike for some cc length increases.
AND BECAUSE GOOD PLAYERS ADJUST...! (items)
: This Item is generally for those games in which you are dying to a lot of Physical Damage. The key to deciding whether you need this or Thornmail is how fast you are dying and who is the source. If their ranged DPS is thugging you (somehow) you might want to go for a thornmail to hurt them as well as negate damage, but if some bruiser dps characters are just beating you down or your getting killed very fast, SUNFIRE CAPE is where you want to go. This item would generally replace the FoN or the Wits End
: This item is an item that you would get to negate the effectiveness of ranged DPS chracters. Because of the damage reflectino most squishy range carries wont be able to handle you effectively with it. If your problem is getting killed fast by melee oriented teams, your probably better off with sunfire cape. This item would Generally replace the FoN or Wits End.
: This is of those items that seems to be a personal preference. If you like playing with more damage and crit, you can get this item as a final item vs an AD oreinted team. It is best to combine this item with Banshees instead of FoN, and an Elixer of Fortitude.
: Not really a fan of this, but if you are commited to this item go ahead and use it to synergize with atmas
: This is one of those items that some people are in love with; I am not. I feel like it doesnt offer anything that you can't do better with other item combinations. You have a slow with it, yes, but your damage output isn't significantly increased, your tanking isn't increased significantly (you would be surprised by how effective mr/armor is over flat hp), and another item like randuin's or phage can get the slow that it gives.
In Actual Use
Irelia is THE anticarry. She is meant to farm hard earlygame, then transfer all her money into enough tank to run through the ENTIRE enemy team and beat their carry down. In a teamfight, your role is to kill the carry, and maybe even soak cc. If you can, try to stick around annie to lure her tibberstun out, and maybe malph ult or something. Depending on how much damaghe you do and how good the enemy is, you should be able to lure out some, if not most of the enemy cc initially.
Make sure you up-vote if you like the build or enjoy my reasoning, I'm an upvote *****, hehe