Vayne Build Guide by SirAlaric
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.
Guide Revamped 2/15/12!
This guide is a variation of a very popular build I've run for a while on Twitch. The key to this build on Vayne is the 95% crit. That alone makes Vayne a monster! Couple that with her silver bolts, tumble and her ultimate she's a force to be reckoned with. Only a 1shot nuke from Veigar or heavy cc would give her any reason to think twice before joining a fight. Once you have 5 of the 6 items in this build, each shot she fires will do 840+ dmg...the only champion she won't kill in three shots MIGHT be a tank or a hardcore bruiser. Squishies will probably die in 2 shots ;)
Staring at those 3 Greater Quintessence of Vampirism runes? I would too. Now that I own 25+ characters, play all roles including: Tank, Ranged Carry, Melee Carry, AP Carry, Jungle, Support, Bruiser...etc I can tell you these runes are amazing. Sure...armor penetration is always great...it really is. I still have my 3 armor pen quints. But 9% lifesteal with no lifestealing items at level 1 and you keep that lifesteal all game long? Honestly, it really helps out in all sorts of roles including this carry build.
If you're juggling the idea of going with armor pen runes vrs lifestealing runes on Vayne consider your playstyle and this question: How much dps does a dead carry do? The answer is obvious right? Survivability is important and a free 6% lifesteal + the 3% from your mastery is good sustain ;).
This item build assumes that you are duoing the bot lane, soloing top or soloing mid and you have a jungle. If you need to go mid and do NOT have a jungler you're going to need some mobility earlier on. Why? Mid needs to roam to top and bot to setup ganks...you can't do that well if you move like a snail. Consider boots of mobility for those games ;)
You'll notice that early on...given the scenarios I listed above I AVOID buying attack speed or movement items. Why? I WANT DAMAGE and I DON'T NEED THE MOBILITY THAT EARLY. You have Teleport, you can buy a cheap 75g ward and you have your passive movement speed ability. Trust me, if you stack damage early, you'll tend to zone your opponent, get a few kills or both! If you want to be zoned, feel free to get boots and attack speed as early as you can ;)
You'll notice the first major item is the Infinity Edge. If you aren't having to return to base to restock...don't bother picking up the in-between items...besides that all important WARD. Other than that, farm strait to the Infinity Edge and then continue following the item build. The moment you pick it up the entire game changes. You'll immediately become a HUGE threat. The next major item is another Infinity Edge. Again, if you think you can farm strait to it without hindering your team or forfeiting kills...DO IT. You'll have massive damage and will crit 50% of the time. Otherwise follow the item build as it's laid out so that you can roam the map and farm kills.
With that information stated...let's tackle some of the questions you have about WHY I choose the items I choose. Let's start with your obvious question..."WHY ARE YOU BUYING 2 Infinity Edge's!?! Zomg, I'm going to have a heart attack over it!" First, calm down and let me explain. It's simple, it gives you 80 dmg and 25% crit...with two Infinity Edges you have ALL THE DAMAGE YOU'LL EVER NEED. Combined with Phantom Dancer and Executioner's Calling your crit will be at 95% with your base damage at about 287 and your life steal at 27%. This is all BEFORE YOU GET YOUR LAST ITEM...that means you dish out insane damage and you do it well before a full build! This gives you a huge advantage over the opposing team and allows you to carry hard! Each shot you fire will be a crit and will do 746dmg+ without any buffs. If you get the red or baron buff...you can expect that to come close to the 1k mark. So, back to the question...why do we get 2 Infinity Edge's? Simple, we want max damage via having MAX CRIT! Who cares if you can get a higher base damage if you don't crit on every shot? Constant crits will always out damage any other option in my humble opinion. The only thing that somewhat affects your damage is armor. But honestly, armor doesn't matter much to Vayne for two reasons. First, the tank and possibly the bruiser are the only ones that get it and you should NEVER FOCUS THE TANK anyway. Second, your silver bolts does HEAVY DAMAGE to tanks. Those two things stated, this is all you have to do...pop your ult and fire a few shots at the carries/support and they will die. By that time your whole team focuses on the tank and bruiser and as you will observe...armor won't matter. ;)
Some of you may wonder why we buy Executioner's Calling instead of a Bloodthirster for the lifesteal. I buy Executioner's Calling because it gives you the last crit% you need to make every shot a crit and allows you to Grievous Wound your target every time you gank on top of a great % of lifesteal. You get all of that for the low price of 1350. It's a flat out BARGAIN! I'd say it's the most overlooked item in the game and easily one of the most powerful to use all game long because of Grievous Wound's scaling against life steal, hp regen and spell vamp. Almost every champ has some form of regen, spell vamp or life steal and this item reduces it by 50%! Honestly, I think this item is way too overpowered and way too cheap...hopefully it doesn't get nerfed like the Sword of Divine did ;)
This leaves us with the all important question, what's the last item I should get...IF YOU GET THAT FAR IN YOUR GAME!
Ah yes, how do we decide which item will be our last....
First of all, if you're playing Vayne right then your games are ending well before you can buy your last item. If you have to buy your last item then one of two things is most likely true:
a) Your team had a very rough game. You had a feeder, your team mates constantly over-extend and failed to ward their lane while doing it or both.
b) You somehow didn't get fed because you failed your ganks, you failed to last hit enough, or your team couldn't coordinate ganks well with you.
Either way, you're in the position of buying your last item. Observe the opposing team's items carefully and choose wisely. Picking up another offensive item is overkill but defensive items are fairly useless on Vayne. So what do you buy!?! Let's go over your options.
If you want a defensive item you could consider Warmog's Armor. With this item you have to farm up some minion kills as fast as you can and then join the team fights. The advantage to this item vs BloodThirster...is you NEVER LOOSE YOUR STACKS. That's great for squishies who tend to frequently die. Also, this item is a perfect choice if you will be split pushing or back dooring. With it, you may or may not be able to survive a team fight, it depends on how well you position yourself and how capable your support/tank are. Just remember, your goal in a team fight is to pick off their carries/support and ensure you survive long enough to do so.
What about your offensive item choices? If you really need to tear a tank down fast, even though you should never focus the tank in a team fight anyway, you should go with the Black Cleaver or Madreds. It is possible they could be a troll team of all tanks or they have a lot of beefy bruisers. Both cases could call for the items. If it were me, I'd pickup the Black Cleaver if their bruisers/tank have low HP and Madred's if they have high HP. Remember, each of your shots will be a crit and with the extra base damage they will be up around 850+ unbuffed. Couple that with the armor reduction and BAM tanks will die lol. Like I suggested earlier though...picking any offensive item at this point is overkill. Funny thing is, Vayne is EXTREMELY SQUISHY. Who cares if you have all the damage in the world when you can't deal it out because you are DEAD. This is why the BloodThirster is useless since you have to farm up the stacks and then loose them every time you die. Hence, I recommend picking up a defensive item or...as I explain next a CC item.
CC? What the **** is that? Crowd control. It's those annoying abilitys that disable you or prevent you from doing what you need to do in a fight. To prevent these effects you could get the Banshee Veil or Quicksilver Sash. There are cases where these will help you win a team fight. In most cases, by the time you cleanse yourself with a Quicksilver Sash or block a worthless ability with Banshee Veil you'll be dead. A poor...dead....squishy.
Honestly, the last item that I tend to pick the most now is the Black Cleaver simply because I laugh really hard when I can 3 shot a tank. Or I get Warmog's for survivability/trolling purposes ;). With Warmog's you are pretty unstobbable and really could kill each member of the opposing team...if they came at you 1 at a time. That in mind, don't barrel in like some kind of a tank and make a miscalculation that causes you to die. If you die....there's a good chance you're opposing team will ace you. Your team NEEDS YOU! Just stay with your team and it's unlikely you will die. Your only concern is heavy cc which is why you NEVER initiate and ALWAYS STAY BEHIND YOUR TEAM FOR TEAM FIGHTS. Let the other team cc the **** out of your tank when he and your bruisers initiate, then proceed to join the team fight. If you pickup Warmog's Armor...each shot you fire does about 800+ dmg and gives you 216 health per shot. At max stacks with Warmog's you'll have 3010 life...couple that with your damage, life steal, and abilities...you're pretty much UNKILLABLE!
I follow the sequence I've laid out because it maximizes the lvl 1-6 ganks. Remember to use your Flash to get those 1 or 2 last hits to get the kill on a gank vrs letting them get away.
DPS & Survivability
What? Carries are squishy they are supposed to die often right? Um...you may be squishy but if you die your team is in serious jeopardy. You can't carry them if you are dead!
There's several thoughts on how to keep yourself alive while still packing a hard punch. Most important is your positioning. Be it 1v1, 1v2, 2v2 or the team fight situation your position and map awareness are absolutely critical! Notice I didn't list the 2v4 or 3v5 situations. That's because you should RARELY engage in those.
Ok, outside of listing that common knowledge let's discuss the item train of thought to survivability. You could get some standard defensive items. Unfortunately they suck on Vayne but you can disregard that and get your Thornmail, Warmogs, Frozen Heart, Guardian Angel...etc. Hey sometimes they work! Frequently, getting one is worthless. What about cc protection items? Those can work. The only two worth mentioning are the Quicksilver Sash or the Banshee Veil. I'd take the Sash so that I can pick and choose what and when I want a cc effect or series of cc effects cleared. However...if you are positioning yourself right and aren't up against a team of super heavy cc....not even those items will help.
Your best overall bet is stacking just enough lifesteal with your damage. Hence you see the importance of obtaining, stacking and keeping your Bloodthirsters stacked. Do this and the other teams only hope for winning is that you have two or more feeders on your team. Even still, that's not game over...that just means they have a chance to win ;)