get
prime

Karma Build Guide by SteveKareha

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.


9K
Views
7
Comments
9
Votes
League of Legends Build Guide Author SteveKareha

(Updating in progress) Karma, the Ionian pride.

SteveKareha Last updated on May 14, 2013
Like Build on Facebook Tweet This Build Share This Build on Reddit

Team 1

[VS]

Team 2





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

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Executioner
 
 

Offense: 21

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Honor Guard
 
 

Defense: 9

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Pickpocket
Intelligence
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Nimble
 
 

Utility: 0


Guide Top

Introduction

Welcome! (Yay for my first guide!)

THIS IS NOT A GUIDE MEANT TO BE READ AT CHAMP SELECT SCREEN! THIS IS AN EXTENSIVE GUIDE ABOUT KARMA, SO TAKE YOUR TIME TO READ IT! THANKS!



Karma was an underestimated champion before, now that she got reworked she has more specific roles, but she's still one of the most flexible champs of the League.

To be honest, I was very sceptical at first but now I love Karma more than I already did.

In this guide I'll try to take on every way to play Karma, I've discovered some original roles and builds that can help you on many different situations as of right now this guide will be slowly updated to cover:

-AP Karma (Top - Mid - Bot)
-Support Karma
-Jungle Karma
-Troll Karma
-Twisted Treeline
-Dominion
-ARAM

WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD


Most of my guide uses spoilers in each section for easier reading, and space convenience, but important things like runes, masteries and comboes don't use spoilers because they're more important, if you think i should add spoilers to them too, tell me in the comments.

Thanks and enjoy!


Guide Top

General Information on Karma's Skills


Passive - Gathering Fire


Karma's passive doesnt feel like a real passive at first sight, but after playing with Karma a few games, I get it's strong potencial and game-changing mechanic, I will cover this passive more in depth within each guide.

General Tips on using Gathring Fire

Q - Inner Flame


Karma lands an skillshot in front of her dealing damage on impact and slowing your enemies.

With Mantra bonus, this skill becomes Soulflare wich creates a damaging field that explodes after 1.5 seconds dealing bonus damage.


General Tips on Inner Flame/Soulflare

W - Focused Resolve


Karma creates a bond between her and her enemy, dealing damage, revealing the enemy and rooting the enemy if the bond is not broken within 2 seconds after Karma lands it.

With Mantra bonus this skill becomes Renewal wich deals even more damage and heals Karma for a % of the damage dealt.


Tips on using Focused Resolve

E - Inspire


Karma summons a shield that absorbs damage and gives bonus movement speed for 4 and 1.25 seconds respectively.

With Mantra bonus this skill becomes one of the best game changing skills in the game, granting all nearby allies the shield, speed bonus and dealing damage around yourself.


Tips on using Inspire

R - Mantra


Mantra adds an additional effect to skills, which are already explained on the respective skill. Mantra is available from level 1 and doesn't require a skill point, however after the rework you can invest skill points on Mantra to reduce it's cooldown and increase the bonus effects to the other skills.

Tips on Mantra


Guide Top

1 - AP Karma: Introduction, Pros & Cons.

Introduction to AP Karma


First I'll cover AP Karma, in my opinion, AP carry/bruiser is the most suitable role for her, before the rework she was good at this role, but now she's better.


Consider the following before playing AP Karma

PROS
  • Can play any lane and do lots of damage.
  • You'll have great sustain with Renewal.
  • Inspire can turn fights on your favor if used with Mantra bonus.
  • Still has a great baiting botential.
  • Not as slow as before
CONS
  • Squishy start.
  • You don't have a "real" ultimate.
  • You will be targeted in teamfights if you're doing good.
  • Very mana hungry compared to old Karma
  • Requires practice


Guide Top

1.1 - Masteries

Karma's Rework required some minor tweaks to the masteries I used to have in this guide, while the old Karma prioritized as much AP as possible, the new Karma needs to sacrifice a bit of damage in order to survive a bit longer specially if you were used to baiting with her, and she also needs more boosts to use Mantra more often.

OFFENSIVE (21/9/0) or (21/0/9)



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

First off both of these offensive mastery have the same core offensive part, focusing on Attack Speed, cooldown and AP, meanwhile the defensive one is focused on giving you HP and the utility one focused on mana regen
OFFENSIVE CORE
  • Sorcery : A must have in most AP offensive builds, as Karma, you'll need to spam your skills as much as possible, and remember, Mantra recharges faster with CDR.
  • Blast : It's not a GREAT mastery, but if you choose APL runes you will be less item dependant.
  • Arcane Knowledge : Magic pen is a great damage booster early game will help more if you go with flat runes.
  • Mental Force : This will help in early game if you go with flat AP runes.
  • Archmage : My favorite mastery, at around 400 AP (once again depending on your items) it gives +20 AP, that's more than a Doran's Ring!
  • Executioner : My other favorite mastery, if you're fed enough, and stacking passives it's a GG.
DEFENSIVE
UTILITY


DEFENSIVE & UTILITY A.K.A BEGINNER (4/13/13)


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

I've found out by helping some friends that this tree suits Karma for those who are still unfamiliar to her, this tree focuses on giving little bonuses that will help you stay longer in lane and help you get used to how Karma works
  • Sorcery : This is a must. As I explained in the offensive tree CDR is important for Karma.
  • Perseverance & Meditation : Both of them will help you stay in lane really longer at early game.
  • Durability & Expanded Mind : +108 HP and +180 MP at level 18. It can make the difference, also remember, you'll be wasting a lot of mana if you're learning how to play her.
  • Hardiness & Resistance : It's just a small boost for early game.
  • Wanderer : Karma is one of the slowest champions, this will make it a little better, so you can get used to her initial slow speed.
  • Vampirism : You'll be getting 3% of the damage you deal with skills. Isn't that awesome?
  • Biscuiteer : FREE COOKIES Basically an extra potion courtesy of Morgana.


Guide Top

1.2 - Runes

Runes are one of the most important aspects of the actual metagame, runes (in case you don't know) grant several bonuses, in the case of AP Karma, I used to have 3 main runesets, Scaling AP, Flat AP and Beginner all of them are composed of tier 3 runes, with the rework I now added a new a new runeset that it's a bit more balanced for the new Karma, however the old runesets still work fine.

If you still haven't unlocked tier 3 runes, you can replace them with their lower tier equivalent, I however don't recommend doing this. It's a waste of IP.

BALANCED


Runes

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
9

Greater Seal of Mana
9

Greater Glyph of Ability Power
9

Greater Quintessence of Cooldown Reduction
3

Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed
3

Better suited for the rework, this runeset can make a difference early on, I tend to switch between this and the Scaling AP Runes, depending on the type of match. Generally speaking I use this runeset when I have a "trading" lane opponent.


SCALING AP A.K.A I GET A FREE Needlessly Large Rod AT LEVEL 18


Runes

Greater Mark of Scaling Ability Power
9

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
9

Greater Seal of Scaling Ability Power
9

Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power
9

Greater Quintessence of Scaling Ability Power
3

This is my 2nd main runeset, basically with a full scaling AP runeset, Blast and Archmage , Karma isn't as item hungry, allowing her to scale through the game. Be aware this set has two variants. Use this runeset if you think you're going to have a medium-hard lane.

Doing the math, if you take Scaling AP marks, you'll get 83.15 AP at level 18, if you take magic pen. you'll get 66.95 AP instead, either way this will help you to get through the game if you don't have enough gold to buy items.



FLAT AP A.K.A I WANNA GET FED EARLY GAME


Runes

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
9

Greater Seal of Ability Power
9

Greater Glyph of Ability Power
9

Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
3


The purpose of this runeset is to get early kills, but you'll fall off on mid and late game.
this set sums a grand total of 30.96 AP and 8.55 Magic pen AT LEVEL 1. I use this when I have an opponent that I can easily kill early game but gets harder over time, so I can get fed as much as possible.


BEGINNER A.K.A I DON'T WANNA DIE


Runes

Greater Mark of Health
9

Greater Seal of Armor
9

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
9

Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
3

This runeset is direceted towards summoners that are unfamiliar with Karma, this goes along with my defensive & utility tree, it will help you stay in lane at early game while you get used to AP Karma'ssquishyness against both AP and AD.


Guide Top

1.3 - Summoner Spells.

Always Take



Karma has no real escape methods early game, later on you can stun, slow or shield yourself to escape or avoid damage, but taking Flash is always good to dodge skillshots or escape when your other skills are on CD, you have low HP or MP, or you're being chased by more enemies that you can take on.



Consider these ones as your 2nd option...


- Ignite Champions can easily outrun and kill Karma even if they're with low HP, Having Ignite as your 2nd summoner spell, could save your life if you're being chased or if one of your enemies is trying to escape.

- Ghost You can use ghost as an alternate method of escape or to run straight to the fight if you still dont have boots with Enchantment: Alacrity or Enchantment: Homeguard.

Ghost also works well as a substitute for Flash if you still haven't unlocked it.

- Teleport I really like to use this spell when playing Karma on top, However it can get situational, if you're winning hard then it becomes almost useless, but when losing, it's a great tool to have map presence and backdooring. Can be used to return ASAP from base to lane.

- Exhaust Focused Resolve + Exhaust do a great anti-escaping combo, first you root your enemy and then you slow it, can also serve as an escape method with Inspire.

- Barrier I didn't like barrier on Karma at first because you already have a shield Inspire. But having a double shield is totally awesome if you're solo top lane or for countering poisons that deal huge damage ( Teemo, Singed) or even to counter Ignite


Consider this spell if you're new with Karma...


- Clarity is a great help for new Karma players, remember, you have a built-in heal and if you're new you'll probably be using it a little too much, with Clarity you can restore your mana and stay in lane longer.


NEVER TAKE


Heal - You already have a very powerful self-heal ( Renewal).
Revive - You're not going to use it, really.
Smite - You're not a jungler (Or at least not in this part of the guide).
Clairvoyance - Vision Ward and Sight ward exist.


Guide Top

1.4 - Items

Starting items


Starting items

Other viable start options



Spoiler: Click to view

Early game (1st and 2nd back)

catalyst the protector

Getting started


Finishing your first core + Upgrading boots.


Click

Get your other core & Select an enchantment


click


Situational items


Losing early game



click


More Mantra - Autoattacks



click

Passive Stacking



Click


Damage & Tanks



Derpfire grasp

More sustain



click

Self Defense



click

Semi-supporting


Shard of true ice


What is half supporting?



Guide Top

1.5 Playing as AP Karma. (Top, Mid and Bot + Item builds + Combos)

General combos



Before going in-depth on how to play Karma on each lane, let's take a look into her combos, for easier understanding of her mechanics.

Harass combo


+

Use Focused Resolve to stun and then Inner Flame to do a chunk of damage. It's not that hard.

1v1 Combo


+ + +

Start with landing Focused Resolve to stun the enemy, then use Soulflare ( Mantra + Inner Flame) to deal a huge chunk of damage and slowing the enemy, throw in some AA to reduce Mantra's cooldown, then use Inspire to either absorb damage, catch up the enemy or escape, then use Inner Flame to kill or slow them. if that wasnt enough, repeat.

1v1 Baiting combo


+ +

Use this combo when you're low of health and an enemy is chasing you, first use Inspire to absorb any initial damage dealt by your chaser, then use Renewal ( Mantra + Focused Resolve) to deal damage and heal yourself, finally use Inner Flame to deal a chunk of damge, afterwards either escape, repeat or perform the standard 1v1 combo.

Teamfight combo


x2 + + +

Before the teamfight, try to poke from afar with Inner Flame, normally I can land two or three, after your tank enters, use Focused Resolve to stun the ADC or whoever deals most damage, afterwards when your team is low on health or the enemy team is escaping use Defiance to shield your whole team and give them a the speed boost, repeat if necessary or use your baiting/standard combo to cleanup.

Top Karma


Spoiler: Click to view

Mid Karma


Spoiler: Click to view


Bot Karma


Spoiler: Click to view


Guide Top

1.6 AP Karma FAQ (Based on comments)

Why do you use only scaling AP runes? Flats and magic pen are more useful

As I stated earlier, it depends on your playstyle, if you prefer an easier early game go flats, if not, go scaling AP.

Scaling AP runesets, are understiamted like Karma, in this case, don't see each rune individually, see the runepage as a whole, as a huge boost on your lategame AP.

Also, the little magic pen runes give, is not worth it FOR ME, you can get more Magic pen from other items whereas AP will be more useful to do more damage, heal and shield yourself.

If Liandry's Torment procs Gathering Fire why dont you consider it core?

To start, Liandry's Torment always must be paired with Rylai's Crystal Scepter, meaning you are stacking health, now after the rework, Karma's scalings are way to different, and stacking health over AP is not that viable.

Also, her skills are quiter harder to land, and thus having CDR or ASPD to land more autoattacks can be more profitable than just trying to proc Gathering Fire via Liandry's Torment.

But it's always up to you, this guide only states my opinion, and is only meant to guide you.


Guide Top

2 - Support Karma: Introduction, Pros & Cons.

Introduction to Support Karma


Next on the list is support Karma, after the rework, Karma's role as a support got quite nerfed, and got switched from a passive to an agressive one, and meanwhile AP Karma is quite easier to understand there are a few other mechanics to support Karma.


Consider the following before playing support Karma

PROS
  • Lots of CC.
  • Great poking.
  • Global shield for your team.
  • Baiting potential.
CONS
  • Squishy all around.
  • You can't heal your carry directly.
  • Requires good communication with your carry.
  • Falls off late game.


Guide Top

2.1 - Masteries.

Support Karma masteries are quite the standard support masteries, but lets get down to it because people like explanations :)

SUPPORT

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

OFFENSIVE

UTILITY

  • Wanderer - Filler, but movement speed is always nice on Karma.
  • Meditation - Mana regen is necesary for poking. Dont let the enemy carry farm!
  • Mastermind - CDR on summoner spells is a must on a support, you dont have any other escape method rather than Flash.
  • Artificer - Best mastery, reduces the CD of your two core items.
  • Biscuiteer - Free cookie, really helps early game if you're on the verge of dying or if you ran out of mana.
  • Greed - As a personal opinion, I dont like building GP10 items, So yeah, this helps, and if you do build GP10 items, well, its more gold, win-win situation here.
  • Wealth - Can help you buy an extra ward or potion.
  • Pickpocket - A must for my build, Since we got no GP10 items, poking with AA gives us gold and reduces Mantra cooldown. Another win-win situation.
  • Intelligence - Along with Sorcery we rack up to 10% CDR.


Guide Top

2.2 - Runes

Support Karma runes are way simplier than her AP counterpart, let's take a look.

SUPPORT

Runes

Greater Mark of Mana Regeneration
9

Greater Seal of Gold
9

Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction
9

Greater Quintessence of Gold
3

Greater Quintessence of Cooldown Reduction
3

Greater Quintessence of Mana Regeneration
3

CORE

CHOOSE ONE SET


All these quints do the job take, the ones you feel more confortable with.


Guide Top

2.3 - Summoner Spells.

Always Take



Karma has no real escape methods early game, and as a support, you can't really use your shielding, stun, or slow to save yourself, remember, to save the carry is always the priority.



Consider these ones as your 2nd option...



- Exhaust - Support summoner spell by excellence, remember to use it always to engage with the enemy ADC and reduce their damage so yours can kill him/her, try to land slows and roots afterwards for more effectivenes.

- Heal - My second favorite on support Karma, really useful since you dont have a heling skill for your carry, if you take this, take the liberty to remove a mastery point from Explorer and put it into Summonner's resolve to increase the heal amount, also build Eleisa's Miracle early to reduce it's cooldown.

- Clarity - This spell is a great help to stay in lane longer, and spam more skills, however it's not suitable in every situation, try to get it when your carry uses too much skills for poking, such as Ezreal or Miss Fortune


NEVER TAKE


Revive - You're not going to use it, really.
Smite - You're not a jungler (Or at least not in this part of the guide).
Clairvoyance - Vision Ward and Sight ward exist, and part of your job is to put them.
Ignite - No. Just no. You dont want to KS your carry.
Barrier - Once again, no. There are many other spells that bring more utility to your team.


Guide Top

2.4 - Items

Starting items

Sight wardSight wardSight ward

Spoiler: Click to view


Early game (1st and 2nd back)

Emblem of valor

Spoiler: Click to view

Finishing your cores + Upgrading boots + Enchantments


Let's not overextend explanations like AP KArma section


Guide Top

3 - Jungle Karma


Guide Top

4 - Trolling like a boss


Guide Top

5 - Twisted Treeline


Guide Top

6 - Howling Abyss


Guide Top

7 - Dominion


Guide Top

8 - Matchups


Guide Top

Changelog

28/12/12 - Accidentally clicked the publish button.
28/12/12 - AP Karma guide finished.
19/01/13 - Added a FAQ for AP Karma.
30/03/13 - Started updating for the rework. Skills and tips updated.
04/04/13 - Updated General info on AP Karma, pros & cons, masteries and runes.
17/04/13 - Updated summoner spells and items (ITEMS NOT COMPLETE YET)
30/04/13 - Updated items and added two new item sections.
08/05/13 - Added general combos, and almost finished top, mid & bot gameplay (Missing the screenshots only), added an explanation to why I use spoilers on everything.
09/05/13 - Added all the item builds in the upper part of the guide as a preview, full expalnations coming soon.
12/05/13 - Started writing all the other builds, some might be updated faster than others, screenshots to all guides will be added when the writing part is finished, moved the AP Karma matchups to a section of it's own at the end of the guide, also updated a last bit on AP bot Karma with supports that work well for her.
14/05/13 - Started the Support Karma guide, half of item section completed.