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.
Hi, and welcome to my very first guide here on MOBAFire.
Vladimir is a very versatile character. His passive converts AP to HP and vice versa, giving him what all Mage classes usually lack: HP for survivability. Because of his passive, we start to think to ourselves.." ZOMG AP TURNS TO HP, MUST BUILD AP BUILD!" I, on the other hand, created this guide for the sole purpose of producing HP through AP and utilizing CDR items/runes as well.
Vlad has been my main character since I was Level 6, and I have won many of my games because of him. This guide is definitely for those who wish to have a strong, hybrid Mage/Tank build with the ability to control any given situation thrown at them.
First off, let's look at Vlad's skill tree:
Every 25 points of bonus health gives Vladimir 1 ability power and every 1 point of ability power gives Vladimir 2 bonus health (does not stack with itself).
*This gives Vladimir superior survivability throughout the game.
Vladimir drains the lifeforce of his target, dealing 70 / 115 / 160 / 205 / 250 (+60% of ability power) magic damage and healing himself for 25% (+100% of ability power) of that amount.
Cooldown 8/7/6/5/4 seconds Range 550
*This is the first ability that should be maxed out. Transfusion enables Vlad to instantaneously deal damage and drain HP from enemy champions. With its cooldown at 4 seconds maxed, and with your CD Red Glyph runes, you'll have around a 2-3 second CD, allowing you to spam this skill. Also, it has no cost, so you should be harassing enemy champs and last hitting minions with this skill always.
Vladimir sinks into a pool of blood for 2.5 seconds, becoming untargetable and slowing enemies above him by 50%.
Vladmir deals 15% of his bonus Health in magic damage over the duration and heals himself for 12.5% of that amount.
Cooldown 22 seconds Cost 20 percent of health Range 1050
*This skill will be the second most important skill for this build, however, be very wary of using it all the time. It drains 20% of your current HP with each use, so using it at full HP will definitely hurt you. I like to think of this skill as an escape mechanism in case I get ganked or as a chase mechanism because of its slowing properties. Also, because it makes you untargetable for 2.5 seconds, it will give your Transfusion enough time to cooldown, so keep that in mind. Transfusion+Sanguine+Transfusion+ Rylais = Super slows and massive damage and lifesteal.
Tides of Blood
Vladimir unleashes a torrent of blood dealing 60 / 90 / 120 / 150 / 180 (+45% of ability power) magic damage to nearby enemies.
Each cast gives him an Empowered stack (max 4), increasing his healing and regeneration by 8% each. Additionally, his next Tides of Blood deals 25% more damage and costs 50% more Health per stack.
Cooldown 8 seconds Cost 30 / 45 / 60 /75/ 90 health Range 300
*Tides of Blood is a very useful farming skill. It deals damage to nearby enemies, allowing you to hit almost every minion analogous to Vlad. Also, it increases healing and health regen, making your Transfusion and Sanguine Pool skills more viable for recovery. This along with Rylai's will help slow down enemy champions while allowing you to heal alot more.
Vladimir infects the target area with a virulent plague. Affected enemies take 10 / 14 / 18% increased damage for 5 seconds.
After 5 seconds, infected enemies take 200 / 300 / 400 (+75% of ability power) magic damage.
Cooldown 120 seconds Cost 15 percent of health Range 700
*In my opinion, Hemoplague is one of the best nuking Ultimates out there. Not only do enemies around you take increased damage, they blow up, taking more damage. This skill is extremely handy during team fights or ganks, as it allows your allies to dish out more damage to your enemies. Also, because enemies take increased damage, Transfusion and Sanguine Pool heal you for more HP. Yayyy!
Now that we are familiar with his skills, here's a quick overview of the runes I have selected and why.
Since Vlad dishes out magic damage, it would make sense to give him Magic Penetration. Getting MagPen Marks will greatly increase the amount of damage you do throughout the game.
Since his passive converts HP to AP, I go with flat HP Seals for Vlad. People often ask me "Why don't you use HP/lvl runes instead? MORE DAMAGE!!!" Well, I personally believe that early game really determines your potential for pushing. Since Flat runes stay constant throughout all levels, this will greatly help you early game. By the time it's late game, you should have the necessary items anyways. At low levels, you still need to be a threat. Flat HP seals adds survivability + damage because of your passive. Keep that in mind!
For Glyphs, I go Flat CD Reduc. Again, Flat helps you alot early game, and you will want to be able to spam Transfusion almost always. These glyphs will definitely help you with that.
For Quints, I go with 2 MagPen and 1 Health, for reasons stated above. Don't forget, they are flat as well!
Overview of Gameplay
Early game will determine your threat level. If you can push your lane fairly quickly and efficiently while still being able to harass the champ as well, then you know you are doing well.
Start off with Boots of Swiftness and 3 HP Pots. You will want to stay in a line for as long as you can. You have no mana, so you want to focus on keeping your HP up, and Transfusion and HP Pots will help with that. Keep last-hitting minions to gain gold. Harass champs with your Transfusion skill and try to level up as soon as you can. The sooner you get to Lvl 6, the bigger threat you will become.
You should be able to get at least one kill before 6 minutes, or at least have a good amount of gold before level 6. On your first trip to base, you should get Ionian Boots, for movement and CDR that will help alot. If you've been doing well, and have enough gold to do so, grab either a Mejai's Soulstealer if you feel confident, a Giant's Belt if you aren't doing so well, or a Needlessly Large Rod if you don't want MS. The HP will increase survivability and increase damage output because of his passive, and vice versa for the NLR. By Lvl 9, you should be well on your way to Rabadon's Deathcap or a Rylai's Scepter .
Mid game is where things will get interesting. By now, you should already have Rabadon's Deathcap, which will significantly increases your total AP and HP. By now, anything you will be building from here should be situational. Assuming you're doing fairly well with a good amount of MS stacks, go get an Abyssal Scepter now. Otherwise, you can finish the Rylai's Scepter. The extra HP will help alot. Now that you have Transfusion maxed, you should be on a leeching frenzy, using it on everything around you. This build gives you an exceptional amount of CDR, reducing Transufion's CD to >3 seconds, which is wonderful! Harass champs every chance you get. If you know their HP is running low, hit them with Hemoplague and Transfuse them, following by Sanguine, and another Transfusion. All this is possible in the 5 seconds Hemoplague is active, and because it is active, your skills will do alot more damage. You should be able to kill champions fairly easy because of this. Keep helping out your allies with this skill order.
Usually games never last past 25 minutes, and you will usually never finish your Zhonya's Ring on time, but just in case it does, you should just do what you've always been doing. Harass, harass, harass. Unlike other Mage classes, you have HP! By this time, you would've stacked around 4-5k HP, giving you extreme survivability and AP. Don't be afraid to jump in and take out enemy champs if you know they're squishy!
Like all champions, and all games, everything is situational. The items listed above are your core items. You should always try to make them first, if possible;however, there are cases where you will need to adapt to different situations. Here are a few viable solutions to different problems.
Too man DPsers/AD champs?
Instead of building Rylai's first, go for Thornmail. This will benefit you greatly if you can scare them off. They will try to harass you, realize that their HP is dwindling and run. That will be your chance to chase and eat them with your Transfusion+Sanguine combo. Another great item to use would be Randuin's Omen Not only will the added armor and Health Regen save you, but it's CDR and Unique Passive that has a % chance to slow attacking Champions' ATKSPD will benefit you greatly. Also, activating it while enemies try to break will guarantee you those free kills!
Heavy Casters hurting your ego?
Build towards Banshee's Veil, Abyssal Scepter, or Force of Nature. I personally go for Abyssal Scepter because of the MagPen, Mag Res, and AP; however, lately, I've been using Force of Nature , solely because of its Health Regen, Passive, and it has the highest amount of Magic Resistance in the game.
Tanks too tough for you to kill?
Go for Deathfire's Grasp. Use its active ability in sync with your Hemoplague. This will help you mutilate their defenses, if not kill them. IF you don't kill them, do not fear. In most cases, you will have your allies to finish up the job.
That's all for my build. It is fairly simple, yet very effective. I personally love the idea of a Tank/Mage, and Vlad has answered all my calls. Try it out, you never know!
*I know the guide's kind of boring, and it looks similar to other guides, but bear with me. It's my first guide D: