Vladimir Build Guide by Zeppyr

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.

League of Legends Build Guide Author Zeppyr

Vladimir: Drinking Blood or Draining Lifeforce?

Zeppyr Last updated on August 25, 2011
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 9

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 21

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 0

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Quick Note

The health you see in the statistic page is without the passive included. With Vladimir's specific items I gave, he should have about 4,000 health and 500 AP.

Also note these games:See the power of Vladimir?

*Excuse me for the other games, I tried them out on the free rotation and I discovered I suck with them (besides Lee Sin, I bought him)

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Champion Abilities

Crimson Pact
"Every 40 points of bonus health gives Vladimir 1 ability power and every 1 point of ability power gives Vladimir 1.8 bonus health. This bonuses do not stack with themselves."

My friend, this is what gives Vladimir his pretty awesome durability and survivability. Stacking PURE AP doesn't look so bad now, right? You can get over 400 AP and 3000 HP pretty easily late-game, even without runes or complete masteries.

*Interesting note:
While specifically noted that Crimson Pact will not stack with itself, any ability power gained through Crimson Pact will be affected by Rabadon's Deathcap. The ability power added in this way will be converted into health through Crimson Pact. You need to gain approximately 74.07 bonus ability power to be granted 1 additional ability power this way. Meaning that you need a bonus of about 74.07 from Rabadon's Deathcap's passive to get 1 ability power. Rushing 2 Blasting Wands will grant you 24 ability power this way, so you basically need to rush 6 Blasting Wands (240 AP) in order to get a single AP from Rabadon's Deathcap's Passive in conjuction with Crimson Pact.

"Vladimir drains the lifeforce of his target, dealing magic damage and healing himself.
No cost
Range: 600
Cooldown: 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 / 4 seconds
Magic Damage: 90 / 125 / 160 / 195 / 230 (+0.6 per ability power)
Health Regained: 15 / 25 / 35 / 45 / 55 (+0.25 per ability power)"

Vladimir's bread and butter (where's the peanut butter n' jelly?!), for a few particular, obvious reasons.
This spell does not only damages pretty high mid to late-game, but it also heals pretty nicely if you manage to get it through a lot of AP, Spell Vamp or a Spirit Visage.

Anyways, back to the point...



Sanguine Pool
"Vladimir sinks into a pool of blood for 2 seconds, becoming untargetable and slowing enemies above him by 40% for 1 second. Additionally, he deals magic damage every half second to them and heals himself for 12.5% of the damage done.
Cost: 20% of current health
Radius of AoE: 300 (estimate)
Cooldown: 26 / 23 / 20 / 17 / 14 seconds
Magic Damage Per Half-Second: 20 / 33.75 / 47.5 / 61.25 / 75 (+3.75% of bonus health)
Magic Damage Per Second: 40 / 67.5 / 95 / 122.5 / 150 (+7.5% of bonus health)
Magic Damage - Total: 80 / 135 / 190 / 245 / 350 (+15% of bonus health)"

Okay, so basically this is your peanut butter n' jelly (escape-chase mechanic other than Summoner Spells), 2nd health regen and living ability. It pops almost ALL projectiles (Avoiding Annies stun will just give the stun back to her, as if she never used it).

An example copied from Vladimir's wikipedia page:
Vladimir is still affected by damage over time effects (like Ignite and Fiddlesticks's Drain) while going into Sanguine Pool.
While using Sanguine Pool, Vladimir cannot use items, summoner spells or his other Abilities. (Basically, if you want to get a good escape, activate Ghost THEN Sanguine Pool)
When in Sanguine Pool, Vladimir is still affected by non-targeted spells such as Event Horizon and Petrifying Gaze.
Vladimir cannot use Sanguine Pool to pass through walls created by abilities such as Crystallize, Cataclysm, or Pillar of Filth.

Plus, a thing never mentioned: It gives you a bonus of about 20% movement speed (like Ghost) for the first 0.5 seconds when activating it.

Tides of Blood
"Vladimir unleashes a torrent of blood dealing magic damage to all nearby enemies.
Each cast gives him an Empowered stack which increases his healing and regeneration by 8% per stack for 10 seconds. This stacks up to four times. Additionally, his next Tides of Blood deals 25% more damage and costs 50% more health per stack.
Cooldown: 4.5 seconds
Radius of AoE: 620
Cost: 30 / 40 / 50 / 60 / 70 health
Magic Damage: 60 / 90 / 120 / 150 / 180 (+0.45 per ability power)"
Vladimir's first AoE and epic-farm ability, never use this to harras unless you are sure to hit. Always try to keep it at 4 stacks mid to late game (not early, it will just cost too much)

Tides of Blood will do about 600 damage per thingy flying to your enemy if he doesn't has much magic resist and you have about 300+ AP. (Extremely easy farmability). The cost will be 300, but It's worth it when you do about 600 damage each 4.5 seconds. (With my build, it will do about 700 or so)

"Vladimir infects all enemies in the target area with a virulent plague which increases the damage they take from all sources by 14% for 5 seconds. After these 5 seconds, infected enemies take magic damage.
Cost: 15% of current health
Range to center of AoE: 700
Radius of AoE: 350
Cooldown: 150 / 135 / 120 seconds
Magic Damage: 150 / 250 / 350 (+0.7 per ability power)"

Okay, so this is your second AoE, dealing massive AoE damage when maxed. Plus, you have 5 seconds before it detonates to deal 14% more damage (including Ignite, since It's ALL sources. Looking over the fact Ignite is true damage, meaning you can't reduce it's damage, feel free to just do it and watch them **** bricks.)

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Dear Summoners,

Lately there has been a lot of rumors going around that Vladimir is really underpowered, overpowered or simply underrated. I am here to show it in a different angle, thus giving people my point of view over him, showing that he is pretty balanced after a couple of nerfs and buffs done to him.

Vladimir used to be pretty overpowered, due to the healing with Q which resulted in a great laning and last-hitting skill (instant damage, projectiled heal) and his crazy AoE Damage with his E and R.

I'd like you to overview this guide as it is my first guide, and give you tips. Looking over the fact I bought Vladimir one day ago, I still feel that I've done enough research and investigation into making my own, yet simple guide about him.

Lastly, this guide is updated to match with Vladimir's new nerfs (different synergizes, damage, etc...)

I hope you will find this guide helpful or useful in any kind of way,

- Zeppyr.

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Why Those Runes?

9x Greater Mark of Vitality (Reds)
9x Greater Seal of Cooldown Reduction (Yellows)
9x Greater Glyph of Magic Penetration (Blues)
3x Greater Quintessence of Vitality (Quints)

Why do I take per level? Easy answer - From level 5/6 (12 for the Quints) these benefit more than flats, and we all know you will reach those levels.
I take HP/level to get more AP late-game, and cooldown reduction so you can spam Q and E faster. More magic penetration late-game, just like any other mage, and more HP/level with Quints.

If you want to RULE early-game but be worse late-game, change the per levels to flats.

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Why Those Masteries?

9/21/0 Veteran's Scars is what we seek - The bonus health in the beginning is converted into about 1.5 Ability Power. Since you start either Amplifying Tome/ Doran's Shield, you'll have either 30+ ability power or about 700 health. Ardor is great as well; All of your items become more effective.
Archmage's Savvy , Archaic Knowledge and Sorcery are obvious choices. I took extra magic resist and armor in the Defense tree to be more durable early game, and Nimbleness just in-case you will dodge an attack. Defensive Mastery is nice, but not neccesarily needed. I grabbed it so minions won't stop you from harrasing your enemies early-game.

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Why Those Items?

Depending on enemy team:
More AD than AP? Start with a Doran's Shield.
If not, then get a nice Amplifying Tome and an Health Potion.

Bluepill back once you arrive at about 1200 gold, and if you got Amplifying Tome, make it a Hextech Revolver and Boots of Speed.

If you started with a Doran's Shield, get a Ruby Crystal, an Amplifying Tome and Boots of Speed.

Second Bluepill: Get Boots of Swiftness/ Sorcerer's Shoes/ Mercury's Treads depending on the enemy team. I usually get Boots of Swiftness, because Vladimir is a pretty slow champion. If they are CC/AP Heavy, pick Mercury's Treads. Want more damage applied on them? Sorcerer's Shoes. Feeling slow? Boots of Swiftness.

If you got Doran's Shield, transform the Ruby Crystal and the Amplifying Tome into a Haunting Guise.
Haunting Guise is awesome for a reason, you double-benefit from it because of your passive. It turns into 30 AP and 250 HP instead, and the magic penetration allows you to get Boots of Swiftness if you needed a reason to skip Sorcerer's Shoes's Magic Penetration.

-- At this point you should have Doran's Shield, Tier 2 Boots and a Haunting Guise

If you started with an Amplifying Tome, start building your Haunting Guise now starting with Ruby Crystal.

-- At this point you should have Tier 2 Boots, Hextech Revolver and Haunting Guise/Parts of Haunting Guise
The Hextech Revolver is an obvious choice - 40 AP? That's about 70 HP and your Q will give you 15% of the damage as extra health. That's just awesome.

Next up, save for Rylai's Crystal Scepter starting from Giant's Belt.
* Just like Haunting Guise: 640 HP instead of 500, and almost 100 AP instead of 80

Afterwards, get Will of the Ancients.

Next is a nice Rabadon's Deathcap.
Okay, this was chosen for obvious reasons:
140 AP = 252 HP
Passive: 30% More AP? That's awesome, and synergize's with your passive. Since you have Ardor, it'll be 34% instead!

If the teams are balanced, the next item is yours. Pick whatever you want.

More AD? Zhonya's Hourglass/ Sunfire Cape. ( Zhonya's Hourglass is usually my pick)

More AP? Force of Nature/ Abyssal Scepter.

*If the game didn't end and you have all items, you can easily sell your Doran's Shield for any item you'd like to buy.

If you get Zhonya's Hourglass as a last item, these are your stats:
Q Damage: 230 (+375) magic damage and healing himself for 55 (+375)
W Damage: Vladmir deals 300 (+319.5615 [15% of bonus Health]) magic damage over the duration and heals himself for 12.5% of that amount.
E Damage: Vladimir unleashes a torrent of blood, dealing 180 (+281.25) magic damage to nearby enemies.

Each cast gives him an Empowered stack (max 4), increasing his healing and regeneration by 8% each. Additionally, Tides of Blood deals 25% more damage and costs 50% more Health per stack.
*WITH 4 STACKS: 360 (+281.25), 25% Spell Vamp as health refunded (160.3125 Health refunded)
R (Ultimate) Damage: After 5 seconds, infected enemies take 350 (+437.5) magic damage.
-- Boom baby, about 800 damage with your ultimate.

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Why Those Summoner Spells?

Ghost and Ignite.

Ignite - Last-hits and to counter potions/heals, also is a good way to kill someone who is running away with low health.

-- You got the idea.

Ghost - Awesome mobility, and combined with Sanguine Pool, you are extremely fast for half a second and no one can target you for whole two seconds (saving your life just got easy)

Flash is also nice, but isn't the same.
Exhaust might be nice, but I don't think it's needed with Sanguine Pool, since it applies a good slow as well.
Cleanse is unneccesary, you have Sanguine Pool.
Heal? Not really. You have your Transfusion with Will of the Ancients/ Hextech Revolver = Awesome healing.
Skip Revive or Clarity.

Clairvoyance is surprisingly nice, but leave that to the pros (supports)

*The rest of the summoner spells do not show here because they are not needed.

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Pros / Cons

+ Strong bursts of damage
+ Great AoE
+ Easy nuker
+ Extremely helpful in teamfights, using his Tides of Blood and ultimate (Hemoplague, 14% more damage on all enemies caught in the AoE for five seconds, then BOOM explosion)
+ Farming just got easy
+ Excellent durability (I had 4k health in a 30 minutes game)

- Focused down easily
- Despite the durability is prone to ganking, can't handle much situations
- Most champions can take him down if playing uncorrectly
- If he's getting disabled a few times, he can easily die if still pursuing him.
- Cooldown problems on Sanguine Pool

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Creeping / Jungling

Okay, so about this.. Unless you sure you can do it; then you can try. Otherwise, don't.
Vladimir has bad ganking abilities and no 'elements of surprise' like Teemo or Warwick's Infinite Duress. Despite his Transfusion, he isn't capable of great jungling. There's few mages that jungle, one of them being Fiddlesticks. I haven't seen more, although.

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Team Work

Coordinate with your teammates when to ulti and who to slow with your Sanguine Pool. Remember you get a 20% more movespeed for half a second when activating Sanguine Pool, so you can chase with it and get away with it. Also, your Sanguine Pool slow is 40% - That's a lot! Combined with someone that has Exhaust, the enemy is getting himself into sure death. Always use your ultimate on 2+ enemies, never use it on 1 unless you have to do so to survive.
(I've used it on two enemy champions; both died and I got a Double Kill)

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Unique Skills

Alright, basically all of Vladimir's skills are unique.

His Transfusion - insta damage and projectiled heal.
His Sanguine Pool - pops almost all projectiles, including: Annie's stun from Pyromania (You can know when It's up if you see a swirling pool of white energy around her), turret projectiles, Dark Binding, All of Lee Sin's abilities, Although channeled abilities will still work ( Drain, Warwick's Infinite Duress) and Event Horizon will stun you.

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Tides of Blood, Transfusion, Tides of Blood, Tides of Blood, Transfusion, Auto Attacks.

Tides of Blood is your farming ability! It can damage all enemies around you and can wipe out creep waves when 4-stacked. If you need health, just Tranfusion a little for a sure killing blow when the creep's health is low.

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Laning can be tough, especially if you're new to Vlad. I find it nice being in top or mid, but mid is usually a little frustrating if you don't play cautiously. I usually pick mid, but when I pick top I make sure to go with a partner I know/trust (can speak English) and we try to coordinate well together.

Depending on your enemy in mid, if it's Teemo, be over-cautionous. Teemo's Toxic Shot is extremely strong against Vladimir and can easily get you half down. Harras him only when he over-extends, and never go toe-to-toe with him.

Same goes for Mordekaiser; attack him only when his shield is down, and stay behind your caster minions so he will miss his Siphon of Destruction.

Brand is a pain in the ***, he can easily kill you once you over-extend and he uses Conflagration on you. Always try to avoid his projectiles ( Sear) while under the effect of Blaze. Simply hit Sanguine Pool or move away from it if possible. Since Pyroclasm's missle speed is slow, simply Sanguine Pool when it comes to you. That should completely ruin his ultimate.

Skillshot champions and abilities ( Ezreal, Morgana's Dark Binding) are easier to play against, just make sure to keep him missing by hitting Sanguine Pool if neccesary (usually it won't be) or simply getting your minions as shields.

*There are several Morgana's that will play with Smite, not for jungling but for insta-killing a minion that interrupts her from landing her Dark Binding on you. Simply be aware of that and stand behind a couple of them, not one. You can't know how long will one will survive. If you get bound and you're low on health, Sanguine Pool out of there.

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So this is it, I hope you guys will try this out and tell me what do you think. Please corret me if you think It's bad, and if you've got nothing good to say - don't say it. Please, if you critique, make sure It's not only "u sux".

I hope this guide helped you and made you learn something about Vlad; I know it did to me.

Please let me know if I should change something; it is greatly appreciated.

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Build Example

Build Example
ITEMS in order of appearance:

Stats @lv. 18 w/ these items. Masteries and runes are NOT calculated!
Hit Points 1930 3870.21 (+1940.21)
Health Regen (per 1) 3.36 3.36 (+0)
Health Regen (per 5) 16.8 16.8 (+0)
Physical Damage Health 3377.5 7145.19 (+3767.69)
Magical Damage Health 2509 5263.49 (+2754.49)
Effective Health 2943.25 6204.34 (+3261.09)

Attack Speed 0.882 0.922 (+0.04)
Damage 99 99 (+0)
Ability Power 0 581.245 (+581.245)
Armor Penetration 0 0 (+0)
Armor Penetration (%) 0% 0% (+0)
Magic Penetration 0 45 (+45)
Magic Penetration (%) 0% 40% (+40)
Critical Chance 0% 0.66% (+0.66)
Critical Damage 200% 200% (+0)

Armor 75 131 (+56)
Magic Resist 30 36 (+6)
Dodge 0% 2% (+2)

Lifesteal 0% 0% (+0)
Spell Vampirism 0% 25% (+25)
Tenacity 0 0 (+0)
Cooldown Reduction 0% 5.61% (+5.61)

Range 450 450 (+0)
Movement Speed 310 380 (+70)

Aura: Gives nearby allied champions +30 Ability Power and 25% spell vamp.

Passive: +40% Magic Penetration [ Void Staff ]
Passive: +20 Magic Penetration [ Haunting Guise ], [ Sorcerer's Shoes ]
Passive: Dealing spell damage slows the target's Movement Speed by 35% for 1.5 seconds (15% for multi-target and damage-over-time spells) [Rylai's]
Passive: Increases Ability Power by 30% [Rabadon's]
Passive: Enhanced Movement 2 [Shoes (if these are Boots of Swiftness, you should have 400 Movement and Enhanced Movement 3]
Passive: Tenacity 35% [Depends on your boots, if you got Mercury's Treads ]