Build Guide by Shardan
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.
Before i start i just want to say few things:
- This is my first guide ever to anything, so if i make some stupid and obvious mistakes forgive me;
- English is not my main language, so if i make some stupid and obvious mistakes forgive me;
- Of course this guide shows my personal Vladimir gameplay - im not saying that following it will make you rock every game;
- I know Vladimir is not a vampire... but "gunslinging hemomancer" sounds kinda awful;
- Criticism welcomed.
I did 115 ranked games as Vladimir (with in ratio 67%), and was trying many builds and ways to play him. I believe this one is quintessence of all experience i've gained while summoning him.
This build focuses on dealing good damage while remaining hard to kill by healing. It's really fun to watch your health grow in middle of teamfight when you are pooled and observe people dying by your combo.
Pros / Cons
- One of best laners in game - you can dominate every lane with your awesome poking, healing, avoiding ganks with Ghost + Sanguine Pool combo and farm well;
- Good single target and AoE damage;
- Great help in teamfights;
- Awesome survivability for a mage - high health, healing and pool of course;
- He is so cool @.@
- Until he gets Hextech Revolver and fast Transfusion he can be dominated in lane;
- Can't do burst damage like LeBlanc for instance - he gets off his AoE, poke squishies and finish off running ones but he is not an assassin (unless fed, then he is everything you want).
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration x9 - typical mage marks helps early and late-game.
Greater Seal of Scaling Ability Power x9 - Mage needs Ability Power :) can replace for flat ones. There isnt really anything else you could put here. With this build you have 40% CDR and little armor/mresi wont give you much...
Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power x9 - Same as above.
Greater Quintessence of Healthx3 - I have a habit of taking them whenever i play mage champion without getting Dorans. Makes early game more safe and makes you seem stronger to the laning enemy (that kind of advantage really helps).
I ALWAYS use Ghost and almost always Exhaust.
Ghost is awesome when used along with Sanguine Pool to run, chase and charging after tank to get combo off and pool away or forward. My favourite spell on Vladimir.
Exhaust is never useless. On Vladimir it helps to chase (as he has no real CC) and deal with Melee ADs. Also, in late-game Exhaust + Pool + Zhonya gives almost no opening for most enemies to deal damage to you for a long time.
Flash combined with Ghost makes you literally uncatchable... but when i take it i often miss my Exhaust and find it unnecessary.
Ocasionally i pick Ignite - it works well with your Hemoplague, but i only get it when i face alot of healers/regenerators (yay new word).
I take typical not mana-using mage masteries.
9/0/21 with Ghost and Exhaust gives you upgrages to those spells, magic penetration, 40% CDR with my build and other cool stuff like increased buff duration and runspeed.
Skill Sequence & Description
Hemoplague (R) > Transfusion (Q) > Sanguine Pool (W) > Tides of Blood (E)
Transfusion : Deals INSTANT damage and heals you after short delay. Your basic poke and nuke ability. Decent damage and healing. Bread & Butter - nothing more to say. It's healing effect is empowered by Tides of Blood stacks.
Sanguine Pool : At cost of big part of his current health turns Vladimir into a pool of blood making him untargetable and siphoning life from enemies above while slowing them. Vladimir's trademark ability making people call him OP. It allows you to:
- deal damage while enemy cant hit you - extremely useful in hot teamfight after you put combo out;
- epic dodging alot of skills like Ashe's or Karthus ultimate;
- allows you to tower dive like crazy - u get in, do combo and pool away;
- makes you ungankable early/mid game especially if you use Ghost BEFORE you pool - you can just pool away to your tower with ghost speed;
- people cant dive you.
Tides of Blood : At cost of little health it deals damage to all enemy units nearby. For every use of this skill you get a stack making your next Tides of Blood cost more health but dealing damage and empowering your Transfusion to give more health per cast. Basic farming tool and good AoE damage especially when you do it with 4 stacks on people affected by Hemoplague.
Hemoplague : AoE ability that infects its targets by disease that will increase their damage taken for some period of time and after few seconds detonates dealing magic damage. If you land it succesfully on most of enemy team's champion in beginning of a teamfight you win.
You get Transfusion as your first skill and max it first - to keep your health high from beginning of laning, to harass, to last-hit, to do anything as its Vladimir's bread and butter.
At 2nd level i generally take Tides of Blood to harass harder (E+Q combo) and farm easier BUT if they have a early-gank jungler or something annoying like Evelynn i chose Sanguine Pool to feel safe.
You max Tides of Blood last - use it mostly to keep your buff at 4 stacks, if you have them Tides of Blood decent damage even at first skill level.
Of course level Hemoplague whenever available.
Items & Breakdown
1. As starting items you get Amplifying Tome + Health Potion. Tome helps alot allowing you to suck less until you get your gun - more healing and more harassing. It also allows you to get your must-have revolver sooner.
2. When you first go back to base you should be able to purchase Hextech Revolver. It's must-have-as-early-as-possible Vladimir item. Every Vlad will tell you dat. You will notice GREAT healing you do increase. It allows you to stay in lane like... forever.
3. Ionian Boots of Lucidity - This build is about healing, and more often healing = more healing overall + along with Spirit Visage and masteries it gives us 40% CDR = Sanguine Pool every 8 seconds.
4. Will of the Ancients OR Needlessly Large Rod if you have 1600 gold. Will of the Ancients really helps in teamfights which should begin to occur by the time u get it.
5. Rabadon's Deathcap - Basic item for almost every mage. Nothing much to talk.
6. 2nd Hextech Revolver - In last patch they made it so Revolver's spell vamp wont stack with each other, but it stacks with a spell vamp from any other item. So Will of the Ancient's spell vamp will add to Revolver's giving you 45% spell vamp. You wont believe how much you can take kiting and exchanging blows with champion like Irelia dashing to you.
7. Spirit Visage - This build is kind of expensive so most of the time you wont get to the end. Spirit Visage is cheap and nice and gives you that 40% Cooldown Reduction to spam spells like crazy (Transfusion every 1.8 second) aside of increased healing of yourself of course. If game is REALLY REALLY long you might have to sell it but trust me those are rare cases. You still have 2 items to go.
8. Abyssal Scepter OR Zhonya's Hourglass - choice depends on enemy team. Generally if they have alot of AD take Hourglass - if most of them are AP take Abyssal. But choice isnt always that simple. You need to feel what you need more. Like if they have alot of nuke you will want to pop your combo and stay untargetable as long as you can when they try to focus you - take Hourglass then. If they are more steady damage then Abyssal Scepter will lower their magic resistance allowing you to spellvamp more.
9. Upgrade your Hextech Revolver to Hextech Gunblade. Nothing much to talk about - more healing and more damage. Dont forget to use your active on gun.
10. You may sell your Spirit Visage and get Zhonya's Hourglass if you have Abyssal Scepter, or Abyssal Scepter if you have Zhonyas.
In my opinion ranked Vladimir NEEDS a solo lane, and best mid, so try to ensure it for yourself at Champion Select. In details i will describe mid game here but top is pretty much same (not counting ganks).
Game begins. You pick up your book and drink, do the jungler thing if needed (covering yours, or ganking enemy one) and head mid.
Until you get level 9 and your gun, you play rather defensive. Trying to last-hitting minions and saving Transfusion to punish enemy if he tries to do harm to you or just comes too close. Try not to use it on minions unless you are like 3/4 health. When you get your Tides of Blood try to keep it at 4 stacks farming minions and doing E+Q combo (come in range, press E first and then Q on enemy - it may take some time to learn Tides range, and will be much more effective when you get your gun) and use health potion if you lose some health. You have only right to go back to base if you've got enough gold for Hextech Revolver unless situation is very critical. If you are low (not 50health... then you go back, but like 1/3 1/4) just wait for minions and Transfuse em a little bit. You need revolver. Sometimes it will happen before first blue pill, sometimes after you get revolver and boots but eventually (after you ding lv6) you should try to gank top/bot. Try to leave mid after you kill enemy minions so mid is busy killing them and maybe wont call "mia" second after he lose you. If enemies on top/bot are very cocky, like harassing your team under tower, pop Ghost to get there faster. When you get there, try to catch em both with Hemoplague, exhaust one, maybe E+Q too but most important is to catch at least one of them with your Sanguine Pool so your teammates can catch up and help you sooner.
Sometimes it works :)
When you get to mid-late game teamfights begins. Your role is pretty simple. In short - catch as many people as you can with Hemoplague, E+Q someone and keep staying out of range throwing your damage from time to time. If you see someone running you can pool to that person and try to get a kill. That is if they are NOT trying to run right away - then follow your ult with Sanguine Pool to slow them.
Dont initiate unless you are in good position somewhere in jungle - you are not a tank, you are just hard to kill mage.
I hope this will help someone... anyone... and even if it doesn't i had fun creating it for few hours :D
Forgive me again for slaughtering your language.
Comment, criticize and correct me if im wrong somewhere, please.
Be a good Vlad and keep up the Summoner's Code!