Build Guide by Viking Biker

Not Updated For Current Season

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Viking Biker

Vladimir - The Vlad Compendium

Viking Biker Last updated on April 16, 2011
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Team 1

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: 0

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

Utility: 21

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Thank you for taking the time to look at my in depth guide to a few of the ways I play Vlad.
I couldn't call this a "Master's Guide" because I'm not arrogant enough to claim to be a master. I have played Vlad quite a bit ranked and unranked and learned a lot over time, starting day 1 of his release.

Key Notes:
You are a mage or a tank, but not both at the same time, so I don't recommend trying to fill both roles in one build, because it gimps both. So essentially pick one, then build around that. Of course that's not to say you can't buy some defensive items, 'cause well that's just smart playing.

Vlad is pretty darn versatile, but the key to him is understanding his passive and picking items that have synergy with it and his abilities and staying away from items that don't fully benefit either of them.

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Profile Descriptions & Play Style Suggestions

This build is cool-down focused guide that makes Vlad very fun to play and gives you very quick cool-downs on your abilities (mainly transfusion) and can generally surprise your enemies and wreck some face. With this build you should be mindful of positioning and play smartly but with the low cool-downs you are able to do some good sustainable damage.

This build is a more general play style which I feel is pretty much a good rounded play style and build for Vlad. You probably won't lead the kill chart, but with the reliable damage and survivability that this build provides, you'll be a darn good asset to your team. You can take a little punishment with this build but it allows you to take some more risks.

3. BLOODY WMD(Weapon of Mass Destruction)
This build is a nuke all out damage and Hella AP stacking play style which sacrifices defense for a total offense. Very little survivability here. This build requires some smart playing and a reliable team. You are essentially the thinnest of Glass Cannons. Stay in the back with good positioning and drop bombs. When a few enemies go down, grow a pair and help get the job done. THIS BUILD DOES NOT GIVE YOU THE RIGHT TO KS OR TAKE EVERY KILL. That just makes you an @$$hole.

This build is the controversial "Tank Vlad" which you don't see often, but can be pretty viable with skill and know how. This also tends to freak your opponents out as they don't really know what to do with you. Keep in mind you will be netting a lot of assists with this build, not too many KB's. You are a tank in this build after all. Essentially, get in there and stir it up, don't focus their tank and help own the carries dropping your ult midway in a team fight can really help turn the tides after everybody has blown their abilities and ults. Also you control where the fight is by being the focus, make sure they stay in that lovely Hemoplague area for the bonus damage for your teammates.

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Lets go over Vlad's abilities and what makes them so darn cool.

This ability is one of the things that make people scream that you're OP. It's a no cost mini nuke, which can turn into a not so mini nuke, that damages the target and heals you based off a percentage of that damage. The kicker? It doesn't cost anything. Yup, zero, zilch, free, etc. I always max this by level 9 so that you can pretty much spam it and kill people. Will this ability keep you safe and snug in a team fight? No, but it can give you that much needed life and damage to kill an enemy champ and stay alive when you should of probably died.

Now this is the ability that will make others scream that you're OP, cry, rage quit, and possibly try to shove a remote in their butts like the kid from the WoW account video on YouTube.

In this one package you have a 2 second 50% AOE slow that not heals but does good damage AND makes you untargetable. WOW. It's not without it's drawbacks though. It does cost 15% of your current health and has a pretty sizable cool-down on it.

* Offensively it slows enemies (especially those low health runners) and kills them while they pretty much can't do anything about it. I can't stress enough not blowing this early however, you have plenty of other damage at your fingertips to use other than your one escape mechanism.

* Defensively it makes you Houdini. See Ashe's Enchanted Crystal Arrow flying at you? Pool under it. See Karthus's Requiem? Time it and pool out of the damage. See that Sion Cryptic Gaze or Taric Dazzle flying at you? Yup, for the low price of 15% of your current health you too can be gank free.

This is pretty cool little ability. Not only is an AOE damage spell to all enemies in range, but it gives you stacks which increase the damage Tides does and increases the healing you receive. Couple this with a Spirit Visage and you become pretty self sufficient. The downside is that it costs more health every time you cast it after the 4 stacks, so be careful!

This Ult is amazing. You get an AOE ult that increases damage in it's area and then ticks down to destruction. This coupled with an ignite almost always ensures multiple deaths. One of my favorite things to do is use it to kill a runner who might normally get away. Some might consider it wasteful, but its a low CD Ult (with the correct build mind you) that is almost always ready when I need it.

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Masteries are pretty standard for 3 of the 4 builds.

These masteries are used in the "Cold Blooded", "Blood Mage", and "Bloody WMD" profiles. They all use the standard 9/0/21 build. I'll go into more depth on why these masteries, but I think it's pretty easy to grasp.

Offensive Tree:
3/3 into Archmage's Savvy - This ups your AP
1 into Deadliness - just to get to the next tier Plentiful Bounty and Cripple aren't good for these builds
4/4 into Sorcery - For the delicious Cool-down reduction
1/1 into Archaic Knowledge - For the 15% Magic Resist penetration

Defensive Tree:

Utility Tree:
1/1 into Haste - To compliment our Ghost summoner spell
3/3 into Perseverance - For the 4% Health regen
3/3 into Good Hands - Being dead less is awesome
4/4 into Awareness - Because 5% experience gain is the sauce
* No to Expanded Mind because we don't have mana
1/1 in Greed - Just cause there's nothing else
2/2 into Utility Mastery - This is coupled with Greed to get to the next tier and having a longer buff duration is nice in case you kill a champ who had them, and for the Baron buff as well.
* No to Insight or Meditation because, well, again we don't use mana
3/3 into Quickness - Well to move quickly for escaping or positioning and also because being fast is cool. Just ask Miss Fortune
3/3 into Intelligence - More delicious Cool-downs reduction (9% total now from just Masteries)
1/1 into Presence of the Master - So others can feel your Masterful Presence, that and having your Summoner Spells down time reduced by 15% is handy

After Thoughts:
Is this set in stone? No. Feel free to swap if you need. I.E. if you prefer Flash to Ghost then feel free to remove the point in Haste and place it into Blink of an Eye. Same goes with Teleport and Spatial Accuracy

For the "HEMO TANK" profile I use a 0/22/8 masteries set. below I'll go into some depth on why I choose these masteries.

Offensive Tree:

Defensive Tree:
3/3 into Hardiness - More armor as a tank? Yes please
3/3 into Resistance - More MR as a tank? Yes please
4/4 into Evasion - because dodging the attacks is better than taking the hits. Plus its the only other choice only benefits mana champs. And, say it with me, we don't have mana!
1/1 into Nimbleness - So we can run faster when dodge! This could help you escape. It can. Plus it almost seems a waste not to take it
2/3 into Harden Skin- Because physical damage can "eff" off. Not that this really makes that huge a difference. If you'd like, put the points in Defensive Mastery and tell those minions to shove it
4/4 into Veteran's Scars - 48 more HP?! Why thank you!
1/1 into Willpower - Keep that Cleanse off cool-down a little faster.
3/3 into Ardor - Having your attack speed increased by 4% as Vlad is a joke, but having your AP increased by 4% isn't. Especially considering we wont have much AP as a tank outside what we obtain through health from our items
1/1 into Tenacity So we can be just like Tenacious D! Really? No, not really. But the 4% less damage keeps us alive slinging blood and annoying enemies longer so our team can kill them

1/1 into Spatial Accuracy -
Quicker cast time, quicker cool-down and we need an extra point to get to the second tree
3/3 into Perseverance - Yes, we don't have mana but 4% extra health regen to regen the massive amount of health we will have is nice.
3/3 into Good Hands - If you hate the idea of using Perseverance then being dead 10% less time is nice too.
4/4 into Awareness - 5% experience gain boost is nice to keep you from getting behind in levels should you die more than expected.

Should you not like this 0/22/8 build, I have prepared a 9/21/0 alternative tank build to add some talented cooldown and magic penetration if you so desire. I am not going to break it down like I have above, but you can view it by clicking here
Should you choose this alternative "HEMO TANK" build then I suggest using the Exhaust summoner spell to compliment the point put into the Cripple talent.

After Thoughts:
Is Vlad the best Tank? Well no, there are much better options. But, with this mastery set and the correct defensive item build, he sure can last a long time and really soften up the opposing team. I've been the last man standing many times in those really tough team fights and been able to mop up the remaining champs to get an Ace. It's preferred if you're not the last man standing and your team is alive and so are you, but you get the picture.

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I don't use a wide variety of runes, as there's not too many I feel are viable for Vlad. I'll go ahead and explain what runes I use in each of my builds.

9 X Greater Mark of Magic Penetration - These ensure your spells and your Ult pack a punch.
9 x Greater Seal of Vitality - Gives you health per level, which is our mana too.
9 x Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction - This is essential to help stack cool-downs for this build.
3 x Greater Quintessence of Ability Power - Gives you some much needed starter AP and health for early game until your cool-downs start becoming non existent.

9 X Greater Mark of Magic Penetration - These ensure your spells and your Ult pack a punch.
9 x Greater Seal of Vitality - Gives you health per level, which is our mana too.
9 x Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction - Gives us enough cool-down reduction to make Transfusion and Tides of Blood spammable.
3 x Greater Quintessence of Ability Power - Boosts your early game damage and health for harassing.

3. BLOODY WMD(Weapon of Mass Destruction)
9 X Greater Mark of Scaling Ability Power - For AP stacking purposes. At 18 it nets you 16.2 AP at 18 giving 29 Health via passive
9 x Greater Seal of Scaling Ability Power - For AP stacking purposes. At 18 it nets you 16.2 AP at 18 giving 29 Health via passive
(I would not recommend Greater Seal of Ability Power because it only nets you a whopping 5.31 AP which nets you less than 10 health)
9 x Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power - For AP stacking purposes. At 18 it nets you 27.9 AP at 18 giving 50.22 Health via passive
3 x Greater Quintessence of Scaling Ability Power - Again, AP stacking. At 18 it nets you 23.22 AP at 18 giving 41.80 Health via passive.

9 X Greater Mark of Magic Penetration - These ensure your spells and your Ult pack a punch.
9 x Greater Seal of Evasion - Lets us dodge more attacks, which is good.
9 x Greater Seal of Vitality - If you want to build more HP. Up to your play style.
9 x Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist - gives us some more magic resist.
3 x Greater Quintessence of Health - giving us that big, intimidating, starting out health. you could also use Greater Quintessence of Vitality to double each flat health Quint by level 18.

After Thoughts:
Are there other options? Sure. These are just some of the Rune sets I've used and enjoyed. Not everybody will like these, my hope is that you like at least one of them or that my way of thinking for Vlad's build options helped you learn something.

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Skill Sequence

Each build has some minor tweaks to the skill order I've chosen. I'll briefly explain what my logic is with the skill order for each build.

In this build Max Transfusion first by level 9, followed by Sanguine Pool and then Tides of Blood Taking Hemoplague when available at levels 6, 11, and 16.

Why? - Part of the what makes the cool-down build desirable is the fact that you're skills are almost always off of cool-down. This allows you to really nuke somebody down and quick. Also because in most lane fights, you can use your pool twice! Having this ability available twice in one fight will make you a monster. This also brings your Tides of Blood to almost insta-spam status and makes your farming and damage output the stuff of legends.

For this build I Max Transfusion first by level 9, putting points in Sanguine Pool at Level 2 and 8 then putting points in at levels 12, 14, and 17. I put points into Tides of Blood at levels 4 and 10 and then putting points in at levels 13, 15, and 18. Taking Hemoplague when available at levels 6, 11, and 16.

Why? - Transfusion always takes priority, and I felt that alternating my Tides of Blood and Sanguine Pool help out the overall damage output by keeping them close to each other in level. I favor Sanguine Pool early though since it is his get out of jail free card and also his slow in team fights. Since this build has some defensive items in it, I feel using a little better about using Sanguine Pool a little more offensively.

For this build I Max Transfusion first by level 9, putting points in Sanguine Pool at Level 2 and 10 then maxing it last at levels 15,17, and 18. I put points into Tides of Blood at levels 4, 8, and then maxing it second in levels 12 through 14. Taking Hemoplague when available at levels 6, 11, and 16.

Why? - Well You have very little defense with this build and your only option for escape is your Ghost or Flash(if you prefer it instead) and Sanguine Pool. For this reason I suggest you save it all costs for that reason unless you know you're safe to use it offensively. By maxing Tides of Blood second, you're going to allow for some pretty sick AOE damage and when it reaches 4 stacks some great self heals via your Transfusion. This allows you to alternate casting Transfusion and Tides of Blood which will balance the higher cost of Tides of Blood with the incredible heals from the following Transfusion.

For this build I Max Transfusion first by level 9, putting points in Sanguine Pool at Level 2 and 10 then maxing it last at levels 15, 17, and 18. I put points into Tides of Blood at levels 4, 8, and then maxing it second in levels 12 through 14. Taking Hemoplague when available at levels 6, 11, and 16.

Transfusion first so you can use it the most during a team fight with it's low CD to help whittle down on their carries. I chose Tides of Blood second so that you can get that 4 stack with as much damage and healing return available for those team fights. Choosing 2 points into Sanguine Pool gives you some decent health return for when you have to pool (although I recommend saving for the end of the team fight or for before you die).

After Thoughts:
These are just my suggestions. Feel free to follow them to the letter or not at all. After all it's up to you to develop a play style that suits you, not me.

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Summoner Spells




As you can see The majority of the builds use these two summoner spells. I feel these are pretty much the best Summoner Spells for Vlad and suit him well. I will list some alternatives and also give you a list of Summoner spells to avoid while playing Vlad.

Viable Alternatives:

Is definitely an option. Can help save towers and assist in ganks and team fights quickly.

Is a suitable substitute for Ghost in this build, but I still prefer Ghost due to the movement speed granted is applied to Sanguine Pool as well. Seeing a puddle of blood hauling butt is comical yes, but being untargetable while while running away makes this combo very nice.

Can be beneficial. Not one of my favorites for Vlad, but can be the extra help you need getting out of a bad situation. I generally don't take Cleanse due to a well timed Sanguine Pool being just as effective in most scenarios.

has it's perks, but I really only recommend it for the Hemo Tank build.

Stay Away From:

No. A long cool-down that doesn't touch Vlad's HP enough to make it worth while. The fact that it only heals half the amount to your teammates doesn't make it shine any more.

Again not beneficial to Vlad. This works best for Champs global ults like Pantheon and sometimes Twisted Fate

Vlad is not a jungler, no Smite for you.

Can this be useful, sometimes yes. But honestly, let somebody else waste a summoner spell slot on it.


Tell me, have you ever seen Rally used in game? Yeah...there's a reason for that.

It is beneficial, but again, let a support champ take this summoner spell instead.

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I don't have much to say here. In the item builds section for each profile I've broken down the buy sequence item by item. Are they law? Of course not! I chose the items in each build to have the best synergy with Vlad's abilities and the role you are filling.

These items I think are ideal when facing rounded teams with rounded abilities but just as in every game they are always subject to change depending on the team makeup.

It's on you to develop different strategies to combat teams that are not proportionate in their makeup. I.E. as a Hemo TankVlad you're not going to need much magic resistance for Physical Damage heavy team and same goes for armor on a Ability Power Heavy team. You need to be able to analyze their team makeup and adapt to counter it. If they lack CC, then perhaps you don't need those Mercury's Treads maybe shift to Sorcerer's Shoes to amp up the damage. Use your melon.

Same ideas go for any of my other profiles. They key to being a good player is to be dynamic, not static. You must be able to adapt, improvise, and overcome.

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I know this is a tremendous wall of text and it has probably crit you like Tryndamere with 2 Phantom Dancers and if you have read the whole thing straight through, I wish I could give you a cookie. Just know that I appreciate you looking at this compendium tremendously, as it took a lot of time and effort on my part to create.

If you have constructive criticism for anything contained in this compendium, then I welcome it! Please help me make the guide better for current and future players alike.

If you just want to flame and be a troll well I can't stop you.

A comment would be appreciated with your vote even though it's not required.

This is my first guide and I tried my best to be as thorough and detail oriented as possible. I am always open to suggestion and I welcome any requests to add any relevant additional information not covered to this guide. All you need to do is comment or PM me.
If you like it, leave me +1. If you're indifferent, don't vote. If you hate it, you can down vote me, but please just tell me why.

I hope you enjoyed this, I hope it helps you, and I'll see you on the Fields of Justice.


Viking Biker