Volibear Build Guide by Caidran
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.
Hello and welcome to my Volibear guide for Dominion only.
I haven't played a great deal if any Summoners Rift since the release of Dominion.
I'm not intending to write a fancy-pants guide with flashy pictures and all that jibber jabber, all I'm going to do is explain how I play and consistently win with Volibear as my main champion. I'll be updating the guide as time goes on due to changes made to the champion.
This is the first guide I've created and I've done so in the fashion I tend to look for when searching guides, a simple, very easily referenced guide that I can use and tweak to my own play style.
As was expected when Volibear was released, there was a massive amount of QQ'ing regarding players being annihilated by his Frenzy skill with complaints that all you had to do was stack health boosting items, which in reality is not entirely true.
In low ELO games it may be viable to stack frozen mallets and run around using Frenzy on champions with 3/4's health remaining, against a decent team this will get you killed, consistently.
Alas Riot decided to nerf Volibear in any case, reducing the damage from his Frenzy by lowering the boost it gives based on bonus health. It should be noted however that the damage reduction was minimal, effectively pacifying most of the players who complained for a time whilst avoiding upsetting too many Volibear players. As a result of this, he is still a very powerful champion and is still my main pick. This does however worry me as there could always be another more substantial nerf in the future once people start to whine again, but we'll cross that bridge if we come to it.
Pros / Cons
- Top Tier 1vs1 champion throughout the game.
- Ton's of health.
- Very high damage output when all skills are available.
- Excellent tactical options with Rolling Thunder.
- Can be kited by skilled players.
- No real escape mechanism.
- Prone to nerfs.
- Prone to CC.
Ionian Boots of Lucidity
Volibear is very useful in the beginning of the match, ensuring that you take Boots of Speed & the beginning of your Phage in Ruby Crystal & Long Sword. Picking up one or two Health Potion. Ionian Boots of Lucidity are your first upgrade & the cooldown reduction will contribute to using Frenzy far more often which in turn will result in more kills.
Throughout the middle section of the game, you'll be building Phage, Giant's Belt & Frozen Mallet. Once you have your mallet, your health will be exceptionally high compared to most of the other champions at this stage of the game, not including other tank-esque champions. Ionic Spark is next on your list & this will provide extra damage and health. At this stage you have a number of options for item builds, Volibear is completely viable with any of the suggested items in this guide after Ionic Spark.
It's not often the game will reach this stage and if it does it won't last very long. However you should be able to build at least one of your late-game items, which you begin with is entirely based on personal preference. Atma's Impaler will give you a great deal of damage and will also improve your survivability with it's armor boost not to mention the critical strike chance is excellent. Zeke's Herald is an excellent choice if you are looking for some life-steal, although it shouldn't be entirely necessary. It's a great option with regards to providing assistance to your team, especially if you have one or two AD carries fighting alongside you.
Instead of selecting Atma's Impaler & Zeke's Herald, take a look at the enemy team composition and how they are building their champions.
The bread & butter item for taking on auto-attack champions. This item will infuriate the Master Yi's & Tryndamere's out there and any other champion based on the same principles. Consistently touted as the last remaining seriously overpowered item on Dominion, which is a bit extreme but it's still a very effective item to combat auto-attackers.
Facing off against tanks is frustrating due to their high health (ask anyone you've killed throughout the match...), Kitae's Bloodrazor will greatly assist with bringing tanks down to health levels low enough to ensure Frenzy is effective.
This item will provide you with attack damage & attack speed, two stats that Volibear just loves. The reason for selecting this item though, is that it will give you visibility of a champion for 5 seconds after hitting them. Akali is a dominant champion in this game mode and The Lightbringer is one of the available counters to her stealth.
Runes & Masteries
I've gone for a very simple rune setup, increasing a number of key areas of Volibear's build.
The higher the CDR on Volibear, the more often you can Frenzy.
The more often you can Frenzy, the more often you can decimate enemy champions.
Increasing Volibear's health is what this build is reliant on. With more health, Frenzy will do a lot more damage and the damage boost from Atma's Impaler will be increased also.
There is some attack speed runes in there along with the two main focus points, the reasoning behind this is quite simple: Frenzy requires three successive hits to activate, the faster you hit, the faster you Frenzy, quite simple no?
With regards to Masteries, I am of the opinion that you can build a successful character with almost any intelligent combination of masteries. The mastery selection provided here boosts Volibear's Ability power to complement his passive Chosen of the Storm and Majestic Roar's damage. I would encourage anyone reading this guide to experiment with their own mastery page builds designed to suit their playstyles.
- Combined with Rolling Thunder there are few champions who can escape you.
- Provides a viable escape mechanism if required as Rolling Thunder will only give a speed boost when chasing a champion.
- I choose this over Flash due to it providing a sustained escape option, especially with the small size of Dominions map and the lack of walls to hide behind.
Ignite or Exhaust
- Ignite, Great option when facing a team with healing capabilities, also provides a very satisfying feeling when an enemy champion escapes with Ignite cast on them only to die a few moments later from the damage over time.
- Exhaust, can all but guarantee victory versus an AD champion in 1vs1. This spell also provides a great method for preventing enemy champions from escaping allowing you to get just close enough to hit Rolling Thunder.
I don't personally select this spell, however it is a viable option which can, when used in tandem with your Thundering Claws, give you a ridiculously high damage outpout for the 12 seconds both Surge & Thundering Claws last for. Like Exhaust, can almost guarantee victory in a 1vs1 battle.
Skill Sequence in battle is not difficult to master when playing Volibear;
Rolling Thunder is your opening skill to close distance and whenever possible, throwing champions behind you into range of your turret! This is where Volibear can shine as a turret defender, forcing the battle to happen when he chooses rather than when the enemy is prepared.
Majestic Roar should almost always be cast instantly after Rolling Thunder, slowing your target and providing some medium damage. Depending on the situation , Thundering Claws is to be activated when available to provide a high damage output and AOE damage per hit, this alone can win a great deal of battles with other champions, especially when there are more than one.
Finally, if the enemy is still in one piece, activate Frenzy on them once they have hit 1/4 health and this will do one of two things. It will kill them outright, or remove almost all of their health allowing you to get the kill on your next hit. Frenzy, when used properly is an incredibly powerful skill & once your CDR is increased, this can be used often enough to cause enemy players to QQ.
Playing the game
Volibear in the beginning...
Obviously everything I say here is based on the metagame in dominion, with four champions pushing top with one capping middle and one going bottom. My personal preference for Volibear is to head straight to top with the other two team mates and assist in the first team fight, however Volibear can excel as a late-comer to the battle especially with his Frenzy, so capping middle turret and then heading top to backup your team is an equally excellent option.
Volibear in battle:
Whenever possible, move as a unit with at least one other champion throughout the game. Basic skill sequence is as above and very rarely changes, with the exception of either not having to use Thundering Claws OR Frenzy, more often than not you will and should be using at least one in your fights.
Volibear defending turrets:
Due to his Rolling Thunder being able to throw champions into turret range, Volibear makes a very powerful defender. When holding a turret ensure that you don't over-extend to the point that your Rolling Thunder won't throw your enemies close enough to your turret for it to be useful. Often in Dominion, enemy champion groups will charge your turret with one or two capturing to prevent damage, this is where Majestic Roar & Thundering Claws shines as they will hit everyone close to you, stopping all enemy captures.
Overall, if you stick with a team mate you shouldn't encounter much difficulty taking down enemy champions in groups of two/three, naturally it's unlikely that you can waltz into a group of four or more champions and start dropping them unless they are wounded beforehand (in which case Thundering Claws will decimate them), so keep this in mind. One on One, Volibear should not fear any champion in the league.
Volibear is a great champion for Dominion, providing high health, survivability and high damage with a healing passive. When played correctly he can finish first consistently and justifiably.
I am always looking for suggestions to improve the guide further and to add more detail, as such all feedback is very welcome, harsh or otherwise. Please be sure to let me know how you perform with this build if you choose to try it out.