Xerath Build Guide by spedgamer

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 spedgamer

Xerath - I'll Show You Real Magic

spedgamer Last updated on September 12, 2012
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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.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 0

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 9

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Welcome to my Xerath guide. I hope that this guide is helpful to you and gets you some wins with this awesome champion.

If you enjoy playing other AP casters with a stun, or high range champs, than you will like Xerath.

If you have never made a guide I highly encourage you to do so with your favorite champion. Not only can you help other people bit you learn. A lot. I have learned so much about this champ and others just from the work I have done so far.

This is my first guide and I plan on doing many more. Please vote and comment I accept all helpful information. I am consistently updating this guide, so if I should add something, please leave a comment and let me know :D.

One key point of these builds is CD Reduction. With the glyphs, your masteries, and Deathfire Grasp you will be very close to the Cap.

Another Focus is on Magic Penetration and AP. Xerath is the King of Magic Penetration. You will deal close to true damage. Also, his ultimate, Arcane Barrage hits 3 times, so AP scaling is Ideal for that.

Obviously things like the Blue Elixer and Golem Buff will help you immensely throughout the game.

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Pros / Cons

Pros: High Damage Output : Incredible Range : Free Sprints :

Con: Very Immobile when in Locus of Power : Lots of OP comments and flames.

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Runes and Masteries

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration : Pretty standard for AP nuke/carry/mage

Greater Seal of Replenishment : For early game mana sustain.

Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power : Maximum AP

Greater Quintessence of Ability Power

I believe that Runes are to match a champion's kit to the individual's play style, so if these do not work for you, find the ones that match what you need.

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Xerath's Gear

Early Game

First buy Boots of Speed and 3 Health Potions

First trip back is to buy Sorcerer's Shoes The Shoes will give you a huge damage increase.
After this pick up Kage's Luck Pick for the gold and AP.

Mid Game

Try to assess the situation, if you need more health, work toward Rylai's Crystal Scepter, if not, Rabadon's Deathcap

Once I have the Deathcap and Rylai's completed, pick up Deathfire Grasp for more CD reduction.

At this point in the game, you should be a huge threat. People will try to kill you. Good items to help you live are Banshee's Veil & Zhonya's Hourglass.

Late Game Situational Items.

If your team is AP heavy, Will of the Ancients work wonders.

If your opponents are stacking Magic Resist, Void Staff. Will probably be of huge benefit regardless.

Overview of Items

Take these first.

Take these if you want more cd reduction late game after you buy Void Staff
Ionian Boots of Lucidity

Good AP and a passive that will allow you to land Arcanopulse and Arcane Barrage with ease.

Largest guaranteed AP gain in the game.

AP and Cooldown Reduction.

Suggested Items for slots 5 and 6

With the melee that will try to backdoor you, the Armor and Activated ability on this item comes in handy. Many people think i would use the for the armor? What? I take it for the 100 AP and a kick@$$ active. The armor is just a bonus.

A great item against caster CC teams and teams with annoying CC in general. Also gives you Magic Resist. You should always include some type of Magic Resist in a Full Build.

If your opponent's are wise they will build Magic Resistance against you. If they do that, Buy this.

If you have mostly AP on your team, this item can be game changing.

If you are 100% confident you can secure kills and stay behind the protection of your team.

Quality Item, rarely used. Use to escape CC

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Skill Sequence and Summoner Spells

Ascended Form
(Innate): Xerath receives 15% of his ability power as bonus armor.

(Active): Fires a long-range beam of energy in a line, dealing magic damage to all targets hit.
Range: 900/1300
Width: 100
Cost: 65 / 70 / 75 / 80 / 85 mana
Damage: 75 / 115 / 155 / 195 / 235 (+0.6 per ability power)
Cooldown: 7 / 6.5 / 6 / 5.5 / 5 seconds

Locus of Power
(Active): Xerath anchors himself to the ground he is standing on for up to 8 seconds, increasing the range of all his spells and granting him bonus magic penetration. Upon disabling this ability, Xerath gains 35% movement speed for 2 seconds. He can deactivate the ability at any time after 0.5 seconds of casting it.
No cost
Cooldown: 20 / 16 / 12 / 8 / 4 seconds
Bonus Magic Penetration: 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 %

Mage Chains
(Active): Deals magic damage to an enemy and marks them with Unstable Magic for 3 seconds. The next spell Xerath strikes this enemy with will stun them for 1.5 seconds.
Range: 600/1000
Cost: 70 / 75 / 80 / 85 / 90 mana
Cooldown: 12 / 11 / 10 / 9 / 8 seconds
Magic Damage: 70 / 120 / 170 / 220 / 270 (+0.7 per ability power)

(Active): Calls down a blast of arcane energy, dealing magic damage to all enemies in an area. May be cast another two times, with no cost, within the next 12 seconds before going on cooldown.
Range: 900/1300
Effect radius: 400
Cost: 150 / 180 / 210 mana
Cooldown: 80 / 70 / 60 seconds
Magic Damage Per Cast: 125 / 200 / 275 (+0.6 per ability power)

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

Max out Arcanopulse first. It is your Primary poking tool.

If you are laning againt melee, pick up Mage Chains for your quick early stun combo.

Next is Locus of Power to "Level 3". At that point in the game you should have already purchased Fiendish Codex and this should put Locus of Power at just above a 9 sec cooldown.

Max out Mage chains with levels 12-15.

Your last 2 lvls will be finishing up Locus of Power

It may be hard, but watch what your opponents are buying, if they pick up any magic resist, putting more priority in Locus of Power will cancel their purchases.

Level Arcane Barrage when it is available, but you probably didn't need me to tell you that.

Summoner Spells

Take Flash
1. Team fight repositioning.
2. First blood.
3. Escape Mechanism.

Take Teleport because

1. Global Availability.
2. Out of mana early? Recall, Teleport, Back in lane.
3. Surprize ganks.
4. Base Protection/Tower Invulnerability.
5. Also, if you are pro, you use wards for spots you want to be able to Teleport to in the future, like maybe Baron or something of that nature. (that's a hint :D)

Other Summoner spells that are decent for Xerath




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So, How to Play Xerath 101


Everyone's favorite I know. During laning phase you should work on earning gold. Poke your opponent as much as possible while also hitting your minions. This will keep your mana at manageable level. You want to maximize your gold intake. This is because when mid game hits, you need to be ready for it.

Xerath is pretty good at farming, so luck us. 2 hits with Arcanopulse should finish off most minion waves once you are about lvl 9.

Generally you will be in the middle lane with Xerath. Watch out for side ganks and save your Flash for that exact reason.

Win your lane. Last hit. Get first blood.

Mid Game

Mid Game it get really fun for you. Don't be afraid to move around the map and gank people. Look for people who are using Recall and snipe them from the bushes.

Help your side lanes push towers. If your other lanes are aware you are waiting for gank, they should push pretty hard.

Do not forget to continue killing minions. They are a huge source of income.

Late Game

I love late game. Stick with your team always. Do not go off alone. Xerath will die if you get jumped.

Stick behind the group and use your spells like artillery. Do not follow runners into the forest unless you know you can kill them fast. Use your range to your advantage.


There really isn't any "combos" for him, but ordering your spells smartly helps.

E - Q results in a quick stun

Q - E - W - Q potent harassing combo

Q - E - W - R - Q - R - R - (release W) - Q High damage for team fights and skirmishes.

I'm sure there is many more ways to order them but these are some that are working for me. Pretty much learn your cooldowns and learn what is appropriate for the situation.

NOTE Learn when to release locus of power I've seen alot of people playing Xerath just chilling in super mode. I saw one sit in it next to a turret, while it killed him after 4 seconds.

NOTE Use your speed burst after locus of power to chase that runner, or to help you escape. If you are already being chased, do not use this skill because they will catch you when you are rooted.

NOTE Have fun.

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Team Work and Laning Partners

Stay behind your team. This is pretty important.

If you are exposed you are vulnerable.

Make your team use their balls and engage the enemy and you will all profit a Victory. .

Laning Partners:

Any tank or tanky dps that can hold the line for you. I have had success with
Lee Sin

Also the following champs should align nice.

because of Cursed Touch

because of Holy Fervor

because of Caustic Spittle Plus I think the duo range would be entertaining.

because of Bushwhack / Pounce

because of Agony

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Ionian Boots of Lucidity vs Sorcerer's Shoes

This is looking to be an ongoing debate for this champion. Depending on the shoes you choose, your build will unfold entirely different. This guide focuses on using Sorcerer's Shoes. I will have a build up for Ionian Boots of Lucidity soon.

The main argument for Ionian Boots of Lucidity is that you can shoot off 2 Arcanopulse during 1 Locus of PowerI see the value of that, but i don't know if I would like to be standing still for 8 sec to do that.

The argument I have for Sorcerer's Shoes you are not very smart if you don't. Really though, 20 mpen that early in the game is BRUTAL

After you buy Void Staff These boots can be a situational buy.

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The Maths

I've placed this at the bottom for those theorycrafter's out there that may find it useful or interesting. Some of this data also defends my opinions on some of my decisions in my guide/build. Numbers excite me.

100/(100+MR)= Damage multiplier. MR=Magic Resistance.

Why I rush Sorcerer's Shoes in my builds.

In this case study let's imagine ourselves at lvl 6. We started the game with Boots of Speed and 3 health potions. we have farmed about 900 gold. What should we buy to maximize our output at this point in the game.

Couple things we can do, we can get a Blasting Wand, or we can upgrade into Sorcerer's Shoes.

Let's base this on my build so we also have the CDR glyphs. Let's also imagine we are laning mid against another AP, lets say Brand. Our main source of damage Arcanopulse will be lvl 3 at this point and have a base damage of 155(+.6*AP)

So the equation for damage for arcanopulse if we picked up blasting wand would look something like this. We gain 9 MPen from our runes, so his Mres will be 21

[100/(100+(21*.85))]*188= 159.5 1210 Total Cost

So each Arcanopulse will hit for 159 if we purchase Blasting Wand

What if we don't start with the boots and get a Doran's Ring at the start and have a Blasting Wand

[100/(100+(21*.85))]*197= 167.1 1335 Total Cost
Better than before. You will move very slow however. I also don't think that Doran's items are best because they only delay your full ability.

But, what if we rush the boots

[100/(100+(1*.85))]*164= 162.6 1100 Total Cost

What I have gathered from this is that you can attain very high numbers with just 1100 gold that it costs for Sorcerer's Shoes and you move faster.

Get the boots. Run faster. Kill harder. What happens here is that the damage of the spell is lower, but a higher percentage of it penetrates to the target. Even at lvl 6 when they haven't bought any magic resist.

I'm not saying always start with boots, but this is an example to show how powerful the boots are at lower levels. Consider 29 straight penetration on a target that only has 30 Magic resist, not to mention the 15% from your masteries, that is so close to true damage. Also consider that most carries search out their core builds before they add defensive items, and you could be rocking close to true damage all game.

Nothing will boost your early game damage more than Sorcerer's Shoes Numbers don't lie.