Xin Zhao Build Guide by iNSPO
Not Updated For Current Season
Xin Zhao Build
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.
About this guide
Hello there and welcome to my Xin Zhao Tanky DPS guide.
This is my first guide and the reason I'm making yet another Xin Zhao guide might be beyond some of you. It just so happens although some guides posted here are very complete and possess tons of useless (or just irrelevant) information, which makes it kinda hard to read them.
In this guide I'll try to summarize in each section what I believe is important to know about playing Xin "the right way".
"What do you mean, the right way?" Well, most of the guides set up Xin to be an all out DPS, when in fact, from personal experience, he should be played as a Tanky DPS.
And although some guides do cover that, I thought I'd contribute with my personal experience and opinions regarding this awesome champion.
About Xin Zhao
Why is Xin Zhao a great champion and what makes me spend my time making a guide for him?
Xin is not only a great champion early game and awesome to pair up with in lane, but also, if well played, an extreme hard to kill killing machine.
Pros / Cons
So, what makes Xin a great champion? And what are his flaws?
+ Very consistent early/mid/end game
+ Destructive combos
+ Passive that helps regenerate HP
+ Can initiate fights (but shouldn't necessarily do so)
+ Great ganker
+ Can jungle very effectively (including dragon)
+ Lanes well with pretty much anything
+ Has high speed/atk speed
+ Has an important role on the outcome of the match
+ A lot of fun to play with
- Can die easily if greedy, especially early game (but can't they all?)
- Not a great harasser
- No escape mechanism (but that's why we have Flash)
- Doesn't have any unique kickass skin :(
My first choice. Since Xin doesn't have any escape mechanism, sometimes Mercury's Treads aren't enough to prevent your death. Use Flash as a last resort to either escape or combined with Audacious Charge to gank an enemy that believes he is safe near his teammates or turret.
I'm a Teleport lover. I just enjoy porting back and forth to assist my team, protect/destroy turrets, gank enemies, you name it. If not this, then I definitely recommend...
Ghost is one of the skills that will be very helpful for the duration of the match (but then again, so will Flash and Teleport
A good option for early game, I guess. However, it becomes really useless late game as you can imagine.
Ignite can really land you some kills early game if used properly after comboing your skills. This might be the key to some early feeding so feel free to take this one.
This isn't bad, but again it loses its purpose later on when you recover your HP to full in very few seconds from wiping a creep group.
[Passive] Tireless Warrior
This passive of yours allows you to regen HP every 3 hits, which is very good, especially early game when you still don't have any Life Steal equipment.
[Q] Three Talon Strike
After triggering this, the next 3 attacks deal more damage and the last one knocks the enemy up in the air.
This is the skill you should work on first since the damage boost really is significant and is a great way of preventing your enemies' escapes.
[W] Battle Cry
Passive: Increases Atk Speed
Active: Increases Atk Speed even more for a few seconds (and every hit you deal while with Battle Cry decreases 1 second in each ability cooldown, including R)
[E] Audacious Charge
Great skill that allows you to jump towards an enemy dealing damage and slowing nearby enemies. This is what you'll initiate fights with.
[R] Crescent Sweep
Deals damage to all enemies within a certain range and increases your Armor and Magic Resistance for 6 seconds. What more could we want? :)
To summarize the skill sequence presented above, as you see, I go for [Q] Tireless Warrior first, which is your main source of damage. Especially at the start.
I prioritize [Q] Tireless Warrior, then [W] Battle Cry, and only then I level up [E] Audacious Charge.
Reason why I don't level up [E] Audacious Charge early on is because it doesn't deal much damage at all, and while low level, the skill won't prevent enemies from running back to their turrets, making it impossible for you to tower dive and kill them... yet.
With [Q] Tireless Warrior, on the other hand, not only you deal more damage, but you knock them up as well, causing them to panic and be vulnerable to, not only you, but also your team mate.
As I mentioned before, leveling this first usually means easy kills early on.
But don't be greedy. When charging your enemies while low level will make you vulnerable as well if you don't have enough HP to back out of there.
Remember, as soon as you charge one, you'll have the other champion plus a certain amount of minions hitting you constantly. So make sure your HP is high enough before risking killing one of your enemies soon in the game.
Don't forget to level up [R] Crescent Sweep as soon as possible also, so you can cause some pain with it to nearby enemies while increasing your defensive stats.
As you can see, I take a pretty straightforward offensive route.
22 Points in Offense, 8 in Utility.
Note: Don't forget to change my Utility point to increase Ghost's speed and duration if you decide to go with it instead of Teleport or Flash.
Evaluate your enemy team
As a Xin Zhao, we'll be tanking a little bit, so it'll be wise for us to evaluate the enemy champions before we decide which build we'll choose for our asian warrior.
Many players stick to a fixed set up but that is a mistake.
Certain enemies will shred you into pieces if they know how to counter you.
So what do you do? The exactly same thing.
That is why Xin shouldn't be played as an all out DPS but as a Tanky DPS. It'd be a waste for such a fine warrior to go all out tank when he can do so much damage and still tank pretty decently. So that's what we're gonna do.
Some players decide to start with Doran's Blade or Doran's Shield but I believe that is a waste because you can't upgrade any Doran's item and you're stuck with it until you decide to sell it for something else (thus, losing some gold).
These are my personal favorites when playing Xin Zhao and items I usually keep for the duration of the match but can of course be replaced by 1 or 2 different ones depending on your playstyle.
Regardless of which kind of enemy champions you have, this is a pretty consistent offensive setup that will tear up most enemies in a few seconds.
Depending on whether you followed my advice, you should have 2 slots left.
Now you need to ask yourself:
1) Are they mainly AP or AD?
2) Who is your biggest threat?
Usually, if teams are diverse enough we'll have both AP and AD enemies, meaning I usually go for 1 item that increases Armor, and 1 that increases Magic Resistance.
I very rarely take this, since it boosts
your MP instead of your HP (like )
but +99 Armor is still pretty good.
Another great item (especially if you make good use of its active skill) that has Armor Penetration.
Good substitute for Stark's Fervor but in my opinion should only be bought late game after you've already built your whole set. Why? Because it's a lot more expensive, for one, and the Stark's will help you farm gold just as much.
Needless to say, Guardian Angel is a good addition to your set up if you're not happy with the items suggested above. I find it a bit overrated but it's definitely good to have.
Not only you get +700 HP from this beauty but also you have a very good chance of slowing your enemies down to prevent them from escaping your deadly attacks. A great item but doesn't boost your Defense or Magic Resistance.
This is basically to summarize the previous chapter about Items.
A few build suggestions for Xin Zhao:
A pretty consistent build strong in both Defense
and Magic Resist. Probably the one I use the most.
This one goes a little bit against my suggestion (of picking two defensive items)
but is still a very solid build and definitely more aggressive build.
Is your enemy team full AD? This will make you pretty much unstoppable.
Works like a charm against AP enemies. It even works well against some very annoying enemies' skills
like Ashe's Enchanted Crystal Arrow or Karthus's Requiem.
I could keep on making different combinations of items and explain who they're good against or why, but I guess you get the picture.
Main thing to bear in mind is to not go full DPS or you might get a bit squishy and easily defeated later on.
At around level 9 or so, if you managed to get a kill or two, your set up should consist in something like this:
Whichever your setup is, if you have Boots (whether Mercury's Treads or Berserker's Greaves), Zeal for attack speed, and some item that gives you Lifesteal (such as Emblem of Valour or Vampiric Scepter), you are ready to go and farm jungle without any Health Potions popping or anything like that.
This, of course, assuming you and your teammate already took care of your enemy's tower in your lane.
What I usually do is start jungling as much as I can and help teammates with ganks wherever I can.
Killing the blue buff monster is a very good addition to Xin's buffs as it recovers MP and reduces ability cooldowns, basically meaning you can spam your skills on monsters, creeps, enemies, and still it'll be unlikely for you to run out of MP.
This will certainly give you an edge towards most champions since, with the blue buff, you can wipe out large groups of creeps without much problem, leveling up the fastest on your team (and maybe the enemy's as well).
Playstyle & Tips
Like I already mentioned countless times, I play Xin Zhao as tanky DPS and that's what this guide is about.
Considering you are mid-late game and have one of the builds suggested above, here are a few tips about playing Xin:
2) Try to get a Black Cleaver as soon as possible, since this is the origin of most of your damage.
3) Be aggressive but learn when to back out of a fight. If you engage in a team fight, be cautious of your HP and be a good judge on whether you'll survive or not. Feel free to back out and let your team do something.
4) Hiding in bushes is a great way to engage with your Audacious Charge, since you can not only jump to your enemies but also slow them.
5) Perform combos with your skills to deal massive damage very quickly.
6) Always try to have the blue and/or red buffs, as they're both very useful for farming and ganking.
7) Stick to this strategy even if you have a tank on your team. A tank (even a good one) can't protect you all the time.
8) Make note of which enemy is a bigger threat to you and choose items accordingly to counter him.
9) Have fun. :)
End of this guide
Being this my first guide I'm sure there is room for improvement.
Feel free to submit your opinions below.
I'll keep on trying different strategies with Xin so I'll be updating this guide in the future if I find necessary.
I'd like to thank:
Mobafire for hosting this guide and for providing gamers with this great community to share opinions and knowledge about this game.
Searz for his very informative post with a guide template on the forum.