Xin Zhao Build Guide by Gnucki

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 Gnucki

Xinvulnerable - Team Tank DPS

Gnucki Last updated on September 14, 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: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 9

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

Utility: 0

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Welcome to the invulnerable Xin build!! (of course everybody knows that no build can really make you invulnerable..(except this one!!! (no it's a joke again but if you thought twice it was real, then..)))

In fact, I have to admit that I made this guide for myself (remember and evaluate my builds). But as it didn't take me much time to share it, I did it.

These build are Team Tank DPS oriented builds.
What does it mean??

Team: When you are in 5v5 especially, you need to play with your team to win. If you have the ultimate solo build, it's good. But you know that team fights are almost always the key of the game.

Tank: You won't be a tank of course, but a really nice offtank.

DPS: You will be able to deal a lot of damage.

Tank DPS: Yes, it's not the end! You will be able to hit tank hard!!

You will understand in the next chapters how it works..

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Pros / Cons


  • Can handle damages (offtank).
  • Super engager.
  • Awesome early game ganker.
  • Can DPS tank.
  • Can kill squishies fast.
  • Really effective in team fight.
  • Master of 1v1.
  • Good laner (good harasser).
  • Strong early, and mid game.
  • Very strong late game.
  • Almost unkillable if fed.

  • A little bit slow (but you should slow enough your ennemies) (the second build give you more speed if you prefer).
  • Not a full carry pusher/killer DPS (but would you rather be vulnerable to CC?).
  • Must be a minimum fed (like all champions I think).
  • No real escape mechanism (but you have flash and can slow one opponent quite easily).

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Build differences

First build
You deal more damage to tanks and you can handle more damage especially early game.
You are a bit slow but you can slow your enemy in one hit.

Second build
You deal more damage to squishies early game and count on your life steal to be unkillable. If you want a pentakill possible build, try this one (of course, you need to be fed to do a penta ^^). You can chase and escape more effectively with your better speed.

Third build
This one is a kind of mix of the two first builds. You keep the bloodrazor and you have a good speed. You can look at its buy sequence (that you can adapt to the others) if you want to make more damages early game and to fill your offtank role sooner.

Fourth build
This is the (off)tank build, if you want to tank early and be a violent engager, you can use it. Your damage output is not as good as in the other builds but you can take more damages. If you want a real tank build, you can start with it, then take real tank items (like that, you can adapt your play to the game (more resilience or more damages?)).

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First build
A classic 21/9/0.

I take Archaic Knowledge for its interaction with the Bloodrazor.
I don't take Nimbleness because with 2% dodge I don't think it's helpful. I prefer to have the full armor and magic bonuses.
I don't take Lethality but I let you guess why (a clue: look at the critical rate of this template).

Second and third build
A 24/6/0.

This time I take Lethality and forget about dodge chance. But you can do like you want.

Fourth build
A 9/21/0.

You want to swallow?

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Skill Sequence

Why Audacious Charge (AC) over Three Talon Strike (TTS) ?

It's really straightforward.
AC make a little more damage at all level than TTS (maybe not in the first levels if you have armor penetration).
TTS only improves damages for each of the skill level.
AC decreases its CD (maybe it will be the case for TTS soon), and increases its speed reduction.
AC is more mana expensive but can help you to farm and to harass. It's also a better skill to improve to help your team kill early game (because you only need one level in TTS to have its effect).

Why Battle Cry (BC) before Three Talon Strike ?

You need a lot of attack speed in this build (but it seems to be the case in all Xin build no?).

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Summoner Spells

Flash: Help you to escape and chase. Save your *** so many times! With a Flash and an Audacious Charge you can get to a fleeing coward enemy champion and finish him! Also allows you to towerdive a little: Audacious Charge under the tower then Flash to escape (use like that only if you are sure to kill the enemy champion).

Exhaust: Help you to slow your target and to prevent it to make damages. Help you so much for early kills. Always efficient in mid/late game.

If you want to use another spell, you can, and I think you know why you prefer it.

If you want to jungle, these builds are perfect for gank, so you can use then and get instead of .

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I only use primary runes.

Greater Quintessence of DesolationGreater Quintessence of Desolation: Armor penetration, excellent in early game, still good after. Consistent with a tank DPS build. Can be replaceable by .
Greater Mark of DesolationGreater Mark of Desolation: The same remarks as for Quintessences.
Greater Glyph of Shielding: Magic resistance. Less magic damages taken (offtank). You can get instead (or a mix) to have a better early survavibility (if you want to jungle for example).
Greater Seal of DefenseGreater Seal of Defense: Armor. Less physical damages taken (offtank). You can get instead (or a mix) to have a better early survavibility (if you want to jungle for example).

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First build
Berserker's Greaves: Give you more attack speed and mouvement speed which is a good thing for early kills and survavibility. It allows you to last hit much effectively and so to earn more money!

Frozen Mallet: Your skills give you damage and attack speed (all a DPS may want). So you can focus on an item which give you some great survavibility! +700HP early mid game? At this time you have generally 1200-1300HP, so +700HP represents +50% HP (=2000HP). This is why, if you have already been fed, with this ganker item you will absolutely dominate your lane. Your target can't flee without using CD. At this time, if you see gank possibilities, you have to go. You are the perfect ganker. It's really important because it's going to allow you to feed you or one of your team mate and can give you a crucial advantage for the rest of the game. Of course, you can start ganking as soon as you have the (even sooner if you want/need).

Madred's Bloodrazor: Gives you damage, attack speed and armor. What more could you want? 4% max HP in magic damage? Ok, you've got it. Essential in a tank DPS build.

Guardian Angel: Now you are an offtank who can go into the melee and take the damages to protect your other squishies team members. But you can kill too and your enemy shouldn't forget that.
Oh no, you are dead because they all focuses you!!! What?!! Not really dead? I'm back from hell to give you your redemption!! Seriously, when they concentrated all their efforts to kill you and you come back to life, it's really enjoyable. Moreover, if they did that, you are pretty sure to have won the team fight and you are back to push.
If the team is an AP team, you can get instead. If the team is an AD team, you can get instead.
If you are not fed, you can get this item earlier (after the for example) to fulfill your role sooner.

The Black Cleaver: With that item you will achieve the fact that you hit very hard and fast. Moreover 45 armor reduction for a tank DPS build isn't bad. Of course, the armor reduction is applied to the target, so all your team benefits from it too!

Stark's Fervor: Gives you a nice life steal even if it doesn't work with the Bloodrazor and a lot of attack speed. But the great thing with this item is that all the improvements are in an halo, so all your team benefits from it!! Did I mentioned the 20 armor reduction for everyone?
You can replace it with an other item (for example ) if you want or if an other team mate has one.

At the game start, take and 3 or a and 1 or if you prefer a for more early survavibility and damages. You must buy potions to stay in lane the most of the time. You have to be at less at the same level as your opponents if you don't want to take more and more ******. When you start to be weaker, it's often to late. A potion cost 35, you have repaid one in one minion kill. Be a carefull aggressive Xin. NEVER BE GREEDY (or you will be a feeder like 90% of the Xin players).

In mid game, if the other team is an heavy CC AP team, you can change in if you have enough attack speed.

In very late game, you can replace your boots with , or, let be crasy, a .

Just a little consideration on the attack speed. Why so much attack speed? This later allows you to hit really hard because of its interactions with and . For example, when you engage an enemy with a charge and you use battle cry, you can charge to another enemy almost instantly (because you kill the first one, because you charge the tank, because your target escapes or is trying to escape, ...).

Second build
Trinity Force: Give you all you need with two really nice passives and a speed bonus that helps you to chase and escape.

The bloodthirster: These build is lifesteal oriented late game so this is a must have. With the , you can hope to stack its bonuses.

You can transform these builds in pure AD builds by replacing the by a in the first or third build and a in the second build for example.

These builds are strong early, mid and especially late game. You don't have to finish them to feel their power.
They cost approximately 16k (a little more with potions and wards). It's expensive but in a long and played game Xin can do it and he will really be strong at this point! Enough to win the game?

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Team Work

This is the most important section!!
This is where the things are going to become interesting and you're going to understand these builds!

Everybody has already played a game where you didn't know how to engage the other team and/or where the opponent tank was too dangerous (because of grab, ...) to be approached. This is not a problem anymore!

Suppose you have a tank in your team. You are the primary engager. You charge the boring opponent tank. Your own tank comes immediately to help you.

5 solutions:

  • The other enemy team let you kill its tank because you are too scary. You can finish the rest of the team after (noob team)!
  • The other enemy team attacks you and/or your tank. Switch target to a squishy carry and kill him with your own carries stayed behind ready to intervene.
  • The other enemy team try to cross you through to attack your squishies members stayed behind. Switch target and do the same thing as the second point.
  • The enemy tank succeed in escaping with its CD. Retry as soon as possible.
  • The enemy tank succeed in escaping without its CD. Bad bit, retry. If he never needs CD to flee, I'm sorry :D.

In most situations, this will force the other team to hit you and your tank letting your other members kill everybody (because they can focus who they want easily)!
In the case, they wait few seconds before deciding to engage you, you can do a lot of damages to their tank with this build. It's important to switch from target as soon as you can and not trying to finish the tank (if you don't want to lose the advantage).

Of course, you can do the same thing with an imprudent carry and take a serious advantage for the team fight in killing him instantly (if your team is aware).
You have a lot of life early in the game and a great slow, so you can engage in a very effective way the first team fights with the first build.
Be more coward with the second one until you get the Guardian Angel. You have a good survavibility with the lifesteal but it's best not to take the focus if you want to hit more effectively (without being the CC's target).

When you get the Guardian Angel (or your other defensive item), you can lead your team and take the initiative on the team fights. It's often better to start the fight because you know what you want to do and who you want to focus. Act or react?
It's a more strategic way to play Xin Zhao, maybe more fun because you need to have more skill and take more important decisions for your team than if you were a simple pure carry.

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Thanks for reading me, I hope these builds and play style could help you to find your own.
I also hope that you won't become better than me with my own tools! But as I'm a noob it shouldn't be difficult Y_Y.

If you have any suggestions, questions or if you want to correct my horrible english, please do it!

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  • Modification of the third build buy sequence.
  • Alternative tanky build.

  • Alternative build with a different buy sequence to have more damages early game and to fill your offtank role sooner.

  • Alternative build with more speed, physical damages and lifesteal.
  • Changes Glyphs and Seals from pure per level to a mix of flat and per level.