Zed Build Guide by Sneepers
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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.
Some info about me:
Hello my name is Sneepers (EUW) and this is my Zed guide. I've played LoL since Season 1, don't exactly remember for how long I've been playing. I've been mastering top since the beginning of Season 2. I really like top, because you have an one v one battle between the two tops and the one with the most skills wins. That's also why I like Zed, Zed takes a lot of skill and knowledge about the game. I've also played similar champions like Talon. My first top champions I played were Xin Zhao and Kayle.
Motivation behind the Guide:
I made this guide because I really like the champion Zed, because you can juke, troll and assassinate people at the same time. Zed also takes a bit of skill, so for the people who want a bit of competition this is the champion you have been waiting for.
Why you should buy Zed:
Zed is quite new, normally i don't buy champions who just came out, because after a week they are f2p (=free to play) and i can check them out and sometimes new champions get nerfed because they are OP. But with Zed you shouldn't wait till he's f2p because he's so worth it. You can kill champions in seconds, escape with ease and just juke a bit around with your clones.
It's easy to outplay other people with Zed but it still takes skill, that's why it gives such a good feeling playing Zed
This is my first guide so please be a bit kind to me. ^^
Pros / Cons
-You can mindf*ck people with all your clones
-You can shut down carries in a second
-You can last hit from distance with Razor Shuriken or a combo with Living Shadow and Shadow Slash / Razor Shuriken
-You can 2v1 (switch places with top and bottom) if someone is countered, because you can last hit very well from distance.
-In-build flash, Living Shadow to escape or to engage (can use over walls)
-Can check brushes with Living Shadow because it grands vision
-Great counterjungler, because of easy escape with Living Shadow and fast clear with Shadow Slash
-Zed is hard to counter, if you just harass them hard you'll win every lane.
-You use energy, so you can spam your abilities.
-You use a lot of energy with your spells, probably out of energy after 1 combo
-Can confuse yourself with your own clones if you aren't paying attention
-Long cooldown on your in-build flash Living Shadow
-You only have 1 CC, with Shadow Slash
For runes, I take pretty standard runes, Greater Mark of Attack Damage , Greater Seal of Armor , Greater Glyph of Magic Resist and greater quint of strength
Why I took these Runes:
-Zed is an assassin so it's nice to have some AD at the start
-For early game, in lane, you should be a bit tanky, that's why i go for the Armor and MR Runes. (this can also make a difference late game).
You can also change your Armor runes for HP/lvl runes, because its hard to gank Zed because of your escape method with Living Shadow so you dont need that much Armor
You start with Boots of Speed and 3 Health Potion
If you are losing lane, immediatelly buy 2 Doran's Blade and finish your boots, I prefer Berserker's Greaves for the attack speed, it helps you winning the lane after, after that buy Vampiric Scepter and go further with the normal build: The Black Cleaver Phage Atma's Impaler Frozen Mallet Blade of the Ruined King Guardian Angel
you can also switch places with Blade of the Ruined King and Guardian Angel , I prefere Guardian Angel first for the passive.
If you are winning your lane rush a The Brutalizer and buy Vampiric Scepter right after, that way you have a great burst dmg. After that finish your boots and go further with the normal build.
Why I take Blade of the Ruined King with Zed is because you don't have that much cc, the active has a nice hard slow with low cd. This way you can escape and chase people. If you don't like Blade of the Ruined King with The Bloodthirster
I build The Black Cleaver in combination with Frozen Mallet so if you buy Atma's Impaler you get a great deal of AD cuz of Atma's Impaler's passive with the HP you get from The Black Cleaver and Frozen Mallet. With this 3 items I had 308 AD on lvl 18 that's why it's so OP and you should definitely get the item combo.
Your last item doesn't really matter, normally your game already ended before you get your whole build, because it's just too OP, so you can just choose your last item, I choose for (another) The Bloodthirster or a Infinity Edge just for the lolz.
If they have a fed AP carry, you should buy Maw of Malmortius as a last item.
After you're full build you should buy elixers and an oracle -> Elixir of Fortitude Elixir of Agility oracle elixer of brilliance . You should buy elixer of brilliance last because you dont use ability power and you don't really depend on CD. (your CD is also quite short) Keep buying the Elixirs over and over again.
You should build a bit tanky so you don't die immediatelly in team fights and just have a bit more sustain in overal.
Flash is a good spell for every champ, its a way to engage and a way to escape, however Zed already has an in-build flash so you can take Exhaust too.
Exhaust is nice because you can shut down the enemy carry.
Ignite is also a strong pick here, because you can shut down champions with a lot of lifesteal like Vayne or just stupid ult champs like Sion Dr. Mundo.
These 3 are the only Spells i use on Zed, because the rest isn't that great in him, but if jungling you should take Exhaust and Smite, Exhaust for some cc you don't have (to gank) and smite for the buffs.
-You shouldn't take any other spells, because they just don't fit with Zed his playstyle, examples:
Cleanse - because your ulti Death Mark blocks every incomming disable, like a stun or snare.
Clarity - Zed uses Energy
Surge Promote Clairvoyance Revive - No one takes these, Clairvoyance got nerfed very hard and is/was for supports. The rest are just Spells to troll or just not good on Zed
-To farm or harass you can just start with Living Shadow and harass them with your Razor Shuriken and/or Shadow Slash
-Shut down enemy carry: you first Death Mark on them, then you use Shadow Slash -> Living Shadow -> Razor Shuriken and Shadow Slash again, after that you can disengage to jump back to the clone of your ult Death Mark . Your passive also helps with this. Contempt for the Weak
-When engaging for a kill: you first use Living Shadow after that you use Shadow Slash for the slow -> jump back to your clone Living Shadow and use Razor Shuriken . try to do it fast so both your Razor Shuriken hit.
-If you put down your Living Shadow and you Shadow Slash right after, you can Shadow Slash a second time with the Living Shadow because of the short cooldown and your Living Shadow will remain. This way you can easily farm from distance or clear huge waves.
-Its important to first use Death Mark and do your combo afterwards because Death Mark triggers after 3 seconds, dealing a percentage of the damage you've dealt while Death Mark was active.
-You should start with Boots of Speed and 3 Health Potion because you can clear the jungle fast and don't need that much armor. Vampiric Scepter is just for sustain in the jungle.
After that you start to focus more on dmg and assassinating, not on the jungle. You start to build some damage with The Brutalizer and gank a lot, you should be able to get some kills and finish the build: Berserker's Greaves The Bloodthirster Last Whisper Trinity Force Guardian Angel Infinity Edge
-This is the route you should take, you can just skip the mini golems because they can be a bit hard, just go immediately to wolves, its because the golems can be a bit hard and I never clear them myself, let the top or bot take them to gain some experience lead on their opponent or just if their lane is pushed too hard.
Zed doesn't need to start with blue buff because he uses energy, if you start with red you can immediately gank (on lvl 2) with the red buff and get first blood thanks to the slow + they didn't expect it.
Try to do an early dragon this really helps your team out. Just ask if the support wants to ward around and then mid and bot helps you out with dragon . That way you'll have an early advantage, track the dragon (so you know when it respawns) because the enemies don't know when it's been killed. so when you know it's up again (because of the tracking) you kill it again with ease with out them even knowing.
If you see the enemy buys a lot of wards, try to buy an early oracle, like level 4 can be nice, you'll just clear buffs, lanes, river and the enemy won't have any vision. This grands good gank opportunities. But try not to die, don't play too agressive. If you die with oracle early game you'll lose a big amount of gold and the lead you just created.
-You should try to counter jungle the enemy wraith camp as much as possible, because you can clear them easily with Shadow Slash and can escape with Living Shadow
-You also can invade their red, just look at the enemy jungler, like Alistar or Amumu they have to start blue so you can just steal their red and gank/go back to your own jungle.
-Also you should ward the enemy jungle, that is very important. You can see what they're doing and steal the red/blue with smite if they're doing it. Also if they are low in the enemy jungle you can just Living Shadow on them and kill them.
-It's also handy if you keep an eye on the enemy jungler (for example, look where they're heading after a gank) and keep track of the enemy buffs, so you'll now if they're heading there or not. That way you'll be able to wait him up with your top or mid and just kill him and steal his buff.
You should keep harassing your opponent with Living Shadow and Razor Shuriken or Shadow Slash
Just keep farming and wait for the perfect moment as:
-Opponent makes a mistake.
-Enemy jungler comes and your opponent is very low.
-Your jungler comes to gank.
-You're lvl 6 earlier than your opponent.
-Your opponent has his spells down.
When you see that moment you should go in for the kill.
As a Top Laner you shouldn't forget to buy sight ward all the time, just to see the enemy jungler comming or just to see if he isn't comming so you can engage.
You should really focus on farming, even if your enemy has a kill and you don't you can win the lane by just farming. Outfarming. If you aren't good with farming, practise with last hitting.
Normally you should freeze the lane, in the middle of the lane, let the minions do the damage and only last hit, this way your lane is not too pushed, so you can engage without tower (with jungler) and it's harder for the enemy jungler to gank your lane.
Also you should know when to freeze your lane and when to push. If you know your lane opponent is back or is ganking another lane, try to push really hard and get the tower. If you know you're winning the lane you can freeze the lane, if he comes to last hit you just 1 combo him. (or just harass)
-If the clone from your ult Death Mark ends in a bush, you can jump to it and juke/troll the enemies because they didnt see where your ult ended, thats why 'the jungle' is the best place to fight.
- Zed is a nice combo with other champions that can jump on other champions, like Akali or Nocturne . This way you can shut down any carry.
-I prefere to play top with Zed because you lose some potential if you go jungle, because you don't have that much CC. although your Living Shadow is a nice way to engage/gank.
-You can play very agressive in lane but watch our for ganks, because if your Living Shadow is on CD, you're pretty f*cked.
-If you are getting ganked by a bit tankier jungler like Alistar or Maokai you can just kill your lane opponent with a deadly combo, after that the tanky jungler won't be able to do anything and you might get a dubble kill.
-Late game, if you are full build, don't farm too much, just take the farm you need to buy elixer's. Because if you do farm your other team members, who aren't full-build yet, will miss the gold you don't need. If you're all full-build just farm as much as you want.
-To flash for a kill isn't bad, even if you don't get it. Don't be afraid to flash.
-If getting chased, try to Living Shadow over the wall, if you jumped over, slow them while Living Shadow remains with your Shadow Slash. This way you'll create a big gap and create an even bigger gap with the slow.
Zed works out really well with other assassins, as Diana, Akali or Nocturne with these team mates you can just shut down any carry, but watch out: this is good in like a gank or early game, but late game you have to watch out you don't put yourself in trouble.
When toplane, you want a tanky jungler with a lot of CC for these reasons:
-You don't have CC yourself, except for Shadow Slash a jungler like Maokai or Jax will do.
-You need a bit of a tank in teamfights, if the top ain't tanky it has to be the jungler, otherwise your team will just melt in teamfights. That's why you should have a tanky jungler
-You do a lot damage yourself, so if they gank, they don't need to do damage, only stun or snare. That sometimes can be a problem (both no damage or both squishy as hell)
So in short you want a tanky jungler with some CC if you're top lane. This should be no problem because almost all jungler who are tanky have a lot of CC.
You shouldn't make a team with like only assassins -> Zed top, Evelynn jungle and Katarina mid because:
-Assassins normally don't have much CC.
-You're all squishy as f*ck and will all die the first second in a teamfight.
-If you all get CC'ed by the enemy, you're useless.
Conclusion: Your team has to have a lot of damage and a lot of CC
A good team combination has more chance to win a game. Even if you lose lane, you can still win the teamfight with ease. Just good focus.
I want to thank my friends who I play most of my games with in assisting me with this Guide and playing everyday with me:
Time For Panic
They gave me a bit of advise while I was making this guide and I play a lot with them, they really helped me out!
Finally the end
Thank you for reading my guide, I hope it has helped you a lot during your time in the Summoner's Rift. I would like to hear some positive feedback to improve my guide even more!
I will also keep updating the guide.