Braum Build Guide by Jovy
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+10% Attack Speed
+15-90 HP (lvls 1-18)
Threats & Synergies
He's a relatively weak support at the moment and the only real thing you need to look out for is his Pulverize + Headbutt combo with which he may knock you under a turret. Other than that it's more of a stalemate than anything else, he can't really poke you or kill you, and he can't do anything to your AD if you use your E during trades.
She's got a long range AA with which she can poke you with and her ult cannot be stopped by your E. But she's squishy and stunning her during early lvls can very well be a kill for you. You can interceppt her Q, and block her E damage.
Not quite as squishy as you might like, but he's not tanky and he's melee and can't poke you. You can intercept his Q on your ADC to deny him any kills.
Her poke isn't extremely strong but it's there. Don't underestimate her AA damage as her range is relatively high and when she's shielded it can hurt you some. She's squishy and landing a stun on her can mean a kill, but she's got really good disengage that you'll need to look out for.
Not only does she have a movement speed buff and shield, but it can also be used on her ADC. This gives her decent disengage and mobility with which she can dodge your ult and Q. Additionally, she has strong, never-ending poke.
You can and should always intercept her E, and then she's very easy to deal with. She's tanky, but she's melee and can't harm you unless she's with her jungler, and she can't use her burst when you have your E up.
Although very squishy, has very good poke, long ranged painful autos and very good disengage. If she gets ahead, she'll be trouble.
Painfully annoying as she has poke and a spellshield. You'll need to bait out her shield in order to be able to do anything. It's very effortless for her to stop Concussive Blows' stun as she can see the stacks just as well as you can, and her E lasts long. Late game she's easier to deal with as there's more than just two people for you to CC.
Strong poke and disengage, but immobile and very squishy. Her heals can be annoying, but you are a bursty not poke champion so they don't help too much.
Very squishy and has very little disengage before hitting 6. Kill her early when she's got like no health and when stunning her means certain death.
Squishy and with very low damage, only problem is that she has a lot of sustain for her ADC, and she has a silence which can be annoying.
Thresh is similar to Blitz, but a little stronger. If you intercept his Q, he still has other things to offer. He's also ranged and his AAs can be painful, so look out for that. His ultimate is a great disengage tool and he can be hard to pin down, luckily he's not very tanky and if you do pin him down, he'll go down.
Although very squishy has very high damage, high range and low mana costing poke. If you can pin him down, he's dead in no time at all, but it'll be difficult reaching him, especially after a few lvls.
Similar to Vel'Koz, but somewhat easier to kill as she's weaker and has no CC (pre 6) bar her root, which can be easy to dodge. Watch out for her long range ability and AA poke.
Rakan's extreme mobility makes him very difficult to lock down, and he has great peel for his ADC with knock-up and ultimate. His low dmg output is good for you though, and he can't really abuse your melee-ness since he's so short ranged himself.
Pros and Cons
Braum, the Heart of Freljord - a top tier tanky support, similar to the likes of Alistar and Leona. He's got decent damage, good CC and thus good peel, many poro friends and, according to lore, everyone likes him. Has he any drawbacks at all? Just a few.
And as for the advantages:
|+ Roam and gank potentional: Again this is where your CC comes in. Not only is Braum a great roamer (good movement speed with boots, a gap closer and CC) but he's great when recieving a gank, as he has great follow up and engagement.|
|Font of Life tags enemies whose movement you've impaired and allies who then attack this target get slighly healed. A good choice for someone with as much CC as Braum.|
|Gain tenacity and slow resistance when casting a summoner spell. You often cast spells when you're escaping or chasing and this rune helps you repel their attempts of catching you or getting away from you after you use a spell.|
|With this rune you receive a biscuit every 3 minutes until the 12th which, when consumed, grants you health and mana. Everytime you consume a biscuit you also gain a permanent boost to your maximum mana.|
|CDR is always nice and this rune will give you CDR in every category; spells, abiliries, item actives etc.|
|Niche rune choice, can be helpful for saving your ally if they get stunned or slowed. You'll get a movement speed boost running towards them and the boost will put you in range for W and E and hopefully save your ally.|
|In terms of stats, there are a number of ways to go about it. Though it may seem a little strange for a tank support, your best option in the first tier is attack speed. This is so you can get your passive stacks on enemies with your AAs faster. Then focusing on defense. Armour in tier 2 because you will up against an ADC bot lane, and health later on as it compliments Braum the best (makes his Q do more damage).|
Once an enemy is stunned, he cannot gain any stacks in the next 8 seconds, but during this time he will take bonus magic damage from Braum's AAs. Although the magic damage is pretty insignificant in teamfights, in lane it can be rather useful, so make sure to take advantage of the magic damage as well.
Enemies will not just stand in your melee range or run into your Qs, and in fact as soon as they get one stack they'll probably run for the hills. This is why you need to be clever when using this passive. In lane a good way of applying a quick stun on the enemy is this: walk up to (or use your W on a minion to get in melee range) the enemy (support) and AA as many times as you can before they run out of range, this will usually be after one or two AAs. Once they're out of melee range, Q them. Now they have at least two stacks and are slowed, giving you time to squeeze in at least one more AA, if not two. Even if you don't stun them, you chunked them for a good bit of health with the magic damage from Concussive Blows and your basic attack damage.
|Braum propels ice from his shield that travels forward in a line, dealing 60 / 105 / 150 / 195 / 240 (+2.5% of Braum's max. health) magic damage and slowing the first enemy hit by 70% that decays over 2 seconds.|
His other bread and butter! This is your only "spammable" ranged ability and so it is utilised for poking as well as engaging.
Poking with this ability doesn't just consist of aiming it and pressing a button. If you use it from long range, it will not only be more difficult to hit, but it will also be something of a waste even if it does hit. Why? Because it's very mana inefficient. This because, for one, it costs a rather considerable amount of mana, especially when spammed. For two, it doesn't really do much damage, especially at earlier levels and when you haven't gotten any HP items. So in order to utilise it efficiently, make sure to couple your Q with either some AAs from you, or some AAs/abilities from your ADC. Using it without any "backup" will result in you going OOM, and your enemies still having an adequate amount of health.
In teamfights this ability can be used as an effective engagement tool. Using this applies a stack of your passive, which is basically a signal for your team to attack, especially your ranged teammates. Hitting your Q at a start of a teamfight is basically a free stun, and a free kill or at least a free flash-burn.
In lane, when engaging, be sure to follow the instructions from above. Before using your Q, AA your enemies in order to be able to land a quick stun before they run out of range.
Aside from being a run o' the mill gap closer, it will grant you and your ally a good bit of bonus MR and armour. You can also self-cast this ability so that you gain these stats when you are alone and taking damage from enemies/tanking a tower/dragon/a minion wave/etc.
This ability may also be utilised as an escape in certain scenarios. This is only possible if there's minions or an allied champion nearby in a convenient position.
But there are many more uses to this ability. Getting to lane quicker - by bouncing onto the lane friend ahead of you or a minion. Then there's leaping onto your lane friend during 2v2 fights so you are both tankier. Additionally, it is possible to leap over some walls and terrain if an ally is on the other side. This is possibe at the Baron and Dragon pits.
And finally, using it to get in melee range and engage fights. This you do by leaping onto a minion that has positioned itself just in front of your enemy laner. This will put you in the position between that minion and the enemy, and in very close range of that enemy. You can now, if close enough, AA them to apply stacks, or, if not close enough, Q them.
Additionally if possible, you can flank your enemies using this ability by bouncing onto a minion once the enemy has gone past the caster minion line.
Using your W in such fasion is something that could be quite useful when you are roaming (or ganking) another lane.
Braum's final bread and butter. I promise.
So, bluntly put, this shield is ridiculous. It will basically nullify all damage heading for you, and it lasts for a whole 3-4 seconds.
The most obvious use of this ability is during trading in bot lane, or if that wasn't obvious - now you know. When your ADC starts fighting the enemy ADC, get in between them (either by walking if you're close enough, or using your W otherwise) and use this ability. Now your ADC and you will take near to no damage, whereas the enemy will still take a considerable amount.
Next, blocking abilities. Things like Enchanted Crystal Arrow, Trueshot Barrage, Super Mega Death Rocket! and Boomerang Blade, that would normally do a lot of damage, can be blocked completely by this shield. You can save yourself and your allies from taking fatal damage by using this ability.
But why stop there? Blocking damage? Puh. Block things like Death Sentence, Rocket Grab and Dark Binding for your ADC in lane. This by, once again, either walking inbetween your AD and the skillshot, or by using your W and then E. Sure, you'll be taking a hook to the face and get CC'd, but you're much tankier than your AD, and you're not even a primary target. If you've used your E to block something, there's still a couple more seconds before it disappears, and you won't take much damage until it does.
Actual final bread and butter. Nah, kidding, but it's pretty good. This is an AoE slow and knock-up, that does a good bit of damage and, frankly, is very pleasing to the eye.
Although it's relatively long range, it's somewhat slow and enemies can dodge it if they see it coming, especially if they have some sort of gap closer. This is why you should try to use this while your enemies are slowed with Q, or some ally ability, or, better yet, when they're stunned.
When to use it specifically? Generally it's best used in teamfights, when your enemies are clumped up together. This ability sets up for many combos, such as Bullet Time, Curse of the Sad Mummy, Glacial Prison and Last Breath, for example.
|You take Q at level one and max it first. This is so that it has a shorter CD and does more damage, as this is your primary way of engaging and poking.|
|You take your first point in W at lvl 3 and max it last. Alternatively, you can choose to put the first point in at lvl 4, but it's safer to do it sooner as you might need it in case of a gank.|
|First point is taken at lvl 2, as this is when the first duels occur in bot lane. You max it second, and maxing it will increase the duration and lower the CD.|
|As with all ultimates, you put a point in R every time you are able. Level 6, 11 and then 16.|
|Steel Shoulderguards are the obvious starter item for melee tank supports. Steelguards and their upgrades give you health, a very valuable stat for tanks, a bit of AD and passive gold generation.|
|Health potions are necessary because as a melee support, you'll be in danger of getting poked down. If you're too low on health to engage, then you are basically useless.|
|Best option in my opinion. Boots of mobility grant a load of out of combat movement speed which makes roaming, warding and engaging a lot easier for you.|
|This item auto-ugprades from Runesteel Spaulders and it gives you an extra ward and some health, health regen and AD.|
|The stats are great and the passive has excellent synergy with Braum. Ulting near an ally summons a "storm" around you which slows and burns the enemies.|
Now that we are done talking about items and abilities and all that other boring junk, we've gotten to the good part - actually playing Braum.
Just kidding, first we'll talk a bit about supporting in general before moving onto actual Braum related stuff. In general there several things you need to keep in mind when playing support (Braum):
Roaming is the act of leaving your lane in order to gank another. You've got a lot of CC so ganking is very easy and it is encouraged that you roam at least a little each game if it's possible.
Bad times to roam:
Good times to roam:
Where you roam, as in which lane, depends on your team as well as the enemy team. Although mid lane is closer, it's arguably more difficult to gank, because the lane is shorter - meaning there's less distance between the enemy and their tower. If they're nowhere near their turret, there's still several exits from mid lane, whereas bot and top there's only the one towards river and the one toweards the tower.
That said, if the enemy mid laner is one that's easy to gank - no gap closers or their Flash is on CD, no CC or low CC/unreliable CC, squishy or on low HP - in spite of the fact that mid is tougher to gank, it's a good idea to do so.
The same can be said about top lane. It's an easier lane to gank, but it's far away and therefore it's riskier. For one, because your ADC will be alone for a long time, and, for two, because it'll take you longer to get back to your own lane if the gank is unsuccessful, meaning you'll lose out on more XP/gold than you would if you failed a mid lane roam.
A successful mid or top lane gank can secure a Rift Herald or Dragon, towers, or just kills for your laners - unless you steal 'em (try not to!).
This isn't just limited to Dragons and Barons, but also buffs, wards, summoner spells and if you can, some ultimates/abilities. If no one else is timing these, you should take initiative. These timers won't just benefit the team, they benefit you yourself.
The timers are these:
Of course it's impossible to keep track of so many numbers during games, so whenever you time something type it up in the chat. Simply say "thresh fl 12 40" or "eb (enemy blue) 24 50".
League of Legends is a team game and it requires good rapport between you and your fellow teammates. But bot lane especially is the lane which requires the most trust & communication, since you are two people working together towards the same goal, like the symbiotic relationship between some fishies and sea anemones. You keep your ADC safe, farmed and happy and they'll reward you with a nice victory screen.
When you are playing solo though, you'll need to rely on the chat and the pings. Chatting in the middle of the game is probably ill-advised, as it's not a particularly slow moving game, especially in laning phase, this is why you will have to learn to use your pings properly. The help ping when you are trying to escape (it'll notify your ADC to come to you so you can E off him or counter-engage), the danger ping or retreat ping when you notice a foreigner near bot lane. Most importantly you'll want to notify your ADC about the cooldowns of your spells and abilities (alt+click on ability/spell). If you notify your ADC that your exhaust isn't up for another 20 seconds, they'll know to patiently wait before an engage, or to play safe.
When it comes to games like these, you will occasionally get frustrated. Perhaps at yourself, more often at your ADC. I won't tell people how to play their games, but I will advise against flaming either way. Disregarding the fact that it's real people behind these screens, controlling those champions, with real feelings and all, flaming is unconstructive and will lead to more mistakes, possibly AFK situations or intentional feeding from a disgruntled teammate. Instead, be nice. ADC got a kill? "Wow nice" "damn, good job" "wp". Short, sweet, to the point, doesn't even need to be true. Positive comments makes people feel good and play good :)
Everyone likes getting kills and having good scores, but when playing support it is best to leave as much to your allies as possible. Although you could go for some nice 200g to upgrade your boots, having the money on virtually anyone on your team is far more valuable. Think about it. Would you rather have Boots of Swiftness for yourself, or a Pickaxe for your ADC.
But Jovy, I hit the-... and I did the- ... and he--!! Yes, great, you're a beast. But you're not doing your team any favours if you get all the kills, even if all you buy are team-beneficial items. You are a support - you support your team and do everything you can to get them ahead!
When someone is getting away and you're sure your ally won't be able to get it, that's when it's fine (and obviously preferable) for you take the kill yourself. Sometimes you'll even get flak for that, like they might argue that they may have gotten the kill if you didn't take it and yadda yadda. Hindsight is 20/20, so if it looks like they might well get away, it's better to just secure the kill then let it go to waste.
When it comes to the support role, there's more to it than just playing the champion. You need to be a great communicator, you need to know where and when to ward and you need to understand wave management. So to start off the gameplay chapter which will also include details about laning phase, roaming, teamfighting, trading, combos and god knows what else, I will talk about wave management.
Managing the minion wave ensures that your ADC gets as much farm as he can. This is important because farming = money and money = good items which in turn = strong ADC. And as the old proverb goes, happy ADC = happy life.
First Wave In bot lane you'll get level 2 after 9 minions die (so mid second wave, 6 melee and 3 ranged minions in total). By helping your ADC during the first wave, you can get an edge and get level 2 before your enemy laners do.
You do this by simply auto-attacking the minions down to low HP (so that the ADC needs only to last-hit it). If you start attacking a minion that's already half HP or less, you risk ruining it for the ADC (AKA it might die before the ADC has a chance to last hit) so you have to be careful not to make your ADC lose out on gold for nothing.
Whichever side's 9 minions die first is the side that will get level 2, which is why you want to accelerate the process by auto-attacking. Once you get level 2, you'll have higher stats and an ability extra and that might be enough to land you a level 2 kill.
Under Tower Although as a support you won't need to last-hit minions almost ever, it's still important for you to help your ADC do it. Especially under towers.
Tower shots will kill a full health melee minion in 3 hits, and a ranged minion in 2. After 2 hits, the melee minion will have but a sliver of health, and thus it'd only take one AA from your ADC to kill it. If the minion is full HP, don't interfere here. For ranged minions though, the tower will hit it once and leave it at around 30%, and an ADC (pre first back) won't be able to kill it with one shot, and won't have time to kill it with two. This is where you come in to AA it once.
That's about it. When they're not at full HP, you just have to wing it. You'll get good at it with practice.
Holding the wave If you're in lane and your ADC isn't, you can hold the minion wave for him so that the minions don't die to the tower. You do this by simply standing in the way of the minions and making yourself their target. If your minions are around, you can hold the wave by only last-hitting minions (so they don't go to waste), but don't attack them or you'll push the wave/kill most of the minions and your ADC won't get anything out of that.
If you're low level, don't tank the minions for too long because they can pack a punch and you don't want to get too low and then not be able to engage or fight the enemy laners. If there are enemy champions nearby you should be careful as well.
Pushing the Wave You generally push the wave with your ADC when the enemy bot laners aren't there (AKA they died or just recalled). This is done by continously auto-attacking (but making sure not to ruin the last-hits) the minions and you can also cast your E and Q on them of course. Once they all die, your minions can journey onwards to the enemy turret and die. This way the enemy bot laners will lose out on the gold & exp they'd normally get from killing that wave.
If the wave is too close to your tower or in the middle of the lane, you won't be able to push it all the way to their tower before they're back so it's best to freeze it in that position and recall yourselves. If you do push it anyway, there's a good chance they'll arrive in time and freeze the minion wave near their tower thus forcing you to be nearby their tower so your ADC can CS, leaving you vulnerable to ganks.
Level 1 is generally pretty uneventful. You've started with Q and the best thing to do right now is poke the enemy support if it's possible. But first you need to utilise your Relic Shield. And this is how:
First wave: Last-hit one MELEE minion. Do not bother wasting your stack(s) on caster minions, as they give you less gold.
Second wave: If your AD has taken damage and missing some health, last hit another minion.
Third wave: By the third wave you'll have regained a third stack, which you will use to kill the cannon, or siege, minion. These minions grant the most gold and you'll want to kill these every time. They spawn every 3 waves.
Fourth and Fifth wave: Do not kill any minions, for if you do you'll have no stacks for the sixth wave, when the second siege minion will appear.
After the third wave keep saving your stacks for every third wave until you buy targon's brace. It'll allow you more stacks and the stacks will recharge quicker, and you'll earn a lot more gold once you've gotten it.
This is when the first few fights in bot lane occur. The enemy ADC will want to fight your ADC especially if you're in an unfavourable match up. This is when you have your Q and E, and you can use these to greatly improve trades for yourself.
When your ADC starts trading, stand in between him and the enemy ADC and you Unbreakable to soak up the damage your ADC would take from the enemy. This will make for a good trade as, obviously, the enemy will be taking damage from you and your ADC, whilst you two aren't taking zilch.
||Additionally this is also a good time to try and make some kills happen. If you've got vision of the enemy support, you can easily Q him and start a fight. Or, even better, just walk up to them and AA them as much as you can, and once they realise the danger they're in because of Concussive Blows and try to get out of your melee range, Q them. Now they've got at least 2-3 stacks of Concussive Blows and just one is needed to seal the deal. Many squishy supports will drop to half HP from just that, and if they're not close to their tower, this can mean a kill for you, or at the very least they'll burn Flash. If you decide to commit to the kill after they've Flashed, be vary of the enemy ADC who will obviously try to fend you and your ADC off.|
Level 3 just means that you'll have your full kit, making it easier to both assist your AD in trading and in engaging fights and poking your enemies.
How do I know if I'm getting ganked? Wards. By now you should have your Eye item and you better use it. Having Dragon and Tri brush warded is usually enough to ensure your safety, but wards are useless if you haven't got good map awareness. Every few seconds you must look at the map, especially if your team has pinged that their lane has an enemy missing, to make sure nobody is heading bot lane. Another thing to look out for is the Teleport animation coming from the enemy top laner.
Having your ult also means that your ganks are more potent. Roaming around this time is encouraged.
Teamfights start occuring around the time lane phase ends and mid game begins, and they don't stop until one of the Nexuses turns to shards. Usually teamfights are connected to objectives - towers, inhibs, Dragons, Barons, even regular buffs and the Scuttler. People will find any excuse to fight these days.
There's a few roles you play in teamfights:
1. The tank: As you're a bulky durable support, sometimes the only thing you end up doing in a teamfight is soak up a lot of damage. In no sense is this a bad thing. I mean, either you take 2k damage or your AD does, and they die.
2. The peeler: Sticking to your ADC like glue, not leaving him unless you have to and peeling off assassins, bruisers and all sorts of other nasty things off of him using your abilities and Exhaust. Don't forget you have active items - Randuin's Omen, Locket of the Iron Solari, Redemption! This is basically your primary function in most teamfights.
3. The crowd controller: CC as many people as possible. You can apply Concussive Blows stacks and stuns to more than just one person in teamfights, as your team is always there to AA the poor fool who got hit by your AA/Q.
4. The Engage: Braum has some decent catch potential with his long ranged slow and knock-up. You might end up being the one who engages the teamfights, but usually you will want someone else in the team (your jungler or top laner, as they tend to be engagers/tanks like you) to do this instead so that you are free to peel and assist.
5. Idiot who got caught: And, well, sometimes you're that guy. Remember map awareness?
← Click here to check out my general guide on Warding to learn all about it!
And that concludes my guide. I hope you found it helpful, thanks for reading and good luck on the Rift!
If you have any comments, suggestions or questions, please feel free to post in the comments or send me a private message. I will read everything and reply to all questions and criticism.
Thanks to my friend Shea for helping me keep the build & guide updated :) I warmly recommend checking out his guide on GP and TF if you also play mid lane! Images from the ability section are from surrender@20!
I've written a couple other other guides, and, if you liked this one, checking them out would be appreciated ♥ I also coded this guide and did the graphics, so if you like them you can request your own in this thread, or via private message :)