[11.13]S11 Darius guide 57% wr 1060 games
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Runes: 95% of the time(confident lane)
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
Threats & Synergies
D shield start with second wind. Do not keep lane even because if she hits 6 you won't really have a chance to do anything. Always try to force fights and freeze before she gets the chance to do anything with level 6. you cant approach her and she can damage you from afar. Before trading always try taking her tentacles down if possible as youll significantly lower her damage output.dont fight her post lvl 6.your best shot is killing her before she hits this autowin spike by freezing. bramble vest early buy is also a good idea as she heals for a lot.denying her an extra tentacle by dodging E when shes about to ult will notably lower her damage output. keep in mind that her tentacles become untargettable and strike instantly when she ults so if you manage to flee away but you have her e effect be careful of the instant tentacle slam.
unfavorable matchup at all.dshield start with second wind. this matchup is heavily one sided towards quinn because of how her kit is built.the key to winning this matchup is by abusing her e cooldown and saving your E when she q's you to make her blind slightly ineffective by bringing her into your auto range.do not over commit for creeps as it will cause you to lose a lot of hp for no reason.dont over stay because her ult makes it easy for her to come back to lane. This matchup used to be a lot easier with old stridebreaker but with the current meta build for darius (triforce) id suggest rushing tabis and trying to survive mainly.
Skill matchup but slightly aatrox favored because of the range disadvantage.d blade start if confident, dshield if not confident enough and take bone plating. this matchup is aatrox favored for the only reason that he has range advantage over darius but if you play it well aatrox should lose.Since he has long base cds, you can use that to your advantage by fighting once he burns q or force him to trade when he starts casting his first q by dragging him with e which will reposition his sweet spot, you can pop ghost and run him down but be cautious to not get hit by his q sweetspots as it will heal him for a lot and could quite possibly get you killed if he lands everything. if lane goes even grab bramble in order to have the extra advantage in a trade. Freezing is unfair as darius and this case is no expection, try to freeze whenever you are give the chance and if he tries to burn q to farm pop ghost and run him down.
Horrible matchup, heavily alkali favored.dshield start with second wind. she has a lot of mobility on her kit which makes it impossible for you to be able to fight her. She can E away from your Q, poke you heavily with Q/auto as you are farming and has a really powerful all in so your best bet is to fight her only when her w is on cd. The only advantage you have while she is on her shroud is that you are most likely guaranteed to land your q because of the way her shroud is shaped so always aim to go to the center of the shroud to Q. Rushing mercs also helps a lot on this matchup. Try have your jungler start bot side and camp you so that you don't fall behind and so that akali doesn't become a problem because I can almost assure you that akali will win this lane and if she does the game is probably over.
This matchup is pretty darius sided and straight forward.d blade start with standard rune page (sorcery).You can hard abuse early game camille because she cant match your early power in any way. Be as aggressive as you possibly can as it will get you an easy kill on her since like i said she will ALWAYS lose trades. After getting a kill on her you can just look to freeze to make her lane a nightmare. Always save E when she's about to E because this always cancels her hookshot and drags her to you so she will be forced to either flash or die. Another reason why you hard win is because she is bad at extended trades earlier on as opposed to you which is another reason why you heavily win the matchup.good camille players will find the right times to trade but it will generally consist of them abusing your E cd so use it well and dont give her any windows for a trade. Good Camille players will save R to dodge your Q so try to force her use R on you first and then look to Q. Overall super easy matchup but just be careful and dont int.
Heavily darius favored because of how immobile and bad cho'gath is earlier on. d blade start with sorc tree. cho gath is really easy to deal with because of how immobile he is and because of his incredibly low damage.if he get caught by your e, it most likely means hes dead which means you should be looking to freeze lane right after.dont allow cho'gath to walk up and proc grasp without going unpunished because if you let him do so continually it'll lose you the lane, so never hesitate to fight cho gath if he walks up too far.Try not to keep the lane even as he outscales you at 2 items so always try to be aggressive(similar to the camille matchup).
I have not laned against a single mundo so far as darius but on paper this matchup looks really hard to me because of his new passive.You can almost never E him and he has unmatched poke/sustain. The only thing you can do is abuse his passive cd and try to all in him while it's down. Dont take any of this for granted though. I'll provide more info on this matchup as I play and will come back again once I have an actual take on this matchup. For now I'll consider mundo as a hard matchup.
Skill matchup but slightly darius favored.d blade start with sorc tree.steelcaps bramble rush mandatory.Laning against Fiora isnt hard at all just try not to eat too much poke from her vital procs with q.always trade back and dont hesitate because you out damage her.her w will stun you if she times it well but the average fiora player cant time it well enough since your e animation is too fast. It's kind of a mind game honestly. Most of fiora players also use it to cut your attack speed in half and negate q damage since theyll make more out of it that way instead of gambling whether youll drag them with e or not.also post 6 try hugging walls when you get ulted so she doesnt proc the last vital and get the extra damage off among with the healing zone.finish her off while she desperately tries to hit the final vital. Also never R her if she has W up because she can easily deny you an R reset which is really problematic esp in teamfights.
Darius favored generally. d shield with sorc tree. grasplank only becomes a pain in the ass to deal with on early levels because of insane q poke so your goal should be to let him push into you by giving up cs and then as soon as you notice he has overextended dont hesitate to fight him because his extended fights are really bad because it all resolves around the position of his barrels. His w is also very useless because he cannot time it well enough in order to cancel your E so a good gp player will only look to cancel the slow from your w so they dont get hit by your q. There is nothing really much to this match up just be wary of where you are so you dont take unnecessary barrel damage while trading and don't eat too much poke by greeding for cs.
Easily one of the easiest matchups for Darius. DBlade start with sorcery tree. The only thing you have to be mindful of on this matchup is that his Q breaks slows so he can avoid getting hit by your q by cancelling the w slow and getting away. Garens extended fights are really bad as opposed to you so if you take some damage at first it's fine because you beat him on every extended battle possible therefore you will indefinitely turn the fights over to your favor the longer they go for.post 6 you are still really strong but be careful of his all in especially if he has ignite dont let your ego overcome you and respect his level 6 damage esp if you dont have R. Most garen players get extremely cocky when they outdamage you while engaging on a trade and will probably not start positioning away which is where you start turning and killing them.
D shield with sorc tree. Do not greed for minions and eat any poke.Always take trades by punishing while hes in mini form/doesnt have R on mega. This matchup might sound hard since gnar has a lot of poke but it really isnt. If you somehow manage to get yourself on top of him hes done for. Even if he manages to get away from you he wont do it without hard losing the trade since his mini form gives him way less stats than his mega form. Your E can actually cancel his E if timed properly but I find it quite impossible to actually pull off(though i have done it a couple of times) its mainly a mind game between you and gnar(similar to fiora matchup) so i'd say trying to save it and actually use it when hes fleeing away by walking as you would do against every other champion. Respect his level 6 all in by staying away from him when hes about to transform. If he burns spells on wave try to punish him for it by hard trading even if he has R (since he deals most dmg with Q and W he wont do much with R).
Skill matchup but slightly irelia favored. D Blade start with sorc tree. Bramble tabi rush mandatory. The key to this matchup is to find the appropriate times to fight her and the best example would be to only fight her at 0 stacks and while her q is on cd so always save your E and use it while shes mid dash.On patch 11.14 her travel time on Q will be reduced significantly which makes timing its cancelling with E relatively easy.If you manage to do this successfully shes 100000% dead. Only look to fight her when there are no low health allied minions nearby because she can easily get some health back and get her stacks up to kill you. Also be aware that she can lower your damage because of her W. Good Irelia players are also going to dash inside of your Q when you first cast it so be really cautious. This matchup requires intense focus and has absolutely no room for mistakes because 1 death can turn the lane into a nightmare for you. Freezing is your best shot because not only do you deny her the ability to stack but you also kill her if she ever walks up for a last hit by popping ghost and since theres no allied minions on her way back to the tower she cant dash anywhere and get stacks which means she dies so ALWAYS freeze the first chance you get.
Skill matchup but slightly jax favored. Dshield start with sorc tree. Tabi rush. Jax is excellent at all stages of the game and therefore it's no surprise that he can easy win the game if he gets a lead so like just like in irelia lane, mistakes are not allowed. Look to fight jax only during the time his q is on cd.if he greeds to E you by over extending walk behind him, wait the stun out, pop ghost and run him down. Dont cast Q if you know he has Q up because that way he can easily outtrade you.he spikes really hard at 6 so if lane goes even for that long it might become really hard for you. Look to set up a freeze during early levels so you can build a steady advantage over jax.also do not look to fight him while he has passive stacks up because it can make a huge difference in trading.like I said earlier, be super careful and no room for mistakes.
Skill matchup. Dshield start with sorc tree. jayce is only hard to deal with because of his ranged form but his melee form forces him to engage on you and because he has no mobility if he doesnt engage properly you shouldnt let him slip by, punish him severely.if he has phase rush it gets a little trickier because he has mobility and slow resistance which makes it harder for you to deal with in which case you just want to fight him at any given chance because he has no damage. steelcaps rush works well if you are struggling.
Abuse weak early game esp pre 6 d blade start with sorc tree. kayle outscales you really hard from 6 and onwards so play super aggressively and try setting up a freeze before she hits 6 because that's the only way you win lane. Never push the lane for no reason because youll just give her free CS so always look for ways to deny CS. When she first levels up R she becomes ranged which already makes it unfair for you since her active can deny you an ult reset in both duels and teamfights. So like I said try freezing, calling your jungler to camp you and get her out of the game to make it impossible for her to scale into late game.
Kennen favored because of the range.d shield with second wind resolve tree.kennen is a lane bully that has high mobility and reliable cc which means he can keep you at a distance as well as be able to set up ganks perfectly so your goal should just be to play around his e cooldown. If he is in an unfavorable spot while his e is on cd dont hesitate to fight him.Also If lane goes even post 6 grab merc treads to lower stun effects and reduce dmg.the main thing to keep in mind in this matchup is that you want to let him have pushing advantage and to not over commit for cs. keep the area warded all the time because like I mentioned earlier kennen players can set up ganks perfectly. He doesn't have any all in potential so if you see the opportunity to fight him
Darius favored matchup.d blade with bone plating resolve tree.kled cant match your damage during all ins but that doesnt mean he is bad at them if he stalls fights long enough to bring skaarl back he can easily beat you.dont ult him while he is mounted because kled himself isnt going to take any damage which is going to force you to finish him off with autos and abilities which in itself means there is a chance he can bring skaarl back.Only fight him when he burns w because that's the only damage source that he has and he uses it automatically so that means you'll always have windows to fight him.he can also set up ganks really well because of ult so keep your area warded regularly.overall simple matchup but dont get too cocky. Take note and play it far back if you notice hes building up a large wave and you are low hp because that means you are relatively easy to dive and since kled excels at diving you are gonna have a hard time staying in lane so if you ever find yourself in situations like these just back.
Difficult matchup.d shield start with sorc tree.Malphite is a situational pick and doesnt really work that well if your team has a lot of ap output, he can keep this lane even quite easily so you should look to exploit any mistakes he makes.he can poke you at a distance and easily just run away with all the movement speed he gets so if you drag him for a trade he can run away with q and because his passive grants him a lot of armor you wont be able to do much in quick trades.his w and e scale with armor and will deal damage based off his armor so that means he deals less damage if his passive isnt up.most malphite players will just look to play it back and poke you constantly to a point where they can just all in with R and kill you.merc treads buy is effective if lane goes even
Just like malphite ornn is no different .he has a lot of cc and damage so he can reliably set up ganks.try playing around his e cooldown and if that's on cooldown always fight him because you'll win.never let him just walk up, proc grasp with w and walk away with it, always trade back.some ornn players will really greed for that grasp proc especially on lower elos so use that to your advantage.never stand close to walls because he will easily knock you up and get a lot of damage off for no reason.being cautious with where you are in this lane is key to winning it. Respect his all in damage post 6 and save your E when hes about to either dash away or knock you up with his R2. Timing your E is also key to this matchup.
Darius favored.d blade start with sorcery tree.maokai cant flee from you so if you engage on him use that to your advantage and assert lane dominance by lowering his hp every chance you get.his rooting ability only works as an engage and if he doesnt use it properly he will die.he can set up ganks really well so dont underestimate him.freezing is great because he cant really farm that well from afar. Play this lane as aggressively as you can because he has reliable sustain thanks to his passive which means that he might just outsustain you at some point if you dont fight him. Never use Q if he has his dash up.
Skill matchup.d blade start with sorc tree.mordekaiser is one of the few champions that can match your extended trading.his passive w and r are really op and you need to respect them.dont ult mord if he has W shield as it will deny you ult reset which in teamfights is huge and it can easily help mord turn fights over.Always make sure to fight close to minions so he doesnt get any extra damage off his Q. If he R's you try to waste his time and dont take the fight becaues he will most likely win. Take the fight only if you know you will win it.grabbing executioners calling with merc treads is not a bad idea if the lane goes even post 6.he snowballs really hard so no room for mistakes.
Darius favored matchup.d blade start with sorcery tree.the only thing to keep in mind here is that you want to respect his level 6 and onward especially if lane goes even.if he has sheen a couple of stacks and tabis he can pop ult and run you down with w so your best choice is to freeze to drain his mana and deny him stacks.Play as aggressively as you can before he hits 6. Proxying waves after you kill him 2 times is a great idea to make yourself even stronger. he heavily outscales you so try to close out games asap because it will get harder the longer it goes.
Straightforward matchup.d blade with sorc tree.Darius is a classic poppy counter however she has reliable cc and can set up ganks perfectly because of it.Since shes immobile and doesnt have a lot of damage you easily win her.freezing is a great option because she cant farm reliably from afar putting herself at a rough spot.also never stand close to walls because she can probably kill you if she catches you on a rough spot.if she picks up her shield her passive cd goes down by an amount so every time she tosses the shield she will be looking to pick it back up.use this to your advantage by predicting her movement and dragging her with your E, try to also step on top of it during the trade so it disappears, this will make a huge difference for you during the trade.This is a really simple darius matchup and theres no way you can lose it.
Skill matchup but slightly renekton sided.d shield with bone plating on resolve tree.renekton feels like a chore to deal with.abusing his cds early is the only way you deal with him.alteratively you can look to trade with him while his fury bar is low so his abilities wont have extra effects and damage.respect his damage and try to freeze because it's going to prove really effective by not letting him gain fury.after 6 he gets really hard to deal with because of his ult being really powerful so if you get to that point while lane goes even it might end up really horribly for you so look to build an advantage over him before he hits 6 by grabbing tabis and bramble earlier on.
Similar to renekton.d shield start with bone plating on resolve..riven has a lot of mobility on her kit which makes it extremely hard to deal with her.rushing steelcaps is a great idea as riven players try to sneak auto attacks during trades in between their abilities to deal extra damage.respect her all in and only look to fight her while her q is down.post 6 it gets a little rough so look to build an advantage earlier on.Save E when she dashes with her E or use it to save yourself when she engages with R as it will always save you.
This matchup is way easier than you think.d blade start with bone plating/sorc tree both work.the only reason he is feared by darius players is because of his w but realistically it's really simple to deal with it.if you drag him with e he wont be able to cast anything for a split second which means you can ult him and therefore kill him.dodging his w sweetspot means you have done like 90% of the job during a trade. he will find himself on a rough spot after missing w so just pop ghost and run him down, also never stand in front of him while ghosting because he can ult his way to safety that way so always stand on his back while he is running.his e can reposition your q so be wary of that too.dont stand close to creeps because he will stun you with his e.Tabi rush is great.
Gwen favored. D Shield start with sorc tree. I haven't played this matchup all that much but I can confidently say that darius doesn't beat her. Pre 6 shes not strong so you can try and abuse her Q cooldown if she uses it but misses by dragging her with E. Always wait for her E first before Q-ing because she can just dash in or out and insta win the trade. executioners calling is a great buy earlier on to reduce her healing. whoever gets their mythic first wins the lane. respect level 6 all in and have jungler gank you.
Darius favored matchup but rather annoying. D Blade start with sorc tree. Shen is rather annoying to deal with however you should know that he has absolutely no kill pressure on you. All the laning here is determined by the way he uses his E. If he uses it to engage on you without his jungler nearby he is inting and should be banned. Most shen players will always save it to get out if they find themselves in a rough spot. Freezing is your best shot here so that even if he uses E to get away he still has got a long way to go to safety. Permashoving can be a good idea if you are ahead because his waveclear is really bad and to prevent him from roaming with R.
Heavily darius favored. D Blade start with sorc tree. Signed is immobile and doesn't match your damage in anyway. He can't do anything in this lane at all because if he flips you he messes up for himself. Just pop ghost and run him down. Save E if you notice hes walking away and dont use it when he flips you. Try not to chase him if he outruns you and if you notice you are losing plenty of hp. Play aggressively, this is a free lane.
Easiest darius matchup. D blade start with sorc tree. Sion can't win this matchup in anyway however you should know that he outscales you so dont keep the lane even for too long otherwise he will be unkillable. Save E when he charges Q to cancel it or you can try to reposition yourself outside of it and start autoing him as hes finishing charging Q. As soon as he tries to make a run for it drag him back with E. His damage doesnt match yours in anyway and hes immobile (outside of R). Free lane.
Darius favored matchup. D Blade start with sorc tree. This matchup might seem a little tricky but its not. It all revolves around the way urgot uses E. If he misses it when attempting to engage he is dead. His damage output is really low until tiamat or level 13 so try to abuse this as much as you can. When committing to a trade save E when he E's away in order to kill him. Respect his level 6 all in if you dont have a lot of HP. Try moving around with him so you deny shotgun leg procs in order to lower damage output. Overall an easy matchup.
Slightly tryndamere favored. D blade start with sorc tree. Tryndamere is in a rough spot this season(as of patch 11.13) so you shouldn't really have any difficulties killing him. Try to ask your jungler to not leash them in order to have priority in this lane. You want to deny him the ability to last hit creeps because if he does his fury bar going up can be really problematic. Freezing is insanely effective into trynd. Save E when he E's so if you manage to time it well you should cancel it and he should be dead. Post 6 try saving your ult or use it when he doesnt expect it.Tabi rush is effective too. His early damage doesnt match yours so always try to fight him to deny cs and fury stacking.
Not even remotely close to being a darius counter. Darius favored. D shield with sorc tree start. Most people portray this matchup as unplayable for darius but as a matter of fact darius beats the shit out of teemo. His q range = your E range so always drag him in when he walks up q you and afterwards just pop ghost wait for q duration and run him down. since hes immobile theres no way he survives your all in considering his all in sucks. Try to keep mental notes of where he places shrooms so you dont get hit by them. Rushing mercs could work but i wouldnt recommend it especially if you are already ahead. Similar to the vayne matchup just dont greed for minions and wait for the right time to kill him.
Skill matchup. Slightly darius favored. D shield start with sorc tree(2nd wind works too if you are not confident) Now I know what you are thinking. How in the world is vayne an easy matchup. Well, for starters her damage is really low before she gets attack speed and a mythic so that means you have a lot of time to kill her before she starts becoming a problem. You can easily play around her q/e cooldown by popping ghost and running her. If you keep your HP up high by not greeding for minions just pop ghost and kill her if she overextends. This matchup used to be way easier with old stridebreaker but since thats gone you are gonna have to play a little more carefully. Tabis rush works excellently.
Volibear favored. Dshield start with second wind. This matchup favors volibear in every imaginable way. I'd just aim to survive in this sort of lane. If you want to try do something in this lane always play around his E cd/dodging it and grab an early bramble. Your playstyle depends on his build. If he goes tank you want to just play around his E cd. If he plays AD grab bramble to reduce his healing and if he plays ap grab merc treads and specifically dodge his E. After level 6 he still has an advantage over you because of how he chooses to use R. Not only does it give him extra Hp but it also gives him a dash with damage which he can use you dodge your Q. This matchup is just really bad for you. Call for jungler help and if you already inted the lane already its best to play weakside. I'd try to keep this lane even if anything honestly.
Always ban. Out of my 1.1k games of darius wukong has been my ban for almost 750 or more games so I can't give a fair share on this matchup. Honestly if you somehow left him open I'd dodge.
Slightly darius favored. D Blade start with sorc tree. This matchup is darius favored simply because yones damage is really bad without his core items and because of the fact yone is immobile earlier on. Good yone players will try to keep the lane even until shieldbow and all in you by E-ing into your Q so with that in mind you should always look to exploit an advantage. Executing a cheater recall into a permafreeze is ideal as he can't do anything about it given how much stronger than him you are earlier on. Tabi bramble rush is effective. Play the lane aggressively and try to position yourself accordingly.His R and Q3 are easy not hard to dodge so if you do end up dodging them you should manage to kill him easily.
Yorick favored. D Blade start with sorc tree. Yorick is often picked only to counterpick darius. The only advantage you have over him is pre 6 when he doesnt have his maiden so always look to fight him if he doesnt have 4 graves/ghouls as you hard outdamage him earlier on. If lane goes even for too long he will just outscale you and permakill you. Try to make his lane a nightmare before he tries to do anything with R. If he doesnt know how to use W this is a free lane.
Gives MS and Healing alongside with Hard Engage thanks to R. Couldn't name a better fit in terms of synergy. If you are already ahead as darius and have yuumi stay with you the game should pretty much end soon. As a side note id recommend taking spirit visage as soon as you can if enemy has AP champs to benefit from extra healing from yuumi and your Q.
Gives MS and Healing alongside with Hard Engage thanks to R. Couldn't name a better fit in terms of synergy. If you are already ahead as darius and have yuumi stay with you the game should pretty much end soon. As a side note id recommend taking spirit visage as soon as you can if enemy has AP champs to benefit from extra healing from yuumi and your Q.
Champion Build Guide
This champion is just amazing and if on the right hands its the kind of champion that cant lose any lanes no matter how bad they might look at first glance. I personally decided to pick him up because of how insane his teamfighting is and how easily you can climb with him given how hard he punishes mistakes as opposed to other champions. Get those 5 stacks and dunk them, nothing feels better.
Anyway, this guide will aim to teach you how to play darius really well. On the sections below I'll be featuring his items and when to pick them alongside with what to do in various stages of the game. Also, I won't be including what his abilities do because I find that totally unnecessary.
I want to make a quick note by saying that since I'm not a pro player or anything don't go hard on me if possible. This is also the first(and quite possibly the last) guide I have made so if you see any mistakes or things you feel like should be included please don't hesitate to let me know.
Starting Items :
- Buy on poke/hard lanes where you lose trades. Tends to also be good if you are a new darius player since it provides some sustain if you dont take good trades. I'd sell this item if im 180 gold off any sterak components since 80 hp is kind of useless at that point.
- Buy if confident/good at darius. If you are picking this up you generally want to fight during the early levels to press an advantage towards a weaker lane opponent like cho gath kayle garen etc.. I would not sell it until I'm building towards the last item to benefit from the scaling omnivamp passive it offers.
- Buy 3 of these as your starting item in impossible lanes that rely on tons of poke like akali heim cassio which are pretty rare lanes but if you happen to encounter these kinds of lanes this is your best buy.You can sell them once you no longer need the extra hp regen or once you dont have any free slots to build any items.
Mythics & Legendaries :
- Pretty much your only good option ATM. It offers a lot of stats and is about 91% gold efficient which is rly nice to see. The main reason why its picked over goredrinker is because the attack speed is priceless on darius. You dont want too much but you cant live without having any. Pulling off combos feels so bad without attack speed so having extra attack speed is a really nice touch. Now if we look at item & mythic passives triforce still wins because it gives you ad the longer you fight thanks to its stacking passive, spellblade proc for extra damage which helps you a lot in the side lane for dueling and taking objectives (not that important but still a nice touch) and the mythic passive which gives you 3 ad 3 ms and 3 ability haste which is far more valuable than goredrinkers 5 ability haste per legendary. Always buy no matter what.
- I really don't need to explain why this item is the best choice for darius. From the stats it provides to the passive darius benefits from everything. As a teamfighting oriented champ a lot of the times you'll get bursted down/stun locked and thats where the shield comes in which grows bigger with more people hitting you before it procs. The healing is a nice touch although its pretty much the last reason why you are buying this item. Always buy this item no matter the game.
- Great into AD comps and is often times a rush item if both the enemy laner and the enemy jungler are AD based or if the enemy laner is an auto attack reliant champion like quinn, jax, fiora etc.. as not only do you benefit from the stats & passive but you also benefir from celerity which further amplifies the movement speed bonus from boots.
- I rarely rush mercs for the reason being that theres not that many instances where you'd fully benefit from the item. For example theres tanks that deal physical damage like poppy who have cc so buying mercs would only help you relieve CC but you wouldnt benefit from the MR and then theres instances like akali and kayle where you would benefit from MR but you would not benefit from the tenacity. So all in all I would probably take tier 1 boots in most cases and I would finish them after 15 mins if the enemy teamcomp has a lot of CC and quite possibly exchange plated steelcaps for mercs if the enemy teamcomp is not really autoattack reliant and has a lot of CC as you are making far more value out of tenacity instead of survivability.
Only to be rushed into tanks like malphite,maokai,ornn etc... who deal magic damage and have CC.
- Excellent item overall. Darius benefits from everything this item has to offer including stats and passive. This is pretty much an item I'll build 90% of the games. The mobility on this item is excellent as it provides great chase potential and sticking power thanks to the 5% ms buff and a faster buildup in the charges(which now scales with ad for extra dmg). This item is also amplified by our celerity rune which gives us extra movement speed. Always buy this item if enemy has 2 or more AD champions.
- Excellent on darius. It gives a lot of armor and hp which darius heavily benefits from. The passive is also great if the enemy team has a lot of auto attack reliant champions(the opposite of DD). The grievous passive is also good and can be proc'd with E. I always choose this over Chempunk Chainsword because like I mentioned above darius benefits from health with armor/mr and not just hp with damage.
- Good item but really situational. Stats are excellent similar to Thornmail but you can only pick this item if the enemy team has 2 or more crit based champions in order to actually utilize this item.
- Now this item is pretty underrated on darius. It gives us plenty of mobility, hp and MR yet I don't see it built too often on darius because most people value Spirit Visage over this item and I can agree to some extent since spirit gives us more HP CDR and increased healing however I believe this item wins the comparison because darius values extra mobility and resistances more than extra hp and healing. So all-in all this item is DEFINITELY my go-to if the enemy team has at least 2 magic damage dealers.
- This item tends to be great in most situations however it's not really that powerful as you might think. In order for me to pick this up there's some conditions to be met to fully benefit from this item. For first and foremost this item tends to be good into AP Bruisers like Mord, Swain, Rumble etc... who tend to deal magic damage over time instead of burst damage which is where the extra healing actually makes the difference. Secondly I'd generally want to get this if I have an enchanter in my team that heals so I can get increased healing from them (like soraka, yuumi etc...). Honestly, I'd much rather pick Force of Nature up instead of this in most situations but if the enemy team has 3+ AP champs id get both of these items. Still a decent purchase but I still believe you are getting more value out of Force of Nature instead of this item.
Force of Nature -> Burst AP Champs(against mages and assassins)
Spirit Visage -> AP Bruisers or if they have at least 3+ AP champs in order to grab both. Bonus reason to grab it would be if your team has healing/shielding enchanters to fully benefit from the passive.
- Amazing buy. Great on darius almost every game. This item is really good because if the enemy team is hard to itemize you can just grab this and not worry about a thing since it gives both mr and armor. Not to mention how you are pumped with even more mr and armor once you start fighting in teamfights thanks to its passive. This item also gives a nice touch of ability haste which is not a lot but still appreciated. The active is also great on darius because it lets you stay in fights longer thanks to the massive shield it provides. Overall an excellent buy however I almost always buy this item the last because I believe darius needs items like DMP and Force of nature before grabbing this item. If you buy this item before you get HP its going to be really pointless since this item gives only mr and armor which means that if you dont have any hp you wont benefit from this item at all so I suggest stacking some HP first and grabbing this item as your 5th choice.
- Really situational item. I'd buy only if enemy has AD burst like ezreal/fed assassins in order to fully benefit from the mitigation on the passive.In terms of raw stats it does give us plenty of ad armor and ability haste which is great. The healing passive is totally useless on darius because this champion wants mobility and bulkiness not extra damage and healing. So like I said overall, rare buy, however if enemy goes full ad or has at least 3 ad champs id probably consider it though you are probably going to get more out of other items that provide more armor/hp if they dont have burst.
- Situational buy. Offers excellent stats however you wouldn't really want to grab this unless the enemy team has 2 tanks. The recent update on this item gave it movement speed per stack which is really good on darius however like I said I wouldn't consider getting this item unless enemy team has 2 or more tanks.
- Situational buy. This item is not as bad as people portray it to be. Sure you don't need the mana by the time you build this item but the rest of the stats are extremely priceless. It gives us a whopping 80 armor which is extremely valuable into certain team compositions, damage reduction and attack speed reduction. I'd generally want to build this if the enemy team has at least 3 champions that rely on attack speed for example : nocturne, tryndamere, yone, yasuo, almost any adc etc... You can argue with the fact that Randuin's Omen could be better into these champions however no one really stops you from building both. The only downside would be the conflicting passives which do not stack (damage reduction passive) however if you build both of these you are getting a **** ton of armor, hp, siginificant damage reduction and crit reduction which are amazing stats into teamcomps like the ones I mentioned.
- I don't have an actual opinion on this item however I don't see why this wouldn't be a good item on darius. If you are already ahead and the enemy team has a single carry say, ashe. I'd definitely want to grab this to get the extra damage reduction alongside with the rest of the items im building against her. She also gains tenacity reduction which makes your slows stronger. In terms of raw stats we are getting about 650 hp and 20 ability haste which is not that bad honestly. Do not pick this item if you are behind. I'll update this once I get an actual opinion on this item so don't take my words for granted here.
- Really situational buy. I almost never get GA on darius because I believe the other items are far more useful. The stats this item provides are total trash for darius and if you lose the passive it becomes even worse to keep instead of selling so all in all I wouldn't consider getting this unless the enemy has 3+ ad champs or unless I am turbo fed (something like 12/0). This honestly depends on the game but you'll almost never want to build this IMO.
- This is honestly the worst item you can pick on darius out of all in the list I provided. You are getting minimal amounts of hp, ability haste(the only good thing) and AD. The only scenario where this item could be picked over thornmail would be if the enemy has vlad or sylas. I legit cant think of a single other scenario where id want to buy this. Almost never buy, thornmail 10000% better.
Starting with early game or aka laning phase.
As darius you are ridiculously strong during this stage of the game so therefore it's pretty obvious you want to be playing as aggressively as possible into most lanes in order to gain a lead. Your playstyle will vary depending on lane however I believe most darius matchups are not difficult can be easily played out.
Most matchups/Easy ones :
Once the game starts you want to run towards your top side jungle and if its possible try to ask your jungle to go leashless because we can look for a brush chase(typical when playing darius) or we can look for a wave pull if our jungler is starting bot side in order for them to have an easy gank. Generally you will want to sit right there if you are playing blue side :
The reason for this being is that if the enemy top laner is leashing their jungler in the top side they'll most likely walk towards you which is where you level w and wait for them to come close. Once they are about to enter the bush you instantly start autoattacking and w. They will probably not die but they will lose around 80% of their health or use flash which already puts you at a massive advantage. If this is the case then try to execute a cheater recall by slowpushing first 2 waves and crashing 3rd. Once you are back the wave will be pushing towards you and since the enemy is at low hp they cannot crash the wave which means you get a free permafreeze and this should autowin you the lane as darius.
Here's a video on how to execute a cheater recall :
However if your lane opponent is smart they will not take that kind of path and instead take a longer but safer route to lane in which case you have to play the lane out accordingly. Try to not let your opponent farm for free because as darius you have massive kill pressure so every time they walk up for cs never let that go unpunished. Always look for opportunities to punish your opponent hard if they ever try to do anything in lane. Cheater recalls can be executed in easy lanes and that can singlehandedly win you the lane because its a really unfair strategy especially on a champion like darius who will most likely have priority in most lanes. Even if you can't make a cheater recall work its totally fine because you still are ridiculously strong. If the wave is in the middle of the lane thats when you should be looking to fight especially if your lane opponent is a weak/immobile champion like kayle for example. Good kayle players will give up cs however the average kayle player will most likely mess up and try to walk up for a cannon which is where you pop ghost and run them down. This isn't the case with kayle but with almost every matchup. You have to understand how strong darius is in lane and abuse the **** out of it while you can. Once you successfully manage to grab a kill always look to set up a freeze. Freezing as darius is rather unfair simply for the fact that you lose absolutely nothing out of it and if your lane opponent ever walks up to get a last hit you just run them down. You can always keep the freeze going if you are ahead even if that means you have to tank the wave for a little because if your opponent tries to crash it they are making a huge mistake which you should not let go unpunished, it will break your freeze but you are getting a kill which is essentially the whole point behind freezing.
Even/skill matchups :
There's gonna be lanes like renekton/riven where you cannot really execute a cheater recall or force a freeze as easily. If you notice your lane opponent is good and it looks like you aren't interracting a lot with each other try to build slowpushes and roam towards mid lane. Riven, for example, is the kind of champion that has a lot of mobility and low cooldowns so you cant really catch her(speaking about good riven players) so in lanes like these you should be looking to build up some waves, crash them and roam.
Hard lanes/ranged matchups :
People portray ranged matchups as extremely difficult however they arent really that bad especially vayne. Sure she might be annoying with all that mobility and zoning but she doesnt match your damage in any way so always look for ways to get on top of her. Most vayne players will push the wave for no reason and blow q on wave so if you notice they are in an uncomfortable position you can just pop ghost and kill them. Never greed for minions. Is the cannon worth 50% of your hp? If you manage to keep your HP up high when she crashes the wave you can just pop ghost and kill her. Its that simple. She might try to zone you with E but thats not really gonna cut it to stop you from running towards her with ghost so shes pretty much dead unless she has flash. So basically for the ranged matchups the key would be to give up minions and look for the right times to all in. ADC champions tend to be weaker early game and thats pretty much the only advantage you have over them. Rush plated steelcaps and wait for the right moment to kill them.
As for the hard matchups like wukong theres not really much to say. Just play it passively, try to keep the lane even and ask for jungle ganks. If they get a kill from you before that happens then its just best to play weakside and ask your jungler not to gank you because at that point your opponent might get a double kill which makes the game unplayable for you.
Getting ganked :
I actually wanted to make a small section addressing this part of the lane. You need to understand how strong darius is and how he can turn ganks into double kills. Most people start panicking and running away as they see the enemy jungler approach but you shouldn't be panicking at all. If you are already fighting your lane opponent as the jungler is approaching keep going and proc your passive. Try to finish your lane opponent off if they were already losing the trade and if they flash away immediately turn on the enemy jungler especially if they are playing something thats particularly weak earlier on like yi nida etc.. If you have Q on cooldown and you have low hp its best to flash away to reposition yourself. Most players will keep chasing you and while your passive is still up try to position yourself so you can get a good Q heal. That will FOR SURE turn the tables and will get you a double kill. Honestly this kind of comes down to limit testing, experience and confidence with darius. My goal with this was to show you that you should be taking fights with darius even if it looks like you wont win them.
Mid game (15+ mins) :
We are now entering the stage of the game where darius truly shines. Once you take the first tower on top you should immediately shove the next upcoming wave(if you are safe to do so) and reset into a bot lane/mid lane roam. Never let your lead go to waste(assuming you have one), always impact lanes with the lead you have by making your teammates stronger or yourself even stronger. Now that we have come to this stage of the game we should almost always be looking to participate in drake fights because generally these are the kinds of fights that seal the outcome of the game. You can't do much about the first drake because you can't just leave your lane as is and participate on the first drake fight around 5-7 minutes but you can try and participate after the 2nd drake and onwards. If you miss these fights no matter how strong you are you will indefinitely lose so always look to join your team in fights and try not to sidelane if you dont have to. Darius is the kind of champion that excels at 5v5 thanks to his passive and R resetting mechanic which means you kind of want to look to fight all the time. If there's no important objectives on the map and it looks like your teammates wont fight anytime soon you can just sit in a sidelane and farm or freeze on tier 2 if you dont have top tower and the wave is pushing towards you. Never give your lane opponent free CS no matter what. We want to make their game as painful as possible in order to win. However if you end up pushing the wave thats not really a bad thing. If you don't see anyone on the map and your wave is crashed to their inner tower(tier 2) you should always look to take the enemy junglers top side camps which is also known as dirty farming. This is so good because not only are you getting free gold and xp for yourself but most importantly you are denying the enemy jungler the gold and xp you are taking yourself. You could also sit in the bushes near the blue/red buff and wait for unsuspecting players to come nearby to kill them.
If you notice the enemy carry can grow into a problem always try to push your advantage against them even further during the mid lane. Try to catch them farming by popping ghost and running them down. This makes sure they don't become a problem by late game (assuming the game goes on that long).
Playing from behind :
Just because darius is such a strong champion that won't always mean you'll come ahead. Often times youll end up being behind but thats just fine. When you are behind you should be looking to farm up and be even in exp. At some point you'll catch up in exp and be able to join a fight. Darius can be behind but hes pretty much never out of the game. 1 good fight can make you a monster to deal with no matter how behind you previously were.
Teamfighting mechanics :
Generally as darius you should be looking to stack your passive on the enemy frontline or immobile champions, flash into the back line with the q flash tactic and then finishing them off with R if they dont have enough hp to survive it or by hitting them with W first into R. Always ping your ghost and ask your team to wait for its cooldown first (if its at 30 or so seconds). Because if you don't you'll be extremely immobile and easy to kill. Even if you don't have flash its still fine as you should always be looking to stack passive on frontline and then with your passive and conqueror fully proc'd aim for the backline.Try to get R resets and not messing those up because if you do it could singlehandedly lose you fights so be on the watch for enemy cooldowns and abilities that can deny you R reset such as kayle r shen r soraka r etc...
Late game (35+ mins) : Theres not much to say for this stage of the game because this is where darius becomes useless and deals no damage. If you start noticing that your damage output drops considerably I'd consider playing for your carries by peeling them with your E and W. Try not getting cocky if the enemy adc is level 18 because they can 1v1 you really easily if they are full build so try staying away from pretty much everyone and just stay with your team.
Thats pretty much it! Thank you for taking time to read my guide, I really hope I was helpful with this guide and if you liked it I'd massively appreciate it if you would upvote and post a comment reviewing it by telling me what I should do to improve this guide If I made any mistakes.