[12.22] Kai'Sa ADC In-Depth Guide by misterfirstblood
Your votes and comments encourage our guide authors to continue
creating helpful guides for the League of Legends community.
Runes: Standard HoB
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
Ability Order Standard
Threats & Synergies
Bad lane, gets revealed later
Hardcounter, gets revealed, can get hit by Q while invisible, you can avoid getting condemned with ult
Very hard lane, range disadvantage is pain
Range disadvantage and good lategame scaling makes it very hard to play versus kogmaw
weak champ at all
poke can be annoying but you outscale
rocket launcher is annoying
cant stand the damage of your Q
waveclear is hard to handle
very even matchup
you will not be able to trade him
Champion Build Guide
I published this guide at March 7th 2018 with the release of Kai'Sa and updated at november 29th 2022.
After my favourite AP Kai'sa Build got massively nerfed, she now got something back in comparison in Patch 12.16. Her shield got basically doubled at level 16 and her Q and passive deals a little more damage. This is nice to have!
+ Mixed Damage (scales with AD and AP)
+ Can reveal Champions
+ Long Range Follow up
- 525 Attack Range
- Ultimate deals no Damage
- Weak when fighting near to a minion wave
- Needs items to upgrade her Abilities which makes her weak when falling behind
Kai’Sa’s basic attacks mark enemies with Plasma, dealing increasing bonus magic damage. After a few successive attacks, the Plasma ruptures for a burst of damage based on the target’s missing health.
Nearby allies’ immobilizing effects add stacks of Plasma.
Kai’Sa’s symbiote-suit adapts to her chosen attack style, evolving her abilities based on permanent stats gained from shop items and experience level.
Q: Icathian Rain
Kai’Sa releases a swarm of missiles evenly distributed among nearby enemies, with additional hits on the same target dealing slightly reduced damage.
With enough bonus Attack Damage, Icathian Rain fires significantly more missiles.
W: Void Seeker
Kai’Sa fires off a beam of Void energy, revealing the first enemy hit, dealing magic damage, and applying stacks of Plasma.
With enough bonus Ability Power, Void Seeker deals more damage and partially refunds the cooldown on champion hit.
Kai’Sa charges up, briefly increasing her movement speed but losing the ability to attack. After charging up, Kai’Sa whips out the big guns to increase her attack speed for a few seconds.
Basic attacks reduce Supercharger’s cooldown.
With enough bonus Attack Speed, Supercharger briefly grants true invisibility while charging up.
R: Killer Instinct
Kai’Sa dashes at extremely high speed with long range to a location near an enemy champion marked with Plasma and briefly gains a damage-absorbing shield.
So what you need to get your Upgrades is:
100 AD to upgrade your Icathian Rain
100 AP to upgrade your Void Seeker
100% Attack speed to Upgrade your Supercharge
When playing Kai'Sa as AD Carry you should ignore the Void Seeker upgrade for atleast 4 items.
Your runes like Legend: Alacrity or stats you get from going in trees like Precision doesn't affect the count by the way.
The only things that count beside your items are your level up stats. You will get
15% Attack speed and 9 AD at level 10
20% Attack speed and 12 AD at level 12
25% Attack speed and 14 AD at level 15
So for example if you want to have both upgrades at level 13 you need to buy ~80% attack speed and ~90AD.
In my Opinion currently the best Item build you could aim for at the current patch is Kraken Slayer into The Collector. Only by finishing your boots and buying 1 additional Dagger for your Phantom Dancer as last item you get both your Q And your E Ability upgraded while having an amazing 2 item powerspike.
Since AP Kaisa's W potential got nerfed pretty hard in Patch 12.10 i wouldnt recommend to buy AP Items anymore for the upgraded W, but if you really want it keep in mind that Nashor's Tooth might be the only viable item option that gives 100 AP by itself that grants useful stats and a good passive for an ADC build.
I dont wanna go further in depth about AP Itemization because this could fill an entire different build/guide with information, but I will still make a sepereate Section in the item chapter that lists the most important ones.
It makes not only increases your dueling potential by a ton, it also helps you through the laning phase.
While Taste of Blood increases your durability while laning by a bit, all the other Rune choices i made are there to help you scale into mid game as early as possible and save as much gold as possible. So i highly recommend Treasure Hunter aswell as Magical Footwear and Biscuit Delivery in the inspiration Tree.
It's the opposite of Miss Fortunes mechanic. Keep attacking the same target to get the most damage out of your passive.
If you own Runaan's Hurricane you can apply plasma to multiple targets at the same time, it's not like vayne that if you change the target all stacks are gone.
Icathian Rain Q
Try to clear the enemies minions before using it to maximise its outcoming damage to champs.
When you get engaged by a tank in a 2v2 for example try to get closer to their adc before using Q, so their adc receives more damage than their tank.
You can cast Q while moving, so you can trade enemies and lasthit at the same time, or take lasthits with Q and auto attack enemies when they go for a lasthit. That a simple mechanic that makes you win trades.
Void Seeker W
W doesnt really scale pretty well with AD but even with 1 point in it it deals a lot of damage and is is still very important to prepare your ult. The fact that it applies plasma on enemies allows you to use your ultimate to engage or escape from a bad position. Also you will need less auto attacks to trigger the last stack of plasma and deal a lot of damage.
You can reveal the most annoying champs to play against with W Void Seeker ; Vayne, Twitch, Rengar Evelynn.
Since you don't have to manually aim your Q and have a reveal on W I would say Kai'Sa is a big counter of Vayne.
E is a steroid that boosts your attack speed after charging up. Make sure not to use it among a fight because Kai'Sa will stop attack while she is charging. When you were at your base, use it as often as possible to get back to lane faster with its bonus movement speed .
Your ultimate goal is to benefit from the invisibility that you get after purchasing enough attack speed. You are able to make big outplays and do a lot of funny escapes and kills with that upgrade.
Always use it before a fight is about to begin and juke your enemies with your invisibility.
Killer Instinct R
First of all; An ultimate which doesn't deal any damage sounds lame for an AD Carry. But trust me - This ability is powerful in its own way.
To be fair: You will have to land your W Void Seeker to make really crazy stuff with it, but this 2 spell combo allows Kai'Sa to be the first ADC who can follow up and help teammates on other lanes like galio shen or twisted fate. So you can not just save teammates with it, you can pick up kills and your enemies botlane will not be fast enough to follow you. So always take a look at your jungle and midlane. You can also chase running enemies with Void Seeker + Killer Instinct and execute them and secure kills. Even in hectic teamfights where you cant benefit from your Void Seeker range its a useful tool which protects yourself AND allows you to reposition yourself, which allows you to do a mistake without dying in lategame.
In my opinion it is one of the most flexible and strongest champions you can imagine and even if the AP Build where you were able to snipe people all over half the map from 100 to 0 within seconds, i still highly recommend you to blind pick and main her in rankeds if you are experienced with her.
If you wanna see more of my league content or Kai'sa Pentakills
or check out my latest video
leave a like or comment if you enjoyed it!