13.1 Stay Alert, Stay Aggressive
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Runes: Lethal Tempo
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
Ability Order Standard
Threats & Synergies
Champion Build Guide
Hi, my name is Demonsedge, and I've been enjoying my time on league of legends. I can't say enough about this game.
I'm a bot lane player with good knowledge of Kai'Sa, so I can speak to how this champion feels and works. When referring to team setup and itemization, I will have a more in-depth look at Kai'Sa's options below as you read through the guide.
I hope you will enjoy this guide and be able to follow my suggestions to understand how Kai'Sa works optimally.
So let's kick things off in style with my guide on Kai'Sa - Daughter of the Void.
Specialties: Sustained Damage, Ranged
Why choose Kai'Sa?:
- She has a very skill-expressive kit because each of her abilities can evolve, unlocking new bonuses and effects.
- She can provide heavy burst for her team that makes her feel impactful in the lanes and when getting objectives ( turrets / dragons & baron nashor ).
- She has great potential to make plays, carry her team and be a good team fight asset.
I always enjoy taking her on the rift when playing league matches, and I hope you will too.
|Effect Radius: 2,750|
Living Weapon - Kai'Sa can gain a set amount of permanent stats from items and stats growth. Once you have reached the stat caps required per ability, she can upgrade it, further increasing its strength, but bare in mind the upgrade is lost if the stat requirements are no longer applied.
With Second Skin Kai'Sa's basic attacks, on-hits and Void Seeker, apply stacks of plasma to enemies that lasts 4 seconds, which refreshes on subsequent stacks, stacking up to 4 times. Her and nearby alliesimmobilizing effects, silences & polymorphs against enemy champions will also apply plasma.
Each plasma stack deals bonus magic damage per stack. Her next attack against a target with 4 plasma stacks will consume them, dealing additional missing max health as magic damage to the target, capped at 400 against monsters .
| Range: 600 | Cost: 55 Mana| Cooldown: 10 / 9 / 8 / 7 / 6 |
Icathian Rain fires six missiles that evenly distribute among nearby visible enemies dealing physical damage to all targets hit. Additional hits against champions or jungle monsters will deal 25% damage.
Minions below 35% health take double damage.
Kai'Sa gains strong damage potential with this ability in fights and duels, and is very effective when farming minions in the lane phase and beyond.
Avoid spamming this ability to conserve your mana in combat.
Living Weapon: Requires 100 bonus attack damage from items and levels to upgrade this ability. Icathian Rain will then fire 12 missiles, thus increasing the overall damage dealt with this ability.
| Range: 3,000 | Width: 200 | Speed: 1,750 |Cast Time: 0.4 | Cost: 55 / 60 / 65 / 70 / 75 Mana | Cooldown: 22 / 20 / 18 / 16 / 14 |
Void Seeker is Kai'Sa's form of long-range poke, firing a void bolt in the target direction that grants sight around its trajectory as it travels. This ability deals magic damage to the first enemy hit, applying 2 plasma stacks, and revealing them for 4 seconds.
The damage dealt from this ability can be very potent after getting a few items. Note that it stops on contact with the first enemy/objective hit, so position yourself to have a clear view of your intended target. Excellent to use when looking to steal objectives ( dragons & baron nashor ) or to finish off low-health targets in fights.
Living Weapon: Requires 100 ability power from items to upgrade this ability (example: Nashor's Tooth). After the upgrade, this ability will apply increased plasma stacks towards your Second Skin passive and provide increased cooldown reduction if Void Seeker hits an enemy champion.
| Cast Time: 1.2 to 0.6 (based on bonus attack speed) | Cost: 30 Mana | Cooldown: 16 / 14.5 / 13 / 11.5 / 10 |
Your signature attack speed steroid. Kai'Sa charges up throughout the cast time, during which she is still allowed to move, becomes ghosted and gains bonus movement speed that will vary based on her total bonus attack speed.
After completing the cast, Kai'Sa gains bonus attack speed and her auto attack windup percentage is reduced to 6.44% for 4 seconds.
Basic attacks reduce Supercharge's cooldown by 0.5 seconds.
Living Weapon: Requires 100% attack speed from items and stats to upgrade Supercharge. Once this ability has evolved, you'll improve the dashes effect and gain invisibility, which activates during the cast animation.
| Range: 1,500 / 2,250 / 3,000 | Effect Radius: 525 | Cost: 100 Mana | Cooldown: 130 / 100 / 70 |
With Killer Instinct, Kai'Sa dashes to a visible enemy champion recently affected by plasma while granting herself a shield for 2 seconds. The shield's duration refreshes once the dash ends.
Kai'Sa's ult has two other benefits:
- Her auto-attack timer is reset after the ability ends.
- During this dash, Kai'Sa can cast any of her abilities.
In this section, I will share some of the effective combos for Kai'Sa that are simple to understand and that you can apply while playing summoners rift (draft and ranked) games.
Playing As Kai'Sa:
- Remember that you can re-engage with Killer Instinct if the enemy retreats with stacks of plasma.
- When looking to target enemy champions with Icathian Rain, make sure you aren't within range of their minion wave, or you will target them instead of the enemy or enemies you were hoping to hit.
- It's very efficient to trigger Supercharge before combat with the enemy, gaining a few faster autos attacks during the trade or fight. Once evolved provides a breaking line of sight from targets.
Playing Against Kai'Sa:
- Stay near your minions during a skirmish with Kai'Sa to avoid taking too much damage from Icathian Rain.
- Avoid Void Seeker as much as possible to prevent her from engaging your backline with Killer Instinct.
- Disengage once you've acquired four stacks of plasma immediately because the damage from Second Skin is amplified against targets at low health.
- Even though Kai'Sa lacks an escape, she can still effectively disengage with Supercharge.
- Kai'Sa is very good at defeating isolated targets, so grouping will make her assassinations more difficult.
Flash: An integral summoner spell for Kai'Sa that's taken 100% of the time in all your games. Another reason it's necessary for her is if you get caught out and can't quickly escape, you can Flash to safety or dodge a very crucial ability from the opponent.
Heal: A must-have spell for Kai'Sa since it provides early-game sustain and even some necessary movement speed. An excellent choice for Kai'Sa that can give you that little boost needed to escape skill shots or get you and a teammate out of a jam. The downside is that subsequent Heals applied to you (within 35 seconds) will be 50% effective, so avoid taking this spell if your support is getting it, though if you both take it, coordinate them appropriately for the best results.
Exhaust: Excellent for Kai'Sa against champions who could take you down quickly, such as Draven, Katarina, Master Yi or LeBlanc. Also great to use on targets for whom you want to slow down or reduce their incoming damage (includes bonus damage from Sheen-related items & abilities).
Cleanse: A reliable summoner spell that can be taken into teams consisting of high crowd control champions like ( Lux, Morgana, Leona, or Ashe). Won't protect you from abilities that have suppression & airborne effects and can only be activated after theimmobilizing effect has been applied to you, not beforehand.
- Control Wards are stored in your inventory (max 2) and can be placed anywhere on the map (limit 1), revealing and disabling enemy wards within a 900-unit radius. Control Wards function similarly to the Oracle Lens trinket revealing stealth & camouflaged based champions ( Twitch, Rengar, Evelynn and Kha'Zix) that approach them.
- Stealth Ward is your main trinket in all games as Kai'Sa, revealing units within a target location for 90-120 (based on champion level) seconds. You get two charges that refresh every 240-120 seconds (based on champion level). The max allowable Stealth Wards to place is three. Great when side laning/placing deep wards in enemy territory or getting vision on objectives ( baron nashor & dragons ).
- You should only grab Oracle Lens when dealing with stealth champions who plant traps such as Teemo, Shaco, & Nidalee. It's also very helpful for champions who use stealth as means to engage/disengage like Twitch, Pyke, Wukong or Shaco.
- The last trinket we can acquire is Farsight Alteration (available at level 9). A strong option for Kai'Sa in 99.5% of games when side laning or getting vision on objectives or target locations from a safe distance. Effective when side laning (similar to the Stealth Ward), but unlike Stealth Wards, they are visible to the enemy and fragile, meaning they will die the instant they are spotted.
Pick up these boots when dealing with teams who have slowing effects. They can vary from sources such as Ashe's Frost Shot/ Volley/ Serylda's Grudge/ Rylai's Crystal Scepter, or other movement slow impairing effects that would leave you vulnerable and make it hard for you to escape combat.
If crowd control could impair your survivability and you can't afford to bring Cleanse, then I would strongly recommend these boots for the tenacity and magic resist. Potent against teams who are magic damage heavy.
Note that Mercury's Treads & Plated Steelcaps, aren't picked often as Kai'Sa when comparing them to the other two choices ( Berserker's Greaves & Boots of Swiftness). In saying this, they can be viable if you feel the extra armor or magic resistance could benefit you in fights or skirmishes.
Each of these starts can be very efficient but will depend heavily on who you are facing and what items you need to build for each matchup.
When deciding which mythic/legendary items to grab for Kai'Sa in your games, you should consider what abilities need priority/evolution in the build you wish to run. Just be mindful of your decisions since they could impact your performance during laning phases and team fights.
The typical mythic of choice here tends to be Kraken Slayer by default because it can provide more utility for your Supercharge active/passive effects & its evolution trigger. Make sure to examine the enemy team before picking your mythic item.
Very effective in one-on-one combat, providing more duelling potential in extended trading and skirmishes.
*Note that this item + Immortal Shieldbow are not able to be combined since they share the same unique passive (lifeline).
The following keystone & rune choices are great for Kai'Sa and will complement her in combat. Always pay attention to the enemy team comp, plus your item builds when selecting your runes to get the most value in each game.
- Hail of Blades is very efficient on Kai'Sa, granting an additional attack speed upon striking a champion with a basic attack (good for three autos). Very useful for trades in fights and duels with the enemy. Great when paired with tank supports such as Leona or Nautilus.
- Press the Attack combined with Supercharge, makes you a threat in combat. Great for dealing extra percent damage to your target after they were made vulnerable (after three autos). Make sure not to switch targets, or you will reset the three-stack chain. This keystone is potent when paired with all-in supports.
- Lethal Tempo, synergizes nicely with Kai'Sa, allowing for more Second Skin passive triggers on your opponent while gaining extended attack range. After reaching the max stacks in combat, gain the ability to break the attack speed cap and provide increased chase down of your target(s). Great when paired with enchanter supports such as Lulu or Nami.
- When looking for a decent sustain option for Kai'Sa, look no further than Taste of Blood, healing you upon damaging an enemy champion. It's a very effective rune option for early lane fights and skirmishes and is effective when getting through the early game.
- Kai'Sa can trigger it with her Supercharge and with her Killer Instinct. Once you complete the dash or invisibility animations from either of these skills, you are then granted lethality for the next 5 seconds (4-second cooldown).
- Eyeball Collection is a formidable Domination rune for Kai'Sa. Grants increased attack damage once maxed out, allowing for more damage with autos/abilities & getting closer to the living weapon evolution on Icathian Rain.
- The main benefit of Treasure Hunter is that you can gain bounty gold stacks (per unique takedown), which aids in buying your core/situational items much sooner in the game to make you very strong in skirmishes and team fights.
- Ultimate Hunter is strong for Kai'Sa because it allows you to activate Killer Instinct more often when looking to close the gap between you and her targets. Very helpful for increased pressure/dominance in team fights and skirmishes.
- Magical Footwear allows Kai'Sa to delay building Boots to focus on getting your mythic and core items sooner. Once added to our inventory, gain extra movement speed in your current pair of Boots purchased.
- Future's Market is effective by accelerating your core item purchases faster. Assists Kai'Sa by gaining free base stats that can contribute to her abilities evolving faster, making her more potent sooner in team fights.
- Biscuit Delivery is helpful when you need additional sustain after trades and skirmishes while also giving you more maximum mana per biscuit (max 3). A staple Inspiration rune taken by Kai'Sa in most of her tough matchups.
- Cosmic Insight offers us more access to summoner spells, active item effects ( Sheen items) & trinket wards. We gain access to our survivability tools ( Flash or other summoner spells) faster, providing more opportunities to make game-changing plays during team fights & skirmishes.
- Triumph can be very useful for Kai'Sa restoring missing max health and providing additional gold. Consider this rune option for Kai'Sa when looking for extra sustain and faster item purchases after securing takedowns.
- Presence of Mind provides mana per second when damaging champions. With this rune selection after scoring a takedown, you'll gain a portion of your maximum mana. This rune helps ensure sure you have mana when entering a new fight or skirmish.
- With Legend: Alacrity on Kai'Sa, you'll deal more damage with your auto attacks, allowing for more pressure in fights. Scales nicely alongside Supercharge when looking to evolve the ability or just for extra movement speed & cast time reduction.
- The life steal from Legend: Bloodline is low early on but builds up nicely into the late game. Helpful for Kai'Sa when against poke lanes or when you need some healing in the early game. An excellent option in duels and skirmishes/team fights.
- Coup de Grace for Kai'Sa allows us to do more damage to targets under 40% heatlh. This damage amplification can be very impactful when we are looking to secure kills and dish out damage in team fights and skirmishes.
- Good against tanks/bruisers ( Leona, Sett, Sion) & some bot lane champions ( Draven, Jhin, Twitch. When choosing Cut Down, be mindful of your starter item ( Doran's Blade or Long Sword) and other health based items, as it will affect your damage output with this rune.
- Shield Bash is a niche rune choice for Kai'Sa because of how well it can pair with the shield gained from Killer Instinct. This rune effect also synergizes with the shielding effects from Immortal Shieldbow, Bloodthirster & Overheal.
- Conditioning is a good durability rune choice for Kai'Sa, getting increases to your armor and magic resist. Helpful when fighting assassins such as Akali, Kha'Zix, Rengar, Master Yi or other champions that make it hard for you to survive fights.
- Overgrowth, while not the first choice for Kai'Sa, can be very effective as another layer of durability that can help you survive duels and trades when selecting Resolve as our secondary. This rune offers max health per monster / minion death, then gaining a % max health bonus once 120 minions are absorbed.
- Revitalize for Kai'Sa, increases the total value of shields gained (from Killer Instinct. Improves the healing & shielding effects of other runes, life steal & omni vamp items ( Overheal, Immortal Shieldbow or Bloodthirster) in your build path.
- Manaflow Band increases your maximum mana pool, along with providing regeneration of your missing maximum mana. A good rune option since it will prevent you from having to back multiple times for mana and allow for more ability casts in the lane.
- For Kai'Sa, Transcendence provides additional ability haste, then grants another passive that will reduce the cooldowns of your non-ultimate abilities after scoring takedowns on the enemy. This rune is potent in matchups where skill casting is ideal for best success, thus granting more impact in fights and objective control.
- Gathering Storm is effective for Kai'Sa by increasing your overall damage (autos and abilities) against targets every 10 minutes and scales indefinitely. A great scaling rune option for games that you know will last long.
When deciding on what rune shards (whether offensive or defensive) to pick for Kai'Sa in each of your games, you have to factor in a few things in champion select:
- Do I need extra attack speed? Assists in making farming a little easier.
- Do I need additional damage? For Kai'Sa, we always take one adaptive damage shard.
Grabbing another damage shard is risky since she has a low base attack speed out of the gate, so I'd suggest avoiding double adaptive damage shards as Kai'Sa for best success.
- Do I require any ability haste? We don't take this option, so it's best to skip it.
- Do I require more armor? Your default choice for most games in the bot lane.
- Do I require magic resist? Better picked when the lane is double mage bot or heavy in magic damage.
- Do I require more health? We don't often select this option as Kai'Sa. It's still viable when going against mixed damage team comps.
Always pay attention to the team compositions you are fighting when mixing and matching the rune shards listed above, in conjunction with your Boots & items. It's a sure way to improve your overall survivability in games.
There are plenty of ways to build Kai'Sa, but hopefully, this guide made it easier for you to understand what abilities/items and runes work well together and how to make the most of her kit.
I hope you enjoyed this guide and will refer this to your friends and fellow gamers looking for tips & tricks.
For any questions or thoughts, you wish to share, contact me in the discussion section. I'll be happy to talk things over with you and see how I can make sense of anything you need answers for to the best of my ability.