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Ezreal Build Guide by m3lior

AP Carry A Viable AP Ezreal Guide? A True Display of Skill!

AP Carry A Viable AP Ezreal Guide? A True Display of Skill!

Updated on December 7, 2014
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League of Legends Build Guide Author m3lior Build Guide By m3lior 65,443 Views 0 Comments
65,443 Views 0 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author m3lior Ezreal Build Guide By m3lior Updated on December 7, 2014
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Choose Champion Build:

  • LoL Champion: Ezreal
    Defensive Approach
  • LoL Champion: Ezreal
    Aggressive Approach


This guide will show how to make Ezreal into a viable AP mage. In order to do this, I focus on countering Ezreal's biggest weaknesses while utilizing his strengths.
AP Ezreal Pros
  • Strong AOE damage
  • Very high AP ratios
  • Low cool downs on all abilities
  • High mobility
  • High damage global ultimate

AP Ezreal Cons
  • Weak farming ability
  • Farm dependent
  • Slow early game
  • Most abilities are skill shots
  • Dies quickly when caught

The play style uses range and mobility to stay alive while maximizing AP, CDR and mana regeneration to set up kills and win team fights.

Note: AP Ezreal is very item dependent, while being a poor farmer. I compensate for this by taking 2-3 ranks (depending on opponent) of Mystic Shot first and getting early mana regen/CDR to spam abilities.

With strong farm and smart decision making, AP Ezreal can be a force to be reckoned with.
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Aggressive or Defensive?

There are two alternative builds posted here: One more aggressive approach, one more defensive. These are provided to get you thinking about what to take in each game you play, depending on your opponent.

Think Critically Every Game!

If you use a cookie cutter build every game you won't be able to make the adaptations necessary when facing different situations.
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Summoner Spells

Flash: Best summoner skill in the game. Use in combination with Arcane Shift to escape impossible situations, or set up for incredible kills.

Ignite: Excellent choice to help secure difficult kills.

Barrier: Solid defensive choice to help keep you alive when you get caught.
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The goal here is to have sufficient CDR early game in order to be able to farm safely and effectively with Q from a distance, while taking defensive runes if necessary (MR glyphs, Armor yellows), and getting Magic Pen/AP wherever possible with what's left over.

Magic Pen == Damage. Pretty simple. Hybrid Pen may also be good if you prefer. There's nothing better to take here.

Scaling Mana Regen/lvl seals will help provide the mana regen necessary especially during laning phase to help frequently use abilities to farm and harass.

Armor yellows are a strong alternative, of course, against a champion such as Zed

AP Ezreal needs CDR far more than AP early game.

Magic resist blues are also a good choice against an opponent like Xerath.

Take these if you take MR blues

Flat AP quints will provide strong damage boost early game to prevent being bullied in lane
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The 21/0/9 masteries which are indicated will serve to maximize CDR, damage, mana regen, and move speed.
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Ability Details

Q: Lowest AP ratio (.4) of all abilities, but also has lowest cool down and highest range. In particular, every time the ability hits an enemy it reduces the cool down of all abilities by 1 second.

*At rank 5 this ability can be used every 1.4 seconds at max CDR if it hits the enemy.
*This ability is boosted significantly by the items Sheen and Lich Bane

Gameplay tips:
    Use to help farm safely from distance
    Use to harass frequently in lane
    Use to reduce the cool down of abilities - particularly ultimate (R) and teleport (E)
    Use this ability as often as possible!

W: Effective AOE skill shot nuke. Very good AP ratio. Goes through enemy units.

*Has high AP ratio and will do significant AOE damage even at rank 1 with enough AP.

Gameplay tips:
    Use on teammates to increase their attack speed
    Use in lane phase to harass enemy through minions

E: Flash ability on a short cool down, combined with a high damage single target nuke.

*At rank 5 this ability may be used every 4-5 seconds or so with max CDR and accurate Mystic Shot.
*The ability will target the nearest unit, and does not prioritize champions over regular units.

Gameplay tips:
    Use to escape over walls
    Use to re-position for combinations
    Use to catch enemies out of position
    Be careful when using this ability aggressively, as you may get caught out of position with no escape ability

R: Massive AOE damage, full-map range nuke on a short cool down.

*May be used every 35-40 seconds with frequent and accurate Q spam.

Gameplay tips:
    Use to shove lanes and farm
    Use this to initiate major combos
    Use to support team mates across the map
    Use to steal buffs
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Ability Order

Mystic Shot At least 2 ranks to lower cool down for farming and harassing.
Arcane Shift second for low cool down to both escape ganks and enable kills
Essence Flux third because the cool down and AP ratios are static
Trueshot Barrage when able, of course

Note: For stronger farm and safer laning phase early/mid game take 3 ranks of Mystic Shot first. I would discourage taking more than 3 ranks as it will severely delay your team fight potential.
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Core Items

Ionian Boots of Lucidity, Rabadon's Deathcap, Void Staff, Seraph's Embrace and Lich Bane are the core items to maximize AP, cool down reduction, mana regeneration and spell penetration while also boosting the damage of Mystic Shot.

Note: The build order of core items will vary depending on the game! Early game, you need mana regen, and CDR to help lane. But you need to have a good amount of AP built before major team fights, though. Don't be afraid to make adjustments as necessary!

When to upgrade to CDR boots depends on the situation that you are in. If your opponent is pressing the lane so much that you are missing too much CS, then the extra movement speed and CDR will help lower the cast time on Q to help you farm faster (and also get ult up faster for farming, shoving, other uses, etc.)
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Situational Items

The items that you take after completing the core will depend on the game and the opponents.
Don't be afraid to get a Null Magic Mantle/Cloth Armor early on if the enemy is a sufficient threat. If you aren't able to safely farm from range with Q, it may be a good idea to build a Seeker's Armguard into a Zhonya's Hourglass instead of a Rabadon's Deathcap against primarily AD assassins (Zed, Rengar, etc), or against ranged AP threats, consider a Spectre's Cowl which you'll later finish as a Banshee's Veil.

To reiterate: You need to have a good amount of AP built before major team fights!

I don't recommend Athene's Unholy Grail any more, as it is easier just get a Null-Magic Mantle if you need MR early game (which can later be converted into a Banshee's Veil.
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Lane Match-ups

AP Ezreal is not strong in lane. At best, you should hope to be an even match with your lane opponent. Skill and smart play will make the difference from there.

If you are laning against champions with strong gap closers or CC with high burst damage you may have a difficult time.

Some examples to be wary of:
Kassadin (after 6)

Against this type of opponent, it would be wise to think carefully about using some defensive runes, as well as changing up the ability and build order.
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Early Game

Work hard to farm as well as possible. If laning against a strong pusher, consider extra ranks in Q and an early boots upgrade. Spam your abilities to get every CS (especially Q). If the enemy is constantly pushed against your tower, call in the jungler. Use Mystic Shot as frequently as you need to keep the lane where you want it and to harass your opponent.

Get blue and don't lose it: This is extremely important! The mana regen and cool down reduction will help immensely. If for whatever reason you don't get your own blue, a good trick is to watch for the enemy mid lane to leave towards their own blue, and then to use your ultimate to try to steal it.

Early game itemization: Sufficient mana regen, move speed, and CDR, before rushing AP and spell pen.

Note: Don't be afraid to use Trueshot Barrage! Use it to shove the lane before going back, or to pick up some extra gold before buying. With strong CDR and frequent Mystic Shot spam, it will come back quickly.
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Mid Game

At this stage you should be maintaining farm while assisting teammates to get kills and objectives. AP Ezreal only gets stronger as the game progresses. Once Rabadon's Deathcap is completed, you will have the damage output significantly effect team fights. This only increases with each completed damage item.

Note: Be careful about not using Arcane Shift aggressively too often, as it can leave you exposed without the ability to escape.

Mid game itemization: BUILD AP and SPELL PEN. Ezreal is very poor in team fights without sufficient damage. Pay attention to the enemy magic resist to know when to finish the Void Staff. The only time to build anything after AP and Magic Pen is if you need to finish a defensive item.
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Late Game

By late game, you should be a power house doing tremendous AOE damage during team fights with your Trueshot Barrage -> Essence Flux combination, with enough mobility that the enemy team has a difficult time locking you down.

Late game itemization: Make sure to get a good defensive item such as Zhonya's Hourglass or Banshee's Veil if the enemy team is still able to close the gap and lock you down. Chances are that if you are caught, you will be dead! Sit in the back and poke poke poke. :)
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This is a short montage from a Plat ELO Ezreal player. This video shows that AP Ezreal can be fun and dominant. Some great plays.

Here is an example of a Diamond I player who plays AP Ezreal regularly:

  • He builds more aggressive here against a relatively passive opponent. (No doran's start, EQWR skills).
  • He displays excellent use of his R to shove, steal buffs, and assist teammates.

Here is another example of some strong gameplay:

  • This player takes a more poke focused approach by buffing Ezreal's Q. (QEWR, Lich Bane rush into Muramana, before building any major AP)
  • He displays excellent use of his R to shove, steal buffs, and assist teammates.
  • Shows strength of early Q, but early team fights were very poor showing importance of earlier AP.
  • Builds no CDR, which also lead to lower damage output throughout game.
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