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Ad Kennen

Last updated on February 21, 2012
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I have a hard time finding guides to AP Kennen but I really enjoy him, and not many people know about him, so allow me to shed light and cast away the shadows. This guide is intended for competitive ranked play.

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Item build is pretty typical. Wriggles could be exchanged for vampiric scepter and later a blood thirster. Your last item is optional, and depends on the situations and whether the game lasts that long. Both Veil and Guardians are solid choices, as is another blood thirster.

Last whisper could easily be exchanged for black cleaver as Kennen benefits from attack speed. I prefer last whisper not that I often get a chance to buy it because it shreds tanks who in competitive games often have a minimum of 200 armor. Because black cleaver won't dent the super beefy tanks, I prefer last whisper.

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Pros / Cons

Extremely mobile, if not the most mobile AD carry. Trist on a killing spree is the only exception.
One of the best harassers.
Extremely powerful sustain.
Ult stuns and single target stuns are great for escape, peeling, and securing kills.
Confuses enemy team during selection. Because most associate Ken's tendency to mid, and sometimes counter pick top lane, most teams fail to counter pick him in regards to bottom lane. Many teams will not expect an AD Ken top.
Potential for 2 ranged carries if AD top (this is very scary, especially if your team has support Alistar, Galio mid or Soraka, all of which alleviate the lack of a tank top).

Plays completely different from AP Ken in all aspects.
Ult is not an aoe stun. In fact, you generally die if you ult and E during team fights.
Most people who haven't watched League matches don't recognize Ken's potential as a viable AD carry.

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Typical AD carry runes. I run the same set for most AD carries. You can run straight damage reds if you want but I haven't tried it and I doubt it's necessary. I may in time upgrade my blues to resist per level since resist won't matter until end game anyways.

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I run traditional masteries for an AD carry. I prefer a stronger heal and almost always run this mastery setup. There are several variations that are not wrong but rather preferences. You can swap 3% vamp for 3% damage, and you may swap up the first 4 defense masteries however you like. It is tradition when laning bottom to go 2-3 in armor because most of the damage taken comes from autoattacks. Most guides always show 2 in armor for sustain purposes.

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Skill Sequence

The skill sequence is in stone except for the first 4 points. If invading I generally go q but e is acceptable for mobility escapes. If you get caught off guard AND focused during invade, e allows you to fall back behind your friends, and take pot shots on the run while you flee from your enemies. E also allows you to chase fleeing enemies.

For passive farm sessions go q first.

For aggressive starts go w first.

If you expect lvl 2 gank for or against you, get e second.

For super aggressive first blood in your lane, go e second as well.

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Summoner Spells

For bot lane AD Kennen I don't believe in other summoner spells. Heal is too good for multiple reasons including, baiting people early game into giving up kills, and is still very helpful late game in team fights. Other acceptable summoners are cleanse, exhaust, and ignite.

If top lane AD Kennen, always go teleport/flash. This is invaluable for multiple reasons. First: It allows you to head home for first heal/buy and get back to lane quickly. Second: It allows you to assist with drag/gank bot, gank anywhere a ward is present, or to take a tower in a pushed lane. Teleport should be used for drags/ganks after 1st use. You should always avoid using teleport to return to lane after first use unless tower defense or assault is involved.

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Creeping / Jungling

Ken is very powerful at stealing the big Wraith. Whenever he has a chance he should q/w/autoattack the big wraith and leave the small ones. AD Ken should avoid stealing blue buff unless teammates are not nearby to benefit. Red however, is fair game.

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AD Ken farms extremely well. If pushing a lane is desired, he can do rapid aoe damage and with Q and W, it's very easy to push.

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Team Work

In any small, sub 4 enemy skirmishes, Kennen can position himself almost anywhere. I liberally go to locations I normally wouldn't during laning phase when a jungler is attacking or assisting me. Because of his high mobility from E and combined burst and stun, Kennen is not in danger when out of position like other AD carries. In small skirmishes, I use Ken's ult very offensively to initiate, or to peel champions off of Kennen. If used correctly in conjunction with W, Kennen can stun one or more champions twice.

In team fights, Kennen is extremely squishy. If you attempt to ult the entire enemy team, you will almost always die. However, Kennen chews through most tanks so it is recommended that you attack the squishiest melee. In fact, when initiating team fights, I normally sit on the closest melee champ. If they are the toughest tank, I switch off when another champ comes within range who is squishier, even if they're also a bruiser. If either ranged carry or support come into range, I switch to them but don't chase. If someone flees and their team is likely to switch and burst/cc you, chasing is generally bad. However, while Ult is used primarily as a defensive ability in retaliation to CC bruisers attacking you, it is excellent if you do decide to chase.

Example: 5v5, enemy team has (enemy jungle)Alistar and (enemy top)Lee sin. Leblanc dashes into melee range to kill our Soraka. Soraka silences her and runs. I switch to (enemy AP carry)Leblanc as does half of my team. As she turns to flee, I active ult so Alistar and Lee Sin can't respond and enemy (enemy AD carry)Caitlynn and (enemy support)Sona think twice about getting in range. Half way through ult I W, stunning Alistar, Lee Sin, and Leblanc in the process and secure a kill on Leblanc. Now I'm in danger range so the best choice is to retreat with E just far enough away and star beating on Lee sin who is squishier than Alistar (Alistar had better items).

Above example: However, if I use E to rush in with my ult, when E ends I have no escape and I'll get blown up (even if the AP carry isn't Leblanc) and I can't escape. If I saunter in with ult and don't use E, they can run away, run to the edges, or still hard switch to me and I'll eat CC so I can't E away.

The point is, I use to care about my ult during team fights, and you should, but not in the same manner AP Ken does.