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Not Updated For Current Season
The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.
This build is designed to have Akali have extremely high early game damage and make her extremely balanced at end game to where she can still put out massive amounts of damage, but she can clear lanes in seconds and solo a turret in under 6 seconds. The point for not continuing to an AP of lets say 650+, is that anything you can kill quickly, you will still be able to kill quickly with 450. The difference is that tanks and the such, which you can't kill quickly with a pure AP build, or a group that has a lot of CC's you will need to rely more on auto attacks.
You may wonder why I use Armor Penetration instead of Magic Penetration. Play a few rounds as Akali and go back to review the match. You will find that a much higher percentage of your damage is in the form of physical, even if your high AP. These runes are designed to get you kills very early and very often. Plus you get more bang for your buck with Armor Penetration vice Magic Penetration. Armor, for the reason noted above, is extremely essential early game. If you play Akali right only Fighters, Tanks and the such will give you any amount of trouble early, Champions that will be auto-attacking you, or their abilities are mainly physical. Champions such as Karthus, Ashe, Ezreal, Ryze, Tristana, Janna...... you get the picture, are extremely easy for Akali to kill without much risk to her, so you really don't need to worry about added protection early. Also, once again you get more bang for your buck with Armor.
Ability Power is quite obvious, you want that passive unlocked right away. The attack damage passive can be useful, but any situation where you would need the spell vamp to survive, you shouldn't have been in to begin with.
I'm not going to go into these really, it's designed to give you high damage output right off the bat.
Ignite and Exhaust are the only two spells you should be using as Akali. Your job is the kill Champions, right off the bat. Any ability you need to run from the fight, such as Ghost or Flash, means that you are playing Akali completely wrong. Your ultimate is a Flash for the most part. If you really need to run away and can't, run towards their base, then Shadow Dance back to a minion. Heal? Once again, if you need it, you shouldn't have been in the fight.
Items and Gameplay
Buy the Tome first before Boots. By the time you need to start chasing you will be able to afford the Boots easy. You goal is to level Mark of the Assassin as fast as you can. Keep on the move and use your Shroud at level 2 to harass your enemy with Marks.
Before I forget and get too far in, once you have a good grip with Akali, you need to be midding. Let me say it again, YOU SHOULD BE GOING MID. Very few champions will be able to kill as early and often as a well played Akali mid. The only instance you should hesitate going mid is against characters like Cho. You will not be able to do enough damage to make it worth while going mid. A mid that doesn't kill the other mid is JUST as bad as a mid that dies. Characters such as Sivir and Caitlyn might give you hesitation as well, you should be able to kill them if you play right, but it might take you a bit longer.
Once you hit level 6 it should be time to buy your boots. Handle any business at the time then head back, get your boots and during that time your ultimate will power up.
Around level 9 and 10, assuming you haven't died more than once, you should have a few kills under your built and well into completing your Deathcap. Once you have your Deathcap you should have a teammate, one who can handle the mid being 2 levels higher than them, hold down mid. Now it is ganking time. Pick the lane with the squishier champions and get your ganks in. Also if you have time before this while your mid after kills and have the health, go top or bottom and get a gank in.
Get Red Buff as often as you can.
Deathcap is extremely necessary as early as you can get it. Champions will be defenseless against you early in the game, even tanks. Lich Bane is a must next because you need the extra damage on your auto attacks. With just the two items you should be around 300 AP. When attacking champions after your Lich Bane you should be trying to auto attack in between every ability if possible. If it is going to take your more than an instant to kill them and you aren't worrying about getting jumped right after the fight, drop your shroud as soon as you ulti in to make sure they don't get away. Otherwise save it for after to make sure you get away from the coming attacks easily.
As said before, we don't continue with our AP build from here. Phantom Dancer is a must because it will allow you to clear lanes quickly and take down turrets quickly when grouped with your Lich Bane.
DON'T GET CAUGHT UP IN NOTHING BUT GANKING.
Unless you are leveling quickly because you just have so many kills, in which case expect the team to surrender early, you need to be solo clearing lanes as much as often to keep the gold coming in quickly and your level going up quickly. As Akali you want to try to remain a higher level than the other team to be the most effective. Also notice your movement speed at this point, you will be able to run across the map in a flash.
At this point of the game we get into our situational items.
Your fifth item is a choice between Madred's Bloodrazor, Hextech Gunblade or Rylai's Scepter.
Madred's Bloodrazor is a must against a team with more than one tank, or a team with CC's. The bonus attack speed plus the passive of 4% a targets hp per hit means you can take out a tank quickly. It takes a maximum of 25 hits to kill anything with a Bloodrazor. With your attack speed being close to 2 hit a second and add to that all the extra damage you will be doing with your abilities, then mathematically you can take out a tank in about 6-8 seconds.
Hextech Gunblade is bought if you aren't really meeting too much resistance and can just continue with what you are doing to make yourself just generally more powerful. With both items you will be able to solo a turret in under 6 seconds.
Rylai's Scepter is bought if you find yourself getting killed right before the right ends and need that little bit of HP boost plus the AP to do a little more.
I don't list a sixth item because there is simply too many different situations for it if you make it to this point. You could buy another Phantom Dancer to sneak attack a teams base before they can make it back, you can get massively more HP to be slightly more tankish, you can get an all around boost with Trinity. There is simply too many options to list.
I tried to be as clear as I could with this build and put in a lot of detail. If there is anything you are wanting more detail on, let me know and I will include it.