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Akali Build Guide by m4rs

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League of Legends Build Guide Author m4rs

Akali ~The Fist of Shadow~ Guide

m4rs Last updated on November 7, 2012
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AP/ Full AP

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Middle Lane
Ranked #51 in
Middle Lane
Win 49%
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

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.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 9

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 0

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Welcome to my Akali Guide. In this guide, you will get to learn how to play Akali and see the true power of the Fist of Shadow. Akali is my main Champion and I love her. I am not the best Akali out there, but I hope you will enjoy this guide and learn from it.

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Story Time

There exists an ancient order originating in the Ionian Isles dedicated to the preservation of balance. Order, chaos, light, darkness -- all things must exist in perfect harmony for such is the way of the universe. This order is known as the Kinkou and it employs a triumvirate of shadow warriors to uphold its causes in the world. Akali is one of these shadow warriors, entrusted with the sacred duty of Pruning the Tree - eliminating those who threaten the equilibrium of Valoran.

A prodigal martial artist, Akali began training with her mother as soon as she could make a fist. Her mother's discipline was relentless and unforgiving, but predicated on the fundamental principle: ''We do that which must be done.'' When the Kinkou inducted her into the order at the age of fourteen, she could slice a dangling chain with a chop of her hand. There was no question - she would succeed her mother as the Fist of Shadow. She has had to do much in this role which others might find morally questionable, but to her it is in service of her mother's inviolable doctrine. She now works with her fellows Shen and Kennen to enforce the balance of Valoran. This hallowed pursuit has unsurprisingly led the triumvirate to the Fields of Justice.

''The Fist of Shadow strikes from the cover of death itself. Do not impede the balance.''

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Pros / Cons


    Very Good Burst
    Can win game instantly when snowballing
    A Very Good Ganker
    Excels at escaping 1v5 fights
    Really high mobility

    CCs kill her :(
    Squishy ( all burst champions like her are squishy.)
    Oracles will counter her Twilight Shroud
    High Learning Curve

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Greater Mark of Insight X2Greater Mark of Strength X7Greater Seal of Vitality X9Greater Glyph of Force X9Greater Quintessence of Potency X3

I take these runes to trigger Akali's Passive- Twin Disciplines at Level 1. Runes itself does not trigger Akali's Passive. But it does with the help of Masteries. I would highly recommend that if you are keen on using Akali as your main champion, you should create a Rune Page only for Akali as this Rune page would not benefit any other Champions.

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For Masteries I take 21 on Offense and 9 on Defence, leaving 0 on Utility. Offense to help trigger her passive and make her super stronk in bursting down targets. Defence to help aid in having Health, Armor and Magic resist for more Sustain in fights.

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Summoner Spells

I take Ignite and Flash and I feel it should be a must for Akali. Akali needs Flash to help aid in her getaways. She should also have ignite to help in bursting down opponents or finishing them off. Also, ignite provides Grievous Wounds which would lower the chances of the opponent surviving by reducing the effectiveness of healing by 50%

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Skill Explanations

Twin Disciplines

Upon obtaining 20 Ability Power, Akali's basic attacks deal 8% bonus magic damage, increasing by 1% for every 6 Ability Power gained thereafter.
Upon obtaining 10 Bonus Attack Damage, Akali gains 8% Spell Vamp, increasing by an additional 1% for every 6 Bonus Attack Damage gained thereafter.

This is your passive and it is very overpowered at low levels. It has a built in Life Steal and it allows you to deal additional bonus magic damage. In order to activate your passive, it would require you to have 19.5 additional Ability Power for Discipline of Force and 9.5 additional Attack Damage for the Discipline of Might. It is possible to proc your passive at level 1 using Runes and Masteries. Please refer to the Runes and Masteries section if you want to know how to proc your passive. Akali's Passive really helps her out in the Laning phase. Overall, a great passive for Akali.
Mark of the Assassin

Akali throws her kama at a target enemy to deal 45/70/95/120/145 (+0.4*AP) magic damage and mark the target for 6 seconds.

Akali's melee attacks against a marked target will consume the mark to cause 45/70/95/120/145 (+0.4*AP) magic damage and restore 20/25/30/35/40 Energy.

60 Energy
6/5.5/5/4.5/4 Seconds

This is Akali's only ranged attack. It does quite a lot of base damage and it's cool down is super low. This is also the skill in which you want to use first in a fight as it marks your target. Triggering the mark with either a basic attack or Crescent Slash will deal additional damage, equal to the damage of the Mark of the Assassin. I take this skill at Level 1 and max it by Level 9. Reason being it is the skill which helps deal TONS OF DAMAGE ( I am not Phreak :3) but seriously, this skill is what you want to max first. This is also your skill used to poke your opponent. Overall, a great skill for Akali.

Twilight Shroud

Akali throws down a cover of smoke that lasts for 8 seconds. While inside the area, Akali gains 10/20/30/40/50 Armor and Magic Resist and becomes invisible. Attacking or using abilities will briefly reveal her.

Enemies inside the smoke are slowed by 14/18/22/26/30%.

80/75/70/65/60 Energy
20/20/20/20/20 Seconds

This skill is probably what makes Akali unique and special. This skill can be used as an escape tool or a sustain tool. While Akali is in the Shroud, Akali gains Stealth, bonus Armor and Magic Resist. Because it stealths you , this makes it an excellent escape tool. You can use it to fool your enemies and escape safely. However, it only lasts for 8 seconds, so try not to stay in the shroud for too long. I take 1 point in Twilight Shroud at level 2, and max it last at level 18, only using this for escape.
Crescent Slash

Akali flourishes her kamas, slicing nearby enemy units for 30/55/80/105/130 (+0.3*AD) (+0.3*AP) physical damage.

Triggers Mark of the Assassin on targets affected by it.

60/55/50/45/40 Energy
7/6/5/4/3 Seconds

This skill is great for farming and using your passive's life steal. I would not recommend you spam this skill as it requires a lot of energy and you might not have enough energy for your Twilight Shroud. I take this at level 4, and max it by level 13.
Shadow Dance

Akali moves through shadows to quickly strike her target, dealing 100/175/250/300 (+0.5*AP) magic damage.

Akali stores an Essence of Shadow on kills and assists as well as every 0.5*AD seconds up to 3 total.
2/1.5/1 Seconds

And Finally, your Ultimate, Shadow Dance. This skill is great for catching up to enemy targets or even escaping. Your ultimate costs 1 Essence of Shadow and has a super low cool down, meaning you can use it anytime as long as you have an Essence of Shadow stored. As the skill description mentions, you gain an Essence of Shadow over time, or killing enemy targets or assisting in killing them, up to a maximum of 3 at a time. This means you can use your ultimate 3 times when bursting or catching up with enemy targets. And this makes Akali, Akali. I take a point in this skill whenever it is available, at Level 6, 11 and 16.

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Skill Sequence

You should take a point in Mark of the Assassin at Level 1 for Farming Purposes and to harass your opponent. Take a Point in Twilight Shroud at Level 2 for Utility Purposes and Zoning purposes. Only take Crescent Slash at Level 4. Take a point in Shadow Dance at level 6.

You should prioritize the skills in this order:

Shadow Dance> Mark of the Assassin> Crescent Slash> Twilight Shroud


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Skill Combo

Levels 1-5

At level 1, your only combo available is your Q, the Mark of the Assassin.
Use your Q on a target and auto attack the target with the Mark to trigger it. This will deal a ton of damage to your opponent, forcing him to retreat. This is your only combo until level 4

At level 4, you should have your Q, W and E. This gives you your next combo. Use your W, Twilight Shroud to zone out your opponent. Stand in your Shroud and if your opponent is in range, throw him a Q, Mark of the Assassin. He should retreat by now, if he does not, proc the Mark using an Auto Attack followed by an E, Crescent Slash. This will now scare the hell out your opponent and will force him to retreat. If he dares to come back again, do the same. This combo is great for farming as well, however you need not use your W, Twilight Shroud. Use this combo for farming.

Level 6-18

By Level 6, you should have all of your skills. You also should have at least a Hextech Revolver. Now you can finally do your real combos.

The Laning Combo:


This may seem complicated and hard to remember, but once you understand it, you should get the hang of it.

Use your Mark of the Assassin on your target and wait for about 2 seconds. If your target runs away, do not engage. However if he does not care and comes within your range of your Shadow Dance, proceed and do your combo. Shadow Dance to him and immediately Autoattack to proc the first Mark of
the Assassin and Crescent Slash him. Shadow Dance to him again to close the gap. By now, your Mark of the Assassin cool down has finished, so send him another one and proc it again with an Autoattack, followed by another Shadow Dance and Ignite to finish the job. (HE SHOULD BE DEAD BY NOW. I MEAN SERIOUSLY, IF HE IS NOT DEAD,YOU SUCK. JK. >:D)

Ganking Combo:


Pretty much just do the above. Just spam those skills. Of course you will need to do it quickly. Pretty much the combo you will be using a lot.

Use your Mark of the Assassin on a target and Shadow Dance to him, auto attack to proc the Mark and Crescent Slash. Shadow Dance again and use the Mark of the Assassin again and proc it again using an Auto attack. If he still does not die, Shadow Dance again and keep attacking, using your Q and E whenever it is off cool down. Ignite if necessary.

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Item Explanation

Boots of Speed and 3 Health Pots

I always start with this as it is just what people buy. Health pots are used to heal when you are low on health when you are laning from level 1-6 . Health Potions after level 6 are pretty much useless as people will be buying elixirs.
Hextech Revolver

This item is neat and gives us some ability power along with additional spell vamp. I take this for early game burst damage and ability power.
Sorcerers Shoes

This Boots are great and gives you Magic Penetration for even more burst.
Hextech Gunblade

Simply a CORE item for Akali. Gives you Attack Damage, Ability Power, Spell Vamp and Life Steal! The Attack Damage to aid to Akali's Discipline of Might, allowing you to have an increased Spell Vamp for it. It also gives you Ability Power which you must have and Life Steal, which is so important, especially when you need to sustain in fights. Overall, a great item for Akali.
Rabbadon's Deathcap

Another Core Item for Akali. This item is pretty famous and you should know about this item. It gives you 140 Ability Power, which is a huge amount of Ability Power. And what's more, it has a unique passive, which gives you and additional 30% of your base Ability Power. Holy Moly. This item makes you super bursty and with Lich Bane, you are going to be bursting everyone down in 1 full combo. Maybe not even your full combo. Another Core Item for Akali.
Rylai's Crystal Scepter

This item is one of the core items Akali should really have. It gives us health and a Unique passive which allows us to slow enemies when we use an ability on them. This item also grants 80 ability power to give us a fairly nice burst for a start. A must have for Akali.
Void Staff

This item is neat and gives you 80 Ability Power along with an additional 40% Magic Penetration. This item is the Ability Power version of the Last Whisper. This item is important as it gives you Magic Penetration. You should be getting this late game when most people should be building Magic Resist to try to counter you. Thus, this item would help you in bursting down your opponents
Guardian Angel

This item is really good as it gives you Armor and Magic Resist. It also revives you giving you additional time to run away or even burst someone down. Really good for Akali.

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Alternative Items

Lich Bane

This item is not really necessary but if you we're to find yourself having a lot of trouble bursting opponents down as they are really tanky, then you might want to replace the Guardian Angel for this item instead.
Mercury Threads

If you see that your opponents have a lot of CC, then you might want to take this instead of Sorcerer's Shoes. It also gives some Magic Resist as well.

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Farming and Laning


    Farming is easy on Akali.
    At levels 1-3, simply throw a Mark of the Assassin at a Minion and Autoattack it to trigger the Mark.
    At levels 4 onwards, throw a Mark of the Assassin and proc the mark with an Auto Attack. You may want to Crescent Slash when there are many Creeps around you.

Levels 1-6
    As Akali, you would want to always go to the Middle Lane or Solo top if both teams have a Jungler. As Akali , the main objective you want to obtain from level 1-6 is to reach level 6 before your opponent. This requires some practice as some times, your opponent overpowers you in lane. In order to reach level 6 first, you must out farm your opponent which is hard even for the best of best. In order to aid in farming, you need to zone out your opponent, restricting them from having farm. This is where your Twilight Shroud comes in handy. Whenever you feel you are not able to get any farm, put a Twilight Shroud on the minion wave and step inside and continue last hitting and triggering the Mark of the Assassin. The outcome will always be a win for you. By doing so, this will either force your opponent to back off and not get any farm, or he could just "try" to get farm. If he does not back off, throw him a Mark of the Assassin. This should scare him off, and thus deny him some farm. If he still comes close, just proc your mark on him with either an auto attack or a Crescent Slash.

Levels 7-10
    By now you should have a Hextech Revolver and some Tier 2 Boots and maybe if you are snowballing, a Hextech Gunblade. You should not be Laning as much and should be ganking, checking back on your lane often to prevent your mid tower from going down.

Levels 11-18
    You should most of the time always be roaming and ganking, participating in Team Fights.

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Gameplay Tips

    As Akali, try not to be aggressive early game as you are really squishy.

    Use your Twilight Shroud to make an escape or help save a team mate by slowing your enemies.

    You can trigger the Mark of the Assassin with an auto attack to deal more damage.

    You can use Shadow Dance up to 3 times as long as you have an Essence of Shadow stored.

    Do not be afraid of using Shadow Dance on minions to escape your foes.

    You can use your Twilight Shroud and your Shadow Dance to juke your enemies.

    Try not to spam your Crescent Slash as it uses a lot of energy which might cause you to have not enough energy for Twilight Shroud.

    In order for your Passive's Spell Vamp to work on the Mark of the Assassin, you have to proc the mark to regain health using the spell vamp.

    Your main role in Team Fights is to focus down the Squishiest Target available. If there is no squishy targets, then focus the Enemy Target with the lowest amount of health.

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More to Come!

Feel Free to comment on what you guys want me to add in this guide.

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That is it for this Akali Guide. I hope this guide had helped you. Please give it a rating and I hoped you enjoyed this guide.

~ Akali - The Fist of Shadow ~

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Update Log

5/11/12 - Guide Published