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Anivia Build Guide by Henry4Athene

Anivia 2 Strong

By Henry4Athene | Updated on October 11, 2012
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LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


LoL Summoner Spell: Ghost


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Middle Lane
Ranked #19 in
Middle Lane
Win 54%
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Ability Order


Hi! This is my first guide on this website and I hope you read through the whole guide before rating. I've had very good success with this build and I hope you will find this helpful. Feedback and constructive criticism would be much appreciated.
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About the Guide

I published this guide fairly quickly so there are some badly worded sentences and spelling errors. Please excuse those, I am in the process of correcting them.

This guide is to show players how to effectively use anivia and a suggested item path.This guide is not a strict item build as you cannot succeed by following a strict item set at higher level games, this guide is to teach the workings and playstyle of anivia and viable item choices depending on situation.
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Pros and Cons

  • Very strong carry
  • Passive gives another life
  • Can wall off escapes
  • Ultimate is very good in teamfights

  • Hard to master
  • relies heavily on blue buff
  • wall can be disastrous if used incorrectly
  • Slow movement speed
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Summoner Spells

Good ones to use:

Flash is possibly a must have on any champion. Even after the recent nerf, it is still a VERY strong spell. You can use it to escape ganks or quickly position yourself for a kill.

This is usually my second summoner spell. Makes for great escapes and great initiates. You can chase someone down easily with it.

Another good choice instead of ghost. This can let you win fights in lane with ease, or secure the kill when the enemy escapes with only a tiny amount of health left.

This spell can be useful for newer anivia players. You usually shouldn't need this spell as long as you use your mana carefully.

Bad ones to use:

This spell used to be somewhat OP right after it's buffs, but it has been nerfed since then and it just doesn't provide enough heal and doesn't compare to the other choices

Could be a viable option. But anivia has a slow movement speed so after you cleanse the CC you don't have any other forms of escape.

The extra AP is actually pretty significant but you do not benefit from the extra attack speed. This spell is better suited for other champions and there are also better choices for anivia.
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Standard AP Carry runes:

Magic Pen Reds is a must for obvious reasons

After some thought, I've decided to add flat magic resist blues. Reasons are AP per level blues give you 27 AP (35 with passive) which isn't very significant at level 18. Magic resist Blues on the other hand can give you that early lane sustain, especially if you are laning against another AP caster. (which is what the current meta suggests) The early resist can help a lot for getting the early farm you desperately need. Both runes are good and it's all personal preference, I'm just a bit biased towards the resists.

Flat AP quints give you some early damage so your spell can hurt without any items. Use this so you don't have to commit to early AP like a to be a threat.

I chose armor yellows instead of magic regen per level because it gives you more lane sustain and the the mana regen wouldn't be useful if you have blue buff most of the time. In the end it's just personal preference, use what ever you think is good.
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An extra life every 4 minutes. One of the best passives in the game and it can save your life. A pretty straight forward skill, but yo can use it to yield amazing effects. Many people forget that you have the egg after you die and they might attempt to tower dive you when you are low. Surprise them with your passive and watch as they take tower shots to the face.

Flash Frost

Slow moving projectile. Has good radius when detonated, deals double damage, and stuns. Get this spell first and leave it at lvl 1. Do not use this spell at the beginning of the game to harass, any good player will be able to dodge it and you will end up wasting mana. You can combo this spell with for incredible damage. You can also use this to last hit multiple minions. I max this second because it is an easily dodged skill shot and has a long cooldown.


The ability to use this spell is what separates good anivias from great anivias. The wall, when used properly can save your team from a jungle ambush or block off the retreat of fleeing enemies. It takes practice and experience to know how to use this ability to it's full effect. Max this last as a lvl 1 wall is good enough until late game.


A homing missile in the form of an icicle. Deals double damage when the target is chilled. You can combo this spell with or . I max this spell first because the double damage can be very powerful and it has a lower cooldown and mana cost than . Spam this spell when ever you are fighting in lane or in teamfights, but make sure your target is chilled to deal the double damage.

Glacial Storm

Your ultimate. This spell will eat through your mana very quickly so use it only when you absolutely should, i'll have another section to define what that means. This spell can be very powerful in teamfights because of the movement and attackspeed slow, plus it deals a significant amount of damage and chills the enemy for that combo with .
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How To play Anivia

Anivia is a tricky champion to play. You must have a passive aggressive play style. what does that mean? Play passively in lane and focus on last hitting, wait for the perfect moment when your opponent is out of position, then quickly throw everything you've got at him. Once you have caught your opponent out of position, keep up the pressure! Zone him from getting hast hits and exp, or kill him outright. that is the mentality that you should have when playing anivia, now that we have that covered, lets get to the in depth analysis.

Early Game:
Go mid and focus on last hitting! Your auto attack is fairly weak and has a long animation, last hitting can be hard for new anivia players.Your auto attack range is Also very long so you can also harass your enemy with auto attacks in between last hits, and though each hit may not seem to do much, it all adds up and leaves them more vulnerable to ganks or your full combo later on.

Important thing is to NOT harass with in the very early game. This is something that i find lot of other guides don't touch on. It is an extremely easy skill shot to dodge and if you miss, the enemy can easily take advantage of it's long cooldown to counter attack: with your slow movement speed and only form CC gone you can be easily killed or forced out of lane. Only use it if you are 100% sure it will hit, usually that means you are right next to target champ. If you hit your , quickly hit for the double damage combo.

Mid Game:
Once you get your , you can use it to farm by quickly clearing minion waves. Farm is very important on anivia, and it is also very easy to get. Make sure to farm a lot during this phase of the game.
Generally you should have about 300 last hits at the end of a long match. You'll want that farm to get your items quickly, Anivia's item build is certainly not cheap.
You can also use aggressively to harass/kill the enemy champ. Since it's a large AOE spell, the enemy can't dodge it like they can with and it's a sure fire way for you to land that double damage combo with . Usually, during this time the enemy will back off when they see you approaching for that combo. If you get in range, put a wall right between him and his escape route, the wall will not block him off completely, but it will slow him down enough for you do land your Combo. Usually you will either kill or significantly injure your target and force him to leave lane. In that case, don't continue chasing, it's very possible that their jungler will be waiting for you. Just keep farming!

This is also the time when you should be asking your jungler for the blue buff, can only alleviate your mana problems, blue buff fully solve it and you will be able to spam your ult as much as you want. Make sure to get blue buff every time it spawns.

Late game:
Stay with your team and don't over extend, you are very slow and if you are caught out of position you will most likely die. This is the time when your wall will make amazing plays for your team. Block off the enemy team from surprise team fights, or isolate lone enemy champs from their team for an easy kill.

The standard combo to should be to start with to interrupt the opponent's movement, , , and finally .

The reason suggest after is because during this combo the enemy is probably trying desperately to get away from you and if you hit (which doesn't have any CC affect) the enemy will be able to run far away enough for you to not be able to hit after. A way to combat this is to use smartcast, this way you can activate your spells a lot faster and you should be able to use before . With smart cast you may be able to squeeze an extra into your combo given it's low cooldown.
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A lot of beginners will ignore last hitting and commit to killing the opponents in lane, often thinking that money from kills greatly surpasses the money from last hits...

If you do the math:
Standard champion kill is about 300 gold
lets say a minion kill is 20 gold


As you can see, a champion kill is worth about 15 last hits and that translates to about 2 and a half waves of minion kills.

Now lets compare the gold gain of someone with 10 kills and 20 last hits VS someone with 3 kills and 200 last hits.

First person:
10*300+20*20=3400 gold

Second person:
3*300+200*15=4900 gold

It's pretty obvious that farm is A LOT better than kills. Your is one of the best farming tools in the entire game so use it to farm! Make sure that your #1 priority is to farm and only commit to killing enemy champs if they are asking for it.

How to Farm
Due to Anivia's high wave clearing speed with players tend to push their lane far to the enemy tower. This can be good and bad. The good news is your opponent is losing farm to tower rather than last hitting them and also they are forced to stay and defend the tower from getting pushed rather than roaming and ganking. The bad part is something that people will tend to overextend in their lane if the wave is pushed and therefore becoming prime gank targets.

The correct way to farm with Anivia is very easy and very safe if done right.
First: try not to let the enemy minions get in your tower range, that way you will not lose any to the tower.
Second: clear waves immediately with , the best way to do so is shown in the How to Use Glacial Storm section.
Third: (the most important part) once the wave is pushed to the enemy tower head back and hug your own tower or just recall back. DO NOT overextend as your minions push up, mid lane minions reset incredibly fast so you wont be losing much farm, if any at all if you wait for the reset. Then just repeat step two and three and get ridiculous amounts of farm.

Things that you could do while waiting for the lane to reset could be: simply hugging tower, recall and buy, getting the wraith camp (this is a big one and you should do this a lot, but make sure the jungle is safe), and getting blue buff.
Something you shouldn't do often is ganking other lanes while waiting for reset. It takes you a long time to walk from mid to the side lanes because of your movement speed and that will cause you to not only lose farm but also let your tower take damage or even get destroyed.
Only go to side lanes if your team is: Taking objectives like dragon, saving a teammate running in the river, cutting off an escaping enemy in the river, or going to a gank where you know FOR SURE that you can get the kill.
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I hope you didn't just look at the item sequence at the beginning and mindlessly follow it because any good player will change his build to match the enemy team.

Core Item
catalyst the protector
You will want to get these items fast 99.99% of the time. Lane sustain and mana is SO important early game, use it to farm well with . You would want to get fast to start farming that extra mana and the passive on catalyst the protector is also very nice, since you're mid you will be leveling up fairly often, every time you do it lets you get a few more minion waves of farm.

Starting items:

Standard starting set for anivia, you can rush straight to catalyst the protector with this and gain early lane sustain and dominance.

I find myself going this route more over the route. I find that the extra mana from isn't too useful as you shouldn't be using your spells too much. The movement speed and extra health is very useful to avoid harass and provides further lane sustain. Getting catalyst the protector is only a tiny bit slower with this set than the route but is something that you should get very early anyways so it doesn't slow down your build to get this item first.

This could be a viable option in a 1v1 matchup. I don't recommend it in actual games because the early AP is useless due to your inability to harass effectively early game, the health bonus isn't as good as the health potions that the other builds provide. The mana regen is also not favorable since you shouldn't be spamming spells early game and you should have blue buff almost all the time later in the game.

First Recall:
catalyst the protector
You should almost always rush this item. It provides extra health and mana, giving you a ton of lane sustain. Get this item after you go back for the first time and use it to farm your lane as much as possible.

Second item you should have, buy this if you started with and have enough money.

Mid game:

Mana is everything on anivia. Blue golem doesn't spawn immediately after your buff runs out, and there will be times where you need to defend towers or assist in ganks rather than getting the buff. This item can make up for those situations. It's also a good idea to get this early because you want reach the 1k extra mana ASAP.

I tend to get this item as soon as i can if there isn't a dire need to rush something else. This item is relatively cheap and gives a good amount of AP. The reason i get this instead of is because it is a lot more versatile. can be built into , , , , or . The flow of the game could change very rapidly and give you a lot more options than .

sight ward
Every time you recall from lane you should always make sure you have some of those in your inventory. allows you to stay in lane a lot longer which will translate to more farm and faster items, it only costs 35 gold but can translate to hundreds of extra gold from the extra farm. sight ward are very good items to get, it protects you from ganks and can spot vulnerable enemies for kills, 75 gold for an item that can save your life is definitely worth it.

From mid game on you should be shaping your build to match your enemies. The next section has more info on that.

I generally stick with T1 boots until late mid game when movement speed becomes more important as you are not just sitting in lane farming 24/7. You have 3 choices when it comes to T2 boots.

This is the standard AP Carry t2 boots, gives movement speed and magic penetration, get this if you are going against especially tanky enemies.

This is another choice if the enemy team has some really annoying CC, gives magic resist and tenacity, but it's the most expensive choice out of the 3.

Many people ignore this item for anivia, often taking instead. This item can be a good choice for anivia because the extra movement speed can let you catch up to enemies easier and use your wall to interrupt their escape. Since you cannot always rely on ghost to be available when ever you need it, these boots can be an viable option.

Just remember, you do not have to build exactly as how I stated in this guide, your build is always changing depending on how your doing and how the enemy team is doing.
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Situational Items

If you are doing good and want to do even better:

Give a lot of AP, every AP Carry have at least one of these.

If you are getting a lot of kills this can be a good choice, but not a very stable source of AP as you can lose a lot of stacks if you die.

You can build this from your and gives a decent amount of AP, though i don't usually take this as my first choice because gives more AP and your already gives you stats for mana.

this item also gives a lot of AP but not as much as but it can let you survive some heavy focus.

You might need to get this item in most games. If the enemy is getting any magic resist then it's a sign you you need to get magic penetration. gives the most magic pen and a decent amount of AP as well.

After some play testing (definitely not thorough), I don't think this item can replace and . the Grail gives you pretty good mana regeneration but does not give max mana pool, the difference is that regeneration can you let have sustained lane presence while max mana pool can let you have stronger team fight presence. Mana regen can be solved with blue buff while max mana pool cannot therefore can give something very valuable while can be replaced by blue buff. I also did the math and can give more AP than at about 1200 max mana, which is extremely easy to get. So all in all, i think is a better item in general.

If you aren't doing too good and you need survivability:

One of the best defensive items to get. You can build this easily because you should already have a catalyst the protector. This gives health, magic resist and mana, and blocks a spell every 45 seconds.

Another great defensive item. You will effectively have 3 lives about every 4 minutes, plus the armor and magic resist that it provides are not something to laugh at.

This is a very situational item, if you are laning against a then you might want to consider rushing this item. It can slow down your build but can also hard counter some very dangerous and annoying CC.

i don't usually get this because makes it's passive redundant, but you can get this if you are having trouble with AD dps from the enemy team.
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What's the deal with Rod of Ages?

I don't build the catalyst the protector straight into a for a few reasons.
  1. gives health, mana, and 80 AP (at full potential, doesn't give that much right away). catalyst the protector already gives health and mana so to upgrade to would only give some extra AP.
  2. Damage is not the problem for anivia during that phase of the game and she should focus on getting more mana to use to farm
  3. The 80 AP from can be trumped by a while still keeping the health and mana from the catalyst the protector
  4. Extra mana from shouldn't be noticeable as you should have blue buff most of the time. should take care of your thirst for mana in between blue buff spawns.
  5. In my opinion, the extra health from isn't useful for the stage of the game that you would normally get it. If you are caught out of position, you will die with or without the health, but if you have good positioning and wards you shouldn't take any damage at all.
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Sample Item Builds

Just a few ideas for what your build should look like for different situations. Remember that you are free to shape and change them to fit your needs.

If you are completely pubstomping noobs

If you are doing alright, but the enemy is putting up a fight

If you are dying a lot and need to be tankier
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How to use crystallize

This spell is very powerful, but can be a waste if used incorrectly. Use it to stop retreating or engaging enemies. When you have the spell maxed, you can completely block off jungle routes, making for really good jungle ganks or escapes.

If your team is chasing the other in the jungle, you can sometimes hit a well placed wall that will catch a slow moving champion. If you block off the route completely, the movement path will automatically compensate for it, generally that means he will start walking towards your team and it will be an easy kill.

Ghost is a must have on anivia. Not only does it let you escape out of tight situations but it can also be used very aggresivelly. When you see an enemy champion running away at the sight of you, activate and slam a wall right in that coward's face. It should be a guaranteed kill from then on.
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When to use Glacial Storm

When you get your ult at lvl 6 you can start using it right away to start clearing minion waves. The correct way to do so is to wait until the enemy minions meet up with your minions so that you can hit all of them at once with your ult. Once you put your ult down, wait a second or two and hit the fighter minions with a to kill them. This way you kill the minions faster and with less mana.

After a two or three waves of repeated and you should be out of mana and full of gold. Recall and shop if the enemy champs aren't pushing your lane. Get blue buff if it's up and go back to lane to continue farming, or attempt to kill your opponent.

NEVER leave on for no reason. Always stop the spell when it has served it's purpose, whether it be to clear a creep wave, or to slow and damage an enemy for your combo.

if you notice that your low on mana and don't have blue buff. Try to figure out if your remaining mana will give you enough of your to kill a wave, or simply damage them. If you don't have enough to completely kill the wave, don't use it at all.
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During a team fight, start off with putting down a nice to split the enemy team in half. then immediately put down to slow their whole team's movement and attack speed and deal damage at the same time. After that, followup with a into the clump of enemy champs to stun as many of them as possible. And finally while doing all of that, continuously spam , aiming for the squishiest champions first. It is crucial that you keep on as many enemies as possible for as long as possible. Not only does it do insane amounts of damage but it also slows attack speed (20% attack speed debuff is huge for late game AD carries) and it allows you to keep hitting every time its up.
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update log

  • 11/28/2011 guide created
  • 11/28/2011 added section: what's the deal with Rod of Ages?
  • 11/29/11 added section About this Guide and Sample Item Builds
  • 11/29/11 added summoner spells section
  • 12/13/11 Added Farming Section, added runes section, added core items in items section.
  • 5/25/12 Added Athene's Unholy Grail to Items section, revised summoner spells section and teamfight section.
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