Annie Build Guide by Dyruus
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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.
First off, I'd personally like to say thank you for checking out this guide. Before you troll vote it, please actually read through it and look at what I have to offer you, this is my first guide. :) I have finally hit level 30, look for a ranked guide coming soon!
So a bit of an introduction is in order, first off, if you haven't already skipped down to the good stuff, you might be wondering how I came to choose Annie as a main. Well, the answer to that is simple, she has one of the purest Mage feeling champions that League has to offer, and I love mages. Tibbers, and her stun are just purely way too amazing not to love.
This guide isn't completely done, and I would love your input instead of a down vote. Just trying to give players a general feel of Annie and see if it's someone their going to like. Feel free to post suggestions, pics of games using my guide, or anything you feel would be helpful and I'll be sure to give credit ^.^
Stun is very easy to get to with good management
One of the best last hit champs with her Disintegrate
Has pretty good range
That's seriously the only real con I can come up with her, sure there are others, like AP dependent and stuff like that. But to me those aren't really cons, as they are just mechanics of the game.
Summoner Spells and Why I Chose Them
Alright, summoner spells can make or break a game, everyone knows that. For Annie we're going to go with Flash and Ignite. Here's Why:
: This is a great escape method, or gank method for Annie. It'll help you get a lot more kills, and save you a lot more from deaths. Must have in my opinion.
: This is to add to your insane DPS, and help get those kills that should have been. Trust me, the more DPS on Annie, the better. :)
Of course, not everyone is going to be like me, and I can't expect everyone to love the way that I play, so here are some other spells that aren't too bad to have on her:
: Again, this can be used as an escape method or to chase down some kills that you need to get, I personally think you're better off with Flash but some people prefer Ghost.
: Since I've been playing Annie basically since I've started League, I don't find this as useful as someone who is new to her would. It may save your *** a couple times, it may be a waste, I'm not going to rule it completely useless, because heals, are well heals.
: This again, will help you keep enemies close for kills, let's you get off more spells and such. But to be complete honest, I'll be damned if another team member doesn't already have this, but again, it has it's uses.
: Early game, you may run into mana trouble with Annie if you mess up your Disintegrate kill shots, or you've been harassed or whatever the problem may be. I'm not going to lie though, once you the Sapphire Crystal on your way to your Rod of Ages mana won't be a big problem. But again, it isn't completely useless.
: This can have it uses in team fights, and can certainly be the difference between life or death in some cases. Personally, I wouldn't choose it over Flash or Ignite but if you know you're going up against some stunners or slowers in a custom, might not be a bad choice.
These next spells, you should never, under any occasion what-so ever get. Ever. Really. I mean it.
: Losing out on Flash, or Ignite, just so you can come back and die again because you didn't have Flash, or Ignite, just is stupid.
: But Dyruus, you could come and help your teammates or save a turret anywhere! While this is true, and while you may get kills this way. Believe me when I say, if Annie is the one teleporting to save a turret against 3-5 other people. You won't live.
: You can't jungle, as much as I would love too with Annie, you can't. Just don't grab it, don't think I need to explain myself here.
: I just don't like this ability in general, but especially for Annie. You should always have your stun close to, if not up to stop turret divers. Best leave this for the support/tanks.
: Do I really need to explain this?
: It's not that it isn't useful, but, it isn't useful enough to replace what you could grab instead.
Ahhh, runes, the amazing game changers in League. Annie can benefit from a wide variety of runes, so I'm going to break it down for you, the best way I know how :)
After many and many games with Annie, I have found that those there are the most effective. It gives you needed Magic Pen, as long with AP and some health. Of course, runes are mostly preference related to play style. But those three are what I'm running on League :)
As far as alternatives go, you could always replace the Quints for AP if you feel you have enough Magic Pen in your games through items and want to burn carries a bit easier. I wouldn't stray too far from the runes I've chosen though. CDR (Cooldown Reduction) could be useful, but I'm not going to give up my AP for it. Although, every Annie is different, and it may be in your best interest to do so. :)
The skill selection is pretty straight forward. But just in case, you didn't see it up top, or don't want to go back up top I'll put it here for ya :)
So basically what you'll want to do is go with Disintegrate to start your last hitting and stun building, and then Incinerate just to build up the second part of your nuke phase. The only hiccup in the order is getting Molten Shield, while some may argue it's best to max out your damage abilities first. You'd be surprised at how fast Molten Shield builds up your stun, not only does it add just that one stack, but it gives you your own little Thornmail basically, and costs almost no mana.
This section is going to be under construction for a while, all I really have to say here is, you need to go 9 under offensive to get your magic pen, the rest is really up to you. I'd try to stick with what I've got up there, before it does work rather well. I'm trying out other builds and seeing what works best, but the masteries I have up there, are a great way to start off.
Alright, now to my personal favorite part aside from actually playing. Item selection. It's very debatable as to which items you're best to start off with. I will ALWAYS go with my Amplifying Tome. The argument is that, she's too squishy to start off with and that by limiting yourself to just an Amplifying Tome is really making her vulnerable. This is the way I see it. Doran's Ring is a great item that gives you AP and Health and MP5, but it's a dead-end item. It won't help you build anything else. You get 5 more AP, and it's a quick link to your Mejai's Soulstealer, if you start with Amplifying Tome. If you honestly feel too squishy at the start, after getting your Amplifying Tome you'll still have enough to buy an HP potion. However, I'm not going to say you shouldn't ever get Doran's Ring to start off, if you find you're dying way too easy while starting off Annie, then start with a Doran's Ring and then continue with the rest of the item build, selling the ring while getting the Blasting Wand for your Rod of Ages.
So starting off this is the early game core items you want to get, and fast:
NOTE: You need personal judgement here, there are times where you're going to want to go Amplifying Tome and then Boots of Speed and then Mejai's Soulstealer, however if you feel confident that you can get your cash fast and you're not being harrassed too hard, go for Amplifying Tome and then Mejai's Soulstealer.
Alright, by the time you start building your mid-game item set, you should have at least 1-2 kills. By this point in the game you need to decide what your weakness is, it's different every game. Not enough mana? Get a Sapphire Crystal. Too Squishy? Get a Ruby Crystal. Not enough damage? Get a Blasting Wand. All of those items will help you build your Rod of Ages which is the next item you're going towards. Once you get your Rod of Ages it really completes the core of the Annie build that you should have every game you play no matter what.
So looking at a mid-game standpoint, here's what your core build should always be:
From here you need to look at what you're dealing with. If you're flat out dominating, it's time to start your Rabadon's Deathcap, always starting with Needlessly Large Rod. If you're going against a heavy magic resist team, it might be best to start building your Void Staff. If you're getting into a lot of team fights, and they keep getting away with close to no health, start building your Rylai's Crystal Scepter or a Archangel's Staff. All four will ALWAYS help your gameplay with Annie and help turn the tides of a game. However there are other items that can be of use here. Deathfire Grasp will add yet another nuke to Annie and help lower her CDR. If you don't want the nuke, but want a cheaper CDR route there's always Morello's Evil Tome, or if you have mana problems then go with Archangel's Staff.
Another suggestion that came up, that's completely viable and adds survivability would be to get Zhonya's Hourglass instead of either the Void Staff or Morello's Evil Tome. It adds a great active, +100 Armor, and needed AP. I would recommend it against a heavy AD team.
So, here's a look at our Mid to Late game build:
The end game build will look a lot like the one listed on the cheat sheet. Obviously, you won't always get to 6 items before the game is over, and most likely the last four mentioned up there will do it for you for the game. However, sometimes you do get into really good games. Also please note, that Ryali's is there just a stand in, feel free to replace it with whatever the game is calling for whether it be a Banshee's Veil or an Archangel's Staff or anything along those lines. NOTE: Listen, if no one on their team has magic resist, or enough of it to matter. Skip out on the Void Staff go for one of the alternative items listed above.
Of course, you'd replace the items you see there based on which build you chose earlier.
Again, the Void Staff is the most replaceable item in that build, because it's very situation dependent. If you have other items, you feel would help, comment below and I'll add em, giving credit off course :)
This is what you'll want to do in about all your fights.
: At the start of all your fights, you'll want this to be at either 4 or 5 stacks, it ensures optimal damage and a much needed stun early on. If you're going with 4 stacks, and your Molten Shield is on CD, that means you should use Disintegrate before you use Summon: Tibbers especially for team fights, as Tibbers with Pyromania at 5 stacks = AoE Stun. Yum.
: Once you have your 5 stacks of Pyromania drop Tibbers on their ***es. Not only does he do massive damage to whoever he lands on, but with Pyromania he also does an AoE stun! That's way too good to pass up on.
: This is your shortest CD, and one of your higher damaging spells. That's why, while they're stunned because a bear just dropped on them, you'll start your nuking phase with this. Pyromania should now be at two stacks.
: All of this happens in almost a blink of an eye, so they should be just about off their stun when you use this. Place it well making sure it hits everyone it possibly can for max damage. Pyromania should now be at three stacks.
: Hit em again with this monster nuke. Normally by now, they'll be dead or close too it, so you're going to through your Ignite on em just in case they aren't quite dead. Pyromania should now be at four stacks.
At this point, do whatever you have to do to kill them, use Flash to hunt them down. Or let a teammate who can hunt them down get them. Just tap Molten Shield and your Pyromania will be at 5 stacks again and you'll be all set to down your next sucker.
Early on in the game, try to grab mid. If you can't get it, it's fine, not the end of the world. The whole key to Annie early on is to get money as quick as possible, and it's pretty easy too! Using Disintegrate to last hit enemies will build your stun, and get you the money. It has a very low CD, so you should be last hitting often. If you didn't know, if Disintegrate kills anything it refunds the mana cost, that is why we use it to last hit. See the video below, if you want to see how to properly last minions with Disintegrate.
So to recap, killing isn't your main focus early game, it's getting those last hits!
Alright, now time for the fun part. Killing. Once you hit level 6 you're perfectly capable of taking someone down, just choose your target wisely. Normally taking out your opposing mid enemy is a fun place to start. Use your abilities wisely, always remember Smart Casting (Shift+Letter of Ability), it will always cast to whoever you have highlighted. I don't use it in my videos, so you can actually see the abilities I'm using easier. Building up your Mejai's Soulstealer stacks early is important, whether it be kills or assists just get those stacks up! Also, make sure your stun is at full or at least 4, before going into a battle, it's a vital part to surviving and killing on Annie. Be aggressive, not stupid, there's a huge difference. Dying will hurt you less early game, but not dying early game will make you more of a power house late game.
Late-End Game, Gameplay
Most of the late-end game, game play is all team fights. Of course use Tibbers wisely, when they're grouped up and you have your stun ready take em out. Especially with teammates it's almost a guaranteed team fight win if you can pull it off correctly. As your item build progresses you'll see how powerful she can really get.
One thing I've noticed about the later gameplay that a lot of Annie's run into trouble with (since she's free this week I've seen a lot of them). Is that, a lot of Annie's use Tibbers before being even close to a stun or because they've gotten ganked etc. Don't waste Tibbers if you don't have your stun remotely close to being up, or you're getting ganked by 5 with no stun. You're burning a CD, and while yes by late game going with the re-spawn timer he'll probably be back up by the time you're alive again, it's just practicing a bad habit through all gameplay stages.
You all probably want a little bit of proof of what I'm selling you actually works. This is just a very small sample and I will upload a lot more pics and videos, and I'd love yours too (giving credit of course) :)
I had a lot of fun making this guide, and I hope you guys had a lot of fun reading it, and learning from it. Feel free to vote on it (no troll votes please) and give some criticism and suggestions :)
Feel free to add on me on League! (Dyruus - N.A Server)
I still have A LOT of work to do on this guide and plan to update it regularly so stay tuned!
Here are some credits!
NinjaSprite - Made me the cool picture at the top and my sig, thanks! :D
FoRhythm - Came up with some excellent survivability ideas, and reminded me about the amazingness of the elixir.
4/4/2011 - Guide is uploaded and live!
4/7/2011 - Edited a bit more of Late Gameplay, bigger updates to follow
4/12/2011 - Another small update, added a picture and a credits section. Also removed the having to comment to vote, hoping to see more voting, but no troll votes..
4/14/2011 - Added a survivability build, and also added Elixir of Brillance to the item cheat sheet
5/28/2011 - It's been a while guys, the new patch has buffed Annie, but isn't really worth talking about too much as the build stays the same. Thanks for all the feedback, if there is any suggestions please say so :D
5/29/2011 - WOW Thanks guys, more and more feedback and votes everyday. I appreciate it all! I changed the runes to match what I'm working towards in-game. Thanks to spoon for pointing it out :)
6/01/2011 - Alright guys :) Again thanks for the votes and feedback, also if you're going to down vote please leave a comment as to why :) Today, I changed around the item selection section a bit, and also added a health pot to the cheat sheet.