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Azir Build Guide by SimpleSandwich

AP Carry Azir - Bird is the word [S5]

AP Carry Azir - Bird is the word [S5]

Updated on October 6, 2015
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386,167 Views 5 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author SimpleSandwich Azir Build Guide By SimpleSandwich Updated on October 6, 2015
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LoL Summoner Spell: Barrier


LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
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Extreme Threats
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Hi there! My name is SimpleSandwich, an avid Azir player on the North America server. Azir is one of the most fun champions to play in LoL, with a complexity that goes beyond the superficial. Coveted for his play-making and obscene damage, Azir has long been a contested pick in pro play. I began playing Azir a week after his release and have since barely gone a day without playing a game with him, be it ranked or otherwise.

In this guide, I will show you why Azir is incredibly strong and worthwhile to pick up.
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Pros / Cons


+ Potentially highest DPS of all mages
+ Incredibly powerful utility
+ Long Range
+ Strong late game
+ Great Auto Attack for farming
+ Sustained damage as well as burst
+ Versatile and long-distance escape
+ Turret is great for siege compositions
+ Wall interrupts all dash abilities
+ Absolutely melts Baron
+ Can turn fights around very quickly
+ Incredibly sexy
+ Delicious with many different seasonings


- Innately squishy
- Only escape can be blocked
- Vulnerable early game
- Mana hungry during lane phase
- Damage is dependent on placement of Sand Soldiers
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Fleet Footwork
Phase Rush
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Your passive, Shurima's Legacy, erects a turret in the place of any destroyed turret, be it yours or the enemy's. As of patch 5.14, Shurima's Legacy No longer grants bonus attack speed based on cooldown reduction. The turret is mainly used for when you are sieging or being sieged on. Its health will decay over time and it will lose armor if Azir wanders too far away from it. The turret seems to do more damage than normal turrets, but solid evidence is still pending.

This ability is your main source of damage and harass early on in the game. It will send any active Sand Soldiers rushing to the designated area, slowing and dealing damage to any enemies along the way. If hit by multiple Sand Soldiers, an enemy will take decreased damage from any Sand Soldier beyond the first. Later on in the game, this ability will be used more to relocate your Sand Soldiers than for damage.

Arise! is the bread and butter of your kit. This ability summons a Sand Soldier, your main source of damage and what your basic abilities are based upon. Azir can store up to two Sand Soldiers at a time. Summoning a Sand Soldierin the range of a turret will cut the lifespan of the Sand Soldier in half, so be wary. You can target an enemy turret with Arise! to deal a substantial amount of damage to it, however this will leave you defenseless if you are jumped by an enemy. Finally, this ability is what makes Azir a monster at taking objectives. With an ally tanking baron, you can easily deal >900 DPS, shredding it in seconds. You can even out-smite your jungler with a Sand Soldier Auto Attack + Conquering Sands. Arise! Will now grant bonus attack speed based on the level of the ability.

Shifting Sands is your primary escape tool. Using this ability will send Azir flying towards the closest Sand Soldier, stopping at the first enemy champion hit, while giving you a small shield. As of patch 5.14, Shifting Sands no longer knocks up the first champion hit, which is why assassins are an effective way of dealing with Azir as it is very difficult for Azir to escape when engaged upon. Shifting Sands can be used in conjunction with Conquering Sands to cover a surprisingly long distance in a small amount of time.

Your ultimate, Emperor's Divide is an incredibly powerful tool. When used, it will knock any enemies in the immediate vicinity in the direction of your cursor, deal damage to them, and form a wall of non-controllable Sand Soldiers. Enemies are unable to walk through Emperor's Divide and any dash-type abilities will be canceled, bouncing the offending champion back. On the other hand, you and your allies can move through Emperor's Divide, and will receive a movement speed boost upon doing so. This is what makes Azir so hard to kill, as he can easily throw off any melee champions and keep them away from himself and his AD carry.

*Note - Though Emperor's Divide will cancel out almost all dash abilities, Fizz can still get past the wall with Playful / Trickster. Also, targeted damage-dealing dash abilities like Fizz's Urchin Strike and Jax's Leap Strike will still deal damage if canceled by Emperor's Divide, but they will still be knocked back and take the damage from the wall.

An example of the Shifting Sands –> Conquering Sands combo. Credit to Siv HD for creating the video. https://www.youtube.com/user/WQLFY http://www.twitch.tv/sivhd
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Summoner Spells

Standard choices

Flash is pretty much mandatory on most champions. It can be used to catch up with a fleeing enemy, Flash over a wall to safety, or do some sick Flash –> Emperor's Divide #LCSbigplays to throw an enemy into your team. We are also going to take Barrier because you are generally going to be keeping your distance from your lane partner and won't be in range to effectively use Ignite. You will want to take Barrier over Heal because Ignite is a very common pick on most mid laners, and it reduces the healing you receive from Heal. Since you are in a solo lane, Heal is also less effective than Barrier, as most of the time you will be in a 1v1 lane. Azir has a weaker early game than a lot of popular mid laners, so if you get behind with Ignite it becomes much less useful than Barrier. Barrier also helps you survive against assassins and bursty mages such as Syndra and Zed to make it to the late game.

Other choices

Exhaust is a viable alternative to Barrier against any champions with burst. A common example of this is in a lane against Zed. Once Zed uses his Death Mark, use Exhaust to mitigate nearly all of his burst. This is an effective counter at all stages of the game. Teleport is useful for when you want to have high map-pressure, or have very little kill potential against an opponent. This is generally used more for top lane, but remains an option. I have, on occasion, taken both Ghost and Flash. I wouldn't really recommend it, as it's more just something to do for fun rather than an effective way of playing Azir. If you buy Enchantment: Distortion the cooldown for both spells are reduced, and you get some nice bonuses when you use them.
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Starting items

What I start 90% of the time. Doran's Ring helps with mana sustain in lane, makes you a little beefier with the extra HP, and the 15 AP lets you fight your lane partner more effectively. You are also rewarded with mana for last hitting properly, giving you even more incentive to farm well. If you feel you can benefit by buying a second Doran's Ring to either help you mana sustain or make you look more beefy, go right ahead. A general rule is to not buy more than two of these.

Luden's Echo

The burst item. Why do we build Luden's Tempest? Luden's Tempest, though nerfed, remains a strong item. Granting 100 AP and 10% movement speed, it also gives a useful passive similar to Statikk Shiv that deals magic damage which scales off of your AP in a small AOE. The materials are fairly cheap, as Amplifying Tome builds into Aether Wisp.

Nashor's tooth

The DPS item. Nashor's Tooth is an item that has recently begun to be seen in many high level games. What was traditionally a niche item on Azir has grown in popularity ever since it was changed to give the same amount of ability power as items like Morellonomicon and Athene's Unholy Grail, but with slightly less attack speed. Because Azirs attack speed no longer scales with his cooldown reduction, Nashor's Tooth will give you the early game attack speed that Azir used to have, as well as a sizable chunk of ability power. The one thing that Nashor's Tooth does not grant is mana sustain, so now one must be even more resource-conscious when playing Azir.

Rylai's Crystal Scepter

As of patch 5.13, Rylai's Crystal Scepter is incredibly strong on Azir. Prior to patch 5.13, AOE's (including your Sand Soldiers) would only apply a weaker version of the slow applied to single target spells. However, after patch 5.13, all AOE and single target spells (excluding damage-over-time based spells) apply the full slow. This means that when your Sand Soldiers hit someone, they will be slowed and will continue to be slowed until you stop hitting them. This allows us to make catches easier, kite better, poke more, and chase even harder. With the added benefit of giving 100 ability power and 400 health, Rylai's Crystal Scepter will make you a very, very tough cookie.

Build order

Early game

When you first back, try to aim for either a Stinger or an Aether Wisp. This is the point where you will have to make the decision between building Nashor's Tooth and Luden's Tempest. If you don't have enough gold, buy an Amplifying Tome, a Vision Ward, and a few Health Potions. You can buy Boots whenever you have a bit of extra gold to spare.


At ~16 minutes into the game with a decent creep score, you should have these items. With your Nashor's Tooth ( Luden's Tempest), you will start to put out a lot of damage. Be careful not to overestimate yourself at this point, as you are squishy as hell.


Choosing boots is generally up to preference. I prefer Sorcerer's Shoes over Ionian Boots of Lucidity as early on in games your damage is focused more around Conquering Sands than your Auto Attacks, and your attack speed no longer scales off of cooldown reduction. If you feel you will need to reposition your Sand Soldiers more often, take Ionian Boots of Lucidity. Generally when late game comes around, if you have Luden's Tempest instead of Nashor's Tooth, sell your Sorcerer's Shoes for Ionian Boots of Lucidity.

Mid game goals

These items give a good amount of ability power, health, utility, and magic penetration. You can replace Void Staff with a Rabadon's Deathcap if the enemy team hasn't built any magic resist. If you are against a team with a large amount of physical damage, you can take Zhonya's Hourglass. Unless they made a buffet out of your bot lane, the enemy team is going to keep their distance from you.


May the chicken god have mercy on his foes. Congratulations, there are few things more scary than a full build Azir. By this point, an Arise!–> Conquering Sands–>Auto Attack combo will do well over 1000 magic damage to a squishy target. Stay safe in teamfights and there are very few things you can't kill.
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Skill Sequence

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

We are going to want to max Emperor's Divide first, as it is your ultimate ability. Next, we want to max Conquering Sands as it is your main source of damage early game. Ranking up Conquering Sands also allows you to re-position yourSand Soldiers more often, as the cooldown is lowered. Afterwards, we max Arise!. Ever since the changes to Azir's passive, it has become much more efficient to max Arise! second. Leveling Arise! now will grant bonus attack speed based on the level of the ability from 20% - 60%, as well as lower the cooldowns of your Sand Soldiers. Lastly, we max Shifting Sands because Arise! is now more important and Shifting Sands retains its utility.
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Laning Phase

In the laning phase, you are going to want to farm as well as you can. Azir has a very good Auto Attack animation for farming, as it is instant and has no travel time. If you take the Feast mastery in the offensive tree, you can restore up to 18 health and 6 mana every wave. With practice, Azir can farm decently under tower using his Sand Soldiers. A basic combo to harass an opponent is to place a Sand Soldier on top of them, Auto Attack –> Conquering Sands –> Auto Attack. The choice to push hard or not depends on the matchup. Against champion that struggle to farm under turret like Akali and Swain the best choice is often to push the wave into the enemy turret.
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Mid Game

Mid game is where you start to pick up power. Your poking will chunk your opponents for a lot of damage. At this point, teamfights will start to break out around the map. Since you have Rylai's Crystal Scepter, you will likely be tanky enough to Arise! –> Shifting Sands –> Conquering Sands –> Emperor's Divide onto an enemy and throw them into your team, a la Insec. If you feel like you aren't strong enough to take the punishment, you can instead stick near your AD carry and deal damage from afar, while saving your Emperor's Divide to keep assassins off of yourselves.
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Late Game

Late game is where Azir is by far the strongest. You can easily out-damage a full build AD carry with your Auto Attacks and Conquering Sands. Your Sand Soldiers are going to be your main source of damage. Using Emperor's Divide, you can peel any would-be assassins of of your AD carry and create an impenetrable wall behind which you and your AD carry can dish out #tonsofdamage, or to help you burst someone after you Shifting Sands on top of them. Killing Baron is faster with a full build Azir than any other champion in the game. Dealing over 1000 DPS to Baron will often be the case, as you can place down multiple Sand Soldiers to increase your damage output.
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Azir is a versatile, long range mid-laner who can deal damage rivaling an AD carry's while retaining an impressive amount of utility. While his early game is fairly lackluster, his late game strength makes up for it easily. If you are looking for a powerful
mid-laner that can deal a constant stream of damage, Azir is the champion for you.
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- Changelist added.
- UPDATE added.
- Updated Introduction, Build path, Pros/Cons, Runes, Masteries, Abilities, Champion Matchups, and Skill Sequence.

- Updated Items, Laning phase, Mid game, Late game, Summary.

- Minor touch-ups to Pros/Cons
- Added matchups for Ahri, Annie, Anivia, Ekko,Karthus, Kassadin, Leblanc, Orianna, Twisted Fate

- Removed UPDATE
- Added Attention!
- Minor grammar changes to changelist
- Updated Build Path, Items, Recommended build
- Significant changes to Nashor's Tooth block in Items

- Removed Attention!
- Touch-ups to Introduction

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