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Caitlyn Build Guide by Laodia

Not Updated For Current Season

This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Laodia

Caitlyn Ranked Build: Don't try to run, u'll only die tired

Laodia Last updated on July 7, 2011
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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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 0

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 9

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Hello everyone and welcome to my second build here on mobafire :) This time i'll focus my attention on one of my favorite carry AD : Caitlyn.

I will begin this build with a short "pros and cons" list about Caitlyn :

Pros :

- The best range of the game (well expect for Tristana when she is HL ofc ^^)
- Very good zoning options with her traps
- Have a good escape
- Can harass multiple targets
- And the last one of course : She has great boobs (we have to recognize :D)

Cons :

- She is very "squishy"
- Her ultimate can be countered many times easily
- She uses sooo much mana at the beginning so we cannot spam her abilities at all
- Her different abilities won't be so effective in late game

Now lets start the build :D I hope you will enjoy it !

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Caitlyn character

Caitlyn is a champion that is classed in the "Ranged carry AD" category : it means that she deals huge physical damages.

She is one of the champion who has the best range of the game so she is a great harrasser and a great farmer but this brings a drawback : if people gets to the melee range, you will be in trouble :D

This is a champ who has many options to zoning people and prevent them from coming close to you but it's sometimes very difficult to make it work :D

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Headshot : This is the passive attack from Caitlyn. This passive is really useful at each step of the game (early, mid and late game). It allows you to do extra damage every 8 attacks, and only 4 attacks from the bushes. So at early game if your are botom of top you can have a headshot coming really fast and harrass opponents quite easily.

Piltover Peacemaker (Q) : This ability is the main offensive one for Caitlyn. She shoots right ahead of her a huge missile and it makes really good damage. Beware : it casts for 1 sec (so enemies can anticipate) and it reduces the damage each time it hits one target.

Yordle Snap Trap (W) : This ability enable Caitlyn to zone her direct enemies and confine them in one very specific spot. I'll explain it in the "laning category" how to use them to really gain a significant advantage.

90 Caliber Net (E) : This net is a blessing for Caitlyn. I told you earlier that she is very squishy and this net allows you to projet yourself backwards while slowing the enemy. This can also make you go through thin walls. A very good escaping mechanism.

Ace in the Hole (R) : this is Caitlyn's ultimate. With this, you can snipe an opponent's champ from a very far distance and put a bullet in his little head which will hurt like hell :D This is a finisher ability ! This sounds really delightful but there is a catch ! if someone put himself in the trajectory of the bullet, he will take it instead of his teammate. Many people get saved with this move so you need to be very sure that no one is here to prevent your target to die before using this ability !

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These masteries are quite ordinary for all ranged carry AD. We just don't take the point in Archaic Knowledge because Caitlyn has no ratio at all in her abilities that uses magic damage.

In the utility branch, it is the same. And at the end we take the last point in Presence of the Master because while playing Caitlyn, you really need the red buff ! Let me explain : you have the best range of the game. Add to this the red buff which makes a damage bonus, and slow enemy and you have the perfect chaser. You can chase people from a very long distance without getting you in trouble and the opponent caught in your fire won't be able to escape !

You can do the red buff very early in the game because of the Headshot : pull the lezard from the bushes and then every 4 attacks you will deal much more damage and kill him very very fast :)

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Greater Mark of Desolation Greater Mark of Desolation (+1.66 armor penetration) : Well, pretty obvious choice here. These are the main marks for carry AD. People, when they will see you rock like hell are going to take armor to reduce your damages but with these you will still be able to hurt them !

Greater Seal of Replenishment Greater Seal of Replenishment (+0.41 mana regen / 5 sec) x4 : A very nice set of Seals early game because your piltover and traps cost you really much mana at the beginning.

Greater Seal of Clarity (+0.065 mana regen / 5 sec. per level (1.17 at champion level 18)) x5 : Same deal as the others but it is more adapte for the late game.

I just did a mix for these 2 sets of Seals to optimize my mana regen early, mid and late game. I know that normaly nobody just mix runes but according to my opinion, this is the way to do this. You can have 9 Greater Seal of Clarity or 9 Greater Seal of Replenishment Greater Seal of Replenishment if you want it will not really make the HUGE DIFFERENCE that you may expect, but still i prefere to mix them :)

Greater Glyph of Focus (-0,65% CD reduction) : The CD reduction is really nice on Caitlyn. Why ?? Well first to spam the Piltover Peacemaker which early and mid game will hurt people so badly that they will bang their heads in the wall :D. And the most important thing is that your traps at lvl 5 will respawn really fast and you will be able to prepare the team fight by zoning the area !

Greater Quintessence of Desolation Greater Quintessence of Desolation (+3,33 armor penetration) : Finally for the Quitessence : really basic and efficient choice, same as the marks : armor penetration > all !

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Summoner spells

For caitlin, i take without any doubts Flash and Exhaust.

I think many people will ask me why Flash and not Ghost ? It is quite easy. First, it is because i love Flash so badly that now i cannot play without it ^^ And the second and important reason is that it really combines very well with your 90 Caliber Net : you will be able to go through wall anytime and escape.

Then regarding the Exhaust, this is a really nice summoner spell because it is a defensive and offensive one at the same time : you can prevent a melee champ to kick your ***, disable an opponent during team fights, and finally slow someone so he cannot run away !

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Haaa finally my favorite part :) I think that some of you will be a bit surprised by the items that i chose but this is really standard build of AD carry but a very Squishy one too. Let me explain :

The items starter : Ok so at the beginning of the game you need to know in which lane you will be in order to buy the right items to start properly the game. If you are bottom with a support who CAN HEAL : i suggest to take a Doran's Blade right away for a good amount of HP and the extra damage which helps you to last hit properly. If you are bottom with a support who CAN'T HEAL or mid lane, i really prefere to take a pair of Boots of Speed with x3 Health Potion because you need to stay on your lane the longest time you can and at some point you will always get harassed by the opponent and without a healing support it will be very difficult to stay long enough with just a Doran's Blade.

The first come back to your base : ok here you have several options :

- If you were able to stay long enough and farm farm farm like hell, come back when you got enough money to have in your inventory : your Boots of Speed, x1 Doran's Blade and x1 B. F. Sword. You need to do this ONLY if you feel good in the game and really safe because you will go right away DPS and with no real resistance.

- If you are getting harassed and don't feel really safe in your lane, come back when you have the money to have in your inventory : x1 Boots of Speed, and x3 Doran's Blade. You will be really resistant for a ranged carry AD early game (because you will have a bonus of 3OO HP) and you will have 9% life steal which will make you stay longer in your lane.

Then, the corp items :

Berserker's Greaves : so why these shoes instead of the Boots of Swiftness which can bring you a nice speed in order to place you more quickly and run away more easily ? It is simple ! You're a main ranged carry AD with a nice escape already ( 90 Caliber Net) so you don't need more speed. And these boots are very good with your passive : Headshot : the more quickly you shoot, the more often it will pop !

Infinity Edge : Ok so this item is one of my favorite for my ranged carry AD champions. Many people seems to prefere a The Bloodthirster to begin with but i prefere the other one because of one thing : The critic that it gives you can surprise your opponent and you can win a fight with this, especially coupling with your passive Headshot. The The Bloodthirster is very nice because you don't have to come back often at base because of the life steal and the high damage but i really prefere the Infinity Edge.

Phantom Dancer : This item will give you the mouvement/attack speed and critic that you always dreamed of with a ranged AD carry. With this you will be able to have a mouvement speed of 428 (if my memory is good :P) which is enough and your damages will increase right away. This will allow you to replace yourself in combat really quickly.

Banshee's Veil : The banshee veil is an AWSOME item. It blocks an opponent spell every 45 seconds and gives you health/mana and the magic resistance you need to be a bit more resistant. You won"t be scared of a Ryze or a Veigar because they won't be able to catch you with their spells and they won't hurt you as bad as before.

The Bloodthirster : Here come the item which has the highest damage of the game when its charged up. Really useful item which allow you to stay in battles long enough to make efficient damages and it also really boost your ultimate Ace in the Hole.

The Black Cleaver : Finally, this item makes people with armor quite easy to kill because of the debuff he put on them and the attack speed/damages it grants you are really nice for Caitlyn.

Remember that this build is quite a Squishy one. You can replace a dps item and take a Guardian Angel instead if you see that you're always the focus and you cannot get away.

Another thing is that you can replace a DPS item that i quote earlier and replace it by a Last Whisper if you see that enemies have massive armor items.

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Laning with Caitlyn

This is a really important part in ordre to understand the mechanism of Caitlyn so pay attention :P

- First, let me explain to you why i always get the Yordle Snap Trap first. When you are laning, your opponents will intend most of the time to harass you. These traps place properly will save you from the harass. Most people use them ONLY to prevent ganks and you should do that too when you are lvl 4-8 and you know that the ganker will come eventually in your lane, but NOT ONLY. You can put your traps right ahead of you and make a line with them so the opponents won't come to close to you. This strategy is very effective because they could just go for the trap and then it's over and mose of the time they won't because they fear to get freely harassed and that is what you have to do if they go in trap. When they are traped they can't move for 1 sec so go harass them freely : THIS IS FREE :D

- When you lane, always do ONLY last hits on minions and don't save your Headshot only for harassing ! Use it to farm too ! This is a great passive to farm early game !

- Finally, you have the best range of the game so use it to harass opponents preventing them from farming. This is a really nice advantage but don't forget to put your traps in the way so they won't try to kill you they will just have to back and lose exp/gold.

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Team fights

The team fights is what makes a ranged carry AD so difficult to play.

You're a very squishy champion and if you get to be focused, you are dead in 2 secondes (well maybe 1 second but i tend to be hopeful :D). How can we prevent that ? By doing 2 things :

- First, you have to be VERY NICELY placed ! The placement is everything so you have to find a spot behind the tanks/off-tanks with a way of escaping (near a thin wall where you can do your 90 Caliber Net or your Flash) and within range of the opponents carry dps so you can shoot them and make them SUFFER :D

- The second one is preparing the area for the team fight with your Yordle Snap Trap. Use them to zone the enemies : put the in the bushes next to the very futur team fight, block the exit with them or even put it in the middle of the fight so when they will engage they will directly be stopped. This ability will save your *** so many times and it will permit you to find the good placement because you will force the enemy to be in the area you decided !

Another important thing of a team fight is that late game your auto attack will be stronger and really more efficient than your abilities so ONLY use your auto attack except if you can hit the 5 of them with your Piltover Peacemaker (but normally you will prefere to follow the focus and not do aoe damage) and if someone intends to escape don't hesitate to use your ultimate Ace in the Hole.

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Ok guys, thats pretty much it. You know now what i think is the whole mechanism of Caitlyn.

Remember that most of people say that Caitlyn is just an early/mid game champion but i TOTALY disagree. Sure her abilities are stronger early and mid games than late but with your passive Headshot and the attack speed you will get with your items, you will be able to deal really HEAVY damages on the opponents !

Thus, i know that i made a very fragile build but like i said : with a good placement and a good vision of the enemies, you're not supposed to be hit because they can't reach you ! And i don't think that taking a very defensive item won't help you so much because if they catch you up, you will die anyway so i prefere to maximise my damage with only one defensive item and optimize my placement so i can deal a lot of damage without taking any :)

I hope you enjoyed my guide. Please leave so comments and votes in order to optimize my builds :)

Thank you, And let's not forget :

P.S : Here is my other guide on Vladimir : HERE