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Darius Build Guide by Dragon20217

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Dragon20217

Darius - Ax him how to Solo Top (In depth Guide updating*)

Dragon20217 Last updated on August 25, 2012
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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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Nurf's and Buff's etc

*Draven Patch 6/5/12*
1) Hemorrhage
Bonus attack damage ratio reduced to 0.3 from 0.4.
Fixed a bug where it was appplying Rylai's Crystal Scepter slow and spell vamp effects.
2) Apprehend pre-pull animation modified to be more readable for enemy champions.
3) Noxian Guillotine cooldown now only refreshes when it deals the killing blow.
*Jayce Patch 7/712 *
1) Noxian Guillotine no longer refreshes upon killing champion clones (e.g. Shaco's Hallucinate

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Introduction and Darius Background

Greetings summoners, welcome to my Darius build. Darius is a melee fighter that sticks to a target and drops them with heavy Ad and bleeds. He's a great harasser in early game with those bleeds

There is no greater symbol of Noxian might than Darius, the nation's most feared and battle-hardened warrior. Orphaned at a young age, Darius had to fight to keep himself and his younger brother alive. By the time he joined the military, he had already developed the strength and discipline of a veteran soldier. The first true test of Darius's resolve occurred in a crucial battle against Demacia, where the Noxian forces were exhausted and outnumbered. Darius's captain called for his troops to retreat, but Darius refused to accept such an act of cowardice. Breaking formation, Darius strode towards the captain and decapitated him with one sweep of his gigantic axe. Both terrified and inspired, the soldiers followed Darius into battle and fought with incredible strength and fervor. After a long and grueling battle, they ultimately emerged victorious.

Seizing momentum from this victory, Darius led his now fiercely loyal troops in a devastating campaign against Demacia. After proving his power on the battlefield, Darius turned his gaze homeward. He saw a Noxus riddled with weakness, where greedy, complacent nobles drained the nation's strength. Seeking to restore his country to greatness, Darius took it upon himself to reshape the Noxian leadership. He identified weak figureheads and violently removed them from their positions of power. Many in Noxus saw Darius's cull as an attempt to seize power, but he had a different plan for the throne. He had been watching the rise of Jericho Swain with keen interest. In Swain, Darius saw a leader with the mind and determination to bring Noxus to glory. Now allied with the Master Tactician, Darius works to unite the nation behind his vision of true Noxian strength.

''A united Noxus could control the world - and would deserve to.'' - Darius

Champion Spotlight

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Pros / Cons

Pros* Good attack Damage
* Great in a 1v1
* Able to tank Damage and life steal it back
* sweet armor
Cons* No real escape
* Often focused in team fights if presented as a real threat
* Not so well in team fights
* A noxian

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Offense tree
Summoner's Wrath : The Extra 5 damage will be handy for last hitting.
Brute Force The extra damage is nothing to pass up
Alacrity The attack speed is beneficial because Darius already has a slow hit animation s it is, so the extra attack speed will be a little bit more useful
Deadliness I prefer this over critical strike chance, getting any amount of extra damage will help you
Weapon Expertise The armor penetration is most important and defiantly worth it, you want to be able to rip through any amount of armor the enemy builds up while still focusing on Ad items such as The Bloodthirster
Lethality The only item that makes this mastery useful is Infinity Edge, but i'm not focusing on the critical strike chance in this build.
Vampirism Combined with your 2 Dorans Blade, and The Bloodthirster you'll be able to recover from a team fight without returning to base.
Sunder Combined with Greater Make of Desolation with extra damage from your Greater Glyph of Attack Damage you'll be harassing the enemy a lot early game
Executioner Finishing off your enemy will be easier with this mastery or make it a tiny bit easier at least
Defense tree
Resistance Good defense if your laning against an Ap caste, early game
Hardiness Good defense if your laning against another melee like yourself
Durability Great mastery for recoveries after a team fight, or longer lane phase

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Greater Mark of Lethality

Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist

Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed
Greater Mark of Desolation I pick this runes for armor pen for higher damage out put
Greater Seal of Armor Since you'll be solo top, this will be useful for in case you get harassed
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist This rune will be very useful to make Darius a bit tanky for ap casters. The damage from Ap casters early game won't do as much damage however if the Ap is fed and your not, be very careful.
Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed I prefer this over Quints of Strength however it's really up to you, if you prefer to swap out Swiftness for Strength then by all means.

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Summoner Spells

Now for the summoner spells run time
Main picks
Flash for your only escape, use it wisely
Ignite great early game, and if you stack Hemorrhage and add a Ignite you'll be able to finish off your enemy's with ease.

Exhaust slowing down your opponent and reducing there damage will turn the battle in your favor
Ghost To catch up to your enemy champ or escaping I am not 100% sure on this skill though because you mainly want to focus on grabbing your enemy with Apprehend Apprehend staying in range, is important, you want to stay as close to your enemy as possible. the rest of the summoner spells are debatable

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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
Here's the skill run down
Darius passive is Hemorrhage his basic attacks will make the target bleed, this is great passive for finishing off a running target
Next his Q Decimate great for early harass make sure to be in range for some serious damage, i take this by level 1 and max it by 9
Next his W Crippling Strike this will add bonus damage to your next basic attack and slow the enemy I take this by level 4 and max it last at 18
Next his E Apprehend Passive: Darius gains bonus Armor Pen, when active Darius sweeps up his enemies and bring them to him. this is great skill for catching your enemy the only downside to this skill is the range its shorter compared to Blitzcrank' Rocket Grab or Amumu's Bandage Toss. non the less its important to catch running enemies, i take this skill at 3 and max it second by level 14
Next skill R (ult) Noxian Guillotine Darius leaps to an enemy champion and strikes a lethal blow, he deals 20% more damage for each stack of Hemorrhage on him/her. If the Noxian Guillotine is the final blow the cool down is refreshed. This is one scary ult, but it can be under estimated by the controller of Darius if you want the kill get those stacks of Hemorrhage to deal as much damage as possiable

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Item Sequence

Doran's Blade

Boots of Speed

Berserker's Greaves

B. F. Sword

The Bloodthirster

B. F. Sword

Infinity Edge


Frozen Mallet

B. F. Sword

The Black Cleaver

Heart of Gold

Cloth Armor

Randuin's Omen
For Items I start off with 2 Doran's Blade For early harass and attack Damage
Follow by Boots of Speed then upgrading to Berserker's Greaves *I decided to replace merc's treads cause I felt that Darius needed more attack speed to get that damage and stacks of Hemorrhage quickly to execute your enemy with Noxian Guillotine
Next I buy B. F. Sword upgrading to The Bloodthirster For the damage and life steal, stacking up the damage and life steal will majorly help you mid game.
Next buy another B. F. Sword and upgrade to Infinity Edge Not for the Crit Chance but the Dmg, 80 attack damage the sword pays for itself.
Next were going for home HP sustain, buy a Phage then upgrade to a Frozen Mallet, you will be less squishy and the attack damage and extra slow is a + for the Frozen Mallet.
Next buy another B. F. Sword upgrade to a The Black Cleaver For attack speed, damage, and armor Debuff.
Last but not least for giving Darius more sustain buy a Heart of Gold and Cloth Armor then upgrade to Randuin's Omen more Hp will make you last longer in team fights. plus the Health Regen, Cool Down reduction, and Active AOE debuff you enemy's cannot get away now unless they flash through the wall

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Ax vs Top (with situational items)

This chapter will involve a Darius vs ? situation in top lane
1) VS
Looks like your up against an ap, Akali is definitely a challenge top, however you have more poking power with Decimate, the only problem is Akali has an escape with Twilight Shroud. Shes able to get away in case a fight doesn't go her way, she can also use it to poke you and fade away if you stay in the shroud too long. Best way to take care of that is get a Vision Ward or Oracle's Elixir, it'll be worth it when your able to finish off her. If your finding yourself outmatched build Magic resist early game. picking up Hexdrinker then upgrading into a Maw of Malmortius will give you magic resist and maintain some AD dmg output.

2) VS
wonderful a cow top...Anyways I don't think i ever seen an Alistar Top but just in case you come across one its best to be prepared. If Alistar is ever going top he'll most likely build ap making his cc, and heal annoying and dangerous, hes poking power on a on a scale of 1 to 10 is about a 7, for Darius is about a 8 or 9 roughly around there. The problem with this is the cc it can definitely hurt your chances of scoring kills, and even cause your death. All i can offer is, keep your distance, farm, and poke from a safe distance (i.e Decimate, Alistar is definitely one mana starved champion early game especially if you spam his abilities. Build Magic resist if Alistar hurts too much Hexdrinker, Maw of Malmortius. Sight Wards are recommended if your laning against an Alistar

3) VS
look your mummy is there hehe.
Okay Amumu is top, now it's kind of hard to figure out exactly what will Amumu build, it could either be a tank build, tanky dps, or Ap. There's really nothing to worry about if hes goes tank build or tanky dps, but be aware if he goes pure Ap hes Tantrum
and Curse of the Sad Mummy will hurt. Magic resist, Hexdrinker] & [[Maw of Malmortius Another thing to the reason why you really shouldn't worry about the tank build or tanky dps is because Darius has a build in Armor pen. His Apprehend will come in handy in the event you face an Amumu Tank/ Tanky DPS max Appregand first but continue to maintain points in Decimate.

3) VS
I'll give you something to chew on
Cho'Gath will most likely go Ap, it's not really a problem but you do have to be careful his Feast will hurt A LOT, along with his Cc Rupture. your going to defiantly have to play smart against Cho'Gath. Cho'Gath has a decent sustain, his passive Carnivore restores tiny bit of health and mana, it'll keep him in lane longer, which means more farm and more stacks of Feast you need to prevent Cho'Gath from getting stacks of Feast, the best way to do this is zone him out, poke him and deny him minion kills, so hes passive will be useless. Zoning Cho'Gath will require Sight Ward to prevent you from getting ganked. Do the same in the first two top champions you may face magic w/ AD dmg.

4) VS
Oh no it's invasion of the body snatches all over again!
um....good luck...

5) VS
shes getting nurf ill get back to this one later.

6) VS
the incredible mundo!
Talk about a counter pick for Darius. Dr. Mundo uses no mana, his Infected Cleaver restores 50% of the health used to cast Infected Cleaver, his Ult Sadism increases his moment speed and regens health quicker. To be honest it's hard to put a mundo to rest. Poke him early game, mundo is squishy early game, unless he starts w/ a Doran's Shield I honestly don't know how to put down a mundo w/ Darius mundo counter picks him too hard.

7) VS
condom plz...
okay okay lets see Fiora aha, Fiora is interesting but I feel like Darius can easily destroy Fiora, it can be a little bit tricky tho, Fiora's poke hurts easrly game but Darius can out poke her. Darius really shouldn't have a problem with Fiora only cause shes squishy and Darius has more health early game depending on what itmes you buy early game. Only fed Fiora can truly have a chance @ killing Darius in my opinion. poke and farm.

8) Vs
hmmm hes a ap,tank. Follow tips from vs Akali and Vs Amumu

9) VS
Gankplank is an interesting character, hes mana dependent to harass with his Parrrley, not to mention his debuff Grog Soacked Blade,And his heal/ removing cc Remove Scurvy. All this tools Gp can use can make him effecting against Darius, but in a one on one Darius can definitely take down Gankplank, however Gankplank can definitely out poke Darius, and farm really well which can make him a threat to Darius so you definitely wanna be careful around Gp

10) VS
Spin to lose boi!
lets see Garen can definitely be a threat and a major pain in the arse to Darius]. [[Garen uses no mana, his Decisive Strike can hurt, not to mention the silence and the extra movement speed.The silence is a killer way of shutting you out. Perseverance which is Garen's Passive helps him regen health faster, which makes him tanky and stay in lane longer. Yeah Garen is definitely a threat to Darius might even be a counter pick threat. Build tanky while maintaing ADC output.

11) VS
psst I can see the strings ;)
Irelia is made for solo top, she has great sustain, a great farming tool but depletes mana quicker, and great poking. In my opinion Darius and Irelia are pretty evenly matched tho Darius can out poke Irelia it's tough to say how they will play out. In a 1 on 1 I'm thinking both Darius and Irelia will kill each other but I woudn't be surpsied if Irelia walked out with a tiny tiny amount of health.

12) VS
Dress up time :)
Jarvan IV hm, Jarven is pretty great early game but falls off mid to late game where Darius stays evenly strong, but the thing with Jarven is after his Ad damage falls off he builds into a tank which can be a major arse, it'll be hard to shut down Jarven since hes very useful early game. I recommend building some armor early game.

13) VS
Jax is one of my favorite solo tops hes has decent amount of damage early game but as mid to late game rolls through hes a major threat HOWEVER, it's Dairus vs Jax]. Its not a bad idea to build armor early game, but starting with some ad items might be a better idea [[Jax also have a dodge/ cc skill which can make Darius disengage from starting a fight w/ Jax, he also a skill called Leap Strike which can be use to hurt you or escape. Jax is definitely a tricky person to kill. Like i said early you can build armor early game or start with Ad items, adept to Jax's play style and observe him.

14) VS
I haven't seen enough Jayce on top to really understand how he works on top.

15) VS
Katarina is like Akali in a way, shes has a blink skill, a Aoe ult, and a ranged skill. Katarina is squishy though, Darius might have a problem actually taking out Katarina due to her blink skill but in power vs power Darius wins early game, if your find that Katarina is dealing more damage to you then I suggest Hexdrinker follwed by Maw of the malmortius

16) VS [
vs Kayle
Kayle has a lot of poking potential and yeah it hurts, Kayle has a range skill, a slow, and speed/ heal buff. Kayle is squishy not big of a problem to Darius The real problem is closing the gap between you and Kayle , I would imagine that a Kayle would keep her distance away from you so she won't get killed but yet stay in range enough to harass you, so in a way Kayle is sort of a counter pick to Darius.
What I recommend is if you can't close the gap between you two then a gank from your jungler can surly aid you in scoring a kill.

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Warding, when,where and why

Okay so through my adventures of Ranked Play I notice that Solo top tend to never or rarely ward there area which is a stupid mistake. The reason why its rather important that you ward your is to obviously prevent Ganks, you may think warding is left to your support while that is true it never hurts to buy a couple of wards to make sure that you are safe and protected. Warding should be done when your lane is pushed below are a few spots you should keep warded at all times

ward here to protect yourself from ganks

ward here for bush horez

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Summary and Closing statements

This is my 2nd build on the newly release Darius, I hope this guide is helpful, if you think i should add or consider any items. Darius is to only be build ad, HE IS NOT TANKY, I fought a tanky Darius with Ad Darius and destroyed him. As for jungle Darius I'm still debating weather he would actually survive the jungle.

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Change log


-Working on a section where its Darius vs solo top champions all the possible situation
-Warding section