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Diana General Guide by MisfitMagic

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League of Legends Build Guide Author MisfitMagic

Darkest before Dusk; Diana Mid Guide

MisfitMagic Last updated on February 28, 2013
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Middle Lane
Ranked #17 in
Middle Lane
Win 51%
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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: 0


Utility: 9

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Hey folks. Seeing as this is my first posted build here at MobaFire, I thought I would start with one of my favourite champions, Diana.

I started playing League of Legends shortly after release. Coming from the original days of Aeon of Strife, and its successors in Warcraft III (read: Extreme Candy Wars ftw :D).

I took a break after a few months of playing, then picked it back up last year, and got way more in to it. I'm a fair player -- I won't say I'm the best, but I can hold my own and understand the nuances and synergies of the game well.

I've found Diana to be a lot like many other champions, hitting her own highs and lows, and will admit that I took a break from her after the Preseason Balance nerfs.

I feel the most recent changes have put her back to a really good place, balancing out some of the issues people were complaining about (read: that ultimate range OP), and returned her to being a great pick. I'm a talkative and highly explanative person, so this will not be cut-and-dry build report.

I love math, so be warned.

Play Guide, Lane Matchups, and Situational Items coming soon!

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Pros / Cons


+ Terrifying burst. Diana's kit works extremely well in closing gaps and keeping enemies close while she melts their face off.

+ Great mobility. Diana's ganking capabilities can be really obscene sometimes. With both a gap-closer and a pull-back/slow, Diana's is great at securing kills almost every time she ganks.

+ Trades very well. Pale Cascade makes Diana a real terror when it comes to trading. This double-shield allows her to almost free-trade with other champs.


- Abhorrent early game. The early game is definitely where Diana struggles. She doesn't take harass very well, and can have a hard time farming against a predominantly ranged AP mid meta.

- Extremely mana-hungry. Diana's base mana, considering the nature of her kit, is atrocious. In order to secure kills and harass effectively, she really ends up using all of her abilities, causing her to have mana troubles all game long.

- No Innate escape tool. Diana has no way to escape unfavourable fights. Creative ultimates can sometimes use creeps to get out, but is highly conditional.

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This is my standard mastery build for Diana.
I take the 3 points in Fury over the 3 points in Mental Force . Without items or effects, Diana's base attack speed ends up being around .864 I believe. At level 18, her passive will do 290 damage, every ~3.5 seconds, for about 415 damage averaged over a 5 second engagement. The extra 4% attack speed would bring this up to 426 (290 damage, proc'ing every ~3.4 seconds). This difference of 11 damage is of greater benefit than the ~1 extra damage to each ability she would get from the flat 6 AP, with the 4% scaling even greater in the late game with the Nashor's Tooth.

These are all the standard picks for Ability mid laners. Nothing to explain here; deal damage, win game.


This build focuses on the same damage-dealing as the standard, but puts the 9 points in utility over into defense, specifically to try and help Diana's susceptibility to early game harassment with some bonus health and magic resist. This choice more or less boils down to personal playstyle.

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Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration

Greater Seal of Health

Greater Mark of Ability Power

What can I say? Diana is a classic example of an AP assassin type champion. She's looking for damage coupled with a little survivability.

These are easy picks. The extra ability power in the late game makes these a better pick than their flat counterparts. Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist is also a good pick for summoners who want that little bit of extra survivability against tough mid lane matchups.

Another easy pick. The early magic penetration helps negate magic resistance runes, and pull together with items to help push through your damage later on.

Here are where I feel we have a little wiggle room as Diana. I personal prefer the health for the sustain in lane against most AP champions. But Greater Seal of Armor are a great pickup as well for when you expect to be taking a lot of physical damage.

More damage. This should need no explanation.

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Summoner Spells

The common picks

For the times where all your spells are on cooldown and your target just gets out of range, or when you need to get a little bit more damage through during a fight, or even just to scare someone chasing you enough for them to back off. Ignite does all of these things and more. A fantastic pick for all damage-dealing champions, especially assassins like, Diana
What can we say about Flash? It can be used to make things happen both defensively and offensively. Helps extend the range of Diana's Crescent Slash or her ultimate, or can be used to make up for her lack of an escape. Definitely one of the best.

Some other reasonable options

Where most of your summoner choices will be used to help improve your power against single targets, clarity can be used to help alleviate the pressure you will be under during the early laning phase. But beyond the early game, Clarity's effectiveness really starts to drop off as the game progresses.
Starting to gain some more popularity, Barrier can add that extra bit of survivability to Diana when she needs to make that dive for the kill.

Personally the only summoner spell I would ever take over Ignite, teleport helps set up favourable fights for your team, or help defend towers.

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

This is [diana]'s main source of damage. Mastering this uniquely styled skillshot is imperative to being able to do maximum damage. Landing this spell is essential to enabling [diana]'s ultimate. And keep in mind, the longer the range, the easier it is to dodge the spell.

This shield is great for in-lane trades and for pushing through extra, worry-free damage when [diana] decides to engage her target. Activating Pale Cascade and then dashing adds a surprising amount of damage, while protecting yourself from early enemy retaliation.

This spell can be really scary. One of the things that makes Diana so powerful as an assassin is that most of her spells are easy and fast to activate. Both her 'w' and 'e' require no follow-up to activation, making this spell one of the best interrupts in the game. Never forget the potential of dragging a ganking jungler into the turret to help quickly turn around a tower dive.

What makes Diana such an amazing assassin, Lunar Rush allows her to close-in on her target up to 2 times, and can be used to dodge skillshots, or even sometimes evade enemy engagements, all on a 15 second cooldown.

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The Core Build

This is one of the ways Diana helps deal with enemy harassment, while also helping weaken enemies. This kind of item efficiency is exactly what we are looking for to help sure-up some of Diana's weaknesses.

The recent buffs to Zhonya's Hourglass have helped push the item beyond the "playable" level to the "must-have". The new Seeker's Armguard is a great item, again for adding some survivability against heavy attack-damage based teams, while also making the hourglass much easier to obtain early when being faced with teams that can focus you down.

The classic pick for all champions that deal magic damage, all this item does is make everyone look squishy. Acquiring a Rabadon's Deathcap really helps break down the damage barrier for when Diana can effectively solo most enemy champions. That being said, I recommend picking this up after at least one of your defensive items, depending on what kind of damage you are taking.

Magic penetration is great for helping push damage through enemy defenses, and as a relatively early pickup, can make early magic resist sources, such as runes and mercury treads less effective at negating your early presence.

Diana's passive is great at nuking-down turrets. Coupled with Lich Bane, Diana can often obliterate towers before any reaction can be made from the enemy team. With the excellent mobility of an assassin and powerful melee attacks, this item makes you a tower-crushing machine.

Although I am confused as to why, this is the item that prior to the last few weeks of play in LCS on champions like Kayle, have put me on the receiving end of many insults, troll callouts, and rage-quitters. To many on the forums, and in-game, Nashor's Tooth is believed to be a niche item, falling behind other items in terms of what other players believe to be true picks for Diana.

Other guides I have read have this slot filled with defensive items, such as Guardian Angel, or even Warmog's Armor. But the most common item I have seen here is Liandry's Torment. I have always felt Liandry's Torment to be a poor pick on Diana, so lets do the math.

Let's compare the damage potential of Liandry's Torment to that of Nashor's Tooth (we will maintain the ability power values and additions from other items, but for simplicity's sake, will not carry calculations of magic penetration or other stats from masteries/runes.

At level 18, Moonsilver Blade deals 290 damage. With the Liandry's Torment build, you will have ~ 562.5 ability power, adding an additional 337.5 damage to Moonsilver Blade.

This leaves us with 627.5 damage being dealt at each proc of Diana's passive. With a base attack speed of ~.864, Moonsilver Blade will proc once every 3.5 seconds. Assuming a 5 second engagement, this would average 884.5 damage (Yes, I know that technically part of that damage doesn't exist, bear with me).

Now, for Liandry's Torment, we will calculate damage levels for 3 different classes of champion health: 1800(a standard AP mid opponent), 2600(a tanky bruiser), and 3500(the tank build).

1800 health: 90 damage over 3 seconds, meaning ~ 149 damage over 5 seconds.
2600 health: 130 damage over 3 seconds, meaning ~ 215 damage over 5 seconds.
3500 health: 175 damage over 3 seconds, meaning ~ 290 damage over 5 seconds.

So, in total, these leave damage levels of: ~776.5 | ~842.5 | ~917.5.

Now, let's take a look at how this 5 second engagement would go with Nashor's Tooth.

Moonsilver Blade's damage, with the extra 5 AP is now dealing 631.25 damage per proc. What's more important, is that [diana]'s passive now procs ever 2.3 seconds, with 1.296 attacks/second.

Over this seam 5 second engagement, Moonsilver Blade now deals an enormous 1451.875 damage!

Even at Liandry's Torment's most effectiveness, against tanky champions, this is a discrepancy of over 500 damage.
The math wins.


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