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Diana Build Guide by R-18

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League of Legends Build Guide Author R-18

Diana, LoL's Dark Sailor Moon

R-18 Last updated on August 21, 2012
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hybrid, AP, Tanky

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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: 13

Honor Guard

Defense: 9

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 8

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Hello summoners,
Lately my focus has been to make off-tanky, sustainable, hard to kill, battle attrition champions rather than focus on a completely offensive or defensive driven champion.

While some champions facilitate a certain aspect of this kind of build, for example, Irelia offers natural sustain and a productive alternate damage with her Hiten Style, so naturally I would try and capitalize on this by focusing defensive and atk spd based items.

Diana has something more to bring to the table with her natural atk spd and alternative damage through Moonsilver Blade I would like to capitalize on this by giving her defensive/atk spd/sustain items. While Irelia/Olaf/Vlad have built in sustain already, Diana has more offence to bring to the table, my focus is to harness this offence in a defensive way.

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MoonSilver Blade

This is one of our largest leverage skills, when it comes to melee toe-to-toe battle, we proc an AOE cleave with level/AP scaling magic damage every 3rd attack in a forward cone. All while granting a permanent 20% atk spd buff. Its like having Jax's passive portion of Grandmaster's Might as our passive. The forward cone is quite literally 180o cone, so just facing enemy minions in groups is simple. This skills base damage increases with every level up and has a significant 60% AP boost. Even at lower levels with 100 AP or less we are still talking about a damage proc of +100 damage, makes farming a breeze and this skill can be set before you strike enemy champions. While the skill will reset after 6 seconds, you can prep it just before you dive your pushed enemy laning champion. Just whack a minion twice and dive. Also this compliments Diana 150 melee range well, most melee champions have a range of 125, with a few exceptions to champions like who have 175 melee range. While this isn't extremely riddled with advantages it does give you the upper hand in initiation of attack animations to where you might get the hit in before they do.
Note: when you do have it "charged" Diana will be emitting a pretty noticeable visual aura around her, a skilled player will pick up on this.

Crescent Strike

Diana has an AP AOE/poke curve shot nuke that isn't extremely mana heavy and offers an extreme amount of dive range when she gets her ult Lunar Rush, we will cover this tactic later. This skill does bring a new approach and has such a massive area it is hard to call it a "skill shot". While I say this, the animation is a little slow and will require some skill... kinda like aiming a shotgun down a hall way, you will hit alot but it might not be what you want to hit. The skill shot sends out two arcing bolts that at the end of the shot join and explode into an AOE. If you are building AP Diana this is your bread and butter just as Mystic Shot is to AD Ezreal. Once an enemy is struck they are inflicted with Moonlight status for 3 seconds. This status effect is just a visual effect that interacts with your ult reducing your ult's CD to 0.5 seconds. This skill is slightly weak and item dependent, but with it having a 80% AP boost, why wouldn't it. Here is kinda the catch with this skill, when playing a low AP based item set this skill isn't going to be hurting much but you still need it for the interaction with Lunar Rush, so no mater what your taking a few points in this skill. This will be the first skill I level, it varies how fast I will level in up based on what my focus is.
Note: If you spam this skill it will suck your mana pool dry, be sure you allocate yourself into how much you plan on spending mana-wise, honestly this skill is about 1 major mana regen item from being spammable.

Pale Cascade

This is an offence driven shield system, rewarding you with a second sheild if you use the damaging orbs. This skill when used pops out 3 orbiting orbs that when contacting any enemy will explode into a mini AOE each. They are the non-seeking version of Ahri's Fox-Fire, however since you are a melee champion getting into range isn't difficult. This ability chains very well with both Lunar Rush and Moonfall giving Diana her Assassin/burst feel. Individually they orbs don't do that much damage but collectively they will cause significant pain seeing Diana can potentially have 110 damage worth of shields at its first level. The power of this skill isn't the damage but the difference in damage productivity between champions. At level 1 this skill can provide you with 60+ damage to them and 110+ health to you, a very significant difference. This skill is a beast on diving turning yourself into a little AOE bomb. The downsides to this skill is the CD and Mana cost, making it a bit more of a challenge to be toe-to-toe consistently when compared to Riven's Valor. While Diana doesn't have a sustaining skill, this shield will protect you from taking lots of damage and create alot of "damage difference" in a battle. I will max this second or even with crescent strike.
Note: This is a hidden gem to Diana, utilizing this skill properly can make the difference in nearly every engagement. It is an Offence based shield, meaning it will do only 50% or less of what it is supposed to do if you use it to run away with.


To round off Diana set, she has a AOE Pull/Slow. Moonfall Pulls ALL enemies to Diana and slows them for a duration. It doesn't do any damage but you can couple it with Diana's other 3 abilities to do the damage. This ability gives us a distinct feeling of being a complete champion, having damage, defense and CC. However Moonfall only offers you so much "CC". It is amazing for clearing a lane nearly instantly, Pop Pale Cascade -> Moonfall -> Crescent Strike -> Moonsilver Blade and you can clean-up all the minion kills very early in the game. Moonfalls main power in individual battle is more for a yank back into the battle when someone is about to run and not an initiator. However in group battle with a heavy AOE team, this one skill could mean the complete domination of the entire enemy team in an instant by grouping them all together in a nice neat stack. The other downsides of this skill are the limited range and CD. I can not tell you how many times already I have popped this to pull someone back and missed them by pixels! Lastly this utility skill has its place with Diana and her strong AOE basis, just have to use this skill wisely since you will only get to use it once per fight with its 26 second CD at level 1, where you will usually keep it till after lvl 13.
Note: This skill can also be used to pull champions and mobs over walls or out of bushes, there are very few places this can occur on the map but if your a seasoned player I'm sure you know the areas I'm speaking of similar to the range of Apprehend on . Also this skill is great for you to run away with since it is a 2 second slow, if you have a melee on you has already used his CC, just pop this and walk away.

Lunar Rush

Diana's dive, escape and chasing move, this skill makes Diana have an extreme amount of mobility on the battle field, from leaping over enemy lines and ganking the carry to being a surprise gank in other lanes. This skill is dependent on one thing... Crescent Strike.
Landing crescent strike is imperative to getting the most out of lunar rush. As you recall crescent strike buts a status effect on all enemies for 3 seconds, giving you a 3 second window to rush onto a target. This ability is a teleporting melee strike that deals magic damage very simular to Akali's Shadow Dance. It is also AP boosted by 60%, but this is not a damage dealing skill, it is a mobility and assassination skill.

you can have powerful control over your lane being effect at nearly all distances. The one downfall to her kit is lack of an hard escape tool till lvl 6, if the situation approves.

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Pros / Cons


    -Has passive attack speed
    -Has Defensive, Offensive and Support skills, so is very well rounded
    -Can be built in nearly anyway and be adept in some roles
    -Has very high mobility
    -Is as mysterious as the dark side of the moon

    -Needs farm to be good at most roles
    -Is squishy at early levels
    -Does not have much mobility till level 6 (the Kassidin problem)
    -Attack power tends to scale to Mid-Late game
    -Requires Skill chains to be good

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As I said in the introduction I was looking to make a more bruiser type champ out of Diana, so my primary items are defensive, sustain and atk speed oriented.

Core Item Build: Diana Bruiser

[*] Nashor's Tooth:
Gives us just about everything we initially need as a offensive melee caster, Atk spd,
MP5, CDR and AP
[*] Frozen Mallet:
Gives us ALOT of HP and some atk, but most of all the slow to stay on top of targets.
[*] Hextech Gunblade:
Gives us sustain and Atk both AP and AD, plus another active slow to initiate with if
Lunar Rush is on CD or we missed Crescent Strike.
[*] Mercury's Treads:
Gives us CC reduction with tenacity and some MR.

From here we build for what defense we need or if we are ahead of the game we can go for more punishment.

Are you fed?

[*] If yes
(meaning you have 3 of your 4 core items built and are a few levels ahead most of the opposing team)

--Build more attack--
Attack Speed
[*] Madred's Bloodrazor
[*] Wit's End
[*] Trinity Force
[*] Malady
[*] Phantom Dancer

[*] Infinity Edge
[*] The Bloodthirster
[*] The Black Cleaver

[*] Rabadon's Deathcap
[*] Lich Bane
[*] Athene's Unholy Grail

Don't just build whatever, have a plan!
for instance, if the enemy team has 2 players with Force of Nature on it, then you should be building AD.
If the enemy team has 2 players with Randuin's Omen or Thornmail, then you should be building AP.
Atk speed is always good if you have some DPS already backing it up like the core build.

[*] If no
(meaning your a lower level then most of the enemy team and you or your team has died a bit)

--Build more defensive--

[*] Randuin's Omen
[*] Frozen Heart
[*] Thornmail

Magic resistance
[*] Force of Nature
[*] Banshee's Veil
[*] Quicksilver Sash

Build and adapt with the flow of the game.

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So I have 5 different builds that I will explain in summary, they are rather self explanatory but I will share my idea and roles for each of them.

#1: Hybrid
This build is meant for more of a poke-poke-poke-dive-assassin role.
She has lots of both AP and AD attack power with sustain but not much defense to attribute to an attrition type warrior/melee style attack. It does give you more survivability than a normal AP carry Diana would, since most of what Diana does is close encounter AP burst damage, this will give you a strong burst and some melee to finish them off.

#2: AP
This is all about the burst, no sustain nor a lot of defense. Just pure blow them up assassinate type role. While the massive AP will give her shield more defense, the second that falls you will be melted. Also in late game I have found even with her mobility, if you get caught with Lunar Rush on CD, your most likely going to be focused down quickly. The main moto of this build is "get in, kill and get out fast!"

#3: Tanky
This build is not a tank, just covering that now, this is an off-tank disrupting build. Your role is to do enough damage to not be ignored and soak up some damage keeping your carries safe. With your high mobility you can home in on the other teams assassins and carries and keep them busy while your team focuses off primary targets. I tend to like this build cause it does offer sustain and attrition like most bruisers. Also gives you tons of mana and CDR to spam the hell out of people and be that very sharp thorn in their side. While you are not going to have the power to melt anyone down quickly, you will out-last them and be the metaphoric laser pointer to their cat.

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Nearly all of these builds are merely concepts, I most likely wont build the same ever in even two consecutive games, by means of what my team needs or just a reaction to what the enemy team is doing. like perhaps their AD carry Ezreal decided to go AP, or something like that, would change my build seeing he might be the highest threat to me. just depends

Anyways in closing, i hope some of my concepts and ideas with Diana give you some inspiration on the field!