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Karma Build Guide by AllisonMRay

Support ✴ Discover the Meaning of Karma ✴

Support ✴ Discover the Meaning of Karma ✴

Updated on September 4, 2022
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League of Legends Build Guide Author AllisonMRay Build Guide By AllisonMRay 17 1 13,079 Views 3 Comments
17 1 13,079 Views 3 Comments
League of Legends Build Guide Author AllisonMRay Karma Build Guide By AllisonMRay Updated on September 4, 2022
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Runes: Standard Karma

1 2
Sorcery
Arcane Comet
Nimbus Cloak
Transcendence
Scorch

Inspiration
Biscuit Delivery
Cosmic Insight
Bonus:

+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+6 Armor

Spells:

1 2 3 4
Exhaust Believer
LoL Summoner Spell: Exhaust

Exhaust

LoL Summoner Spell: Flash

Flash

Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
Extreme Major Even Minor Tiny
Show All
None Low Ok Strong Ideal
Extreme Threats
Ideal Synergies
Synergies
Ideal Strong Ok Low None

Champion Build Guide

✴ Discover the Meaning of Karma ✴

By AllisonMRay
Sae Eleisa Tera Vi Karma

Hello and welcome to this little (massive) Karma guide!






✶ ✶ ✶



Hello and welcome - happy to have you here visiting my little guide! My name is Allison, and I am a Karma enthusiast and often find myself one tricking her for months at a time. I am currently working on grinding a million mastery points, and decided to make a guide to outline some of my observations and thinking about the champion for other Karma fans!

I began playing League a while back on a friend's recommendation, and started out playing ADC. Unhappy with the role, I jumped to support and played a few different champs (Yuumi, Lux, Leona) for a long while. For the longest time I actually didn't even bother purchasing Karma even when expanding my support pool because I didn't think I would enjoy her. She just didn't appeal to me! I rarely ever saw Karma in my games, and I generally just didn't bother with her. Once I had rounded out my champion pool I decided to play her on a whim because my Soraka pick was banned and I instantly fell in love. I love the flexibilty and utlity that she provides in every game, so she never really gets old! I have been playing her ever since, almost exclusively as support. I hope through this guide I can bring some of the joy of playing Karma to others. :)



PROS

Easy enough for beginners
Really high level of skill expression
Great early game - ultimate at level 1
Very mobile for an enchanter support
Some of the best shields in the game
Really good peel/protect potential
Ultimate gives lots of options

There are so many wonderful things about Karma! Besides being very fun to play, she is indeed very beginner friendly. But don't underestimate her! Karma has a very high amount of skill expression because she has so many options. Her Mantra (R) really forces you to think on your feet because unlike other ultimates, Karma's has three forms each of which augments one of her basic abilities. She is a great early game bully with some very nice enchanter peel potential late game.
CONS

Squishy enchanter
Reliant on teammates
Range isn't great without Mantra
Need a good early game
Outscaled by other enchanters
Can become shield-bot

No champion has it all, including Karma! Karma has a great early game as a lane bully, but falls off late-game . Karma does get outscaled by other enchanters . You aren't useless, but will definitely feel less impact on your poke damamage late . You are squishy , and the 12.1x update makes your sustain just a bit worse. You really need a good early game on Karma or you will get steamrolled. Your range isn't fanastic without Mantra , so if you miss an ultimate you're easy to punish.

Below I will try to archive all of the knowledge I have gathered about Karma, and while there will be a little discussion of things like tank Karma, this guide is focusd strictly on support Karma. This guide isn't complete, and certainly much of it is a matter of opinion. But in most cases, I've tried to include the justifications for all of my choices! I also tried to make this guide friendly to all levels of League knowledge, from brand new players to the more seasoned, so some information may seem a little basic but remember, we all start somewhere!

I'm always open to and would love to hear other's opinions and thoughts on Karma, the build, and my Karma Philosophy! :)

✶ ✶ Huge shoutout to jhoijhoi's Guide to Making Guides which provided some critical code for this guide! ✶ ✶
The Karma Philosophy

Before getting into things, I wanted to briefly touch on my mindset for playing Karma because it greatly influences all of the decision I make from build to positioning to spell rotations. In my perspective, Karma should always be putting her team before herself. What does this mean? In general, you should be playing in a way that is extremely protective of your ADC. This doesn't mean play passively or that you shouldn't be fighting, nor should you be constantly glued to your carry's side. What does this mean in practice then?

Karma is a champion with lots of options. A great way to think about how to play Karma is to think about your ultimate, Mantra. For beginner Karma players (including myself for a long time), using things like a Mantra Q in a teamfight to get a bit of burst damage seems great. Mantra Q is such a satisfying ability to land, especially on multiple targets. You might even snipe a kill! This is all great and can be very helpful to your team, but you need to be constantly making sure that you are peeling for your carry. Sometimes, a Mantra E to keep your team alive is more important than getting a kill with a Mantra Q.

Oftentimes I will do things like flash + E in front of my fed ADC to block things like a Jinx ultimate, a Zoe Q, so on. This may seem counterintuitive to the whole idea of "don't die", a crucial part of League. But remember, you are a support, and sometimes you are going to have to make sacrifices to keep your team going. This isn't to say you aren't important, but sometimes the best thing you can do for you 10/0 Draven isn't to just shield him, but to physically put yourself between him and lethal damage. Don't int, but don't be afraid to protect your team at all costs. You won't always die doing this, and in fact after a while you'll get comfortable enough with your own health bar and shield power to judge if something is actually lethal, and you can be mindful not to feed in the course of saving someone. But overall, sure, it might feel good to live through a Jhin R, but consider who on your team is outputting damage, who is making plays, and who has bounties. It's okay to die for the greater good.

Karma support is, in general, not a flashy position. You will not be sniping triple kills like a Lux or Brand, nor will you be hitting huge knockups like a Lulu ult or Janna Q. It's entirely possible to get some great trick shots on Karma of course, and you better believe I have a folder of funny Mantra Q kills and W dive outplays. But generally speaking, in teamfights and even smaller skirmishes, you are not likely to be the one walking away with the multikill insane outplay. Karma's support is generally in the form of massive shields and unparalleled peeling ability. This does not mean it is any less valuable than a Leona Solar Flare or a Seraphine Encore. Karma is all about knowing who and how to protect and using this to carry your team to victory. And if you're lucky, by late game you will get to enjoy the satisfaction of watching the carry you protected and raised dominating the Rift with ease.

Above all else, selflessness is the key to Karma.


Runes


✶ ✶ ✶


SORCERY

Sorcery is going to be your most common rune path to take on Karma, as is the case with most enchanter supports. Below I outline the potential for Resolve tree, but you should mostly always be looking to go Sorcery. As far as keystones, there is nothing better on Karma than Arcane Comet. This is because it adds a great deal to your early game when Karma is the strongest. You really want to be focusing on snowballing your lane and forcing the enemy to take bad backs, and the extra damage on comet is excellent for that. Summon Aery is also an option on Karma, but I find that with her shield and high early game damage output it simply is not as helpful.
Nimbus Cloak is my favorite to go here on Karma, though many use Manaflow Band. Both are fine options, but I find that I do not have any mana issues on Karma so Manaflow is a bit unnecessary. Nimbus cloak on the other hand allows you to get away with cheeky RQs and make quick escape.
Transcendence is a wonderful rune on Karma! It has exactly what we are looking to scale throughout the game: Ability Haste! You'll gain 10 free Ability Haste just for playing the game, and after level 11 will get Ability Haste on cooldowns. This is a wonderful rune on Karma, and I would always make sure to pick this if you are going sorcery.
Scorch is the best on Karma particularly because it lends itself towards our goal of snowballing early. This rune allows your Mantra Q to sting just a little bit more in lane, which is critical in the early lane to force the enemy out of lane. The other options here don't offer much for Karma, so I wouldn't really bother going any of the others. Gathering Storm doesn't help you much because even with it, you will be outscaled and on Karma you should be focusing Ability Haste and not AP.
Rune shards on Karma are pretty simple, and are almost always the same every game. It can be tempting to go Ability Haste, but in order to make sure that you have a decent early game it is usually better to go double Adaptive Force shards. You'll get enough Ability Haste throughout the game, and early game without extra AP will feel notably weaker. I will usually go armor as my final shard unless the enemy team is very AP heavy in which case I will go for some Magic Resist.

✶ ✶ ✶



RESOLVE

While sorcery is almost always going to be your go-to on Karma, I also think that the resolve tree major path is great on Karma! That said, you should only ever go Guardian as it is the only really viable choice here. That said, Guardian is great because it gives you a little more peel and protection for your carry particularly in the early game. This can be great against lane bullies. I usually go Guardian if I have a weaker/squishier early game ADC, such as a Senna or an ADC who needs to be closer to the action like a Draven or Nilah. But most often, I tend to take this rune into matchups where I am just not entirely certain I'll be able to output enough damage early for Arcane Comet to really shine.
Font of Life is an excellent rune for Karma because her Q both Mantra and basic apply a slow and proc this runes conditions. This can provide a little more sustainability in the early game which can be critical if you are against a very poke heavy comp and you find yourself often getting pushed out of lane. This rune can help keep your ADC up for longer. The other two runes offer little for support Karma.
Bone Plating is my go-to here because it allows Karma to take more risky Mantra Qs in lane. This is because you have to worry a little bit less about the enemy team hitting you back because you will be taking reduced damage. Still be careful because you are not quite tanky enough to sustain through being hard CCed, but it will allow you to take a few hits of poke damage without much concern.
Revitalize is the best option here on Karma because it augments her sheilds a considerable amount. I personally do not feel that any of the other options are worth it to take on Karma because you really want to be doing all you can to empower your shields. These will be what carry you through the late game so it is very important that we do everything we can to make them as strong as possible.
Rune shards on Karma are pretty simple, and are almost always the same every game. It can be tempting to go Ability Haste, but in order to make sure that you have a decent early game it is usually better to go double Adaptive Force shards. You'll get enough Ability Haste throughout the game, and early game without extra AP will feel notably weaker. I will usually go armor as my final shard unless the enemy team is very AP heavy in which case I will go for some Magic Resist.

Summoner spells

✶ ✶ ✶
SUMMONER SPELLS
✶ FLASH ✶ is an absolute must on Karma. While some champs with a speed-up like Karma's Inspire can get away with no flash, you will regret not having it on her. Inspire is not a dash, a blink, or any of the other cheeky moves that lets you get away with no flash. Flash is critical not just for saving yourself - you can not only use flash to jump in and finish off a kill with a Mantra Q, but you can also flash to body-block or shield your carry. This is a must in every single game.
✶ EXHAUST ✶ is the best summoner spell on Karma, in my opinion. I understand why people prefer ignite - it can definitely help snowball a game early! But in my experience, Exhaust is better for a number of reasons. For one, it slows down an enemy and lessens their damage to allow for you to actually land a W. This can be excellent for setting up ganks from your jungler or to handle one from the enemy. Exhaust also helps you keep relevancy in the late game because you can be peeling much harder for your carry than you could with Ignite.
✶ IGNITE ✶ is often what is recommended on Karma. You will be in range to ignite most anyone in a fight except perhaps a skittish support like a Soraka or Sona. You can easily clean up fights with Ignite and it is overall a great spell. I take it when the enemy team has some champs that may otherwise get away from a fight on low HP either because their mobility or the support pick or if I am confident I can crush a lane matchup. Just be mindful that your team doesn't have too many Ignites.
✶ HEAL ✶ is fine. It does what it says on the tin, and can be helpful for getting your carry out of a sticky situation. That said, there are much better options than heal for Karma, so unless you feel really very strongly that it is going to help you in a game, I'd skip it. If your ADC does not go the typical Heal/Flash, I usually ask if they want heal and if they aren't concerned over it, I'll take Exhuast.
✶ BARRIER ✶ , like Heal, is very situational. It is (at least in my opinion) a bit selfish to take on Karma as it doesn't benefit anyone but yourself. Sure, you likely won't die which is great for the team, but it is better to take peeling tools like Exhuast. Not to mention you have a shield that is pretty strong and comes up quite often.
✶ CLEANSE ✶ is another spell that I personally don't care for on Karma. I find that it is better suited on carries, because on support Karma you should be focused on helping your teammates with your summs and abilities more so than worrying about yourself. That said, I will VERY rarely take cleanse if its a really CC heavy, funky matchup I don't feel comfortable with, like a Lux + Viegar bot. Even then, you're team is probably still better served with an Exhaust, Ignite, or even Heal.

Ability Guide



PASSIVE ABILITY
Gathering Fire

"Karma reduces Mantra's current cooldown by 5 seconds for every enemy champion she damages with an ability."

✶ ✶ ✶
"Karma reduces Mantra's current cooldown by 5 seconds..." --> To understand this ability, let's start with what Mantra even is! Mantra, Karma's ultimate, is very special! Not only do you get this ability at level 1, but it also augments all of your other abilites. Mantra does nothing on its own, and instead you must pick between one of your three basic abilites to augment. Below, I go over each augement and tips on how to use them! Her passive allows her to reduce the cooldown on her ultimate, which means that you can be casting more augmented (read: more powerful!) versions of your abilities more often.

"...for every enemy champion she damages..." --> This is a very interesting and under-used part of Karma's passive! People often forget that you can get double the cooldown if you hit two enemies at once with your Mantra ability. This means that if you hit both bot laners with a Mantra Q, you would recieve 10 entire seconds of cooldown, and even more if you are able to double proc off the ability (more on this later!)

"... with an ability." --> Karma has two damaging abilities: her Q and her W. This means that either of these are able to work with your passive and reduce your ultimate cooldown. Very importantly, this portion of the passive was changed in patch 11.16, so if you are returning to Karma please be aware that her cooldown is no longer reduced with basic attacks like it used to be!

Ability Tips & Tricks
Karma gets her Mantra ultimate at level one. Your passive allows you to reduce the cooldown of your ultimate, which means you can be using it much more frequently. A five second cooldown is a big deal, and you can stack the reduction.
Only your damaging abilties can be used to reduce your Mantra cooldown. This means you will be relying on your Q and W abilities.
Using your Mantra reduces your Mantra, provided you hit. Manta abilties can proc twice, providing a total of 10 second cooldowns. This plus your un-Mantra-ed ability means a total of 15 seconds of cooldown on your ultimate if you land every component. You can see this double-proc in action in the video below.
All three of the Mantra versions of Karma's basic abilities (Soulflare, Renewal, and Defiance) all scale with Mantra's rank. This means you should still be leveling up your Ultimate at 6 - don't try to go for a sneaky extra Q rank or you will definitely regret it!
Since patch 11.16 Karma's basic attacks no longer reduce her Mantra cooldown. Her passive now procs only on abilities!
✶ ✶ ✶

Showing off the Mantra cooldown combo. First, an R+Q showing the start and end cooldown, followed by R+W also showing the double proc! Make sure to watch the R timer as abilties hit :)
✶ Ruined Karma, event exlusive Cursed chroma ✶

Q
Inner Flame
✶ | Range: 950 | Cooldown: 9 / 8 / 7 / 6 / 5 | Cost: 95 | ✶

"Karma fires a blast of energy, dealing * 70 / 120 / 170 / 220 / 270 (+40% of ability power) * magic damage to the first target hit and surrounding enemies, and slowing them by 35% for 1.5 seconds."

✶ ✶ ✶

"Karma fires a blast of energy " --> Karma's Q is a straight line skillshot with an okay range. That said, this skillshot is a little tricky to land, especially when you're just starting out on the champion. It's a thin, sometimes tough to hit skillshot. But I'll go over a few tips and tricks to land and make the most of this ability below!

"...dealing * 70 / 120 / 170 / 220 / 270 (+40% of ability power) * magic damage... " --> Poor Karma does not have the greatest AP ratios in the world, and this ability being her main damage should really exemplify the need for the transtion to the enchanter playstyle discussed in The Karma Transition. Just be aware that this ability scales off of AP!

"... to the first target hit and surrounding enemies... " --> This is one of the little details that separates decent Karmas from the great ones. Karma's Q is not a single target ability, but rather has a small zone that will splash damage onto nearby enemies. This means that there is a chance of being able to hit mutliple enemies without even needing your mantra!

"... and slowing them by 35% for 1.5 seconds. " --> This is another neat trick on Karma's abilities that I think is often overlooked in her kit by casual players. Most people are aware that the Mantra version of this ability has a slow on it, but you should not forget that even the regular verson will get you a brief slow - this can get you out of some sticky situations!

Ability Tips & Tricks
Karma's basic Q has a little slow on it, which means that it can be great for quick getaways. You do not need your Mantra to get this effect. I often like to turn on a pursuing enemy and throw out a Q to slow them and dissuade a chase. This is often enough to frighten away your foes and to get your teammates and yourself to safety.
Against champions with things like spellshields, windwalls, etc., it can be very helpful to use your basic Q to bait before hitting a Mantra Q. To pull this off, you will need to put on your best acting skills! This means you should run up with as much confidence as you would with a full Mantra Q. Be aggressive! Wait for the ability then throw out your Q. Even if you don't hit, you now still have a window of opportunity. I love using this trick against people like Braum, Morgana, Samira, etc. because your Q cooldown is shorter than whatever ability they would use to negate your damage.
The best tip on Karma's Q is to use the splash damage to your advantage. This is a critical skill if you want to keep up damage and support item stacking in difficult lanes. Sometimes, it can be very hard to walk up and W for poke, and good players will usually hide in minion waves to avoid Karma's RQ combo. But we can use these minions to our advantage! Hitting a Q onto a back minion wave will splash the damage onto nearby enemies. Just be careful you aren't stealing farm doing this or your ADC will definitely be upset!

✶ ✶ ✶


Karma Q, Inner Flame. Showing off the basic ability and how it can splash onto your enemies!
✶ Darkstar Karma, Rose Quartz chroma ✶
W
Focused Resolve
| Range: 675 | Cooldown: 12 | Cost: 50 / 55 / 60 / 65 / 70 |

"Karma tethers herself to a champion or jungle monster, dealing 40 / 65 / 90 / 115 / 140 (+45% of ability power) magic damage and revealing them for 2 seconds. If the tether remains unbroken, the target takes the same amount of damage again and is rooted for 1.4 / 1.55 / 1.7 / 1.85 / 2 seconds."

✶ ✶ ✶

"Karma tethers herself to a champion or jungle monster..." --> Karma creates a link between herself and an enemy. What is important here is that this also works for jungle camps! Don't get too far ahead of yourself though - jungle Karma isn't some secret pro strat. It's bad. So what benefit does the jungle monsters part of this ability have? Well, this actually gives Karma a bit of priority when it comes to helping take objectives like dragon, herald, and baron. You can approach these objectives with a much lower health than other supports may be comfortable with because with the Mantra bonus on your W (discussed below) you can get health back from these camps!

"...dealing 40 / 65 / 90 / 115 / 140 (+45% of ability power) magic damage..." --> Unforunately, the damage on this ability is nothing to write home about. But that's okay, because the point of this ability isn't damage but rather utlity. But just be aware that this scales with AP.

"...and revealing them for 2 seconds..." --> This is as great little bonus on this ability. Revealing an enemy is super helpful, especially in bot lane ganks where the enemy laner will often run to the bushes to drop out of vision so they can't be auto-attacked and abilites are harder to land. A reveal can be very helpful at keeping them in vision for those last few attacks. Remember, an enemy is immediately revealed when the W is cast. You do NOT need to complete the duration of the W to get this reveal bonus.

"If the tether remains unbroken, the target takes the same amount of damage again..." --> Karma's W actuially procs damage twice, once on cast and once if the enemy doesn't break the tether. When you cast this ability, a small zone indicator will appear. Both Karma and the target can break the tether by walking too far from the zone.

"...and is rooted for 1.4 / 1.55 / 1.7 / 1.85 / 2 seconds." --> Here is the real utlity on Karma's W! This ability is not hard CC, but it is good CC! A root is always useful, and can be great for setting up ganks. It's a bit harder to land than some other CC because the enemy can walk out of the zone, but it pairs wonderfully with Exhaust. This is almost a sure-fire way to get the enemy ADCs flash at least!

Ability Tips & Tricks
Your W procs is one of two skills that do damage and can therefore reduce your Mantra. Keep this in mind when your Mantra is on cooldown
W can be somewhat difficult to use when poking in lane because it is unlikely the enemy ADC or support will just stand still and let you root them. But that said, you can still use your W for poke! Simply walk up, hit W, and then feel free to back off. This will not only do damage, but also reduces your Mantra cooldown and procs your Spellthief's Edge. That's practically a free 20 gold!
Make sure that you are paying attention to the indicator on your W zone. It is not the best CC in the world, but as mentioned it can be paired with an exhaust to easily lock down an enemy, or at very least force out their summoner spells. A Flash + Exhaust + W can be a really good gank set-up!
✶ ✶ ✶

Karma W, Focused Resolve. Showing off the basic ability and and the range/what happens when the second proc does and does not hit.
✶ Tranquility Dragon Karma, Amethyst Chroma ✶


E
Inspire
| Range: 800 | Cooldown: 10 / 9.5 / 9 / 8.5 / 8 | Cost: 50 / 55 / 60 / 65 / 70 |

"Karma applies a shield (80/120/160/200/240 + 45% AP) on herself or a target allied champion for 2.5 seconds, which grants 40% bonus movement speed for 1.5 seconds."

✶ ✶ ✶

"Karma applies a shield (80/120/160/200/240 + 45% AP)... " --> Karma creates a shield that scales with AP. This skill will be your bread and butter on Karma, as it is really what makes her such a great support and helps her stay relevant in the late game. The AP scaling on this ability is nothing to write home about, and doesn't relly justify going an extremely AP focused build. Instead, we will always focus on Ability Haste. More on this in the Itemization tab!

"...on herself or target allied champion for 2.5 seconds..." --> Like all supports in League, Karma's shield can be used to protect herself or her allies. Personally, I don't use the self-cast and instead prefer to just mouse over myself as I am definitely someone who tries to do micro-movements, meaning my mouse cursor is always pretty close to my champ. But not everyone prefers playing this way, so if you would like to self-cast, LOL has a nice hotkey for doing so. Just press the Alt key!

"which grants 40% bonus movement speed for 1.5 seconds." --> This is Karma's signature move. There is a reason she is called a speed demon, and this is it! Karma's shields offer some serious speed boosts to yourself or your teammates (both, with Mantra!) for a pretty decent amount of time. 40% movement speed is massive, especially for the very immobile and the extremely. A Kayn or Hecarim with a Karma E is nearly unstoppable, and a quick speed boost can save a slow-poke ADC in a pinch. I personally think that the movement speed on Karma's shield makes it the absolute best enchanter shield in the entire game.

Ability Tips & Tricks
If you want to self-cast Karma's shield (or any self-castable spell in League), just hit the 'Alt' key in combination with your desired spell.
Don't be afraid to use your E to get back to lane quickly! I would usually advise against Mantra + E to get you and your ADC to lane early because the high Mantra cooldown, but you should be using your E to boost yourself back to lane. 40% movement speed is nothing to sneeze at, so make sure that you use it! Don't AFK on your way back to lane! Usually I'd focus on using it on your ADC if you recalled together. A Karma E speed-up can be the difference between getting the crashing wave and losing a ton of gold to the greedy tower!
✶ ✶ ✶

Karma E, Inspire, Showing off the basic ability and the movement speed bonus granted.
✶ Odyssey Karma, Aquamarine chroma ✶
RQ
Soulflare

| Bonus Damage: 40 / 100 / 160 / 220(+ 30% AP) | Detonation Damage: 35 / 140 / 245 / 350(+ 60% AP) |

" Inner Flame deals increased damage, and fires a larger blast that also explodes at maximum range. The explosion creates a field for 1.5 seconds that slows enemies within by 50%, which reptures to deal magic damage."

✶ ✶ ✶

" Inner Flame deals increased damage... " --> At a very basic level, your Mantra Q serves to increase the damage on your basic Q ability. That said, this damage only scales 30% with AP, so it still is likely to fall off quite hard late game.

"...and fires a larger blast that also explodes at maximum range. " --> When your Mantra Q reaches the end of its range OR hits an enemy unit it will explode into a circular blast zone. Just be aware that this ability does not go through minions. Any enemy unit will cause the RQ to explode, which includes things like Shaco boxes, Heimerdinger turrets, and Zyra plants. Just try to keep all of this in mind when lining up your shots!

"The explosion creates a field for 1.5 seconds that slows enemies within by 50%... " --> Once RQ is fired and has exploded, the circular blast zone on the ground will stick around for a second and half. What is really cool here is the slow ability, which can be amazing for damage or peel. Even just clipping the very edge of someone's character model with the zone will cause the slow to proc. See tips and tricks for more information on how to get the most out of this!

"...which reptures to deal magic damage. " --> I know what you are thinking - "Allison, you keep saying Karma has not-so-great AP ratios but this scales 60%! How can you say that's bad?" 60% is a pretty decent AP ratio, but I'm afraid that this is harder to proc than you think. It is amazingly rare that an enemy will hang around in your lingering blast radius zone long enough to take the detonation damage. Without CC, it is nearly impossible. The slow, while super helpful, is not really enough. 1.5 secconds is a long time, and almost all your enemies will be smart enough to leave before you can hit that sweet, sweet 60% scaling damage proc.

Ability Tips & Tricks
It's very important to always be mindful that Karma's Q (both Mantra and basic) is stopped by any enemy unit. This means that if you fire a Mantra Q and it clips a minion, a Shaco box, a Zyra plant or so on that it will explode on impact. You need to be careful where you are aiming or you may lose your entire Mantra on one silly little minion!
This is a great ability to shoot over walls! It has a very large imapct area, and pretty decent burst for finishing off really low enemies. It can also go over wall for sneaky poke. For example, when I'm on blue side I love waiting for the enemy to push in then shoot a Mantra Q over the wall near tri-bush to get in a great poke! (A little more on this in the early game section!)
One of the best ways to use Mantra Q is for peel. Because of the AOE slow, this can be a great ability for deterring a chase of enemies. To do this, simply turn back to whoever is chasing you and fire your Mantra. Even if it doesn't hit, this will still create a slow zone that will hopefully give you time to run, or to turn and fight!
Remember, RQ procs twice - once when it reaches the end of its range and once after 1.5 seconds. These both count as a proc to lower your Mantra cooldown. So if you manage to catch one person in both the initial impact and the detonation, 10 seconds of Mantra will be refunded.
✶ ✶ ✶

Karma RQ, showing off the explosion and detonation zone. I promise I missed the last one on purpose ;)
✶ Conquerer Karma ✶
RW
Renewal

| Root Duration Increase: 0.5 / 0.75 / 1 / 1.25 |

" Focused Resolve's root duration is increased. Karma heals for 17%(+1& per 100AP) of her missing health once on-cast, and once again once the tether lasts its full duration or the target dies while tethered."

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"Focused Resolve's root duration is increased." --> This part of the Mantra ability gives the root on Karma's W a small boost, from a half second to a full 1.25. Notably, this number does not scale! So no matter how much AP you have, your root duration increase will not increase. Only leveling up your Mantra will increase this number.

"Karma heals for 17%(+1& per 100AP) of her missing health..." --> Karma has a very small amount of healing in her kit, which was recently nerfed with the Season 12 durability patch. That said, don't underestimate how much this ability can do for you! A well timed Mantra Q can absolutely save your life in a pinch. People underestimate how much healing you can get out of this. On top of that and your mobility with items like Battlesong and your E speed up, this healing can be critical to making a clean getaway!

"...once on-cast, and once again once the tether lasts its full duration or the target dies while tethered." --> Karma's Mantra W procs twice, once immediately when it is cast and once when the duration ends. This can also happen if your target dies during the time that you are using the RW ability. This means that if your enemy keeps engaged with you, you will get to heal up twice! This is a nice little burst of durability that can often times keep you alive in a skirmish.

Ability Tips & Tricks
RW is my favorite ability for dives. I always like to say that if you're going to dive a Karma, she is going to take someone with her. How does this work? Essentially, you want to wait patiently for the diver to get in turret range - don't get spooked and fire out an RQ! Once they have dived you, RW them as quickly as possible and shield yourself (or your carry). This leaves the enemy with a choice: stay under tower and get rooted and probably die for a kill, or just leave you be. Rooting an enemy under tower and leaning the tower to do your dirty work is a great anti-dive move. Of course, this won't work on champions who have dashes up, but it is still very helpful to even out dives at the very least.
RW is not only a great anti-dive tool, but it is also very helpful for ganks. Don't be afraid to walk into range with the ganker and put an RW on them. Much like diving, this leaves them with a choice of staying in range and getting rooted or backing off to break the tether. This can be enough time for you to speed up yourself or your carry to make a getaway. This won't always work, but it is a good peel option especially when paired with a slow from a Q.
In small skirmishes, it can be very hard to get the second proc on your W. But that doesn't mean you should be scared to use the Mantra version, because the healing is often very helpful! The tether zone is not huge and pretty easy to break but don't be afraid to go for the Mantra W when you are in a small fight and need a little boost to come out on top! It is much easier to get the double proc during chaotic teamfights, but typically you want to save your Mantra for your shielding during full team brawls.
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Karma RW, showing off the range and the healing proc on the start and end of the spell.
✶ Winter Wonder Karma ✶
RE
Defiance

| Primary Bonus Shield: | Detonation Damage: 35 / 140 / 245 / 350(+ 60% |

" Inspire's shield is increased. Inspire spreads to surrounding allied champs at 30% effectiveness. Secondary targets recieve 12% bonus movement speed."

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"Inspire's shield is increased." --> This is a pretty straightforward buff to your E, giving a much stronger shield to the ally on which you apply it. But be aware, the increased shield strength is only for the ally you click on when you Mantra spell is cast! This can also be cast on yourself, but that is usually not the best option as your carry or other teammate will likely benefit more. In the video below I show off how the stronger shield looks when selecting different teammates and yourself!

"Inspire spreads to surrounding allied champs at 30% effectiveness. " --> This right here is what makes Karma such an amazing teamfight support. Being able to shield your entire team is massive! The shield will only be 30% effective, but do not underestimate how much of a boon this can be for your team, especially once you've started building items that buff your shield.

"Secondary targets recieve 12% bonus movement speed. " --> How amazing this peeling tool is! Not only can you give everyone on your team a shield to block a significant chunk of damage, but you can also speed everyone up! This is excellent in combination with Battlesong to either get on top of the enemy and destory them quickly, or to make a grand escape from a poor situation.

Ability Tips & Tricks
Be very mindful about who you are targeting with your Defiance. It is easy when you first start playing Karma to shield yourself on instinct and let anyone around you take a bonus shield. But the difference between primary target shield and secondary targets is pretty massive, so make sure that you are still thinking about who really needs the shield and movement speed the absolute most, not just defaulting to yourself or anyone near you. This can be tough in hectic teamfights, but just take some time to practice mindfulness in using Defiance!
Don't be afraid to use Defiance to get around the map. Using a quick RE to get you and your ADC up river for a fight breaking out mid is a perfectly valid way to use this skill. That said, just be aware of your timer and if you are going into a fight without a Mantra available. That said, by mid game you should have enough Ability Haste to be able to use Mantra pretty often. This also works for rushing back to lane, but be careful using this too early or you may find yourself arriving to lane with a great RQ setup but with Mantra on cooldown!
I've said it before and I'll say it again - Defiance is your main teamfight ability. It should be what you are spamming in every single teamfight. Do not fall prey to the obvious desire to RQ for damage, because doing damage is not your job on Karma. You should always be looking for shield opportunites first, cheeky RQs second!
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Karma RE, showing off the multiple shields - notice that the champion clicked on is the main target and recieves a much larger shield!
✶ Order of the Lotus Karma ✶

Itemization - Mythic Choices


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Shurelya's Battlesong

Shurelya's Battlesong is the go-to mythic on Karma. This will be what you build most games. What mekes Shurelya's so good on Karma? Well, it allows her to do what she already do best: shield and speed her team. Movement speed can be massive in League, and can be super useful for engage or disengage. Shurelya's procs every time that you shield, and not only offers movement speed to your shielded ally but to yourse lf as well! This means that you and your carry can get back to lane or to an objective faster, or you can run away from danger together! Additionally, the active on this mythic is massive! 30% movement speed for you entire team + movement from your Mantra E? You'll be flying across the map! This item is also helpful for ganking, as an E + Shurelya's passive can help get more immobile champs onto their lane opponent, making it easier to secure a kill or flash. Just be mindful that into some matchups, speed isn't quite enough. This is especially true if they have many mobile champs who can get on your team regardless, or if they are extremely poke heavy and forcing you from lane.

Things to consider when buying/using:
Is my team naturally mobile? Is theirs? Examples of "naturally mobile" champs that Battlesong may not help against include someone like Talon or Katarina. These champs can likely get on your carry and kill them before you are able to Battlesong them away.
Are mobility builds viable on the enemy team champs (such as Prowler's Claw)?
Which enemies are dead if we can get onto them, and which will still be able to escape even if we can speed to them? Who should we be focusing on?
Would my Shurelya's active be better used for engage or disengage?
Does the enemy team have a way to get on my carry even with Shurelya's? Can they reach us with long range poke abilities?
Is my team/carry still getting poked out? Would sustain be more useful here?

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Moonstone Renewer

Moonstone Renewer is actually my personal favorite mythic on Karma, but I feel it is a bit more situational than your bread and butter Battlesong. Moonstone is great against teams who are extremely poke heavy, or who have burn/DOT builds. This option makes it very easy to survive a lane against someone like Xerath, Velkoz, or even someone like a Soraka or Sona. You will not be able to match the damage of the former, nor the healing of the latter, but that's not really the point! Moonstone builds are focused on keeping your carry in lane and sustaining through difficult fights with your shields being the main focus with healing as an added bonus. Much like Battlesong, Karma can proc her Moonstone with extreme ease, especially in the late game. Because of the frequency of your shield, you should be able to hit the full 5 stack, 30% heal/shield power max on Moonstone in teamfights without much trouble.

Things to consider when buying/using:
Is my carry getting poked out of lane often? Do we often need to back for health?
How much are we losing when we back? Are we matching the enemy poke and having neutral backs, or are the enemy hard pushing and taking objectives?
Does the enemy team have a lot of burn/DOT damage? Moonstone can be a literal lifesaver against DOT champs like Zyra, Brand, or Heimerdinger or helpful against poke heavy lanes like Xerath or Seraphine
Does my carry have any self-peel, disengage or mobility? (Such as Vayne's Condemn or Lucian's Relentless Pursuit). Battlesong is still great for these champs, but less critical than for someone like Jhin or Miss Fortune.
Are there major threats I may need to get my carry away from?
How much lifesteal does my team have? On life-steal heavy teams, its usually better to go mobility, just as it's better to go healing on mobility heavy teams!

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Imperial Mandate

Imperial Mandate does technically work on Karma. Because Karma Q (both Manta and base) slows and your W is an immobilzing root, you can proc this mythic. But is it worth it? In my opinion, no. Mandate can be good for early game damage and snowballing, but it can be very difficult to proc if you are missing Qs. But the real problem with Mandate really boils down to the Karma Transtion (discussed later). Essentially, Karma becomes a shield focused enchanter in late game. Mandate encourages you to be using Mantra Q in team fights. But maybe you plan on just using your normal Q and W to proc Mandate. This is still not optimal, because it requires you to get incredibly close to the enemy, oftentimes putting yourself in unncessary danger and likely leaving your carry vulnerable. Personally, I'd recommend skipping this mythic on Karma!

Things to consider when buying/using:
Is the team severely lacking in magic damage? Will the bonus AP proc be enough to make a difference?
Does the enemy team have MR?
Can anyone on my team do enough burst damage to secure kills quickly with the mark applied? Will I have to stay in close combat long, or will we be able to 1-shot my mark target?
Can I consistently hit Qs without Mantra?
Is the enemy team mobile enough to easily escape CC and Mantra Qs?
Would speed or healing be more effective and consistent?

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Locket of the Iron Solari

Locket of the Iron Solari is an interesting mythic on Karma! Up front I will admit I do not have much experience running this item on Karma myself, but I have seen people run it before and have tried it at least a handful of times. Locket is a good item all around, and is helpful for full team utlity. In my opinion, this item really isn't too helpful on Karma as you already have a near full team shield (provided your team doesn't run in 4 different directions as soon as you get ready to Mantra E!). Locket is good for teaming with a team with extremely high damage output. It will also make you a little more tanky. Still, I feel like this mythic just isn't great on Karma.

Things to consider when buying/using:
Does the enemy team have champions with extreme burst damage? This can include champs with potentially devestating, full-team ultimates like Brand, Gangplank, or Diana?
Would my team benfit more from being able to speed away from the enemy with Battlesong or sustain with Moonstone?
Do we benefit from having someone being slightly more tanky? Do I need the resistances?
Can I afford the tradeoff of mana regen for MR?
Is the enemy team building shield reduction (like Serpent's Fang) or have champions with abilties that ignore shielding (such as Pyke ultimate)?
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Luden's Tempest

Luden's Tempest is a mage mythic. I personally would never purchase Luden's Tempest on support Karma for a number of reasons. For one, Luden's is much more expensive than Moonstone and Battlesong. 700 gold more! This is totally fine if you are playing mid-lane, where you are farming minions. But support Karma is not exactly swimming in gold, even if you are farming your Shard of True Ice with ease. The second reason Luden's isn't a great pick is because doing damage just is not your job on support Karma. It feels great to hit a massive Mantra Q with a damage item in your pocket, but this item is against the Karma Transition (discussed below). You will fall off late game, particularly in terms of damage. By mid-late game, you are an enchanter, and you get almost no value out of Luden's outside of maybe padding your KDA a bit. This item is a skip on support Karma.

Things to consider when buying/using:
Why am I playing Karma support to focus on damage? Where does it seem like the damage is lacking?
Would I be more useful going a support item to buff the damage on the rest of my team?
What is my plan for the mid-late game transition to an enchanter?
Would I be better fit playing a mage like Lux, Brand, or Vel'Koz this game?

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Itemization - General Guide


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Chemtech Putrifier

Chemtech Putrifier is hands down the best legendary item on Karma. Even if the enemy team doesn't have insane levels of healing, it is still likley that they have enough to warrant a purchase. Usually, I will build this item if even two of the enemy have healing, which, in modern league, is almost every game. Even on the 12.1x durability patch, it is still worth it. But the grevious wounds is not the only reason that Chemtech is appealing on Karma. Sometimes, people will go Staff of Flowing Water or Ardent Censer as their second item because it directly buffs team damage output. But what these builds neglect to consider is that the name of the game on Karma is ability haste. Karma's AP ratios are fine, but nothing to write home about. When thinking about scaling on Karma, you should be look at Ability Haste, not Ability Power . And Chemtech Putrifer offeres 20 Ability Haste! This is higher than any other standard enchater legendary, all of which are at 15 Ability Haste. Unless you are in a very specific situation, you should almost always look to pick up Chemtech Putrifier right after your Mythic.

Sometimes, I buy the Oblivion Orb before finishing my mythic against matchups like Yuumi or Soraka. But make sure that you finish the item, because the full item of Chemtech is leaps and bounds more powerful than the orb alone. Just remember, Chemtech Putrifier only procs when you shield someone other than yourself, but it gives both you and your partner the grevious wounds effect. So in line with our Karma philosophy, always be focused on buffing someone else, not yourself! Unforunately, Chemtech Putrifer doesn't offer heal/shield power, so we will have to pick that up somewhere else!

Pros

Offers great grevious wounds that can be critical in mid-late game
Applies grevious wounds to both yourself and a shielded ally, reducing the need for your teammates to waste valuable gold on healing reduction
Offers 20 Ability Haste! The highest of any enchanter legendary item. AH is a critical stat for Karma, even moreso than AP

Cons

Requires that you really put all of your focus on shielding allies, as the passive does not proc when you shield yourself. This is of course what you should be doing anyways, but it can be difficult to remember and focus your shields if you are newer to Karma/enchanter supports.
Gives no heal/shield power. This is a really important stat on Karma, as your shields and vision are your main contribution late game!

Staff of Flowing Water

Staff of Flowing Water is great on Karma, as it is on most enchanters. This is usually my go-to third item after my mythic and Chemtech Putrifier. What makes Staff so good, particularly on Karma? Firstly, it is another item that procs on healing or shielding, and being the shielding queen that she is, Karma can make optimal use of these types of items. The bonus AP damage is great to help buff your teammate and your abilities just a bit. But what makes Staff of Flowing Water so good on Karma is not the AP, but the Ability Haste. Staff of Flowing Water grants 20 ability haste for 4 seconds for you and a teammate on every shield! This is insane value, and will allow you to cycle through your spell rotation quickly and efficiently. This means multiple Mantra E's in teamfights and plenty of W and Qs to peel and protect. So while Staff of Flowing Water doesn't provide any base Ability Haste, the passive is fantastic and almost a must have on Karma. Also, Staff of Flowing Water offers 8% Heal/Shield power, which is a stat we are going to want to stack as well as Ability Haste.

Pros

Really great AP buff for your allies. Also helpful for yourself, but again, Karma's AP ratios are nothing crazy.
Ability Haste! 20 Ability Haste for you and an ally per shield! This is absolutely massive because again, Karma wants to really focus on Ability Haste items.
Every champion in the game benefits from Ability Haste, which makes it a little more broadly helpful than some other support legendaries
8% Heal/Shield power. This is an important stat on Karma

Cons

No base Ability Haste. The passive on this item is great, but you have to have shield up to activate it.
Offers less AP than both Chemtech Putrifier and Ardent Censer. AP may not be the main focus on Karma, but it is important to be aware that your AP will be a bit lower, effecting all of your ability stats.

Ardent Censer

Ardent Censer is not in a great state at the moment, in my opinion. It really feels like it is too situational and is simply outshined by other items like Staff of Flowing Water. I don't think that this is necessarily a bad buy on Karma, but it most definitely not a must-have like the previous two items discussed. Ardent Censer is wonderful if you have multiple teammates who rely on auto-attacks for their damage output. These are ADCs or champions like Master Yi or Quinn. In cases where I have a teammate like Kayle I may pick this up late game to support her level 16 power spike, for example. Just be mindful of who is on your team and you'll become more comfortable making the decision of whether Ardent is worth your precious gold each game or not. So while Ardent can be useful, I often find that I get more value out of other support items over this one. It's great for your ADC, but sometimes isn't optimal for the team as a whole. And remember, you're the team support, not just your ADC's pocket!

Pros

Great if you have multiple teammates who are auto-attackers for the main source of your damage. Also good if you have a hypercarry you really want to focus on buffing.
Offers the highest AP of any standard enchanter item. AP isn't the most important stat on Karma, but it can still be helpful in giving all of your abilties a little boost.
8% heal/shield power, an important stat on Karma

Cons

Fairly situational. Need to have a decent number of auto-attackers on your team or an extreme hyper-carry to really get value out of Ardent.
Offers no Ability Haste, which is the number one priority when looking for item stats for Karma.

Redemption

Redemption is one of my favorite support items. I think that this is an amazing pick on Karma and is often ignored. But taking a look at the stats on this item, it becomes very clear why this item is so great. For one, Redemption offers 15 Ability Haste, which is what we are looking for on Karma. But this item offers so much more than Ability Haste. The heal/shield power on Redemption is double that of every item in the game except Mikael's Blessing. Both of these items offer 16% heal/shield power, which is massive. In addition to all of these amazing stats, Redemption is just an overall helpful utility tool for your team. Any fight can be helped with a bit of extra health for your allies and some burn on the enemy and so Redemption is a valuable tool in almost all games.

Pros

Offers the highest heal/shield power available in the game (16%) matched only by Mikael's Blessing.
Decent amount of Ability Haste which is always something to be looking for on Karma
AOE heal as well as max health damage to enemies can help turn around fights and keep your carries up for longer.
Has a fairly decent range, meaning it is possible to help your allies without being right beside them to stay in ability casting range.

Cons

Very generalized support tool that lacks answers to specific team deficiencies such as a need for grevious wounds or anti-CC. Sometimes it is better to be general, but you can be missing out on some very important specific answers to enemy tactics that other items are better equipped to tackle.
Useless if not well positioned in a fight. If your team is pressured out of the AOE the item's value plummets
Offers no Ability Power

Mikael's Blessing

Mikael's Blessing is a very intersting item in that is one of very few options to respond to CC available to supports. This item also offers a fantastic 16% heal/shield power as well as 15 Ability Haste, two things we really want to see for Karma! This item also offers 50 Magic Resist. This makes this item wonderful against very AP heavy teams as well as obviously being great against CC. That said, Mikael's is a little difficult because you need to have a sort of CC sweet spot. What do I mean by this? To consider Mikael's the enemy obviously must have a enough CC to be a threat to be useful, but this item also has a 120 second cooldown! Too much CC and this item just becomes not impactful enough compared to some others that could better help with peel. I personally only really go Mikael's if there is really specific CC that my carry needs cleansed for them and otherwise tend towards Redemption. Mikael's definitely has a place in a Karma build though.

Pros

Great to help protect carries against CC that may be shutting them down and ruining their carry potential
Has a slight bit of healing for the cleansed ally allowing you more time to shield and set up picks for them. It is not a lot of healing, but any sustainability is good sustainability!
Grants some very good stats such as 16% heal/shield power, 15 Ability Haste, and 50 Magic Resist.

Cons

Requires some pretty precise timing and awareness to get the full value. This is not so much a bad thing as something to keep in mind. This item takes a little practice to use efficiently!
Decent number of stipulations on what CC can be cleansed. Some of the most brutal CC such as surpression and airborne cannot be cleansed with Mikael's
If there is too much CC coming at your team it can sometimes drown out the usefulness of this item. Have to find the CC sweet spot.

Vigilant Wardstone


Vigilant Wardstone is another one of my absolute favorite items and it usually always competing with Redemption for my final item slot. This is for a couple reasons, the main one being that as I discuss throughout this guide, Karma falls off late game. It is the sad truth, but that does not mean we stop being useful. Late game, you can bring a great deal of value to your team through warding (see Warding and Late Game for more information on what makes Karma so good at warding). Vigilant Wardstone allows you to have a much better control of map vision especially when multiple potentially game deciding objectives are available at the same time. This item also offers some very nice stat boosts, most importantly 12% to our Ability Haste.

Pros

Allows for multiple control wards to be active at once, as well as more stealth wards. This can be invaulable when towers start to go down and vision becomes an increasinly valuable resource.
Grants 12% bonus to numerous important skills, but most importantly is Ability Haste. Since we focus on building AH on Karma, 12% boost with the rst of your AH items is a significant boost!
Extra control wards are not just helpful for providing your team with vision but also for keeping vision control by denying the enemy team their wards.

Cons

Much like Redemption, this item is fantastic but misses out on filling more specfic niches that may be needed for your team that something like a Miakel's or an Ardent may be better for.
Forces you to take up 2 items in your inventory just for vision items. This can be very difficult as games stretch on and you find yourself struggling to keep up with a support who has an item with team effects active
Recent meta of Umbral Glaive can make it hard to keep your wards actually on the board, even if you have more of them. Sometimes it can feel like a waste of gold when your control ward is being immediately cleared by a Pyke or a Senna support simply walking near it.



Zhonya's Hourglass is an overall great item because of its extremely powerful stasis effect. Becoming invulnerable and untargetable is extremely helpful in avoiding situations where you would surely be one shot as a squishy enchanter. That said, this item does not offera whole lot on support Karma, and since we have such limited item slots it is something you should really only go in the very late game when the enemy getting a pick on you means that the game may be over. In general I think there is almost always something that will be more useful to the team you could buy, but there are instances where surviving critical teamfights is the most important thing you can do.

Pros

Stasis is extremely powerful and saving yourself from a particularly deadly enemy ability can help turn a teamfight and perhaps even the game.
Offers 15 Ability Haste as well as a little armor and Ability Power

Cons

Takes up one of your very limited item slots for an item that offers very little to your team overall. Often, this slot could be better used on buff/debuffs
Though the armor and Ability Power are useful on Karma they are not as useful as items with stats like heal/shield, mana regeneration or higher Ability Haste stats

Cosmic Drive

Cosmic Drive is an item I've seen picked once and a while on Karma support, and I can certainly understand why. Cosmic Drive has insane Ability Haste and Movement Speed, both of which are fantastic on Karma. It is an incredibly fun item to play on Karma, but unforunately I very rarely see it fitting into a support build. This is not just because of the cost but also because there are just so many better items on Karma. This item feels great early game because of our compartively high damage output but as Karma begins falling off late game this item just isn't really worth the investment.

Pros

Amazing amount of Ability Haste, which is the most important stat to be building on Karma, even over AP
Movement speed is also a great stat on Karma because it allows for quick RQ pokes and allows you to move quickly back to safety
Admittedly, this item is insanely fun on Karma. Just the absolute best, turns you into a speed demon. But speed demon AP one shot Karma is probably better saved for ARAM games.

Cons

Very expensive for a support item.
Karma's damage falls off very hard late game, so going full mage items on her is rarely viable from the support role
Takes up an inventory spot and gold that could be better spent on team buffing items

Dark Seal

Dark Seal is an item that some AP support choose to go when they are snowballing the lane because of its ability to stack and further empower your AP based abilites. In that sense, this item makes perfect sense on Karma. After all, she is a champion who is great at snowballing and all of her skills are based on AP. But because we are focusing more of Ability Haste on Karma than AP it is not as powerful on her as many other supports. This item is not necessarily bad on Karma, but any of the above items will often provide more value. Additionally. because I play Karma with the express goal of protecting the team carry I don't enjoy an item that punishes me for say, eating an Ashe arrow aimed right at my ADCs face so they can get away.

Pros

Very nicely compliments Karma's ability and desire to snowball lanes in the early game
Stacks of AP become quite significant after you've collected a few. While we prefer Ability Haste on Karma, AP is by no means a bad stat to stack on her.

Cons

Does not provide much for us outside of AP and a little health, neither of which are major concerns on Karma
Punishes you when you have to bite the bullet for a teammate. Not to say that dying should be something that you are doing often, but I just don't feel it fits my own personal goals on Karma.
Once again, this takes up a precious inventory space that could be used for teamwide buff items.



Itemization - Boots


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Boot Options

I know what you’re probably thinking – a whole section just on boots, Allison? Well, yes, because I wanted to have a space to talk just a little bit about how amazing and important boots are on Karma. So important that is sometimes better to finish your tier two boots on Karma before your entire mythic. This is because Karma is all about speed as well as Ability Haste, and since we are most often going to go Ionian Boots of Lucidity it is easy to get some quick and cheap Ability Haste. That said, you have a few different options of boots and I want to give some perspective on when options besides Ionian Boots are viable.

Ionian Boots of Lucidity

Ionian Boots of Lucidity will almost always be the boots you want to go on Karma for a couple of reasons. For one, these provide a good boost of Ability Haste for relatively cheap. On top of that, this item gives summoner spell haste, which is an interesting stat! This means that the cooldown on our summoner spells (Flash and Exhaust/Ignite) is going to be shorter! This is not a massive change, but it can definitely help with peel for both yourself and your carry. Summoner spells are powerful tools, so being able to cast them more is always a plus! Ionian Boots are fantastic on Karma, and as mentioned above it can sometimes be useful to finish this before your entire mythic because for Karma, boots can be their own power spike.

Mercury's Treads

Mercury's Treads These are a specific case type of boots. Movement speed in very important to Karma, especially in a teamfight. That said, this is not more important than Ability Haste. So why would you ever go Mercury Treads over Ionian Boots? In some cases, the enemy team’s CC can be much too oppressive for you to be effective on Karma. It is critical that you are casting your shields as often as possible in a teamfight, but if you are getting CCed and dying too quickly then the Ability Haste is pointless! So, if you are facing down a team with very scary CC consider going Mercury Treads and focusing on picking up some higher Ability Haste items later on.

Plated Steelcaps

Plated Steelcaps are used for essentially the same reason that Mercury’s Treads are, but for teams with a heavy emphasis on physical damage. This is great if the enemy team for some reason goes all AD because it will simply give you ridiculous durability in fights. This is because, like in the case of Mercury’s Treads, having Ability Haste will get you no where if you are melted in a fight before you can even cast your abilities! This is definitely a pocket pick, so make sure to carefully consider the relative strength of the enemy team and their damage output before picking this over Lucidity Boots.

Sorcerer's Shoes

Sorcerer's Shoes are not bad on Karma but are really only if you plan to play her mid-lane. They are great for giving magic penetration, but they do little to actually help support Karma. These boots are similar to building Luden’s: they are built for mage Karma, and you are not playing mage Karma (or if you are, this might not be the best itemization guide for you!). Support Karma’s job is to support, and Sorcerer’s Boots are intended to increase your damage which is not where we are putting our focus in this role. While this pick will not necessarily get you pinged by your team, it is really not quite as good as your other options.

Early Game


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Getting Started

The number one rule to remember for any early game is of course that the game begins as soon as you load in, not when minions or jungle camps spawn. Make sure that you grab your Spellthief's Edge and two Health Potions to start and get out there without wasting time! Remember, always order your Doordash before you queue!

One of my favorite things to do when there is no invade activity happening is to try to land a cheeky Mantra Q before getting to lane. On red side, this usually means going into the dragon pit and throwing a Mantra Q into the tribush or behind the enemy red. On the blue side, just a quick Mantra over the wall into the enemy blue can get you some free damage and money. Just make sure you bring an ally along to proc your spellthief's edge!

Invades

This quick start is extra important on Karma, because we have surprisingly good tools for invades. What do I mean by this? Well, remember that Karma is unique in that she starts the game with her ultimate! You do not quite have the skill at invades as an engage like Blitzcrank or Pyke, however your Mantra Q can be very good at creating a large are of crowd control with the slow ability. Just remember that you only want to encourage an invade on Karma if your team has someone else with a very strong invade skillset because while Karma can definitely be a great support during these endeavors, she will rarely be able to get value out of invade without some extra firepower backing her up!

Invade positioning
If your team is looking to invade, your positioning should obviously be with them! But to get a bit more specifically, you want to stick close to your ADC, usually a bit in front of them because if things go poorly, it is better you bite the bullet than them -this will be better in the long run and it will protect from early game mental boom! If you are aware of the enemy positioning (say, if you saw them move into pixel brush in the river) don’t be afraid to take a step up and hit a Mantra Q! Be mindful of good early engagers, but in general you should be safe throwing out your RQ which then gives your team options, and their team choices.

Because your RQ will slow the enemies down, hitting a group of them will force the enemy into an unfavorable position. They will have reduced movement and take a good chunk of damage, meaning that they will either need to quickly look to return damage or flee. This also gives your team the option to jump on the slowed enemies and look for a pick or to walk away if the team’s counter-engage is looking a bit scary.

If an invade does go poorly, my best advice is to take a second to just breathe, stretch and refocus. It happens to everyone occasionally. But because Karma is such an early game snowballing champion you absolutely cannot afford to get tilted early. If that means you need to mute all for that game, do it. It's not worth getting upset with your team and losing your biggest window of opportunity on Karma.

Ability Leveling

One of the most important parts of the early game is making sure that you take the correct abilities! Karma has very little flexibility in her ability leveling, so it is critical that you get it correct. Below, I've gone over each ability and some thoughts on starting/leveling it.

That said, here is some notes about ability leveling: In almost every game you will always want to go Q->E->W, leveling your ultimate whenever possible. I have seen people who are new to Karma sometimes skip leveling their ultimate at level 6 because Karma already has her ult, after all! But this is quite possibly one of the biggest mistakes you could make on Karma because your Mantra abilities scale with Mantra rank, not the rank of the ability being augmented. Always put a point into your Mantra whenever any other champion would be leveling their ult!

Starting Ability Options
Inner Flame (Q) is almost always what you will want to start on Karma. It is best in lane early and is very helpful for invades as previously discussed. This is also the best for helping with leashing, though I would never recommend using your RQ to help leash- just a regular Q is enough! This is because at the start of the game your Mantra cooldown is 40 seconds with no cooldown available until your Q comes back up. So what does this mean? It will take you less the 40 seconds to walk to lane, and you want to start bombarding the enemy with RQs as much as possible. Additionally, it’s good to have the full force of the ability available if the enemy is waiting for you on the way to lane.

Focused Resolve (W) is the absolutely worst start on Karma, and I would never recommend it. The only time I have ever started W was an accident and it was not a very fun experience! This ability offers very little on its own and really needs to be used in combination with others to be useful. It can be good to get a bit of extra poke in lane but it is less effective than Q and is very dangerous without an E to defend yourself or make a fast escape.

Inspire (E) is very rarely the correct choice for first spell, but it can be helpful in niche cases. Say, for example, your team is invaded on and you are caught by surprise. A Mantra E can be helpful to get your teammates out of that sticky situation relatively unscathed, but this is only for very rare instance. You will be better off starting Q in almost every game.[/indent]

Playing the Lane - Getting the Most From Abilties

So now that we’re leveled and completed our leashing, its time to hit the lane and start snowballing your ADC! But before beginning, I want to point out that there is no one single “correct” way to play a lane, because winning lane can be achieved in a number of ways. I tend to play a fairly aggressive Karma which can be hard if you are just starting out on her! But don’t be discouraged – just like any champion the more you play the more comfortable you will become pushing the limits of what said champion will do. That said, there are a few things to practice for each skill that will accelerate your Karma gameplay. Since you will not be using your Mantra as much early game, I want to specifically focus specifically on getting value out of the unempowered, basic versions of each of Karma's abilties.


Inner Flame (Q)

One of the biggest differences in people who play Karma often and those who don’t is their ability to hit unempowered Qs consistently. This is not particularly difficult once you get the hang of it, but it is a relatively skinny skill shot that will take some time to get comfortable with. Once you’re more comfortable with the range you can begin practicing slightly more difficult techniques, such as using minions to hit enemies with Qs splash damage (without stealing CS and making your ADC cry, of course!)
How to improve As obvious as it sounds, the best way to improve this skill is just to practice. Many people playing Karma have a bad habit of holding their Q until they can use it in tandem with Mantra, but this is a huge mistake that will make you miss out on tons of damage in lane and slow down your support quest progress. Don’t be afraid to throw out unempowered Qs sometimes, especially if the lane is particularly slow. Just using the projectile more will get your comfortable with the range and hitbox, which is the biggest obstacle here.

Focused Resolve (W)

I think the biggest problem I see with W is that people just don’t use it! It is common for people to hold their W to land a great root, but think about the value you are missing out on. Assuming you are safe from a surprise gank because of your stellar map awareness, what value do you get from holding W? Karma’s W is very difficult to engage a fight with, especially if you are at the point in lane where both ADCs are focused more on farming than fighting. You could be using these windows of opportunity to get value from your W, especially when the enemy support has already used their cooldowns trying to poke or engage. When the lane is relatively frozen, I often like to go up and W the enemy ADC while they are trying to last hit. Why is this worth it? A couple of reasons: for one, it will grant you gold for your support quest, which is already a huge win. But more than that, it forces the enemy ADC to make a choice between autoing you in response and last-hitting minions. Remember, you want to be doing all you can to help your ADC get ahead, and that includes messing up your enemy’s farm! Every little bit counts, and you get a nice bit of gold for your effort.
How to improve Try to start looking for those sorts of ‘lulls’ in action in lane when both ADCs are focused in on farming. Keep a close eye on the enemy support’s cooldowns and try to create windows of opportunity for harassment. When you are first starting out, make sure that you ALWAYS have E up if you plan on using W to harass as it will make you much safer. I would never recommend on using Mantra W in this situation, because you want to keep your Mantra up in case a fight breaks out. W in lane is really not about doing a lot of damage, it is all about being as much of a nuisance as possible. Letting your W go unused while you wait for the perfect root is a major waste of resources and will make you lose out on a ton of gold!

Inspire (E)

Your shield is one of the trickiest abilities to get the hang of, not because it is tricky to hit (it’s a shield, after all!) but because it is one of the most decision-making intensive parts of Karma’s kit. In lane early game you will not really be using RE unless you and your ADC as in danger and need to get out fast or need a boost to push you to victory in a skirmish. For the most part, you will be poking with RQ, leaving you with only one shield. This means you will have 2 key decisions in every skirmish, poke, and so on. The first decision will be to shield before or after the engage. This means that, for example, if your Draven wants to go in and do a bit of damage, you can either boost him to get in quickly and block some of the initial retaliation damage, or you can save your E for after to speed him away and discourage a counter engage or to protect from retaliatory damage. Both of these have their own benefits and drawbacks, and it is important to be thinking about them. The other important decision will always be who to shield in a fight. This is usually an easy answer in a 2v2 – shield whoever is in more danger. But it becomes more difficult when you add in your jungler or midlaner for example, and even more complicated when you factor in the shield before or after decision. There is much more thought that goes behind Karma’s shield than most people realize because of the speed up and its immense flexibility!
How to improve I find that usually after losing a fight, its best to use the time I’m enjoying the grey screen to quickly run through those two questions in my mind. When did I shield, before or after? Which target did I pick to protect? Consider what the fight could have looked like if you’d made the opposite choices. Would it have changed the outcome? The answer will sometimes be no, but it is very important that you begin thinking about all of these possibilities or else you will fall into the trap of mindlessly shielding whenever someone takes damage. This isn’t necessarily always a bad thing, but because Karma’s versatility you do not want to miss out on opportunities to make better and smarter plays by taking advantage of the incredible speed ability on E. The best way to get better at this skill is to hone your decision making skills by critically examining the decisions you did and didn't make and how they could have affected the outcome.


I was struggling to fully write out what I meant about the shield decision making, so I hope this flowchart will do a bit better at illustrating the two big unempowered E decisions you will be faced with playing Karma! For each options I have included pros and cons, represented by green and pink boxes respectively. In discussing self vs teammates, I am referring to in laning phase with 2v2s and 2v3s. Bigger fights usually call for Mantra Es


Playing the Lane - Positioning and Play

If you are looking for a quick and dirty of Karma's role in lane, it is boiled down in the simplist terms to harrassment. You want to be constantly harrassing the enemy bot lane with as many Mantra Qs and Ws as you can. Your damage output is very high compared to many supports in the early game. For this reason, Karma in the early game plays more like a mage than your typical enchanter support. Karma wants to be aggressive and bully lane, so try to focus on doing that while minimizing danger to yourself and your ADC using your shields and Exhaust.

In general, I like to focus very hard on maintaining brush control in lane when I’m playing Karma. This can apply a lot of pressure to the enemy because an early RQ does a lot of damage and can really mess up the enemy ADC’s farming focus. This will also force the enemy support to either step up and contest or play much safer. Be careful against champions like Pyke who can very easily contest your brush dominance, but for the most part you should be able to hold the brush throughout most of the lane.

Just like with any other support, you want to make sure that you are always parallel or even a little ahead of your ADC in lane. A lot of people talk poorly about enchanters because the stereotype that they play ridiculously far back and just cast their buffing spells from safety. But this is just silly – any good support will be playing further up and in line with the ADC regardless of the champions class. Even some engage supports sit AFK behind their tower sometimes! It is all a matter of understanding and being comfortable in the lane, and as you grow more comfortable playing a squishier champion close up you’ll only continue to improve.

One other important note about positioning on Karma is that you need to be very aware of where the minions are in the lane when you plan on hitting a Mantra Q poke. There is nothing in the world more frustrating than lining up what you think is going to be a perfect Mantra Q only to have a minion pulled towards you and block the entire shot. Just try your best to be aware of the wave positioning when going for a Mantra.

Though I’ll talk more about warding later on, I want to quickly touch on Karma’s ability to zone off parts of the lane to deny vision. Say, for example, the enemy support is moving to ward tribush and you really don’t want to allow them vision in that area. What can you do before resorting to an all-out skirmish for vision control? It’s a great idea to throw out a Mantra Q onto the ground besides the tribush where the enemy would have to move to place their ward to prevent them from stepping forward. This may scare them off, and if it doesn’t it will give your ADC time to join you to fight for control while they are waiting out your Mantra zone (or if they choose to step in it, you’ve laid down a good amount of damage to hopefully turn the skirmish favorably to you.) If you are not in any kind of immediate danger, never give up prime vision locations for free! Try to contest, even if it is just a bit of harassment.


Early game – Objectives and ganks

When it comes to early game objectives, Karma is wonderful for helping secure first dragon. This is because of your ability to help your ADC push the lane with your Q ability, as well as your ability to chunk out the enemy team to a point that they cannot safely contest. When it comes to actually taking dragon, rift, etc., make sure to position yourself so you are close enough to your team to be safe but also far out enough that anyone on the enemy team wanting to contest the objective will run the risk of being hit with your W and turned on by your team. You can use your Mantra Q to burn through objectives faster, but I’d always recommend letting your other teammates handle the damage while you save Mantra in case a fight does break out. This is of course dependent on your knowledge of the enemy jungler’s location, so don’t feel like you can never use Mantra on objectives. Just try to be mindful of the potential worst case scenario at all times and prepare to handle it.

As far as ganks go, it is quite similar to taking objectives. You have a lot of utility, and you should be using that to peel for your ADC and keep them safe from the enemy jungler. In my experience, it is often better to physically place yourself between the ganking jungler and your ADC, using your W, exhaust and Q slow to dissuade a chase while speeding up yourself and your carry with Mantra E. Ganking is highly situational, but the general rule of thumb is to ask yourself: Can my ally escape alone? What tools can I use to dissuade the enemy from fighting, and which enemy is the biggest threat I should be targeting? Once the enemy has been debuffed with my abilities, do we win if we turn and fight?

Running through this checklist in your head will not always guarantee that you stay safe from a gank, but it will at very least help guide your decision making in terms of ability use to give you a better chance of winning the engage. Sometimes, your ADC will die. Sometimes you will die. And it will be your fault sometimes, and other times it won’t! The most important thing to remember for dealing with ganks on any champion is to keep a level head both during and after. Sometimes it can be frustrating to have your ADC throw away your amazing peel and still get themselves killed, but pointing it out them in chat and starting a fight with your own team will definitely make winning fights against the enemy infinitely harder.

Early Game - Summary

The general gist of the early game on Karma is that you want to harass as much as possible. You start the game as more of a mage than anything because of your very intense harass from your Mantra Q and your W poke. You should really be focusing on winning the lane and trying to set the enemy ADC as far behind as possible. Karma is an amazing early game champ and she has the ability to snowball lanes easily. Make sure that you are being smart about the trades you take and how you utilize your E. Warding is absolutely critical in the early game, especially prior to neutral objectives. In early game skirmishes, it is okay to focus on trying to output damage with your Mantra Q, just be sure you save peeling abilities for your allies. In the next section I will discuss the mid-game transition from a mage playstyle to an enchanter support style.

The Karma Transition


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Mage to Enchanter

Time for the long awaited discussion of the Karma Transition! I’ve said many times throughout this guide that Karma is a very unique champion, and it is not just because of her kit’s inherent versatility. What makes Karma really special is the fact that while only being one champion she plays as two completely different classes on champion throughout the course of the game.

Why Transition Playstyles?

In the early game section, I talked a lot about how your job is to being firing our RQs often and to be harassing the enemy to chunk them out of lane. Karma’s early game damage is incredibly significant when compared to other supports, and you should be focusing on using this to your advantage to snowball a lane. But what happens after laning phase is over?

The unfortunate truth about Karma is that she falls off. In my threats section I discuss in more detail why champions like Yuumi and Sona are a pain for Karma late game because they outscale her insanely well. Even champions like Janna can outscale a Karma when it gets to late game. So does this mean we give up as soon as the game starts to drag on? Of course not! It simply means that we must adjust our playstyle to keep playing to Karma’s strengths as they evolve throughout the game.

How to Transition

In early game, your focus should be on damage output and snowballing, but late game your job is to peel and protect. I will discuss this in a little more detail in the Late Game section below, but it is so critical to understand that you will have to adjust your playstyle as the game stretches on. This is why buying damage items on Karma support is often such a bad idea – early, your Mantra Q feels very powerful and out damages a lot of other support abilities. But your damage will fall off late game, both because you lack the money to go full AP like a midlaner and because it really leaves your team out to dry late game. Karma is a very diverse champion who can play many roles (mid, top, support and sometimes even APC!) but in order for this to work you must A) be very accurate and skillful with using the entirety of your kit with unforgiving accuracy and B) have enough money to support this playstyle! This just is not realistic for support. So what can we do?

The very core of the Karma Transition concept can be easily simplified by thinking about what ability we want to Mantra. In the early game, it is almost always going to be Q because you are all about chunking and harassing. Late game, it is our job to take full advantage of the support items and our peel ability to keep our teammates with better damage output up and alive through the use of Mantra E. Of course, this concept is more complicated in practice, but this is the very boiled down version of what I mean when I discuss this idea.

You will still be using Mantra Q after the transition, but as teams begin having all out brawls as opposed to small lane skirmishes you will need to begin considering focusing on peel instead of damage. Remember, your Mantra Q may lay down some nice damage, but will chunking one or two targets be more useful in a fight than giving your hypercarry Vayne a massive shield and speed boost while also protecting your other teammates? The answer is usually no. We want to do everything in our power to keep our teammates up and outputting damage. While it may not get you an exciting pentakill montage, never underestimate the power of a well placed Mantra E to win a teamfight or even an entire game.

When to Transition

Of course, there will not be a big blinking indicator on screen that says “Time to transition!”. This is something you simply have to become comfortable with as you play Karma more. My best tip for getting a hang of this transition is to look at the relative sizes of fights as the game progresses. In a 2v2 lane skirmish, your damage can be hugely significant. But as the game goes on an fights start to go beyond 2v2s you may want to consider putting your focus on peel and using Mantra E to not only get the best use of your ultimate but also to utilize Karma’s amazing ability to proc support items like Staff of Flowing Water and Battlesong.

Late Game


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Fighting the Fall Off

So, we’ve officially made our transition from early game mage Karma to late game enchanter support. In my personal opinion, this is the hardest part of any game on Karma. In general, you want to rush to end games as quickly as possible when playing this champion but of course that will not always be possible. The main focus here is going to be keeping our team up and fighting for as long as possible so that we can win out large teamfights and take objectives. Below I will go over some important late game responsibilities that will help you stay relevant despite Karma’s natural late game fall off.

Warding

Every support should be focusing on warding throughout the game of course, but having exceptional vision control in the late game can help make up for some of the gaps in Karma’s utility late game. Karma is very good at keeping vision control because of your natural speediness and ability to get away from any enemies who may be lurking in the bush you want to ward!

In late game, I would advise putting as much emphasis as possible on keeping your wards fresh and relevant because outside of teamfight peel this is the most value that you can offer your team. This is why I often like to go Vigilant Wardstone as my final item. Make sure that you are taking every opportunity possible to refresh and reset your wards – remember, your enemy is on the move which means your wards should be too!

It is critical that you are there first to get to objectives so that you can set up the best wards possible as well as clearing any enemy wards that may already be placed. Early warding around objectives can lead to making extremely valuable picks and makes winning teamfights over objectives easier. Additionally, having vision on the enemy jungler is extremely important to prevent a potential steal, so you want to make sure that you are present first and able to place to optimal wards to watch for all potential pathing options.

Finally, don’t forget the value of de-warding. Just like Karma is great at placing wards because of her movement speed shield she is also great at dewarding for the same reason! After activating your Oracle Lens you can use your shield to cover more area. This is even more efficient if you bring an ally along who can help destroy the wards while you keep moving to search for more.

Teamfights

Towards the late game there will be a lot more emphasis on teamfighting, which means you’ll have to make sure that you are making the transition into an enchanter-style support at this point. Your main goal in every teamfight is to keep your carries alive and fighting so that they may output as much damage as possible. This means that its all about using your shields and other utility to give the absolute best peel possible. A good tip here to remember is that your RE shield gives the most benefit to whoever is the initial target. So, make sure that you’re not just defaulting to placing the shield on yourself or whoever is closest to you at the time the ability becomes available. Be mindful about who you are focusing on! In addition to your RE, you should be looking to use your W to peel the most important targets. This ability can be very useful in catching immobile carries, or to slow down a very tanky target with repeated casts so your teammates can burn through their health bar. The best way to identify major targets besides simply looking at the scoreboard is assessing who (if anyone) is left alive after a teamfight as well as who seems to be doing the most to prevent your carries from carrying!

Warding


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Warding on Karma


Before discussing the specifics of warding for blue and red side, I wanted to reiterate some of the things I have mentioned before about warding on Karma. Because of her ability to self-peel Karma has an easier time placing wards deeply without the need of an ally in case things go poorly. Of course, it is always better to ward with an ally, but Karma is a little safer than most because of her utility.

In general, if you are caught warding alone you should turn and immediately retreat. In some cases, you may feel confident you can win a 1v1 but take account of where you are before picking a fight. Are you deep in enemy territory? Do you have vision on the other members of the enemy team? Can my team get to me and back me up if I need them quickly? If you are unaware of the positioning of the enemy it is entirely possible, they are right behind the person you were going to fight, quickly turning your 1v1 to a potential ambush. I am not saying you can never 1v1 because Karma can hold her own in a duel, only that it is very rarely worth dying to get vision on enemy jungle entrances or camps. Always have an escape plan before going to ward alone.

When you are looking to retreat from a warding mission, the first rule of thumb is not to panic. Unless you are in immediate danger of being hard CCed or one shot, you most likely do not need to immediately flash. Instead, try to immediately run away by casting an RQ to create a zone of slowing while speeding yourself up with E. If they do chase, immediately place a W on the closest enemy to force them to either slow their pursuit of risk being rooted. If they are able to catch up to you, this is a great place to use QW to gain back some health and to once again root the enemy so you can E away.

But what if you are caught warding with an ally? The same general strategy as above applies but instead of going for an RQ try to hit the first enemy with an unempowered Q and use Mantra E on yourself and your ally, placing the main shield on whoever is in most danger of being caught. Even if you do not hit the Q there is a chance that the enemy may try to dodge it, slowing them down. If you do hit, remember that even unempowered Q slows. The same W principle applies here as it did for being caught out alone. If you have a Battlesong, never be afraid to use it for disengage in these situations.
Dewarding

Karma is a champion who is uniquely good at getting the most use out of an Oracle Lens because of her speed boost shield. To perform dewarding most efficiently you will want to have an ally come along so they can kill the wards for you. This will let you speed boost yourself to cover the most ground possible. One very important part of dewarding is not to do it aimlessly. What do I mean by this? When you are looking to deward try to have a plan in place before hitting your lens. Think about where your enemy may have wards. Where would you ward if you were the enemy support at that moment? What areas would be your top priority? Check those places first. This also gives you a chance to plan your pathing efficiently and not waste time running around in places that people rarely ward, or checking areas that are already covered by a control ward. If you are with someone else and you hit your lens at the same time make sure you separate enough to get use of the full range of both lenses.

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Warding Maps


These maps should provide a general idea of the best spots to ward for various situations whether you are on red or blue side. Remember, you want to really be focusing on getting vision on those neutral objectives before the enemy team so always try to give yourself enough time to sweep and lay down fresh wards before fights over objectives break out.

Blue Bot Side Warding

✶ Example of blue side wards for the bot lane. Below I have explained the key in detail, but this is not an exhaustive list of every possible ward location in the bot side, but following this general guide should keep you relatively safe from the most common gank and ambush locations. ✶

Red Bot Side Warding

✶ Example of red side wards for the bot lane. Below I have explained the key in detail, but this is not an exhaustive list of every possible ward location in the bot side, but following this general guide should keep you relatively safe from the most common gank and ambush locations. ✶

Map Key Explained

Enemy Jungler Pathing Arguably the most important thing to keep an eye out for. This is because in most cases the enemy jungler will be doing the majority of ganking, but it is more than seeing the jungler when they are right next to your lane. Your jungler pathing wards should try to be informative for your entire team, especially your own jungler. What do I mean by this? Taking a look at the blue side example you can see one of the ward spots is located between the enemy blue camp and the gromp. This is my favorite ward spot because it not only tells me when the jungle camps are up but also tells me which direction the jungler is clearing, if they are doing full clears, etc. This is all very valuable information to keep up your entire team’s map awareness and will help you anticipate ganks in every lane long before they happen.

Preparing for Dragon These are the best wards for preparing for dragon depending on which side you are playing. All of these spots are great for keeping vision around the objectives to prevent being overwhelmed by the enemy and forced into an unfavorable fight as well as to prevent potential steals.

Midlaner Gank Pathing Besides the enemy jungler your second biggest concern is going to be the enemy midlaner in most games. The importance of these wards will vary based on who the enemy midlaner is and their playstyle. Some champions are excellent at roaming, such as assassins and other highly mobile champs. Others, such as mages, may have a bit of a harder time roaming to bot. That said, never assume that your midlaner simply won’t gank because of the champion they are playing. Any champion can pull off great ganks so never let your guard or your vision score down!

Situational Wards These are just a few examples of situational wards, such as wards that may be used if your jungler is worried about getting their camps stolen. One great example of situational wards is any time that the enemy has a Kindred. You should always be trying to keep visions on any marked camps.

Support Lane Control These are very basic wards that can be used to keep brush control in lane. I generally tend to avoid these because they are usually less value than those further out, however they can be very helpful against hook champions like Blitzcrank, Pyke and Thresh as well as those with CC like Morgana who can contest brush well.

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Baron Warding Guide

When it comes time for Baron you want to make sure that you are always early enough to lay down some optimal wards and to give your teammates time to do the same. There are more wards on this map than you can play yourself and are only a suggestion of some of the best locations to ward pre-Baron. Since you can't ward them all try to make sure you are focusing on covering as many possible enemy pathing options as possible.

Blue Baron Guide

✶ Map of the blue side Baron wards. Always try to spread your wards so that they are covering as many possible team pathing options as you can! ✶

Red Baron Guide

✶ Map of the red side Baron wards. Always try to spread your wards so that they are covering as many possible team pathing options as you can! ✶
✶ ✶ Be sure to check out Jovy's warding guide whose warding maps greatly inspired and guided the ones I have created for this guide! ✶ ✶
Matchups


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Support matchups

Below I have outlined my general thoughts on each typical bot-lane matchup. Please be aware that these are all based on my experiences playing Karma into these matchups, and everyone struggles with different champions and matchups! That said, I tried to incorporate not only my experience but that of other Karma players I have seen as well as her overall general win-rate against various champions.

Each champion has been categorized by my overall sense of difficulty of the matchup. These three broad categories include Simple, Average, and Difficult. Of course there is not accounting for the relative skill-level of the player piloting your matchup champion, but I have tried my best to compare each champion's kit to Karma's strengths and weaknesses and provided a short list of suggestions of what to look out for and how to use Karma's kit to the best of its ability to answer the threat of the enemy laner. If there are any matchups here that I missed, let me know and I'd be happy to add them!

Finally, I think it is important to cover my top 3 Karma champion ban recommentations. Obviously, this is just my opinion but these champs tend to cause the most trouble for Karma and will make the game significanly more difficult if you are facing them for reasons outlined under their champion tab below. These are not the only difficult matchups nor are they necessarily unwinnable, these are just the most common anti-Karma picks that I see and have struggled with in my journey to learn Karma. So, without further ado, my top three ban picks on Karma:

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SIMPLE
Alistar

AVERAGE
Ashe

AVERAGE
Bard

SIMPLE
BLITZCRANK

SIMPLE
Brand

SIMPLE
Braum

DIFFICULT
Janna

SIMPLE
LEONA

AVERAGE
Lulu

SIMPLE
Lux

SIMPLE
Miss Fortune

SIMPLE
Morgana

AVERAGE
Nami

DIFFICULT
Nautilus

AVERAGE
Pantheon

DIFFICULT
Pyke

AVERAGE
Rakan

DIFFICULT
RELL

SIMPLE
Renata Glasc

DIFFICULT
Senna

AVERAGE
SERAPHINE

DIFFICULT
Sona

DIFFICULT
Soraka

SIMPLE
SWAIN

AVERAGE
Tahm Kench

AVERAGE
Taric

SIMPLE
THRESH

DIFFICULT
Yuumi

SIMPLE
ZILEAN

DIFFICULT
ZYRA
Synergies

✶ ✶ ✶

Bot Lane Synergies

Below I have outlined Karma's synergy with a variety of bot lane pics, including both AP and AD carry. In the coming weeks I will be focusing on adding in jungler synergies as well! Each carry has been categorized as having High, Average, and Low synergy.

The great thing about Karma is that because her kit is so incredibly flexible and her playstyle diverse enough that she can work with pretty much any bot lane pick. That said, there are a few that work better than others so I've tried to highlight some of the main strengths and weaknesses of the matchups.

AVERAGE
APHELIOS

AVERAGE
ASHE

HIGH
Caitlyn

HIGH
DRAVEN

HIGH
EZREAL

HIGH
JHIN

HIGH
Jinx

LOW
KAI'SA

LOW
Kalista

LOW
KOG'MAW

AVERAGE
LUCIAN

AVERAGE
MISS FORTUNE

HIGH
NILAH

LOW
SAMIRA

LOW
SENNA

HIGH
SERAPHINE

AVERAGE
SIVIR

LOW
TRISTANA

AVERAGE
TWTITCH

AVERAGE
VARUS

AVERAGE
VAYNE

AVERAGE
XAYAH

HIGH
ZERI
Thank you!


✶ ✶ ✶


Thank you so much for taking a look through my guide! I hope it was able to provide you with a little more knowledge about how to play Karma, the Enlightened One! If you have any questions, critiques or thoughts please feel free to share them - I'd love your feedback!

I hope to also add in matchup information for all the ADCs you may face as well as jungler synergies in the coming week!

I am also working on a new guide for Soraka, the Starchild so stay tuned for "So-rocking the Botlane" soon! :)

Lath Rian Oune Vi peace and focus, and good luck on the Rift! <3

League of Legends Champions:

Teamfight Tactics Guide