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Xin Zhao Build Guide by shangrila

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League of Legends Build Guide Author shangrila

DPS Xin Dominion

shangrila Last updated on May 7, 2012
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Jungle Role
Ranked #2 in
Jungle Role
Win 53%
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

Not Updated For Current Season

The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 9

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 0

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Hello there! I wanna share my experience of playing Xin on Dominion.

In this build I try to maximize Xin`s DPS as much as I can, and in that way that easy to build. But i will not tell you how to defence, because its very situational and I still working on it.

If you plan to build this exactly, you will kill even Rammus in late game very fast, but you probably will be dead too. Your burst will be real insane, but survival will depend on your team and your calm mind. This build make you feel that you can do everything and kill anyone, but 1 stun = dead, still works on you. So if you want to build this, make sure you have a tank, fighter, AP carry to protect you (or any other variations of them, but you need 3 fat guys in front of the fight so they can begin and survive while you on the way to finish all enemy's).

With this build Xin become one of the strongest Assassin in the game, except Poppy I guess. But its only because of her ult, otherwise if she lock it on you, she will die.

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You might ask why i invest 3 point in Magic resist, and only 1 point in Armor.

I do this, because I cant find viable MR items on Xin, except Mercury Treads.
But now we have Mamortus (or how its name, dont remember), but I didn`t test it yet.

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Armor Penetration runes is necessary, because I don't want to build Last Whisper Xin, its too slow, compare to this build.

Greater Seal of Armor and Greater Glyph of Magic Resist are very good on melee, and also because we dont have mana issues at Dominion. But after nerf of flat MR runes, I cant tell, may be better to switch per/lvl MR.

And the newest update, is Vampiric Quints. I highly recommend it.
There are a lot reasons for this. Passive nerfed at Dominion. Vampiric Scepter nerfed month ago or so.
And the most important reason - when you finish the Core, you will face insufficient of slots, because fifth slot is a Vampiric Scepter, and so you have only 1 slot, to build some very expensive item which can take a lot of time, and loose some team fights because of that. In other words, you can no longer force Vampiric Scepter, and finish your 5th item.


Greater Mark of Lethality

Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist

Greater Quintessence of Life Steal

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Skill Sequence

There is no reason to up Three Talon Strike first. All is scale with it is a dealing damage.
Audacious Charge anyway gives you more damage and it is instant. Also you slow more efficiently, and cooldown of this spell is reducing.
The only cons about it is a mana cost, but it not matter at Dominion.

So the order is - Audacious Charge first priority, then Battle Cry for maximum attack speed and reduce all your cooldowns.

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

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Summoner Spells

I use only this 2 spells:
Ghost I always use Ghost, speed is necessary at Dominion.
Exhaust Exhaust is second one, to stop some fed Trynd, Yi etc.

Possible alternatives:
Flash It may save your life sometimes, but at Dominion Ghost more effective.
Ignite Usable, but incredibly long cooldown, we need it more often.
Garrison The only real alternative to Exhaust is Garrison, which you may like.

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Xin is all about speed. Movement speed and attack speed. This is because the faster he goes the more control he has. On maximum speed Three Talon Strike is almost instant, you can stop Katarinas ult, Nunu, Malzahar, Warwick etc.
Also, the faster you attack, the lower your cooldowns. So u can use your spells twice in one battle. That's why we need to build as much attack speed as possible first.

But for start items I found the best package is Prospector's Blade which gives u incredible 200hp for free and for the rest of the money - boots and pots.
I tried a lot of start items, but this is the best. Don't forget that Dominion cuts your passive Challenge, that's why 5% lifesteal is necessary.

In simple - the first goal is Zeal. Then we want The Black Cleaver but it can be hard to get 1650 gold, so we keep purchasing Dagger as much as we can. Then we want to finish Phantom Dancer and best way do it at this stage is to buy Cloak of Agility.

This is the core. When you finish Phantom Dancer you will kill any squishy target in less then 3 seconds. I build this every game. The difference come after that. If the targets not squishy, the things become harder, because it requires more damage, and also some defence too. So its your choice how to defence, but mainly focus on health, because Xin have enough resistances with his ult.

Okay. If you want to increase damage the obvious next item to do it is Cloak of Agility or B. F. Sword which is less cost effective but if you want Infinity Edge or Sanguine Blade its better to begin with it.

Some notes and problems on the way:

  • Vampiric Scepter can be purchased anytime, but I prefer after core.
  • You can complete Zeal to Phantom Dancer before you buy B. F. Sword, because sometime you will not have gold, but still need some gear
  • The boots can be finished anytime when you realize, what threats do you have. If your team can protect you, buy Berserker's Greaves
  • I almost never sale Prospector's Blade, because game not come so long. But if you will, remember that 200hp is very significant percent of your Health, its like 10%, so if you sale it, you need to by at least another 200hp first. Or of course if enemy team exclusively AD or AP, you can buy Armor, or MR, but in this case you should do that early

Optional Items:
  • The Lightbringer - If you got more then 1 stealth champion (include Wukong, Talon, Vayne) its probably good idea to buy this, because this can be game-changing
  • Phage - I buy this when we have a lot of jumpy running heroes, like Teemo, Shaco, Kennen. But never build it until you finish the core. Otherwise, you will catch them but can`t kill them.
  • Wit's End - I like it when I build defensive build, or the enemy full of AP. In some games, even presence of Karthus or Annie, force me to buy it.
  • Zeke's Herald - after patch, unfortunately its not so good. But if you play 4 ad someone need to buy it. And it rarely be you, because you will die fast, and bye bye aura.
  • Frozen Mallet - after the core finished, you can go Frozen Mallet + Atma's Impaler, which makes you much harder to kill, and no way for escape from you.
  • Quicksilver Sash - anti Malzahar, Warwick, Morde. You can live without it if you meet only 1 of this characters
  • Cloak and Dagger - if the enemy team is AD, so you don't need Mercury's Treads, but they have hard CC, you can buy this, to increase tenacity. For example I can buy this if i found Pantheon annoying, or fear of AD Shaco

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Pros / Cons of this build


  • heavy damage, allowing to kill fast even tanks (without +100 armor items)
  • armor reduction - to deal more damage to your target by your teammates
  • very high mobility - can results in high farm and low predictability

  • squishy - very vulnerable to disables, because health comes from lifesteal and passive (know your threats, at least Hard CC)
  • cant get away, once in fight, you will stay until it ends
  • not specialized for heavy armored targets
  • sensible to Ignite - you will loose 1 on 1 most fights if you ignited. The good thing that cooldown is too long for this spell. Executioner's Calling may help with this.

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Team Work

Any questions about teamwork?

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Xin is a great champion for Dominion. Good mobility, sustain, strong 1 on 1, can be build as offtank also.
That's why he can be played almost in every game, except your team full of AD. (Make sure you have at least 2 AP in team, or at least some one game-changing, like Karthus or Annie)

But this build requires fat guys in team, or AOE carry`s (Annie, Veigar, Anivia etc), otherwise, he cant mitigate much damage itself and you need to build offtank Xin.

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How to deal with...

The main question - why I should deal with them? Why them? There is another 4 champions in team that I can kill.
Xin is anticarry, and the problem that this heroes is a carry`s which you have to kill. Otherwise they kill all your team, and then you. This is the most strongest ones and have some abilities to change the flow of the game. For example - AP Shaco is great defender, if he takes top tower, you will need 3-4 crew to take it back, meanwhile he can already running to gank your bottom and take bottom turret and then you will again require 3-4 man crew to get it.

AP Shaco
AP Shaco can become pain against standard build. So we need some changes to counter him, because Shaco is a great defending champion, with good escape abilities, and enough burst to kill you when you are feared.
So the receipt is simple. After the core finished, buy Mercury's Treads and The Lightbringer. Bye Bye Shaco. His damage become not so strong, the fear not too long, and he is marked and cant escape easily - first, he usually will be slowed by you, and you will see where he goes. And the second, most important, if he uses his ultimate, you will know which Shaco is real. Thanks to The Lightbringer

Can be pain in ***. The problem of countering him is that you need a lot of items to do that. And success will depend, how many AP champions in his team. You will need finish the core, then build armor, probably it will be Frozen Mallet + Atma's Impaler combo. Then reduce tenacity by Mercury's Treads or Cloak and Dagger depends on how many AP carry`s in his team. I cant say good bye Pantheon, but you definitely cant be shutdown by him. 1 on 1 you probably win, but there is another players in his team.

I don't like Teemo :) This guy is really strong. The easiest way to kill him, is to wait while he uses his Blinding Dart. But he can do damage without it, so if he is waiting for you and your team dieing without you, you have a real problem.
2.5 second you will be blind, cannot use your lifesteal, and almost not doing damage, and the worst, you will have to waste your spells. After that Teemo just running away, with a few kills.

There is two ways to deal with it. The simplest way is to buy Quicksilver Sash. But its expensive, and not always viable, because its only magic resist, while other team may be all AD.
The second one is to build tanky, Frozen Mallet + Atma's Impaler + Mercury's Treads. Should be great to survive, and most probably to kill, because its very hard to escape from Frozen Mallet passive.

LeBlanc & Kassadin
Easy counter and unfortunately you need to implement it early. But still focus on core and try to buy this as late as you can.
Mercury's Treads and Wit's End. Probably some health needed too and usage of your ult when they assault on you.

Oh ****. You better stay away from her. Usually you cant beat her 1 on 1. Her damage comes mostly as true damage. That's make the only way to protect is to buy health. Armor wont help much. Usually she will be armored, and healing a lot, which makes her very hard to kill 1 on 1.
Focus on core and sustainability. Sanguine Blade will help you. After that may be some health is good, but it still not enough to kill her 1 on 1.

Actually bruisers (fighters) is that heroes that you usually cant beat 1 on 1 easily. They created to hold you down as long as possible. So you can understand that Olaf Shyvana Lee Sin Wukong etc, is the guys which are not your primary target. If they are, you need some help, anyway. You have a tank in front, or you build tanky, and someone else help you deal damage.

Sometimes twitch can be problem. But Xin loves Twitch :) If you finish the core, just hold your Audacious Charge when you go into fight, and then while he appears from behind or something like that, you have a spell ready, and bye bye twitch.

She don't need some special counter items. May be Merc`s should be fine.
Just two things you need to know about her. Dodge Charm, or its doesnt matter if you have Mercury's Treads.
And Spirit Rush - her ult. If she using it leave her alone for 10 seconds. After that you have a minute to easily shut her down 1 on 1.

AD Sion
Its easy, but requires a slot for a mediocre item. Also some help from teammates are good, because of the Sion`s stun.
Executioner's Calling - solving all problems of AD Sion. Also makes you much more, much more sustainable.

Focus on her. Usually you will be on your third strike when she cast her ultimate, don't forget to knock her up when Death Lotus begins.

Tryndamere & Kayle
I stick this heroes together because they have similar ultis, which makes them strong.
Unfortunately counters for them pretty expensive. Its called Exhaust. After they used ulti, exhaust them, NOT BEFORE! and finish off.
Without exhaust they feel freely, and can deal damage and go away. The only problem it has long cooldown, but if you finish them, it will be enough.

Extremely strong carry. Usually his kill means your death too, cause of his passive. He is not strong if not protected by team, but if he is, you are in danger. You need to gank him early, so he not grow up, otherwise, his range so long, that you cannot reach him. Long range slow + he may buy Phage and he will deal massive damage, while you will be far away.
Just don't let him farm, if he is bottom, gank him. If he is on top and you take top, continue to push, don't let him clear waves on the way to top. The same important to any carry`s, but Trynd and Kog, scales incredibly great with just 1 item! Difference from Trynd, that you cannot come close enough to exhaust him.

Support Nunu with Zeke's Herald + AD ranged carry Vayne for example
This duo can be very strong, face palming everything. And because its a duo, you should never try to deal with them alone.
Unfortunately you cant build something and problem solved. You need some teamwork. The first thing - someone needs to buy Frozen Heart which makes constant debuff aura, and negotiate some portion of Nunu`s attack speed buff.
Second thing is to build Randuin's Omen on you, and Mercury's Treads.
The problem is not solved totally, especially if this players play together using Skype and well coordinated. But it counters them significantly, and at least you have a chance if your team is good.

The greatest tank on dominion and the most strongest pick ever. Dominion is dominated by AD characters mostly, because late game comes relatively fast, and some Trynd can be fully equipped in 20-25 minutes. That's why Rammus is shine here, because its anti AD hero, which just force you to kill yourself.
His taunt 3 seconds is amazingly strong, means dead almost for everyone, even Mercury's Treads won`t help you, 3 seconds or 2 seconds taunt, for Xin is not matter.

Actually there is not much you can do against him. Still Mercury's Treads will help a bit, at least something, plus reduce his magic damage. But mostly you have to change strategy game play and avoid him. If he go top, go gank bottom. The problem still here - he is fast moving tank, which gives you not so much time to gank bottom, and capture flag. You need to work very fast, kill fast, capture fast, and your team must act accordingly and coordinated.

And say thanks team if you have 2 strong AP carry`s, which is Rammus not like. They will help to force him buy Magic resistance, and not so much Armor. But if you have 4 AD team or even 5, nothing can be worse than that :) you loose in 90% of time, because again, Rammus anti AD specialist and you all will kill yourself trying to kill him, or will run from him around the map.

So in conclusion, I have to say, that Rammus is really unbalanced at moment, and usually all I doing, is trying to build more damage, for faster kill his teammates, and capture bottom for example. Trying to play unpredictably for him, and watching for his movements.

Yes you can kill him with this build, but he will not allow you to build it easily. You probably will loosing hard, when finishing your core. But after you finish it, your team have a chance.