Build Guide by Pragz
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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.
Ezreal is a pretty great carry when played right. I've seen a bunch of AP and AD builds and have play-tested
His runes are very specific to the build. I've given him two sets of Mana per Level runes simply because the combined mana adds about 100-125 AP due to Archangel's. Very, very, VERY useful since they take up no item slots. If you must, you can replace the marks with Magic Pen, but the AP granted outweighs the bonus penetration.
Generic 21/0/9 build since I play aggressively. The bonus mana from the utility tree adds about 43 AP, so be sure to max Expanded Mind no matter what mastery build you go for.
My item selection is designed to be purely offensive, maxing out AP while adding only a touch of survivability. The key thing to note here is you are a glass cannon: you will unleash hell from the back of your team, but if you get caught out of place even once, you're likely to die. The learning curve associated with Ezreal is steepened here, but it's a necessary sacrifice to add to your epicness.
A note on Mejai's - I am not a fan of Mejai's and do not like using it. It is highly annoying when that death caused by a mistake on your part costs you about 100 AP. My build ends up with 640 AP consistently, as in it will never change. Your death will not contribute to a serious chunk of AP down the toilet. HOWEVER, if you like Mejai's, you can easily add it into this build. Get Mejai's before you finish Archangel's. If you make it all the way through the build (now having 1 NLR as opposed to two) and have a fully stacked Mejai's, you will have 765 AP. It's substantially higher than the current build, but you will lose about 95 AP when you die. Die once and you have 30 more AP than my current build. Die twice and you are under. Do you feel lucky, punk? Well, do ya'? If you like Mejai's, go for it. It's a good item in less paranoid and delusional hands. Report back your findings, too!
You want to start by rushing this, Tear of the Goddess. Mana is a crucial factor early game and this helps you immensely. Start with a Meki Pendant and return to base as soon as you have about 1k gold. This will finish off Tear and you can start building:
This item is actually situational. This is what you'll buy 90% of the time, but there are situations where you can switch it up. I buy Boots of Swiftiness if the other team has no tanks since they won't be stacking MR. Everyone has a boot preference, but these are my suggestions. Once you get your boots, your next goal is:
Shazaam! The most common and generic mage item out there. End-game this item is worth about 135 AP as well as supplies the bulk of your mana. It's incredibly useful and you should never, EVER be without it. This costs 1860 since you already have Tear, so rush it quickly. Remember: Ezreal has to farm a bunch, so learn to last hit and always, ALWAYS be there to gank. An assist is worth 70% of the gold. Never ignore a ping because you're about to push an unguarded outer turret, and try using your ult to contribute to a gank in another lane. If you hit, free gold!
Now you go for Zhonya's, generic mage item #213. Bunches of AP come from this baby and the invulnerability is invaluable in certain cases. (When that Ashe arrow is about to last-hit you cross-map, Nunu's ult is about to go off, etc.) Get this as fast as possible. Never, EVER skip/forget your Zhonya's Ring!
And now Rylai's. Slows per hit, survivability, and good AP. What more could you want?! This baby will roll faces later by slowing enemy champs cross-map with your ult and giving your team the ability to catch up and clean up.
Needlessly Large Rods are fun and useful. A flat 80 AP per, plain and simple. These slots are actually situation and don't require the Rods at all. I'll often replace them with cheap survivability items, such as Kindlegem (the CDR makes your skills even more spammable, plus HP!), Giant's Belt, Soul Shroud, etc. It really does just depend. But more often than not, at least one slot is a NLR. Who doesn't like buttloads of AP?
This ability is very, very useful even though the build is AP. Late-game you can spam this without worry because the mana cost is so low and your total mana/mana regen is so high. Each hit takes a second off each ability's cooldown, so always hit a minion in the wave as your passing lanes to a gank. It'll line you up for more Trueshot Barrages! Yay!
Bread. And. Butter. It's a great harass and pick-off. Deals about 720 damage per hit and pesky minions can't get in the way. Use this any time a champ gets in range, especially if two or more are in a line. The bonus attack speed is pretty useless unless you see two DPS champs wailing on each other or something. Don't even worry about trying to line it up through allies and into enemies because the time spent doing so is just not worth it.
This ability has so many uses. Perfect initiator and escape tool. I like to jump in on people for a guaranteed hit with my next shot, plus the damage dealt by this is not to be scoffed. Recent patched upped the AP ratio, so it's actually pretty epic now. Does more damage than your Essence Flux! Also, a great escape tool. Jump over a wall to safety (love doing this through the dragon/baron walls because most other jumps have AoE damage associated, meaning they'll suck aggro for a bit) or just get out of that well-placed enemy ability (MF, Nunu, GP, Anivia, and other similar ults, to name a few...). Combine with Flash to leap two walls simultaneously. Talk about epic escape tools will ya'...
This ult is hard to master but will win games when you do. It's a cross-map ability that hits everything it encounters on it's journey across the map. Time this in team fights when they bunch up for maximum efficiency. Get enough skill in judging enemy movement (and ****-tons of luck) and you can hit that guy who escaped the gank two lanes down). Recent patch upped it to .9 per AP, so roll faces with your 1.4k damage.
_____Tactics, Techniques, and Game Scenarios
Early-game: Try to get mid. If not, you want to lane with a tank or someone with poor early game. You want lane dominance no matter what and you want to get last hits, even if it means your lane partner isn't getting as many as you. Gold is so important to you. Last hit everything you can and avoid pushing; keep the minions waves close to your turret for the escape advantage.
Harass your opponents. Flux is great for doing this and will really keep those squishies off you. Only people like Mordekaiser will be able to truly resist your damage, so feel free to wail on everything that comes in range. DO NOT WASTE ABILITIES ON MINIONS! Mana is a problem early game and using abilities on minion waves is wasteful and useless. Save all your mana for enemy champs.
Some good tactics are: Shift in, hit with Flux and Mystic, then run out. Harass them. If you see someone run into a bush (and they have acceptably low health compared to yours), keep them honest by Shifting into the bush for a nasty surprise. They won't expect it 90% of the time and will likely run at the sight of you.
Go back to base when you can finish Tear and get your boots.
Mid-game: Now you'll want to stop harassing and start committing to assaults. Make your team ping you for ganks and always be in the team fights. Get as many kills and assists as possible to try and be fed. Gold is still a problem for Ez and this will help you immensely. Remember: Use Trueshot Barrage cross-map in a fight you know your team will win just for the assists. Great for feeding yourself.
You should have Archangel's by now and either have Zhonya's (if you've been fed enough) or at least the NLR component of it.
Death will come in the form of:>>>
By now you have about 250-330 AP and squishies will melt to this combo. Barrage is great for cleaning up those that get away. Continue to pop Mystic Shots as they run or on minions after they died to reduce the cooldown on Shift. You always need a backup/escape plan in case of a gank, and that is 99% of it.
Late-game: By now you will have Zhonya's and most likely Rylai's (or be damn close to it). Your tactics have to shift now as team fights start breaking out:
In a team fight, your goal is to surround yourself with a wall of allies to soak damage. Fire Fluxes and Mystics out to take chunks out of eager enemies. When the battle erupts into close-combat, Shift to the side and launch a Barrage when they're all in a nice line. Continue popping Fluxes and Mystics as you run in circles avoiding things. Remember: Ezreal will be focused. He's a squishy carry. ALWAYS keep your eyes on anyone with pulls, stuns, snares, or other dangerous CCs. People like Blitzcrank and Urgot MUST be kept at maximum distance. ALWAYS be moving to avoid things like Blitz's pull, Morgana/Lux's Binding, etc. Shift out of anything dangerous, like Kennen's and Morgana's ult.
Ganks, though, are where you really excel. Always buy wards and place them in key areas (river, heavy-traffic crossings like the one by Baron and Dragon, etc.) to catch those out-of-place enemies. Have a tank or two escort you to the area and kindly kick the living **** out of the enemy in question.
Go back to base whenever you're not truly needed and you have anything less than 3/4ths health. Pick up your final items during these trips. As Ezreal, you have the ability to go back to base frequently. Your ult is a major contribution to any fight and you can use it from the fountain. You are squishy and not dying is more important than pushing a minion wave or two slightly forward while your enemies surround you.
Final note: Ezreal requires a high degree of skill. If you can't use his skill shots because you don't have the skill, don't use Ezreal. You should always practice with a cheaper champion like Sivir or Morgana to see if you have what it takes for skill shots. If you can't properly lead a shot, you need to practice lots or play some other kind of champion.
Now get out there and prove AP Ezreal is better than any AD build!