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Morgana Build Guide by Glasletter

Middle Glasletter's guide to Morgana, the Fallen, Angel of Edge

By Glasletter | Updated on August 14, 2020
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Runes: Morgana

1 2 3 4
Domination
Dark Harvest
Cheap Shot
Eyeball Collection
Ravenous Hunter

Sorcery
Manaflow Band
Gathering Storm
Bonus:

+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+15-90 HP (lvls 1-18)

Spells:

Summoner Spells
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash

Flash

LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite

Ignite

LeagueSpy Logo
Support Role
Ranked #22 in
Support Role
Win 51%
Get More Stats

Threats & Synergies

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

Champion Build Guide

Glasletter's guide to Morgana, the Fallen, Angel of Edge

By Glasletter
Introduction
Morgana. The longest root in the game. The end.



That's what most players think, right? Of course the Thresh and Pyke players will complain about the Black Shield, but for the most part Dark Binding is to Morgana as Rocket Grab is to Blitzcrank.

I'm here to tell you that this isn't all she is.

Most people assume Morgana does negligible damage, at the cost of high utility, and that is generally true. Even the recommended items have you building Ardent Censer and Locket of the Iron Solari, but what they don't know is that Tormented Shadow does missing health damage, and that with just the burn from Liandry's Torment after a Q+W they'll lose 15% max health in addition to all other effects and damage. It's not uncommon for me to toss a Q+W backwards at a full health enemy as I walk away only to get a kill notification several seconds later.

Welcome to the joy of watching people cry helplessly as they burn.
Pros / Cons Back to Top
Pros

+ Hard CC
+ Amazingly easy to farm with
+ Very relaxing playstyle
+ Shield counters most champs
+ Strong sustain
+ Safe early and scales well
+ One-shots squishy champions
+ Playable even on high ping
+ Easily walks out of ganks/engages
+ No need to sacrifice durability for damage
Morgana counters nearly every champion, she outsustains most of them and she doesn't even have to sacrifice damage to manage it. Black Shield could easily be considered the strongest ability in the game given it's insane potential for nigh invulnerability, Soul Siphon can be used to outplay anyone who is a bit too confident and a Soul Shackles into Zhonya's Hourglass can easily net a 5-man stun. Utility, tank and damage, all rolled into one.

Cons

- No kill potential without Q or ult
- No mobility
- Ultimate requires staying within danger
- Semi-long cooldowns
- Difficult to carry entire teams with
- Farming pre-5 is painful
- Focused early in teamfights
Morgana has little to no kill potential without landing a Dark Binding or the full cast of Soul Shackles and can often do nothing but shove into tower and hope you can keep your enemy laner from roaming. She also has no mobility, so you have to be very aware of fights long before they happen or you will find yourself on the losing end of nearly every one you make it to. Additionally she dies easily if you can't land the bind on chasing enemies.
Runes Back to Top


Keystones


Hail of Blades
Auto based Morgana sounds like fun, but lets play for real shall we?

Electrocute
Electrocute can actually work pretty well with Morgana as its easy to proc and brings them closer to execute range, but Dark Harvest works better for scaling and they preform roughly the same to start with anyways. You can take this instead if you're jungling as you can't proc Dark Harvest as reliably.

Predator
Speedy control mages are a meme. If you're gonna do that, Racecar Veigar is the way to go.

Dark Harvest
Tormented Shadow does missing health damage with no cap, meaning that it does the most damage when your enemy is at 1 hp left. With Dark Harvest as long as you get them to half health with a Q+W it should proc and finish them off without them realizing or anyone protecting them. You should drop a Tormented Shadow or auto anyone you can to get these procs and scale infinitely alongside Gathering Storm.



Runes


Tier 1
Cheap Shot

This is basically a flat damage increase to your Q+W combo or R+W+Q, and also works on other teammates CC.
Taste of Blood

If you have trouble sustaining you could take this as an alternative, but Soul Siphon is strong enough that you shouldn't usually have issues with sustain.
Sudden Impact

You don't have any mobility abilities and you don't want to Flash just for a slight bit of extra damage, yeah?

Tier 2
Zombie Ward

Damage is better. You're a fairly safe control mage anyways, and generally can simply walk away from ganks with a well-timed Black Shield, even if you miss the binding.
Ghost Poro

This rune is meant for junglers or roaming laners. Morgana tends to shove then sit safely under tower while Tormented Shadow farms for her.
Eyeball Collection

Allows for stronger snowball potential and is the only rune on this tier that increases damage. The obvious choice.

Tier 3






To summarize the sub-tree, your runes of choice are Manaflow Band and Gathering Storm.


Manaflow Band is vital for Morgana as she tends to be very mana-intensive in her early game and doesn't want or need to devote gold and items to things like Tear of the Goddess. This is why we also start with a Faerie Charm against lanes we're not worried about being poked out of lane. Nullifying Orb is decent against AP champions, but ideally you play so safe in laning phase that it shouldn't be necessary, while it doesn't help nearly as much in the late game as sustain from your mana will. Nimbus Cloak was a viable alternative until they installed movement speed into Morgana's Soul Shackles directly.


Gathering Storm helps Morgana's natural scaling and when combined with Dark Harvest turns her into a late-game monster. Waterwalking is better for roaming champions and Scorch is better for early game poke-heavy mages.


Runes of note:

The following are all possible alternatives, although I use the ones listed above personally;

Absolute Focus is great for the Q+W from max range as you're likely either healthy or about to be with Soul Siphon, just doesn't scale as hard.
Revitalize+ Conditioning would work well with a tankier build starting with Rod of Ages, but it's a less aggressive playstyle.
Perfect Timing/ Magical Footwear+ Biscuit Delivery can be played against very specific champions such as Zed and Neeko for early defensives and sustain from heavy poke.
Summoner Spells Back to Top
Burns on top of burns, Ignite is the usual choice for midlaners who don't use Teleport or Barrier. Make sure to hit this early into an all-in, as the lower you get them early the more damage your Tormented Shadow will do.

Morgana doesn't need to back early for items like Tear of the Goddess and she sustains easily enough to outlast her laning opponent. I usually only take Teleport when playing top lane or when your top laner brought something else and you need map pressure.

With the exception of Yuumi, Shaco, Hecarim and a select few others, Flash should be taken on all champions. Typically Flash is best used with Soul Shackles, not Dark Binding, as the bind isn't generally a guaranteed hit.
Skills Back to Top
PASSIVE
ABILITY
Soul Siphon (Passive): Morgana's passive is so simple many people simply don't know what it does. This in lane allows you to outsustain your opponents. Be aware that you ONLY get the vamp from enemy champions, cannon minions and large jungle monsters, so don't go throwing Dark Bindings at caster minions with the expectation that you'll heal from it. This also works wonders in team fights, making Soul Shackles very similar to Illaoi's Leap of Faith, easily bringing you from half to full health with enough targets. Additionally, if you've got the mana a Q+W over a wall at a jungle camp can provide additional sustain.
Not sure if this is working as intended, but I have discovered that autoing the Rift Herald's eye on the back actually procs this as well and gives you a massive burst of health, which is a great way to bait even if all of your abilities are down.

Q
Dark Binding (Q): Nearly the longest root in the game, Dark Binding is a slow-moving skill shot that roots the first target it collides with for up to 3 seconds, beaten in duration only by Karma's empowered Focused Resolve at 3.25 seconds. Making up for the projectile speed with root duration, damage and a large hitbox, this ability is the stuff of memes and will be for as long as it is in the game. Generally you want to save it until you'll either be able to land it fairly easily or put pressure on your enemy, but don't forget; the threat of an ability is almost more dangerous than the ability itself.

W
Tormented Shadow (W): The unexpected damage in Morgana's kit, at rank 1 each tick does 6 damage with a 7% AP scaling, meaning if you somehow had 100 AP at level one you would only do 13 damage per tick. The real power comes in it's missing health damage, over tripling both the base damage and AP scaling ratios. I'd do the math for you, but just believe that it's a lot and I'm too lazy to figure it out right now.
The pool lasts for 5 seconds and whenever you proc Soul Siphon it reduces the cooldown by 5%, basically meaning that if every tick hits a champion or large monster/minion it is immediately recastable upon expiration. If you land a bind or cast Soul Shackles it is even possible to have two instances overlap momentarily, especially when hitting multiple targets as that counts for multiple procs. Hitting 5 people with a Soul Shackles cast reduces the cooldown by 25%, for instance.

E
Black Shield (E): This ability grants nigh invulnerability in certain circumstances. About to get lesbianed into oblivion by Allure or Charm? Black Shield. Tahm Kench looking to Devour your tasty edge queen booty? Black Shield. Mordekaiser trying to call you out to a 1v1 in the shadow realm? Tell that noob to "Get gud, newb!", because you've got a motha' loving Black Shield...!

Black Shield is a targeted ability that blocks a certain amount of magic damage and cancels all effects of abilities while it is active on the target, being yourself or an allied champion. It lasts 5 seconds or until broken and is what allows Morgana to get away with a severe lack of mobility as you can effectively negate all forms of crowd control, up to and including abilities like Bard's Tempered Fate or Urgot's Fear Beyond Death. Be advised, this does not remove certain objects or effects, such as the fish from Fizz's Chum the Waters, which simply drops to the ground instead of attaching.

R
Soul Shackles (R): The bread and butter of Morgana's teamfight engage and the only way to make her uncertain damage certain, Soul Shackles absolutely decimates enemies in both 1v1 and team fights. Upon activation, all enemies within range take an immediate burst of damage and become linked to Morgana with chains which explode after 3 seconds, applying that same damage again and stunning them. During this cast Morgana also gains movement speed and slows all enemies chained, making it easy to keep pace with them as long as they don't dash/flash out.
This spell can be and often is combined with the active effect of Zhonya's Hourglass, allowing you to stun enemies without worrying about dying during that 3 seconds.
Items Back to Top
Sorcerer's Shoes - The only boots that increase your damage output, Morgana plays safe enough that you shouldn't need defensive boots. There are better items for surviving.

Luden's Echo - The effect from Lost Chapter will keep your mana up in lane, and the explosion proc puts you enemy into Dark Harvest range more quickly. It's worth noting that the explosion also procs Soul Siphon and can be used to hit people to proc Dark Harvest as well. When jungling replace it with Stalker's Blade - Runic Echoes instead.

Liandry's Torment - The main "core" item on Morgana, Liandry's synergises perfectly with your Q+W combo, applying a burn for 2.5% of their max health and also ramping damage quickly into Dark Harvest range, it's also easy to keep it fully stacked as your abilities can be used more than once every 10 seconds. This item should usually be built second, but can be built first against tank-heavy comps.

Morellonomicon - The item for anti-healing, simply build this whenever the enemy team is lifesteal/healing heavy, such as with Vladimir or Soraka.

Zhonya's Hourglass - Build this against AD heavy teams, particularly ones with burst assassins like Zed or Talon. It also synergises well with Soul Shackles.

Spirit Visage - Build this against AP heavy teams or if it's a pretty even split, as it increases your Soul Siphon healing and the flat health will make you much tankier.

Mejai's Soulstealer - If you started Dark Seal or bought one early into the game and it's got 8-10 stacks or if you've finished one of your defensive items, upgrading into a Mejai's Soulstealer can make you absolutely devastating. Morgana is one of my favorite champions to build this on because it's always easy to get stacks and keep from losing them.

Rabadon's Deathcap - When you're drastically ahead and just need to dump gold or are just looking for a good last item, you can't go wrong with a good 'ol Rabadon's Deathcap. Build a Void Staff instead if the team is stacking magic resist, best paired with Morellonomicon.
Bringing it all together: Gameplay Back to Top
Laning Phase


Playing Morgana in lane is very simple; use Tormented Shadow to push waves and farm, then step back to a safe distance so you cannot get ganked. In order for your opposing laner to assist in a gank when you're so far away they have to walk past the minion wave, making it very obvious that something is up. Keeping a ward on one side and playing on that side is advisable. If the jungler tries to make a play on you without their laner's help, it's simply the same as your regular lane just against a different opponent.

Specifically on using Tormented Shadow to farm, at rank 3 with no items it kills the entire caster minion section of the wave by itself. At rank 2 you can auto each once, then place it to kill them completely. Generally you want to place it to hit as many as possible over the full duration, which often means waiting for the wave to settle. Don't place it if you only have one melee minion left, as it will die and half of the wave will leave the pool.

If an enemy laner attempts to engage on you, keep in mind what abilities are best blocked with a Black Shield and attempt to land a Dark Binding, immediately following with Tormented Shadow if it is up, then simply walk away. Do your best to bind them when they are in range of your minions, as that damage can add up significantly as well.

When going for a kill with your laner at half health or less, wait for them to use any mobility abilities they might have, then immediately walk into range and activate Soul Shackles and Ignite them. Follow them for the full cast duration, matching their Flash if they use it, then as the stun lands drop Tormented Shadow and bind them again, avoiding minions as that can still make you miss the ability. Make sure to use your autos as well, as the extra damage increases how much your Tormented Shadow will do.
Additionally something of note, Soul Shackles range actually exceeds Flash range, so if your opponent has Flash up but doesn't have a dash in their kit, simply walking into melee range and pressing ult guarantees they cannot escape.

Be careful not to get too close to the tower unless you know exactly where your enemy laner is, such as if you just killed them, and have eyes on the other enemies in the game, as this is where you are at your most vulnerable.


Mid-to-late Game

Morgana specializes in waveclear, teamfights and one-comboing squishy, high priority targets. You play roughly the same as lane, except now since you can't as easily tell where your enemies are, you push where you have vision and you attempt to land Dark Bindings on unsuspecting enemies. The more you play the better you will become at predicting movement and where to fire, and at this point in the game you should be able to kill any squishy target as long as you can land this ability.

When fighting for objectives or when the enemy team is largely grouped and your team is close enough, a quick Flash+ Soul Shackles into the enemy team can be surprising and devastating. You want to bind immediately in this case, and if it lands drop your Tormented Shadow on that target unless they are a tank. In this case or if you missed your binding, Zhonya's Hourglass if you've got it or just try to survive and keep them all in range until the stun comes through, being sure to Ignite your priority target/carry or whoever has heavy lifesteal to apply grievous wounds. After the stun hits, drop another Tormented Shadow and by this point the fight should be pretty much over, hopefully in your favor. Be aware that doing this is in part playing as a psuedo-tank, and that while you'll almost certainly kill at least one person doing this, it is best when followed up by your team.
Ending Notes Back to Top
Some things to consider:

Morgana Jungle - One of the healthiest clears I've experienced, just keep in mind that your passive only works for the largest creep. When taking Morgana into the jungle the build is actually very similar; swap out Luden's Echo for the jungle version, Stalker's Blade - Runic Echoes, starting with a Hunter's Talisman and a Refillable Potion. For runes you can either stick with Dark Harvest or take Electrocute instead, as you're not able to stack Dark Harvest as consistently in the jungle. I also take Transcendence instead of Manaflow Band as it takes too long to stack outside of lane and the passive mana gain from the jungle item more than makes up for it.

Morgana Support - Unless you know your carry personally, build expecting to carry the same way you would in another lane, upgrading your support item once then moving on to your usual items. If you trust/know your carry, you can max Q first instead of W.

Morgana Top - Basically the same as mid except you're rarely in danger. This counterpicks most top lane champions, but keep in mind that you're also taking up the "tank" slot with a control mage who is at best a pseudo-tank. Often Liandry's Torment is your first item here as top tends to be tank-heavy.

Feel free to follow me on twitch - https://www.twitch.tv/glasletter

My other guides:
Jungle Rek'sai - https://www.mobafire.com/league-of-legends/build/glasletters-guide-to-reksai-the-true-queen-of-the-rift-542861
ADC Kindred - https://www.mobafire.com/league-of-legends/build/glasletters-guide-to-kindred-adc-517662
League of Legends Build Guide Author Glasletter
Glasletter Morgana Guide
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Glasletter's guide to Morgana, the Fallen, Angel of Edge
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