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Ryze Build Guide by throatslasher
How to get DIAMOND playing only one champion: RYZEBy throatslasher | Updated on April 23, 2014
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Ryze is one of the strongest hyper-carries in the game, if not the strongest. He also has one of the most dominant lane phases in the game. I love him because you can itemize purely defensive items and your damage will skyrocket. I play a consistent, diamond level Ryze. I sometimes lose my lane and still carry games. Ryze is broken, and I think anyone can carry themselves to plat or higher by just playing Ryze if you follow my simple, common build.
My stats on Ryze are the following:
[+] There is no lane opponent Ryze can't handle. Even **** matchups can be salvaged.
[+] Ryze is a hypercarry. This is rarer than you think. He is a snowball champion AND a hypercarry.
[+] Ryze has fantastic 'bounce-back'. That means if you don't do well in lane or die a few times, you can still contribute a lot to your team in the later stages of the game.
[+] Ryze gets more damage with pure tank items making him an unburstable damage machine.
[+] Ryze is not very item dependent.
[+] When Ryze counters someone, he COUNTERS someone. More on this later.
[+] Great CC, AoE, and sustain.
[-] ****ty auto attack. Farming with your autos takes practice
[-] You don't have THAT much range. It's OK, but you can get outranged by a lot of stuff.
[-] Your damage will eventually plateau. Once you finish all of your items, you will eventually fall off damage-wise and tank-wise. You need to finish the game in a brisk manner. After 45 minutes, it's all downhill.
[-] Ryze SUCKS at taking towers. Since tower damage is based on the higher value of your AD or AP, you will be doing like 75 damage to towers with your auto attacks even when you have full build.
Flash is mandatory, duh. Flash to run, flash to kill, flash is god.
For your second slot the two standard choices are Ignite and Teleport. Are you bronze or silver? Take Ignite. Do you hard counter your lane opponent? Take ignite. Are all of your teammates in favorable lane matchups? Take Ignite. Are you Gold+? Think about Teleport. Are you against a lane opponent you'll never kill? ( Anivia, Lux) Consider teleport. Are there plays to be made bottom? Consider teleport. Is this ranked teams? Consider teleport.
|Are you against Zed or Fizz? Consider Barrier. I sometimes take ignite in this lane if I have confidence in my jungler, but barrier decimates Fizz and Zed. Cloth Armor start also doodies on Zed.|
|Greater Mark of Magic Penetration: You do magic damage. Take these marks|
|greater mark of hybrid penetration||greater mark of hybrid penetration: I've experimented with these vs some melee opponents and I've had success. Make up your own mind, but never pick these vs a ranged opponent or someone who can farm from afar|
|Greater Seal of Armor: These will really help you trade in lane as well as help your mid game teamfighting. Once you get your big armor items, these are just meh.|
|Greater Seal of Mana Regeneration: These are expressly used to give you a dominant laning phase. If you can hit your opponent with a lot of spells, consider taking these to give you more ammo early.|
|Greater Glyph of Magic Resist: Take these at all times. Even if against an AD lane, they are still useful for mid game teamfights. You can make a third ryze page with armor seals and scaling MR glyphs vs an AD lane if you want to set aside 3 rune pages for Ryze|
|Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed: Ryze doesn't need anything in the quint slot, so you might as well take MS. Ryze has no escape so these are useful. I take these 101% of the time on Ryze.|
Devastating Strikes and Executioner are quite useful on Ryze, and 21 utility seems lackluster because of how useless Wanderer is.
9 defense isn't what it used to be either, or I'd recommend 9/9/12.
All in all, I think 21-0-9 is the way to go. If you see some pro player playing Ryze on stream, immediately check his masteries and PM me if I'm incorrect.
I start this every game. Without fail. This gives you the strongest harass and the fastest tear. No other combination of items at the start is as effective as this. With the bonus gold, the 3rd potion will definitely give you ample sustain.
The build order
These are your core items.
After that, you can choose between Glacial Shroud (need armor) or Negatron Cloak -> Spirit Visage (need MR. You can skip finishing Spirit Visage if you just need some quick MR and don't need the enhanced healing immediately).
You can build Glacial Shroud and leave it at that if you want to start working on Spirit Visage and finish Frozen Heart later
Merc treads if you need tenacity, Sorc shoes if you don't.
Towards late game, your build should look something like this:
At this point, Your last 2 items are Void Staff and Archangel's Staff. If they don't have much magic resist, finish archangels before void staff unless they are stacking MR at this point.
Tear of the Goddess - Self explanatory. Mana = damage. Build it 1st to stack it as quickly as possible.
Rod of Ages - This gives you massive amounts of mana for damage and health to supplement the resistances you will eventually buy
Frozen Heart - CDR, Armor, and mana. This is definitely overpowered on ryze. Even if someone else on your team buys a FH, you should probably buy one too. If someone on your team is likely to build a FH, just let them know towards the start of the game that you will be buying frozen heart if they want to buy something else like Aegis of the Legion or locket.
Spirit Visage - This item seems a bit controversial, but it's an 'always build' item in higher level play and I think I've worked out why. Spirit visage is a 'triple threat' defensive item for Ryze. The MR is great, the health is decent, and the enhanced healing is extremely useful for Ryze. The enhanced healing will make your ultimate really shine and may draw out ignites from the enemy team just to cap your boundless sustain. Combine this item with a late game Hextech Revolver if you're ahead and you desire lulz. BTW, you're going to build more than 40% CDR, I'm very aware. Oddly enough, everything that's amazing for Ryze also provides excessive CDR. His passive Q + items + masteries = excessive CDR. It's going to happen so just roll with it.
Void Staff - While you don't need the AP, the spell pen is very important in the later stages of the game.
Archangel's Staff - This item is superior to manamune in terms of overall utility. The shield should be SIGNIFICANT based on your supposed 4k~ mana pool. Popping this when you get jumped on should net you a nice 800-1000 health shield. Supplemented by your high resistances, it should prove difficult for your enemies to break through. If you absolutely have NO USE for this item, you CAN use muramana, it's just suboptimal. I would only build Manamune if they will NEVER have the damage to kill me.
None of these items are anywhere near core, but I have built them once or twice in extreme circumstances.
Quicksilver Sash - You can pick this up if you are in desperate need of cleanse. This should probably replace Spirit Visage. You will lose some potential sustain and defense, but sometimes you just gotta have cleanse. Although you are a straight tank, you are also a carry and you can't afford to get suppressed to death.
Banshee's Veil - Since 3.10 patch, this item got WAY better for everyone except for Ryze. A valuable component to BV was the mana along with the MR and spell block, and without the mana, this has moved from core to situational. In almost every scenario, if you think you would desperately need the spellblock, get Spirit Visage unless you're trying to avoid knockup. ( Unstoppable Force)
A second Rod of Ages - This is extremely troll, but it's viable. The passive catalyst proc doesn't stack, but the stat gain DOES stack. I build this item if I'm completely pub stomping early and have way more gold than I should. This can be played around with if you feel that all of the extra gold you have from being ahead would be best spent on more health and mana over resistance items. This build is also extremely effective versus excessive true damage.
Zhonya's Hourglass - I don't prefer this item. The armor is good and the active is godly, but I feel that the AP is extremely wasted. This can be necessary in extremely rare circumstances, but I hardly EVER build it. I think I've built it once, but it's an option that's there. Don't build this item if you personally are really behind.
Twin Shadows - I've built this item once or twice when very ahead. It's fun to use and extremely cheap. The movespeed is really nice and the MR is a bonus.
Will of the Ancients / Spirit of the Spectral Wraith - I have built these once or twice and I'm not impressed (unless coupled with Spirit Visage!!!). I was mostly trolling around, but spell vamp on ryze isn't awful at all. I can't think of a real desperate situation where this would be necessary, but spell vamp on Ryze is just funWill of the ancients could prove useful if your team can make use of the ap and spell vamp, while spectral wraith can be effective for faster dragons/barons. Still not core. If you want to pursue spellvamp 4th or 5th or 6th, pick up a Hextech Revolver and make sure your other 5 items are complete before you finish into Wota.
(PROTIP! TURN ON SMARTCASTING! IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO PROPERLY COMBO WITH RYZE IF YOU DON'T SMART CAST)
Passive: Arcane Mastery
This is your bread and butter. Knowing how to abuse this passive will seperate the bad Ryze players from the good ones. This passive stacks immensely well with cdr. You get 10 from your Q and 9 from your masteries so a Frozen Heart will pretty much cap your CDR. More on how to combo later.
Zap! Bread and butter. Pink fireball used to harass, abuse your passive and farm. Throw these pink baseballs to get what you want. Max this first always.
W: Rune Prison
CC! Glorious CC! Single target, but we'll take what we can get. This spell is pretty great when it's maxed out, but it's pretty poor when it's low level. It sucks to harass with this spell early for several reasons. It does less damage than Q, it costs more mana than Q and it's shorter range. Avoid using this to harass early or you'll run OOM quickly. I max this second for the consistency over E and the incresed snare duration.
E: Spell Flux
Utility, utility, utility! This is a fantastic spell and it doesn't get the respect it deserves. Knowing how to abuse this spell is imperative. This spell costs ***loads of mana, so use this spell sparingly early. To use this to it's full potential, cast it when there are valid bounce targets or cast it when you are in close proximity. I max this last because it doesn't scale that well and W has way more utility at level 5 than spell flux.
R: Desperate Power
This ultimate is OK. It doesn't do any damage but it has its uses. Use this to push waves, teamfight, abuse your passive, or sustain. The movespeed is definitely underrated so make sure to abuse this when you need to chase or flee. The cooldown is quite short consiering all the CDR you will build and your passive.
(AUTO) = auto attack
(THROW YOUR KEYBOARD DOWN A FLIGHT OF STAIRS) = Mash all 4 buttons repeatedly
Overload > Rune Prison > AUTO > Overload
Overload > Spell Flux > Overload > Rune Prison > Overload ... Overload
Overload > Desperate Power > Spell Flux > Overload > Rune Prison... Overload
Overload > Desperate Power > Overload > Spell Flux > Overload > Rune Prison > Overload ... THROW YOUR KEYBOARD DOWN A FLIGHT OF STAIRS
Practice all of these combos at different stages of the game to see how much damage they do. Practice = perfect
How to play Ryze:
For laning tips, see below. For teamfighing, see above. You should just combo effectively at all times and try to put your damage on targets that don't want a truckload of damage while keeping yourself somewhat out of harm's way. Ryze isn't that complicated or intricate, but it does take some dedication to get the muscle memory down to get the maximum DPS out of him possible.
Your combination of high damage, high sustain, and decent tankiness will allow you to stand in the middle of the action and throw everything you have at high priority targets. Don't be afraid to flash aggressively if it will net you a kill on that stupid Vayne. For more helpful information, download the replays from the replay section and watch what I do and analyze it yourself.
I still pick ryze in mediocre matchups just because I know that I can be very effective in other stages of the game besides the laning phase.
I do avoid 'hell' matchups though because my opponents will probably deny me farm or maybe even kill me. Avoid hell matchups if you want, but in lower divisions you can still outplay your counters.
I'm far too lazy to get into every matchup. I don't have a set gameplan vs a lot of opponents, but I have general feelings about how the matchups play out. I'll just file them into 4 catagories raising from "pie" to "hell".
(You win, they cry)
(You have a big advantage, but they can fight back OR they start hard-get easy/start east-get hard)
(They have the kit to potentially deal with you)
(They have the kit to bend you over their knee)
Explanation of matchups
Kha'Zix; He cant handle your damage. Completely shut him down with your Q spam and autos. Use W early sparingly. Pick up maybe a cloth armor somewher in your early purchases.
Mana crystal 2 pots, flash ignite
Diana; Same as Kha'zix, shut her down before she hits 5-6. Your high MS should be sufficient to dodge her q's.
Mana crystal 2 pots, flash ignite
Gragas; This lane will be decided in the first 4 levels. Your goal is to completely deny his auto attack cs'ing and force him to cs with his barrels early. You can kill him, but the more levels he gets on his Q, the easier it is to farm at a distance. Always try to keep creeps inbetween you and gragas so no surprise body slams.
Mana crystal 2 pots, flash ignite
Evelynn; This is an old school counter. If you run into one, just blast away, she can't really fight back. Call your mia's.
Mana crystal 2 pots, flash ignite
Kassadin; This lane is easy if you take mana crystal. Your auto+Q combo will out damage his Q, but he will probably have more hp pots than you. Punish him and deny as much cs as possible. When he starts farming with Q, you've won the lane. Call for ganks before he hits level 6.
Mana crystal 2 pots, flash ignite
Katarina: You will beat kat quite badly. You can't stop her ultimate, but until she can properly wave clear, you can deny her from using her auto attacks to cs, making her push wth her q. Happy hunting.
Mana crystal 2 pots, flash ignite
Ahri; Your q's will rip her to shreds, but if you don't dode her q's or god forbid get charmed, she can turn the lane round. Punish her early and look for a Q+W+ignite finisher. Stay mobile and dodge her skillshots. Be wary of her 6.
Mana crystal 2 pots, flash ignite
Akali; You will dumpster her, but if you don't beat her hard enough, she can turn the tables at level 6. Call your mia's and blast her when she's not in her shroud.
Mana crystal 2 pots, flash ignite
Nidalee; You heavily outtrade her, but if she lands spears you will be in big trouble. Concentrate on cs'ing and punishing her for her cs. Once she 6's, be wary of ganks. I still take ignite because she's entirely killable early.
Faerie charm, 4 hp, 2 mana, ward, flash ignite
Kennen; Stay behind your creeps and you're ok. He can probably blow you up at 6, but that's ok. Make sure you dont give him free cs, but don't get tagged with shurikens. You can either play this super aggessive or passive, your choice.
EITHER (Faerie charm, 4 hp, 2 mana, ward, flash teleport) OR (Mana crystal 2 pots, flash ignite)
Karthus; This one is pretty easy, but he can still kill you. If he chooses, he can farm at max range and you can't do much about it. On the other hand, you can easily burst him down and out poke him if you play it correctly. Another big problem is his wall. If you get caught out during your aggression with a jungler gank and a wall, you're probably either flashing or dying.
Talon; A cloth armor will shut him down early, but sadly his rake has equal range to your Q. If you stay mobile enough and harass him when his rake is on cooldown, you can wear him down. You'll do way more late game than he will, easy matchup. Take a cloth armor start with 3 hp and 2 mana potions
Twisted Fate; You technically can win this if you harass him when his pick a card is on cooldown, but he can farm and poke you from a range you can't really deal with. Your best shot at killing him is with jungle ganks. Hopefully, your jungler will bring more CC than damage as you just need to lock him down for a short while to burst him. If you anticipate killing him in lane, take ignite. Most of the time, I'd take teleport so I can follow him when he uses his ultimate.
Veigar; Easy peasy matchup. His ultimate is useless against you, and if you harass him when his Q is down, he can't fight back. The only reason this isn't in pie matchup is if he manages to stun you as you get ganked, you can die. Be wary, outscale him, and buy merc treads.
Vladimir; This is another easy peasy matchup. If you don't keep him down early, however, he can easily outsustain you with just a revolver. Get a mana crystal and make him eat **** starting at level 1. Harass him with Q's until he's completely zoned from sustaining himself with his Q, and you've won the lane.
Ziggs; His range allows him to play safe and out poke you, but if you can use your mobility to kite some of his spells, you can sneak some big damage in. This is very close to pie, but I would still call this easy because you can get poked down by masterful ziggs play.
Morgana; This is the 'easiest' of the hard matchups. She has extremely easy wave clear and sustain starting at level 5, but until then she is your punching bag. A big danger is getting hit with a snare, ESPECIALLY when their jungler is in proximity. Poke her down, but you should focus on CS more than harassing her. Once she hits 6, she can EASILY kill you with her ultimate, Q+W, and ignite. Be wary.
Master Yi (AP); This pick is a bit more rare nowadays, but his untargetable consistent waveclear/poke can be a bit of a problem, as well as his sustain. I would just call for jungle ganks and wait for him to alpha. He'll reappear on the 1st creep he cast it on, so anticipate. Kite him with all 3 of your spells as he makes a break for his tower. Ignite him when he tries to meditate through your damage. This is winnable, but if he plays it right he will never die to you. I'd start mana crystal and try to go for a cheeky level 3 kill.
Kayle; Kayle packs some big damage. Her Q harass is very consistent and the slow is crippling. I don't think this matchup is anywhere near impossible, but I think her damage is greater than yours and it costs less mana. I would not intentionally pick this matchup, and if I did, I would play it super safe. You don't HAVE to fight her if you don't want to. If she constantly charges you and tries to zone you, call for your jungler.
Orianna; Ori has a combination of low mana costs, high zoning capabilities, great cc, and decent damage. Her entire kit will lend her the tools to outplay you, and her ability to do so is entirely based on your enemies' skill level. I would **** my pants at a D1 ori, but a G5 ori? I can take her. I can't give much advice on this matchup besides call for ganks and poke her when her spells are down, which won't be often. You can play this safe and CS, if you choose.
Swain; Swain is interesting. His damage his very comparable to yours and you are both very similar champions. I believe his E will do more damage than one of your raw Qs at all stages of the game. This can be won, but it will probably be before 6 and with ignite. Call for jungle ganks. This matchup is a little shaky for me as I've only played it 2-4 times. I would probably throw a null cloak in my early build just for some protection. The only way you're killing him is if he builds poorly, IE anything other than RoA rush.
Syndra; Range, CC, Poke, low mana costs, waveclear, burst. Everything ryze doesn't like. I don't think you can beat her, but you don't have to lose this matchup. Just farm. If you can get a lucky jungle gank, you can probably kill her with flash and/or ignite.
Xerath; Comparable to Syndra, except his mana costs are higher and his stun is a bit less reliant. You do have opportunites to poke him when his Q is on cooldown, which will be often. Stay mobile and get some good shots in when his Q is on cooldown and you can push him out of lane
Fizz; Some say Ryze counters Fizz, and they're kinda right. I just really suck at this matchup so I call it hell. Go practice it for yourself and get back to me, but the Fizzs I see are just played so perfectly that I cry salty tears into my keyboard.
Zed; Zed can be outplayed. I would recommend barrier, the armor rune page, but also mana crystal 2 pots. My reasoning is that most zed's farm with q, and q can be easily avoided in the early stages. You're much better off blasting him with unanswered damage, forcing him to farm with his Q instead of his autos, meaning he won't use his q's to harass YOU. If you come out swinging, you will win.
Back when you have 600+ gold for tear, cloth armor, pots, and hopefully a ward. If you can wait for 900+, a second cloth armor will all but guarantee you will survive his ultimate combo. A trick I like to do which is a bit risky is to wait for him to ultimate, then flash out of range. This will cause him to miss his double aoe slash/slow, which is critical for his combo. He will most likely miss his Q as well. He will probably flash as well, and without ignite, you probably won't be able to pick up the kill, but it's a neat trick to avoid 90% of his damage.
Zyra; This is pretty close to hell. Her godlike range, CC, and waveclear are too much for you to handle. There is no safe approach towards a well played zyra. If you get aggressive, you'll get rooted. If you play passive, you'll get poked down with Q. This is a lose-lose matchup. Try your hardest to farm. If you have a very aggressive ganking jungler, this lane can be salvaged if you kill her early once or twice.
Jarvan IV and Wukong; Pretty uncommon mid picks, but pretty difficult to assess. They're both gapclosing bursty AD champions with knockups. Alone, they can't outtrade you, but with a jungler, you're dead to rights. Anticipate lots of jungle pressure and lots of deaths. It's pretty hard to imagine these happening due to their rarity, but I'm just making you aware that people pick these and they will suck.
Cho'Gath; This is an 'easier' hard matchup. His knockup can put you in a bad spot really quickly and it's easy to combo with most junglers. Remember it's better to flash from certain death with full health than to flash away after you're getting raped and die anyways. If cho puts a Q at your feet as j4 throw his flag on top of your head or directly in your path in the middle of the lane, just flash. Cho will fall to jungle pressure and consistent harass, though. Either play 100% passive early, or don't let up with 100% aggression, as anything inbetween will allow him to sustain your damage.
(for hell matchups, it's advised to not fight them at all unless they are making mistakes. Call for your jungler and wait for them. Consider teleport and conservative builds)
LeBlanc; Her burst is far too high for you to handle. You can only throw a Q during her harass combo and you can't chase her return distortion down for any follow up damage. She outdamages and outtrades you heavily, plus silence hurts Ryze in a bad way. Avoid this matchup.
Lissandra; This is on the 'easier' side of hell, but it's hell nonetheless. Her range, waveclear, and lockdown literally lends no counterplay from Ryze. Post 6, you are outclassed. Pre-6, you can completely snowball her face if she misses skill shots. If you run at her, hit her with a Q and dodge HER Q, you'll slowly start to dumpster her. Jungle ganks will be invaluable especially if they can lock her down during her E. Her ultimate has no counterplay so be wary.
Anivia; Her range puts you to shame. Her level 6 puts yours to shame. Even her level 2 and 3 are way better than yours. Stay far away from this bird. Nothing worse than an unanswered Q+E at level 3. Maybe merc treads.
Cassiopeia; Bend over and kiss your *** goodbye, this is the worst of the worst. She will F*ck. You. Up. A well played cass means you can basically alt+f4 out of the game. If you can survive the laning phase, you can do stuff late game, so concentrate on farming and dodging her Q's. Jungler, where are you? HALP!
Lux; Her cheap zoning tools and CC will keep you completely subdued while she clears wave after wave with her ridiculous range. Not much you can do here, so farm and TP around.
Pantheon; He's going to try to kill you at level 2, and he just might succeed. His punk-*** stun will keep you constantly on your toes for jungle ganks while his cheap AD poke will have you sobbing into your pillow. You can win this with a few levels and some cloth armors, so just survive the lane phase. A good counter-gank from your jungler can win this lane for you.
I'm sure I'm missing a few, so request matchups you don't see in the comments section. If I have any knowledge of it, I'll update the section.
Link 1 ( Ryze + Hecarim jungle vs Kha'Zix + Nocturne jungle)
Link 2 ...... (will be added soon)
Link 3 ......
-Changed 'sub par choice' to 'situational choice' when referring to barrier
-Changed all instances of banshee's veil with spirit visage with explanation
-Added explanations to starting items
-4 categories in matchups instead of 5
-Went in depth with matchup description
-Altered liss matchup