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Zed Build Guide by XAsmodeus

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League of Legends Build Guide Author XAsmodeus

In the blink of an eye... A Zed guide.

XAsmodeus Last updated on November 17, 2012
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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.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 9

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 0

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Welcome summoners to my Zed Zed guide. Zed is incredibly awesome and can assassinate your enemies in the blink of an eye. His shadow ability Living Shadow which is a repostioner/gap closer an is incredible for intiating ganks or escaping from sticky situations. With Zed you will rack up kills quickly and effectively and leave your enemys wishing to surrender at 20.

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What is Zed?

Zed is an assassin who relies on heavy damage and mobility to give the enemy some butthurt and qq. His play style is like most assassins he waits in the back of team fights and kills everybody, and when in the early laning phase, jumps out and kills everybody. He should not be played like oh say Lee Sin Lee Sin. Lee Sin is incredibly awesome as well and his intiations and late game tankyness is incredible. If you Zed play like Lee Sin, you will lose all of your high damage potential and instantly die as your only intiation ability that will cause panic is your ult and you will instantly die if you ult into five enemys.

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Concept of Zed

Zed is a high mobility assassin, who needs to jump into fights after the initiation has taken place, burst down the ad/ap carry and run. His whole kit is designed to be elusive and quickly escape. The concept is do not get caught, so make it a goal in every game to have 1 or less deaths.

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Pros and Cons


[*] Strong damage though out game
[*] Passive will allow you to win most trades
[*] Has good poke, chase, and sustained damage
[*] His ult is great for initiation onto carrys

[*] Needs to build damage to be effective
[*] Often Focused
[*] No hard cc (stun,snare, etc.)

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Cool Zed photo

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With Zed you need heavy damage for your abilitys, and early game armor for surviving the jungle as well as late game magic resist so you can skip the Maw of Malmortius and go right to buying another The Bloodthirster.

My runes are as follows:

Greater Mark of Attack Damage: This will help you kill those jungle creeps quickly, you only need three because 6 marks of desolation are required to pierce the armor all jungle mobs have.
Greater Mark of Desolation: These are completely needed if you want to kill anything in the jungle in a timely manner take six.
[[Greater quintessence of strength: Same as the marks of strength, so you can do more damage early game.
Greater Seal of Armor: Nine of these will be enough armor to resist the blows of the jungle mobs and early game engagements.
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist: These scale with the game so late game you can invest in more than magic resistance.

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I run a pretty standered ad page 21-9-0 making sure to take Tough Skin and Bladed Armor to reflect most of the minion damage early game. Also Executioner seems to go well with you Razor Shuriken and Death Mark, and of course your passive Contempt for the Weak which scales with the amount of hp an enemy is missing.

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Summoner spells

The good

Flash: Great escape tool essential if
caught out of place.
Ignite: Good for picking up kills early
game and synergizes with you ult.
Ghost: Great for chasing and escaping.

Exhaust: Take if you want more cc on [{Zed]]

Teleport: Great for map control, but in the jungle
you should be exercising map control with ganks and counter jungling.

The Bad

Heal: This is for supports.

Clarity: You do not have mana.

Surge: You do not need attack speed or ap, it is also being removed in s3.

Promote: This is for pushing lanes, and it is being removed in s3.

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Zed relies on heavy damage early and late game to be able to get kills and snowball out of control, take these for success.

Madred's Razors: Basic for jungling, although upgrading it into a wriggles sets you behind. On most jungles I usually starts boots and pots before grabbing two Doran's Blade but with zed I was left with 100hp after my first engagement wraiths then red, so clothe armor into madreds it is.

Mercury's Treads: Magic resist and tenacity, a great option another good option is ninja tabai but only if they are running mostly ad champions.

The Brutalizer: Great early game item, damage armor pen and cool down reduction. This is a must for not just Zed but any ad caster.

The Bloodthirster: This is kinda obvious, 100 damage and like 18% life steal, must for damage output. Take a second one instead of Maw of Malmortius if they dont have much of a magic damage threat.

Last Whisper: Sell your brutalizer for this, great damage and armpen, will allow your damage to scale late game.

Frozen Mallet: Survivability a hint of damage, and you can stick to targets easier. A must if you want to not instantly die late game.

Atma's Impaler: Armor, crit chance, and a beast passive, do not pass this up.

Maw of Malmortius: Great item, nice passives and good damage and mr, get if the enemy has alot of magic damage.

Guardian Angel: I didnt mention this in the item build at the start of the guide, but it is good if you are not so fed and op that you die once or twice.

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Attack speed and Zed

Zed is a burst ad caster. What this means is he is in and out killing his primary target then leaving. To accomplish this you need to build alot of damage and a hint of survivability. There is no room for attack speed. The only attack speed items you should get besides Elixr Of Agility is a Wit's End and a Trinity Force, here are my reasons:

    Wits is for if they have a fed ap caster, or thorn mail. Only then and late game sell for Maw.
    Tri Force is souly for burst damage the add attack speed is just a bonus, you do not need to focus on it.

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Basically jungling is simple on Zed. Grab clothe armor and five Health Potion and get to work. Here is the route
[*] Wraiths
[*] Lizard Elder
[*] Mini Golums
[*] Wolves
[*] Ancient Golum
[*] Then gank, if no lanes are open continue to farm.

Now typically in a jungle you want to go boots so its easier to gank and you can go to the camps faster. The only problem is that Zed has little survivability in the jungle so Cloth Armor and Health Potion is usually the way to go. If your with a team how ever follow the same route grab Boots of Speed and three Health Potion and get a hard leash from mid and bot/top depending on what side your on. Follow same build except skip Madred's Razors and build two Doran's Blade instead.

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If you still need help....

This is a stonewall jungle zed video if you need more help with it. Note I am not affiliated with stonewall in any way and am not claiming this video is mine.

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Counter jungling

Counter jungling is an art that takes many games to master, in this section I will teach you techniques, things to remember, and enemy junglers.

[*] When counter jungling be weary of where the enemy top, mid, and jungle are.
[*] Place wards at the enemy red and blue as well as your own, to watch where the enemy is.
[*] Running into a jungle and smite stealing a wraith once isnt going to cut it. You have to live in the enemy jungle, taking everything and killing the jungler if you encounter them.
[*] Do not forget to gank, counter jungling is important, but wont mean anything if your mid just fed their Kass 10+ kills.
[*] Know who you are facing, dont counter jungle a Shyvana, please.
[*] Remember to ward your own jungle so the enemy does steal your jungle, or else invading the enemy jungle did nothing.

Here is a list on tips for counter jungling.

Udyr: This guy will screw you up in a 1v1, he can stun shield and everything else that xin doenst like. So with this guy dont invade his jungle, and play it safe. Also in team fights focus him(unless he has lots of tank items), also try to shut him out early game with lots of focus and organized jungle ganks, as once he gets his mercury treads, wrigglers lantern, and wits end, its over he can dominate your team with ease.

Warwick: Probably one of the most sustained junglers in the game, he never really has to leave jungle. His ganks arnt to scary until level 6 so up until then you should have to worry. But if u find him in the jungle decide for youself if you want to engage. As warwick can really draw out fights thanks to all his healing, and team mates might come to save him after a bit.

Nunu: His threat towards you isnt that he will kill your if he finds you, but that he will take all your camps before your done with blue. The best way to counter this is either take a couple of wards with you or have your support do it, and keep a jungle guard until your done with blue.

Trundle: This guys counter jungling is great, he doesnt steal your camps he hits you in the face with his club and steals your ad so you can fight him. So watch out for him. The best way to deal with trundle ward, and gank him early on, as he starts at blue you can have your team run to him and gank him.

Tryndamere: Generally most jungles will beat Tryndamere unless he is fed. But he is often low health in his jungle because of his passive Battle Fury. to make his jungle go fastest he cant heal himself so he deals more damage. Use this to your advantage and once youve cleared blue, wolves, and wraiths go into his jungle and own him!

Olaf: this is a scary guy , but nothing you cant handle. Like Tryndamere he stays low health during his jungle. Unlike Tryndamere he will rape you at low health(unless your fed) as when at low health he gets more attck speed, with his ult he cant be knocked up, and his Vicious Strikes and Reckless Swing are made for 1v1ing. Take caution and know when to engage him.

Shaco: This troll will appear out of no where at one of your bushes with 4 boxes and a clone. Take extreme care with a shaco jungle, he can gank at level 2 easily. The best way to deal with him is play it safe and ward, shaco tends to drop off late game if his early game isnt full of kills. Remember this and shut him down with oracles and wards!

Nocturne:Being a snowball champion, nocturne relies on kills to have a good game, so dont feed or he will destroy you. His jungle is pretty quick thanks to Umbra Blades. Have your team do organized ganks on him, and once he is level 6 he can jump to you at anytime. Remember this and remind your team not to over extend!

Lee Sin: This guy is a pain in the *** if played right. Being able to gank at level 2 you must always be on your guard. Early game you will have trouble fighting him off. The best way to deal with him is wards and a competent mid who will go into the jungle and kick lee sin's *** if hes in your jungle.

Skarner: Crazy guy, rapid clear times, spammable slow, speed boost and shield, and a disabling ult watch out for him. Most players make the mistake of trying to 1v1 him early game, he usually rapes their face. Because of his exoskeleton being able to negate alot of your damage and his Crystal Slash which is a heavy reliable damage source, he is not to be messed with unless you are more ahead, or have back up on the way.

Amumu: Great jungle, his ganks are terrifying, his clear time is insane, and his team fight impact is match winning. Mummy boy want counter jungle you so much as just gank and team fight. So you must counter jungle him. Steal everything, hunt him down, ward his jungle, keep him from getting ahead. Make sure you beat him up if you find him anywhere, even if you dont kill him you will force him back, depriving him of xp and gold.

Shyvana: The goddess of counter jungling, pray if you see her in the loading screen. Do not trade with her early, just ward your jungle so you dont get ganked in you jungle, and just spend your time ganking lanes. Shyvana's early game ganks are terrible so just build some gp10 items and go gank all game.

Hecarim: Crazy ganks, but meh clear time. Trading with him will usually result in your favor, but know that he can delay fights for his team to arrive and wreck you face. Steal his camps and try and counter gank him. To do this look at your team, if any of your lanes are over extended go there thats where Hec will be. When he arrives to gank your idiotic pushing team mates, give him a beat down and maybe even kill him.

Nautilus: Oh how his glory days are gone. Still being the cc king, he just doesnt match up anymore. Amumu can do his job better and he just doesnt do any damage. Steal his camps and kill him he can do nothing to you.

Shen: A real pain in the ***. While he doesnt have insane damage, he can make trading with him hurt, and his ganks are really good with that taunt. Counter jungling him is risky business, stick to smite stealing the big wraith and wolf. As with Hec try and counter gank him.

Gangplank: He is a farming jungle, will stay in his jungle and get gold and xp so he can go insane pirate mode late game and kill everybody. So go into his jungle, steal his stuff force him to go to your jungle for xp and gold. Then kill him.

This is the list for now, tell me if you want a new champion added.

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Team fights and Zed

As stated earlier your an assassin. You hide in the bush then jump out after the fight erupts and jump on the enemy ad or ap carry. Basically kill who ever is dealing the most damage then get out. Your squishy as hell and cant sustain in a fight long unless your team is wrecking theirs.

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In all Zed is a great champion, decent ganks, strong damage, high mobility, snowballing clear times. He is a pretty decent pick, but I do prefer him jungle and here is why: He has good clear times and he is an assassin, assassins should be roaming the map getting kills not laning. Even though he has strong mid and top harras, he just doesnt belong their he should be free running around killing people. That is it for the guide and please let me know if I need to make any changes your comments will be appreciated.

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Update History

11/15/2012: The guide is made.
11/15/2012: Same day I add the concept of Zed.
11/17/2012: Fixed some issues with BBC coding and condensed some of the sections.