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Talon Build Guide by heyraff

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League of Legends Build Guide Author heyraff

Intermediate Talon Play

heyraff Last updated on April 29, 2015
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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

Legendary Guardian

Defense: 5


Utility: 4

Threats to Talon with this build

Show all
Threat Champion Notes
Twisted Fate Simple. Avoid his Wild Cards, and punish him after he uses his Blue or Red card to farm.
Veigar Veigar is easy to beat. Don't walk into the walls of his stun, and move when he casts his W on your head. He counters AP champs, which means Talon counters him.
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Talon. One of the league's finest assassins. He's gone through a lot of different phases over the past few years. For a long time people thought he was underwhelming. Then people gradually started to catch on and realize, wait: he's amazing. Then he was a bit of a flavor of the month pick for a little while, up until the game developers came in and hit him with a heavy nerf, removing the silence from his trademark ability. I have mained Talon throughout. Today, he's in an OK spot, still able to snowball out of control if he gets an early lead, but not as oppressively overpowering.

This guide outlines the most effective way to build Talon through masteries, runes, items, and skill order.

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Pros / Cons

-Very high damage (both single target and area of effect)
-Reliable gap closer
-Strong Level 6 power spike
-Very strong midgame
-Stealth Ultimate
-Nukes squishies
-Great at pickoffs
-Good tower buster

-Falls off very late game
-Susceptible to Crowd Control
-Inherently Squishy
-Early game isn't great
-Usually a high priority target

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The combo of Flash and Ignite is really unbeatable on Talon. Flash is useful in a wide variety of situations, and Ignite helps you finish off enemies that would otherwise escape with very low health. That is invaluable during laning phase. Other spells that COULD be viable include Ghost, Exhaust, Heal, or Teleport, but none of them are really as perfect for Talon as Flash and Ignite.

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Core Items
The core items that you'll be buying in almost every game are Ravenous Hydra, Brutalizer, and Last Whisper, usually in that order (although Brutalizer could come first if you don't have the funds). This gives you a good mix of Attack Damage and Armor Penetration, the two most important stats for Talon, and the Life Steal is nice too. As for what to turn the Brutalizer into, your choices are Black Cleaver or Youmuu's Ghostblade. Really, they are both great items on Talon, but I give a slight edge to the Ghostblade. It doubles the armor penetration from Brutalizer, adds 15% critical strike chance, and gives you the item active that increases your movement and attack speed, which is great for chasing and/or dueling opponenets. Sometimes the game ends before I complete it, though, because Ravenous Hydra and Last Whisper are both more important.

Boot Options
The Boots of Mobility are generally going to be your go-to. Talon is really good at roaming to the top and bottom lanes and ganking, so he really benefits from topping out his movement speed. Also, these boots will let you catch up to enemies who see you and might try to escape. The next best option would be Mercury Treads. The 35% tenacity bonus is huge, reducing the effectiveness of all enemy CC (crowd control). If they are a team that is heavy on stuns, slows, snares, etc, definitely pick these up. Ionian Boots of Lucidity are an OK choice. The reduced cooldown on your skills allows you to execute your combo more frequently, but I wouldn't call it a necessary choice. Cooldown Reduction is difficult to build effectively on Talon, however, so if you really wanted to pick these up, it wouldn't be a terrible idea. Boots of Swiftness are nice too. You don't have the max speed of Mobility, but you won't lose speed in combat either. They are viable. All other boot options should not be considered.

After your core items, there are different approaches to take when building your items. Here are some of the good choices you can make, and when to make them.

Situational Items: Offense
Hexdrinker: Buy this if your lane opponent does magic damage, and they are ahead of you early. If the enemy team has 2 or more magic damage champions, you should generally pick this up. It provides decent damage, as well as magic resist and a magic damage shield that can save your life in a pinch. Upgrade it to the Maw of Malmortius later on.

Infinity Edge: This brings massive damage, but is really meant for a champion that auto attacks a lot, something that Talon doesn't generally do. It synergizes well with Youmuu's Ghostblade, so if you went that path, this could be a good idea.

Bloodthirster: An item that used to be a core pickup on Talon. It's rarer to see on him nowadays because of the damage nerf (it used to give 100 damage, rarther than 80), but it is still a servicable choice.

Situational Items: Defense
(Only look to pick up a major defensive item after you have completely your core offensive items. Talon needs that damage to be effective.)
Mercurial Scimitar: Like the Hexdrinker above, this one is a combination of offense and defense. The active component of the item here is what sells it: it is a cleanse that, when used, frees you from any sort of CC you are under, allowing you to escape certain death. It also offers 80 attack damage and decent magic resist, so a pretty great item. Take if if they have CC ults (Amumu, Leona, Warwick, Sejuani).

Banshee's Veil: A standard buy on many champions. This offers good health, magic resist, and the spellshield that completely blocks the first enemy ability to hit you. Can't go wrong with this one.

Randuin's Omen: If the enemy team is killing you with attack damage, this is the choice to go with. The armor and health will help to keep you from getting blown up at the start of a fight, and the active Area of Effect slow can help you escape and/or stick to a fleeing enemy.

Guardian Angel: Pretty good item. Only moderate armor and magic resist, but this baby let's you have a second life, reviving you if you die with a portion of your health and mana back. In a close teamfight, this can turn the tide in your favor, allowing you to come back and annihilate another target after dropping your first. If your team is losing however, this might just be a waste of time; because you are so squishy, if you make a mistake, killing you twice is not much more difficult than killing you once.

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Attack Damage, Armor Penetration, Armor, and Magic Resist. These are fairly standard choices. You get the damage you need, and the resistances you want to help you survive in lane. After the early game, that armor and magic resist are not going to save you if you make a mistake, but they will be decent during the lane phase in helping you outtrade your opponent.

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The masteries I've selected are 21/5/4. The points in the offense tree are standard for most Attack Damage champions, with one exception. I put 4 points into Sorcery over Fury. The extra Cooldown Reduction is more effective on Talon than the attack speed. First, because unless you go cooldown boots, the only CDR you are likely to get from your items will be the Brutalizer. Second, because outside of the laning phase, Talon does not do a lot of standing near an enemy and attacking repeatedly. Talon is the purest of the assassins: he jumps in fast, and gets out faster. Cooldown reduction will make your skills usable faster, so you can make another leap.

In the Defense tree, I selected the masteries that will help you last a little bit longer in lane by blocking a bit of damage and keeping your health recovery up a little bit. It's not much, but if you are decent at dodging the majority of damage from the enemy, it should be enough to keep you around long enough to get the gold you need for your first trip back to base.

In the Utility tree, I put points into 1.5% movement speed, and a 1 second reduction on your recall ability. Talon benefits greatly from move speed. You are often chasing targets that see you coming and attempt to flee. The slightly faster recall does not seem like a big help, but the time you save adds up, and it WILL save your life on a few occasoins when you recall a little too close to danger and they try to stop you before you disappear.

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Skill Sequence

Q: Noxian Diplomacy
Talon's Q is an auto attack enhancer. When you use this skill, his next basic attack will deal enhanced damage, and it will also cut the target, causing them to bleed out and take additional damage over several seconds. The target is revealed for the duration of the bleed. This skill does good damage, and can be used as an attack rest, meaning that you can use it immediately after a normal attack to get off 2 hits in rapid succession. Max this move second.

W: Rake
W is Rake. This is the move you take at level 1, and it's the one you max out first. Talon sends out three spinning blades in a cone in front of him that shoot out, and then return back to him, dealing damage to all enemies in the cone twice, and slowing them for a few seconds. This move does mighty damage after a few points have been put into it, and you should almost always be using this first when you go in to do damage on a champion.

E: Cutthroat
Talon's E is his signature skill. He will instantly teleport behind the target enemy, slow them briefly, and enhance his damage against that target for a few seconds. This is Talon's gap closer. He can flash from one side of the lane to the other in the blink of an eye, often doing enough damage to destroy an enemy before they have a chance to respond. Enemies will be afraid of you using this, so play mindgames. Run in their direciton, and they will retreat, leaving you with space to farm minions. Take a point in this second, but max it last.

R: Shadow Assault
Talon's ultimate is very, very good. When you hit R for the first time, Talon goes invisible and sends out several spinning blades in a wide circle around him. Any enemy hit by one of the blades takes severe damage. Talon then has 2.5 seconds to move around with enhanced speed before the blades all converge on his new location, damaging enemies a second time. R can be pressed a second time to call the blades back early. This ultimate is very powerful, and can be used in many ways; to engage, to execute, or to escape.