Build Guide by organic
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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.
A Work In Progress
DUE TO THE MINION BUFF IN THE MOST RECENT PATCH (3/1/11) CHANGES WILL MOST LIKELY BE MADE
^that being said, give me input anyway!
I am currently structuring and formatting this guide to be in-depth, clear, and concise.
For now, I am going to publish it so that you may critique my item, rune, mastery, and skill progression choices. Feedback is important, so help me help you.
I do not and will not respond to troll posts, nor will I question random downvoting or upvoting. I would like for you to leave an explanation, but I know many people won't, and I won't waste my time catering to a problem they have with the gudie that they have refused to make me aware of. To those of you with constructive criticism, I thank you in advance.
There are many different ways to play Janna; currently she's ranked very high in many solo and draft queue tier lists for this reason. In most, she is top tier. Her versatility is one of her best attributes; you can play full support, full AP, full pusher, or a hybrid thereof. My aim with this build guide is to provide a clear explanation of these, and to touch upon many tips and tricks I've seen and learned over time, playing with and against Janna.
A few things to remember:
○ You are not a tank.
○ You are not a DPS.
○ You are not a melee.
○ You are not a carry.
○ You are not a jungler.
○ You are a pusher.
○ You are a support.
○ You can shield/buff.
○ You can escape.
○ You can disable.
○ You can slow.
Let's get started.
Pros / Cons
○ Escapes easily
○ Pushes/Lanes very well
○ Shields champions/buffs AD
○ Shields Turrets
○ Disables champions
○ Great farming
○ Low damage output
○ Will be one of the first targeted in a team fight
○ Requires accuracy and skill to shield and slow at the right times
For Janna, pushing and defending lanes is critical. Since she can farm easily, escape amazingly, shield turrets, and disable/slow enemy champions, she can harass effectively and push lanes out quite well, giving you much needed map control. Being able to lane-hop quickly can either save a turret or destroy one.
Rather than Flash as a second choice, I recommend Ghost. Janna's W allows her to pass through minions and gives her a huge speed boost, but when activated allows you to do a small amount of damage and greatly slow an enemy. One of the things that makes her so great at escaping is her ability to use Q to disable, W to slow, E to shield, and then pop Ghost to gain back that passive speed and ability to pass through minions. You won't need Flash since Ghost will allow you to get away so quickly (not to mention the +3% MS you get from her passive).
If you're not comfortable with Ghost, then Flash is definitely the next choice. Flash through walls, away from ganks, into a team fight to pop your ult.
Fortify is a good choice, too, especially if you're playing more lane-defensive than offensive. Her ability to save a lane is doubled. I think Teleport and Ghost are more useful, but Fortify definitely has its uses.
The only other spells I find useful for Janna are Ignite, if you're playing a serious AP build and are confident in your ability to get kills/assists, or Heal, if you desperately need that last bit of healing to win a fight or get away safely.
I generally go with flat mana marks and seals, flat CR glyphs, and exp. quints. The flat mana early game is awesome for laning longer; it can save you in many sticky situations. The flat CR is good early game to help you get those shields in or get your W back sooner, and it helps you bump up even closer to the CR limit late-game; I don't use scaling CR because the CR early game is more useful to me than and extra 4-5% CR late-game when I'm already at ~35% CR anyway. Quints are interesting for Janna. Since flat mana runes also contribute to her AP late-game, you might get mana quints. You might get AP, you might get health. I tend to get exp, especially since I get 5% increased exp. from Awareness, so that's 11% increased exp. from the beginning of the game till the end, allowing you to far outlevel your opponents. Imagine that if you're solo-laning top. Win. (Protip: add in a Zilean for an almost 20% exp. boost from the start.)
For a general build, I go 9/0/21. The mana, health/mana regen, ghost, and cooldown bonuses from the Utility tree extremely useful. From the Offense tree you can get some extra magic penetration, even more cooldown reduction, and some extra ability power. The combined CR + Frozen Heart gets you close to the CR limit with little to no work, and the extra mana gives even more AP due to the bonus from Archangel's Staff. The flat mana and mana regen allows you to lane much longer than normal, which is exactly what you want. The bonuses from this mastery build far outweigh any other for Janna, I feel, though there are certainly specific alternatives.
This is very general and situational. You want to drop at least a point in Q and E at levels 1 and 2, and I would recommend a point in E at 3, as well. From there it can change based on your circumstances. The higher your Q, the better your farming abilities, and since you won't get many kills with Janna, this will be where most of your gold comes from. The higher your W, the better your movement speed increase and the better your slow, allowing you to get in or out of a lane effectively, whether it's running to a tower to save it or running away from a fight you can't win. The higher your E the more you shield and buff attack damage, so the more likely you are to stop a tower dive from succeeding or save an ally from that last hit. Always drop a point in your ult when you can.
The sequence shown above is just a recommended sequence; learn your abilities and how they work so that you know which one you should level at what time in order to better your chances of winning. Good judgment is much more important than being able to follow a guide.
Start with a Sapphire Crystal and two health potions. This will give you an initial mana boost and some survivability, allowing you to lane longer than your opponents. Janna's mana regen, with your mastery bonuses, should be good enough for you to lane for quite some time without needing to recall, as long as you're not spamming your skills for no reason. (Tip: save your W for champions, don't shield too often, and try to farm/disable champions in one go with your Q)
Some people start with a Meki Pendant and try to rush Archangel's; I don't recommend this, and here's why: getting a Sapph. Crys. first will give you the mana bonus you need and upon your first recall you should be able to get a Catalyst, which in turn will give you more health and mana than you would get from regen, allowing you to lane even longer, forcing your opponent to recall and allowing you to push and gain some significant progress on their turret.
When I get my Catalyst, I can usually afford Boots and a Null-Magic Mantle, but not Merc. Treads; if you can afford them, get them, if not, they can wait. I choose Mercury Treads over other boots for the reduction of debuffs. It shortens them enough that you should still be able to escape situations where normally you wouldn't be able to and removes the need for Cleanse. Next you should start building a Glacial Shroud; by the time I return to build GS if I haven't gotten Merc. Treads I can usually afford both at the same time. (I'll show you some tips later for farming that should get you the gold you need.) If you can get it, go ahead and grab either a Blasting Wand or Rod of Ages depending on how much gold you have. If you couldn't afford RoA, then get it on your next return and start building a Rylai's. The extra slow from Rylai's gives you an even better chance at escaping by allowing you to slow and entire team of enemies with your Q and slowing the one most likely to catch up to you and kill you with even more with you W. The health bonus and AP bonus from Rylai's gives you some much needed survivability, too, but I mainly choose it for its passive. When you get the chance, get your Frozen Heart, giving you that last bit of CR you need to spam your skills (you should have enough mana at this point), and a good bit of armor and mana, plus an amazing passive, making you much more useful in team fights.
If your tank or another character hasn't already gotten Aegis, pick it up; its aura is a great buff for team fights. If not, go ahead and get Archangel's. The passive here will give you a great AP increase; at level 18 you should have a max mana of 4194.2. The passive from AS will give you an increase of 125.826 AP. But you also get an extra 200 from RoA, bringing you to 4394.2, and another extra 1000 from AS, raising you to 5394.2. The AP bonus now should be at 161.286.
The last item is situational; if you don't need to get an Aegis, you have many options. You could pick up a Deathcap to give you another huge AP bonus, raising your damage output a bit but mainly increasing the amount you shield with your E (since it has a bonus of 90% of your AP); you might grab a Stark's Fervor if you have a heavy AD team. A Soul Shroud is good for survivability and the cooldown reduction aura might just turn the tide in a team fight (though, remember, at this point the CR from Soul Shroud will only be aiding your allies, it will do little for you). You might grab a Guardian Angel so that if you die in a teamfight, you can revive and immediately pop your ult to separate the enemy team and allow you to get away. A Zhonya's Hourglass has a great active to save you, and the AP and armor bonuses are very nice, too. You need to have good judgment and some prior knowledge (read: do your research) about your team before picking your support item(s). Ex.: If you buy a Stark's Fervor for a team that's mostly AP, you've made a useless choice. Even if you're playing mostly pusher with Janna, you are still a support character, and you need to make decisions accordingly.
Janna is an excellent farmer; I'd say she's about the second best farmer in the game. Early game, you can pick away at minion waves and then send off a Q to finish them off or get them low enough for you to do so yourself. Mid game you're going to be a bit stronger, and you can start decimating waves in one go. (NOTE: This may have changed since the recent creep buff; I need to check it out myself to make sure.) Here's the trick: position your Q so you can get the whole wave. Now, while it's charging, since your W allows you to pass through minions, walk up and start shooting the ranged minions, taking off chunks of EACH of their health bars, all three of them. Your melee and ranged minions are doing the work up front for you. If you time it correctly, when your Q goes off you should get the gold for an entire wave, save maybe a cannon minion. This is even more effective and efficient late-game. Depending on how AP-heavy you build, you might be able to take them out with just your Q, but I find leaning towards support is better since you can still wipe an entire wave out in no time flat.
With this build, Janna is quite the pusher. When team fights are happening, Janna can and generally should be far away farming and pushing lanes out (maybe now more than ever since the minion buff). Team fight...where's Janna? Backdooring like a pro. She wipes out entire waves quickly, has a disable, a slow, a shield, and a knockback/heal. If they come after you, you're not going to get caught if you're smart about it, and you've just distracted them from whatever lane they were team fighting in while making some progress in another lane.
If you ARE present for a team fight, don't run away. Use your shields wisely, save people! Prevent damage to your DPS or your carry. Use your Q to disable the team for a few moments, gaining precious time and damage on them. Use your W to slow down the enemy that's chasing you while you run away and save the last teammate, or use it to slow down the enemy that thinks they're going to escape, to ensure a kill.
USING YOUR ULTIMATE
Janna's ult. is the cause of lots of raging and loss of team fights if you don't know when to pop it. Do NOT use it to save ONE person when you can kill the rest of the enemy team. Shield them instead, or double-tap your Q to shoot it off and maybe save them. Do NOT initiate with your ult. It's a waste and now you have one less resource in a team fight. You should do it to save your entire team, or to possibly split the enemy team up so you can target a few champions to deal heavy burst damage to them and take out their carry or DPS.
You should generally let your ultimate go for its full duration. You're going for maximum healing, here, as well. But, if you can't, don't hesitate to move out of it and start throwing your Q and W, always shielding yourself or someone else.
TIP: Just so you can worry less about shielding, remember that you can ALT+E to shield yourself automatically, and that you can press E and then click on the portrait (on the left-hand side of the screen) of the teammate you want to shield.
Janna is a great asset for any team, provided you know how to play her. It can be easy to feed if you're not sure what you're doing, but once you are, you'll be amazed at your own ability to escape and push.
If you have any input or ideas, I'd love to hear them. I may not have thought of them yet, and you never know what new idea might make a champion even better.