Build Guide by Battlemagi731
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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.
- DoT spells can kill escaping Champions
- Tankier than most casters
- Ultimate skill heals
- Passive restores mana
- Nevermove makes increases escapability
- One of the slower casters IMO
- Still squishy
- Timing required to initiate "Swain combo"
This is my Swain build. Now, at first glance, you may think, "WTF? Defense spec'd Swain?" but I'll explain more on that in the Masteries section. For now, let's just say I forgot to change my Masteries and from there this was made. This build is how I build Swain, which means you don't have to follow it exactly. Rate and comment, s'il vous plait. =D
I have chosen Clarity and Ignite for this build. Normally I would go Clarity and Ghost to make this cripple get out of messes faster, but being spec'd in Defense makes him harder to kill. So, I added Ignite in it's place. Clarity will obviously keep your mana up, which comes in handy when using your Ultimate as it uses mana constantly. Ignite will add a fourth step to the "Swain combo" as I call it. That is Nevermove, Decrepify, Torment, Ignite.
Now, I will explain why he is spec'd in Defense. After forgetting to change my Masteries, I found that playing with Defense spec'd Swain makes him much harder to kill. No duh, right? Spec'ing in Defense also frees up room in your inventory for other items. I used to build an Abyssal Scepter for the Ability Power and Magic Resistance, but with the Magic Resistance buff in the Defense Mastery Tree, I don't build it anymore, even though, yeah, the Magic Resistance buff in the Mastery is not as good as the Abyssal Scepter, the other items in my build such as the Banshee's Veil and the Majai's Soulstealer make up for it's lost buffs. So, spec 9/21/0 for the Masteries and you'll be on your way.
Start with getting Nevermove, then Decrepify, then Torment. As you go, start upgrading the last moves in the "Swain combo" first. Torment, then Decrepify. Nevermove will still hold for the same amount of time no matter the level. With the later skills upgraded, you'll have the ability to do more damage. Add in Ignite to the combo for good damage. Get Ravenous Flock whenever possible as it will help you survive during team battles as well as farm minions for gold, health, and mana. (Yes, if you last hit a minion when using his Ultimate, his passive still kicks in, so you can honestly keep it going when killing minions.) Also, use Clarity in longer team battles to keep your Ultimate going.
For Runes, I have gone nine Greater Glyphs of Force to boost Ability power, nine Greater Seals of Knowledge to boost mana (as mana regen is not neccessarily need due to Swain's Passive), nine Greater Marks of Insight to boost Magic Penetration (to scorn those who build MAgic Resistance against you), two Greater Quintessences of Knowledge to further boost mana, and one Greater Quintessence of Force to further boost Ability Power. Note: You can substitute on Greater Quintessence of Knowledge for a Greater Quintessence of Insight to further his Magic Penetration.
Now, I buy a Sapphire Crystal first along with a Mana Potion. If you're laning with someone, you'll be competing for last hits, making it hard for Swain's passive to kick in, or if you're in middle, you may get harassed by your opponent also making it hard. Next, build a Catalyst the Protector, then build a Banshee's Veil when you can. Even if you're not against many AP Champions, it will still block a harmful skill. Second, build a Majai's Soulstealer. The buff that it gives will come in handy to feed you. And with the Banshee's Veil protecting you, you have a better chance of not losing your stacks. Third, build Sorceror's Shoes for the speed and the Spell Penetration. Fourth, you'll want to start building a Rabadon's Deathcap. After that, build your Void Staff for the Ability Power and Spell Penetration. Finally, build a Hextech Revolver. You may want to build this earlier if you're having a tough time so that the Spell Vamp. will help you live. Still, refrain from upgrading until you have everything else as to save gold. Note: The Hextech Gunblade can add a fifth step to the "Swain Combo", making it: Nevermove, Decrepify, Torment, Ignite, Hextech Gunblade. If you do not want the Gunblade, the Revolver can be upgraded into the Will of the Ancients, which gives 40AP, 20% Spell Vamp, and an aura that gives 30AP.