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Katarina Build Guide by Sofistos

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Sofistos

Katarina - The Sinister Build

Sofistos Last updated on December 15, 2012
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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

Honor Guard

Defense: 9


Utility: 0

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General Explanation


NOTE: This guide might be in constant changes here and there, duo to specific reasons. But it won't change completely turning into an all different guide.


Ok, so this is my first guide and i decided to choose Katarina to see how things will go.

Please note that i'm unexperienced with most of things, but i feel that for a start i can just TRY and create some sort of random build which i used once or two.

If you have any question and/or you think this isn't a good guide, i can't help you, because my eyes are not yours, therefore you'll see things your way and i'll see my way.
But i supose i'll get better with time.

Some informations

I think it would be smart from me to warn about my difficulties on writting in english, so please be patient while reading all of what it's in here, because it surely has some bad vocabulary, bad grammar and most of all, repetitive words. I'm very sorry for that.

This build is not suposed to be anything special, it's just another one of those strange builds out there.

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Recommended Spells

Be flexible with the Spells.
I've chosen Ghost, simply because if you're going to deal AD damage, you want to get closer to your enemy.
I've also chosen Ignite in case the enemy tries to escape, after receiving tons of damage.

If you feel more likely to choose Exhaust in order to slowdown your enemies, as a way of escaping or attacking, give it a try.

You may choose Flash to escape in the jungle if you don't have any wards or allies nearby, or just by case on any other lane, but also for an extra catch up.

Choosing Heal can be a good help, since Katarina lacks sustain. Although, i recommend it only if you find a hard middle champion.
Here are some examples:


Other Useful Spells

The newest added spell on Summoner's Rift, Barrier, can be helpful, though it doesn't heal you up and "can't" prevent much in late game(depends on if your get caught by the whole enemy team), it is still good a good prevention to a close death, if you still manage to escape obviously.

The spell Revive, can be good to defend in middle game or late game, if the enemy team is pushing too much and destroying too much towers. Although, i don't really recommend it since you don't have sustain, which would put you in danger even if you could be close to a tower, while the enemy team is diving it. Still, choose it depending on your pre-made team's strategy, if you happen to have one (team).

You can choose Smite if you feel more comfortable while pushing a lane. Eventually, you'll be in danger if you push too much, but it may help you to get that last minion, or to smite that pet Summon: Tibbers, etc.

The Teleport spell, can be good if you need to help ganking a lane, since your in middle lane. Although, i recommend you to choose this ability only if you have a pre-made team, it's much easier.

Spells That Should Be Avoided

Clairvoyance, Clarity, Garrison - are the spells which should be avoided and here's why:

Clairvoyance, may grant you temporary vision of a certain area, but then you won't have that Flash or Ghost to escape or catch up and even maybe Ignite if you choose like, Clairvoyance- Ghost.

Clarity, is not useful on Katarina, since she doesn't use mana and she isn't even a support.

Garrison, is only useful in Crystal's Scar, but we're focusing on Summoner's Rift right now, so this spell does not need any explanation.

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I tested these runes and they seem to fit well, but let me clarify too that everyone has their own ideas for runes, so please respect my choices as i respect yours.

Why These Runes

The reason why i choosed these runes, it's because i wanted to build as much attack speed as i could in order to easily stack Malady, while also having better chances to slow with Phage and obviously to deal as much damage as i can.

It's also obvious that you're not going to put 300 AD on a Katarina, since she's not even a Fighter or a carry, that would just destroy her lane, that's why it's safer to build a lot of attack speed, some attack damage and sustain if needed.

I Don't Like Your Choices

That's ok. Just be sure that you at least respect it.
Although, if you feel that you can create a critical, yet respectful comment do it so and i'll care to read. But please, do not comment with intentions of changing the runes, this is my build, my choices, if you don't like the runes then make your own.

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Please maintain the core items - but be flexible with the other 3 spaces left. I know how League of Legends matches can be total randomn and telling you to follow a very strict build, won't help you out with everything you may find. But still, follow the items i provided as you may.

Why These Items

Having attack speed in this build is important, but you surely need attack damage, otherwise your attacks wouldn't be that good.
If you feel confident, buy as much AD as you can, without forgetting the AS.

I do want to call attention on some 2 items, Malady and Trinity Force.
You may be thinking, if i wanted a lot of attack speed, then why choosing Malady and Trinity Force?
Well, to be honest, i know that Katarina isn't very flexible with different builds, other than her standard and others, i know that her Bouncing Blades - Shunpo abilities, deals magic damage. That is why it's always a smart move to buy some ability power, even if you're mainly building AS-AD, since those 30 ability power points, or more, can finish off someone with low health easier than just with 0 ability power points.

Building more AD than AP, on Katarina, isn't a problem at all, since she's a Hybrid champion. Surely her Bouncing Blade isn't that useful without tons of ability power, but whatever.

I Don't Like These Items

As i stated above, it's ok, we all have different ideas. Anyways, i'm not going to repeat it. If you haven't read it yet, then scroll up a little bit and do it.

Other Observations

Be aware, that the items build might change in time, duo to any changes on them.

Notice that you will be a little bit more item dependant.

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Maintaining balanced spells, since we don't want to focus much on them anyways, it's good.
Yes it's just good, not much will be clarified here.

Abilities Usage

Spam your Bouncing Blades! You will enjoy hiting minions since this spell leaves a mark on them. Be sure still, that you also shoot some blades on your enemy.

sinister steel, is going to be more useful here, since it scales well with attack damage points.
Don't spam this one so much, it may push your lane too much and it's not very save to do so.

Save Shunpo for escapes or if you are REALLY sure that you can kill someone AND go back to base or a tower safely.

I know that Death Lotus is a very powerfull and useful ultimate, specially if you have high magic power, but let's ignore it a little bit and level it up later.
Keep in mind that it can still be a good hit on a champion if you Shunpo and/or Bouncing Blade are/is on cooldown.

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Well, i like these masteries. They have the offense that i need and some little sustain that is... almost nothing, but anyways it's always good.

Obviously i have 4 points in Fury .

I don't like Lethality and Frenzy so they're out.

Yes i have 3 points in Resistance , since we go to middle lane, we'll surely encounter Mages.

Also, veteran's scar is good to have, because we have also health runes. So that's like:

30 + 26 x 3 = 108

Which is not that bad on early game in my opinion.

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Pros / Cons / Warding

A Very Small Overall View

Notice that her pros and cons might change from build to build, this one is not an exception.

You can't get too close to your enemy, but you can last hit much easier. This will give you some sort of advantage, but only if you're close enough to the tower and avoid pushing a lot, though it might be actually easier depending on your enemy.
On middle game, you will want to stay behind your teammates and let them just initiate, because you need to get closer in order to attack - but since Katarina has no sustain, initiating a team fight, might not be the best choice.


Faster farming;
Easier to kill 1vs1;
Better sustain in lanes duo to lifesteal+attack speed;
Better chances at surviving if silenced yet receiveing big damage;


Bouncing Blades, Shunpo abilities are kinda wasted - Death Lotus might be too;
Less poking with abilities;
Kinda more item dependant;

Other Observations

All the others pros and cons, such as good poking and no CC, belong to the standard Champion Stats.


Buy wards as much as you can, but don't exagerate. A sight ward it's fine, since you just want to check for ganks and/or escaping successfully .

If you by any chance have the money, buy one or two Vision Wards.

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Hope you enjoy this guide if you ever try it just for the fun.
Anyways, take care and goodbye.
_ _ _
Snowy Mage



NOTE: This guide might be in constant changes here and there, duo to specific reasons. But it won't change completely turning into an all different guide.

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Other informations

Adding something here some time later.