Vi Build Guide by Donutknol
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Bruiser Vi (favorite atm)
Mid/late game items (read note)
Example Final Build 1
Example build 2
Example build 3
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.
Hello, my name is Donutknol, I'm currently unranked but I consider myself a pretty good Vi player, I really like playing her and hope to help other Vi players or people who are considering to buy her too. These are my builds on Vi jungle and top, I mainly play her jungle as her high mana costs can be a slight problem in lane, and since she was originally designed to be a jungler. I will try to update this guide frequently. This is my first guide so please give reviews on what I could improve I will try to answer ASAP and also take any advice into consideration.
Don't forget to upvote if this helped you or you just generally like the guide. Also, this guide has recently hit 1 million views! I don't really have any giveaways but I genuinely want to thank anyone who read my guide, especially the people who vote and give feedback.
About Vi as a champion
Vi is a pretty versatile champion and is mainly played jungle. You can build her many ways, from straight out tank to glass cannon, but I prefer to build her as a bruiser AD caster, which is the best way to build her in my opinion. I see people building attack speed on her with items such as Blade of the Ruined King but I think Vi doesn't need atk speed since she gets enough from Denting Blows. Her role is to get to the back line and kill the carry. Usually you get to them using Assault and Battery and chunk them with the rest of your abilities. In the top lane she is a lane bully like Riven, Lee Sin and Renekton. If she's ahead, she can easily snowball herself and also other lanes, since she has good ganks. But when she's behind she won't do that much and she'll mainly have to build tanky. In the jungle she is a really good duelist, like in the top lane and can also gank really well with the small knockback/knockup from her Vault Breaker and with the overall burst in her kit.
Recent changes affecting Vi
In patch 7.16 Vi's ult cooldown got decreased by quite a bit, helping her throughout the game. There was also a fix to a bug which wouldn't make her always land behind her target after ulting, which is nice since you would occasionally miss your instant q because of this. Her E can no longer be canceled mid-auto, which is some nice quality of life since occasionally you would miss a kill due to this cancelling. Overall some decent quality of life and a nice buff to her ult
Pros / Cons
- Really strong in all stages of the game
- Awesome ganks
- Can build tank and still do quite some damage
- Assault and Battery can disrupt entire teams
- Snowballs really hard
- High lockdown+mobility
- GIANT METAL GAUNTLETS
- Denting Blows deals percentage health damage and shreds armor
- Great duelist
- Is a carry jungler
Mobafire didn't update their mastery planner yet, will add this ASAP.
Edit: It's taking a very long time for the update to come so I'll just give a little explanation: I take offensive masteries mainly, since it grants you alot of early game gank killing potential as well as good damage in the late game. I take the keystone Thunderlord's Decree because it's basically perfect for Vi: You q, auto and e and you get a w proc as well as a thunderlord's proc. This gives you some insane burst damage which opponents often don't expect. However on the tank setups I take courage of the colossus, the shield gets really huge once you get more health, even if you only hit it on one enemy.
Greater Mark of Attack Damage
Greater Seal of Armor
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist
Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage
Some early mr for early skirmishes.
For extra magic resist in late game, so you don't get blown up by mages (although you should still get some mr items). Also helps against full AD team because they will always have some magic damage.
For early clear speed and overall more early damage.
This works well on vi because she has very high AD/bonus AD scalings, so it just gives you a big boost in damage
This is just mandatory for junglers. No other options.
I always take this. If timed well you can pass 2 walls if you combine this with your q. Also a note that you can flash while charging your q so you can charge it while out of range of the enemy, flash and then release. People often don't see it coming. But only flash q if the opponents flash is down otherwise they can just flash away. If you don't have flash yet you can probably replace this with ghost.
This helps you secure kills and makes it easier to lane against and all-in high sustain champs like Volibear or Warwick.
Other Viable Summoners
You can use this at top to have some more map pressure and/or make sure you don't lose any experience or farm after you backed. On jungle you could take it for some teleport counterganks but without Flash it will be easier to catch you when your Vault Breaker is on cooldown.
This can sometimes be viable in the top lane as well as in the jungle if you're in a tough matchup.
refillable Some extra damage, xp gain and sustain against jungle monsters. Refillable potion over health potions since you don't need the extra hp in the jungle and you also get free hp potions for the rest of the game as long as you don't sell it, which really adds up the longer the game goes on.
This synergizes really well with vi, it gives you alot of early AD, and cdr. The slowing smite is quite versatile, can be used offensively to chase down targets or defensively by allowing you to run away more easily.
More Early Core
Some more early damage. It will really improve your ganking power so you can snowball early. Phage's passive also works good on Vi so you can stick better, and it gives you a nice chunk of health early on.
This item is really good on Vi, because the spellblade passive synergises really well with her Excessive Force because it is an auto attack reset and immediately applies the bonus damage. If you manage to get fed and get this in the early mid game, you're probably gonna be making adc's and other squishies cry.
A newly added item. It gives a chunk of both armor and health. But it also gives a unique passive which grants you Momentum as you move (without getting your movement impaired). The momentum grants you flat movement speed up to 60, and your next basic attack deals 1 damage per momentum stack (goes up to 100). If you have maximum stacks the damage doubles, so 200 damage. This is a really versatile item, as it gives nice defense, but also a pretty big chunk of damage, amplifying Vi's chunking potential even further. I chose this over Randuin's Omen since it gives better stats overall and as I said a big chunk of damage. If the enemy team has more AP threats you can trade this in for a Banshee's Veil.
Such an amazing item now. It got slightly reworked recently to make it more of a tanky option instead of being focused more on damage. It now gives more health, less AD, but SO much sweet, sweet, cdr. Together with your jungle item and masteries you'll have 35% cdr, which lets you use your abilities alot, which is what Vi revolves around.
Late Game Item Options
Really good in terms of stats, nice mr, health, and some health regen never hurts. The great thing is damage reduction on repetitive damage. It's good against alot of mages, especially ones with alot of damage over time such as Swain.
It's not a bad item, not at all, I just like Dead Man's Plate better with the extra punch and speed it gives.
This is a nice item, since the health works well with Vi's passive. Flat health isn't that effective overall though since you need resistances as well.
It's not bad, it gives alot of AD and life steal, but I prefer Ravenous Hydra since it also gives AoE and health regen.
Good item if you're up against a magic damage heavy team, gives some decent damage and good resistances, plus of course the magic damage shield.
This isn't a bad item at all since it works like Trinity Force but, less damage, an AoE slow and it gives armor. I prefer Trinity Force but if you're against an heavy AD team or you're going really tanky this is a nice item.
Very good item for the tank build. Helps your team out alot with the shield and gives you a bunch of mr and armor, makes you more of a supporty tank in combination with Knight's Vow
Quite good when you're ahead and the enemy has trouble killing you. Gives you a bit more armor,a decent chunk of AD and obviously the revival passive. Can be sold for a better item in late game once the passive has been popped.
You can get this instead of cleaver. This gives better burst with the lethality, as well as a big chunk of AD. Also a bit of cdr and good lethality. Active helps you chase or run away. Generally only get it over cleaver when against very squishy teams.
Nice item if you're going mainly tank and you want some damage. Not as good on standard bruiser since you don't get as much hp (plus you probably have enough damage already).
The flat stats on this item got nerfed, so it's not as good anymore. It does give the reduced critcal strike damage taken but I don't think this outweighs the stat loss. Can still be good if the enemy has alot of AD on their team and just Dead Man's Plate isn't enough.
A big counter item to fast attacking champion. Gives the most armor on one item in the game and grants you an attack speed slowing aura. Also gives alot of cdr. Not that good of a choice on the bruiser build but if you go tank and don't get cdr it's really nice to get if the enemy has a couple of auto attack reliant champions (think Tryndamere, Irelia or Yasuo together with an AD carry). Same applies to top lane.
It's a decent item, it gives a good chunk of damage, especially with the lethality, and the spell shield is actually quite nice, you can channel it while moving, the shield lasts quite long and the cooldown is low. It also gives a decent amount of health, but cleaver gives you a bit more but I'd say it's personal preference. Same reasoning for top lane
A good hyper offensive option. The passive in combination with the lethality and high AD gives you a ton of burst in combination with your Q-auto-E combo. The same goes for top lane
Good option for the tank build if you don't have a tank support/top lane building it. Helps your adc become a bit more resilient, heals you for their damage and gives good stats while being prety cheap. Same reasoning for top lane
I usually take this for some vision. I take in the jungle as well as top.
This is a possibility too for when you want to make sure that something isn't warded. I usually prefer Warding Totem though.
You should take this if you are against a ranged champion or just a champion with alot of poke.
I usually don't take this, but when you're against a skillshot champ and/or want to stay in lane long against a champ that isn't gonna poke alot it can be nice. Also helps with roaming if you'd want to
This is when you are against a weak early game champion that you have to shut down early.
Some more early damage. Helps you beat your opponent in trades, partially because of your high AD scaling. Builds into The Black Cleaver.
Since you don't need alot of movement speed you can go with defensive boots, and it's probably pretty obvious against an AD laner you take Ninja Tabi and against CC and/or AP you take Mercury's Treads.
Since the top laner is usually (one of) the tank(s) of the team, the extra armor and health is never bad, and the extra damage the passive grants you is pretty damn nice, even when building tank..
Just generally a really solid item, lots of mr, health regen, health. The passive also helps alot against alot of mages, as well as the on-hit from guinsoo's on champion's like Varus and Kog'Maw
This synergizes well with your w, so you shred armor like a beast and it also gives some damage and alot of cdr and health.
Same reason as for jungle: This item is really good on Vi, because the spellblade passive synergises really well with her Excessive Force because it is an auto attack reset and immediatly applies the bonus damage.
Gives alot of damage, some nice lifesteal, health regen, which synergizes well with your Spirit Visage and some AoE damage.
A tankier version of the Ravenous Hydra. Instead of a circle it give you a cone AoE (basically like your e on each auto but a bit weaker) and it scales of your health instead of AD.
Some nice damage and mr, the shield is nice and it also gives you more AD the less health you have left.
The explanation for jungle applies to top lane as well.
Good hyper offensive option, same as jungle.
If you need more armor this is really nice and it gives a little bit extra damage too with the AoE burn.
Only take this if the enemy has 4/5 AD's and/or their only threats are AD.
As I said before, works well with Vi's passive and the health regen is really nice.
See jungle item explanation for this item.
Just like with trinity force, works well on Vi because of the Spellblade passive. Also give some nice armor, some mana and a good amount of cdr. Also gives a bit more chase potential with the slowing area.
As explained in jungle, a more supporty setup which can be very good if your team doesn't have a tanky support and a strong ADC.
Similar to knight's vow, good for helping your adc stay alive while still giving good stats.
Early Jungle Route
In the current jungle should start either blue or red, depending on what side you are (start the one on the side of your bot lane generally). After this do either gromp or krugs and go to your next buff or rift scuttler, depending on how low you are. After you backed you can go gank or farm some more, depending on the situations in the lanes. Also remember that if you are doing blue that you should walk back a bit after each auto attack. You don't have to walk far, just a small bit. This will decrease the damage you take because the blue will have to walk after you so his DPS will be decreased. Your DPS will not be decreased though, because you just auto attacked and it will take a bit before you can attack again, so in this time you can walk back and then attack again. This does not work on red buff however, since he has a higher attack range.
As the jungler you have a few things you have to pay attention to: Protecting your own jungle, protecting and/or ganking your lanes, and securing the epic monsters. First off protecting your own jungle: I shouldn't really have to give a reason behind this: protect your buffs and your gold income. This isn't always that needed if you're not losing very hard or playing against a heavy counterjungler such as Shaco or Nunu. However, if you lose outer turrets fast or are playing against a counterjungler, you shoould make sure to get wards in your own jungle to get potential picks on the enemy jungler. Another good option is smiting the wolves for the sentry, but this does not replace wards. Then protecting/ganking your lanes: You are the jungler, and a big part of what you do is help out lanes that are losing or snowball lanes that are equal or winning. But you can also protect your lanes with vision (wards, scuttle crab) and counterganks. I want to specifically emphasize the importance of scuttle crab, because I see alot of jungler not actually killing it, even though it's free gold, roaming power, vision and some health for you while killing it through your jungle item.
Now the epic monsters, in a spoiler to avoid a giant wall of text:
Your killing combo before level 6 should usually be Vault Breaker-auto attack- Excessive Force-auto attack- Excessive Force and then as much auto attacks as possible after this and use your skills whenever possible this will also guarantee a Denting Blows proc. Your minion clear combo will be standing in front of a minion wave, waiting for it to pile up, then dash through them, turn around and use Excessive Force. There shouldn't be alot of minions still alive if your AD is a bit decent. After you hit level 6 you can just do the killing combo mentioned before or use Assault and Battery- Excessive Force- auto attack- shortly charged Vault Breaker for knockback and extra damage- auto-attack- Excessive Force-auto attack and then keep stomping them until they die or escape (and of cours keep using Vault Breaker when it's off cooldown).
When jungling as Vi you should never forget to use your Excessive Force as an auto attack reset as it will improve your clearing speed. You can also use your Excessive Force in lane to harass, but don't spam your skills too much as your high costs can make you go out of mana pretty fast, which makes you kind of useless. If you're (starting) in a trade in lane, unless you know you can kill the opponent, try to engage with a fully charged Vault Breaker (or charged up as far as possible), Excessive Force, auto and Excessive Force, then disengage, since you are mainly an AD caster and you deal most damage in about the first 5 seconds. After that your damage is still good because of your attack speed steroid on your Denting Blows but in a trade you should just back off if possible.
26/3/14: Build published
27/3/14: Runes, Masteries, Summoner Spells added. Also first top build and other viable items on jungle bruiser build added. Ability explanations added.
28/3/14: Combos added, guide name changed
30/3/14: Passed 1000 views! Also added Top item explanations.
31/3/14: Boot enchantments added.
1/4/14: Passed 2000 views!
3/4/14: Passed 3000 views!
5/4/14: Passed 4000 views!
8/4/14: Passed 5000 views!
10/4/14: Passed 6000 views!
13/4/14: Passed 7000 views!
15/4/14: Jungle tank build added and passed 8000 views!
18/4/14: Passed 9000 views!
19/4/14: Passed 10000 views!!!
2/5/14: Passed 15000 views!
5/5/14: Swapped Spirit Visage for Locket.
20/5/14: Passed 20000 views!
26/5/14: Passed 25000 views!
8/6/14: Added some top lane startings items and the glass cannon build.
10/6/14: Hit 30000 views.
24/7/14: Small tweaks to guide.
5/8/14: Replaced Boots of Swiftness with Mercury's Treads. Also hit 50k views!
6/8/14: Added jungle route.
30/8/14: Added Youmuu's Ghostblade as a possible replacement of The Black Cleaver
6/11/14: Minor mastery changes.
22/11/14: Changed "recent vi changes" to "About the Season 5 jungle changes" because the last vi changes were more than 15 patches ago.
25/11/14: Hit 100k views!!
6/12/14: Added righteous glory to viable options
15/12/14: Hit 150k views.
21/12/14: 200k views, updated jungle route and max e 2nd instead of w.
22/12/14: Added hexdrinker as early replacement for brutalizer, updated item explanation.
5/1/15: Hit 250k views!! Also happy new year everybody!
15/1/15: Adapted guide to the first official season 5 patch.
23/1/15: Hit 300k views.
15/2/15: Updated rank
19/2/15: Hit 400k views
2/3/15: Hit 500k views!
16/3/15: Hit 600k views!
26/3/15: 1 Year anniversary of this guide!
3/5/15: Edited rune setup, removed old red pot.
26/6/15: Small tweaks to the guide+jungle clearing tip added.
19/7/15: Hit 1 million views :D
6/8/15: Removed the "Patch 5.5 vi changes" chapter. (Was too outdated)
16/8/15: Updated summoner spell explanation.
27/8/15: Item changes for all builds. All explanations added. Did some minor tweaks.
10/9/15: Small tweaks.
26/9/15: Added recent vi changes (with this build) chapter.
28/10/15: Minor tweaks.
13/11/15: Mostly updated for preseason 6.
20/11/15: Hit 2 million views!
28/11/15: Added Thunderlord's Decree to masteries instead of fervor of battle.
31/1/16: Small tweaks.
26/2/16: Small tweaks.
10/3/16: Talked about vi buff in 6.5 and added mastery explanation
3/4/16: Hit 3 million views!
10/6/16: Adjusted build paths to the new triforce changes. Now 2 possible build paths for bruiser vi (jungle)
21/7/16: Added jungle priorities chapter
25/8/16: Added recent vi changes to the respective chapter, changed hp potions for refillable potion.
2/9/16: Added an additional path for builds in bruiser jungle.
4/9/16: (Finally) removed all boot enchantments.
12/2/17: Updated everything for season 7
20/10/17: Updated all items and explanations after a long break.