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Master Yi Build Guide by

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Lifesteal/Hit-and-Run Master Yi

Last updated on September 8, 2013
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Cheat Sheet

Lifesteal/Hit-and-Run Master Y

Master Yi Build

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: 23

Honor Guard

Defense: 0


Utility: 7

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Thank you for taking the time to read this guide! I hope it will be useful in helping you to Yi. This guide is meant for a solo-top Yi, who will eventually be taking turrets and fighting one-on-one with other champions. Thus, this guide focuses on doing lots of damage very quickly then getting out just as quickly. This is a build I have used for a while now (since before AP Yi died and all-AD Yi was implemented) with a good enough success rate I felt it was worth throwing out there for your consideration and feedback.

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Runes are a personal preference for this build. If you think that this build is a little risky, use defensive runes that give health, armor and Magic Resist. If you want to go all-out, focus on Armor Penetration, Crit Chances and damage. As of writing this guide, I honestly haven't spent enough time or IP/RP on runes to definitively tell you exactly which ones to get, so my advice is to experiment and go with what suits your play style.

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Get all the offensive masteries that buff AD and damage in general. On the utility side, increased movement speed can help you get out of a tight spot and mana regen can help with his early mana problem. Improved Recall can make a huge difference if you are recalling in a nearby bush to get a way. Alternatively, try getting Summoner's Insight to reduce the cooldown on Flash.

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Most of these items are fairly standard on a Master Yi build, but I do want to go over each of them at least a little to justify them.

Starting Items:
Boots of Speed; good first starting item, and is a recipe item for Berserker's Greaves which is the next item to get the first time back at the shop.

Health Pots x4: Since this build will get Meditate last, health pots are good for not dying early game. Don't be too put off if you do die early on, as this build really gets off the ground early-mid game. That said not dying is always better.

Later Items:
Berserker's Greaves: Movement Speed + Attack Speed make these my go-to boots for almost any AD-based champion.

Statikk Shiv: This may seem an odd choice to many of you, but I personally like this item for Yi early game because it can help balance out his damage out-put. Without it, all his damage is AD based, so if enemies rush armor, that can make life really difficult. Statikk Shive ensures you put out at least a little magic damage to get around that. Additionally, Alpha Strike + electric charge can clear most of a minion wave almost instantly, greatly increasing farm potential. the Aside from that, the bonus Attack Speed, Crit. Chance and movement speed make Statikk Shiv fit in very nicely with the strategy for this particular Yi build.

Bloodthirster: Massive AD and lifesteal make the Bloodthirster fantastic for any AD champion. Look for a huge increase in performance around the time you are getting this item.

Infinity Edge: More AD, and massive bonuses to Crit. chances and damage mean huge improvements to damage output.

Last Whisper: A little more AD, plus the added armor penetration help ensure that you do enough damage against armored champions that lifesteal keeps you in the game and your opponents dead.

Blade of the Ruined King: More AD, attack speed, lifesteal AND on top of that it can help slow a pursuing enemy. I save this for last because you can build up the Bilgewater Cutlass in you last item slot fairly easiy, giving you most of the benefits earlier.

Alacrity: Since your general strategy is to attack turrets where the enemy isn't paying attention then getting away before they can respond, Alacrity is nice for the second half of that, as well as actually getting across the map fairly quickly.

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Item Substitutes/Alternatives/Other Items to Consider

Master Yi can have a bit of a mana problem very early game. Consider switching one health pot for a mana pot if you can avoid taking lots of damage early game.

Statikk Shiv can fall off a bit in terms of damage later in the game. Ravenous Hydra does more damage and also deals damage to multiple enemies, but remember you will also be sacrificing Crit. chance, attack speed and movement speed if you do decide to switch the two. Alternately, consider selling Statikk Shiv and buying Ravenous Hydra after completing the rest of the build.

I used to get Zephyr instead of BotRC.

Consider Boots of Speed or Mobility if Attack Speed isn't a problem.

Ward as you think is necessary.

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Alpha Strike can be a very effective way to poke, dodge a poke, or close the distance to another champion.

Meditate is nice for sustain, but with this strategy won't be the most powerful tool in your arsenal. That said, if you are running low on health with an enemy tower diving, Meditate reduces all incoming damage quite a bit, so you could delay them long enough for the tower to kill them. This works better at high level where damage is reduced 70% and you regain massive amounts of health.

Wuju Style is a nice passive ability. Activate it in conjunction with Highlander for a truly devastating combo.

Highlander is awesome. Do not be afraid to use it and Wuju Style to take down a turret, just know that then you should usually run away immediately instead of maybe pushing to the next turret.

Double Strike can be coupled with lifesteal and Wuju Style to deal a fair amount of damage. Try to make sure that (especially early game) you activate Wuju Style when you are about to double strike, as the duration of Wuju Style only lasts ~1.5 cycles of Double Strike.

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Summoner Spells

Get Flash and Ignite. Use flash to escape in the rare event that an enemy champion manages to close in on you when you aren't ready. Ignite can increase damage output. Another effect that I've noticed is that when you ignite someone, they tend to stop following you, probably because they assume a gank is coming. Either way it discourages people from chasing you.

Alternative: Get Teleport to quickly get in lane.

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This is a fairly expensive build, so make sure you are farming quite a bit. One way to do this is to make sure you are the one to clear large waves of incoming minions. Statikk Shiv + Alpha Strike should clear almost an entire wave in less than a second.

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High damage output
High maneuverability
Tons of fun

You will be focused early in team fights
Not as good on the defensive (but still manageable)
Dependance on lifesteal means that pulls, stuns, and high level pokes will hit hard

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Once again, this is a build meant for a Yi who is focusing on taking out turrets and gaining superior position. Comments are appreciated, as I am always looking to improve upon my build. If you think that the build sucks, feel free to tell me but please be polite about it.