Build Guide by chakrava
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Not Updated For Current Season
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Look! It's my first attempt at a build! And I'm sure it's bad! But whatever! Pardon my lack of any fancy layout for the time being. Note, this is more a general guide to Lux then one of those super-optimized guides to get you that 27/1/18 score you want so bad. It is the way I play Lux and I've managed to get respectable scores and a 5 game win-streak while having an absolute blast using it.
After seeing the final form of Lux compared to some of her pre-release mock-ups I was disappointed. Her damage numbers are deceptively low and her damage shield looked kind of worthless.
And then I got her past level 5.
Lux has immediately become one of my favorite champions, she's one of the best pokers IMO, and poking is one of my favorite play styles. Her passive gives her a minor Lich Bane effect from level 1. Her damage shield makes a noticeable difference in team fights (when I get it, last skill). And her laser beam, despite not having an appropriate charge-up sound like something out of a mecha anime, is the most fun you'll ever have pissing people off and clearing lanes.
Masteries and Runes and Spells
Offensive for the magic pen, required for any caster build. After that I focus in utility, grabbing the mp restores, neutral buff duration, move speed, cooldown, clairvoyance, and summoner skill CD.
Runes were chosen because:
These are the ones I have
For summoner spells I choose Ghost and Clairvoyance. Ghost is obvious, it gives you unsurpassed mobility to get around the map. Whether running to or from fights, moving to setup a laser blast, or just getting back to your lane for xp, Ghost is a versatile and effective spell.
For my second spell I choose Clairvoyance, probably my favorite spell. Early game it lets you spy on the enemy team and see what lanes the enemy champs are going for, as well as scouts out bushes to avoid ganks. Mid game Clairvoyance is great for checking mia's or jungle locations, and again, scouting bushes. In addition, since Lux has an ult that can hit anything within 2-3 screens, Clairvoyance gives you a clear look at where you're shooting if you're say, trying to shoot Master Yi in the back as he cowards away.
Your mini Lich Bane! Anytime you hit something with one of your damaging spells (anything but Pris Barrer), it places a debuff on that target for 6 seconds, signified by a little ball of light above the target. If you auto-attack a target with the debuff you deal an extra 20-190 magic damage! By mid-game this roughly doubles the damage of your auto-attacks.
Learn to take advantage of this passive and you'll understand why the base damage on Lux's spells is so low, because you get a free 190 off every spell.
Nearly identical to Morgana's snare, except Light Binding continues on after hitting the first target to snare and damage (for 1/2) a second target. This means that a single minion is not sufficient cover to keep Lux from snaring a target.
Light Binding deals mediocre damage by itself but has a very high AP ratio. Combined with the combo from Illumination, a single Light Binding has some very decent damage potential even early on. More important than the damage though, is the crowd control aspect of the ability. If you don't know how important a CC is (even a "soft" CC like snare) then you should really branch out and try some normal matches against players, they're a lot more fun than practices.
I ignore this skill til late game because I like to focus on being as effective as possible at poking. Prismatic Barrier throws out Lux's staff like some sort of deranged bola that totally ignores the other team. Instead, it grants yourself and any allied champions the staff hits a brief (3 sec) damage shield. Also of note, the staff travels out along the path you throw it, and then boomerangs back, just like Sivir's boomerang. This means that, just like Sivir's boomerang, you can apply the damage shield twice to the same ally if you aim it properly.
I don't like this skill early game, I'd much rather have another ~50 damage on my attack skills than negate 100 or so damage from the enemy team during the laning phase. That said, this skill is awesome for team fights. With so many champions using powerful AoE's now, negating ~150 (~300 with a properly aimed double hit) on each member of your team is very powerful.
A long range place-able AoE slow field. The field lasts for 4 seconds, or until you activate the skill a second time. However the skill ends, it explodes, dealing good damage to everything in the area (and applying Illumination!). Lucent Singularity has the advantage of being one of the hardest AoE's to see, the graphic is a ball of light surrounded by a slight "hazy" effect. It's very easy for enemies to not notice or forget where a Singularity is placed, and this makes it that much easier to use it as a trap.
Learning to use Lucent Singularity will make a huge difference in your effectiveness with Lux. Don't just use it like any other champions AoE that immediately bursts on reaching its target zone. Throw it where you know/think an enemy champion will flee, then quickly snare them with LBinding, attack to proc Illumination. Then, if they run through the area of your Singularity, pop it on them for more damage and another hit of Illumination!
Another great use of Singularity is area control. Simply put, if you keep an enemy from entering an area of the map, you're controlling them. This is an advantage. You like advantages. Once you've established to your opponents what happens when they enter your Singularity (damage, damage, snare, damage), you shouldn't have too much trouble throwing it in front of them when you want to hold them back from a point. I've found that even the tougher champions (tanks) will often hold back or break off a charge rather than run through the Singularity, even if they could probably easily shrug off the damage and push forward to slap my squishy little mage to the ground.
Singularity is also Lux's best farming tool. Lay it down to hit as many enemy minions as possible, then hit each one to trigger Illumination after triggering it. Once you have some AP this combo will 2 shot a minion, letting you drop a wave quickly.
Final note! Singularity is a scouting skill, while its active you gain a small sight radius centered on its location. GREAT for checking out bushes!
Imma Chargin' Mah Lazer
I love this skill. It's fairly powerful in its own right, and has a great AP scale (~.75 I think). It's got enough range to go from one tower to the next in the 5v5 map, and has no travel time, it instantly deals its damage along its entire path as soon as it's cast. It's like Ezreal's ultimate, only useful, since you're actually stacking AP to boost its damage and it doesn't lose damage as it hits multiple targets. Also, as with your other skills, it applies Illumination.
Also, you can get its cooldown down to 24 seconds.
The base cooldown at the 3rd rank is 40 seconds, and with maxed CDReduction it drops to 24 seconds. The power and this ultimate paired with its INSANELY low CD makes this a great skill for anything. You can blast a lane of minions to pieces from far away. You can pick off enemy champions while still running to a team fight. You can pick off runners. You can pick off tower campers. You can do anything you want with it, the cooldown is lightning fast! Once I have the Blue golem buff I use this at the start of every team fight, knowing that it will most likely be back up by the time the fight breaks into a route.
And it's a giant freakin' laser.
Guide-ish Type Part
I'm sure there's a "better" way to play Lux. It probably involves a Soulstealer or something I'm sure. Within a few days there'll be a proper Lux guide made by one of the guru's on here and it'll blow away my build here.
But buying any "snowball" items is a sign to the LoL gods that I've gotten to uppity, and they proceed to squish me in matches that end with double digit death counts that start with a 3-.
Lux's most effective position is behind the action. Her main attack skills have enough range to let you stand back out of the range of the enemy champions and still influence the battle. You have no real escapes, no heals, and a damage shield I tell you not to take until late game. Play defensively, few champions can match the poking game of Lux, and your kiting ability is very strong. But once an enemy manages to close the distance you'll find Lux to be a very squishy champion.
Try to use your Singularity to discourage enemy initiators or charges before fights begin, and try hit as many enemies as possible with it once the fight begins. Try to save your LBinding to either save yourself or keep an enemy from getting away, it's far too valuable to waste for mere damage. Anytime a fight is going on, through your Prismatic Barrier and hit as many teammates as possible, you'll be surprised how much of a difference it makes. And, as always, whenever it's safe to do so, take advantage of any Illumination debufs you've placed on enemy champions.
Note: I grab 2 health potions to go with the Meki's Pendant, forgot to include in build.
I make a decent mid with Lux, the extreme range of her 2 attack spells combined with the potential burst from Illumination makes her a threat early on, but I have trouble maintaining enough damage to actually kill champions with her long cooldowns early game. However, I prefer to lane with another champion, preferably one of the big nasty hitters like Miss Fortune or a Garen. Lux excels at control with her long range CC's (slow/snare), and having someone by your side who can take advantage of a snared Pantheon means easy First Bloods. My first skill point is in LBinding, that first level 2 second snare has some great pre-minion First Blood potential.
Lux's mana costs are reasonable, so while you should focus on using your mana to control/damage your lane opponents, don't be afraid to use Singularity to tag a minion wave for some quick cash if you have the mana to spare. I try to recall once I have enough money to complete the Tears of the Goddess and a Blasting Rod. I know, weird order, and common practice will usually tell you not to recall until you can get at least your first full item, or to get Tears and your boots. After playing a few matches though I found that this is the best time for me to recall. The Tear lets you start charging up your max mana, giving you better sustainability, and the Blasting Rod gives you some much needed damage. And with my masteries and runes I have a 330+ move speed without boots, so you can afford to put them off a little while.
By mid game I make a quick choice on items. If I'm getting a lot of harassment or there's some enemy stealthers I'll grab a Giant's Belt for the survivability (0 hp = 0 dps!). Otherwise, I finish off the Archangel's Staff. After that I typically grab the Archangel's or Giant's depending on which I didn't get already, then finish my boots. What items you build after that depends on the enemy team. I usually end up taking a Deathfire Grasp at this point to help counter hp-stackers. The demoralizing effect of dealing 1/3 of a champion's health cannot be underestimated. Rylai's is a great item for improving the slowing effect of your Singularity, Zhonya's is, as always, one of the single best caster items in the game, and will turn you from a dangerous annoyance to a potential team killer, and the Void Staff counters anyone stacking MR. If you don't need the Void Staff, consider the Lich Bane. You already have a mini Lich Bane from your passive, why not tack another couple hundred damage into the mix?
Otherwise, mid game is a field day for Lux. With Boots of Swiftness and the masteries/runes you should be blazing along at ~420 move speed, letting you move quickly around the battlefield to respond to pushes and teamfights. Your ultimate has a quick cooldown and can clear an entire lane of minions from a fair difference, don't be afraid to use it once you've raised it to the second rank (first rank's cooldown is too long to waste). Once you have enough firepower to quickly kill the golem start grabbing it every chance you get. One of Lux's weaknesses is the relatively long cooldowns of her skills until she levels them up, the golem buff negates this weakness and lets you blast skills non-stop.
Don't forget that Lux is most effective behind the action. You may not have quite the blasty-blast-blast of Ryze, but you're ability to deny areas of the battlefield is fairly strong and you have a laser. Speaking of your laser, mid-game teamfights are the perfect time to steal some kills. Sure it's kind of a **** move, but your allies will still get 70% the value of the kill (split amongst them). In all seriousness, kill-stealing will get you hated and you shouldn't do it ("on purpose"), but a money-sprouting corpse is worth infinitely more than a fleeing body (any gold / 0 = infinity).
Teamfights are the order of the day, continue sticking around the back of the teamfights and lobbing your spells in to disable/damage the enemies. When there's no teamfights going on, go clear a lane. You've got the speed to get in position, and a laser with the cooldown that justifies recklessness. Don't stick around a lane, that's asking for a gank. Instead, line up a good shot for your ult to take down as many minions as possible; if you're close enough, follow up with a quick Singularity and LBinding and pick off a straggler or two from Illumination, BUT GET THE HECK OUT OF THERE! You are squishy, and even a single enemy champion has the potential to kill you in seconds if they get the drop on you.
And, as mentioned above, get the golem buff whenever possible, preferably when a teammate is nearby to help prevent ganks. Once you max your cooldown you'll have the ludicrous 24 second ultimate. Spam spam spam spam spam, and make sure to make a few quips about "lasers", "sharks", and "charging" if the enemy team is full of bad sports.