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Lux Build Guide by Retribution
Lux: The Final Spark. A Comprehensive Guide.By Retribution | Updated on February 20, 2016
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Choose Champion Build:
Frost Queen's Build
Threats & Synergies
Caution for mobility post-6, avoid Charm.
Aggressively abuse poke and auto attacks in the early game, avoid pushing past the river after lv6. Pink wards can come in handy.
Relatively easy lane, watch for R E combo post-6. Farm lane.
Favourable range advantage, but highly dangerous up close.
High damage output, waveclear, but easy to catch and kill.
Relatively easy to avoid, and quite squishy. If poisoned, however, damage potential is absurdly high.
Avoid Q by walking towards your opponent's left.
Early W, save Q for after he lands from E.
Difficult to kill, and dangerous if jungler shows presence. Farm lane.
Pushing potential is extreme, but lacks kill potential. Just keep wave clearing.
Strong harass with Q, but not much else otherwise.
Somewhat dangerous with jungler, but little threat otherwise. Can easily harass and kill.
Abuse early-game lack of damage and mobility. Post 6 lane will be far more difficult, just keep pushing.
Strong damage, but can be outplayed if you save Q until after she uses harass combo rather than before.
Can R to negate burst combo, but lacks damage potential if kept at range
Strong poke with Q, but not much threat without jungler presence.
Highly threatening damage, early W recommended, avoid trading
Weaker early game due to lower scaling, but strong poke in Q.
High damage on QE combo, but lacks kill potential. High survivability with W E R.
Mirror lane. Your opponent is as broken as you are.
Lacks range, but strong harass with Q, abuse range advantage. Post 6 kill potential is stronger.
You out range easily. Strong push potential, and dangerous with jungler presence.
Tanky, but relatively easy if distance is kept.
Hard to kill due to E, but little threat if Q is dodged.
Rather useless if the spears and traps are avoided.
Strong clear potential and CC, trades can go either way
Highly dangerous. Strong gap closers, damage, and survivability.
Hard out range. Caution for damage potential within auto attack range.
High sustain, but no threat at range.
Strong harass, burst, and wave clear. Exercise caution.
Get W level 3, has high burst post 6. Push the range advantage early on. May need to consider 2 points in W.
Little kill potential, but threatening with jungler. Caution for post 6 roaming.
Both sides have strong kill potential on the other post 6, abuse his pre-6 weakness.
Low scaling, be sure to avoid E, watch for Q angle
Decent poke and waveclear. Watch for post 6 combo damage.
Low damage early game, but has strong sustain and can avoid burst with W.
Both possesses high range, attempt to burst at range.
Caution for lane aggression. Can block everything except R.
Can 100-0 burst post-6. Abuse early range advantage, consider extra point in W at lv5.
Strong wave clear and poke, but lacks solo kill potential.
Only has one damage ability. His R can be a nuisance.
Very vulnerable, and lacks kill potential and poke pre-6.
1.1: Introduction: About me and my guide.
Hi everyone. I'm Retribution, and welcome to my first guide on Mobafire!
Don't just use the cheat sheet and expect to do well! Inside the guide are my explanations, my thoughts, and everything I can think of about Lux, as well as MY way to play this champion. If you disagree with me for any particular reason, feel free to let me know! I'm always looking for ways to improve my guide.
Lux is a champion that is skill-shot based. While she doesn't counter many people, she doesn't get countered easily either. Because of this, Lux is a great choice against most any mid lane champion. I seldom lose my lane when playing Lux, simply because I am experienced playing this champion. She has a slow and a snare to use, as well as high-ranged harass, kill potential, and objective control capabilities. Lux might not have the mobility, nor the tankiness, compared to some other picks, but she is definitely a viable choice, particularly as an AP damage dealer.
This guide is designed to be highly comprehensive. In other words, it's a full guide that guides you through a step-by-step process to learn how to play Lux (and the game in general, if it helps), and not something that you should browse through during your 60 second loading screen. Although I have included TL;DRs in some sections, if you truly desire to become a better player, I strongly suggest taking the time to go through the massive walls of text, analyzing the information, and making use of it, hence the use of the word "Comprehensive".
If you liked this guide, tell me why you like it; if you put a thumbs-down, tell me what I can do to improve!
Disclaimer: By no means do I consider myself a 'good' player, and I don't want anyone else to make that assumption either. I'm hoping for readers to judge my guide based on its content, and the content alone. I've put in my utmost effort into putting in details, and the information are accurate to the best of my knowledge. I'm not saying that the information would be 100% true, but they are accurate, to the best of my knowledge.
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AD: Attack damage. The amount of damage your auto attacks will do, before applying armor.
AoE: Area of Effect. I use this term to describe spells that can hit multiple targets.
AP: Ability Power. A champion stat that scales with abilities to allow them to deal extra damage. This is one of the most important stats for Lux, because all of her abilities scale on AP.
AP/lvl: Ability Power per Level. The amount of Ability Power the rune will give you, which increases based on your champion level.
AS: Attack speed. The amount of auto attacks you can use in 1 second.
cc: Crowd control. Effects, such as stuns, slows, and silences, which can disrupt you from doing things like moving, casting spells, and more.
CS: Creep score. The amount of minions you have last-hitted.
DoT: Damage over Time. Abilities that give damage over a certain period of time, such as Noxious Blast, Toxic Shot, or Blaze.
GP10: Gold generated per 10 seconds. A generic term for items that increase gold income, such as Spellthief's Edge, Relic Shield, etc.
Mana Regen: Mana Regeneration. A champion stat that shows how much Mana is restored every 5 seconds.
MP: Magic Penetration. Flat Magic Penetration (From our runes and boots) ignore a certain amount of the target's MR, while Percentage-Based Magic Penetration (From our Void Staff) ignores a certain percentage of the target's MR.
MS: Movement Speed. A champion stat that affects the speed in which our champion walks. (Runs, whatever you want to call it)
MR: Magic Resist. A champion stat that affects the amount of magic damage taken from spells. The more Magic Resist one has, the less damage they will take.
OP: Over-powered. Self-explanatory.
UP: Under-powered. See previous answer.
+Great burst damage!
+3000 range on ultimate!
+2 spells give vision!
+Has a shield!
+Amazing poke damage!
+Few effective counters!
+Best laugh ingame!
-Lack of escape tactics...
Lux is a champion that is easy to learn, but hard to master. While her skill set isn't too hard to get used to, being able to use it effectively is different. It's like how the usage of Black Shield determines the difference between the "good" and the "great" Morgana players.
Lux is a good mid laner, due to the fact that she out-ranges almost everyone else, and has a form of built-in survivability, as well as her exceptional damage output. She is also one of the safer picks for Mid lane, because the only champions that really counter her are assassins, most of whom don't have much kill potential until later in the laning phase. While some lanes can be a bit difficult, assuming both players are of around equal skill level, Lux will seldom lose a lane.
Lux, however, is a natural support. Not "support", as in keeping your AD carry alive, but "support", as in working together with your teammates to win a fight late-game. Despite your exceptional damage output, while you can continue to poke down your opponents, you can NOT burst down more than 2 targets at the same time. With all your spells on cooldown, you're extremely vulnerable. This is where teamwork comes into play. A good way to describe this would be: Your team's tank is doing their job at the front lines, and you support them by throwing out Light Bindings and Prismatic Barriers. You're supporting the tank, so he won't be taking too much damage, and he's supporting you by tanking damage, so the enemies would not jump on you. That's just an example; Lux should be having this kind of symbiotic relation with just about every member of the team. It's difficult to do well as Lux if you cannot work with your team, or vice versa.
Let's see an example.
Typical burst combo: Light Binding > Lucent Singularity (Don't explode) > Final Spark > Explode Lucent Singularity.
Without smart spell casting, this is what you do: Q, click, E, click, R, click, etc.
WITH smart spell casting: -Hover your mouse over your target- Q-E-R-E.
This concept does take practice to get used to, but you'd thank me when you learn how to use Smart Spellcasting. Try it out! Those fractions of a second you save can often mean the difference between life and death.
For those of you that don't know how to set it, you can arrange your key configs in-game. When you are inside a game, pressing ESC will make this window pop up. There are options on it, like Video and Sound. Find the Key Configs page, and make your changes there.
Illumination is Lux's passive. Much like Leona's passive, Lux's abilities mark their target, so that her auto attacks would deal extra damage. Final Spark also detonates Illumination, but her other spells do not. This spell makes Lux a good harasser early game, and its AP scaling also ensures she does not fall too far behind in damage late game. It is a good idea to get this mark on your opponents before using Final Spark, regardless of the phase of the game, for an extra burst of damage.
fillerNote the enemy minions with the Illumination marks.
FINAL SPARK PROCS AND RENEWS THE PASSIVE.
While the damage in itself may seem insignificant, it in fact contributes to a significant portion of your damage output, especially when procced multiple times.
The actual effects are slightly longer than the visual effects imply, as you can still proc it even as the visual is fading.
The full effect of the proc DOES apply to Light Binding's secondary target. However, it does NOT apply to targets damaged by Luden's Echo only.
You can actually start your attack animation BEFORE you put a mark on them (Usually by detonating E while your auto attack is in mid-air) and still proc the bonus damage. In other words, pop the E right before your auto attack hits, for a surprise burst of harass damage. You'll gain all the damage output possible from that combo, and enemies will be less likely to retaliate due to the slow on E.
When you want to push the lane, make use of E and this passive! By continuously auto-attacking, you can generally proc 4 marks before they expire.
When your E is level 3-4, you should be able to 1 shot a ranged minion with E-Auto, depending on itemization.
Light Binding is Lux's Q skill. This is a skill-shot type ability that damages and ensnares the first TWO targets hit. Therefore, you can definitely try to Q an opponent standing behind a single target. This skill was actually buffed to apply full effects to both targets hit, so you will get the full damage + snare duration for both targets! Yaaaay!
Usually, you will want to cast Lucent Singularity under your target first for the slow (Without detonating), then follow up with Light Binding, as it ensures your target will remain in one place for you to do whatever you want to them. However, it has a long cooldown, so only use it if you are sure it is safe to do so. It's good for last-hitting minions if there are multiple low-health creeps, but make sure the enemy doesn't engage on you while the spell is on cooldown. Only use it on the enemy champion for defensive purposes, if you think you can kill them, make them leave lane, pressure them such that they lose cs, their engage spell is on cooldown, and/or the enemy's jungler is not close by. Using it for harassing is strong, but dangerous! Be cautions when attempting to do so.
fillerfillerNotice the range on this spell. It can also pass through one enemy unit. Note that the bind already ended on the second minion, while the first is still bound.
Full effects of the spell will apply to both targets hit.
The snare duration does NOT increase with level.
It passes over walls, as with most skill shots.
The projectile speed is quite slow, so it's a good idea to use Lucent Singularity under the target and apply the slow effect on them.
At 40% CDR, the cooldown on this is 6.6 seconds, which isn't all that long. Compare that to a 11 second cooldown at 0%.
The spell does its job even at rank 1. Thus, it's a good idea to get an early point here and max out E first. (See skill sequence)
Lux's W skill is a skill-shot type shield that acts like Boomerang Blade, because it returns to you after it hits maximum range. Prismatic Barrier is best used in teamfights, where your teammates would be able to take more damage, giving your team a distinct advantage. The shield is deceptively powerful, and it can easily grant your teammates thousands more in "effective health" if you can hit multiple targets. This skill can also help you survive DoTs and delayed attacks. We've all had that moment where we make that amazing escape, only to have the enemy Karthus press R, or to die to some random DoT.
Remember, this returns to you after hitting max range. It seems the indicator is faulty. The actual projectile achieves a longer range, whereas the width seems to be narrower.
You can move while casting this, so try to hit as many allies as possible in a fight.
The missile speed remains the same regardless of the cast direction or your movements while it is being cast. With that being said, you can apply the second proc faster if you cast it in front of you while running, or slower if you cast it behind you.
The visual indicator is slightly messed up. It is in fact longer and narrower than indicated.
The shield is deceptively strong, and can add thousands of effective health to your team if you were to shield multiple allies during a fight.
Use this when trading with your opponent in lane to ensure minimum damage taken.
While there is a cast animation, the shield now gets applied instantly at the end of the cast time.
Lux's E skill is Lucent Singularity, a delayed AoE damage skill. This also provides vision, while it's travelling, as well as while the AoE is active! After you throw down the orb, it has up to 5 seconds of delay before it detonates itself. For harassing, you want to explode it quickly, by pressing E again, because any enemy with some sense would know to stay out of it, and/or walk out of range. Try throwing it behind the enemy, because most enemies would walk away to avoid getting hit. The AoE properties of this spell also makes for good farming, but do so at your own discretion, as the mana cost of this spell is a bit high. For maximum harass, lay a Lucent Singularity under your opponent, fire an auto attack while they are in range, explode the Lucent Singularity while your attack animation is still in the air. This is far more reliable for harassing, as your opponents would likely back off if they are marked.
fillerfillerAs you can see, the range of Lucent Singularity is quite high. The detonation radius is not small. Anyone with their hit-boxes touching the area will be damaged. The location of my mouse hover is the actual maximum-cast range.
The slow effect applies for a very short amount of time after you detonate the AoE.
If you're trying to catch up and/or escape from the opponent, try putting down the circle, and detonating it just as they leave the area, for maximum slow potential as well as some damage.
You can use this in conjunction with Illumination very easily. Cast this under your opponent, auto attack them, and detonate it before the auto attack projectile hits. Most opponents would back off if they have the passive mark on them, so this method is more reliable for harassing.
Using this for wave clear isn't a bad idea, but make sure you don't miss too much CS.
Once your E is rank 3-4, you should be able to E-Auto a ranged creep from 100%, depending on itemization. It's just something nice to keep in mind when you're trying to push.
Make good use of the vision this spell grants to check objectives/bushes/etc.
Lux's ultimate ability is Final Spark. This is the spell that defines Lux. It is basically a laser beam that shoots in a straight line for up to 3000 range. In other words, it's approximately the distance from the entrance to your base to your mid lane outer turret. It has a short cooldown, so by lategame, don't be afraid to use it often! Your laser also provides you with vision of the area you are casting upon, so in some cases it could be used for vision purposes. There is a 0.5 second delay while it casts, but the damage is instant, unlike Trueshot Barrage where you have to wait for the projectile to hit. You can use this spell to finish off that fleeing target, or use it to steal/secure objectives.
Final Spark has a long range, however, it is NOT global, as shown in the minimap. Aiming it on a moving target is difficult, and requires practice, as the actual projectile seems to be slightly narrower than indicated.
The actual hitbox is narrower than the visual indicator.
A creative use of this would be to pin your opponent along the wall with this, so there is a greater chance of hitting them with this.
You can use this for wave clear, even during the laning phase, if you're in a farm-heavy lane, if you have blue buff (preferable), you lack kill pressure on your opponent, and/or there isn't any threat of a dragon attempt any time soon.
If you're unlocking your camera to look at the end of the range, make sure you're not being ambushed. That's something that tends to happen a LOT if you don't pay attention while moving towards a snipe target.
Having an Illumination mark on your target allows you to deal more damage. It also refreshes the mark.
Don't forget about the 0.5 second cast time.
This spell, like Trueshot Barrage is a channel that is only cancelled if you die. Other types of CC like stuns or silences will NOT cancel the channel.
If you're past ~50% done the channel when you die, the spell will go on cooldown without casting, but if you die after just starting the channel, it won't go on cooldown. Could be a bug? Confirmation needed.
This is a standard AP caster setup. The Greater Mark of Magic Penetration gives MPen increasing our damage by ignoring some of the target's MR. Of the viable marks on Lux, this one grants the best value, so it'd probably be a good idea to stick with just this Mark, and nothing else. Along with our Sorcerer's shoes, this will allow our abilities to deal their full damage early game.
The Greater Seal of Scaling Health grants some much needed health, and scales fairly well into the late game, granting over 200 health by level 18. When Armor isn't exceptionally needed, this is definitely the best choice here.
The Greater Glyph of Scaling Cooldown Reduction gives a good chunk of CDR, something very important if you are to keep up with your poke damage. Since no MR is taken in the rune setup, you may have a slightly rougher time against strong laners, but this rune scales incredibly into the mid-late game, and highly synergistic with Lux's high-poke nature.
The Greater Quintessence of Ability Power provides us with some much needed damage. Self-explanatory here.
This setup accounts for a variety of uses, from defensive stats to offensive capabilities, and should probably be your most frequently used page on Lux.
I usually take the above page against an AD opponent with higher threat, such as Zed or Talon, to provide some more early-game defenses. With this, you are more likely to survive their burst damage, and be able to move into the mid-game at a relatively even point.
This rune page is what I would use against a high magic damage dealer from the early game, such as LeBlanc or Brand, granting the highest amount of defense potential of the various pages against mages.
The last two given pages use Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed instead of our standard AP quints. These are more dependent on your playstyle, and whether you plan to roam in the early game. One thing to note is, this scales far better than the AP Quints, at the cost of early game strength. If you plan to roam a lot, these will definitely be helpful, along with the Wanderer mastery, but otherwise you'll probably be better off farming up, with the AP quints.
This 12/18/0 setup is my normal setup for Mages.
|This increases the damage dealt by spells, something very important for a caster like Lux. This is also the better of the two choices for Lux, as she does not need the attack speed at all.|
|This is mostly an early game mastery, granting a good amount of sustain in the laning phase.|
|This grants us some scaling stats, and is the more useful of the two choices, as Spell Vamp is exceptionally weak for AoE spells.|
|This ability grants a good damage boost, provided you've already killed some enemy champions. I personally prefer to get this over Oppressor , because I usually have no troubles getting the required kills, but as Lux does have a slow and a snare to work with, the other is definitely viable as well.|
|This mastery grants increased damage against enemies low on health. I prefer to take this for maximum damage output, as opposed to [meditation], due to us already having enough MP5 from either Grail or Frost Queen's Claim.|
|With this mastery, you heal whenever you kill an enemy champion. It's quite nice to have on Lux, as she is one of the more vulnerable champions in the game. Her mana supply is also somewhat low, so the percentage recovery can help.|
|Having an extra 5% CDR increases Lux's poke potential, and is the only thing that can get you over the otherwise-40% CDR cap.|
Flash is the standard summoner spell choice for most champions. This can be used for multiple purposes, such as running away, getting in that last hit, or dodging enemy abilities should they prove threatening to your life. I take this on Lux all the time. Enchantment: Distortion decreases the cooldown on this spell, and is a good pickup if you are against a team with heavy engage.
Barrier is a great defensive pick on Lux. Considering how vulnerable she is, the extra "health" is more useful than Ignite would be. Also, it's quite unlikely that you would be in range to cast Ignite most of the time. I personally prefer Barrier over Ignite, due to the additional safety it provides, and because Lux doesn't really need Ignite to secure kills anyway. Her base damage is quite high, and she has a long ranged snipe in Final Spark if needed.
Heal is your other potential defensive pick. It's similar to Barrier, in that one grants "effective health", while this grants actual health. This is a better pickup than Barrier against an opponent with more sustained damage, while Barrier is better against more burst-oriented enemies. The speed boost can also come in handy in many situations.
Ignite is a good pick for any AP Carry with an offensive playstyle. The damage adds to your burst, and allows for kill-securing if in the case your target is left with a sliver of health. While the cast range on this is far lower than Lux's potential range, you're almost never going to be casting your combo from max range, due to the difficulty of landing a max range Light Binding. If you know you want to play defensively, though, it's good to consider the other choices, like Barrier.
Teleport is a summoner spell useful for a variety of purposes, from defending a tower, returning to lane quickly, split-pushing, or ganking. I suggest this if you're going for a passive farm lane, since this allows you greater mobility, while sacrificing trading potential. It's useful against enemies that you know you won't be able to kill easily, such as Galio and Cho'Gath.
Exhaust slows and weakens a target champion for a short period of time. This is mainly used as a counter summoner spell against champions with strong burst, such as Zed.
Cleanse is a very situational pick, and should only be picked when your opponent has long-duration hard CC, such as Veigar's Event Horizon. Cleanse also removes Ignite and Exhaust.
At level 1, get Lucent Singularity first. This spell is useful for many purposes, from strong early harass, gaining vision, controlling the minion wave, and/or defensive capabilities with its slow. Starting out the lane with an offensive playstyle will help you assert dominance in the lane, making it easier for you later. Lux also has one of the stronger level 1's of the mid laners, so you definitely want to take advantage of that. A Light Binding start is possible as well, especially when a level 1 fight is anticipated, as a 2 second lockdown is just about a guaranteed kill and/or burnt summoner spell. Light Binding, however, has a far longer cooldown, and is far harder to land for damage purposes, so assuming standard situations, a level 1 E is often better. Always, always, always max Lucent Singularity first, regardless of situation.
At level 2, it's best get the other damaging spell that we did not get at level 1. By now, we have both Light Binding as well as Lucent Singularity. If you are harassing enough, these 2 spells will be enough to net you that First blood. Against opponents that harass hard starting from level 1, a point in Prismatic Barrier at level 2 is a good idea. For example, if you have that early point against a LeBlanc, the shield completely negates a level 1 Sigil of Malice, which makes it practically impossible for her to kill you pre-6. Why? LeBlanc is heavily reliant on early aggression to get a kill at around level 4/5. If she can't get you to half health before then, there's no way she can kill you without jungler assistance -- something you'll be able to avoid with the ward from the Warding Totem. Just an example.
After Lucent Singularity is maxed, we want to proceed to max out Light Binding. Why not Prismatic Barrier? You "only" have 3 damaging abilities, so if you level up the shield before your snare, your damage won't be optimal. Because you rely on combos, maxing out damaging abilities first is a must. Someone like Veigar can get away with maxing Event Horizon before Dark Matter, because Primordial Burst essentially 1 shots squishies anyway. You don't have that, and you typically need your entire combo to burst someone down.
Of course, level up Final Spark whenever you can.
Why don't you max Q first? It does more damage, and the cooldown is shorter as the level goes up, which is important because it is your only reliable method of escape.
1. It's a skill shot, that only hits the first two targets along the path. In other words, if your accuracy is low, or if your opponent has a decent reaction speed, you'll be pretty worthless in lane. Also, many ranged champions tend to stand behind their creep waves, making it even harder to land. While it provides more burst, it's simply "too hard" to land this.
2. E is easier to hit. That's also partly why it is your main harassing skill. While it does less damage and has a smaller ratio, it is *so* much easier to land. If you rely on Q, You won't be able to deal much damage (unless your opponent is just straight out bad), and you remain vulnerable to jungler ganks and hard engages. However, having E on cooldown really doesn't add that much of a threat to you.
3. Leveling up E increases its slow ratio. I mean, a 20% slow is kind of useless, but a 36% slow would be enough to allow for an easy escape. This is useful in saving yourself, and even your teammates if they ever get close. What if there are more than 2 enemies chasing and you can't land your Q anyway? You use your E. In this case, if you maxed Q first, you're dead, or you'll at least burn your Flash.
4. E is your main wave clear and poke ability. Lux's mid-game power spike revolves around the obscene amount of poke she provides, and that is almost entirely due to her having E. Don't forsake her power spike by maxing a different ability first.
|In most cases, the best tier-2 shoes for Lux are the Sorcerer's Shoes. The 15 MPen, along with our +8 from runes, will allow us to deal nearly our full damage against just about all targets, as most champions have a constant base MR of 30. By late game, these shoes, with other MPen items, will allow you to ignore a big chunk of the target's MR as well. Especially with the nerf to MPen stats, these boots are vital.|
|This item is a great defensive pick against high magic damage opponents, if you're beginning to fall behind. With Lux's range, you should not be getting hit by the enemy. You can fire off your entire burst combo without enemies even getting close enough to touch you, with a few exceptions. Also, with the mobility you gain from boots, you should be able to dodge skill shots easily. Thus, sticking with Sorcerer's Shoes is the best idea. However, if you absolutely need the MR, these are the boots to get.|
|This upgrade gives nearby allies a bonus speed when they are moving towards you. It's a single direction thing, like Galio's Righteous Gust. This isn't that good of a choice on Lux, since you aren't the one initiating fights, and will in fact be on the edge of a team fight. It could save a teammate, though, if you're running to help them.|
|This upgrade gives us a reduced cooldown on the mobility summoner spells. If you find that you are prone to being caught in a bad situation, grab this. The base cooldown on Flash is 300 seconds, and getting this will reduce over a minute of the cooldown. This is very useful if you're in situations where you'll desperately need your Flash up more often.|
|This gives us a speed boost whenever we hit a target with a single-target attack or spell. This really isn't good on Lux, since all of your spells are AoE. In fact, this enhancement is straight out bad. If you ever want more speed, just get Alacrity.|
*In conclusion, I don't think Enchantment: Furor and Enchantment: Captain are good ideas for Lux. Either one of the other two are fine, and the choice is purely up to situation.
|This item is a great pickup all around, granting good defensive stats, as well as mana sustain. It gives good defense against AP mid champions, as well as grant you the ability to effectively farm using skills. With this, your mana supply is increased, allowing you to harass and farm far more freely. Buy this before upgrading boots, if you are going to build into this item path, and upgrade this into Athene's Unholy Grail as soon as you can.|
|This is quite possibly the most broken item in the game as of right now. What's so good about this item though? It gives lower AP, and builds out of Frostfang, something virtually useless in a solo lane. The answer lies in its active: the 'Spooky Ghosts'. In other words, the old Twin Shadows' active. This is the single strongest active in the game, useful for scouting for enemies, as well as setting up catches with its powerful, 4 second duration slow.|
|This item is pretty much a staple pick for any AP caster champion. You gain a 120 base AP, as well as a percentage bonus. You would usually get this later on in your build, due to its high costs. It's best to start with Needlessly Large Rod, but Blasting Wand could be an option if you're having trouble gaining gold. This item becomes more gold-efficient the more items you have available, with it being barely efficient if acquired as your second full item. Thus, it's better to hold off on this item until after at least one 100-AP item.|
|This item is a great choice on Lux. While the AP isn't too high compared to other items, the cost is quite cheap, and it gives a massive 35% MPen boost. This would actually benefit us more, because percentage-based MPen is now calculated before Flat MPen. If you find that you aren't taking much damage, either from good positioning or lack of damage from the enemy, this would be a good item to get after your main AP items.|
|This item gives us a 100 AP boost, a good amount of armor, as well as the Stasis active. The armor bonus is great for surviving against the enemy team, and the active can save you from DoT or delayed spells, such as Death Mark. I usually like to get this after Athene's Unholy Grail, unless I'm taking heavy AD damage, in which case I would hold off on this until nearing full build, if I get it at all.|
In terms of item builds, the first core item Lux players should purchase is generally always a CDR item, providing some amounts of damage, but more importantly, MP5 and CDR. This allows for players to be able to keep up with Lux's lengthy cooldowns and hefty mana costs, and enables a higher amount of damage dealt within a time frame. Having this first CDR item is essential to get her mid-game powerspike going.
A large area of contention is trying to decide which CDR item to purchase. Let's start by analyzing the pros and cons of each option.
+30% Mana refreshed on kill/assist!
+Highest Mana Regen over time!
-Most expensive of the CDR items...
-Weakest offensive potential...
As suggested by this list of (dis)advantages, the Grail is best used for defensive based playstyles. While this enables the highest amount of mana regen over time (due to Mana Font, and refreshing 30% mana on kill participation), the 'only' offense potential this item has is its 60 AP, in itself a weak amount for a 'core item'.
+Highest amount of AP!
+Easiest build path!
-Lowest Mana Regen of the choices...
-Grievous Wounds is situational...
Damage wise, the Morellonomicon grants the highest boost, at 80 AP, an amount more in line with common AP items. The main benefits of this item lies in its grievous wound passive, applying reduced healing. Of the three choices, this item is the clear choice for opportunities at early snowballing, as it is the only one of the three that grants 20% CDR at component items alone. However, the main downfall of the item is its complete lack of defensive stats/potential, as well as its sub-par mana regeneration.
+Cheapest of the three choices!
+'Spooky ghosts' Active!
-Frostfang component effectively useless...
-Lowest CDR of the three...
Frost Queen's Claim, originally only built by offensively-based supports, gained popularity during pre-season 6 as the most efficient CDR item rush for many mid laners. One of the benefits of the item is its low cost. Of the three CDR items mentioned here, this item has by far the lowest cost, as well as granting gold generation effects. Its relative lack of damage is partially negated by the Spellthief passive, which grants bonus damage on some attacks. The other, more influential benefit, is its active, arguably the strongest active in the game. Further analysis on the active to follow.
So when, and why, might I build a certain item?
As previously outlined, each item has specific benefits and deficits, and it is often a good idea to decide on which of the three items to purchase at an early point, based on situation. Again, everything is purely situational.
Guidelines to deciding:
- When at a heavy need for Magic Resist (eg, against high damage enemies like LeBlanc)
- When seeking for a more scale-based defensive playstyle
- When snowballing, or about to start snowballing
- When playing aggressively, seeking to build a lead at an early point
- When looking to make roam attempts
- Whenever Grail/Morellonomicon don't seem optimal.
In other words, Frost Queen's, and Grail, are likely to be your two more-commonly selected items. While a Grail has been a long-time favorite, why the Claim? The answer lies in the 'Spooky Ghosts' Active, again, arguably the strongest active in the game.
Scouts enemy champions, and if found, applies a 4 second 40% slow, and reveals for the duration, on a 60s cooldown.
For those familiar with the old Twin Shadows, this is effectively the same active. This doesn't seem like much. Why is it so strong though?
This active is exceptionally versatile. Its uses range from catching opponents out of position, gap-closing on enemy(s), as a get-away tool, as a scouting tool, etc, and unless used on your spawn platform, will generally grant results regardless when it is used.
So, when should I use it?
1. Roaming. When making a roam attempt to another lane, the most frustrating thing would be for your opponents to run off the moment their wards spot you. With the active though, that becomes a nonfactor. If used from a distance, the active will slow them by the time they are able to react to seeing you, rendering them incapable of simply running away. This also works as an efficient tool in some cases, as a defense line against potential counterganks, by scouting for the enemy jungler or mid-laner.
2. Scouting. The two ghosts will automatically move towards the two nearest enemy champions, regardless of the fog of war. In other words, even if the ghost doesn't reveal an enemy champion, you can still gain valuable information regarding which side of the map that particular enemy is currently at, and in some cases, where.
3. Initiating. A 40% slow is powerful, especially when coupled with its lengthy 4 second duration (The longest in the game). When seeking to initiate on an opponent, slowing them first makes that task significantly easier, all the while making it more difficult for them to escape. A slowed enemy is essentially a sitting duck for Light Binding, and/or any other initiation abilities your teammates might have.
Rod of Ages is picked somewhat often as an AP item to rush, granting a good boost to defense as well as damage. However, I consider this item to be of little use on Lux.
1. It takes time to charge up.
When you first buy the item, you only have a measly 80 AP. The other 40 takes 10 minutes to charge up, which is a rather long time. In that case, you'll always be forced to buy this as your first full item if you are going to get it at all. However, that simply doesn't work with Lux. As Lux is a mage reliant on her early-mid game power spike, you should be building towards her needs in terms of output. Specifically, CDR. Rod of Ages's 80 AP doesn't help with that. Buying this item as your first full item essentially takes away any threat you have on the enemy team until at least the 30 minute mark, due to your lengthy base cooldowns. However, going for another item first will render this item useless. Since it takes time to stack up, there is really no point purchasing the item 45 minutes into the game.
2. You don't need the health.
Once you play a few games, you'll realize just how vulnerable Lux is as a champion. She has no real escape methods, and all she has is Light Binding. Building health is a huge waste of gold, since that extra health would not help you in a bad situation. It would maybe prolong your life by about .5 seconds, but that's pretty pointless. As explained previously, the AP it gives is very trivial, as well. While the mana could come in handy, it doesn't make Rod of Ages viable on Lux.
3. You can't snowball with this item.
Lux has a very high amount of burst as a champion, and she is capable of insta-gibbing most enemies. With that said, she is a champion that relies heavily on early snowball. If you can't get kills as Lux early-mid game, you'll just be a liability for your team by late game. You need those early kills in order to progress into late game. The easiest way of doing that is to build damage. Again, Rod of Ages does not help at all in that aspect. Since it takes time to charge up, it essentially makes you useless until you buy another item. By then, too much time will have passed. As Lux, your primary goal in a team fight is to find one of the opponent's carries, and burst them down, turning the fight into a 4v5. Regardless what phase the game is in, you always want to have enough damage to burst down the opponent's AD carry. If you build Rod of Ages, that's practically impossible.
4. Too heavy of an investment.
This item costs around 3k gold, which is around the same as most other viable AP items. However, the AP it gives is very low, and the stats don't benefit you much. Athene's Unholy Grail, on the other hand, is vital, because it helps to control that minimal mana supply that Lux has. As a burst mage, you want to build as much damage, as soon as possible. Instead of investing into Rod of Ages, you can take the same amount of gold and get a Rabadon's Deathcap. (Well, a few hundred difference, but you get my point.) Purchasing Rabadon's Deathcap grants you almost 3x the AP you would get from buying Rod of Ages first.
Rod of Ages simply doesn't give Lux enough benefits to make the item viable. As Lux is so vulnerable, the health is essentially wasted. The amount of AP the item grants is too trivial to start with, and will not allow you to snowball into mid-late game. Also, the amount of gold you spend on this item is approximately the same amount of gold you need to get Rabadon's Deathcap, which can give you almost 3x the AP.
The biggest issue with this item is its complete lack of cooldown reduction.
The only case in which you should even CONSIDER getting Rod of Ages is when you're against some (strong) AD mid champion like Zed or Talon who can pretty much instantly kill you the moment they get the opportunity. This is assuming you can keep a decent amount of CS even when being countered. It doesn't give you any damage, but the health will be your only defense other than Seeker's Armguard.
TLDR? Don't buy Rod of Ages on Lux.
There's always been disagreements regarding whether Rylai's is a suitable item on Lux. Sure, there are benefits, but there also exists many disadvantages to the item.
+ High health gain. Rylai's is, in fact, just about the only defensive option you have as a mage, when you need extra health. While options such as Zhonya's Hourglass, Abyssal Mask, etc grant you good amounts of resists, the lack of flat health renders those stats relatively ineffective. Doesn't Rod of Ages provide more health, though? Well, Rod of Ages is a very heavy investment as an item, as explained in Section 3.6. Yes, I know one of my points in 3.6 says you don't need the health... But, sometimes, you do. And that's where Rylai's comes in handy. This build path as an alternative lets you remain relevant with the 100 AP gain, in comparison to the 10 minutes in time it takes Rod of Ages to charge up. If you find yourself in a situation where you have to get defensive items, you're not likely going to have the 10 minutes it takes a Rod to stack.
+ Good AP gain. The 100 AP from this item enables you to remain decently relevant even while speccing into defensive stats, similar to, say, an Hourglass second-item build. While not as offensively focused as a Luden's Echo, nor a Deathcap, just having a 100 AP item helps you continue to dish out damage, with the flat damage bonus you gain.
+ The slow. This is arguably the most important part of the item. However, it must be noted that only two of Lux's abilities benefit off this: her E and her R. (The Q doesn't get anything at all, because the 1 second Rylai's slow becomes irrelevant due to the 2 second bind.) Her E, however, already has a slow. This item simply extends the post-detonation slow from 0.25s to 1s.
Onto the laser. The slow, while short in duration, can definitely help you while chasing down opponents, especially when coupled with Frost Queen's Claim. Its relatively short cooldown also means you can better abuse the R as an obnoxious poke tool.
- Slow doesn't particularly benefit Lux much. Yes, its best part is also its worst part, as an item. It's certainly not worth burning 3k gold just for the slow; you're better off spending it on something else.
- Better alternatives exist. Yes, that's also true. Are you dealing with someone with near instant burst damage, such as Zed, Talon, Leblanc, or Veigar? Hourglass is better. How about against an AP with strong gap closers, but less instant burst, like Akali or Katarina? Abyssal and other MR items are your friends.
Conclusion? Don't spend the 3k gold just for the AP and the slow. Ergo, this item is not for offense. However, there certainly are times when you need flat health above all else. That's when Rylai's comes into play. This won't be needed the vast majority of the time. But, if all else fails, remember that it's definitely still an option.
|Ahri is no longer as prominent of a mid lane pick after her nerfs. Despite that, she is still a terrifying opponent when played by an adept player. The key to this match up is to dodge every spell shot possible, especially Charm. If Ahri misses that spell, you have around a 10 second window to freely harass her, and she won't be able to counter-engage too effectively. Once she gets level 6, beware of her mobility with Spirit Rush.|
|Pre-6, Akali is extremely vulnerable, so play aggressively. If you are hit by Mark of the Assassin, avoid getting within range of her Crescent Slash. Other than that, she can't do much to you early on. Even if she gets to level 6, you still have a time frame of approximately 25 seconds during which she still lacks kill pressure on you. Afterwards, try to avoid pushing your lane past the river. If you don't push too far, Shadow Dance isn't much of a threat.|
|Anivia's Flash Frost is quite slow, so it should be easy to avoid. You would want to farm up, and dodge her projectiles. If you are hit by the ice, Frostbite will hurt. After Anivia reaches 6, her Glacial Storm+ Frostbite combo will likely take 1/3 of your health, and that combo is available around every 5 seconds. Try to keep your distance, but harass her back when you get the chance. This lane is more of a farm lane compared to other lanes. Anivia's passive is Rebirth. Don't get egg-baited! You out-range her. If you can dodge the skill shots, and harass enough, you should have no trouble. Anivia is ridiculously squishy early on.|
|Annie has high single-target burst damage. Keep that in mind when you are laning against her. She will likely use her Q to farm, and her auto attacks outrange yours. Thus, you want to harass her and attempt to deny her farm. When her Pyromania is ready, make sure she doesn't hit you with spells! Disintegrate's range is longer than your auto attack range, so be careful about using auto attacks on Annie. Once she hits level 6, any time she has over 2 stacks of Pyromania, she would have the potential to stun you within the next combo. Keep your distance! Summon: Tibbers aura actually hurts a lot, too.|
|Brand is a tough opponent to lane against, because of his passive. The damage from Blaze is basically a mini- Ignite that's available on every spell cast. Also, stay behind your minions! If he hits you with Sear while you are burning, you will be stunned. Stay away from minions affected by Blaze, because Brand may use Conflagration to damage nearby units. Always avoid his Pillar of Flame. While being his primary harass tool, the spell has a cast time, and an area of effect indicator. Once he hits 6, always be sure you have at least 3 minions around you at all times. His Pyroclasm bounces, but doesn't prioritize champions, unless the target is burning. Take advantage of that!|
|Cassiopeia does an awful lot of DoT damage. Her Noxious Blast has a short cooldown, and is similar to Karthus's Lay Waste. Miasma is an AoE poison that EXPANDS. Stay clear of the cloud; if you make contact, you will be slowed. (And poisoned, obviously :P) If you are poisoned (which you should not be), stay well clear from Cassiopeia. The cooldown on Twin Fang refreshes if the target is poisoned. If you think she is about to use Petrifying Gaze, turn away, if possible. A slow is not as bad as a stun.|
|AP Cho'Gath is a difficult opponent to lane against. He has tankiness, an abundance of cc, as well as built in sustainability through Carnivore. Rupture is a delayed AoE knock-up effect, scaling off 100% of his AP. Feral Scream is a silencing skill in a cone in front of him. Vorpal Spikes is no danger if you stay a decent distance away. Try not to let him stack Feast. Once he gets enough stacks, he will be virtually unkillable. Also, his Feast is a single target true damage spell that can easily deal over 350 damage to you at level 6, and even more later on.|
|This lane shifts slightly towards Diana's favor. While laning, dodging her harass, Crescent Strike, is imperative, as the spell has a low mana cost, and high damage. The beam shoots out towards her right, so if you walk the other way it shouldn't be hard to avoid it. Her Pale Cascade is a shield that deals damage to nearby enemies, and Moonfall is her main source of CC. She isn't much threat until level 6 though, when she unlocks Lunar Rush. The spell has a longer range than Flash, and the cooldown resets if you were hit by Crescent Strike recently.|
|All of her spells have minimal range, and she should not be able to deal any damage onto you early. Hate Spike is spammable, so if you get too close, you'll likely get hit. Ravage's range is even smaller, but her gap closing ability with Dark Frenzy can be fearsome. Of course, there's also Agony's Embrace, which grants her a shield, and slowing you at the same time. Her stealth reveal range is longer than all her spells though, so with a decent reaction speed this lane shouldn't be hard.|
|Laning against an Ezreal can be quite a pain, as you have no idea whether he's going to build AD or AP. AD Ezreal's main source of early damage comes from auto attacks and Mystic Shot; Arcane Shift is used as utility (Basically a free Flash), and Essence Flux is virtually useless in this build. His Trueshot Barrage is still a force to be reckoned with, but that spell is far weaker compared to an AP build.|
|AP Ezreal, on the other hand, is an opponent that is very different to his AD counterpart. While his skill set is identical, their uses are completely reversed. Here, Essence Flux would provide the majority of his damage, while Mystic Shot is rendered useless until he acquires a Lich Bane. Arcane Shift is now not only his main escape spell, but also makes up a big part of his burst. Once he unlocks level 6, Trueshot Barrage can be extremely dangerous, as it not only has a high base damage, but also has a high ratio.|
|Fiddlesticks is rarely seen as a mid laner, but is a nuisance to lane against. He has incredible sustain using Drain, but remains stationary while casting it. Dark Wind silences you and bounces between targets, and is pretty much just annoying. It doesn't do that much damage early unless he maxes it first. Crowstorm deals very high damage; when paired with Terrify and Drain he could kill you from full health. However, he remains stationary when casting Drain, which gives you a perfect opportunity to burst him. Be wary of Terrify. Even the nerfed 2.25 seconds of hard CC could destroy you late game.|
|Fizz is among one of the harder matchups for Lux to play against. When laning against Fizz, try to keep your distance. His Urchin Strike is powerful harass, especially when paired with Seastone Trident. Often, you'd be unable to hit him because he uses Playful / Trickster. Your best bet at harassing is to use Lucent Singularity against him. Don't use Light Binding until after you see him use E. That skill has a rather long cooldown. Chum the Waters is a skill-shot based ability, so you can probably avoid it by side-stepping. If you are hit, he can easily burst you from full health.|
|Galio counters just about all AP mids with his passive, Runic Skin. This will be a hard lane, as you won't be able to deal much damage to him. Try to roam, too! You can't really get fed against Galio, unless your opponent is just bad. His Resolute Smite + Righteous Gust combo can take away 1/3-1/2 of your health, but isn't that hard to dodge. Do not tower-dive him if you can help it. You would die to Idol of Durand if he casts it. Bulwark heals Galio whenever he gets damaged, so avoid attacking him while he is shielded!|
|His Barrel Roll is similar Lucent Singularity, but does more damage. *There is no explosion range indicator. His Body Slam is like Sejuani's Arctic Assault; you will be slowed and damaged if you are hit. Explosive Cask knocks you away from the center point of the explosion. It also has a 100% AP Scaling! By mid-game, you will want to dodge his abilities. Between the high base damage, your squishiness, and his AP Ratios, one of his spells would likely take away more than 1/3 of your health!|
|He is actually quite easy for Lux to lane against. He doesn't have as much range as you, and lacks the utility as well. Hextech Micro-Rockets can be strong harass, as he can either focus one point for increased damage, or spread out the radius for increased accuracy. H-28G Evolution Turret is essentially "free gold" for you, but it does deal quite a bit of damage. CH-1 electron storm grenade is not very fast, so you should be able to avoid it easily. When he uses UPGRADE!!!, use discretion. RQ isn't much threat if you stay at range, while RW and RE can both be affected by side stepping.|
|While rarely played as a Mid laner, AP Karma does have decent potential. Her early game is quite weak though, and aggressive play will allow an advantage. Be careful with Inner Flame, as that is Karma's primary harass ability. It travels in a line, and explodes in a small area. Try to utilize your range advantage. She eventually becomes an "AP Support", but her RQ damage is very significant with items.|
|Karthus is very weak during the laning phase. However, he can farm really well with Lay Waste and Defile. Therefore, you will want to play very aggressively against Karthus, making him stay back, and try to delay him from reaching level 6. Wall of Pain slows you and reduces your armor and MR significantly, so avoid it if you can. Flashing over it works. When you see Karthus casting Requiem, you have 2 choices: Protect yourself with Prismatic Barrier, or destroy him instantly with your combo.|
|Against him, you need to be careful. Harass him hard pre-6, but try to stay out of range of Null Sphere. Once he reaches 6, he can easily kill you when you have less than 1/2 health. He also becomes impossibly hard to gank, because he now has Riftwalk. Force Pulse slows you down significantly, and also deals quite a lot of damage. You WILL need to roam, to get kills, as well as protecting yourself from dying to Kassadin.|
|Against a Katarina, you want to keep your distance and farm. Bouncing Blades apply a mark, like Akali's Q does. Sinister steel deals damage around her, and Shunpo is basically a targeted Flash. Do not give her the chance to close in on you, as you do not have many escape tactics. When she casts Death Lotus, shield yourself and get out of range. Your cc will not be able to interrupt her channel!|
|AP Kayle is a very strong pick for the mid lane. Laning against her as Lux can also be quite challenging. Try to avoid standing too close to your minions, as the splash damage from Righteous Fury adds up very quickly. Abuse your range advantage. Getting hit by Reckoning could easily lead to your death. Once she unlocks Intervention, you will have an even harder time, as it becomes far harder for you to do anything to her.|
|Kennen's skills cost "Energy" (Like Akali, Shen, and Lee Sin). Therefore, you do not want to deplete your own mana supplies when laning against him. If he applies Mark of the Storm on you, you may get stunned if he follows up. You should always stay behind your minions. That way, he can't land his Thundering Shuriken on you, and you won't be using Light Binding unless you're going for the kill anyway. Slicing Maelstrom will hit 3 times and stun you, so be careful of that!|