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Zed Build Guide by Mr Braque

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Mr Braque

Mid/Top Zed : Disable shadow won't save you

Mr Braque Last updated on December 24, 2012
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Middle Lane
Ranked #22 in
Middle Lane
Win 50%
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

Not Updated For Current Season

The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.



Offense: 16

Honor Guard

Defense: 14


Utility: 0

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Hello world ;

i'm making this build because i'm little tired to see always the same thing and i'm too lazy to talk to each creator of zed guide to discuss of my point of view .

Basically all you have to know when you will read this guide is :

Zed is an assassin not a bruiser, so i play him like an assassin : Big burst/Low Survivability .
Nevertheless if you try this build you will see you will be many time with more of 75% of your life after your burst on a team fight .
I'll explain to you how on other chapter .

My English is not perfect i hope you will be able to understand what i'll try to mean here .

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Zed discuss

in the first time i'll focus on the Mid Lane but all i'll said here is also good on top lane .
The difficulty of zed is : Hard .

Zed is not a easy champion because you have to do ton's of damages (sic) with a melee champ with no defensive abilities .
In other hand if you build him as a bruiser of with defensive item, you waste all the interest of this champion .
Many bruiser are better than him as a bruiser role or tank role, Zed is not made this and you won't be able to burst down your target quickly .

All the interest of Zed is to burst down 1 at 3 enemies champ in a short amount of time .

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Zed is a really strong champion



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I play in 10/20/0 .

Sorcery : CD Reduction it's always good , remember about the cooldown of Living Shadow on the Cons
Deadliness : Gain of AD it's always good for an AD caster like Zed.
Weapon Expertise : Armor Pen is very Usefull in early, it's a MUST HAVE .
Destruction : Tower killer ! Breaking the tower fastly is always a good thing .


Durability + Veteran's Scars + Juggernaut + Doran's Blade = Tons of health in early game .
Tenacious : CC reduction , the weakness of Zed ! We need this.
Safeguard : That's Allow you to make some towerdive more safety, even if you have to be very careful when you try this !
Tough Skin : Allow you to make more trade with basic attack and resist more on minion's hit, usefull in early game .

The other Masteries are some Extra Armor and Magic Resist, for your early .

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Greater Mark of armor penetration
Some people use Flat AD Mark i'm not agree with this, specially because i start with Doran's Blade and stack very quicly AD with my the B. F. Sword in early .
It's better than rush the The Brutalizer who not give you all you need .
I'll explain why on Item Chapter .

Greater Seal of Armor
Must Have on Top AND against AD jungle .
That allow you to not die against AD champion in early .

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
Same as Seal but for Magic champion .

Greater Quintessence of Energy
Most of people complains about Zed energy cost .
The solution is here, when a champion is too expensive in Mana you use mana regen, it's the same for energy champion .
With this you won't have any trouble of Energy in team fight , especially with a lvl 5 Razor Shuriken

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Skill Sequence

Razor Shuriken
This skills is very Expensive in early even with quint but that allow you to harass your enemies like a boss !
It's a Skillshot so you have to use it properly of your enemies will just dodge it .

Max it first

Note : Your Shadow give Extra damage
Living Shadow
The Best Skills of Zed .
It's like a rabbadon for AD , that means : +25% of AD damage at lvl 5

It's also a clone who hit the same target as you with your skills, and reduce CD and energy Gain if you and your Shadow hit the same target !

Note : Use it to farm and harass safely
Max it in last
Shadow Slash
AOE , Snare of 40% at lvl 5 and 60% if your shadow hit the same target as you . (but no Extra damage )

Max it in second
Death Mark
This skill is a Kill Machin .
50% of damage deal by Zed explode after 3sec .

Most of new player of zed take a lot of risk and use it just as a untargetable gape closer and don't let the time of the mark to explode .
When you burst your target and he left with 20% of health , just smile and count ...1 2 3 and :
An Ennemie has been slane !
so PLEASE ! don't chase your target in the enemies team or you will just die, think about the mark explosion+ignite
As Assassin squishy you are focused by them .

Max it when it's possible ,Top priority !
IMPORTANT : don't use Death Mark + Living Shadow in the same time, that don't do more damage .

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Let's talk about item now

Most of you will start to read by this chapter, so welcome !
For the other thanks to read all the other chapter .

Well, since the Season 3 Movement speed is increased so Boots of Speed + 3 Potions is not the best Starter anymore for many champion and zed is one of them .

At lvl 2 Living Shadow + Flash will be enough to run away safely of early gank so start Doran's Blade

This starter will give you a pretty good amount of Flat HP , damages and some sustain.
it's also useful if your opponent try to kill you in early .
you will win most of trade so don't be scare and play aggressive

The Bloodthirster in season 3 it's easy to stack, good life steal and tons of AD you will love it !

Ravenous Hydra most of people think about his passive and think it's a waste of time on zed .
They just forget about 2 things
1/ This item give a huge amount of AD
2/ Death Mark works with the active on the hydra, imagine 400 Extra damage instant it's like a 5th skills .

It's not enough for you ? Hydra give you life leech, cumulate with the The Bloodthirster, you will be full life very quickly after some poke and allow you to return in the fight as soon as possible.

Last Whisper many people like The Black Cleaver, but first of all you don't rush The Brutalizer too expensive for armor pen you can have with mark + masteries and you need Health since the lvl 1 not at lvl 5 or more when you will end your The Brutalizer
In other hand, The Black Cleaver need to be stack on your ennemies, and zed need to be effective at the first skill .

For all these Reason, Last Whisper is better than The Black Cleaver on Zed .

now the next item is AP on Zed and you will think i'm totally crazy .
maybe i am , but read this .
Hextech Revolver had Spellvamp and spell vamp works with all skills who is not considered as a basic attack like Parrrley of Gangplank
So imagine : you use your ulti, burst down your ennemie and when the mark explode , you gain 300 health or more .
So i crazy ?
Check this here , my life goes up and down many time before i receive the heal during the fight and i make no auto attack


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Team Work

Most of new Zed player go to suicide , take a kill and think this champion sux .

In fact Zed can do so more than just ulti and burst carry .

Sometime you have a good opportunity to kill Carry, so do It, Back off let the mark explode and give you life and put your Living Shadow in the team fight to make some AOE and use Razor Shuriken and Shadow Slash, you damages are insane even if it's just your shadow !

So use it, if you can't make your kill at the begin of team fight, and jump in later if necessary .
You are more usefull alive with 3 assist because you snare them and let them with 50% of life before your carry finith your targets than dead with 1 kill .

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I have many games with Zed, it's even give my first Pentakill .

But don't pick him against any champion of you will just die .
I won't give you a list because it's useless and i'll forget some counter .
But i'll give you some point to respect .

Verify this check list , if your opponent have to many point of this list, don't take Zed .

  • Very High sustain
  • Gap closer AND Stun/Silence (2 on the same time, like Riven for example)
  • Ultra tanky champion
  • High true damage

if your opponent have 2 point or more don't play zed .
Let's test this list .
Anivia : Stun +High burst .
Riven : Gap Closer+Stun and Tanky champion
Darius : Ultra Tanky champion + High True Damages.

For me that sound good .
Irelia : Gap Closer+Stun but not really tanky if she start trinity and not high true damage burst .
So you can test .

Olaf : If he is Ultra tanky he will be not very dangerous and if he is dangerous he will be ""squishy"" (it's olaf so he is never really squishy) .
So you can lane against him but in late game you know he will be a problem .

Keep in mind bruiser and tank are NOT your main target so faster you end your lane phase against these type of champion, better is .
After 15 min, they will be too much tanky and dangerous if you don't outplay them totally and it's not easy to do .
So end the lane phase as soon as possible on top to gank mid and roam in that case .

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Let's talk about synergy .

As for counter i won't give you a list of champion but we will try to check what we need to play good .

  • We need a tanky team, that means 2 tanky champion at least .
  • Strong engage to create some opportunity for assassination
  • Zone CC are a big plus
  • Not too much assassin on the team, usually one is enough

For exemple :
Malphite Top , Amumu jungle, So Zed mid is a very wise pick .
Let these two tanky champion engage , and CC the whole enemies Team, after this, your job will be very easy to do .

always think about synergy pick, most of player have a bad zed experience because they pick him on a bad team synergy

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I hope you enjoyed this guide .

I tried to bring new point of view of Zed Gameplay , so test on 2 or 3 games before voting down .
Feel free to put some historic of your game with zed with that guide that will be my best reward for this guide .

Todolist :
Add Some match Up & Video

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Score Game

Pentakill !!!


-24/12/12 : Spellvamp video
-24/12/12 : Pentakill Zed
-25/12/12 : New masteries to test , thanks Sylnic