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Morgana Build Guide by GrimmSever

Not Updated For Current Season

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League of Legends Build Guide Author GrimmSever

Morgana - The Sexy Dark Angel !!

GrimmSever Last updated on January 15, 2013
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Middle Lane
Ranked #8 in
Middle Lane
Win 51%
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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: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 0


Utility: 9

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Read This

Hey everyone, Grimm here. This is my first guide I've built on here so far so don't be too harsh a critic. I have put a lot of time and effort into this so hopefully ya'll appreciate it as much as I enjoyed making it!

But I do welcome any and all feedback (rate it too!) and I'll try respond back with any answers, advice, comments, or maybe some questions for you. Hope this guide helps somebody and as always, GLHF!

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Intro to Morgana +Gameplay Strategy

So here's my take on the Fallen Angel Morgana..
  • - Easy to land kills with as soon as getting your ulti
  • - Capable of holding her lane vs multiple foes
  • - She stays strong through ALL phases of the game
  • - Her ulti is GREAT!
  • - Targeted quickly if you do your job.. kinda sucks.. Lol
  • - Somewhat slow moving for someone with wings..
  • - Very skill dependent.. but really, what AP caster isn't?
  • - Did I mention? Targeted.. A LOT!
So how do I play Morgana?

First off, if you're unfamiliar with casters/ranged characters, here's your first and most important lesson: RANGED = KEEP YOUR DISTANCE! Funny seeing people who are used to playing melee champs try to use range/casters.. you can usually spot them by the amount of deaths they feed the other team.. that and from your team probably yelling, "STOP FEEDING"!! Ok, that said... onto playing the game!
-Lane Phase-

You are mid: Therefore, go mid, no questions asked, no need to call it, if you don't get it then your team is completely stupid. I have never seen a Morgana go anywhere but mid. If you have, i'm interested to know how that game turned out and what the team comp was. Seriously. If it works, it works.

But I won't go into the boring details, but basically you kill minions and harass the opposing champ. Straight forward and easy? You know it!! However, come Lvl 6, the fun begins! It IS possible to score a kill before then via early gank or the dumb opponents thinking you don't have much power early game. So feel free to test that out and show em what's up! But remember that you're an AP caster who IS mana deprived and squishy early (especially against hybrid mids like Akali, Katarina, Shyvana, etc... So don't let your ego get in the way and they turn it into a kill in their favor. Nothing like giving up First Blood and pissing off your team!!
-Early/Mid Game-

So, in my opinion, this phase is between the Lvl 6-12 and is when the game actually starts. By now I'd hope you are death free and possibly grabbed a kill or two (depending on how aggressive you've been playing). Once you've got your ulti, Soul Shackles, you can start adding up them kills and giving their mid tower a decent amount of punishment; or have held your own enough to allow a quick team push to take it out. If you haven't, you have a few options: 1- stay there and push the tower and rack up the minions kills, or 2- after a kill or wave clear and you can afford to go mia, slide up into another lane and help your team with a gank if possible. DO NOT sit there and trade minion waves equally with your opponent for too long or even worse.. lose your tower! No sense in feeding the other team in anyway. So hope for good teamwork and do your best to provide some as well. Please? Thanks!!!
-Mid Game-

Here champs are between Lvl 12-16 and are ending the "lane phase." This means that there is at least one turret down (hopefully your opponents mid) and team fights should start to push lanes further. Morgana at this time in the game should be fairly strong and can do some serious damage with your Tormented Soil+ Dark Binding+ Soul Shackles combo; solo or teamed up! If you don't have the mid tower down yet, get your team together and do that... unless you guys are getting beat that badly and having to play defense already. Which in that case, either surrender or group up and have some freakin' teamwork!!

I usually have their mid down and move from lane to lane to help push where I can. If they start back on my mid tower, then I slide back into lane and stall their efforts. DO NOT just chill in lane or try to push to tier 2/3 tower by yourself, especially if you're team could use the help. There are exceptions to this such as their team is all dead, you can see clearly on the map where they all are, and/or you are in no danger from possible ganks.
-Mid/Late Game-

And finally comes late game. During the late stages of the game, both sides are fighting to get those last towers down to start in on the inhibitors/inner turrets/ and their nexus. Playing Morgana properly, you should be one of the first to Lvl 18 and be well fed. You should have a decent number of minions kills, but don't worry if you aren't leading the pack. You should have few deaths, and a good share of the teams kills/assists. Depending on your team comp and how you're coming out in the team fights, determines how quickly you can knock out their base (obvious fact I know, I'm sorry). Your job is simple. Don't die easily, hit your spells, save your ulti for opening team fights, shield a friend once in awhile, and help choose your team's opportunities carefully, and win!

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Items - The what and why I do what I do

Recently Changed/Updated!!!

Ok. So here's what I typically build with Morgana. I'm not going to list the items via a buy-by-buy bases for you for several reasons: 1-things are always situational, 2-you need to experiment and find what works for you, 3-there is no one right way to build your champ, and 4-I honestly don't stick to it... Lol. But I will explain my choices though.

*Note* - Yes, I only have 4 items on my "main items" list. But it's because games don't usually last long enough for me to buy more... If they do, check out some of the one's I have listed as situational items. I have yet to play a ranked match, so this comes strictly from playing non-ranked matches. (When I do get experience in ranked, I will post an alternate build)

Main Items

Sorcerer's Shoes
Pretty much a staple buy with any AP caster (unless you're playing a support champ). Works really well with Morgana giving her that extra damage capability when your opponent thinks adding magic resist early will help them against you... Even if they don't stack magic resist items against you, you may safely assume they have magic resist runes anyways. But I buy these with pretty much every AP mid I play.

Athene's Unholy Grail
This item replaced my old main items like Morello's Evil Tome and Archangel's Staff.

- Compared to Morello's Evil Tome, it has more of an AP value and has more mana regen both in it's initial value and it's passive. It does have a slightly lower cooldown reduction, but I tend to forget about it's active use; especially after getting Zhonya's... I just found it just suits me better.

- Then to compare it to Archangel's Staff. This is the only thing I use if/when I go away from Athene's Unholy Grail and here's why: Archangel's Staff is a beast for AP champs. It gives you good magic regen, is gives a monster supply of mana, and it converts your overall mana pool to extra AP power! It does have a low initial AP value of 45, but if you reach the full stack of 1,000 mana from it's passive (wish you should easily), this items AP value raises from 45 to 75 from what it gives on it's own... OK, 75 AP is not too bad, but then remember, that's just from this item, not your overall mana pool. And these can be stacked. Comparatively, stacking these would have a better outcome than stacking Rabadon's Deathcap's. Think about it!
So why don't I chose this all the time? Well, that's a good question; so here's my opinion on that. Although all of those benefits are incredible, I go with Athene's Unholy Grail because
  • 1- Chalice of Harmony is very OP early game when you choose to lane mid like I do. Very rarely do you see AD carries in mid anymore, so you normally face AP right? The Chalice offers two forms of mana regen which gets stronger the less mana you have = longer lane sustain.
  • 2- The second part of it, Fiendish Codex, is also cheap, gives more mana regen, and adds cooldown reduction.
  • 3- The final product, although a bit more expensive than Archangel's Staff AND has much less of a final AP value than it does, it's the magic resist and mana regen on kill/assist that has me sold. You could argue that overall mana pool by Archangel's Staff > the mana regen on kill/assist from Athene's Holy Grail. And I could agree...but for argument sake, I won't. Lol. Try them both and see for yourself, and ultimately you'll choose what works best for you.

Zhonya's Hourglass
This is a favorite item of mine. The AP value is high due to that beastly Needlessly Large Rod, the defense from Chain Vest helps your survivability more than you know, and the kicker... look at the active function! In times of distress, say, right after pulling a full combo in a team fight, you're waiting on cooldowns, people are chasing you/already caught and engaged you, or you come subject to targeting right from the get go... pop this bad boy and sing to yourself "Can't Touch This" Lol. Oh, and if your team isn't around after, then run! It saves lives!

**For those non-late 80's/early 90's people, and don't get the reference, click on "Can't touch This" above and learn something!**

Frozen Heart
I really like this item on Morgana despite the no AP boost. For her, and this may sound odd, but you don't really need massive amounts of AP. Yes all AP champs need some, but really, if you're not hitting hard enough you should look more at the enemy team's build than anything. Maybe it's time you you invested into building your magic penetration? Anyways, back to the item at hand. The armor is very nice and adds to your sustain; people will be hitting/targeting you! The extra mana is nice as well, but what you really look for in this items is these next two things: More CR! CR = Cooldown Reduction = Yes please! An extra second or two off your Dark Binding is oh so helpful!! Finally you come to the passive. The reduced enemy attack speed helps your team a whole hell of a lot against those pesky attack speedsters. Frozen Heart really is just an all-around good item.
*Note* Go ahead and check with the team before you do build this though just because 2-3 people on your team building it, although helpful, would be just a waste of money for someone who could build something else instead.

Situational Items

Abyssal Mask
This is one items that I have an ever changing opinion on I think... and currently it's on my "good buy" list. I'll opt into buying this when the opposing champs start to add magic res and/or I could use the extra myself. Then there's the fact that it's got a decent AP value as well. Basically, the better you play and harder you hit, the higher the chance their team will try to limit you via stacking magic resist. So with that in mind, all-in-all, you could do worse!

Rabadon's Deathcap
I don't think this needs an explanation for any AP users. If it does... you shouldn't play AP champs I'm sorry. I will explain why it's not a "main" item for me though. I'm serious when I say Morgana really doesn't need massive amounts of AP to deal a large amount of damage. There are just those other items I'd rush getting first before this is all. So once you build those, the game is still going, and you got the money, buy it and be happy!

Rylai's Crystal Scepter
This is a new addition to situational items list. I hadn't considered using it before because she's already got her stop in Dark Binding and her stun if Soul Shackles hits. But I got this one game because my team already had 2x Frozen Hearts, an Abyssal Mask, and a Will of the Ancients built at the time we were doing the majority of our team fights. So I opted for an extra CC with the slow effect on this item. Makes it nice when your Dark Binding has a few short seconds of cooldown still and you have them on the run because then your Tormented Soil can be of great help. Not to mention using the AoE to slow everyone at the start of the team fights! But that game ended funny with me essentially playing support going 1/2/30... I **** you not! And I did take Exhaust in this game as well. You could have called me "CC Queen Morgana" Buahahahah!!!

Void Staff
I rarely used to get this, but later on in Summoner Level (20-30) people either start playing smarter or just now know what to buy or begin using magic resist runes. So I've found it useful in several games when the enemy champs are either stacking the magic resist items or I'm not satisfied in the damage I'm doing despite having a normally good amount of AP. It really just depends on how your team build is going. There's been times where I'd thought of getting it but a teammate grabbed an Abyssal Mask (before I had one built) and it changed my damage enough to where I didn't need like in that case, you'd just go for something else. It is a very viable option, so if you need it, go for it.

Deathfire Grasp
I never really use Deathfire Grasp on Morgana, but when I do, people die! (supposed to read that in the "Most Interesting Man Alive - Dos Equis guy's voice) LoL

But seriously, I usually only use this on my harder-hitting, burst damage to the face kind of AP champs like Ahri, Brand, and Veigar. Then playing a game the other day I did something crazy... I had a good game going at 15/1/11, we were in late game, and I never really was in fear of dying... so I sold my Zhonya's Hourglass and picked this up. Let's just say that the game ended not too much later and I finished 23/2/14. When it's not being used, having Deathfire Grasp's extra damage active vs Zhonya's Hourglass shield was worth it. It sure was fun!!! :D

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Skill Breakdown +Summoner Skills

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
-My typical ability-learning sequence-

Again, for any situation or opponent you face, treat these as situational. I'm a cautious person; meaning I refuse to get my *** kicked because I wasn't prepared properly. So what I'm really saying is that don't always build Morgana the same way every match. If your build works, great. BUT if there are better alternative ways, is it not worth trying them out?
In short, here's an example:

When playing characters that like to jump on you and combo you up close, I tend to build Tormented Soil a little more than normal. That way I can stay further away while still harassing them and screwing up their farm ability. But if I play someone who is more scared of getting close to me, I build Dark Binding more. Finally, if they are somewhere in the middle of those, you aren't quite sure how you'll fair against that champ, or you just want to be extra careful... then don't be afraid to put another in Black Shield early on; or you could just alternate more between Dark Binding and Tormented Soil vs. going heavy in just one.
-Using them skills-

Morgana has an amazing set of... uhm... "skills" ... Yea, lets talk about her skills!

Soul Siphon
This is Morgana's passive. This is beyond helpful to you in that it gives you a natural life leech with every attack you do; whether it be a regular attack or one of her abilities. You never know when that little gain of HP is enough to! Telling from experience, I've walked away from fights with as little as >20 health. Or there's been a few when someone hit me with Ignite, I was really low on life and only 1 Health Potion, but stopping to hit a few minions helped save me!!

Dark Binding
Love this skill. It's got pretty long range, hits pretty damn hard, and stops the enemy champ! The only down side here is that it's not a true stun, it only stops their movement; they can still can attack. However, it does more than enough and is vital in getting your kills as well as being a great team fight initiator... so make sure to land it (it's an aimed skill shot)! It's also a very fun early game kill provider/scare tactic. From beginning to end game, opponents think "OH **** NO!!!" whenever it lands. As soon as you cast this and you know it's going to hit, throw a quick Tormented Soil down under them immediately and watch their life begin to drain away. Keep poking them like this while keeping yourself out of harms way by being SMART, you will have a great game. Guaranteed!
-Warning- Champs such as Akali, Diana, and Katarina who have teleport skills like Shadow Dance, Lunar Rush, and Shunpo respectively, can still use them and move to your location. However, if there is still time on your stop, they will be unable to move after their teleport until it wears off. So take care and try to time it after they've used those abilities!

Tormented Soil
Another great ability right here. It's an AoE that deals damage in a small circle. I spam this skill quite a lot when I can afford the mana. It is good at disrupting the enemies farm capabilities if they need to get up close or you can scare them back a bit if they're range too. It won't do a great deal of damage early on its own, but that little bit of damage adds up and they'll stay cautious knowing you can burn them down quick if you got Dark Binding and Soul Shackles up and ready.
So I've been reminded the extra benefit of leveling this sooner than Dark Binding. At Lvl 3, you can almost kill a mob of creeps on one use (caster minions for sure). So, if your goal is to handle your farm with extreme ease and keep your laning opponent off his/her's... then lvl this up as you see fit!

Come mid/late game, you can successfully hold off a 3/4/5 v 1 push on a turret with you guarding it oh so carefully. Just set this AoE in front of your turret to start slowly reducing them, then keep your Dark Binding and Soul Shackles on standby for if they try to get too close. It works I tell you! You can reduce minions down quick with it, and if they turn on you, pop your shield, ulti, and run circles around the turret allowing it to damage them as well. ONLY attempt this if the turret has a decent amount of life please. Don't go for it if it's got less that a quarter life, ya know? Play IT SMART!!!

Black Shield
And who said Morgana couldn't have some support to her huh? Hah! This shield is nice in that it absorbs some would-be damage to you or one of your teammates. My advice on this is this:
Use on Self
  • If you're solo and about to run in and drop your ulti (helps prevent the whole dying thing)
  • If you're solo and taking heavy damage period
  • If you're beginning a team fight, you drop ulti, and you are their focus!
Use on Teammate
  • A good time to use this is during a team fight in which you have teammates with a cast time/focus ulti that will put them in the line-of-fire; like: Fiddlesticks, Galio, Katarina, Kennen, Nunu, etc. (Although Galio has his own shield and is a bit tankier, so I'd save it for yourself in that instance). Shielding them will help make sure they live through their cast time and/or give them the freedom to take full advantage of it by moving into close proximity to the enemies.
  • Basically, anytime you're with a teammate(s) and they are the focus, if they're running into or away from a fight in which you don't plan on fully engaging (ulti is down), or you're so OP that you don't need that stinkin' shield and feel like doing your good deed for the day and give sympathy to a teammate... Hah!

Soul Shackles
And now we talk about this awesome Ulti. So what this does is it basically puts a leash on any and all nearby champs within a 600 range (the same range as a sight ward). On use, it does a good amount of damage and slows everyone caught by 20%. IF you manage to keep it on them for the 3 second duration, it then does the same damage again AND then stuns them all!!! Yea... so good!

Here's the hard part about it. Because everyone knows how much trouble they'll be in when you use it, you either will get targeted immediately with stuns/silences/or an all out nuke of damage. Nooooo!! So what do I do, you say? Well...That's where Black Shield comes in handy. Drop that on yourself before starting the ulti because it WILL block an incoming stun/silence. 3 seconds goes by fast and they are very likely to run. So make sure to run with them or stay in the area until it finishes that way you can inflict max damage on the most champions possible.

-My take on summoner spells-

Find what works for you. That's all. I like Flash for the obvious uses of chasing, engaging, running, and living. I am a big fan of Teleport because it allows me to come and go from lane without really missing anything except maybe half a minion wave at max. Allows me to recall back after scoring a kill, buy new gear, and return to lane all before they respawn. Also good for aiding at other turrets and popping mid lane behind pursuing champs for a surprise/hard to avoid gank. I don't really use Ignite just because I feel I do enough damage as is and i get far too much use out of Flash and Teleport instead. but to each their own.

Now for the Maybe spells... I can see how Heal and Clarity would have merit early game in helping you sustain lane even longer, but I don't like them because I don't like to think that I can rely on them to be enough. Exhaust would give you another CC, and would help chase down potential kills or slow your/team pursuers. However, with your Dark Binding having low cooldown and higher range than the Exhaust, I think you can skip it and go with something else.

What about the rest? I'll save you the trouble and just say no. Go ahead and make a case for some of them if you wish, but again, just... NO!!! Did the extra boldness, caps, color, and exclamations help make my point? Good! Now moving on...

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Masteries & Rune Page Explanation


Alright. I originally wrote on here my intentions of testing and trying out going both 21/0/9 and 9/0/21 with Morgana to see which way seems to be "better." I like the boosted experience, CR, and spell vamp the 9/0/21 gives, but.... I never fail to be ahead in Lvl compared to my laning opponent or anyone in the game period no matter which build I was using. Quicker lvls = quicker ability learning = quicker kills = more money for me and team = GG we win!! But I found that opting for the more damage build in the 21/0/9 masteries, I tended to get that first kill/assist faster. Getting more kills/assists sooner in the game vs grinding creeps longer sort of evens out the level gain speed. If anything else, you keep your laning opponent from leveling as fast by killing them vs letting them grind away as well.

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration

Greater Seal of Mana Regeneration

Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction

Greater Quintessence of Ability Power

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
Magic penetration is a great asset to any AP champ. I use these because, if you look up at my items build, I don't typically build heavy on magic penetration. So there ya go.

greater seal of replenishment
Mana regen will only help you. With even decent mana-regen, Morgana can sustain her lane and stay in fights for some time. Also gives you an out from having to buy extra mana/mana-regen gear.

Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction
Here comes the critics. I have had people try to explain that these are worthless. Uhm... I disagree? With these at Lvl 18 +your items, your CR is at about 20-25%. Think about that. If an ability has an original cooldown of 10 seconds, its now only 7.5 seconds. A whole 2.5 seconds sooner on an ability is a HUGE difference! Tell me it's not...

Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
Ability Power. Now what would I ever use that for? Hmm... Oh what the hell, lets try it and see!

Alternate Build

I've also played with the alternate 9/0/21 build so I'll post it with some explanation as well.

I had played around with this build and used to prefer it over the 21/0/9 setup just based on how I was playing. But with a little tweak in my play style I've since switched my preferance. But I do like this build as well and would recommend it to a more passive player AP-ing mid. It definitely allows you to level up quicker. It's just hard to accurately compare these because how you play differs from game to game and your opponent. Sometimes you're more aggressive/passive because of the skill of the opponent and the extra exp would be a good compliment.

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration

Greater Seal of Mana Regeneration

Greater Glyph of Ability Power

Greater Quintessence of Ability Power

Part of the remodeling/remaking/testing/adjusting/whatever you want to call it... I decided to try out a more damage based rune setup than I have above. And, well, it does more damage (shocking)! Lol. However, I do prefer the cooldown reduction runes better. I think the cooldown makes a bigger difference than the damage output because you can simply cast much quicker. It may not seem like a huge difference, and I don't have statistical number evidence to prove it, but just going off of my opinion and experience.

Listen to Me
You heard me say it. I admitted that this area is my weakness. So please take that into account when you bash me for what you think is a stupid idea. Instead: post me your suggestions or comments about your theories. I'm simply doing what's worked for me thus far. Thanks!

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Champion Lore

So here's whats 'cookin' with Morgana... haha, see what I did there? ^_^

"There is a world far away populated by graceful and beautiful winged beings gifted with immortality, where an ancient conflict still rages. Like so many conflicts, this war split families. One side proclaimed themselves as beings of perfect order and justice, fighting to unite the world under their law and strong central governance. Those that fought against them saw their kin as tyrants, creatures incapable of seeing the larger view, who would sacrifice individuality and freedom for the illusion of efficiency and safety. Morgana was one who fought against what she perceived as the tyranny of her kind, and for that she was branded ''fallen.'' Morgana was not innocent, having plumbed forgotten ways to gather forbidden might to become a powerful mistress of the black arts. This goal was driven by her obsession to defeat the general of the opposition's army - her sister, Kayle.

While the two were in fact birth-sisters, Kayle struck the first blow by disowning any filial connection when Morgana refused to join her cause. Eventually, Morgana grew in power enough to not only reach, but challenge Kayle. As the time approached when the two would meet in what could be their final conflict, Morgana was suddenly summoned to Valoran. At first, Morgana made a deal with the League's summoners to fight in exchange for greater power. With the advent of Kayle into the League, Morgana now willingly fights in the League of Legends for the privilege of being able to destroy her sister again, and again, and again. She lies in wait for the day the bonds of the Institute of War no longer hold her, and on that day she plans to destroy Kayle once and for all and return home a hero.

"There is no rest while Kayle's brand of tyranny still exists."

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Credits +Other helpful Guides

I'd like to thank and credit some for aiding me in making this guide:

  • Mobafire - For allowing us to make and use guides on your site at no cost to us. It's a free and extremely helpful reference guide to all players and those aiming to better themselves and others.
  • jhoijhoi - For your "Making a Guide" guide that you posted and showing us noob builders how to make a halfway decent guide ourselves!

Other Helpful Guides
  • If you like playing support, try checking out my cousin's guide on Janna