Build Guide by Meowthief
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Not Updated For Current Season
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AP Sion? That's outrageous! Sion was the first champion I ever bought, and when I bought him, I played him as a DPS. Needless to say, I lost a lot. And then I tried AP, and I wrecked face.
Ahem, anyway, this is my first guide, so it might be a bit sloppy and such, but I'll work on it.
Note: There's supposed to be shoes in the item tree up there, but if I put 'em up there, it would get rid of Mejai's as "one of my six items", so just read the shoes part of the guide near the equipment section before you downvote it for not having shoes. Thank you. :D
AP SION: PROS AND CONS
Pros: High burst damage
Can get an early game first blood
Hits like a tank late-game (We're talking about actual war tanks!)
Has somewhat of an escape method
Fantastic AP scaling
Has tank-like properties at late-game
Works in Twisted Treeline and Summoner's Rift (Just cut out Mejai's)
Fun to play as!
Cons:Silly looking dance
A bit squishy early game
Anivia will take your axe and decapitate you
Banshee's Veil makes you cry
Mejai's Soulstealer can be unreliable
Your ultimate is not the most useful thing
In my opinion, the positives easily outweigh the negatives. Moving on...
FEEL NO PAIN: This passive is not the best for AP Sion, but it definitely makes him a good tank.
CRYPTIC GAZE: A part of your Bread-and-butter. A bit costly for Sion, but a 2 second long range stun is amazing. Plus with 100% AP scaling, that Akali won't approach you with a thirty-nine and a half foot pole. (If you now have the Grinch theme song stuck in your head, my job is complete. If not, I'll keep trying.)
DEATH'S CARESS: Oh my. A 10 second shield that you can explode for full damage at anytime. YES. This is the best shield in the game in my opinion. It ALSO has 100% AP scaling for the damage and the shield. Plus, you can just run in and destroy the shield, killing all of the enemy's creep wave. NOTE: When the shield takes max damage, it goes away. So attempt to pop the bubble before it runs out of damage and time! And you can only explode it 4 seconds AFTER you activate it, so try to use it in a bush or something like that. This is also a part of your bread-and-butter. I'll cover the actual bread-and-butter later along with the practical uses.
ENRAGE: And this is where it goes downhill. Enrage adds a ton of damage, but at the point you get it, it's somewhat unnecessary. However, once you get Lich Bane, your damage output skyrockets, and even the most tall of towers can't stop you. This is a decent way of gaining max HP to tank, but don't rely on it too much. As AP Sion, I don't focus on last hitting minions late-game, but if it makes you happy, go nuts.
CANNIBALISM: Once again, another non-AP ability. However, that does not mean it's not useful. You can take out towers in the matter of seconds with this thing. Plus, if you're running low on HP, just go to your opponent's Golem Spawn with Cannibalism on, and steal the buff while gaining all of your HP back. My brothers and friends find me weird for maxing out an ultimate last, but getting Death's Caress and Cryptic Gaze are top priority.
The two summoner spells best for Sion are Flash and Ignite.
Summoner Spells to have:
Flash: This is an invaluable spell. It gives Sion a decent escape method. (Just activate your bubble and run through the forest, and pop flash through the woods.) Also, it can be used to flash into combat when you're in the bush. If done correctly, rage quits are inevitable.
Ignite: I love this spell. It's basically a guaranteed first blood. Also, you can put it on Mundo and he cries. It becomes not as good late-game, but it still works, so I use it.
Clairvoyance: This spell is fantastic. In my opinion, it's one of the most underrated spell in the game. It gives you great map awareness. Throw it in a bush, and your group will thank you. I usually run this when I see that our team has too many Ignites.
Summoner Spells to consider
Ghost: I like this spell, but with a long range stun and Flash, I find it unnecessary. However, it's all up to preference.
Teleport: This spell helps you and your team in a lot of ways. Pushing towers, defending a tower, setting up ganks, and pushing a lane. Teleport is a good ability, but I generally prefer tanks and pusher having it.
Cleanse: Everybody has to love this. However, this is what the Veil is for. Cleanse is a nice little addition, but I like other spells rather than Cleanse. If you're facing a heavy CC team, go run it I guess.
Summoner Spells to not consider
Rally: This is for junglers, not for Warwick. I'm sure it has other practical uses (pushing a tower with a creep wave) but there are better spells out there for him.
Heal and Clarity: Sion does have some mana problems early-game, but you need to learn how to control them. And as Sion, I have never gotten in a moment in which Flash wouldn't work, and where Heal would. However, I guess it could be useful against somethings like Karthus's Requiem.
Exhaust: Exhaust is a fun spell, but frankly Sion's cooldowns take longer than Exhaust lasts. It can help your team, but I rather run other spells.
Fortify: It can save a tower, but I find that the tower just gets destroyed eventually. If you can get consistent kills off of it, go nuts. Otherwise, let it go untouched by everyone except somebody who has nothing else to run.
Revive: Huh. This is only remotely usable on tanks and Karthus. Yep. Not Sion.
So that's my opinion on each skill. Just choose the ones that work out the best for you. Keep in mind, adjust your masteries when choosing a new summoner spell.
Sheen: Wait what? Why is this up here? Personally, I love sheen. It provides a slight push in AP and the much needed mana that Sion needs. But most importantly, it gives you such an increase in damage. Basically, you activate your shield in the bush, sheen activates, you slap 'em in the face with an axe, pop the bubble, stun 'em with a Cryptic Gaze, sheen activates, hit 'em in the face with an axe, and pop Ignite if needed. If you have a partner, this is basically a guaranteed kill.
Mejai's: Is explanation necessary? Mejai's provides you with insane AP, and possibly a cooldown. Sion is somewhat durable, (especially with a 800 damage shield and a high health pool) so losing those stacks is uncommon. Just play safe when you get this.
Lich Bane: Virtually a stronger version of Sheen. Let's count, shall we? 111 natural damage + 65 enrage damage + 500-600 damage from Lich Bane. YES PLEASE. It also makes your hands glow this cool yellow color. And 7% movement speed! Oh Chea!
Deathfire: Gotta love it. You get 30% of their max life taken off in your Bread-and-butter, plus AP, mana regen, and lovely Cooldown reduction.
By now, the game is usually over, but on occasion, the game lasts long. I usually go for...
SHOES: Shoes are necessary for any game. Especially Gank-Sion. Although, they're not up there in the build, I usually get shoes now. The point is, you're durable enough as is, so movement speed is only used for chasing those pesky people with low life. Which is why you have Ignite! Frankly, I don't like shoes, but if you're the type of person who always gets shoes second, I would go for Sorcerer's Shoes for penetration, Merc Treads for a heavy CC team, or Boots of Swiftness for chasing and running.
Void Staff: It kills those magic resist stacking champions and adds AP. 'Nuff said.
Zhonya's: Crazy high AP, and a two second distraction technique. Use it wisely.
Banshee's Veil: Give them a taste of their own medicine. Now they will want to get rid of that pesky shield, so that Katrina will throw a knife at you while you throw a stun, and a team fight initiates, while their carry is stunned. Hoohah! Generally, I get this and sell my boots. Woah, are you crazy? No, because Banshee's Veil provides protection, you're out of the gank phase, and you should be playing quite defensively. Read the strategy section for more specifics.
Archangel's Staff: I doubt your skills are spammable enough to get significant mana on this thing, but any extra mana and AP is welcome.
Guardian Angel: I never really liked this item, but it's still pretty good. You kill their carry, but die in return during a team fight. Your team pushes while you revive like a zombie, and you're right back in! It's generally a tanky item, but if it floats your boat, go nuts.
Chalice of Harmony: Sion is prone to running out of mana, but you have to learn when to use it. Also, Chalice gets in the way of your build, so I steer away from it. However, it is a good source of mana regen nonetheless.
Rod of Ages: A delicious item, but it costs way too much. I prefer the other items, but if you are super fed, I would shoot for this item.
Elixir of Brilliance: A good item. Use it when you max out your items and the game goes on way too long.
Frozen Heart: Mana + Armor + mass attack slows = your team loves you. But in reality, somebody who needs it should get it, not Sion. Cooldown reduction is nice though!
Quicksilver Sash: It's like having 3 summoner skills! It just interferes too much with the build.
Just use what makes you win. 'Nuff Said.
Somewhat basic, but acccepting suggestions:
Mark: Magic Penetration. Yep. It's a staple, and I couldn't find anything else better. :D
Glyph: 30 AP at level 18. Not too awful. You don't really need any more CD reduction. You might consider flat MP for Sion because of his low mana pool early-game, but it seems to be useless end-game, so I just go for increasing AP instead.
Seal: Mana Regen! Sion needs any mana regen he can get without damaging his build.
Quint: I could've gone magic Pen, but instead I went for movement speed. This way, you can land your stun safely.
Almost to the good part.
I went 9/0/21 for the magic penetration. Otherwise, I went pretty basic. You need mana, but XP is a top priority. And now, it's time for...
ACTUAL STRATEGIES AND SUCH!
The game begins. You have 2 options.
1.) Buy equipment as fast as you can, (Amplifying Tome and a Mana potion) and rush top or bottom lane in an attempt to get in the bush.
[EDIT: I have recently been beginning with a Sapphire Crystal and a mana potion and a health potion instead of an Amplifying Tome. I do this when I want my partner to carry. Try both ways if you like.]
2.) ONLY IF YOU HAVE CLAIRVOYANCE. Wait until the 8-10 second mark and reveal their spawn point. This shows what direction they're going in, their equipment, (helpful if one of them has jungling equipment, but he doesn't have smite for the sole purpose of fooling your team) and their cool skins. Afterwards, follow step one while peeking in bushes with Clairvoyance.
Note: Please tell your partner that you do not have the stun. If you don't they will rage at you.
Hopefully, you didn't engage them because you don't have your stun yet. "But why didn't we get the stun first?" Well, hold your horses, I'm getting there soon enough.
If you do encounter your enemies, I recommend running. However, if you have a good partner such as Tristiana, smack 'em with your axe and activate your shield, in hopes of getting a first blood. Explode the shield before it's about to be destroyed. Do not be greedy. You'll get kills in due time.
Once the minions spawn and all 4 people in the lane are visible, activate your shield, and HARASS. Smack that Ezreal with a beautiful axe and pop the bubble as he runs away. Always try to hit the max number of people with the explosion. After a while, once you activate that bubble of love and pain, they will run away, losing valuable XP and gold. You just have to find the right amount of harassing. Try to run out of mana at around 800-825 gold. If you or your partner got a first blood, but Mejai's. If not, just buy Sheen. Stay in the action, and further harass with both of your skills.
Most people do NOT play Sion, so they don't know how long it takes to pop that bubble, nor do they know your cooldowns. Harass them with your BODY. Approach them and make them retreat.
Now that you're a somewhat decent level, keep on farming for Lich Bane. If you haven't died yet and you haven't bought Mejai's, now is a perfectly decent time for it. If you have, just buy normal shoes.
Anywho, I would begin to gank whenever you feel confident. If your partner can solo a lane, go tell your team you're going to gank mid or bottom. I recommend ganking with Lich Bane, but you're free to do it anytime before.
1.) Activate your bubble offscreen.
2.) Run over and smack 'em in the face.
3.) Shoot off your stun.
4.) Get that body on fire (Ignite)
Anyways, the point here is you should follow that chain. Some things are given like auto attack when you're not doing anything. Other things are while he/she is stunned and your auto attack is on cooldown, run a bit in the direction they're going to run, in order to get some more auto attacks on. Although it doesn't seem like much damage, your output is fantastic.
(At Level 6 with Lich Bane. Not exact, but you get the point.)
180 auto attack
320 shield explosion
180 auto attack
80 auto attack
Ignite if necessary
At level, 6, 1000 damage without a partner is pretty rad. And you repeat, building up Mejai's.
READ PLEASE: If you gank too often, you will be targeted as a prime subject in team fights. Thus, try to balance ganks for your greater good. I cannot stress this enough.
Ahem, anyways, if you know they have Flash, you might want to stun first, then pop the shield.
So that's the scoop. Rinse and repeat, farm lanes, and arrange ganks. Keep in mind, if you get ganked, you can save yourself, but NOT YOUR PARTNER. You have one stun and a shield. It's better to save yourself, rather than your partner. Unless they have 20 Leviathan, Occult, and Soulstealer stacks. Then again, if they do have those, I don't think they can be ganked. Anyways, just remember, you are top priority. But don't be afraid to take a risk. Sion can take quite a hit.
Basically the same as late early-game. Arrange ganks, dragon kills, and camping the golem spawn because that enemy Warwick really needs to stop stealing it. Go through the forest and smack a turret with an axe til it explodes. With Lich Bane, you hit like a train. Team fights should begin to form, so be careful.
That last section was short. Welp, time for team fight strategies.
TEACHING A NEW TRICK TO AN OLD SION
So in a team fight, there are many roles. Tank, carry, support, heal support, stunner, initiator. You are simply bait.
Yeah, okay, you also stun the carry. The point is that they want to kill you. You have crazy stacks and and big red axe. Your goal here is to make them over extend. When they do, you throw that stun at that cheap Veigar, while Kennen bolts into combat, ultimate in hand. If they target you first, run towards you team with the shield on. Proc Zhonya if you have to, then Flash away.
Also, a huge part of Sion is clean-up crew. Soraka is running away? Run over and stun her! Your team will adore you!
When you win the team fight, (losing isn't in Sion's vocabulary) push push push! This is when you want to proc Cannibalism. Hit that tower over and over again until it crumbles from your sheer AP. Keep an eye on when that Udyr spawns, and command your team to go back.
FRIENDS AND FOES
With Sion, I would recommend somebody with a slow. I love laning with Olaf and Anivia. Secondly, I love long range. Ashe is pretty nice, along with Tristiana. In other words:
1.) Slows! (Anivia, Olaf)
2.) Long Range! (Ashe, Tristiana)
3.) Walls! (Anivia, Trundle)
4.) Bait! (A Rammus who refuses to go back to base and he has 100 HP left)
5.) DPS Stuns! (Irelia, Pantheon)
1.) Tanks. (Your damage output is not nearly enough.)
2.) People bad at the game. (I refuse to explain this one.)
3.) Immobile Hiders. (I hate Teemo's that camouflage in the bush, jacking my XP.)
4.) Harassers. (If you have two harassers, then they just tower camp til you get ganked.)
GOOD ENEMIES TO LANE AGAINST
1.) Squishies without stuns/reliable stuns! (Annie, Miss Fortune)
2.) Ezreal! (His skills shots are easy to dodge, and he over extends! :3)
3.) Support! (Sona, Soraka)
4.) With wards, Stealth people! (Twitch, Teemo, Shaco.)
5.) Channelers! (Nunu's, Katrina's, and Malzahar's Ultimates)
BAD ENEMIES TO LANE AGAINST
1.) Tanks. (Oh god, my patience < Mundo.)
2.) Tanks. (Mordekaiser, Rammus.)
3.) TANKS. (I hate tanks D:)
4.) High Burst Damagers. (Panth D:)
5.) Anivia. (You will die. Ask to switch lanes. She's squishy, but you cannot do enough damage to kill her egg. And you will cry.)
So let's end this on a positive note. Sion is fun to play, and you ought to try him out, AP style. He's pretty cheap after all. Oh, and before I forget, look up the Grinch Theme song. I refuse to throw two references to the Grinch in one guide. Please?
One shot those Twisted Fates, and when you're about to destroy their Nexus, do a "troll recall". Everybody will love you, People love trolls right?
Oh wait, nevermind.
TL;DR SION IS COOL :D