Build Guide by Lawlzor
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Not Updated For Current Season
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This is my first build but I'll get straight to the point. Poppy is an anti-carry meaning your job in team fights is to kill their carries. You're going to die, but you just have to make sure your time alive is used successfully. Please just read this build before you attempt it. I've tried to explain key examples and details to get a feel of the build. Builds aren't just the spec and item order for your champion. READ BELOW!!!
With the new change with mana regen in the latest patch (2-1-1) I felt having two Philosopher's Stone is best for allowing you to E and Q as much as possible and being able to sit back and regen health and mana at a high rate. This also allows you to use Q on last hitting, which is helpful, but with two Philosopher's Stone and Kage's Lucky Pick, greed mastery, and hopefully getting a few kills before 15 minutes you will be gaining gold very quickly. You should be in a duo lane and between you and your partner, you can out last any other champion as you harass them safely and as much as possible.
Poppy has one combo that is going to get her kills. That is E (Heroic Charge), Q (Devastating blow), and Q again then repeat. There's situations where you're already at your target so E'ing first isn't needed, but those are rare. If those instances happen, hold onto your E until they run, or until you can position for a wall collision. In combat you're weaving in and out of melee range letting your Q and E recharge. There's NO need to just beat on them unless your target isn't attacking you, or you're CC'd.
Poppy early game is quit squishy. Getting tons of regen with two stones is key to countering this. You'll want to E and Q your selected target then back off. You will get hit, but be smart about it and make sure you can get out. Regen to a comfortable level and repeat. Near 6 minutes your enemy champions should be at half, allowing for easy ganks. Get your stones as quick as possible, and always play defensively unless using the above combo to harass.
Around 20 minutes you should have a few kills, sadly I've been getting an average of 2-1 K/D ratios at this point. Basically, you're going to die as poppy, a lot, but I believe that's why poppy is so good. She can tower dive, dish out insane burst damage, and get those kills some other champions wouldn't get in a 2v1 situation. Don't be afraid to jump into a fight when the squishy is at half. Just make sure you can kill said champion in 1 1/2 combos (E-Q-Q). It's a safe bet if you don't think you can in that amount of time (4 seconds) just harass like you would above until you can.
Farm as much as possible, but be close to team fights. W and ghost give you insane movement speed, allowing you to get to half the map in a few seconds. In team fights you'll be playing defensively, finding your carry target, and W-R-E-Q-Q-Q-E them. Use micro management to stay spaced out from the other champions, even if you have to cast W again and run away behind your team mates do it so your cooldowns can refresh and repeat (other than your ultimate). Repeat this process until all champions are dead. Don't be afraid to jump into a fight if you're at extremely low health. Your job is to take out champions. Again, the judgement is to ask yourself if an E-Q-Q or sometimes just an E-Q will kill said target. Who care's if you're at 10% life if you're going to get a kill. It's a risky play style, but I enjoy it, and it's what wins me games.
At this point you should have trinity and voidstaff. The last two items are more filler, I never really "need" these items so you can replace them with defensive items, or less costing items. With those items you're unstoppable. You can 2 combo (E-Q-Q) basically any champion but a tank, which will take a few more Q's and one E. Just keep going in and out of team fights, letting your cooldowns refresh. Never just sit there auto attacking champions, you're AP, you rely on your Q and E.
SELL ORDER Getting two philosopher's stones at the beginning pays for itself but there's a point where you NEED to sell them and obtain more core build items. These points in the game vary. Never sell these before 20 minutes. If you're getting kills, you wont have to sell these until trinity and void staff. Most games I've sold my stones when getting trinity, after obtaining zeal. Then, to purchase a blasting wand for your void staff. Some games I'll be fed so much I just keep them, or sell both at once after trinity and go straight for void staff. I don't recommend selling them at the same time, having some regen in the current metagame is really nice, but sometimes you have too. It's all situational.
HELPFUL ADVICE Your E spell does bonus damage when you collide to a wall. I've been yelled at, raged at, you name it when sometimes E people not against a wall. Of course any chance you have the positioning to do this, DO IT. However, sometimes you just can't get those .3 seconds of time to position yourself and being able to dash to your target is a good thing and can easily lead to a kill. Don't get in the habit of only using E when you will hit them against a wall, it's a priority, but it has much more potential if you balance and act on situations accordingly.
After you get two Philosopher stones you now should be spamming w on every cooldown. It's your bread and butter when trying to get to team fights, during team fights, and escaping. With two stones you will regen all your mana you used by the time W refreshes. Getting zeals asap is also important for the added movement speed. This is a perfect situation to sell a stone in order to get it, but I usually don't have to if I'm getting a ton of kills.
Use your ultimate offensively responsibly. I use my ultimate on champions above 50%. Anything lower, midgame and up I can 2 combo down with just E and Q quickly. Your ultimate is situational. Some examples would be if a champion was alone, and you two ran into each other away from your team fight, use your ultimate at 30% or more. You WANT that kill asap, anything lower than 30% you will easily be able to E-Q. Remember you can tower dive very well with your ultimate. I like to go around the bushes on bottom at their tower and come from that side. Either they stay there and die, or they run up or right, allowing for an easier time for your teammates to assist, or for you to stop getting hit by their tower.
Learn to be okay with deaths. The pattern of all of my poppy games is I do "okay" early game, then as I get sheen-trinity I just start stomping on people. The start of the game can be bad. I do a lot of 1 for 1's, dying but getting a kill. Sometimes sadly I'll have bad positioning and not get the kill at all. It's okay because just one Q is doing a ton of damage anyways, and I can usually get an E-Q-Q, sometimes one more Q then die. That is forcing your enemy to have to either back, or be an easy target for your team. You didn't get the kill and you fed, but you won partially. I tell my team every game "Hey, I'm feeding the first 15, then I will carry you all" and I do. I've gotten 8 deaths before 15 minutes, but had 7 kills, and the ending score was 15+ kills and maybe 2-3 more deaths than at the 15 mark. You're a progression champion. You start out weak, but grow strong.