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Zyra Build Guide by SawyerNelson


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League of Legends Build Guide Author SawyerNelson

Original Damage Support - Zyra Support Guide

SawyerNelson Last updated on November 11, 2018
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Cheat Sheet

Zyra Build

Sorcery
LoL Path: Sorcery
LoL Rune: Arcane Comet
Arcane Comet
LoL Rune: Nullifying Orb
Nullifying Orb
LoL Rune: Celerity
Celerity
LoL Rune: Scorch
Scorch

Resolve
LoL Path: Resolve
LoL Rune: Bone Plating
Bone Plating
LoL Rune: Chrysalis
Chrysalis
Bonus:

+6 Attack Damage or +10 Ability Power, Adaptive and +15-135 Health (at levels 1-18)

LeagueSpy Logo
Support Role
Ranked #6 in
Support Role
Win 53%
Get More Stats

Ability Sequence

1
4
5
12
13
Ability Key Q
3
14
15
17
18
Ability Key W
2
7
8
9
10
Ability Key E
6
11
16
Ability Key R


Threats to Zyra with this build

Threat
Low
High
Show all
Threat Champion Notes
3
Thresh Zyra is a legacy counter to thresh. Summon a plant to block his hook when he approaches. Every time he approaches you can damage him Thresh is very vunurable to early magic damage. Later in the game not much changes, so long that he doesn't flash on top of you and flay hook before you have the reaction time to simply flash away then turn on him.
Guide Top

Author


Sawyer Nelson


This guide was written by Sawyer Nelson on November/6th/2018 for free, with the purpose of educating those interested. If you want to show your appreciation you can do so by Donating via [PayPal] or following Sawyer's Social Media:
  • Twitch - (Gameplay, Personality, Commentary, and Coaching League of Legends Live stream)
  • Twitter - A trash can for my stupid thoughts
  • Youtube
  • Instagram - Clips of my gameplay, maybe a picture of me once a year


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ZYRA

Zyra is the legacy DAMAGE Support, a usually pick for the Support role which usually offers protection and CC. Zyra offers a lot of damage and control. That being said she is a double edge sword, being able to dish out a lot of damage comes with the price of being able to be caught out fairly easily. Which makes playing her a skillful balancing act.

Pros

+ High Damage
+ Good Laning
+ Medium Range Control
+ 2 CC Ability Support

Cons

- Squishy
- Countered by Tanks
- Hard to play when behind
- Useless when out ranged


Zyra is very unique in the sense that she gets to deal so much damage from the support role. This doesn't mean that you can 1 shot everyone in the game solo, but instead you play a partner in crime with your ADC to single out and take down targets.


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Summoner Spells


IGNITE

Ignite deals true damage based on level over 5 seconds & reduces healing for it's duration. On a 3 Minute and 30 second cooldown. Ignite enables you to deal more burst damage and single out an enemy during all ins. Look to take fights when Ignite is up, and not when it's down.

FLASH

Flash is standard on most champions, Zyra is no exception. As a Support a lot of what you want to be doing with Flash is using it for immediate engages / punishes.

Flash + Grasping Roots + Stranglethorns + Deadly Spines + Rampant Growth

You will often be fighting on neutral ground as Zyra so you may often have to Flash to get into aggressive range.


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RUNES


Summary



Basically theses Runes provide Zyra more damage early game automatically on her abilities, but more importantly more survivability from all ins. .

Sorcery Resolve
ARCANE COMET
Arcane Comet gives Zyra more damage on her abilities naturally, it's cooldown is fairly short allowing you to proc it often when poking the enemy during the laning phase. It's cooldown is also reduced very quickly by Zyra's damage types.
Nullifying Orb
Nullifying Orb blocks a bit of magic damage when you are low health, on a champion such as Zyra that can go down so easily you get a ton of value out of the damage Nullifying Orb blocks. Zyra also doesn't get much value out of Manaflow Band since her base mana and itemization leaves you with enough mana in most situations.
Celerity
Zyra has no gap closer so she needs to be as fast as possible Celerity gives you some extra movement speed, and a small amount of AP. Works very well for Zyra.
Scorch
Scorch add extra damage after hitting an ability. Scorch is on a 10 second cooldown, and damage scales with level. In combination with Arcane Comet adds a lot of free extra damage for hitting Zyra's abilities.
Bone Plating
Bone Plating simply blocks damage for free, effectively giving you more health. Very simple, very effective.
Chrysalis
Chrysalis gives you health early then later turns into AP, works great for Zyra, giving her Health early during the laning phase allowing you to take better trades, and AP later simply giving you more damage.





These Runes are a catalyst to proper Support play on Zyra. Allowing her to get damage for free with levels rather than Ability Power and giving her survivability with Nullifying Orb, Bone Plating, and Chrysalis.

You may feel as though you're missing out on damage by not running say Domination with Sorcery secondary. Which you technically are, but that damage isn't important to Support Zyra. Without the Survivability and free damage per level scaling it is harder to accomplish proper play without a gold lead. Even if you get a gold lead and can 1 shot a widely mispositioned carry that's not Zyra's job, nor should it be your aim to win.


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ABILITIES

Abilities







Passive: Garden of Thorns
Seeds spawn around Zyra periodically, becoming faster at levels 5,9,13,18. If an enemy Champion steps on a seed, it dies. Zyra can cast spells near seeds to grow plants. Extra plants striking the same target deal reduced damage.

This passive will not spawn seeds while Zyra is in a bush and in the fog of ward. So while setting up to leash your jungler level 1 stand near the buff they are starting to spawn seeds near it, it stand in lane to do the same.

Otherwise this Passive works, well you guessed it pretty passively, giving Zyra more value the longer she exist in the same area.
[Q] Deadly Spines
Deals damage in a rectangle shape, when cast near a seed summons a ranged plant that deals damage to the nearest target.

When cast on top of a seed deals bonus damage.

Rampant Growth

Zyra plants a seed, lasting up to 60 seconds. Deadly Spines and Grasping Roots cast near seeds will turn them into plants who fight for Zyra. Zyra can store multiple seeds at once, and killing enemies reduces Rampant Growth's recharge time.

Seeds last 60 seconds, and if stepped on by an enemy champion, it dies.

Cast Rampant Growth on top of enemies you are casting either Deadly Spines or Grasping Roots on, to deal bonus damage.
Grasping Roots
Zyra throws slow moving roots dealing magic damage and rooting all enemies hit.

When cast near a seed it summons a melee plant that slow enemies hit.

This is Zyra's main CC ability it's important not to waste it or else you leave yourself and your carry vulnerable.
Stranglethorns
Zyra summons a large circle dealing damage and knocking up all targets in it after a brief delay. All plants summoned in this area are empowered.

Stranglethorns's cast range is fairly short, so you will have to move for Flash forward to get an aggressive ULT landing on the enemy back line. Stranglethorns can be used aggressively or defensively, more often than not defensively.

Zyra kit is fairly simple. Deadly Spines is your poke ability & Grasping Roots is your catch, to CC targets for your allies to hit, and to set yourself up to land an easy Deadly Spines + Stranglethorns.

It may take some practice to get used to casting W Rampant Growth on top of abilities you hit, but it's not that hard. A basic combo to land an ability + plant's damage would be:

E Grasping Roots + W Rampant Growth + Q Deadly Spines + W Rampant Growth.

When to or when not to cast W Rampant Growth to summon a plant changes depending on the situation.

To maximize damage while poking or during all ins you want to cast the abilities with plants. You also can also use the plants for utility, the melee plants summoned with Grasping Roots slow targets hit, so you can use them in coke points to block off entrance or exits. You can use the ranged plants summoned by Deadly Spines to zone the enemy from the minion wave during the laning phase, and to get Spellthief's Edge stacks safety.


Again Zyra's combo is pretty simple, but landing it, is usually the hard part, since Zyra is such a squishy champion you will likely have cast Grasping Roots from a neutral position making it harder to land. The way to increase your chances of it landing is to Flash on top of the target you want to hit then dump everything on them:

Flash+ Grasping Roots + Stranglethorns + Deadly Spines + Rampant Growth + Rampant Growth.

When trying to land Grasping Roots understand that it is a long thin ability, so you want to try and position it so that it runs through as many enemy champions as possible, rather than just a few.


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ITEMS

Starting Items




Starting items for Zyra never changes, you will play out the early levels 1-4 every single game with Spellthief's Edge, 2 Health Potions, and a Warding Totem.

Spellthief's Edge gives you gold for damaging enemy champions. The easiest ways to proc this for Zyra is with auto attacks and Q Deadly Spines + Rampant Growth.

Use the Health Potions when you take a trade that puts you below 70% health. It's very easy for Zyra to be bursted

Early Build Path

> > > >


If you are playing to dominate the laning phase The Dark Seal + Refillable Potion give you a ton of value early, and continue to throughout the game. You can sell both the later the game goes on, or hold onto them. Regardless if you are ahead or behind in gold, you will most likely be able to purchase these 2 items, giving you cheap and effective stats.

It may seem odd to not go for Sorcerer's Shoes on Zyra, the magic penetration value is good, and relatively cheap for a support, but Zyra doesn't need it. If you and your team are snowballing than it's a fine purchase. In the majority of matches on Zyra you get a ton of value out of Boots of Mobility, they are very cheap, give you lots of movement speed out of combat, which lets you have map movements otherwise unavailable to Zyra allowing you to show up to fights that you would otherwise be 4-8 seconds to late too. Boots of Mobility allow you to ward safer, assist your jungler better, and move from one lane to another faster. Sorcerer's Shoes simply give you a bit more damage, so it's quite the trade off for a Support whose job is majority of moving around the map, ward, and playing with her team to catch out the enemy.

Throughout the match you want to be carrying at least 2 Control Wards, a Control Ward allows you to gain adition vision, but more importantly it allows you to deny vision from the enemy. Make good use of it and you will be rewarded.


CORE BUILD

After completing Liandry's Torment + Zeke's Convergence you can look to complete Remnant of the Watchers, completing it from Frostfang simply gives you a small amount of health, AP, and an extra ward. It's not very crucial for Zyra to complete if early, you can in certain matches that are say higher tempo and require more control early. Most matches you can simply delay it to complete a 2nd full item in Zeke's Convergence at a accelerated pace.

This is Zyra's main item, it's very expensive for a Support, but luckily you give a mini version of it for 1500g in Haunting Guise so even in a match in which you are behind, you will probably have enough gold to be sitting on a Haunting Guise for a while. When upgraded to Liandry's Torment you get a lot more damage. Liandry's passive makes it so that you deal bonus magic damage based on the enemy's Max Health, and this passive is doubled if you slow or immobilize enemies hit this ticks for 3 seconds, so you can proc it multiple times during a fight. This also makes even 1 hit from a plant deal a good amount of damage. The item also offers AP and a good amount of Health, everything Zyra wants.
This may seem like an odd item on Zyra, and that's because it is, since the first item you will complete in Liandry's Torment is 3100g, it best to go for cheaper items for the rest of the match. Zeke's Convergence offers Zyra Armor, Magic Resist, Mana, Cooldown Reduction, and a somewhat useful passive when you ULT. All for 2250g, and the components are pretty cheap which is also important since you will be sitting on them for quite some time. You will be purchasing this again after Liandry's Torment which offers you a good amount of HP. Zeke's Convergence offers you lots of Armor and some Magic Resist to make that HP more valuable. It's not very realistic to try and make use of Zeke's Convergence's passive offensively, since it will apply a slow zone around you, and all enemies in the slow zone that your ADC hit's will take bonus magic damage, but you can make pretty easy defensive use of it by ULTing a target trying to dive you or your ADC, and then if they are on top of you they will naturally be slowed.

You will complete Locket of the Iron Solari as a 3rd item, similar to Zeke's Convergence it is simply a defensive item for Zyra. You want to purchase it 3rd because it's shielding active gains more value the later the match goes. Subsequently you will also gain more value out of the Magic Resist later in the match.

Don't feel as though you are missing out on tons of damage by building defensive items in Zeke's Convergence & Locket of the Iron Solari. It's not your job to be 1 shotting enemies, you can be offensive items listed below if you are snowballing, but while even or ahead these 2 defensive items will give you the most value.
I recommend this again because it's a cheap item, and the later a game goes the cheaper you want your completed Support items to be. Mejai's Soulstealer will build out of your already purchased The Dark Seal. Mejai's will give you an opportunity to get a lot of AP for getting Kills or Assist, which are way more likely to happen Mid - Late Game. Losing these stacks are not game breaking, but gaining them can be, as your full combo becomes more potent.



SITUATIONAL ITEMS

All AP items on Zyra are very expensive and result in inconsistent itemization timing / play, which is why I personally don't build them often unless the opportunity presents itself. You are practically forcing what you want from the game, rather than playing for what works by building all AP items every. Single. Game.


Rylai's is a good 2nd item after Liandry's Torment if you are snowballing, it offers the same stats AP + Health, but you gain the passive of abilities slowing the enemy, which Zyra's plants make very good use of giving you potentially more control in fights.. When completed the slowing passive is also a catalyst to Liandry's Torment's passive, giving you a full damage proc.

If you have multiple AP (Ability Power) threats on your team, and the enemy has tanks / bruisers that can easily itemize Magic Resist you can purchase a Void Staff 2nd, 3rd, or 4th item depending on the game state. It's not widely expensive, but it's build path isn't very impactful and will likely take a long time to complete so make sure it's worth it.

Morellonomicon is in the same boat as all items that are good on Zyra, offers HP + AP + Magic Penetration + a Healing Reduction Passive. For Zyra Morellonomicon is more of a specific snowball item, it's very awkward to purchase 2nd after Liandry's Torment instead of Rylai's Crystal Scepter. So when would you want to purchase Morellonomicon?

If you are widely snowballing, and the game would stagnate around 26-29 minutes, and it is somewhat of your job to kill the enemy Mid / ADC, say if you have 3 tanks Top, Jungle, and Mid lane.

Luden's Echo is only useful in the very, very late game. In which you actually need the mana to cast multiple rotations of abilities, the damage and CDR it offers is nice, but it's very, very expensive item for a support, if you are in the very late game you could sell a no stacked Mejai's for Luden's Echo.

In the Late Game if you have an item slot a 1 time use Stopwatch give you and your team lots of options during fights or bait enemies into you and your team. Generally it has a lot of utility, you can use it once than sell it to carry Control Wards, or hold onto it and upgrade it into a Zhonya's Hourglass.


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ADC Synergy

Zyra is not a standard support since she offers a good amount of damage her best lanes are with ADC's that offer supportive abilities for her, or have personal defensive abilities.


One of the oldest lanes for Zyra is:

Zyra + Ashe

In this lane pre level 6 Zyra's Q Deadly Spines + Ashe's W Volley is to much poke for most lanes to deal with. Especially against bad player they will always be giddy to try to damage you early and basically present you with opportunities to blast them in the face. Even against good player trying to avoid both these abilities is quite the chore. After level 6 Ashe can become the support to Zyra because of her ULT Enchanted Crystal Arrow. When hit it sets up Zyra for an easy full combo.


Zyra + Miss Fortune

Pretty similar to Ashe, Make it Rain + Zyra's poke early is pretty unavoidable and very hard for most lanes to deal with. After level 6 the combo of Zyra's ULT + Miss Fortune's Bullet Time is a TON of AOE damage.


Zyra + Ezreal

This lane doesn't win super hard, but is a very defensive and safe lane. When played properly it will allow both Zyra & Ezreal to scale at an accelerated pace. Ezreal can be lacking in damage early game which Zyra easily makes up for. Later in the game Zyra shifts to setting up Ezreal for damage.


Zyra works with every ADC but can really dominate lanes when her ADC has poke early and a good ULT. See Matchups for more.


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GAMEPLAY

Early Game


During the Laning Phase you want to do your best to poke with Q Deadly Spines and auto attacks. Any time you spend E Grasping Roots you will make yourself or your ADC vulnerable to counter attack, so don't miss it.

When the enemy ADC is locked into an auto attack on a minion, it will give you a very easy opportunity to land Q Deadly Spines which you should look to exploit. Once you have the enemy ADC / Support poked down to around 60% health or less you can look to land E Grasping Roots on them for an all in. During an all in spend Ignite early, not only will it deal extra damage, but it's healing reduction will reduce the healing from the enemy champion's abilities, health potions, and summoner Heal.

Level 2 you can choose to put a point into W Rampant Growth if you are going to play the lane very slow. Taking E Grasping Roots gives you the opportunity to catch out enemies and lock them down briefly for your ADC to follow up on.

Keep track of your Arcane Comet and Scorch cooldowns, and try and poke around those. If you are simply spamming Q Deadly Spines on cooldown you will quickly run out of mana and not be able to do anything. You should space out your ability cast not only to deal more damage because of the runes, but it is better for the duration of the lane as well.

Zyra has a strong level 4 spike, since you will have 2 points in Deadly Spines, if you lane Grasping Roots during this time you will likely land a great trade putting you ahead in the lane.


Recently a lot of junglers such as Camille, Xin Zhao, etc. Have the option to level 2 gank after starting Red Buff. So care for a gank immediately as you come to lane when playing against these type of junglers. For extra safety you can put a ward in the river as you come to lane.


ADC's ability to follow up.


What's more important for you to practice is not only watching the enemy bot laners and trying to punish their mispositioning with an engage, but also watch your Ally ADC to see if they will be near you to follow up on your CC .

If you CC'd a target and got no follow up, you didn't CC them. If you got a 5 man Malphite ULT and your entire team was in another lane, what happens? Nobody dies and they all turn on you and you die.

The power of CC in League of Legends is that it enables your ally champions that otherwise don't have good options of dealing their damage to be given brief timing windows to deal their damage without any counter play from the enemy.
Mid Game

Mid game is when multiple towers go down on the map, or champions start moving around the map. Zyra can be caught out very easily when alone and moving around the map. When moving around the fog of war it's better to move with your jungler / ally so that you are safer, and if you find someone you can fight them.

Zyra has a better time staying in lanes, it's safer and she can continue to farm spellthief's stacks. It's also easier for Zyra to respond to fights, when fights start it shows where most champions are on the map most likely allowing you to move freely

When you are moving around the fog of war play mindfully, think about who can be where you are going, understand the risk, and don't take the risk when it is too high. Would you walk in the enemy jungle when you have no wards in the river, the entire enemy team is missing and your allies won't be behind you? Of course not.

Roaming


Roaming on any support is pretty simple, it's when you take a timing window in which your ADC is safe to have an impact somewhere else on the map. Zyra's roams involve responding to fights or moving into the fog of war with your jungler / ally.

So when should you roam is very, very easy don't over think it, and don't over do it.
  • When the Bot Lane wave is pushed into the enemy tower
  • When you have recalled and can move to any lane
  • When your ADC is dead / recalling and you would be alone bot lane
  • When the enemy laners are pushed up

These are all good times to roam, how effective that particular roam will be is affect by literally everything on the map, the minion wave positions in Bot lane & the lane you are ganking, the likelyhood of the gank, the HP, Mana, level values of your ally laner compared to the enemy laner. Moving with your Jungler also helps pull off a gank. Some ADC champions such as Ezreal have abilities to farm the minion wave from long range safely, others such as Kai'Sa will be zoned completely if you leave.

When you do get a roam off, look to either recall and reset bot / to the lane with your ADC in it, or to immediately walk back to lane. Do NOT overstay doing pointless things.

Warding

Defensive
Defensive warding is warding on your side of the map
Neutral
Neutral Warding is in the river / lane bushes.
Offensive
Offensive warding is warding into the enemies side of the map (past the river).

When you should or shouldn't ward depends on your allies location and the enemies location / potential location. Look at the map and think.

Control Ward, Control wards are to deny the enemy vision, not to give yourself extra vision. Zyra makes good use of neutral wards (on river) rather than aggressive wards, it's easier to bait the enemy into you than it is to force yourself onto the enemy.


Throughout the Mid - Late game there will be moments of no action in which it is optimal for you to drop 3 wards around an objective, then recall to refresh the ward count on your Remnant of the Watchers and return to your team.


Late Game


Late Game Zyra's job is the same as Early & Mid Game, but actions hold more weight late game, when respond timers get longer and a single player dying can mean the enemy team getting Baron / Inhibitors means that you better catch out enemies messing up to snowball your team, and not get caught out or misplay yourself.

Be mindful of how strong you and your allies are, you can or can't take fights depending on items. You don't have to start a fight every time you see the enemy, your allies may need time to farm, but when your team has the advantage you should be in position to force the fights. Once you get a good feel for this you will understand how polzerizing it can feel to play Support depending on the game state, you are doing a lot or nothing at all, waiting for your allies to scale and for the enemy to push in.

If you aren't the only Engage for your team consider staying back in fights and peeling for your ADC. Say if both you and a Malphite CC the enemy back line, but the enemy Talon solo dives your ADC there is nothing your ADC can likely do to deal with it themselves. Zyra's abilities can be used well defensively, especially against bruiser champions diving your ADC, they generally are combo reliant and if you interrupt that combo along with dealing damage to them you can likely take them down.

When engaging you really have to make sure that your entire team is on the same page, and the only way to do this is through pinging, and pinging a lot. Pings are loud, quick, and everyone understand them. You can't be pushing down Mid Lane then take 5-10 seconds to type out " Hey guys i'm going to go in here pls follow up". By that time the wave has hit the tower and you are way to far away. Instead be in position to punish the enemy, and ping on the way or for assistance as many times as you can as you are engaging.

Don't be ARAMing the entire late game either, if you aren't warding or playing around the fog of war you are just showing yourself to the enemy and hoping they walk into you. It's a lot more valuable to make the enemy miss position when trying to ward the area you would be in, than it is to move at them down the mid lane because they showed up on your screen.


Zyra's effectiveness does rely on her gold value and itemization more so than other supports, making it very important to not feed on her. That being said when playing and practicing Zyra this promotes good play to avoid obvious and simple deaths. Zyra is also very rewarding when you land perfect damage combos and when landing immediate engages with Flash + Grasping Roots. Zyra if you have good macro sense Zyra can also be a catalyst towards proper roaming play if you can spot fights happening and move to them when it's correct or even better move with your jungler as you have pushed out waves to make a play elsewhere on the map.


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CONCLUSION

Zyra is the go to damage support for not only learning the game but for brutal laning & map control. She will teach any player how to optimize damaging enemies, and also optimize Early - Mid Game map movements to help allies and also to avoid bad map movements the result in you dying. If you have any question on Zyra or anything League of Legends related you can ask me on my Twitch Stream when I'm live.


Sawyer Nelson


This guide was written by Sawyer Nelson on November/6th/2018 for free, with the purpose of educating those interested. If you want to show your appreciation you can do so by Donating via [PayPal] or following Sawyer's Social Media:
  • Twitch - (Gameplay, Personality, Commentary, and Coaching League of Legends Live stream)
  • Twitter - A trash can for my stupid thoughts
  • Youtube
  • Instagram - Clips of my gameplay, maybe a picture of me once a year