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Shen Build Guide by Xplor

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Xplor

[Patch 6.10] Shen! In-Depth Complete Guide! - REWORKED!

Xplor Last updated on May 21, 2016
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Team 1

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.


Natural Talent
Bounty Hunter
Battering Blows
Piercing Thoughts

Ferocity: 12

Dangerous Game

Cunning: 0

Tough Skin
Runic Armor
Veteran's Scars
Legendary Guardian

Resolve: 18

Threats to Shen with this build

Show all
Threat Champion Notes
Malphite He is just a simple tank, useless against Shen. You will always outdamage him, he will always run out of mana. Still, watch for his slow, their jungle can have a successful gank in combo with him.
Katarina Katarina on top have no role. If you face her on 1vs1 from early to late game, you will always win against her. Keep your Dash (E) on her ultimate. You gonna interrupt her. If you are playing against her, build some MR early.
Guide Top

Welcome to the GUIDE

  • Hello and welcome to my first complete guide

  • I recommend reading the entirely guide for a better understanding of this champion

  • My name is Xplor, I am playing League of Legends on EUNE since Season 2.
  • I am not high ranked, I don't consider myself to be extremely good in game, but I like to do a difference, help the other lanes and players, and lead the team to victory, not with an AP or AD carry, with a TANK. A very good one.
  • Shen is my main champion, I played it for a while, and now after rework (even if some people disagree), Shen can really make a difference in every game.

Guide Top

Pros / Cons


  • One of the best Tanks in the game
  • Energy Champion
  • You do % damage
  • Have a global ultimate
  • If feeded, Indestructible


  • Low energy regen rate
  • Long Stand United cooldown
  • Mostly, good team dependent to succed.
  • Melee champion
  • Easy to play but hard to master!

Guide Top


I am trying to make one standard rune page for Shen, to completely avoid to have multiple Rune pages for one champion, and these are the best possible for him, giving him a significant boost on early levels.

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist, x9

+12 Magic Resist
Spoiler: Click to view

Greater Seal of Armor, x9

+9 Armour
Spoiler: Click to view

Greater Mark of Attack Speed, x9

+15% Attack Speed
Spoiler: Click to view

Greater Quintessence of Health, x3

+78 Health
Spoiler: Click to view

  • There are some debates as well to pick Greater Seal of Health instead of Greater Seal of Armor, which can grant additional +72 Starting Health instead of +9 Armor.
  • In some situation, actually in most situations, +72 HP can be the same or more benefit that +9 Armor, specially when you play against AP or Tank on TOP; On support Shen I better recommend to keep +9 Armor because of Heavy ADC;
  • These are also very expensive, 820 ip per piece.
Well, now you are ready to play...
Hmmm... well not yet :). You can continue reading.
Next? Masteries

Guide Top



From: Offense / Ferocity

5/5 Fury
I was explaining before, why to have some early Attack Speed is important. Yes it is; Fury gives you a boost of +4% Attack Speed, which will help you the whole game. It makes a difference, believe me.

1/1 Double Edged Sword NEW
I found overall this mastery useful, benefiting from extra damage you deal (3%), and compensating the damage you receive (1.5%), from the next mastery on this line and from the Grasp of the Undying ;

5/5 Vampirism NEW
I was telling you on earlier version of this guide, that Shen does not benefit anymore afterall from lifesteal / spellvamp after rework, because the new "Q" is different, removing the ability to heal himself. But after some multiple tests with this new mastery which i decided to change, Shen benefit "slightly" of some Lifesteal / Spellvamp; Not enough to make a major difference like before, but enough to have better and longer sustain in lane that earlier mastery.
Keep in mind that this 2% doesn't look so much, but it stack with Grasp of the Undying from the utility tree, making him to have little more sustain in lane that before.

1/1 Oppressor NEW
As the last point on this tree, you have to pick from this one and Bounty Hunter but I find this more useful early game, since you have your combo slow from Q and your "Dash", giving you in that moment an additional 2.5% damage increase. The other one is definitely better on late game if you get some kills, but me, personally, I rather prefer Oppressor because I focus on early game winning the lane.

From: Defense / Cunning

NO points to add to this tree. Not anymore after the new update through the guide since 02.03.2016 / patch 6.4

From: Utility / Resolve

5/5 Unyielding
From Recovery and Unyielding , I personally choose the second one. Later you will stack Armour and Magic Resist. Unyielding gives you mid - late game great boost, while Recovery needs, is not even noticed early game. At least not on Shen. Tested already.

1/1 Explorer
Well, how I said, movement speed is a MUST on Shen as well. Stack as much as you can. This utility gives you a great boost of movement speed while you are in brushes or on the river. Don't skip it.

5/5 Veteran's Scars
+45 HP is a very good start, having lots of HP at first level and early games;
But there are some contradiction about picking one between Veteran's Scars and Runic Armor .
Before the rework, with the old Shen, Runic Armor was my main pick because of the LifeSteal Q, additional shield as well, boost the little regen you had and ... teammate's heals. But now, while Shen does not benefite anymore of LifeSteal, I am giving more importance to Veteran's Scars for additional HP on early game.

1/1 Perseverance
+50% Health Regen, increased to 200% when below 25% Health

There is not a must to have it, you can pick Insight instead of it, but me, personally I rather prefer additional regen during the game... more sustain on the lane.
You can pick any of these 2.

5/5 Swiftness
There are 2 simple reasons why I pick this instead of Legendary Guardian
One of them: You are not support (at least not with this build), so Legendary Guardian is useless on early game, and the difference on late game is too small to be noticed.
Second reason? Hmm... is the only viable one. It helps you this tenacity and slow resist. More that you can guess :)

Grasp of the Undying
Well, this is the last one. The most important.
Let me review all 3 of them from utility and tell you why I pick this one.
  • * Bond of Stone It doesn't help you too much while you are solo on top. Actually it doesn't help you at all until mid - late game, when team needs you more. Is a very good pick for Shen support, but there goes another build and things to consider it. Until then this is not a good pick for Shen TOP.
  • * Strength of the Ages - Usually this is a very good pick for jungle Shen, when you stack the 300 bonus HP very early. Personally I don't recommend this one on top Shen.
  • * Grasp of the Undying - This one, my opinion is the best pick for Shen TOP; lifesteal equal with 2.5% of your own HP it doesn't look much, but it can make the difference while fighting with your enemies.

Grasp of the Undying suffered a little nerf during patch 6.8
HEALTH STEAL 3% maximum health ⇒ 2.5% maximum health

    There is no point to start to consider picking other end masteries from other tree lines, because this will make you change your whole Mastery tree lines. Pointless, trust me (already tried other mastery builds, but doesn't work so well on Shen. This one is the best on this champion, on my opinion. Just try it!)

Next? Items

Guide Top


  • Well, there is a standard build for Shen, and following it, can drastically increase your winning chance. Don't expect to have 30/0/10 but u can have instead 10/0/30 on it; He is not a burst damager, is a tanker, a very good one. You will definitely have more assists that kills, but playing smart you should have extremely low deaths to none.
  • Never make AP Shen!He is born to be tank.

I will start this guide with the basic starting items for Shen:

On first recall, normally if you play against an AD champion on top you can pick:

Your final items should be (in this order):
  • Sunfire Cape (on the bottom I will explain every item)

    In the meantime, before or, I prefer after, end and upgrade your boots:
  • Boots of Swiftness

    As always should be, the 3rd and 4th item is:
  • Zz'Rot Portal or Spirit Visage, you pick the order, depends on the enemy team champions and status.

    If the enemy team is not a threat, after you build your Zz'Rot Portal, you can make:
  • Dead Man's Plate, followed as 5th item, the Spirit Visage. It will not be needed early if they don't have feeded AP carry, because with your HP which you stack overall until you make the Spirit Visage, no one is a threat anymore, not even AP enemies.
  • The last item, personally, I pick Randuin's Omen, because of another extra HP and Armor. But if they are playing very aggressive on late game, I recommend instead of last one, to take Guardian Angel. The extra armor, MR and revive, can help you in some situations.

There are still few situational items, such as Thornmail, Titanic Hydra, Trinity Force, Warmog's Armor and Banshee's Veil, but how the name said, there are... situational items just... I rather prefer standard build.

Allright, How I said, I will explain why every of these items are so important on Shen

Sunfire Cape

This is the most important item on Shen. After the patch 6.3, Sunfire Cape got an incredible boost, +50% additional damage to minions and monsters, jumping to a total of 150%. Farming on Shen with this item was never better. You burn everything around you. Always take it.

On patch 6.9 Sunfire Cape price got increased:
TOTAL COST 2700 gold ⇒ 2900 gold

Boots of Swiftness

This kind of boots have the biggest movement speed in combat!
you have a very big advantage over the enemy if they are lack of escaping skills. You can catch them in matter of seconds. More than that, you have additional movement speed boost from Explorer (on brushes and river). How I said before, Shadow Dash is your friend. Use it well, and you will easily succed your actions.

Zz'Rot Portal

This item is extremely important on Shen and should be bought after the Sunfire Cape as fast as possible for several reasons:
Getting ARMOR and MAGIC RESIST on this price counter all opponents, giving you insane resistance and allowing you to survive as impossible...
The Voids spawned allow you to insanely push, farm and destroy turrets and objectives.
You got some bonus movement speed while near the turrets (and destroyed one), so escaping and catching opponents is very easy now.

The fact is that you don't need to get maximum HP as early to be a good tank. Having Armor and Magic resist is way more benefite for a successful Shen
Spoiler: Click to view

Dead Man's Plate

This item definitely worth the gold to get on Shen.
The elementary status it gives is insane allowing you to troll your enemies with your health and armor, discharging the energized passive you got from moving around to your enemies, having one more output damages from a full defensive item.
And the movement speed you got at full charge is good to catch some enemies from behind or have an easy escape if they keep tracing you.

Spirit Visage

This items gives you lots of HP, cooldown reduction and MR as well, some additional health regen, and increase the received healings by 25%. Very useful if you have Soraka, Sona, Taric, Nidalee, Kayle...etc etc, around, or any other healings input.

Spoiler: Click to view

Randuin's Omen

Additional HP, Armor, some lower dmg received by critical strikes, useful passive, and a mass- slow which is very useful late game when the horde are sticking together. Hit all at once, and your team can do the rest.
But, sometimes is not very useful like Guardian Angel

Guardian Angel

As a tank, on late game you will have to take lots of damage. Always there is a possibility to die as tank, well anyone can die, that doesn't mean you should get on any champions, but a good tank can change the balance of the teams. Is very important to survive. If you can't, then, revive. Annoy them. TROLL TROLL TROLL :)

Spoiler: Click to view

It's a very good situational item, and you should pick it even more often, specially when the opponent team have a very good AD Carry or feded one. Works perfectly against Talon, Zed, Yasuo And other AD champions who have high kill potential.
Just picking this gives you the best chance to win against their over-fed AD based champion...

Titanic Hydra
Hydra is a very good element which you may consider picking only in situational teams, the point of this item being of farming. If you want to be a farm based Shen, Titanic Hydra with Sunfire Cape will wipe out minions or jungle very easy.
You get as well extra HP, AD, Health Regen and some extra damage increased by your Maximum Health. Being a tank, this would be in your benefit.
It's a very good item to pick sometimes, but don't forget your role. You are a pure tank.

Warmog's Armor
This item gives you the best HP boost, and in some situations when they have tons of damage, you should pick it.
It is a purely defensive item and doesn't give you any kind of offensive options.
Good to pick sometimes.
Spoiler: Click to view

Trinity Force
With trinity, you will deal some bonus damage, stacking it passive with your Q, and get some additional status. But there's not a big point to pick it in a game.
Spoiler: Click to view

Banshee's Veil
It's a good pick sometimes on Shen, For some extra MR, HP and Health Regen, but first time for it's passive, a shield which block the next enemy ability. It refresh after 40 seconds of not taking damage from enemy champion.
Imagine a situation when Blitzcrank uses his Rocket Grab. You will block his pull, saving you from an ugly situation. Very very benefit. Or a good pick against Veigar
There are so many situations when this item could be benefit for Shen, you pick it when you think you should have. But I strongly prefer if I pick it, to be on mid-late game, not early.
Spoiler: Click to view

Guardian Angel
Good pick, sometimes; I was talking little earlier about it. Only late game, not earlier. I rather prefer the last item, if it's the case to choose it.
This item was boosted in the patch 6.5 and patch 6.9 somehow...

Well, that's enough talking about items, we should move on and continue with Skill Sequence.

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Ki Barrier (Passive)

Spoiler: Click to view

Twilight Assault (Q)

Allocate points at level: 1, 4, 5, 7, 9.
Spoiler: Click to view

Spirit's Refuge (W)

Allocate points at level: 3, 14, 15, 17, 18.
Spoiler: Click to view

Shadow Dash (E)

Allocate points at level: 2, 8, 10, 12, 13.
Spoiler: Click to view

Stand United (R)

Allocate points at level: 6, 11, 16.
Spoiler: Click to view

On the first 3 levels I recommend the next new skill sequence:
  • Level 1 - Q
  • Level 2 - E
  • Level 3 - W

This new one replace the old one Q - W - E
Spoiler: Click to view

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Summoner Spell

Well. First of all, my opinion is that, Teleport is a MUST on Shen when he goes top; You use your "R" on an allied who need your help, possible on bottom line. Well, until you walk on top, Is very risky that your enemy to destroy your turret. Now go base and use Teleport or if you have lots of hp, just Teleport back on top. It have a lot of uses.

Ignite. "BURN THEM ALL" (a quote for the people who watch Game of Thrones)
Ignite Increase your chances to win TOP lane, to make a successful gank as well, and is much more useful that Flash in my opinion. Why? you have already Shadow Dash. it's like a secondary flash, with low cooldown.
This doesn't mean you should not pick Flash anymore, since it's overall the father of summoner spells.
You can do it, but I still prefer Ignite

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Ganks, Tips and Tricks.

With Shen you don't need to be jungle to make a gank and to help your teammates. You can do it very well with Shen, and in time, improve them until the point that you change the balance of the game!

  • Use Stand United only when your teammates need you or you think that you can do a successful gank. Don't use it just to teleport.
  • You still can use it when your team goes at drake and there are enemy around.
  • Using Shadow Dash require a little practice; predict enemy trajectory for a successful Dash all the time.

I was telling you before that we will speak about some tricks with Shen and Twilight Assault.
Spoiler: Click to view

"Provoke me to DUEL Trick!"
Spoiler: Click to view

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Support Shen

How I promised to you, I will add some details and information about how to use your Shen as support!

    In the support Shen there are some minor changes according to standard Shen usage.


Removed Fury
Removed Double Edged Sword
Removed Vampirism
Removed Oppressor

Added Wanderer
Added Assassin
Added Merciless
Added Bandit

Removed Perseverance
Added Insight
Removed Swiftness
Added Legendary Guardian
Removed Grasp of the Undying
Added Bond of Stone

D e t a i l s
Spoiler: Click to view


  • I recommend the same runes to use as support Shen like on top Shen
  • I know that you may reconsider to remove the extra 15% attack speed, since the masteries one was removed, but there's not anything else useful to put instead; Is better to have it.

Skill Sequence

  • I recommend using the same skill sequence like on top Shen. Is the best option.

Summoner Spells

My advice for support Shen is to take, first of all, Exhaust
Like on many other supports, rolling exhaust increase your chances for your ADC to take a kill, or to help him escape.

Since you are not TOP anymore in this game, you won't necessary need to have Ignite
You will better need Flash instead of it, in this case, for a better chance of combo
(I succed some combos, when our jungle come on bottom lane with high speed - Hecarim was in this case, and I used a combo Flash + Shadow Dash + Exhaust to daze the enemy ADC, even if I was far away and he didn't expected. It was a successful gank which repeated a couple of times.)

Team Work

  • Your ADC need to know to play with Shen support or to be very smart, for a successful win;
  • Make sure that your Shadow Dash never or rarely miss!
  • Use Spirit's Refuge to save you ADC!!! If the enemy ADC is attacking yours with autoattack, use this skill to cover the damage and immune him for 1,75 sec. Be near him, and use your Q to bring your sword if is not there.
  • This time matter! In this time, your ADC can outdamage him, and then with that combo "
  • Flash + Shadow Dash + Exhaust will give your ADC a free kill.

Build is set up in the upper part of the page, hitting the arrow > (right) near the title.

And.. don't forget. Ward your DRAGON. and keep some wards in Brushes as well!

Guide Top

Jungle Shen

To be fair, I got some games with Shen on jungle and is working pretty well.
There are advantages and disadvantages, but I will write down some details and changes you need to do to play it right, and result positive praise from your team.


Removed Double Edged Sword
Added Feast
Removed Vampirism
Removed Oppressor
Added Wanderer
Added Runic Affinity
Removed Perseverance
Added Insight
Removed Grasp of the Undying
Added Strength of the Ages

D e t a i l s
Spoiler: Click to view


  • The same kind of runes you should use like on TOP / Support Shen. Here I will change nothing. Not yet at least.

Skill Sequence

  • Use the same skill sequence. There's nothing better. Only that you will start with Q, and continue on level 2 with W.

Summoner Spells

There's nothing to explain to Smite, because is the basic jungle spell. Make sure you use it right, because in some situations is crucial to have it without cooldown and to use it smart, like taking / stealing dragon and baron.

Since you are going jungle, you travel all over the map continuously, helping your allies and aiding to a successful gank. Sometimes you are going to need Flash to make a good combo and to catch the enemy champion, and in different situations.


  • In the upper part of the page, pressing the right arrow near the name, navigates you to the additional builds, where you can find Jungle one as well.
  • Shortly? It's the same build, only that Sunfire Cape is removed, because Stalker's Blade - Cinderhulk is going to replace it, mostly because of the same passive, which is very efficient.
  • With patch 6.4 Shen got an Important jungle buff.

Now you can daze jungle monster with your Shadow Dash. A very good buff for Shen Jungle

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Ranked Play

Shen montage compilation - Part 1

Spoiler: Click to view

Xplor as Shen vs Illaoi on top, ranked patch 6.4

Spoiler: Click to view

Guide Top

Additional Guide Changes & New patches

21.05.2016 Patch 6.10:
  • This patch actually bring nothing new to Shen and his gameplay...

10.05.2016 GUIDE REWORK:
  • To say it shortly, after many hours of work I succeed to rework the entire guide, removing old stuffs and adding new ones, correcting some misspells overall and making it easier to understand and read.
  • I hope I did it right :)

04.05.2016 Patch 6.9:

20.04.2016 Patch 6.7:
  • Grasp of the Undying suffered a little nerf during this patch:
  • HEALTH STEAL 3% maximum health ⇒ 2.5% maximum health
  • On the other side there's nothing else which affects Shen

06.04.2016 Patch 6.7:
  • There's nothing new In this patch which affect Shen gameplay.
  • Although, I made some slightly grammar updates through the guide...

23.03.2016 Patch 6.6:
  • Nerfed and Boosted: Zz'Rot Portal armor and MR decreased from 60 to 55.
    As well now acts like a pink ward and have a minimap distinct icon.
  • Nerfed: Titanic Hydra damage reduced: ATTACK DAMAGE 50 ⇒ 35

16.03.2016 Changes:
  • Added Zz'Rot Portal to SITUATIONAL ITEMS and into the items chapter.

10.03.2016 Guide Changes!
  • Today I succeed to update the WHOLE GUIDE with a new interface and arrangements, much easier to understand and to read;
  • As well, I added lots of new content through all chapters!!!

09.03.2016 Update 6.5
On this update, Shen got a minor modification on his ultimate, the visual of the shield is increased slightly and the target ally's screen FLASHES now when you use on him.
And a minor price decrease for Guardian Angel, and a slight modification.

Spoiler: Click to view

02.03.2016 Changes:
Updated the chapter: Ganks, Tips and Tricks.

01.03.2016 Changes:
Added a new chapter: Ranked Play
Added additional lines info and new champions in "vs. Champions" area

25.02.2016 Patch 6.4
Shen Jungle got BUFFED!
"E" Dash jungle monsters as well now.
Boots of Swiftness movement speed decreased by 5, from 65 to 60 - NERFED
Mercury's Treads Tenacity increased from 20% to 30% - BOOSTED

Other few minor updates through the guide.

22.02.2016 Changes:
Updated the ITEMS Chapter, writing in details about more situational items.

21.02.2016 Changes:
Added additional lines info and new champions in "vs. Champions" area

20.02.2016 Changes:
Updated the Runes Chapter with Additional information

15.02.2016 Changes:
This chapter was created
Added additional lines info and new champions in "vs. Champions" area

Guide Top


  • Shen is a very addictive champion. It was and is still considered one of the best tanks in game.
  • Shen works as well as support and jungle.
    Playing with him, like with every champion, increase your skill, and you will get into one point when you consider the opposing team at the same level with bots.

  • This is Shen, and if you read the whole guide, I wish you good luck and try my builds, because is working extremely well on this point.
  • I apologise for some English mistake I made, this being just my secondary learned language, not main one.
  • I will keep this game updated every time something changes on Shen or to the build I wrote, and I will try in time to add lots of new stuff and useful hints.

I hope I will see you in game and Wish you the best.
If you find this useful, please leave a review.

  • Here's my Youtube Channel where I am uploading very often League of Legends games:

  • And if you liked my guide, you can take a look on my other guides :)

Thank you !