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Irelia Build Guide by aloisfancy

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League of Legends Build Guide Author aloisfancy

[Plat] Irelia Top Guide

aloisfancy Last updated on March 1, 2015
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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

Legendary Guardian

Defense: 9


Utility: 0

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Hello, I am a Platinum Irelia main. I've played 100+ games with her (ranked and unranked). Although that is not much, I know her ins and outs.
Irelia excels in the current meta due to her mid-game power spike. Because most rotations, objectives, and team fights take place in the mid game, Irelia makes a big impact on most games.

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Pros / Cons


+ Great sustain
+ Good post-6 laning pressure
+ Amazing mid game
+ Good roaming and assassination
Overall, Irelia excels in the early-mid game by providing tremendous lane pressure and map pressure. Her laning, when perfected, can top almost any other champions laning phase. Post-6 she can use her ultimate for large amounts of sustain and burst damage. Once she obtains Trinity Force, her damage skyrockets compared to the rest of the players on the map. She may have the best 1-item power spike in the game. Due to this, she can apply pressure all throughout the map by roaming and assassinating enemy champions. She snowballs quickly from these roams to further add to her mid game power.


- Weak early laning (lvl 1-4)
- Falls off late game
- Dependent on Tri-Force
Irelia has trouble laning from levels one through four due to her dependency on having all three of her abilities. Irelia is simply lacking compared to champions like Nidalee, Darius, or Ryze, who can have long rage, high damage abilities at level one. Her q may be long range and high damage but it's also a gap closer, meaning once she uses it, she is vulnerable to an all in which is very dangerous due to her low stats early game. Irelia has no abilities that scale very well into late game. Her main damage output, her W, does not scale with total AD or extra AD, and therefore is obsolete in the late game. If she falls behind early, due to a gank or a difficult lane matchup, she may have trouble getting back into the game. If she is unable to buy an early Tri-Force, her potential mid game power spike is jeopardized due to the fact that the enemy champions are already far ahead of her.

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Greater Mark of Attack Damage are standard for most AD champions. The combination of Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed and Greater Mark of Attack Damage is preferable because of it's efficiency over the combination of Greater Mark of Attack Speed and Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage. The Greater Seal of Armor and Greater Glyph of Magic Resist help you to survive the early game and provide adequate resistances. If you are against an all AD team you should use Greater Glyph of Attack Speed and replace ONE Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed with a Greater Quintessence of Armor. If you are against a team with an AP top and AP mid, I recommend using Greater Seal of Scaling Armor because the early 9 armor won't help much because you will be between top and mid most of the time. The scaling armor will provide substantial resistances against the ADC late game.

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The masteries focus on AD, Attack Speed, and Tankiness. The Spell Weaving and Blade Weaving mastery synergizes well with the spellblade passive of Sheen. Do not take points in Warlord because the percentage increase in AD is very small and makes little difference. The nine points in defense are for sustain and tankiness in the early game.

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Ionian Fervor(Passive)

Ionian Fervor gives you increased tenacity for each nearby enemy. This makes Irelia an efficient pick against heavy CC teams.

Bladesurge (Q)

In normal lanes you generally begin with Q for assistance in farming and easy early harassment. Q is also your main tool for gap closing.

Hiten Style (W)

In difficult lanes, start with your W to sustain through the first level. W also helps you sustain throughout the entire laning phase. Max W because it is your main damage output, as it deals increased true damage per hit as you level it up.

Equilibrium Strike (E)

Max E second as its stun/slow duration scales very well and is an extremely effective CC tool in the late game. Keep in mind that your E is only a stun if the enemy has a higher percentage health than you, otherwise it is a slow.

Transcendent Blades (R)

Your ultimate (R) has three main purposes. It can be used to clear a single wave very quickly if you are planning to back soon or simply push a lane. It also gives you four Sheen procs which are very useful in lane trades and bursting people down. The health that it gives back is also useful in lane trades. Keep in mind that your R gives back health for each minion it hits, so it is important that you aim your ult through a large wave of minions so that you gain more health. It can also be used to kill low health enemies from a range.

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Crystalline Flask is a good start on Irelia because sustain is very useful to her in the early levels, especially when going against poke champions such as Ryze or Nidalee. She also has very high mana costs.

If you are against a non-poke champion or a relatively easy lane, you should start Doran's Blade and go aggressive.

Trinity Force is Irelia's core Item. She benefits from all aspects of the trinity force, which is why she gains such a large power spike from it. Trinity Force should almost always be Irelia's first completed item.

You should only build Blade of the Ruined King as your first completed item if you are against early health stacking champions like Dr. Mundo.

Randuin's Omen is the best armor item to build on Irelia because of the gold efficient stats if gives, as well as the very useful passive and active that will help you peel/chase. It's a better choice of Sunfire Cape because Sunfire Cape damages enemies passively which might affect whether your Equilibrium Strike stuns or slows the enemy.

You should usually get Mercury's Treads because it synergizes well with her passive, Ionian Fervor. It provides high tenacity for team fights and escaping ganks. Buy Ninja Tabi only if the enemy team is all AD.

Youmuu's Ghostblade is primarily for extreme snowballing. It is bought after your second item Blade of the Ruined King. This item is quite risky due to the fact that it leaves you with no tanky stats, therefore I only recommend buying it if you have more experience with Irelia.

Spirit Visage is generally a better pick than Banshee's Veil because of the increased healing it gives. You should build Banshee's Veil against teams with long range poke or long range engage, i.e Nidalee, Xerath, Thresh.

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Early Laning

Laning with Irelia can be quite difficult but , if mastered, she can dominate against almost any champion.

On your first 2-3 backs try to buy at least 1 or 2 Mana Potions because Irelia's early mana costs are quite high, especially when you use Bladesurge to last hit.

In difficult lanes, you want to spend the first few levels cs'ing. Try to only last hit the minions so that the enemy laner is forced push the wave into your tower so that you can farm easily and safely. Bladesurge allows you to farm very well under your tower so don't worry about missing CS. You can also sustain well by activating Hiten Style before you start cs'ing under tower.

Survive through the initial levels and then try to play more aggressive when you have 2-3 levels in your Hiten Style because it will give you superior sustain for trades and increased damage due to the true damage per hit.

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Trading in Lane/ All-ins


As Irelia try to initiate trades when the enemy laner has higher percentage health than you, so that your Equilibrium Strike with stun them.

The best way to trade during laning phase is to Bladesurge a low health minion, which will reset your Q, and then use Equilibrium Strike on the enemy laner. The Equilibrium Strike will stun the enemy and will proc Sheen so auto attack immediately after. After auto attacking, proc Sheen again by activating Hiten Style. You will have chunked the enemy laner quite heavily after this combo especially if you have Sheen. If you want to escape any chance of the enemy laner trading back with you, you can simply Q back to a low minion behind you.


If you are looking to kill the enemy laner rather than just trading, then proceed with the combo above but instead of Q'ing back to a minion continue by using your ultimate. Remember that you can use Transcendent Blades to proc your Sheen a total of four times, so weave in auto attacks between every use of your ultimate. Try to get Transcendent Blades to pass through both the enemy champion and a large wave of minions to gain a huge amount of health during the trade. If the enemy is not dead at this point, or he used Flash, use Bladesurge to close the gap. Bladesurge will not be on cooldown because you killed a minion with it, therefore resetting the cooldown. This is the combo that you will use to kill the enemy laner or assassinate enemy champions in other lanes.

Helpful Tips

Once you have enough AD, which you most likely will after completing Trinity Force, you can activate Hiten Style to proc Sheen and then proceed to use Bladesurge on a FULL HEALTH caster minion instead of a low health minion. This is possible due to the fact that Bladesurge applies on-hit affects such as the Sheen proc. The caster minions will due from the W-->Q combo thus resetting your Q. This allows for surprise initiations and also zones the enemy laner far away from minions. It can also be used to catch up to people: If an enemy is running away down a lane into their own minions activate Hiten Style then Bladesurge to a caster minion to reset the Q, and then Bladesurge to the enemy champion.

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Team Fights


In the mid game, your main objective in team fights is to assassinate squishy targets, such as their mid laner or ADC, by using the full combo explained in the last chapter. The enemy's teammates will be unable to peel hard enough for your target because your damage is so high at this point, but don't be overconfident and dive too far into the back line ahead of your own team.

Late Game

In late game, your main objective is to peel for your ADC by CC'ing and damaging the enemy that is diving on to the ADC. This honestly is not much of an impact for a top laner. Other top laners such as Maokai or Dr. Mundo are insanely tanky and zone the enemy's entire back line. Irelia does not have the innate tankiness that those champions do so she is unable to dive the enemy back line without being immediately bursted. Other top laners such as Ryze have incredible late game scaling and deal tons of damage to the enemy. Irelia has horrible scaling so she cannot deal well sustained damage throughout fights or burst anyone down. Due to these reasons, Irelia cannot do much but protect the ADC late game. Your goal should be to close out the game before you reach this point which can be done with enough practice.

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I hope this guide helps you get better at Irelia. If you have any suggestions on how to improve this guide or making guides in general, please leave a comment. Also, if you enjoyed this guide, check out my guides for LeBlanc Mid, Zed Mid, or Azir Mid!