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Master Yi Build Guide by Omega Zero

Jungle Quick Guide to: Master Yi!

By Omega Zero | Updated on July 22, 2020

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Choose Champion Build:

  • LoL Champion: Master Yi
    Yi the Conqueror!
  • LoL Champion: Master Yi
    100% Crit Yi
  • LoL Champion: Master Yi
    Off-Tank Yi (You sick scum)
  • LoL Champion: Master Yi
    CASTER-BLASTER YI
  • LoL Champion: Master Yi
    D U N K M A S T E R Y I
  • LoL Champion: Rumble
  • LoL Champion: Rumble
  • LoL Champion: Rumble
  • LoL Champion: Rumble
  • LoL Champion: Rumble

Runes:

Precision
Conqueror
Triumph
Legend: Alacrity
Last Stand

Domination
Eyeball Collection
Ravenous Hunter
Bonus:

+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+6 Armor

Spells:

1 2 3
Ghost Boy
LoL Summoner Spell: Ghost

Ghost

LoL Summoner Spell: Smite

Smite

LeagueSpy Logo
Jungle Role
Ranked #5 in
Jungle Role
Win 53%
Get More Stats

Ability Order

Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
Extreme Major Even Minor Tiny
Show All
None Low Ok Strong Ideal
Extreme Threats
Ideal Synergies

Introduction to the Master D

Welcome to my quick guide to Master Yi, the Wuju Bladesman, in the Jungle! Here I will teach you Yi's builds, skill orders and even some essential tips to play better than most other Yis!


"Let us begin"

Master Yi is an AD Melee Champion who can be played as either a Fighter, a Right clicking Carry that can go either on-hit or crit, or a Caster, Master Yi's strength comes from the fact that you can build almost any route on Yi as long at it emphasizes on the AD of course, not going full AP Yi since that is long gone, including a 100% Crit Build on Master Yi, normal Carry build, Caster Build, Attack Speed On-Hit Yi, and so on.

His most popular build (and for good reason) is grabbing Rageblade then building two other on-hit items (including Bloodrazor), then buying some sustain from there such as Death's Dance, Randuin's Omen, etc. Due to Yi's nature, you have to get good at your macro and decision making, when to split, getting good ganks and so on. Yi isn't someone who can just braindead farm all game and expect to win the game as you still need to gank to be worth anything. No point in picking a hyper carry if you don't kill people right?
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Pros / Cons

PROS:
Super Fast and healthy clearing
Super Fast Pusher
Has two really strong steroids (Buffs) that allows him to be an extremely dangerous duelist
Has a good heal and bait tool
His kit naturally lets him be a carry (You still need items, don't you dare go 6 Tears on Yi)
Multiple Build Paths
Large damage output (Which is also true damage by the way)
Can single handedly carry the game if played right (At least in Bronze - mid Plat)
Can be very hard to escape him, and can be very hard to chase him too!
Screws over tanks with his Wuju Style AND Conqueror!
The hell are slows?
Has Offensive and Defensive Capabilities in his kit
Easy to Understand Kit
Awarding to use once you get deep into his kit and learn the advanced usages of Alpha Strike and meditate
Teaches you more on rotations, timing and decision making due to his kit being easy, and this can help you improve on other Champs!
Can outright avoid nukes or reduce the damage taken with his Alpha/Meditate respectively
The Master Baiter with his kit allowing him to run away faster than how long I last in bed
Alpha Male : ^)
7 eyes, more vision the better. : ^)
The OG Dunkmaster : ^)
Sword Boots : ^)

Cons:
Can be EXTREMELY Squishy
Isn't exactly tanky (Unless built tanky, but even then he's a horrible tank with no CC and with all the ******** Max HP% Damage we have in this game)
Your Meditate is CHANNELED, aka YOU DON'T DO ANYTHING BUT STAND THERE (but really you use this more for AA resets actually, so this isn't too heavy of a con!)
I asked what are slows, that doesn't mean you aren't immune to stuns and silences and snares and roots and knockups and other horrifying ****
If they build Thornmail (or have a Rammus) you're going to severely injure yourself if you don't prepare yourself, so have protection!
I'm easy to play, not exactly easy to 'Master'
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WHY SHOULD YOU PLAY YI?

Well tell me, why did you click on this guide? If you like: Being fast as ***, Penta-kills, Resets, AFK Farming (Just kidding please don't do this learn how to also do ganking) into god-mode, Angel Arena, CAN'T BE SLOWED, True Damage, Healing and fancy asian swordsmen with trench coat that has a popped collar, then My Blade is Yours.

In all seriousness though, Yi is a beginner-friendly Champion, his kit is easy, he's one of the original League Champions, so he has no advanced BS to get you confused. He can do AMAZINGLY well at carrying and damage outputs, ESPECIALLY towards Champions. And he's probably one of the best steroid-based champions in the game. He sacrifices defensive buffs and CC for Offense and mobility, and 3 out of 4 abilities can be used defensively on reflex and can award people who spend time and dedication to mastering this unique Champion. Hidden mechanics are hidden within this beautiful man, I mean just look at his eyes, seven GORGEOUS eyes to look at no?

(And don't even get me started when he decides to take-off his goggles, gotta make'em Ladies and Men and Tarics moist yo!)
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WHEN SHOULD YOU PLAY YI?

I already said that I dislike Off-Tank Yi (Assuming you read my Author's Notes), and I'll actually get into more detail here. Won't give huge af explanations since this is supposed to be a quick guide:
Okay basically as a tank Yi is ****, sorry. He has zero CC, no innate durability (unless channeling where if people are smart they'll either focus your other teammates that aren't tanks OR they won't even notice you if you decide to go PURE tank)
Yi's Kit has a HUGE Emphasis on murdering people under Highlander's influence. Off-Tank Yi kinda reduces your damage output, especially post-nerfs. Again no CC.

So you should play Yi as a Glass Cannon imo, and when should you pick Yi? When:
You have a tank, good initiation team, your comp is a flank/split pusher comp (you're the split pusher mind you), or if you're in One For All/All the Eggs in one Yi. Basically if you have no tanks, especially if you have no initiators, I highly recommend picking someone else that can Initiate/Tank. Yi's good for: Splitpushing, Flanking, Team-Fighting if you got a good way to force a clash in your favor.

Basically, what I'm saying is; When you need damage, like LOTS of it, alright?
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Rundown on Runes to Run It Down

ITEMS:
Jungling: You want to be building on-hit, or Crit, depends on your playstyle and if you want to win or have fun really, just make sure you grab Rageblade and stuff (FINISH YOUR JUNGLE ITEM FIRST THOUGH). You want your stats to do EVERYTHING to buff your damage-output, especially with Conqueror + Rageblade just being absurd (then add Wuju Style on-top of that and really I'm pretty sure no one can out-damage Yi or at least outshred tanks).

Master-Yis and Runes eventually decided to confess their love for each other and did naughty things and had their baby; Keystone Masteries + Runes = Keystone RUNES!

So basically you want to keep grabbing damage or something, I'll explain what you want in the Secondary tree later!
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Serious Thoughts Though.

ACTUAL Topics on Items
"The focused mind can pierce through stone."
Thing is this on Yi, a lot of items could be built on him and it would fit him, Wit's End isn't a bad choice at all against Magic Damage teams that DON'T burst you down instantly but does a good chunk, while keeping attack speed. Another item is Rageblade followed by On-Hit effect items, Hell I even went Tank Yi once (Cinderhulk, Boots, Warmog's Armor and Black Cleaver were the core items, I added Death's Dance and a Titanic Hydra) Since I was dying way too fast but we still had a pretty good amount of damage outside of me (ALBEIT this was a 3 man game in a voice chat).

Nowadays in Season 8? Just... Build Rageblade and Bloodrazor with Conq and you make things disappear. Anyway, now let's onto the Runes and Masteries (their lovechild specifically), shall we?
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Details Runes And Master-Yis. (This pun doesn't work anymore)

I despise myself for that pun.
I also despise how that pun is now completely null and void.

"Speed is the essence of all things"
For On-Hit (and in general really) you grab Precision Tree as your primary, with your runes being any of the four (most OP imo being Conq bc 'lmao free AD and sustain fam' because what are tanks even), PtA helps you deal more damage early on (and helps with ganks) but it pales in raw-damage output compared to Conqueror, which makes you deal so much damage the moment you swap out of it you may try to 1v1 a Garen thinking you can then you realize Conq did THAT MUCH DAMAGE for you. Lethal Tempo is fun and can make you smack things quickly and could work as an actual substitute for Conqueror. Footwork is neat for sustaining and mobility, but honestly really no reason to grab this anymore, especially without celerity unless you feel that confident in roaming and have other damage sources on your team. You could opt for a Hail of Blades build, but maybe do that after you've learned Yi and Jungle in-depth.

For your secondary, I'll just give you a quick listdown:
DOMINATION: You want to unleash hell upon those who dare to oppose the OG Dunkmaster, here I normally grab any from the second row, then Relentless Hunter OR Ravenous Hunter, the latter also works on your Conq/Wuju style by the way!
SORCERY: You wish to show the might of magic towards the naive fools, and by magic I mean SPEED MAGIC! As a jungler go grab Celerity and Waterwalking/Nimbus Cloak, alternatively you could go with Gathering Storm if you want to better scale into late game and maybe even Transcendence if you want the extra CDR! It DOES help after all!
RESOLVE: You will never falter to any attack, and you will push onwards and be willing to be more safe and take on more attacks for your allies (or you just want to be more durable just enough to live with 30 HP instead of 20 HP I guess), Chrysalis (RIP) and either Bone Plating or Revitalize are the runes I would grab if I were to run this page!
INSPIRATION: Your mind and creativity surpass those beyond a mere Champion, and you realize the potential use of utility rather than mere attributes such as strength, speed and might. Perhaps you can bargain with Dorma- I mean the merchant to acquire your items earlier, or use magic to make your own improved shoes! Or peer into the cosmos and acquire Cosmic Insight in order to fully utilize your potential! BASICALLY WHAT I'M SAYING IS MAGICAL FOOTWEAR SAVES GOLD AND IMPROVES SPEED AND IS MY PREFERENCE ALONGSIDE COSMIC INSIGHT OR FUTURE'S MARKET.

Now let us go into Skill Sequences!
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Skill Sequence and tips

"One Strike, Many Foes"

I used to say "HURR MAX Q ONLY" because at the time it was the rule! However recent changes opened up a new path - 3 Points Q then Max E. It was good for jungle, because not only were you improving your main source of damages, it scales with ConQ and Rageblade, so really the only downside was (possibly) slightly slower clear but Alpha Mana Cost changes made it possible to max Q also AND expend less mana! You can either do Max Q or 3 points Q, up to you really!

TIP: Your Alpha Strike can do a few nifty tricks, it can chase opponents, even after they flash when you reappear, you disappear from the map, dodging/canceling skillshots and AoE abilities if timed right. Your Alpha can be used to jump over walls if you have vision of a target on the opposite side. But you *can* still get killed in Alpha sometimes.

TIP: Your Meditate is an AA reset when you AA, Meditate then IMMEDIATELY AA reset, this is another mechanic where it shows that Yi is much more than just "Press Q to kill, press W to heal lul" that most people think. He's honestly quite flexible and can be quite fun to use once you discover and test his limits to be honest! Also, there's a bug where if you time your Meditate and cancel it right away, Meditate's full damage reduction will apply to turrets, because why not I guess.

*You have been slain* BUT I WAS IN ALPHA!
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Summoner Spells!

"A true master is an eternal student."

GHOST: A possible alternative to the summoner spell Flash. This is better suited for Sorcery Tree as secondary and allows you to chase over long distances. The only issue is you will have to wait a bit before your speed ramps up dramatically, and you cannot go over walls without the use of Alpha, and you will lose the perks of taking Flash!

FLASH: The go-to spell for pretty much every single Champion in the game, the utility of this thing is just insane! You can go over walls, dodge skill shots, and so on! The issue with this spell is that it does not work with Celerity, and it suffers from a five minute cooldown! so be cautious!

SMITE: Self explanatory. Deals instant true damage that is fixed to monsters and minions. If you're a jungler, always take this, no reason not to unless you're trolling.

TELEPORT: I mean, if you're a lane Yi then you can grab this, it gives you good respo power and allows you to stay in lane healthier or do sneaky pushes! If you're jungling I personally don't find this worth it enough to replace the first two summoner spells, especially in a Solo Q environment (unless you're doing some mighty cheese strats) since Teleport early on has a cooldown greater than SINISTER SIX MINUTES.

IGNITE: If you're feeling VERY aggressive then take this with you. You can cheese people early on with this, especially in lane where people aren't used to finding you.

BARRIER: Uh, not my type, and you're not a Marksman so... I guess if you want the defense just to be sure, although you're Yi so you don't need to worry about that too much. Not worth taking imo.
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Summary and a Few Extra things to point out! (And a log too bc y not)

First, you trade a lot of mechanical abilities in exchange of learning the importance of timing and positioning, you're squishy as hell and your saving grace is the fact you do an INSANE amount of damage AND almost all your abilities (Thanks Wuju Style) have offensive and defensive capabilities, your Q can dodge abilities and nuke multiple targets, Meditate reduces damage AND acts as an AA reset, Highlander allows you to chase and run away easily, and Double Strike can hopefully get your Q up in time for a dodge.

Also, the state of Yi at the moment is kind of sad in a way, if you don't have Conq AND/OR Rageblade, you lose so much damage it's honestly surprising. After not updating this guide for nearly 2 (and just recently, another 2) years, I'm glad I'm back now that I understand Yi, Jungle and League in general a lot better. Alongside having some confidence, the lack of these things are why I abandoned this guide a long time ago. However as I mentioned, there's STILL an Extra "Kayn" Chapter here because, well, why not I guess? Makes this guide more unique and niche too! So thank you for reading this guide, and enjoy this oddly-out-of-place chapter for Kayn vs Master Yi! (Read: Please check my Kayn guide uwu)
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Fighting Kayn!

Totally not going to shamelessly promote a Kayn guide I've made a long time ago but never updated this section to reflect that accurately for years until now because I'm a responsible person.



"Will you prove worthy?"
"Probably not."
"You wish to learn the hard way, I see..."

See, I'll be honest, I'm not good at keeping things short (I'm sure you all have noticed at this point) especially when it comes to things I heavily like. And Kayn is one of those things, so enjoy!

Fighting against Kayn and Rhaast
"They are worthy?"
"To die? Yes!"

Kayn early on is a jungler who has a ridiculous clear speed, clear efficiency, ganking routes and so on. Due to this he makes a strong jungler, and can even put up a decent fight early on thanks to his perceived weak early game duel power, but Shadow Step can catch you off-guard! Kayn will naturally be aiming to gank a lot, so either take his jungle or set-up a counter gank, or take objectives (Rift Scuttlers are included in this list) if possible! Do your best to shut him down as Kayn is HORRIBLE when he's behind!

AGAINST DARKIN RHAAST: "Killing is so... liberating!"

Rhaast is the Darkin Scythe that Kayn wields, eventually Rhaast will take over and turn Kayn into a high-sustain fighter. His kit will shred max HP, and will certainly disrupt you. Normally Rhaast builds as a fighter, however should he decide to go build more AD it may prove to be challenging or even lethal for you to attempt to take him on without the conditions being in your favor. Dodge/Alpha his W if possible, as this could set the fight to his favor and it WILL if he's got a good amount of AD. His Q and ult deal max HP% (of course it does) and he heals off his spell damage, ADDITIONALLY you need to shred him quickly before he ults or without burning your abilities, because if he fights you and you're low and he ults you, you will MORE THAN LIKELY lose the fight, so be extra careful around him! (That said if he's forced to ulti you early on then that fight is probably over for him especially if you saved Meditate.)


AGAINST SHADOW ASSASSIN: "Death is inevitable."

Kayn is the host of the Darkin Scythe Rhaast, and he will vanquish Rhaast and take full control of the weapon, unleashing his true potential as the Shadow Assassin! Kayn is an Assassin with RIDICULOUS burst potential and high mobility, practically moving faster than you especially through his enhanced Shadow Step! Kayn will almost ALWAYS build Lethality, although he may get a Cleaver (if he's a lunatic) or some Defensive AD items, you won't be seeing him copy a Rhaast build as that's extremely inefficient on SA. Dealing with the Assassin requires you to keep your eyes peeled and cautious, as a surprise ambush from the Shadow Assassin may lead in a quick death for you, especially since Dark Harvest is becoming popular on Kayn. If you can survive his initial burst through meditate, you can turn the tide against him. Although be warned that once he ults, he will have his passive refreshed and could potentially redo his combo and could kill you, so save your meditate!


And that's about that. While the fight directly tends to lead towards Yi especially once Yi has acquired items, don't forget there are four other people in the game that both you and Kayn can feast (and get feasted) on in order to win the game. If you fancy learning Kayn (who is honestly a really fun champ and is the only other person I'd say I main to the same extent as Yi), then check this Kayn guide that I just updated if you got time and learned/enjoyed this Yi guide!

https://www.mobafire.com/league-of-legends/build/kayn-you-click-this-guide-536486
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