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Caitlyn Build Guide by poinears
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An Introduction to Caitlyn
Passive: Headshot provides extra damage after a certain number of shots, dealing 150% of Caitlyn's normal damage to enemy champions and 250% to minions and monsters.
First Spell: Caitlyn's Piltover Peacemaker is an aimed shot that deals damage to every minion, monster, and enemy champion in its path. The amount of damage taken decreases based on how many other targets it has hit before making contact with the intended target. To deal maximum damage to the intended target, a clear shot is necessary.
Second Spell: The Yordle Snap Trap is a placed trap that is sprung when an enemy champion steps onto it. The trap deals damage over time, snares the target for a short perod, and grants Caitlyn visibility of the unit. Each trap lasts 3 minutes if not sprung, and only 3 can be placed at any given time.
Third Spell: This spell is usually used as a defensive weapon, allowing Caitlyn to escape from ganks and slow her pursuers. the 90 Caliber Net is an aimed shot that throws Caitlyn the opposite direction of the shot, as well as slowing the first enemy or neutral champion or minion it encounters.
Ultimate: Ace in the Hole is my favorite from all of Caitlyn's spells because it allows the player to assassinate any visible enemy champion in range with low health. For this spell, Caitlyn lines up a shot, dealing massive amounts of damage to the first enemy champion the bullet encounters. Other enemy champions can intercept the bullet to save their teammate.
The masteries are completely up to personal choices. I would recommend these masteries because Caitlyn is based completely off of damage. These masteries increase the damage output, attack speed, armor penetration, and grant a very small amount of lifesteal. The defensive masteries can get you back on lane faster and support the summoner spells.
These runes on the first build are all attack speed, which boosts Caitlyn's attack speed to almost one attack per second to start. If you choose to take different runes, such as I exemplified in the second build, I would recommend moving the Zeal to just after the Berserker's Greaves in order to grant the extra attack speed. As for the second build, these are just runes that I would probably take.
I have chosen these summoner spells for several reasons. Usually, I take Heal and Clarity with DPS carries, particularly with Ashe and Vayne, but the Vampiric Scepter grants Caitlyn enought lane sustainability to avoid taking Heal. I no longer take Claritywith Caitlyn, but be very careful with your mana, as Caitlyn can be very mana hungry, especially when using her Yordle Snap Trap and Piltover Peacemaker often. I have since changed from Teleport to Exhaust, which is much better for an AD carry, especially one that has an escape built in. If you choose to change these, just make sure to take the mastery points that support them.
Take this skill at levels 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9. It makes for incredible early game harass and can keep enemies off of the minions. Also, I have encountered people stupid enough to recall by their turret during the laning phase. You can't do that against Caitlyn as her Piltover Peacemaker can leave you dead instead of back on your summoner platform.
Take this skill at levels 2, 8, 10, 12, and 13. The early game trap can deal quite a bit of damage, but is better used to do two things. In outside lanes, the use of the traps can cut off the grass from the opposing side and can guard against ganks when put in that patch of grass towards mid. In general, just use it to restrict you enemies' movement in the lane. In middle lane, use it to guard against ganks by putting the traps in the grass on either side of the lane. I have been saved from ganks several times over by these traps being set off and giving me visibility of the enemy champion set to gank.
Take this skill at levels 4, 14, 15, 17, and 18. The early net is used as an escape mechanism throughout the entire game. It can be used to slow an escaping enemy, but I don't put much stock in it. To be completely honest, this spell is next to pointless beyond the first level. Use it to escape ganks and lost teamfights. NOTE Caitlyn's 90 Caliber Net can be used to push her over walls.
Take this skill when possible, at levels 6, 11, and 16. The idea behind this skill is great, but actually implementing it takes practice and quite a bit of luck. This shot takes about 2 seconds to shoot and deals massive damage to the first enemy champion it encounters. If all else fails, it will hit your intended target, usually killing them. This works great at level 6 when used in a combo with your Piltover Peacemaker on a low health target. The peacemaker will get them down to a low enough health that your ult will kill them.
+ Armor shred
+ Good early game harass
+ Massive amounts of damage
+ Fed Caitlyn=win
+ Ace in the Hole
+ Escape mechanism
- Squishy early game
- Incredibly expensive build
- Singled out as the DPS carry
- Early game farm dependent
- Not farmed=big problem
- Ace in the Hole can be blocked
Farm up. You need everything you can get. Last hit EVERYTHING and keep their carry off the minions if possible. It is OK if you don't get every last hit, but make sure you get most of them. Sacrificing one last hit to throw a harass shot with your Piltover Peacemaker is OK. At this point, all you are trying to do is to get fed and keep them from getting fed.
This can be debated several ways. In general you have three options to keep sustaining your farm:
1) Set up and participate in ganks - this can be somewhat difficult, as you have no CC
2) Join in ganks and teamfights outside of your lane - use Teleport to get there
3) Stay in lane and farm - my preferred option, as I am guaranteed farm and an easy escape
No matter what you do, make sure not to feed their carry at all.
Gank and teamfight your a** off. You have damage and attack speed. You have armor penetration. You are the reason your team will win. You should be 2nd in and stay in for the entire fight, if you can survive. If things collapse, get out, as your team needs you alive. Take kills, use your skills, and don't be afraid to (don't make it blatant) KS.
Since Caitlyn is mainly a DPS carry, offensive masteries are the best option. The extra attack speed and damage are helpful, particularly in the early game, when you do not have much health or damage output. There are other spells in the utility column because there is no other true place to put them. The improved recall is not necessary at all, nor is the difference in death time. These are just to waste extra points. However, the rest of the points are used in improving my summoner spells.
I particularly chose Exhaust and Ignite because my particular style of play tends to be very aggressive early on. This combination can usually secure a kill when done right.
Other recommended spells are:
Flash - Good both offensively and defensively
Heal - Not really necessary, but nice
Cleanse - For that pesky tank crowd control
Surge - Great for extra DPS
Ghost - Offensive use: yes, defensive use:NO
Bad spells are:
Rally - Really?
Clairvoyance - You have teammates for a reason
Fortify - NO
Promote - What are you thinking?
Revive - How crazy can you get?
Brand: Don't try it. Once he hits level 6, his burst damage will ROCK your s***
Ashe: Great matchup for you. You have a longer range and more early game burst damage.
Ezreal: I can see this falling either way. It depends on playing styles and skill levels.
Tristana: Same as above. I can see this going either way.
Malzahar: WIN! He has no damage output if you can keep him controlled early.
Poppy: This is an unusual mid, but don't try it. She does too much damage.
Teemo: This could go either way. Usually it will go badly for you with his blinding shot.
Ryze: Keep him controlled early and you win. Lose it early and it's over for you.
Annie: Same as above. Keep her controlled.
Cassiopeia: This is an easy win for you. Her spells are mostly AoE spells.
Corki: I haven't seen a Corki-Caitlyn matchup mid, so I can't exactly judge this.
Kennen: You will probably lose this, but you can give it a shot.
LeBlanc: A good one will kick your a** with their burst damage. A bad one will feed you.
Miss Fortune: I haven't seen this, but I'm pretty certain that you would win.
Lux: You win. No contest.
Morgana: So long as you have a Vampiric Scepter you can outlast her mana.
Nidalee: Her spear is her only real damage output. Just don't waste your mana.
Swain: I can't seem to beat him mid. It might just be my inexperience, but I'm not sure.
Sivir: With the patch, watch out for her extended blade, but if you dodge that you win.
Urgot: Watch for those little poison canisters. A bad one, you win. A good one, you lose.
Vayne: Same as above. It all depends on playing style.
Xerath: No zoning control. You win.
Vladimir: You will win this, but it will be hard fought. Don't let him get fed.
Twitch: Twitch mid? On lane, you lose instantly. In mid, barricade yourself back.
Twisted Fate: I have not yet seen post-patch TF. However, I think you would win.