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Riven Build Guide by metalblaster

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League of Legends Build Guide Author metalblaster

Riven -- Broken Sword of Doom!

metalblaster Last updated on September 15, 2011
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Team 1

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Top Lane
Ranked #18 in
Top Lane
Win 51%
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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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 22

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 6

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 2

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9/16 -- Fixed the skill issues so they are now real and added a new build.

Note: Off-tank build Coming soon as well as a more in-depth explanation behind all of the decisions made in this guide and a great big look at team fights as riven.

I also will be adding the different Phases of the game as I get more experienced.

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Introduction - Why this build and what is riven?

First, This is my first build on Mobofire, please don't just down vote it because of that.

I felt compelled to make this build because honestly, people seem to not be playing Riven in an Optimal way. After playing her for a good while, as well as testing various items on her, I feel as though I have a good idea of how she works and what works best on her.

Riven is a Champion that is a combination of Vayne (damage potential), Lee Sin (multi-cast abilities and mobility) as well as Talon in her ultimate. Some people will probably drawl parallels to other melee champions, however, I think this combination most accurately describes her. Anyhow, I hope you enjoy this guide as well as the various builds I will include. I will be updating this guide as much as i can to new techniques and item builds so keep looking.

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Pros / Cons

High DPS
Aoe Skills
Carry Potential
Consistent damage
Great in team fights
Great skill synergy

Squishy (early game)
High Priority target (when you get fed)
High CDs
Susceptible to CC
Not much MR included in build.

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The runes I chose are standard tanky dps runes. I find that in the early game, esspecially since you are rushing a B. F. Sword you will be squashy and an easy target, the rune set above helps you survive the early game with out any kind of sustain item for life steal or health regen.

Note: Obviously, you can tweak these runes as you see fit and to fit your play style.

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Masteries - Defense?

Again, I take mostly offensive masteries but I also choose from the defensive tree. Sorcery gives you a great starting CDR that you will so desperately need in the beginning of the game. I chose not to max out on Evasion in favor of getting a couple points in Good Hands but it might be beneficial to experiment with a maxed Evasion . Again, use your own judgement. If you are an aggressive player, id recommend maxing out Evasion and leaving the utility tree alone. One could certainly make the case for taking points out of the offensive tree in favor of a more defensive build if you decide to go with less tanky runes.

I will get to the Must have masteries later when I have more experience.

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Skill Sequence

I don't think its appropriate to talk about each skill individually because they have a certain synergy to them that will be explained later.

I take Broken Wings first because this gives you your largest damage dealer as well as a great mobility tool. In keeping with mobility you want to take one point in Valor next because not only does it give you a shield to help you have a higher sustain, it allows you to move quickly to dodge and absorb skill shot abilities better. Next you want to take another point in Broken Wings then grab Ki Burst to increase your sustainability as well as your damage output. Obviously at lvl 6, take your ulti Blade of the Exile. I like to max out Broken Wings as quickly as possibly while taking points in Valor. Lastly, I finish maxing out Ki Burst. This order allows for high mobility as well as good escape and burst damage.

The 2nd Build Included is basically a glass cannon ultra-expensive build. the skill sequence isn't designed to max out any one of the skills as early as possible because I find that Riven's skills work really well together as well as scale upward with your AD. You'd only want to go this route in 2 situations. Your team is made up of mostly beefy champions or you are extremely fed from the get go. Either way, your damage at the end will be monstrous at the trade off of your sustainability.

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Skill Usage and Tips

A lot of people spam Broken Wings when they enter a battle. This is not the optimal way to use this skill because in-between each strike one can combo an Auto attack to increase the damage output or a quick Ki Burst to stop the target from getting away as well. Remember, Your Passive Runic Blade Procs as you land abilities making the extra auto attacks particularly deadly. You will never crit with a ability, however, you will with an auto-attack, so mixing the auto-attacks in with Broken Wings can provide a deadly combo.

An example of how one would use Broken Wings to its ultimate effectiveness is to initiate with it, then auto attack, then use [BROKEN WINGS]] again, then Ki Burst, then finish with Broken Wings, this allows you to give chase with Valor or a Flash while keeping your passive, Runic Blade at a max. Keep in mind you can get about 2 auto-attacks off in-between each successive [BROKEN WINGS] strike.

Note: One issue with your skills is that you can easily over extend if you are not careful or unintentionally tower dive and die quickly. Make sure you keep your mouse moving as the situations change.

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I like to start my build off with Boots of Speed and 3 Health Potions, however, you can choose to start with a Dorian's Blade instead. I like the mobility of the boots early on because it allows you to move quicker and avoid any harass as well as give chase to squishy low health champions in the early levels of the game.

Now my reasoning for rushing a B. F. Sword is quite simple, it provides a large amount of damage early on allowing you to get kills and first blood if they are playing really conservative. IF they are playing really aggressive and targeting you specifically I would take the Vampiric Scepter before getting the B. F. Sword as it will allow you to stay in the lane longer.

Lets talk shoes. I choose the Ionian Boots of Lucidity for the CDR they give, however, based on the situation you are in, Mercury's Treads, Boots of Mobility, Boots of Swiftness and even Ninja Tabi are all viable and worth exploring.

Depending on what kind of team you are facing you can choose to circumvent the Madred's Bloodrazor in exchange for a Zeal and eventually a Phantom Dancer, the reason I prefer the Bloodrazor is due to the bonus armor you gain as well as the extra damage to high health champions. The added attack speed is a must because your auto attacks do most of the damage mid game and will allow you to add more auto attacks between each Broken Wings strike. Another Item you might want to consider building is a Trinity Force. The proc from the built in Sheen as well as the slow you gain from using it are worth checking out.

One of the reasons I choose to go with a Frozen Mallet instead a Trinity Force is because of the health boost and the synergy that it will have with your Atma's Impaler. The Impaler also will give you more armor and crit chance increasing your overall sustainability and damage from the Infinity Edge.

The Last item we will talk about is Zeke's Harbinger. I choose this item for my Life steal because it gives not only that but HP regen, Attack speed and decreases the armor of surrounding enemy champions. It also has the aura effect which is beneficial to your entire team. Obviously this can be swapped out for something like The Bloodthirster for damage.

Other items to consider are Warmog's Armor for added damage from your Atma's Impaler, as well as Spirit Visage for the MR and the CDR as well as the passive, Tiamat for its damage, AOE and health regen and Youmuu's Ghostblade for armor penn, CDR, crit and active effects.

My 2nd Item build as state above is a "Glass Cannon" build. I said it is expensive and in some ways it is, however, it is possible to get a lot out of it with out completing the build fully. For example, Rather than finishing your Phantom Dancer, Frozen Mallet and Youmuu's Ghostblade you can elect to either go for a Trinity Force which is absolutely Epic on Riven Due to its passive from the Sheen or just get The Brutalizer, Phage and Zeal. Also as crazy as it looks, the Hextech Gunblade is one of the highest AD items in the game and yes, while the AP is a waste on Riven, the benefits far out weight the negatives. The reason for the Wriggles Lantern is for early life steal and to allow you to take dragon and blue buff early. Due to the lack of CDR on this build, the Blue buff is a great way to make up for that. The dragon also helps with the expensive nature of this build.

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Summoner Spells

Best choices:

Flash is a great spell but can be interchanged with Ghost if you want more mobility.

Exhaust is great on any melee character for escape and the added damage bonus.

Ignite is good for finishing off champions who have low health and barely escape.

viable but not great:

Heal to add to your sustainability in the laning phase.

Smite Use this if you choose to jungle.

Teleport so you can always be in the right places.

Worthless for Riven:

Basically all the other summoner spells are not worth getting on a champion such as this. Cleanse might be worth it if there is a lot of CC, however due to your mobility, this shouldn't be an issue at all.

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This build I have made may not be the best of them all in terms of pure DPS, but if you get most of the items you should have a higher chance to do your damage and it should be fairly consistent. I was able to cap my crit damage at around 1k with a full set of these items which makes riven a fairly deadly champion.

This build was designed to give you a damage and a tanky side so you can take on some of the toughest champions and still come out of the fight alive. I hope you enjoy this build.