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Riven Build Guide by Rakelius

Not Updated For Current Season

This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Rakelius

Riven, Hard-to-kill-DPS

Rakelius Last updated on September 16, 2011
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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: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 9

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

Utility: 0

Guide Top


Hello and welcome to my first guide, hopefully making the experience of playing "Riven, the Exile" more fun in the future.
This guide is based on a DPS build in the combination with survivability, to make a more interresting and effecient fight.

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Quintessence: :
The most important part of the rune build lies in the quintessence runes. I choose movement speed for a more secure and better use of my abilities, both early game as well as late game.
Riven is one of the few champions starting with 325 movement speed, this means that with a total of 3,5% bonus to movement speed at start she will have 336 movement from start. Buying some basic boots early, will allow me to keep up with pretty much all champions at start, meaning I can focus more on the other items at start, giving me a headstart when it comes to DPS.
Other important thing about the movement speed runes, is that throughout the whole game, you will notice that Riven has a hard time hitting some of her abilties (Ki burst) since the range of these abilities is lower. Extra movement has really proven to help getting in close quickly, and making the kill.

Marks: Greater Mark of Desolation
I choose armor penetration here for one simple reason, to boost up the damage on each hit/ability. There is not much to add, since most other runes would be less effective in the end.

Here armor is a good choice, which helps early game survival and makes you able to harass much easier. The reason for not choosing dodge runes, is that every hit is reduced by armor, and only very few hits a dodged which makes dodge runes a risky business.

As with the Seals, magic resist is choosen simply because of early game survival and making harassment easier. Compared to other choices such as cooldown reduction, it seems much more efficient as a mellee dps/offtank to have some survivability instead of being able to cast your abilities more often.

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So what is the idea of the early game build?
Well it´s simple. We want to be able to do some damage, while in the same time be able to be the first one charging in. So with the first items we make sure that we get some damage, armor, magic resistance and enough movement speed to keep up, and all this at a cheap price so we got a quick start.
and with give the resuslts we are looking for, also givin you a free ward so you are better able to avoid ganks. The great thing about these items, is that they are all so cheap, you get a fantastic start and you allready have an "allround" build.

We don´t go straight away for the since we have 386 movement speed alone from the runes and . This gives us the time to get the before mentioned items before upgrading boots.

Mid game:
With a build making you hard to kill allready, we want to boost the damage more. We start out with givin some good damage, more survivabiblity and in the same time givin us better potential for killing enemies with slow.

We don't just go for extra attack damage, but also armor penetration making the damage even more effective. Gives us both, but also other very useful stats.

Late game:
Having a great portion of damage, we want to give our survivability a big boost. We add not only to make us tougher, but also so we can replace one of the early game items without bringing down the magic resist or armor we've allready gained.

When is aquired, the next move is to get either , or upgrading your to . The choice is really up to the individual and it depends a bit on the situation.

If you choose , you will gain lifesteal, and you can therefore easily sell . You will loose a ward and some armor, but as mentioned before, the armor is still kept through .

If you choose to get , you will loose the "active" which gives a 300 magic dmg absorb shield, and some magic resist, but which is then again gained through .

So in the end you don´t really loose anything by choosing one over the other. (By experience it is recommended to wait with upgrading to until the very end, unless you have some hard time surviving).

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Skill Sequence

The most wonderful thing about Riven, is ofcourse the difficulty of getting the correct combo out there. Most champions have some simple sequences and don't require much attention, but Riven has combinations that can be used depending on the situation.

When you are doing normal laning, you will be using your . The damage output itself is not very big from itself, but if you push "Q" one time, then attack, "Q" again and keep this rotation going, then you will down the minions very quickly. This is because of , which is a great burst of dmg. Other thing to remember is that using on minions might be tempting, but you if you make sure its not on cooldown, you will be able to fight back much easier if an ambush was to be made on you. You simply use , then and then to get a little extra distance and some protection.

When entering combat with an enemy, it's a good idea to start out with dashing into the enemy with , then attacking them once to get used. Using immidiatly after is recommended to get control of the situation, since it is limited how far away the enemy can get on such short time. With the enemy still close, use "Q", then attack and do this sequence all out.
Some things that ofcourse should be mentioned is the use of and .
is used mainly to escape but also at times to get the last hit if the enemy is escaping with low hp. With Riven it is however recommended that you try your best to save it for escape maneauvers.
kinda talks for itself, use it after the stun of wears off to keep control of the situation.

"Extra note"
With Riven, as many other champions, you can only make a "general" skill sequence. Champions like Riven have many combinations available against different targets, and therefore it is impossible to make one sequence which fits all situations, HOWEVER the sequence above works very well in all situations.