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[S4] The Forgotten Raven: Official AP Offtank Guide-
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Summing up why you buy these items.
Rod of Ages
The Rod of Ages is very important early game, for lane dominance. It's passive will keep your health and mana up, so you can stay in the lane longer. Late game the stacks on this item will help you survive.
Athene's Unholy Grail
Athene's Unholy Grail will help you score some kills with your ultimate ability (Ravenous flock), while increasing your mana regeneration to use it more frequently.
Swain is usually up close to the enemy to achieve a kill, using a spirit visage will increase the chance of you surviving.
Rabadon's deathcap is an amazing item to have, because of it's 30% increased overall ability power, you will be able to deal enough damage to kill the enemy and come out alive.
Activating this item will make you invulnerable to incoming attacks, making your ultimate ability (Ravenous flock), extremely useful.