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League of Legends Build Guide Author GeneralGuides

(S4 Updated) Teemo Top Lane

GeneralGuides Last updated on February 11, 2014
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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.



Offense: 21

Legendary Guardian

Defense: 9


Utility: 0

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This is my Teemo guide for top lane domination. The guide introduces you to his kit, useful items, runes and masteries. I'll also be explaining some counter-mechanics to common and somewhat less common top laners. Follow this guide for a great new experience with this amazing yordle, and discover new ways to utilize this champion to your gameplay preferations.

While you're about to read the guide, can I recommend you some awesome music? If you're up for it, check out AMV - This Is What Makes Us Girls.

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Pros / Cons

+ Strong laning phase
+ Map awarness with Noxious Trap
+ Awarness allows him to push safely
+ Can be built glass cannon or tanky
+ High movement speed with Move Quick
+ Great at kiting
+ Can protect himself from AA's with Blinding Dart

+ Lacks efficiency in teamfights
+ Short range
+ Relies on attack speed
+ Has to snowball or he will fall off late game
+ Has no hard CC
+ Too many people hate him for no reason :C

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greater mark of hybrid penetration
Hybrid penetration is the dream for Teemo. He is AA based and procs magic damage with Toxic Shot. These are only useful for the early game however because we will not be building any armor penetration on items.

This is like a free Doran's Ring when it comes to damage, and they allow you to deal more damage in early levels, especially great when you start with Doran's Blade.

These are mandatory, they will help you sustain AA damage from common top lane champions whom are mostly AD. Even thought you might be laning against an AP champion like Kennen, you will still need these even if just for the reduced damage from lane minions.

These are somewhat less mandatory, but useful because champions tend to have at least one magic damage ability, especially junglers. Can be replaced with attack speed or ap glyphs if their team is very AD heavy.

greater mark of hybrid penetration

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Mastery Explanations

Tier 1 - 4 points on Fury for attack speed, unlike for most APC's, Teemo benefits more from attack speed than cooldown reduction -> pick Fury instead of Sorcery

Tier 2 - Points taken on this tier are basic and have to be taken to climb up the tree.

Tier 3 - 1 point on Spell Weaving . Note that Toxic Shot doesn't get any bonus damage from this mastery. This does however drastically increase the damage on Noxious Trap and Blinding Dart.

Tier 4 - 1 point on Dangerous Game for extra sustain after killing an enemy champion. This is also great for teamfights, and can save your life in tricky 2v1 situations. Can also save your furry butt from Ignite.

Tier 5 - 1 point on Arcane Blade for extra AA damage.

Tier 6 - 2 points on Devastating Strikes to support your hybrid penetration marks.

Tier 1 - 2 points on Block to prevent AA damage. Most top laners are melee anyhow.

Tier 2 - 1 point on Unyielding to reduce damage from spells aswell as AA's. 3 points on Veteran Scars for flat health bonus.

Tier 3 - 1 point on Juggernaut for extra health.

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Maxing sequence

Toxic Shot
Since Toxic Shot is your main damage ability, has no cooldown, applies on every AA, and is also your main harassing ability. You should go ahead and max it first. This allows you to poke, zone and prevent farming way easier, and it will make your enemies fear you.
Blinding Dart
Arguably better maxed second over Move Quick because it allows you to deal damage. The blindness duration doesn't increase drastically, but it does help block one or two more AA's, which could potentially save your life. Also the AP scaling is pretty radical.
Noxious Trap
Of all abilities, you will max your trademark ultimate third at level 16.
Move Quick
Better max this last because the level 1 Move Quick still adds considerable amount of movement speed compared to the maxed version. Some people prefer to max this second, instead of Blinding Dart if they need more movement speed, I wouldn't recommend this however.

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Items + Build

Starting items

This is a typical Teemo start, suitable for mid lane aswell. This start allows you to deal and harass for more, but you will lack the crucial sustain. Pick up Sweeping Lens to clear out early enemy wards, this allows your jungler to gank you easier. You will also sustain your early mana pool with this build, allowing you to spam blinding dart aswell as AA's.

This offers you a different kind of an early lane, you can't poke with Toxic Shot as efficiently, but you can sustain your lane even from harder opponents. Both Dorans's still offer the some flat health bonus at early game. Pick up Sweeping Lens for the same reason as above. You can't sustain mana pool if you spam your abilities a lot, but since you have the bonus AD you'll be using AA's more anyhow.

Not one of my common starts because I usually go more offensive than tanky, but incase your facing someone with heavy AA damage like Jayce, the shield will benefit you more than the other Dorans's. You can still sustain yourself with the health regen from the shield but you wont be dealing as much damage in general.

Something you might wanna try incase you see it useful. This is the start you can use incase your up against a skillshotter or some squishy champion you literally just have to chase down, no matter your damage. You can sustain yourself with the numerous health potions but you will lack defenses and damage in general.

Incase you're in dire need to rush Seeker's Armguard, you want to start with the cloth armor. Just like Doran's Shield, this allows you to sustain damage from AA heavy champions, but will lead into building Zhonya's Hourglass for protection from bursters.

Core items

Arguably the best shoes for Teemo. You should always get this unless you're facing really AD or AP heavy teams and you have to build respectively.

Should you be facing a hard lane, where the opponent has mostly AD damage scaling, Seeker's Armguard is your best friend. Best against AD and bursters. Upgrade to Zhonya's Hourglass when you best see fit.

Your buddy against those pesky tanks with early magic resist or health is the one and only: Haunting Guise. Upgrade this to Liandry's Torment when you best see fit.

Usually my first item, take it for CDR and attack speed. Upgrade to Nashor's Tooth for a complete kit steroid.

The best steroid for any AP in general, the hat is your core item aswell. Pick it for its high damage and unique passive.

General full build


Optional items
Build one of these for the blank item slot

One of those items you can consider for extra health is Rylai's Crystal Scepter. Even thought Toxic Shot doesn't proc the passive slow, this item can prove itself worthy over time.

A great item to pierce enemy defenses, worth its cost even if the enemies aren't stacking magic resist.

You should get this later on it the game, since the passive spellblade scales better from more AP. Overall a great item thought.

Twin Shadows offer decent magic resistance and AP. Consider building this if you're facing an AP top laner.

Runaan's is a great item in general, and can increase Teemo's presence in teamfights. However it can be useful for farming in mid-late game if you had a bad early game, leading to a better output later on.

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Abilities + Tips & Tricks


camouflage Camouflage: After standing still and taking no action for 2 seconds, Teemo becomes invisible to all enemy units. After leaving stealth by either moving or taking action Teemo gains 40% attack speed for the following 2 seconds.

Tips and Tricks
  • Do not rely on your invisibility too much, you can still be hit by skillshots and target switching abilities. CC especially will reveal you, like Dark Wind.
  • In a good situation, you can wait for the enemy tanks to pass you and then attack their carries from behind when your team initiates.
  • You shouldn't stay invisible near an enemy if they know you're there. That's basically waiting for more enemies to come and kill you.


Blinding Dart: Teemo shoots out a dart with powerful venom dealing magic damage and blinding the target for a short duration making them unable to hit anything with AA's or enhanced AA's.

Tips and Tricks
  • Blinding Dart also blocks enhanced AA's and should therefore be used correspondingly. Example situation: You could block a couple of Caitlyn's autoattacks when dueling, but you can also wait to block her Headshot when she gets it.
  • If you're looking to poke someone down gradually, it's better to save ur mana and use a basic attack, since Blinding Dart does not apply Toxic Shot.


Move Quick: Teemo passively has a movement speed bonus until a champion or a turret hits him. On activation Teemo doubles this passive speed for a short duration.

Tips and Tricks
  • Don't be afraid to use the active, it might be too late when they have already caught you.


Toxic Shot: All of Teemo's basic attacks apply a strong poison to their targets, dealing magic damage on impact and overtime.
Tips and Tricks
  • Use the poison on your advantage and harass your opponents with your basic attacks when they get too close.
  • Sometimes when diving a low healthed enemy, it's effective to use AA first and then Blinding Dart. This is because the dart, as stated before, does not apply Toxic Shot and could leave the opponent alive. When you get to AA range use it to your advantage, Blinding Dart has longer range than your AA's which means you can use it after AA even if they have more movement speed than you.


Noxious Trap: Teemo plants a mushroom which grants vision of a small area around it. When an opponent steps on this mushroom it explodes dealing damage over time on a small radius. It also grants vision for a couple seconds after exploding.
Tips and Tricks
  • You can use these to clear large minion stacks at once.
  • Use Noxious Trap to ward key locations and enemy jungle routes.

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Early Game

Your early game goal is to win lane and possibly start the mid-game by downing an enemy tower first in your team.

  • Beat your opponent in Gold.
  • Beat your opponent in CS.
  • Don't die, and get kills if possible.

You have to be aware of the opponent on their top lane or at least jungler incase you're going to pick Teemo. Since he relies strictly on winning the lane you should be careful in early game.

  • Don't provoke the enemy jungler to gank you by overextending.
  • Don't let their tower hit you, this can happen easily by accident because Toxic Shot grants tower aggro.
  • Play carefully pre-6 because you don't have map awarness.

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Mid Game

Oh look, its Teemo's time to shine. After the first enemy tower has fallen you are free to start the mid game phase and pressure their jungle and mid lane areas aswell as taking care of your own lane. Objectives on mid game include:

  • Helping your teammates win their lanes.
  • Splitpushing.


This is one of the most efficient techniques for Teemo to win a game. There are times when this will work, but it will require all-round good communication with your team, and you will have to be prepared for lots of things in general. Splitpushing will only work if your team is equal to, or ahead of the enemy team without you, and they can therefore handle teamfights and defending without you. You will also need a lot of map awarness to successfully splitpush. This means that you should also buy those Stealth Wards in order to get better awarness of your opponents's whereabouts. Incase you're the kind of a player that doesn't pay attention to the minimap you're most likely going to get killed most of the times you're about to splitpush. Sometimes it's just better to stick with your team instead of trying to win the game by yourself.

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Late Game

While split pushing is great for Teemo, you should only do it in the mid game. When it comes to late game however, stick with your team. Helpful tips for late game are all general and apply to all champions:

  • Don't rely on your team winning without you (anymore).
  • Never split from your team to ward, you could get caught.
  • Try catch out out-of-position enemies, only with good vision.
  • Contest dragon or baron with teamfights.


Teamfights occur over certain objectives in the game. Whether it's just to push, or for drake or nashor, you should know your role in teamfights.
Few points should clarify your role during teamfights:
  • First of all, use Blinding Dart wisely, it could save a teammate or yourself.
  • You should peel targets for your carries.
  • You should use your capabilities in kiting to your advantage.

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Match-ups and countering

Pantheon - The Artisan of War
Melee, Tanky, Strong Early

Level: Moderate
Roaming potential: High
Things to watch out for: AA Block
Explanation: While laning versus Pantheon you want to start with Cloth Armor for defensive or Doran's Blade for sustain. His early game is strong so you have to watch out for your odds in trades. To counter him better, you want to build HP as his Spear Shot and basic attacks gain 100% crit chance when you hit 15% of your maximum health or less. You also want to build some armor because a lot of Pantheon player prefer building The Black Cleaver.

Lee Sin - The Blind Monk
Melee, Magic Damage, Weak Early, Mobile

Level: Hard
Roaming potential: Medium
Things to watch out for: Attack speed debuff
Explanation: This is one of the hardest lanes you will ever have. Lee Sin as a mobile champion can engage and disengage quite easily making it hard to kite or trade effectively. He also has Tempest to reduce your attack speed, and can also reveal you from your passive. While reduced attack speed already makes you quite weakened, he deals magic damage aswell which is extremely painful. You should focus on denying his farm and preparing for late game.

Garen - The Might of Demacia
Melee, Fast, Tanky

Level: Moderate
Roaming potential: Low
Things to watch out for: Blind timing
Explanation: First of all, this matchup is moderate because both of the champions have their edge in trades and teamfights. Garen is tanky and due to Perseverance he can sustain himself if you don't harass often enough. He can still deal lot's of damage with Judgment if you let him close enough. Your Blinding Dart only blocks his Q and AA's when it comes to defending yourself. Keep your distance and deny farm.

Darius - The Hand of Noxus
Melee, True Damage, Tanky

Level: Moderate
Roaming potential: Low
Things to watch out for: Apprehend
Explanation: Like in the Garen matchup, you must play this lane with care and respect towards your opponent. If you let your guard down for a splitsecond, the lane could end up in a disaster. Your AA range is roughly the same as Darius's Apprehend and if you're careless he might shred you into pieces after catching you. At level 1 Apprehend has 24 second cooldown, and he will most likely max it last. Kite him if he has missed it.

Nasus - The Curator of the Sands
Melee, Tanky, High Sustain

Level: Moderate
Roaming potential: Medium
Things to watch out for: Splitpushing
Explanation: Nasus is a super tricky opponent to fight against. This is because Nasus can adapt to multiple situations you can create on and off the lane. He can choose to build tanky and slowly stack his Q, as you can only use Blinding Dart so often. Or he can choose to splitpush while you're teamfighting. This can be extremely annoying as he is a fast tower pusher. Be sure to call out MIAs as Wither can have a great impact when he's ganking.

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Overall Teemo is an easy-to-learn champion for those who wish to try this unique yordle. However you have to be careful when picking him because of the common hate on this champion especially in Bronze - Gold elos. Nobody really considers Teemo a tanky top laner due to his changes and gameplay kit.

Hopefully you will find this guide helpful and utilize your knowledge, past and future experience to play Teemo even better in the future. I'm glad if I opened your eyes to general Teemo play or some new tactics, and I hope you comment your own opinions on the comments section.

If you do what others do
You can only achieve what they've achieved.
But if you combine what everyone did
You can become all those things.
You can become anything.
Follow your own path.
Make the world follow what you did
And not the other way around.

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Credit for the images on this guide go to their respective owners listed in this section, some of the images are re-sized, edited or otherwise modified.

From top to bottom:
#1. (introduction) DeviantART user NibblesMeKibbles.
#2. (pros and cons) Seemingly removed from the internet.
#3. (runes) DeviantART user Baeshie.
#4. (masteries) user Deandomino.
#5. (abilties + tips and tricks) DeviantART user i-Zephixe.
#6. (early game) DeviantART user Philiera.
#7. (mid game) (user deleted).
#8. (late game) user Michael Amos.
#9. (summary) (uploader not visible).