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Shyvana Build Guide by Amazing Monkey

Shyvana- Justice Under Dragon's Wings

Shyvana- Justice Under Dragon's Wings

Updated on September 9, 2012
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League of Legends Build Guide Author Amazing Monkey Build Guide By Amazing Monkey 30 9 71,235 Views 61 Comments
30 9 71,235 Views 61 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author Amazing Monkey Shyvana Build Guide By Amazing Monkey Updated on September 9, 2012
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Hey guys, Amazing Monkey here! I would like to introduce you to my very SECOND guide, Shyvana- Justice Under Dragon's Wings. I made a poll to see which champion needs a guide the most, and votes were placed for Shyvana and Karma (spoiler alert). So I decided to start with our favorite dragon-lady of Demacia, Shyvana.

Do keep in mind that I'm not the most experienced player in League of Legends, but I do my research and have enough experience to be confident in this guide. If you feel that you can add to this guide or do not agree with something, please let me know and I will be happy to discuss!

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Pros / Cons


  • Great gankability and escape with Burnout and Dragon's Descent
  • Has fast clear time in jungle routes
  • Excellent counter-jungler
  • No mana costs for her skills
  • Good damage throughout the game

  • Almost no CC ( Dragon's Descent's knock-back all she has)
  • High learning curve (can be difficult to play)
  • Needs a leash to keep up with the enemy jungler

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More explanation and alternatives to come...

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I like to have a balance in my rune page for the bruiser-type champions, like Shyvana. Here is what I typically use:

Greater Mark of Desolation


As Shyvana is part dragon, it only makes sense that she should be able to tear through opponents' defense. My build doesn't have any armor penetration items, so she needs to have that from somewhere. Marks (aside from Quints) provide the best armor penetration.


When going through the jungle at the beginning, you'll really take a beating from the beasties that live there! These Seals will help you stay alive whether it be jungling or soloing top against another bruiser/off-tank.


For much of the same reason as having the resilience runes, it is good to have extra magic resistance. These will help you survive team fights as well. You'll be jumping into the fray quite often. The reason I choose these rather than Greater Glyph of Magic Resist is that early game, you won't be faced against much magic resistance. It's better to let that defense build as you level.


It's great to have extra attack damage at the beginning of the game. Shyvana can jungle with these and lane with them, making use of the extra damage in more than just her basic attacks. These especially help her in the jungle as they enhance the damage from Burnout (AoE speeds up the jungle process).

Alternative Runes


A big part of Shyvana is turning into a dragon. The best way to ensure that happens often is to increase her attack speed. Some may want to have damage here, but they are best placed in the Quintessence section.


Attack speed is a great thing for Shyvana to have. Not only does she dish out a reasonable amount of damage, her basic attacks speed up the process of becoming a dragon again ( Fury of the Dragonborn).


If you're looking for more sustain in the jungle, these are a good choice. Although with Shyvana as an Off-tank, she does not exactly need the lifesteal. But they can be good if you choose to go an aggressive route with her.

More alternatives to come...

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An excellent ganking tool, as some enemies have great escape. Pairs well with Burnout to really keep up with enemies.


A jungling essential. If you plan to jungle with Shyvana, you better put this in your Summoner's pallet. Even if you don't need it to slay your jungle monsters (which is unlikely, without a strong leash), you can use it to steal buffs from the enemy or to prevent the enemies from stealing yours.


If you don't plan to jungle with Shyvana, I recommend getting Flash. You never know when you're going to get jumped and need an extra escape.


Exhaust just not quite tickling your fancy? Not to worry, Ignite is an excellent alternative. It pairs well with Burnout for some extreme DPS. I think we all know how it works. My favorite thing to do is save it for an ulting Tryndamere! ;D


This is a great solo-top spell! You never know when you have to go help mid or even bot, while still keeping an eye on your lane. If no one on your team has this spell, it's not a bad idea to get it for yourself.

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Abilities Explanation


Great for farming and destroying turrets, this is Shyvana's burst move. It's good to have this leveled up early.


Shyvana shoots a fireball, dropping enemy's armor by 15%. This pairs well with her passive, as she will deal great damage with her basic attacks. I usually lead with this skill as soon as I get it.

This passive is mini-booster for all of your other skills (this is where attack speed helps):
Twin Bite- Reduces cooldown by 0.5 seconds for each basic attack .
Burnout- Increases the duration for up to 6 seconds for every basic attack.
Flame Breath- Shyvana's basic attacks deal 15% of this ability's damage to debuffed enemies.
Dragon's Descendant- Gives fury to Shyvana over time, each basic attack will give her 2 fury as well.


Shyvana's ultimate jungle tool. Not only does this move deal AoE damage, but it also increases her movement speed to help with ganks and escapes.


Shyvana lunges at the enemy while turning into a dragon. This skill can go through thin walls and over cliffs. This makes this ability a useful ganking tool. Shyvana gains a decent amount of armor and magic resistance as well, allowing her to be an initiator in team fights.

I typically start with and focus on Burnout in the jungle, as AoE damage is essential for speed and survival. Leveling closely behind, I choose Twin Bite next as it gives Shyvana extra burst and also each strike from this move counts as a basic attack. I level up Dragon's Descent every chance I get, as it increases her survivability significantly. Finally, I focus on Flame Breath last because, as useful as the armor reduction can be, it doesn't amount to the usefulness of Twin Bite or Burnout.

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Shyvana's build is meant to be a Bruiser or an Off-Tank. I've created a build to satisfy that as well as give her the necessary attack speed to take advantage of her passive, Fury of the Dragonborn.

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Starting Out (Jungling)

> > > > >

I'm going to give you a summary of what to build as well as where to start in the jungle and so on...There will be guides for the other builds later. But this primarily focuses on the jungle aspect of Shyvana. Similar to my Wukong guide, Great Sage Equal to Heaven, I will give you some recommended items for different phases throughout the game.

Cloth Armor and Potions



As with most Junglers, these starting items are really great for Shyvana to start with. Cloth Armor provides defense and FIVE Health Potions really gives you the sustain that you'll need to clear the jungle as well gank without dying. Cloth Armor also builds into Madred's Razors, an incredibly useful jungling item.

Doran's Blade

If you prefer to go the aggressive route, I recommend getting Doran's Blade. This will give you that extra damage as well as sustain from the Life steal and health.

Boots and Potions



Boots can help quite well for ganks and traveling around the map. You will also have sustain from the Health Potions, but I suggest asking for a strong leash as the levels will give you necessary defense and damage to survive the jungle.

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First Recall (Jungling)

> > > > > > > >

The thing with Jungling is that each game can be very different. You might recall with one or two kills, or you might find yourself needing a recall before you manage to land a kill. A big part of this depends on how well you and your team work together with ganks and how well you can counter-jungle. This is most likely what you can afford at this point.

Madred's Razors

This item is the best for shredding through monsters and minions early game. It also gives you a little boost in attack damage and armor. This should cost you 585-700 gold, depending on your starting item, allowing you to get this as well as boots.

Boots of Speed

As a Jungler, you're going to need that extra mobility to move around the map swiftly or land a gank. Shyvana's Burnout does give you extra movement speed. But you don't want to rely on that alone as it is also a big source of your damage.

Wriggle's Lantern

A Jungler classic, Wriggle's Lantern gives you life steal, extra damage from Madred's Razors effect, a built-in Active Ability which allows you to plant a Vision Ward every three minutes. The ward is most useful to either give vision for top lane or to place at a buff to steal it later.

Health Potions and Wards

sight ward
As the game continues and you gain more maximum health, health potions become less helpful. But with the first recall, they still can do you some justice. I pick some up if I have the extra gold. As far as wards.....GET THEM! Yes, it's great to save your gold for good items. But a measly 75/125 isn't worth a death from a ganker. Plus, it might just give you a jump on the enemy and score you a kill. That's getting your money's worth! Supports and junglers will help you at times, but I always grab a couple whenever I can.

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Second Recall (Jungling)

> > > > > > > > > > >

At this point, you should be around level 6, if not past it. One or two turrets should be gone on both sides and you're starting to be needed a lot more outside of the jungle. Lanes should still have their established champs, but you will start to see some roamers soon. With this being said, you're going to need to increase your ability to move around, improve your gankability, and make yourself more tanky.

Heart of Gold

Heart of Gold is a great item to have early game for champs that can't just sit in a lane and farm. You get extra gold every second. But this item also gives you health that you're going to need pretty soon. It will also build into Randuin's Omen later on.

Mercury's Treads

These boots will give you the magic resistance and tenacity that you will need for encounters. They will especially help if you need to build against an AP carry or Debuff heavy team. However, the situation does not always call for such things. Here are some alternatives:


When ganking, the last think you want is for your victim to escape. Phage provides a Unique Passive Ability which gives you a chance to slow your enemy from a basic attack. You also gain health and damage to make you more useful in team fights. It also build into Frozen Mallet, which will guarantee that slow later on.

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Mid Game (Jungling)

> > > > > > > > > > > > > > >

You've been defending lanes and ganking a lot, but now it's time to group up for team fights. At this point, it is likely that the enemy or your team has found a target lane that they wish to push. The teams will gather to push or defend and you're no longer going to be able to just sit in the jungle. Now you're going to need more health for team fights and to increase the frequency of your Dragon form.

Recurve Bow

You'll have a nice boost in attack speed with this item. It will also build into Wit's End or Madred's Bloodrazor, depending on the circumstances.

Wit's End

This will give you some magic resistance as well as extra attack speed. You also gain some extra magic damage from your basic attacks.

Giant's Belt

The extra health and pliable nature of this item makes it a good choice at this point. It will combine with Phage to make your Frozen Mallet.

Frozen Mallet

This item will really help with your damage output as well as sustain. It's Unique Passive Ability is an enhanced version of Phage's, slowing upon the first basic attack to an enemy. As they are slowed, you will be able to stay on them with Burnout, using it's full damage potential.

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Late Game (Jungling)

> > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > >

Most turrets will be destroyed at this point. Both teams will be trying to exploit the weakness of each other. You will want to do whatever you can to make sure that you're not a weakness in your team. It's time to add on the damage and health to make sure you can hold your team together.

Chain Vest

You'll get some extra armor with this item. But it also builds into a variety of items, such as Atma's Impaler or Randuin's Omen.

Randuin's Omen

This item gives you quite a few treats and as a tank or support, it makes you incredibly helpful. You get health regeneration, armor, and an Active Ability which reduces attack and movement speed of surrounding enemies. You can really escape or turn a team fight around with this item.

Atma's Impaler

It's time to take that health you've been building up and turn it into damage. The more life you have, the more physical damage that this item will give you. You'll also have extra armor to help you tank.

Force of Nature

To complete your tanky nature, Force of Nature is an excellent choice. It's time to sell your cute little Wriggle's Lantern and invest in a real defensive item. With Force of Nature, you gain extra magic resistance as well as movement speed. You also gain health regeneration to keep yourself healthy as long as possible.


If you completed your build, good for you! You're either dominating or turning things around. Either way....whatever will you do with all of that extra gold???? Elixirs are a great way to spend that extra gold. The cool thing about these is that even if you have no item slots available, you can still buy them! They'll be automatically consumed! Get oracles elixir if you want to clean out wards, Teemo mushrooms, or stealth champs like Twitch.

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Situational Items

To make yourself an effective teammate, it is important to make your build based on the enemy's builds and team composition. I won't cover all of these situations as there are a lot. But here are a few suggestions that I've seen quite often (not prioritized in any particular order).

Warmog's Armor

Sometimes, Frozen Mallet just doesn't give you the health that you want. This item gives you extra health for every kill you make.

If you are the only tanky member on your team, I suggest getting this in the place of Frozen Mallet.


A great counter for that pesky, fed AD carry! Each basic attack they do to you will be returned with 30% of that damage via magic. If they have an AD carry destroying your team, encourage some of your teammates to also get this item! Trust me, it makes a difference.

You're going to have to put Atma's Impaler on hold for this item. I suggest building tanky if their carry persists.

Maw of Malmortius

Here's an item that will give you some magic resist and attack damage. If you're fighting an AP heavy team or their AP carry is causing a bit of trouble, this is a nice item to have. Not only does it give you magic resist, but it also has a Unique Passive that gives your attack damage for health missing AND a 400 magic damage shield that pops up if you would almost die from magic. Eat that, Lux!

If you can sense their AP carry getting fed, don't build Wit's End and shoot straight for this item. The sooner you can get AP defense, the better. If Wit's End is already built, I suggest building this item as soon as you get the Giant's Belt. What good is magic resistance with no health to defend from it?

Madred's Bloodrazor

If you matched up against a rather tanky team, I recommend tweaking your build a little bit for this time. Madred's Bloodrazor is a perfect item for Shyvana to use against teams with a lot of health as she still gets attack speed for her passive and she also gets a new Unique Passive Ability allowing her to deal more damage, the more max health her enemy has.

Instead of finishing Wriggle's Lantern, leave Madred's Razors as they are. Continue building up to the Recurve Bow as normal. Then replace Wit's End with this item.

Aegis of the Legion

A great supportive item as well as a useful jungling tool, Aegis of the Legion proves health and armor and magic resistance for you and your friends! The great thing about this item is that is is inexpensive to make and very useful early game. If you feel that you will need to be a team player and still need to keep a little health for yourself, this is a great buy.

I recommend not completing Wriggle's Lantern, if you seek to purchase this item. To the get the most out of it, it should be purchased somewhat early in the game.

Guardian Angel

Another great tanky item that gives you a second chance, is Guardian Angel. I usually get this item if the other team is at an advantage. As Shyvana need to dive into the battle, she needs that extra defense to keep her alive. The Unique Passive Ability also ensures that you'll live long enough to at least cause a distraction for your carries to survive.

I would either replace Wriggle's Lantern or Atma's Impaler with this item. Depending on how far you are in the game.

Sunfire Cape

If you're looking to go more tanky, this is a solid item. You'll have extra health to feed your Atma's Impaler and this item has a Unique Passive Ability which deals 40 magic damage per second to nearby enemies. If you are going against a team that is building Thornmails, this is a good item to have as the damage is via magic and not physical. Just be careful with this when running through the jungle with low health. The monsters will attack you!

You should probably replace Frozen Mallet with this item, as you shouldn't need a perma-slow if you need to go more defensive.

More alternatives to come...

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Basic Strategy

Shyvana is considered a Bruiser or an Off-tank. You basically want to deal the most damage you can while maintaining a balance of health, armor, and magic resistance. Shyvana has a very simple combo for one on one combat.

Basic Combo






SPACE Shyvana is great at fighting one on one. The best approach to her abilities, whether in lane or in the jungle (from my experience), is this sequence:
  • Shoot your enemy with Flame Breath. It will drop their defense and give them a debuff for your passive, Fury of the Dragonborn.
  • Next, rush in to the enemy, activating Burnout. The later you can activate this, the better, as you want to get the most out of the damage it provides. Use it to close distance between the enemy, if necessary.
  • Attack the enemy with a basic attack.
  • Activate Twin Bite immediately after the basic attack. (the ability resets the time between auto attacks, allowing it to follow through faster.) Unleash the basic attack for that twin damage in full effect.
  • Repeat this combo as much as you can until the enemy dies. If you need to escape, use Burnout to run away.


In case you are unfamiliar with the term, Ganking is when two or more players choose to ambush an unsuspecting opponent. This is one of the basic fundamentals of a Jungler and commonly used throughout any game.

The trick to ganking is communicating with your teammate and closing off the escape for the enemy. (Ex: It is very easy to gank an enemy that is pushed up to your turret, as they have to run all the way back to their turret or into the jungle to escape.)

A fast way to inform your partner that you are going to engage in a gank, is to press G on your keyboard and click on the enemy you intend to gank. With Shyvana, it is usually best to let your teammate engage. If you engage, the enemy will run too soon and your ally won't even get a chance to hit them. Once your teammate as engaged, activate Burnout and rush in. Use The Basic Combo from there on out.

Once you are level 6 and have Dragon's Descent, ganking becomes a lot easier for Shyvana. Now you can turn into a dragon and immediately close the distance between you and your opponent. I advise you gank as you normally would, saving your ultimate for if they Flash or escape by other means.

Pictures and more detail to come...

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Jungle Strategy

Jungling is a great place for Shyvana to be. She has a fast clear time, decent gankability, and can counter-jungle quite well. If is for this reason that I decided to dedicate an entire chapter for what to do in the jungle. There are a lot of twists and turns for how you approach this terrain.

The Beginning

When starting out, you and your team should decide whether you wish to invade your enemy's Jungler or to stay defensive and remain in your own jungle.

If you decide to invade, consider where the enemy's Jungler will start. If they use mana, they most likely will start at Blue Buff. If not, they will start at Red Buff. Before entering their jungle, find a bush near your target and wait for your whole team to gather. If your enemy is smart, they will have the two closest lanes guard the Junger (Mid and Top or Bot). At around 1:52 min into the game, the buffs will appear soon. This is the time to move in and attack the jungler or the leasher. You want to pick them off one by one, if you can. If you don't manage to kill them all, at least scare them away from the buff and take it as a team. Immediately rush to the twin of this buff, as the enemy jungler will attempt to steal it to keep up with you. After that is over, start your jungle route as normal with a great advantage.

Shyvana does not use mana, therefore, it is best to start her out at Red. If you chose to start from within your own jungle, have mid lane and either top or bottom lane (whichever is closer to red) help leash and guard your jungle. As the Wraiths nearby Red Buff, spawn 15 seconds sooner, I typically start with them. The leashers should attack them but NOT ENOUGH TO KILL THEM. You need all of the experience you can get. Next, go to Red. Allow your leasher to hit the beast first, immediately follow through with Burnout and widdle it down until you can kill it with Smite. (You may choose to gank mid or top at this time for a level 2 gank. Communicate with your team to plan when you will do this. Then carry on as normal, if you can.)

Continue across mid lane between your own turrets and start on wolves. You will have Twin Bite by now and they will perish fairly quick.

Next, it's time to tackle Blue Buff. Smite may not be cooled down at this point, but it should be close. With the Health Potions you have, you should be able to take on Blue without too much trouble.

As you are healing up from the Health Potions, your jungle is virtually cleaned out. Now you have the choice of running into the enemy jungle and killing their Jungler or ganking a nearby lane.

If you plan to count-jungle at this point, consider where they might be. If they started at Blue, they will be just making it to their Red or they will be getting the Golems nearby their Red. Sneak into the bush the wraps around the Red Buff camp and see if you can find their Jungler. If you do see them and you are confident that you can fight them, Exhaust them and rush in like a normal gank. They will most likely run so you want to be quick with this assassination. Keep in mind your surroundings. If a lane is missing, they might be aware of your presence and be planning for a counter-gank!

After the jungles are clear and you've made a few ganks. You should recall and pick up some items. Look at the map and see how your lanes are doing. Is top over extended in your favor? Is bot warded in anyway at all? Which buffs have respawned, if any of them have. If all of your lanes are over extended so that it will be difficult to gank, let them know. See which lane could use a gank the most and farm the jungle as they let the enemy push. At this point, you're not going to be following a specific route. You want to keep all of you lanes safe, keep all of the buffs from being taken from the enemy, and take Dragon and Baron whenever you can. Ping Dragon and Baron for help. Save Blue Buff for mid lane, after you've taken it the first time for experience.

I will reformat this section with pictures later. I'm just getting this guide set up for everyone to use as soon as possible.

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More to Come

I have obviously not completed this guide. But I've hopefully provided enough to get views and ratings and to help the community. As I said at the beginning, if there is anything you want me to add, please let me know. Otherwise, here is what I plan to add in the near future:
  • Shyvana Solo-Top Guide
  • Match-Ups for each enemy
  • Team Fight Strategy
  • More Pictures and Cleaner Design
  • Suggestions from all of you!

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Special Thanks

I'd like to give credit to everyone that helped out, even in a small way (not TOO small huehuehue):
  • JhoiJhoi! Her epic guide can be found here! I always give her props, cause I would never make any guides without this easy-step tutorial.

    That guide really helped me figure out what to do on this site and where to put things! I highly recommend it if you want to make your own guide! (The bad guide example made me lol XD)
  • IcarianWings for voting and insisting on a Shyvana Guide.
  • A Chubby Baby for voting for a Shyvana Guide and increasing my standards on how good my guide should be. There's a lot of work ahead for me. I recommend this review shop!
  • OTGBionicArm for expressing disgust to the idea of a Soraka guide and voting for me to make a Shyvana guide.
  • IceCreamy for his simple and convenient review services and pointing out some major flaws in my guide. His Review Shop can be found here!
  • Khazem for a solid kick in the face. He pointed out some significant changes that should be made and left a (Down-Vote =/) for motivation to improve. There's a lot of work to be done.
  • Albableat for pointing out the levity of magic resistance early game. I changed my glyphs from his suggestion. He also pointed out a major change in The Basic Combo that I completely overlooked! His review shop is found here!
  • SkullzX for pointing out some small issues with my masteries as well as information in my Jungle section. His review services can be found here!
  • tehAsian for voluntarily leaving a tremendous amount of useful CnC! There will be a lot of changes coming to this guide soon, and now they will be THAT much better!
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