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Sion play for AD

Last updated on January 26, 2012
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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

Honor Guard

Defense: 9

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 0

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Welcome to my Guid for AD-SION

Hello i´am HEROES Hyper² from team Heroes-Gaming

I make a guid for AD-Sion

Have fun and and Play good

Visit use Site:

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Why I made this guide ?

Why I made this guide

There are plenty of AD Sion guides out there already, most of them are broadly right, but they make some silly errors along the way, meaning their DPS, their team-play and their survivability is not as good as it could be. This guide shows you how to stomp face with Sion consistently and make sure your team gets the win.

Reading the detail in this guide will turn you from a good Sion player into an Excellent Sion player. I have included as much detail and relevant thought as possible and where I disagree with other guides I explain why and why my build is better :P

This build is designed to be used against a balanced opposing team, as always think for yourselves and alter builds according to your own team and your enemy's team. I assume that you know how to play Sion reasonably well and are perhaps normally building AP but curious about this AD nonsense!

I have taken a lot of time over this build and have shown mathematically why some item and strategy choices are better than others, please rate positively if you think this build has helped you!


Comments and Feedback: Lots of you have written some interesting suggestions concerning different items to build, I am currently playtesting these and will update this guide with the results soon.

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17th September Patch Notes: Impact

17th September Patch Notes: Impact

Sion received a decent buff which made him viable again:

Base Mana increased to 240 from 200
Mana per level increased to 40 from 25
Between them these buffs will make it easier to harass and survive in lane for an AD Sion who can't afford to stack stack Doran's rings.
Base Attack Speed increased to .625 from .591
Base Movement Speed increased to 320 from 315
The increased movespeed will make it easier for Sion to get in range and the attack-speed buff puts him in line with other AD carries. These buffs make him better all game long since attack speed items scale off base attack speed and Trinity Force scales with base movement speed.
Now gains 1.25 Magic Resist per level
A good buff to Sion's mid and late game survivability; at lvl 18 this is 22.5 extra MR. Resistances are especially valuable on AD sion because Enrage gives him extra health and Cannibalism gives him ridiculous lifegain once he starts hitting enemies. These both scale multiplicatively with Resistances so a small increase actually goes a long way. Magic resist is especially useful because it helps Sion survive the initial burst that AP champs will lay down at the start of a teamfight; if you're alive when you start hitting the enemies then chances are you will gain a whole load of that life back before their cooldowns come back up - and they should definitely be dead by then! :P

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Pros / Cons

Pros / Cons

+ Extremely Effective Tanky DPS
+ Insane damage late game whilst healing yourself and allies for thousands makes Sion almost unkillable
+ Very strong ganker, especially with ignite
+ Strong laner, with good staying power after lvl 6 using Cannibalism and is able to take minion aggro well with passive Feel No Pain
+ Fulfils offtank role very well
+ Is viable in solo top or duo lane
+ Works well with a lot of aggressive laners to get early kills, e.g. Annie, Xin Zhao, Garen
+ Great combo in bottom lane with Taric; double stun and burst will let you kill or zone most enemies.
+ Strong farmer and pusher with Death's Caress
+ AD build + Cannibalism will see you go straight through towers and keep yourself and allies alive even when you are taking huge damage
+ Difficult to gank: Naturally tanky + 1.5 seconds stun Cryptic Gaze will let you survive all but the best ganks.
+ Cryptic gaze is a good interrupt to cancel channeled ultimates like nunu's Absolute Zero
+ Shield to protect against things like Karthus' Requiem and Ezrael's Trueshot Barrage
+ is one of the strongest additions a team can have to a lvl 1 teamfight over jungle buffs using Cryptic Gaze on an enemy caught out of position will almost always get your team a first blood.

- If put against two ranged characters when he is solo lane he will struggle and have to last hit at tower
- Has no escape ability; he is normally committed to any fight he enters. This means good knowledge of other champions and their items, as well as positioning is key.
- Shield now bursts quite easily without AP.
- Expensive build requires you to be very good at last hitting and staying in lane.
- Takes a little while until you get high DPS with purchase of Infinity Edge and again with The Black Cleaver. Unfortunately these items cannot be rushed because Sion's survivability, utility and ability to finish enemies suffers too much.

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Sion: AD or AP?

Sion is currently outshone by better AP casters; at the time of writing there are at least 5 other champions who will beat him in lane, mid game and late game. They do more damage and provide better utility to their team. He is a mid-low range caster right now. While it is certainly possible to play him this way and enjoy success, there is a reason he hasn't been seen at top ELO play for months. I think Sion is currently more viable as an AD carry.

For those of you new to the game, champion selection is perhaps the most important few minutes of any game; how you build should depend on your team and the enemy team:

AD is better if:
- your team has strong mid game carries (e.g. nidalee) but only one late game carry.
- your team already has most of it's damage coming from AP sources. (If you go AP too, smart enemies will pick up an early negatron cloak or two and you will lose you the early teamfights and the game will snowball away from you.)
- you have a few slows or an aoe slow (anivia... kassadin...). Sion is a melee DPS so needs to be in 125 range to do decent damage... you have your stun but you will normally only be able to use that at the start and end of a teamfight, some decent slows on your team will enhance your ability to output high DPS without enemies getting away with ghost and flash. This mostly applies early game before you have Trinity Force.

AP is better if:
- you already have a strong late game physical carry (trynd... trystana... ashe... corki)
- you don't have enough cc on your team already (AP gets to 40% CDR by mid game which makes all the difference)
- your team needs a stronger mid-game

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Skill Sequence

Skill Sequence

A lot of other guides make the mistake of levelling Enrage at lvl 1 followed by Cryptic Gaze and then Death's Caress at levels 2 and 3.

The problem with this is it really limits what you can do for the first couple of levels; if you don't have your stun or shield you will not be able to harass or put up a decent fight if either a) they try to kill you, or b) there is an opportunity to kill them.

Without the decent harass of Death's Caress and the protection of Cryptic Gaze you will likely be dominated in lane, meaning you won't be able to last hit much anyway and may even be zoned out completely.

Don't level up your first skill at the fountain; wait until you know who you're against in lane or to see if there is a lvl 1 teamfight over Jungle Buffs. Make a better decision once you have more information. If you think you can get an early kill and have a strong laning partner, go straight for cryptic gaze. If you are in an easy lane against melee characters, take Death's Caress. Then get the other one, then get Enrage whenever you can.

I focus on Death's Caress after Enrage because it is useless if an enemy pops it before it can be used, so splitting levelling points between it and Cryptic Gaze is counter-productive since it gets growing returns from being focused on. If you need the CDR on cryptic gaze then go for that all the way, but don't split focus between them.

Obviously level up your Cannibalism at lvl 6, 11 and 16.

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Runes !

Runen are very much on AD

9x 1.66 Cupid penetration <-Mark's

9x 0.42% Critical chance <-Seal's

9x 0.28 Attack Damage <-Glyph's

3x 3.33 Cupid penetration <-Quintenssence

Dürch 24.93 Cupid penetration and 3.78% in Critical chance is our damage very terrifically also against tanks.

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Masteries !

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Team Play


Laning vs Jungling: Sion is a moderate/weak jungler; there is a guide somewhere on Mobafire which shows that Sion can jungle and I agree that it works. The problem is that the Rune/Mastery setup and purchase of Madred's razor etc. hit his late game usefulness too hard because he is not getting optimal items for his skill set and he is not getting enough farm. He does not make the most of enrage because you kill fewer monsters in the jungle than minions in the lane. Sion is a very strong laner, with his stun, shield and ignite you can farm, harass and get kills in lane. There is simply no need to jungle. Leave it to someone who is better at it and whose skillset matches the items better.

Sion should definitely be laning:

Which Lane?

If possible get a solo lane to get more creep farm and levels.

Your carry should be in mid, if there is no-one appropriate/willing, you can take it if you are experienced enough with Sion. In general (not all the time) people will go mid if they are experienced and confident with their champs, so you can expect a tougher time there.

You are best put in solo top or 1v2 top. 1v1 you should be fine, if you are taking 1v2 you will probably have to be quite passive to begin with since any exchanges they will most likely win. Fortunately you will level quicker and once you get level 6 you can stay in lane indefinitely with the lifegain from your Cannibalism.

Sion is slightly better top than mid because he can use the bushes very well to aid his harass, discussed later in the guide.

Sion is an excellent 2v2 bottom lane champion. He works particularly well with other early game champions, especially if they have a slow or stun. E.g. Xin Zhao, Annie, Garen, Swain, Dr. Mundo, Cho Gath, Irelia, Nunu. A stun can also be used to ensure allied skillshots land, e.g. Nidalee's Spear, Lux's Cage. and can allow for very strong harass, just make sure no minions will block the shot before you stun. Lanes like this are very strong and you can esily get some kills if you play it right.

Following his recent buffs I would recommend Taric to go bottom with Sion; he has decent sustain and the stunlock they can lay down between them is properly filthy; if one stuns and they both run in, auto-attack and cast their spells then stun again and continue attacking it is easy to get a kill or lower the enemy enough to be able to zone them out.

If you have a teammate with an appropriate champion who says they are good and up for early kills, esp if they have either Ignite or Exhaust, then you can lane 2v2 Bottom. Otherwise try to get one of the other solo lanes.

Laning tips and strategies

Sion has a small mana pool which is quickly used up at early levels. Once you have your Mana Crystal or Sheen this is a bit better. But don't blow all your mana straight away unless it will definitely get you a kill.

Whenever you are laning, make a note of what summoner spells your opponent(s) and laning partner has. Make a note of whenever they use them and use this to your advantage. E.g. if they have Exhaust they will be stronger 1v1. Also if they have Flash/ Ghost/ Cleanse/ Heal they will be harder to kill. If they have are casters with low mana but one has Clarity they could be baiting you.

Also consider what items they have:

Cloth Armour & 5 Health Potion : More resilient to Phys attacks & minion Aggro, can stay in lane a long time.

Boots of Speed: Faster than you, can get away/chase better than you.

Doran's Shield: More resilient to phys attacks and minion Aggro, decent health regen.

Doran's Ring: Decent mana regen enough to harass you with spells. Additional AP to make them hit a bit harder.

Doran's Blade: Stronger in a 1v1 fight, relies on lifesteal to regain health.

Vampiric Scepter: Relies on lifesteal to regain health.

You can exploit the weakness of these last two items by harassing them very hard immediately and then playing aggressively to keep them away from minions; if they are at 1/3 health and you have 3/4 health they cannot fight you and win, so position yourself between them and your minions to zone them out of gold and even experience if you can. When you are doing this, do not push the lane; only last hit. This will let your minions be damaged as much as possible by the enemy minions; some will die, the rest will die in one tower shot. This means you deny your opponent lots of Gold and make it very hard for him to deal enough damage to get his life back up. He either has to go back to base or call for a gank, so be wary of ganking junglers and people going miss from other lanes when you use this strategy.


Very important, if you don't harass, your enemies will dominate you because they know they can win in a 1v1 fight if you have lower life. Co-ordinate with your laning partner if you have one to decide who you will harass. Generally anyone without a heal or lots of health potions is a good choice. Especially if they are squishy and weak early game, e.g. Ashe. Focus your harass on them and only harass the other if the opportunity presents itself and the other is too far away.

Sion harasses better in side lane because the bushes are closer to the minions; hide in the side bushes and activate Death's Caress after 4 seconds, when the time is right, run out, stun the enemy hit him a few times and pop your shield. You should be able to put some serious damage out with this. If you can, do it when most of their minions are on low health, that way, when you pop your shield you will kill them, picking up last hits but importantly, you will take much less minion damage when you do this. If after this the enemy wants to stand and fight, you will have minion advantage (i.e. he will take more minion damage than you) and with ignite you might be able to get a kill.

Try not to let them see you put Death's Caress on as it's very easy to just keep your distance from Sion until he uses it. If you must you can use it to block damage especially from projectile skillshots. E.g. you see Ezrael's Mystic Shot coming towards you at close range, hit your shield to take it and stun him, hit him a few times (keep your shield up if minions are attacking you) and then blow your shield. If you have the advantage keep attacking him and force HIM to run. If you run he can attack you with range as you walk away, if he runs then you win the exchange by a big margin.

You can also use your shield to avoid damage from Damage over Times, like Ignite, Toxic Shot etc. or if you see a stun incoming like Taric's Dazzle, hit your shield so you don't take so much damage when they auto attack you and you have your damage ready when you come out of the stun to retaliate.

If they have a strong ganking jungler, you will need to ward if you want to push the lane. Most Junglers can gank only when they have red buff and are lvl 4, they are normally about the same level as the duo lane champs at this point. So if you see your duo lane champs are lvl 4, it might be better to stop pushing the lane.


This is an expensive build so Sion needs to kill a lot of minions to pay for it all. This is why you want to have a solo lane. Last hit minions wherever possible, whether by attacking them or using Death's Caress to get a bunch at the same time. Farming is very important to Sion.

Last hitting under tower: if your opponents have pushed you back, you can still pick up those last hits:

until you have levelled up enrage a fair bit it takes the following number of hits to kill each minion:

Combat Minion: 2 from Sion, 1 from tower. So hit him first, let the tower hit him, then hit him again to get the last hit.

Caster Minion: 1 hit from Sion, 1 from tower. So let the tower hit him first, then auto attack to pick up the kill.

If you are being harassed while you do this, use Death's Caress to avoid damage.

In mid game you are a very quick farmer: go up to a group of minions, turn on Death's Caress and then hit each minion individually and then pop your shield. This will give you the kill on every single one.

Avoiding Ganks

Get some map awareness! Glance at your mini map at least once every 10 seconds to look for people who are missing from lane, especially your closest lane. Ask your allies to call miss by pressing "Shift + G" and then clicking the map several times to indicate the direction they think they are going. Writing "ss" or "ss Xin Zhao" in chat is not good enough because it doesn't make a sound and people may not notice it if they are in the middle of a harass war. If an opponent recalled and another lane is vulnerable to a gank from them, ping the map and say "Xin Zhao not returned from base yet, care".

If everyone calls miss like this you should not give away any kills from ganks from other laners.

Get a ward or don't push the lane if you want to avoid getting ganked by a jungler/roamer.

If you leave your lane for whatever reason (e.g. Red Buff or recall)it is still your responsibility to call miss from your lane. So keep an eye on it and inform allies promptly.


You are middle-high priority for both Red and Blue buff in early game.

Be a team player, if there is someone with higher priority then offer it to them if they really do need it more than you. For example, blue buff is essential to Anivia who is very mana hungry and Nidalee who needs it to spam spells and snowball to a mid-game carry.

Red buff should be yours until you have built your Trinity Force which has a decent in-built slow, let another phys champ take Red once you have your Tri Force.

If no-one is taking blue then you are more than happy to use it - especially mid-late game once mages have their mana problems sorted out; the CDR will be great for getting 3 stuns off in a teamfight and proccing your Trinity Force twice more than you usually would.

Sion's Ult + DPS make him ideal for tanking dragon at early levels with only one more teammate. Co-ordinate with your team (especially your jungler) and try to take it each time it is up and you can safely get it. Dragon is normally only taken by the jungler, mid lane and bottom lane champions. It's too far for top lane to get involved (this is why bottom lane normally has 2 people in it - it controls dragon better). Take dragon if between your jungler, mid lane and bottom lane you can win a fight if you had to. Normally this involves having more of your team nearby than the opponents. So if you get a kill, or force a recall, get Dragon while the enemy can't stop you.

With his ult, Sion can initiate on Baron if the tank isn't around, don't be afraid to start before your teammates have all arrived.


A team which wards is more likely to win. I won't go into huge detail here, but I really recommend reading this guide it's very helpful.

Warding should normally fall to a jungler early game and then a support late game. If no one else is warding and haven't started despite you asking them to, then it is worth Sion doing some basic high priority warding - Dragon early game, Baron Late game.

Make sure you have Ghost off cooldown and Cryptic Gaze ready if you are going into hostile territory, if you think they might be baiting in a bush for you don't go without your whole team. Try to wait for a time when you can see most of their team somewhere else on the map.

If you have the money, get a sight ward when you first go back to get Bezerker's Greaves put it up if they have a strong ganking jungler, otherwise hang onto it until for whatever reason your laning enemy leaves his lane (perhaps he has taken your tower and gone to gank). At this point go up towards mid and put it in the river, covering Baron/Dragon, but slightly more towards mid. This lets you push hard for their tower, and if someone comes from Blue Buff or Mid, you will see them on their way and can make a timely exit without dying.


First of all: don't let yourself get into a situation where the enemy can initiate a teamfight that you can't win, go back to your tower with your group if you have to, ping the tower with "Shift + G" to let them know.

If you have a numerical advantage and can win the fight, initiate immediately with your stun; you will either get one kill or several depending on whether their teammates run or stick around.

Before you initiate, ping the target with "Shift + G" to let your team-mates know what's about to go down, otherwise your stun could wear off before they get involved.

Only initiate if your teammates are close enough to immediately capitalise on your stun. i.e. you are in a close group.

Don't initiate if the tank is there and is a good player; if he is a ****** then you may have to do his job for him. It seems obvious but never initiate if your team can't win the fight. If the enemies are at tower, bear in mind that it will be much easier for them to chase nearly-dead champions than for you to, so if it's an even chance, don't fight. If they win they Ace you, if you win you may only get 2 kills.

While teamfights are brewing press tab and look at the enemy team, don't look at kills, look at items and levels; if you know the character's skills and the items and levels you can quickly work out who is the biggest threat to your team (i.e. the one who does most damage). Tell your team in chat, in CAPS if you have to, who to focus. e.g.

Katarina has a Rabadon's Deathcap + Rylai's Crystal Scepter + Void Staff.
Ashe has B.F. Sword + Phantom Dancer,
Lux has Rabadon's Deathcap + Rod of Ages
Nasus and Malphite are both built tanky with Sunfire Cape+ Banshee's Veil etc.

write in the chat:


if everyone follows this instruction you have a huge advantage in the teamfight. Splitting damage between champions is a great way to get your team aced while your enemies all walk away on 1/4 health.

NEVER ATTACK THE TANKS UNTIL EVERYONE ELSE IS DEAD. If someone like Mundo is bumbling around in front of you away from his team, don't take the bait, punish him by auto attacking him but don't use any spells and immediately be ready to change targets as soon as the fight starts.

If you have a choice between attacking a full health Ashe and a 1/3 health Malphite, many people go for malphite. This is a Classic mistake: Malphite has more MR, Armour, higher Max Health and an ability Ground Slam for helping him stay alive. So even though he is on 1/3 health he will take longer to kill than a full health ashe, in addition, Ashe will do more damage while attacking you while you focus malphite than malphite would do if you focused ashe.

If Malphite has 900HP out of MAX 2,700, 150 armour, 100 MR, it will take longer to kill him than an Ashe with 1,400HP out of MAX 1,400, 60 armour and 30 MR.

Assuming everyone has the right penetration runes and magic damagers have sorc boots hey have the following effective HPs:

HP against Magic sources: ((((100 - (20 + 8.5)) * .85) / 100) * 900) + 900 = 1 446.975
HP against Phys sources: (((150 - (14.94 + 6.66 + 6)) / 100) * 900) + 900 = 2 001.6

HP against Magic sources:((((30 - (20 + 8.5)) * .85) / 100) * 1 400) + 1 400 = 1 417.85
HP against Phys sources: (((60 - (14.94 + 6.66 + 6)) / 100) * 1400) + 1400 = 1 853.6

Always go for the squishy unless the tank if VERY close to dead.

Using your stun as an interrupt

If you are against an enemy with a channelled ult, any fear, stun, silence, knock-back, knock-up or taunt will interrupt it and stop it right there. This means Sion can use his ult to shut down Nunu's Absolute Zero, Katarina's Death Lotus etc etc. Co-ordinate with your team before hand and make sure only one person is allocated to use their cc as the interrupt.