Kai'Sa Build Guide by SnipyOCE
Snipy's Midlane AP Kai'Sa Guide
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Runes: FLEET FOOTWORK
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+8 Magic Resist
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+8 Magic Resist
Champion Build Guide
If you're interested in learning how to play Kai'Sa mid, check out my stream! I also save all my stream VODs on my YouTube channel for anyone who can't make it to my stream.
My OP.GG - Void Seeker (Kai'Sa account)
I'll be gradually updating this guide with playstyle and combo tips for season 11, but for now the item build and rune page will always be up to date!
|Electrocute for the burst.|
|Taste of Blood gives you great lane sustain early-game. This is the best rune out of the first row to take in all matchups. The other runes in the row aren't worth taking at all.|
|Ghost Poro is a great rune for midlaners since it provides more vision for you and your team. Eyeball Collection is a viable alternative though.|
|Ultimate Hunter is a great option for making plays more often. Alternatively, Ravenous Hunter provides great sustain both in and outside fights.|
|Manaflow Band is crucial to getting your Q evolve in the early-game. 250mana from this rune gets converted into AD through Manamune.|
|Transcendence gives you 10 ability haste which is great in rounding out your build and enabling combos such as W-R-W.|
For stat shards I go for attack speed, adaptive force and either Armor or Magic Resist depending on the matchup.
|Doran's Blade gives great stats for early-game and helps you get Q evolve earlier. Try to hold on to the item until you can sell it and keep your Q evolve (but sell cull first).|
|Manamune is the key item used to evolve your Q using its mana to AD conversion. The extra AD it gives your other spells as well, since they all scale with AD. Compared to botlane, midane Kai'Sa gets a lot more EXP and will be able to reach level 9/10 faster and get Q evolve at a reasonable time.|
|Ionian Boots of Lucidity gives you much-needed CDR for your spell cooldowns. It's cheap and also reduces your summoner spell cooldowns too. Without it, you won't be able to W someone and then RW to burst them.|
|Lost Chapter gives you enough mana and AP to evolve your Q and W spells quickly.|
|Nashor's Tooth buffs your E and makes you harder to catch. Combine this with Berserker's Greaves and you'll get E evolve, but this usually isn't needed.|
|Everfrost active can apply a stack of plasma as well as set up for your W. We don't need to rush a mythic since Kai'Sa has great synergy with Manamune and Nashor's Tooth, so we usually buy Everfrost third.|
|If you’re against multiple AD champions like Zed + Lee Sin + Pyke, you can buy a Seeker's Armguard after Manamune since it's very cost-efficient for the armor and AP it gives. After your core items, you can buy Zhonya's Hourglass if you really need its active. Otherwise, sitting on a Seeker's Armguard for the rest of the game is fine too.|
|If you’re against a heavy AP teamcomp like Ekko and Elise, you can rush Hexdrinker to ensure they cannot burst you down. Alternatively you could buy Mercury's Treads.|
|Horizon Focus fits this playstyle as an assassin that dives in. It's worthy to note that if you RW towards an enemy, then your W still counts towards proccing this item's passive since the W is technically cast from over 700 units away (even though it might appear to be cast right next to an enemy).|
|Rabadon's Deathcap will massively amplify your spell damage and Killer Instinct shield. This is a massive powerspike.|
|Cosmic Drive got buffed in 11.4 and gives a ton of ability haste and movespeed, making it very cost-efficient as a 3rd or 4th item.|
For skill order you want to take Q Icathian Rain level 1 and also max it first. It’s your waveclear and primary trading tool during early game since minions will usually block your W Void Seeker unless you go for some flashy play or the enemy mispositions. Max W Void Seeker second, and E Supercharge last, while putting a point into your ult whenever possible.
You can also take E level 2 if you feel like you can chase the enemy down for a heavy trade without taking too much damage in return.
- QW is the most basic combo. It’s faster than using WQ, and the Q also hides the W animation somewhat, giving the enemy less time to react. You can also sneak in an autoattack when you press Q since it doesn’t cancel your autoattack animation.
- Example combo: AA QW AA
- W+Flash is extremely useful. It helps you get around enemy minions if they are in the way, surprise people, and you can also use it to change the direction your W Void Seeker goes. Early game it’s usually used as a finisher unless you managed to land the W Void Seeker at the start.
- If you flash at the end of your W animation, you can actually make your real W invisible.
- Another way to land your W Void Seeker on people is to combine it with your R Killer Instinct. Kai'Sa is free to cast any of her abilities during her R Killer Instinct, so you could ult up to somebody and have your W Void Seeker come out as soon as you arrive. Click the links below for examples:
- Example 1
- Example 2
R Autoattack Reset
- Killer Instinct is an autoattack reset, which is super helpful in applying your passive Second Skin during fights since this build doesn’t include any attack speed outside of runes.
- You can take advantage of this with this combo: W AA R AA
- In this combo you can Q Icathian Rain anytime since it has no cast animation.
5-stack Combo without W Void Seeker Evolve
- This is a quick way to get all your damage off and pop your execute from your passive, but the enemy needs to be in autoattack range first: AA Q W AA R AA
Fast Combo with W Void Seeker Evolution + Flash
- This combo is slightly slower but has a longer range: W flash Q AA R AA.
Assassination combo with Hextech Rocketbelt
- Use the raptor trick to gain an early XP advantage if you started Doran's Blade. You will hit level 2 off the first wave so use that to force a good trade against your level 1 opponent. The enemy will reach the same level 1 minion slower.
- With the earlier level 2, you usually can gain control of the lane minions and go for a cheater recall.
- Focus on farming for your Manamune + Pickaxe. This will give you Q evolve, letting you easily clear a wave. 1 evolved Icathian Rain is enough to delete the first 3 melee minions, and you can autoattack and/or Q the leftover minions.
- Since you will often have lane priority, try to roam and help your jungler in skirmishes, establish deep vision, or gank a side lane. Relentless Hunter also helps with this.
- Catch out stragglers with your W and R. By the time you ult in, your W should almost be off cooldown.
- You are fully online at Manamune + Pickaxe + Hextech Rocketbelt + Amplifying Tome where you will have Q and W evolve, and a ton of ability haste from boots and runes.
- Q evolve is enough to easily solokill enemies by yourself while W evolve makes you a strong teamfighter due to your low W cooldown.
- Look to poke the enemies from far away, and use any friendly CC to ult in and R+W squishy enemies.
- Try not to miss your Void Seeker, since it heavily affects your total damage output if you don't get a cooldown refund. Sometimes it's better to E or protobelt to get close and burst an enemy, and then RW to finish them off.
- Make sure to proc your caustic wounds with W and autosttacks whenever anyone has multiple stacks of plasma on them.
- Learn how to walljump with Kai'Sa ult. It will help you. A LOT.
- Your W can easily 2-shot carries if they have no MR, with a W, R+W combo.
- Try to rely on your W for constant damage. Only get close to autoattack enemies when it is completely safe, or when you have your team near you.
- Don't worry about only trying to hit the backline carries, your W will chunk the frontline too. Sometimes it's better to get constant damage on the enemy frontline instead of trying to snipe the enemy backline who are far away.
- You can use the enemy frontline to bunnyhop over and burst people behind them. To do this, W the frontline, wait 2-3 seconds for your W cooldown, then ult over the first enemy and aim your W at the person behind them.
- You can position yourself so that your Q Icathian Rain only hits one minion (usually on a melee minion or cannon minion) but kills it immediately. It helps get waves pushing. Cannon minions need to be missing some hp to die from Q Icathian Rain. This trick + her autoattacks give Kai'Sa pretty good early pushing/waveclear ability.
- Your Q Icathian Rain missiles do double damage to minions below 35% health. Make use of this by autoattacking multiple minions and Q’ing at the end to execute them.
- Try to stand in a position where if the enemy walks up, they will tank more Q Icathian Rain missiles since less minions are in range.
- Your W Void Seeker will continue to cast even when CC’ed. The W Void Seeker animation gets cancelled when you get cc’ed as well, making it harder for the enemy to notice you're casting it. Useful against champions like Twisted Fate, Zoe, Annie, etc.
- If running ignite, try to ignite early so that your passive execute will do more damage.
- After you trade with someone, you can back off a bit and if they walk back up while still having 2 or 3 plasma stacks, you can surprise them with a W+flash or W+flash+AA. Like this.
- Your W Void Seeker hitbox is very fat so you can even hit someone who’s hiding in a minion wave if you W+flash right next to or on top of them.
- You can hide your W Void Seeker by aiming it through walls.
- Your W Void Seeker has 3000 range, also the same as Lux’s R Final Spark.
- Try to aim your W Void Seeker at enemies that are (or going to be) cc’ed as they won’t be able to dodge.
- Use your R Killer Instinct to escape over walls.
- You can flash to cancel your R dash early.
- You can take a small
at the start of the game in order to hit level 2 off the first wave, possibly resulting in an easy first blood. Just make your Q Icathian Rain hit only one Raptor and kite it around the
camp wall towards your lane. For your own raptors kite them around the wall but for enemy raptors kite them towards the river. Raptors spawn at 1:30 and a small raptor will die from 6 Q Icathian Rain missiles + 4 autoattacks. In previous seasons, we could take the attack-speed stat shard in our runes so that we can do it easily, consistently, and barely take any damage from doing so. This season, the small raptor will be left with 1 HP so we'll need to take 2 x adaptive force stat shards to do it with Doran's Blade.
Video Explanation here, old but still applies:
Congratulations, you've made it to the end of the guide so here's a little-known secret that will 100% boost your Kai'Sa skills: