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So you want to main Xerath? (As of 7.22)
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Threats & Synergies
If you don't underestimate his dash potential you should be fine, more so late and early game then mid. Just keep poking and take out his wind shield, he's quite squishy underneath. Just play safe-ish and it'll be a fine match up.
Similar to Yasuo, don't underestimate his ability to jump around, especially early/early mid game. His high damage output and ability to engage and disengage can make life difficult all game, but mostly nearer the start. If you end up fighting against him play cautiously while building up your mana and AP. Once you no longer have to worry about mana and have a fair bit of AP you can start being more ballsy. If you don't feel like playing passively (still poking) for the first 25 minutes (ish) I'd advise special help from the jungler, however the jungler is actually under no obligation to help you, so don't count on being able to use this every time.
Her jumps are nasty so remember to keep your distance from both her and her knife.
His jumps and ability to rewind time make him tricky to deal with, so you want to be really careful when encountering him.
It is important to remember that she has as much range as you with her ball so stay as far away from that as possible, only coming in for pokes or a combo. As long as you don't get dragged into it you should be fine.
Tricky to dodge and painful if you get caught in a combo but ultimately quite simple to defeat so long as you dodge well and poke often.
As an enemy her jumps are irritating but so long as you keep your distance you shouldn't have any trouble with her.
You will destroy her. You out-range and out damage her, no issue here.
She has about equal range and her ult makes it a bit difficult to use yours but other than than you should better as you have a better poke and CC then her.
Keep your distance and he won't stand a chance. If you need to get close enough for and E or perhaps even a W if it's a good Veigar then you might encounter difficulties but you should be fine either way in the long term.
His soldiers are the only problem you'll face.
Squishy as hell only her passive will mildly inconvenience you.
Keep your distance and she won't be able to touch you.
His combo and burns may cause you difficulty but as long as you stay out of his range you should to fine.
Weak and squishy, be careful if you stray to far from turret due to his stun but other than that you should encounter no trouble.
Weak, you will destroy him. Watch out for ganks though.
You out range her so she should be no trouble, her poison will be irritating though.
Avoid her jumps and you'll be fine, get jumped and you will almost certainly die.
His jumps will cause issues but if you play your cards right he will fall far before you.
His turrets are hard to deal with early game despite your range. If you take things slow you should win lane.
Other than his ult you should encounter no problems.
His jumps will be the death of you but you out-range him in every way. Keep your distance and flash at the ready and you'll make it through.
He does a fair bit of damage but if you stay under your turret you'll do well. Leave your turret and things will start to get difficult.
Her jumps make her deadly, avoiding and poking is the game here, if she gets the drop on you, your will die.
Barely a threat, keep out of her range and away from her for her Glacial Path and she will die over and over.
Dangerous of underestimated, stay behind your minions and you'll make it through.
Watch out for the combos, they'll be the death of you, but you outrange him so you should do well.
His tankiness and ability to restore health can be an issue but if you keep dodging and keep your distance you should do alright.
Tricky to fight so keep moving erratically to avoid her balls and you should win.
Can be an issue if she lands hits. Stay behind minions and keep your distance and you should destroy her.
His squishiness will have you destroy him. Keep your distance and watchout for mushrooms and you'll own him.
Pathetic when opposed to your might, relish in destroying him.
Irritatingly hard to kill, only poke. You get within his range and you'll suffer from the mistake.
His tankiness and ability to restore health can be an issue but you outrange him so take advantage of your combos and make him suffer.
Shouldn't have much trouble, just be wary of his clone.
Only issue is his ult, try to stay in lane as long as possible as his turret destroying capability is very high from the get go. Other than that have fun, he's quite easy to deal with.
Just watchout for his combo Q and you'll be fine. Remember his ult revives him so you'll have to kill him twice.
Her plants and CC will be a problem. Dodge as best you can and poke her, DON'T get close.
Morellonomicon should be the first thing you complete. Not only for the large amount of AP it gives you but also the CDR (cooldown reduction). This'll transform you from the Arcane Sniper to the Arcane Spell Slinger Sniper. Bit of a long winded name but it gets the point across!
Tear of the Goddess and then Archangels Staff, turning into Seraphs Embrace is a must have. With it you can ensure that you never run out of mana and keep on dishing out the pain for as long as possible. You should be building Tear as close to the start of the game as possible, alongside Morellonomicon to ensure early stacking.
Liandry's Torment is a perfect item to get next as it complements the first two nicely while bringing its own power to the mix. More health allows you to stay in battle longer, more AP allows for more damage, the burning effect allows for killing those annoying people that get away with a fraction of their health intact and the Magic pen makes for less resistance on the part of the enemy.
Rabadon's Deathcap allows for a ton more AP, that's all there is to it.
Luden's Echo makes for a great addition to your AP, while giving you a tad more movement speed and the handy tool of doing damage to people, even if you miss your intended target.
And finally Void Staff is a great item to cap off your AP set of annihilation. It gives a lovely bit of AP, and an even better addition of more magic pen, which combined with your Liandry's makes out to ruin the day of those that tried to build Magic Resist!
To start off with you will start with the Sorcery Tree's Arcane Comet. This is ideal for you, as a ranged champion with a decent amount of CC, as it increases your damage output and allows for you to set up more shots as they attempt to dodge it (if they do try). Plus your slows and stun will almost always guarantee a hit.
Next you need to take is Ultimate Hat, as it's CDR for your ult will allow increased use without worrying so much about wasting it. Your ult, while difficult to hit, does a great deal of damage and has a lot of play making abilities, so its good to have it as often as you can.
Now its time for Absolute Focus, and its reason should be pretty self-explanatory, but I'll help anyway. As an Artillery Mage, you should not be taking damage, you are as far from the action as possible and as such the likelihood of you falling bellow 70% health is quite low, and as a result you will have almost permanent damage boost whenever you fight.
To cap of the Sorcery Tree you should take Gathering Storm. This ever increasing damage will make the longer you can stay in game the higher your chances of victory.
Finally you should build your Secondary path into the Domination tree's Cheap Shot and Eyeball Collection. The former will allow you to chain up your combos for even more damage, while the latter will take advantage of your ability to kill, giving you permanent stacks, basically a free Mejai's with no risk.
With the Q make sure to judge where they will be as there is a little delay when firing, if you line them up with the centre of the shot they shouldn't have enough time to dodge it.
With your W there is again a delay as it comes down from the sky, but as long as you centre it on the enemy they shouldn't have time to dodge. Q and W are the first ones you level because they can't be stopped by things like Yasuo's Wind Wall, as the Q is a laser and the W isn't a projectile. Take advantage of the slowness the the W gives to hit them with your Q, this allows for better use of your mana and will reduce the amount of misses you have.
Your E goes one step further, stunning your opponent. If you land it immediately fire both of your other abilities for a ton of damage. However the E is slow moving and can be intercepted by minions, so it is generally best to combo W, E, Q. This will ensure you hit your stun as it is much easier to slow your opponent then it is to stun them and while slowed they will be much easier to hit. The Q just caps it off with a great deal of damage. As for your Ult, this is one of the greatest strengths and weaknesses of Xerath at the same time. The barrages are very hard to land. When you activate your R the enemy will start to move to avoid the barrages, so you really have to live 3 steps ahead when you fire, anticipating where they will be when the barrage lands. Other than that just stand in a place where you're sure you won't get jumped when firing, as you get rooted on use, and try to pick off those that are low health or just plain squishy.
He is a ranged champ so keep your distance
He is skill shot based so try to be 3 steps ahead of your opponent
He is best in lane, so don't leave lane unless you absolutely have to.
With that said I hope you enjoy playing Xerath as much as I have and go out there and kick some butt on Summoners Rift!