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Riven Build Guide by Smuttypoonmonsta

Not Updated For Current Season

This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Smuttypoonmonsta

Tank Riven

Smuttypoonmonsta Last updated on September 17, 2011
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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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 14

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 16

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 0

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Main rune set

Greater Mark of Warding
Going with magic resist marks early for a flat increase will help stave off mage harass in the early game and in general, make you a bit more resilient if you and your lane mate go for a kill.

Greater Seal of Resilience
Flat armor alongside a Doran’s Shield early game will make you fairly durable against AD harass in lane. This will also allow you to go for a kill against AD champions early on with your lane mate without being squishy.

Greater Glyph of Shielding
Having magic resist per level will allow you to bypass the need for a magic resist item in the mid game unless the enemy has a very strong mage presence. Eventually, you will need another source of magic resist however, but this will hold you well.

Greater Quintessence of Fortitude
A nice boost of health in the early game will be extremely noticeable and will continue to be into the mid game.

Other runes worth considering.

Greater Seal of Evasion
Not as strong overall as an armor seal, but, if you go full dodge runes with dodge masteries and Ninja Tabi, you will be dodging quit often. Having a rune set with this in it for ranked is ideal for any tank if you know you’re coming up against high attack speed units such as Xin Zhao or most carries.

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Summoner Spells

Great for an early game kill and especially great in the mid and late game to shut down enemy carries.

Great for initiation on top of the dash from Valor allowing you to get in and stun with Ki Burst into your combo for a knock up shortly after. In the early game, can be used for an escape after tower dive or in general, escaping a bad situation.

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How to use your abilities


Runic Blade

A simple passive that becomes a strong source of damage once you get even a bit of attack damage.

  • Best used in between combo strikes in Broken Wings. Do your best to keep the stacks from being at max (3).

Broken Wings

This is your primary ability on Riven. A three part combo that ends in an AOE knock up. When used, each individual use of the combo gives a stack of Runic Blade therefore making it ideal to pause between each hit to allow an auto attack.

  • Two methods to go about using this. Primary method is to allow auto attack hits in between for damage to be maximized while the other is defensive or gank usage. Rushing to the final strike to get a knock up can buy precious time in conjunction with your Ki Burst for a kill or saving a team mate.

  • Remember, this ability will either go in the direction you are facing or what enemy target your cursor is on. Keep this in mind so you do not go off in a direction that leads you away from an enemy you are after.
  • This a great escape tool on top of your Valor.

Ki Burst

A short albeit effective AOE stun with a range equivalent to Riven’s melee range with her ultimate active.

  • If you’re against enemies with channeled ultimate abilities (Katarina for example) this can stop them dead. The damage isn’t too shabby either and could be used for a solid initiation to a fight to disrupt an enemy.

  • While it is a short duration, don’t let that restrict you from saving your team mates while running. If you can get in and stun then Broken Wings away, it can easily save an endangered team mate.


A quick dash with a distance equivalent to 1 second of running at 400 movement speed. It seems short, but it can be a game changer. It also provides a well scaling shield based on Attack Damage.

  • A great initiation or retreat skill. Great to escape with if you use Ki Blast prior to dashing out or dashing into the enemy to stun and using Broken Wings to escape after.
  • Don’t underestimate your shield. It can be a saver especially when inflicted with Ignite or other dots. Also, can be useful against AOE or Global Ultimate abilities (think Karthus).

Blade of the Exile

An ultimate ability that has two uses. A cone AOE damage ability second use with a passive attack damage and attack range increase.

  • Using the second half of this ability to hit a group of enemies or fleeing enemies can be very beneficial. The damage itself is moderate.

  • Best to use it mid Valor dash when going into an enemy to maximize the effectiveness of its passive duration.

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Lane Items

Doran's Shield
Good armor, health and health regen for early lane phase into the end of laning. This will remove the early game squishy that Riven has.

Mercurys Treads
Getting your movement speed early will open up the ability to pull off earlier ganks and lane kills. This will help you get in and stun into Broken Wings combo which should allow plenty of time to kill non tanks. The tenacity is needed against all CC to ensure it doesn’t break your Q combo.

Health, attack damage and a chance to slow the enemy. This is where you start becoming beefy enough to take the hits from two, maybe three enemies while your team kills them. The slow will help for chasing if it procs and the attack damage will always help you hurt them.

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Core Items

Frozen Mallet
Good health, good attack damage and a slow on hit. This is a good tank item for a champion that also needs to put out some damage. In the mid game, this will be amazing.

Glacial Shroud
The CDR is important for getting your Ki Burst and Valor up as soon as possible but it also provides some important Armor and of course, the much needed Mana Bar to confuse your enemies. This will also become a Forzen Heart later in the game.

Sunfire Cape
Armor, health and a passive AOE that will be inflicting damage while you are on top of the enemy. With the Broken Wings combo and Valor to get in on top of them, this item will have plenty of hits on them.

Atma’s Impaler Between the Frozen Heart and Sunfire Cape along with your Quints, this should be giving you a good 50-60 attack damage and more armor to sustain yourself against carries. Getting this will give you a damage boost into the late game that will continue to make you tanky yet put out solid damage.

Force of Nature/b]
Health regen based on health (which you should have a decent bit of), a good amount of magic resist and a strong movement speed buff make this a natural choice to any tank to deal with pesky mage champions.

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During the lane phase, try to lane with an AD carry. Riven has no form of ranged attack so having someone behind you to discourage harassment is always nice. Having your ranged partner harassing them will open up the opportunity to kill them once you have Valor, Ki Burst and Broken Wings.

Try coming out of the bushes with a Valor or Broken Wings into a Ki Burst then finish the Broken Wings Combo. If you don’t come out with Valor, use it to gap close if they are low and be killed or to dash and stun again.

Remember though, protect your carry. Spamming Q to disrupt their aggression or to make them target you is important.
Don’t be afraid to take a few minion kills if you are doing well though since I do not recommend GP/5 items for Riven since she can jungle fairly well around level five and that they turn into nothing incredibly useful for her either.

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Team Fights

In a team fight, you should make sure the team is there with you of course. Focus on protecting your team as opposed to dealing damage. Between Ki Burst and Broken Wings, you can protect your squishy team mates fairly well. Use Dash to initiate for the shield and follow up on cooldown or save it to get to your ranged in a hurry to protect them.

Remember to use your Ult near the start for increased damage and using the AOE on a group is ideal.

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Thanks to Searz for the awesome guide format! You can find it here.