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Katarina Build Guide by kittus09

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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 kittus09

The Big Book of Katarina

kittus09 Last updated on September 12, 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: 9

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 21

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

Utility: 0

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Hi everybody and wellcome to my Katarina build guide. I hope your learn something with that guide and try the build to enjoy playing Kata and owning everybody around. You are wellcome to suggest imporvements for the build leaving your comment and rating.

In that build you will be able to see 4 different ways to build Katarina:

    AP Katarina
    AD Katarina
    Hybryd Katarina
    Rabadon's Deathcap style

In each section I will explain in Detail all the builds.

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Pros / Cons


Mobility Skills
Nice harraser
AoE damage
Low CD
Great Passive


Squishy Champ
Stuns, Fears, Silences... make her useless
Isn't ranged unless she is based on her skills

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Katarina allways deals magic damage unless we build her AD, so we will need Magic Penetration Marks


I allways have used HP per Lvl seals to garantize Katarina's survivavility while she is doing ultimate.
You can also use AP or AD per lvl Seals to imporve the Damage


Katarina haven't got mana, so only Cooldowns will make you not be able to use yor habilities, taht's why you have to take CDReduction Glyphs.


If you are building AD Kata you should getAD Quints, If you aer building AP Kata or Rabadon's Deathcap style Kata you should getAP Quints. However you can useCDR per lvl Quints wiht all Katarina's way.

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Skill Sequence

Like you can see in the Skill sequence, I allways maximize the BB(Bouncing Blades) before shunpo even I'm building and AP Katarina. In the following chapter I will explain why.

Everytime you play katarina you have to do it mid. Katarina is the best mid, only Malzahar can make you be in problem but you can also own him. You only have to get a little bit of skill with her and anybody will stop you in mid. Being mid with Kata explians why I maximize BB. You only have to move to the following chapter to see it.
Anyway the Skill Sequence will be (in maximize sequence):

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Skill Information and Usage Tactics with Summoner Spells

Skill Information

Bouncing Blades

This skill will be the mainly used in mid lane early game time because of some reasons:
Normally, the players who go mid are AP carrys who deal a lot of burst damage (Malzahar, Orianna, Cassiopea, Veigar, Swain...) or AD ranged carrys who have a great autoattack and habilities (Ashe, Caitlyn, Sivir, Kog Maw...) and if you are in their "fire lane" you will die in seconds. That's why I dont use shunpo in early game, using it to your enemy will expose yourself and make you die.
Using BB to the first minion when the enemy minion are coming to you in queue will make your BB go to them one by one and leaving a nice hit to you mid enemy player.
You also have to remember that farming and last hitting in early game is very important to get fast money, the BB will help you doing that because of its multi target damage.
Thus skill will be the one you will use in late game to harras the other team before teamfight.

Killer Instincts

If the BBs aer used alone, every hit that they do, the 10% of damage that they lose. But, if we activate Killer Instinct before using BB, every hit will make the same good damage. We only need one point in this skill because we will use his active to make sure that BBs make a good hit when they arrive to your enemy after having hitted 3 or 4 minions.


In early game we will use it for mobility, to chase the enemy before doing our ultimate, but if you are build and AP, Rabadon's Deathcap style or Hybrid Kata, in late game this hability will deal a large amount of damage to your enemy, remember that you can jump walls if you have some target (enemy or alli) in the other side.
After doing this skill, Katarina always make an autoatac to the target.

Death Lotus

That is the one that make the others champs be feared of katarina. The Death Lotus will be your Main Damage.
It is very important that you use the Death Lotus in the right plance and in the right moment, you have to be sure that the enemy team have used all the fears, stuns, silences... they have because if someone stops your ulti with that, you are solt. The best way to use your ulti is staying back and when everybody is a big ball in the mid of the map, you use shunpo in and use Death Lotus. They wont be able to see you because everybody is together but you will be dealing damage like anybody, and making a sure triple kill.

Voracy (Katarina's Passive)

I love that passive, his cooldown cleaning after killing an enemy will help you a lot of times scaping and killing more enemies until you get your PentaKill.

Skill Usage Tactics

Shunpo in, Shunpo out

It's easy to say it, but difficult to do it. The thing is that when you can use your ulti, your enemy is killeable because have only a little bit of HP left and there are minions near tower, you can shunpo him under tower, use Death Lotus, and when he dies, thanks of your passive you will be able to use shunpo another time, so you use it on a minion and scape. Remember that this can't be done if the enemy have some silence, stun, fear... skill cause it would make you fail hard.

Since the last moment

you are not a ranged carry, so when you have to hit the tower you have to do it next to it, that would say that when you are doing it you will have to scape when the last minions is being killed because if not you will take tower damage. Every minion need 2 tower hits to be killed. With Katarina you can attack the tower since the last moment, when the last minion is nearly being hit by the tower the second time, you shunpo it and scape, maybe that two more hits to the tower that you can do will make help you after.


If someone is chasing you use Shunpo to one alli or to a minion to scape faster. (Remember that now, with some of the last upadetes, you can use shunpot to teemo mushrooms but not to the wards.)

Blades + Shunpo

Like I said, in early game, your main damage will be the bouncing baldes, one of your main movements have to be to use BB to your enemy and go back using shunpo to a minion. If they are AP carry they will sure use a skill to your direction, but you won't take damage cause you will have used shunpo to another place.

Bye Bye Potion

Your skill Killer Instincts not only make that your BB take the same damage to all the enemies, it also makes that everyone hitted loses 50% of his hp regeneration. So, if someone have used a potion, try to use BB on him with Killer Instincts activated. That also will be useful playing vs Vladimir.

Skill Usage Tactics(with Summoner Spells)

Now I will explian why you have to take exhaust and ignite to own with Katarina.
While you are using your ulti, using your summoners spells won't stop it. So, while you are in mid lane, you only have one target, so u use all your skils to it.
So you should do:
>>>>>>>>and if your enemie doesn't die you still can usewhen it leaves the Death Lotus AoE (BB have a little more range than yur ulti, so you will have to stop your ulti in the right moment and give him your BB)

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Hybrid, AP and Rabadon's Deathcap style Kata

In this three builds I use 9/21/0 maestries because of the survivavility that gives to Katarina while she uses the Death Lotus and because of the extra HP(in early game) and AP that gives.

AD Kata

In the AD build I use 21/9/0 which makes her have more damage. In the AD build, the shunpo won't make a lot of damage like in the others builds, so I use Critical Chance and Critical Damage Maestries to try to maximize the autoatack after the shunpo.

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Before explianing anything I want to say that in the Items Purchase Order Section you can see that the Mejai's Soulstealer is the last item. That doesn't say that it have to be taken the last one. I put it there cause it is a situational item, if a game isn't going very well don't take it and start the build like it's explained, but if it's going very well and you are getting feed, Mejai's Soulstealer is the first item you have to take.

AP Katarina and Rabadon's Deathcap Katarina

Like I said, in this two builds, if you ar having a great early game, take the Mejai's Soulstealer as soon as possible. But in ranked games that will be difficult, so, If you are having a normal or weak earlt game, jsut wait to have 1600 to take your earlyneedlessly large rod. That will give you a nice damage to your shunpo and ulti which will help you to finish yourRabadon's Deathcap (Remember you will have to farm and stay at lane as much as you can with your 3 potions and try to kill your enemy mid laning at least one time to make that possible) . If you did well, you will have that item when people is regrouping in mid to push, and you will be who have more damage (210 AP more or less), helping to harras with BB and to kill with your ulti when your tank engage. You will win that teamfight sure.
rylai's Scepter: That item is perfect to kata. It will give you some survivavility because of the HP, damage in AP and a great passive that will slow evey target of your skills, helping you to make your enemies eat your whole Death Lotus.

Rabadon's Deathcap Katarina

That way of build Katarina is the pure AD katarina build way but with AP items (Take the item that give you more AP to maximize your Death Lotus' Damage) in League of Legends the item that gives you more AP is Rabadon's Deathcap, so stack it trying to start buying the Nedlessly Large Rod.

AP Katarina

The Lich Bane: This is my favourite item in League of Legends, gives you MR, AP and a great Passive. We know that Katarina makes an autoatack after making shunpo, with an AP build, that autoatack would deal 100 dmg, but with the Lich Bane, that autoatack will deal 100 dmg + you AP in magical damage. Great! Use Shunpo and autoatack in Teemo = sure kill.
the Hextech Gunblade: that item is also good for Kata, will give you a nice damage in all your skills and will give you some spell vamp.

AD Katarina

The Sword of the Occult. your early game is based in that item, you will be in mid lane, but you will ahve to have a lot of mobility in all the lanes to try to get stacks with kills and assists.
The Frozen Mallet is not as good as Rylai's Scepter that makes slow all the enemies targeted by your ulti, The frozen Mallet passive will only slow the target hited by an autaoatack. It is good because Kata will make that autoatack after shunpo, so, ALWAYS, ALWAYS shunpo the enemy who have more possibilities to scape to make sure he is slowed.
The Bloodthirster: That item will give you a lot of Damage to your ulti and will help you to farm. Try to have always your Bloodthrister full (100 ad) before starting a teamfight.
The infinity Edge: You will say: "Why this man is taking an Infinity edge that gives 75 ad, if he can take another Bloodthister that gives 100 ad, I want more damage on my Death Lotuuus!" Yes, it's true, you can do it like this if you like, but the Infinity Edge will give you Critical Chance and Critical Damage which will improve your autoatack after the shunpo. You will have 500 ad, with some luck, you will make a 1250 damage autaoatck after shunpo!

Hybrid Katarina

That Hybrid Katarina is a dificult way to go because you are based on your stacks. But, if you are able to buil her, you will own everybody.
+: That two items will give you a nice Damage in mid, early game.

Take yourRylai's Scepter and TwoHextech Gunbaldes, the pure hybrid item.

Situational items

orThe Abyssal Scepter and The Hexdrinker If you are having troubles with some AP carrys or a Tank with a lot of MR this are your item, if you are building an AP Kata Abyssal scepter will give you AP and MR and a passive that will reduce MR of your enemies, but if you are AD The Hexdrinker will give you AD, MR and a shield that will stop magic damage when you are low HP, but won't reduce enemies MR lie Abyssal Scepter.
Playing vs a nice tank? The Void Staff will help you penetrate their Magic Resistance with its passive!
Playing vs a lot of AD carrys? Take your thornmail and let them taste their hits! (Come trynda, come!)You also can take Zhonyas because of the armor that it gives and its Active. After making the ulti, everybody will come to you, when this is happening, use that skill and let your team finish the work.


The boots of Ludicity will help you early game because of its CD reduction, but I think that in late game Sorcerer Shoes will help more with that magic penetration and we wont have problems with CD cause Katarina have a nice passive

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Now we will see which Skills are maximized with each build and the damage dealt with every one:
(That information have been found out by me, building Katarina in the diferent ways to see the damage dealt.)

AP Kata

BB Damage: 200 + 48 + 270: 518 DMG
Shunpo Damage: 240 + 579 + (600 Lich Bane Passive): 1419 DMG
Ulti Damage: 80 + 30 + 193: 303 DMG each Blade

AD Kata

BB Damage: 200 + 328 + 6: 534 DMG
Shunpo Damage: 240 + 12 + (1250 autoatack (with some luck)): 1502 DMG
Ulti Damage: 80 + 205 + 4: 289 DMG each Blade

Hybrid Kata

BB Damage: 200 + 184 +155: 539 DMG
Shunpo Damage: 240 + 332 + (350 autoatack): 922 DMG
Ulti Damage: 80 + 115 + 111: 306 DMG each Blade

Rabadon’s Deathcap style

BB Damage: 200 + 329: 529 DMG
Shunpo Damage: 240 + 705: 945 DMG
Ulti Damage: 80 + 235: 315 DMG each Blade

Like an advice, I will say to you to start building Katarina with AP style, beacuse it is the easyiest way to build her and the damage is great. When you start knowing how to play kata well, then try the other builds, the damage of the builds is not very different, all can be played properly, jsut try it and play the way u like more.

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The Ap Katarina is the easyest way to play her, and wil let you have a nice damamage in your skills, this build is very balanced, which will give you a good early, mid and late game.

The other builds are more difficult to make, The hybrid Katarina is also a balanced build for her and will make you enjoy katarina because you will have good damage in skills and also in autoattacks, that will let you farm and kill jungle mobs. But the difficulty comes with the need of your stacks.
AD Katarina won't have the early game of the other builds, you will need to stack the sword of the occult to start making damage, but if you do it well, in late game you will have a nice damage and a great farm. Katarina AD is one of the best Harrasers in game because of the damage multitarget that can deal with the BB.
Rabadon's Deathcap Katarina will aslo have a nice early and mid game, in late game you wont have the burst damage of your Shunpo and BB but your Ultimate will deal the much damage it is able to.

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Other Builds...

Watch this really interesting build of Brand:

Watch my Nocturne Jungler build:

Thanks to Prototype ;)