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Riven Build Guide by tailgating

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League of Legends Build Guide Author tailgating

The Riven Guide

tailgating Last updated on December 29, 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.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 7

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 2

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Hello!! Welcome to my Riven Guide!!!

I am here to share you my build that has worked so well for me and helped me get to a higher elo :)

Also, I find that Riven is the most fun champion I have ever played because her skills have great synergy with each other.

I don't have much time to make this guide all fancy with all the pictures and stuff. I will just be adding words at first, but may add pictures from time to time.

Now please enjoy my guide!!!

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EXPLANATION *READ THIS FIRST!!!*** (or after intro ^.^)

Most of the riven guides in this site includes a warmog or a frozen mallet and a atma's impaler.
However, my build does not include them... WHY???

Because of her shield with awesome scaling!!

With attack damage, she will obviously do more damage (duh) and her shield, with 1:1 bonus ad scaling will give you lots of health. So what you need is not warmog, but armor/magic resistance items as armor/magic resistance will just make your shield stronger and you can cast your shield every few seconds...

Then Lifesteal will help you become sustained in fights as you gain back health while your shield is taking the damage.

This is the reason why i do not take warmogs. If you are in love with the item, go ahead, but it's not my cup of tea :)

I Also play Riven Solo top!! (although middle sometimes work o.o)

This is because she has a very high damage output early on that she can counter most of the melee autoattackers that are common solo top champions.(bye bye Tryndamere... you too Irelia... Oh i didn't forget about you Wukong)

Also, her Ki Burst used with her Valor allows for easy ganks with the jungler.

When she is in the bottom lane, she will get easily harassed by the ranged AD carry so this is why solo top is the best for Riven.

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Pros / Cons


    Great Synergy with her skills
    High damage output in the early games. Then Constant throughout the rest of the game.
    Can kill squishy with ease
    Her combo makes farming very easy
    Great escape mechanisms

    Tanky DPS may prove hard at the end.
    Gets countered by few champions in the lane.

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(Passive): Riven's abilities charge her blade, causing her to do 5/7/ 9/11/13/15 (+0.5 per bonus attack damage) bonus physical damage on her next auto attack. Riven can store up to 3 charges, and will only expend one at a time.

A really good passive. This kind of forces you to autoattack between spell casts, for the maximum damage output. Similar to Lee Sin's passive.

Broken Wings

(Q): Riven steps forward and lashes out in a series of powerful sword slashes that will damage all enemies nearby. This ability can be activated a second time within 4 seconds, and a third time within 4 seconds of that. On the third activation she will also knock nearby enemies back and have a larger radius of damage. All three strikes will deal the same amount of damage.

This matches so perfectly well with her passive!! You can use this like Q - Auto Attack - Q - Auto Attack - Q - Auto attack for the maximum damage from your passive. However don't be afraid Q twice in a row without an autoattack. In lane sometimes, I Q twice in a row at the end for the small knockback so I can get an extra hit off of them.

Ki Burst

(W): Riven deals physical damage and stuns nearby enemies for 0.75 seconds.
Cooldown: 11 / 10 / 9 / 8 / 7 seconds
Physical Damage: 50 / 90 / 130 / 170 / 210 (+1.0 per bonus attack damage)

Amazing Spell! Deals amazing damage and stuns for a short time :) I max this first because it does lots of damage early on and it's good for harassing.


(E): Riven dashes towards the cursor and gains a shield for up to 2.5 seconds.
Cooldown: 10 / 9 / 8 / 7 / 6 seconds
Shield Strength: 60 / 90 / 120 / 150 / 180 (+1.0 per bonus attack damage)

This is the main reason why I prioritize damage over HP in that you get free HP every 6 seconds that increases when you get more damage. Also, if you get more flat armor/magic resist, the shield will get better and better. Overall a great spell. Can also be used to poke in the laning phase. (explained later)

Blade of The Exile

(R): Riven's sword reforms, gaining 20% bonus attack damage, extended range on her damaging abilities and autoattacks for 15 seconds. She is also granted the ability to use Wind Slash once for the duration.

(R): Riven can activate the ability to emit a shockwave in a long cone in front of her that deals physical damage to all units hit based on their missing health.
Cooldown: 75 / 60 / 45 seconds
Minimum Damage: 80 / 120 / 160 (+0.6 per bonus attack damage)
Maximum Damage (25% health or lower): 240 / 360 / 480 (+1.8 per bonus attack damage)

Great ultimate!! Many people underestimate this ultimate as they see the wind slash weak. However, the ultimate will make all of your other spells super strong... Wind Slash is used as a final blow and many times you won't even need it because you will deal so much damage with the ulti on.

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You can go Armor penetration or Flat AD, they are both nice.
However, other than that, you really need to go flat armor because early lane, you really need those extra armor. You can go MR per level or flat MR, and it really doesn't matter because early game armor is more important.

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Boots of Mobility For the extra movement that can help you stun the opponent. Good item to start with.

Doran's Blade Will make you tankier and will give you so much more burst damage with the shield.

The Brutalizer Awesome Armor penetration!!! If your enemy doesn't get armor early game, then you're basically doing full damage to them.

The Bloodthirster What did we say Riven needed? Damage, Armor/MR, and Lifesteal. Bloodthirster satifies both.

Guardian Angel Gives you good amount of armor/mr and also awesome passive.

Last Whisper If 2 or more enemies have armor higher than 150, you should get this item. If not, stack bloodthirsters.

Why not Wriggle's Lantern?

You basically spent 1600 for 23 attack damage. Riven needs damage and damage and damage and wriggles will not cut it.

Youmuu's Ghostblade?? :D??

No. yoummu's ghostblade is a lackluster item when the cooldown is down and if you get stunned when the active is being used, the effect cuts down in half. Keep the brutalizer for the armor penetration and leave it at that!

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Early Game

I go solo top with Riven. (Explained in the Explanation section)

Until you get all 3 of your skills, do not be aggressive. Try not to get poked as much and just last hit and level up. When you have your Valor and Ki Burst you can Valor toward your enemy and Ki Burst. Then auto attack for the maximum damage. If there aren't many minions around, and you dealt lots of damage with your shield, you can go ahead and do your Q and Auto attack combo. However, most of the time, I use my QQQ's as an escape tool so that the enemy cannot retaliate.

If you're in the 1v2 lane, play safe and try not to get poked too much. You need your jungler's help in this situation, and after you kill one or two and you get your doran's blades, you're set.

Here are counters to her in lane.

Gangplank- oh how i hate him.. He parleys you all day and then just oranges out of your stun.. If you're a better player than him, you can actually beat him and then snowball, but if he's a competent Gangplank player, it will be hard.

Vayne (maybe cait)- vayne will harass you all day in lane and then is too slippery for you to catch up to them

Also armor counters you pretty well.

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Middle/Late Game

In the teamfights, do not initiate!!! You may be feeling real strong after your guardian angel, but if you get focused, you will die quickly. Let your tank or tanky dps initiate and when the fight start, go for the AP, or the ranged AD (the squishys) and try to take them out first.

If you got few kills (or many) from laning phase and you snowballed into middle and late game, it should be really easy and you should be really strong.

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Final Words

Riven is in a really good spot right now because she is so strong. If you master her and play her with no to few mistakes, you can easily climb the elo ladder.

Have Fun...