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Thresh Build Guide by astrolia

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League of Legends Build Guide Author astrolia

Thresh Champion Spotlight - Extended

astrolia Last updated on February 26, 2013
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Support Role
Ranked #16 in
Support Role
Win 50%
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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: 1

Honor Guard

Defense: 13


Utility: 16


This is a day one Thresh guide and I am going to archive it later. Riot's official Thresh champion spotlight is very good for learning how to play the character as a support. It's a great learning tool because it actually shows him being effective and also gives you a plethora of ways to use Dark Passage. This "guide" is intended to compliment the official spotlight by explaining some finer details that Riot doesn't really talk about in the champion spotlight and also give item suggestions.

Please be sure to watch the champion spotlight first before reading the rest of the guide as the guide will refer to it multiple times.

Runes Explained

Because of Damnation, Thresh gets 0 armor per level. If you don't have additional armor when laning versus an AD carry bottom lane, you're gonna have a bad time. Flat magic resist is to reduce damage from enemy supports who do magic damage. Flat is better than scaling the large majority of the time because flat is stronger at level 1 (when you get poked down) and level 6 (when people will get their ultimates and try to make plays / kill you). Many AD carries also have magic damage skills and ultimates. GP10 quints are just for additional income since you're a support and you aren't farming minions.

greater mark of hybrid penetration A more offensive mark would be hybrid penetration. You do a bit of ranged autoattack harass, and also some magic damage.

Masteries Explained

13 in Defense is to get Unyielding and Block to help make up for your lack of armor per level. You can do 1 point in Summoner's Wrath for Exhaust and 16 in Utility, or 17 in Utility to get Pickpocket . The points in Utility are for more gold generation and higher starting gold, plus other benefits like the mini-ward and the cookie. Pickpocket is optional - you're encouraged to use it at least 1 per 5 seconds, but Death Sentence's passive will do max damage after 10 seconds. Your choice.

Skill Notes

These are just some quick notes about his skills that aren't mentioned in the spotlight.
  • 1. Soul Range: Damnation makes souls spawn as long as you're within 1900 range of minions. Enemies can see them too, but not if they don't see you.
  • 2. Death Sentence Passive Indicator: Thresh gains a passive that's colored light green which indicates that his next attack will do bonus damage. After 5 seconds, it turns yellow. After another 5 seconds, it turns red, indicating Death Sentence's passive will do max damage.
  • 3. Reactivating Death Sentence: Hitting Q again to pull yourself toward whatever you latched onto will also pull you through walls, and place your hooked target on the opposite side of you.
  • 4. Death Sentence Double Tug: Death Sentence's scythe will pull your target toward you, and after a small delay, it will pull them in a second time. If you hit Q after the initial pull, you will miss out on the second pull.
  • 5. Lantern Range: The lantern has 2 ranges. Super big range = Leash range. If you walk out of that circle, the lantern will fly to you and shield you. Smaller range = Vision/soul range. You get vision of that area and your lantern will collect souls in that area for you.
  • 6. Soul Collection: Your lantern will pick up souls, but the cooldown is very long. Don't use it only for soul collection.
  • 7. Aiming Flay: Enemies near your mouse direction will be pushed away, and enemies away from your mouse will be sucked in. Move your mouse around while holding E down to watch the arrows change direction.
  • 8. Towers: Unlike some other skills, Death Sentence's bonus damage doesn't work on towers.
Lantern Range Visual

Flay Visual

Skill Order Explained

In the spotlight, Riot recommends maxing R when available, W and Q by 13, then E last. It's very easy to see why. Dark Passage and Death Sentence are easily your best skills for laning. Death Sentence = more harass damage, and more engages because of the shorter cooldown. Dark Passage = Added shield strength for trades, and lower cooldown on your lantern to help with ganks or escapes. Both of those skills also incredibly strong/useful, but have ridiculously long cooldowns that go down per level. If you're dominating your lane very hard, you could max Flay 2nd instead. But if you're not doing too hot, max Dark Passage 2nd instead.

Item Suggestions

This is gonna be the longest section cause Riot really doesn't talk about items in the spotlight.

emblem of valor

philosopher's stone
kage's lucky pick
Basically, Thresh needs tanky support items. Start with some Sight Wards and potions for laning. You can also buy a Vision Ward vs stealth or in organized play. Since he has good HP scaling (92 per level) but no armor outside of his souls, I recommend Sightstone for the wards and HP, Emblem of Valor for the armor/regen and Boots of Speed during early game. With 4 Sight Wards, you can keep 2 spots warded for the entire duration it will take you to passively generate enough gold to buy a Sightstone. Another possible early item is Kindlegem. If you'd like, there's also Philosopher's Stone and Kage's Lucky Pick. If you don't want anything they build into, I recommend against buying them - Having a completed item will be more useful during mid game, while having GP10 will make some of your items later cost less. If you are expecting a very long game, obviously GP10 will be better than rushing a completed item. Doran's Shield also helps with his lack of armor, works alongside Unyielding and Block , but doesn't build into anything.

shurelya's reverie
During mid game, work on Ruby Sightstone, Aegis of the Legion and Ionian Boots of Lucidity - more tanky stats, and cooldown reduction. Since you now have magic res from Aegis of the Legion, you can get something like Locket of the Iron Solari for more CDR. Later on, Shurelya's Reverie is useful for initiating or escaping. If the enemy team has a lot of mages, you can upgrade Aegis of the Legion to Runic Bulwark. For enchants, Enchantment: Captain is supportive, and Enchantment: Homeguard is useful if you're being sieged at your base.

There are many more items that can "work" on him. Melee range tank / debuff items like Abyssal Mask, Frozen Heart and Randuin's Omen can all work because his kit encourages you to pull people right into melee range and you will presumably take some damage back. Iceborn Gauntlet can work too if you have a lot of cooldown reduction already, but it's fairly expensive. Riot's in-game shop also recommends Sunfire Cape. It's an offensive option (especially alongside Abyssal Mask), but if I had a Giant's Belt I would rather make Randuin's Omen for the active/passive.

zeke's herald

shard of true ice
Normal vanilla support items also work. Zeke's Herald helps if your team has a bunch of AD champs. Mikael's Crucible can be used versus obnoxious crowd control teams. You could also combo the active with Dark Passage to save someone. Twin Shadows can be used for slowing people before using Death Sentence on them. There's also Shard of True Ice. On other ranged supports this is like a peeling tool or something to help your initiator, but Thresh could just self-cast it to keep people in position for his other skills.


I have like... practically nothing to say about his gameplay. The champion spotlight does an excellent job of showing laning behavior, how to use your skills to setup kills, helping your jungler gank, team work, and various skill combos.

There's only two things I would add:
  • 1. Death Sentence and Flay double as interrupts. This was kind of obvious though.
  • 2. When you hook a champion with Death Sentence, then hit the button again to jump toward them, you end up standing behind them. You can actually see this in the spotlight around 3:05 with the Soraka. With this swap, using Flay after Death Sentence can further separate someone from their team. This can also be used to force someone / knock someone into the walls of The Box. (They seemingly try to show this with Varus in the segment after, but Varus's Flash messes it up.)

General Supporting

For some info about general supporting, warding, etc, you can check out my basic support guide.


In conclusion, Riot's spotlight is pretty good. Watch it.

Thanks to tehAsian for his contributions / pointing out what wasn't in the Riot Spotlight as well.