Build Guide by OrangeHightower
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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.
This is a build that I have found to do me quite well as I have started playing and is in no means an expert guide by any extent of the imagination.
I have a very weak ISP so I am forced to play defensively to avoid lagging into towers, champions, etc. so this build up stresses solid defencive playing until mid to late game when you have the items needed to pour out loads of damage, where by then my connection has settled and I am able to play more comfortably. As well, as I am new to this game, all of my friends are already Level 30 and as a result, I am forced to play against people who are much better runed and mastered than me, causing increased hesitation and placing a larger emphasis on defense.
Once I am able to go into further detail, I am sure you will understand how Tristana makes an excellent early defensive/minion push character and late game carry.
9x Greater Mark of Desolation Greater Mark of Desolation
- Very easy to understand, probably the best for damage, even over +dmg.
9x Greater Seal of Malice
- High crit chance is very good, helps with getting minions down quickly, possibly proccing on the odd shot or two you take on a champion.
9x Greater Glyph of Malice
- Once again, high crit is very good. I have seen some people want to put magic defence in here or regen, I do not see much point and have never had mana issues, especially late game where you blow away most enemies very quickly and can then get 50 - 60 seconds of uninterrupted tower, barracks destroying.
3x Greater Quintessence of Desolation Greater Quintessence of Desolation
- Not much to be said here but once again, lots of damage is going to be done.
I do not do the standard 21-0-9 build because I have found it does not fit into my play-style, which is more about clearing minions, taking a defensive stance and ensuring my tower does not get destroyed.
I instead went 25-1-4, which is all about ensuring I stay alive, getting to and from my tower as quickly as possible to avoid missing last shots (gold) and experience.
As I use Tristana as a defensive tool early game and do not use her as offensively as others, I did not pick up on Cripple for Exhaust or go to the additional experience as Explosive Shot helps with last shotting weak minions in bunches, leading to lots of experience.
Overall, my masteries are similar to the 21-0-9 tree, except I have a preference for attack speed over the bonus experience, which means nothing come late game, and Heal over Exhaust.
As Tristana is a squishy character, I find heal helps keep me alive if I ever get into a bad two on one when someone comes from either side when I am playing mid, I will not usually burn this unless I know it is going to work or I know that it will help me do enough damage that an assisting teammate will get an avenging kill, plus give them additional health if they are in range.
Recall + Teleport works well with an item dependent character like Tristana, I usually will not recall unless I absolutely have to until my teleport CD is up so I can quickly make it back to my tower/minions to help them out and have them push up to the first mid tower.
A lot of people say that Tristana is a slow character, which I would agree with, though I find over all the other builds that mine happens to be the fastest and with my play style, she does not get caught as I do not use Rocket Jump very often, except for killing lots of weak mobs or escaping, which I rarely have to do as I am usually turtled behind teammates or with a tower. As such I have found no use for Ghost personally.
When the game starts the first item I buy is
Dagger. The bonus attack speed is nice, considering I choose Explosive Shot first. I will follow this up with Berserker's Greaves as the movement speed bonus is all I find I will ever need and I have had no problems in keeping up with opponents outside of Master Yi or when others use
The next item I will go after is Long Sword, which I then will get the Phage to an eventual Frozen Mallter, obviously I do this process in steps and will often be forced to buy the Giant's Belt separately, instead of in one go, unless we happen to either get some good downage of towers and I possibly pick up the odd kill or two.
By this point in the game, I am usually 1/0/2 in most of my games, having picked up the odd kill if I am fortunate enough to have done so, though usually I get an assist on a gank when someone takes the initiative to do so. I will then focus on the life-stealing and damage Hextech Gunblade, grabbing the Bilgewater Cutlass side before the Hextech Revolver portion.
By this point, I feel quite comfortable in moving around, doing damage, killing minions and taking on a single player without being concerned, unless I know they have been fed quite substantially.
At this point I'll try to pick up an additional Hextech Gunblade, an Infinity Edge and Phanton Dancer to round out my character, though I usually end with only getting up to my second Bilgewater Cutlass before the game is over. I am currently testing using the Black Cleaver and have found that this works incredibly well depending on who I am facing. Individuals such as Fiddlesticks and Ryze seem to be much more susceptible to the bonuses of Hextech Gunblade than The Black Cleaver.
I am also note sure if having an attack speed of 110% provides any benefit as I don't know if there is a cap on attack speed. If so, I would suggest getting a +dmg item of some sort instead of the The Black Cleaver.
I cannot stress the importance of last shotting mobs, the bonus gold you get is crucial to such an item dependent character as Tristana. Do NOT simply auto-attack. Look for mobs that are weaker and right click them to kill them off and get the bonus gold, you have just saved yourself 15 - 25 seconds of stagnant time with every kill. I usually finish most games with the most minion kills with around 150 - 200 minions slain in my ELO bracket, which sees levels 5 - 15's.
The better your items the better you do, the better you do the better your team does. Also, do not worry about being called greedy if you kill steal from other players, you will end up winning the game for your team most times, especially late game as you can outrange any character in the game, courtesy of Draw a Bead, and can take down a tower by yourself within four to six seconds when following minions.
As someone who plays very defensively, Explosive Shot and Rapid Fire are your main tools to farming minions and will ensure that you get them down before they reach your tower.
Stand away from your minions as best as you can to avoid AoE attacks if possible and always watch for enemy champions and MIA call outs. If someone is MIA stand back a little and surrender a little ground if need be to ensure your safety.
I am a heavily defensive player and tend to be rather stubborn. Always try to take mid if you can as Tristana as you will quite easily handle this lane and do not have to worry about being attacked from the side as much as you can progressively attack from further away.
If you are forced into taking a side lane, do not fret however, continue to focus on last shotting mobs as best as you can, using Rapid Fire whenever possible to burn minions down quickly. I do not like going out past mid-point as Tristana is a squishy character and unless I have someone like Rammus with me to use Puncturing Taunt Puncturing Taunt or a similar skill, as the bushes make it very difficult to ensure the safety of Tristana early game.
Support your teammate in every attempted gank as best as you can, using Rapid Fire if available and Explosive Shot if Fiddlestick Fiddlestick is amongst them.
If you see your teammate is going to die and you can the enemy away to save your teammate and try to Heal them if possible. If not possible and the enemy is weak, try to finish them off but be wary of possible 1v2's or worse.
Do NOT die needlessly chasing enemies at 50% or higher! This is a surefire way to get killed.
I have found early game solo fighting to be very difficult with Tristana as she is a squishy who needs range to fight comfortably. Rapid Fire is your primary go to move most of the time as it allows you to pour our lots of attacks very quickly. The passive of Explosive Shot works well if the enemy is silly enough to stand amongst his/her minions and eat the ability which will usually force them back, especially if they are a melee class.
Come late game, you can usually stand in front of most enemies, especially if they get distracted and blast away at them with Rapid Fire as your life steal will usually ensure you will be at 50 - 75% health before you blast them with Buster Shot.
Team fighting is all about positioning with Tristana, try to be in the back, unless you have multiple MIAS, in which case, the side furthest from an ambush location is best. I cannot stress this enough that you are squishy, multiple Ultimates will kill you quickly and it will not be slow. You'll die and that's it. When a team fight is initiated, auto-attack the squishiest individual you can and Rapid Fire. They will go down quickly and suddenly it is 5v4 in only a few seconds. At this point, continue to target the next squishiest target unless there is a noticeably weak tank target that you can Buster Shot to get the kill and down another enemy quickly. At all times, ensure you are not standing in AoE or are in the middle of the battle as you will get targeted and go down.
Pros / Cons
- Draw a Bead almost certainly ensures that you will be outranging your opponents 100% of the time, especially come end game.
- Rapid Fire is a wonderful attack speed steroid that you will always have with you.
- Rapid Fire + Explosive Shot makes you a wonderful minion killing machine and will ensure that you can solo lane effectively.
- Very strong late game presence.
- You are squishy, you will die if not played correctly. Tristana is not an easy character to play against very good players if you are never in the right position.
- Very position oriented.
- Weak early game.
Fighting Specific Characters
This is a section I will try to update as best as I can as I progress in the game. I have just started playing and thus am unfamiliar with many of the champions and thus cannot give much recommendation as to how to play against each champion at the moment but with time will add to this section.