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Kayle Build Guide by Unmasked Kayle

Top Unmasked Kayle's guide to Judgemental Toplaning

Top Unmasked Kayle's guide to Judgemental Toplaning

Updated on September 12, 2021
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League of Legends Build Guide Author Unmasked Kayle Build Guide By Unmasked Kayle 4,181 Views 0 Comments
4,181 Views 0 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author Unmasked Kayle Kayle Build Guide By Unmasked Kayle Updated on September 12, 2021
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Runes: Standard

1 2
Precision
Press the Attack
Triumph
Legend: Alacrity
Coup de Grace

Resolve
Revitalize
Bone Plating
Bonus:

+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+6 Armor

Spells:

1 2 3
Standard
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash

Flash

LoL Summoner Spell: Teleport

Teleport

LeagueSpy Logo
Top Lane
Ranked #39 in
Top Lane
Win 51%
Get More Stats
Top Lane Ranked #39 in
Top Lane
Win 51%
More Kayle Runes
>

Threats & Synergies

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Champion Build Guide

Unmasked Kayle's guide to Judgemental Toplaning

By Unmasked Kayle
Introduction
Hello, I am Unmasked Kayle / Kayle Boredom from the EUW server. This in-depth guide will teach you how to play Kayle and climb in low elo (Iron to low Platinum).

I played the game since the end of season 3 and Kayle was my first and current main. I am not an especially talented player: after placing Silver 2 in my first provisionals, it took me three seasons of intense play to reach Gold, and other three to climb to Platinum. I finally hit my goal last preseason, after putting a lot of quarantine hours into the game. Actually I am platinum on both my accounts and climbing low elo has finally become "easy". My first attempt took me more than one thousand games, and my last around 130 games. I learned a lot during this journey and I want to share it with you.
When to pick Kayle and when to DODGE
Kayle is a bad blind pick, having some borderline unplayable matchups like Irelia, Riven, Nasus. The best thing that you can do if you intend to play Kayle is ask for last pick or dodge in case you get a lane you cannot deal with.


Compositions with heavy CC are also worth dodging, as Kayle is very weak to stuns. Allied comps without any form of frontline are also hard to execute as Kayle. Finally, when analyzing your lane take junglers into consideration. If the enemy top + jungle can easily dive you, with champions like Elise, consider dodging as well.

Despite playing Kayle in most of my games, recently I started to add more champions to my pool to deal with hard counters. Shen is a good second pick, beign good into most bad Kayle matchups. Teemo and Mundo are also worth mentioning.
Game plan

As Kayle, your game plan is usually farming until level 16 as fast and safely as possible in order to get the most out of your Divine Ascent. Your champion is weak early, so it is a good idea to let your jungler know that you will not be able to assist toplane invades or fights around Rift Scuttler . In most situations, Kayle is better played as a weakside champion, meaning that you will not receive much jungle help, and will absorb pressure from the enemy jungler. After level 8-9 you can start farming gromp and blue, and after 11 you can farm all jungle camps.

Teleport is your most important spell, and you take it in almost every scenario. You use it to play safe and not miss out on farm even if you die. Its purpose is not making plays on the other side of the map, as doing so will put you behind, making you lose waves worth of gold and experience. Of course, you can decide to set yourself behind (for example teleporting to turn a dragon fight) to help your team get ahead and carry you. You can also go help your team if the enemy laner freezes on you and you cant break the freeze. Each situation must be evaluated on its own, but as a GENERAL RULE you never want to leave sidelane and keep farming as much as possible.
Lvl1
Before the game starts, evaluate your lane. Your options are:

1) Leash jungle (or fake leash) and let the enemy push
2) Push first wave



You want to let the enemy push whenever you cannot fight them early. You also want to push vs matchups that can freeze at level four, assuming they arrive late on the wave so you can build a big wave, crush on 2 or 3 and recall. This usually allows you to survive to at least level 6, and it is hardly punished in lower elos.

Keep in mind that Kayle's level 1 is extremely strong with a point in Starfire Spellblade, Press the Attack and combat secondaries (which is your standard build). Very few champions can win 1v1 vs Kayle at level 1. Champions that you cannot kill lvl 1 are Ignite users, ranged matchups and most bruisers.
Early Game (Laning Phase) and wave management
In the early game (levels 2-10) Kayle is a very weak champion. You lose most 2v2 scenarios, so you want to avoid fighting as much as possible. In my experience, explaining this to the jungler before the game starts will avoid a lot of flame from their part when they die 1v2 while you have no priority.

As Kayle, getting priority early is impossible in most matchups, on top of it being pointless because if you crush the wave into the enemy tower you want to recall or ward, and if you dont crush the wave the enemy will freeze it.

As Kayle you cannot really freeze either, especially pre-6, because you dont have enough waveclear to match an enemy shove. However, you can attempt to do so anyway by manipulating the wave. If they let you freeze, you can farm safely and poke down the enemy laner when he comes for csing, thus building an advantage. This plan doesn't change even if you die to the enemy and fall behind. Just farm and scale. If you fall VERY BEHIND and your team has another win condition you can even build support items and play for teamfight, but those are very rare scenarios.
Mid to Late Game
In the mid game you can start joining fights and making plays happen whenever your Divine Judgment is up. Do not sacrifice CS and experience for a dubious play and never coinflip teamfights. Just farm, join team for a fight when ult is up if an objective is being contested, go back to farming. You can farm jungle camps on the way so it's not a big loss in XP. As a general rule, NEVER FIGHT without your R up. It's the best value you bring to a teamfight before lategame. In the midgame, ulting a fed ally is usually the right move. Midgame for you ends when you reach level 16.
Splitpushing
Throughout the mid and late game you mostly want to splitpush to mirror your team's pressure and avoid your team getting 5v4'd while you keep farming. General splitpushing theory applies to Kayle too. Split on the OPPOSITE SIDE of the objective being contested. Do not die while splitting unless your team can win an advantage out of it. Be mindful of the game state, where the enemies are and who can meet your push. Establish a line of vision to avoid getting surprised. Remember that you win most 1v1 and many 1v2 if your spells are up, especially your ult and Flash, even before 16.
Lategame and Teamfighting
In the lategame you want to play as a backline carry and receive your team's support to deal damage. Kayle is a bad frontliner, so position accordingly. If your team has no frontline, building a Guardian Angel might be the correct choice. Your ult can be used on a fed allied diver like Yone for a juicy combo, but most of the times you will just ult yourself for self-peeling or to dive-bomb the enemy carry with R and flash. In the late game you keep splitpushing with your Teleport up on the opposite side of the map in relation to the objective being contested.
Building: Summoner Spells
Kayle can utilize effectively most summoner spells. However, Teleport is your best default choice for the toplane. In the early game, it allows you to minimize the amount of abuse you can receive from the enemies. In the lategame, it becomes a splitpushing tool. It is always worth bringing, even instead of Flash in some games.


Flash is a general use positioning spell that works well with Kayle. It is your second standard choice.
Ghost can replace Flash when facing slow-heavy champions like Mundo, as it denies part of their all-in potential. For general use, Ghost is a top tier teamfighting spell on Kayle, on top of it being on a shorter cooldown than Flash. In the lategame, Flash is more useful as it has more outplay potential.

Ignite (and all the other spells) are situational tools that Kayle can use to deal with specific situations. For example, Ignite is very good in the Darius matchup. Exhaust can be taken to deal with champions like Master Yi.
Building: General Itemization Thoughts
Kayle has an immense variety of possible builds, being able to use different types of stats effectively. She can build almost every item in the game and do well. For this reason, I encourage you to experiment yourself and try different things and see what works for you.

The STANDARD AP build, the most played and also the one the champion is balanced around, is an AP build that uses Nashor's Tooth and Riftmaker. As third item Rabadon's Deathcap is the usual choice, but situationally you might want a Zhonya's Hourglass or a Lich Bane.

The STANDARD AD build is a 3-crits-item build that uses 1 Mythic item (of choice) like Kraken Slayer, 1 Zeal Item (of choice) and as third item Infinity Edge, reaching 60% crit. It is less common than the AP version and at the moment, in my opinion, a weaker one. It will not be featured in this guide.

As a general rule, AP builds bring more utility and scale harder, while AD builds have an earlier powerspike.

Defensive itemization slows down your main build but is often necessary to deal with problematic situations. An early Cloth Armor or Null-Magic Mantle can turn the tides of a lane or make you survive the burst of the enemy fed assassin. To itemize against full AD or full AP teams, my standard choices are Plated Steelcaps + Zhonya's Hourglass and Wit's End + Mercury's Treads.

For boots, Berserker's Greaves are the standard choice for all (viable) Kayle builds. Other useful boots are Plated Steelcaps (ex Tabis) and Mercury's Treads, which should be selected when needed. For building defensive boots, follow the general guidelines for itemizing resistances on Kayle.


I will now mention some particularly useful items and how to use them inside an AP build.


Nashor's Tooth is the best item Kayle can build. It offers all stats that are extremely valuable early and scales perfectly into the late game. Finishing your Nashors turns you into a strong champion that the enemies must respect.

Riftmaker is a good choice for Kayle because the AP build cannot really get any self healing from other sources. Self healing on Kayle is extremely valuable for proper splitpushing, dueling and teamfighting.

Rabadon's Deathcap is a stat stick that amplifies the power of your build, turning you into a monster. It can be replaced by situational items or built later.
Wit's End is a fantastic first item that can also fit into an AP build (Wits into Nashors into Riftmaker) and can make you win a lot of otherwise hard AP lanes like Sylas. I always build Wit's End into an AP matchup unless the rest of the enemy team is full AD.
Executioner's Calling is the standard choice for Grevious Wounds on Kayle, even in AP builds. You mostly buy this item at first back to deal with champions like Vladimir, Sylas, Gwenn. The extra AD is very useful early compared to Oblivion Orb. If you happen to opt into Greavious Wounds later in the game, choose instead the AP version (Orb/Morellonomicon) for better scaling.
Guardian Angel is a premium teamfighting item. I like to build it 5th or 6th. It can be sold right after popping the passive in the super late game for extra value.
Void Staff is your only viable option for magic penetration. Use it to deal with tanks. It can replace Rabadon as a third item or follow it as a final item.
Ardent Censer, Moonstone Renewer and Staff of Flowing Water are items that you can build if you fall EXTREMELY behind and your team has another win condition (a fed carry that you can support for).
Bramble Vest, Chain Vest and Warden's Mail are very useful early choices to survive a hard AD matchup. You do not need to upgrade them to a full item and you can sell them later if needed.
Lich Bane is a cheaper Rabadon that gives movement speed. Build this if you're getting kited or if you're too poor to afford Rabadons.
Manamune is a strong item that can fit in both AP and AD builds. Once stacked it has absurd dps and it also brings some useful Ability Haste to reduce your ult CD. It works as a first item in an AP build (like Wit's End).
Zhonya's Hourglass is your standard choice to deal with problematic or fed champions. Its active can turn a teamfight. Generally it is better to use zhonya first and ult after, so to bait the enemy teams around you and hitting them with a strong AoE burst.


AP items not mentioned here are less viable. They include for example Banshee's Veil, Rylai's Crystal Scepter, Archangel's Staff. For mythics, Night Harvester and Luden's Tempest. This does not mean that you shouldn't consider them, it just means that Kayle cannot use those items well or that the situations in which they shine are not common.

Remember once again that Kayle can build everything and still do well, being a versatile champion.
Starting items
The STANDARD starts for toplane are:

1) Doran's Blade vs melee
2) Doran's Shield vs ranged

Kayle can start any item she wants. For example I like Doran's Ring into farm lanes like Garen, and Long Sword + Refillable Potion in matchups where I want Executioner's Calling on first back. Everything works. Just keep in mind that the stats on the Dorans items are very good. Corrupting Potion is a viable start, best paired into Inspiration secondaries but also on its own.
Kit
Passive - Divine Ascent

Kayle's first passive offers innate level-based scaling. It gives range and offensive stats. It is Kayle's more important spell and the one that brings the most value. Baiting a duel right before hitting your level 6, 11, 16 powerspikes can turn the fight in your favor.

Kayle's second passive gives you ramping damage over 5 stacks. At max stacks, you also gain movement speed. Just like Irelia, Kayle becomes way stronger when she has her passive stacked. One easy way to win lane in low elo is to stack your passive and just run the opponent down. A common mistake, is fighting without a stacked passive.


Q – Radiant Blast
A medium-range missile that slows the enemy and whose range gets extended upon hitting a target. It also reduces the enemy resistances with hybrid penetration. Finally, it has a 0.25s cast time, meaning that it stuns your champion for a quarter of a second upon cast. Use this spell to keep your distance from engaging enemies or to run down fleeing ones. Abuse the range extend for some easy plays, they never respect it, even in higher elos.

W – Divine Blessing
This two-targets heal + speed boost helps with kiting, setting up ganks and engaging. The speed is the important part, however the heal can be a precious sustain tool, especially in the laning phase.

E – Starfire Spellblade
With E's passive your auto attacks hit harder. The active is an execute that deals %missingHpDamage. One cheesy way to use this spell is using it to a target next to your intended target after level 11 to hit them with spell damage. This also works on towers. It is important to note that an E-empowered auto cannot be cancelled and it will hit the target even if they go out of range.

R – Divine Judgment
This ability will make or break your games. Using it on a priority target (a diver or a carry) in the correct situation can win a teamfight even if behind. After level 16 this spell is often better used on youself, especally if your team recognizes you as a win condition and supports you (with champions like Lulu, Yuumi, and so on). However if you see the window for a big juicy ult do not hesitate to ult a teammate, especially if you have Zhonya for yourself.
Ability order
The standard Kayle ability build is Max Q, then E, then W. The Q deals more damage early than E, allows for faster pushing and better poke, but is worse in extended trades where you put in a lot of autos.

My personal choices for spell order are a bit particular.

1) I often put a second point in W - Divine Blessing at level 4. Having way better base numbers than rank 1, and almost identical than rank 3, the second rank of Divine Blessing is extremely efficient to sustain in hard matchups. Its hp per mana ratio is just mathematically better.

2) I often only put two or three points in Q before starting to max E. This is efficient as it allows to reach E max at level 11. When I put an extra point in W at level 4 (frequently) I reach E max at level 12.
Vision
Setting correct vision for splitpushing and teamfighting can be vital for a squishy champion like Kayle. As a general rule, keep a LINE OF VISION whenever you are splitting and do not walk past the line. As a second rule, DO NOT FACECHEK. You are not Ornn, if you get hit by one CC you're dead. Keep this in mind. Providing vision is obviously a more complicated topic but there are dedicated guides to learn more about that.

Buying a Control Ward whenever you back is standard practice and you should be doing this regardless of the champion you're playing. The only exception for this rule in the mid and late game is if you finish a powerspike item or don't have space because you're full build. In the early game decisions can be more flexible depending on your needs. A Long Sword might have more value than a Control Ward in a close matchup.
Matchups
For matchups, check the dedicated section at the top of this guide or the Kaylemains guide. The Kaylemains guide was produced by users of the Kaylemains discord, including me (although I did almost nothing). Its matchup description, thought for high elo (Diamond+) differs from this guide. For example, Camille and Tryndamere are considered harder in that guide than they are in this, because those matchups get harder in higher elos. This guide's matchup section is aimed at a high Gold level of gameplay. You can check out the Kaylemains guide here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1tggHs3tJbG9JshQC_NKjmxMcuhWlAQsvqXg6Ow4fN3w/edit#gid=545801058
EXTRA: Kayle's limited Skins
This section is "political" and is not related to learning Kayle. Feel free to skip it if you are not interested in the topic.
As you might know, Kayle's Silver and Judgement skins are not available for purchase. Your action can make a difference to bring those skins back. This is my original post on the Kaylemains reddit explaining what you can do to convince Riot to re-release them. The post got removed because it clashed with the subreddit's rules (mentioning the limited skins in posts is not allowed). After writing the guide I thought that this can be the correct place to post it again. Thanks for your support!




FAQ ABOUT KAYLE’S LIMITED SKINS

I send a ticket every time MyShop is up to ask for the re-release of those skins. You can do that too if you want your feedback to be heard, and dedicated Kayle OTP like me and you to have full access to their champion’s cosmetic items. The following FAQ should answer your questions about this issue.

1Q) As you are probably aware, Riot August said that Silver Kayle cannot be re-released due to it having originally been advertised as an EXCLUSIVE to the pre-order bundle for the digital edition of the game. Then why do you insist? I thought there were lEgAl rEaSoNs that prevent the re-release of Silver Kayle. Are you ignoring the lEgAl rEaSoNs? I think you should be aware of the lEgAl rEaSoNs.
1A) Thanks for asking! I am indeed aware of the legal intricacies surrounding this topic. In my opinion, there are two rather persuasive counter-arguments:
1A1) Appealing to "legal expenses" in the case of a multi-national multi-billionaire (2021 net worth: 25 billion dollars) corporation based in China sounds like a bit of a stretch. Riot/Tencent spends millionary budgets on advertising alone. Legal expenses are probably not at the first place when it comes to running a marketing choice through their decision-making flowchart. We believe that despite the legal liability, a re-release of those skins would look like a concrete possibility when the image return would outweigh the costs. In other words, when the bad publicity (you broke your promise! noobs!) would be surpassed by the good publicity (you republished an almost extinct skin that nobody has! thanks!).
1A2) However, you might not be satisfied by the previous explanation. It is in fact purely conjectural. There is a more concrete reason that makes the re-release of Silver Kayle possible: other previously-limited skins have already been re-released. PAX Sivir, Championship Riven, Urfwick, Grey Warwick and Medieval Twitch. Some of them have returned in the original form (Grey Warwick, Medieval Twitch). In the case of the most "problematic" skins, legally or otherwise, Riot smartly decided to create a new version of them to circumvent the "impossible to release" clause. Hence Championship Riven 2016, Neo-PAX Sivir and so on. Despite looking carefully, we see no reason why this could not happen with Silver Kayle. Going this route would also allow the original owners of the skins to retain its rarity and value.

2Q) Judgement Kayle was a RANKED REWARD, similar to the VICTORIOUS SKINS. If the Victorious Skins aren't coming back, why should Judgement Kayle?
2A) Judgement Kayle isn't listed among the Victorious Skins in Riot's [Guide to Legacy and Limited Skins](https://support-leagueoflegends.riotgames.com/hc/en-us/articles/201752944-Guide-to-Legacy-and-Limited-Skins). It is however present among the Achievement Skins, for which it is said that "there are no plans to make them available by other means". In other words, Riot doesn't plan on re-releasing those skins, but, as my conversation with Riot Support shows, "they will be back if there is a good opportunity to do so in a special event!" (Riot Luffy). This is why it's more important than ever to have our voice heard and convince Riot that we want those skins back! While there are no guarantees of our success, our action, YOUR action can make a difference and convince Riot that this is the right moment to reopen the limited skins' vault.

3Q) But Unmasked Kayle, isn't this bRiGaDinG? Aren't you asking us to spam Riot Support with our petty requests?
3A) We believe that "brigading" implies a malicious intent. We just want to submit our feedback to have the developers and the people in charge of skins and cosmetic releases to hear our voice. I asked the Support if I could solicit other people's feedback and they were very open and receptive about it. You can read our conversation in Annex 2.

4Q) You convinced me! How do I take part in your campaign?
4A) Submit a ticket at Riot Support in the category “I am not satisfied about MyShop personalized offers” explaining that you are a Kayle main/OTP and would really like to have those skins back. Link this discussion and/or credit me if you want so they understand it's a whole community asking for it!

5Q) Why you have no life? Don't you ever go out? Get some friends maybe? Loser? Besides you sound like a prick. I hate your guts. I hate you, I HATE YOUUU.
5A) UwU

Here are my conversation with Riot Support.

Annex 1: https://ibb.co/ZKttjXM
Annex 2: https://ibb.co/pWZc0vF

Kind Regards,
Unmasked Kayle / Kayle Boredom
Conclusions & Changelog
I had fun writing this guide. It turned out shorter than I expected. I intend to keep expanding it in the future with more in-depth discussion of specific topics.

Feel free to send your feedback UwU

CHANGELOG

12 September 2021 - Guide published
11 September 2021 - Guide creation

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