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Varus Build Guide by C9Sneaky

Not Updated For Current Season

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 C9Sneaky


C9Sneaky Last updated on February 12, 2015
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ADC Role
Ranked #13 in
ADC Role
Win 47%
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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

Legendary Guardian

Defense: 9


Utility: 0

Threats to Varus with this build

Show all
Threat Champion Notes
Ezreal Stay behind creeps and hit your Piercing Arrow. Very simple. He can dodge your abilities like most but can't really kill you. Stay away from bushes when he's 6.
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Hi, I'm Sneaky from Cloud 9! This is my guide that should include tips on how to build and play Varus ^_^. Varus is a strong laner and very good team fighter. His poke is insane when he's fed and his ult is massive crowd control when the enemy stacks up. He works well in most team comps but has problems with getting initiated on since he has no escapes.

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Pros & Cons

+ High CC
+ Long-ranged poke
+ Lots of damage
+ Can kill tanks pretty quickly due to his Blighted Quiver

- No escape
- Attack speed steroid is limited to getting kills outside of lane

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Summoner Spells

Heal + Flash
Cleanse + Flash
Exhaust + Flash
Against a Twisted Fate taking Cleanse can really help you survive his post level 6 ganks. If you are able to Cleanse his Gold Card you should be able to survive the gank without too much of an issue. Exhaust can be useful against a heavy assassin team like Zed and Kha'Zix. Taking Exhaust will help you survive their burst easier but generally Heal is a better overall summoner spell for carries.

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21/9/0 is the best mastery setup for Varus. He can't really make good use of Expose Weakness or Spell Weaving / Blade Weaving so I don't take those. Dangerous Game is amazing and Frenzy is necessary on champions that you build more than 10% crit on.

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Attack damage marks give strong early game stats and are more efficient than other runes.
Armor seals are good because you'll be taking a lot of physical damage from minions and autoattacks early game.
Magic Resist glyphs are used to mitigate harass from their support.
Attack speed quints are really efficient compared to other runes and give you a strong mix of offensive stats when combined with attack damage marks.

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(Passive) Living Vengeance
Attack speed steroid that activates off of minion and champion kills/assists. It's very good in the laning phase since it makes last hitting so much easier with a permanent steroid. The only problem is in a actual fight, this isn't active unless you just killed a creep or an enemy.

(Q) Piercing Arrow
Cooldown: 16/14/12/10/8 seconds
Your prime source of damage outside of auto attacks. You're basically going to be spamming this spell very often. Don't use it every time it's off cooldown but use it enough to where you're losing mana.

The best way to use this in laning phase is to charge it up and hold it until nearly the last second so that the enemy will try their hardest to dodge before you even throw it. They will most likely put themselves in a position where they can't even dodge it anymore and you get a free hit out of it.

The main targets you want to hit with this are squishy backline people. Hitting two in a row is going to chunk them really hard to a point where they can barely fight anymore. Three could probably kill them or make them have to back. Make sure to keep going for the same guy since spreading out the poke damage is not very useful.

Always try to fully charge this unless its late game with full build. I never shoot it instantly unless it's going to kill them from the smaller amount of damage that it does.

At about level 9+ a nice trick is to stand at max range of this ability and then shoot at the enemy farming creeps. They won't be able to react to it and dodge since it doesn't show on their screen.

(W) Blighted Quiver
Extra damage on every auto attack and stacking passive that gets activated on another ability hitting. This is most effective when you weave your abilities by using one after every three auto attacks. It's best used on dragon that way and not players since auto attacking three times in a row is a lot when you aren't building attack speed.

(E) Hail of Arrows
Cooldown: 18/16/14/12/10 seconds
Use this to activate your W on a target with three stacks, to last hit multiple creeps, stop someones regen and deal damage, or slow someone either trying to escape or initiate onto you. Do not spam this in lane anymore. This is purely a last resort for damage or for the utility it brings when needed. It doesn't do that much damage and the mana is better spent on Piercing Arrow.

(R) Chain of Corruption
Cooldown: 100/90/80 seconds
This is your initiation tool. Throw this at the enemy to lock them down for a free hit of your Piercing Arrow directly after. It will do insane damage to them. It can also be used as a mass CC ability in a teamfight or just to stop someone from chasing you.

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Skilling Order





Taking 1 point in each skill by level 3 is the best on Varus because you can chain up his abilities. You need to land your Q or E to proc your W stacks. You can however take 2 points into Q at level 3 which will give you a really strong harass.

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Starting Items
Doran's Blade is basically the only starting item option available. It gives you great early game stats and sustain to help you trade and farm easier. The Warding Totem is a key to your early game as well. You should put this down at 1:30 either in the Tri brush if you're on blue side or over the wall into the river brush if you're purple side.
Early Game
First buy:
If 1550g+: B. F. Sword, 2 Health Potion, 1 Mana Potion
If 1240g+: Pickaxe, Doran's Blade, 2 Health Potion, 1 Mana Potion
If 875g+: Pickaxe, 2 Health Potion, 1 Mana Potion
If 440g+: Doran's Blade, 2 Health Potion, 1 Mana Potion

Mid Game
Infinity Edge is the first choice of item with the changes to The Bloodthirster. You get the most AD out of this item and it help you scale very well. Always buy B. F. Sword on your first back if you can as it will be the most AD you can get on your first recall. If you can't afford it you can always get the Pickaxe first.

IE alone is not a very strong item but once you have your core item, Statikk Shiv, is when you are really strong. The attack speed and crit from Shiv makes the best out of your IE and takes advantage of the bonus crit damage.

Late Game
The 3rd item can be either The Bloodthirster or Last Whisper. In most scenarios Last Whisper should be the 3rd item as your the enemy should should be building armor by now. If they are not building armor, The The Bloodthirster is a really good item on Varus. The reason that it's better than Blade of the Ruined King is that Varus has really high AD values on his abilities and he can benefit more from just having more AD.
Situational Items
Unless you're getting crushed by magic damage in which case if the damage you're taking is cleanse-able then build Mercurial Scimitar. If it's not then buy Banshee's Veil.

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How to play Varus

(Early Game)
You basically want to last hit and hit people with Piercing Arrow as much as possible. Force them into a bad spot and get the free Piercing Arrow off.

Once you hit 6 you can probably just use Chain of Corruption onto them and kill them if it lands. The only counter play they can have is cleansing and getting out. Try to make sure that when you're aiming your Piercing Arrow in the first few levels that you hit creeps as well as the enemy champion so that in the case that they dodge it you still push the lane.

A trick I used for a while was getting a ward up on the enemy buffs and then sitting in the dragon/baron pits to snipe out their buff as they're doing it. All junglers never smited unless they didn't receive a leash from their teammates, resulting in a easy buff steal level one! It's a lot harder to do now though since they all Smite the buff now. The only way it'll work is if they miscalculate it or if they smite early. Start charging the arrow at around 750 life on the buff and then shoot about 50 above smiting range. If they mess up you'll get it. If they don't oh well, you tried!

(Mid Game)
Push waves with Piercing Arrow and target squishies with it. Keep hitting the same target and they'll have to back for free objective control or a free team fight win.

You should have Infinity Edge and Statikk Shiv at this point while building up to The Bloodthirster or Last Whisper.

Be careful around the enemy carries and jungler since you don't have an escape. Make sure to go to lanes where you can either farm easily and not die or beat the opponent 1v1. Push on them hard with Piercing Arrow and take their turret.

(Late Game)
You'll have your full build by this time or really close to it. Once you have reached 3+ items you'll do insane damage to everybody. Poke down squishies!!!!!!! Stick with your team and group for objectives. You aren't good at split pushing so make sure you're almost never alone.

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Well I think that's it. Thanks for checking out my guide!! Leave anything you think I should expand on in the comments or adjustments if you want. I'll look at all of them and fix it up!

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