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Vladimir Build Guide by Dr Eggmund


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League of Legends Build Guide Author Dr Eggmund

Vladimir《Season 8.1》: The Ultimate Carry Guide

Dr Eggmund Last updated on January 20, 2018
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Cheat Sheet

The Crimson Reaper

Vladimir Build

Inspiration
LoL Path: Inspiration
LoL Rune: Unsealed Spellbook
Unsealed Spellbook
LoL Rune: Perfect Timing
Perfect Timing
LoL Rune: Magical Footwear
Magical Footwear
LoL Rune: Cosmic Insight
Cosmic Insight

Sorcery
LoL Path: Sorcery
LoL Rune: Celerity
Celerity
LoL Rune: Scorch
Scorch
Bonus:

+20% Potion and Elixir Duration and +13 Attack Damage or +22 Ability Power, adaptive

LeagueSpy Logo
Middle Lane
Ranked #12 in
Middle Lane
Win 52%
Get More Stats

Ability Sequence

1
4
5
7
9
Ability Key Q
3
14
15
17
18
Ability Key W
2
8
10
12
13
Ability Key E
6
11
16
Ability Key R


Threats to Vladimir with this build

Threat
Low
High
Show all
Threat Champion Notes
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Fizz Feels great when you destroy a Fizz as any champ and Vladimir should be great against him. Pool his Ult to deny his all in and poke fizz with Qs early to pressure him and deny him farm. Try all ining at 6 however i reccomend you get fizz to a lower health than most other champions or bait out his E, as this will prevent him from denying your damage. Build the usual protobelt, and buy sorcerer's to poke him even more for the squirt he is.
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Poppy Poppy was the only reason people picked Vladimir top lane at one point because he can farm without being pressured and get to late game with complete ease. Take advantage of your ranged abilities and bully her out lane.
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Shen This is a farming lane, except you have the upper hand. He does %AP DAMAGE AND NOT AD So don't rush armour like seeker's against him. Poke standardly and pool his dash if you are in danger.
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Introduction


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As of January 11th 2018
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Hello! And welcome to my guide for Vladimir! Whether you are a veteran to the game or just picking it up, this guide is for you and for all things about Vladimir. Firstly if you have any constructive feedback or any questions let me know in the discussion section it is very appreciated for improvement to this guide.

My name is Dr Eggmund, A Vladimir Main with over 270,000 Mastery Points currently a Gold Player, on the Oceania Server. I've made this guide to share my favourite champion in the game with my thoughts, opinions and views on how he is potentially the most devastating champion and evidently feared by others on the Rift. Other Vladimir mains might disagree that he isn't a meta champion since his rework a long time ago. But It is in my beliefs that he is possibly one of the best top and especially mid laners as of present.

Moving on I picked up Vladimir in mid season 6, a time in my opinion where Vladimir was fairly weak as a champion to climb in Solo queue. I believe that Vladimir is an easy champion to get your head around but very difficult to master his kit. This was one of the main reasons why I put this champion aside for a while and really made me rethink why I bought this champion to begin with. However through experience and experimentation Vladimir can be a very rewarding champion to learn and master.

Furthermore, Vladimir has never been better than he is currently. I started playing ranked with only 2 months till season 7's end (around September 2017). However in my first season of ranked I climbed From Silver 4 all the way to Gold 1 in under a month and a half with a 62% Win Rate On Vladimir. If I had started earlier Platinum would have easily been achievable. With buffs in the early season and with the uproar around burst damage mid laners there has never been a better time to play Vladimir. So I have left my former Jayce maining self behind and swapped to my new passion which is destroying every one of my opponents with the Blood Lord. Now that we have my background out of the way let's move on to the strengths and weaknesses of The Hemomancer.
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Pros / Cons

Pros


+ Great Sustain with Transfusion
+ Top Tier Late Game Carries
+ Great Escape Tool with Sanguine Pool
+ Shines In Team Fights
+ Great Engage in Teamfights
+ Amazing AoE attack with Tides of Blood
+ Uses HP instead of Mana
+ Scales Well with AP items

Vladimir's uniqueness is what makes him shine in the spotlight. Having the ability a heal for half your abilities is what makes fighting a Vladimir so frustrating. Playing passive and poking your enemy laner when the time is right is the key to exceeding in the mid to late game as Vladimir.
Cons


- Hard to farm with early (in terms of AD)
- Easy kit, hard to master
- Early game can be a struggle for newcomers
- Lack of mobility
- High cooldowns
- Has no hard crowd control
- Horrible Puns (To be honest)
- Poorly made 1820 RP Skin

Vladimir's biggest weaknesses are his high cooldowns and his lack of crowd control. This makes Vladimir an easy champion to stick to for the enemy laner. Learning to farm and avoiding poke early whilst providing some yourself is key to winning early as Vladimir.

To further go into detail on Vladimir's cons champions with gap closers like Jax or Xin Zhao are usually the counters to Vlad as you have no Crowd Control do disengage the fight. So you need to make sure that you are respecting your laner and not getting to close to them early on, through experience you'll learn what you can and get away with early game and especially late game. Playing risky on Vladimir is what makes him so beneficial. If you have your team surrounding you with Sanguine Pool and possibly Zhonya's Hourglass you can deal damage whilst not taking any to begin with.

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When Is Vladimir A Good Choice?


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Vladimir will always be a decent or strong champion for your team in the top lane or mid lane depending on your ability to play him. Vladimir can be your teams AP-Carry in team fights, he can be your Tanky-Mage due to his passive if your team is looking for a brick wall that constantly keeps rejuvenating and finally the mixture of both which best suits Vladimir and my playstyle for him.

Specifically speaking Vladimir is a great choice when the enemy team chooses a high burst laner against you, this favours Vlad due to his Sanguine Pool being able to negate all quick burst damage combos and all in's by the the enemy laner. Once their combos are all gone you have free canvas to work with and you can use all your high damaging abilities to your full use

A big factor that works into winning your lane as Vlad, long and even trades with the enemy will work in your favour as you have brilliant sustain with item combos such as The Dark Seal and Refillable Potion. Every time you back you should be leaving a bit of gold for some health pots just to piss off your lane opponent by how annoying and unkillable you are.


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Abilities & Skill Sequence

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

PASSIVE
Crimson Pact (Passive): This ability means that the more health that you have the more ability power you have. Whilst visa-versa the more ability power you have the more health you gain, what kind of backwards a*s s**t is this?
This passive is what makes so many builds work on Vladimir, you can build him to be an AP Mage (my preferred choice), a mixture of both (how he's regularly built), or a full sustain tank.

Q
Transfusion (Q): Vladimir's bread and butter ability, an ability that won't be changed as its what makes Vladimir, Vladimir. The ability to heal in lane from minions or champions whilst dealing decent damage is a super reliable ability. Plus once you have two stacks of transfusion it activates Crimson Rush which heals you and also deals almost double damage to a regular Q. Maxing this ability first assures us that we gain more sustain and also good ranged poke to zone enemy champions.

W
Sanguine Pool (W): Sanguine Pool is what makes Vladimir so annoying to the enemy team, it's essentially a free Zhonya's Hourglass which can slow enemies plus remain invulnerable for a few moments. It's only weakness is that it uses 20% of your current health which is a lot especially in the early game so you have to be careful and smart about how you use it as it has a really high cooldown early game. However if you use it correctly you will dodge lots of damage in a teamfight and the 20% would seem like nothing. We max this ability last as it doesn't provide much damage to Vlad's kit.

E
Tides Of Blood (E): Tides Of Blood is ridiculously good in teamfight situations as with a full AP build you can devastate enemies teams with it. Tides Of Blood is an Area of Effect ability which deals damage to all within the circle hitting targets closest to Vladimir (meaning it doesn't pierce through minions). We max this ability second as it provides great damage like Transfusion but doesn't give us any sustain so it is not as effective to max this ability first.
R
Hemoplague (R): Hemoplague just adds to Vladimir's AOE arsenal, along with tides of blood you deal loads of damage when the ultimate procs. It also provides utility for the team as well as all enemies who are hit with Hemoplague are dealt an extra 10% damage from your teams abilities which can mean the difference in teamfights. Finally when your ult procs you deal to damage to all enemies affected after a few seconds and heal depending on how many champions were affected. We max this ability whenever possible (Levels: 6, 11 & 16)

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How To Combo With Vladimir

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Poking In Lane
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-->

Charge E --> Release --> Empowered Q --> Reset
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-->-->

Q --> Q --> EMPOWERED Q --> Try and pressure your enemy with your empowered Q as much as possible

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All In Combo

--> -->-->-->-->

Charge E --> Flash --> R --> Release E --> Empowered Q (Preferably) --> Sanguine Pool (To dodge damage from the enemy) --> Ultimate Procs (Plus Ignite if possible)

This is my main all In combo in lane and in teamfights. I would recommend doing this combo when trying to initiate a team fight or in lane when your mid laner is 3/5 or less hp. This combo is reliable when tower diving the enemy and is a MUST learn if wanting to win as Vladimir. This combo is tricky to learn and sorta uncomfortable at first but practice makes perfect after all and with the new practice tool it makes it a lot easier to learn now.

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My Personal Tips
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First of all, In the laning phase I rarely use the first combo above other than when I know I can kill the enemy laner due to:
1. E and W uses lots of your HP bar early game, and...
2. Vladimir doesn't deal much damage early game compared to other mid laners (excluding his empowered q).

My personal advice in laning is to focus on farm a majority of the time and poke with Q when possible. Save your W for when getting ganked by the enemy jungler (it's a life saver and it uses to much health in the early game to use impracticably) and wait for level 6 to see if you can all in your opponent with my recommended combo.
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What Keystone Do I Take For Pre-Season?

My Preffered Keystone Ordered From Favourite To Least Favourite
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Unsealed Spellbook
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This is the keystone that many Vladimir players have turned to. It may not seem useful at first but with Ionian Boots of Lucidity in our build and Cosmic Insight in our Inspiration Runes set, we gain a grand total of 40%. This means that our Flash is on a 180 second cooldown and other spells like Ignite or Ghost will be reduced to under 120 seconds. This rune also allows us the ability to swap out summoner spells. So we can take our Ignite for early game laning and kill pressure and once we get to teamfights we can swap in Ghost to chase down the enemy and deal your explosive AOE damage. This rune is amazing and even in the top lane our Teleport is on a reduced cooldown meaning more potential for Teleport ganks and helping your team.
Summon Aery
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Essentially Deathfire Touch from the previous seasons however It's alot better. It is very annoying for the enemy when your Transfusion has extra damage early game. Champions like Zed & Talon or any kind of melee ranged mid laner will really struggle to take the extra poke in the early game. This is my preference for a keystone in the Sorcery Tree, it may not be as good as it was on release and it falls off late game for any champion. But there's no doubt that it is very good keystone early game and it will help Vlad pressure enemy laners and gain gold advantages.
Phase Rush
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Phase Rush my 2nd preffered keystone in the Sorcery Tree this preseason as Vlad lacks mobility and with Ghost being quite a weak summoner in the early game Phase Rush is useful for Vladimir in the mid/top lane. Very easy to proc with three abilities such as Tides of Blood into Transfusion then auto. In lane this quick combo allows us to keep punishing our opponents and dodge skillshots with some easy to create movement speed giving Vladimir that gap closer which he needs (excluding Hextech Protobelt-01). It's not as good as Stormraider's Surge as it was once called in my P.O.V, however it's even easier to proc on Vladimir early game so if you see a use in it give it a go.
Electrocute
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Another option you might take on Vladimir with the changes to runes and masteries. Like Phase Rush, Electrocute is a keystone that takes three unique attacks in order to activate it's passive ability. Similar to Thunderlord's Decree in previous seasons, when the passive activates you damage your opponent with an extra lightning bolt of damage, however Electrocute can only be activated if you use three unique attacks like mentioned previously. This means champions with abilities in particular such as Cannon Barrage on Gangplank and several other champions aren't as effective as this is one ability. Despite the change to proc this keystone Vladimir can easily proc Electrocute with his basic combo of Tides of Blood, Transfusion, Auto Attack. Three unique attacks which causes Vladimir to obtain a bolt (literally) of free damage for extra burst.
Arcane Comet
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A decent option for Vladimir. Essentially to summarise this keystone if you damage an enemy champion when this keystone is off of cooldown you hurl a mini Xerath Ultimate at the champion which does some damage. Of course this has to land on the enemy and if they are prepared this keystone can mean nothing. That's the unreliable factor in Arcane Comet which leans me towards other keystones however I can get a grasp of why people would take this, as it provides some decent extra damage when poking.

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FOUR Vladimir Rune Pages: Unsealed Spellbook & Summon Aery

Runes That I Take On Vladimir
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Throughout Pre-Season i've experimented many rune pages and so far these 4 rune pages are my optimal choices thus-far, these runes are focused in being the best way to maximise Vladimir's potential. 2 for my favourite Rune as of now Unsealed Spellbook and one for my previous but a favourite still to many Vladimir players Summon Aery.

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Starting off my favourite selection for Vladimir Going down the Inspiration Tree.

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Unsealed Spellbook Rune Pages
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Inspiration
Unsealed Spellbook: I went into further detail on this in my "What Keystone Do I Take" section make sure to check it out if you haven't but to summarise you gain an extra 25% cooldown on your summoner spells which doesn't seem like much until you combine it with Ionian Boots of Lucidity and Cosmic Insight, you also gain the ability to swap out summoner spells for others.
1 1 Perfect Timing: A free Zhonya's Hourglass passive early in the game? Yes please! This is awesome to lane with it can save your butt in so many situations. Also it saves us some gold as well, as we build into Zhonya's Hourglass later in the game we save 300 gold which can be crucial. Perfect timing is essential for any mid-laner or top-laner going into the Inspiration tree.
1 1 Magical Footwear: Once again similar to my reasonings in taking the Perfect Timing route we save money on our boots depending on the amount of takedowns or kills if you will before 10 minutes. Each kill grants us a 50 gold deduction which isn't much but we also receive free 300 gold boots at 10 minutes which is the perfect time to be normally purchasing such an item. Magical footwear will save gold and potentially save even more depending on how fed you get.
1 1 Cosmic Insight: Cosmic Insight is similar to Intelligence from previous seasons but is a little better in Season 8 with the inclusion of Unsealed Spellbook, Our combo of Cosmic Insight, Unsealed Spellbook and Ionian Boots of Lucidity grants us 40% summoner spell cooldowns which means we can suprise our enemies with flash all in's and be more mobile and versatile around the map. You can honestly flash and not have to care as it will be up in only 3 minutes time! Must take if you are going down the Inspiration path.
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Sorcery
Celerity: Celerity is in my opinion a must have on Vladimir, it gives him 3% extra base movement speed which is similar to having Greater Quintessences Of Movement Speed]] in previous seasons. Vladimir needs this base movement speed to dodge skillshot based champions in the early game. Without boots Vladimir is immobile as all hell and it really helps out. Plus once you swap into your Ghost summoner spell with Unsealed Spellbook in team fight phase of the match. Using ghost will trigger Celerity's ability in which you gain extra AD and AP damage based on Vladimir's current movement speed. It also means that a combination of Tides of Blood and Sanguine Pool (which gives you 30% extra movement speed when activated) will deal extra damage on Tides Of Blood compared to just using it by itself. Other Vladimir players may disagree but try it out and see how you like it cause I do.
1 1 Scorch: Scorch is really good on any AP champion going into the Sorcery tree as it provides our auto attacks a bit more Umph dealing between 20-60 damage based on level and can be reused again only after 20 seconds. This rune is crucial to Vladimir's early game presence as it's really effective when trying to win dominance over the lane and your opponent. With a little extra damage Vladimir's early game can be given a boost to help carry into the mid-late game.

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And this is my 2nd preference when going down the Inspiration Tree where we run a combination of Transcendence and Gathering Storm to focus on bettering Vladimir's late game.

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Inspiration
Unsealed Spellbook: I went into further detail on this in my "What Keystone Do I Take" section make sure to check it out if you haven't but to summarise you gain an extra 25% cooldown on your summoner spells which doesn't seem like much until you combine it with Ionian Boots of Lucidity and Cosmic Insight, you also gain the ability to swap out summoner spells for others.
1 1 Perfect Timing: A free Zhonya's Hourglass passive early in the game? Yes please! This is awesome to lane with it can save your butt in so many situations. Also it saves us some gold as well, as we build into Zhonya's Hourglass later in the game we save 300 gold which can be crucial. Perfect timing is essential for any mid-laner or top-laner going into the Inspiration tree.
1 1 Magical Footwear: Once again similar to my reasonings in taking the Perfect Timing route we save money on our boots depending on the amount of takedowns or kills if you will before 10 minutes. Each kill grants us a 50 gold deduction which isn't much but we also receive free 300 gold boots at 10 minutes which is the perfect time to be normally purchasing such an item. Magical footwear will save gold and potentially save even more depending on how fed you get.
1 1 Cosmic Insight: Cosmic Insight is similar to Intelligence from previous seasons but is a little better in Season 8 with the inclusion of Unsealed Spellbook, Our combo of Cosmic Insight, Unsealed Spellbook and Ionian Boots of Lucidity grants us 40% summoner spell cooldowns which means we can suprise our enemies with flash all in's and be more mobile and versatile around the map. You can honestly flash and not have to care as it will be up in only 3 minutes time! Must take if you are going down the Inspiration path.
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Sorcery
Transcendence: With Transcendence on board Vladimir can increase his Cooldown Reduction by another 10% if he need's it. There's not much more to explain. If you don't have 40/45 % cooldown reduction and you feel that you don't want to buy any more items with cooldown reduction passives to fill this gap. Then maybe try Transcendence out it may be beneficial.
1 1 Gathering Storm: For an eternity Vladimir is depicted as a champion whose late game potential is feared as one of the most threatening. This is summarised due to his low cooldowns for his abilities increasing his healing and doing damage in a matter of seconds in the late game, this is mainly due to the insane output of Ability Power Damage from particularly Transfusion and Tides of Blood. So with Gathering Storm you increase your AP output the longer the game goes for, this is ridiculously good and it fits Vladimir with his reputation as a Late Game Carry. when I saw this rune for the first time I knew what champion It was perfect for and this will give make Vladimir's late game even more terrifying to face against.

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Now this was previously my favourite rune page and currently my recommended preference for Vladimir when not taking Unsealed Spellbook, make sure you test out any of these two Summon Aery pages out because I know it is very viable especially when playing Vladimir mid lane, and depending on your own preference you may enjoy it more than I do and utilise it better than others do.

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Summon Aery Rune Pages


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Sorcery
Summon Aery: I went into further detail on this in my "What Keystone Do I Take" section but to summarise you deal some extra damage on auto attack or on an ability which is super good for aggressing your laner with Vladimir. Plus as Vladimir lacks the early game damage arguably to other mid or top laners this really helps.
1 1 The Ultimate Hat: Now I brought this conclusion by basing it by our other options in this tier of runes. We have Nullifying Orb which gives us a magic damage shield at low health which is fairly useful, then we have Manaflow Band which is useless as Vladimir uses no Man or Energy. So The Ultimate Hat is the superior choice as with Hemoplague being essential in team-fighting and All-In Attempts. Stacking up cooldown for your ultimate for every time you press R is brilliant for having your awesome Ultimate/R up more often for fights.
1 1 Celerity: Celerity is in my opinion a must have on Vladimir, it gives him 3% extra base movement speed which is similar to having Greater Quintessences Of Movement Speed]] in previous seasons. Vladimir needs this base movement speed to dodge skillshot based champions in the early game. Without boots Vladimir is immobile as all hell and it really helps out. Plus once you swap into your Ghost summoner spell with Unsealed Spellbook in team fight phase of the match. Using ghost will trigger Celerity's ability in which you gain extra AD and AP damage based on Vladimir's current movement speed. It also means that a combination of Tides of Blood and Sanguine Pool (which gives you 30% extra movement speed when activated) will deal extra damage on Tides Of Blood compared to just using it by itself. Other Vladimir players may disagree but try it out and see how you like it cause I do.
1 1 Scorch: Scorch is really good on any AP champion going into the Sorcery tree as it provides our auto attacks a bit more Umph dealing between 20-60 damage based on level and can be reused again only after 20 seconds. This rune is crucial to Vladimir's early game presence as it's really effective when trying to win dominance over the lane and your opponent. With a little extra damage Vladimir's early game can be given a boost to help carry into the mid-late game.
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Domination
Taste Of Blood: Taste of Blood has great use on Vladimir, whilst he has early game sustain from his Q Transfusion other laners who have that better early game presence will be tough if they know the correct timing to poke you. Taste of Blood will give us that extra sustain in lane by hitting the enemy champion with an attack every 20 seconds, helping us stay alive and healthy in lane. With The Dark Seal's passive of increased healing from potions and with Transfusion our aim is to farm and stay in lane healthy throughout early game and Taste of Blood helps with it.
1 1 Ravenous Hunter: Once again in the Domination side we take another sustain rune Ravenous Hunter. Ravenous Hunter gives us a base 2.5% healing on our abilities and further increases it by 2.5% for each time we take down a unique champion. this means we can gain a total of 12.5% increased healing with 5 unique champion kills which will make us all the more annoying. With Vladimir's main focus on high AP builds this means our Transfusion will receive more healing power plus this awesome rune Ravenous Hunter.

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And finally similar to the last rune page but it focuses more on Vladimir's late game potential taking Transcendence and Gathering Storm do maximise cooldown and late game damage.


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Sorcery
Summon Aery: I went into further detail on this in my "What Keystone Do I Take" section but to summarise you deal some extra damage on auto attack or on an ability which is super good for aggressing your laner with Vladimir. Plus as Vladimir lacks the early game damage arguably to other mid or top laners this really helps.
1 1 The Ultimate Hat: Now I brought this conclusion by basing it by our other options in this tier of runes. We have Nullifying Orb which gives us a magic damage shield at low health which is fairly useful, then we have Manaflow Band which is useless as Vladimir uses no Man or Energy. So The Ultimate Hat is the superior choice as with Hemoplague being essential in team-fighting and All-In Attempts. Stacking up cooldown for your ultimate for every time you press R is brilliant for having your awesome Ultimate/R up more often for fights.
1 1 Transcendence: With Transcendence on board Vladimir can increase his Cooldown Reduction by another 10% if he need's it. There's not much more to explain. If you don't have 40/45 % cooldown reduction and you feel that you don't want to buy any more items with cooldown reduction passives to fill this gap. Then maybe try Transcendence out it may be beneficial.
1 1 Gathering Storm: For an eternity Vladimir is depicted as a champion whose late game potential is feared as one of the most threatening. This is summarised due to his low cooldowns for his abilities increasing his healing and doing damage in a matter of seconds in the late game, this is mainly due to the insane output of Ability Power Damage from particularly Transfusion and Tides of Blood. So with Gathering Storm you increase your AP output the longer the game goes for, this is ridiculously good and it fits Vladimir with his reputation as a Late Game Carry. when I saw this rune for the first time I knew what champion It was perfect for and this will give make Vladimir's late game even more terrifying to face against.
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Domination
Taste Of Blood: Taste of Blood has great use on Vladimir, whilst he has early game sustain from his Q Transfusion other laners who have that better early game presence will be tough if they know the correct timing to poke you. Taste of Blood will give us that extra sustain in lane by hitting the enemy champion with an attack every 20 seconds, helping us stay alive and healthy in lane. With The Dark Seal's passive of increased healing from potions and with Transfusion our aim is to farm and stay in lane healthy throughout early game and Taste of Blood helps with it.
1 1 Ravenous Hunter: Once again in the Domination side we take another sustain rune Ravenous Hunter. Ravenous Hunter gives us a base 2.5% healing on our abilities and further increases it by 2.5% for each time we take down a unique champion. this means we can gain a total of 12.5% increased healing with 5 unique champion kills which will make us all the more annoying. With Vladimir's main focus on high AP builds this means our Transfusion will receive more healing power plus this awesome rune Ravenous Hunter.

Whilst Celerity and Scorch focus on getting to Vladimir's strength of mid to late game faster, having the combination of Transcendence and Gathering Storm makes Vladimir even stronger than usual once he gets to late game. I have laid down the options and explained each with my thoughts and with the facts. However it is for you to decide which you like the most, and in the end you might now like any of these pages, thanks for wasting my time... But seriously I don't have a say in what you prefer to use it is up for you and what you enjoy most on Vladimir.



Guide Top

Summoner Spells

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Now this section may seem practically useless ever since the release of Unsealed Spellbook which is truly amazing to have in Vladimir's arsenal, however it may not beuseless at all going through these summoner spells effectiveness since you can swap and use any of them in game with the Unsealed Spellbook rune.


Essentials
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Flash: Essential for any champion in the game but it is a must have on Vladimir, Vladimir's main combo uses Flash as a surprise element allowing the enemy to have little to no time to react.

Ignite: I always 95% of games start with ignite when mid or top. Ignite gives us extra kill pressure for Vladimir which is a big boost when trying to snowball early for a mid-late carry. Once we get to team fights then we swap into...

Ghost: ...Ghost which is SO beneficial late game in team fights, Vladimir's ranged abilities aren't very large ranged whatsoever, so... with Ghost Vlad doesn't have to worry about his range issues because he can stick to the enemy and deal his damage!

Great Secondary Options
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Exhaust: Just an annoying spell in general, really great against assassins so you can nullify their burst combos. Only take in a matchup if not confident. Exhaust is a very, very flexible summoner spell so if you are scared of being killed early take it.

Teleport: Teleport would usually be essential for any top laner, however with the ability to grab teleport at any point of the game with Unsealed Spellbook I would always start with Ignite for extra kill pressure.

Not A Fan Of
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Heal: OMG this is essential on Vladimir, Vladimir heals and if you take heal that means more healing how can you lose?!? Just quit league please, What's the point when you have so much sustain in your kit.

Barrier: What are you a p*ssy? You are a Vampire for goodness sake!? I have seen Vladimir's take barrier as a secondary option. However there is no point when you have Sanguine Pool...

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Items - Core

The Tri-fecta

Hextech Protobelt-01 is my favourite item to build on Vladimir. Provides Health, Ability Power and Cooldown Redcution the three necessary things on Vlad and also provides a small gap closer that deals damage. This item can be used while in Sanguine Pool increasing movement speed and gap closing at the same time. Best Core Item for Vladimir and all at a low price, make sure to get it!

Liandry's Torment Perfect item to begin with top lane I usually take this item first against tanks. So it is a great pick overall against tankier opponents due to the burn affect passive. Linadrie's along with Void Staff and Sorcerer's Shoes are a great combo for magic penetration as Liandry's passive is amazing with Tides of Blood Vladimir's E. Flashing into the middle of the enemy team in the late stages of the game with all players hit will receive lots of Liandry's Passive. I build this item regularly 1st or 2nd.

Zhonya's Hourglass Has been an essential item for any AP champion for a long time now and that's because it has one of the most B*llSh*t passives in the whole game allowing you to be INVULNERABLE for a few seconds. These are the times when you should use it:
    - Use to wait for ability cooldowns
    - Use to allow your ultimate to proc and heal you instead of dying
    - Use when you are getting dove under tower
    - Use when you are going to get hit by Zed's Ultimate proc damage
    - Use for this
    - Use for that...

It does everything so just buy it for god sake. Oh and Seeker's Armguard Is pretty neat too against AD champs.


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Items - Other Choices

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Rabadon's Deathcap is essentially Infinity Edge for an AP champion, increases damage output a Sh*t Tonne so if you are going to be the late game carry this is a must have!

Void Staff Very reliable item on Vladimir to burst through those top laner's in team fights and of course increases your AP as well, Helps us burst through top laner's and tanky supports with insane increased magic penetration.

Luden's Echo If you are destroying your opponent in lane then this is a fun item to mess around with for a 1st item, However I usually leave this item till last for a great increase in ability power which is buffed with our Rabadon's Deathcap passive increasing our damage and healing even more.


Gotta love Spirit Visage. Love this item, can be a first item against scary AP opponent's or can be bought later to increase HP, HP regeneration, Armor and Cooldown. Also a passive built for Vladimir allowing 30% increased healing from Vladimir's abilities. Depending on your play style and confidence i in your matchup you can pick either way.

Abyssal Mask I have been messing around with Abyssal Mask and in the end I would take Spirit Visage as the better option. However this item provides great tanky stats which can be beneficial over the increased healing from Spirit Visage so it is essentially your choice depending on what play style you want to go with.

Banshee's Veil Never really buy this item. But against an Ahri, LeBlanc or especially hook champions like Blitzcrank or Thresh it can be very beneficial so you don't have to waste Sanguine Pool just to prevent being hooked. This item provides an incredible spell shield and some needed AP. In the right hands can be beneficial for Vladimir.

Rylai's Crystal Scepter Used to be essential for Vladimir however with the nerfs to this item a whiles back in Pre-Season 7, It isn't as great as it once was. Still provides Health and AP to support Vlad's Passive but the nerf to slow was due but it really ruined this items effectiveness for Vladimir. As Liandry's Torment provides health and AP but with a mire beneficial passive I believe Rylai's Crystal Scepter isn't as necessary to build anymore. This item is situational perhaps againt champions with high mobility like Garen so you can try and outpace them.

Elixir of Iron Vladimir on Steriods

Elixir of Sorcery Vladimir on AP Steriods


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What Are The Best Boots For Vladimir?

The Shoe Shop

Ionian Boots Of Lucidity It's a no brainer, If you are running Unsealed Spellbook these are a MUST take since you give yourself 10% Cooldown reduction on your summoner spells which is essential to your Summoner Spell Cooldown Reduction Combo mentioned in previous sections. However if you are running any other rune such as Summon Aery, Sorcerer's Shoes may be a better preference for you.

Sorcerer's Shoes These boots are so good for AP Mages allowing you to bypass more of the enemies magic resist (which trust me they'll buy against a Vladimir) with the extra 18 Magic Penetration and kill them a lot more smoothly. Love these boots hope Riot never change them.

Ninja Tabi Great selection against champions like Yasuo or Tryndamere champions whose kits revolve around auto attacks. As well as protecting you from their AA's it gives you some much needed armour against them to help trade with them or reduce their damage output as it is better to be alive in a fight and do less damage than to do no damage at all.

Mercury's Treads Never really build this on Vladimir, however if you are up against an Ahri or an Annie this can save your life providing extra Magic Resist and less duration on Annie's stun and Ahri's charms.

Boots Of Swiftness These boots are awesome really helps Vladimir stick to his opponent. However I would rather take ghost than buy these boots as you are missing out on extra damage or defensive stats with the other boots. I would only build these boots against champions like Nasus, or possibly Dr. Mundo as their slows are ridiculously annoying and can cost your life.


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Laning: Early Game

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Vladimir's hardest time and most people would agree is his early game. You have to be careful and I don't mean play like a scaredy cat. I mean know when to poke and that comes through experience. The most difficult task when laning is Vlad's low AD stats and little to no damage on most of his abilities, a big tip for if you are trying to farm the last 3 caster minions under tower is you can either:
    1. Auto attack, (Tower Hits), Then Auto Attack again. (Practice timing)
    2. Or an easier method is when
Tides of Blood is level 1 it does the same damage as an auto attack when you tap the E key. So Tap E then (Tower Hits) and auto attack to gain the CS.
. One tip when farming as any AP Mage is PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, either in-game and/or customs to get better at gaining the gold advantage on your enemy early game. To summarise it is best to focus on farming and know when you have the freedom or space to Ward for vision, or Poke the enemy without worrying about missing CS.

It was especially hard for me coming from strong laning top laners back in Season 6 Such as Jayce and Darius to a champion with Low AD stats like Vladimir. So if you are struggling to wrap your head around farming, don't give up and stick with learning through experience.

However with all that said don't underestimate Vladimir as his early game can be ridiculously strong. With Vladimir's Empowered Q you can deal up to over 1/4 of the enemies health in just one click in the early levels. Vladimir also has the sustain in lane that he theoretically never has to recall if played correctly. If you play lanes correctly and make full use of Vladimir's unique kit you should steamroll your enemies in terms of CS, experience and possible KDA. Knowing the right time to go in and q the enemy is essential in pressuring your laner early.

To summarise Vladimir's early game a lot faster. My opinion on how to play Vladimir early game in these 5 steps
    - Focus on farm and poke with q when possible
    - Freeze waves closer to your side of the map so when the jungler is nearby you can make a play with more space to work with.
    - Look to all in at Level 6 if you are confident that the opponent won't be able to counter attack you.
    - Remember trades that end in a tie in terms of HP work in your favour as you have more sustain than the enemy (In most cases anyway).


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Laning: Mid Game

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This is when you start feeling the difference in your gameplay. Your farming issues should have resolved by now and your damage output is climbing as well as you have maybe up to a decent amount of cooldown reduction with some damage items as well making you a huge threat to any opponent. Vladimir's major power spike is when you have bought Hextech Protobelt-01, boots and Liandry's Torment. once you have finished off Liandry's your HP and Damage would have hit the point where you can 1v1 most enemies if you have played the laning phase correctly. Now start to play aggressive as long as you have vision of other enemy opponents. Make sure you pressure them with your Q's as you would throughout the early game.

Finally once you've pushed your way up look for a roam into a different lane to either feed yourself with a kill and pressure their lanes turret, or help your top or bot laner get ahead. It may be difficult closing on to them without having a CC kit however I would recommend having flash built up just incase. Make sure to have full awareness of the playing field around you, trust me your other lanes will appreciate you for it.


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Laning: Late Game

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This is Vladimir's time to shine. If you have
    1. Successfully farmed throughout the early and mid game
    2. been pressuring your laner and getting kills
    3. Taking objectives and having a presence around the map

Then congratulations if you have ticked any of these boxes then you will have a successful late game as Vladimir.

Vladimir is a lethal asset to you team late game like most AP Mage are however like a Katarina you produce insane AOE damage with your Hemoplague and Tides of Blood and with the sustain from Transfusion and Hemoplague you also have the ability to go in to the middle of teamfight, reset, then repeat which is a major benefit in teamfights. With ridiculous damage, increased heal and a massive amount of AP. You will take down ADC's or even high AD Top Laners like Yasuo, Riven or Pantheon you can take out almost anyone in a 1v1 if you don't waste your cooldowns and perform the correct combo. In a teamfight or when you want to fight make sure that your Transfusion passive has at least 1 stack so you can activate Crimson Rush sooner in a teamfight which can be the difference to taking out an ADC losing their high damage source.

In teamfights you are the engager and the damage output, if your teams prepared signal to go in with the all-in combo mentioned previously. If they focus on you activate Sanguine Pool and keep using your Q and E to heal and produce Damage.

Vladimir's Kit + His late game sustain + His late game damage, spells trouble for the enemy and you need to take full advantage of this if they let the game go on this long.


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Skin Choices

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If you are satisfied by the champion Vladimir you may want to look into some skins for him. Well in this section I will go over some of my thoughts for each individual skin there is for Vladimir.
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Marquis Vladimir is a great skin all across the board. It ticks all of the boxes. Blue coat really suits Vlad. White pale face. Blonde luscious hair. All for the low price of 520 RP. This skin keeps the original Vladimir theme but makes him better. My second favourite skin overall.





    + Price: 520 RP
    + Rating 5/5

Count Vladimir brings the classic vibe of a blood sucking vampire in the name and splash art. However in game it lacks any detail, which is expected for a 520 RP skin. However there should be more to it and that's why it isn't a great purchase.


    + Price: 520 RP
    + Rating 2/5
    + Legacy

Vandal Vladimir looks like a really good skin judging by the splash art, it's lured me into wanting to get it. However at a price of 975 RP, and no motorcycle in game. It's best to skip this one unless you're willing to spend the extra Cha-Ching $$$


    + Price: 975 RP
    + Rating 2/5
    + Legacy

Nosferatu Vladimir Is the best legacy between Count Vladimir and Vandal Vladimir , it represents the classic vampire of Nosferatu pale, white skin, and a head like the Dreamworks Animation Megamind. It feels like a better version of Count Vladimir. Only Legacy skin I would get for Vladimir


    + Price: 975RP
    + Rating 3/5
    + Legacy

Soulstealer Vladimir A favourite for most, it is an epic skin so it will dig into your pocket however. You get a new model, recall, new ability effects and it is awesome. I have had this skin before and it is the only skin I have refunded. Want to know why? It didn't suit Vladimir what so ever. He has his normal voice lines which don't fit with his skin. Also there are so many varieties of better skins that it wasn't worth getting. Most Vladimir mains have this skin as it is different to the rest by far it is very unique. But everytime I used it, I never enjoyed the fact that I had this skin. Your opinion on this one I rate it highly never the less.


    + Price: 1350 RP
    + Rating 3/5
    + New Ability Animations
    + New Recall

Blood Lord Vladimir will dig the deepest into your pocket. In my opinion this is the worst effort riot has put into a LEGENDARY skin. For 1820 RP you get no new animation effects. No recall animation. Riot really needed to redo this skin...however do you want to know why it is my favourite Vladimir skin. His Voice Lines oh my god. I have played Vladimir so many times I do not remember once starting a game without spamming his awesome laugh. You feel so evil and his voice is the best in the game. This skin still gives new voice lines. New taunt animations. A new model. The most evil splash art you will ever see and you also get my opinion that this skin is awesome. My only doubt is that it is not worth 1820 RP but nevertheless I love it and it was my Legendary skin virginity for a reason.


    + Price: 1820 RP
    + Rating 5/5
    + New Voice Lines
    + New Taunts
    + Most Evilish Laugh Award

Academy Vladimir is given a lot of hate for good reason. The Academy skin branch is one of the worst sets of skins this game has ever been exposed to. However Academy Vladimir really fits this theme, his look makes him looks like a kid in a gothic group that people would try and avoid. The styles suits him and for 750 RP it is good value. Finally he has a cool looking scarf that flutters around while you move which I love. For a cheap price I don't disagree with you if you choose it.


    + Price: 750 RP
    + Rating 3.5/5


Finally it had been Leaked that a new Vladimir skin would be released titled "Master Arcanist Vladimir". There is no confirmation from Riot but many leaks have been found true in the future such as Rakan & Xayah plus Pulsefire Caitlyn. No idea if it would have been a similar style to Master Arcanist Ziggs skin but If it was a reality my wallet would be devastated and empty.


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Conclusion & Special Thanks

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Hope you Enjoyed!
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Thank you everyone for over 500,000 views on my guide!!! It's really heart warming to see that half of million people have viewed my simple guide and a number of them helped (I hope) with their Vladimir gameplay. I hope you enjoyed my first guide, and my first guide on Vladimir, I hope it helps you get that little boost of knowledge that I really needed back in the day for this champion. Once again if you have any enquiries don't hesitate to ask and please give me your opinion on how i can improve :)

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My Final Thoughts On Vladimir
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Vladimir is a champion whose abilities are easy to understand for any player but only effective in the right hands. Vlad's high skill cap meaning not mechanically hard to play but certainly difficult to learn for such a unique kit can be a struggle it especially was for me back in the day. It can see many new player's (like myself) struggle to understand his early game and get past that stage efficiently. However if this stages is completed well the player is rewarded with a monster of a champion (like the demon he resembles) and can destroy enemy teams mid and late game.

Big thanks to jhoijhoi for helping me with preparing this guide, you can check her out here jhoijhoi's profile1 1

ALSO A MASSIVE THANKS TO Rock3tt for a huge inspiration into this build path, runes and essentially everything this build has to offer.
He is very good teacher for Vladimir and his videos are terrific content and enjoyable to watch they certainly helped me get off the shelves when beginning this champion as well.
You can find the man's youtube channel here Rock3tt's Channel

Finally a guide that inspired me to make one of my own, has some funny humour and is very knowledgeable of the champion Vladimir, iLikeEmSpicy has his own unique Vladimir guide with the similar purpose to help with anyone with a variety of experiences with Vladimir. I certainly learned many things from his work, Please make sure to check out his personal Vlad guide here --> iLikeEmSpicy's SPICY Vladimir Guide
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Bibliography
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To give credit for the several images that improved the visual aspect of this guide here's credit to the original source of these images.
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Future Plans

- Learn how to add images ~ Done!
- Neaten out my guide ~ Improved By Far :D
- Videos on combos and ability demonstrations
- Situations Guide
- Warding and Farming Section
- Wave Control
- Best Skin Opinion :) - Completed