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Volibear Build Guide by Mamo

Not Updated For Current Season

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Mamo

Volibear: Armored Thunder Bear Cares Not of Your Team Comp

Mamo Last updated on December 6, 2011
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Jungle Role
Ranked #33 in
Jungle Role
Win 49%
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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: 0

Honor Guard

Defense: 21

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 9

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Hello and welcome to my very first guide here on mobafire. When I play league with my friends the role that I usually take, and am best at is solotop or jungler. When I do play these roles I usually become the tank, offtank or initiator who runs straight into the enemy team and wreak havoc. So when I saw Volibear and his kit I knew I found my new champion. After playing many games with him, I found a build that I believe brings out all of his potential, and I wish to share it so other people can love this big old bear like I do.

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Pros / Cons


  • great initiation into fights
  • amazing early game and late game, if u know what you are doing
  • can bait kills with Chosen of the Storm
  • good damage output while still being a tank with Frenzy, and Thunder Claws
  • can jungle
  • one of the best dances in the game

    . no natural escape mechanisms
    . mid game tankyness falls off
    . has to be in melee range to be of any use
    . jungle sustain isn't the best
    . people be jelly of your dance moves
    . litte girls with compasses will begin to follow u around

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These are the runes that i have chosen to use for Volibear. However there are some alternatives that i will discuss, and in the end runes are all up to the individual person, and they are allowed to pick whatever they want.

greater mark of desolation With my greater mark of desolation my paws pack a lot more punch both early and late game. Since you are the initiator you'll be targeting the squishes, which usually don't have much armor to begin with. Add that with the armor pen and you'll be hitting the like...a giant bear.

Going with Greater Seal of Armor will give u that early game armor that will sustain you in the lane and team fights before you get your armor items. Also gives you more survivability in the jungle.

I basically use Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist with most, if not, all my champions. it is harder to build mr that it is to build armor, so i believe that having the extra magic resist is more important in the lategame than it is earlier.

I go with Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed to work of of my Frenzy since it will be your main form of damage. Also helps your speed in the jungle, which is essential for a successful jungle.

Alternative runes

If you want, you can take these instead of the quints for even more attack speed, but i think without the armor per you will be susceptible to armor items

greater seal of vitality These runes will help your Frenzy be more powerful, but will leave you more vulnerable to harass early game

Same reasoning as above, except this will also affect your lategame tankyness as well

These runes will give you some extra tankyness early game and will work off your Frenzy as well. Perfectly fine substitutes for the attack speed quints.

Again rune choice is up to the summoner. You are allowed to choose whatever you want. I am here just to give you few options.

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When it comes to masteries, like runes it all personal preference. You can choose the masteries you want at any given time. All I want is for u guys to continue reading and see why I chose the masteries that I did.

I go with the 0/21/9 mastery tree when I play our loveable bear. In my opinion, the defensive tree is where volibear gains the most perks from. This tree gives hi extra health, reduced damage, some cc reduction, and even a little cdr to put some icing on the cake. While I say that how you work the mastery tree is up to you, the talents that I believe are essential on Voli are Durability , veterans scar, and Juggernaut . These give our armored friend some essential boost to his overall performance and should not be overlooked.

The last 9 points that I have usually go into the utility tree. This is mostly for the reduced death time, and the increased movement speed. I like these perks over the ones in the offensive tree, and i feel like they give me a small edge in the game as a whole.

When it comes to the other mastery trees I don't really see anything in them that would benefit going all the way down into. If you go into 21 points into the offensive tree you lose out on some nice survivability skills. I tried the offensive tree and it didn't really work out for me, but maybe some of you have had a better experience that me.

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Summoner Spells

I’m not going to go into a lot of details for the summoner spells because I think most are self-explanatory

I feel that Ghost goes hand-to-paw with our furry friend especially when Rolling Thunder is thrown into the mix. If you combine those two abilities, there is basically no champion that you can't catch up to and fling into the waiting embrace of your teams abilities. Ghost also covers your weakness of having no real escape abilities.

if you are the solo top the I feel like this spell is a must. Since you are by yourself in that solo-lane, any time spent out of it is wasted gold and xp that your opponent is getting over you. This spell is also great for having a presence over the entire field, and having the ability to tele to your friends when they are in a though spot or they want to start a royal rumble and can use a helping claw..erm..thunder..erm..hand!

If you are going to jungle then get this.... No paragraph needed.

Alternative Spells

This spell isn't as good as it use to be with the recent nerfs, but is still a good spell for that surprise initiation of wall escape, you can replace Ghost with it if you desire.

If you are having a problem catching opponents, you can get Exhaust to make sure that they don’t get away. But in reality if people are getting away from you then you probably did something wrong.

This summoner spell can catch opponents off guard if you use it when Chosen of the Storm procs to surprise heal-burst them under your tower. It’s fun but I still like the speed from Ghost to chase someone off, or get away.

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Skill Sequence+Explanation

This part of the guide is pretty straight forward. I'll explain the skills, the order I take them, and why i do it that way. I also mention some tricks/tips that go along with each ability.

(Innate): When Volibear's health drops below 30% of his maximum health, he will heal for 30% of his maximum health over the next 6 seconds. This passive effect has a 120 second cooldown.

Voli's passive and what a passive it is. This ability allows you to trick opponents into thinking you’re out for the count and then you comeback in and get the kill. This ability does kind of fall off lategame do to everyone having the burst needed to pass it. But by then you should be tanky enough not to care anyways.

Volibear's next attack deals an additional 25/50/75/100/125 physical damage and flings the target behind him.
Cost 40 Mana Range 300

This is what our bear friend uses to initiate and chase. This ability flings opponents like singed's fling and puts then in spots that they will soon regret. Also gives you a flat 45% movement speed which allows you to chase almost everyone. One thing to remember about this ability is that it only gives you the movement boost when you’re going towards enemies not away from then so this ability can't help you escape.

Passive: Volibear gains 8/11/14/17/20% Attack Speed with each attack. Stacks up to 3 times. Active: When Volibear has 3 stacks of Frenzy, he can bite an enemy to deal 90/140/190/240/290 (+  [20% of bonus Health]) physical damage, increased by 1% for each 1% health the target is missing.
Cost 35 Mana Range 400

Ahh frenzy...this ability is what makes voli still a damage threat even if you build tank. Since it scales off of your bonus health, it encourages you to get tanky with health so you also hit harder. The only bad part of this ability is that you have to auto attack three times before you can use it so that may screw you.

Volibear deals 60/95/130/165/200 (+0.6) magic damage to nearby enemies and slow them by 30/35/40/45/50% for 3 seconds. Minions and monsters are feared as well. Cost 60/65/70/75/80 Mana Range 425

A nice AOE damage slow that helps you keep on someone so you have an easier time getting your large bear paws into them. It also has a nice little second component that fears minions and monsters. This part allows you to jungle with minimal damage since those creeps won't be hitting you too much. A little side note on this roar, the ranged on it is smaller than you think so try to keep as close to them as you can before using it.

Volibear channels the storm, causing all basic attacks for 12 seconds to deal 75/115/155 (+0.3) magic damage, which chains to 4 nearby enemies. Cost 100 Mana Range 300

A nice ult that gives your auto attack a chain lightning effect. If you are allowed to auto attack a few times in a fight, then this ability will rip your opponents apart without them knowing what him them. It is at this point you yell THUNDERCLAWS *****.

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


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

I take frenzy first cause it is your main damage output so you would want it asap. Next I max rolling thunder since the cooldown is reduced, and you want to have your fling up as much as possible, finally you level majestic roar last. You also take your ult whenever it's available. You can take majestic roar over rolling thunder if you want the slow over the fling, but I feel the fling is better to have in teamfights.

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Probably the most important part to any champion is the item build. This is the part where I also see many other volibears fail. The main reason for this is because people see his W and think “hey if I buy a bunch of health items I’m going to be super tanky, and faceroll with Frenzy." The one big problem with this is that while you will have a ton of HP, you won't have any armor or mr to go with it. So all that extra health does to your tankyness is make the enemy champs have to hit you three more times until you fall over. However, if you get only armor and mr items your passive and W damage suffers, so you basically become ignorable. The items that I’m about to list are the ones that I believe will give our big old bear a combination of health and resistances, while allowing him to hit like a truck at the same time

This is the item I chose to start with. Whether you’re going up against ap or ad, this baby will give you a nice regen boost so you can stay in lane and get that harm. The health pot will also give you a nice little heal if you go in for some harass or vice-versa.

philosopher's stone sight ward
When you can b back to base these are the first to items that you should get. The boots will give you that little extra speed to dodge, and harass, and the philo stone will give you all the sustain you could need. Also has the nice little gold per 5 bonus to help you get that extra cash for the rest of your items. You should also be getting wards so you have the vision to see an enemy coming to gank or to help your jungler setup a gank of his own.

The next main item you need are your upgraded boots. The best option here are merc treads simply for the tenacity bonus. The biggest annoyance you can come across with our thunder buddy is when the entire enemy team cc's you before you can get close enough to initiate. These boots are the best solution to that problem. However, if you notice that they have a lot of ad or auto attacking champs, go with ninja tabi for the armor and nice dodge bonus.

Warmogs is probably the most important item any volibear could get. If someone tells you otherwise, give then the THUNDER CLAWS!!!!!But all joking aside this item gives you a giant health buffer, and increases your damage at the same time due to frenzy. It's best to save up until you can buy the giant's belt portion first, since that part gives you the biggest boost.

You make ask why rush this item if you were just complaining about people getting too much hp on this guy, and my answer to that is this. If all is going right with the game, the point where you have this item NO-ONE will have the burst to take you down, so you don't have to worry about resistances yet. However, once you have this item you need to start focusing on that armor and mr because the enemy team will get the power to rip through your health buffer.

This is the main armor item that i like to get because not only does it give you a nice chunk or it, but you get even more hp as well! However when building this item always get the chain mail first so you have that boost, since you don't really need the health.

Now we go into getting some of that mr. Banshees not only gives you a nice mr boost, but it also has a shield that can negate one enemy spell on you. And to top it all off, it has a small health boost to boot. Man you can't really ask for anything else.

With banshees and sunfire out of the way, you basically have enough resistances combined with your runes, and leveling up. At this point I like to pick up rylais to add a little utility to the mix. This item not only gives you a good hp boost and some ap, but it makes all your spells have a slow added to them. This perk is especially useful when combined with your ult. It essentially allows you to slow the entire enemy team simultaneously.

If you have gotten this far into the game then you have a few choices for your last item. If you want to be a god-mode super armored bear tank, then go with GA. This item will not only give your armor and mr a nice boost, but also gives you your own pocket rez... which is amazing. On the other hand, if you feel like your claws should pack a harder punch pick up atmas. This baby not only gives you some nice armor and crit, you also have 2% of your health converted into attack damage... and trust me if you have been following this item build, you will have a **** ton of health to convert.

Optional Items

This little item gives you quite a few nice bonuses. The 99 armor combined with some mana and cdr really does help out the big guy. I’m still testing this item, but I might end up replacing sunfire cap with it. Either way it is a perfectly good sub for armor.

FoN gives the most mr in the game. And on top of that, it has a nice health regen boost and a speed boost. You can take this item over banshees if you want, but i prefer the bonuses the veil has for voibear.

This item gives all your auto attacks the same slow rylais would. I prefer the scepter because it makes slowing the enemy team easier with your ult then running up to each individual and hitting then, or using your roar. Again you can get this over rylais if you want it’s your choice.

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Team Work

League of legends is a teamwork based game...believe it or not, so knowing what your job is in that team and how to do it is essential. When it comes to Volibear, his role is to be the tank/initiator. What that means is it is your job to start the teamfights for your team and to make sure that you take most, if not, all the damage. You also make sure that your squishes are same from harm by dragging away anyone who dares to touch them with your electrifying claws.

During the laning phase you have to make sure that you don't die to your enemy. I know that sounds obvious, but this is especially important to you because you have a solo lane. If you die, your opponent will have an edge over you that transitions into later parts of the game. Basically if he beats you, he beats the rest of your team.

Once the laning phase ends you have to make sure you stay with your team in case anything starts to go down. You’re the tank so you need to be at any/all teamfights when they happen, because chances are, your team will be wiped out if you aren’t there to soak up all the damage. Basically what I am saying is... YOU ARE A FREAKING GIANT ARMORED BEAR WHO DOESN’T GIVE A SINGE **** ABOUT THE ENEMY TEAM AND SHOULD BE FEARED BY ALL OF THEM.

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Creeping / Jungling

In this part I’m going to explain the specific points about Volibear's jungle. I’m not going to tell you how to jungle or where you should ward cause there is already a guide that does this. The link to that guide is right here jungle guide.

When it comes to Voli he doesn't really clear the jungle at lightning speed like Shyvana or Udyr. However, he doesn't really have to worry about being jumped by the enemy jungler because his passive will ensure that he will survive the experience. He also has a really nasty gank when he goes to the lanes. Rolling thunder+majestic roar+red buff are an excellent initial gank, but once he uses these he doesn't really have a way to stay on then if they have any form of cc or natural escape, so one must keep that into account.

Finally, you don't really need to change any of the items in the build if you start at the small golem camp and go from there. You can build into the philo stone and have that sustain. But, if you want to start at blue, I suggest you start with the Cloth Armor and health pots and build it into a Wriggle's Lantern.

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So that's all I have to say when it comes to Volibear. If I get any feedback on this guide I will keep it up to date and change it as I keep playing this amazing champion. If anyone has any comments on how I can make this guide better or just questions in general please leave a comment and I’ll get to them as fast as possible.

And remember to make sure you show those puny champs why... ''Few can weather the storm that follows in the wake of Volibear's roar.'' - Ashe, the Frost Archer.