Volibear Build Guide by J 2 the ROC
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+10% Attack Speed
Threats & Synergies
His execute means you won't be able to take advantage of your passive.
Can harass very easily and still get away.
Extremely annoying early on, but if you survive long enough to get close to him, he's very squishy.
He can W to avoid your execute which usually makes him very difficult to solo kill in lane.
Can harass and knock you back before you can flip him.
High damage, but you can do a lot of damage to her if she misses her stun.
Very easy matchup. You can flip him when he channels his Q, and if you break his shield before he can reactivate it, he has virtually no other form of damage.
High damage and if she blocks your Q or E it can turn trades against you very quickly.
His E makes your auto attacks very slow, so it is unlikely either of you will be a big threat to the other.
Blocking auto attacks is annoying. If he jumps and with his auto attack block, knock him back with your E.
You win trades with him most of the time, but his slow makes your auto attacks weak. Get him to Ult and then play aggressively while its on cooldown.
His E hurts, but he won't be able to take advantage of his passive if you execute him.
His ult makes him almost impossible to all-in on your own. Farm up and wait for a gank.
You will both be doing a lot of damage to each other. Get him to ult and play aggressively when its on cooldown.
She can harass a lot and use her ultimate to counter your execute.
If he uses his shield and flame breath on you, flip him, use your E, and start trading. You will out damage him. Just avoid his skill shots.
Annoying. Hard to kill under your turret because his passive makes him untargetable when he dies.
Not much of a threat. Your E fears his minions.
His ultimate counters your execute. Get him to ult and play aggressively while its on cooldown.
Champion Build Guide
After another period of uselessness, Volibear Top has returned and once again he's more powerful then ever. In my opinion, he is a top tier pick from Iron all the way through Gold, and I still play him in Platinum. His kit is relatively straightforward and easy to pick up, with an excellent skill-set to master.
What Volibear is good at
+ Extremely tanky with The Relentless Storm
+ Burst Execute with Frenzy
+ Great utility and sticking power with Thundering Smash and Sky Splitter
+ Very strong auto attacks with Stormbringer
+ Can peel your own carry or focus down enemy carries
What Volibear sucks at
- VERY easily kited in teamfights
- Loses a lot of tankyness when his passive is on cooldown
- Leveling up Frenzy doesn't reduce cooldown
- Easily countered with Ignite
Take Conqueror or Press the Attack, as both are viable on Volibear. Press the Attack offers a bit more damage output, while Conqueror offers healing and true damage. For now, let's look at Conqueror.
While it is proced, your Frenzy will deal 8% true damage, as well as heal you for a portion of the damage dealt. This should be your keystone in any and all matchups. It fits Volibear's Kit much better than Grasp of the Undying, which is useful for small trades rather than the all-ins that Volibear Top Edition is built for.
Triumph is just broken on tanks, Legend: Alacrity is needed to boost your attack speed since you won't be building any attack speed items, and Coup de Grace synergies best with the execute from Frenzy .
Second Wind provides a good amount of raw healing in lane phase and extended teamfights. Revitalize might seem like a better option at first, but after a experimenting with the different mastery combos, I've found that Second Wind provides almost twice as much healing. Your second keystone can be either Demolish or Overgrowth, depending on your preference.
As for the third tier runes, you should always take the attack speed boost for the offensive slot, and either armor or magic resist defensive runes. The 15-90 health bonus really isn't that good, and doesn't scale as well as resistance runes.
Chosen of the Storm
|Mini Dr. Mundo Ult that automatically triggers when low on health. This passive is arguably one of strongest in the game, quickly returning 30% of your max health when you get too low. But the best thing about it is the fact your opponent will almost always underestimate just how much you can heal, and you can bait very easily with it. Unfortunately, Grievous Wounds severely reduces the effectiveness of this passive, so always be careful if your opponent has Ignite.|
|Movement speed steroid that let's you fling your opponent behind you. Thundering Smash has an incredible amount of utility, both in lane and teamfights. Open with Thundering Smash, use Sky Splitter while they are in the air, and then start whacking away at them. The movement speed buff can be used to get to mobile opponents, or to escape an incoming gank. If your opponent is pressuring you under tower, try and fling them back when they aggro you so they take even more damage. A substantial portion of the kills I get in lane are from opponents who stray to close to my tower and are flung into range without minion cover. If you use Sky Splitter to knock them back they will usually take two turret shots before getting out of range. Max this last.|
|Grants attack speed and a single target execute. The passive portion of Frenzy grants bonus attack speed, which synergizes well with your super strong auto attacks. Once you have three stacks, you can use the execute portion of Frenzy . I think the hardest part of playing Volibear is knowing when to use the execute, as lot of people will do it too early and lose out on a lot of damage. If you are trying to kill your opponent, then wait till they are down to about 15-20% health before using it. If they don't have much max health, you can use it a bit earlier. Max this first.|
|Area of Effect slow and damage that also fears minions and monsters and knocks enemies back. Sky Splitter is a great utility ability, not only effective for sticking to fleeing enemies, but also very useful in team fights for either peeling or your own carry or slowing the enemy carries. Because this ability fears minions, you can still be aggressive towards your opponent even if they are around a big minion wave. Just make sure you fear the caster minions before a trade. When engaging, always use Thundering Smash to flip your opponent, and then use Sky Splitter so you can stick to them as long as possible. Be very weary of this abilities range, as it is relatively small. If you aren't doing well and lack damage during teamfights, simply simply sit on your ADC and knock-back anyone that tries to kill him. The reason I max this second is because I find the increased slow to be more valuable than the speed from maxing Thundering Smash first. Max this second.|
|Auto attack steroid that applies damage to your target and up to three targets around it.. This where the majority of Volibear's damage comes from, as the damage buff that it provides is just ridiculous. At level 6, your auto attacks do an extra 75 damage for 12 seconds. That's the equivalent of instantly getting three Pickaxes for 12 seconds. On top of that, Stormbringer deals magic damage, and most of your lane opponents won't be building magic resist against you. Because Stormbringer applies to up to three enemies around your target, you will be doing a lot of damage in teamfights just by auto attacking the closest enemy. Max this ASAP.|
If you are playing against an AD opponent, get a Sunfire Cape first. The health and armor are obviously good, but the AoE passive is excellent for clearing minion waves. Stand in the middle of wave and use Sky Splitter while Sunfire Cape finishes them off. The burn is also pretty useful for damaging your opponents in extended fights.
If playing against an AP top, start Spirit Visage. The 20% increased healing makes The Relentless Storm even stronger than it already is. This will be your primary source of magic resist, unless you get Mercury's Treads. Even if the enemy team was full AD, I'd still take Spirit Visage for the increased healing.
|Ninja Tabis are usually the best boot pick. 12% auto attack reduction is incredibly powerful, not only against the ADC but champions with high auto attack damage like Riven or Tryndamere. The only alternative to Tabi's are Mercury's Treads, which I would only take if the enemy has only one AD. Even then, if they have a hyper carry like Kog'Maw, Tabi's might be the better option.|
|Thornmail is usually the third item I get, because by around this time in the game the enemy ADC is dealing decent damage and will have some sort of healing. Thornmail is extra useful when the enemy team has another auto attack based champion ( Master Yi, Xin Zhao, etc.)|
|Warmog's Armor will give you the most health flat out of any item. The passive on this item allows you to regain all your health in a matter of seconds after a teamfight. Against a poke comp or teams with a lot of burst damage, Warmog's Armor is your best option.|
|Titanic Hydra is the one dedicated damage item that you can build on Volibear, as it boosts your overall health, and make your auto attack damage increase as your max health increases. If I am ahead, I will get this as my third item, but most of the time this will be the last item I get. If my team has a lot of damage and I am the only real tank, then I will forgo this item for something else.|
|Dead Man's Plate is extremely strong on Volibear, and I usually get this as my fourth item after Thornmail. It provides a good amount of health and armor, but the passive allows you to build up a lot of speed before fights, which makes it a lot easier to get on an enemy carry, and then stick to them with the small slow it applies.|
|Randuin's Omen is very strong against teams with fed ADCs or teams with more than one auto-attack based champion. The active is also useful, as you can use it after the slow from Sky Splitter wears off. Patch 9.13 increased the armor on this item by 10, but the effect isn't very noticeable unless you're building it early.|
|Frozen Mallet is actually very underrated on a lot of melee champions. Every single auto attack you land will slow your target by 40% for 1.5 seconds, which is great for chasing down and sticking to enemies. Frozen Mallet also provides the most health of an item besides Warmog's Armor, and you can usually use the two interchangeably depending on what you prefer.|
|I would no longer consider this item to be viable on Volibear, given the high price point. The shield you get with this item is nice, but it doesn't affect your maximum health for Frenzy or The Relentless Storm.|
You are in Volib*tch mode whenever any of the following abilities are on cooldown; The Relentless Storm, Frenzy , or Stormbringer. If you die in lane chances are you got caught in a fight when at least one of these abilities was on cooldown. When they you should never actively seek out fights with your opponent. You should be focused on farming and warding when in Volib*tch mode. It's because of this concept that you should not be focused on small trades (which Grasp of the Undying is dependent on), but rather going all in once all your abilities are off cooldown.
Once all your abilities are ready to use, you should be looking for opportunities to start a fight. The best times do so are after an enemy has just used an important ability (like after Darius uses Decimate on a minion wave). When you're ready to engage, use Thundering Smash to flip your opponent, then immediately activate Stormbringer and begin auto attacking. While they are in the air to use Sky Splitter to deal 8% max health damage whiling slowing and knocking them back.
It is important to constantly reposition yourself in front of your enemy after each auto attack, so you can get as many as you can off on your opponent. Finally, once you have done as much damage as you can do with your auto attacks, use Frenzy to execute the enemy. A rule of thumb I go by is to use Frenzy when my opponent is down to around 15-20% health. If they have a lot of max health, then I would wait till they are a bit lower, and if they are squishier, then I would wait till they are at about 25 or even 30% health.
Teamfighting with Volibear
If you are ahead and have Titanic Hydra or Frozen Mallet, then you might be better off going straight after the enemy carry. If you can stick to them for a few seconds you will most likely kill them. The higher in rank you get, the less likely this is going to work because players are better at kiting and peeling champions like Volibear
But most importantly, always be on the look out to use your ultimate engage combo if a carry is caught out; Flash + Thundering Smash. This combo is a perfect setup to begin a teamfight, as the enemy carry will be placed in immediate range of the rest of your team. Just make sure the rest of the team is with you!