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Xin Zhao Build Guide by Calselius

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Calselius

Xin Zhao - Tanky Assassin

Calselius Last updated on March 8, 2013
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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: 9

Honor Guard

Defense: 21


Utility: 0

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Xin Zhao is a tanky assassin dude. Also he's an initiator. What do I mean? Well pretty much what I just wrote. Doesn't make sense? Well it's true. He's a tanky assassin who initiates pretty well. Basically your job is to go in, hit as many people as you can with your ult, knock them off target and force them to regroup and get back in while you're actually fighting. Basically Xin Zhao gives your team a lot of initiative. While you're all killing a target their team has to spend a few precious seconds recuperating and getting back in the fight.

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Pros / Cons


+Massive upfront burst.
+Pretty decent sustain.
+A team fight better than a lot of bruisers.
+Fairly easy to play.


-Sorta dies easy before you get some items.
-Possibly not going to beat Darius.
-Perhaps a possibility to maybe sorta possibly fairly.

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Greater Mark of Attack Damage

Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist

Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage

They're good. Damage does damage. Armor runes give armor. MR/level lets you not have to stack much armor end game. They're good because they work, and because they're good. Xin has an armor shred so it makes armor penetration very potent on him. Flat damage helps you last hit, it helps you kill people.

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Sunfire Cape ideal item for early game. Because, +45 Armor, +450 Health; at a time makes you strong.

Attack Speed ​​and Magic Resist for Xin required. Cheap and reasonable.

If you have guardian angel in Mid Game, you really advantageous. Because comfortable tower diving, advantageous in team fight.

Why Trinity Force ? Because, 30 Attack Damage + 30 Attack Speed + 10 Critical Strike Chance + 250 Health + 200 Mana + 8 Movement Speed = Best offensive item for Xin Zhao and Sub-items, are very compatible.

Life steal is good in late game. With this item you can be your tank and offensive.

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Skill Sequence

  • Challenge :Anyway his passive is named CHALLENGE. On any auto attack or his gap closer (his E, Audacious charge) Xin Zhao will apply a 15% armor shred on to the enemy. Fairly basic stuff. Also it keeps enemies from being knocked back by your ult. Fairly basic stuff. I'll explain why that's important later. Basically you don't even have to remember this ability exists.

  • Three Talon Strike : Three Talon Strike does Three Talon Strikes in to the enemy. Each does fairly hefty damage, with a knock up on the third attack. It does a lot of damage, it CCs, it goes on a low CD, it scales with bonus AD. It's just good. Like most of Xin's abilities this one isn't particularly difficult to explain. You press da button, da button hurt enemy who you auto attack.

    Maxing Q first is the only thing I recommend here. Xin is so malleable in his decisions that you could do anything that fits you as it fits you. Get W (sustain) first for a harass heavy lane? That's fine. Get E first for a lane you want to gank and want the slow/gap close for? That's good too. Getting Q first for the nice harass? That's always nice.

  • Battle Cry : Battle cry passively heals you on every third attack on top of an active that will increase your attack speed. Like other Xin Zhao abilities that's pretty much it. Handy for keeping your health up, and should always be pressed before going all in to maximize damage.

  • Audacious Charge : It's a gap closer. It does magic damage. It slows the enemy. The end. I really feel like I should have more text here but there's simply nothing more to say. That's what it does. Once again there's no special trick here or anything.

  • Crescent Sweep : Knocks away all targets NOT afflicted with your passive. Meaning only the target with your passive (the armor shred) on them will remain near you, everybody else gets knocked away in spectacular fashion. Gives you a bonus for each target hit to your armor/MR. Remember when I said Xin is a tanky assassin initiator? It's cause of this ability. You knock their team away from your team, then you keep your target in front of you, CC'd, debuffed, ready to die. The more targets you hit (the more of a death wish you have) the better this ability gets.

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

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Synergies and Counters


I'm just going to explain all of these at once. Champion that excel at killing a single target via a line nuke, or massive burst, or etc do extremely well with Xin since they get the time to pull off their job. Akali gets 2-3 seconds of their team regrouping to go on a target and kill them. Ahri gets a clear shot right at a slowed and possibly knocked up target to land her charm. Same with Fizz. Xin doesn't really work with people like Fiddlesticks or Galio for fairly obvious reasons. However, he just works really well with those more single target focused kill comps. Other champions can work great here too. What's more, after an AoE is done and their team is lower it's advantageous for Xin to knock em all around so you can keep them from retaliating and score even more momentum for the kill.


Darius: like most melee champions without insane harass Darius kinda beats on Xin. Don't worry though. Use your W to sustain up a bit, wait for the jungler to gank, and bash on him. It's just you really can't beat him solo. One thing to do after level 6 is to initiate on him hard using your ult right away and drop his HP down. Since Darius has no sustain he'll have to B or probably die the next time you go on him. Advatange: Xin. Other than that just watch out, try not to die, and don't be stupid. Xin has a low HP pool so it's easy to be caught in ults that kill you, or die to early harass. It's really not THAT bad though, just kinda-bad.

Irelia: She's kinda like a better version of Xin. Soooo yeah. You're like 90% strength of everything she does, so it's easy for you to get out done in 90% of what you do. I'd recommend trying to just wait for team fights. She'll be probably just as good as you, but at least she won't be BETTER in team fights. Note: She's better in 1v1. Try to in lane get an early advantage somehow, and use that 175 auto attack poke to try and keep her down.

Jax: KING OF AUTO ATTACK SLAYERS. Yeah just... don't fight Jax. In the laning phase you can use your 175 range to love tap him a bunch but never push your luck. You will die. You will die hard. Just don't do it man, just wait for the jungler bait his counterattack then knock him up and slow him and try not to die. Not dying is super important.