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Master Yi Build Guide by Maawk

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Maawk

Yi - Stacking up the Pentakills!

Maawk Last updated on March 3, 2012
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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

Honor Guard

Defense: 9

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 0

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Alright young padawan, I can sense the force is strong with you. The rumors has reached my ear that you are the chosen one.

Nuff' said.
I welcome you all to my first, and probably last, Master Yi guide. I'm your host: Maawk.
This guide will cover how to successfully lane with Yi, but I've also got a few tips and tricks down my sleeves to help you master this particular champ.

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Pros / Cons

Unstoppable movement
High damagedealer
Good farmer
Great lanesustain

Exhaust is a *****
Item dependent
vulnerable against ranged laners

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Basic spell description

Master Yi's passive is called Double Strike, this is arguably one of the best passives for a AD carry in my opinion. What is does, is that it causes Master Yi's every seventh autoattack to strike it's target twice.
Personally I'm abusing his passive for harassing, and it's working out rather well.

His "Q" spell is called Alpha Strike, which causes Master Yi to "teleport" across the battlefield and strike up to 4 enemies before returning to the first enemy targeted.. Keep this in mind, since it will give you the ability to initiate without taking damage and hunt down your foe. Alpha Strike also has a slight chance to cause 400 damage to minions and monsters, which makes jungling THAT much easier.

Master Yi's "W" spell is Meditate. When used he starts to channel a healing overtime effect, which also gives him 100 extra armor and magic resist at first rank.
This is a great spell for laning purpose, and if you're getting targeted the extra armor and magic resist it applied will make you very close to invulnerable.

The "E" spell is called Wuju Style, it gives Master Yi a permanent damage bonus. This ability may also be activated to cause the damage bonus to double itself for 10 seconds, but will then loose the passive untill the cooldown is reset. This ability can be compared to sion's Enrage.
This is the skill that I maximize first, due to the high damage it provides - Great ability !

Master Yi's Ultimate is Highlander. When activated he gains a huge movement/attackspeed buff, and becomes immune to slowing effects such as Ice Blast. If he scores a kill during his ultimate, all of his cooldowns are reset.
This ultimate is just sick, and is also the reason why he's called a "Right click Champion". Because when you activate this, you can outrun, or chase down anyone while still getting close to the attackspeed cap. Use it when IN teamfights, not to GET faster TO the teamfights. A unnecessary mistake made by many.

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The starting items on Master Yi are actually quite open for your personal pleasure. Personally I like to go with the Boots of Speed, and three Health Potion. The main reason for this is that I can harass oponents on my lane, and then easily get away with it. The three Health Potion also provides a great lane sustain.

On the other hand you might aswell open with a Dorans Ring, and use Meditate as your lane sustain. However this will reduce movement and juking ability quite alot, which might affect your laning capability in general.

After the standard boots I upgrade to Berserker's Greaves and start purchasing items for Zeal. It's really important to built towards Phantom Dancer, since your main damage will come from the passive on Infinity Edge later on.

The Vampiric Scepter will sooner become a The Bloodthirster, but the extra lifesteal will help you ALOT during the whole game.

And now finally to the item which will make Yi a living nightmare, Infinty Edge. This is a MUST on any kind of AD Master Yi. Why? Because every other autoattack he delivers late game will be in critical hits, and that will now bite off an extra chunk from the enemies health.

After Infinty Edge you will upgrade your Zeal to a Phantom Dancer. The reason for this is quite simple: Crit-chance. More crits, more damage - piece of cake.

Assuming that it's lategame by now, the The Bloodthirster comes in handy! The ability to stack up damage, AND lifesteal at the same time, is just two birds in one stone. Insane!

At this point of the game, you've probably drawn some attention to yourself with your high-hit-crits, and the ability to chase down anyone. Therefore you are in serious need of some survivability.
This in the form of Banshee's Veil. The passive on this item will make your life ALOT easier!
That ONE Blitzcrank hook will no longer affect you, and you can retreat safely.

A second Bloodthirster? Really? I know this is kind of a glass cannon build, but this second bloodthirster has just saved my *** TOO many times. The feeling when you can lifesteal more then you take damage is just great.

Keep in mind that this is MY way of building Yi, if you want to switch items or have any suggestions please comment.

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Situational Items

It's important to adjust your build on Master Yi, depending on what champions you are facing. For example, if you have the feeling that you will be focused more than you'd rather be, why not build up to your Banshee's Veil earlier, or perhaps purchase Guardian Angel.
Guardian Angel is good in teamfights, since it will force the enemies to loose focus from you for a couple of seconds. Even though this might not seem like alot, it's really THAT helpful.
I've seen many Master Yi's building Warmog's Armor and Atma's Impaler, which is great for survivability and a good damage output. But for some reason I just don't think it's worth it. I'm guessing it's because of my playstyle that I won't be needing that much health. But those are definately good items. No doubt.
Thornmail This might be worth purchasing, if facing a fed AD carry or if the majority of their team consists of AD champs. But if you're planning to buy Thornmail, you might aswell go with Atmogs aswell.
Other good items for master Yi lategame, are The Black Cleaver and Last Whisper. Both of these items makes it easier when facing a little bit more "beefy" teams, with champions such as Trundle and Udyr.
People has also been suggesting that changing Banshee's Veil to Frozen Mallet would be a good idea. And I agree. Although I still feel like the Banshee's Veil will provide a better lategame - but that's just my opinion.

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I have tried many diffenrent masteries on this particular champion, and this is the result. No more, no less.
The masteries that I use are in my opinion the best options for Master Yi and my way of playing him. They provide a great damage output and more sustainable laningphase. Even though many might suggest Vampirism I just think that the lifesteal you get from this build will be enough in the end.

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For runes I prefer using Greater mark of desolation, since it makes squishy targets smooth as butter and tanky champs more manageable. It also scales good throughout the game in general

For quints I use Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage, because it provides a good early game, which can and most likely will affect your endgame drastically.

For Seals i use Greater Seal of Armor. That extra armor gives you a great lanesustain, and makes you slightly more durable through the whole game.

Finally for glyphs I use Greater Glyph of Magic Resist. This helps alot against those annoying casters early game, and will (as with the Seals) make you more durable.

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Summoner Spells

Accepted Summonerspells
Flash This is probably my favourite summoner spell, because it provides such a great escape, or pursuiting ability. If you face-check a bush and a wild Garen appears, you can get away with your awesome Flash spell.
Exhaust Great when facing mainly AD, because it gives you such an advantage due to the damage reduction. It's also wonderful to have this spell when escaping or chasing other champions.
Ignite That "lucker" is no more, simply the best if you feel like your foes are getting away, or when put against champions such as Dr. Mundo or Volibear.
Cleanse My second favourite summoner spell, just beacuse it prevents you from being disabled or slowed for that matter. This is the asummoner spell that keeps me alive in most situation.

Optional Summoner Spells
Ghost I wouldn't recommend it on Master Yi because he already has his own one in his Highlander. But I guess that if you want to break the movementspeed record, this might just be the spell for you.
Teleport I suppose there are to options in which you want to use Teleport in. The first is if you are solo-laning top, which I wouldn't recommend in the first place. And the other is if you're going to push lanes the whole game. I guess it's alright, but it wouldn't be my first choice
Heal If you want people to rage at you, this would be the spell. When you're fighting 1v1 or barely getting away, this spell will save you and make people shout out loud "Noob Heal". - love it

Don't use these...seriously
Surge Attackspeed will not be a problem, and the extra Ap is simply useless on an AD character.
Smite This spell should never be used, unless you're jungling. And that is not the case.
Revive Just...don't...
Clarity Not worth wasting a summoner spell for this one, NEVER!
Promote Let's stay serious here, shall we?
Clairvoyance Never heard of a support-Yi, hope i never will...

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Laning and Harassing

The laningphase with Master Yi is a hard time for many. It all comes down to whom you are facing, and who you are laning with.
Having a support by your side will make everything ALOT easier, especially your harassing capability.
I would recommend waiting till level two before initiating your vicious plan to damage your foe. Why?
Because you then have Alpha Strike AND Wuju Style. There abilities will cause serious harm to you oponent, and the harass rotation is also rather simple: strike minions with autoattacks until you have your Double Strike ready, alpha stirke in, use Wuju Style and hit them once, then safely retreat back to your bush.

Use this tactic with caution when facing champions such as Blitzcrank, since Yi is easy to disable with ex. a stun, you might get caught offguard.

Farmingwith Master Yi is like for every other champ very important. Try to last hit minions as efficient as possible with Alpha Strike and autoattacks.

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Getting Harassed? No prob - Meditate.

In my personal opinion, master Yi is especially vulnerable to ranged heroes such as Caitlyn or Teemo. Since both of these champ are certain of making your laningphase a living hell, you have to be careful.
If you're certain that you will lane against them, you might want to consider buying Doran's Ring instead. Why? Because you have Meditate, which basically make you invulnerable at low levels while healing you based on your AP.
This ability works really well in tough situations, since they won't be able to get you down due to your hardcore meditation!

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Stacking Up the Pentakills...

In this video I was playing Master Yi as a jungler, but with basically the same items as mentioned earlier. This is not something that you should expect doing EVERY GAME ;), jokes aside you can get a picture of how much damage you would cause your foes with this build.

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Positioning - The ultimate test...

Positioning with master Yi is the most important part in how to master this champ. As you saw in the video, I arrived during the final parts of the teamfights and served as a clean-up crew . Since people already had their focus on our tanks when I jumped in, I could easily slice them to pieces.
Try to position yourself so that you can "ambush" the enemy carries abit after the teamfight starts. With the enemy carries down, you can shine as you clean up the rest of their team.

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This is my first build here on mobafire and I really hope you will find it useful!
If there's any questions about the items, runes or on the guide in general, don't hesitate to ask in the comment section.
I will soon add a Jungling build aswell, looking forward to it :)
Now go out there and right-click some ***!


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2012/03/03 - added The Black Cleaver, Last Whisper and Frozen Mallet to "Situational items"