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League of Legends Build Guide Author sanguinary maniac

You can Hide, but you can't Run (An AD Master Yi guide)

sanguinary maniac Last updated on May 7, 2011
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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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 0

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 9

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This build is dedicated to one thing:
Destroying your opponets with utterly awesome (and rather ridiculous) AD damage.

Master Yi is a very quick charecter and able to dish out damage very quickly as well as being able to push towers and destroy them very quickly. Not only that but if you get a kill with his ult you refresh all ability cooldowns (including the ult). Your only problem is your mana so don't over use it and grab golem's whenever you can!

If you have any comments please leave them below and please give me any tips you can as this is my first guide.

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Master Yi's History

Keeper of the ancient art of Wuju, Master Yi is a mystical warrior from the isle of Ionia. He descended from one of the few tribes dedicated to the preservation of Wuju, a martial art founded with the principles of absolute spiritual awareness of one's self and one's enemy. When the armies of Noxus invaded Ionia, Master Yi joined in the Ionian defense to fight the craven enemy, bringing his village honor through his unparalleled mastery of the blade. The ensuing battles ravaged the land, but no conflict inflicted as much horror as the day the armies of Noxus closed in on Yi's village. Left undefended, the village became the unfortunate test subject of the latest invention by an up-and-coming chemist, now known as Singed. The remains of the village that Master Yi returned to were so horrific that it remains a festering scar on Ionian history. To this day, no Ionian will ever publicly speak of what occurred.

After the Noxian invasion was contained, Master Yi fell into a deep isolation. For years, he trained morning to night, speaking to no one and refusing offers of consolation by fellow Ionians. The only thing stopping him from madly charging into Noxus battle lines headfirst was his pledge to keep the Wuju style alive. Even though he seethed with impatience, his rage became a tool for sharpening his practice of Wuju, developing stronger and deadlier skills for his eventual vengeance. The only thing that roused him was news of the League's formation, and Noxus's subsequent enrollment in the League. Master Yi now brings his mastery of the blade to the League of Legends with unflinching purpose: to avenge his kinfolk and end the predations of the Noxus once and for all.

''The art of Wuju lives on in Master Yi, and is plunged through the hearts of his foes.'' -- Soraka, the Starchild

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Pros and Cons

Does massive dps
Has Insane Attack Speed
Awesome chaser
Very good at running away
Able to farm well

Low Mana D:
Squishy, especially early game
If your stunned your screwed
Doesn't reach full potential until level 6 and ult

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Who and what you should be careful of

Jax is your number one enemy. You must avoid him at all costs because he has ridiculous dodge and everytime he dodges he can stun you. This makes your ulti useless against him. NEVER engage him in one on one combat unless he is at low health. Get a Sword of the Divine to counter him.

Tanks with Thornmail must be avoided as well especially if they have a taunt and even more if they're named Rammus. Thornmail can cause your ulti to do massive amounts of damage back to you! O.o Get some magic resist like Guardian Angel to keep yourself alive.

Look out for Teemo too. His Noxious Trap and Blinding Dart can become quite annoying

Hate healers because they always stop you from killing things and go after them with a Vengance. Grab a Executioner's Calling if the heals are getting really annoying.

In general avoid people with stuns(unless their like Ashe and have a tiny amount of health)and if over half their team has a stun get Mercury's Treads to reduce the stun duration.

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I go 21/0/9 for the most damage possible. Remember, you have one point in Utility Mastery for a reason! Grab the Golem buff whenever you can while you're at it grab the lizard buff too!

Technically you could go 21/9/0 for more survivability. Or even 9/0/21 if your going AP Yi(not covered in this guide but you can find one at

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Greater Mark of Desolation-Great for any melee champion but especially great for Master Yi as most his damage is from Auto Attacking. The added Armor Pen makes tanks easier to kill and gives you the ability to just burn through low armor champions.

Greater Seal of Attack Speed-Yi just can't get enough Attack Speed. These runes allow for easier last hitting minions so you can farm more effectively.

Greater Glyph of Critical Damage-You can't go wrong with more Crit Damage! This works especially well with Infinity Edge

Greater Quintessence of Desolation-MOAR ARMOR PEN!!!

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Summoner Spells

I use ghost for that extra boost of speed when I am chasing/running away. This is useful all the time even in early game and I improve the spell with my haste mastery. (If you replace this spell remember to switch the mastery!)

It provides a useful slow and debuff to enemies and is very useful when chasing or running away. (If you replace this spell remember to switch the mastery!)

Other good spells
This spell can be used instead of ghost and can be used to jump ledges and get away or to pursue opponets.

Also a very good spell for Yi especially if you focus on tower pushing, as you can take advantage of minion waves and push a tower or inhibitor.

Another good spell especially for getting First Blood or just for dotting a random opponet at low health when they flee from a team fight (Technically you could just chase them down but if you want to stay in the team fight...Ignite's your spell!)

Meh spells
If your jungling this is obviously what you want, but don't follow my guide if your jungling!

If you are midding or if you are just unsure of yourself, get this spell for some extra survivability.

If you find yourself constantly running out of mana (either because you don't get golem's or you spam Alpha Strike then get Clarity so you can use your mana more.

Constantly stunned and now really pissed off? Get this spell for stun prevention. (Personally I think Merc Boots are good enough)

No. Just no. Don't get this spell.

Leave that to tanks your Master Yi, you DESTROY towers you don't protect them.

Leave it to the support.

Once again, the support.

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Double Strike-Master Yi Strike twice every 7th Attack

Every 7th attack you make will now deal twice the damage! This scales with all items and abilities(like Wuju Style). You should watch this and once it reaches 6 stacks try to use it on an enemy champion to deal lots of damage before running away and farming again. This passive is one of the reasons why you are arguably the best tower pusher in the game.

Aplha Strike-Master Yi leaps across the battlefield with blinding speed, dealing magic damage to multiple units in his path with a chance to deal bonus magic damage to minions.
Master Yi leaps across the battlefield striking up to 4 enemies, dealing 100/150/200/250/300 (+1 per ability power) magic damage to each enemy with a 20/30/40/50/60% chance to deal 400 bonus magic damage to minions.
Cooldown - 18/16/14/12/10 seconds
Cost - 80/90/100/110/120 Mana
Range - 600

This is your harrass/intiate/farm spell. Try to use this on a minion close to you when there is a enemy champion near you and only a couple minions. More likely than not this will hit the enemy champion and deal some decent damage. Be careful and don't spam the spell too much (unless you have golems) as you have a very low mana pool. FYI you can not hit the same target twice with this spell so if their aren't enough enemies the spell will just end.

Meditate-Master Yi rejuvinates his body by focus of mind, restoring health and increasing his armor and magic resistance for a short time.
Master Yi channels, restoring 140/280/420/560/700 (+1.65 per ability power) health over 5 seconds. While channeling, Master Yi gains 100/150/200/250/300 armor and magic resistance.
Cooldown - 35 seconds
Cost - 70/85/100/115/130 Mana
Range - Self

If you find yourself being harrassed and forced out of the lane to heal much too often then grab one rank in this spell at level 3-5 instead of an Alpha Strike. This ability can be used to keep you alive until allies get to you, or just to stay alive while your team mates kill your opponet.

Wuju Style- Master Yi becomes skilled in the art of Wuju, passively increasing the power of his physical attacks. Activating Wuju Style doubles the passive bonus damage for a short time, but the passive bonus is temporarily removed after the effect wears off.
Passive: Increases physical damage by 15/20/25/30/35.

This move should be whenever you use Highlander, and also when you are trying to take out towers. If you kill someone with Highlander after you've popped this then the passive will stack with the active and you will get TRIPLE the normal effect. Don't pop it until your other active wears off though, because the actives don't stack.

Highlander- Master Yi moves with unparalleled agility, temporarily increasing Master Yi's movement and attack speeds as well as making him immune to all slowing effects. Additionally, killing a Champion refreshes all of Master Yi's cooldowns.
Increases Master Yi's movement speed by 40% and Attack Speed by 40/60/80%, and he becomes immune to all slowing effects for 6/9/12 seconds. Additionally, killing a champion refreshes all of Master Yi's cooldowns, and scoring an assist reduce the cooldowns by half.
Cooldown - 75 seconds
Cost - 120/120/120 Mana
Range - Self

This is why I play Yi instead of any other charecter (though Kat's passive is cool too). After killing an enemy player with your amazing Wuju Style, Highlander combo you can go rape another player's face with the same combo and keep on repeating till you have a Pentakill or run out of mana (tends to be the second one so get golem's!)This ability can also be used to run away (and your imune to slows :D). In cohesion with ghost you will be the fastest charecter on the map and be able to chase everyone and everything down (with the exception of Kassadin :P)

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Boots of Speed-This is your first buy, get three health pots along with it.

Berseker's Greaves-After securing enough gold buy Berserker's Greaves (around level 3-4) next time your at base so that you can last hit more minions and get as close to five health pots as you can with your remaining money(continue doing this when you come in). If your lane has a lot of stun you may want to consider getting Mercury's Treads instead.

Zeal-This should be purchased around level 6-7. After this you should have a good attack speed and be able to last hit most minions as you farm. You should also be able to outrun everybody pretty easily(unless they have Boots of Mobility or Boots of Swiftness.

Vampiric Scepter-This should be bought by levels 7-8This is your "survivability" until later. Combined with your great attack speed you should be able to stay at a decent amount of health even with consistent harrassess. (You're healing 13 health per swing 26 health per 7th attack and you have 1132 health).

Phantom Dancer-Uprade your Zeal to a Phantom Dancer. This is where you will get most of your attack speed and chasing power.

B. F. Sword-You should get this item around level 12-14ish. At level 14 your base damage is 96 damage. Add this item and your rank 5 Wuju Style passive and your healing 21 health per swing, and 42 health every 7th hit! Thanks lolwut--- for figuring this out.

Stark's Fervor-Around level 15-17 you will be getting this item for some more "survivability" and attack speed. You're now healing 37 health per swing and 74 health per 7th hit! You're also healing 30 health every 5 seconds!

From here you can branch out in several directions depending on how the game is going.

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End-game items

Good for any Occasion

The Bloodthirster-This item is a great bonus to your collection. It adds 60 attack damage to your arsenal when you first get it as well as another 15% life steal. You would be healing 71 health every swing without even having farmed! To unlock the true potential of this however you should start farming minions until you have 40 stacks! (Personally, I find it rather tiresome to farm :p) Once fully stacked you have 45% lifesteal and are healing 109 health per swing!

Infinity Edge-With this item you should crit every couple of seconds and you should crit HARD!!! Generally a good item no matter what. Raises you attack damage by 80, upping your attack damage to 223.76 damage per swing, and critting 559 health, without counting any runes or masteries!

Frozen Mallet-Want some more health? Frozen Mallet can give you it! Grab this for a little more survivability and for a decent slow when you hit someone for even more chasing power! (remember when buying to get Phage first)

Guardian Angel-Finding yourself dead a bit too much for your liking? Get this to stall death itself!

Youmuu's Ghostblade-Kind of overkill on Yi with the extra Attack Speed an Movement Speed and the Cool down reduction. Still, there's no such thing as an enemy that's TOO dead is there ;D

Tiamat-Adds 50 attack damage (193.76 attack damage total) 15 health per 5 seconds as well as 5 mana per second. Very useful item that causes you to deal splash damage(97 splash damage)!


Banshee's Veil-Their team has some really annoying spell casters? No problem! Grab a Banshee's Veil for added health, mana and magic resist!

Quicksilver Sash-Though a very underestimated item this can, potentionally save your life! Use it to remove any stupid crowd control effects on you (especially if your inflicted by a blind. ie: Blinding Dart.

Wit's End-Use this to stop those pesky casters from casting anything as you bash their face in.


Thornmail-An enemy melee champion is being fed? Use this and make him suffer when he attacks you. Apart from this just get more damage and attack speed and focus him down.


Executioner's Calling-Annoying healer pissing you off and preventing kills? Get this and stop those stupid healers from healing so much! Also get your teamates to focus the healer first! If she's being focused she can't heal anybody else or else she'll die!


Madred's Bloodrazor-The enemy tank never dies and has a legendary killing spree? grab Madred's Bloodrazor to end that stupid tank's spree and start one of your own!

Black Cleaver-Buy this so you can penetrate through a tank's heavy armor and kill him. This item gives you all the stats you want! (except for movement speed)


Oracle's Elixir-Kind of obvious, but if your opponets have an annoying stealth charecter like Shaco or Evelynn you should get this so you can chase them down.

Vision Ward-Not as useful as Oracle's Elixir but still useful for taking out stealth when placed correctly. Useful mainly when laning.


Sword of the Divine-This is your anti- Jax weapon. Use it on him, and other dodge *****s with a vengance.

Once you're done with your build...

Elixir of Agility, Elixir of Fortitude, and Elixir of Brilliance.
Don't have anymore room for items but have a lot of left over gold? Buy these elixirs for even more stats! Also feel free to buy some Sight Wards and Vision Wards as they can be very useful when placed at smart locations (bushes, dragon, baron etc.).

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Skill combos

Harrassing/Farming with Champions nearby- Alpha Strike the minion farthest from your enemy, this should hit them as you bounce around.

Killing your opponets before level 6- Alpha Strike Wuju Style smack smack smack you want to run? Exhaust/ Ghost smack smack smack dead.

Killing your opponets after level 6- Alpha Strike Wuju Style Highlander smacksmacksmacksmacksmacksmack dead.

Running away- Ghost Highlander :D your safe!

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Destroying Buildings

Always allow minions (or a tank) to draw the towers attention first before rushing in and beginning to bash a tower. If their are many allied minions near the tower and most of your opponets are visible and not missing in action than pop Wuju Style and Highlander and end that towers pitiful existence. Same with Inhibitors but then you don't have to care about the minions. Once the building goes down, run away with Ghost.

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A Little Caution Please!

Master Yi has very little health and you want to play him in a very cautious manner. Do not allow him to be constantly open to harrassment and if an ally rushes into an impossible to win fight you DO NOT follow them into the fray. Run away. This is because you're Master Yi and not Dr. Mundo with his Sadism and Adrenaline Rush.

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I play Master Yi as a side laner although he can mid. If you are midding grab a rank of Meditate at level 3 and be careful! Master Yi has a low health pool and can't sustain much damage!

Early game
Get into the brush with your partner and get ready to gank the first unsuspecting nub that comes along. Intiate with Alpha Strike before meleeing them as much as possible. If you are getting low on health(about 200 health run away while health potting unless your opponet is basically dead.
After First Blood keep harrassing them with Alpha Strike while you farm. And jump them when they are at low health.

Mid game
Grab Golem's whever you can after you've bought some lifesteal, and stay in your lane and FARM!!! This is essential for you if you want a good late game(Master Yi is very item dependent). Only leave your lane if a team fight is brewing.

Late game
This is when all your farming pays off. You will be the god of the battlefield, utterly destroying anything in your path! Go on a gank rampage and push any lane you can!

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And that concludes my Master Yi build. If you have any comments please leave them below as well as any tips for making the guide better. If you dislike this build please tell me why and I will try to fix it!
Thanks for reading!

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5/6/11-Changed Item build so you buy a B. F. Sword before Zeke's Harbinger so that you get more from the life steal. Also changed order of purchase of Infinity Edge Frozen Hammer and The Bloodthirster. Thank you lolwut---, your advice is appreciated.

5/7/11-Added a bunch more description to all of the items in my build. Also put the end-game items in their own chapter so they're more easy to distinguish from the normal items.