Karthus Build Guide

[S3]Karthus, new Version

Uploader Angeluzs
Updated 4 years ago
176,631
100%
Runes
  • 9
    Greater Mark of Magic Penetration (+0.87 magic penetration)
  • 9
    Greater Seal of Scaling Ability Power (+0.1 ability power per level (+1.8 at champion level 18))
  • 9
    Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist (+0.16 magic resist per level (+3 at champion level 18))
  • 3
    Greater Quintessence of Ability Power (+4.95 ability power)
Skill Order
Q W E R
1 1 1 1
2 2 2 2
3 3 3 3
4 4 4 4
5 5 5 5
6 6 6 6
7 7 7 7
8 8 8 8
9 9 9 9
10 10 10 10
11 11 11 11
12 12 12 12
13 13 13 13
14 14 14 14
15 15 15 15
16 16 16 16
17 17 17 17
18 18 18 18

Karthus has always been considered like an AP Mid weak in lane, strong in teamfights. That's why he's not really played on Solo/Duo Queues, but kinda appreciated in Ranked Teams. But with the Season 3, everything changed. The new metagame and items made him stronger, and now we can sometimes see him in ranked Queues. His early game is very underestimated; however, he has a strong Single target-damage potential at lv 5. At mid/late game, he's in my point of vue one of the strongest AP Carry in teamfights. I'll tell you in this guide, how i use to play him Now (S3). It worked pretty well.

My Runes are also very simple: Magic resist for safety in early game, ap flat for damages early, and Magic Penetration/AP per level for mid/late game Damages. ->Mana Regen per level Seals also can be tooken ->I took Magic Resist per level glyphs; Flat Magic resist also can be tooken against strong early game AP Mid ->I've been seeing more and more Movement Speed Quintessences, It can be tooken but I don't recommend it, because Karthus need AP to make damages and you are supposed to have your [imgsmall=summoners/exhaust.png] and [imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png] to chase/escape.

[title][img=skills/karthus/p.png] Passive: Death Defied[/title] Upon dying, Karthus enters a spirit form allowing him to continue casting spells while dead for 7 seconds. [title]Explanation:[/title] One of the best Passive in my point of vue. With this, you can make your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/r.png] in safety during a Teamfight, because you won't be able to be crowd-controled. It's also very usefull in the way that you can just continue to do your constant damage in the middle of the fight while you are dead. In these 7 seconds, try to make damage as much as possible, your spells don't cost mana. In teamfights, all the fight long, and even after your death, try to make your enemies stay in the [imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png] ring, land your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png] and spamm your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png], and let's hope they'll forget you :D [title][img=skills/karthus/q.png] Q: Lay Waste[/title] Creates a delayed blast at Karthus' cursor position. After 0.5 seconds, deals 40 / 60 / 80 / 100 / 120 (+30% of ability power) magic damage to each nearby enemy, this deals double damage if it hits only a single unit. Cooldown : 1 second Cost: 20 / 28 / 36 / 44 / 52 mana Range: 875 [title]Explanation:[/title] This spell will make you able to harrass in early game and farm in safety, due to his long range and low mana cost. Don't forget this is a high single target damage combinated to [imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png] while it's at least lv 3. Poeple often do this spell on a group of minion, but I really don't recommand this; it will be more difficult for you to take the last hit on minions and it will push your lane. Think that the spell does less damages if the target is further. Try to use it and abuse it. [highlight]->Notice that the spell is in smartcast, means that the [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png] will appear where your mouse is ->[imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png] can give the vision in the Fog of War ->Take it at lv 1, and max it first[/highlight] [title][img=skills/karthus/w.png] W: Wall of Pain[/title] Creates a 800 / 900 / 1000 / 1100 / 1200 distance wide wall through target point. Reduces enemy armor and magic resistance 15% and reduces movement speed by up to 40 / 50 / 60 / 70 / 80%; debuff lasts 5 seconds. The wall lasts 5 seconds. Cooldown: 22 seconds Cost: 100 mana Range: 1000 [title]Explanation:[/title] This wall is just so awesome. Reduces movement speed from 40% to 80%, reduces magic resistances and high range at lv 5. It is the reason you can kill your opponement Midlaner in early game, and if well placed, can you make win the fight. It has also a good utility in laning phase, with it, you can chase your enemy with [imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png] and [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png], to make him high damages. It's also a really good way to engage a teamfight. [highlight]->[imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png] can give the vision in Fog of War ->It used to reduce also the armor, but due to a recent nerf, it now only reduces the magic resistance. This is why I max it last. However, you can max it in second right after [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png], in order of early teamfights.[/highlight] [title][img=skills/karthus/e.png] E: Defile[/title] Toggle Off: When Karthus kills a unit, he restores 20 / 27 / 34 / 41 / 48 mana. Toggle On: Drains 30 / 42 / 54 / 66 / 78 Mana to deal 30 / 50 / 70 / 90 / 110 (+25% of ability power) damage to nearby enemies each second. Cooldown: 0.5seconds Range: 550 [title]Explanation:[/title] This is the reason why Karthus is feared. The passive is really good, restores a lot of mana. That's why Karthus can't be oom. Also, when turned on, a sort of ring appear around you, and deals damages to every target that are into your ring. It makes damages constantly, and that's why this spell is really powerfull during a teamfight. It makes everybody to get away from you, to not stand into your ring. with your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png], you'll see your enemies' life going down pretty fast. [highlight]->Don't forget [imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png] cost mana every second it is activated ->I max it second, this will be your bread and butter skill during teamfights.[/highlight] [title][img=skills/karthus/r.png] R: Requiem[/title] After channeling for 3 seconds, Karthus deals 250 / 400 / 550 (+60% of ability power) magic damage to all enemy champions (regardless of distance). Cooldown: 200 / 180 / 160 seconds Cost: 200 / 300 / 400 mana Range 10000 [title]Explanation:[/title] This is one of the most hated ultimate in the whole League of Legends. It makes damages to every single enemy champions, wherever they are, whatever they do. This is really usefull to finish one of your enemy who has escaped with low HP. This is also a real helpful hand during a lane fight at Top/Bot, like if you ganked. [highlight]->In early, use it only if you are 100% sure to secure a kill. Remember it has a high cooldown. ->Be careful, your ulti can be stop by any stun. In order to avoid this, use it in safety or while [imgsmall=skills/karthus/p.png]. ->Max it whenever it is possible to max it.[/highlight] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y-hQ1Iai5aY[/youtube] [highlight]/!WARNING/![/highlight] Karthus ultimate has enemies. Beware of [imgsmall=summoners/heal.png] and especially this blue human-unicorn -->[img=champ/soraka.png]<--

[img=skills/karthus/r.png] --> [img=skills/karthus/q.png] --> [img=skills/karthus/e.png] --> [img=skills/karthus/w.png] [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/r.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/r.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/r.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png][imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png] -->[imgsmall=skills/karthus/r.png] is your ultimate (R). The most loved and the most hated ultimate in the League. Max it whenever it's possible (level 6,11,16) -->[imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png] is your Q spell. Amazing farming and harrassing tool. Don't underrestimate its damages. Max it first (level 1,3,5,7,9) -->[imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png] is your E spell. Your most important spell in fights that does AOE damages per second. Max it second (level 4,8,10,12,13) -->[imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png] is your W spell. The wall that everybody fear, bringing the enemies' magic resistance and movement speed very low. Max it last (level 2,14,15,17,18).

[title]DIFFERENT BOOTS[/title] [img=items/sorcerers-shoes.png] are the most recommended boots for Karthus. In early-game, you'll be able to avoid ganks with [imgsmall=items/sorcerers-shoes.png]+[imgsmall=items/sight-ward.png]+[imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png]. You'll be also more powerfull against your opponement Midlaner. [img=items/ninja-tabi.png] are not recommended. If you need armor, just take Zhonya in early [img=items/boots-of-mobility.png] NOPE. Cuz everytime you'll hit someone, the additional movement speed will be cancelled. [img=items/mercurys-treads.png] : Can be used against AP Mid, Top and Jungler or against extremly high CC. [img=items/ionian-boots-of-lucidity.png] : Isn't really usefull, because your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png] and [imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png] just don't have cooldowns. [title]EARLY-GAME ITEMS[/title] [img=items/tear-of-the-goddess.png] : Why? Just one answer : [imgsmall=items/seraphs-embrace.png]. When your [imgsmall=items/tear-of-the-goddess.png] is stacked to 750, and when you buy [imgsmall=items/archangels-staff.png], it will turn to [imgsmall=items/seraphs-embrace.png]. Its active drain 25% of your current mana to create a really good shield, which will be one of your most important step into your teamfight combo. [img=items/catalyst-the-protector.png] : This item will give you all the HP/Hp regen/Mana/Mana regen you need to sustain well on your lane [img=items/haunting-guise.png] : In case of lane domination or if you obtain an early blue, this is a good option. [highlight]-> Don't forget you are Karthus, you have to be safe for a good lane domination. Mana/Mana regen is absolutely needed and HP highly recommended.[/highlight] [title]ITEMS THAT YOU MUST HAVE ABSOLUTELY TO DO[/title] [img=items/rod-of-ages.png] : this is the most important early-game's item for Karthus. Will bring you all the sustain and damage you need to secure your laning phase. [img=items/seraphs-embrace.png][title]At MAX 35mins of game[/title] : This is the must have for your mid-game teamfights. Brings you a really good shield + A lot of AP. It's really easy to farm [imgsmall=items/tear-of-the-goddess.png] in early game with Karthus. Don't forget it will be part of your combo in teamfights. [img=items/zhonyas-hourglass.png] : Should be the most important item for Karthus in fights. Gives more AP, the Armor you need to sustain to adc and the active that will make you make more damages in the fight. Get it in 3rd or 4th Item [img=items/rabadons-deathcap.png] : Every single Midlaner needs it. Just take it as 3rd or 4th Item. It's really easy to have now that it cost -500g than at Season 2. [title]ALTERNATIVES[/title] [img=items/guardian-angel.png] : Can be tooken if really focused, or if you wanna have more fun as staying longer in the fight :D [img=items/abyssal-scepter.png] : If it's the APs who are carrying the game in front of you and if they stacked magic resistance. [img=items/athenes-unholy-grail.png] : I used to test it in some of my games, This can work only if you are really in a bad situation on your lane. Otherwise, [imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png] is much better. [img=items/will-of-the-ancients.png] : Since the S3, I think this item became less viable. But if you think you can survive due to it, take it. I sometimes take it cuz I'm a real WotA Fan :) [img=items/void-staff.png] : Real good last Item for Karthus, to make more and more damages. Good against poeple that have MR. [img=items/spirit-of-the-spectral-wraith.png] : Never tried it, but I think it can be a alternative if you are looking for big sustain. [img=items/shard-of-true-ice.png] : Even if it's a support item, and that I've never tried it, it can be fun :D [img=items/rylais-crystal-scepter.png] : If poeple escape too much, or if you are a bit focused, take this. -> If you take [imgsmall=summoners/ignite.png] instead of [imgsmall=summoners/exhaust.png], I think [imgsmall=items/rylais-crystal-scepter.png] is part of the Core Items [img=items/nashors-tooth.png] : Everybody knows that Karthus' basic attacks are just OP. [img=items/liandrys-torment.png] : It's one of the best S3 items, and it's really good to take if you are fed and they don't do much magic resist. Think really about this. [img=items/deathfire-grasp.png] : it became again at S3 a real good item, really usefull if you have someone to burst down.

Everybody says "the best Defence is Attack". But Karthus isn't logical. For the early-game, I should say "The best Attack is Defence". [title]At 2:00[/title] After having help your jungler on his blue/red, just last hit with your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png]. It's the safest way to farm, and due to its mana cost, you won't have mana problems. [title]Is the opponement jungler ganks you[/title] Even if you were about to kill the enemy, put your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png] and back. Don't be afraid to [imgsmall=summoners/flash.png], you can really be killed easily early. [title]When your jungler ganks your lane[/title] Don't make your enemy feel that your jungler is about to gank. Means that don't try to overextand and harrass him, he will immediatly know what's going on (do it if you know that your enemy is stupid :)). Try to DON'T dodge enemy's spell, but be careful to don't take many damages. Make him sure you want to 1v1 him. Then put [imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png] then [imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png]. While he's backing, hit him with [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png], make try to make him stay in your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png]. Use your [imgsmall=summoners/exhaust.png] if needed. [title]OTHERWISE[/title] Just farm. Make him feel impacience cuz nothing happens mid. Oblige him to make mistakes. If he goes on you, make first sure that the oppenement jungler isn't ganking. If he tries to 1v1 you, try to dodge his burst. When he's on cooldown, place your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png], put on [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png] and hit him with [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png] while he's backing. You should win the damages exchange. Try to harrass your enemy as much as you can with your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png]. Try to place it under his feet or in front of a minion he would last hit. But beware to don't spamm too much, in early game you don't have a lot of mana! Your ultimate is also part of your early mid game. You can take a kill on someone that went away with low HP, or you can just land it to secure a kill during a fight on a lane. Whenever you land your ulti, be SURE the kill will be secured. If the enemy is tanky, don't do it. If he has heal ready, don't do it. If you land it only to steal a kill, don't do it. If someone is running to you, don't do it. Tell to your teammates when your ulti is ready [highlight]->Don't forget to take jungler's Wraith when your lane is pushed, this is really easy to do with Karthus, and can gives the advantage.[/highlight]

Make sure your lanes are not pushed. You can easily push a lane. Be ALWAYS with your teammates. Nothing else to say, it's the same for everychamps. Try to poke with your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png] as much as possible without beeing unsafe. [title]IN TEAMFIGHTS[/title] Let your team engage, or engage yourself as placing [imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png] on their carried. Then this is the most important part of Karthus, this will explain everything you've done till now. With Karthus, you have to be in the MIDDLE of the fight, and beein kinda focused. Don't be afraid to die. Don't also be afraid to [imgsmall=summoners/flash.png] In the fight if your too far. [title]When your in the middle of the fight[/title] Put your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/w.png], put on your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png]. [imgsmall=summoners/exhaust.png] the opponement carry. Then immediately use [imgsmall=items/seraphs-embrace.png]. Spamm your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/q.png] ALL THE TIME. When you are getting like 500HP, use your [imgsmall=items/zhonyas-hourglass.png]. Don't forget to let your [imgsmall=skills/karthus/e.png] on all the time ! When you finally die, means you're in [imgsmall=skills/karthus/p.png], use [imgsmall=skills/karthus/r.png] to finish 'em ALL. [highlight]I WILL DO SOME MORE THE NEXT DAY[/highlight]

I'm a 15 year-old french student. I've been playing LoL for now a year and an half. I'm at 1500 Elo on S2 and S3. I love cats and bananas. My favorite lane is Mid, but I'm also a good supp. IF YOU LIKED MY GUIDE, IF IT HELPED YOU, DONT FORGET TO LEAVE A COMMENT AND TO LIKE THIS GUIDE ! :D Hope you enjoyed it. Love you guys <3 Angeluzs

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