Master Yi Build Guide

The DPS Yi that starts with Dorans Ring

Uploader Danferno
Updated 5 years ago
  • 9
    Greater Mark of Armor Penetration (+1.28 armor penetration)
  • 9
    Greater Seal of Scaling Mana Regeneration (+0.065 mana regen / 5 sec. per level (+1.17 at champion level 18))
  • 9
    Greater Glyph of Magic Resist (+1.34 magic resist)
  • 3
    Greater Quintessence of Health (+26 health)
Skill Order
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

Master Yi is generally known as the "Right Click Champion". The term is generally used by people that never seriously played with him, because a good Yi does more than rightclicking (he occasionally leftclicks, for starters!). I do not claim to be a pro and I can not guarantee this guide will get you to 2000+ ELO, kicking GBob and HotshotGGs ass while going there. In fact, I don't recommend picking Yi in serious ranked games at all, because there are way better AD carries out there. However, he's damn fun to play with in normals (or relaxed rankeds). If you're looking for a high ELO Yi guide, I'm not sure you'll find it here. You might notice this is not a jungle guide. It used to be because Yi was a rather weak jungler (he didn't fit in the meta at all, imo), but with the new masteries, I dare say he's actually quite decent. At least I got a penta as jungle yi just yesterday... (22/11). However, laning him is just so much more fun because of all the psychological warfare it entails. For jungle Yi, I recommend and .

Up to personal taste as well. [.]You can swap for [highlight]Quints of Desolation[/highlight] (armorpen), but early game most of your damage is going to come from [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/q.png]; the extra health from [highlight]Quints of Fortitude[/highlight] is generally more effective. [.][highlight]Marks of Desolation[/highlight] aren't really negotiable, I can't really think of any runes that'd help you more. [.][highlight]Seals of Clarity[/highlight] are hard to replace too, you really need mana if you want to harass/heal sufficiently. You could use Flat Armor runes ([highlight]Resilience[/highlight]) or Hp/lvl ([highlight]Vitality[/highlight]), but Yi has the unique feat of being an AD carry that can use mana to heal himself, so I really would recommend the Clarity runes. [.][highlight]Glyphs[/highlight] are a lot more flexible. You can really put whatever you want here, Flat MR ([highlight]Warding[/highlight]) really takes the sting out of casters early game, but you could also opt for more mana regen, cdr, attack speed, ...

[title][img=skills/masteryi/p.png] Passive: Double Strike[/title] [number]Master Yi strikes twice every 7th attack.[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] A lot of people forget about this passive and don't pay attention to it. You should. Especially when solo top, good use of this ability can really turn your lane around. Try not to waste it on minions, combine it with alpha strike for a [highlight]deadly harass[/highlight] (200 damage at L1 is not impossible) or use to deny melee opponents. [title][img=skills/masteryi/q.png] Q: Alpha Strike[/title] [number]Master Yi leaps across the battlefield striking up to 4 enemies, dealing 100 / 150 / 200 / 250 / 300 (+100% of 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[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] This skill is really awesome (and using superlatives is fun), but it takes some skill to use properly. [.][highlight]Don't spam it[/highlight]. You'll push your lane like mad and leave yourself open to ganks. [.]If you want to use this as harass, wait until there are only [highlight]3 enemy minions[/highlight] left to ensure you'll hit the champion. Ideally, you want there to be as few minions as possible to avoid pushing the lane. [.]Use this to get minion kills in a hard lane (when you can't get to their minions). Make sure your target is in a safe spot, you don't want to alpha strike into a double stun. [.]If your target dies before your alpha strike is finished, you return to your [highlight]starting position[/highlight]. Use this to your advantage - it's one of the only ways to get minion kills in a 1v2 lane. The timing is very tricky though, so be careful. The same happens when you alpha strike on vladimir and he pools in between. [.]Apparently you can use this to dodge Karthus ultimate, but I haven't been able to do it yet. Lieutenantshinysides says he can, so I'm probably just bad. [highlight]*update*[/highlight] [.]You can use this to dodge Mundo's cleaver, Ashe's volley, ... [.]This will [highlight]remove creep aggro[/highlight]. A potential tactic when laning against a melee champion is to attack him when you have doublestrike and then immediately alpha-strike on a minion to get rid of aggro, saving you a lot of health. [.]Use this to escape. You can [highlight]alpha strike over walls[/highlight] (including Jarvan's ultimate), so long as you have vision of a target beyond it. If you are pro, you can even place wards in jungle specifically for this purpose (if you are really pro, you place them while running). [.]Use this to chase. If your timing is really awesome, you can even follow someone's flash with this (or shunpo, spinning slash, ...). You can see this in effect in this GrassHyren video: . [.]Avoid using this to engage. It's usually a better idea to just run to your target (which you can because your ultimate makes you immune to slow and you're megafast) and use this to remove focus from you. Remember that you'll disappear for a short period while alphastriking, forcing your opponents to choose between refocusing or waiting for you to return like sitting ducks. If one of their champions stay apart from the rest, you can also use this to get away from most of their team. [.]Makes you jungle really fast, getting red is no problem even without wriggles. [.]I call this skill Yi strike, because it's so awesome. [title][img=skills/masteryi/w.png] W: Meditate[/title] [number]Master Yi channels, restoring 140 / 280 / 420 / 560 / 700 (+165% of ability power) health over 5 seconds. While channeling, Master Yi gains 100 / 150 / 200 / 250 / 300 armor and magic resistance. Cooldown 35seconds Cost 70 / 85 / 100 / 115 / 130 mana Range 20[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] This skill is pretty straightforward. Find a safe-ish spot and heal. There are some nifty tricks though... [.]Use this when opponents use [highlight]exhaust[/highlight] on you, especially [highlight]early game[/highlight] (in small fights, usually not a good idea in teamfights). [.]Once it's at L2-3, it roughly keeps up with tower damage. Are you and a teammate [highlight]towerdiving[/highlight], but you're at low hp? Take tower aggro and meditate so your teammate can dive without harm. If you have flash and decent timing, you'll actually survive (flash away between two tower shots) more often than not. If you don't have flash, you can do the same trick with alpha strike, but it's a lot harder and the situation needs to be right (you need a target outside tower range). [.]Avoid using this when the enemies have stun/silence ready. [.]Do use if you're ignited and at extremely low hp - it still heals quite a bit and the armor/mres can really make the difference. [.][highlight]Meditate > Karthus/Caitlynn ultimate[/highlight] [title][img=skills/masteryi/e.png] E: Wuju Style[/title] [number]Passive: Increases physical damage by 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 / 35. Active: Master Yi can activate this ability to double its effectiveness for 10 seconds, but this removes the passive bonus until Wuju Style becomes available again. Cooldown 25 seconds Cost 40 mana Range 20[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] This skill is really useful and also rather useless. I usually [highlight]get one level[/highlight] in it and leave it there for a while. Unless your lane is easycake, you'll rarely ever have the mana to use this and the difference between L1 and L2 is neglectable (even more if you factor in armor). You get 33% more damage, whereas L2 meditate increases heal by 100% en resistances by 50%, a way better deal if you ask me. Don't underestimate it either though, L3 activated gives you more damage than a BF sword. [highlight]If attacking towers[/highlight], it's usually best to activate this when your [highlight]doublestrike counter is around 5[/highlight], so it'll be active during two doublestrikes. The ideal moment varies with your attackspeed (once it's high enough you just want to activate it immediately). [title][img=skills/masteryi/r.png] R: Highlander[/title] [number]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. (Assists reduce half of the base cooldown amount.) Cooldown 75 seconds Cost 120 mana Range 1[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] The reason Yi can get pentakills. [.]Don't activate this too early. If you expect to get stunned, [highlight]wait until after the stun[/highlight] to activate this (L1 only lasts for 6 seconds, lategame this becomes less of a problem). [.]Unless you're really sure your opponents aren't going to come, [highlight]avoid activating this to take down towers[/highlight]. It's tempting, but with Highlander you can escape virtually everything, without it you're dead meat. [.][highlight]All your cooldowns will reset[/highlight] if you kill someone while this is active. Unfortunately, in most situations you won't have enough mana to really make use of it (until you buy banshees anyway). Always keep an eye on your mana after a kill and choose wisely which skill to reactivate; [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/r.png] if it's about to run out, [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/q.png] if you can do something useful with it (see above), [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/w.png] if the situation's right. Only reactivate [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/e.png] if you're really swimming in mana (or it makes the difference between a kill and someone getting away with 10 hp).

[img=skills/masteryi/r.png] > [img=skills/masteryi/q.png] > [img=skills/masteryi/w.png] & [img=skills/masteryi/e.png] [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/q.png] is maxed first because it's the [highlight]most reliable source of damage[/highlight] in laning phase and really helps your farm in hard lanes. When you level [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/w.png] or [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/e.png] depends on the situation. If you're having issues staying alive, prioritize meditate; if you're dominating your lane and don't need the heal, prioritize Wuju style. The 15 passive damage makes lasthitting a breeze (it also allows you to kill caster minions with one tower hit + one attack instead of needing to attack twice) and adds some punch when attacking champions (but not that much extra past L1).

[img=items/dorans-ring.png] I start with [imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png] because it gives Yi everything it needs to lane succesfully. Doran's ring gives you [highlight]health[/highlight] (= awesome), improves your alpha strike (= mostly used for harass and to get minion kills in hard lanes), improves your meditate (= used to keep you alive) and gives you mana regen (allowing you to [highlight]harass[/highlight] and [highlight]heal[/highlight]). All those things stay useful throughout the entire game. Also, it confuses the shit out of your opponents. If you start with [imgsmall=items/dorans-blade.png], you won't have enough mana to use both [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/w.png] and [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/q.png], giving your opponent free farm. You'll rarely ever be able to make use of the extra attack damage and the 3% lifesteal really isn't going to help you (just getting any hp out of it would push your lane beyond reasonable terms). If you think I'm full of bullshit, you could also take [imgsmall=items/cloth-armor.png][imgsmall=items/health-potion5.png]. This also gives you some survivability (against physical damage) and health regen, however you're still left with low hp (especially if you went for armorpen quints) and (too) low mana regen (which is partly offset by the reduced need to meditate). If you can't use your alpha strike regularly, you risk giving the opponent free farm. You don't want that. [img=items/boots-of-speed.png] [img=items/dorans-blade.png][img=items/dorans-blade.png][img=items/dorans-blade.png] or [img=items/wriggles-lantern.png][img=items/avarice-blade.png][img=items/zeal.png] or [img=items/tiamat.png][img=items/zeal.png][img=items/vampiric-scepter.png] Your next item depends on how early you had to recall and the situation in your lane. You'll always want to get [imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png]. In 99% of cases, [imgsmall=items/sight-ward.png] is also a good idea, especially if you want to try taking out the tower or expect to get ganked. After that it gets more tricky. Stacking [imgsmall=items/dorans-blade.png] works surprisingly well for [highlight]early-mid dominance[/highlight]. If you're in it for the [highlight]long haul[/highlight], get [imgsmall=items/avarice-blade.png] for the gold/5 and [imgsmall=items/wriggles-lantern.png] for the lifesteal, free ward and push/jungle power. Wriggles is an optional item though, because it doesn't help all that much against champions - if you want the lifesteal, a simple [imgsmall=items/vampiric-scepter.png] works wonders; if you want pushing power, damage and sustainability [imgsmall=items/tiamat.png] is underrated (see end of guide). Add a [imgsmall=items/zeal.png] for extra attack speed. [img=items/berserkers-greaves.png]/[img=items/mercurys-treads.png] [img=items/phantom-dancer.png] [imgsmall=items/phantom-dancer.png] is now my favourite core item (you finish the [imgsmall=items/youmuus-ghostblade.png] later). It gives roughly the same as youmuu's, but no cdr and armorpen - however the ms and as are permanent, making this item more reliable than youmuu's. This makes pushing a breeze and significantly adds to your damage. [img=items/youmuus-ghostblade.png] [imgsmall=items/youmuus-ghostblade.png] is a great item (if you remember to activate it), especially because of its components. This gives you "[highlight]burst dps[/highlight]" - you'll be hitting like a madman with this & ulty activated, not so much when you have neither active. Activate it to take down towers quickly while keeping [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/r.png] available to escape. The ms boost is very useful when chasing. The cdr and armorpen make you extra deadly - alpha strike will be available again sooner and you pierce through almost everyone's armor (apart from tank, obviously). [img=items/infinity-edge.png][img=items/the-bloodthirster.png][img=items/the-black-cleaver.png][img=items/starks-fervor.png][img=items/tiamat.png] I can't tell you what damage item to get. [imgsmall=items/infinity-edge.png] gives you the most raw damage but is hard to farm (don't buy this until you have [imgsmall=items/zeal.png] or [imgsmall=items/youmuus-ghostblade.png], because Yi's attack speed is surprisingly low until L2-3 Highlander), [imgsmall=items/the-bloodthirster.png] is great for the attack damage and lifesteal, but the way Yi works, you will often have to refill it and it's a pain to build as well (It's not uncommon to get 2-3 kills in a teamfight and then die). [imgsmall=items/the-black-cleaver.png] gives you a nice combination of attack speed, damage and armor reduction. It's one of the better options if you bought [imgsmall=items/wriggles-lantern.png] (since that already gives you lifesteal) and/or have other physical damage dealers in your team. [imgsmall=items/zeal.png] is great if you just want a little bit more attack speed and movement speed for very low cost. [imgsmall=items/trinity-force.png] does not work well on yi. [imgsmall=items/starks-fervor.png] is a great teamitem. If you have money issues, [imgsmall=items/tiamat.png] is easy to build and gives you a lot useful stats (lane sustain, damage and minor splash), all for about 2k gold. [img=items/banshees-veil.png][img=items/guardian-angel.png][img=items/giants-belt.png][img=items/wits-end.png][img=items/spirit-visage.png] Often you'll find yourself unable to deliver your damage because [highlight]you get focused and burst down[/highlight]. Although you can't really avoid this (it depends mostly on how both teams play), you can make it less likely by buying [imgsmall=items/banshees-veil.png]. The reason this item is so effective is that it makes each individual hesitant to use his burst/stun skill on you, hopefully [highlight]moving the focus to someone else[/highlight]. The hp and mana are damn useful too. Unfortunately, a real pro team will get the shield off you before the teamfight using skills like Brand's Pillar of Flame, ... Another winner is [imgsmall=items/guardian-angel.png], again because it shifts focus - it's less appealing to kill someone who'll come back to life. It also makes you much more of a teamplayer - sometimes all you need to do is charge in, soak up all burst damage giving your team the chance to rape them and then revive to finish off the stragglers and really take down those towers. [imgsmall=items/giants-belt.png] makes you surprisingly beefy. [imgsmall=items/wits-end.png] gives you the attack speed you lack, whilst also boosting your defence against mages. [imgsmall=items/spirit-visage.png] not only improves your meditate and lifesteal, it also gives you hp and magic resistance for relatively small cost. The cdr isn't exactly wasted either. [imgsmall=items/frozen-mallet.png] is way [highlight]too expensive[/highlight]. Get red if you really need a slow (but don't forget you have massive movementspeed with Highlander and Youmuu's), get a simple giant's belt for hp. [img=items/warmogs-armor.png][img=items/atmas-impaler.png] If you find yourself unable to deal any damage at all, tank Yi might be your thing: after you finish your core build (usually [imgsmall=items/youmuus-ghostblade.png] and/or [imgsmall=items/phantom-dancer.png], get a [imgsmall=items/warmogs-armor.png] (which you will fill insanely fast, even if stuck in base with super minions) followed by [imgsmall=items/atmas-impaler.png]. This will make you a lot more beefy while still having very decent dps (you won't two-shot Ashe with this build, but neither will she).

Yi is one of the most underestimated solo laners. [highlight]1v1:[/highlight] Focus on [highlight]lasthitting[/highlight] until your doublestrike is ready, then alpha strike on the opponent, hit him with doublestrike and run into the bushes to drop minion aggro. It's very important to know when you can and can't do this. Xin Zhao will rape you if you try 1v1'ing him (but well, he does that to just about everything) like this. Udyr might not be impressed either. But against say... gangplank this works surprisingly well (although not so much now his passive slows). If for some weird reason you got midlane against a caster, it's just deadly. Laning against Lux was never easier. Prioritize [highlight]survival[/highlight] over kills. Your main goal is to farm - if that means the other champion can farm too, that's often a good trade (unless he's tryndamere I suppose). If you need to choose between meditating or alpha striking, you're generally best off with [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/w.png]. The normal laning rules apply to Yi as well - lasthit, [highlight]avoid pushing[/highlight] (especially with alpha strike - don't use it if you can't be sure it'll hit the champion, aka when there's more than 3 minion or when you are already pushing too much). [highlight]1v2:[/highlight] [highlight]Stay back[/highlight], 2-3 extra minion kills are not worth getting killed over. Use [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/q.png] whenever you can (aka, when the minion you're targeting is far away from their champions or when it's going to die before Alpha strike ends, see skills section). Make an effort to get as many minion kills under the turret - normally melee minions need to take two tower hits before you can lasthit them, caster minions need one (if you didn't skill [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/e.png] yet, you must attack the caster minion once before and once after the tower hit). [highlight]Be ready to kill them when your jungler comes for the gank.[/highlight] [highlight]2v1 & 2v2:[/highlight] This depends too much on the respective champions to describe. Just remember to get as many minion kills as possible without risking humiliating death.

Still mostly [highlight]farmfest[/highlight]. Use teleport (if you took it) to be all over the map, killing minions at topspeed and when the opportunity arises (which happens more often if you place wards), [highlight]taking down towers[/highlight] in no time. If you have wriggles, you can easily clear jungle and [highlight]dragon[/highlight] goes down pretty fast too (though obviously in higher leveled games getting dragon isn't exactly a walk in the park). Teamfights aren't really your thing yet - if your team can survive without you, by all means do take out those turrets. While you're not the best recipient for red buff (because you are more farming than ganking), it does allow you to win almost any 1v1, making you a much more efficient splitpusher. [highlight]Give blue to someone else[/highlight] - you can use it, but not as much as they do.

Either continue [highlight]splitpushing[/highlight], or take part in [highlight]teamfights[/highlight] (which is to be preferred depends on well, everything). Please let your initiator engage, you're too squishy to go in first. Your goal is to take out their [highlight]most dangerous person[/highlight] (generally the AD carry or mage) while trying not to die. In ideal circumstances you [highlight]run to your target[/highlight] and use [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/q.png] on it the moment their team focuses you. This'll put you out of the fire line for a short bit, hopefully allowing you to get the kill, refreshing your cooldowns, ... [imgsmall=skills/masteryi/w.png] is rarely ever useful during the fight - only use it if you have no other choice. It's great to recover afterwards though. It's not necessarily a bad thing if you die, so long as you dealt enough damage and soaked up enough enemy spells to give your team the upper hand. [highlight]If you get burst down before you can deal any damage, you're doing something wrong.[/highlight]

[img=items/tiamat.png] = [img=items/bf-sword.png] + [img=items/regrowth-pendant.png] + [img=items/meki-pendant.png] + [img=skills/kayle/e.png] [imgsmall=items/bf-sword.png]1650g + [imgsmall=items/regrowth-pendant.png]435g + [imgsmall=items/meki-pendant.png]390g + [imgsmall=skills/kayle/e.png]priceless = 2475g + Splash. That's right. For 2070 gold, you get [highlight]2475g of stats and splash damage[/highlight] to all your attacks. Should you buy this in every game? Probably not, but don't dismiss it out of hand ("the splash range is so small you'll never hit two champs with it") either. [highlight]It makes pushing and farming superfast[/highlight] (allowing you to clear distant waves and run away again before the enemy team can come gank you) and is really easy to build. If you have a good Orianna [imgsmall=skills/orianna/r.png] in your team, getting [imgsmall=items/tiamat.png] is almost unbeatable.

I haven't properly tested this build yet, but if you have a decent team (that can last 30+ minutes without excessive feeding or even defeat), tank yi is an option. Note that [highlight]your midgame will be absolutely rubbish[/highlight] - you will have neither damage nor beefiness. Endgame however you get very decent damage, while running around with 3,5k health and around 100 armor/mres. Because you sorely need damage, improve Wuju Style over Meditate (still get meditate on L2 unless your lane is easy). Playstyle isn't that different, but [highlight]you'll start entering teamfights even later[/highlight] because frankly, you're useless until minute 20-30. Itembuild: [img=items/warmogs-armor.png][img=items/mercurys-treads.png][img=items/atmas-impaler.png][img=items/youmuus-ghostblade.png][img=items/sword-of-the-divine.png] Atma's and Wuju put you at nearly 250 attack damage, Youmuus and Sword of the Divine give you the attack speed and armorpenetration you need. The 6th item is entirely up to choice (SotD is optional too, tbh), [imgsmall=items/banshees-veil.png], [imgsmall=items/starks-fervor.png], [imgsmall=items/sunfire-cape.png], [imgsmall=items/tiamat.png], [imgsmall=items/thornmail.png], [imgsmall=items/infinity-edge.png], [imgsmall=items/frozen-mallet.png]... are all good items. It's not a bad idea to start by getting [imgsmall=items/heart-of-gold.png][imgsmall=items/philosophers-stone.png][imgsmall=items/avarice-blade.png] to compensate for the kills you won't be getting, but it delays your atma's even further, which means you'll be useless even longer. The main reason this is somewhat viable is Yi's amazing farm speed, allowing you to farm that Warmog and Atma's really fast.

I'm not the best player in the world (I have a laughable 1478 ELO) and to be truthful, I don't play Yi in ranked games (he relies on his farm too much), but I've found that this setup makes me a much more useful yi in normal games than jungle yi (lacks damage and inferior jungler), AP yi (one-trick-beast; the extra HP from meditate rarely ever turns the tide), crit Yi (too squishy, relies too much on luck) or any other Yi build I've seen on solomid so far. Some credit goes to ... Huge Yi Guide. Bit less huge Yi Guide. Zoning Tutorial. Song to listen to while playing Master Yi, will save your life. Awesome guides. Also, any comments are more than welcome - I'm not even nearly the best yi player in the world so if there's anything wrong in this guide, or some info that really needs to be added, by all means do comment and help solomid to get a decent lane yi guide! PS: Dyrus just wrote a Yi guide, I'm fucked! PS2: Tank yi might actually be more viable than I thought (his midgame remains stupidly bad though). PS3: Mark my words - Master Yi will be totally OP in dominion. PS4: SaintVicious claims he can get a 2k burst with Yi (triforce+youmuus), I need to test this. PS5: Told you. [imgext=]

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