Katarina Build Guide

Every Blade Tells a Story

Uploader Sinisteel
Updated 1 year ago
Skill Order
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[center][highlight]WILL UPDATE FOR PRESEASON AS SOON AS SOLOMID UPDATES THE GUIDE TEMPLATES[/center][/highlight] [center][highlight]My Stream[/highlight] www.twitch.tv/sinisteel[/center] [center][highlight]My Twitter[/highlight] @sinisteellol[/center] Welcome to my Katarina guide. I'm Sinisteel, a Master Tier NA mid laner. This is my first guide on Solomid. I hope you all will find it very helpful and informative! I started playing Katarina a couple of months after I started playing in Season 2 because I wanted to play an assassin champion. I didn't really care if Katarina was good or not, I just liked her theme. Nearly 4 years later, I still enjoy playing Katarina. She may not be a very strong or popular champion, but she still has a very exciting play style that has kept me loyal since I started. [highlight]Pros[/highlight] [.]Extremely fun to play [.]Nearly ungankable with [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] [.]Very strong after level 6 [.]Destructive ultimate with very high base damage and scaling [.]Low cooldown abilities [.]One of the most powerful passives in the game [.]No mana [.]RED HAIR IS SEXY [imgsmall=champ/katarina.png] [highlight]Cons[/highlight] [.]Crowd Control destroys her if not played properly [.]Very weak early game [.]If you fall behind, it's very hard to get back into the game [.][imgsmall=skills/katarina/p.png] can be your saving grace or your bane in team fights [highlight]Statistics[/highlight] HEALTH 510 ([highlight]+83[/highlight]) HEALTH REGEN. 4.5 ([highlight]+0.55[/highlight]) MANA N/A ARMOR 26.88 ([highlight]+3.5[/highlight]) MAGIC RES. 32.1 ([highlight]+1.25[/highlight]) ATTACK DAMAGE 58.376 ([highlight]+3.2[/highlight]) ATTACK SPEED 0.658 ([highlight]+2.74%[/highlight]) RANGE 125 MOV. SPEED 345

When the game begins, ask yourself the following questions: [.]What summoner spells does my opponent have? [.]What items did my opponent start? A popular mid lane summoner spell set is [img=summoners/flash.png][img=summoners/ignite.png]. However, you don't want to get baited by [img=summoners/heal.png], [img=summoners/exhaust.png], or [img=summoners/barrier.png] because people do take these spells frequently, especially against assassins. You always want to keep track of what the enemy started. Your harass is far more meaningful if your opponent has [img=items/dorans-ring.png][img=items/health-potion.png][img=items/health-potion.png]. You'll want to avoid trading too frequently if your opponent has [img=items/crystalline-flask.png][img=items/health-potion.png][img=items/health-potion.png][img=items/health-potion.png][img=items/health-potion.png] because this start offers an insane amount of sustain. In the early game, you want to focus on two things: 1. Using [img=skills/katarina/q.png] to harass your enemy whenever it's up 2. Farming minions. Make sure you're watching the map. If fights break out in the jungle, make sure you're there. If you ever see the enemy mid leave lane, make sure you call it out and follow if you can. Your roams aren't too strong before 6, so don't try to force anything unless you're certain you'll get your team some kills.

Mid game is all about towers and dragon. At this point you should have a few core items so you'll be dealing some nasty damage. Make sure you're constantly roaming and applying pressure around the map, but don't forget about your lane. Remember that you have a tower to defend. I cannot stress how important dragon is as a global objective. Make sure you're buying green and pink wards and using your [img=items/sweeping-lens.png] to clear enemy wards to ensure that your team secures the dragon. Not sure why dragon is so important? Here's what each stack of the dragon buff does: 1. DRAGON'S MIGHT: +6% attack damage and ability power 2. DRAGON'S WRATH: +15% damage to towers and buildings 3. DRAGON'S FLIGHT: +5% movement speed 4. DRAGON'S DOMINANCE: +15% damage to minions and monsters 5. ASPECT OF THE DRAGON: Doubles all previous bonuses and your attacks burn for 150 true damage over 5 seconds. This stack only lasts 180 seconds.

Late game is pretty similar to mid game with one exception: any mistake on either side could potentially mark the end of the game. Vision is your most important resource in the late game. There's no room for error. Anyone who gets caught throws the game. Make sure you [highlight]never facecheck anything[/highlight].

Wards are probably the most important items in the game and they always will be. Vision is undeniably the biggest advantage a team can have because of how much information even a single ward can provide. Knowing where your opponents are and where they are headed allows your team to prepare for fights, catch people off guard, and secure objectives. Just because you're a mid laner, that doesn't mean you shouldn't be buying wards. Everyone on your team is obligated to buy and place wards. Trinkets alone won't win games; you need to be willing to spend gold and purchase real wards in order to put your team in the most advantageous position. You may be wondering, \"where should I ward, Sinisteel\"? Here are some great spots to drop stealth wards: [img=http://i.imgur.com/Yw36tLT.jpg] [img=http://i.imgur.com/KeOJ5gE.jpg] [img=http://i.imgur.com/0yDxgpD.jpg] [img=http://i.imgur.com/wS6h3I8.jpg] These ward locations are very easy to reach and usually will not put you in a bad position. Let's move on to pink wards. Pink wards remain visible now and take 5 hits to kill, so you must place them very strategically, even more so than stealth wards. Here are a few locations where you can drop pink wards as a mid laner. Keep in mind you can also place stealth wards in these spots but I prefer pinks because people usually don't check these bushes: [img=http://i.imgur.com/Ow37Aii.jpg] [img=http://i.imgur.com/Kzqd2Fd.jpg] These two spots ensure great vision control on the river. Not only will you be giving yourself vision, you will also help out one of your side lanes tremendously. [img=http://i.imgur.com/gOG4iHW.jpg] This is a great ward to drop in the early and middle phases of the game because it allows you and your jungler to roam freely to bottom lane. If you get kills bot, you can swiftly turn that into a tower and/or dragon kill. The mirror location of this ward spot is behind the purple side red buff. It isn't smart to drop a pink ward there during the laning phase because Baron doesn't spawn until 15 minutes and even then it's very risky to attempt it early. It's much safer and more efficient to put emphasis on dragon control in the early and mid game. As the game progresses, that spot behind Baron becomes increasingly important, but you shouldn't worry about that until roughly 20-25 minutes into the game.

I already talked about this briefly, but the key to acing the enemy team is your own personal judgment. Your ultimate is still your strongest damage output, but one tiny mistake or misjudgment can render your ult worthless. You can't jump in and start spinning too early because you'll just get CC'd. However, you can't jump in too late when everyone else on your team is dying/has died. Throw [imgsmall=skills/katarina/q.png] / Use your [imgsmall=skills/katarina/w.png] until the time is right for you to [imgsmall=skills/katarina/r.png]. You still deal considerable amounts of damage with your basic abilities, but your ultimate is what truly decides a team fight. It might take a few games, but you will most likely understand what I'm saying when you get put into that situation soon enough. In regards to your team, [highlight]WAIT FOR THEM TO INITIATE[/highlight]. As stated before, you should never be the one starting any fights. Period. Also stated before, pay close attention to that [imgsmall=champ/nautilus.png] or [imgsmall=champ/soraka.png]. Make sure their CC is down before going in. The worst feeling EVER when playing Katarina is going in to ult and getting a fraction of a second worth of channeling, then getting CC'd and losing the fight. It happens to all of us and it's horrible. I've encountered that feeling multiple times, but after playing Katarina for a really long time, it happens much less often now. Keep all of these things in mind when you're team fighting.

If there's one thing Katarina performs exceptionally well in, it's roaming. She has very high mobility and movement speed, so you can catch out the enemy side lanes very easily and transition those small victories into global objectives like towers and dragons. When roaming, make sure you won't be losing any gold/xp in your lane. If creeps end up hitting your tower, ask your jungler to cover mid for you. Roaming is very high risk/high reward so make sure you know where all of the enemies and their wards are before making a move. The last thing you want is to get counter-ganked, die, and have your lane opponent 2 levels higher than you. Awareness is the key to roaming. In simpler terms, push mid and roam. You'll win games. Remember, [highlight]this is a TEAM game[/highlight]. Help your team so they can help you.

[highlight]7/25/15:[/highlight] [.]Guide is mostly up-to-date now. [highlight]2/18/15:[/highlight] [.]Changed item builds. [.]Refined laning/skills chapters. [highlight]12/30/14:[/highlight] [.]Refining older chapters. [.]Making everything more structured and organized. [highlight]12/29/14:[/highlight] [.]Doing a massive overhaul of matchups. [highlight]12/27/14:[/highlight] [.]Changes to build path [.]Updated some champion match-ups. [highlight]8/30/14:[/highlight] [.]Slight changes all around [highlight]7/27/14:[/highlight] [.]Updated runes [highlight]6/21/14:[/highlight] [.]Added Yasuo match-up (sorry this wasn't on here before) [highlight]6/18/14:[/highlight] [.]Updated masteries and lane match-ups for patch 4.10. [highlight]4/13/14:[/highlight] [.]Minor updates to masteries and items. [highlight]4/3/14:[/highlight] [.]I'm still alive don't worry, updated the guide for the 4.5 patch. [highlight]1/6/14:[/highlight] [.]Updated some screenshots to look more modern. [.]Updated some skill explanations as well as adding some screenshots to the Sinister Steel explanation. [.]Added a new chapter, [highlight]Warding as a Mid Laner[/highlight]. [highlight]1/4/14:[/highlight] [.]Changed masteries again. [.]Apparently I left a couple of champion match-ups blank. Sorry! [highlight]12/29/13:[/highlight] [.]Changed masteries a bit. [highlight]11/29/13:[/highlight] [.]Completely reformatted the guide in alignment with the new guide beta. This should make the guide much more reader friendly and easier to navigate. [.]Updated the guide for preseason 4. [highlight]10/12/13:[/highlight] [.]Doran's shield + 1 health pot added as a starting set. [highlight]9/12/13:[/highlight] [.]Added Banshee's Veil to item list, removed Warmog's Armor. [.]Lots of minor updates to the guide. [highlight]8/21/13:[/highlight] [.]Revamped guide a bit. [highlight]7/8/13:[/highlight] [.]ONE MILLION VIEWS! [highlight]6/27/13:[/highlight] [.]Updated some older information. [highlight]6/25/13:[/highlight] [.]Guide is now featured! [highlight]6/22/13:[/highlight] [.]Diamond now ^^. [highlight]6/20/13:[/highlight] [.]Fixed some numbers on Void Staff. (It gives 35% MPen, not 40%) [.]Added more description for starting items. [highlight]6/19/13:[/highlight] [.]Polished some of the wording to remove ambiguity and more accurately express what I wrote. [highlight]6/8/13:[/highlight] [.]Little bit of editing, nothing major. [highlight]6/7/13:[/highlight] [.]Moved around some Summoner Spells [highlight]6/3/13:[/highlight] [.]Organized the guide a bit more with more explanation on items [.]Removed [imgsmall=items/sightstone.png] from [highlight]Item Builds[/highlight] (should have done that when they nerfed it) [.]Added [imgsmall=items/randuins-omen.png] to [highlight]Item Builds[/highlight] [highlight]4/22/13:[/highlight] [.]Reworked masteries a bit to better reflect what I currently find to be most efficient. [.]Organized the guide a little bit. [.]Tidied up [highlight]Runes[/highlight] Chapter. [highlight]3/28/13:[/highlight] [.]Took a break from League but I'm back now. Did some minor editing to the guide. [highlight]2/8/13:[/highlight] [.]Added Mercury's Treads to [highlight]Item Builds[/highlight] chapter as a potential option. [highlight]2/1/13:[/highlight] [.]Added Elise to [highlight]Match-ups[/highlight] [highlight]1/20/13:[/highlight] [.]Added Barrier to [highlight]Summoner Spells[/highlight], removed Promote and Surge. [highlight]1/19/13:[/highlight] [.]Added AD Casters and Bruisers to the [highlight]Mid Lane Match-ups[/highlight] chapter. [.]Added Sightstone as an optional item to build. [.]Slight textual revisions. [highlight]1/13/13:[/highlight] [.]More variety and insight on [highlight]Item Builds[/highlight] [highlight]1/12/13:[/highlight] [.]Major update to the entire guide. (sorry I haven't updated in a while) [highlight]12/9/12:[/highlight] [.]Major rework to [highlight]Item Builds[/highlight] chapter because of the December Preseason 3 patch. [highlight]11/24/12:[/highlight] [.]Added \"Alternate Runes\" to [highlight]Runes[/highlight] chapter. [highlight]11/23/12:[/highlight] [.]Completely revamped guide. (sorry for not updating in a while) [.]Removed [highlight]When to Rush DFG and When Not to Rush DFG[/highlight] chapter. [.]Removed [highlight]Abyssal Scepter or Zhonya's Hourglass?[/highlight] chapter. [.]Added [highlight]much[/highlight] more detail to [highlight]Lane Match-ups[/highlight] chapter. [.]Changed recommended runes. [.]Haunting Guise is now a core item. [.]Redid [highlight]Item Builds[/highlight] based on the DFG nerf a while back. [.]Updated guide to better suit the new, upcoming S3 mastery page. [highlight]10/24/12:[/highlight] [.]Added many pictures to [highlight]Skills[/highlight] chapter. [highlight]10/23/12:[/highlight] [.]Slight fix to [highlight]Item Builds[/highlight] chapter. (Haunting Guise classified as optional) [.]Added a new chapter, [highlight]When to Rush DFG and When Not to Rush DFG[/highlight] [highlight]10/21/12:[/highlight] [.]Added [imgsmall=champ/evelynn.png] to [highlight]Lane Match-ups[/highlight]. [.]Minor fixes. [.]Added an informative paragraph to the end of [highlight]Lane Match-ups[/highlight]. [highlight]10/20/12:[/highlight] [.]Minor textual fix to make the guide appear more appealing. [highlight]10/19/12:[/highlight] [.]Rewrote [highlight]Late Game[/highlight] chapter. [.]Slight fix to Vladimir lane match-up to be more consistent with the rest of the guide. [highlight]10/18/12:[/highlight] [.]Slight Change to [highlight]Masteries[/highlight] with reasons. [.]Added Katarina's Base Stats to [highlight]Introduction[/highlight]. [.]Added Scaling/Damage to [highlight]Skills[/highlight]. [.]Added an [highlight]About the Author[/highlight] chapter. [.]Remade the [highlight]Early Game[/highlight] and [highlight]Mid Game[/highlight] chapters. [highlight]10/6/12:[/highlight] [.]Made some changes to the [highlight]Lane Match-ups[/highlight] Chapter. [.]Made [highlight]Item Builds[/highlight] Chapter a bit more clear with more detailed explanations. [highlight]10/3/12:[/highlight] [.]Slight fix to text to remove ambiguity. [highlight]10/2/12:[/highlight] [.]Minor fix to Shunpo ability description. [highlight]10/1/12:[/highlight] [.]Added [highlight]Mid Game[/highlight] and [highlight]Late Game[/highlight] chapters. [.]Added more detail to several chapters. [highlight]9/30/12:[/highlight] [.]Added arguments for/against certain popular AP Caster items. [.]Tidied up the guide a bit, made it an easier and more organized read. [.]Added two new chapters to the guide: [highlight]Argument Against Gunblade[/highlight] and [highlight]Abyssal Scepter or Zhonya's Hourglass?[/highlight] [highlight]9/29/12:[/highlight] [.]Completely revamped item build based on a month of experimenting. [.]Touched up upon explanations and made them more clear.

Thanks for taking the time to read my guide. If you enjoyed reading it or learned something from it, please like my guide. I love positive feedback. I stream occasionally, so be sure to follow me at [highlight]www.twitch.tv/sinisteel[/highlight] if you want to see me in action! If you have any questions or are unsure about something I said, feel free to comment or tweet me @SinisteelLoL. Be sure to follow me on Twitter if you found this helpful or need further help with Katarina! [img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/katarina.png]

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