Soraka Build Guide

how 2 soraka

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There are many different ways to play all of the champions in League. Yes, contrary to popular belief, even the support champs like Soraka or Sona can be played in MANY different ways. For example, one way to play Sona is to take your face and roll it across the keyboard. Personally, I do not like this method because your nose starts to hurt and I find it difficult to control the mouse (and thus my character) using my face. Another less publicized method is to have your left hand on the QWER keys and to have your right hand on the mouse. I'll get back to the point considering this is a Soraka guide: This guide will detail how I play Soraka (considerably different than how other notable support players play her). If you want to get better at Soraka, I encourage you to not only try what I'm about to describe in this guide, but also try to play Soraka how other guides say and see which method works the best for you.

Granted, I'm no Xpecial or Nhat, but I do play Soraka. I play her A LOT. I went from 1400s to 2000s playing mainly Soraka over winter break. You may know me from my popular guide, "how 2 winner". If you want my autograph for your desktop background, here it is: [center][imgext=http://s13.postimage.org/ou7juiclj/Untitled.png][/center] Soraka is my most played champ and I have built her many, many different ways and the way I'm about to describe is the build that has had the most success for me. Here are my ranked stats with Soraka: [center][imgext=http://s7.postimage.org/43e37d28b/Sor_Stats.png][/center]

To those of you who didn't close out of my guide after noticing I had AD runes, Thanks. To those of you who didn't notice I had AD runes until I just pointed it out and closed out, [center][imgext=http://files.sharenator.com/fuuuuu_The_Worlds_Hardest_Game_3-s343x268-95358-580.jpg][/center] So...I guess everyone wants to know, "Why???". Because you can be an annoying little unicorn if you keep throwing those bananas. I'm guessing most people run magic pen (I used to as well), but then I realized...Soraka only has two skills that actually hurt the enemy: Starcall and Infuse. Now considering Starcall is bad to use in lane (for reasons I will go into later), you are left with only one offensive skill to use in lane: Infuse. Now, considering you should not always use infuse whenever it is up (whether it is to give your lane partner mana or to damage the enemy) for reasons I will go into later, the only way you can harass is by throwing bananas. The extra 9 damage on the countless bananas I throw in lane has gotten my lane so many kills we would have lost. Have you ever had a fight bot lane where the enemy gets out with less than 20 hp? Now consider what would have happened if your bananas did 9 more damage per hit...I'm pretty sure we all have the same image in our minds: [center][imgext=http://www.mobygames.com/images/shots/l/15367-worms-world-party-windows-screenshot-banana-bombs.jpg][/center] Regarding the rest of the runes--they are pretty basic. GP/10 seals and quints because you are not csing at bot lane and thus not getting any money. In order to get any money at all, you need to build GP/10 (core items) and the runes and masteries add on to that. The glyphs are magic resistance per level because you do not want to get one hit by their ap carry late game.

[img=summoners/exhaust.png][img=summoners/heal.png] These are the summoner spells I typically run when playing Soraka. TYPICALLY being the keyword. There are ALWAYS situations where it is best to take a different summoner spell. I'll go over those briefly: When to take [imgsmall=summoners/flash.png]: I take this when I'm laning against a very aggressive bot lane (one that I'm afraid I'll die in). For example, I typically take flash when I'm playing against a Blitz or an Alistar with someone like Vayne because I'd die instantly if I got pulled / comboed earlier on (before I have tanky items / big heals). Without flash (when you are running exhaust/heal) you should be playing fairly safely because you have no escape ability. In mid/late game (while running exhaust/heal) you should be safely in the back of your team, never running off by yourself to need flash to escape a sticky situation. When to take [imgsmall=summoners/clairvoyance.png] ~_~ never. CV used to be a really good skill because it allowed good CV users to know where the jungle is at ALL times (effectively ruining his gank potential). Now that it got nerfed badly and junglers clear camps and go in completely different routs, it lost its usefulness. If you are consistently buying wards, you won't need the slight vision boost CV gives. Besides, CV is not a fun skill. With exhaust, you can use it on the enemy carry and then make fun of them in all chat along the lines of, "Yo, I herd u do big damage". With CV, if you manage to find the enemy in the jungle, all you can say is, "Yo, I know where you at". Now you just sound like a creep.

0-9-21. I know some people go 0-21-9 and all I can say to them is, "y u no liek moneez?". With 0-21-9, you get very tanky and you eventually get that 8.1% CDR at level 18, but you give up CD for your exhaust and heal, flat CDR, and GP/10. I feel as if you know how to position in fights, you don't really have to be THAT tanky to live and that's why i go 0-9-21 instead of the tanky mastery build. I avoid the mana regen in the utility tree because, quite honestly, I've never ran out of mana on Soraka. You have a skill that gives you mana back and only have one other skill you should be using in lane...how do you run out??? Be sure to also take the Scout mastery because it has Teemo holding up a magnifying-scope-thingy (also because you really do not need the other things in the tree). In the defensive tree, I take armor and HP to give me some durability in lane. Also take the Heal mastery so you can heal bait harder :-).

[img=skills/soraka/p.png] Your passive. Pretty powerful. Gives your whole team MR which mitigates some of the AP's (and many junglers' and tops' damage). Max this fir....WAIT A SECOND... [img=skills/soraka/q.png] Don't get this skill until lane phase is over. They should rename the skill to ADcarryCry...HUZZAH ...that would be somewhat more funny if the skill was called Starcry. Basically what this skill does is push your lane, fuck up a lot of your AD's cs, and make you more prone to ganks. If you've played Soraka and you used Starcall a lot in lane, 9 times out of 10 your AD has raged at you for pushing the lane. However, I've never had an ad rage at me for NOT Starcalling. The what...30 damage after resist... is not worth it. [img=skills/soraka/w.png] Max this skill (getting Ult whenever possible). HUGE armor buff and heal. Also, it puts you in a position of great power: Your AD carry be hatin? Tell him to appologize or you wont heal him.* Your AD carry do no damage? Heal the minions whenever heal is up and say, "These caster minions do more damage than you so I'm going to support them now."* *I do not suggest doing this if you want to win. [img=skills/soraka/e.png] Get this whenever you can't get your ult or your heal. This skill can give you and an ally mana and it can also damage the enemy while silencing them. Silence is one of the most underrated CCs in the game. If this skill is used correctly, it can fuck up enemy ganks and win teamfights. [img=skills/soraka/r.png] Get a point in this at 6, 11, 16. Basically a global heal. I'll go more into effective uses of this in a later section.

You always want to start out [img=items/faerie-charm.png][img=items/vision-ward.png][img=items/sight-ward3.png] or [img=items/faerie-charm.png][img=items/sight-ward4.png][img=items/health-potion.png] This gives you plenty of wards for you and your lane partner to be safe early in the game. It is also the start of one of your core items [img=items/philosophers-stone.png]. After getting philos, you want to get [img=items/boots-of-speed.png] because the jungler is probably 6 by now and his ganks will be more dangerous, so you need the speed to be able to run away. You want to get another GP/10 because you want more money for wards of course, so build a [img=items/heart-of-gold.png] whenever possible. Now you should upgrade your boots into [img=items/ionian-boots-of-lucidity.png] for the additional cooldown on your heal and silence. By now, lane phase is most likely over/almost over, so you should upgrade your philo into [img=items/shurelyas-reverie.png] because it allows your team to catch up to the enemy when you are winning a teamfight while also allowing your team to run away when you are losing (probably because your ad is suck noob and got caught :( ). By now, you have finished all of your core items and the rest of the items are all situational (i.e. based on how the game is going and what champs are in the game): [img=items/aegis-of-the-legion.png] A very good item to consider getting right after shurelyas. It gives the whole team armor, damage, and magic resist. The only time I would say NOT to get this is when your jungler has already gotten one. [img=items/abyssal-scepter.png] I seldom get this item because I don't feel as if AP stacks too well on Soraka (I like going tanky and CDR). However, if the enemy is building a lot of MR and your team has a lot of magic damage AND ALSO the enemy AP is killing you, this might be a good item to get (probably isn't, though). [img=items/starks-fervor.png] This item is underrated in my opinion. It gives your whole team lifesteal and attack speed--two very good stats for AD based champions. I would get this if my team had 3+ ADs. Typically after aegis. [img=items/will-of-the-ancients.png] A really good item to get. It gives your team a good bit of spell vamp and ap. I would get this if you have 2+ AP champs. Again, typically after aegis. [img=items/frozen-heart.png] This is more of a lategame item (something you would get after aegis + starks/will). You should get this if the enemy team has champions tha benefits greatly from attack speed (irelia, vayne, etc.) and if your tank doesn't have one yet (for some reason...). [img=items/randuins-omen.png] This is also more of a lategame item. If the enemy has a lot of champs that benefit from attack speed, this is another option to consider. Typically, your tank has either this item or frozen heart and you should get the other.

I'm not going to draw a picture of the map and draw, "Good ward placement" because I'm using a touchpad and it would look completely fucked up. Just kidding, the real reason is because I KNOW that you guys KNOW where to ward, so I do not want to waste your time. Just a general note: Ward enough so that you feel SAFE. If they have a jungle Alistar that does balls to the wall crazy shit like flash behind your turret and gank you, then ward both of the entrances to your jungle and not just your river/tribrush. If the enemy jungler likes lane ganking or if the enemy has some really offensve support (such as Alistar or Blitz), keep your lane bushes warded. Also note that wards can be placed offensively. If you are laning with a Vayne, for example, always keep the enemy lane brush warded so that Vayne can condendem them into the wall and possibly get a kill. Even people at high elo forget that the brush is warded and do dumb shit like stand next to the wall thinking they are safe.

At level 1, Soraka's heal is so weak and uses so much mana that you can only cast ~3 before running out of mana. You want to NOT play aggresive until at least level 3 because you need infuse to be able to get mana back and you want a heal bigger than 70. Once you and your lane partner are level 3, you two can trade blows and heal it back. I cannot possibly make a perfect guide telling you exactly what to do because there are millions of different scenarios. What I typically do is autoattack their AD carry with my bananas whenever I have the chance to AND FEEL SAFE TO. For example, when you see him going for a last hit, just walk up, hit him once, and then back off. You do NOT want to go Rambo all of a sudden and throw like 5 bananas when their jungler is near or their mid is MIA. Typically, you want to play more aggressively when you see their jungler is top because there is a much less chance that you will die. Also, you want to play more aggressive when their support is someone without a lot sustain (such as janna) because your hits will add up eventually causing her to feel unsafe to cs and back. Because you do not have an escape (no flash) you want to be at a position at which you can easily run away if the enemy decides they have had enough bananas thrown to the face. When to heal (w): Many Soraka players heal whenever their AD has lost a lot of hp because they don't want to waste any of the heal (i.e. when their heal does 340, they heal when their AD is 500/1000 because they do not want to overheal). This, however, does not account for the HUGE armor buff that the heal gives. Whenever my AD is about to trade blows with the enemy, I always heal right after the first couple blows (even if some of my heal gets wasted i.e. I heal 340 and heal at 800/1000) because the skill gives so much armor. Typically after they see me heal, the enemy starts to run away (liek a pusc) because their damage just went down by like ~40. My AD then gets in around 2 or 3 free hits. When to silence/mana (e): DO NOT USE MANA WHENEVER YOU SEE YOUR LANE PARTNER/YOU ARE NOT FULL MANA. You might not know this, but silence is OP. I'm not telling you to never use infusion to give your lane partner mana...I'm telling you to be smart about it. For example, if their mid is Kassadin and he is MIA, you might want to hold off on using it because you can COMPLETELY counter his gank (if he is ganking) if you silence him at the right time. Silence him right before he ults at your AD, and he is fucked. Also, if you are versus a very aggresive lane, such as Graves/Sona, you might want to hold off on the silence until your ADs start trading blows. You can then silence the graves before he Qs or Dashes in so that your AD gets the advantage in the fight. Silence can win you scrimmages and can be used offensively in lane. For example, if you are Graves/Soraka versus say Sona/Sivir and you are all level 6. Most support players feel safe because when the ADs trade blows, they are usually hitting eachother and not the support. However, if you and Graves focus the Sona who is probably squishy as fuck at this point, and you time your silence right, she is a free kill. You want to time your silence so she cannot flash out, heal herself, or ult you guys so that your Graves can just burst her down from 100->0. When to exhaust: In lane, whenever your ADs trade blows and it seems as if they are actually going to fight (I cannot explain how you know, but you just know), you should exhaust their AD so that your AD has the edge in the fight. If your AD carry is running exhaust as well, then their AD will be doing absolutely no damage for a good ~6 seconds (unless he has cleanse). Exhaust is also a good defensive skill; if you fuck up and get out of position and their AD is killing you, you just drop it on them and their damage is reduced A LOT and you can probably outrun them back to your tower. The same goes if you get ganked. When to summoner heal: You want this skill to be your last line of defense because it has the longest cooldown. However, if you are CC'd you cannot use your other heals while you can still use summoner heal in which case it would be a judgement call. If you think the summoner heal will give you enough time to cast your other heals (w, r) and that you can live, do it. If you think you will still be stun-locked even if you summoner heal, do not do it. Heal baiting is also VERY effective. You can manipulate their AD into tower diving you or walking into a gank by making it seem like you are very low, but in reality you have a a good 500+ worth of heals castable instantly. When to Ult: Whenever you get 6, tell your team, "I have ult, ping before you start a fight". Your ult could possibly save their lives, so you should always TRY to be watching the map to see if any lanes are getting ganked or fighting. If you ask your team to ping before they start a fight, you can be sure that you don't miss out a crucial heal. Also take note that your ult does somewhat have a delay; if you use it right before they die, they will still die, so be sure to time it right. Your ult is also a direct counter to some champs. For example, whenever I see an enemy Karthus ult, I do not even look at my teammate's hps; I instantly ult. The same goes for Noc--I wait 1-2 seconds right when I hear, "DARKNESS" and then ult.

This phase of the game is all about grouping up, winning teamfights, and getting objectives: [highlight]Pushing[/highlight] Whenever you guys group up to push, you want your team to try to poke them. If they get poked back, Soraka has one of the best sustains in the game and can heal them back to full in no time at all. If they do not have a sustain support, then just keep poking them until they leave and eventually give you a free tower. If they do have a lot of sustain, then you wait for your tank to initiate or for one of them to fuck up their positioning. [highlight]Team Fighting[/highlight] In teamfights, you always want to stay near the back (and close to the AD). Try to heal the person tanking all of the damage (usually your tank), but be sure not to get so out of position that they can insta-gib you. Also, your most important task is to keep your AD alive so if you see an assasin such as Riven or Talon going for him, be sure to exhaust before he gets fucked up. Silencing the right target here is also very important. You have to use your best judgement when silencing because there are a million different scenarios and I can't describe them all to you guys. Typically a good silence target would be their AP, however it may be more beneficial to silence someone like Sona before he gets his ult off. You get better at knowing who to silence as you play soraka more and get more experienced with League. Starcall...why not. During a teamfight, you are not hurting your team by pressing Q whenever you can (you really are not hurting them that much either even though you take off some MR), but do not get out of position to use it. [highlight]Objectives[/highlight] You want to heal the person tanking the objective (baron / dragon) because your armor buff reduces the neutral monster's damage sooo much. Again, you want to be somewhere towards the back of team near the AD because your main job is to keep him alive. DO NOT USE E TO DAMAGE THE NEUTRAL MONSTER. Save your silence incase the enemy team is coming. If one of them goes in planning to steal dragon/baron, you can silence him and prevent him from flashing away or blinking away (silence does not stop smite, however).

My computer is not good enough to handle recording any League games while getting decent FPS, so I sadly cannot post any videos to go along with my guide. If any of you guys wants to record a game following my guide and upload it (to own3d or youtube) and link me, I'll gladly post it in my guide and accredit it to you. If you have any additional questions or comments, feel free to add me in game (ciash) or to PM me.

Comments coming soon!
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