Katarina Build Guide

Katarina - Ready for Trouble?!

Updated 4 years ago
  • 9
    Greater Mark of Magic Penetration (+0.87 magic penetration)
  • 9
    Greater Seal of Scaling Health (+1.33 health per level (+24 at champion level 18))
  • 9
    Greater Glyph of Magic Resist (+1.34 magic resist)
  • 3
    Greater Quintessence of Ability Power (+4.95 ability power)
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

[.][highlight]8/23:[/highlight] Guide released [.][highlight]8/26:[/highlight] Organized and cleaned up guide [.][highlight]9/6:[/highlight] Added patch section. Updated some match ups to give a better idea on how to play. [.][highlight]9/8:[/highlight] Added video section, credit goes to [highlight]TiensiNoAkuma[/highlight]. Change items builds: Took out Hextech Revolver and changed up the core a bit. [.][highlight]9/9:[/highlight] GUIDE APPROVED :) Thanks everyone!! Updated Player and Katarina stats.[highlight] After dropping to 1488, I climbed to 1700 solely on Katarina.[/highlight] [.][highlight]9/12:[/highlight] Added first buy to items to give a better idea how to build early. [.][highlight]9/16:[/highlight] Updated stats, carried to [highlight]1809.[/highlight] Removed Mejai's section, it was pointless, all in all, do not buy it. [.][highlight]9/21:[/highlight] Attained Platinum (1861) solely on Katarina, GG. [.][highlight]10/7:[/highlight] Guide has been featured!! :) Expect a massive rework and more in depth explanations, thank you guys. [.][highlight]10/18:[/highlight] Finally broke 2000 elo! Currently 2024. [.][highlight]10/31:[/highlight] Section added about DFG, more to come on this item. Added substitution for quints, flat AP can outshine MS quints. [.][highlight]11/02:[/highlight] TnA QnA (hue) Section added. [.][highlight]11/13[/highlight] Added patch nerf information and what I believe will happen. Added more information about where katarina stands from TnA's Facebook.

Hello solomid! I am GANGNAM STYLÉ and this will be my first guide. Currently I am a 1900-2000 elo solo que player and I've recently picked up and in the progress of learning the true potential of Katarina. After searching the forums and reading about Katarina's remake it seems the majority of the community believes she is under powered and not fun. I oppose this stance and in this guide I would like to share and shed light on how Katarina should be played in solo que ranked. If you have any questions or concerns please add me in game or leave a comment below! Thanks for reading, now on to the guide! [highlight][center]Player Stats:[/center][/highlight] [center][imgext=http://i161.photobucket.com/albums/t219/Liiger/sts31.jpg][/center] [highlight][center]Ranked Spree:[/center][/highlight] [center][imgext=http://i161.photobucket.com/albums/t219/Liiger/spree.jpg][/center] [highlight][center]Katarina Stats:[/center][/highlight] [center][imgext=http://i161.photobucket.com/albums/t219/Liiger/Stats-2.jpg][/center] Katarina, The Sinister Blade, plays the role of a melee mage and assassin. She has the capabilities of destroying an entire enemy team and can turn the tides of a losing fight. Though you will never -ever- initiate with Katarina, you will find, if played right, that you will clean up the Fields of Justice at the end of a team fight. [highlight]Pros:[/highlight] [.]No mana/energy [.]Decent poke and safe lane burst [.]Key ultimates will win games [.]Built-in escape, less reliant on flash [.]Good counter to sustain teams [.]Easy to play, hard to master [highlight]Cons:[/highlight] [.]Not so easy early game [.]She's melee so ranged champs can pick on her last hits [.]Once you shunpo you're very vulnerable to ganks [.]A bad ultimate can cost you a team fight or the game [.]Cool down dependant

Just some common questions answered by Tiensi, I felt this would help straighten out any misconceptions. [center][imgext=http://i161.photobucket.com/albums/t219/Liiger/KatQA.jpg][/center] [title]Post About Season 3[/highlight] [highlight]This is copied from TnA's facebook:[/highlight] Alright guys, so with the incoming changes I'm sure you guys are wondering what I'm going to do. Here is a basic summary of everything. Here's a list of some of the changes: Penetration buff (more reason to stack more magic pen) Guardians Angel Nerf Katarina nerf: (Overall 40 dmg at max) Flash/Ignite Nerf: Cooldown is being increased After the incoming changes, Kat will be taking a big hit on her mid game power. During the mid game she doesn't really have as many items and is more reliant on her base stats. Unfortunately these changes will hit Kat very hard, making it difficult for her to snowball. With the penetration buff, I'm planning on maybe replacing hourglass/GA (due to nerf) with an abyssal scepter, having more reliable penetration is something I cannot pass up. This change applies to both Katarina and Diana. Flash and Ignite are still two must have summoner spells, there is no way to replace them and they are exactly what kat needs to do what she does best. Recently, I've been playing a bit of Diana, due to my history with Kat I've chosen to build her the exact same way. This isn't the best build for Diana, unlike Kat she has no form of disengage/escape, and she has sustained damage output with her short cooldowns. My new build (of which I will be trying tonight) will consist of Sorc boots - Hourglass(if AD lane)/Abyssal Scepter (if AP lane) - Hat- DFG-GA As for Kat, once the penetration changes go in, I will still be building Hat first most likely, but will be moving between abyssal/hourglass as my second item based on the game. I think that about covers everything.

[title]11/13 Patch: Nerf[/title] [.]Bouncing Blade initial damage reduced at later ranks to 60/90/120/150/180 from 60/95/130/165/200 [.]Sinister Steel damage reduced at later ranks to 40/75/110/145/180 from 40/80/120/160/200 [highlight]Patch Insight:[/highlight] This is mainly targeting Katarina's Mid game and may be huge in limiting her ability to snowball. I imagine if you're a good Katarina player you should be able to still win games with her as she's a great middle lane pick and with an advantage can still shut down most opponents/bot lane. [highlight]Patch explanation:[/highlight] TBD upon playing/gathering information.

Normally when I pick Katarina, I take in to account who my team is playing as and who the enemy team is playing as. Your team matters just as much as the enemy team. [title]When to Pick Katarina[/title] In ranked I will normally confidently pick Katarina if I have the third pick or lower. The only times I will play Katarina as first or second pick is if a team mate will trade with me. When inspecting the enemies picks if the first two champions lack hard crowd control, I will pick Katarina. If they are already loaded on the disables, I will go to my next option as a mid laner. The choice is ultimately up to you.[highlight] I have outplayed teams with 7 disables[/highlight], you can do it too. It's not impossible, it's just not smart. [center][highlight]Sample team to play Katarina against:[/highlight] [img=champ/vladimir.png][img=champ/twistedfate.png][img=champ/nunu.png][img=champ/missfortune.png][img=champ/taric.png] 2 disables, both are delayed.[/center] [center][highlight]Sample team to not play Katarina against:[/highlight] [img=champ/xinzhao.png][img=champ/nautilus.png][img=champ/gragas.png][img=champ/vayne.png][img=champ/blitzcrank.png] 11 disables, 8 are instant.[/center] You can win either game, you can lose either game. You will most likely win the first match up much more than the second. It's all how you play. I mentioned that I also keep an eye on what my team picks. [center][highlight]There is nothing worse than playing a Katarina with a team composed of:[/highlight] [img=champ/leesin.png][img=champ/udyr.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/ezreal.png][img=champ/soraka.png] No champs can initiate, you better pray you can catch them in a 4v5 with this composition.[/center] [center][highlight]Now compare that team to this team:[/highlight] [img=champ/riven.png][img=champ/amumu.png][img=champ/katarina.png][img=champ/varus.png][img=champ/sona.png] A Katarina on this team is completely set up for success.[/center]

I always love when players add a mindset chapter, it really helps the player understand the role of the champion they're playing. Please, read this first, read my guide, then reread this chapter. It will apply closure on how to bring everything in this guide together. So you picked Katarina. You are a Melee Mage and an Assassin. [highlight]You do not fight in the thick of things[/highlight], you lurk in the back and at the perfect time you sneak in and create chaos, [highlight]"Never fight fair"[/highlight] says Katarina. In all honestly I've recently thought of Katarina as purely a KSer. You will rarely get the chance to nuke someone 100-0%. In reality, when a team fight occurs, your priority is to wait until the time is right. By then your target (AP or AD carry mainly) is getting focused, or falling low. Then Katarina Shunpo's in and destroys their remaining HP, followed by her destroying the other low HP targets. The way you what to think and play Katarina is by [highlight]acting as a clean up crew[/highlight]. After the fight has started, abilities are on cool down, everyone is losing bars of health, and you're just waiting, watching, getting ready for the kill. Play like this and you will see your Katarina game play drastically improve.

[center][imgext=http://i161.photobucket.com/albums/t219/Liiger/runes.png][/center] [title]Explanation:[/title] These are my standard Katarina runes, I rarely use a different set up. [.]The magic penetration marks helps keep your damage up. [.]The HP per level seals helps you become tankier towards your AP opponent. [.]The magic resistance glyphs again helps you mitigate damage. [.]The AP quints gives you a nice ability power boast ealy game, this sets up your mid game snowball. [title] Substitutions:[/title] [highlight]Marks[/highlight] Should always be magic resistance. [highlight]Seals[/highlight] Can be changed with armor runes if needed vs an AD lane. [highlight]Glyphs[/highlight] Can be changed with AP per level, I feel the mres is superior though. [highlight]Quints[/highlight] Can be switch with MVSPD. [highlight]Katarina Tip:[/highlight] Runes will not make or break a Katarina player. There have been normal games where I accidentally used my jungle or support runes and masteries. Depending how you play the game you can still absolutely dominate, even against an enemy Katarina.

[title][img=skills/katarina/p.png] Passive: Voracity[/title] [number]Champion kills or assists reduce Death Lotus's cool down by 10 seconds, and refreshes basic abilities.[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] Katarina's true power. This passive is amazing and is the reason Katarina is so fun and excels at cleaning up the enemy team after that first kill. In order to play a good Katarina it is imperative that you do not waste this passive. Once you grab a kill make sure you abuse the fact that your basic abilities are ready to be used again and get those free kills. This will also make your ultimate run a very short cool down, keep an eye on that timer and let your team know when you're ready to kill again. [title][img=skills/katarina/q.png] Q: Bouncing Blade[/title] [number]Katarina throws a dagger that bounces quickly from enemy to enemy, dealing magic damage and marking them. Each subsequent hit deals 10% less damage. Bouncing Blades hits a total of 5 unique targets (4 bounces), each striking the closest next target. Striking a marked target with an ability or basic attack will consume the mark to deal additional magic damage. Dagger Magic Damage: 50 / 85 / 120 / 155 / 190 (+0.5 per ability power) On-hit Magic Damage: 15 / 30 / 45 / 60 / 75 (+0.2 per ability power) Total Damage: 65 / 115 / 165 / 215 / 265 (+0.7 per ability power) Cooldown: 10 / 9.5 / 9 / 8.5 / 8 seconds Range: 675[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] This is your bread and butter skill. I always max this skill first. It can be used as a free harass skill or a farming tool. [title]In Lane:[/title] You want to use this to get those ranged last hits that you'd otherwise miss or would take too much unneeded harass. Around mid game, this combined with your W will kill five of the six minioins in a wave. Remember this skills passive, try to always proc it on the enemy in order to maximize damage. Weigh the pros and the cons, do not proc the passive if it puts you in danger. [title]Pre Team Fight:[/title] Katarina wants to be a safe distance away from any crowd control, once this is done, use [imgsmall=skills/katarina/q.png] as a poking tool, this along with your team can set up the perfect team fight or win you an objective. [title]Team Fight:[/title] Always use this ability first on your priority target, the burst potential before your ultimate is significant and can't be ignored. Once you hit that first kill or assist and this skill is up again you'll learn why Katarina should be heavily feared. [title][img=skills/katarina/w.png] W: Sinister Blades[/title] [number] Katarina whirls her daggers around her, dealing magic damage to all enemies in the area. If she hits an enemy champion, Katarina gains Movement Speed for 1 second. Magic Damage: 40 / 80 / 120 / 160 / 200 (+0.3 per ability power) (+0.6 per bonus attack damage) Movement Speed: 12 / 20 / 28 / 36 / 44 % Cooldown: 4 seconds Radius of AoE: ~375 [/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] This is the skill that replaced Killer Instinct. I very much appreciate this ability and I max this second. It makes farming amazingly easy around mid game. If you had a poor early game farm, now is your time to catch up. As mentioned before, release a [imgsmall=skills/katarina/q.png] on the wave and finish them with Sinister Blades, [highlight]your CS and gold will go up considerably.[/highlight] This ability procs Q's passive, abuse this for more damage on your opponent. It also has a nice passive in it's self. Suppose you [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] to an enemy, activate Sinister Blades and you will receive a nice little movement speed buff. Though it is only a second, it will allow you to get in and out effectively. [title]In Lane:[/title] Again, early it is used as a farming tool. Make sure to also use it on the enemy for added harass when trading. The movement speed buff is a great way to run away from the enemy and force misses on skill shot abilities. [title]Team Fight:[/title] Mid to Late game this skill packs a serious punch. After you use Q and E on an enemy, [highlight]always activate W before you commit to your ultimate.[/highlight] Remember you get a movement speed buff, this is amazing when it comes to chasing and chaining kills. [title][img=skills/katarina/e.png] E: Shunpo[/title] [number]Katarina instantly moves to her target's location and takes 15% reduced damage from enemies for 3 seconds. If the target is an enemy, she deals magic damage 40 / 70 / 100 / 130 / 160 (+0.4 per ability power) Cooldown: 14 / 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 seconds Range 700 [/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] This once was Katarina's main ability, now I believe it is her [highlight]one point wonder skill[/highlight] and max it last. I only use this skill for it's mobility because at level 1 it does little damage, but it sets up the rest of your skill set. You can use this to teleport to any targetable object in game (excluding turrets/inhibitors/nexus.) [title]In Lane:[/title] The purpose of this skill is not for damage but for [highlight]mobility[/highlight]. It's cool down is some what long so don't use it whimsically in lane. If you're near your tower you can use it to get that last hit you would miss , but please, please, never use it to get that 1 castor minion in the back that is passed your enemy. I always save this ability and extend when my wave is on it's way in. This way if a gank comes you have the option to waste flash -or- save it and [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] away to a minion. Remember [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png]'s passive, 20% reduced damage is really huge. [highlight]Katarina Tip & Advice:[/highlight] Tip: Always try to carry an extra ward so you can use it as a blink to escape a gank or a death in lane. This makes it so you don't need to wait on a minion wave or flash to play risky. Advice: If your flash is down and you're not warding, -do not- use [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] offensively. This is bad news and set you up for a beyond easy gank or vulnerable to your opponents crowd control and harass. [title]Team Fight:[/title] This ability is used to set up your ultimate in a team fight, it's mobility grants you easy access to the enemy's AD or AP carry. Always [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] later into the fight and never waste it before (escaping CC is not wasting it) realize with out a kill or assist it's cool down is long and makes you useless until it's back up. The reason you are useless is because you can only Q from a distance when it's down, thus you can not chain the rest of your abilities on a target. [highlight]Team Fight Tip:[/highlight] After I go all in and get a kill/assist, I tend to use [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] to go to another enemy before casting my other skills. This is because once you are near the enemy you can automatically use Q and W for more damage, the passive proc from Sinister Blades increases your chasing potential and keeps you in range for additional auto attacks or another W Q combo. [title][img=skills/katarina/r.png] R: Death Lotus[/title] [number]Katarina becomes a flurry of blades, throwing up to 30 daggers at nearby enemy champions during the 2 second channel. Katarina throws blades at 0.2 second intervals, dealing magic damage and applying Grievous Wounds to the closest 3 enemy champions. Grievous wound reduces incoming healing by 50%. An enemy champion can be hit by a maximum of 10 daggers over the 2 seconds.Magic Damage Per Dagger: 40 / 50 / 60 (+0.3 per bonus attack damage) (+0.175 per ability power) Maximum Magic Damage to the Same Target: 400 / 500 / 600 (+3.0 per bonus attack damage) (+1.75 per ability power) Cooldown: 60 / 55 / 50 seconds Range 550 [/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] Ahhhh! [imgsmall=skills/katarina/r.png] On of the most scary ultimates in the game.. [highlight]oh you got stunned..[/highlight] This ultimate is purely based on the individuals knowledge of the enemy champions abilities. In order to excel on Katarina you -must- know every champion's disable(s) and their cool downs. One good ultimate can win you a team fight and possibly the game. This may seem overwhelming at first but in time and with practice you will soon learn when to use it and when to save it. [title]In Lane:[/title] The only time I use this skill in lane is combined with a jungler gank. You will find players to be very cautious with you in lane when you hit level 6. They tend to glue their finger to their disable in case Katarina is feeling ballsy. If you can sense you can do enough damage to either grab a solo kill or force them to back, use it. Otherwise save it for a jungle gank. [highlight]Katarina Tip:[/highlight] With your ultimate and your skill set your ganks are very deadly. If you can out push your lane always look for opportunities to [highlight]roam top or bottom[/highlight] (I find bottom to be easier to gank) This is how a Katarina gets ahead as it's some what hard to win lane in a straight up 1v1. [title]Team Fight:[/title] This is what will determine a good Katarina from a bad one. So many players see the team fight break out and the enemy gets caught. Katarina [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png]'s in immediately presses R and so quickly it ends because the enemy [imgsmall=champ/soraka.png] silences you. I can't emphasize this enough. [highlight]You need to count and watch every disable before you ult.[/highlight] I am not saying wait till every disable is gone before you use your ultimate, what I'm saying is you need to be smart about your timing. If a team fight breaks out and you see someone with an instant disable, you can make a safe bet they're saving it for you. Keep your eye on this player and when they use it go in and wreck havoc on the enemy and punish them for their mistake. This is just an example, usually a team will consist of more than one disable. It is up to you as a player to master this real life skill, no guide can improve your ability to use your ultimate at the right time. [highlight]Katarina Tipz:[/highlight] #1 The way I try to use this skill is to [highlight]count the enemies disable's[/highlight] before the match even starts. I make a mental note of it. When a team fight occurs, I notice how many ways the enemy can stop my ultimate, as that number gets lower as the fight progresses I make a judgement call. "Ok now is the time to ult." I proceed to use my combination and benefit from waiting. #2 [highlight]Patience is key[/highlight]. If you can't get a good ultimate in, don't use it, else you're just stunned and every skill is on cool down, you're as good as dead. If you wait the enemy will use CC on someone else and youre chance of winning increase.

Very little to describe here. [.]Always max Q first, it gives you the best lane presence and farming ability. [.]Max W second, it's low cool down and added harass and farming power is so beneficial. [.]Leave E at level 1 and max it last, it's mobility is it's purpose and shouldn't be relied on for damage. [.]Obviously take R at 6, 11, 16.

Katarina has a few combos that a player should learn in order to lane properly. I will describe them below. For reference, Q = [imgsmall=skills/katarina/q.png] W = [imgsmall=skills/katarina/w.png](Sinister Blades) E = [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] R = [imgsmall=skills/katarina/r.png] [title]Basic Harass:[/title] In lane, hit the enemy with: [highlight]Q[/highlight]. It takes no mana but can push lane. Use mostly on ranged enemies. [title]Standard Harass:[/title] In lane in melee range, aim the enemy: [highlight]Q > AA > W > E away[/highlight]. If done smartly, you can avoid a trade back. Use mostly on melee enemies. [title]Standard+ Harass:[/title] If you know the jungle's position: [highlight]Q > E > AA > W > Run[/highlight]. This provides the most damage for harass and does significant burst. I'll mention it again, only use if the enemy jungler is not near your lane. [title]The Kill:[/title] If your jungler is ganking, do this: [highlight]Q > E > AA > W > R > ignite > W > Q[/highlight]. Use discernment, if the enemy has an escape you will not land this full combo, if you can kill the enemy with out ignite, don't use. If you can land an extra AA or an extra skill do it. [title]Team Fight Combo:[/title] When the time is right and you want to team fight ult: [highlight]Q > E > W > R > ignite > (assumed kill/assist) > E > Q > W > (assumed kill/assist) > E > Q > W[/highlight]. Repeat the E > Q > W combo when you can reach another enemy. [highlight]Tip:[/highlight] If your skills are down and you know it's safe, [highlight]always add an extra auto attack in between your skill combos[/highlight]. The extra damage is considerable and it will add up.

[center][img=items/deathfire-grasp.png][/center] [highlight]With school taking priority I haven't been able to play as much but I promise I will test this out over the weekend and come back with a decision.[/highlight] The CDR nerf isn't bad as CDR doesn't break Katarina. The main reason this item is now controversial is the huge nerf on it's numbers. At the moment, DFG can still be a good item, the extra burst can be the difference from that early team fight reset into your snowball or your death. I've read you will need ~1000 AP to get the same damage post nerf, but TnA has also stated it is ok to build after 300 AP. If you do this, build: Boots > KLP > DC > Aby > Boots2 > DFG. This is only speculation and I will test out the item path in ranked.

[highlight]Start:[/highlight] [center][img=items/boots-of-speed.png] and [img=items/health-potion3.png][/center] I have never bought anything else on Katarina in the beginning. [highlight]First Back ~1250G:[center] [/highlight][img=items/kages-lucky-pick.png][img=items/elixir-of-fortitude.png][img=items/sight-ward2.png][img=items/health-potion2.png][/center] [title]Explanation:[/title] After my initial first buy, I aim to get a [imgsmall=items/kages-lucky-pick.png] as fast as possible, getting this item early only helps in the long run and sets you up to buy an even faster, [imgsmall=items/rabadons-deathcap.png] I do not go revolver anymore as the sustain is good, not great, and the same effect can be achieved by 2 hp potions. It also delays you from buying [imgsmall=items/rabadons-deathcap.png] asap. The reason behind the elixir is that when you go to trade and kill your lane opponent you can pop this item to receive a boost in HP along with your HP pot to become deceptively tanky in a 1v1 duel. [highlight]Core Items:[/highlight] [center][img=items/sorcerers-shoes.png] [img=items/kages-lucky-pick.png] [img=items/rabadons-deathcap.png] and [img=items/sight-ward2.png][/center] [title]Explanation:[/title] [highlight]Next item:[/highlight] [center][img=items/zhonyas-hourglass.png] OR [img=items/abyssal-scepter.png][/center] [title]Explanation:[/title] This is a judgement call, you want to get either of these items after your [imgsmall=items/rabadons-deathcap.png]. Check the other lanes, is the top AD crushing and the enemy's team comp includes and AD carry with an AD jungle? Get [imgsmall=items/zhonyas-hourglass.png] If you're feeding you lane, and the enemy is composed of an AP composition, get [imgsmall=items/abyssal-scepter.png] [highlight]Optional:[/highlight] [center][img=items/haunting-guise.png][/center] This item is not bad. I guess you could say it's good, but not great. It's like [imgsmall=items/the-brutalizer.png] that you don't upgrade for mid lane, you sell it later and get end game items. If you need the extra HP (vs Cho Gath, Annie, LB) be my guest. This can be the reason you snowball through mid game. I reiterate, it's good, not great. [title]Late Game: [/title] Normally the game will be decided by this point. You will need to decide how to build against the enemy team. I will give you suggestions about what your last two items should be. [highlight]In no particular order:[/highlight] [center][img=items/hextech-gunblade.png][/center] This item is not worth it. You will not be building the prerequisites, if you do happen to and you're at a loss for what to build, upgrading to this can't hurt. I wouldn't advise it. [center][img=items/deathfire-grasp.png][/center] This item synergizes amazingly with Katarina's assassin like play. If you plan to build this item build it late. You want this item late game for it's late game potential, not for when your enemy team has low hp with your low ap. [center][img=items/void-staff.png][/center] If the enemy is stacking the magic resistance to counter you, this item becomes your best friend. If my game lasts long enough I find myself building this item more and more. [center][img=items/banshees-veil.png][/center] I haven't built this much but it can be a huge benefit in the battle against disables. If you cant time your ultimate well you can buy this to help out a bit. Any ability can trigger the shield so play smart. [center][img=items/guardian-angel.png][/center] If you're looking for a defensive item, I would buy this over [imgsmall=items/zhonyas-hourglass.png] You get a second chance and will have the power to unleash your full combo before you die again. [title]Example Builds[/title] [center][highlight]AD COMP: [/highlight] [img=champ/garen.png][img=champ/cassiopeia.png][img=champ/jarvaniv.png][img=champ/varus.png][img=champ/sona.png] [highlight]BUILD:[/highlight] [img=items/sorcerers-shoes.png][img=items/deathfire-grasp.png][img=items/rabadons-deathcap.png][img=items/zhonyas-hourglass.png][img=items/void-staff.png][img=items/guardian-angel.png] [highlight]AP COMP:[/highlight] [img=champ/rumble.png][img=champ/orianna.png][img=champ/maokai.png][img=champ/ezreal.png][img=champ/sona.png] [highlight]BUILD:[/highlight] [img=items/sorcerers-shoes.png][img=items/deathfire-grasp.png][img=items/rabadons-deathcap.png][img=items/abyssal-scepter.png][img=items/void-staff.png][img=items/guardian-angel.png][/center]

Most of Katarina's matchs up play the same, but I will try to go in depth per champion. I'll explain when and how you can be aggressive and when you should play passive. [title]What you need to know:[/title] As you will read, most match ups are about the same. Harass when you can play safe when you need to. I believe the key to winning games with Katarina lies in her [highlight]roaming abilities and team fight capabilities[/highlight]. In order to do well with Katarina you must have presence in [highlight]other lanes[/highlight]. Once you get a lead, you will continue to hold that lead if you continue to do well in team fights. Perfect these two aspects and you will win. [center][img=champ/ahri.png] [highlight]Ahri[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]5/10[/highlight][/center] After playing this match up more, I have found that Ahri really isn't a threat unless you make her one. You can farm pretty easily if you're not walking into skill shots. Use Q to farm, don't be afraid to use it for harass though. Early game you can only chip away at her HP, bait her into using spells as she will run out of mana fast. Mid game you will start to win if youre trading properly and not getting caught. You are better than her mid to early late game. [center][img=champ/akali.png] [highlight]Akali[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]Pre6 4/10 Post6 8/10[/highlight] [/center] I don't see this match up all to often. The way I would play it though is to be aggressive before 6. Wait until Akali uses her Q on a minion then combo Akali with Q > E > W. Never use [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] if you assume the jungler is near and can gank. Post 6, you need to play it safe. Akali will burst you much harder than you can burst her. After 6, carry a pink ward and ask for a gank. You can push harder than Akali, try to do so and roam to help win other lanes. [center][img=champ/anivia.png] [highlight]Anivia[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]2/10[/highlight] [/center] Anivia honestly isn't that hard for Katarina. In order to win this lane you need to keep up with your farm and use your [imgsmall=skills/katarina/q.png] to harass Anivia. Bait out her Q and dodge it with [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] She can't really hurt you pre 6 with out her stun. you can get her low early easily or make her waste her mana. Don't get egg baited, you can ask for a jungler gank but you will be fine 1v1. Post 6, the lane gets a bit harder, just avoid the stun and you won't get chunked hard. Carry an extra ward to wall hop if you think you'll be trapped. [center][img=champ/annie.png] [highlight]Annie[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]6/10[/highlight][/center] I've played a fair amount of Annies. I don't think she is an issue for Katarina. Annie will try to farm while you do. When she has her stun use [imgsmall=skills/katarina/q.png] to farm, when her stun is down try to harass for what you can. When Annie hits 6 you do not want to get caught by Tibbers. If you fall behind, build a giant's belt to survive her burst. Annie can't push that hard, abuse your easy farm, push lane and roam to gank bottom or top. [center][img=champ/brand.png] [highlight]Brand[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]8/10[/highlight][/center] Against Brand, you can not stand still. You want to keep moving and stay behind minions. You do not even want to [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] on him or near him rely on it as a feww escape when you get caught. Play very smart, [imgsmall=skills/katarina/q.png] when you can. In order to win this lane you need to play passive till he is low mana, when this happens take advatage of the lane until you force him back. It is a huge help if you have a crowd control jungler as he is suceptiable to easy ganks. If you [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] to Brand expect a full combo and you to be near dead. [center][img=champ/cassiopeia.png] [highlight]Cassiopeia[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]6/10[/highlight][/center] Another match up where you can't stop moving. If you can dodge her Q's and stay on farm you will out play her later. If you plan to kill her make sure you can do it before she has the chance to stun you. Abysmal Scepter would benefit you well here. [center][img=champ/diana.png] [highlight]Diana[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]7/10[/highlight][/center] I have faced 3 Diana's so far, I have won all three of the match ups. I will not say Katarina counters her but she does a good job not dying to her. In order to win the lane you need to stay on her weak side (left side of lane if you're top, right side if you're bottom) always move more to the weak side, or closer to her to avoid her Q. If she manages to hit you with her Q she will ult to you. Save your [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] to escape her pull or escape the slow. You need to harass her before she uses her shield. Her pull/knock up will end your ult, if you bait it and out play her you will win. [center][img=champ/fizz.png] [highlight]Fizz[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]5/10[/highlight][/center] Fizz isn't the easiest but he is not the hardest. Basically harass when you see fit, do not let him out trade you, If you let him get in range he will poke, auto attack, trollpoll away. Don't bother ulting unless his escape is down. Out push him and roam. If he throws his fish you better dodge it. If it lands on you [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] -after- it goes off, or you escape, still walk slow, and then get knocked up. [center][img=champ/galio.png] [highlight]Galio[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]8/10[/highlight][/center] Not much Katarina can hope to do in this match up, he's very tanky, your damage won't hurt him. He will blast you when ever you go for a last hit. If you're forced with this match up ask your jungler to camp for you. Post 6 you can't [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] to him or you're screwed. [center][img=champ/gragas.png] [highlight]Gragas[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]4/10[/highlight][/center] You would think this would be a hard match up, but in reality if you're an equal player you will either come out equally or on top. You can easily stay equal on farm if he barrels you [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] away. Don't [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] onto him with out his skills on cool down else he will slow you and Q you for tonz of damage. Only [imgsmall=skills/katarina/r.png] if it's a sure kill with a jungleror his ultimate is down. [center][img=champ/karthus.png] [highlight]Karthus[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]3/10[/highlight][/center] This match up is pretty easy, dodge his Q's and get your last hits. Harass him for free and force him to blue pill. Keep running around and he will go out of mana eventually. At 6 you can definitely kill him, poke his hp down then go for the kill. It will be close so don't stick around for his passive. Fact: I got my first penta kill verse a team with Karthus. I was so happy i yelled and threw my hands up, Karthus killed me. [center][img=champ/kassadin.png] [highlight]Kassadin[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]9/10[/highlight][/center] This is a pretty hard match up, get your jungler to gank and shut him down before he hits 6. Do this and you will snowball to win. You will probably lose if you have to solo him. One time when I played verse Kassadin, I switched with Pantheon and took top and played extremely safe verse a lee sin. I died a few times but roamed enough to make up for it. You can send your top to fight him if you think you'll lose. [center][img=champ/kennen.png] [highlight]Kennen[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]7/10[/highlight][/center] Kennen is a hard match up. He will auto attack you and Q you every time you go for a minion. If you get stunned you're going to lose a lot of hp. You need to play this match up safe and smart. Try to roam more if your farm is near close. Using your ultimate on Kennen alone is useless, as you can guess, only use with a gank. [center][img=champ/leblanc.png] [highlight]Leblanc[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]6/10[/highlight][/center] She may seem hard but you can definitely win. Focus on farming as much as you can, don't let her chunk you for free though. Ask you jungler to help you shut her down early. I rush an abysmal scepter in this match up, maybe even merc treads if I'm failing. You can push hard on her and roam when you want. You should always want to do this! [center][img=champ/lux.png] [highlight]Lux[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]4/10[/highlight][/center] Lux isn't seen mid much, Katarina is a good champ to throw against her. You can easily dodge her abilities and you can poke her down and get ready to kill her at any time. Do not [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] on her when the enemy jungler is near else you will die from a gank. [center][img=champ/malzahar.png] [highlight]Malzahar[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]5/10[/highlight][/center] Malzahar is a tricky one, you need to be really careful when to use your skills and where you are in lane with respect to his E. I would farm over harass but that doesn't mean don't focus solely on farming. Malzahar has no escape and is an auto pusher. Get your jungler to gank him. Post 6 if you get ulted by him at any point in the game you need to work on your Katarina positioning. [center][img=champ/mordekaiser.png] [highlight]Mordekaiser[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]4/10[/highlight][/center] Mordekaiser is not that hard. If you let him farm you will lose late, if you let him kill you you will lose lane. What you need to do is farm when you can and chip away at his hp when his shield is down. It's easier than it sounds. He has no hard crowd control so get him low ignite and ult away. You should come out on top. If you're out pushing him and winning, help win the other lanes as well. [center][img=champ/morgana.png] [highlight]Morgana[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]5/10[/highlight][/center] You would think this is a bad match up, I actually like this one. You can farm pretty easily and dodge her snare with yout [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png]. I wouldn't advise trying to 1v1 her at full hp with her snare up. Go in poke the health away get out, try to have your jungler help you, it's not needed but it can be a huge help. If her snare is on cool down and shes about 50% go in for the kill with ignite. [center][img=champ/orianna.png] [highlight]Orianna[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]7/10[/highlight][/center] This match up is similar to Lux in a way, but harder. the only difference is Oriana doesn't have a snare, she has a knock up. I wouldn't advise trying to ult her right away, instead poke her down and go in for the kill later. You can out push her and roam. You hold a stronger presence mid and late game. [center][img=champ/ryze.png] [highlight]Ryze[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]4/10[/highlight][/center] You can beat Ryze. You need to harass with [imgsmall=skills/katarina/q.png] and avoid his Q. Do not bother [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png]ing to him, you will lose the trade. You can bait him to commit to a fight if your jungler is near by throwing your whole combo on him. While he is busy chaining you, your jungle can come in to apply their CC and abilities. Mid game you can easily out farm him, do this and roam to take advantage. [center][img=champ/sion.png] [highlight]Sion[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]5/10[/highlight][/center] I enjoy facing Sion. His kit is really easy to manipulate. You want to stay on farm and don't let him get the advantage in lane. If he tries to run up to you, he's planning on stunning, stay away. If he has his shield on and you can't burst it, stay away. When his skills are on cool down you can harass him. Save [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] for after his stun and with no shield feel free to [imgsmall=skills/katarina/r.png] ignite him. [center][img=champ/swain.png] [highlight]Swain[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]7/10[/highlight][/center] Swain is a bit tough but if you play him right you will win. Never [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] to him with his slow and snare up. if you can chip him low enough and hit 6 first you will kill him. Past level 6 his damage is deceptive. Do not engage with out ignite. [center][img=champ/twistedfate.png] [highlight]Twisted Fate[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]3/10[/highlight][/center] So far this has been my most common match up. Katarina verse TF with no jungler is so easy. Dodge his cards, don't get wild carded, farm, and harass him and you'll win. Incorporate the jungler and you may have some problems. All it takes is one gold card and a gank to ruin your game. Keep him pushed and don't let him him ult to your bottom lane and you should win. -Always- alert your team when he is 6 and missing. [center][img=champ/veigar.png] [highlight]Veigar[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]3/10[/highlight][/center] This match up is simple, you want to be aggressive as early as possible, but do not bait your self. Use discernment. If he constantly is Q'ing you he will go out of mana and have less AP. If he uses Q to farm you get free trades. The only way you will lose after 6 is if you ult and he stuns you. Again you can out push this champ, abuse this and roam where you want. [center][img=champ/vladimir.png] [highlight]Vladimir[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]7/10[/highlight][/center] Vladimir has no hard CC to stop your ult, this lane is really a match of player skill. If you can out play him, avoid unnecessary Q's and E's you will win early. Around 9-11 Vladimir starts to wreck you if you were even. Try to get a lead and hold on to it. Save your [imgsmall=skills/katarina/e.png] and [imgsmall=skills/katarina/r.png] for after his pool. [center][img=champ/viktor.png] [highlight]Viktor[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]4/10[/highlight][/center] Viktor is an underestimated champ. Kat beats him. All you want to do is farm and not take his harass and laser. Use your [imgsmall=skills/katarina/q.png] when you can. You can out trade him if you dodge his laser. At 6 his ultimate silences you (first time I faced him I forgot and turret dove... never again) Either bait his ult or make sure you can kill him before it kills you. You win the lane and get to roam. [center][img=champ/ziggs.png] [highlight]Ziggs[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]???[/highlight][/center] You never see this champion played. Avoid his constant harass and don't stand in his knock up when you ult. [center][img=champ/zyra.png] [highlight]Zyra[/highlight] Difficulty: [highlight]4/10[/highlight][/center] In order to beat Zyra you need to out play her. This means you can't get caught in her snare. Either dodge it or harass her when she misses it on you. Her level 3 Q+W can easily do 70% of your health if you stay in one area. Bait her ult before you use yours. She will out damage you with it up n two seeds and end your ult early. Play the lane smart.

This is Katarina's weakest point. Her farming is hard, her harass is weak, and if you play really poorly it can be hard to come back. What you need to do is stay in the back and watch your opponent, go for safe last hits and use your Q to harass or last hit. Keep an eye on how your opponent plays, they will mimic the same patterns through out the game, notice how they skill, when the skill, if they favor moving up, down, left, or right. This is the time you should try to analyze your opponent and mentally prepare a strategy on how to win. Think to yourself, how can I win? Can I be aggressive? Should I play passive? I'll just wait for a jungler to help me. Play your early game smart and it will set up your mid and late game quite nicely. [.]Level 1: Protect your jungler's jungle, either cover mid or watch the mid river area. Please don't allow the enemy to get a fee invade because you got lazy. Leash as per the jungler's request. [.]Level 1-2: Aim to farm [.]Level 3-5: Start harassing when you can. Prioritize farm. [.]Level 6: Look for roaming opportunities, win the other lanes, win the game. [highlight]Laning Tip[/highlight] [highlight]Always, always, always, buy wards.[/highlight] In the item section I included [imgsmall=items/sight-ward2.png]. That was to represent warding Mid lane. You never only want to buy 2 wards, it should be a [highlight]constant thing[/highlight]. I prefer to ward both Mid river brushes. It helps you catch ganks and escape as well through the opposite river side. Warding can easily increase you elo by 100 points if you get into the habit of warding your lane and the map.

This is where Katarina starts getting [highlight]fun[/highlight]. Your farming has gotten easy, your harass is much better, your ganks are quite scary. Remember that the key to a good game is having good farm, never stop farming. Coordinate with your jungler and try to kill your lane, if it's too hard, don't stress it, allow him to win other lanes while you farm and roam. Aim to roam bottom more than top, if you kill bottom you can [highlight]steal a free dragon[/highlight]. Dragon is huge to getting a lead and frustrating the enemy. If your doing well, please don't get kill happy, you're not invincible and your death can cost a lead. Always prioritize [highlight]objectives over kills[/highlight]. Objectives win games, having a high K/D/A doesn't. [.]Level 7-9: Keep farming, try to kill your lane, try to gank other lanes [highlight](bottom > top)[/highlight] force objectives when you can. [.]Level 10-11: If your tower's not down yet, make sure you get it down asap. [.]Team fight's will break out. I will cover this in-depth in a later chapter.

This is where all your hard work will pay off. Tower's are gone and dragon's are being contested. The real goal of late game is to either win right away or force a baron. In solo que, the main focus of late game is Baron. Do not attempt Baron when everyone is up and it's a 5v5. So many games are thrown this way. Keep the jungles warded and aim to catch the enemy. I have noticed if it's around [highlight]24:00[/highlight] minutes and the enemy is missing your best bet is they are at [highlight]baron[/highlight]. When the team fight finally breaks out the game is really on your shoulders, if you ultimate poorly you will lose. If you play smart and avoid crowd control you will win and you will take Baron after. Again always focus [highlight]objectives over kills[/highlight], this mean do not chase that teemo with 200 hp, he will get away and you waste valuable time getting free towers or Baron. [.]Level 12-16: If you're grouped stay with your team, it's not worth getting caught alone. You're reliant on your team in order to kill the enemy. [.]Level 17-18: Focus on baron and free towers. If you team fight and kill 2 or 3 enemies, -do not- waste time chasing the survivors for kills. Get baron and win.

Some parts of this section may be repeated from earlier parts in my guide. This is the part of the game where everyone plays Katarina so wrong. This is where all the forum QQ comes from, where players complain that the new Katarina sucks and beg for a revert. I will try to explain how to utilize Katarina to her fullest potential in team fights. As Katarina you [highlight]-never-[/highlight] want to be in the front lines, stay in the back, I don't care if you can get 1 kill by going out of position, you will get focused and you will die. stay in the back and wait for the fight to fully break out. As I mentioned before, look at your opponents and count their CC. Minus one when it's down and note the cool downs. When you feel it is safe, it's your time to shine. With most cool downs down and your's are all up, a losing fight will completely change in favor for you. Once you get that first kill, the double, triple, quadra, and penta kill (if you're lucky ;) ) will follow. You need to be patient, you need to be smart, [highlight]you need to play better than your enemies.[/highlight] Always keep in mind, the longer you wait, the more disables will be down. If your team is fighting the opponent chances are the enemy [imgsmall=champ/taric.png] used his stun on your [imgsmall=champ/xinzhao.png] attacking their carry. Watch for this and capitalize when it's your time to shine.

These are not my videos, all credit goes to [highlight]TiensiNoAkuma[/highlight], he is a 2.6k Katarina main, watch this video and learn. He knows exactly what he is saying. Through out the video, he will answer common Katarina questions and improve your knowledge of the game and the champion. [center][youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-zY7ruKB7c&feature=plcp[/youtube][/center] [center][youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6HLATBEs-M&feature=plcp[/youtube][/center] When my lolreplay is back and running and my laptop allows me to record again I will upload my own.

So you picked Katarina. You are a Melee Mage and an Assassin. [highlight]You do not fight in the thick of things[/highlight], you lurk in the back and at the perfect time you sneak in and create chaos, [highlight]"Never fight fair"[/highlight] says Katarina. In all honestly I've recently thought of Katarina as purely a KSer. You will rarely get the chance to nuke someone 100-0%. In reality, when a team fight occurs, your priority is to wait until the time is right. By then your target (AP or AD carry mainly) is getting focused, or falling low. Then Katarina Shunpo's in and destroys their remaining HP, followed by her destroying the other low HP targets. The way you what to think and play Katarina is by [highlight]acting as a clean up crew[/highlight]. After the fight has started, abilities are on cool down, everyone is losing bars of health, and you're just waiting, watching, getting ready for the kill. Play like this and you will see your Katarina game play drastically improve.

Thank you for taking the time to read my guide. Please thumbs up if this helped you. If you dislike this guide, please leave an explanation and I'll try to help any player. I will update this as I play Katarina more and become better with her. PLEASE LEAVE FEEDBACK ON ANYTHING ABOUT THIS GUIDE! If it's a question you have or a suggestion you have thought of I'd love to here it!

Comments coming soon!
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