Kassadin - Guardian of the Rift - by SmecssRaege

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Kassadin, The Guardian Of The Rift


Q: Null Sphere - Nuke, 2 second silence

W: Nether Blade - Steals % of mana giving it to you on auto attack

E: Force Pulse - AoE slow/high damage nuke that requires 6 spells to be cast in your vicinity before bcoming usable

R: Rift Walk - Teleports to the selected area, dealing damage in the targeted area, damage and mana cost increases with continuous casts
Passie: Reduces incoming magic damage by 15% giving the portion of damage negated to attack speed.

-%Cooldown, HP, Spell Penetration
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(Personal Setup -14.8% cooldown @ lvl 1)

Summoner Skills
: This is one of the few heroes i would rather use cleanse for than flash. Cleansing off a stun/silence and will be the difference between rift walking to freedom, and eating the dirt (Do you really need flash when you have a 3 second cooldown flash?...although double flash can be nice, it's highly unnecessary :-D)

Ideal Mastery Build: 21/0/9 or 21/9/0 for maximum damage output, or 9/0/21 is perfectly fine and acceptable, regen and more cleansing help too


Sapphire Crystal + 2 health potions

580 gold:
Tear of the Goddess (you want this ASAP)

1230 gold
Blasting Staff + Boots 1

XXX gold
Mejai's Soulstealer Recipe 

575 gold:
Sorcerer's Shoes (Getting these earlier helps a bit cuz riftwalks cooldown isnt quite massively spammable at lvl 6 and a bit more power to farm with)

1325 gold:
Catalyst The Protector

880 gold:
Blasting Staff

850 gold:
Rod of Ages 

880 gold:
Blasting Staff

1050 gold:
Archangel's Staff 

1235 gold:

880 gold:
Blasting Staff

1350 gold:
Lich Bane (Null Magic Mantle+Recipe)

880 or 1760 gold:
1 or 2 blasting staff(s)

1975 gold: (after obtaining both blasting staffs)
Zhonya's Ring

Item #6 is down to 2 choices:
Vs Casters or More damage: Abyssal Scepter
Vs Meleers or More disable: Rylai's Scepter

**Note: If you want a more survivable but less damage build, drop the archangels staff, and then modify the buy order too: Mana crystal or Regrowth Pendant (Into philosophers) to start, get boots, then work into rod of age > mejai's soulstealer> sheen > rylai's scepter> lich bane zhonyas ring. That will tip you to nearly 3k hp, other items to consider for a more survivable less DPS build would be: banshee's veil or abyssal scepter (vs casters)**

This will leave you in the area of 700-750 AP at the end of the game if you acheive this item setup (yes i've done it in a game that dragged onto about 50-55 minutes) 

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1: Q (having the silence at level 1 can be a life saver...so...just in case)
2: E (force pulse will be one of your bigger sources of damage, and biggest source of income)
3: E
4: W
5: E 
6: R
7: E (i think this is the level when you can start 1 shotting back row creeps with force pulse, and you can riftwalk>force pulse to kill all front+back)
8: Q
9: E (maxed out here)
10: Q
11: R
12: Q 
13: Q (maxed out here)
14: W
15: W
16: R (maxed out here)
17: W
18: W (maxed out here)

Early Game(1-5): At level 1, hold off on using null sphere unless it's needed to prevent or cause death. Once you are level 2, feel free to use Null Sphere to get last hits while keeping yourself out of harassment range, at this level null sphere doesn't even make a noticable dent in a heroes HP especially if they have any regen...IF they don't have any regen you may consider harassing them with null sphere rather than last shotting, but i personally always chose the income in the beginning to get the items to end their lives later :) Once you get level 2 and force pulse, use those 2 spells in unison to get as much farming done as you can during this stage

Mid Game(5-11): Somewhere in here is when you're going to start 1 shotting creeps as explained in the skill build section, but at the same time, once you pick up your soulstealer, you will have enough AP and mana cap to start dropping heros with a fairly good proficiency, and should start considering to do so. How to do this? Well if you harass them down to about 60% life or so they will usually still stay on the lane but play a bit more cautiously, that's fine, If you have force pulse up and ready, just wait til they are away from a tower and move in for the Rift Walk+Force Pulse+Null Sphere+Melee combination to either force them off the lane or end up with a stolen soul for +10 ap and a mana restore from them. Keep farming as much as possible in between hero harasses and kill attempts. (I've literally led the kill boards AND the creep kill boards at the same time on kassadin, so he has huge potential for early game money)

Mid-Late Game(11-16): Now is about when Kassadin can really starting making his presence felt, if you haven't done so already that is. Now sitting on maxed force pulse and nearing or already maxed null sphere, you start putting a hurt on low HP heroes with the same method mentioned above. Now is also a good time to consider ganking, but before you do...you need a little gank preperation...it's quit simple howerver, Is force pulse up? (If: Yes) then you are all set to go (If: No) then you will want to stick around your lane (or even neutrals if you have to) to charge your pulse up to available (this can also be achieved on the go by riftwalk - waiting for 7 seconds - riftwalk... rinse and repeat) For the most part, you still want to use the same chain of moves, Riftwalk>Force Pulse>Null Sphere (there are heroes you should prefer to silence FIRST however, such as Ryze or Morgana or Fiddlesticks...people that can CC you basically...and for this fact alone, enemy cooldown awareness is a great help) If you are ganking or are getting into a team battle that you know is coming, Another thing to consider is "pre-charging" your rift walk so that you can start out by Rifting in for a very healthy amount of damage and then pulling off the same chain as mentioned.

Late Game(16+): Pretty much the same thing as mid-late game, nether blade doesnt really change anything, although nowadays you should be sitting on a massive mana pool to riftwalk your heart out :)


**It's preferable to solo on this build, but if stuck with a lanemate or playing with a friend, here's some things to consider**

People you want:
 Characters who can't / don't commonly farm backrow creeps and can help you when you go for hero kills
Such as: Allistar, Tryndamere, Evelynn, Twitch, Blitzcrank, Kayle(Judicator), Nunu, Singed, Ryze, Malphite

People you don't want:
 Basically the exact opposite, people that DO farm backrow creeps commonly
Such as: Veigar, Annie, Anivia, Zilean(although with his longer duration slow, he can be a big help in hero jumps), Twisted Fate etc. etc. Basically everyone not on the first list almost :P

How to approach battles:
I pretty much described it in the "Mid-Late Game" section above. Although Kassadin can be called an initator because of riftwalk, YOU DO NOT WANT TO BE THE INITIATOR, you want to judge the situationf or yourself for a moment, and then decide whom you should pour your efforts into killing (targeting the casters and the lower HP targets first as you should be able to pretty much melt them down in the blink of an eye) One big thing to note, is NEVER go into team battles WITHOUT force pulse already charged up, use the methods mentioned before to do so (Riftwalk usually being the easiest and most reliable way to do so) As force pulse will want to be the spell you put out the fastest. Once you have a healthy mana pool to support it, when you are in combat NEVER STOP rift walking...this is a key thing most kassadin players don't think about...but the time created in somebody having to re-locate where you rifted to is PRECIOUS TIME that they aren't able to cast or otherwise acknowledge/assess what you are doing in the fight. Granted i wouldn't employ this tactic until you are sitting on a pool of AT LEAST 2.5k+ mana, as you will burn mana way too fast if you are at any less (Although having a golem rune greatly helps in the spamming of riftwalk as it can restore upwards of like 50-60 mana per second when you get all your items complete) 
that is the general gameplan, it's not always going to be the same, but that's where player skill and ability to read what you need to do comes into play.

Final Note: Picking up the Golem Buff (blue runes) as much as possible during the game does greatly increase your direct killing effiency because you will be sitting on A LOT more spare mana to blow spells on heroes and creeps alike. If you are with friends or decent people in your game, ask for help to take the golem down as early and as often as possible. 1.5% max mana per second is a HUGE help, and the 25% cooldown reduction can fillout any missing cooldown timer (IE: for this character, its the difference between 17, and 40% cooldown reduction, big difference for a character who relies on his spells for probably 70-80% of his overall damage) 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~END OF KASSADIN, THE GUARDIAN OF THE RIFT~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~