[Guide] AP Poppy: The Amazing Anti-Carry
This guide will cover both basic and advanced techniques for fully utilizing AP Poppy's potential. It will cover all of the basics: who she is, what she can do, how she does it, and when to do it. This guide is focused on 5v5 Summoner's Rift, but it also applies well (if not better) to 3v3 Twisted Treeline since the value of a champion is worth more there. I will talk about this later in the guide.
Table of Contents
[I.] Who are you?
[II.] Who is AP Poppy? Why choose AP Poppy over DPS Poppy?
[III.] Poppy's Spells
[VI.] Summoner Spells
[VIII.] Ability Line Up
[IX.] Gaming Phases
[I.] Who are you?
My name is ChAlz. (CHALZ which comes from Charles, my name.) I've been playing LoL since December 2009. I currently main Anivia (I have a guide for her as well. It can be found here or at the bottom of the thread) and I recently started choosing AP Poppy beacuse of her amazing burst damage.She has very similar tactics as the old Veigar: He could basically whipe out any carry with mana with the clicks of three buttons. AP Poppy can do this just as well (if not better) to any carry without magic resist.
[II.] Who is Poppy? Why choose AP Poppy over DPS Poppy?
AP Poppy has many names: the super nuke, the combo-breaker, the ultimate glass cannon, the amazing anti-carry, ...I could go on and on. She has so many names because there is no champ in the game quite like AP Poppy. Why? Because all of her skills are centered around one concept: To **** on the opposing carry.
I choose AP Poppy over DPS Poppy simply beause AP Poppy has the highest burst damage in the game. DPS Poppy deals large amount of damage, but no damage more devastating than AP Poppy's. The only downside about AP Poppy is her survivability. DPS Poppy usually consists of defensive items as well as offesnive items.My build consists of no defensive items. Why? Simply because, in my opinion, she does not need the health. Your objective as AP Poppy is to run into a teamfight, **** on their carry, and get the hell out of there. With very low health stats, positioning and timing are very important when it concerns AP Poppy. Riot classifies her as easy to master. With this build, I consider her quite difficult to master.
Here are the reasons why I want you to choose AP Poppy:
• She is extremely fast
• She can kill ANY carry without large numbers of magic resist
• Her Devastating Blow does devastating damage.
• She has the largest bust damage in the game at this point.
• Her passive saves her from champions with high damage nukes (Garen's ult, Veigar's ult to name a few)
• Her ult can allow you to in into a team of 5 without harm.
Here are reasons why I DON'T want you to choose AP Poppy:
• She does not farm well.
• She MUST have a good laning parter early game.
• She is quite squishy late game.
• It takes quick fingers and lots of practice to fully execute her "kill combo"
• A banshee's veil will counter her undoubtedly.
[III.] Poppy's Spells
Devastating Blow (DB) <-- Remember these acronyms!
Paragon of DEMACIA!!! (PoD)
Heroic Charge (HC)
Diplomatic Immunity (DI)
DI -> DfG -> HC -> DB
Depending on when to use this will be dicussed later in the guide. Also, if a target is killed while the ult is still active, the immunity will wear off. Be VERY careful about when and where to use this spell.
I use one set of runes, masteries, and summoner spells with poppy.
Red: Magic Pen - All of Poppy's spells deal magic damage. No excuse not to have these runes.
Yellow: Mana Regen/5/Level - Because Poppy only has 1 flat mana item (Lich Bane) she relies on mana regen for keeping that mana pool up. At level 9, these runes give Poppy an additional 8 mana/5 seconds. This is better than a mekiki pendant.
Blue: Cooldowns/Level - The more ults late game, the better. Period.
Purple: Movement Speed - Poppy is extremely mobile. That little boost of movement always helps her get away or chase.
I use a 9/0/21 build with Poppy.
The link can be found here:
The 9 points in offence are:
• 3 in Archmage's Savvy
• 1 in Cripple
• 4 in Sorcery
• 1 in Archaic Knowledge
The 21 in utility are:
• 3 in Perseverance
• 1 in Haste
• 4 in Awareness
• 2 in Utility Mastery
• 3 in Meditation
• 1 in Greed
• 3 in Quickness
• 3 In Intelligence
• 1 In Presence of the Master
[VI.] Summoner Spells
These are my top choices for summoner spells: (Ordered by priority)
1.) Ghost - Such a great spell for Poppy. Using PoD + Ghost witll grant you well over 500 movement speed. This spell is a MUST for AP Poppy!
2.) Ignite - this spell is great from early to mid game. It is also quite viable late game. I prefer this over exhaust simply because it allows for more early and mid game kills.
3.) Exhaust - a good spell for disabling that carry or guarenteeing a successful KC.
4.) Flash - a repleacement for ignite or exaust that allows more escapability. Not my personal prefrence.
5.) Cleanse - good for escaping those mis-calculated kill combos or any gank for that matter.
List of spells I do not recommend:
Teleport - Poppy doesn't need this simply because she is so **** fast. She can cross the map in no time with PoD alone.
The rest of the spells are not recommended.
My item build is centered around 1 thing: Ability Power.
That's right. Just Ability Power. No health, resistances (unless you find yourself getting CC'd to death). Just freakin' Ability Power. Why the hell would I only get AP? As said before, she does not need the health. No matter who the carry is and no how much AD or AP they have, they WILL be killed in a very short amount of time and AP ensures that this happens. It may seem unreasonable to not get any defensive items, but I assure you: her passive and movement speed make up for it.
• Sorcerer's Shoes - For movement and magic pen.
• Deathfire Grasp - Without DfG, AP Poppy wouldn't exist.
• Lich Bane - Allows Devastating Blow to be really really devastating.
• Void Staff - With this, your DfG proc can deal anywhere from 50 - 75% of your target's health. (without magic rest)
• Rabadon's Deathcap - Grants large amounts of AP.
• Archangel's Staff - If the game drags on for this long, then this will be my 6th slot filler. Grants large amounts of AP
The order in which I get my items is as follows:
1.) Doran's Ring and 1 health pot
4.) Sorcerer's Shoes
5.) Deathfie grasp (getting Kage's Licky Pic first)
6.) Lich Bane
7.) Rabadon's Deathcap/Void Staff (depending on enemy magic resist)
8.) Rabadon's Deatchap/Void Staff
9.) Archangel's Staff
Other items to consider:
Well, maybe I over exaggerated a little bit. A defensive item here or there may be of benefit to you. If I were to get any defesive items with her, it would be one of these:
Banshee's Veil - This is an over all great item for AP Poppy because of the magic resist boost as well as the health and spell shield.
Zhonya's Hourglass - This item provides lots of armor and a very useful passive.
Abyssal Scepter - If you find yourself taking too much magic damage from a champion without getting CC'd too much, (vlad and kat are good examples) then this is the item for you. Not only does it give more magic resist than a Banshee's Veil, but it also grants AP and a magic resist debuff to surrounding enemies. Since you are usually very close to your opponents when you KC them, the debuff is excellent. I (Thanks to dunkelzahn for considering this item)
[VIII.] Ability Line Up
My ablility line up prioritizes davastating blow first. ALWAYS get one rank of HC and PoD before level 5. I level up HC and PoD further depending on my status in my lane. If I want to be more aggressive and do more damage, I level HC first. If I want to be more defensive to try and escape ganks, I level PoD first. Sometimes I'll level them up simotaniously.
[IX.] Gaming Phases
Early Gaming Phase:
At this phase, you are not extreme Anti-carry Poppy. You are regular Poppy. Regular Poppy needs minion kills and experience to evolve into AP Poppy. This is why it is important that she has a good laning parnter. A good laning partner, in my opinion, is someone that can harass both opponents or provide support to you. Poppy can NOT defend a lane alone. Your aggressiveness should also depend on the enemies in that lane.
Here is my basic strategy: Use DB to farm minions at level 1. Remember, you have mana regen because of Doran's Ring. If you can't get too close to the minions without getting harassed, then wait until they come to you. Remember to stay in exp range. If you can't even do this, a lane switch should occur. Poppy does not need a ridiculous amount of minions to evolve into AP Poppy mid game. The important thing at this point is to stay alive and get as much exp as possible.
At Level 3 with 2 ranks of DB, she can start doing impressive damage already. This still does not mean you should be overly aggressive. If the enemy is over-commiting, feel free to hit them with one of these. Most of the time, they will get the message and retreat just enough so that you can continue to farm minions.
At level 6, you should have anywhere from 700 - 1200 gold. Port back once you get around 1300 getting boots, mana crystal, and an amplafying tome. With 1 rank of PoD and boots, it shouldn't take a very long time to return to the lane. At this point the early-mid phase has started.
Mid Gaming Phase
You are still not AP Poppy yet, but you are almost there. Continue laning in your phase just like in the early game phase: last hit minions with DB and try to take as little damage as possible. The only difference is that you have your ult. At level 6, her ult is very useful for 2 reasons:
1.) If you have pushed too far and you find yourself getting ganked, use the ult on an enemy champion that would do minimal damage to you without slowing or stunning you. Just because Nasus deals minimal damage to Poppy, it does not mean that you should ult him. His whither will slow you down in enough time for the ult to wear off while they are still in your range.
2.) She can tower dive and kill an opposing champion at low health. Depending on who to ult depends on the enemy champions. You would think to ult the champion whose health is very low, but also keep in mind that once they are dead, the tower and the other champion will continue to attack you.
My strategy is this: If there is an opposing champion that you know will not stun you, ult them, wheather it is the low health champ or the other one. If both of them are stuns, then you'd have to make a judgement call. You WANT them to stun you while your ult is up so that you won't take tower damage. You DON'T want them to stun you as soon as your ult wars off. If you see that the enemy has recently used a stun, then ult THAT champion , (wheather it is the low champ or high champ). Don't use your ult first, however.. If you can, pop ghost and PoD for that extra boost of movement speed, use your ult on whichever champion applies to the situation, finish off that unfortunate b*stard, and run out. Try to ult them while you are out of tower range. This should not bee too difficult since DI has a very long range.
Even if you don't have a situation where this happens, you still need to continute farming. Port back once you get about another 1200 gold for sheen and sorc boots. At level 9 with 5 ranks of DB and sheen, she can do massive damage, making her a good ganker at this point, but ONLY leave your lane if you know that the enemy team will not be able to push the tower.
Late Gaming Phase
For Poppy, the late gaming phase starts as soon as DfG is bought. She is now in her early stages of extreme Anti-carry Poppy. At level 11 with DfG, she can kill-combo champions with little health and no magic resist. (The Kill-Combo, or KC, will be mentioned later)
How to Kill-Combo:
Something to keep in mind about the KC: It only works on champs with little or no magic resist. Because fed carries tend to get more offensive items, it works perfectly on them.
So, how DO you kill opponents in 2 hits? The basic combo is this:
PoD -> DI -> DfG -> HC -> DB
In order for the combo to be executed well, it must be done quickly so that they don't have time to react (flash or ghost away). "Quickly" by my standards is getting off then from full health to zero in about 3 - 4 seconds (if ignite is not used). This is less than one second between each spell cast. I reccomend making a custom game against bots to practice this. (Not Ryze bot because he will stun you with his super-human reflexes) It takes only one custom game to get the feel for this and it is **** satisfying when done in game.
Who to Kill-Combo:
It is important that the stats of the opposing champions are noted at certain parts of the game. The target of your KC should be prioritized like so:
Fed Champion: First Priority
Most farmed champion (typically solo mid or top): Second Priority
Support champion: Third Priority
Tank: Fourth Priority
Only go down to priority list if the above champion is either dead or across the map. If you find yourself in a situation where you have little time to check the stats, just go for whoever seems like a promising opponent. Don't do this always, though. Check the stats consistently throughout the game.
In 3v3, making a teamfight 2v3 instantly is a big deal. Think of it this way: On a 5v5 map, killing one champ will make it a 4v5, right? That means you killed off 20% of their team no problem. In 3v3, you killed off 33% of their team no problem. Therefore, Poppy is not only viable on Summoner's Rift, but also very viable on Twisted Treeline.
When to Kill-Combo or ult
Learning the KC is half the battle. Learning on when to use it is the other half. There are only two situations to use DI:
1.) When you know you can successfully KC a carry and make a quick escape.
Even if they are with their team, the KC allows you to rush in and kill their carry unharmed. What you hope will happen is that their team mates will instantly react to their carry being cmboed and stun you while your ult is active. This will, of course, have no effect since you are targeting their carry. It is important to try and charge the carry AWAY from their team mates to that getting away is easier. Fully executing this feels so **** good.
2.) When you get ganked or targeted 3v1, 4v1, or 5v1.
So, you pushed bot too far and here comes: Pantheon with his ult, TF porting in, Shen coming out of no where, Eve coming from stealth, and shaco coming from behind. Well, your first step is not to panic. In a large skirmish like this, it is important that the right person is ulted: the person that will do minimal damage without stunning you. So, who do we ult in this case? The answer would be (drum roll) Shen o. Sure, he can taunt you for 2 seconds, but your ult lasts 8 seconds at rank 3. After he has you taunted, he has no other way of stunning you or slowing (besides exaust). Even without ghost, a PoD should allow you to get away (as long as THEY don't have ghost.) Try to save ghost for situations like this rather than situations like #1.
AP Poppy rapes face if used correctly. She has been the funnest champ to play and learn for me. She was also one of the hardest for me to learn. She takes time to fully learn and master, but it is oh-so satisfying when you two-shot their 7-0 carry who thought they were invinicble.
Thanks for reading my guide! If you have any questions, feel free to ask!
Other Guides by me:
Solo Mid Guide to Anivia
1.) Updated items list
cool. always wondered how those squishy poppies bursted 1.5k damage off my Ashe in 2 seconds
Thanks for posting this, I really like it.
Cool guide there.What bugs me is that there are too many conditions for the combo to succeed.Summoner spells,enemies,cc,many things can break poppys combo,and u only got 1 shot to pull it off.Thats why i almost always prefer the more reliable AD way,with less burst but more sustainability.
My biggest prob is,how do u keep ur opponent from running away from u after u cast ur ult?I can do this in TT cuz of the many walls around that help my E stun em,but in SR its almost undoable with such an open field...
As a long time Poppy main (I too have written a guide on AP Poppy), I love this guide. I think it really puts forth the strengths of AP Poppy and how to play her (read: find squishy and plow them with extreme prejudice) while also highlighting her weaknesses (read: can't farm for ****, Banshees/MR screws her over).
I only have a few points of contention on this guide:
1) The AP stacking. From my many games as Poppy, you'll maybe need 250 AP at most. Any more is plain overkill.
2) Advocating Lich Bane after Deathfire Grasp. Lich Bane, to me at least, is a real luxury item. At that stage in the game after you get your DFG, getting a Void Staff or Abyssal Scepter gives you magic pen and a good amount of AP which will give you a lot bigger bang for your gold than a Lich Bane, imo.
3) The lack of Abyssal Scepter. Abyssal Scepter kicks all kinds of ass, It gives you some much needed magic resist (Poppy and Sion are the only melee characters in the game without scaling magic resist, and Valiant Fighter isn't a godly passive) and the magic reduction not only helps you plaster enemy carries harder, but it helps your buddies out too since you're going to be jumping into the middle of their team, tearing after their carry like a swarm of locusts.
Other than that, it's a great guide!
Alternatively, try running into the fight and THEN casting your ult. Diplomatic Immunity's long range can bone you over because then the Epcot Dome around your body and the effect on them warns them that you're coming and they can prepare something a little faster.
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