[Guide] Zilean: “But I'm a Pacifist!” The Chronokeeper
Zilean: “But I'm a Pacifist!” The Chronokeeper
Table of Contents:
Purpose of the Build (or What this build is supposed to do) XX02
Zilean's Abilities XX03
Summoner Skills XX04
Early Game "Three...Two...One... Pop..." XX08
Mid Game "The Ganks, the Pushes, and the Teamfights" XX09
Late Game "I'm sorry, were you trying to kill our carry?" XX10
To search a section, hit Ctrl F and type in the code on the right (to help you people too lazy to read everything, lazy buggers)
So, you've picked up the Chronokeeper, eh? Well, I'm gonna show you some of the ropes then, and a very uncommon build that's been working for me, Craixis. I've scored just under 300 kills, 300 deaths, and about 600 assist, with Zilean alone, he's my main, and this build is why.
Just a heads up, this build isn't going to make you the almighty carry where one nuke completely kills the other team... this build is “The Unsung Hero” build... works well in solo queues filling that much needed teamwork factor.
I've gotten tired of seeing people saying “Stack AP, Stack AP”, on Zil, just my last game I had a guy trying to tell me to stack AP in vent, I said @%#^% you, Zilean is not an AP stacker... I'm playing to win, I play support. Besides, support Zil is much more interesting then Nuke Zil... more to do, more to do it with.
“But, but, Time Bomb gets 1 to 1 ratio on AP” Yeah, but Time Bomb doesn't win you games unless you're fed out the @#%$, and Zilean fed is not nearly as effective as a Ryze or Akali, who can faceroll teams with ease...
“Zilean can faceroll teams” @%#% you, Zilean loses his ability to faceroll teams if they pick up two things, Quicksilver Sash, or M resist (and void staff can't be gotten quick enough to counter M resist). Support Zil doesn't have to worry about all the extra **** of M resist, Cleanse, or QS sash, as he's not worried about killing the enemy, he's all about #$%^ing with the enemy team while keeping his team alive, he's more worried about winning the team fights then having a high K/D ratio (as I stated, I'm about 1/1 on mine, but my assist are 2/1).
“You're a Pacifist, why should I listen to you” #%^$ you, I'm not, Zil is not, but we know enough that we don't need to be on the front line to be the biggest threat on a team (hence, we can be pacifist, but we'll be the reason you, and your team, die horrible in a rain of fire). Hence the title, we may never throw out a time bomb outside of the laning phase, but we're still a force to be reckoned with. The smart people will remember you when the game is said and done, don't you worry, you may not have 25/0/12... but you will be the driving force behind games.
And thus ends my rant, and the introduction...
Purpose of this build (or what this build is supposed to do) XX02:
This Zilean build is not designed to be the glass cannon, as many believe Zil is. This build is to show off his true strengths, fixing the misconception that Zil is a "one trick" pony with Timebombs and Chronoshift... He's an ungodly support, he should be play as so, IMHO.
One problem with Zil though, is his skills cost a large amount of mana, so this build focuses on getting a large mana pool first, and then getting the mana regen/cooldowns to make it much more effective in team fights. Unlike other Zil builds, this build allows you to use all your abilities as often as needed (Timewarping everyone and anyone around you, for one), and ultimately allows a Zilean player to reach their full potential.
At least, from what I've found (this build has had great success in almost all games I've played, unless my team is unable to carry their weight, by feeding or raging and the like... stupid hopeless raging M'Fing Queuedodgin... I'm off topic here...)
Also note, this build will draw heavy attention from enemies, the suggested cooldown items also improve survivability.
Zilean's Abilities XX03:
Passive: Heightened Learning: Increases Experience gained for all teammates by 8%
As long as Zil is alive, this good for getting the level advantage, as you level 10% (well, 8%, same @%#%ing difference) faster then them.
Time bomb: Places a bomb on any unit, allied or enemy, which detonates after 4 seconds, dealing area of effect damage.
This is your first skill, and should be the first one you max when you get a chance (next to Chronoshift), this ability is great for farming and harassing early game, or reversing the flow of a lane late game. This ability can be used on both allies and enemies, and if the target is killed, it detonates the bomb... this ability can keep enemies from farming while also allowing you to farm (at the same time.)
You can easily scare off enemies who lack the needed health or M resist to stop you by double bombing a caster minion, which deals both bombs in damage (after you get your Archangel's Staff, that is), nothing says “Back off, this is my Turret” like a double bomb to the face...
Rewind - Zilean can prepare himself for future confrontations, reducing the cooldowns of all of his other abilities.
This is your second skill (and you guessed it, second skill to be maxed, again, next to Chrono), this puppy is what makes your nuke deadly, and farming ability easy... using this, you can place two time bombs on enemies (or place a second timebomb on the first target). This ability also lets you spam your next ability, and it helps Chrono get off that horrible, horrible cooldown (you should be spamming this whenever its up when Chrono is on cooldown, yes, you do have the mana for this.)
Time Warp - Zilean bends time around any unit, decreasing an enemies movement speed or increasing an allied units movement speed for a short time.
You're third skill should get 1 point in it either at level 4, or level 8, depending on the game (and if you're being harassed or not), this ability is very useful, but is out shined by rewind and chronoshift (and isn't needed to farm, like Time Bomb.), though even at level 2, this ability can be spammed repeatedly to get you to where you need to be. (Whether it be bombing that guy with 1 bar of life by the turret, or a team mate in the mid lane about to get ganked). Not a bad skill, to say the least, but unneeded until the laning phase is over.
It's a very underrated ability, and it's what truly makes your presence known in a teamfight.
Chrono Shift - Zilean places a protective time rune on an allied champion, teleporting the champion back in time if he takes lethal damage.
This is what makes this build so lethal, this puppy's cooldown may be 180 seconds long, but the payoff is great. It almost fully heals most allies (it will full heal you) if they die, and it can give your carry the extra courage they need to wreck the enemy team (I mean, why run when you'll just come back to life on the spot?) The best part about this ability, is that its effected by Rewind, so all the items I've listed (see later) work wonders to get this thing going out every 28 seconds (And the main reason this build has Archangel's, Chalice, and other mana regen items)... Depending on the battle, it may be a single rez or reviving the same carry twice (it also keeps the team pushing after a team fight)... this ability really makes Zilean a great support character, and ultimately, should be the first thing you prioritize when you get a chance.
Summoner Skills XX04:
There's a whole variety of summoner skills that work with this build, I prefer Tele/Ghost myself, but originally this build started with Tele/Flash
I believe Heal/Clarity could work for early game, but I prefer full utility over destroying the lane (which Zil does with or without both of those...)
Skills to avoid:
Revive is the only one I can think of, but given the right scenario it could work very well with flash (a very, very rare moment, though... Revive may also prove useful if you got caught with Chrono down and need to get back into a fray)
I am currently using:
I get almost everything I can from the Utility Tree, longer lasting Neutral buffs and cooldown reduction are two very useful skills (and most of the utility tree either has higher mana regen, or higher move speed, never bad), and the final skill means you can use your summoner skills sooner (with Ghost and Tele, it makes you very difficult to stop)
Skip expanded mind and Greed... and leave one point out of Good Hands, as you shouldn't be dying too often (though less time dead is never bad.)
Pick up Archmage's Savvy and Sorcery, along with Archaic Knowledge... this should give you 9% cooldown reduction, along with 15% M Pen
(Suggested update by kamia)
I used to use 1/0/29, but as kamia pointed out, the extra mana from expanded mind is almost useless (and the cooldown reduction from the offensive tree makes supporting allies easier)
My personal Runebook for Zil is:
Glyphs: Great Glyphs of Celerity (Cooldown over level)
Seals: Greater Seals of Force (AP over level, though straight AP may work)
Seals: Greater Seals of Clarity (MP5 per level)
Marks: Greater Marks of Insight (Magic Pen, early game farming/harassing)
Quintessence: Greater Quintessence of Celerity (Again, Cooldown over Time)
Meki Pendant (Though usually you can skip this and get Tear of the Goddess on your return trip for mana)
Tear of the Goddess
Blasting Wand (hmm... AP...)
Archangel's Staff (MANA!!!)
Null Magic Mantal (O..k?)
Kindlegem (might want to get this before Null Magic Mantal)
Spirit Visage (Cooldowns + M Resist + Extra Health on Revive... for yourself if you need it)
Boots of Speed+ (Either Sorc boots or Merc Treads work here, M Treads if there's plenty of CCs flying)
(If you find you need it, grab boots sooner, I haven't fully accounted for the cost changes with Kindlegem)
Null Magic Mantal
Chalice of Harmony (7.5 Mana regen + 1% per 1% of mana you're missing... fixes one of the problems with this build)
At this point, it varies, my Rewind is down to about 4 seconds (Spirit V used to be Nashor's Tooth, but since the changes to Nashors it is no viable in this build, IMHO), Soul Shroud is a good item, as it gives you a bit more survivability and cooldown reduction, Innervating Locket is also good for mana regen and helps you heal, which is never bad, though GA and other defensive items may go here if you are getting focus fired). If you want to take a more offensive route, after getting Soul Shroud, grab a Void Staff for Spell Pen then sneak in a Zhonya's... they'll wonder where the hell you got the damage from.
Note: If the game seems to be going too long for your liking (or you're lacking magic damage), swap the Spirit Visage for a Zhonya's Ring. This will put a bit more kick into your Time Bomb, while also providing you with a(nother) bail out button. Usually games will not reach this point, though the surprise Zhonya swap will throw enemies off and get you the win.
Alternate build (Counter Physical Damage)
Follow build one to Archangel's Staff
Boots (Merc Treads for heavy CC, Sorc. Boots for straight damage)
Glacial Shroud (note, with 20% cooldown reduction, if you followed the masteries, you've hit the cap)
Null Magic Mantal
Chalice (... I like my mana regen)
From there... tanky, really tank (AotL or GA)... health or Armor is all you need here (as you're fighting a team with only Physical carries, or the Physical carries are the higher threat)
Remember, the main thing to take from this build is to reach the cooldown cap with a decent amount of mana regen, so you're not the "blow your load and go" nuker, but the staying power demigod. You could also go a larger mana pool build with a Catalyst to RoA, but I find I'm very mana hungry most of the game that route (that being said, the results were not bad being tankier then most Zileans).
Final alternative, for a more well rounded anti burst Zil
Null Magic Mantal
Chalice of Harmony
Null Magic Mantal
Kindlegem (grab a Ruby Crystal before if you can't quite afford the gem)
You're still mana hungry at this point, but you're beefier all around, I finish off with a TotG to Archangel's if I can, but I find this build is really heavy on the mana consumption, the first build is the best to handle mana issues most game, while this build can set you up to be an off tank for your more, squishy carries. That poor Mundo is still sore I blocked his cleaver each time he tried to kill our red lining Veigar :D
"This is my land
Its as cold, wet, and miserable as your land
But because its my land, its better!"
Early Game "3...2...1... pop..." XX08:
Most people will say Harass with Zil early game... I say, $#%^ them... Only harass if you know you'll be getting that kill later (like a Yi whose over aggressive, or that Garen who thinks his Judgement is better then your time bomb), otherwise... bomb the minions. Try to bomb smart... ranged carries? Get the caster minions so they can't farm, melee carries, either the carry himself (if he doesn't run) or the soldier minion (the caster minion is still a good choice here too, as they'll run back when they lose their cover), try to get the enemies to stay back, you're stronger pushing. You can take mid or lane with this build, though I prefer to lane (I mean, we are support, after all).
If you are the only viable mid, take it, use the caster minions to harass your enemy, make them afraid to move forward, or clear the front line minions if you're scared of the enemy, I mean... some enemies are too tough to directly harass, cough* Morde *cough, and you need minion, not champ kills, if you're gonna be lethal late game (see Screenshot). Play smart though, and make sure you make the enemy fear your guts, you should dominate your lane, as Zil is a very strong pusher. Just remember, if you're pushing well, put a point into Time Warp... they may come and try and gank you and your lane mate (ghost and Time Warp ensure that one of you are making it out), junglers are notorious for this.
Usually, by the time you have to go back (in both the mid or the side lanes), you'll have enough for a Tear of the Goddess (and possibly a Blasting Wand, if you were able to kill a stupid enemy or two). Odds are, by the end of the laning phase, you have your Staff and your Spirit V... don't really need boots sooner because Time Warp and Ghost (if you took it) can cover that.
Note: If the enemy is strong in CCs, delay the Arch angel's for Merc Treads... this will benefit you much better early game (I mean, you can't farm dead)
Mid Game “The Ganks, the Pushes, and the Team Fights...” XX09:
Now, you're strongest asset here is your ability to move across the map in a short amount of time, this makes you very effective at saving allies who are in trouble (or avenging them if they were a shot shy of killing their enemy) try to keep a good eye on the map to see where you're needed... Time Bomb should be killing off caster minions with 1 bomb (so a double bomb blows up the whole minion wave)... meaning you should have no problems pushing your lane (let the minions do all the tower killing, you just keep them moving forward)
At this stage you're at your weakest, your cooldown isn't high enough to make you a large threat in team fights, while your time bomb is slowly getting weaker. You have lots of mana, but you don't have a large amount of regen for it... there's lots of drawbacks here...
“So, if your build is weak here, why play it?”
I said you're at your weakest, but you're far from weak... time bomb still packs a punch, chrono is still very useful (it should be up every team fight, or it should come up if you need it), and though not spammable, Time Warp is still a viable utility to get teammates out of trouble, or get you to where you need to be to change the tides. Just remember, don't be selfish, the true art of Zilean is buffing allies and debuffing enemies (Time bomb is a good debuff, while Time Warp is a good buff/debuff). Try to save rezzes till the last second, to keep enemies on their toes (they know they either need to kill you quickly, or keep you CCed... Merc. Treads make the latter difficult), and it also keeps allies who are unaware (or disoriented with all the #$%^ that goes down quick in a teamfight) that they even have a rez on them (there's also the fact that not many people know that those hour glasses floating around them will save them if they die... remind people of that fact, or try to point it out at the beginning of the game, it can still end up being wasted though.)
If you master the art of the “last second rez”(LSR), aka Clutch Rez, you're team will have a huge advantage (LSRing is also great if you're carry just got CCed and is looking very much like lunch). If you and your teammates end up on the wrong side of a gank, Chrono the enemy team's target and Time Warp the closest people... if they kill their target, its coming back, so they'll have to turn around and kill him again (which they will), this will buy you and your teammates the precious time to get away (I never said the Chrono was going to save the poor guy. If he dies, he's on his own, #%^$ him and regroup.)
Late game "I'm sorry, were you trying to kill our carry?" XX10:
Now, this build has one big drawback, its very team reliant... the good news is, its easy to turn #@%%ty teammates into pros. Unexpected CC and FF? Chrono, Eve just kick you're nuker in the crotch? Chorno/timebomb/rewind/TimeWarp/Time Bomb (repeat until dead, nice combo eh?), Yi just highland it, Timewarp his target, while they're booking it timewarp yourself and keep up with both of them (time bomb Yi often), if Yi changes to a slower target, Time Warp his target, failing that, Chorno, always fall back on Chrono, like a crutch... Lean on it baby!
Lots of your problems in this area of the game can be fixed by yours truly, enemies can't run because you can speed up your CCer or slow them down for the team to overrun, they can't FF your carry because you'll just Rez em, they can't CC you because you've got M Treads and you can move at the speed of sound... you're your strongest here, but you're not dealing damage... this stage of the game, you make sure team fights will go your way, keeping enemies who are unlucky enough to get drawn into your team close to your team, physical carries away from your team by slowing them, or getting your own teammates away from the enemy team with Time Warp (again, failing that... Chrono at will)
You'll be doing plenty of clicking at this stage of the game, you've gotta have a good twitch reflex to be truly effective here, but you will be the driving force behind your team in teamfights (your Ryze/Akali/Annie/Anivia/Yi/Tryn/Sion/Fiddles/Teammates will love you for what you do)...
You should still be time bombing, to be sure, but you're not going to be doing it to kill people, more so, you want to hurt them (Sadism, get used to it), so your carries can kill em (I've got double the assist as I do deaths or kills on Zil... in total). This build should also keep you and your team from dying often, hopefully I'll be seeing more support Zils out there so I can actually play a #%^ing carry... lazy #%$$%^%s.
Well, here we are again, with another update as of December 23, I believe I updated everything correctly (at least in the items section). Since I've played AP Pirate, I have a new found respect for Catalyst, which translates into the new build. Currently, the build is 2 for 2, handling like the older build with a bit more mana issues (but a lot more HP). I still stand by the statement that Time Warp is Zilean's strongest ability, not Time Bomb, best slow/haste in the game, do not neglect it!
If you see any errors, please point them out, I will correct them, I'm also open to suggestions, just don't post a full build here (I never get why people do that...) If you have a better rune/masteries suggestion, give me a few reasons why its better and I may try it out. I find, though, that this style of Zilean build gets the best results... even if I lack the 16 kills at the end game, I usually make that in assist (if the game last that long). I am just not a fan of snowball items, so if you try Mejai's and like, go for it. You won't see me suggest them due to the risk involved, but if you find you're not dying, they can save you money on items you otherwise would need to buy.
2 cents on the build and guide.
I build zilean pure support, usually, and have really not liked the whole change to the haunting guise, as that was before my first item, and the 10% cooldown on it was amazing. Spell vamp is just not as good. Anyways onto the commentary
Your masteries: There are some better masteries than going full utility, as you don't need the Expanded Mind, the one that gives you 5% based off your max mana, thats only an extra 50 mana from a full tears of goddess or archangel staff and will also therefore translate to only about 1.25 AP on the archangels, which is just not worth it in my opinion. Greed, is totally useless as a mastery, you don't need that much in good hands, now that you've cleared about 8 points from your utility master, what i'd recommend you put it into is the Offensive tree
-3 into Archmage Savy
-4 into sorcery (and one extra into whatever to get here)
-1 into 15% spell pen (although you aren't buildling AP, this helps out early game)
I'd definately get CDR flat for blues, magic pen (or CDR if you really want it, but you'll see that it's not necessary) for reds, and HP for quints (zil is squishy, very much so), MP for Yellow.
For items, you realize if you get 9% from masteries alone, you just need to stack on about 6% with runes, to get 15% CDR and then you'll only need 1 item in the game to get your max CDR (well .01 second off but that's really negligible), so before they changed Haunting Guise, i'd get that and the CDR shield, since adding mana, but now either go for the
-1 item CDR which would be Frozen Heart
-2 item max CDR combination of either Spirit Visage, or Fiendish Codex, or Deathfire Grasp (which nice for an added nuke, AP, and everything), Soul Shroud
main point is, trying to get 40% CDR, and before then, getting bluebuff really helps you as zilean is probably the most MP hogging ***** when you get down your CDR
Skill choice wise, yes, definatly
and kiting with zilean is really fun :)
And early game, harass with zileans bomb, it is so ridiculous early game, it takes squishies almost 1/4 of their bar each bomb, this is where his bomb does the most damage, and you should take advantage of that, why do you think people hate laning against zilean, becuase he can bomb with range, 700 range on the bomb, melee's can't come in without taking one to the face...
Item wise: okay, i agree on most, some AP is good, archangle because zilean spams way to many spells and needs a huge MP pool, CDR, and some AP to give a good amount of HP on revive
-Better choices in masteires, for 9/0/21 (going with CDR)
-Runes , personally I'd choose flat CDR blues, MP/5 Yellow, Magic Pen Reds, HP Quints
-Playstyle, Harass like hell early game, but don't ignore last hitting and farming
Spirit Visage is more HP on the revive for yourself and allies (no spell vamp here, even with the next patch)... The reason I have cool down over level vs flat cooldown is because you get more later (You also level up quickly, so the gap in cooldown is hardly noticed). AP over level is to cover for the lack of AP from items (sure, it may be only 20 extra AP, but Chorno heals for 60 with just that... I end up with usually 180-250 AP by end game without really focusing on it. (and as I said before, it used to be Nashors until it got its AS bumped and its AP lowered...)
I guess I could swap out Expanded mind, take out Greed, and take a point out of Good Hands and put it into the Offensive tree for Archmage's Savvy and Sorcery (Archmage's isn't really that great though, but the cooldown reduction would probably work better... the magic pen after is a nice touch), I just stated what I've been using so far (its been working, so why not, right?)
Besides, making sure the enemy can't get cash while you're still raking in dough is a much better choice then attempting to kill someone, only to have them turret hug and waste the bomb, and when fighting someone like Taric and Soraka, its a much better choice to keep the minions away as they're not going down for awhile. (I'm also trying to cover for the next patch, as we will not be able to turret dive without fear anymore, another reason I say Farm > Harass, they'll have issues geting EXP either way if you're farming right.)
Zilean's Revive still gives a large amount of HP (most of the time, unless its a tank who stacked 40k hp), they'll come back with over half (usually close to full, if not full... with Spirit Visage, you get full HP no matter what, who needs AP when you're still healed)
Though I did have my boots and spirit V backwards, I should fix that...
Oh and thank you for the feed back, Updated Masteries and fixed a bit at the early game section...
I like the guide man. It was detailed entertaining. I like playing Zilean a lot (though he is not my main or anything) and finally I have a guide to convince **** team mates that AP Zil is NOT the way to go..... OFC he's in it for the 20/0/X games anyways so I think he may still go terrorist Zil....
Aye, one of the bigger draws with AP Zil is the fact he can still face roll teams (his early game makes him decent later), with the new changes stacking AP will still be viable, just not as great (still has potential to face roll though...)
I just get tired of people being so selfish with him (There have been games where we've been down by 25 and still made a come back because of a well timed Rez... granted, many people notice when they get "Clock Blocked" like that, and you got that warm fuzzy feeling that you won the game for your team) and AP Zil supports the "Me and only me" mentality (I mean, I've had many a games when I'm playing Panth and the like where Zilean could've Rezzed me to kill the enemy team, but instead runs off, not even passing a time warp.)
With this build, its much more team reliant, but still allows you to carry if needed... and it hopefully hooks more people on the "Team Work" mentality. The major draw of this build over straight AP Zil, is the shear "screw with you" factor, nothing pisses melee carries off more then moving at 200 move speed while their enemies are moving at 500, or time bombs on minions that they end up killing by mistake, or that champion they know is a threat is now back in their face... they can't stop it, even if they end up jumping Zil, you can usually bolt it out of there with little fear of death.
Ultimately this build focuses on controlling the flow of teamfights by choosing who lives and who dies, Time Warp and Chrono are really good for that, and Time Bomb is a nice cherry on top. Should see if he will give this build (or another support Zil Build) a go, maybe he'll enjoy it better.
AP Zilean supports the team effort seeing as how Chronoshift has a THREE-POINT-OH AP ratio on how much HP you stand up with.
I can't think of any other ability in the game that has a 3.0 AP ratio.
If you have 300 AP, someone suddenly stands up with 1900 HP instead of 1000. Just a slightly huge difference.
Even with Mej's Soul Stealer, you get 180 AP (if you get 20 stacks, 20+8), and Zhonya's ring, you get (a Max with these two items) 370AP, if you have 20 stacks, without that 20 stacks, its 175 AP... With the same masteries/runes, it's 418, but you have to take in the fact that 20 stacks will be rare (unless you're playing idiots), and you're much more squishy with items like these, and you have no mana to do anything what so ever (this is a common build I see on Zileans, which makes me cry as I can do what they can do, and more, with less cost, and an almost endless mana pool... without golem).
So yeah, you can Rez people with 2200 life, but my build can do it twice (for 500 life less) in a much shorter amount of time...
Oh, and the total cost of those two items alone is 4815$, almost 700$ more then my two, with a result which is slightly better then mine for 2 skills (as you have almost no mana with said items)
Though you did bring up an excellent point, the AP ratio on Chorno is amazing, if you can sneak a soul stealer in there, the assist with my build should be able to get you a few stacks no problem... Might need to try that some time when I get a chance (though more likely I'll stick with mana regen, as its still a large problem with this build)
And Nunu's ult is pretty close to Zils in AP ratio, except his can be much more deadly if you're unlucky enough not to have a CC or escape tool (or Buster Shot/Headbutt/Or when Janna starts blowing people)
Guess I'll bump it with a minor update, new items did not affect this build while Timebomb now dealing 3, 2, 1 damage also doesn't affect it (sure, no free turret dives anymore, but the build still works, and so does Zil)
Just wish I wouldn't Aggro the bloody Golem before the bomb detonates to kill the minions nearby -.-'
holy **** tldr
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