[Guide] statikk's Take on Sona, the Maven of the Strings

First Riot Post
123
Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

RiotStatikk

QA Analyst

09-26-2010
1 of 1 Riot Posts

*** These are all my personal thoughts and opinions and in no way reflect the opinions/ideas of Riot or The Council. ***

Hey LoL community,

I've decided to write my newest guide on Sona as she is our newest champion and I found myself enjoying my time spent playing her.

As always, I advise you to read my article "Know Your Role" first before taking a look at any of my other stuff. Always check out the Runeterra versions of these articles/guides as they are a lot easier to read this way.

Good luck out there on the battlefields summoners!
_________________________________________________

Current Compendium of statikk's Guides:

Know Your Role: Runeterra or LoL Forums
Kassadin, the Voidwalker: Runeterra or LoL Forums
Udyr, the Animal Spirit: Runeterra or LoL Forums
Dr. Mundo, the Madman of Zaun: Runeterra or LoL Forums
Sona, the Maven of the Strings: Runeterra or LoL Forums
Vladimir, the Crimson Reaper: Runeterra or LoL Forums
_________________________________________________

Let me preface this by saying that these are only my personal suggestions and recommendations. Feel free to add your own spice to the mix as guides should not be treated as infallible rulebooks but rather should be taken as mental starting points that provoke analytical thought.
_________________________________________________

Sona, the Maven of the Strings
_________________________________________________

Spells

Hymn of Valor (Q)

Aria of Perseverance (W)

Song of Celerity (E)

Crescendo (R)

Power Chord (Passive)

_________________________________________________

Suggested Role - Supporter / Pusher

Being an aura-based champion, Sona has Support written all over her. Her strength lies in sticking with her teammates increasing both their damage output with Hymn of Valor and reducing incoming damage with Aria of Perseverance. She is an ideal babysit champion for a Carry as she can keep easily keep them alive with Aria of Perseverance while also being able to harass lane opponents with Power Chord and Hymn of Valor spam. Song of Celerity allows her to give her team that little movement speed edge which is crucial for ganks, chases, escapes, and positioning. Crescendo can come into play in many ways throughout the entirety of a game, locking up kills, saving escaping teammates, or downright changing the entire momentum of a teamfight for her team.

Sona is also a great champion for Pushing especially with teammates. Her strongest strength as a Pusher is really her map mobility with Song of Celerity. She can handily down creep waves with Hymn of Valor spam and a few Power Chords and then apply pressure to towers. She may not have the greatest of tower damage dealing potential but can still be effective with items like Aegis of the Legion in hand to buff nearby creeps. If the enemy tries to cut off her retreat path, Song of Celerity is a great preemptive escape tool which can be combined with Summoner Spells such as Ghost or the active component of Shurelya's Reverie to out-run most incoming attacks. Crescendo can also be used as a trump card to slow down the enemies bearing down. She is especially a Pushing threat when combined with her team and as such is a strong pick for an early / mid game Pushing lineup.

Lastly, Sona can potentially be geared more towards a Ganker / Semi-Carry damage dealing role if desired. This means she would probably need a solo lane and focus on building up an early advantage in the lane by dominating her lane opponent with Power Chord and Hymn of Valor harass while fending off incoming attacks with Aria of Perseverance. Sona certainly has burst capability with Hymn of Valor + Power Chord, lockdown ability with Crescendo, and map roaming potential with Song of Celerity.
_________________________________________________

Runes

Marks of Insight (magic penetration)
Seals of Clarity (mana regen per level)
Glyphs of Force (ability power per level)
Quintessences of Swiftness (movement speed)


Magic Penetration synergizes with Hymn of Valor, Power Chord, and Crescendo -- her primary sources of damage. Mana Regen helps support her spell spamming ways. Ability Power is a solid stat for her as it helps both her offensive and defensive prowess. Movement Speed synergizes perfectly with Song of Celerity to increase her map presence while also giving her an easy time to sneak in (Power Chord) autoattacks to harass any lane opponent(s).
_________________________________________________

Summoner Spells

Clarity: allows for more spell spam for both you and your teammates (also allows you to focus your items on different stats other than mana items)
Clairvoyance: in order to maintain map control and to spot incoming ganks
Heal: burst team healing to accentuate her support ability
Ghost/Flash: increased mobility to help finish kills or escape sticky situations
Teleport: increased map mobility and presence to support your teammates as well as increased potential to pressure enemy towers
Cleanse: for when the enemy team has far too much CC (ie: stuns, roots)

My personal preferences are Ghost and Flash.
_________________________________________________

Masteries

21 points in Utility (notable points: Meditation, Quickness, Intelligence, Presence of the Master)
9 points in Offense (notable points: Archmage's Savvy, Archaic Knowledge)

Utility gives her the power to spam her spells like any Support should want to. The other 9 points can honestly go to whatever you want.

Do not forget to grab upgraded summoner spells if possible.
_________________________________________________

Spell Build Order

Crescendo > Hymn of Valor = Aria of Perseverance = Song of Celerity

Spell build order is heavily dependent on your intended role and playstyle. A pure support-oriented Sona would most likely want to quickly max Aria of Perseverance and Song of Celerity while a more balanced Sona may want to max Hymn of Valor off the bat. Putting at least 1 early point in each spell and ranking Crescendo whenever possible are good ideas. I personally max Hymn of Valor first as I tend to play Sona as an offensive support (which will be further detailed in the items section).
_________________________________________________

Item Suggestions

Sona is certainly a champion who is still in her experimental stages but there are at least two obvious ways of building as she is after all a Support caster.

The first build is focused on itemizing ability power while also finding a way to deal with the mana problems that come with spamming her spells. Thus, this item build centers around taking advantage of Archangel's Staff. Another notable item here is Lichbane which perfectly synergizes with her low cooldown spell spamming ways and with Power Chord and Hymn of Valor can deal a surprising amount of burst and sustained damage. Ability power increases both her ability to heal her teammates as well as significantly increasing the damage she can dish out. This makes it an all-around good stat to focus on her as it will naturally allow you to support your teammates while also letting you in on the fun. This build balances her defensive and offensive capabilities.

AP Support Build:

Doran's Ring - Boots of Swiftness - Archangel's Staff - Lichbane - Rylai's Crystal Scepter - Zhonya's Ring


The second build is a much more typical pure Support build focusing on aura items such as Soul Shroud and Aegis of the Legion to bolster the team. This build is less risky due to the fact that you can support your team "passively" by just being near them and the fact that the items provide relatively more survivability. Something to notice here is the strong synergy between Sona and Shurelya's Reverie giving your team unrivaled movement speed which allows for good team positioning (for easy focusing of prime targets, escaping, etc.). This build is more defensive-oriented and is often a good idea if your gold farm is limited.

Pure Support Build:

Doran's Ring - Boots of Swiftness - Soul Shroud - Aegis of the Legion - Shurelya's Reverie - Guardian Angel


One thing to never forget is to counter your enemies’ item choices and team composition. Sometimes it is necessary to veer from your intended build in order to perform at maximum potential. Do not neglect item choices such as Frozen Heart against a physical-heavy team or Banshee's Veil against a magic-heavy team. Mercury's Treads is also key to victory against any team with strong CC capabilities.

Notable Situational Items:

Frozen Heart - Mercury's Treads - Banshee's Veil


Note: Remember, be flexible and adapt. There's no need to strictly follow any set build. Mix and match in order to find something that suits both the situation as well as your playstyle.
_________________________________________________

Miscellaneous Tips

  • Use Song of Celerity to move around the map more quickly to always support teammates especially in terms of positioning
  • Remember to switch between at least 2 auras as they persist for a few seconds after deactivation
  • Always try to use Power Chord immediately after 3 casts especially during the laning phase
  • Hit as many (prime) targets as possible with Crescendo by waiting until the enemy team has fully committed to their positioning


Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

ObsidianKnife

Member

09-27-2010

First


Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

MedicAndrew

Senior Member

09-27-2010

Great guide on the runterra site. I like the added images. Just out of curiousity as why you did not do it like that here? Forum restrictions?

But either way very informative! Thanks and keep up the good work


Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

Spiffy McBang

Senior Member

09-27-2010

Why start with Doran's? It's excellent for many champs, but Sona is one who has good options that lead directly into items she's going to use later. Mana Manipulator is the most obvious, since the Locket is a common choice. Personally, I take Meki and go with Fiendish Codex instead as a cheaper, quicker way to get CDR, but that still lets me start with a core item.

I really have the urge to lay out my build, but it's not my thread- I'll resist. >_>


Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

Pipin

Senior Member

09-27-2010

1. Suggested role Yep support is written all over her. But pushing? I would tend to disagree. Like written in your guide pushing is ment to split their team, but that also means you would be away from your teammates thus wasting the full potential of your auras, and your nuke isnt exactly the best for clearing the creepwaves. So i would rather see someone else do the pushing while keeping sona next to a carry. I do agree with her amazing burst early on, altough her semi carry ability comes due to the fact that she gives out a amazing buff to the team and not her dmg potential late game.

2. Runes... I cant completely agree. Quints should be flat hp as Sona is the lowest hp champ there is, and that means people will 2 shot you + ignite and your dead in the laning phase. Other than that i still perfer to go for mana regen + cd reduction + hp on runes, its just a case of what you perfer i guess.

3. Spells...
Clarity, a definetly a no go for me. With utility + mana regen runes i already got enough mana regen to use my spells more than enough as long as i dont spam my nuke just for farming or wasting casts.
Heal,not much to say, situational i guess if noone else on your team gets it or you just feel that having that little extra is good.
Ghost/flash, same as with heal, works good as positioning spells altough i think her E does the job just fine.
Teleport, definetly my favourite on her as you can be in every single teamfight and on every corner of the map when needed.
Cleanse, argh i dont really know about that, its ok, but you shouldnt get ccd in the first place because you should stay on the edge of the battle but its a good spell, i dont like it tough
Clairvoyance what? Clairvoyance not even mentioned? Smart use allows your team to be pretty much ungankable and dont say you can rather buy wards... Because clairvoyance is by far supperior not even to mention the mapwide range.

4. Masteries Yea pretty much the standard utility thing.

5. Spell build order Yep pretty much nailed it there.

6. Items Imo should either be AP with late game lich bane because you will pretty much be spamming skills might as well put it to use. Or aura build focusing on spamming auras like mad, and WTH Shurelya's Reverie i still cant figure why this item is in the game? It doesent make sense to me especially not on Sona. You already have a move speed boost so if you really want a speed modifier get Randuirs omen and slow their team instead of getting move speed on a hero with a movespeed aura. Shurelya's Reverie is imo just a item that would be better off just taken out of the game for now till it gets reworked.

7. Miscelanious tips Take Hymn of valor first as Aria on lvl 1 wont save anyoneespecially not when ignite is used, charge up power chord in well and voila you have 200 dmg burst on lvl 1 + autoattacks.

Also dont always switch auras, only when teammates are actually needing more than 1 aura on them, otherwise while farming Hymn should be active while moving to the next lane Celerity.

Stay in the back of the fight so Hymn will punish anyone who dares come near you squishies, and move into the fight only when you want to use Crescendo.


Thats all the input to your guide i have. I hope at least someone will read my post and not just downwote because i dont agree with a red.


Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

reaver99

Senior Member

09-27-2010

Doran's is good since Sona is so squishy. It won't help your teammate if you get Mana Manipulator but keep having to go back. It depends on your playstyle though - if you hang in the back and don't harass, Mana Manipulator is better.

The one thing I might add is that I prefer CDR glyphs with HP quints since CDR really helps getting all three auras up, and you can pretty much max it with golem buff or Soul Shroud + elixir. HP again because Sona goes down to a stiff breeze.


Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

Spiffy McBang

Senior Member

09-27-2010

She is squishy, but between the range of Hymn and even a level 1 heal, judicious harassment should not leave you in trouble. I will say that it's important to play how your partner is playing; hopefully s/he is aggressive, because early Sona can support a very aggressive game plan. My last partner, though, was a Veigar who wasn't even in exp range half the time in a 2v1 lane, and their mid came and ganked me a couple of times while he ran for the hills because I didn't adjust.

This is also part of what I like about Meki + pots versus a Manipulator, having a backup in case you get thumped a bit and would have to suck down a lot of mana healing yourself through spells. But Clarity (which I take) makes that more a matter of taste than a necessity.


Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

Chingmeister

Senior Member

09-27-2010

Currently, Sona is a bit overtuned and you could buy items randomly and you would still win. I have seen a Sona team win 15 out of my last 15 games. The only close games were Sona vs Sona.

The few times I played her I went Health crystal (start with 9% CDR from masteries so am squishy) > Locket > boots 1 > starks > boots 3 > Aegis (Aegis first against some burstier teams)

Locket is hax mode. Sona becomes like Kat with no mana costs.

Heal/Ghost. Heal adds that anti-amumu ult quality which is what I use it on 90% of the time... Ghost is for chasing the other teams Sona.

I add in 42 mana regen @18 from runes which lets you spam at will.

One game I combined with Taric w/ Soul Shroud to make even our casters super carries while beating on chain stunned opponents.

I think the total was something like:
+60 dmg
+20% attack speed
+20 Ability Power
+20% lifesteal
-20 Enemy Armor
+40 hp/5 regen
+24 mana/5 regen
+60 Armor
+30 MR
+20 Movement
+20% Movement
-15% CDR

+/- a few

In that game our Ashe simply tanked Garen's spin and just and butchered him. It was hilarious. We were all tower diving at will and just taking tanks and tough melee out like swiss cheese.

Demaci...wtf...Ashe didn't run or kite and just owned my face...

Someone good at math add up the gold value of the above...and multiply it by 5 to see the total effect, and then subtract the base item costs of 10k to see how OP it is.


Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

Chingmeister

Senior Member

09-27-2010

I foresee Sona's movespeed buff is going to get a massive nerf in the future. Permanent improved Sivir Ult is a bit too much. It makes melee AoE champs like Amumu/Singed/Garen inescapable and improves their initiation too much. Amumu already was the best tank before they megabuffed him by nerfing flashing out of his ult. Add in Sona so you can't outrun him and you don't even need to land a bandage toss. You can just run in. It also makes FLASH which they wanted to nerf MANDATORY because it is a gauranteed escape if you flash backwards and run with Sona's movespeed bonus. (Add in Sona's heal(s) for dots and your good to go).


Comment below rating threshold, click here to show it.

Pipin

Senior Member

09-27-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chingmeister View Post
Currently, Sona is a bit overtuned and you could buy items randomly and you would still win. I have seen a Sona team win 15 out of my last 15 games. The only close games were Sona vs Sona.

The few times I played her I went Health crystal (start with 9% CDR from masteries so am squishy) > Locket > boots 1 > starks > boots 3 > Aegis (Aegis first against some burstier teams)

Have 42 mana regen @18 from runes which lets you spam at will.

One game I combined with Taric w/ Soul Shroud to make even our casters super carries while beating on chain stunned opponents.

I think the total was something like:
+60 dmg
+20% attack speed
+20 Ability Power
+20% lifesteal
-20 Enemy Armor
+40 hp/5 regen
+24 mana/5 regen
+60 Armor
+30 MR
+20 Movement
+20% Movement
-15% CDR

+/- a few

In that game our Ashe simply tanked Garen's spin and just and butchered him. It was hilarious.

Demaci...wtf...Ashe didn't run or kite and just owned my face...

Someone good at math add up the gold value of the above...and multiply it by 5 to see the total effect, and then subtract the base item costs of 10k to see how OP it is.
Yep and thats exactly why she is not op! She is a walking item nothing more. If the enemy split pushes your boned. If your carries fail... then you just watch them and cry yourself out of the game.


123