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[Guide] Raping face with Karthus.

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PacketLoss

Junior Member

08-14-2009

For most spellcasters, I like to stack HP / HP regen runes with cooldown reduction so I can focus on stacking mana and ability power items early in the game. The main general weaknesses for spellcasters is their lack of hp and armor, so I stack runes to counter their weaknesses so I can stay in my lane longer and then out-farm and out-level the competition while buying the better end game items. Almost all of the games I have played have ended before someone gets up to six end game items, the only exceptions have been where both teams turtled and farmed neutrals for 20 mins.

Anyway, with spellcasters I generally like to go with the Tear of the Goddess item first (en route to archangel's staff) for the permanent increase in mana everytime you cast and eventually onto bonus AP = 2% of your max mana. I like to get this early and spam spells even when nobody is around for maximum effect same as spamming last hit enrage kills with Sion. I don't necessarily finish off archangel's staff first because the 2% bonus isn't much early on and I usually go for abyssal scepter for the neg. magic resist aura and zhonya's ring for massive AP boost. Then, if they have a lot of non-spellcasters I go with Frozen heart for the neg. attack speed aura, armor, and the cooldown reduction is always nice. So there's four main items, leaving two up for grabs based on playstyle and how much $$ you have in game.


Summoner spells - well arguably clairvoyance since the indestructible wards are OP and prevent you from being ganked if you pay attention to your map. Then take your pick of flash / boost / exhaust for survival depending on your playstyle.



recap on items:

(1) archangel's staff
(2) abyssal scepter
(3) zhonya's ring
(4) frozen heart


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FiRe2

Senior Member

08-14-2009

Sounds like a good alternative, I still prefer my item build though just due to my playstyle. I find that sunfire cape often provides all the defense I need, because when I'm using defile in a team fight, the majority of people generally began to run, or try chasing me as my team cuts them apart. But your item build / rune build sounds pretty solid as well. I may have to try it one day.


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D3fender710

Junior Member

08-15-2009

Hmmm interesting guide, I'm a karthus user myself. Might test your build!
But in your guide you forget to mention your rune set up and spells used. Didn't read the guide in detail so sorry if I overlooked it.


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Lollerman

Senior Member

08-15-2009

I'm a bit jealous... I'm never able to buy the Sunfire Cape... lord knows I've tried...


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FellowerOfOdin

Member

08-15-2009

Sunfire Cape is a terrible choice on Karthus. You should rather stick with Rod of Ages.


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Lollerman

Senior Member

08-15-2009

Quote:
FellowerOfOdin:
Sunfire Cape is a terrible choice on Karthus. You should rather stick with Rod of Ages.


I've always wanted to get it just to see if it'll still damage enemies after I die.

I can never get it in time... game always ends way before I finish core build...


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FiRe2

Senior Member

08-15-2009

Quote:
FellowerOfOdin:
Sunfire Cape is a terrible choice on Karthus. You should rather stick with Rod of Ages.


As I said it's personal preference, you can change the item build accordingly to your playstyle, but it's always worked for me and has never proved to be "terrible"


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FiRe2

Senior Member

08-15-2009

Guide amended. Changed item build based off the last few games I played and had great success. The feedback so far is appreciated, it's helping me create a stronger guide.


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TreeEskimo

The Council

08-16-2009

I've played karthus against the top of the top and I approve of this guide. My play varies a bit here and there, but the #1 thing that you're doing right is the dorans ring + hp pot level 1.

Many pro karthus players start off with the mana part of their tear and an HP pot so they can get a faster tear. THIS IS NOT NECESSSARY. I've soloed against karthus after karthus in a mirror match where they started with the mana crystal and hp pots and I started with dorans ring + hp pots and we always get tear at the same time, but I also have my dorans ring. Reason being the dorans ring adds everything you need to own the lane starting at level 1. With this build I've killed ashes at level 1 and other semi weak solos before level 3.

Also I'd recommend that you build a tear before sorcerors shoes, almost always get boots before tear, unless you're first trip to heal you have inbetween 980 and 1330 gold, in which case I'd just buy the tear as it will help you in the lane tremendously (although you want your first trip back to be at 1330 gold normally if you can make it that long).

Another thing you might want to consider is taking your first level of wall at 7 or 8 instead of 2 (only if you're solo though, I'd say wall at 2 is better in almost all 2 person lane situations). If you take defile at 2+4 and have decent creep micro your mana pool is near infinate. Not only that when defile is level 2 you can nuke the 3 ranged creeps till they die (ifyou hit all three with every nuke) and you get 90% or so of the mana you used back. This trick works at most levels of laywaste since the damage and mana cost both go up, I believe the DPM (damage per mana) gets slightly worse on it, but I'm not certain.

Another item I like to buy on him (right after boots + tear) is the soulstealer. For 1550 gold early on, you get +70AP at the time and +140 AP late game (lich always ends up with kills as laywaste gets last hits easily, his ultimate finishes low champions, and he can continue casting after death to give him a beyond the grave kill after any close fight). I also go the movespeed 3 boots instead of sorcerors shoes as movespeed is extremely important on him.

Lastly I'd add a section about golem buff + lich. In short it makes him amazingly strong at any point in the game. Early game the extra mana regen is crucial. Mid game you can keep defile on longer in fights while your mana pool is lower and late game the 25% cooldown reduction virtually increases your single target damage output by 20% or so as laywaste hits like a truck on single targets. Its fairly easy to creep the golem solo after you have your archangels staff.

Well now that I've told the world my secrets to karthus hopefully some more good karthus players can arise

EDIT:

I also forgot to mention summoner spells. I typically go clairvoyance / flash on him as clairvoyance is amazing for all the reasons you mentioned and he can own with any summoner spells (esp when soloing mid its good to have clair so you can see inc ganks, as if you are good they WILL gank you). Flash is amazing because... its flash. I hardly need to use it when its cooling down as the other team typically cant pull off more then 1 successful 3man+ gank every 6 minutes with clairvoyances up. It can really be a lifesaver.

In the event your team has 2 clairvoyances already, teleport would be the skill to take along with flash IMO. Teleport is amazing on lich. He is a strong pusher and can near instantly kill creepwaves. This is useful for TPing after a gank to push a tower or TPing to defend a tower that you're allies cant get to. It's also useful so that whenyou have 980 gold early game you can blue pill home and teleport back with your tear without even missing creep XP.

In the long run you will make more gold / xp off teleport than smite IMO as you'll spend less time traveling between lanes. Just something for you to try if you wanted to switch up your strategy some


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FiRe2

Senior Member

08-16-2009

Thanks for the input, added what you said. I generally still get sorc boots first because I farm ridiculously well on karthus and generally have doran's ring, boots, tear, and abyssal by 20 min.

edit: I might try that spec out, getting 2 levels of defile. At the moment though, the wall of pain early is killer for early kills and stopping pushes. but i'll be sure to try what you said.