Katarina I found is a very strong character in League of Legends that mops up the floor at the end of the battle destroying all of the survivors. Katarina has generally low cooldown and her passive is a cooldown reduction after a kill or an assists. Therefore in most of the game the suggestive items are items that increase ability power. However, in turns of runes for Katarina I am clueless. I had watched off of a youtube video one person who put everything on cooldown reduction and Katarina's shunpo ends up going down to around 3 seconds! What items, runes, skins, and masteries would you put on Katarina?

Thanks, Kubtops

  • 1
    In general, the skin you choose is only cosmetic and has no affect on game-play. There are some exceptions to this, Leona's sunlight deals one less damage to champions wearing sunglasses for example but for the most part, the skin you choose is personal preference.
    – SimonL
    Apr 3, 2013 at 3:55
  • What game mode?
    – SimonL
    Apr 3, 2013 at 12:48
  • @SimonL The Leona thing is just a rumor, they tested it and it was no true :(. But if you have the 3 ninja's (Shen, Akali and kennen) in medical skin then gain 1 additional hp. Apr 4, 2013 at 8:38
  • @SirDuckduck, it's not a rumor. The sunglasses do work to block 1 of the extra damage that comes from her passive.
    – Sir Ksilem
    May 3, 2013 at 13:12
  • @SirKsilem youtube.com/watch?v=OLAQ0KCiw0k look for yourself May 3, 2013 at 14:33

4 Answers 4


These answers are somewhat accurate, if you are playing public games, or pre-made with friends.

There is no static build to any champion.

That being said, I somewhat disagree with the builds being posted in the answers, if you are wanting to play katarina in SoloQ, sorry guys :(. The Katarina they are suggesting is glass cannon, and is fine if you aren't playing solo-queue, but I promise you, going full mPen or full AP, you will die. A lot. You will get CC'ed once, and that will be the end of you :)

Unfortunately, super-anti-fun season 3 is a little bit different in higher Elo. Katarina is a very niche pick, usually used to counter Melee sustain tops like Cho'Gath and Garen. She generally starts 11 pots 1 ward, or 9 pots 2 wards. I would rarely start boots 3 with Katarina, as you have one of the best gap closers/escapes in the game with shunpo.

First B should be L1 boots, and Giant's belt, and the rest in pots/wards.

Go back to lane, and work on finishing sunfire cape+haunting Guise if Vs. AD in lane, or go Warmogs if vs AP. (i tend to skip sunfires and rush warmogs). After that, it's somewhat situational, but basic core items are Sorc shoes, sunfire cape, warmogs, Liandrys, abyssal, and the 6th would be a toss up between DFG, Rabadons, Void Staff, Zhonya's or Guardians Angel.

One thing to note, if you go into the math and theorycrafting of "most efficient use of gold", Katarina actually has really bad AP ratio's on her skills since her latest nerfs, about 4-5 months ago. Ratios to the tune of .45 on Q (first target), .25 on W (!!!!!!!), .4 on E and a whopping .2 on her Ult.(per knife, mind you, but it's still really low)

I don't know how long you've been playing LoL, but those AP ratios are garbage compared to what they used to be, and do not warrant building full AP, and is basic proof that Riot does not want Katarina as a snowballing APC. Her base damages are alright, which actually makes it a better use of your gold getting mPen and Health.

Edit: forgot to actually answer your question, 9/21/0, mPen reds, armor or scaling HP yellows, scaling MR blues, AP or move speed quints or flat HP quints.

  • FYI: I would use lolpro or solomid to quickly look up guides rather than mobafire, mobafire is notorious for putting up troll builds, getting a bunch of people to upvote them and then people blindly play using these troll builds. :/
    – user41604
    Apr 3, 2013 at 11:39
  • Blindly playing any build is what one should avoid - it's not mobafire's or any websites fault. I wasn't aware of the fact that mobafire did what you said on purpose, simply because I haven't come across any high-rated troll build myself. But thx for the info! Those sites you mentioned are good. I just gave mobafire as an example since I didn't want to go into specifics about such websites.
    – xray1986
    Apr 3, 2013 at 11:56
  • @PanagiotisPalladinos mobafire doesnt do it: the LoL community does it :) check out Zac guides the next few days, you'll see what I mean. It's more prominent when new champs come out! But you did a good job poiting him out to guide sites, he can get the basics on those sites at least, +1. Ps: edited my answer ;)
    – user41604
    Apr 3, 2013 at 12:16
  • Thanks, we basically agree on the fact that Katarina should not be played squishy and should have sustain. I'm not playing Kat so often so I haven't gotten the chance to try her out THAT tanky. I'll do it soon though. +1 for a different building aspect.
    – xray1986
    Apr 3, 2013 at 12:47
  • Great answer but with the 9/21/0 I had read that a 21/9/0 was the best build for kat.
    – Kubtops
    Apr 4, 2013 at 14:55

Katarina is a champion with decent base damage on her abilities with average AP scaling, and it is for this reason that a lot of professional players choose to build her 'magic penetration build', that is, since you have a lot of base damage, the best way to further increase your damage output is to increase magic penetration. Cooldown reduction is not that needed on Katarina since she has quite short cooldowns to begin with and your role is to cleanup and get your passive to reset your cooldowns anyway

For a magic penetration build:

Start Boots and HP Potions
Rush Haunting Guise
Upgrade to Magic Penetration Boots
Aim for an Abyssal Sceptre

Depending who you are laning against, you may choose to get the Negatron Cloak from Abyssal Sceptre early After those items you can start going for AP (deathcap, rylais or zonyas for more defence), or upgrade your Haunting Guise

For Runes you can:

Magic Penetration Reds
AP scaling or flat Yellows (can also do armor yellows vs an AD mid)
AP scaling or flat Blues (can also do magic resist if you feel you need it against your opponent)
Magic Penetration Glyphs

For masteries I just go 21/9/0 picking up all the AP stuff in offence and HP/magicresist in defence


You can find many builds for Katarina and other champions here: www.mobafire.com

My personal experience with her is that you WILL need spellvamp early. So a hextech revolver right after boots of speed (which in most cases is the best first item with potions) would be really good. This way you can harass a lot using your knives and also have a lot of sustain - thus overpowering your (possibly mana based) opponent mid. After that a Haunting Guise is a pretty decent early game Item as well and then for me Rylai's is also a must in most cases. As the slow helps you assassinate more effectively.

I wont go into any more specifics regarding items since you can find them in the link above.

For runes I recommend Magic Penetration Marks and Quints. Now if you are going mid then you definitely need flat magic resist glyphs and you could also go AP/level seals or Health/level or Armor.

If you 're going anywhere else Flat armor is the best choice for yellows along with Magic resist/level glyphs.


Here's the most broadly applicable effective Kat build I've found... note that she is my main.


  • AP quints
  • MPen reds
  • AP blues
  • Armor yellows

Item Build:

  • Sorceror's Shoes
  • Rylai's Crystal Sceptre
  • Liandry's Torment
  • Rabadon's Deathcap
  • Zhonya's Hourglass
  • Deathfire Grasp

(If you get fed, replace Sorceror's Shoes with Mejai's Soulstealer as your final item.)

My reasoning for Rylai/Liandry is +800 HP total, gives a slow to keep people in your ultimate (unless they flash), and Rylai doubles Liandry's burn passive. Great to assassinate that pesky tank after he burns his CC on your team's tank.

Ultimately, if you get Mejai's Soulstealer you should wind up with somewhere close to 1,050 AP with these runes at full stacks. This means your ultimate should deal ~3,000 magic damage to 3 champs... The best part is, if you're still spinning and one of the enemies dies, if another one gets in range, it replaces the dead one as the target. Early game you can ignite before you ultimate to deal massive damage for level 6 kills in lane.

Another tip on Kat - her ultimate will continue targeting an enemy that can no longer be seen, so long as it was visible when her ultimate triggered, and it is not out of range. Akali cannot escape her ultimate simply by shrouding, for instance, this is why it's great to have Rrylai's slow; it pretty much forces champions without movement abilities to flash out or come close to stop your ultimate.

Why don't I use Hextech Gunblade? The answer is simple: 3/4 of her abilities are multitarget/AOE (exception is the E), she receives 1/3 the benefit of spell vamp only. So why not start with an additional 400 from the Rylai (cheaper than Gunblade) rather than having to deal out a total of 6,000 damage in order to gain that 400 while in combat? (6,000 damage / 3 = 2,000; 20% of 2,000 = 400)

  • Note that with the new itemization, Mejai's Soulstealer starts with five stacks, and consequently could be obtained earlier if you are fairly confident in your ability to win in lane. My rule about never buying anything with the word "Hextech" in it still applies.
    – ReiHinoX
    Nov 28, 2014 at 18:40

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .