I've really been trying to get good at the marksman/AD Carry role lately, and itemization for the role has been fairly confusing for me.

A lot of guides recommend Statikk Shiv now, and I still don't understand why. Phantom dancer is statistically much better in terms of damage output, so of course it's a little more expensive. Still, the return for the expense seems to be much greater.

So my question is, in what situations would I want to buy Statikk Shiv and not Phantom Dancer? The only reason I can think of is Statikk Shiv may help with split pushing, but I don't find myself split pushing on the marksman role very often since I obviously never take teleport and normally the team needs me for damage in any potential teamfight.

  • in short, wave clear, cheaper, AS cap(popular champs right now have AS modifier skills/passives), crits on shiv passive, more MS/mobility, so the only benefit you're really getting on the pd over shiv is 10% crit chance and unit collision avoidance.
    – Brian
    Commented Aug 13, 2014 at 17:50
  • 2
    The easiest way to look at it is Sustained vs Burst damage. PD will give you more damage over time, but Shiv will give you more up-front due to the passive. Commented Aug 13, 2014 at 19:22

4 Answers 4


Season 6

Statikk Shiv:

  • 200g cheaper than Phantom Dancer
  • 5% movement speed always
  • Passive that allows you to improve burst potential. Damage can critically strikes and scales with critical damage.

Phantom Dancer:

  • 5% more attack speed
  • 12%(+7% over shiv) movement speed but is conditional (only active when near an enemy).
  • The last enemy "hit" deals 12% less damage to you.


Really it comes down to the same key points. Statikk is for burst. Works best on mobile champs (e.g. Shaco or Tristana). Slightly cheaper. Phantom Dancer however has lost some of its desirable advantages over Statikk Shiv. (Incoming speculation) With its new passive it seems like it may be more geared to situations in which the ADC might not have peel or is split pushing perhaps. This comparison isn't as important with the Season 6 changes since they're trying to make builds more situational (or at least that's the idea anyways).

Pre-season 6 Answer

Statikk Shiv:

  • 300g cheaper overall than Phantom Dancer.
  • 1% more movement speed.
  • Passive that allows you to improve burst potential on a champion.
  • Increased Wave-clear potential however this is a weak argument (imo).
  • Builds out of Avarice blade so it would allow the ADC to make gold a little faster.

Phantom Dancer:

  • 10% more attack speed.
  • 10% more critical strike chance
  • Champion ignores unit-collision (I don't recall this but the wikia says so)

Picking Statikk Shiv over Phantom Dancer:

  • Champions with large dashes or blinks: Shaco, Tristana, Corki, (maybe even Ezreal).
  • Champions with damage modifiers: Shaco, Pantheon, Talon, Vayne.
  • Champions with certain items (or both): Infinity Edge or Hurricane.
  • Champions you want more burst on (personal preference really): Gangplank, Graves, etc.

Picking Phantom Dancer over Statikk Shiv:

  • Any champion you know you're going to go to late game with that isn't covered in one or more of the categories above.


Remember that this isn't law, this is mostly theory. It mostly comes down to preference but if you're looking for some guidelines follow these and they should help. The reasons for those listings are because Shiv's passive gains charges faster by moving in any way and it's affected by damage modifiers, but most of all it's personal preference. They're both great items with their own purpose, if you find your play-style compliments one of them better, use it instead.

Statikk Shiv seems to be an early-to-late game item allowing you to burst enemies a bit better and obtain it a bit faster.

Phantom Dancer is more of a late game item as it more item-slot efficient (meaning it gives more stats from a single item).

  • Changed answer to this, because it seems more complete and gives more data.
    – GarrettJ
    Commented Oct 13, 2014 at 21:20
  • Is it possible to fix this answer to reflect the changes made for season 6?
    – GarrettJ
    Commented Nov 18, 2015 at 22:45
  • The passive on statikk shiv is being pushed even further into the waveclear slot. It already does 50% bonus to minions which is being increased to 75% (at least currently on PBE it is). Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 6:21
  • @VanBuzzKill That's kind of odd since i thought they said it was too strong at the moment. Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 8:18
  • They were refering to the strength against champions and not necessarily the waveclearing. I believe what they're trying to do is give each item a niche of some sort.
    – Shelby115
    Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 12:49

Statik Shiv is good on marksmen who have poor waveclear, or who are looking for a little extra burst/pushing power.

Phantom Dancer is generally better on people who want to be better late-game carrys, or who want to eat towers.

Example: Tristana gets early shiv because she already pushes the lane. This always keeps the opponent csing under tower, which is harder. Her burst at 6 can be incredibly deadly with it too (jump, explosive shot, shiv, potential crit, ult).

I get PD on cait, instead of shiv, because I can already wave-clear with my peacemaker, and I want the extra attack speed to be pushing down towers even faster.

  • 1
    to me this sound controversial: Statik Shiv is good on marksmen who have poor waveclear and Tristana gets early shiv because she already pushes the lane Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 13:17
  • 1
    @PhilippSander - I think you mean contradictory? Keep in mind that pushing power is not the same as wave clear. While many champions have both together, it is not always the case. Tryndamere, for instance, has great pushing power, but poor waveclear.
    – Ben Craig
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 13:24
  • Trist wont be getting a shiv til mid game or later, so pushing waves into outer towers shouldn't still be happening, she gets shiv because the proc will most likely put minions at 1 shot levels proccing her explosive shots to speed up wave clearing. Her Q also more than makes up for the 10% AS reduction
    – Brian
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 15:19
  • @Brian a lot of people (myself included) are actually going shiv first on trist now
    – Ben Craig
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 15:22
  • @BenCraig from eulcs it seems the build orders been dorans->zerks->ie->shiv but maybe its changed in the last week I dont see why trist would want to prolong her useless phase though. Her spike comes at IE. shiv's AS boost can be put off with trist's Q :O
    – Brian
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 15:30

While wave clear is one reason that Marksmen buy Statik Shiv, another is simply the reliable magic damage burst.

This is why it is a common item on non-marksmen ADCs - Master Yi, Tryndamere, Yasuo - they can use the DMG diversity. It can also be used to every so slightly swing your team's DMG composition.


My personal favorite has always been Phantom Dancer. I'm surprised no one has even mentioned the chasing capabilities with no unit collision! Overfed Rengar running away towards mid lane? You could pop a global ult, or just run straight through his minion wave while he has to snake his way through. The only time I ever build Stattik Shiv is on Draven for insane burst. But I still sell it later on for the pure DPS and chasing potential it gives.

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