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ANNIE BUILD GUIDE: Sublimely Magnificent Annie Guide Mark 3 [Mid] by CynicalEffect

by CynicalEffect (last updated 10 months ago)

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9
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration(+7.83 magic penetration)
9
Greater Seal of Scaling Health(+9.72 health per level (174.96 at champion level 18))
9
Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power(+1.53 ability power per level (27.54 at champion level 18))
3
Greater Quintessence of Ability Power(+14.85 ability power)
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Summoner Spells
View Summoner Details

Starting

Full Item Build

View Item Details
21
0
9
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 3/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 1/1
mastery 3 3/3
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 3/3
mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 1/1
mastery 2 1/1
21 Offense
mastery 1 0/2
mastery 2 0/2
mastery 3 0/2
mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/3
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
0 Defense
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 1/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
9 Utility
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Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Pyromania
QDisintegrate
WIncinerate
EMolten Shield
RSummon Tibbers
View Skill Order Details

Introduction

Note: This SHOULD be ready for the current changes. Might be some things I missed though.

Hello and welcome to my Annie guide. Annie was my first champion I started using regularly in League of Legends and over a year later, is still my go to champion when needing a win. In this guide I hope to explain when and why to pick Annie, how to play her and different builds and approaches to consider. This guide is for mid Annie, however a lot of what I say will apply to the newly popular support Annie.

Annie is a great pick due to her massive burst and AoE stun. If you play her she should win her lane against the majority of mid champions if played right and snowballs well from there. Even if the lane phase does not go well, having an AoE stun available at the start of the fight and another five seconds after that, still makes you incredibly useful.

The above build, masteries and runes are just an example of solid choices, you don't have to, and should not religiously stick to them. I explain the possible viable choices in much more depth in the appropriate sections.

Throughout this guide I will use abbreviations and shorthand terms. Here is a list and explanation of all those that I use.

CD = Cooldown
CDR = Cooldown Reduction
AP = Ability power
AD = Attack damage
MR = Magic resistance

Runes

(And a few not so viable). I will explain when you want which runes, the choice you go with overall is up to you.

Marks

: These are the obvious choice for marks. Flat magic pen is great early and still useful late game.

: I've never used them as I can't justify the cost. But these in theory should be a viable choice if you harass well with autos in lane. I don't have the maths to see how they compare to standard magic pen but they certainly aren't a bad choice.

: This is something I'm currently trying out. I don't expect it to be competitively viable, but it's interesting at least. An extra 8.5 AD. Couple this with Annie's incredibly long range, and you have effective harass. If you do go this route, I'd advise prioritising magic pen items earlier than you normally would.

Seals

These are aimed at increasing your mid to late game durability. An extra 180 health at level 18 is nothing to laugh at. Especially when combined with the defensive steroid of which makes it a decent amount of effective health.

Mana regen. Always a viable choice, but not what I would prioritise on Annie.

Armour is always a good choice against both AD heavy teams or an AD mid such as Talon or Zed. Other than that, it's best to go for something else.

At level 18 a set of these will give you less than 18 AP. That is pretty minor to be honest. I would never touch them, but if you really want to maximise your damage, I guess these are for you?

Glyphs

At level 18, a set of these give 27 AP (35 if you have Rabadons). It is a moderate damage boost and a good choice. They level out with the flat AP glyph at level 7, making these the much superior choice out the two.

Scaling MR. This helps you mitigate damage in lane and be pretty bulky late game. Another great choice.


Flat MR. These are more effective than the scaling version until level nine. If you're in a lane that has great burst at level six, such as or these would probably be the better choice.


Quintessences

Three of these give you ~15 AP. These help maximise your early game damage and level six burst.

As mentioned earlier, movement speed is great. It will make it possible to land combos without having to use flash, it will also allow you to effectively kite and harass with autoattacks and Q.

Masteries

mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 3/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 1/1
mastery 3 3/3
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 3/3
mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 1/1
mastery 2 1/1
21 Offense
mastery 1 0/2
mastery 2 0/2
mastery 3 0/2
mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/3
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
0 Defense
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 1/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
9 Utility
I've barely touched LoL since the mastery changes, so the above are purely what I imagine what would work and has not been playtested. However they are relatively self explanatory. I generally opt for 21/0/9. The 21 in offence is due to you needing to be burst opponents down and this maximises your potential. The 9 in utility grants you longer buff duration, shorter summoner spell cooldowns (Very important if you're flash initiating) and increased movespeed for stronger ganks.


Other options are 21 in defence tree for harder lanes or 21 utility tree if you really want extra roam speed. I guess either could work.

Summoner Sets

Primary Set
Explanation:

Flash is simply a must on Annie, but not for escapes like most champions use it for. Flash initiations will win you teamfights. Flash stuns will win you your lane. Flash will win you the game.

Ignite makes it easier to burst people down. As a burst mage, this is exactly what you want.


The above two are fairly standard choices, however another summoner that can be used to great effect is.



Get your bot lane to place a ward in the bush closest to the enemy tower and then allow their lane opponents to push. With a stun and ult ready, you can teleport in behind their AD + support and get an almost guaranteed double kill.

Obviously, you can do the same top lane. However this works best bot lane as they're likely much easier to burst down.

Note: This reveals the ward you're teleporting to, even if it's in a bush. That's why it's best to do it behind them, to cut off their retreat.



Although not something I ever really run, it could be useful in certain first to stun wins lanes. For example, Cassopeia or Veigar.

No other summoner spell should really be considered.

Item Builds

Starting Build(s)
Build 2
Build 3
4
Build 3
3
These are your main choices for starting out. As you can see, they all share the same trinket and it's pretty much the only one you consider using in laning phase. Annie is susceptible to ganks due to having no built in escape and wanting to apply early pressure.


As for what else you run, well it's a question on matchup and what you want to do in the game. Boots will allow you easier opportunities to land stuns and can lead to earlier boots of mobility if you want to just roam all game.

Doran ring is a standard start. It allows better trading and maximises your damage raising your chance of getting a free kill at level 6.

The flask/potions are for every rough lanes where you expect to be constantly poked. Generally best to avoid taking this unless you NEED to.
Final Build(s)
Standard Final Items
Please check item choices chapter below for a much better overview.

The above is a standard lategame Annie full build, although it's rare that you will reach this point.

Skill Order

Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Pyromania
QDisintegrate
WIncinerate
EMolten Shield
RSummon Tibbers
Level one I would always suggest taking W. You can charge your stun passive on the fountain and have it ready for any invades or a early stun in lane.

The best question is Q or W max first? I used to lean towards suggesting a Q max due to easier last hitting and more reliable harass. However, maxing W lets you clear waves faster and allows you to roam better. It also gives better early/midgame teamfight presence.

The last thing I want to mention is the single point in molten shield before 6 which is purely my personal preference. Although it does lower your level 6 burst somewhat, it allows you to get easier stuns on the enemy as you can use it to proc your passive just as you want to stun them. If an enemy sees your passive ready, they will play more defensively, but using molten shield just before stunning them can surprise them. Like I said, this is purely preference and if you wanted to just level Q/W for maximum damage that is perfectly fine.

Skills

Pyromania
I will go on record and say this is one of the best passives in the game. In lane it gives you the needed time to burst an opponent before they can do anything. In teamfights it will give you a MINIMUM of two AoE stuns per fight. The stuns are for decent durations as well.
Disintegrate
Allows easier last hitting as it refunds mana. Max this either first or second depending on what you want to achieve. (Explained in above section)

If you're stunning your enemy, remember that this skill is your only one with a travel time and as such it could allow your enemy to flash away out of immediate follow up range.
Incinerate
This provides good AoE damage. If you're in a teamfight with stun charged and Tibbers on CD, try to stun with this if you can safely do so. This is due to the obvious fact that an AoE stun beats a single target stun. This ability also provides good waveclear.
Molten Shield
This gives you a great defensive steroid. With 40% CDR, you can maintain this shield almost constantly giving a constant +60 of both resistances. This is roughly equivalent to a free chain vest + Cloth + Negatron and half a null magic mantle. This means that building health on Annie is ridiculously efficient due to the way effective HP works. [Explained later in math chapter] This also returns decent damage against any autoattackers, not that you'd want to be getting hit however.

Lastly, this can be used to get your stun faster. Which is always good.
Summon Tibbers
Flaming bears of death.

The above four words pretty much sum up this ability perfectly. This ultimate has so many uses. So lets go over the main ones.

Initiation: Tibbers cast is instant. With your stun up, if you see a few enemies grouped, you can flash and ult them, stunning them all and leaving them in a very bad situation. The same applies to laning. If you lead your combo with this, your opponent will have no chance to react, allowing you to get off a full combo.

Upfront burst: At any point in the game, this does a huge amount of damage. Damage is good.

Sustained damage: If you have the moderate total of 300AP, Tibbers will be doing 95 damage to anything around him per second. It is deceptively strong and enemies will likely ignore tibbers mid-teamfight, allowing you to do a large amount of free damage.

Taking towers: I'm not suggesting you use Tibbers just to kill a tower (Well, maybe if it was an inhibitor tower it might be worth it) but if Tibbers is still standing in a teamfight that your team just won, use him to attack and tank towers. They will fall pretty fast.

Granting vision: If there's a teamfight in a jungle that is not properly warded, after using tibbers you can order him to stand in a bush, granting vision of it. It's certainly not the best use of him in most scenarios, but hey...it's something.

Champion Matchups

Ahri
Difficulty
Favors You
Note: * Next to name = hypothetical. Do not completely rely on them, but they should still be a good indicator of how to play a lane. I play Annie less than I used to and therefore may have very limited experience in matchups with more recent champions.

Annie is pretty strong against Ahri. Make sure you dodge her shots pre-6 and poke her whenever you can. Once you hit six it should be easy to combo her. Make sure she doesn't dodge your Tibbers with her ult.
Akali
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
This one can go either way. Annie has the advantage pre-6. Harass whenever possible with Q and autos. Don't let her proc her Q on you, it hurts. Once you both hit six, you need to make sure you can take her out in one burst or you're going to end up dead. If she is level 6 and has a Q on you, back off and wait for it to go. Don't let her jump on you to proc it and then hit you with another immediately. It's where her burst comes from.
Anivia
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Without a junglers help, this can be a somewhat hard lane due to Anivia's passive. Pre-6 Anivia is not a threat if you can dodge the slow moving ball of ice. The problem is, you cannot kill her with your burst. She'll just revive before you can finish her off. Unless you have a jungler helping you of course. Once she hits 6 and has blue, she becomes a much bigger threat and will generally outscale you in the game. If possible, work with your jungler to deny them blue.
Brand
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Bad..ish matchup. You're just outranged and he can trade equally well. Focus on dodging and farming until 6, then going for a kill if you're confident. Be careful not to let his ult bounce between you and tibbers. Goes without saying but dodge his stuns.

He is however relatively vulnerable to ganks.
Cassiopeia
Difficulty
Favors You
A mixed matchup. Cass has range advantage, but if Annie can dodge Cass' poison, stun and walk away she can come out on top. Once they hit six, whoever stuns first will likely win. Unless of course you take cleanse, putting you in a strong position for trades.
Diana
Difficulty
Favors You
* She's melee, so bully her in lane. You should be able to zone her well pre 6. Once she hits 6 obviously make sure you avoid her skillshot (Well, avoid them in general) as that nullifies a lot of her damage. If you try to burst her, make sure you do it with her shield down. Obviously it's harder to burst somebody with a shield up, this is not helped by the fact that Tibbers may well refresh her shield for her.
Evelynn
Difficulty
Favors You
* Another melee and a pretty squishy one at that. This is one you win before 6 and can faceroll afterwards. She will likely go roaming if given an opportunity, try to countergank. Consider boots of mobility.
Fizz
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
If fizz can read your actions or has incredibly fast reactions, they can win this lane. Pre-6, just try and keep a stun up. Harass him with autos. If he charges into you, stun him and walk away. Once you hit 6, just make sure you land the ult and that he doesn't dodge it. Your ultimate is instant, but his reactions are not.

Basically this one is hugely skill dependant.
Galio
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Awful lane. You won't kill a decent Galio. You can't easily go roaming as he can outpush you. He does decent damage to you. Just not fun.
Gragas
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Another bad lane. He can outpoke you well with his barrels. Do your best to avoid them, try to stand away from creeps so he has to choose between farm and harass but try and have creeps between you if in bodyslam range. Harassing him is somewhat pointless due to his passive. He's also pretty hard to burst down at 6. Try to avoid the lane.
Heimerdinger
Difficulty
Favors You
* Honestly, I have not played vs a Heimerdinger since his rework. I imagine it should be in your favour if you avoid harass as he can be all in'ed quite quickly and you can kill him before his turrets kill you.
Karthus
Difficulty
Favors You
I love this lane. He's soooo squishy. Hit him in the face with fireballs. Level 6 burst is a guaranteed kill on him.

If the game does go to lategame and he does decent damage, I'd advise considering a zhonyas to negate his ultimate.
Kassadin
Difficulty
Favors You
This is not an awful lane as you might expect it to be. You just need to make sure you don't let Kass get free Q's onto you. Make sure you have your stun up, if he tries to silence you, make sure you stun him as well and chuck a few autos his way. You will trade semi-decently. Once you both hit six, you can outburst him.

Maybe run AD marks for better harass in his weak early game.
Katarina
Difficulty
Favors You
* Another I have yet to play against post-remake. I have however been playing Kat a fair bit, which means I have a pretty decent idea of how Annie should play against her. She's melee, so as always, harass with autos. Stand away from your creep wave. She'll want to use bouncing blades on it for waveclearing, staying away from it helps you avoid free harass. If she shunpos onto you, do not retaliate with your abilities instantly if possible due to her damage reduction for 1.5 seconds. Once she hits 6, make sure you have a stun ready/close to ready to interrupt her ult. Don't let her dodge your ult with a shunpo, you'll feel rather silly.
Kayle
Difficulty
Favors You
Annie is a somewhat decent counter to Kayle as you can burst her during your stun, making her ult useless in 1v1 situations. However, outside of all ins, Kayle will outtrade you if you do not stun her. You can win this lane, but you need to be smart about it.
Kennen
Difficulty
Favors You
Dodge shurikens, they're bad for your health. Also take note of when his auto attack passive is up, try to make him use it on a minion. If he tries rushing at you, stun him, hit laugh and walk off, or if possible just kill him. Most of his damage is avoidable and you can outtrade his standard autoattacks with some of your own and an ability or two. Easy to burst at 6.
Khazix
Difficulty
Favors You
Stay near your minions so he cannot deal bonus damage to you from his isolation passive thing. His early game damage is extremely high, don't let him get damage on you early levels or it could end very badly for you.

Be careful with using your stuns, as he can all in you fairly effectively if you're badly positioned without stun. If you do have stun and he jumps into you though it should be an easy kill most the time. Play smart and you should win.
Leblanc
Difficulty
Favors You
Playing against LB is never easy. (Unless you're Galio) But Annie deals with her better than most. Don't let her get off free damage. If she Q's you, fire one back. Once you hit six, you can easily combo her. She can do the same to you though. Invest in an early negatron and you just won the lane if you were having trouble.
Lissandra
Difficulty
Favors You
If you avoid standing behind your minions it becomes a lot harder for her to harass you with . Be wary of junglers as she can set up ganks extremely strongly once she's level 6. Stunning her while her is travelling can prevent her escapes.

This is a skill based lane normally with neither champion able to easily kill the other without a mistake being made, however a jungler can win it for either champion.
Lux
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Long range, with kiting abilities and a shield. All the things that counter Annie. As against any champion, dodge skillshots when possible. If she does hit you, try to not let her proc her passive with an autoattack. In the rare times that she will be in range for you to hit her, she can shield your harass. When you try to burst her, if she gets off a shield she will block both a chunk of your front load of burst and then when the shield comes back to her she'll be countering your ignite. Just generally a bad lane. She is relatively susceptible to ganks though if she misses a light binding.

On the plus side, if you're decent at dodging it should be hard for her to kill you as well.
Malzahar
Difficulty
Favors You
Another example of "First full 6 combo wins". Before 6, don't let his malefic visions spread to you from your minions. Harass when possible. Once you hit 6, kill him as soon as possible. If you're standing on his AoE, get off before he ults you on it. Flash if needed.

He will generally push lane in though, allowing easy ganks if your jungler is smart.
Mordekaiser
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
* I can honestly say I've never played this matchup. So can't really say anything with real conviction. But as always against Morde, don't stand in your creeps. Make him choose between CS and harass. If he's in range with shield down, you may as well poke him a bit. Can't help any more than that.

It's unlikely you will him without jungler assistance, but he is likely to push the wave making said assistance easier. Otherwise he will outfarm you, outpush you and outscale you.
Morgana
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
A hard lane. Morg doesn't die easily and can shield your stuns if she predicts well. She can sustain harass well. If you flash in to combo her and she survives, you're pretty much dead. Try and get your kills elsewhere.
Nidalee
Difficulty
Favors You
Healing and jumping away does not do much if you can completely burst her down. It goes without saying, but dodge spears. If you cannot do that then this lane is unwinnable. If you can dodge them it's easy.
Orianna
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Orianna can zone you pretty easily with her range. She can outtrade if close. She can also shield some of your burst if she predicts well. This is a bad matchup. Not much you can do in it either.

Pantheon
Difficulty
Favors You
* I've only played against one Pantheon mid. I was Lux. I have never lost midlane so hard as I lost it that game, Annie should however do a better job of it. He has decent poke and burst. As always, don't let him get off free poke, fire something back at him. I'm unsure on how easily you can burst Pantheon at 6. But hey, go for it anyway. You're Annie. You shouldn't really give a fuck.
Riven
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
* Never played against a Riven mid as Annie and I never want to. She can shield your damage, while jumping into you, stunning you and crushing your healthbar. You definitely need armour in this matchup and you need to be very careful without your stun.
Ryze
Difficulty
Favors You
A fairly decent matchup. Don't try trading without your stun up. If you play right you should win this early. If he rushes mana you can crush him at six. If he rushes banshees, just push to tower and go ganking.
Swain
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Boo, Swain. Make sure you avoid his snares. You can trade favourably pre-6 as long as you dodge them. Once you hit 6, try to burst him. If you get the kill, good. You're going to need it. Post-6 and after he buys some defensive stuff/gets blue buff, he becomes a real pain to deal with and you might as well try and get kills elsewhere.
Syndra
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
The burst potential of Syndra probably outclasses even your own. Be very careful once she's level 6 and you're at around 75% Hp, if you get stunned in that situation you're going to die.

Try and get a jungler to help you if free as she has no escape.
Talon
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Forget what I said previously in earlier versions of this guide, this is an awful matchup. You need to rush a seekers armguard to stand a chance and even then it's not easy. His outranges any of your abilities, other than ult. This means he can almost always get the first damage in an all in situation which a huge advantage.

If you can bait his dash into you while your jungler ganks it can easily result in you getting a kill. If you survive that though is another question.
Twistedfate
Difficulty
Favors You
Yay, more squishy champions. Dodge his wildcards whenever he throws them. Try and trade when pick a card is on cooldown.

Once you hit 6, you can easily burst him down from full HP. Try and have his path towards top or bot lane warded to help prevent him ganking with his ult.
Veigar
Difficulty
Favors You
Consider running cleanse or taking merc treads. If you do so, you can avoid his dark matter, which makes up a large amount of his burst. Hit him in the face with fire when you can, he'll want to farm baleful strike. Forcing trades benefits you. Once you're 6 it's an easy kill. Take a more tanky build vs him, stacking AP will just get you one shotted later on.
Xerath
Difficulty
Favors You
If you can dodge his stuns pre 6, you have the advantage here. Harass him when possible, focusing on dodging his stuff. Once he hits 6, if he drops his stun mark on you, flash at him and kill him first. Nobody ever expects aggression in that situation.
Yasuo
Difficulty
Favors You
I have not even seen a Yasuo in the game yet, let alone played agaisnt one as Annie. I can say nothing of any use here whatsoever.
Zed
Difficulty
Favors You
Rush a seekers armguard and you've pretty much won this lane as long as you play smart. Avoid poke, both from him and his shadow. You can outtrade if you have a stun up.
Ziggs
Difficulty
Favors You
If you can dodge his bombs well, you'll win this lane, If you cannot, he will. Pretty simple. Another easy champ to blow up once you hit six, but that won't mean anything if you're poked out of lane and get behind. With his passive up, he will probably win any trade where you don't stun him.
Zilean
Difficulty
Favors You
One mistake I see bad players make is walking away once Zilean puts a bomb on you. Do not do this. Chase him and hit with everything you have while he's got stuff on CD. Getting a point in shield early could be smart, as you know when the damage will hit you. That 10 extra magic resist could be quite helpful. When trying to burst him, you need to do it while he is stunned. Don't give him a chance to ult himself.
Zyra
Difficulty
Favors You
* I'm honestly not sure how Zyra is these days after her broken release state, I'm guessing she's still very strong. I feel this matchup will depend on your jungler. In a 1v1 without intervention, Zyra's range will likely trouble you, much like orianna. However, once you hit 6, if you have a strong ganking jungler a kill is practically assured everytime you have flash/ult up.

Item choices

Comprehensive item list: When to get what

Boots

These should be your standard boots. They maximise your damage. You want damage.

Good for ganking mid game. If you won't be able to kill your mid lane, or other lanes seem highly gankable most the time, these can be a good purchase.

Very situational, but can be effective. If an opponent relies on CC to burst you down, these are worth looking at. For example or . Although, you could still just go sorcs and kill them first. Decisions, decisions.



Early game item choices
This along with sorc shoes, standard runes and masteries will be causing you to do close to true damage against your opponents with MR runes, making them easier to burst. The health will also make you a bit bulkier. This is an effective item choice if you want lane dominance and early/mid game power in general. Do not upgrade this to Liandry's though (Explained later) and if you reach full build you should probably sell it, however it's very rare where you will reach that point.


Slightly less early power than the haunting guise, but builds into a deathfire grasp which is a core item on Annie. The CDR is nice to have as well.


Get this if you're struggling in lane against heavy harass or you really want to go RoA this game. Generally not a good choice if you want to dominate your lane as it gives you no killing power.


This works really well with boots of mobility.

Boots of mobility and mejai's? I know what you're thinking. "This guy's an idiot." Well, this build is great for carrying soloqueue games.

If you go this route, the aim is to push your lane out. Walk to either top or bottom lane in no time at all, and kill them. Or hell, go into the enemy jungle and hunt for them. If you can do this successfully, mejai's obviously fits in well. This is incredibly effective in soloqueue, as the more lanes you win for your team the more chance you have of winning the game. If you win mid and bot lane for your team, you will win the vast majority of your games.

Especially useful against AD champions. Pretty much a must buy against champions like Talon.


Core item choices


The bad news is that this no longer scales with AP at all. The good news is that it still helps you blow up a single target especially effectively. It goes without saying, but make sure you lead your combo with this.

The king of AP items. This gives you the most AP on a single item and makes all your other AP items more effective. Rabadons is never a bad choice. You want to be killing things and this helps you kill things well.

As mentioned earlier in the guide, Annie benefits hugely from HP once she has a few points put into . Add on good lane sustain and decent AP, and this is a great item for Annie when bought at the right time. However, the time it takes to charge to effectiveness means you need to get this relatively early for it to be at full strength in mid game teamfights, which is the point of the game where Annie is most useful.


I can't understate how important magic pen is. If an enemy has 100 magic resist, you will only do 50% of your raw damage. With just a void staff, you will reduce their magic resist to 60, causing your attacks to do 62% of your raw damage. This is not even factoring in the AP the item itself gives. However, remember that this item works as a % of the enemy MR and the less they have the less useful this is compared to building raw AP. Also remember that you should be focusing the squishy target, so just because an enemy tank has 200 MR, if the targets you're going to focus only have 50MR do not bother with this item.

If you find yourself flash initiating fights for your team, this could be a very good item to pick up. Otherwise you could find yourself getting instagibbed once your stun wears off. If you flash, R, Q, W then use the active forcing your opponents to focus somebody else, you can then come out and use E, Q, W straight away giving you another AoE stun.



Other items to consider

This is a relatively situational item but it does have its uses. For a start, it once again counters high burst AP champs that may be able to otherwise combo you from full to nothing. It also works well with a double AP comp (Or with any champion that does moderate AP damage), as the reduction of MR benefits any magic damage dealt to the target. However, for the aura to work you're going to have to be near the enemy team. This makes it synergise well with the zhonyas tactic mentioned above. It does also allow for better trading in lane against AP mids if you get it during the laning phase.


This item is relatively cost-inefficient. Mediocre health and AP. You're paying for the slow here. Two of your skills are AoE so apply only a minor slow. I personally don't think it's worth having a poweful slow on only one ability, unless you're up against somebody who really needs the movement speed, but even then there should be people better suited for countering said champion. However, if you just need a chunk of health and it's too late to get a RoA then it isn't an awful choice.

This item is great. If you have an important fight coming up make sure you have this active.

The health and mana is great on Annie, however the active can easily be popped by any poke ability. Situationally could be useful as a late game defensive choice against certain champions that can win a fight with one skillshot (Blitzcrank) or any champion that needs to hit all spells to combo you (Leblanc)

Your spell combos will be done too fast with no attacks in between, meaning you lose proc chances. It could possibly work well in a glass cannon build if you sit at the back and fire Q's and autoattacks every two seconds with 700AP. I'm yet to try it. But until I do, I'm leaving this item here.

Okay, this isn't an outright bad item. It gives okay AP, nice CDR and it does let you spam without blue buff. However, I just do not consider it to be an optimal choice. Consider it as an option if you're not going to be getting your own blue buff and need some additional MR. Very situational.

This is something I have never tried, but could be quite effective in theory. As I've repeatedly established, makes building HP on Annie more effective than most other champions. With RoA and Warmogs...you're not going to go down easily. It goes without saying that this dents your damage and as such should be saved until after you have several main AP items. This is also reliant on your team having a good damage output, as you'll be taking more of a tanky stun role than damage dealer.

Cheap and effective. Useful if you're being targeted by CC, but that probably means you're in a bad position or the enemy team isn't very smart. Situationally useful though.

I just don't think these stats benefit Annie enough. The CDR is nice, but masteries, DFG, blue and blue elixir will leave you pretty much at the CDR cap. There are just better choices generally. Maybe consider if they have a Mundo who's being problematic.

Items to avoid

You do not need the mana. This is bad. Oh so bad.


Deals damage based on enemy current health. After a combo they should be very low health, if alive at all, this item is relatively useless on Annie.

This item is great on bruisers. But for Annie...well I'm not a huge fan of it. I think it simply costs too much for what it gives. The revive means nothing if you die in a bad position, it just means you'll get instadropped when you're back up. It can make the difference between winning or losing a fight...but it could also be totally useless. For the cost, it's simply not worth the gamble in my view.

Early Game

Last hitting and trading
  • Try to last hit with autoattacks, saving your stun to try and zone your opponent. If they come for CS, hit them with an auto, Q, auto, auto. If your stun isn't up, feel free to last hit with Q.

  • Using Q and W costs too much mana for harass, so it is not recommended to do repeatedly. If you're sitting at near full mana feel free to though.

Going for the kill
  • By the time you're level 6, they should hopefully be low enough to be burst to 0. If you took a point in shield, try and keep your passive charges on 3. When an opportunity comes up, activate your shield and then instantly tibbers them. If you have no points in shield, keep your stun one off full and try to land a W + Tibbers on them, flash if you need to do so.

  • After stunning them, follow up with Q+ignite, and a few autos and they should be dead, especially if they were effectively harassed earlier.

Other things to remember
  • If you're unable to kill your own lane or another lane is struggling, look to gank them.

  • Make sure you keep farming, even if you're playing a gank heavy style you shouldn't fall too far behind in CS, at the very least make sure you keep up in levels.

  • Remember to ward. Other guides cover this in great detail, so look for them if you want to know where to be warding.

Mid Game

Look for ganks, farm, etc.

Teamfighting
  • Mid game teamfights is where Annie shines the most. If you're ahead of your mid lane opponent, use this time to snowball the game. Force teamfights whenever possible if your ult is off of CD. At this point, you can probably drop anybody but tanks from full to zero.

  • If you're not doing so well, Annie is still great in teamfights, so if other lanes are doing well you can still look for fights and you act as a stunbot.

Strategy
  • At this point in the game, you probably want to be maximising your AoE damage. Hit as many targets as possible to damage and disable them. For example, if you have the choice of dropping a tibbers on Janna/Lee/Brand or the lone Vayne, you should go for the group at this stage in the game. This is of course assuming a squishy opponent is not ridiculously fed, if they are you can just drop everything on them and take them out of the fight.

  • If you're winning fights, keep taking objectives and pushing towers. If not, play more conservatively. Try to catch people out of position, or Tibbers stun a large group of people and try and win the fight from there.

Late Game and Teamfighting

Late game, one fight can win or throw you a game. A lot of the action will likely take place around baron nashor, as the buff it gives is extremely strong and allows teams to siege towers. Make sure you're with or near your team at all times at this point. If you get picked off for free, you just lost your team the game.


The later the game is, the less effective Annie becomes as enemies become bulkier. You can fulfil various roles at this point.

The initiator
  • A flash ult with your stun ready is one of the best initiations in the game. You need to wait until you can hit three or more enemies ideally. Make sure your team is ready to follow it up if you do go for it. Taking Zhonyas if you're initiating can be very effective, as explained in the item section.

The anti-carry
  • By this point, assuming their AD carry is remotely competent, they will be the main threat in these fights. Chances are though, if you can get in range you can instantly drop them. Wait for the proper time, (Ideally once the fight has been initiated) flash and kill their AD. If successful, transition into one of the two below mentioned roles.

Stunbot+AoE damage
  • In this role, you just want to be stunning and hitting as many people as possible. I explain how to do this better in the combination section below. If you're in range of a priority target, use your Q on them.

Protect the carry
  • Once again, take advantage of your stuns. If your AD carry is significantly stronger than theirs, use your stuns to disable anybody that's threatening your carry.

You can obviously do more than what I've just listed and swith between roles mid-fight. But they're what I find the most basic approches.

Spell combinations

Nobody in the game has spammable AoE stuns like Annie does. If you can maximise your stuns on groups of players, it can leave your team in a very strong position.

Maximising stuns

To maximise your AoE stun capabilities, use the following method.

If you lead with and follow it up with , , . Your next incinerate will be a stun. Now, assuming you have close to 40% CDR, that's roughly five seconds between two stuns, with your enemy spending almost two of those five seconds stunned.

After that, just clean up whatever is left. If you managed to stun multiple targets twice, you should have easily won the fight.

In roughly seven seconds of fighting, your opponents just spent 3.5 seconds stunned. This is without even taking your team into account yet.


Maximising damage onto a single target

If there's somebody you just have to absolutely kill, the following combo will maximise damage. This combo can be pulled off in around three seconds, with proper CDR.

(If applicable), , , , , , .

If your target has survived that, you're hitting the wrong thing. It certainly takes fast fingers to pull that off, but once you can it is worth it. You also have a stun ready to be procced for the next wave of attacks.

Mathstuff: Effective HP and magic penetration

Effective HP
  • Effective health, or effective HP is the total amount of raw (Pre-resist) damage your champion can take. It's calculated with both your resistances and health.

  • As Annie's Molten shield increases your resistances by 60, this makes health items considerably more effective than they normally would. As established, 60 points of resistances = 60% increased effective health. An extra 60% of 4000HP is a lot more than 60% of 2000HP.


Magic penetration.
  • This allows you to mitigate the enemy magic resist. There is both flat and % magic resist reduction, but which do you get?

  • Well, with the change of season 3 and the way that magic pen is calculated, it's become a lot harder to choose what to get. They've made it so buying both % and flat magic pen can work well together. Just be careful not to spend a needless amount of gold on magic pen as you'll end up lacking AP.

Trolololol - AD Annie, Support Annie, Jungle Annie and Full Tank Annie.

Before I start, I'd like to make this completely clear. This section is for fun, although these builds do all somewhat work, please don't be surprised if you get reported for using them in ranked. They're not meant to be competitively viable.

However, Annie can perform well in any role for the team, except for top. Here are some basic builds/strategies for the other roles.

Please note, this guide was completed before support Annie was even considered, let alone popular. There are probably guides out to help you play that better, do not take the following as genuine advice. I'm just leaving what I originally wrote.

AD Annie

This is the one that I'd consider the strongest of the alternative roles.

What Annie brings: One of the longest autoattack ranges in the game. A self buff which reduces your damage taken and hurts the enemy the AD for autoattacking you. Great CC/early burst. Can lead to easy kills in lane (Especially with the help of a jungler) and helps you protect yourself in team fights. She also has extremely easy last hitting with her Q.

What she lacks: The biggest thing that she misses is attack speed. It's pretty awful. An escape (Other than stunning) would also be nice. Lastly, some sort of AD steroid, this limits her viability late game.

Runes/Masteries: Running attack speed reds can make up for her limited attack speed. As already mentioned, you can last hit with Q, meaning you can live without the flat AD reds. Other than that, I'd build her standard AD. You MIGHT want to take the hybrid pen quints, but I'm not expecting anybody to spend the IP on them for a "troll" build.

Build: I'm not entirely sure the best way to build her, I need to play it some more. I think going a triforce/BT/GA build may be the best option at this time, as going the full DPS IE/PD combo is still going to result in you doing less damage than the enemy AD anyway. You're not going to be a late game champ regardless, so probably best not to build like one.

How to play: You should only pick AD Annie if you have a support to help you CC/burst a target. Alistar and Taric would be excellent choices. In lane is where you are strongest. Make sure you make the most of this time, harass when possible with your superior attack range (Unless you're against Cait). With your stun up, you should be able to effectively zone if with earlier mentioned supports. If you do get an opening to burst them, go for it! Should easily be a kill post-6. Get a jungler to assist for a definite kill.

In teamfights, stay safe and attack whatever you can. If somebody dives you, stun them. If your team is quite far ahead, play more aggressive. Stun as many of them as you can, just try not to get killed and throw the game.

Support Annie

What Annie brings:: CC and burst. Should be very strong at maintaining bush control and zoning when ahead.

What she lacks: Sustain/damage mitigation. You're pure offence, going for the burst. This leaves you quite vulnerable to poke.

Runes/Masteries: Go standard support. You MAY want to take more offensive based masteries if you're going to be ballsy.

Build: Gold items. Wards. Some more wards. Aura items. You're a support. Try and hit CDR cap to maximise your stuns in fights. Boots of lucidity + shurelias will do the job well enough.

How to play: Like AD Annie, you should only pick this when laning with a bursty champion. Tristana, Graves and Corki would be very good choices. Play her like you would Taric, just with more burst and less Auras. Try to zone the enemy by gaining bush control. Remember to ward.

In teamfights, if you're being the aggressors, try and stun as many people as possible, you'd make a good initiator. In closer fights, try and protect your AD if they have anybody diving them. Maximise your stuns.


Jungle Annie

Okay, I've admittedly never done this. But I know it can work, may be a better way of building this, if so let me know.

What Annie brings: "Have you seen my bear Tibbers?" An enemy has been slain. (Dem ganks)

What she lacks: Not the best clear time after a few levels. Somewhat blue reliant. Weak to counterjungling.

Runes/Masteries: Magic pen reds, armour yellows, your choice on blues and movement speed quints. I'd go 0/21/9 for masteries, taking the extended buff duration.

Build: Start boots/3 (Or maybe cloth 5..but SHOULD be fine boots/3) Get a hextech asap. Should probably just go for a slightly tankier version of her normal build. I'd suggest going boots of mobility for stronger ganks.

How to play: Start with molten shield. Lowers damage done to you and does respectable damage back to the enemy. Get a very strong leash on blue. Alternate between levelling W and E. Look for ganks at all times, especially when your ult is up. Should be free kills assuming you don't mess up.


Full tank Annie

What Annie brings: STUNS. STUNS EVERYWHERE. Her shield also increases her survivability by quite a large amount. Enemies will continue to see you as a threat because you're Annie and will focus you regardless.

What she lacks: Sustained damage, may just be ignored once you've used your initial spells. Gapcloser/general mobility.

Runes/Masteries: IDK. Something tanky.

Build: Boots of choice/frozen heart/abyssal/aegis would be my core build in a standard game (In no particular order). Gives you some AP so you do some damage, strong resistances and most importantly, auras. They're OP. After this, I'd probably build a warmogs or two. Because everyone likes health. Rylai's would actually be a very strong item for this build. Health and AP are great on her, but most importantly the slow will allow you to peel better.

How to play: Are you stunning things? If yes, good. If not, start doing so. You have a very strong initiation. Especially if co-ordinated with something like a Malphite ult. You're also great for protecting your AD. Stun anybody trying to dive them and slow them with Ryali's if you have it. You could in theory also shield your AD by using Tibbers after you've summoned him. Put him in front of your AD to make it harder for them to click your AD. Never actually tried this, but hey, it might work.

Final Comments

This was my first guide, looking for constructive criticism.

I hope you enjoyed it and hopefully learned something. I'd rather you didn't downvote my guide for disagreeing with a thing or two in my guide, this covers a LOT of stuff, so everybody is bound to disagree with something. ;)

Special thanks
Xeenvs and Kanova for proofreading my guide.
Xeenvs for proofreading my guide again when I changed most of it.
CynicalEffect for writing such an awesome guide.
Riot for making such an awesome champion.
You guys for reading this whole guide. Unless you didn't read this whole guide, in which case I want my thanks back.

....Yeah, that's about it.

Thanks for reading.

Comments

April 11, 2014 - 12:39 PM #1

http://www.linkbucks.com/KtnP

December 22, 2013 - 07:10 PM #2

Okay, scratch that. Completely updated.

Matchup section completely redone. Items redone. Runes and masteries cleaned up.


All in all a giant update. See you guys next year for the next update.

December 18, 2013 - 02:21 AM #3

Somewhat updated for new season. Very little work done to it though....meh

September 23, 2013 - 12:49 PM #4

Very good guide with very good tips.

I use to play annie mid or bot as carry AP (mostly with a sona as support) and it works very good, but you have to play absolutely with ward and wit hthe support.



Other thing I want to add is that I start with a droan ring, I have more power to start the game and a better mana regeneration, which is convenient in early game.

August 29, 2013 - 05:28 AM #5

As of now (Or the last month), this guide is discontinued.

August 14, 2013 - 01:40 PM #6

I would like to point out that the Lliandri's Torment is very useful, especially in conjunction with ryjals scepter, as Voyboy swears by this combo . double damage , based on % health , when you use stun. or , when you have ryjals, on every spell, including tibbers aura , which is highly useful.

July 20, 2013 - 08:18 PM #7

what did you edit this time? :)

July 19, 2013 - 08:27 PM #8

Johnatan: Thanks for the feedback. The jungle section is quite out of date (Forgot to update that part for season 3). Will edit your advice in on my next update.



higgabes: You have good taste.

July 19, 2013 - 09:59 AM #9

jecht <3

July 19, 2013 - 06:28 AM #10

Excelent guide. I'd probably add Nunu as a hard lane. He has an insane sustain that nullifies the damage incoming from Annie. And I did an Annie jungle twice, she needs a lot of mana to work it, so build the AP item for the jungle (you know, the shit that gives spellvamp), prob ROA and the rest keeps the same. The rest is just the same I have experienced since season 1, so great job writting it.

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