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DARIUS BUILD GUIDE: (S4 Update) Dunking in Top Lane (And Every Other Lane) by callme3603919917

by callme3603919917 (last updated 1 month ago)

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9
Greater Mark of Attack Damage(+8.55 attack damage)
9
Greater Seal of Armor(+12.69 armor)
5
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist(+0.75 magic resist per level (13.5 at champion level 18))
4
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist(+5.36 magic resist)
3
Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage(+6.75 attack damage)
View Rune Details
Summoner Spells
View Summoner Details

Starting

Full Item Build

View Item Details
9
21
0
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
9 Offense
mastery 1 2/2
mastery 2 2/2
mastery 3 0/2
mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 3/3
mastery 4 1/3
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 1/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 4/4
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
21 Defense
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
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
0 Utility
View Mastery Details
Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Hemorrhage
QDecimate
WCrippling Strike
EApprehend
RNoxian Guillotine

Introduction

I have been playing Darius for quite some time now and have found him the most suited to my playstyle, my favorite lane (Top), and he's arguably one of the strongest (laners) top lane champions in the game. Darius is a fairly easy champion to pick up and play right away but like any other champion, he takes a while to master. He is one of the most fun champions in my opinion for one reason: The dunks. This is one of the most attractive things about Darius and probably the reason most people play him. Darius makes a lot of people mad because his ult just does stupid amounts of damage throughout the whole game. His bleed is a DoT just like Singed or Teemo or malz, people just hate DoTs. He also sounds exactly like The Boulder if you have ever watched Avatar: The Last Airbender when Toph is in the underground earthbending tournament. When Darius was first released, he was very popular, he was the absolute king of the top lane, and although you don't see him very often, he is STILL the king, he has very few counters, and 60% of the time you're countered, you're still going to win lane, Darius's early trades are just so one sided that the enemy has to play perfectly to win a trade.

Darius has about the same power S4, I feel like you have a few more options in starting items and mastery setups, which is nice. Your final builds will be relatively the same.

Runes

This is my standard rune page on Darius, armor is necessary on all tops, all the time, AD scales really well with Darius and is basically a must, I take half scaling MR and half flat, because almost always the enemy team will have at least a little AP, even if it's only on a few spells. The scaling vs. flat mr is really sort of preference, I take scaling for the better late game since Darius's late game is notoriously weak. AD quints are there for you to bully lane even harder, AD just scales so well with Darius it's hard to give up. Movespeed Quints are viable, but I have found with a triforce, that it is very unnecessary, the phage provides adequate movespeed for you to catch your targets. Lifesteal is not needed on Darius, as AD scales much better, early and late game. If you want to take one crit red, go for it, it can win you early trades sometimes.

Masteries

mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
9 Offense
mastery 1 2/2
mastery 2 2/2
mastery 3 0/2
mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 3/3
mastery 4 1/3
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 1/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 4/4
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
21 Defense
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
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
0 Utility
This is my preferred 9/21 page, Double-edged sword is a no-brainer if you're melee, I take CDR over attack speed because it is more valuable on Darius, especially since Darius has an auto-attack reset on his w, you rarely will benefit from the attack speed. I take all the AD i can get in the offense tree, because it's great on Darius, and the other ones don't really make sense on Darius.

In the Defense tree, I take block for extra trade potential early game, hp regen to make up for Darius's lack of sustain. Unyielding is basically block again, so I take that, I take extra hp, again, for early game trades. Oppression is great all around, especially in teamfights, it lets you brush off some damage from cc'ed opponents. After the Perseverance nerfs, I no longer take it, you really don't need a ton of regen on Darius, Second Wind is nice, but you don't have any natural healing and won't get much lifesteal, Instead, I opt for 4 points in Tenacious to give you a stronger teamfight presence. Hardiness is extra armor, just all around good, If they're mainly AP though, or you're Darius mid you can switch to the MR part of the tree. Swiftness is good to help you prevent getting kited.

Utility tree is just silly for Darius, I would literally only go into if you want to sacrifice 4 AD in the offense tree to get a reduced recall time.

Item Builds

Starting Build(s)
D-shield (better usually)
D-blade
Build 3
5
Doran's Shield + HP pot: This is great in basically all situations and is safer than the Doran's blade. You get great sustain and trade potential from the stats on shield vs champs that auto often. This is also better against jungler ganks than Blade which is the main reason I prefer it over Blade, as Darius typically gets ganked often. I start this in just about every matchup.

Doran's Blade + HP pot: This is very good against low jungle pressure (ap junglers that don't auto a lot, ex. amumu) and against weak laners with low poke that you can abuse all lane, Nasus, Malphite, etc. You can start this in the matchups you would normally start D-Shield as well you just have to look out for ganks and be aware that it is less forgiving if you lose a trade. The advantages however is better poke from your Q and straight up trading vs. champs that don't auto a lot. You want to take doran's blade vs. any champ that has no chance to outtrade you early, especially squishies.

Cloth 5 can be useful against AD casters that don't auto a lot, like pantheon, I rarely use this start but it can be useful and provides some added sustain.
Final Build(s)
Standard Final Items
This is a standard build vs. most team comps, you grab early damage and utility from triforce, merc treads vs. moderate cc and some AP, Randuin's is great in teamfights and is the best armor item in the game right now. Banshee's veil is great vs heavy poke via spell damage and gives solid MR, GA helps Darius's teamfight presence and gives extra MR and Armor. This is a basic explanation of a standard build, for more in-depth explanations of item choices, look further down the guide. CDR isn't really needed anymore because the 20 second refresh on your ult is more than enough in fights, when it was 12, your ult would go on CD before the fight ended, and you needed the CDR. CDR is still good, but I would prioritize damage, resistances/HP, and mana before CDR.
Build Order
*UPDATED*
Lately, I've been feeling that grabbing Hydra first gives you a bigger power spike in lane, since triforce doesn't make you that strong until you have it fully bought which takes a lot of time. I think I'd prefer to get just Tiamat for the AD and waveclear, then start into my Triforce as I don't care about the lifesteal on Darius from finishing the Tiamat, and you want Triforce as early as possible for mid-game fights. This also gives you a nice fallback because if you somehow get smashed in lane then you could skip Triforce altogether and then head into one of your tank items. In the case you get wrekced in lane, I probably would actually finish the Tiamat.

Situational Items

Frozen Heart
This is a great item on Darius. This provides mana which Darius needs in teamfights to land multiple dunks, gives a lot of armor which is helpful vs fed ADs, The passive is also great vs AD as it reduces attack speeds. The CDR is more luxury than anything, as it brings your ult back up off of CD very often if you managed to miss a reset. I take this not very often unless they have tons of AD, and I skipped a triforce, which I rarely do.
Frozen Mallet
This item is good if you need extra sticking power on the ADC, with a triforce, I rarely find it hard to stick to the ADC, the problem is usually getting to the ADC, I would only get this if you're the only one that can deal with the ADC, and you have to have it to get to him. Rarely do I buy this since Triforce is usually enough movespeed to keep me on the AD.
Hexdrinker
This is a solid item vs. heavy AP comps, I would take this instead of triforce if you're getting stomped in lane by an AP, or If you're winning lane, I would still rush triforce, but then swap this with hydra. The shield gives you great trading power in lane, especially from behind. don't finish Maw until late game.
Sunfire Cape
If you can split push safely, (VERY LOW catch potential on enemy team) I would buy this instead of Randuin's, This gives you better split-push potential, but a bit weaker stats in teamfights. It's really almost never better than Randuin's.
The Bloodthirster
This is good if you're running Darius bot lane, or if you are ridiculously fed. I find myself getting this in games where I'm totally crushing in CS and Kills. This adds tons of Damage to your ult and spells it's insane.
Spirit Visage
This item can be good if the other team has very little poke damage from spells, but still a ton of magic damage. This would be swapped for the banshee's veil. I also wouldn't buy this unless you have a lifesteal item.
Locket of the Iron Solari
If i'm getting absolutely crushed in lane, or my teams getting crushed and no one can afford Magic resist, I'll buy this. This gives you a lot of cheap stats and a great Passive MR Aura, and a great aoe shield active. Very good item if you're just behind. I wouldn't get a GA if you bought this. This is such a good item on Darius for MR if you're looking for another tank item late game.
Spirit of the Elder Lizard
Always on Darius jungle, Gives CDR and AD that's great with Darius's kit, the ancient golem is viable, but this is just better.
Last Whisper
If they're stacking armor and you just can't get them low enough with your basic spells to ult them, pick this up. It should give you the extra damage needed to finish off their armor stacking tanks/bruisers. If I need to do the damage for my team, I'll buy this instead of another tank item. If you're really fed you can build this after triforce or if you don't need to be tanky.
Blade of the Ruined King
I have never found a situation to buy this, but I do see Darius's with it so i thought it deserved an explanation. This item gives you great dueling potential and can be helpful in teamfights from the active, but the stats are very mediocre on Darius, lifesteal and attackspeed are favored less than AD, which it gives you very little of.
Zeke's Herald
I actually love this item, If my team is all AD, I find myself getting this rather than a Black Cleaver, It gives better stats for Darius, More HP, More CDR, while being still beneficial to your team.
The Black Cleaver
If you don't like Zeke's and your team is all AD, and no one on your team wants to get it, pick it up. Sometimes I'll pick this up as a sixth item if I'm feeling like I do no damage.
Mercurial Scimitar
This is great for when you need damage, but they have tons of CC, usually a malz or WW. I grab this on occasion when i'm carrying and need damage, but I'm having difficulty getting to their carries.

Skills

Hemorrhage
One of the best passives in the game. Early in laning this will pump out tons of extra damage onto each one of your spells and autos to win trades. A trade that looks lost can be won afterwards if you managed to get enough stacks onto them. This passive is rarely accounted for by the enemy laner and the damage is hard to calculate, making this a great hidden force. Keep in mind you should always try to refresh the stacks if possible when you know they're about to wear off. A part of this many don't remember is that you get movespeed for the number of enemies with bleed stacks on them, You should use your while being ganked to stack this for extra movespeed as there is no delay in the cast time.
Decimate
This is your Bread and Butter, Meat and Potatoes, Peanut Butter and Jelly, Aphromoo and Doublelift spell. This spins your axe in a Circle and allows you to hit multiple enemies in a short radius. The outer ring of it (the blade) will do extra damage to champions. In honor of Morello: \\\\\\\"This is what separates the good Darius's from the great ones.\\\\\\\" A Great Darius will hit with his blade 100% of the time. This is what you should practice with Darius. You should be able to reposition and kite to hit people with the outer portion of the spell every time. This can win you trades and turn around ganks easily. Be wary when using it in lane as it will naturally push the lane.
Crippling Strike
An auto attack reset with increased damage on your auto and and auto attack and movement speed slow on your target. This ability is great for trading in longer fights as the cooldown is reduced based on the amount of stacks on your opponent. 1 second per stack. You should always use this spell after you pull someone in to lock them down. To maximize damage, weave an auto in before and after this spell. This also melts towers.
Apprehend
A great catching tool both in lane and out. This can pull multiple enemies in a cone into you. Use this in lane to pull in enemies to trade and use this in combination with to catch an enemy out of position in a team fight. The flash-hook is your best tool in teamfights and can win your team an entire fight with a good one. A cool note to add is that this will disrupt Shyvana's ult over the wall, If you are on one side of a wall and have vision of a Shyvana, or fiddle, about to ult over the wall towards you or your team, you can use this over the wall and it will smash the shyvana into it, stopping her from making it over the wall (It sounds weird, but it can be useful). This also gives you some useful Armor pen. that helps transfer your q damage into the late game.
Noxian Guillotine
This is Darius. This is your infamous Dunk. You jump up in the air, and slam your axe directly through the enemies forehead, it just looks and feels awesome, It also makes a great noise. It resets on killings blows and does more damage with each stack of
You should always try to build up 5 stacks on an enemy to get the full damage, but if not possible, just get is many as you can. You should ALWAYS use this to finish off enemies. The few seconds it takes off of the enemies life is a few seconds of spells and autos your team won't use, and a few seconds of cc and damage your team won't receive. This also gives great pentakill potential.

Updates (Important sort of)

3/3/13

Darius' Ult was changed to no longer fully refresh on a killing blow, he gets the refresh but he can only use it again for another 12 seconds after the kill before it goes on cooldown. If he gets another kill during this time he gets another 12 seconds, I believe.

This was basically put in place to stop him from being able to snowball as hard in lane, and it's very similar to the Riven nerf. They wanted to keep his very good team fighting potential by still allowing him the reset.

Basically, now that it only refreshes for a short time, you want to only use it to secure a kill, if you're not 100% sure you'll get the kill otherwise, then use it. You now have to decide whether you want to risk them possibly getting away, or if you want to have the CD. I will say most of the time that you will want to use your ult, ESPECIALLY in multi-enemy situations. This change to his ult hasn't varied my Darius gameplay a lot but it has changed it somewhat and is worth noting.

12/3/13

In an AMA:
"Any plans to make Darius’ ult fun again?

Morello: Actually, we got the Darius thing in playtests now. Just have to wait to get some of the other fighters in gear and some art resources.
It won’t be watered down if we do this version – not worth doing if you don’t go ham.

Darius's ult may be getting some sort of a change in the future.

I have been lazy in updating this section.

3/4/2014: HUGE Updates to almost every section of the guide, I hope everyone enjoys the improved quality of the guide, keep Dunking!

Summoner Spells



Explanation:

is probably the most OP spell in the game and you'll see it used just about 99% of the time. This is a nice escape that will get you out of trouble. You can use it both offensively and defensively. Especially good for flash-pulls or flash-dunks. You basically need this on Darius as he has no escapes. I would always take this unless you prefer ghost, they serve almost the same purpose but I think flash is a little stronger for most situations. In case you didn't know this is a blink ability that can go over walls and has a pretty high CD.

is better on some champions like and but a good into a can set up a perfect initiation for a team fight. Take it if you like it better, this can work just as well as flash and you can ghost-pull or dunk but flash is faster and harder to predict, AND you can get over walls.

is also one of the strongest spells in the game. Most bruisers top and AP carries mid will take this as it provides a solid way to secure your kills. This paired with Darius' bleed damage can be nasty and even pick you up some unexpected kills. You can use this before you ult to get there health down faster and finish them with a dunk, it's a pretty nice trick. This pairs really well offensively with all your skills and you should think about taking this over everything else as it provides the most damage for Darius. In case you also didn't know, this does true damage over 5 seconds to a champion based on level. That sounds a lot like your passive, except the passive is magic damage.

could also be viable but I believe overall that ignite is stronger. You don't need the CC and ignite pairs better with your passive. Your w already slows attask speed and ms so this is overkill. You would basically use this when you're out of range to catch up but you already have flash for that.

always when jungling. Don't take smite exhaust take smite flash, he already has a ton of cc and doesn't need exhaust. The flash pulls are also ridiculous for ganking.

You could take this instead of ignite against high burst damage champs such as Riven. This gives you a decent shield but you win almost every exchange anyway and ignite will help more for exchanges on Darius anyways.

Not needed on Darius unless you plan on not buying wards all game. Reveals a portion of the map, so it's not at all a bruiser spell.

You don't have mana problems, never take this. Unless you really, really want a pentakill and don't think you'll have enough mana, don't even consider it.

This really isn't something to take on Darius, the CC removal could be useful, but the damage from ignite is much too powerful. Basically never take this.

Ignite will be taken by most top champs so essentially barrier would be a better choice, this spell isn't super good right now and is mainly a support spell. You could bait people, but people already underestimate Darius' damage so you don't need it.

No, this spell sucks, don't die a lot and you won't need it. It instantly spawns you back, which is only good late game, but the CD is still like 5 minutes, so just get a GA instead.

This is a really good spell after the changes. I find myself taking this over ignite most of the time now. Ignite is still really good if you want to get kills, but tp is actually good in a lot of counterpick matchups and Darius can make pretty solid plays with tp.

Triforce Explanation

A big difference in my build from a lot of other Darius's is the triforce. The triforce provides a ton of useful stats to Darius and gives him a huge powerspike around the time you finish it at level 8-9ish. I'll start breaking down each component. The phage is the most useful part, as it gives Darius a huge amount of needed mobility, gives HP and AD which are both important on Darius as well. The Sheen gives mana which Darius really starts to need later in the game when spamming R in teamfights. The ap is useless, but the sheen proc makes your w's do a ton of damage. The zeal gives even more mobility to Darius, gives Attack speed to help you stack bleed faster, and who can't use a little crit chance? The crit chance is especially good when you crit someone with a sheen-proced w, they're going to take Tons of damage. Darius benefits from every part of the triforce, and if you build it, you can basically build 100% tank after, sometimes you'll need a hydra or last whisper to still do damage in the late game, but if you go into teamfights with a triforce and 1-2 tank items, you're going to be very strong and difficult to deal with. I won't get this item only when I think that the enemy laner will be stronger with their triforce (if they build one) than mine, typically only against Irelia.

Pros/Cons

Pros:
  • Incredibly strong poke in lane
  • Naturally tanky-ish
  • The refreshing dunk
  • High Penta-kill Potential
  • His laugh and dance are fun to use
  • His passive damage is very hard for opponent's to calculate, winning early game trades
  • Great Sticking Potential
  • Hard to counter
  • Three really nice skins and a 4th coming soon, bioforge is my favorite

Cons:
  • No escapes
  • Many Darius players are unsure of builds and lack mechanics
  • His Ult has a pretty long cooldown if you don't get the refresh which cuts out a lot of your damage
  • You'll probably get kited
  • His poke pushes the lane

Your Burst

This is obvious to some, but I assume I could add it anyways to clear up how you can combo your abilities.

Your general Burst:
-->-->AUTOATTACK-->-->AUTOATTACK-->-->-->

I ignite first just so I can get them lower to hopefully get the ult refresh. This won't always be the burst but for most situations it will be. This is probably overkill as your abilities do a lot of damage. If you don't need to ult, don't because it will save mana and the CD, this is really only a problem when you think you will be fighting soon enough that your ult will be on cooldown, but not close enough that it will be on refresh, otherwise just secure the kill. They will probably flash either right after they realize you are going all in, (when you pull), or right before you ult, in which case you just flash dunk them.Your ult, if in animation, will hit them regardless of if they flash, even if over a wall.

Laning early game

Darius is very strong early game and snowballs pretty hard, with no natural escape spells and top lane being easier to gank than mid most of the time, this is going to make you a big target for the enemy jungler. A fed Darius can surely carry the game and lead his team to victory so the enemy team will want to prevent you from getting kills.

Darius is an aggressive champion. You want to play somewhat aggressive against almost every champion you face. Of course there will be times when you are countered and need to sit back but once you hit 6 you can start playing aggressive against most counter-picks to Darius. Use your Q to harass all the time. It has a very low mana cost and does a lot of damage. A cool thing you can do with Darius is to trade with them and kite backwards, almost like you're scared of them, and when they start to back off, pull them back in for another rotation of your spells. This works because your spells are on a very low cooldown compared to other top laners. I typically try to use this method of trading against someone that I can't beat by trading autos and CD's with.

KEEP YOUR BLEED STACKS UP. When you can, always get that extra stack on them, if you take a fight, and it looks like you are losing but you get 4-5 bleed stacks on them, and then back off, your bleed might end up burning them down to where you win the exchange. This is a trick I love to use on champions that are hard to just sit there and brawl, like Shen or Shyvana. Auto them when they get close and Q them when they run away. If you know your bleed is about to wear off, try to reset it with a Q or auto, the longer 5 stacks is on them, the harder it will be for them to sustain back up. If you're losing trades, you can almost always come out even by stacking 5 bleeds, then backing off.

Be careful of ganks. With flash being your only escape mechanism be sure to use it wisely and always be warding, you are very vulnerable to ganks.

Know Darius' strength. If the enemy jungler is low and your lane partner is low, go for the fight. Darius is very strong and high burst in the early game, especially at 6. You can turn a lot of ganks around, very much like renekton does. A trick to doing this is to kite backwards with your Q, acting like your running from the gank, but once you hit your Q onto them a few times, pulling them in and killing them, (works even better if you can bait out a tower dive). A lot of times when I have a ward and see the enemy jungler waiting to gank with low hp, I'll run to them before the enemy laner can react and burst them, which can sometimes result in a double kill if the laner reacts late. Knowing when you can pull off 2v1's is a large part of playing Darius during laning phase. Having adequate vision and lane manipulation helps with this.

Mid Game/Roaming

If you are losing/tied in lane then just keep farming. Grouping can be helpful for your team if the enemy top decides to stay top when you're behind, but you should try to farm up if you're being met with a lot of 5v5 situations that you can't win. Trying to pull their jungler up top while you're behind can relieve pressure in other lanes to allow your team to make plays. If you can get your first top tower, it will always be beneficial to your team.

If winning your lane by a substantial amount, make sure to roam around to your mid/their jungle. Help your mid out. Darius is a good roamer and can help your team score some kills.

Darius is an incredible tower pusher with a triforce and your w. The sheen passive and the 200% ad auto attack reset melts towers.

Make sure to help your team secure objectives, most likely dragon or mid lane turrets, especially when ahead, you can force 4v5 or 5v5 fights in your favor.You will have a lot of gold when ahead that you can be spending on wards so make sure you're helping out by placing tons of wards for better control of objectives. Darius is an early-mid game champion, much like Renekton, therefore you need to force objectives and fights while ahead to finish the game early, or transition well into late game.

If you are ahead at this point always just keep all-ining your opponent and shoving your lane to take that turret to allow you to roam. Be sure you have wards as all-ining can put you in a bad positon to be ganked. Darius is a really good all-in champ so if you keep doing it they really can't do anything about it.

If they are just camping under the turret get your jungler to dive with you, the turret is a very important objective as it opens up their jungle, allows you to roam and gives your team gold.

If you are way behind then make sure you aren't feeding, and if you are, call for jungler or play passive. Try to still keep your lane pushed because you want that turret and, as Darius, you can pick up a lot of kills mid by roaming which can get you back into the game. Darius is an easy champion to come back with, if you're getting camped, usually that means someone else on your team gets a lot of free pressure, so don't get down about losing lane, you can benefit your team by just having a huge presence in your lane, even if not winning lane.

Team fights

In team fights make sure to pull their ap/ad carries and burst them if possible. You should be building tanky enough to reach their back line and take enough damage to stay in the fight. If you can land a flash-pull onto one of their squishies to start a fight 9/10 times you're going to win that fight. Darius can pull over many walls, so with vision, you can catch enemies easily. A few major and frequent spots this happens are in baron pit, and when sieging the enemy base. Just make sure not to pull their jungler into baron pit when baron is low.

Late-Late game there is almost no chance you can effectively dive the back line, so you should be helping your AD burst whoever it is they're fighting.
Darius is really good at peeling enemies off your team, if you didn't initiate with your pull or your cooldown is back up, make sure to pull people off your ad or ap carry, this can help them last longer and can win you the teamfight. Spam your q in team fights, among the confusion it's going to be hard to position yourself to hit them with the outer part of your q, so don't worry about it too much. Use your w on their ad carry or another champion that relies on autos, as it has a huge attackspeed debuff that will reduce a lot of their damage output. If you execute all of this perfectly and your team isn't way behind, chances are you just won the teamfight. Most people don't realize that if all you do in a team fight as Darius is dunk everything, you're actually doing a TON to help your team. Your R is probably one of the highest damage nukes in the game, and since you can spam, it's ridiculous. The .3 seconds it takes your dunk to kill someone can prevent that enemy from getting off some hard cc, damage, or an escape opposed to if you let your team finish them which might take an entire extra second or two, which could give them just enough time to get off their cc or that last spell/auto-attack. Doing this 5 times in a team fight just finishes the enemies off faster, enabling your team to hopefully survive longer and win the fight. Getting mathy, 5(champions)*1.7(about the time it would take your team to finish the kill if not dunked subtracting the time it takes to dunk)= 8.5 seconds. This is just an approximation but you can save your team about a VI cooldown amount of time.

Late Game

Late game you should be just about done with your build. Late game you should never be building damage items unless you're way ahead, or you don't have enough damage on your team, if you missed out early and had to build tank, don't start building damage late game because it won't make a big enough difference. A Last Whisper is the only damage item you should really consider late game. Build tanky so that you can use your utility to initiate teamfights and live long enough to use your dunks. Late game is similar to mid game except you probably won't need to be farming at all. Make sure you stick with your team, that you're still warding if you have an open slot, and that you're doing your job in teamfights. There's nothing different you should be doing with Darius that you wouldn't be doing with any other champ late game. Stay with your team, do your job in team fights, help with objectives and you'll be doing the most for your team as you can late game. Always look to catch someone offguard with your E as it can be just as deadly as a blitz hook, and since late game Darius is fairly weak, your only chance in fights might be off a good catch with your E. Split pushing really isn't an option on Darius as he has no escapes so don't do it unless you know it's safe to do so, you're better off to leave a Shen or someone else to do it.

Knowing when to ult Late game is also important. If you catch someone out, you need to know whether your ult damage is needed to finish the kill, or if your team/you can finish it without your ult. This is very important because if you catch someone out and use your ult but you know there will be a fight soon, you could've lost your team the fight by not having 99% of your late game damage to bring to fights.

The KEY thing as Darius is to not get caught. Late game there will be wards everywhere and turrets down so it is really easy to get caught, especially being a slower champ without any natural escapes. Make sure you have vision before roaming around. If you can steal blue buff, you might as well, mana helps a ton in team fights with Darius.

Contesting Baron:
You can be the one to run in and disrupt the other team taking Baron. You're tanky enough that you can accept the damage without dying and have enough damage to steal it if you time it right. Your pull can grab an adc over the baron wall or pull him from the back of the pit. Darius is really good for running in and interrupting Baron but make sure once you commit you stick with it because if you run in, you won't be coming out. If your team is with you and you're trying to steal or secure baron, a trick you can do is to find the enemy jungler trying to smite it, and position yourself in a way as to pull them away from baron, which can score your jungler an easier smite.

Jungling

This isn't a jungling 101 guide so I'm not going to explain how to jungle, just the way Darius jungles, any differences with him as a jungler, and his ganks.

Darius is a very fast jungler with scary ganks. I don't jungle him very often but you will generally build the same things except you'll want to get a or . His sustain isn't the best but his ganks are really strong which makes up for it. This is a role where might be more worth than flash but I would probably still pick flash over ghost. When ganking, try to bait out their flash BEFORE you pull. Your pull has a decent range and should be able to reach them even when they flash. If you can do this they're dead.

Start whatever buff is furthest from your top lane for a level 3 gank top if you can win the 2v2. Your level 2 ganks are insane and probably the best level 2 ganks in the game. Mid is less predictable for level 2 ganks. Use flash if you need and you can score your mid an easy kill. Mids a lot of the time won't start with an escape at level 2, so this can really catch them off guard. Do the regular jungle path and gank often.

When jungling Darius, unless you somehow get extremely fed, I would build mainly tank and probably little damage. Elder Lizard is great for Darius jungle. Start with your Q when jungling and still keep the same maxing order. Get E at 2 if ganking and W if you're not. Get E if you're ganking at 3 if not, grab another point in Q and then your E at 4. Your E is your main ganking tool so use it wisely. Try to get your mid to CC them first so you can get in a land a pull.

Darius' jungling is basically the same as any others, he can counter jungle decently because he will be able to fight just about any jungler he encounters after 6, maybe not before. Kha'zix, Rengar, Vi, and Lee are maybe the only junglers that can outduel you in the jungle.
I would get the component of my on my first back for sustain along with boots.

I would look at a lot of the items I mentioned in the build section, specifically aiming at more utility items. I think an Ohmwrecker (If it ever gets buffed and isn't a pile) might also be a really good item especially for jungle Darius as the sustain from the catalyst will help and you can get some better ganks in by ignoring some turret damage.Also you will get some damage from the early, so you won't need a ton more damage.

Ancient Golem can be swapped for Elder Lizard but you will have a lot less damage, I would only buy this if you already have a lot of damage on your team.

As far as Dragon you want to coordinate it with your team, Darius can take dragon relatively early as opposed to some other junglers and you should always have it warded.

As mentioned before you can pull both of the buffs over the wall so remember this for invades/counter jungling as it can score you a free buff, or prevent you from being counter jungled if a Blitzcrank tries to pull it over.

His late game will be about the same as lane Darius so refer to that. For mid game just be sure you're leading your team as far as objectives like Dragon and Baron go and same for the buffs. Give 2nd blue to your mid, you won't need any more as Darius. Make sure you're trying to control the mid game as this is where Darius jungle will be most potent.

Mid Darius

Mid Darius is actually a lot different than top Darius. You're going to be in a shorter lane, which means you can't kite as effectively, or be kited as effectively. You also will get poked a lot harder, as almost every mid is ranged. You're going to want a Doran's Shield start here, and probably will want to get a hexdrinker early. Being mid, you can build a bit more damage than normal as long as your top or jungle are going tanky. You still outdamage basically everyone in this lane, basically like top, but you'll need to learn new matchups. Smart use of your E is what will win you mid lane as Darius. The advantages to Mid Darius are: better roaming potential, a better turret to take (mid turret provides much more map control when down), and a refreshing change of pace from top. The disadvantages are that you will probably have a harder time scoring kills against some mid laners, and will be ganked more often because mid is easier to access for junglers. You have to use the roaming advantage to make this more useful than Darius top, it's harder to snowball in mid by just laning because you have less room to work with to kill your opponents. Strategic roams however can make you a potent mid, and give your team a great lead.

Bot lane Darius

Darius support isn't all bad. You have a lot of early game damage and a lot of potential to set up you and your adc for kills. The hardest part is being melee, you can get poked easily as Darius while trying to postion to land an E and are easier to kite when there are 2 opponents with cc and escapes. Get a targon's as your gp/10 and build mainly tanky, opting for damage items if you're getting fed. If you don't get ahead in lane you'll likely stay behind because Darius doesn't scale as well without kills/items. If you do manage to snowball however it basically turns into a 6v5 because now the support does tons of damage as well.

Darius bot if you're doing a double-Bruiser bot isn't necessarily good, but it's fun. You need to pick another bruiser with some long ranged cc or gap closers/poke to compliment Darius. Lee Sin works well, Zed would work well. You split the farm like a normal double-bruiser bot and both get Targon's. This is basically the same as Darius support except you need to be more aware of your team's champion picks and synergize well bot.

Counter Picks

Hard

His ranged auto attacks will poke you out of lane and you won't be able to get near him unless you land a really good pull. His w passive refunds mana which will give him good sustain to outpoke you. Try to out exchange him when he all-ins you and you 'll be in a good spot. Be passive until 6 as he will just poke you down and destroy you before 6. If he makes a dumbo and gets hit by a Q, you can pull him in and fight him. This lane is the most brutal Darius matchup, just try to get ganks and farm till 6, if you dodge his eq combo you can probably kill him at 6.

Easy-Hard

Most people are awful at teemo and just pick him because he is a "counter-pick" to Darius. Your pull is the same range as his auto attacks so grab it at level 2. If he gets caught by your pull you can easily burst him and kill him. Start Doran's shield vs. Teemo. After you hit level 3 you basically win the lane. Just keep pulling him and bursting him and he can't do much. Letting him push is bad because then he can poke you under turret.

Hard

With ranged auto attacks and a lot of escapes she can poke you down and when you go to close the gap she can pounce away. Try to be aggressive if you can but if she is out-damaging you then make sure you get help from your jungler. Most likely it will end up as a pretty stagnant lane. If you kill her before 6, you can snowball, otherwise just farm and dodge spears.

Ultra Hard

She will look to harass you as much as possible, and try not to get into range of you. If you all in her early, level 2 or 3, when you are really strong, you can very likely force her out of lane. Then you take this advantage and all in her every time she allows you to pull her. She is very squishy so all-ins will either make her base or have to stay under tower, and if you have lane control she can't do much, it's when she's poking that you're in trouble. A well timed ult by her will win her fights as it can block yours. You have to get tricky with your ult to get her to miss her ult. Jungler's help is great for this lane. You do a ton of damage to Kayle, if you play smart and trick her, you can avoid being kited. Most times it's worth it to just flash onto her to force a fight.

Medium

Some people think Jax counters Darius. He doesn't, you can outdamage him easily early game. Don't use your w while he's counterstriking and you win the trade, it's literally as easy as that. After level 13-14 or so you probably can't beat him in trades as he'll have triforce and blade.

Gnar

This matchup is actually pretty brutal. It's similar to jayce or kayle, except he can almost always get away, and he can actually outtrade you if he manages his Mega Gnar form well enough. I would start doran's shield and just farm. Don't fight him unless he really messes up, or you get a gank.

More Match-ups

Medium
He has high sustain, which is something you don't have, so just make sure you're throwing your bleed on him and making sure he can't lifesteal back up, wait for his passive to pop to dunk, and you should win the lane, watch for his level 2 burst, It's better than yours.

Medium
Shouldn't be very hard to beat. Harass her very hard until 6. When she hits 6 she'll think that she can suddenly fight you, but your ult does more damage than hers, and she will soon find out. Make sure to grab a pink ward to put down in her shroud, it will make fights unbelievably easier. Early game don't bother trading autos, just hit her with your q.

Medium
Cho can be difficult because his silence is really long, always think twice about diving Cho. His ult does essentially the same thing as yours, so make sure you ult him first. He will always out sustain you so just try to beat him in farm and harass, if he does try to fight you, you should win fairly easily. You can bully him hard before 6.

Medium-Hard
Can prove tricky, has ranged autos and spells that do damage based on your health. No real ultimate so play against her similar as you would to jayce. Build a lot of early game magic resist, hexdrinker and merc treads always. After the nerfs, you can outtrade her when she's in spider form.

Easy-Medium
Her w can counter yours if she's good. You can see her parry coming so just don't derp and mess your w up. She will probably ult just before your dunk so be prepared for that. Fiora isn't very strong against Darius.

Medium
GP is really strong in lane and has similar harass to yours. A formidable foe, just be careful because he is good at kiting, and Darius is good at getting kited. Never sit in his ult while fighting him. Buy early armor and try to trade him before he gets a lot of poke onto you with

Hard
Your Demacian twin. He will probably beat you early game in exchanges. Be careful and try to stop his passive with yours. Dunk him before he dunks you. Basically never try to fight him before 6 unless he is dumb and takes free poke. This is basically a skill matchup. He gets kited harder than you so you can kite him pretty easily.

Medium
She can snowball just as hard as you. Punish her early game but don't underestimate her damage. Her e can really turn things around so keep it in mind. It can come down to something as simple as First Blood, so make sure you don't lose to her early. I would call for an early gank so that you can snowball instead of her. I wouldn't get a triforce in this matchup unless you know you're going to get yours way before she gets hers. You MUST have ignite to duel her.

Medium
Jarvan has a lot of cc so be careful when the jungler may be nearby. He has a lot of poke and can stay away from you in lane. You will generally win exchanges but make sure you're not getting poked down first because he can also dunk you with his ultimate. Even though you're Darius you should probably never dive him unless you are 100% sure you will kill him. Dodge q's and you'll win trades.

Medium-Hard
Kennen is pretty strong against Darius, he can kite you with his stuns and poke you with shurikens and autos. Play this similar to Teemo except remember that Kennen's all-in is significantly stronger than Teemo's.

Easy-Medium
Kha'Zix shouldn't be picked to fight Darius, just stay near your minions and his damage is reduced dramatically. He can't outdamage you and he lacks the cc to kill you, but if he gets a gank from the jungler you're basically dead.

Pretty Easy
Darius destroys him, Lee sin's kit can be used to make some pretty insane plays so just be careful that if he's good, he might end up outplaying you. Don't let him sustain back up for free with w and dodge his Q's and you will win the lane. Also, don't get kicked into turret, kind of a given.

Medium-Hard
Tons of armor. Your poke won't do much to him, this lane will probably result in a stalemate. Remember your ult does true damage though so you can still hurt him pretty good after 6. He can't trade with you so just poke him down and call for a gank to score some kills. You could want to take TP so you can match his pressure and roam in this matchup since you probably won't kill him with ignite.

Easy-Medium
Not very hard because your ult counters his, you can outtrade him after 6 easily, before 6 you have to dodge cleavers.

Easy
Q him when he goes to farm and he won't have a good time. This lane should be an easy one to win, but of course, late game, Nasus will always beat you. He's weak early game so just try to get him behind on his Q farm.

Easy
You basically beat Olaf. Make sure you don't underestimate that Olaf passive and you'll be fine. His E poke if he chooses to max it first will most likely out-trade you so be careful of that.

Medium-Hard
This is a pretty good matchup. Don't let him hit 2 before you or he'll make you pay. Watch for his ult just before yours. Comes straight down to skill on this one. Whoever misses their Q more often will probably lose. You manage your bleed stacks better than he manages his Fury and you'll win trades.

Medium
He's decent vs Darius, just stay away from the brush and know when he ults and you'll win. He can cheese you at level 2 so be careful. Ward the brush if you need to, he can only outtrade you with smart use of the brush.

Medium-Tricky
A good riven can utilize her kit skillfully. Make sure you know what she does. Ult her before she ults you and you should be golden. She can block a lot of your poke with her E and your exchanges will be pretty even. Her pre-6 game is probably the only one that can match yours, so be very cautious when trading. Her post-6 game can beat yours if you don't dodge anything, so dodge her stun or her ult and you'll probably win the trade.

Easy
This is generally a bad pick against Darius but shen is shen so be careful. You can out harass him and all the health and armor he builds won't matter against your dunk. Ganking him can score you some easy kills, you can interrupt his ult with E and if he does ult out of lane you take towers quickly. Don't get hit by his passive autos, wait for him to use it on a minion.

Medium
Singed is a troll. He can cause some problems for you if you let him kite you. Your e is really good at countering him so use it. A good singed won't let you kill him. A jungler gank can win you the lane, because if you start snowballing you can win easily.

Medium-ish, pretty easy
Trynd won't be much of a problem. Make sure you catch him off guard with your ult or he will just ult instead. If he ults before your ults hits, just ignite and hope your bleed or ignite kill him. Before 6 you can easily outtrade and kite him, just don't let him build his rage bar.

Medium-Hard
Vi will be a little tough, her poke is just as good as yours and her ult is annoying. Just be careful of all her shields, it can help her win trades. She's not played often top, but she's pretty good.

Medium
A good Vlad will dodge a lot of your q's and r's with his pool. Other than that you should be able to poke him pretty well, and outtrade him. Don't get kited and you'll win.

Easy
Your ult trolls his passive really REALLY hard. You can easily beat him in exchanges and poking/whatnot, just make sure you kill him right as his passive starts, or he might win the trade. Watch for ganks very carefully in this lane, volibear's cc paired with a jungler's cc and damage is something you absolutely will not survive.

Medium
Wukong is pretty easy to beat, don't ult his clone. Remember you can pull him while he's invis. A perfect timing of his ult can screw up yours. If you see him about to dash get your w ready so you can hit him before he clones away. I have messed up my ult countless times by hitting his clone, so be careful of that.

Medium
Xin has TONS OF DAMAGE so be really careful when exchanging, I wouldn't play aggressive until 6. He might be one of the few champions that can out-exchange Darius early, so watch for that level 1-3 burst.

Hard
A pretty good counter to Darius. Use the bushes to hide from ghouls and try to poke him back as much as you can. You WILL get poked down, so just try to farm under turret. If he isn't poking a lot then you can shove the wave and try to roam as you probably won't be getting kills off of him. You actually can outtrade him if he has been unsuccesful in poking or is out of mana.

Medium
Can prove pretty difficult if played well, crazy sustain and decent poke, try to e him when he's e'ing away. You might need jungler ganks to actually secure a kill. Make sure to step on bloblets.

[title]Easy-Medium
He can ult and block yours so be careful of that. His poke also has a longer range so try to sneak close enough to get a q or e off. Your exchanges will be near even so make sure he's not going to win the trade by ulting before you get to ult him. Build a ton of armor, ninja tabi and warden's mail earyl really will help you trade and win most fights. His 6 is probably stronger than yours, but if you can get away from him when he ults, he won't do enough damage during the mark to win the trade. Don't rush triforce in this matchup, get a warden's mail first item, you should probably get ravenous right after warden's mail.

Darius' favorite junglers

Warwick is going to be one of your favorite junglers. Warwick does tons of damage but his ult makes it really easy for you to follow up with a pull. Make sure you don't e while he's ulting or you'll screw it up. Feel free to ult while they're in his ult. ALLY-OOP

Nunu's blood boil and slow will allow you to catch up to the enemy 100% of the time and since you win almost every exchange, you're going to be getting kills.

Maokai's ridiculous range snare and knockback is exactly what you need to catch up to them follow it up with your burst and a DUNK.

J4 is also great as he provides an insane amount of CC as well as a dunk. If you can nail the doubledunk with your J4 jungler you're going to feel like Michael Jordan in Space Jam.

Hecarim will make the enemy team want to kill themslves, the sheer damage the two of you have combined is just insane, unless they're playing ulted alistar top lane, they're going to die.

Shyvana just does so much damage that you will two be able to absolutely wipe someone off the face of Summoner's Rift. Your cc with her damage is just stupid.

Mid pick synergy

The best mids to pick with a Darius on your team are katarina and Orianna for the following reasons (TF is also good):


Darius has very good initiation potential with his so a great way to start a fight is to have orianna put her ball on you, then run in and pull as many as you can, then she can follow up with an ult. This cc chain can catch multiple opponents out of postion and easily win you a team fight.



Kat is very mobile but she doesn't come with a lot of cc. Darius has the cc she needs. Roaming together you too have HUGE burst damage, cc and mobility which can help you catch opponents and get away. In team fights, you're Kat's best friend because when she ults, you can pull anyone who tries to escape back over to her, or pull anyone off of her that's trying to cc her. Her ult also brings them down to the perfect health so you can dunk away. You're also both Noxus, Kat is HAWT, you're a big man with a deep sexy voice and they need to release Kat and Darius' kid as a champion.



Tf is good in almost any team comp, but a good tf is going to help you catch any and everyone. That gold card will give you just enough time to get the e in and then burst. His ganks at 6 are also going to be better than your jungler's most likely.

Tips

Darius' e has a really long cooldown for a basic ability. Make sure you use it appropriately because if you use it too early or late you'll regret it.

Darius' q can push the minion wave without you even really realizing it. Be wary that you may be inching closer to the turret.

Always remember you have no escapes. Darius can get caught really easily so be cautious.

Learn the Ult's damage output really well. Know approximately how much damage your ult is going to do with the amount of AD items you have bought and the # of stacks on the enemy. You WANT that refresh.

You can ignite early with darius if you don't think they're quite low enough to ult and the bleed+ignite will surely bring them low enough to ult.

Farm with your w if necessary. It has a low enough cooldown and mana cost that you can spam it. Don't go overboard, but don't miss a siege minion because you refused to lose 45 mana.

Make sure when fighting to always back away before you q, the extra damage will always be worth it and it might just make or break a fight. Especially during laning.

Make sure to laugh whenever you dunk someone and spam your dance under your turret to taunt them into making a dumb decision and dive you.

Your E range is broken. It can pull over many walls that you wouldn't think possible, and often goes farther than the indicator, so don't be too cautious to try for a pull that could win you the game, I couldn't even count how many times a ----> has won me a game.

Countering Darius

Flash away WELL before he ults, don't be greedy and try to hold onto it, if he is just an auto attack away from being in dunk range, it's probably too late, say this because about half the time you attempt to flash away from the dunk the animation will still go off (yes, even if you flash over a wall) and do the damage.

A huge misconception about trading with Darius that people make all the time against him regards his passive. A lot of people will trade with Darius just to the point where he gets 5 stacks of bleed, and then immediately back off, this is absolutely the WORST, WORST, WORST, WORST, WORST thing you can do. This is exactly what he wants, and you will lose every trade if you do this. His bleed alone will outrade whatever damage you just dealt to him. You want short trades with Darius where you only get 1-2 bleed stacks. Renekton can be very succesful at doing this after he has built tiamat as he can cancel his w suppression and get away before you can pull him back in.

A good Darius will most likely play aggressive in lane and will try to all-in you at level 6. Make sure when he pokes you that you try to poke him back, if you are taking free poke, you're setting yourself up to get . Darius' Q pushes the lane, if he is spamming it he will push the wave into your turret, make sure you use this to your advantage and get all the last hits under your turret. And call for your jungler for free ganks.

Be careful if you're low as Darius has a great kit for turret diving. If you have ranged auto attacks, harass him a ton in lane. He can't do anything to catch up to you if you stay out of his E range.

Darius' E has a really long cooldown, make sure you know when he has used it because then you can play accordingly.

If Darius tries to all-in you at level 6, make sure you are at full health and you are 100% ready for it, never underestimate his ult, that is the worst thing you can do against him, it will get you every time. is a really good spell to counter Darius and I don't know why people don't use it more against him. Try it, see if you like it, it can possibly be the sole reason you win lane against Darius.

Don't let Darius roam, make sure he doesn't get your tower, he will roam and he WILL pick up kills, this is what Darius is good at so call those mias.

Try to never let him get that last extra auto-attack or Q on you, the extra stacks of bleed damage add up and will shove you out of lane. Make sure you know how much damage his bleed will do, his paired with can do some serious damage and early levels can kill you without you even knowing it. Being able to calculate his passive damage will let you be more aware of the damage you'll take from a trade.

The best advice I can give for countering Darius is to pick a champion you are really good with and know well. Do not pick a champion because they are a "counter" to Darius, a good Darius will be able to avoid fights with the counter pick, or possibly just use Darius's crazy trading potential to win anyways.. If you know your champion and Darius better than they know Darius, you should be able to win.

If you're the jungler, PICK SEJUANI, her slows are really strong against Darius and she can actually ult Darius in mid air while he's dunking. She's tanky so it's hard to turn around during a gank and dunk her, just don't get kited by Darius because you will die. Vi as a jungler is also very good vs. Darius with all of her cc, damage and shields.

If you're low and Darius is low, and he runs in a bush, this likely means he knows he can kill you, don't hope that his ult is down, it won't be. Be afraid of bushes Darius might be in. Darius has very short cooldowns and will be able to kill you by kiting you into the brush even when he's low.

Final Comments

Learning the range on both Darius' Q and E are keys to success. Make sure you know how much damage you have built so you know how much damage your ult is going to do. Never underestimate the amount of damage you can do because you can make some crazy plays if you know exactly what you're capable of. Calculate your passive better than your opponent can, and make sure to keep those bleed stacks up and you will be sure to kick them out of lane. Darius is one of the most fun champions in the league right now and if played correctly can win top lane against just about every matchup. One of the best parts about Darius is if you do manage to lose top you can ks with your ultimate and catch back up very easily. People could argue it might set the rest of your team back so you just have to judge whether the ks's will help you or screw your team.

Feel free to comment and let me know about anything that could be improved or that you disagree with.

Thank you to everyone who has already read or liked this guide, I appreciate it.
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