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XIN ZHAO BUILD GUIDE: Warmog Kingdoms Win Now - Jungle Xin by annihilator24

by annihilator24 (last updated over a year ago)

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9
Greater Mark of Attack Speed( +15.3% attack speed)
9
Greater Seal of Armor( +12.69 armor)
9
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist( +1.35 magic resist per level (24.3 at champion level 18))
3
Greater Quintessence of Armor Penetration(+7.68 armor penetration)
View Rune Details
Summoner Spells
View Summoner Details
9
12
9
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 4/4
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mastery 4 mastery 4 0/2
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9 Offense
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12 Defense
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9 Utility
View Mastery Details
Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Challenge
QThree Talon Strike
WBattle Cry
EAudacious Charge
RCrescent Sweep
View Skill Order Details

Runes

Masteries

mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 4/4
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9 Offense
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12 Defense
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mastery 2 mastery 2 3/3
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mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 2/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
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9 Utility

Skill Order

Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Challenge
QThree Talon Strike
WBattle Cry
EAudacious Charge
RCrescent Sweep

Champion Matchups

Introduction

Sup summoners, my name is cardinaI, a high-elo jungler and this is my second guide on solomid for broken junglers that (for some reason) don't have any good updated guides. Please enjoy and feel free to visit my maokai and Vi jungle guides. Drop a comment if you want to know more and I'll get back to you asap. Enjoy!
[http://puu.sh/28R06]

Pros / Cons

Pros
  • Very low cooldown gap closer
  • Ultimate gives innate resistances
  • Great hard and soft CC
  • Amazing when fed
  • Best initiator NA
  • Known as 'Win Now' for a reason
  • Balls deep

Cons
  • CC on his ult is situational, won't work on a carry you're focusing if they are challenged
  • Q takes a long time to get off 3 strikes for knockup
  • Before 6 no way to escape a bad engage
  • Balls deep (no dedicated escape)
  • Ultimate can really screw your team

Jungle Route

Blue Start:
When to Start Blue: You
  • Start at wolf camp, level up W, only autoattack big wolf until it dies
  • Kill Blue buff, level up Q, walk to wraiths
  • If you got a smiteless walk directly to red, kill it with smite, then level up and either gank or grab wraiths > wolves > back
  • Just clear camps and gank, put the most pressure around mid and top as they are very easy to gank with Xin


Red Start:
  • Start wraiths with W, kill the big wraith, then kill the small ones if your team didn't
  • Kill red, preferably ask for a smiteless here.
  • Run to blue and kill it with smite (or go wolves if smite is on CD)
  • Gank top/midlane or get wolves > wraiths > back
  • Clear camps + gank mid/top until 6, then set something up bottom

In - Depth Jungle Optimization

Ok, this is probably my favorite chapter of the guide, and this will help you with any physical junglers you use. I'm going to do a lot of math in this section, and if you don't want to read it just skip to the end.

The following is assuming you start and incorporates it.
Optimizing Runes
This deals with optimization of marks and quintessences, you should almost always take the seals and glyphs I recommend.
Starting with 15 AD:
Jungle time:
Between 3:37 and 3:40

Starting with 19 Armor Pen:
For efficient jungle clear the fattest creep (blue/red) have 20 armor and Xin's passive plus the 8% penetration mastery knocks this down to 15, so 15 armor pen is the most optimal against creeps (if you want to go full armor pen build). However, this will give you an overall slower jungle.
Jungle time:
Between 3:43 and 3:45 starting W
Between 3:40 and 3:43 starting Q

Starting with 8 Armor Pen and 15% attack speed:
I would never consider full attack speed runes on Xin Zhao because his W provides the attack speed buff xin needs for both the jungle earl game and his autoattack animations when ganking. NEVER run full attack speed.
Jungle Time:
Between 3:37 and 3:40 with W
Between 3:33 and 3:37 with Q

Starting with 8 Armor Pen and 9 AD
This offers the best mix of optimal armor pen to deal more damage to creeps, and bonus AD to deal more damage during ganks and to creeps as well. This is the page I'm currently testing and the one I generally prefer over most others.
Jungle Time:
Between 3:38 and 3:40
Between 3:34 and 3:37 with Q

Invading / Ganking

Xin is a decent duelist early game, but has to commit to every exchange because he has no escape abilities. This means that you need to be careful that you don't get into a situation where your team can't help you in an unfavorable situation. However, xin has a huge amount of sticking power, so if your laners are aware you can easily set up kills on the enemy jungler. Early levels you should do your best to be careful.
Ganking:
Lead off with your Charge into a Three talon strike in your gank, allow your allies to land their CC and damage. If you can flash for a kill early game, do it, because xin snowballs really well.

GANKING TOP
The best ways to gank with xin are through tribrush and lane. Xin has a huge amount of sticking power, so if you can get in range you have pulled off a successful gank.

From Lane
[http://puu.sh/2a4CH]
Probably the most reliable way to gank both top and botlane, very few top laners ward these top two brushes and will be unaware of your presence. Try to keep about half a screen between you and the enemy minions when sneaking into a brush. This gank is easy and straightforward, and I use this the most when ganking toplane

From Tribrush
[http://puu.sh/2a4Gw]
One of the most frequantly warded brushes in the game, and for good reason, this is an unreliable gank location. It does give you the best positioning, so if you know they have no wards take advantage of this. Note: do not gank laners with a gap closer from here such as Irelia and Jayce and Jax, because they will just jump to you and escape the gank.

From River
[http://puu.sh/2a4J7]
The second most warded area toplane, they will almost always have vision on you here. I like ganking from here early game because it is the fastest (should get there by 3:30-ish if you get a good leash) and many people will not ward it level 1, especially if they start an item like Flask or Cloth. Gank from here if they are overextended near your tower.

Tower diving is also an option from behind the tower, although unless the enemy is at low HP you will probably want to set it up with multiple people.

Runes

[http://puu.sh/26Tk1]

Marks:
Attack speed/armor pen/attack damage are my favorite three sets of runes to run, but it's pretty much up to your personal preference. AS gives faster clear time, but AD and arPen are better for ganking/damage dealing. As of now I'm running flat AD marks.
Seals: Always armor seals for every jungler, no exceptions are viable in season 3, especially with the increased cost of armor.
Glyphs: MR/ level is the most solid set of glyphs here, if they have no magic damage source you can run flat armor or AS.
Quintessences: A choice between AD arPen and AS, still experimenting.
See In-Depth Jungle Optimization if you want more information.

Masteries

[http://puu.sh/26TlM]

I like to run 9/12/9 on xin, going into armor pen, veterans scars, and runic affinity in each of the respective tiers. 9/21/0 and 0/21/9 are also viable options, but I find a mix of all three trees gives me exactly what I need. CC is not a major concern for xin lategame seeing as how you will probably always build merc treads and your dash should be up about every 5 seconds in a teamfight. You should almost never die, so the primary concern is early game ganking/getting through the jungle.
See In-depth Jungle Optimization if you want more information.

Summoner Spells


I always take this summoner because xin has no built-in escape, especially early game while he is extremely vulnerable.


Always take this on junglers, no questions asked. Smite is a necessity to secure objectives, even if you feel comfortable jungling without it you absolutely NEED it to secure your own buffs, and dragon/baron. Especially on xin, who has no minion execute like nunu or cho'gath.


Also known as the ganking summoner, take this if your only goal in life is to make people's lives miserable through early game ganks. I don't like this summoner because xin again, has no escape which he needs.


Covers more ground than flash in drawn-out teamfights, but Xin's Charge is very low cooldown and will allow him to stay on top of a carry's face regardless of whether or not he has this summoner. It's a decent escape, but not really

Skills

Passive: Challenge

Explanation:

This passive is the reason xin is currently so strong in the meta. Given the huge amonuts of ad/armor/health stacking, xin's passive and low cooldowns let him deal damage without building any actual damage. This passive is great for shredding a tank in teamfights, but be sure to remember your challenged target is not knocked back by your ultimate! In teamfights use this passive to shred the enemy carries or use it on the enemy tank to peel for your carry (you will rarely do this you must play aggro with xin)



Q: Three Talon Strike Max last

Explanation:


This skill is what makes Xin so lethal throughout the game, especially into the later stages. Three Talon Strike makes your next three autoattacks deal 15/30/45 (+20% AD) damage to a target, and the third strike will knock the target into the air. While the CC is a useful component of this skill, the most important component is the reduced cooldowns it gives you. Each time you use this your other abilities cooldowns are reduced by 1 second for each strike, totalling 3 seconds. This means lategame Audacious Charge will be on about a 4-5 second cooldown, allowing you to chase to your heart's content. This skill also gives an interested (bug?) attack speed boost while using it, seems somewhere around 60% increased attack speed. Kind of odd, but worth mentioning. Use this spell immediatly when ganking and when getting on top of carries or interrupting a nunu/katarina ulti. use it in the jungle AFTER your battle cry and audacious charge so you can make use of the cooldown component of this skill. You can start with this for a slighly faster jungle path, but I prefer W because of the increased flexibility it gives. You should get a leash after your first buff, and you will be completing them at about the same time with starting Q or W, but W will net you more health at the end of your first buff.


W: Battle Cry Max second

Explanation:

Pure and simple, this is what makes xin a viable jungler. It gives 26 health regen at level 1 per 3 attacks. This means early game you will be healing for about 130 hp at wolves/wraiths and around that much at red or blue. This nets about 300hp in your first two camp clears, equivalent to 2 health potions. Compared to maokai passive, which gives 8% of 600 every 5 spells, which will normally proc 2-3 times doing wolves and blue. .24*600 = 144 health, half as much as xin gets back using W. Use this skill whenever up to boost attack speed for clear time, and activate it when ganking so you can more easily get off Three talon strike. I max it second to keep Xin topped off in the jungle. The reason I start with this level 1 is because it gives you much-needed sustain and gives it's full utility level 1. You cannot make use of the CDR from his Q or the slow from his E , while his W grants it's full utility.



E: Audacious Charge Max first

Explanation:

AMAZING ability on a short cooldown for a gap closer, about the shortest if you take advantage of . Lead off with this in ganks as they run away, or if they run toward you save this ability until they use an escape or start running away. The reason I max this first is because it gives 25-45% slow on contact and gives by far the most burst damage for ganking. This is your GANKING skill. Maxing three talon strike first will net you a bonus 60 damage from rank one over 3 autoattacks, but audacious charge gives an instantaneous 150 damage bonus along with 20% additional slow. If you know you won't be ganking AT ALL (bad idea) max three talon strike instead for faster clear time and low cooldowns.



R: Crescent Sweep

Explanation:

Since the rework I still have mixed feelings about Xin's ultimate. You can think of it as the opposite of Jarvan's cataclysm, because it pushes away enemies. It's great because it offers an aoe nuke and 15/20/25 increased resistances for each enemy hit for 6 seconds. When using it make sure you either want to disengage or your team isn't counting on them being in a certain place. (ie do NOT USE when orianna is trying to cast an ultimate or when a friendly darius is about to nuke a carry. This ult can be used effectively when ganking botlane, and you can get creative in leading off with it ganking other lanes. This is Xin's 1v5 skill, and could at maximum deal about 1600 damage while increasing xin's resistances by 125 apiece. If you hit all 5 people it's the highest damage skill in the game. That being said, make sure you don't position the enemy in a way that your team can't get at them. I find the best use of this skill when fighting in the jungle by using it to split the enemy team and allow your allies to quickly focus a section of the enemy team. A well placed Xin ultimate can win or lose fights for your team, use it carefully. But remember, BE A MAN.



Item Builds

Starting Items
This is the no-question-about-it best start for almost every jungler. It gives +10 flat true damage per auto to minions (the equivalent of a long sword) as well as increasing your total damage dealt to monsters by 10% (pretty much another longsword). It lets you clear ridiculously fast compared to other starting items and builds into madred's razors which you will be buying on your first back.

First back
Boots of speed, while not necessary as your starting item are excellent for setting up ganks, especially because laners often bypass boots in favor of more sustain or damage oriented early game builds. These will also let you escape sticky situations much easier. Madred's razors are currently my favorite item for every single jungler as it doesn't discriminate between AD and AP junglers anymore, gives you a huge +25 early game armor and costs only 400g after buying machete
Being helpful
You should have an extra 150-ish gold on your first back after finishing boots and madreds, so feel free to pick your team up a pink (or green) ward along with some health potions. Great items, consumables. Buy 'em.

Health Rush
These two items should be your first priority after razors and boots , I prefer to buy both these items before upgrading either one (lower tier items are more cost efficient, junglers and support need the value-to-gold ratio the most). It gives you just over half the hp you would get from a and builds into the only two items you ever need.

Boots I consider
Nine times out of ten I will go for or because you can almost always make use of the MR and tenacity from mercury treads as you want to be as mobile as possible in teamfights, but mobis are a viable alternative if you want to have hella map presence or the enemy team has little to no CC. Swiftboots I occasionally buy if the enemy team has nothing but slows for CC, you can always make use of the extra movespeed. Don't be afraid to get Tabi's if the enemy team is highly dependent on AD and autoattacks to get the job done. Great set of boots, and even help with tankiness in the jungle. I sometimes buy if I want to go for a very high-damage build and want to get off as many autos as possible. Not the greatest choice, but they are the cheapest one.

How the heck do I KILL HIM?
As the title suggests, after you get these two items (I prefer to get locket first) you will be all but unkillable to anything but a fed carry. Even they should have a hard time killing you. These two items give 1450 health, 45 armor, passive health regen, and a pretty significant AOE shield for your team. These are the core items of almost every jungler right now, and build these before any attack damage items (please)
Dealing Damage while Tanking
While offering less tankiness than something like , I get this item after I have completed mogs/locket if I could use the extra HP and the damage sunfire offers. The longer you sit on the faces of the enemy team the more damage this item will deal. When dueling tanks over the course of a teamfight it can deal north of 500 magic damage, which people tend to be more vulnerable due to the armor stacking meta.

I'm not dying anyway...
If the enemy team finds it impossible to kill you and you find yourself with an extra 3k in your pocket, feel free to waddle on up to the shop and grab one of these babies. Blade of the ruined king will shoot your damage sky-high and increase your sticking power (the ability to stay on top of a champion trying to run away from you). The passive on blade gives about 5% of 2500 average enemy health, so bonus 150 physical damage on each hit with 75 of that in healing, it will make xin an unkillable sustain-y monster. (But if you don't have hp you're still going to die). Cleaver is geared toward helping your team deal more damage, the more cleaver stacks you get on the enemies, the more physical damage your carries and bruisers can deal.

Lategame Item
I say lategame item because about 40-50 minutes you should buy yourself one of these if your team doesn't already have one. Great item for dealing with AD's and has a stupid amount of synergy with since you should be in the middle of their team to use randiuns to it's full effect.

Fun with Friends
Buy this item if you find the game is going to be won no matter how hard you try to throw. While I don't normally get this it's an incredibly good item for Xin (just doesn't offer any tankiness or sustain... QQ) it's a fun item to have because of the damage spike it gives you

The viable alternative to Nashors
This item can be good on xin, especially if you forgo merc treads for a different type of boots. Again, I do not recommend unless you have a BUTT-ton of gold, but if it's good on irelia it MUST be good on xin zhao (CDR and AS) he lurvz muchly.

For Carrying n00bs
If you're the only one dealing damage, tanking, and carrying on your team BUY THIS ITEM. The stats it offers make xin both unkillable (assuming you have your core items) and deal TONS OF DAMAGE. The best time to get this is when you are the only person on your team with kills and you really need to carry yourself some n00bs. Also, it's General Oddone's and Phreak's favorite item, so it must be good.

Enchantments
90% of the time I will buy assuming the game goes long enough. You will be in the middle of the enemy team, and your fellow tanks will want to catch up (xin tends to be ahead of his team most of the time), the passive on this enchantment is amazing. Expensive, but worth it. Buy homeguard if your team is trapped inside your own base and you need to defend your objectives.

Early / Midgame roles

1) Map Awareness
Of all the roles that need this skill, it is most crucial on the jungler, and early game when you are your weakest you must know where the enemy jungler is before you make any big plays. You should be buying at least 1 every time you back. I'll discuss locations to ward a little later on in this chapter. Basically, having map awareness means: if your bot lane is getting tower dived, you should already be there. If your mid laner is getting zoned by the enemy laner or the enemy jungler you should do your best to apply pressure to those lanes. This goes into the next part of this chapter: giving presence.

2) Presence
As the jungler you need to be aware which lanes are winning and losing, which lanes are overextending, and where the enemy jungler is as much as possible. I find that if a lane is screaming at you to come help them it is generally a good idea to do what they ask. Even if you walk over to the lane and the enemy backs off it allows your allied lane a little more breathing room; allowing them to CS and preventing them from dying for that short amount of time. Have you ever noticed the best junglers seem to be everywhere on the map at once without giving up much CS in the jungle? That's because they know where to be and when. Don't come to top at level 4 when your ally has pushed to the enemy tower, and don't keep hanging around botlane when they back off every time you show up. Try and track the enemy wards and avoid them. If there are no wards in lane, gank through lane. If there are wards in river but not Tribrush, gank through tri. Grabbing some early will spike your gank potential and help your team secure objectives.

3) Securing Objectives
As the jungler it is generally your job to make calls about when to invade the enemy jungle, when to kill buffs like blue and red, and who to give them to. As a general rule, take the first blue and the first few red buffs, then give every blue after that to your mid laner. If they are a manaless champion, feel free to take it or give it to another mana-heavy champion like or . It will also be your job to make calls about when to do Dragon and Baron. I find that the best times to secure a dragon are after a successful gank in botlane or when you see the enemy jungler heavily commit in toplane. When you aren't able to secure Dragon you should always have it warded past the 6-minute mark, by either yourself or the support. Xin Zhao has a hard time early game with Dragon compared to a jungler like warwick or lee sin, so take some teammates with you if you want to do it. With the much more aggressive Korean-style meta tower have become of huge value; so you should do your best to defend your own towers and push down the enemy's. If one of your lanes dies you should almost always get over to their lane so that the tower doesn't get pushed while they are dead.

Lategame role

Tank/Initiator
You should be the one on your team who
  • Decides when to initiate
  • Catches off-guard enemies
  • Peels for carry if necessary
  • Stays on top of the enemy carry
That being said, you have to know when a good time to engage is. Since you don't have immediate hard CC like maokai's twisted advance or cho'gath's rupture or morgana's bind, you need your team to follow you quickly. If they are not in a position to do so it's not a good idea to engage. If you have a carry like vayne or kog'maw, who tends to be more valuable than normal carries, MAKE SURE THEY ARE DEALING DAMAGE. If they have to do nothing but kite you should get on top of the enemy tank and make sure your carry can deal damage. If your carry isn't doing anything or can handle themself get on top of the enemy AD or AP. Xin is particularly vulnerable to silences, so try not to run head-on into a kassadin unless you're sure you won't die before your cooldowns come up. Xin also has a hard time dealing with blinks like kassadin ult or ezreal arcane shift. Try to avoid confrontations that involve you walking towards the enemies and never attacking. You would be better used killing a tank.

Damage Dealer
Xin Zhao is capable of dealing
  • Tons of damage
Even with warmogs/locket, Xin will deal just as much damage as an ad carry in the midgame, so take advantage of this. Duel with people you know you can kill when teamfighting. Xin is also highly dependent on his cooldowns for dealing damage as his autoattacks alone won't give you much with just tank items.


Unkillable Pain in the Ashe
If nothing else, xin should be an unkillable hunk of meat that the enemy is forced to deal with. Get in their face, rush their carries and squishies with Charge, and make yourself relevant. Your build should be geared toward surviving an entire teamfight, especially if you are the only dedicated tank. 6 warmogs may be a little extreme, but make sure you always buy at least one.

Change Log

  • 2/21: Started writing guide
  • 2/23: Wrote Item build and skills sections
  • 2/28: Officially published guide as it is near-complete

Comments

April 18, 2013 - 10:36 AM #1

This is the 3rd guide I've read about Xin Zhao on Solomid. And to be honest it is also the best, by far in my opinion! The other 2 failed to help me understand what to build and what masteries & runes to use and why. Skill Order also very neat! Last but not least the section about how to play Xin is plain awesome.



While reading this guide this thought crossed my mind many times: "Ah so that is what I've been doing wrong". This guide should be #1.



Thank you.

March 7, 2013 - 08:42 PM #2

You can use W for every camp, so yes, it is "constant DPS"

March 6, 2013 - 11:00 AM #3

@blasius

It doesnt give him permanent attack speed only for a short period of time. Im running As purely for the clearing and having constant DPS.

March 6, 2013 - 07:01 AM #4

Over all this guide covers everything you need to know, however, u need to put some magic resist items on xin, not just armor. if u can please make an AP heavy item build. Thanks :)

March 5, 2013 - 09:17 PM #5

AS runes are not needed on Xin; by level 2 his W gives him +40% AS, so the extra measly 15% from reds just doesn't do much.



Get armor pen or AD reds.

March 4, 2013 - 03:28 AM #6

@OminousJester @Flux

Xin is definitely still really good, but he can now be eclipsed by heavy damage junglers like fiddlesticks and udyr, etc. Maxing Q will now net you more damage and the cooldown decrease on it will carry over to your E assuming you get the procs off, so it is better to max Q for extended trading/teamfighting but E is still the strongest ability for heavy gank Xin Zhao

March 3, 2013 - 06:47 AM #7

I still agree with the group that says maxing E first is best as it's your most reliable source of damage and cc. Someone can always flash/etc. away from your third Q proc going off.

March 2, 2013 - 05:15 PM #8

@Flux

Xin is definitely still viable, but the line between maxing Q or E first has been blurred. I personally like maxing Q because of the increased dueling presence and damage.

March 2, 2013 - 01:22 PM #9

is xin still viable after nerf?

March 2, 2013 - 07:25 AM #10

Hi annihilator24,



I would like to mention that buying Armor Penetration marks and Attack Speed quints (and marks) to get the same combination of stats is a better investment overall. If a summoner wants to have another rune page with a combination of Armor Penetration and Attack Damage, the difference in cost efficiency of Attack Damage quints over marks surpasses that of Armor Penetration quints over marks. This is relatively insignificant in context of your guide but there are summoners (like me) who pay good attention to our IP. Thank you for your efforts!

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