BUILD GUIDE: Solo Queue AD Carry by LOD

by LOD (last updated over a year ago)

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What is an AD Carry and What Does it Do?

An AD carry is a champion who uses autoattacks combined with skills to deal their maximum damage. AD carries are kings of the lategame (especially singletarget). The longer a game goes on, the stronger they become. The reason for this is that they all have a 1:1 AD ratio ability that is available up to 2.5 times a second. Total AD x Total AS = AD Ratio of 1 seconds worth of autoattacking. This basically means that for each one second period where you are autoattacking your enemy, the AD ratio on your autoattack increases temporarily assuming your AS is over 1.0. This is the reason that attackspeed, crit, and AD all need to be balanced out. Although we can't forget about armor penetration, brutalizers and black cleavers aren't always realistic, and ArPen is mostly available on Last Whisper or outside of the game.

If AD is the carry equivalent of a casters AP, then that means attackspeed is the equivalent of CDR, and crit is the equivalent of what would be spell crit, which obviously does not exist. This is why AD champions usually pickup some crit somewhere along the line, it gives them the single-target edge over AP champions. This isn't always the case, as with Kog, who replaces crit with on-hit magic damage. By now you might be realizing why Tiamat is such a useless item. Why would AD champions get AOE cleave, crit, attackspeed, AND attack damage. Not only would that make reaching an endgame build even more difficult, but it would also make itemizing an AP champion even EASIER in comparison.

So, to sum things up;

AD Carries are masters of single-target damage at the cost of a more expensive build.

Choosing Your AD Carry + Support


In this section I will show you each AD Carry and the best support to go with them:


  • Supreme ability to kite
  • Strong initiation
  • Free CV (Good Dragon/Baron control)
  • Weak early game
  • Medium range

  • Infinite volley spam synergizes with the build below
  • Ashe will usually be able to get farmed up if you play this lane correctly

  • Allows your passive and volley to do a lot of burst damage early game
  • Tornado synergizes with arrow for chain stuns
  • Slow synergizes with Volley and Frost Arrow for very strong kiting all game


  • Strong laning phase
  • High range
  • Can easily siege towers
  • Weaker damage endgame

  • Outfarm any lane in the game
  • Never lose on trades
  • Can't obtain kills as easily, but can push harder

  • Kill lane
  • Traps synergize with stun, which helps Caitlyn to land her Q+passive

  • High damage output all game
  • High mobility
  • Good poke
  • Low-High range

  • Insanely high burst damage
  • Can get kills without making overly aggressive plays

  • Very high damage output early/mid
  • Good poke
  • High mobility
  • Can potentially fall off endgame compared to other AD champions
  • Relies on good early game/farm
  • Medium-High range

  • Similar to Corki, large burst from a safe distance
  • Gives Ezreal the sustain he needs to be aggressive and farm

  • Allows Ezreal to spam skills on anyone who gets out of position without penalty

  • Tanky
  • Huge burst damage
  • Very high mobility
  • Falls off endgame compared to other AD champions
  • Medium range
  • AOE ult

  • Massive burst damage with shield
  • Does not have to worry about sustain because of how tanky Graves is

  • Allows Graves to spam his skills and make even more aggressive plays as he reaches up to 100 armour

  • Synergizes the most with Graves burst combo
  • As with Soraka, you become extremely tanky, allowing you to make aggressive plays at the cost of no mana sustain

  • Second highest lategame damage
  • Long range
  • No escape!
  • !Lots of poke ability!

  • Kog is a lategame champion who needs to farm, Soraka allows him to do this safely.
  • Does not capitalize on his early game damage but still enables him to zone people

  • Gives Kog extremely high damage output with Bio-Arcane Barrage, Living Artillery and Janna Shield
  • Past 6, gives Kog an escape method via ultimate. Extremely useful for peeling off of him.

  • High midgame damage
  • Medium range
  • One of 3 AD carry AOE ultimates
  • High mobility around the map

  • Power Chord (slow) and Q can kill people extremely fast when put together with MF's W
  • W helps with MF's fairly short range (she could potentially take more harass)

  • Forces your opponents to play flawlessly, one snowball could end up in a kill.
  • Huge movespeed + AS increase is exactly what MF needs early game

or or

  • One of the strongest lategames
  • Low range
  • One of the best pushing champions
  • Trolls people by dodging a lot

  • Huge damage with shield+Q
  • Shield helps her with such a short range

  • Power chord keeps enemies on their toes when thinking about harassing Sivir
  • Trapping 2+ champions in an ultimate will cause them to take a massive beating from double Sivir Q and many Ricochets.

or or

  • High range
  • Weak midgame
  • One of the best lategames
  • Strong early game with the right support

  • One power chord can easily result in a kill
  • Forces your enemy to counterpick your lane or they will probably lose it
  • Can safely push and outfarm most champions in bottom

  • Allows for extremely easy combos with two knockbacks and a knockup
  • Heals give good sustain
  • Supports extremely dangerous plays (ie tower dives)

or or

  • Low-High range
  • Reliant on support / enemy lane
  • AOE Ult has huge damage potential
  • Only carry with real stealth

  • Each stun gives you a 6 stack expunge
  • Can get kills easily against most lanes aside from Caitlyn (don't Twitch vs Caitlyn)

  • Same as Taric

  • King of aggressive plays, if he gets a single pull, you are guaranteed a kill or 2 summoner skills

  • Medium-High range
  • Insane lane dominance
  • Falls off lategame as an AD carry
  • Can initiate/catch people
  • Built in slow

  • Soraka can sustain Urgots massive mana consumption

  • Shield after Urgot gets a successful E and they will take massive amounts of damage to win lane
  • Can troll people extra hard by combining ultimates, but this isn't always realistic..


  • Medium range
  • Can target + assassinate any target
  • Short stealth
  • Massive steroids
  • Best at 1v1

  • Stun and Vayne E synergize extremely well.
  • Forces people to play safe and not hug walls / go into the brushes

  • Can sustain a lot of tumble harass
  • Lets Vayne farm really hard, which can win games

Note: These are just my favourite supports to run with each champion. Any support is viable in solo queue, even Yorick, Leona, Nunu, etc. You don't have to run these, but I feel that these lane combos can throw games in your favour more easily than some other lane combos.

My thoughts on 'different' supports

This is a highly player-dependent support, he can feed the living fuck out of you and win you a game, or he can lose you the game by never landing any grabs, feeding, etc. Any support can do this but it's more tempting on blitzcrank, which is part of why he is such a hard champion. Bottom line, I would use this guy with a really safe carry like Vayne or Caitlyn, or even Kog (high range) (and only if it was boss blitz player), because he has no way of helping you directly.

This guy also has no way of helping you directly but he fucks with the enemy AD and support and is surprisingly good, also gives you a high-damage ghost lategame. He only works because of how annoying of a champion he is to deal with. Taric goes in to stun you? He gets 3 ghouls on his nuts. Again, I'd use him with safer champions because he has NO direct way of supporting you. He can also be used against Ezreal in specific as a direct counter if your yorick is good, as I've had Yoricks who can block every skillshot before. Nice.

Use this if you see that you are on stream against any CLG member, direct counter.

Here is another champion who can't support you directly, but is somewhat viable. Leona, however, easily counters aggressive plays and thus is more leniant with the AD you use with her. I wouldn't use someone like say, sivir, but she can punish aggression with her CC and shield AOE, forcing them to deal with her before dealing with you. Her only flaw comes from the fact that her E range is not the best, and the particle isn't the fastest. You might have trouble even hitting slippery/long range champs.

What Do I Build?

These are pretty much staple on every carry save a couple. They can be easily traded out for other boots but offer a cheap source of attackspeed early-mid game.

This is your main source of damage and survivability early game. Most carries can't survive without 2-3 of these, but they aren't necessary to stack on everyone

This item has the second most +AD in the game, is one of only two items offering crit AND attack damage, and gives you increased crit damage, which is the source of damage for a lot of carries

This is what allows you to be useful lategame, otherwise stacking armor would be OP ( says l0l)

Offers greatly improved mobility, high attackspeed, and crit chance. This is what fuels the damage from your Infinity Edge

Stop buying this unless you are a giant man-eating worm who spits on people.

This item is pretty underrated, but for good reason. I'm sure one day its use will come along but for now it remains as a subpar version of 3 items in one. It is an IE with less damage and no crit, a PD with no crit and no MS, and a last whisper which doesn't penetrate %, but debuffs for your whole team. Why build an early game item on a lategame champion? Vayne and Twitch are a couple of the only champions I'd buy this on

This is the best item in the game for solo queue carries. I'm not saying IE is bad, no, but not every support is king in solo queue. This allows you to sustain yourself in teamfights and large pushes, do massive damage, and can be used as a cheaper alternative to Infinity Edge. Most of its use comes from champions who have good AD-scaling abilities

Not many uses for ranged carries as it builds into a melee DPS item, however it slips into a few builds.

Useable on champions with spammy abilities (ie Corki, Ezreal). Gives good survivability, mobility, and damage for an expensive price.

Extremely situational. Very rarely I will grab this on someone other than Kog/Twitch. The magic damage and survivability from getting this come at the cost of no AD or crit, usually a vital stat for carries.

Builds into Tri and PD <3<3. If you pick up mercury treads early game instead of berserkers, you can get an early zeal on almost anyone to make up for the lost AS without too much penalty.

Chaox decided to troll the ad community by theorycrafting again and he came up with wriggles. Kind of actually works but it delays your build 1600g. You can buy this in any lane you're having trouble with, but don't mix it with too many dorans blades or else you will find yourself miles behind their carry. This does give you massive dragon, baron, and push control as well as self-sustainability, a heavily valued stat in solo queue. Up to you to decide whether you need it or not.

Sup bro my cooldowns are up faster I'm Ezreal/Urgot

Sup bro wizards dont do as much damage to me and you cant CC me as long

Honorable mentions

Atmas combined with warmogs or fmallet can work on almost anyone, this includes carries. I don't reccomend it but hey, Vayne does not give two fucks what you build on her, so this gets an honorable mention

Fuck you Jax. Umad bro?


x2-3(Janna, Situational)or


(Janna, Situational)OR>Get whichever one you didn't getGood itemZ:


Anything you feel like, for you can build anything on Koog and be successful!

or(if you need extra mobility )>Optional




or (debuff build, abuse dat AOE autoattax - requires smart positioning for your whole team)


Note: Boots choice is yours on every champion (Merc/Lucidity/Zerkers)

Defensive Item Choice

As a carry, you can usually only afford to put one defensive item in your build. If you build any more, you may as well have played Malphite.

This item used to be an extremely strong defensive item for carries. As of now, it can still be used situationally. Usually GA or QSS is more valuable, however sometimes you need exactly what BV gives you.

Get this when one or more of the champions below are on the other team and pose a major threat to your safety. These champions can be crippled by having one skill blocked from their combo.

This item is pretty standard on carries lategame. Since they hold so much power, it is important for them to stay alive, whether it is to clean up champions or super creeps. You will usually know when to get this item by instinct, however if you were not born with that instinct, get this when you think that the enemy is wasting a lot of time trying not just to block you out of a teamfight, but to hunt you down and make sure you die (which is stupid). If the enemy uses everything they can on you, then GA can win you a teamfight easily.

This item has overtaken BV in popularity because it's extremely cheap, doesn't delay your build, and allows you to survive stupid shit that you normally shouldn't. This is almost a core item on most builds, and you should find yourself getting it a lot in the mid - lategame (but not always of course, sometimes you must prioritize more damage). One of the main reasons, among a few others, is that it removes ignite and exhaust.

This item will make your life a breeze against these champions (usually):

(if you just CAN'T avoid getting ulted or snared)
(Removes wither, though it might not always be effective against Nasus)


As an AD carry, there are only a few things you need to worry :

1. Creep score

This is important for every champion except supports, however it is especially important for AD champions as this is the ONLY way to tell how far ahead you are in a game as a carry. You came to bottom lane to farm, and you must become flawless at it. Learn your champions autoattack animation, base damage, how many skills you can use to last hit without running out of mana. These are all things you need to know by heart. You WILL lose if you aren't good at last hitting.

2. Positioning/Who to Target

This is the second most important thing, for if you do not know how to position/who to target, then you are useless! This is both incredibly easy and incredibly hard to master. Carries are nothing unique in that in teamfights, you often have to trade your own safety to put the enemy focus in danger, like most damage dealers. You'll soon come to realize (if you haven't already) that this is what makes or breaks good players of any role. You see that support that willingly gets in range of you every fight when she COULD be standing just slightly further away? Yeah, she's going to die in 3 autoattacks, and if she keeps doing that, she could lose her team the game. The constant struggle in teamfights is figuring out an angle from which you can safely deal the most damage to their team. This sometimes means that you have to autoattack their tank, sometimes it means firing off your ult over a wall, sometimes it means kiting an enemy assassin for days while your teams do their thing.

Generally, I think of it this way. The higher priority target that I have to kill, the more dangerous of a situation I have to put myself in. You want to tip the scales in your favour by abusing tanks. When a tank initiates is THE most vulnerable time for their highest priority targets. It is extremely easy to not get initiated on, but many people are extremely stupid. Getting initiated on is often the reason you will lose a fight because you become vulnerable for too long a period of time. Make sure to move with your team and be aware of every tiny little play being made. A tank getting into flash range of you could lose you the game.

3. Actual Goals

One more important thing to think about when playing a carry is that you are basically a walking siege unit. You need to think like a motherfucking canon minion, yes, a canon minion (PCM overrated). When you are caitlyn, you should be getting a tower by 10, 15 minutes. When you are trist you should tell yourself that you need to have 100 CS by ~13 minutes or you are sure as hell going to be too far behind.
When their mid tower is still up at 20 minutes, you need to head towards mid and tell your team to make a push. Towers are intimidating but the fact that even outer towers stand up until 30 minutes loses people too many games. Your focus is to win your lane, take your tower, and then either farm and push your lane more, or take more towers. Same thing goes for dragon, especially if you picked up a wriggles. Don't sit there with it and do nothing, tell them that now is a perfect opportunity to do this or do that. How many times has your mid lane pinged you and told you to come the fuck over to push his tower. The second you drop every outer tower (or even 2 sometimes, top isn't ALWAYS too important), you can roam around the map and make aggressive plays like teamfights, baron, dragon, or inner tower pushes.



Red: 9x Greater Mark of Desolation
Yellow: 9x Greater Seal of Resilience
Blue: 9x Greater Glyph of Warding
Quintessence: 3x Greater Quintessence of Strength

+15 Armor Pen. +13 Magic Resist. +6.8 Physical Dmg. +13 Armour.

I take these runes because they make you really tanky early on while at the same time allowing you to maximize damage in trades. These may not be optimal for every champion but anything can happen in solo queue so being squishy will not work out for these champions.


Red: 9x Greater Mark of Desolation
Yellow: 7x Greater Seal of Resilience 2x Greater Seal of Clarity
Blue: 7x Greater Glyph of Warding 2x Greater Glyph of Clarity
Quintessence: 3x Greater Quintessence of Strength

+15 Armor Pen. +4.3 Mana regen / 5 @ lv. 18. +10 Magic Resist. +6.8 Physical Dmg. +9.8 Armour.

I take these runes on these champions for the same reasons as the above runepage, except these champions are more skill-reliant and need the little bit of extra mana regen to be successful.


Red: 9x Greater Mark of Desolation
Yellow: 9x Greater Seal of Alacrity
Blue: 9x Greater Glyph of Alacrity
Quintessence: 3x Greater Quintessence of Strength

+15 Armor Pen. +6.8 Physical Dmg. +13% Attack Speed.

I run this runepage for extra aggression early game, however, with the survivability gone, you must play perfectly. The only reason you can run this page is because of the high range of Caitlyn and Kog. I might also consider this runepage with a kill lane such as vayne+taric, but only because she is mobile and taric is generally a safe laning partner.


Red: 9x Greater Mark of Desolation
Yellow: 9x Greater Seal of Evasion
Blue: 9x Greater Glyph of Warding
Quintessence: 3x Greater Glyph of Strength

+15 Armor Pen. +6.8% Dodge. +13 Magic Resist. +6.8 Physical Dmg

I run this page on Sivir to take maximum advantage of her passive. Why not




I would run this page on someone who uses manamune, as SoS can be a strong but subtle mastery.


I run this on most AD carries I play because you will never lose a trade against someone who has put those extra points into utility, and the extra tankiness helps early game combined with defensive runes.


I run ignite on Tristana so this becomes the ideal page, but only 1 point has changed from the above page.


I take this page on Ashe because I feel like her early game is already weak so the extra crit damage and AD won't help her. Instead I take the improved mana regen, movespeed, and flash cooldown.


This page is the best on Sivir because you can become near invincible against other AD's, reaching around 30% dodge. Combine this with dodge boots for even more effectiveness. Most people don't think to do this on her but because of her 475 range, you often come into physical attack range of enemy champions. Don't forget to keep moving when fighting other carries as well!

Note: It is inconvient to upload many pictures of each possible mastery page. Use common sense when it comes to placement of points in masteries like Archaic Knowledge, it isn't necessary on carries without magic damage!

Early Game

In the first couple minutes, focus on farming. CS is always more important than trading hits or making offensive plays. Creeps do a lot more damage than you think really early, and unless you are going to get an easy kill on a 400 health Blitzcrank who is OOM and DC'd, don't do it (you know what I mean). Sometimes you can get really strong pokes off if you are Caitlyn, Kog, Ezreal, etc. Once you hit level 3 or 4 (depending on which skills you got/need), you can start outplaying your opponents. Whether it is zoning him, preventing him from getting CS, out-CSing him, killing him, or sending him B, you want to outplay your opponent. Nothing but personal experience will teach you how to become good at this, and each champion is different. Just remember that safe plays are always better than dangerous/risky plays.

Note: Try and learn your opponent in the first couple minutes. Take a glance at his armor/MR, attack damage, and how well he is CSing. Press tab and compare CS in between waves (when it is safe to do so). Also try and remember approximately when the enemy summoners are up. You don't need to time it, but the enemys exhaust being up could be the difference between a safe play and a dangerous play.

Mid Game

By mid game you want your first item to be complete. You either want to CS or push towers depending on which seems like a better idea. Always keep an eye on baron and dragon, and if your support needs to help your team, buy wards for yourself. As a carry, your opponent will constantly be trying to shut you down, and the mere presence of you sitting in a lane farming your next major item could really piss them off. Don't get caught or make stupid plays and absolutely nothing will be your fault at this point in the game (as long as you aren't 0-7 with 30 cs or some shit). Once you complete your second major item, force fights as soon as possible with your team. Start sieging towers as well.

Late Game

At this point, most of the game relies on your smart positioning and lightning-fast reflexes. Well, not really, you can lose for other reasons, but you SHOULD be ready to carry your team at this point. Every play you make is clutch, even buying things like QSS when you need them. Also make sure to use exhaust on whoever has made it their job to kill you. Whether that is olaf, kennen, nocturne, it does not matter. This exact point in the game is why carries are called carries.

Team Fights

Basic Kill Priority
1. AD Carry, Out of Position, Whoever your tank initiates on
2. AP Carry (Stronger)
3. Assassin, AP Carry
4. Support
5. Tank

This is the order in which you right click people until they die, when in range. If you are safely autoattacking the enemy carry (it won't happen often..), and he moves out of range to attack someone else, you then change positions to autoattack their AP carry safely. AD carries don't often get a chance to focus more than one person in a teamfight at a time. This isn't to say that if their tank is available most of the time, he is the one to attack, no. I'm saying their highest damage dealers only present themselves to attack for short periods of time in which you should bust everything on them, essentially telling them to fuck off or die. For example, if their AP carry comes out to use all of his abilities, nuke the shit out of him until he is either scared to re-enter the fight, or dead. Don't spend time chasing after him to secure a kill, but instead switch to someone who has now presented themself, such as the support or assassin, much like the previous AP carry presented themself. This may sound complicated but each target switch happens very quickly and the difference between killing someone can be a single right click. Also remember to try and stay at max range, you don't want to be the AD carry (#1 priority on the list) who has allowed him/herself to be caught and die/have to retreat the fight. So, as you can see, the perfect balance of risk/reward is necessary when playing a carry, although it's really more simple than it seems.

I'd give an example of a teamfight, but it is too difficult to describe as they can change so rapidly and be so random. I'll try and upload a few videos later.


September 22, 2012 - 01:47 PM #1

plz upload some videos for positioning with vayne i have big problems with it and cant find anyone pro to earn from him

March 19, 2012 - 08:21 PM #2

tikalkeria even though I'm not the author of this thread I would say no, you may be fast and shoot fast but your job as an ad carry is to be the teams dps. I understand why you would want to do it though :)

February 15, 2012 - 05:18 AM #3

what do you think about 3 speed boots? I like to get those on Ashe sometimes and Vayne then build early zeal, upgrading to a PD or 2 for attack speed and even MOAR movement speed >:D

February 2, 2012 - 04:33 AM #4

Be nice if you could update this and maybe mention who counters who but i know its alot of work so its k if you dont want to

January 29, 2012 - 12:06 AM #5

You forgot some supports bro. Have you ever tried a Cait/(Nid support) lane? Freaking brutal poke. OR Teemo Soraka lane, Blinds carry, Silence support for no damage out put from opponents for 1-2 seconds is super powerful. Kayle/Kog is also a very powerful lane a sped up Kog and the oppenents dont have and resits and are slowed...Ouch. if you want help with masteries Look me up on NA server: Dalems

January 7, 2012 - 08:42 PM #6

Please update masteries, thanks and a great guide

January 1, 2012 - 12:41 PM #7

awsome but you Must do a small update to yor masteries ^^

December 31, 2011 - 08:15 PM #8

I love your Ezreal custom skin. Sexy Ezreal rawks.

December 28, 2011 - 03:28 AM #9

Very nice! Thank you for that guide, but could you upgrade masteries pls? :P

December 21, 2011 - 05:17 AM #10

A really good guide and well done good job!

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