The first time I encountered an Akali was in the level ranges of the 20s. He managed to crush us easily. Ever since that moment, I've played Akali enthusiastically and she is one of the funnest champions I have ever played in this game. Even before her E would proc her Q mark, I practiced her and played her almost exclusively for a time. I find a passion in Assassins such as Akali, Katarina, Diana, and perhaps the most infamous, Nidalee. In Season 2, I was able to hit 30 and begin ranked. Unfortunately for me, I didn't know the rules of Ranked and played Akali, mostly first picking her, in 35 games going 20-15. Of course, I could go Middle or Top and on the other team, I would face Garens, Nidalees, Lee Sins, and various others. I learned how to play against each of these champions and began to solidify my mechanics and game sense.
Pros and Cons
- Fun Champion
- Easy to learn
- Beats the common AP champions
- Juking <3
- Bursting enemies
- Best passive NA
- Vision Wards and Oracles stop her shroud from doing much and keep you limited to 3 skills.
- Easy to kite before level 6
- Easy to harass before level 6
- Hard laning phase
- Easy to CC
Damage 53 (+3.2 / per level)
Health 445 (+85 / per level)
Energy 200 (+0 / per level)
Move Speed 350
Armor 16.5 (+3.5 / per level)
Spell Block 30 (+1.25 / per level)
Health Regen 7.25 (+0.65 / per level)
There exists an ancient order originating in the Ionian Isles dedicated to the preservation of balance. Order, chaos, light, darkness -- all things must exist in perfect harmony for such is the way of the universe. This order is known as the Kinkou and it employs a triumvirate of shadow warriors to uphold its causes in the world. Akali is one of these shadow warriors, entrusted with the sacred duty of Pruning the Tree - eliminating those who threaten the equilibrium of Valoran.
A prodigal martial artist, Akali began training with her mother as soon as she could make a fist. Her mother's discipline was relentless and unforgiving, but predicated on the fundamental principle: ''We do that which must be done.'' When the Kinkou inducted her into the order at the age of fourteen, she could slice a dangling chain with a chop of her hand. There was no question - she would succeed her mother as the Fist of Shadow. She has had to do much in this role which others might find morally questionable, but to her it is in service of her mother's inviolable doctrine. She now works with her fellows Shen and Kennen to enforce the balance of Valoran. This hallowed pursuit has unsurprisingly led the triumvirate to the Fields of Justice.
''The Fist of Shadow strikes from the cover of death itself. Do not impede the balance.''
MasteriesI chose to go 21-9-0 Masteries even in Season 3 to maximize my damage output.
Thanks to the new Spellsword mastery, Akali is even more viable.
According to who I am facing, I switch out defensive masteries such as MR for Armor or vice versa.
The 2 points in Brute Force are required because of the passive.
The mastery in Executioner is vital for Akali as well. Akali is supposed to come in the middle of the fight when all the CC has been used up. You should be able to kill easily after that and continue to get refreshes on your R: Shadow Dance.
RunesThese runes just give you the perfect amount of AP and AD for Akali's passives to work.
Throwing in some HP, it's just great.
Akali's passives are extremely important as they give you more burst potential as well as more spell vamp.
Here's an example of my ideal Akali page:
This summoner spell allows you to finish off targets that run away. A very good laning spell mid/top which allows you to pick up kills you might have missed.
The key summoner spell. This is the most mandatory summoner spell for almost all champions. Flash allows you to make plays and is a get away free card.
There are some more summoner spells that you can take:
This combo allows you to have much better map control and allows you to become a split pusher. Remember that your passive also works on turrets, you do an additional few magic damage because of your passive to towers!
The 'SilSol' summoner spells. If you want to go completely balls deep and attempt to win lane through trades and winning them, go for it.
Exhaust is an amazing summoner spell that can help to burst AD carries even harder later in the game. It doesn't help much during laning but it's an alright spell.
Cleanse can also help for when the opposing team has a lot of CC. However, you probably shouldn't have chosen Akali if they do, but sometimes we like to first pick.
Passive: Twin Disciplines
This passive.. Is freaking sexy. All I can say about it. Sexy. It's pretty much two passives in one and allows you to get spell vamp and burst through additional magic damage, what's not to love? It also scales very well into late game. This is the reason why we rush a hextech gunblade.
Q: Mark of the Assassin
Mark used to harass. Before her buff, it was hard to actually proc but now that they've made E proc it as well, it's extremely easy to harass people.
W: Twilight Shroud
The infamous portable bush. Akali is probably best known for her juking potential and also her shroud. Remember that the shroud gives you MR and Armor as well as invisibility, so even if they have an oracles or vision ward, you want to fight inside of this.
I sometimes consider maxing this second because it is such an amazing defensive buff and allows you to beat some champions that would otherwise beat you.
Face check with this skill and make sure that they don't have a vision ward or an oracles on them. An Oracles on a tank can pretty much nullify this skill in a teamfight.
E: Crescent Slash
It's kind of an extended AOE auto attack which lets you harass and farm with ease.
R: Shadow Dance
Gosh.. What do I say? This is a free flash to an opponent or minion. What's not to love? The ratios and the base damage aren't that bad either. After getting three stacks of Shadow Dance you should be able to destroy your opponents in lane. During teamfights you should use this to pretty much stick to the AD and kill him.
This skill is useful for picking up kills under the turret and rushing right back out. When a target is low with no target CC, you should dive them for a free kill. Remember that you can shadow dance right back to an enemy minion.
Using the Portable Bush!Twilight Shroud is one of the funnest skills to use in order to juke especially with the combination of Shadow Dance.
Although it might not seem to work, shrouding right next to a bush can make it so that they can't see you entering the bush. Try this out in top lane mostly and watch it confuse your enemies!
The reason that this works is because as long as your body is at least halfway inside of the shroud, you'll be able to stay invisible.
CombosThere are a dozens of combos that you can do with Akali but I'll give you the most common ones.
will represent an auto attack.
- Q -> wait a few seconds -> R -> proc mark -> Q -> E
-> Wait -> -> -> ->
- R -> Q -> E/proc mak -> W
-> -> / ->
- Q -> R -> proc mark -> W
-> -> ->
Passive style combos:
- R -> W -> Q -> E -> wait for cooldowns -> Q -> R -> proc mark
-> -> -> -> Wait -> ->
- Q -> W -> E
- Q -> E
- Q -> E -> E
- E -> E
You can integrate flash in order to substitute for flash in case you want to secure a kill.
This item is irreplaceable because of Akali's passive that scales so well with it.
Mid starting items:
Top starting items:
(You might say that the flask is a waste because of the mana but the free HP pots is still nice, especially with the ward which can keep ganks from screwing you over.)
Be taking the wraiths if your jungler isn't, it'll help keep your farm ahead and you get free healing.
I do not recommend this build but if you're having trouble against a champion you should pick up second level boots -> hextech revolver -> Rylais -> hextech gunblade.
For Guardian Angel get the component which counters who's fed on the other side.
For Rylai's you should be building the giant's belt since you're having a hard time in lane.
Against Heavy AD:
Against Heavy AP:
So I've been testing things out with:
: This is the enchantment that most people get. It's for mobility even though you should have enough of it, you can get this if you want to roam even more and get to places faster. The problem that I see with these are that if you can get these, you can also get the boots of mobility in order to get a better enchantment such as furor.
: A good enchantment for when having lots of teamfights. You'll be able to focus AD carries even better because of the short burst of movement speed that you gain from it.
: This is honestly one of the least useful items because all it does is give cooldown reduction to an already long summoner spell which Akali slightly forgoes after hitting level 11.
Champion SelectionYou should chose Akali against immobile AD carries and teams which are not filled with CC.
This allows you to jump around in teamfights and secure a kill on the AD carry.
An ideal team to go against would be:
Early game for Akali should be focused on knowing whether you can trade and keeping up your farm.
At level two you should have your shroud. Use it in order to zone the enemy champion away from the creeps.
If the jungler comes to gank, don't be afraid to use flash, it's not that important early on, just don't get caught again.
Q minions in order to last hit the ones you can't risk getting near.
Remember that you run on energy and don't exactly need to conserve it that much.
Be checking if they're people who spam their mana quickly and calculate how long it will be before their mana is up to use another skill and dodge it or stay out of range.
The laning for Akali should be passive and you don't need the jungler's help that much unless they directly countered you.
Once you hit level 4 you should be able to use your shroud in order to get close and mark them. Once marked, wait a while and zone them away from the minions because they will be afraid of your second proc and another mark.
Congratulations! You managed to get to level 6!
Once level six, you should wait until you have 2+ charges on Shadow Dance and try trading with them. Make sure that there are minions!
It's extremely important that the champion is behind the minions so that you can escape in case they are able to out trade you. Play safe and be resourceful.
You should be going to other lanes in order to clean up or help them with their lane. Make sure that you are going to be able to do something before you go though. If you go and aren't able to do anything at all then you just wasted a few minion waves and allowed your turret to take damage. Think about that before you roam and look at the minimap at all times for minor conflicts.
Thanks to your ability to burst people down so fast, you dictate how the teamfights flow. Remember to focus the right person and tell your team how to focus people. Go into the teamfights after the fights have been started. AD > AP > Bruiser > Support > Tank
Late game is where Akali begins to fall off from her mid game dominance. Hopefully you guys are warding baron and keeping the objectives rolling. Attempt to end the game as quickly as possible
During mid game fights you should be focusing who is most fed/dealing damage whether it is the AD carry, the AP carry, or the bruiser. Just take them down.
Later on in the game, you have to focus on the AD carry. The AD carry by that time will have enough items to start dealing damage. Remember that you're an assassin. If you see the AD carry out by himself, go after him. However, if the entire enemy team starts heading there as well, get your team there and force a teamfight where you can stick onto the AD carry.
Who to Pick Akali Against and Who Not To (AD Carry-wise)
Pick Akali against:
While she does have a stun, the closer up you are to her, the lower the stun duration will be. Also she has no speed steroid or way to find you in your shroud.
While he does have his E skill, Stand Aside, it doesn't stop you too much and he's extremely reliant on picking up his axes in order to deal more damage.
He's only got one dash and it's not that long of a range. He can blind you but you can just shroud and find your way out to focus him again.
He's extremely immobile and although his range is monstrous, it'll be easy to burst him down with the range on your Shadow Dance.
Can't peel for herself at all. She has a movement speed buff only when she's not being attacked, you counteract that easily.
While he can go invisible, he doesn't have the means to kill you nor does he have the time to go invisible when you've bursted him so hard. He's extremely squishy and you can 100-0 him easily.
While tanky, he's the most immobile AD carry that there is.
No escapes, his snare isn't that long, everything he has is pretty much a skill shot, shouldn't have too much trouble taking him down.
These champions are all quite immobile and easy to focus down.
Do NOT pick against:
Perfectly counters Akali, he can reveal inside of her shroud as well as escape with his Valkyrie, his Gattling Gun is AOE and shreds armor, his missiles have a huge hitbox.
Reason: He can E out of you and put you in a bad spot. He also has the burst to kill you.
Every time I see a Sivir I cry inside. Her shield stops Akali's burst if used correctly and her ultimate gives a movement speed buff that allows escape.
I pick up a Rylai's or Frozen Fist against Sivir.
Push away and a jump.
Ultimate, Q, E, burst with W, GG.
Who to Pick Akali Against and Who Not To (Top-wise)Coming Soon.
Who to Pick Akali Against and Who Not To (Mid-wise)Coming Soon.
Ideal Akali Team Composition:
Akali has the most synergy with teams which can stop the opponents from moving.
An example team would be:
The team comp should be tanky and able to soak up damage while having some form of CC such as a stun or knock up.
Nami could also be used in this instance.
It's key that your team is able to stop the enemy team from doing anything while you are wrecking their AD carry. Disruption helps Akali a lot.
Final CommentsI'll be adding a counter list and how to play against them as well as a few videos later on.
12/19/2012 - Guide is made.
1/9/2013 - Added base stats and lore. Added a few counters.