Xin Zhao Build Guide

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Win Zhao - The Bruce Lee of Demacia

written by Sanzuro

Xin Zhao Build

Table of Contents

  • Introduction

    I've been playing league since beta, I know the most of the ins and outs of the game. I know what most/all the champions can do and can't do. I'm not the master of all the champions nor do I think I could do as well as I do with Xin with every champion. I have around 600-495 Wins/lose ratio in normal que and about 100/50 in ranked games. I have played Xin since he first came out and was over powered when he could solo mid and win the game 1v5 if played right. I was there when he was nurf hammered so hard he couldn't do anything of much but support. I now think Xin is in the place league wants him in and I think he fits perfectly, He is an amazing champ if played right and can suck just as east as other champs if played wrong.

    Xin's main role in my opinion is to start team fights, one of the first champs to go in and the first champ to leave a fight, He is very beefy and his ult makes him prefect for this role. His role during the fight is to take down and focus the squishys and other carrys to aid the team. His very fast Three Talon Strike makes him prefect to surprise and disable the carry when he charges them with Audacious Charge. Xin Is very beefy and I consider him a hard carry, I play him aggressively starting fights and finishing them just the same, my Item base is very defensive based so I can survive the onslaught after I Audacious Charge into their team.

    P.s: Mind the grammar and spelling mistakes, don't comment about them, they will get fixed in the long run

  • Updates

    Updates 02-10-11

    *Add more to jungling (skilling order)
    *Add explanations for a few items in core build + item section
    *Fixed a few spelling errors and other errors here and there
    *Added reasoning to pros & cons
    *Added a mid to late game section

  • Pros & Cons

    Lets start with the Pros


    + Very Strong Mid/Late game
    + High chance of First blood
    + Easy to Master
    + Really good AoE slow and Disable
    + Hard to take down or disable
    + Can completely bypass the enemy team's Disablers and tanks to cut up the DPS and Mages
    + Strong presence
    + Great laning phase
    + Hard to shut down with CC effects

    And for Cons


    - Extremely item dependent
    - If focus can go down quickly but not without a fight and generally leads to your team cleaning them up

    Reason why I consider him item dependent. because without those items to "beef up his hp it becomes a lot harder to do what this guide suggests you to do. Charge in start the fight take the first wave of disables and hits and then focus down the carries. If you are squishy you might get focused down and not even get your ult off if you get stunned.

  • Know Your Role

    Knowing your role in a team is almost the key to a clean and easy victory if you know what your suppose to be doing and get that done, your other team mates can get their job done and the game goes by faster.

    Xin Zhao I see is having one role. He is the guy that starts fights and slices though the enemies carries. During a fight it is your soul duty to be focusing down the people behind the tanks and taking them out and Xin Zhao is prefect for this role. With the right items and build he can do this with less worry about being disabled and stop from completing his role and winning the game.

    The idea behind Xin be able to do this is his main combo of Audacious Charge Crescent Sweep Three Talon Strike Battle Cry

    Why Battle Cry last? you might ask.
    simple With your items and natural ability to attack fast, you will have no trouble getting Three Talon Strike off on your target during a team fight. During the last hit of Three Talon Strike Activate Battle Cry to start lower the CD of your Main dmg skill, I have found that you can get CD reduction on two Three Talon Strike after the first one. which leads to more dmg out put.

  • Masteries + Runes

    Masteries are very important and I like to go with a 21-0-9 build taking either smite or exhaust mastery depending on if I forest or lane. Most Xin and other people like to suggest to go down the defensive tree so you can take more hits and live longer but my core items allow for this without having to miss out on the dmg masteries which I consider important to this build and play style.

    The Runes I like to run on Xin play great into dealing top dmg with his Three Talon Strike and defense all in one.

    Greater Mark of Desolation x9 for 15+ armor pen (for Three Talon Strike max dmg)
    Greater Seal of Vitality x9 for +175 heath at level 18
    Greater Glyph of Focus x9 for 5.85% CD reduction
    Greater Quintessence of Desolation x3 for +10 more armor pen

    This rune set up grants you Maximum dmg out on Xin's powerful Three Talon Strike With 25 armor pen to go with the three power strikes. I grab the Hp per level seals to help with survivability early level 4-5 and late game. The glyph of focus to really help with Battle Crys CD it's a great asset for xin and it wont be level'd past one till later game. Thus the reasons behind the rune set up and masteries.

  • Skills + Skilling Order

    Xin and his Skills. His skills are what make Xin Zhao into Win Zhao.

    [spell=Tireless Warrior]
    Xin Zhao is healed for 30 points for every 3 attacks that he lands. This amount increases by 5 every 2 levels.

    Amazing passive if you ask me, great early game healing while laning and foresting. Great late game when you have built up your attack speed. It lets you skip buying life steal, though more life steal is never a bad thing, just not a huge priority with Xin

    Three Talon Strike
    Xin Zhao prepares to unleash a fearsome combo, causing his next 3 standard attacks to deal his attack damage + 15/30/45/60/75 to enemy targets, with the final attack knocking his opponent into the air.

    This Skill is What makes people hate and fear Xin, if you use him right the enemy carries with be crying and raging every time you knock them up during ults or while they run from your spear. This skill also has a very hidden two quick hit play with it. When your attack animation is over and you can feel the time beetwen your next attack and use the skill. This will attack your opponent immediately. This allows for a quick two hits or a double hit.

    Battle Cry
    Passive: Increases Xin Zhao's attack speed by 15/20/25/30/35%.

    Active: Xin Zhao unleashes a battle cry, increasing his attack speed by double the passive amount for 7 seconds, and causing his standard attacks to reduce all other ability cool downs by 1 second.

    This skill is great for increasing how fast you heal with his passive by letting you attack faster. Also while active each attack lowers CD of the other skills. I find I see Xin's using this skill to get Three Talon Strike off faster, but don't. Use this skill After you hit with your Audacious Charge and Three Talon Strike. This will allow your Three Talon Strike back faster as well during the duration of CD reduction.

    Audacious Charge
    Xin Zhao charges an enemy unit, dealing 70/110/150/190/230 magic damage to all nearby enemies and slowing them by 20/25/30/35/40% for 1.7 seconds.

    This Skill allows you to Start Team fights, Slow running enemys, and the start of your combo. The common Combo with Xin is to Audacious Charge into their team and then use Crescent Sweep (best used when hitting whole team if you can) which deals massive dmg, Then fallow up with Three Talon Strike and after the knock up strike use Battle Cry To quickly refresh your other skills.

    Crescent Sweep
    Xin Zhao unleashes a fierce spear sweep on targets around him, dealing 125/250/375 + 20% of their current health in physical damage. His magic resistance and armor are increased by 30/40/50 for the next 8 seconds.

    This skill is amazing, when used right you can Deal 20% of their entire teams max health in dmg at the start of a fight, handicapping them a lot. This skill even increases you defense to allow you to do this and take the oncoming onslaught for doing this to their team and come out alive.

    I like to grab Audacious Charge first if a level one team fight starts I never seem to get the third hit of Three Talon Strike off and they get away and I don't get my kill and were all disappointed we didn't get first blood. So that being said by grabbing one in Audacious Charge you slow the enemy and I seem to get at least 3-4 hits in and slow them for my ally as well to get some hits in. Generally leads to first blood. Everything from their pretty much explains itself. I try maxing Three Talon Strike to max my dmg output, and one in Battle Cry to quickly refresh skills during battle, and of course taking Crescent Sweep whenever I can.

  • Core Build = Items

    My core build is fairly simple It utilizes making Xin beefy and hard to kill after your combo of Audacious Charge to Crescent Sweep to Three Talon Strike and finally Battle Cry to refresh cool downs while in fight.

    I like to start with a Long Sword and a Health Potion while rely on Greater Seal of Vitality for survivability early game by level 3 I'm already hard to kill/deal with. I do not recommend going back to base un-till you can afford Phage and a Boots of Speed and if you don't do that well during lane phase I recommend getting at least a Ruby Crystal and a Boots of Speed on your first trip back. This will make you beefy very early game which makes you great at start fights early in this game. all it takes is some support and you'll be kicking a$$ and taking names have in the 1200 hp range around level 7-8.

    By your third or fourth trip back to base you should have by now you Phage and a finished boot and depending on the team you get either a Ninja Tabi if there team is DPS based the armor will help you stay alive. If however they are AP based I recommend you getting Mercury's Treads for blocking magic dmg and most mages stuns and slows duration. And by now your working on your Giant's Belt and then turning it into a Frozen Mallet.

    After your Frozen Mallet one of the better items to pick up and works great if their team is AP based of DPS based a Banshee's Veil. Which part of the item to pick up depends on what you need, if you find yourself losing your hp fast cause of mage's nukes grab the Negatron Cloak and reduce their dmg. If their team is full of DPS pick up Ruby Crystal.

    The reason I recommended the all mighty Banshee's Veil is so you can have that effect to block one negative spell. cause you will be Audacious Charge-ing into their entire team and you don't want to be stunned so you can get your Crescent Sweep off on their entire team.

    This is where the build can split into different items depending on their team ect. I recommend [item=madred's bloodrazor] buying the Recurve Bow first to increase your attack speed so your passive [spell=Tireless Warrior] can be activated faster so you heal more often. Also another bonus of attack speed is that you deliver your main source of dmg faster Three Talon Strike next most people recommend getting the Madred's Razors next to help with farming and armor and I ALSO recommend getting that next as well. then of course the Pickaxe and then into the [item=madred's bloodrazor]

    This item gives Xin some Dmg and some attack speed which both help Three Talon Strikes dmg out put, it also plays into your passive [spell=tireless warrior]. And there you have Xin's core build, it allows for Maximum dmg out put on Three Talon Strike and huge amounts of survivability so you can get off Audacious Charge and Crescent Sweep without suffering huge repercussions of the enemy team. it allows you to start fights and not die right away as well. It turns Xin into the hard carry he was meant to be.

    Quick Item Summary

    [builder=Xin Zhao/fe7d0994d036dd027a5f95be44c537ef] For fighting magic based teams. Banshee's Veil will make mage's not want to waste spells on you giving you lots of survivability, Mercury's Treads will also block a lot of the slows and stuns that mages come with.


    [builder=Xin Zhao/9867f9d7bab46c1bcf8ca944ad48f86e] Ninja Tabi with provide armor and dodge to stop those annoying dps, and an added bonus Banshee's Veil will stop most of the DPS stuns and slows and dmg spells and as well will make you less focused.

    Next the item from there are your choice

    I highly recommend getting

    Guardian Angel you will have the other team just begging for the game to be over. Xin comes back to life he was hard enough to kill to begin with.... sigh. it gives you that edge in a team fight and often in ranked a GA means you don't get targeted, and if your not targeted you can just go kill their carries.

    The Black Cleaver Really good, adds to your armor pen and makes Three Talon Strike do a ton more dmg

    [item=Stark's Fervor] Another good one plays right into your passive [spell=tireless warrior] and attack speed to deliver your Three Talon Strike faster

    Atma's Impaler Good souly cause you'll have around 3000 hp around level 16 with my build, it provides defense and some attack dmg. and you might crit which isn't a bad thing.

    Items NOT to get are as fallowing:

    Infinity Edge Yes it will provide high dmg out but it's missing a few things that would make it good, attack speed which on Xin is great which you can get both dmg and attack speed from a The Black Cleaver which also provides you armor pen and speed as well as dmg. plus your not a crit champ buy better stuff

    Sword of the Occult a stacking item on this build could be good you have high survivability, I just don't recommend it with xin, when you die you lose a lot of your killing power with lose of stacks and Xin doesn't have a good escape ability. so it's harder to stay alive and you wont get very high stacks. pretty much saying you wont keep stacks high buy a better item.

    Manamune NEVER buy this item ever, xin doesn't have a mana problem, if you run out of mana take blue buff it's easy to snag for a DPS and you can always go back to base and recharge and head back out to the field of justice

    Those are the few items I recommend highly but I don't think the game will last much longer after that.

    will update after getting input from comments/pms

    Other items that come to mind or you might like instead

    [item=force of nature] Good item provides lots of magic resist but I feel that Banshee's Veil is better cause it blocks that negative spell which makes mages and other disablers cautious of casting anything on you

    Zeal-Or- Phantom Dancer These items work great on OTHER Champions. They work okay with Xin but all it does is make his passive [spell=tireless warrior] a bit better with the speed it provides. the crit chance is only 12% it's not hugely noticeable. It also doesn't do much for Three Talon Strike (your main source of dmg) other then letting you swing faster. getting a item that provides both attack speed and AD is better. however getting it after as one of your items to fill your two extra slots doesn't hurt

  • Summoner Abilities

    I'll list off some good summoner spells to take while playing as Xin. In my 21-0-9 masteries build, you will see I have taken improved ghost so yes I highly recommend you use the summoner spell Ghost as one of your summoner spells

    Ghost Take this so you can get to fights fast and move around fast in the fights helping you deliver your Three Talon Strike to whom ever you decide to kill.

    Other spells to take our the fallow with reasons why:

    Ignite Reason being you can finish off people very quickly with this spell on them and if they get away it can help you snag that kill if you get disabled and can't chase.

    Exhaust I like taking this one if I feel in the mood to be a ganker. there is nothing like Xin flying out of the bush with Audacious Charge exhaust and smoking them dead with Three Talon Strike And Exhaust with pretty much seal the deal.

    Smite Take this spell of course if you are jungle-ing it helps you kill the tougher creeps and later game quickly get buffs and back into the fray.

    Spells I don't recommend but still work

    Flash Flash works for anyone you simply flash away and your safe. and this is the same case for Xin, but I think it is un-needed on him

    Cleanse This spell works great if the other team has lots of disables but I find it unnecessary cause with Banshee's Veil people tend to ignore using disables on you.

  • Early game + Working in the team

    Xin's role in the team can be many things but it will always be something. I like to see him as icon of safety, a steam roler, an unstoppable force if you will. He can start fights, he can save allies from death, he can steam role towers as well, and wipe out the other teams carries like they were butter AND I'm going to tell you how to do all this.

    Early game

    Xin is only weak at level 1-2 he doesn't start with that much Hp and we don't have flat hp runes and our starting items don't provide hp and our Greater Seal of Vitality don't take noticeable effect till about level 4-5 but he can still take a punch if a level 1 fight starts. by taking Audacious Charge first you have given the level 1 team fight a fairly good slow and you'll get in more auto attacks then you would off if you had taken Three Talon Strike. They always seem to run before the third hit... hits. so charge the weaker of the two attackers and start auto attacking them and hope your ally jumps on the band wagon and targets the same foe. IF you become the focus of the enemy activate you Health Potion to keep you alive.

    After the level one team fight or if the team fight doesn't happen try to play from the bush and take any chance you combo the weaker of the two enemies by Audacious Chargeing them and fallowing with your Three Talon Strike try to get them low and or a kill out of it. and Playing from the bush makes Xin very annoying and hard to deal with.

    How to deal with a bad early game

    If your getting beat early game and can't get into your bush and don't feel safe Audacious Chargeing into them don't worry there is nothing to be scared of your Greater Seal of Vitality will kick in around 4-5 and you'll notice your hp being higher combined with Ruby Crystal you'll pick up on your first trip you'll have enough hp to start your harass and not get killed for it.

    How to start a fight

    Xin is a very good initiator, he can start a fight like no other champion out there and here is how to do it. During a team fight while both team's size each other up, wait for the prefect moment so that you can Audacious Charge into all 5 of them. (yes all five of them cause were that crazy) when you land your charge spam your Crescent Sweep till it goes off hitting all five of them best case scenario on average you'll hit 3-4 of them with it. which will deal about 30% of their hp in one sweep of Xin's mighty spear.

    After the fight starts eat their carries alive

    Now that you have made the other team shit themselves with Xin's mighty Crescent Sweep and dealt 30% of their hp down already give or take depending on the target. Now your job is to slice up their carries. After the fight has started and your team has jumped in just as you did, your job is to now take the carries out of the fight. activate you Three Talon Strike and go after that ranged DPS or mage carry. next is to turn on your mighty Battle Cry and quickly refresh your Three Talon Strike and Audacious Charge to chase down the carry or mage if they decide to run. You might be thinking you might not have enough in you to do this and take all the hits that will be coming your way, but I have prepared for that with your Frozen Mallet and Banshee's Veil to protect you from the dmg. as well as your hp per level seals Greater Seal of Vitality

    How to save an ally

    This is quite simple you have two spells that will keep your running allies alive and well if you do this right. If you see an ally running and they have one or two hits left don't just let them die, Xin is VERY tough. You can Audacious Charge into the perusing foe's to slow them. most enemy's will give up realizing your ally is now safe and there to slowed to get to your ally. But sometimes one will try to run past and you get they kill they want so badly to stop him it's simple, this is the only time you will activate Battle Cry and Three Talon Strike at the same time, you want those strikes in this case as fast as possible to stop the enemy from killing you ally. IF it works your ally is saved and you can run away to a tower and be safe yourself. and if need use Crescent Sweep for the defense for your own escaping.

    Also an added bonus you can turn saving an ally into snagging a kill by doing the same thing except not running after disabling the enemies.

    Steam role their towers

    It's quite simple since Three Talon Strike does not hit towers nor does it knock them up that is not what you use to do so. All you need to do is simply active Battle Cry for the bonus attack speed and go to town on the tower, I find you can deal anywhere to 2/4 or 3/4 of the towers hp with one minion wave backing you up when your around level 5-10. any where past you can completely take a tower in one wave with Battle Cry active.

  • Mid Late Game

    Mid to late game is very easy for Xin zhao, my build makes him very tough and very annoying to deal with. You will change the tide of any team fight your skills allow you to disable the right people and save your allies from what may seem like certain death

  • Creep Jungling

    Jungling with Xin Zhao I see it happen from time to time I personally don't like it but here is how I do it.

    I don't change my rune set up at all but I change my masteries to include improved smite.

    The core build changes to include the beginning item change.

    I start with Cloth Armor and Health Potion x5 and start at blue buff like most junlgers do. I start with Three Talon Strike from their it's easy hit all the camps using pots at each one. once you reach lizard elder skip him and move on to the golem back to base and start over this time hitting lizard elder and then ganking when you see a chance.

    Item order

    Start with Cloth Armor Health Potionx5 next items will be grabbing Boots of Speed and then getting Madred's Razors and then fallow the core items from the other build. Frozen Mallet Banshee's Veil and grabing Ninja Tabi or Mercury's Treads depending if the other team is magic dmg heavy or AD dmg heavy. Of course after this you build your [item=madred's bloodrazor] and hopefully the game is over by now and you have won.

    Skilling order

    Focusing again on Three Talon Strike to deal as much dmg as possible to the carries of the other team. and again picking up Battle Cry last cause Audacious Charge is more valuable. And of course grabbing your ult whenever possible.

  • Summary

    Xin Zhao - The Seneschal of Demacia is a heavy DPS champion their isn't anyone he is scared of and no situation he wont charge into and walk out of with his spear held high. and this is exactly what this guide will teach you to do. He is very item dependent late game, but isn't weak early game when he doesn't have his items. If you play smart and know your limits you can carry any game to victory.

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Submitted by Sanzuro

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