Tristana Build Guide

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Tristana - Turret Enemy #1

written by Chlose

Tristana Build

Table of Contents

  • Abilities

    Draw a Bead 
    (Innate): Tristana increases her autoattack range by 9 every time she levels up (does not include level one). At level 18, the bonus is 153 (703 total range).

    The main reason why you play Tristana, for this AMAZING passive.

    Rapid Fire

    (Active): Increases Tristana's attack speed for 7 seconds.
    Cost: 80 mana
    Cooldown: 20 seconds

    Attack Speed Boost: 30 / 45 / 60 / 75 / 90%

    This is what makes Tristana, Tristana. Other than her passive. See title=P

    Rocket Jump

    (Active): Tristana fires at the ground to propel herself to a target location, dealing magic damage and slowing surrounding units by 60% for 2.5 seconds when she lands. On kills or assists, Rocket Jump's cooldown resets.
    Cost: 80 mana
    Range to Center of AoE: 900

    Cooldown: 22 / 20 / 18 / 16 / 14 seconds

    Magic Damage: 70 / 115 / 160 / 205 / 250 (+0.8 per ability power)

    This is your escape mechanism, but early game it will be your mini-nuke. ALWAYS have this off CD whenever possible.

    [spell=Explosive Shot]

    (Passive): Enemies explode when slain by Tristana's attacks, dealing magic damage to nearby enemies.
    Radius: 50
    Magic Damage: 50 / 75 / 100 / 125 / 150 (+0.25 per ability power)

    (Active): Explosive Shot rends the target enemy, reducing healing and health regeneration by 50% and dealing magic damage over 5 seconds.
    Cooldown: 16 seconds
    Range: 625

    Cost: 50 / 60 / 70 / 80 / 90 mana

    Total Magic Damage: 110 / 140 / 170 / 200 / 230 (+1.0 per ability power)

    This is your main harass ability. Shame its active is the range of a melee champs ranged abilities, but the active is a great way to chip away at their health, along with its passive if the opponent(s) are stupid and hang next to their minions.

    Buster Shot

    (Active): Tristana fires a massive cannonball at an enemy unit, dealing magic damage and knocking them and surrounding units back.
    Cost: 140 mana
    Cooldown: 60 seconds
    Range: 700
    Knockback Force Width: 200

    Magic Damage: 300 / 400 / 500 (+1.5 per ability power)

    Knockback Distance: 600 / 800 / 1,000

    At rank 1 and 2, this is your nuke. Your main nuke. Period. The burst on this is AMAZING, and the AP scaling is pretty massive if you go AP. At rank 3, this is your ass saving/team mate saving skill, NEVER use it offensively end game unless you get behind them and blast them to your turret/team, which is actually a pretty dangerous position to be in normally. Beware though, it does sent things through walls.

  • New patches!


    No real changes, but pretty good guide update, since it was in need of one.

    BOOM new masteries!
    Nothing much changed. Only AP trist get less from deathcap now. Oh and the few tweaks here and there that makes hiding in the bush properly and stuff.

  • Summoner Abilities

    Ghost/ Flash for your escape/mobility spell. Exhaust since its a duo lane vs another carry if you follow the meta. You can also take Teleport if you want. Drop a ward, tele in, bd that turret if you have the damage needed for it. You can take Cleanse if you want, but seriously, just grab a banshees or quicksilver if you have trouble with cc.

  • Masteries + Runes

    Ok so heres some masteries. If you take 21 in offense, you can go like this or like this. Those are the only ways you can go, imo. You can get magic pen in there if you shove extra points if you want to exploit explosive shot lots, but otherwise its pretty useless. You can put the last 9 wherever you want. 9 in defense like this or in utility like this. Personal preference really. Also, I dont like the change to getting the 10% crit damage, so I made a different set of masteries that works pretty good, especially since poor Trist can get outlaned easily. Something along the lines of this give or take a few points in the creep damage/turret damage if you want. Just general good stuff in there.


    For runes I personally run this. Sometimes I change it up and go with flat armor yellows, or flat mr blues. Quints are what ever you feel like really, you can go full on armor pen, get some extra hp, more regen, whatevers. Quints I say are personal preference really.

  • Items

    First items are very important. You can take Doran's Blade, or Vampiric Scepter. You could also start with Boots of Speed and 3 health pots(I did this vs Karthus mid, the extra move helped IMMENSELY). Another start, though not advisable, is Doran's Shield. This maybe only take if you're against someone who has high harass like Cait or something.


    After this, farm up. FARM UP. Look at my farming section, no real reason why I have it there though. Cuz all it says is FARM. Pick up some boots if you didn't start with it, and grab a B. F. Sword. If you don't have enough gold, get Berserker's Greaves and some health pots if you need them, or if you don't have it but have enough gold, get your Vampiric Scepter. Also you can stack dorans if you need to, it can help if you have a tough lane. Remember: if you need to grab merc treads, grab them. Any time. Even if its after you get your zerker greaves and you just keep getting rocked by cc somehow, sell it and grab mercs. Or the alternative Cloak and Dagger.
    Now from here, you can decide to rush The Bloodthirster or Infinity Edge. Usually go for IE though, especially with that awful life steal nerf... If you need grab Avarice Blade at any time. If youre getting denied hardcore grab it(or switch lanes). The extra gold helps believe it or not. Or another occasionally popular first item is Wriggle's Lantern. Don't ask me how good it is though, I personally never tried it.
    After I build a Zeal for move speed and a bit of attack speed. The crit is also a very nice touch. You can choose to finish up a Phantom Dancer or from there build the BF sword upgrade you skipped before this.
    From here you can build what you need, however if it looks like you need a [item=Madred's Bloodrazor] make sure you start it ASAP, its quite expensive and not part of your core. Although I feel it's pretty useless. Unless you go on-hit Trist or something.
    First I finish up my PD, its VERY useful. Here, look at your enemy team. If you dont see much armor, you can build a [item=Black Cleaver] and finish up a Youmuu's Ghostblade if applicable. If theres lots of armor, just make a Last Whisper. After this, make some defense. Banshee's Veil is a very popular and good survival item for carries.

    Other good items:
    Frozen Mallet if you need survivability. Don't get it for the slow, it's just too darn expensive, and you should own red buff, otherwise your team is probably doing it wrong. Unless it's someone like Xin, then it's ok for them to steal it from you.
    Hexdrinker Got a Karthus that you just cant stand? Get this. It will save your ass from his ult many times. Unless hes UBER fed and rips through the shield and your resist. Also has a nifty new upgrade, haven't tried it yet, but the AD boost probably isn't that great due to you having to be at lower hp for it to give a bigger boost.
    Trinity Force I guess this is a good item on Trist... I saw a guy in the NESL tourney take it, and I must say it was interesting, I would never touch it though. But if you do, build a Phage first.
    Atma's Impaler If you decide to get a mallet, then this baby could have some good use. Take it if you want to.
    Executioner's Calling want to deny Mundo his ENTIRE ult? Or there's multiple healers? Grab this. Though its best if someone else grabs it. Personally I recommend you don't even touch it. And as much as I don't like this, due to the lifesteal nerf, it's the most cost efficient lifesteal item in game right now.
    Sword of the Occult are you face stomping the other team? TAKE THIS. With your positioning and escape moves you ideally shouldn't die, so your stacks are relatively safe. But if you aren't just totally screwing them over(and why haven't they surrendered? Unless its before 20 minutes.) don't get this. I've never gotten it though, personally.
    [item=Tiamat] 6 of these and its GG. Jk.
    Quicksilver Sash for when you need cleanse.
    Guardian Angel this can be good, nice armor and mr, also lets you revive every 5 minutes. With a fully stacked bloodthirster you can probably stay alive for quite a while after you come back up or even grab that ace.
    Thornmail got an annoying Yi or Irelia on their team? Grab this and say f*ck you. Hopefully... Though it probably wont be of much help, so don't make it lol.

    Frozen Heart another armor item that can be useful, albeit quite expensive.

  • Skilling Order

    There are multiple ways to do your skilling order, it mainly depends on how you play. If you don't like pushing the lane, don't rank explosive shot. If you use it for harass, rank it fast. However, I recommend taking rocket jump at level 1 no matter what you do. Here's an example of prioritizing explosive shot.

    Of course here it depends on if you want to rank rocket jump or rapid fire first. I just tossed everything into rocked jump for this example. If you don't want to push, then follow the skilling order at the top of the page.

  • Farming

    Farm. Farm farm farm. Period. Laning phase, last hit. Pretty much. After a while, its not called farming. After team fights and stalking at turrets, gtfo that lane and push another one. PUSH. As fast as you can, you're aiming for 300 minion kills, NEVER let ANYONE get more minion kills than you. Period. Invade the enemy jungle if its safe when you're not pushing. If it's ok with your jungler, take your jungle's mini camps.

    So one of my last games i got 200 minions before 20 minutes. Do you know how beast that is? That's a TON of cash you're rolling in. I also had a couple kills and assists so you know, that's a TON of cash. You've got your bloodthirster, and pretty much have your infinity edge at that point, and at 20 minutes using an item dependent champ? Well, your team will probably win is all i have to say.

  • Working in the team

    Stay back. ALWAYS make sure you have at least 2 team mates between you and the enemy. Unless you're raping face, then well, just be careful. NEVER over extend, always be behind another champ before the team fight, you don't want to be the one grabbed by that faggoty Blitz or Amumu, or poked by some skill shots. Alternatively, you can come up from behind or the side(jump over a jungle wall or stay behind it if you're still in range there) and proceed to duke it out with their carry or destroy their casters who just blew their loads on your tank. Other than that, there's nothing more really, unless its using explosive shot on someone so they don't get healed fully.

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Submitted by Chlose

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