Anivia Build Guide

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A LoL Beginner's Guide to Anivia

written by Rowol

Anivia Build

Table of Contents

  • Introduction

    I remember when I first dipped my toes into League of Legends. I had only planned to feel around and test the waters but my first game I was violently pushed over the edge and violently dunked beneath the surface. I floundered around my first game, and when the match ended I put the game down and didn't touch it for weeks. I came creeping back slowly and now after months of learning tip and tricks I'm a very regular player.

    Ok, ok I'm getting to the point I promise. Does this experience sound anything like your first time playing? I remember just perusing the champions list, looking at all of the pretty pictures without a clue as to who I should play and why. Once I had finally picked a character I thought I wanted to play all of the guides I could find about that character were incredibly in depth with deep gameplay descriptions and statistics when all I really wanted was to know what button to push, when and why. I knew I would get to all of that complicated stuff some day but first I wanted at least a basic grasp and a couple games under my belt.

    For this reason I write this guide for those of you who are new to LoL, who want to learn to play Anivia the Cryophoenix and really just want/need a guide to understand the character. I promise to do my best to simplify things as much as possible and make each section as short and concise as possible, we'll see how it turns out!

  • Anivia as a Champion

    Anivia is thus far my favorite champion to play. She literally does just about everything very well. She can deal out loads of damage, has crowd control capable abilities (stunning and slowing of enemy champs), can push towers and lanes, clear minion waves extremely quickly and has the ability to single handedly turn the tides of games if played correctly.

    Somethings to bear in mind when playing Anivia is that she is insanely slow, with a base speed of 300 she is one of the slowest champions in the game. On top of that she is very, very squishy and cannot takes much punishment before dying. While her abilities do lots and lots of damage they also require a fair amount of mana, so you need to use your spells conservatively early game. I won't lie Anivia is a fairly difficult champion to play well but don't give up! She is very rewarding and can be an absolute blast.

    That being said this guide is meant for beginning players, as before stated in the introduction. If you are looking for a more advanced indepth guide there is no need for you to go searching further I will provide a link to the best guide I've seen, one that was instrumental towards my build development:

  • Abilities

    You passive ability. Rebirth effectively gives you an extra life every four minutes. This can be an incredibly empowering ability but can also be entirely useless. Basically if your health drops down to zero you revert to an egg form with full health. While in egg form you are incapable of moving or attacking for six seconds. During this time you are vulnerable to enemy attack and if they can drop your health back down to zero... you die and must wait for respawn.

    Flash Frost
    Flash Frost is a skill shot, meaning when you cast it, you choose the direction it will travel. After you cast Flash Frost you can push the cast button again at any point during it's path to cause it to explode damaging anybody near the projectile and stunning them for a short time.

    Because you can make Flash Frost explode on command it has the ability to damage opponents twice. After firing Flash Frost allow it to pass through an opponent dealing damage once, then immediately press the button again to cause it to explode dealing it's damage again (in addition to a short stun). Regardless of whether or not you explode the ability if it passes through the opponent the opponent will be momentarily slowed.

    Probably the most effective utility tool and yet most difficult ability in the game to use correctly. Crystallize creates a solid wall of ice that opponents, creeps and monsters cannot pass through. It can be used to facilitate an escape, prevent your opponents from escaping or more difficultly... ensure your abilities land.

    Crystallize is super difficult to master and expect it to take some time. It's utility is insane but a poor wall can be the difference between an escape/victory or an ace for the other team (meaning all of your team is dead).

    Frostbite is your main damaging ability. While Flash Frost has much greater range, Frostbite deals the most "nuke" or "instant damage". By itself it isn't anything impressive but if you manage to hit somebody with it who has been hit by Flash Frost or Glacial Storm it's damage doubles... dealing massive damage. That said, try your best to only use it after hitting the enemy with a Glacial Storm or Flash Frost.

    Frostbite unlike Flash Frost is a target ability. This means that if an enemy is in range you can cast the spell at them and it will home in on the target until it hits, even if the enemy managed to escape from line of sight. This makes it considerably easier to use.

    Glacial Storm
    Your ultimate. Glacial Storm is a very powerful AoE (Area of Effect) ability that does damage per second and slows enemies inside of it until the ability is used again and turned "off". On top of that it's cooldown is very short (6 seconds) so it's an ability you don't need to worry having on cooldown.

    Glacial Storm can clear minions very quickly mid/late game and when thrown down in the middle of a team fight helps secure kills for your team. Know that it uses lots of mana though so during early game especially be cautious about using it too much.

  • Skilling Order

    This skill build is probably the most common and it's great for a beginning Anivia. It focuses on the power of your Frostbite allowing you to deal maximum damage as quickly as possible.

    You could also skip placing a point into Crystallize and move straight into maxing Flash Frost and Frostbite, but you need to start practicing using the ability as quickly as possible. Nothing is more satisfying then securing kills with excellent wall placing skills!

  • Masteries + Runes

    This is a decent masteries build for the beginning LoL/Anivia player. It focuses on amplifying your damage dealing potential and giving you a little bit of survivability. Fill out the Offense tree until you finish off the third tier then run through Hardiness and Resistance in the Defense tree. Put the three points into Utility at some point after this, either after you have finished off Offense or if you feel you would like them before then.

    Bear in mind that as you progress through summoner levels you will probably want to change this build up quite a bit. An experienced Anivia player would prefer to choose a more high risk, high reward build whereas this is meant for you to learn the champion. You can refer to the link I placed earlier: for a better build for the experienced lol/Anivia player.

    I have not included any Runes into this build as I recommend NOT purchasing runes until you get to level 21 and can purchase 3rd tier runes. I wasted a good 2k IP on runes not realizing that I would not use tier 1 and 2 runes once the tier 3 became available. Save your IP for new champions!

  • Summoner Abilities

    There are only a few choices for Summoner spells that are really great picks on Anivia:

    Regardless of what spell you take to supplement it with, Ghost is always a useful Summoner spell and something that shouldn't be neglected. Anivia's poor movement speed can paint her as a target and escaping faster enemies (and just about all of them will be faster) proves difficult. Ghost is useful for avoiding death and getting to a lane/team fight as quickly as possible.

    Ignite is a popular choice, there will be situations where you almost finish off an enemy and just need a little bit more damage... Damage ignite provides exceptionally well. I recommend taking Ghost and Ignite until Flash becomes available.

    Once you hit Summoner level 12 Flash becomes your new best friend. Useful for escaping dangerous situations Flash will save you more then you think it can. It's also got a very useful offensive edge to it, allowing you to jump ahead for a quick wall on escaping enemies or more importantly for getting the drop on a low health opponent for an easy kill. A must have spell on any Anivia.

    Other Options:

    Clarity is a great option for new players, as it grants Anivia something she desperately needs early game... mana. If you find you are constantly out of mana try taking clarity for a while until you can get a feel for how much spell use is too much in early game.

    Surge is a fun spell that can give your damage output a little push. Since Anivia is a burst mage however she does all of her damage over only a couple of seconds before having to wait for cooldowns. This means that after your initial combo the summoner spell really isn't doing you any good before your spells are up for casting again. You may get two combos off per cast which can be useful, other summoner spells just tend to help more.

    Once they are both available I recommend always taking Flash and Ghost when playing Anivia. The offensive and defensive options of the two spells are just too good to pass up on a burst mage like the Cryophoenix. Naturally as you gain more experience you may want to mix and match a bit to find a combo that works best for you and your team composition.

  • Items

    Anivia's starting item build will tend to be fairly standard, especially once you find a build you really like. Some of her last slot items fall on necessity and countering enemy teammates but her early game doesn't change itself up much... and for good reason!


    Rod of Ages
    Rod of Ages gives everything any aspiring Cryophoenix player wants in a match; health, mana and ability power. This is going to be the only item you purchase during early/mid game that grants any survivability and as Anivia is so squishy it's bonuses are desperately needed!

    Archangel's Staff
    Archangel's Staff is a phenomenal item that grants Anivia much needed mana and a great ability power bonus to boot. Not much more to be said here.

    Sorcerer's Shoes or Boots of Swiftness
    Your boots are a toss up. For the sake of beginning to play pick up Sorcerer's shoes which help circumvent enemy magic resist improving your damage output. Once you start to get a feel for handling Anivia try out the Boots of Swiftness. Faster movement speed can make all of the difference when getting back to lane, chasing down enemies or clearing minion waves threatening your towers.

    Rabadon's Deathcap
    Easily the most popular item on mages and it's not hard to tell why. It's ability power bonuses are huge. Expect to see your damage output skyrocket after purchasing your deathcap.

    In essence these are items you want to have at the end of every game if possible.


    Void Staff
    Void Staff allows your spells to punch through the magic resistance of your enemies. This is insanely useful as with a high MR score opposing players can shrug off your most powerful spells and keep coming. The only reason it isn't included in the core build is because you will have many games where most of the enemy team, barring the tank, don't build any magic resistance. When this is the case Void Staff isn't worth the gold. The rule of thumb (Boondock Saints flashback) here is if three or more enemy champions are building Magic Resist, pick it up. If not... don't worry about it and look into other damage output items.

    Frozen Heart
    If the enemy team has some powerful AD champs that are dishing out too much hurt, Frozen Heart provides a huge buff to your defense stat. But it also grants bonus mana which combos nicely with Archangel's Staff and a massive 20% cooldown reduction allowing you to nuke much more often.

    Banshee's Veil
    If you require magical resistance this item is likely the only one you will build on Anivia. It provides a nice MR buff alone with health and mana bonuses. It's real prize comes from the ability to resist an enemy ability every 45 seconds... something very useful for avoiding deadly enemy stuns and slows.

    [item=Morello's Evil Tome]
    If all is going well for your team Morello's gives massive ability power and cooldown reduction buffs. Add in a little bit of mana regeneration and you've got an item great for nuking the enemy.

    Additional Optional Items

    Mejai's Soulstealer
    Once you've got the hand of playing Anivia Mejai's is a great item to build. It's extremely inexpensive and it's bonuses can be astronomical. Every kill or assist you get adds a stack to the item, each stack providing additional ability power. When it reaches it's maximum of 20 stacks the item also grants 20% Cooldown reduction... a lot of CDR. It's downside is that every time you die you lose a third of your stacks. These stacks are not lost when you revert to egg form for rebirth meaning as you begin to master Anivia it can be fairly simple to attain and hold a high number of stacks.

  • Build Example

    Here is an example of how you would want to build through a normal game:

    Start of Game:
    Start off with a Sapphire Crystal and Health Potionx2 (I used to drastically underestimate Health Potions, don't do this! They may cost 35 gold a pop but the amount of time they allow you to remain in lane for definitely makes up for gold spent.)

    First port back to base:
    Try to have the gold when you get back to base to purchase your Catalyst the Protector this will take the spot of your Sapphire Crystal and will lead the way into purchasing Rod of Ages.

    If you have been particularly lucrative in the early game and have the gold, purchase Boots of Speed and a couple of Health Potions on this first port back to base.

    From here:
    Pick up another Sapphire Crystal or purchase Tear of the Goddess straight, this builds into your Archangel's Staff. Once you've got both Tear of the Goddess and Catalyst the Protector upgrades your boots to Sorcerer's Shoes or Boots of Swiftness.

    Now buy a Blasting Wand for finishing off your Rod of Ages and another for building into Archangel's Staff.

    Once those items are done start up on your Rabadon's Deathcap by purchasing a Blasting Wand or if you have the gold Needlessly Large Rod.

    From there pick a couple of items from the Post-Core build and finish off your build according to what you are needing for the round. What I really want to stress is that building your items makes your game much more effective. Too often new players will wait until they have enough gold to purchase an entire item gimping their champions. If you aren't sure what items you require to build your next Post-Core item or Optional item, locate the item you are wanting to build in the buy screen. A very helpful little tree appears when you select the item indicating which items you are looking to buy.

  • Gameplay Summary: What you should be doing!

    Ok admittedly I wrote the entire guide to get to this section. This is precisely what I was looking for when I started playing League of Legends. Following this guide you know what skills you should level up in game and what items to purchase. You know what you are looking for mastery wise and what what summoner skills will supplement you best. But once you get in game... what do you do with all of that information? Hopefully this helps!

    Early game is defined as the laning phase, generally people stick to bottom, middle and top lanes while the jungler does their thing. This phase usually lasts until roughly level 8-12, or until enough turrets have dropped for either team to stick start roaming the map in packs initiating team fights. As champions start to reach levels 15-18 late game commences turning the game almost entirely into team fights and pushes.

    Early Game
    Anivia is queen of solo mid. If you want to fully utilize her abilities this is where you want to play. If you don't yet feel comfortable playing alone though, go ahead and take a lane with another player. Regardless of what lane you occupy the way you want to play is the same.

    Spend your first couple of levels focused on last hitting minions and dodging enemy abilities. The extra gold and experience from scoring that last hit are vital throughout the game, it's also great practice for when you get to higher summoner levels. Mostly ignore the enemy champion(s) until you get to level 3 and have 2 ranks in in addition to your starting point in . Now you can begin to harass the enemy players, land and follow it up with . With 2 points in you will deal very impressive damage even at level 3.

    Try to conserve your mana, don't launch unless you think you have a good chance of scoring a hit. Whittle away your opponent's health until they are fairly low and then move in for the kill.

    Be careful to not push the enemy back too far, this leaves you vulnerable to enemy champions coming down from mid or from either top/bottom lane. Anivia, remember, is very slow and though she has many tools she can utilize to escape, getting caught too far away from your turret will be costly.

    Mid Game
    Not much changes for you mid game. You will still stick mostly to your lane, practice being aware of your minimap and assisting your teammates if fights break out in your area. Your mana pool should be growing but use sparingly still. Continue to farm and your build items. As you transition into late game start to move with your team. Positioning is fairly important for Anivia make sure you are behind the tanks and bruisers of your team not in the middle of the fray.

    Start using offensively against enemy champions more often around this point too. is a great spell but requires excellent timing and aim to use well... something that truly comes with practice. allows you to get the damage bonus of with a much lower chance of missing. Just activate it, through out a Frostbite, then deactivate the ability again to conserve mana.

    Late Game:
    Once late game begins stick entirely with your team sometimes breaking off to clear large minion waves threatening your towers. Use of shouldn't be much of a problem here as you should have lots of mana and high Ability Power allowing your to clear waves very, very quickly.

    As team fights break out, throw down in areas where the fighting is the most intense. Opponents will often ignore it, underestimating the damage it does. Once you've got down focus on stunning enemy damage dealers with and blasting them with . Hang back while your spells cool down and attack with auto attacks until you can nuke again.

    As you become more experienced you can try "egg baiting", drawing the enemy team in for what they think is an easy kill. As they fall in on you for the kill your team can wade in picking them off one by one. You are likely to die in this scenario so make sure that your Rebirth is up before attempting this strategy. While the enemy team is dealing with your team pop up again thanks to rebirth and lay down the hurt.

    Note: is a great spell but it's double edged sword; be careful to not use it to block your teammates from scoring valuable kills. Sometimes you will throw it down and an enemy will over it to escape, despite the enemy escaping this was still a good move. They've now used a valuable summoner spell and if wasn't up... you would have just scored a kill!

    Note2: Once you hit level 6 you should be able to start soloing the blue (golem) buff. Golem buff is invaluable on Anivia as having an almost infinite supply of mana will allow you to spam very often. Be sure to keep track of when it is up and take it as often as possible. If you've got it don't worry about running out of mana, spam your spells away!

  • Conclusion

    You know the basics!!!

    As always I recommend playing through some bot games first to get a feel for Anivia. A bot game will not follow the game summary I listed here at all but that's not important. The more you play a champion the more you know what you can handle. Most importantly it gives you practice with and .

    Don't get discouraged everybody learns and Anivia is difficult to learn, but she is a blast to play! Keep practicing and before long you can expect some excellent end game scores and a very long winning streak!

    Thanks for reading my guide :) if you found it useful please rate the guide at the top. Please bear in mind you veteran players that this guide is meant for beginners. I know there are many different builds out there but I summarized here what I though would be most useful for somebody new to the game. If I missed anything please leave feedback I've got no aversions to making changes if there is a better idea, thanks!

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Submitted by Rowol

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