Fiddlesticks Build Guide

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SmartSticks: Playing Smart,Meta and like a Desperado

written by Yangninja

Fiddlesticks Build

Table of Contents

  • Introduction

    This build which I am proposing to you is a very unconventional one; yet very effective. *lights pipe* You see ol' chap, most guides and philosophical ideas about Fiddlesticks treat him as a regular mage. Something he is clearly not. As he stands now, Fiddle completely breaks one of the core mage rules: To stay back and Nuke. Fiddle is what we call in soviet Russia a "Suicide" Bomber. People build him in a way which doesn't enforce his weaknesses; instead choosing to blindly max as much AP as possible.

    Fundamentally in the Meta-Game of tanky carries, you become a suicide bomber which only blows himself up. This is where an intervention build had to be made. Something which keeps all that is Fiddlesticks at its core; however grants something which makes him a valid meta pick, slaps crows in the face of Tanky DPS and makes his wood last a lot longer (that's what she said).

  • Abilities

    This Passive is key to our build as Fiddle. This in combination with your build grants you 53.5 Flat Magic Pen. This can be increase to around 60 with masteries and other external factors. Evidentally, you can pretty much get squishes to 0 Magic Resist. On top of that, 30 of that is reduction that helps other mages on your team through being auras.

    At max rank 3 seconds of people running like headless drunks? Amazing! Other uses have proved to stopping chasers. This can also protect your allies from getting raped and turn the enemies carry into gold relatively quick.

    Used to be what made Fiddle the most unique mage before Vlad came along. But yeah, very powerful spell that always comes at the end of your spell combo. If left uninterrupted it can do some pretty hefty damage. Anyone who stands in it either is seriously out-DPSing you or is stupid.

    Damage aside, draining minions and the jungle give you infinitely longer lane staying power.

    Dark Wind
    This skill is mainly serves 2 purposes: Farm and Assassinate. It's damage is very lackluster and scales stupidly rubbish with AP. Don't get me wrong the silence is very nice; however it is very random and heavily weak.

    What you should know about this skill is that this skill actually works very similar to
    Double Up. This is for the reason that it slightly prioritizes champions and if the enemy champion is not that far behind the first crow target, it's almost guaranteed to jump to them second.

    I could go on about this skill for hours on end. It is what makes Fiddlesticks remotely pickworthy in the first place and is something that pretty much destroys team fights. I will go over proper usage of this skill later on in the guide; however I will tell you now that this build can decrease the cooldown of this beast down to 100 Seconds. That takes off nearly a minute between CAWCAWCAWs. Very crucial to maximising your wreckage in consistent team fights.

    I'm sure you've all been in that situation where a team fight is about to start and this skill isn't up. This will solve the problem nearly instantly

  • Summoner Abilities

    One thing which I do agree with other Fiddlesticks players is their choice of Summoner Spells. Instead of listing the spells which you shouldn't take, I will give you a nice list and description on all the Spells you can use to benefit your scythe-wielding buddy.

    Flash: Personally my staple spell. It has so many universal uses from:
    -Running Away
    and most importantly Flash Storming. If within the 2 seconds in which you channel your targets have moved, a Flash as soon as the storm starts makes sure that you get as many people as possible into it.

    Ignite: When I don't full premade 5v5, I pretty much take this skill out of personal preference. Perhaps it is only really worth it when you know you're going mid and is brilliant for getting a lv6 Storm kill. Another thing to note is that since this build is not heavy in AP, this can be good for getting in that extra AIDs-based DPS all-game-round.

    Clairvoyance: If you really want to be competitive, this is a great spell to detect ganks on you or scouting for storms. Fiddle is really one of those characters that doesn't care what his second spell is. So if you want to be a team player, it doesn't hurt to grab this. After all, with your mastery setup this will only have a cooldown of around 45 seconds.

    Ghost: I never really understood why I've seen plenty of cookie-cutter Fiddle's go Flash|Ghost|Boots of Swiftness. Naturally you're a very passive character, who just has these random tendencies to blow people up. Then go back to a passive mage. In this build you will typically be needing flash more to get up close and personal; however if you do choose to go ghost, I highly recommend you to choose another spell other than Flash.

  • Masteries + Runes

    Typical Mastery Setup
    External Image
    very basic simple 9/0/21 mastery setup which makes sure that you get the improved speed. Starting out with in the lowest base movement speed tier is frustrating; especially when speed is key for chasing n' such.
    That small boost can be the difference of you clipping your enemy with a dark wind or looking down in shame on yourself that you've missed a great harassment opportunity.

    For runes, The most ideal base ones for Fiddlesticks are:

    Quintessence: Greater Quintessence of Fortitude
    +97 HP
    Marks: Greater Mark of Insight
    +8.5 Magic Penetration
    Seals: Greater Seal of Clarity
    +16 MP5 at Level 18

    Now for Glyphs you have a less restricted choice for an optimal build. Here are the three I recommend:

    Greater Glyph of Celerity
    Greater Glyph of Focus
    Greater Glyph of Force

    Although it's all personal preference which you want, I personally recommend the Greater Glyph of Celerity to compliment Fiddle's intense scaling in the late game. This rune also allows us to reach our 100 second cooldown on Crowstorm and reduce the long cooldowns of your regular spells.

  • Skilling Order

    Depending on your position and whoever you're laning against, the skills you invest in early game change ever so slightly. These examples will involve the skill builds until level 6.

    Here you would want to of course pick Dark Wind over your other abilities as you should be playing as a passive poker. I suggest going E|W|E|Q|W|R. You want to get the level 2 of Drain for that extra DPS if you go for a lv6 storm kill.

    In a CC Lane
    If you're partnered with someone who has a stun or other hard CC, your Fear is becomes significantly more important. to this you would want to go E|W|Q|Q|W|R. Since you are concentrating a lot more on killing and annoying in this setup, you don't need dark wind nearly as much as your other 2 spells. It is however recommended that you give your flying crow some love in the mid-game levels to make you more balanced.

    The curse and blessing of Fiddlesticks is that his skills grant him choice on the situation. With casters like Annie or Anivia, It's all about maxing one skill ASAP. Unfortunately this makes them very predictable and gives them no room to play with when building. The beauty with Fiddle is that you can take any skill over another one depending on your instinct and it will make him more adapt in the current game environment.

    To this I present a very random skill build of Fiddle. Do not feel Obliged to follow this past level 6 in any way. Like mentioned, it's all about the situation and keepin' it real!

  • Items

    Now for the bit you've finally been waiting for. If you've reached here I congratulate you on being devoted enough to read this guide. If you thought TL;DR, then you're gonna be extremely shocked reading this. Now lets start off with our early game build.


    This is the classic rushing Abyssal Scepter. As this build prouds itself as having MagicPenSticks first as foremost, we have a lot more to discuss later on when we get to the controversial aspect of this build; Therefore we Rush. I would also like to point out that this is the only AP we'll be getting up until a late game Deathfire Grasp.

    You start of Simply with your Doran's Ring and a Mana Potion. You should farm up for at least Boots+Half of Abyssal at least before you go back. Naturally the half of Abyssal you pick depends on your opponent; if they are a caster, grab Negatron Cloak. In pretty much most other situations you'll be grabbing a Blasting Wand.

    The next time you go back grab the other half and maybe follow this useful tip if you're in surplus at this point:

    Money Efficiency Tip: Whenever you have money to spare early-mid game. I highly recommend you building a cheap [item_text=Kage's lucky Pick]. It really is sometimes the unsung hero of making you money. On top of that it reduces the cost of your Deathfire Grasp near the end.
    Even though from here on, your Inventory will be full often. When it's not as crowded early, getting one or two wards will help your teams map awareness.

    End-Game Build
    woah woah woah! Wait a second. you may be asking me "Yang you are on Drugs" or "Yang you're smoking something ridiculously strong". I'll assure you that I will explain every aspect of what I've done and how that benefits Fiddlesticks in the meta.

    Sunfire Cape

    First Argument: When you storm, you will come across 2 types of responses: Running Away and initiation. Those who run away allow you to easily maneuver around and kill those squishies. On the other hand those who want to kill you have to get close. This means that they will feel the full force of your Crowstorm and your Capes.

    Second Argument: Keep in mind that the current meta involves Tanky DPS. Ideally this means that the armor and health you get from the Sunfire Cape will give you much more survivability. When you Crowstorm, you are not only putting a huge target over yourself but also risking your life in the process. The bonuses from the Capes build on this weakness. Statistically speaking, these Sunfires increase your Effective Health by 3000 against DPS.

    Third Argument: Time to bring some maths into this to continue to convince you non-believers in a relatively basic model. For the price of two Sunfire Capes, you can buy 3 Needlessly Large Rods. Next, every Cape you have deals 40 Damage each second.

    Crowstorm has a 0.35AP Ratio. This means that if you want to deal the damage of 2 Sunfire Capes during your storm, you need 228.6AP. Now your 3 Needlessly Large Rods give you 240AP: a minor difference of 12AP. Now let's look at the bonuses of the items again

    2x Sunfire Cape: 900 Health | 90 Armor | 80 CloseDPS (worth 228.6AP during Crowstorms)
    3x Needlessly Large Rod: 240AP

    As you can see the difference, you're paying for 1 less item. Not only that, but you're also paying for a lot survivability. On top of that, it's also easier to pay to build a Cape than buy a Rod outright.

    (Cool Note: Sunfire Capes look really cool when you have the Bandito Fiddlesticks Skin)

    I know that this doesn't take into account all variables. For example the capes don't give you AP for your other skills; or perhaps they only deal most of the 80DPS when people are close to the center of the Crowstorm. My response to that is the offering of all the other utility it provides you. Such as: jungling and faster farming

    DeathFire Grasp
    An absolute beast of an Item for Fiddle. It needs very little explanation; therefore I will list all the reasons why it's breezy:
    1) Will drop Crowstorm to a 100 Second Cooldown with other parts of your build (almost a minute less)
    2) The active rapes Tanky DPS
    3) The active doesn't interrupt Drain
    4) The active works easier because his spells tick instead of nuke. Making it easier to take advantage of the 30% of current health nuke.

    Tanky-Meta-Physical-Ranked Alternative
    Above is a more Meta build for when the enemy team contains Garen, Poppy, Xin etc. Instead of manually dropping their Magic Res, the void staff does a lot of the job for you. The Mercury's Treads prevent the annoying CC and make up for the Magic Res you need without Abyssal Scepter.

    The Abyssal/Void Rule
    The cut off point where Void Staff starts becoming more useful than Abyssal Scepter is at 80 Magic Res. If your enemy team has got that much, it's definitely worth getting a Void Staff to counter them. This is crucial because it determines the damage your Sunfire Capes and your skills do.

  • Working in the team

    This is where Fiddle shines the most. The key here is Co-ordination. Even mediocre Fiddle can do really well if he co-ordinates his team mates into initiating just before he storms.

    A Defensive Storm is Always the best (during mid-game)
    When you storm the top or bottom lane whilst they are getting pushed is highly effective. This allows for you to take a safer route to your storm spot. Also since the chances of pushing and diving is high at this point, your storm is far more disabling and deadly to the enemy team.

    Disrupt with Dark Wind
    When you Crowstorm into a situation where you think your Dark Wind will bounce many times then cast it first before your fear; however if the enemy has nothing against you or the crow won't bounce, it's a waste of storm-time and mana to cast it. Before you die however; if Dark Wind is up, try to get a shot on the cluster that is pwning you for a chance to get a random bounce kill.

    Fear Control
    You can save the lives of plenty of people by fearing the chaser. Another sweet tactic is to stack CC on whoever already is stunned/slowed etc; giving loads of time to kill them. When you crowstorm, you don't have to Fear and Drain the same person; you can Fear Garen for example to prevent his silence and then drain the nearby Teemo. During the time Garen is feared, he will get hurt by your sunfire's and storm, as you drain the love juice out of Teemo.

    You do not have to come out of Nowhere
    a lot of people say that Fiddlesticks becomes useless when you have wards. However it is a common misconception that you have to Crowstorm from a generic unseen place. I guarantee you that holding back until the team has focus on your initiator, then storming has almost the exact same or deadlier effect. For reasons including: You're safer near your team, you don't storm 3 miles from where your team is and it's easier to get a more accurate and deadly storm as a result.

  • Summary

    It's been an information rollercoaster I know; however hopefully this guide has taught and shown you the way to make Fiddle less of a glass cannon and into a pick you'll most probably choose more often.

    I would also like to thank Shadius for putting in a lot of effort towards helping me with the concept of the build. Now becoming my most effective Fiddlesticks build.

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Submitted by Yangninja

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