What Do I Build On Kai’Sa?

Hey guys, I’m Riot Jag, the lead Gameplay Designer on Kai’Sa. I’ve seen a lot of confusion on what type of role, playstyle, or build she’s supposed to have, so I’m here to provide some context and some advice. First off - Kai’Sa is intended to be a _versatile_ champion. The goal is for her to have multiple roles, playstyles, and builds. So, I’d like to give a bit of context on each of her abilities and how they achieve this. Always remember that **you don’t need to upgrade every ability** every game, and most cohesive builds will evolve no more than 2 spells. [Ability breakdown](https://i.imgur.com/nvaiP4W.png) Almost everything on Kai’Sa’s kit scales directly with an offensive stat. Let’s talk about each ability in detail. P (Caustic Wounds): Magic damage, scales primarily with AS and AP. **Kai’Sa’s passive is the backbone of her damage output in most of her builds**. In a conventional ADC build, she’ll probably do about 65% of her total champion damage as Physical Damage, and around 35% as Magic Damage, primarily due to the very strong AS scaling on her passive. Almost every build will get a lot of value here.** Her passive is also one of the biggest reasons she’s extremely strong as a bot laner - pair her up with a CC monster like Leona or a Thresh and you’ll have some awesome kill lanes as they ramp up her passive stacks for her**. Q (Icathian Rain): Physical damage, scales primarily with AD and CDR. It has AP scaling, but since it’s Physical Damage, it’s much more likely to have value in builds that include Essence Reaver {{item:3508}}, Infinity Edge {{item:3031}}, or Duskblade {{item:3147}}. If you’re playing an Assassin style with Lethality, this is your bread and butter. W (Void Seeker): Magic damage, scales primarily with AP, AD, and CDR. Most builds will always get some value out of W (especially since it accelerates your passive), but AP builds scale this spell harder than anything and it becomes your primary nuke if you’re starting out with items like Luden’s Echo or Lich Bane. This also has plenty of punch with Hybrid builds that utilize Hextech Gunblade {{item:3146}} or Guinsoo’s Rageblade {{item:3124}}. E (Supercharge): Scales primarily with AS and CDR. It’s important to note Attack Speed purchases scale down E’s cast time and scale up the MS it gives, making it feel super good with items that give that stat. Items like Blade of the Ruined King {{item:3153}} or Statikk Shiv {{item:3087}} really shine with a build that pushes to upgrade Supercharge first. R (Killer Instinct): Shield scales primarily with AD, AP, CDR. Not much to think about here, just don’t build tank and you’ll get good value out of the shield. The AD ratio gets much better with level, so AD Kai’Sa builds will get better shields that can actually absorb a Critical Strike from an enemy ADC that has also reached late game. Few other tips: -Kai’Sa has some of the worst level scaling in the game in terms of offensive base stats (her AD and AS per level are extremely low), but **her item scaling is extremely potent**. Most item purchases will scale you up quite well, as long as they’re offensive (if you’re thinking about Tank Kai’Sa, just don’t!). -Lifesteal is always a good purchase for ADCs with short attack ranges, and Kai’Sa is no exception. Blade of the Ruined King {{item:3153}} is a great item for ADC builds because it gives Kai’Sa a bit of everything she needs (AD for Q Evolve, AS for E Evolve, lifesteal, dueling potential). -Some penetration items may be correct on Kai’Sa depending on the game, but since her damage profile is fairly mixed, it’s usually better to look at other items. **Critical Strike becomes quite potent in conjunction with a few rankups in her E** since the stats multiply quite well. I’m happy to answer further questions here, but my main hope is that people will have a lot of fun exploring their favorite build path on Kai’Sa, as opposed to me telling you exactly what to do. Good luck!
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