Age’s League of Legends Season 5 Basics Guide: Part 5 – The Marksman
Posted by Age
A guide on how to deal tons of damage as a Marksman in lane and in team fights.
Hey all, this is my Marksman guide! This role used to be called ADC for Attack Damage Carry but Riot found that the term “Marksman” better defines this role. I’m old school LoL so I might say AD Carry or ADC instead of Marksman. So before we get started, I’ll state some reasons why learning how to play a Marksman is a good thing to learn.
- Massive boost for refining micro & macro mechanics – I have to say this is insanely beneficial to you. Last hitting, kiting, learning when ganks might be coming, learning how to position, learning how to follow up fight engagements, learning how to go back to base. All of these are vital for a Marksman because for the first 10 – 20 minutes, you’ll have to apply all of these mechanics to survive and farm.
Again, just a small disclaimer, I’m not a pro marksman, but I do have a ton of experience in all the positions. These are just some general guidelines that new players need.
Popular Marksman Oriented Items
Here are some standard Marksman items that’d you’d want to consider. From left to right, these items are:
- Berserker’s Greaves – This is the standard boots for Marksman. It offers attack speed which is needed for most Marksmen. You usually will never want another type of boots unless you play something like Ezreal or Urgot.
- Mercurial Scimitar – Very useful versus CC heavy teams this item provides damage and an active cleanse. You usually want Quicksilver Sash (needed to make Mercurial), if the enemy team has a lot of CC, and hold onto this item and build Mercurial as your last item.
- Phantom Dancer – Great for attack speed, crit chance and movement speed. A personal favorite since this item helps to ignore unit collision.
- Statikk Shiv – Good for a bit more movement speed but mainly for attack speed and crit chance. Also offers ranged poke so it’s great for short ranged Marksmen
- Blade of the Ruined King – This is usually a pick up for Marksmen that are mid range or need that initial attack speed and damage. The active heal, attack speed buff and enemy slow really can help in some situations.
- Trinity Force – An all around item that grants a bit of everything which is good on hybrid Marksmen.
- The Bloodthirster – A decent pick for damage and lifesteal. Also provides a shield
- Last Whisper – Great for doing actual damage versus tanky champions with a lot of armor
- Infinity Edge – Great item for Marksmen for a boost in damage and crit chance
- Guardian Angel – You usually do not want to get a defense item because it takes away from your damage. But I find this is one of the best defense item for a Marksmen. A bit of armor and magic resist also revives you if you get bursted down in teamfights
- Runaan’s Hurricane – This item bring raw attack speed with bonus damage on physical attacks. This item is great for AD Carries with on-hit effects built into their kit like Kalista and Varus
Summoner Skills that I generally use are Flash and Heal to stay safe. Sometimes I’ll use Ignite for more killing potential. I’ll use Cleanse if the enemy team has a lot of CC.
Runes And Masteries
So here are my runes and masteries that I generally use for carrying as a Marksman. Feel free to use this as a base in order to make your own Marksman setup that you feel comfortable with. The masteries are 21/9/0 focusing on just damage in the offensive tree some health and resistances in the defense tree. Runes I focus on damage (x8 AD Marks, x1 Crit Chance Mark, x1 AD Quints, x2 Life Steal Quint) and defense (x9 Armor Seals, x9 MR Glyphs). This setup helps for easier last hitting and surviving harass in the early game.
In the early stages of the game it is the Marksman has one main job: farm. Marksmen are the ones who need to get a lot of farm to get the really good damage items to deal most of the damage. Simple right? I talked about last hitting in the very first part of this guide and you’ll have to apply this to farm rather well. Of course there are times where you get zoned by the enemy support or get pushed to the tower. In those cases you’ll need to find a way to gain some ground by harassing the enemy laners. You’ll also need to learn how to farm under the tower. You might be stuck there for a while till someone can go to assist you and your Support. Also, the rule of thumb you can follow for buying your first items when you back is buy items for Infinity Edge, Bloodthirster or Blade of the Ruined King. For standard Marksmen builds you want to build one of these items first, preferably Infinity Edge for the damage. Vampiric Scepter should help with life steal till you build into a stronger life steal item.
As a Marksman, you are a high priority target for the enemy team. To kill that is. The enemy jungler usually spends a good amount of time skulking around the bottom lane (which is the standard lane Marksmen and Supports are in) to gank you in order for their Marksman to farm and to go buy items which will give them an advantage in lane. Sometimes wards aren’t enough to stop ganks. Heck, maybe the enemy lane you’re fighting might try to dive you even if the jungler gets spotted by a ward. So you should be ready to kite. Kiting is avoiding skill shots, AoEs and the like. Kiting is as easy as simply side stepping and attacking repeatedly to avoid that one skill shot that could have turned into a horrible problem. Attack-moving like this is called orb walking. This is especially vital for Marksmen because they are squishy (Squishy means that you easy to damage and burst down). Some Marksmen have skills that allow them to kite even better. For example, Ezreal’s Arcane Shift which allows him to jump to a nearby position. Kiting should also be used in team fights. With kiting, the enemy team also wastes their skills while you and your team are doing actual damage.
I think you generally know what to do here so I won’t go into much details. Remember this though. In team fights, the Marksman’s role is to stay in the back of the team and deal damage to the best enemy targets the Marksman can hit. This is because Marksman are generally squishy characters. If you can go for priority targets (enemy mid laner or enemy Marksman) then go for it. If the enemy team gets whittled down, the Marksman can advance a bit more. If the enemy starts to flee, the Marksman can move to the front and start chasing them down. Keep in mind that you should be kiting when necessary and be wary if an enemy has a chance to burst you down.
So those are the general guidelines on how to play as a Marksman. There are variations to Marksman builds and some that are completely different like the blue Ezreal build (not sure if it’s still viable, you can look that up) and Urgot. Also, if you see your team is at a standstill for engaging the other team, just be patient, you don’t have to start fights. Your job is to deal tons of damage to the enemy when the fight starts. If you start the fights start them from a safe range because if you move up to the front, you will get jumped on and then your team’s damage is greatly reduced because you’re not around. As always, feel free to comment below if you have anything to say about the guide. Have fun on the Fields of Justice!