How it Works
LoL Builder spends 24 hours a day scanning through game data. It only saves ranked games played by diamond and challenger tier summoners. Using thousands of these game snapshots it determines what orders champions purchase items in, called builds. It groups these builds based on the first three items it sees completed, but keeps track of what order component parts are purchased and what items are built at the end.
These build paths are not always as straight forward (like Vayne’s), sometimes they have a lot of variance (like Fiddlestick’s). Regardless of the amount of variance, LoL Builder uses a massive amount of data to give us a unique look at how diamond and challenger players build their champions. So that we can improve our own play or make quick decisions how to play a champoin we’re not already familiar with.
Who Should use it?
LoL Builder is for both beginners and pros. Beginners should use LoL Builder to learn and understand new champions. Amateurs and veterans can use LoL Builder to determine how their build strategies differ from diamond and challenger players or as a quick reference for champions they don’t play often. Please see the limitations below before using this data to make decisions in ranked games.
Why it’s Great
Hopefully the virtues of knowing how diamond and challenger players build are obvious. If they are not, consider the alternative. The alternative is to visit one of the popular LoL websites, find a highly rated guide written for the champion you want to play, and follow it. Generally, this isn’t a bad idea. But in reality, you’re taking the advice of a single player with their own strengths and weaknesses. The guide may have been rated high or the summoner might have a solid win record with the build, but that doesn’t mean this build accurately reflects how real players build. LoL Builder represents the aggregate decisions made by thousands of diamond and challenger players in all 7 regions.
There are some limitations to LoL Builder everyone should consider:
If you’re not playing a ranked diamond or challenger game, it might be common to see champions take unique roles. During season 3, you might have seen Sona go middle or Volibear go top. These are considered by some people as perfectly viable strategies, but diamond and challenger players don’t make these picks often enough in their games for LoL Builder to pick up on them. You will not see obscure builds like this at LoL Builder.
Let’s be honest, diamond and challenger level players don’t build the same way every game. If an opponent Ahri is fed, a Rammus might build a Spirit Visage sooner than normal. If an opponent Vayne is dominating bottom lane, a Hecarim might build Iceborn Gauntlets before he builds Spirit Visage. These types of decisions are difficult to display in any type of build. LoL Builder only shows you what the typical champion builds more often than any other build. Our builds should not be used as a one size fits all build, learn to be adaptive.
In some cases the difference between one build and another is their choice in boots (or an item’s purchase order), so its a good idea to look at alternative builds and make mental notes of how they are different. Remember, builds are unique based on only their first three items. For example, Corki’s #1 build is rated at 50% and his second build is 49%, but the only difference is the second item selected, which is his boots. This tells us that the vast majority of the time Corki goes Trinity Force -> Boots 45% Sorcerer’s, 44% Berserker’s -> The Bloodthirster.
Builds appropriate in diamond tier games may not work in bronze & silver games. Players who reach diamond are much better at playing their champions than bronze & silver players. This may allow them to forgo certain purchases or build things that simply wouldn’t work without their level of skill. In short: building like diamond players alone won’t get you into diamond. But I think it’s a good start.
Your Builds Suck!
You think LoL Builder’s builds suck? Considering the limitations explained above, LoL Builder’s builds are based on how challenger and diamond players actually play. Given that, our builds are simply a reflection of how the top players build their champions.
Build Rating (%S)
Each build is given a rating as a percent. This percent indicates the percentage of games that could have been using this build. The sum of all the percents doesn’t’t add up to 100% because two different builds might start Berserker’s Greaves, and Berserker’s Greaves might be seen as the first item in 90% of games.
LoL Builder determines starting items based on game length and item price. It is the least precise part of the build. It is intended primarily for new players to see what they might want to purchase on a champion. These items are in random order.
A build is specific to the first three items purchased. The build summary lists these three items in order followed by the most seen 3 item combination. The result is that the highest rated build will always display the most likely 6 item build. Check alternative builds to see if boots or orders are switched.
These are summoner spells selected in the games where the selected build was seen. In most cases, two spells are used the vast majority of the time (95% or higher), but up to four spells can be listed if they are all seen often enough. During the development of LoL Builder we were surprised to see so much uniformity in summoner spell selection among diamond & challenger players.
Early & Mid Game Items
Early and Mid game items are determined by comparing thousands of games in relation to each other and noting the order that items show up. Minor components like Long Swords, Ruby Crystals, Daggers, etc are removed for brevity.
In most cases, items are built such that all the major components are bought and then the fully built item is completed: Spectre’s Cowl > Kindlegem > Spirit Visage. The order that these major components show up on LoL Builder is related to the priority they are purchased by that champion.
However, in some cases you might see something like: Spectre’s Cowl > Bildgewater Cutlass > Kindlegem > Spirit Visage > Blade of the Ruined King. Is this a bug? No, it is displayed this way because the champions tend to build a Bilgewater Cutlass before finishing Spirit Visage, but also finish Spirit Visage before completing their Blade of the Ruined King. During Season 3 I noted that Vayne built Bilgewater > Berserker’s Greaves and then finished her Blade of the Ruined King the vast majority of the time. Awesome.