A champion that has been incredibly problematic since her release, Irelia has come far since the early days of League of Legends and her initial iteration. Renowned for having an insanely high learning curve to accompany some of the most devastating outplay potential available, Irelia is as snowbally as they come. But how can you guarantee that you will be able to hit critical mass almost every game? Read on for some tips on how to elevate your Irelia gameplay.
With the current state of Conqueror, it’s no surprise that most AD bruiser champions run the same, or similar pages. Access to this rune is incredibly important for successful trading with Irelia, and maintaining stacks of both it and your passive (as touched on below) is a key part of the champion’s identity. Extra damage and sustain? Don’t mind if we do.
On the topic of sustain, feel free to trade out the recommended secondary tree for Taste of Blood and Ravenous Hunter in the Domination tree, should you feel like you need it.
Trinity Force has been core on Irelia since before her rework. The item is essentially guaranteed multiple procs thanks to her Q’s interaction with on-hit effects, and therefore having access to this item as soon as possible really will hammer home Irelia’s oppressiveness. Also consider either Ravenous or Titanic Hydra, as these help augment the waveclear capabilities of an AD bruiser who would otherwise be shoved in without Tiamat.
Irelia’s Q – Blade Surge is the essential part of her kit. All the mobility you could ever wish for, plus good, consistent damage and access to a reset mechanic means that this skill is the way to go in terms of priority order. Both her W and E have their uses in utility scenarios, as well as terrible damage scaling, but most Irelia’s will opt to max E second in order to access more stuns more frequently.
Tips and Tricks
Keep Your Stacks Up
Irelia’s passive – Ionian Fervor – grants her temporary attack speed after using a spell on an enemy, and additional damage on-hit after reaching full stacks of this. Theoretically, her Q – Blade Surge has no cooldown, as long as you use it to execute low health minions or attack marked enemies. As such, make unanswerable trades as early as level 1 by auto-attacking the minion wave, executing multiple with your Q to stack up your passive, and then just sticking to the enemy champion.
Purchases of core items like Phage, Tiamat, and eventually Trinity Force will aid Irelia in sticking to an opponent and stacking her passive, and once her numbers are up on both her passive and her Conqueror she is incredibly difficult to peel off.
Abuse Your Range
For a melee champion, Irelia rocks one of the most significant attack ranges for a non-ranged champion in all of League. Partially due to the size of her weapon, and partially due to her need to auto-attack to trade, experienced Irelia players will use this to dance around the battlefield effectively.
Picture this: you’re 1v1ing a Riven, but given that you have nearly doubled her attack range, you can kite out her shield without dropping stacks or the risk of being traded back upon. Yes, it’s a small window of opportunity, but it still is one to factor in.
Dealing with a ranged champion? No big deal. R-Q-E-Q-Q is Irelia’s perfect–yet relatively easy to execute–combo, and landing this on a squishy opponent will not only allow you to consistently close the gap on them, but also deal a solid 80 percent (if not all) of their health.