- Quick Guide
- Author / Skins
- Item Build
- Rune, Masteries, and Summoner Spells
- Strategy and Tactics
Strategy and Tactics
First of all, Master Yi is a very squishy champion. If you are the first one to enter into battle you will be the first to die. To get the most out of Master Yi, you should wait until the team fight starts and then sneak in with Alpha Strike (Q) while popping Wuju Style (E) and Highlander (R). Master Yi should prioritize attack targets by whoever poses the biggest threat on the enemy team which are usually the carries. The faster you can get them down, the less damage your team will take. Keep in mind that there is nothing from stopping the enemy team from changing targets and focusing on you. It is important to keep an eye on who the enemy is focusing and your health so you can run out while Highlander (R) is still up. At the same time, keep an eye on your team’s position to see if they are going to retreat so you know when to run. Good use Meditate (W) can eat heavy burst damage however, it is your only fail safe and is a damage reducer +heal. It is dangerous to rely on this.
Strengths: High DPS
Master Yi has a very high damage output. Even with a minimal amount of items, Master Yi can do a lot of damage because of Wuju Style (E). Every kill that he gets resets all of his abilities when Highlander (R) is active which allows him to be a killing machine.
Weaknesses: Low Survivability
Master Yi has one of the worst survivability in the game. He is easily shut down if the enemy team focuses on him. It is usually best to just snipe out targets in team fights and never initiate them. It is important to use meditate to tank high burst to increase your ability to survive.
Weaknesses: Crowd Control Prone
Master Yi is easily shut down by crowd control (CC). Exhaust and stuns are the bane to Master Yi. In order for Master Yi to build against crowd control, he has to sacrafice a lot of his damage. By not entering team battles too early, you can avoid getting CC'd if the enemy team uses them on your teammates. If you are exhausted a good method is to run away until it ends. It is better than being a solid target for the enemy without having the damage to defend yourself.
Backdooring and Split Pushing
A game is never won, without some sort of split pushing from Master Yi. Focus on finding turrents and forcing objectives. If you have cooperate team mates you can easily take sidelanes while your team takes objectives. Yi is a strong duelist, if an out of position enemy comes within range of you while pushing it is important to all in them to take them out. If you commit and kill them you would have your ultimate to run away if more of his team mates are coming. By drawing enemys to various sides of the map you can create openings for your team to take mid towers or even baron/dragon. Always activate E while pushing towers. You can also use your ghost blade to escape ganks while pushing. Mastering how to split push is important as Yi because team fights are not your forte. Save your ultimate to escape always. Try to avoid using it to take towers and try to secure kills without it as it no longer refreshes.
Master Yi is one of the easiest champions to jungle with because of his Alpha Strike (Q) procs on creeps which randomly deals a large amount of damage to them. At the same time, this can also hinder Master Yi if you never get any procs off. The most important thing to note when jungling as Master Yi is to make sure you can see every neutral creep in the base camp before you use Alpha Strike (Q), otherwise it won’t leap to the creep covered in the fog of war. This is not a big deal later in the game but in the beginning it could a determining factor in whether or not you will be able to gank and how long it takes for you to finish your jungle. When jungling, it is very important to take note of enemy clairvoyances and champions to make sure that they don't gank you in the jungle. Also, take note of respawn timers of buffs (5 minutes), dragon (6 minutes), and baron (7 minutes).
When dragons and barons start to become contested, you need to save your smites for them. Do not waste smites on anything else unless you can have it up again in time for dragon/baron. It is very hard to contest dragon/baron without smite when the other team has smite because they can easily steal it from you every time. Yi has the damage and with procs from wriggles jungling without smite toward the end game should not be a problem. Use it only to secure buffs.
Asking for A smiteless Leash
This is the strat if you want to go quickly to gank a lane. By asking your mid lane and your side laner (top or bot depending on where you start) to stay longer and put damage on the buff you are taking, you can save your smite for the next buff camp. This is important if you know the enemy will be lower hp than you and want to counter gank. It also gives you access to ganking a lane who is a lower level than they would be if you did a normal route. I generally use this in all my games because Yi needs to avoid losing control of games to junglers who can dominate early, such as maokai or lee sin.
Dealing with enemy invasions
Typically, if someone ganks you while you are jungling, you should get out of there immediately. If you notice that you can outnumber the enemies, you can rally the support of your allies to counter gank. Backing off is usually the best response to being ganked mid-jungle because if they don't get a kill off of you, then they just wasted a lot of time that they could have used to gank other lanes or to creep. Yi is not the best in early game fights however if they are grouped and your team plans to commit starting alpha strike will help AOE down enemies if you choose to fight. This is not the safest choice.
Standard Jungling Route
Normal Route Blue Side:
- Ancient Golem
- Mini Golems
- Lizard Elder
Alternative Route Blue Side:
- Lizard Elder
- Ancient Golem
- Wight Camp
The possibilities on jungling routes are endless and can vary from game to game. Choosing which route to take should depend on your team composition and the enemy team composition. When you clear all of your creep camps, you can either try to gank a lane or wait it out until your jungle respawns. Do not force a gank if it will put your team in a bad position. Fail attempts at ganks can lose you the game by costing your team deaths and losing your lanes. While Yi can easily pressure advantages, enemy teams can do the same to Yi, which is why it is important not to fall behind by too far early. With the new Wight camp you can sub it in for golems or out for golems. Generally I perfer golems over taking this camp but depending on what you want to gank do not over look it.
Offensive Style Jungling
- Lizard Elder
- Ancient Golem
- Gank Mid
This jungle route focuses on an early top lane gank which is medium risk high reward. The success rate of this route highly depends on the top lane and the enemy's vision of you. When starting at ask your top lane to leash the Lizard for you and also to help you do wraiths (they need to do a lot of damage to wraiths to help you) so that you take minimal damage and are able to gank the top lane right after. You should be level 2 right after the first camp and have a big advantage.
- Ancient Golem
- Enemy Lizard
Counter jungling is going into the enemy jungle and taking their creeps. You always want to counter jungle if the enemy team has a weak jungler and weak laners that can't stop you if you invade their jungle. An example of a weak jungler that has a hard time defending themselves is Amumu.
This route is very dangerous now considering you do not hit level 3 upon completion of the enemy buff. Be very careful. Ask for a no smite leash on blue buff. Proceed to enemy red and take the buff using smite. After you gank top and continue on your normal route. If you are spotted or clairvoyanced at any time, you should back out of the enemy jungle immediately. If you successfully steal the enemy creep camps, it will leave their jungler crippled. When counter jungling, flash is a very important summoner spell to have. In the event that you get caught, you can flash over walls to try and escape. Early game the most common counter jungling is smiting enemy blue wraith.
There is no one defined path to counter jungle. Use your creativity. For this instance, there are several junglers that will have a hard time killing the lizard red buff. You can ward the red buff or get your teammate to ward it so that you can steal the enemy red more effectively and possibly kill their jungler. Heavy counter jungling allows yi to force lanes to move and abuse weak junglers. If you take a lead early and can get an early wriggles always try to ward and start controlling their buffs.
During the mid game make sure your Ultimate is up when invading. Having flash is a must when there are hard stuns or snares on enemy teams. If you know your team is stronger and you happen to be stronger than their enemy jungler, counter jungling helps force fights so you can further gain an advantage. This is how you choke an enemy jungler of all his map presence. If you can consistently bully him and force him to back you will be pulling yourself and your lanes ahead when the enemy comes to help them. Often times if you invade an enemy jungler while you have red you will almost always manage to kill them if they are weaker than you.
Tips and Tricks
Since you can no longer hold double strike when you gank do everything in your power to at least secure 4 hits. This will allow you to get double strike off and deal extra damage.
Although Alpha Strike (Q) is an offensive ability, it can be used defensively since Master Yi becomes invincible for a short period of time when he becomes a blur. You can use Alpha Strike (Q) to avoid incoming damage of any kind by popping it before the damage ticks. For example, if you get bombed by Zilean and time the Alpha Strike (Q) just before the bomb is about to explode, then you will negate the damage completely.
Not only can you use Alpha Strike (Q) to avoid damage, you can also use it as a leverage to move around the map to catch up to enemies or to run away by leaping in the respective area. Using the same mindset, Alpha Strike (Q) can be used to dodge AOE’s, target spells, and auto-attacks.
Sub Target Striking
When you alpha strike the spell hits up to 4 targets. These target do not always have to be in the cast range. By alpha striking nearby minions you can damage enemies and pick up kills without getting any closer. Lane Master Yi's will consistently do this. As a jungle master yi, it's still good to know. The following video provides an example of this. Alphastrike now focuses the closest so this requires no more than 4 enemies.
When jungling, I like to auto attack the creep first and then immediately do Alpha Strike (Q). This technique is noticable at low levels when you have low attack speed. It is a way to compensate for having to wait for your auto-attack timer. You can also choose to auto attack>walk>Autoattack>walk i generally do this out of habit it's not really important.
Later in the game, when you have sufficient health points and levels in Meditation (W). You can tank turrets for your team to backdoor when there are no creeps available to tank it. When tanking turrets, make sure you are at max range from the turret so that you can quickly get out of turret range when you need to. Using alpha strike you can reset turret aggro. Keep this in mind if you are diving with an ally, run into melee range of the enemy tank the turret then alpha strike to switch aggro to your ally. Use of this is important for yi is not the tankiest. You can pull off strong dives this way.
When you play Yi, you will notice that he does not output enough damage early and mid game. He is best late game when he is farmed. Because of this you want to spend most of your time in lane, split pushing and using Highlander (R) to escape when the enemy team is coming. Carry a ward with you at all times and use this so that you can escape when they are coming. When they back off, just go back to split pushing. Once you have enough items and farmed you will do massive damage. Just be sure to enter the fight AFTER most of the CC is used on the enemy team. Master Yi does very well against teams that do not have much CC.
Always look for possible ganks. Enemies who can be ganked are those who are low health, or over extended. Red buff will greatly improve your ganks. However NEVER limit your ganks to when you have red buff. Always look for ways to create pressure on the map and let opponents know that you are around and still farming. Ganking can be done through many routes. Your ganks will improve once you reach level 6 and can easily chase down your targets.
When ganking a lane opponent try to walk into melee range, apply the red buff slow and ONLY alpha strike after they flash/use their escapes. You can pick up kills and force flash from the enemy through this method. This is the most solid way to gank opponents with good escapes. Becareful when alpha striking, it can land you into bad positions if the enemy flashes under their tower. The video below shows how it should be done.
Key Points When Playing as a Jungler
Ganking when enemies overextend
Anytime that you see an enemy overextending in lane, you should make your way towards that lane and try to gank. If they are passed or at the median where the creeps meet in lane, you have a good chance at ganking and getting a kill or at least burning the enemies summoner spells. Keep in mind that you should give a lane a lot of attention when the enemies don't have their summoner spells up.
Ganking when enemies are low health
Any time an enemy champion is at low health, you should make your way towards their lane. At the same time, you want to be as stealthy as possible. This means that you're not running across lanes through creep waves or places that are obviously warded. When enemies are low health, you can potentially tower dive. If they back off before you can get to them, then you can help your lane push that tower and possibly destroy it before the enemy retaliates. Running with highlander from behind towers is risky but often times can catch enemy by surprise and create ganks.
Yi's drastic movement speed allows you to often just run down the lane to rescue team mates. Unlike most junglers who have to wait in bottom brush to gank yi can simply wait by the tower. Once the enemies and your allies commit. Run in with highlander or ghostblade. Keep in mind you sacrifice a lot of time in your ulti to perform this strat. It is often successful. With the change to the duration this gank has become more reliable however highlander will not refresh ever. Mastery of this gank is needed when the enemy heavily wards. The following video will help you understand this. It is best used on bot lane but it is effective on mid and top as well.
When your allies are low health, you should make way to their lane immediately to alleviate them and allow them to heal. Otherwise, they can get dove on and lose the tower along with a dragon. Try not to alpha strike the creeps while holding lanes for you end up pushing and possibly setting your allies back. You also waste mana that can prove useful. If an enemy has died, push the lane to tower to deny the enemy of experience.
Controlling dragon is a crucial part of the game. Losing too many dragons can lose you the game through gold discrepancy. It is important to note that the respawn timer on dragon is 6 minutes. Knowing when dragon respawns can give you an edge in positioning your team and securing dragon before the enemy team can even get to it. Anytime an enemy champ in mid or bot lane dies or goes back to heal, you should contest the dragon if it is up and if your team is not low on health. This gives you an advantage in numbers and can force the enemy team into a bad fight that they don't want to commit to. Make sure you have smite and are ready to secure the dragon. Be careful when tanking dragon because it lowers your attack speed which drastically harms Master Yi''s Damage per second.
Much like controlling the dragon, controlling baron is more or less the same concept. Getting baron can turn a losing game around. Baron spawns at 15 minutes and respawns every 7 minutes. Baron is much harder to kill than dragon so it should not even be attempted unless your team has enough damage to kill it at a decent rate. Doing baron at a bad time can lose you the game, especially if you are intercepted by the enemy team. Unlike dragons, barons cannot afford to be lost. The baron buff greatly increases damage and regeneration. If you have baron, then you should push together with your team. If the enemy team has baron, then you should usually turtle at the towers. You can also use meditate to tank Baron. Baron will sometimes knock back and cancel your meditate. Often if you have enough life steal tanking baron is not a problem. You can also solo baron easily with a solid item build.
Synergies and Counters
Yi is now immune to Attack Speed Slows!
Team Compositions and Synergies
Master Yi has the ability to deal tons of damage. Unfortunately, he doesn't really have the ability to do anything else. To compensate for this, make sure your team has someone to tank as well as initiate team fights. Remember, unless you are ridiculously overfarmed, you cannot initiate team fights. Master Yi is an assassin type champion in which you swiftly move in and out of battles unseen and unheard. Champs like Galio, Kennen, and Alistar provide a good amount of CC for Yi to freely DPS.
Enemy Targeting Priority
In team fights, try to aim for the enemy carries and squishy champions first. Any kills while Highlander (R) is up will refresh all of your abilities to allow you to go on a rampage. If you commit to a team fight, make sure you do not forget to proc your E, R, and Youmuu's Ghostblade if you have it.
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