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How do you not feed as Vlad top?

  • #1

    So, I want a ranged AP top laner and settled on Vlad because he's manaless and not a little rat. I use MS Quints start boots 4. So over a couple of games I have got leapt to over and over by Rengar (warded the bushes of course but I still couldn't go anywhere near him so what to do), dashed to by Irelia (whom I FB'd but that didn't stop her from all-inning me later) and so on. I feel like his pool doesn't actually help at all against gap-closing melee champions, further I can't see how you don't get zoned because you'll probably die if you get into their range once - say your jungler came and pushed the lane, what then, if I go to CS I get all-inned and die, but they froze the lane on their tower and you need that CS to do anything. What's the secret of Vlad? 


  • #2

    I feel Vlad is an overrated top and gets stomped on by almost every bruiser in the meta. As Vlad, just go hyper-aggressive (with wards) and try to deny them farm and punish them with Q+AA+E+AA if they come to CS. You can do this up to around level 3. After that, you actually have to play safe and harass them down until you can combo them and kill them. Harass constantly with Q, and if you have wards, push up to their tower and harass them there. They can either tank it for CS, or try to attack you and lose CS and draw minion aggro. 

    Use your pool to avoid fight-changing moves that you know will end up in your death. For example, Rengar's Empowered Q, or Irelia's stun, or Zed's ultimate. You want to be a tanky sustain fighter by the time laning is over; your laning really sucks and going top will show you how much it does. I feel he's better off mid where he won't get jumped on so often.

  • #3

    The easy solution would be: don't pick him vs champs with gap closers.

    When playing vs Rengar, stay out of range from his leap. This can be done by sticking to the opposite side of the minion wave (the side closer to the river). If he manages to jump on you, immediately W away before he can double Q you.

    When playing vs Irelia, it's simpler but harder at the same time. All you have to do is W away after she jumps on you but BEFORE she slows/stuns you. That way, she doesn't have her gap closer and you get free harass till her Q is back up.

    Also, don't use your Q on minions, it's your main harass/trading tool.


  • #4

    I have the best luck playing bruiser tanky vlad. 9/21  with spell vamp quints.

    I rush seekers vs AD, rylai's vs burst, hextech against poke.

  • #5

    Vladimir dosen't win lane. He has almost no C.C, and his damage is heavily AoE based.


    What you have to do with Vladimir is play defensive, farm up, and just wait for teamfights. That's where Tides of Blood, Sanguine Pool and Hemoplauge make Vladimir good, not lane.


    If you want to pick Vladimir and actually have lane presence, it has to be against other weaker laners, or those who are also more teamfight based, such as Malphite.

    Last edited by raikaria: 9/1/2013 9:51:56 AM
  • #6

    I don't feel like Vlad really fits anywhere well at the moment; he gets outclassed in lane top by most popular bruisers, and wants to afk farm mid when more aggressive mid game presences are favoured at the moment (for objective control and such).

    EDIT: Actually giving some advice, either go Rejuve ward pots and go very aggressive early against people like Irelia who dont scale really well until levels 6 - 9, or take Dorans shield, back for an early Seekers, and farm the lane, freezing it closeish to tower and get some ganks.

    Last edited by KingDempz: 9/1/2013 10:46:37 AM
  • #7

    You can still play him mid safely and farm forever. Then after level 6 you can usually just all in many squishy midlaners. You won't take objectives all over the map but if that's your play style do it and hope your team doesn't fail in there lanes. When the teamfights come you'll be pretty unstoppable from farm alone. .

  • #8

    If your lane is impossible from the beginning, you either ask for help, ask for laneswap, or lose cs in exchange for living and try and cs under tower. You'll rarely win an early lane with vlad but once you get some items and levels you'll be unstoppable :o)

  • #9

    You have to play NOT to lose, instead of playing to win.You max Q first, lvl W second but max it last.

    Be aware that your E costs health, and costs more as you stack it. Most new vlad players will try and trade when they are actually killing themselves.

    You spam Q, passively, and auto attacks, for a fairly long time. Basically be at full health permanently, Buy hextech revolver when needed, which is almost always. Be aware that sometimes hextech is a trap, as an opponent might have too much burst and you need a defensive item first.

    Your purchases are extremely important. Since you are playing to NOT lose, instead of to win and dominate, Vlad often has to buy defensive items(zhonyas, abyssal, Rylais) for different matchups.

    In the early game, doran's shield will often be extremely powerful to start with. building ninja tabis, merc treads, or cooldown boots are all viable within reason.

    Spirit Visage is a monster item late game too, I would almost say mandatory pickup for him.

    When you get a lead, have a passive lane, etc, you of course can go greedier/more offensive.

  • #10

    You scale like a madman, so it's ok to lose lane to a point. It's all about sustaining that harass. 

  • #11

    Also, if you are looking for a ranged AP laner, try Swain top. Fills a similar niche to Vlad, but does it better imo, and is pretty strong in lane (especially post 6).

  • #12

    You shouldn't use MS quints on Vlad. Flat AP is better since his early game sucks. Also boots 4 is not as good as Dorans shield start or the bead pots ward start.

    Also what you're doing is basically sit in the lane and farm/splitpush all game until no one can stop you.

    Zhonya build for teamfight, Spectral Wraith build is for splitpushing and dueling.

    Last edited by NightOfWallachia: 9/1/2013 11:11:23 AM
  • #13

    Stay passive until lvl 6 if you are not already losing, otherwise stay passive until lvl 9 when you have max q. 

    Remember: going even with Vlad is losing to Vlad.

  • #14

    vs gap clsoers. he is bad. i feel like he goes well vs rangers tho

    ~Vuldin Archives.

    Diamond V Taric's Enforcers 

  • #15

    Thanks for the advice. I gather that Vlad isn't the strongest pick, but I'm not ready to discard him just yet, as I like strong late-game champions and I feel like I can learn something from playing him. So, basically, just build defenses to stop losing, and try to get the lane to your tower? 

    Swain top, I play some Swain but never tried top. Hybrid runes, 9/21 or some 9/14/7?


  • #16

    I gear masteries depending on match up. 9/21 for harder ones, 21 / 0 / 9 for lanes I think I can stomp + comps that will allow me to carry. Runes I run hybrid pen (Torment + AA's = incredible early harass) and typical AP Quints, MR blues and Armor yellows. 

    Build-wise I rush a Rod, maybe going Seekers if I feel I need the armor, then its quite situational. Spirit Visage vs AP heavy comps, Liandry's for more damages, Rylais if I am getting kited + more chunkyness. Swain synergises well with a lot of items.

    EDIT: You can get away without mana regen due to his passive, and picking up a few mana pots on every back.


    Last edited by KingDempz: 9/1/2013 12:02:24 PM
  • #17

    Quote from KulliKekkonen »

    Thanks for the advice. I gather that Vlad isn't the strongest pick, but I'm not ready to discard him just yet, as I like strong late-game champions and I feel like I can learn something from playing him. So, basically, just build defenses to stop losing, and try to get the lane to your tower? 

    Swain top, I play some Swain but never tried top. Hybrid runes, 9/21 or some 9/14/7?

    Dont be discouraged by Vlad. He has been picked a fair amount in tournaments recently. He is NOT a weak pick. Take the time to learn him if you enjoy him.

  • #18

    I play Vladimir quite a lot and have some success with 9/0/21 masteries (focusing CDR/Spellvamp/movespeed), and a rune page with MPen marks, HP/Level seals, AP/Level glyphs and Spellvamp quints. Level 1, such a setup give you 10% CDR and 9% spellvamp, both are extremely useful on Vladimir, by giving him a lot of sustain.

    Don't forget to keep up your four stacks from E as soon as possible (starting level 4~6 it's often ok thanks to the spellvamp/CDR). It may be obvious, but I barely see any player keeping those up, so I prefer to say it. These stacks improve a lot your damage and regeneration. And you don't need to hit minions to increase them.

    Don't be affraid to trade. If you have some E stacks and get attacked, a Q/E combo will heal most of the damage you got while inflicting a lot of damage to your opponent.

    From my experience, you shouldn't use the pool just to avoid some harass, the cooldown is just too high, and you can easily regenerate yourself with some Q. Use it to avoid death, avoid a gank, or bait someone to attack.

    Last edited by _Mod: 9/1/2013 2:20:39 PM
  • #19

    Vlad is my most played champ this season by far. Elmanbeastio has hit most important points. Here is a miniguide for laning against gap closer bruisers:

    Start either with doran shield or cloth+pots, depending how reliant is the enemy AA damage, how many armor pen they use (hi lolnexus if you want to use it. The more armor pen they have, the more armor you will want to get) or if they have true dmg (irelia).

    Early game take the dominant position harrasing with Q and AA since they can't jump on you yet, because they don't have the tools to jump on you effectively. When they get them by leveling up just q them on range, but don't chase them to do that as you would lvl 1, because then they will jump on you. The only thing that defends yourself from being killed is your minion wave.

    If they jump on you they will spend mana and they won't win the trade (at least widely) because of your minions. And they will push the lane if they do, so you can sustain from minions and freeze for a while. In addition everytime they jump on you they become very vulnerable to ganks. This is true for early levels as long as you don't go too far from your wave to harras. You will slowly learn when you are at risk of being jumped the more you play him.

    Because of what I said, (minions def you) MS is not gona help you that much, tankiness and dmg will. Go 9-21 masteries, Mpen, Hp, Ap/lvl, flat AP runes. Don't use e to farm before you get your revolver unless you really need to

    On your first trip you should go revolver unless fighting a riven or so, in which case you should be getting more armor. And once you can't be down 100-0 and you have revolver you are close to level 9, when Q has a low CD. By that time you are stronger than them if you keep your e at 4 stacks (which you should always do).

    Keep in mind the power spikes. At level 6 you get a nice powerspike, but they usually do aswell so this makes no difference. The other power spike is at level 9, when you max your Q and your sustain gets annoying against anyone that cannot 100-0.

    In a general way you usually are stronger levels 1-2, weaker 3-8, stronger 9-13, weaker 13 onward. Of course it depends on the champion, the build they take and how the game has been doing, but most of the time you won't be able to duel post 13 even being ahead whole game.

    This isn't a problem since you as vlad want to TF, just show yourself in lane to push/depush waves and then group with the team. And remember being 10cs behind in lane as vlad isn't losing lane. Also take into account there are some impossible lanes (Riven and swain are the hardest for me).

    Last edited by Dulahan90: 9/1/2013 3:35:56 PM
  • #20

    Just to clarify what some earlier people have said between playing passive and playing aggressive. You have to play aggressive in terms of using your q and e (if you can do it without pushing wave too much ideally) off cd on the enemy, and autoattacks, especially early. Keep playing aggressive in this way.

    However, if they turn aggressive on you, just run away immediately. Keep q + eing them with a few autos, but run to your tower asap. I will never all in as Vlad unles they are like 30% to my 80+ and i have ignite q and e off cd the very least.

    Finally, DONT POOL AT HIGH HP. So many people do this, and they seem not to realise - it is goddam 20% of current hp. If you do that at 80% hp, the cost of the pool is more than pretty much anything the enemy could have hit you with 1v1. It also goes on cd so you cant use it at lower hp or when you are closer to your tower and they dive. The only two exceptions to this is of course if you need to dodge stuff that otherwise would pretty much guarantee your death i.e. fizz ult, or when you are diving, and you do it in between your q e to lose aggro from the tower and let your q and e get off cd again fr the kill. 

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