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Lately, I've noticed that Sion has become a rather hot topic in the last few months, if not even longer. And I can understand why, since while he's still in a weird spot he's also capable of delivering some good plays, especially since S3 and PreS4 dished out some favorable items for him. In this blog post, I'm giving my two cents about some possible play-styles for this veteran. Some are tried-and-tested and deemed pretty cool, other ones are very experimental that are in need of actual testing.
AD Sion, the Juicy Teamfighter
Since Sion is inherently beefy in laning phase thanks to his good defensive stats, Still worth it and Stronk Bubble, building AD and Lifesteal will make him a devastating force. Once you have some LS going on, you can theoretically leave Free Meatballs on at all times and still gain health with every hit. Speaking of Meatballs, this should be the first ability you'd want to max most of the time since it also raises your AD naturally. And once you're entering a teamfight or if you want to push quickly, activate Dinnertime and enjoy your free AS, bonus LS and AoE heal that scales with your autoattack-damage.
For offensive items, consider good AD/LS stuff or nifty passives/actives that enhances your sustain and damage, like, , (which is cost-efficient when Sion hits Level 8, possibly even earlier when you're farming well), maybe even if you're feeling brave. As usual, adapt your build, especially your defensive choice/s, to the situation. For boots, either get AS Boots, Armor Boots, MR Boots or MS Boots (both sorts of MS boots are legit for him).
His main weakness are anti-health champions like Batshooter, but he can soft-counter most executioners like Demacia and his dark twin brother thanks to his innate tankiness and ability to recover lots of health especially with the ult.
AP Sion, the Bane of Solo Lanes
While he only has 2 abilities that scales with AP, they both have 0.9 AP scaling and also gain a good amount of base damage (300 when maxed). This makes Sion a surprisingly viable and durable burst mage, since his Voyerism stuns for 1.5s and doesn't get more expensive when leveling. His Boom Box does get more expensive, but is a very nice farming tool nonetheless and also a great way to protect yourself, since the shield strength is also gaining 0.9 AP (that also helps to have the shield up for at least 4 seconds so you can recast it in most cases). Because Health Bar Rising only cares for the kill itself and not for the method of killing, you should master the way of toggling it on whenever you're casting and last-hitting and toggling it off when not needed so you can focus your gold for defensive items on Armor and MR. Lunchbreak is completely useless 99 out of 100 times when you're building AP, so you can ignore giving it points ASAP to further feed your two TRUE ultimate abilites.
For offensive items, focus on the classic burst stuff, like those 120 AP-items, Hungry! until late-game). Plus, as AP Sion, your time is early- to mid-game, so while Mejai's can give you a good transition to late-game, you're at risk of losing that advantage in teamfights since Sion can't escape multiple opponents well., and such, the recommended items for Summoner's Rift are pretty fine. You'll also need mana and MP5, since Sion IS mana-hungry. Contrary to AD Sion, I wouldn't suggest since you won't be as durable as AD Sion (mainly because you won't level
As said, he will fall off late-game when people begin to travel in groups, since he's better in picking off single targets. Ironically, executioners will now be able to soft-counter AP Sion since he's not good at healing himself now.
Off-Tank Sion, a Refined Taste
Now we're entering the uncommon/fun build-zone, but Off-Tank Sion is okay. He doesn't have that much interrupting power than classic tanks, but his sustain can be very tough to beat when exploited correctly. At first, you want to max Life Insurance first so you can get out the most of his infinite scaling. That and it gives you some of the AD you will need as an Off-Tank. After that, level the shield because the damage of the enemies will become a bit ugly at this point. Your main method of initiating teamfights will be as usual, picking a target and stunning it, activating both the bubble and the ult and running in like a herpderp for a Right-Click Party.
As a tank with a fair amount of AD, you should abuse your 20 seconds of Glory to keep your team's health up in a teamfight, meaning that some CDR is needed for maximum notoriety, too. will become a core item on you since it gives all the stats you need AND some lifesteal. Other useful items to consider are , , and in case you need Armor and , , , and in case you need Magic Resistance. Notice that most of these items also give you the AD or CDR you need for maximum healing power.
You main weakness will most probably be anything that eats tanks for breakfast and CC-heavy compositions.
GP5 Sion, the lategame Hybrid
Essentially, you grab someone that duo-lanes with you, get aAND a (Upgrade optional), which is very counter-intuitive, and accumulate as much mollah as possible. You'll be pretty weak in the first half of the game, mainly trying to build up your health and covering your lane partner's behind, but then you're going to buy some items. , and/or will be pretty nifty for the beginning and will be an alright finishing touch. After having paid of the Avarice Blade, build it into since it's Sion's thing. Don't forget to have some MR, too.
It's a strange build, I know. I don't really know how to make that work well enough. Maybe scratch that, since Sion's not built to be hybrid anyway.
AS/LS Sion, the Crazy Healer
That'll be a quick one.
Get much AS (the absolute maximum cap would be the value that would make 2.5 when activating the ult. In other words, don't get more than 222.29% bonus AS for AS/LS Sion), get some LS (Ravenous Hydra, Bloodthirster or BotRK), get Atma's and MoM and PUSH TO VICTORY! When you're okay with having a bit less AD, you could get aor instead of Atma's/MoM so you have more slots for things that are more important for you. Maybe some more AS?
Even anti-health champions can't touch you when they're not bursting you. Just be careful around hard CC.
Well, that's it. State your opinion about these builds in the comments and trash me for being a newb.