- Playing As
- is a great initiator to combat. Lead the front to start a fight and use your to do the most damage possible.
- Try to position yourself so your knockback is most effective.
- Playing Against
- is a powerful initiator with both his and dealing damage to all units around him. Try having your team stay spread out until he's used his .
- relies heavily on his for damage and cooldown resets, so preventing him from finishing his combo will have a dramatic effect.
- Ability Usage
- minion waves and turrets. Doing so for extended periods however will push your lane, so watch out for gank attempts. heals every three attacks, allowing him to sustain himself in lane for a while by autoattacking
- resets the auto attack timer, so getting one basic attack off, then using the ability will yield a greater DPS.
- The attack speed granted by is great for taking down turrets and minion waves, whilst also being extremely effective while jungling.
- magic damage and slows enemies surrounding the target; you can use that to your advantage by charging a nearby enemy in order to slow another just outside its range. This ability will also pop (or similar spell shields) on any of the affected targets which is extremely useful if your team has an incoming area of effect disable.
- Bear in mind that if you use this tactic to jump to a priority target with , you will want to auto-attack them at least once before using in order to apply the debuff so that they aren't knocked away from you.
- Try using champions. where it will hit the most enemy
is a great initiator. Lunge at a target with and use to do the most damage possible.
- To further increase the effectiveness of the initiation, try and aim your attacks specifically at a high value target such as the opposing carry before using as this will cause them to be , separating them from their teammates.
- is a formidable ambush ganker. makes it very hard to immediately escape from him and deals high initial damage, and makes it so that even targets with escapes can be chased effectively.
- slows the enemy enough to be able to land your with almost complete success if they have no blink or dash ability, guaranteeing the knock up.
is a good jungler with passive effect and a great ganker with and after finishing his jungle route.
- The best time to gank is when the enemy champion has recently used all their escape summoner spells such as and (or abilities such as or ).
- It is best not to use all your crowd control at once, time each of your crowd control abilities with your ally allowing an easy kill when your enemy gets out of melee range you can then to ensure your kill.
can assist in ganks by knocking enemies back towards your allies, but be sure that you are both in front of them and do not currently have your target before you do so.
- Using on a minion near the target enemy champion will prevent them from being , so that using will knock them back.
- minion or a champion along your escape route. Combined with , this can allow to escape most unfavorable fights. Use it on an enemy across a wall for a clean escape (e.g.: throw ward across small golems wall, then dash to golems, when they flash in or come around, flash is still available for use) can be used to escape ganks on some occasions by targeting a
can be used to knock enemies away from you when trying to escape.
- When attempting a retreat, ensure that your pursuer has not been first before using as otherwise it will have no effect on them.
- and can kill a tower very quickly in late game, as long as there are enough minions around to keep it from targeting . However, if building AP, Xin Zhao's heal lets him sustain from tower attacks even without minions around him.
- has good sustain with . This leads to a relatively safer laning phase than other melee champions. Going for a last hit on a minion at the expense of taking an autoattack is generally more acceptable on than it is for other melee champions.
- can effectively punish an enemy's wasteful ability usage with . If the enemy uses their dash or damage spell to farm minions, using on the enemy will usually lead to a favorable trade.
- A good combo for trading is to use the first two procs of on minions, saving the third. When an enemy goes to last hit minions, use and perform an autoattack to knock the enemy upwards. This allows to get in some free damage.
- can be used to break or at least trigger shields to get their duration running.
- pushes relatively quickly due to the autoattack reset and extra damage from and the AoE damage from and . This can be used to quickly push minion waves to the enemy tower, and then open up opportunities for to roam to mid or bot.
- has a slightly faster turning and autoattack animation than many champions, so using to reposition behind an enemy during an all-out exchange can net you a slight advantage in damage output, which can mean the difference between a kill and a death.
- has good sustain with . He can do his first clear of the jungle camps at near full health without the use of potions. Thus, he can save his potions for use in the event that his jungle is invaded.
- Starting with and clearing will ensure is near full health and mana for a Level 3 gank if necessary. Starting with and clearing will instead give first gank extra damage and an extra slow at the expense of being low on mana. Getting double buffs will give the best of both worlds, at the expense of longer clear times due to the distance between the two.
- It is generally advisable to gank at Level 3 with to apply pressure on the lanes and help your teammates or yourself snowball. Mid lane or top lane are both decently gankable at Level 3, since those lanes are often played with champions that snowball quite heavily. Bot lane champions will usually be playing it safe, but can also be ganked if the enemy champions overextend. The goal of such a gank is to get a kill. At the very least it will definitely burn Summoner Spells, but ganking for that sole purpose is inefficient.
- If there are no gank opportunities at Level 3, then it is generally better to and get the other half of your jungle item rather than continue farming, so that doesn't fall behind in experience.
- Make it a habit of ganking from behind the enemy rather than from the side. Doing so ensures that can save for when the enemy uses an escape ability or , since they would have to get past to get back to the safety of their turret. Ganking from the side gives the enemy too much warning, and puts in a position where the enemy can more easily get past him.
- Mastery Usage
- Item Usage
- attack speed steroid; consequently, items that grant attack damage, such as , work well with him. Despite having a large attack speed steroid it is generally accepted that is a better item for him than a Bloodthirster because he is highly auto attack dependent. is a natural fighter with a strong reliance on autoattacks and an excellent
- Attack speed items like allow to heal from passive more often, increasing his survivability, and triggers knock-up more quickly.
- If you're in need of some Magic Resistance, is a very good item for him.
- Items that offer attack damage and attack speed together are excellent choices for .
- passive armor reduction along with can grant massive armor shredding power against squishy targets along with high cooldown reduction.
- attack damage of the item increases his overall DPS, and he benefits well from the attack speed, movement speed and procs. His high base attack damage mean he can also proc for massive damage. is an especially useful item to . The
- For jungle item enchantment, can get either or based on what his team needs. If he needs to be a stronger early game champion because his team comp scales better into the late game, is usually the better item. If the enemy team has a lot of high health champions he should get .
- is essential on a bruiser Xin Zhao build due to the healing on .
- health item for , and the slow is extremely helpful in preventing your target from kiting you. is an excellent
- Cooldown reduction and attack speed items are doubly effective on due to the flat CDR on . This means that items like synergize well with him.
- is a great item to increase survivability, as the damage and life steal can be enough to keep Xin Zhao alive during heated fights, especially if there are enough minions around for him to feed on.
- AP can work due to the AP ratio on . With sufficient AP, Xin Zhao can heal himself for tons of HP on every third autoattack. works well with this build due to providing on-hit magic damage that also has synergy with . is also effective, due to its' passive increasing the frequency of procs.
- also scales with AP, allowing Xin Zhao to deal good burst, especially if he buys .
- By going AP, Xin Zhao has excellent sustain and can often 1v1 even towers by late-game. But since he is melee, Xin Zhao may still have to build some tanky items, such as or .
- is very vulnerable to kiting when his is on cooldown.
- Try to CC when he is attacking you or your ally, The crowd control effect can turn the tide of the battle to your allies' favor.
- Build armor items to mitigate his damage as mainly deals physical damage.
- When engaging
, Try to split with your allies to reduce the armor and magic resistance he will get from his .
- Keep in mind, while you can not get knocked back from . This makes him less effective 1v1 after he used
is a great counter to , since it reduces damage through armor,and reduces his attack speed, which is central to his damage output.
- life steal. is a great alternative, however do remember that he can heal himself through the damage if he has
- Avoid stacking health without armor as deals physical damage based on your current health.
- Stay with your allies when fighting Xin Zhao, he can only knock up one target at a time.
- is a melee champion. Harassing him with long range spells/autoattacks when he goes to last hit minions will ensure that he has to pay the price for getting farm.
- Punishing if he uses to farm minions will generally result in a favorable trade. He has just used a large part of his damage on minions instead of you, and thus has reduced trading damage.
- Don't rely heavily on your shield to mitigate damage. has relatively low mana costs and low cooldowns, which he can use to break/trigger your shield duration.
- pushes relatively quickly and thus opens himself up to ganks from your jungler. Ping for help and play passively in order to lure into overextending.
- Pushing the waves toward his turret will force to farm under it, giving you an opportunity to roam.
- fast clears. Use junglers that can farm faster than to gain an advantage. Counterjungling is dangerous since he has high early game damage and clears the jungle at near full health. has very safe clears, but does not have very
- Many a will start for the extra damage and extra slow for that Level 3 gank. Stealing his will not overly inconvenience him but it will benefit you.
- will generally gank at Level 3. Your midlaner and toplaner should be careful not to overextend during this period.
- Make a habit of the common entrances to your lanes. Doing so will at least ensure you have ample warning when comes to gank.