Continuing our series on items’ cost effectiveness we bring our attention to mages by analysing items that grant bonus ability power (AP). While other stats like maximum mana and mana regeneration are relevant, ability power is the one stat that truly powers a mage.
The table below can be sorted by clicking on each header. The column Cost/AP shows the gold cost of each unit of AP. The lower the gold cost, the more AP you get per gold unit.
|Abyssal Scepter||70||+57 MR, UNIQUE Aura: reduces the MR of nearby enemy champions by 20||2650||38|
|Archangel’s Staff||106||+400 Mana, +25 Mp5, +45 AP, Passive: 3% of your maximum mana is converted to AP. UNIQUE Passive: each time your champion uses an ability their maximum mana will increase by 4 mana. This effect has a 3 sec. CD. Bonus caps at 1000 mana||2855||27|
|Deathfire Grasp||60||+10 Mp5, UNIQUE Passive: 15% CDR, UNIQUE Active: deals MD to target champion equal to 30% of their current health (+3.5% per 100 Ability Power) with a minimum of 200 damage (1 min. CD)||2610||44|
|Doran’s Ring||15||+100 Health, +5 Mp5||475||32|
|Elixir of Brilliance||40||Click to Consume: grants 20-40 Ability Power, based on champion level, and 10% CDR for 4 min.||250||6|
|Fiendish Codex||30||+7 Mp5, UNIQUE Passive: 10% CDR||1245||42|
|Guinsoo’s Rageblade||93||+35 AD, +45 AP, UNIQUE Passive: on attack or spell cast, increases your AS by 4% and AP by 6. Lasts 5 sec. (stacks up to 8 times)||2235||24|
|Haunting Guise||25||+200 Health, UNIQUE Passive: +20 Magic Penetration||1485||59|
|Hextech Gunblade||70||+40 AD, +15% LS, UNIQUE Passive: +20% SV, UNIQUE Active: deals 300 MD and slows the target champion by 50% for 3 sec. (700 range, 60 sec. CD)||3625||51|
|Hextech Revolver||40||UNIQUE Passive: +15% SV||1200||30|
|Kage’s Lucky Pick||25||UNIQUE Passive: Gain an additional 5 Gold every 10 sec.||765||31|
|Lich Bane||80||+350 Mana, +30 MR, +7% MS, UNIQUE Passive: 100% chance when an ability is used that your next physical attack deals an additional 100% of your AP in damage. This effect has a 2 sec. CD||3470||43|
|Malady||25||+50% AS, UNIQUE Passive: your physical attacks shred your target, dealing 20 MD and lowering their MR by 6. MR reduction stacks up to 4 times||1825||73|
|Mejai’s Soulstealer||180||+20 AP, UNIQUE Passive: your champion gains 8 AP per stack, receiving 2 stacks for a kill or 1 stack for an assist. This effect can stack 20 times; you lose a third of your stacks if you die. At 20 stacks, gain 15% CDR||1235||7|
|Moonflair Spellblade||50||+25 Tenacity (Tenacity reduces the duration of stuns, slows, taunts, fears, sleeps, silences, blinds and immobilizes. Tenacity effects do not stack)||1200||24|
|Morello’s Evil Tome||75||+12 Mp5, UNIQUE Passive: 20% CDR||2350||31|
|Nashor’s Tooth||55||+50% AS, +10 Mp5, UNIQUE Passive: 25% CDR||2885||52|
|Needlessly Large Rod||80||1600||20|
|Rabadon’s Deathcap||182||+140 Ability Power, UNIQUE Passive: increases AP by 30%||3600||20|
|Rod of Ages||80||+450 Health, +525 Mana, +60 AP, Passive: your Champion gains 18 Health, 20 Mana, and 2 AP every 1 min. Bonuses cap at +180 Health, +200 Mana, and +20 AP. UNIQUE Passive: on leveling up, restores 250 Health and 200 Mana over 8 sec.||3035||38|
|Rylai’s Crystal Scepter||80||+500 Health, UNIQUE Passive: dealing spell damage slows the target’s MS by 35% for 1.5 sec. (15% for multi-target and damage-over-time spells)||3105||39|
|Sheen||25||+250 Mana, UNIQUE Passive: when an ability is used, your base damage is increased by 100% for your next attack. This effect has a 2 sec. CD||1260||50|
|Trinity Force||30||+30 AD, +30% AS, +15% CS, +12% MS, +250 Health, +250 Mana, UNIQUE Passive: 25% chance on hit to slow the target by 35% for 2.5 sec.; on cast, your next attack deals bonus damage equal to 150% of your base attack||4070||136|
|Void Staff||70||UNIQUE Passive: +40% Magic Penetration||2295||33|
|Will of the Ancients||80||+50 Ability Power, UNIQUE Aura: gives nearby allied champions +30 AP and 25% SV||2100||26|
|Zhonya’s Hourglass||100||+50 Armor, UNIQUE Active: places your champion into Stasis for 2 sec., rendering you invulnerable and untargetable but unable to take any actions (90 sec. CD)||3100||31|
Items with stacks tend to be very cost effective and Mejai’s Soulstealer is no exception. It even competes with the temporal boost of the Elixir of Brilliance on cost effectiveness. Rabadon’s Deathcap is still the most cost effective AP item with a flat bonus; in no small part thanks to its powerful passive.
For hybirds builds, Guinsoo’s Rageblade provides a great amount of AP at a small price. Unfortunately, mages may find it difficult to keep all stacks up. In that case, Will of the Ancients is a valid alternative. It give a respectable bonus AP while also helping the mage to stay alive with spell vamp.
Archangel’s Staff is an item that can guarantee a continual use of skills thanks to its mana bonus and mana regeneration. If the maximum mana bonus and therefore maximum AP bonus is reached it becomes a worthy item for the discerning mage.
Farther down the list come Morello’s Evil Tome and Zhonya’s Hourglass; followed not far behind by Void Staff. All are excellent items that are suitable depending on the build’s particular needs.
Abyssal Scepter, Rod of the Ages, Rylai’s Crystal Scepter, Lich Bane and Deathfire Grasp come afterwards. Again there isn’t much difference in cost effectiveness so they can be chosen based on a build’s needs. Regardless, the previous group of items is more cost effective and may be the better option.
Hybrid items like Hextech Gunblade, Nashor’s Tooth, Malady and Trinity Force don’t provide much AP for their cost. Their worth is obviously in the other bonuses provided, being poor choices for a pure mage.
Haunting Guise is one of the few items that increases spell damage while providing AP; because of its magic penetration. However, the bonus comes at a great price and is one of the least cost effective items in terms of AP. Unless the build can greatly benefit from it, Haunting Guise gives too little and asks for too much.
While numbers alone can’t dictate the best way to assemble an item build they do provide a basis to select the most efficient items for a particular need. Further information on items’ bonuses and abilities that rise or lower AP, among others, can be found at the League of Legends Wiki.
– Acronyms: AD: attack damage, AP: ability power, AS: attack speed, CD: cooldown, CDR: cooldown reduction, CS: critical strike chance, Gp10: gold per 10 sec., Hp5: health regen per 5 sec., LS: life steal, MD: magic damage, Mp5: mana regen per 5 sec., MR: magic resist, MS: movement speed, PD: physical damage, SV: spell vamp
– Archangel’s Staff’s bonus AP corresponds the minimum base mana at level 18: Sion’s 625 plus the full bonus mana
– Guinsoo’s Rageblade’s bonus AP corresponds to 8 stacks
– Mejai’s Soulstealer’s bonus AP corresponds to 20 stacks
– Rabadon’s Deathcap bonus AP corresponds to its flat AP bonus + 30%
– Rod of Ages’ bonus AP corresponds to its maximum bonus over time
– You can sort multiple columns by holding shift and clicking on other column headers