This League of Legends Season 10 Ultimate Alistar guide is the only guide that you will need in order to play Alistar Support. This guide will include builds, combos, counters, synergies, keystones, and runes. Alistar is a bull that takes hits for his team. This Minotaur of Runeterra smacks and pulverizes his opponents and sets up amazing crowd control for his allies. It was written by our team of writers along with the help of Challenger player, Alicopter, who is an expert in everything Alistar. He is considered by many to be the best in the world at this champion and you can find him Streaming on Facebook and uploading content to his YouTube Channel.
Alistar Overview Infographic
We put together an Alistar overview infographic that has the best builds, runes, strengths, weaknesses, combos, skill orders, counters, synergies and anything else that you need to quickly learn the basics of Alistar. Make sure to share with your friends and check back here to get the latest updates. We will be updating this infographic as changes happen so check back often!
Who is Alicopter
Alicopter, 24 years of age. Currently playing with summoner name King of Facebook, Alicopter. He managed to finish Challenger at 421 LP on Alistar and some Rammus/Leona and peaked around 680 LP during the end of the season last 2018. He was born in Syria but is currently living in Laval, Quebec (Canada). He started the journey in League of Legends by the end of Season 3. By season 6, he began picking Alistar and Rammus into the solo queue because he had a pretty bad PC which would drop down to 10 FPS in teamfights. This did not stop his drive to excel in the game, and he did. Now, entertaining people in League of Legends has never been quite unique with his cowliness.
Table of Contents
Why Play Alistar?
Before we start on the Ultimate Guide to Alistar we first want to tell you why you should play him. His overall strengths and weaknesses are as follows:
- Incredibly tanky
- Strong engage and disengage
- Can peel assassins
- Efficiently protects ADCs
- Low base movement Speed
- Failing your combo will make you and your carry vulnerable
- High cooldowns
- True damage will bypass his Ultimate
- Easily kited
Soraka is considered a counter to Alistar because she has the ability to negate his combos. She prevents him from completing his combo using her E (Equinox) that silences him. Try to make her use her abilities before you use yours. When she does, go all-in with W + Q. Outsmart her in the early game and with it, you will get better results in the late game, especially when you have built tank items for the team. Focus on pushing her away with your W (Headbutt) and then using your Q (Pulverize) on her ADC when possible. Remove her ability to quickly heal her teammates by knocking her up with them. Watch her position and engage when you can crowd control both her and her carries.
Taric is considered a counter to Alistar because he has amazing armor protection for his team. He provides healing and also has a stun with his E (Dazzle). You can try to avoid his abilities before initiating and then using Alistar’s combos. Keep in mind that you have to protect your ADC in the early game phase so they can peel through tanks in the late game. Don’t waste your skills as it leaves you defenseless. Wait when Taric has ultimate (Cosmic Radiance) which may flip team fights and turn the game in their favor.
Nautilus is considered a counter to Alistar because of his ability to stop Alistar's charge towards his ADC. With his passive (Staggering Blow), he can lock you down and give his ADC free damage on you. He also has a point and click ultimate (Depth Charge) that can target your carry and knock them up which may also hit you and prevent you from saving them. In this lane, try to emphasize on getting your items faster and helping your carry gain more gold. Both supports will be trying to start for the team. Dodge his Q (Dredge Line) and stack CCs with your allies.
Vayne synergizes with Alistar because she has the moves to deal high damages in the late game which Alistar can protect along with his item build. Your goal is to help Vayne be as fed as possible in the early to mid game phase so she can be painful in teamfights later on. Items like Knight’s Vow and Zeke’s Convergence will give Vayne the ability to tumble around and deal damage while you protect her.
Draven synergizes with Alistar because Draven is a champion that needs heavy protection early on in order to snowball. You want to give him time to stack his Adoration and build more items as fast as possible before his enemy ADC does. When enemy champions try to gank your lane and seize Draven, protect him with your stuns and knock-ups so he can safely position and kite them down. A fed Draven will out damage enemy champions in the late game and will create more openings for the team to win.
Yasuo synergizes with Alistar because his ultimate (Last Breath) is easily activated after Alistar hits his knock-up. This can produce amazing plays that will destroy enemy champions when timed perfectly in team fights. Also, Yasuo can block auto-attacks from enemy ADC with his W (Wind Wall). This brings a big advantage to the laning phase, since it denies farm from the enemy ADC.
Alistar Summoner Spells
Alistar’s recommended Summoner Spells are Ignite and Flash because of its killing potential especially when you are in lane facing the opponents botlane. It will reduce further healing while also providing you an extension to either chase an enemy to secure the kill or escape a fight you can’t handle. If your ADC is going to use Teleport to quickly return back to lane and not miss any CS in your lane or assist a teamfight on the other side of the map.
You can consider using Heal and Flash because you will be the one to protect teammates and deliver the most amount of restoration in their health and defenses. Using your summoner spell along with your items can boost your teammates chances of survive difficult fights.
Alistar Runes and Keystones
Alistar’s recommended runes are Aftershock, Demolish, Bone Plating and Unflinching on Resolve as primary and Hextech Flashtraption with Future’s Market on Inspiration as Secondary because your goal as Alistar is to deal damage with your combo while setting up great initiations for your team to follow up on. This rune build will help you destroy turrets faster while being tenacious in enemy ganks. Choosing Hextech Flashtraption will provide you a mini flash while your spell is on cooldown. It can still be effective to engage when the enemy has no vision of you. Future’s Market can make you buy items beforehand even if you don’t have enough gold. Combine this with +9 Adaptive Force, +8Magic Resist and +6 Armor and you’ll be tanky enough even without your core items in the early game. Be tankier with these stats in the late game phase and soak as many damages as you can for your team.
You can consider using Aftershock, Demolish, Conditioning, and Overgrowth on Resolve as primary and Biscuit Delivery with Cosmic Insight on Inspiration as secondary. These runes will increase your health and defensive stats higher as the game goes longer. Your Inspiration runes will also back you up the early game when you have less mana giving you potions and early game CDR on items, summoner spells, and stats. You will be combining this with +1-10% CDR (per level) on Offense, +6 Armor on Flex and +15-90 Health (per level) on Defense giving you build for scaling in the late game.
Alistar’s recommended items change depending on the situation, however, the following items will give you a good idea of what to build in different situations.
Alistar starts with Relic Shield if he wants to have health, ability power, gold per second and health regeneration in the lane.
Alistar starts with Steel Shoulderguards if he wants to add more attack damage early on as well as health, gold per second and heath regen. Both items have spoils of war that can help execute minions for their ADC
Zeke’s Convergence is core on Alistar because of its ability to connect to an ally and boost its damage. Casting your ultimate near your ally will surround you with a frost storm that will slow enemies by 20%. It also ignites your ally’s basic attack for 10 seconds. This enhances your damage output early in the game.
Knight’s Vow is core on Alistar because your goal is to keep your ADC alive as long as possible to deal high amounts of damage in any fight. Using Knight’s Vow, you will choose a partner and gain +20 more armor and +15% movement speed to assist them. When your partner is being damaged by an opponent, some of the damage will redirect to you. Also, if your partner deals damage to enemy champions while you are nearby, you will heal a significant amount to yourself. This is a very useful item to aid your ADC whenever an opponent tries to assassinate him/her. It provides protection while giving you time to back him/her up.
Locket of the Iron Solari is core on Alistar because of its ability to give a decaying shield that absorbs damage to its surrounding teammates. This item provides the security to Alistar's team whenever a team fight happens. Alistar can be in the middle of a fight where he can still heal and support his team preventing them to die instantly. With the use of this item, Alistar can take care of his teammates HP while also engaging to enemy champions that drift too close to him.
Use Boots of Mobility so you can roam around the map and assist allies in skirmishes.
Use Ninja Tabi if you are against assassins or heavy AD team compositions.
Use Mercury Treads when you are dealing with multiple CCs in the game. This will reduce the duration of it.
Offensive Situational Items
If you want to chase your target and close the gap while also slowing them down, you can build Righteous Glory. This item works like a ghost where it boosts your movement speed. You will have a 75% movement speed when you are towards enemy champions or enemy turrets. Once you are near, you will emit a shockwave that will slow enemy nearby enemies by also 75% movement speed. The stats of this item grants health, mana, and armor. Perfect for Alistar while also helping him chase down enemies to engage on.
If you are being run down by champions with high attack speed stats and items like Master Yi, Xin Zhao, you can build Frozen Heart. This massively increases armor which is great for enemy teams that have heavy AD-based composition. Giving you an aura that slows the enemy's Attack Speed by 15%. Your ADC will most likely have better Attack speed stats against these enemies when you have the item.
If you want more healing to your allies, you can build Redemption. It increases heal and shield power by 10% for Alistar as he aids in healing and shielding allies in the game. When activated, you will be able to call down a beam of light that heals your teammates in the area while also burning enemies as true damage. Note: As long as you are about 5500 range within your teammates, you can trigger this item even if you are dead.
Defensive Situational Items
If you want to grow stronger the more enemies are nearby, you can build Gargoyle Stoneplate. This item will provide you 40 Armor and 40 Magic Resist. Not only does it give you extra stats, but it also increases them if 3 or more are around you giving you another 40 Armor and 40 Magic Resist. Upon activation, it increases the base and bonus health by 40% while increasing champion sizing.
If you are against high burst mages and an enemy team composition full of magic damage, you can build Spirit Visage. This item not only gives more magic resist, it only provides Health and CDR. Passively, it increases all healing and regeneration effects which are perfect for Alistar.
If you want deal Grievous Wounds to the enemy while reflecting their damage back, you can build Thornmail. This item provides 80 armor and 250 health. When hit by basic attacks, it reflects magic damage equal to 25 + 10% of your bonus armor. This activates Grievous Wounds to reduce regeneration effects. Combine this with Unbreakable Will and you'll be a wrecking ball.
Full Build Example
An example full build for Alistar can consist of
- Boots of Mobility
- Targon’s Buckler
- Zeke’s Convergence
- Knight’s Vow
- Locket of the Iron Solari
Passive - Triumphant Roar
Any stun or displacement Alistar does to enemy champions or when a nearby enemy dies, Alistar charges a roar up to 7 stacks. When he fully charges his Passive, he heals himself and all nearby allied champions. This passive is a great way to sustain teammates when having teamfights around the map. It assists his team, especially when taking too much damage within the clash. Alistar can be a great protector while supporting allies along the way.
Q - Pulverize
Alistar smashes the ground. Enemies around him are knock up in the air for 1 second while also receiving magic damage from this ability. This is a great CC that can set up ganks and kill opponents in the lane. Alistar’s Pulverize can toss the enemy champions when he gets a perfect position. This can transition into an objective, destroyed turret, or even win the match when timed perfectly.
W - Headbutt
Alistar rams the enemy and switches in their position dealing magic damage plus ability power. It knocks them back at a distance of 650. This ability is very effective in closing the distance between you and the enemy champions. Headbutt can set up a nice combo using your Q (Pulverize) to knock up multiple targets. Use this to push away opponents that you don’t want close to your carry.
E - Trample
Alistar stomps the ground dealing magic damage for 5 seconds around him. Every trample pulse that hits an enemy champions makes Alistar charge 1 Trample stack. At 5 Trample stacks, Alistar’s next basic attack against a champion will deal significant magic damage while also stunning them for 1 second. When opponents aren’t dead after a quick W + Q combo of Alistar, he doesn’t let them escape. He maximizes being in the middle of enemy champions and stuns one of them and tries to let his carry get the kill. This ability along with his W (Headbutt) and Q (Pulverize) completes his status as an effective support tank. He offers a great amount of crowd control to his team. He can also start with this skill closing to his targets and stunning them first before pushing them back with your other abilities.
R - Unbreakable Will
On cast, all disables to Alistar are instantly removed. He then buffs up and reduces any damages taken by up to 75% for 7 seconds. His ultimate provides the tankiness he needs to be in enemy lines. Alistar also needs to prevent any attempts of assassination to his carries while also being a front line. Avoid team fights where you don’t have your ultimate available as you want to be sturdier to keep as much teammate safe as possible. Your items will be a protection to your team. Enemies will be afraid to all-in your carries if they know you are ready to knock them up. Push them away and receive all their disables leaving them with fewer skills to hit your strongest damage dealer.
Ability Skill Order
The skill order for Alistar is R – Q – W – E . The reason is you’d always want to max your ultimate when possible especially when it is available on levels 6, 11, and 16. Pulverize is your priority as it is the best skill you have to disable enemies in team fights. You’d want it on its max cooldown and highest damage to maximize the knock up when roaming. Leveling Headbutt second is your next focus right away as it is your best combo with your Q. These abilities are often used to set up kills to your allies. Your Trample’s purpose is to hold off enemies after you achieve a great W +Q combo in any fight. Enemies that are quick and agile are very difficult to handle. This delays the stack of the chain. Focus on this skill order to stop a target’s movement before stacking to your stun
A power spike is when a time champion reaches a level or builds an item that makes them a lot stronger than other champions in the game. Alistar’s Powerspike is when he reaches level 2 and can combo his opponents in the lane with W + Q to incapacitate them. This gives your ADC time to deal auto-attacks and abilities. When you reach level 6 you’ll have tankier stats than most juggernauts because of your Unbreakable Will. It provides you great resistance and will help you face your enemies and take hits for your ADC. Alistar becomes stronger as tank support when he is able to build Zeke’s Convergence and connect it to his ADC. He will then be able to boost his carry’s damage while he can slow down enemies nearby. This is an effective way to get more kills and secure more objectives. Acquiring both this item with his boots of mobility can ramp up his ganking potential and help secure more areas in the rift.
W + Q Combo
This combo is the most often used play you’d do with Alistar. It has the ability to close the gap with your enemies then knock them up in the air for your ADC in the lane can deal damage. It is also effective when you want to start fights around the map that may either lose the enemies summoner spells or get kills for your carries. If you can reach your enemies without using your W(Headbutt) then you can start by knocking them up with your Q (Pulverize). You can then pushing them to your team for them to secure the kill easier.
Q + Flash Combo
This combo is used when you don’t want your enemy to know your about to knock them up. Q (Pulverize) and then click flash in a direction before the animation finishes. In some cases, they will not notice this. Flash + Q requires the full cast duration of Q, whereas if you Q + Flash, the Flash seems to cancel the casting animation of the Q to get an instant effect.
W + Flash Combo
This combo is if you want to have off some travel time of the W. It is great pulled off in particular when you want to dodge abilities along the way. This is stylish when the flash gets you over an incoming skill shot like a Morgana Q and then knock them up with your Q (Pulverize). Use your flash when it is necessary to reach your opponents before they CC you.
W + Flash + Q Combo
This combo is used similarly to the W + Q combo. Using this instead of W +Q will shave the travel animation in the combo. It works the same effect but is way faster which can help in reaching far away enemies. You can either target it in a single enemy or use your W to fake a dash into an enemy and Flash + Q into a different area and knock up more opponents in the fight. You can also do a Flash + W + Q when you want to be a bit slower for your team. This enable them to reach in time as the combo has the same effect and will deal a great amount of CC fo your team.
How to Play Alistar
At level 1, Alistar should be picking Pulverize as his first ability because it is his most effective skill. But you won’t get much of it unless someone walks within your range. When you get Headbutt, then you can start harassing your enemy laners. You can keep banging them with Headbutt if you want to be irritating to the duo in the bot lane. Always be careful when doing your W + Q combos as you have high cooldowns on your skills early on. Awareness is key to playing Alistar and one must place vision around your lane to safely utilize your damage to your target. As you reach level 3, you can now be a problem to their support especially if they are melee. Stack your Trample and then stun them. You can then combo their ADC with W + Q. This will ultimately give off a summoner from their carry. Always remember that when dealing with enemies, check your distance between you and your carry. Hold a stack of your spoils of war as it can help you heal your ADC if your summoner spells and abilities are on cooldown or you have used up your passive. Alistar does not only excel at the bot lane early in the game. You can never maximize his true potential if you stay passive with your ADC as you wait for Unbreakable Will. Use this time to roam around the map and get early assists. Your combos combined with Flash can set up kills for your allies. Play with your teammates’ strengths and gank their lane. When you reach level 6, this is a great time to take the more leads and do better on ganking and protecting your team. Hexflashtraption is a great way to initiate around walls and surprise laners with your combos.
- Split Pushing – When split pushing, Alistar should be beside his ADC assisting him to build more items. If you have taken the bottom turret, you can then swap places with your top and gain more pressure around the map. Do not ever leave your ADC without informing them. Assassins and high burst AP mages can easily secure a kill from them. The other team will be trying to engage on you and delay your carries to have a lead. Push them away with your Headbutt or do your quick W + Q combo. Take as many plates as you can on the turrets. This will give you the position to take the Rift Herald with your jungler push your advantage even further. Going to the mid game requires your ADC to earn as many golds as possible to prepare for greater objectives. This will boost your teamfights along the way. Make sure that you don’t overextend in one lane as multiple enemies might converge on you. When you know the other team is focusing on one side of the map, try to trade the other side to equalize team gold.
- Objective Control – As you go past level 6, you will likely have already built Zeke’s Convergence and Knight’s Vow. This will keep your ADC’s health in check while igniting his/her damage on small skirmishes. Dragon Souls is a must-have this Season 10 so you must prepare and engage whenever possible. Ward the pit a minute or two before trying to take the dragon. Souls like the Mountain and Ocean will greatly increase your ability to be peel damage for your team. Team fights are likely to happen and you should try to surprise enemies with your combos. If you know your carries are in the right spot and you are able to aid them when needed. When you are confident that your carry is safe, use your W + Flash + Q combo to multiple targets and stack CCs with your allies. The other team will likely try to reach your carries or destroy you with their playstyle, so be aware of your bond with Knight’s Vow. This will keep you and your ADC alive for a long period of time. After your finish doing your combos, ensure that you are on a spot where you can assist your allies at the back. The name of the game for you as Alistar is to keep your carry alive as long as possible.
Alistar in the late game is a huge threat to the other team. You most likely have 4-5 items now which may consist of Zeke’s Convergence, Knight’s Vow, Locket Of Iron Solari and Redemption with your support item Targon’s Buckler. If the game extends to this phase, you should be ready for engages from the enemy at any moment. If you are on the lead you would need to take the Elder Dragon for the execution buff to the enemy. This will increase the chances of your ADC and mage to burst them out. But if you aren’t on the lead, you still need to try to deny them these objectives. Sometimes your team would have to make a choice on whether you are going to steal the objective or take another part of the map. One role of the support is to make sure your team has a vision around these powerful objectives and take it anytime. Teams in this phase can easily assassinate each other. Take the Baron or the Elder Buff when you have all the information you need for a play. Being Alistar, you want to find a play where your Pulverize will knock up opponents which your team follows up to destroy them. Be careful about using your W + Q combo, they will try and subdue you and kill you as fast as they can to prevent further slaughter in their team. You can then activate your ultimate (Unbreakable Will) while adding protection to your allies with Locket of Iron Solari to resist as many damages as you can and disable lockdowns on you. Activating Redemption will also improve your chances of winning the fight. This will increase your allies’ HP when low and burn some of the enemies as it hits. Once you have secured 2-3 enemies for your team, it is easier to get the Baron and Elder buffs. Alistar is a bull that will ram the enemy as much as he can to turn tides in your favor and win the game.
Alistar Tips and Tricks
- Practice your W + Q combo as you might perfectly time the animation right which will push the enemies away and will make your teammates mad at you
- Play aggressively when dealing with poke champs
- Partner with your range teammates as you are the setter and not the damage dealer. Maximize the use of Knight’s Vow to trade better
- Don’t forget that your role is to support your teammates and heal them. Be a rampaging bull when it is necessary but also protect your team whenever possible
- If you are winning the lane, try to assist other teammates by counter ganking their lane if you know enemy junglers are approaching their area. Alistar can easily push aside enemies with Headbutt
These below videos are great game play examples for how to play Alistar. Coming Soon
Frequent Mistakes/Noob Traps
These are things most Alistar players do that shouldn’t be done at a high level ELO.
Mistake #1 – Using Pulverize on one target only. YourQ is one of the most important skill you can have in teamfights. Not using it for multiple targets can lead to a loss which will be unfavorable for your team. If you can knockup all 5 of the enemy do so.
Mistake #2 – Not doing your W + Q combo right. Practice is always key to being a better League of Legends player and one of combos you should master is the W + Q combo. Most players tend spam W + Q and either push the enemy away with Headbutt or Pulverize in advance as the range hasn’t reached yet.
Mistake #3 – Automatically clicking R on teamfights. Do not forget that your ultimate, Unbreakable Will has the ability to remove all CC you’ve received instantly. Try to soak up as many as possible before clicking R to reduce the enemy team’s effectiveness.
Mistake #4 – All inning utility supports. When having 2v2s in the the bot lane, you should try to hold off your ability against supports like Janna and Morgana as they will likely beat your combos. Try to lure them from spamming their abilities first before going all in to avoid being kited down.
Similar Champions to Alistar
Listed below are some champions you can use to replace Alistar as a support. One who emphasizes teamfights by using CCs. When he isn’t available either banned or picked by the enemy team. This will give you a variety to choose from. Safeguarding your LP from going down and keeping your games awesome.
Extremely tanky, Multiple CCs and Strong presence. Leona brings light to his allies. He directs their opponents to her locking them with her sword and shield. She reaches enemies with her Zenith Blade and stuns them with Shield of Daybreak. You'll feel her presence has Eclipse appears out of nowhere. And when you think you are already safe, a Solar Flare is ready to strike you down.
Hard CC, Great engage and Point and click ultimate. This titan will deliver heavy blows with his anchor. No man can face him alone without help. He brings Riptides across the grounds, and slowing nearby enemies. Nautilus can hold anyone in place with Staggering Blow. Giving all the opportunity for his allies to deliver damage. One thing's for sure, even from afar, shockwaves will knock up in the air. Immobilizing the weak.
Great AP ratio, Great engage/disengage and Crowd control abilities. Want to play around with your opponents? Rakan is your best shot. His charms will entice champions, not knowing what to do with him. He dances around his allies as he protects them against foes. Heals and shields are a small offer to his allies as he makes a Grand Entrance.
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