Before we dive into the in-game portion of the guide, I’d like cover the pregame; specifically Runes and Summoner Spells.
With Teemo being the most unique and versatile champion in League of Legends when it comes to builds, I believe it’s important to go over every Keystone and Rune so Teemo enthusiasts all over can get some quality insight. I also didn’t want this to be just like every other guide and just say what to take; I’m going to tell you why and when you should take certain runes as Teemo isn’t a “Set and Forget” champion.
Press the Attack (Tier 3)
Press the Attack, without a doubt, has its place in certain match-ups; this is a rune that should be taken when all-ins are inevitable in the match-up or when up against a meaty tank (fuck you Mundo). PTA can also be abused against champions like Maokai, Riven, Illaoi and Camille due to extended trades being rather common in these matchups. If you’re unable to consistently proc PTA, then don’t bother taking this rune.
Lethal Tempo (Tier 4)
Not complete garbage, but not the worst. It’s simply not worth using Lethal Tempo unless you plan on going a full on-hit build that features Rageblade, BoRK, Wit’s End, etc., which really doesn’t shine until late-game. I don’t believe it’s worth it to sacrifice Teemo’s opressiveness in the early-game just to, MAYBE, shine in the late-game. I take it back; it’s garbage.
Fleet Footwork (Tier 3)
Just like PTA, Fleet has it’s place in certain match-ups that focus on kiting or dodging spells. A few of the key match-ups are Darius, Sion and Nasus where kiting and dodging spells make or break the lane. Aside from those match-ups, It’s a solid middle ground between sustain and poking, but I’d rather choose one end of the spectrum (Grasp or Aery).
Conqueror (Tier 4)
It feels okay based of the precision tree granting attack-speed, but not great. It’s just… meh. I’d rather take PTA or Fleet.
Best of Row One: Triumph
Triumph can literally win you games by coming in clutch during close fights. Overheal is also nice for this row, but the shield is nearly negligible until mid/late-game. Honorable Mention: Overheal
Best of Row Two: Alacrity
Alacrity is arguably the best rune all of the rows. With attack speed being an extremely efficient stat on Teemo, it’s hard to argue any other rune for this row.
Best of Row Three: Coup de Grace
Coup De Grace is the standard choice when picking deciding what to pick for row three. Cut down is okay versus tanks, but Coup De Grace is useful against all champions rather than just tanks.
Comet (Tier 4)
Comet feels pretty bad and Aery simply outshines it. The only time where Comet beats Aery is by procing Comet through a Shroom, but why sacrifice constant Aery poke for something so inconsistent and unreliable.
Aery (Tier 1)
Aery is one of Teemo’s Core Keystones with the other being Grasp of the Undying (See Full Article on Grasp). Aery is far and away the most consistent option for enhancing Teemo’s already oppressive playstyle in lane. The ability to double-proc Aery by catching the last tick of poison is just the cherry on top. The damage from Aery stacks up very quickly due to it being quite easy to proc consistently. Although Aery is preferred in the majority of matchups, there are times where it can be extremely feast of famine making lanes extremely volatile, which is where Grasp comes into play. Overall, simply perfect for Teemo.
Phase Rush (Tier 4)
The ONLY time to take this rune is versus champions like Nasus or Darius to counter slows, but other than that it’s trash.
Best of Row One: The Ultimate Hat
With the recent nerf of to Manaflow Band, The Ultimate Hat is far and away the best rune for this row. Manaflow band is still a decent choice, but having the ability to fully stack The Ultimate Hat by level seven is simply too good to pass up. Honorable Mention: Manaflow Band
Best of Row Two: Transcendence
If you plan to be as oppressive as possible, then Absolute Focus is the best rune in this section. However, do not take this rune into a losing lane as it’s essentially pointless since you won’t be above 70% hp that often. If you don’t plan on being above 70% for the majority of the lane, just take Transcendence as it will give you more value throughout the game. Celerity is a pretty niche rune. Although I personally wouldn’t run Celerity, I could see a player’s logic for wanting to take it, especially for matchups where movement speed is vital (i.e. Darius). Honorable Mention: Absolute Focus/Celerity
Best of Row Three: Scorch
Once again, when going over this row you need to take into account your play style. If you’re going for the most harass in lane, then take scorch. If not, Gathering Storm is your next best bet. Also, if you happen to be playing Teemo Jungle and happen to run the sorcery tree, then consider taking Waterwalking as it will give you more mobility and impact on the map. Honorable Mention: Gathering Storm
Electrocute (Tier 2)
Electrocute feels great when going for a bursty AP build. It’s important to use your passive effectively when running Electrocute; otherwise it’s difficult to make the most of the rune. Unless you plan to truly play into Teemo’s theme of being a sneaky assassin, you’re better off going with Aery.
Predator (Tier 5)
This Keystone is meant for champions with a low amount of mobility or who are able to effectively abuse the movement speed boost with their kit. Don’t bother.
Dark Harvest (Tier 4)
To put it simply, why take Dark Harvest when you can go Electrocute? Although it’s weaker late game, I don’t believe it’s worth it to sacrifice your early and mid-game for a more bursty late-game as late-game is never guaranteed.
Best of Row One: Taste of Blood
With Runes Reforged, Taste of Blood replaced Feast and is extremely valuable in lane when it comes to sustain. However, if you’re going for the highest output of damage then go with Cheap Shot. In my opinion, the extra damage from Cheap Shot isn’t worth it. Honorable Mention: Cheap Shot
Best of Row Two: Zombie Ward
Zombie Ward can single-handedly spot out ganks making your overall laning phase safer. Every other option isn’t necessarily viable.
Best of Row Three: Ravenous Hunter
Ravenous Hunter is absolutely insane on Teemo. Ravenous Hunter allows Teemo to heal off his auto-attacks due to the on-hit damage from Toxic Shot (E) and the damage over time for your poison. This rune is a must when using the Domination tree.
Grasp of the Undying (Tier 1)
Grasp of the Undying is currently underrated when it comes to viable Keystones for Teemo (See Full Article). The reason Grasp is so great on Teemo is that it allows Teemo to win difficult matchups he would once lose. Grasp allows him to be just oppressive as Aery does, but sacrifices great sorcery runes for survivablity.
Aftershock (Tier 5)
If you plan on sitting next to blasting cones all day in order to proc Aftershock, considering seeing your doctor.
Gaurdian (Tier 5)
Best of Row One: Bone Plating
Bone Plating is simply too good against burst damage. Demolish is nice on paper, but you have to consider how often you’ll be able to proc Demolish and compare it to Bone Plating.
Best of Row Two: Conditioning
Conditioning is the route to go if you actually plan on building a true tank item. Even without a true tank item, Conditioning feels great. If you’re playing the sustain game (i.e. versus Gangplank/Comet Camille), then I’d recommend taking second wind. However, you can win the sustain game without Second Wind; it just makes it easier. Chrysalis is also an intriguing rune, but I have yet to test it. On paper, Conditioning is too good to pass up. Honorable Mention: Second Wind
Best of Row Three: Overgrowth
With the new Grasp of the Undying build and the AP item rework, you end up with a large health pool based on items alone. Overgrowth just enhances it.
Unsealed Spellbook (Tier 4)
I’d like to say that it has it’s place in matchps, but it simply doesn’t. The reason Unsealed Spellbook is viable for champions like Vladamir is due to nothing else being a particularly great choice and Stopwatch making hourglass cheaper. Although it gives you the flexibility to abuse ignite, Aery is still the more consistent option for snowballing lanes.
Glacial Augment (Tier 4)
It’s an interesting rune, but there’s a reason it’s such a niche keystone; because it’s bad and needs major buffs before becoming viable.
Kleptomancy (Tier 4)
If this was pre-nerf Klepto, then it would probably be Tier 3. However, with it heavily relying on RNG and it being difficult to proc at times, it’s too inconsistent to abuse.
Best of Row One: Magical Footwear
Due to Teemo rarely needing to build hourglass, Magical Footwear is a great choice, especially with the movement speed boost.
Best of Row Two: N/A
This row is extremely situational and low impact. Future’s Market being “fill,” Minion Dematerializer being versus tanks that would build Banner of Command, and Biscuit Delivery for difficult lanes.
Best of Row Three: Cosmic Insight
Cosmic Insight will always hold value throughout the game, whereas Time Warp Tonic is only great when having potions ticking.
Aery – Domination: Tier 1
It’s no surprise that Aery is one of Teemo’s core keystones as it enhances Teemo’s oppressive laning phase. This rune set-up should be taken when Teemo is able to abuse the lane without much counterplay. It provides for poke, mild-sustain and the ability to to provide massive vision with your Shrooms due to The Ultimate Hat. It’s a common misconception that this is a “set and forget” rune page; this page should not be taken when trying to win a poke/sustain war that has high volatility (i.e. Gangplank). However, depending on the elo you’re currently playing in, I doubt enemy top laners know the weaknesses to this set-up.
Grasp of the Undying – Domination: Tier 1
It’s no secret that I have been a huge advocate for running Grasp of the Undying with a semi-tradition item build on Teemo (Full Article). Although it doesn’t match Aery in terms of poke, this build allows Teemo to win matchups he would once lose. It also makes what was once difficult matchups brain-dead easy (i.e. Gangplank, Comet Nasus, Comet Camille, Fiora, Riven, Singed, etc.) It also tricks enemy players into think they can actually kill you as most players don’t know how tanky this build makes you. However, this build is also not a “set and forget” rune page; for example, if you’re laning against Dr. Mundo, you will not win lane with this build due to not being able to abuse the early laning phase in order to win lane. This is a scenario where you double-down on poke and take Aery.
These builds all have their role in certain matchups and play styles. If you’re going for a bursty build, consider taking Electrocute as it will enhance your mischievous playstyle. Fleet Footwork also comes in handy where mobility is highlighted; for matchups like Darius, depending on the elo, you cannot afford to get pulled in. This is where Fleet Footwork comes into play as it will give you a short spurt of movement speed to run circles around Darius. However, you could still take Aery/Grasp. For huge, meaty tanks you can consider taking Press the Attack if you plan on going for a more on-hit build. However, if you still plan on build AP versus a tank, just run Aery.
Hope you enjoyed and stay tuned for Chapter Two – Summoner Spells and Ability Sequences