An in-depth Zed guide for Wild Rift

One-shot the enemy carries every time! The best Build, Runes and spells for the current patch.

Thumbnail artwork by Oreki Genya.

Introduction

Greetings, fellow champions! We have teamed up with Kashi for this one to provide you the best possible Zed guide. Kashi is a Wild Rift content creator from Philippines who makes unique guides, gameplays, and so on over at his Youtube channel. He reached Diamond in Wild Rift season 0, is a high platinum from PC League and a Mythic from Mobile Legends, so he brings the best of both worlds, in terms of experience and knowledge.

Zed

Artwork by Oreki Genya.


Contents


Why play Zed?

Zed is a low risk, high reward champion who can easily dominate lane and burst down squishy targets. He goes really well in the mid lane and can instantly burst the priority targets. To top it all, Zed is great in 1v1 situations. His scaling depends on how good your laning phase is.

If you want to kill without getting in danger, Zed is for you!

Zed Shana Artwork by Shanasae.


Pros

  • High burst damage
  • Can snowball with few kills
  • Can carry the whole game
  • Rewarding to learn and master
  • Can kill without getting in danger
  • Great at both ganking and duels
  • High mobility
  • Lot of outplay potential

Zed Artwork by Oreki Genya.

Cons

  • He is easy to kill if caught off guard as he doesn’t have any sustain, just like any assassin.
  • Learning how to lane is hard work because you will never have lane priority in the early game.
  • Not beginner-friendly.
  • Takes time to learn and master.
  • Laning against champions with hard poke like Orianna or Ahri is difficult.
  • Has no sustain.

Builds, Runes and Spells

Build

youmuu's-ghostblade duskblade-of-draktharr stasis-enchant black-cleaver mortal-reminder guardianangel death's-dance
Youmuu's Ghostblade Duskblade of Draktharr Stasis Enchant Black Cleaver Mortal Reminder Guardian Angel Death's Dance

Youmuu's-Ghostblade

Youmuu’s Ghostblade This is a go to item for Zed as it’s passive allows him to roam the map easily and secure kills that will let him dominate the game. The armor penetration that it gives also gives Zed more options to kill targets that have high armor and hp.

Duskblade-of-Draktharr

Duskblade of Draktharr This item provides Zed with more ganking options even without Oracle lens. The trick to this is look at the icon down below. The icon of duskblade will start rotating if you are seen by a ward. By knowing this, you can change your gank path and be more successful at killing enemies.

Boots

Mercury's-treads

Mercury’s Treads: If enemy has Magic Damage threats, this is a good item.

Ninja-Tabi

Ninja Tabi: If enemy has Physical Damage threats, this is a good item.

Stasis

Stasis Enchant: As you will be diving a lot, there will be circumstances that you will fail at escaping, and stasis enchant can really help you with this.

Black-Cleaver

Black Cleaver: As Zed is generally weak against tanky targets, I recommend Black Cleaver for more armor reduction and it’s passive provides you movement speed every time you kill an enemy.

Adaptive-helm

Adaptive Helm: This item will really help you in sticky situations if the enemy has stacking AP, like Mundo and Akali.

Guardian-Angel

Guardian Angel: Zed is a squishy target, so building this will help you escape if you messed up your combo or you got ganked.

Death's-Dance

Death’s-Dance: Zed’s only weakness is his lack of sustain and can be easily killed, therefore building death’s dance on him will soak up some damage.


Spells

Flash Ignite Barrier
Flash: This is a must have for Zed as he can surprise his enemies in the early game or escape. Ignite: Good for finishing off targets when you run out of energy Barrier: Gives really good sustain and can be useful when enemy jungler can burst you early like Lee Sin or Vi.

Zedevelyn Artwork by Evelin Turcsán.

Runes

Electrocute Brutal Spirit-Walker Hunter-Genius
Electrocute Brutal Spirit Walker Hunter Genius

Electrocute

Electrocute: Zed can easily proc the passive of Electrocute due to his nature, and the damage of electrocute will add up to his Dearh Mark.

Brutal

Brutal: You can’t go wrong with this rune, as it gives you AD and armor penetration.

Spirit-Walker

Spirit Walker: Gives Zed extra health and helps him chase targets with the 20% slow reduction.

Hunter-Genius

Hunter Genius: Zed’s ultimate has a long cooldown, and this rune can lower the cooldown of his ultimate up to 30 secs


Abilities

Fanart Artwork by Jason Nguyen.

Passive: Contempt for the Weak

Zed’s attacks against enemies below 50% Health deal bonus magic damage equal to 7% of their maximum Health. (10s cooldown per unique enemy).

This is an extremely strong passive as it increases your damage against low hp enemies. It makes last hitting very easy.


Razor Shuriken

Zed and his shadows throw their shurikens, each dealing 80 physical damage (80 + 100%AD) to the first enemy they hit and 48 physical damage (48 + 60%AD) to other enemies in their path.

Cooldown: 6s

Energy: 70

Level 1 2 3 4
Cost 70 65 60 55
Base Damage 80 130 180 230

This is a good long range poke ability that can help you farm safely. When enemy mid-laner is a long ranged poker like Orianna and Ahri, try to max Razor Shuriken to last hit safely from a distance. If you try to auto-attack against these champions, you’ll lose a lot of HP to their poke.


Living Shadow

Zed gains 35 Energy whenever an ability strikes the same enemy twice. Energy can only be gained once per cast ability.

Zed’s shadow dashes forward, remaining in place for 4.5s. Reactivating Living Shadow will cause Zed to swap positions with his shadow.

Cooldown: 75

Energy: 35

Level 1 2 3 4
Cooldown 20 18 16 14
Cost 35 30 25 20
Energy Regen 35 40 45 50

This essentially extends the range of your shurikens even further. As your shadow will imitate all the abilities you will use, you can activate this ability to poke your enemies pretty consistently. You can also switch places with your shadow once. This means it’s great as both an engage and an escape tool. Only use it to poke when you know that no one is looking to gank you. Because without these abilities you don’t have much of an escape left.

How living shadows work
  • When you are aiming your shuriken, you can aim at a point, your shodow will aim for this point as well. This makes it easy for even multiple shadow shurikens to intersect shadows
  • Shadow Slash does damage when used by living shadow. The damage stacks but the shadows do lesser damage.
  • Your ult leaves behind a living shadow as well. It behaves in the exact same way as your W/skill 2 shadow. So essentially you can do damage from your shuriken and slash 3 times. That’s 225 percent bonus damage on a combo pulled off perfectly. Given your percentage damage passive not even tanks are gonna survive long if you throw in a few auto attacks at the right time.

Shadow Slash

Zed and his shadows slash, each dealing 70 physical damage (70 + 80% bonus AD) to nearby enemies and slowing them by 25% for 1.5s.

Each enemy champion hit by Zed’s slash reduces Living Shadow’s cooldown by 2s.

Cooldown: 5s

Energy: 50

Level 1 2 3 4
Cooldown 5 4.5 4 3.5
Base Damage 70 105 140 175
Slow 25% 30% 35% 40%

This is a short burst of damage around you. It is good to note that Shadow Slash doesn’t cancel your auto attack animation, so you can use it in any part of your combo without missing out on any juicy auto attacks. Your Living shadow imitates Shadow Slash as well. So using both in a combo is a very safe poke, that does not even require as much aim as your shuriken.

It’s usually better to upgrade living shadow at level 2 before this ability, but there are some situations where this is better. In melee matchups or when you are facing problems last hitting, it might be a good idea to go for this ability instead.

In general it’s very difficult to Shadow slash against ranged enemies early on without your Living shadow.


Death Mark

Zed becomes untargetable and dashes to target enemy champion, marking them. After 3.5s, the mark triggers, dealing physical damage equal to 64 (100%AD) plus 25% of all damage dealt to the target by Zed while the mark was active.

The dash leaves a shadow behind for 6s. Zed reactivate Death Mark to switch positions with this shadow.

Cooldown: 90s

Level 1 2 3
Cooldown 90 70 50
Base Damage 25% 40% 55%

This is the main source of Zed’s burst damage on his opponents. He leaves behind a living shadow, become untargettable and leaps to the enemy, doing a set amount of burst. The most intriguing thing is the second part of this ability. He leaves a mark on the opponent that explodes, dealing a percentage of the amount of damage Zed did to the target. If you see the mark on the opponent’s head, believe that the mark will deal enough damage to kill him. Essentially the target is a dead man walking.

Although remember, this mark does not take into consideration any abilities used by or used on the target. Shielding, healing or using invincibility might still save the target. Putting in a few more autos after the mark procs is advisable but not necessary. You do not have to get into harm’s way if you don’t have to.

Zed Rhaast Artwork by Rhaast.

Apart from it’s offensive capabilities, Zed’s ultimate is arguably his best tool to escape tough situations. Not only does the ult make him invincible but it also leaves behind a shadow. Along with your W this means you can have two living shadows on the map at a time, and which one you teleport to is completely up to you. This is waste an immense amount of resources of the enemy if they still try to chase you. Deception is the name of the game for Zed.


How to win with Zed

ZedGalaxySlayer Artwork by Santeri.

Laning

Always remember that you are weak early game amd you shouldn’t try to last hit a minion if there is a risk of being poked. Save your shuriken to last hit and don’t even try to poke level 1 with Zed, because you will definitely lose the trade.

Your only goal is to hit level 5 and get your ultimate. Don’t risk your HP for last hitting minions but rather save it for when you have your ult. Upon reaching level 3, you can try to poke with 2nd + 3rd + 1st. This combo will easily proc electrocute and can help dominate your opponent, especially if he or she is squishy.

Also, don’t stand near your minions because you will inadverently be poked when your enemy laner last hits them. Try to stay near the outer part of the tower and only go out when enemy laner is missing. keep in mind that it’s easier to poke with Zed on Wild Rift than on PC version, because even your living shadows can use Shadow Blade to last hit.

Here’s a neat trick if your target is protected by frontline. You can ult the enemy frontline, then proceed to burst the target behind them and if they try to cc you, immediately go back to your ult shadow and start pretending like nothing ever happened.

You can also use your ult invulnerability to evade ganks, but time it correctly so you can dodge their skills.

Teamfights

Zedfanart2 Artwork by Oreki Genya.

Find the priority target first. If you are ganking dragon lane, go for adc and let your team handle the tank. If your team is trying to take objectives, go for the enemy jungler so they won’t have any chance of contesting that objective.

You can also go for the tank, but only if that tank is a big threat in your team, like Malphite if they have a Yasuo.


Best synergies with Zed in Wild Rift

synergies Artwork by Oreki Genya

Champs that have a lot of sustain on their own will work best with Zed, especially ones that can distract the frontlines for Zed to assassinate the backlines. These champions can include Darius, Gragas, and Malphite.

Alistar

Zed_Malphite_

His low cooldown full team knock-ups mean you have time to pick and choose your targets while he soaks up entires enemy team’s damage 10 times over while shouting how angry it’s making him. It’s difficult to believe anything is making this guy angry as he can soak up your entire ult and not even see a 20 percent difference in his hp bar. Just hope he is on your side.

Malphite

Zed_Malphite_

If a literal mountain drops on you, you won’t have time to worry about 5 foot assassins running around the map. Use this to your advantage. Engage on their backline as Malphite keeps the frontlines busy with his AOE auto attacs and immutable cc.

Darius

Darius meme

It is really difficult to ignore a Darius in a team fight as he runs around the map screaming “Here’s Johnny” on every ADC. This guy brings the opponent to you. While you can burst down the ADC, Darius can in turn use your damage to one shot dunk and get his ult reset, leading to some juicy Aces.

Gragas

Zed_Gragas

This dude is the drunk uncle who will disrupt every family gathering. One ult from him and you will have saved your flicker to ult, which means you will kill their backline return to your tower as if nothing unusual happened and your shadows will continue pretending it’s all the drunk uncle’s fault.


How to counter Zed in Wild Rift

One of the best counters for Zed is heavy cc, especially because when you ult, you will always be behind your target. Another counter for Zed is invincibility, that’s why Stasis Enchant is important to buy if you are going against him. So essentially, any champion with an invincibility frame can look to counter him. The following are not his lane matchup counters, but counter picks in general, from their respective roles. this does not mean these picks can always win against Zed, just that if played right they have a chance to scuff his gameplay.

Fizz

Fizzz meme

Fizz has much more range and poke, and to top it all he can go invincinble. So while you use your shadow clone jutsu, this guy will just stand on his obnoxious stick and call you a boomer.

Tryndamere

Tryndamere

Stasis lasts for 2 seconds, this dude can go invincible for 5 seconds. Make sure you don’t blow up your combo on him while his ult is active. Tryndamere is not an opponent you want to take on 1v1, as even your auto attack passive is useless on him. Getting him low, simply increases his damage on you. Make sure to waste his dash so that you can safely run away using your clones.

Fiora falls in the same category with her low cd invincibility in skill 2, Camille with her ultimate.

Alistar

Zed_counter_Alistar

He has 70 percent damage reduction in his ult, as if he is not tanky without it. So all your dark arts and powers will be rendered to a mere 25 percent of their effectiveness if you end up ulting him. To top it all, if you get hit by his chain cc, escaping will not be an easy task, especially if his team follows up.

Ahri

Zed_counter_Ahri

Look! I know how cute she looks, she has those nine fluffy tails, big eyes and all that, but don’t go near her! Stay away my dude. She will pretend to send heart emojis at you, stay away I repeat! Orianna as well, doesn’t matter if it’s a robo girl. It’s no Simp September all year round for Zed.


Gameplay

HellsDevil is a Challenger player in Wild Rift. Here’s an in-depth guide plus gameplay video by him as he breaks down Zed for the latest patch, along with some high elo gameplay.

Watch Zed go up against Orianna and still decimate the enemies.


Tips players from other games

How different is Wild Rift Zed from PC League Zed?

Zed mobile Artwork by Oviya Vendan

Not just mages but anyone can build Zhonyas(Stasis Enchant), so this surely affects Zed. It’s an enchant on boots, so many characters can get this much earlier if they see your Zed as a threat. But remember, the cooldown of your ult is way lower than that of Stasis Enchant. Just keep a mental time of when a particular character expanded his enchant, and you will be good to go.

Despite this, most high elo players consider Zed S tier. He is very strong at shutting down AD carries and mages in any tier at any time in the game. Late game his ult cooldown is not even complete 30 seconds with the proper Ability Haste providing items. That makes it pretty spammable more so than it is in PC.


Tips for MSW players who want to play Zed

Ghost MSW and lol WR Zed

You will be reminded of Ghost with all of Zed’s teleporting and stuff. So Ghost players will feel right at home when trying Zed out. Although Zed is very different from Ghost in terms of abilities and so on, The similarities lie in the knowledge of how to engage, who to engage and when.


Characters similar to Zed in AoV

Zill and Zed

Murad, Nakroth, Zill and Zed were all made in the same forge. Zill players will particularly enjoy playing him, as the ults are similar, with untargetability and insane single target burst. The mobility is also very similar, while you dash away from enemy after ulting, very safely. His s1 poke is similar, except that the shuriken does not come back like it does with Zill. Of course, there are many differences, but if you are one of the Zill mains, or Murad mains, you should definitely try this one out.

It is good to note that the second part of Zed’s ult damage is very much like Batman’s Batarang. It marks the enemy and deals damage, based on the percentage amount of damage that is done to the target within that time. So the counters that work for Batman, like Arctic orb, work for Zed as well.

Remember the passive of Fenrir, the most expensive offensive item in AoV? Well, Zed is born with that passive. This will give you an idea of how strong he is on the Rift.


Tips for MLBB players who want to main Zed

hayabus

Zed seems like the long lost brother of Hayabusa. Their ult is similar but Hayabusa’s ult is kinda like Yi’s 1st skill. Also, they both throw shurikens and can teleport to shadows. Only difference in the shadows and shurikens is that Hayabusa’s skills are more than one unlike zed who only has one shadow from W and Q shuriken.


Conclusion

Zed is a quintessential mid-lane assassin who thrives on making lives of enemy ADCs miserable. If this is something you enjoy doing, then Zed is the champion for you!


Special Thanks

It was a pleasure working with Kashi on this guide. His insight on Zed is unique and so is his content. So go show him some love at his YouTube channel!

Really grateful that Shurko and HellsDevil let us embed his gameplay videos on here. If you haven’t already, go subscribe!

Many thanks to Oreki Genya, Jason Nyugen, Oviya Vendan,Evelin Turcsán, Rhaast, Shanasae and Santeri who allowed us to use their absolutely amazing artworks on here. They truly make the guide come alive.

Thanks to reddit user u/Zexillium for reviewing parts of the guide.

And finally, you, the reader! Thanks for reading.

Hope you enjoyed the guide! Got anything interesting you’d like to share - a guide, a piece of fanart or even a tip? Was there something we missed in this guide? Got a query you’d like answered? If your answer to any of the above questions is ”yes”, then connect with us on Discord!