The serpent slithers through Summoner’s Rift and reaps the souls of the unfortunate men that cross her paths. As one of the more unique champions in the game, she has become a staple champion that’s used in all three lanes. Many things make Cassiopeia such a reliable champion to have as a Pocket Pick no matter what role you’re playing. This Cassiopeia guide aims to help new players achieve mastery over this champion so that they’ll be able to climb ranked with her help.
The Serpent’s Stone Cold Embrace
Unlike her sister – Katarina – the youngest daughter of the Du Couteau did not choose to train in the military arts, instead, she stayed with her mother to focus on the political aspects of the kingdom. Unfortunately, her closeness with her mother caused her to become her pawn when she learned that her husband plans to betray the Emperor whom she is loyal to. Until one day, a mission from her mother would lead her to the ruins that would curse her until the end of her days to become part woman and part serpent.
Cassiopeia has traditionally been a strong control mid laner but has since been able to diverge into the other lanes. Professional players like to use her for her game-breaking outplay potential when it comes to multi-target CC and the ability to duel against multiple enemies at once. This type of gameplay will be highlighted in our Cassiopeia guide when we highlight the reliability that this champion has when played in the mid lane as one of the strongest duelist mages in the game.
Cassiopeia General Gameplay
A unique thing about Cassiopeia that will be highlighted very much in this Cassiopeia guide is the fact that she doesn’t need to purchase boots. She is a strong dueling champion that likes to be in long fights rather than short skirmishes because her abilities provide consistent damage rather than huge burst. When playing Cassiopeia, she has a similar gameplay to ADCs in the sense that positioning and kiting are things that will really help her achieve maximum efficiency.
Cassiopeia Guide – Skills and Abilities
In this Cassiopeia guide, we’ll be talking about how Cassiopeia’s abilities completely complement her kit. She is a battlemage that likes to stay in a fight for a very long time so spamming her abilities and keeping herself alive are two things that she needs to keep up. Luckily, these abilities really help her become a slippery snake that can take a small opening into a game-winning opportunity.
Passive: Serpentine Grace
Innate – Cassiopeia can’t buy boots and instead gains movement speed based on level up to a maximum amount.
Serpentine Grace may seem like a very simple ability that doesn’t do much but really helps Cassiopeia save a lot of resources in terms of gold and runes. Since you don’t have to buy boots or their upgrades, you can immediately rush your mythic item without distractions. Try to maintain a steady income of gold so that your advantage doesn’t get wasted. Players should also take note that runes like Predator and Magical Footwear don’t work on Cassiopeia and are automatically replaced.
Q: Noxious Blast
Active – Cassiopeia shoots out a blast of poison at a target area that explodes after 0.4 seconds, dealing magic damage every second for 3 seconds to enemies hit. Enemies hit are afflicted with Poison. In addition, if Cassiopeia hits an enemy champion, she gains bonus movement speed that decays over 3 seconds.
Noxious Blast is a great ability to harass enemy champions and clear the wave. The importance of using Noxious Blast lies in the player using it on as many enemy champions as possible during a fight and using the bonus movement speed to help in repositioning or chasing enemies. Remember that the ability has a few milliseconds of delay so you might need to predict where the enemy might move during that time. The poison will really help deal a lot of damage over time against the enemy.
Active – Cassiopeia spews venom in 8 different spots, forming an arc in the target location, covering the area with a toxic cloud for 5 seconds.
Enemies within the Miasma take magic damage every second, are grounded, slowed by a decaying amount over time, and are afflicted with Poison.
Miasma is a good CC ability that really promotes dueling and prevents enemies from escaping your grasp. This ability grounds the enemy so dashing abilities, blinks, and teleports are interrupted or are unable to use while their inside. Use it on an enemy that you don’t want to escape or if you’re trying to run away from someone. Remember that this ability also afflicts poison which will help you in dealing a lot of damage against enemies which you’ll learn more about in a bit.
E: Twin Fang
Active – Cassiopeia unleashes her fangs at a target enemy, dealing magic damage. If Cassiopeia kills the target using this ability or if the target is killed while fleeing, the mana cost is refunded.
If Cassiopeia targets a unit that is afflicted with the Poison status, this attack does bonus magic damage and heals her for a small amount. This ability’s healing is reduced by 75% against minions and monsters.
Twin Fang should always be used on two scenarios, when targeting a unit that’s about to die or if the target is afflicted by Poison. In case you didn’t read it, your Q and W abilities both apply Poison stacks so using your rotations wisely is key to maximizing damage. Whenever you use, Q or W, try to weave Twin Fang in-between before using the next ability so that you can deal a lot of damage and even heal yourself. This is easy considering you have slows and DoTs on the enemy.
R: Petrifying Gaze
Active – Cassiopeia uses her cursed gaze on all enemies in a cone in a target direction, dealing magic damage to all enemies hit. In addition, enemies that are facing Cassiopeia are stunned for 2 seconds after being hit by Petrifying Gaze, while all other enemies are instead slowed by 40% for the same duration.
Positioning is key to making this ability successful. Try to make sure that you’re using this ability in the direction where the most amount of priority targets are facing so that you stun them for 2 seconds. During those 2 seconds, a lot can happen and it can even prove to be their death. If fighting enemies that are fleeing, don’t be afraid to use this ability since the slow will help in the pursuit. Using abilities like Flash or Hextech Protobelt can help you reach a favorable position to stun enemies.
Cassiopeia Guide – Items and Builds
In this Cassiopeia guide, we’ll be talking about this champion’s item builds. Luckily, no matter where you play this champion, her build stays the same since she likes to prioritize abilities that apply DoT or help her survive fights a lot longer. She likes to prolong skirmishes into straight duels so movement disruptors and items that apply bonus movement speed are useful when helping this champion achieve that goal.
Tear of the Goddess – Unlike other champions, Cassiopeia doesn’t use a traditional Starting Item. Since her abilities involve very short cooldowns, it’s easy for her to spam abilities and quickly upgrade her items. If you’re not comfortable using this item as a starting item, you might also want to consider something like Doran’s Ring or Corrupting Potion. You should avoid building this item if you haven’t learned how to spam her abilities smartly or are not good at getting gold.
Liandry’s Anguish (Mythic) – This item is a popular choice for mages that don’t deal high bursts of damage in short skirmishes because it still allows them to inflict a lot of pain to the enemy. In addition, Cassiopeia likes to build a lot of health so this item scales really well as she gets a bit beefier in fights, ensuring that her damage output isn’t compromised by the survivability that she’s building up.
Archangel’s Staff – If you started out using Tear of the Goddess, you’d probably want to rush this over Liandry’s Anguish. This item is provides a ridiculous amount of ability power depending on the amount of mana that you have. Once you have both Liandry’s Anguish and Seraph’s Embrace, Cassiopeia will be hitting like a truck each time she casts an ability. Make sure that you stack your Tear of the Goddess or Archangel’s Staff quickly to upgrade it as soon as possible.
Zhonya’s Hourglass – A stable defensive item for all mages that helps the player become invulnerable for a few seconds which is useful if you think the enemy has caught you out and plan to unleash all their abilities on you. Remember that you should always use this item when the enemy catches you out, even if you think it might not help you survive because it might buy you enough time for your team to rescue you or delay them from any objective.
Cosmic Drive – The main charm of this item on Cassiopeia is that it helps her gain more movement speed after building all her other items. Kiting and chasing are the two most important mechanics for this champion so having extra movement speed will help her a lot.
Rylai’s Crystal Scepter – Since there aren’t a lot of movement items that can help Cassiopeia, being able to slow enemies down can also be a good way to kite and chase enemies around the map. Since Cassiopeia has a lot of damaging slowing abilities, this item helps increase the effects of those skills significantly.
Rabadon’s Deathcap – This item is the icing on the cake in terms of itemization because it increases your total AP by 35% which can really boost your damage output significantly. Build this item as the 4th or later item.
Morellonomicon – This item can be really useful if you’re up against heavy healing enemies that stay allow for too long. Since Cassiopeia doesn’t wear boots, you can choose between 6 of the 7 items we’ve given to you depending on the situation.
Cassiopeia Guide – Runes
Keystone: Conqueror – Unlike other mages, Cassiopeia likes prolonged fights. This allows her to be able to earn Conqueror stacks quickly and be able to benefit from the rune’s abilities. When combining Twin Fangs and this rune, Cassiopeia will be healing uncontrollably and even be able to defeat enemies even when she’s outnumbered.
Presence of Mind – Cassiopeia spends a lot of mana during fights because she keeps spamming abilities. This rune helps her sustain her resources more efficiently during fights by giving her bonus mana regeneration and refresh a portion of her resource bar whenever she gets a champion takedown.
Legend: Tenacity – One thing that Cassiopeia doesn’t like is being pinned down on a specific spot. Having extra resistance against CC abilities allow her to move around a fight more freely without the threat of being locked down. Make sure to participate in fights to stack this up quickly.
Last Stand – Since Cassiopeia will most likely be fighting against burst champions, she’ll always be lower in HP when a fight starts. This rune takes advantage of that situation by giving her bonus damage when below 60% HP.
Taste of Blood – Gain additional sustain during fights with this rune by healing up whenever you damage an enemy champion.
Ravenous Hunter – More omnivamp for when you are fighting an enemy. This combos really well with the Legend runes because both requires stacking up through takedowns.
Cassiopeia General Overview
In this Cassiopeia guide, we’ve learned that it requires some mastery over positioning and prolonged fights to use this champion. If you’re a player that gets skittish once you reach below 50% HP, this champion is definitely not for you. ADC Players that have been auto-filled to mid lane might also want to try this out if they aren’t planning to use a mid lane marksman or is forced to use an AP champion.
How to counter Cassiopeia?
Cassiopeia is extremely weak in the early game. Do not engage her in prolonged fights and try to harass her often and try to take her down in one go. Once she starts kiting you, it’s better to start running away unless you have a reliable gap closer.