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League of Legends - Kennen Guide and Build

Updated on January 31, 2015

League of Legends - Kennen Guide and Build

Are you looking for a Kennen guide or a Kennen build? This page covers the basics of playing Kennen effectively including skills, runes, masteries, tips and includes custom skins.

Kennen is a strong AP carry with great team utility, thanks to his ability to stun enemies and his area of effect ultimate. Kennen is a versatile champion that can be played either top or in the middle lane. If you enjoy playing fast and agile champions then Kennen is for you.

This Kennen guide and build aims to be a basic and simple introduction on basic strategy that should be adopted when playing Kennen, it is recommended for people just starting to use Kennen.

Don't own Kennen? Want a Kennen Skin? Or just need more Rune Pages? Learn how you can get free Riot Points.

Guide current as of: Release Notes v1.0.0.148 (October, 2012).

This Kennen guide is also available in quick summary format (thanks to

Images on this page are sourced from the official League of Legends website and the game client. They are used for review, commentary and educational purposes.

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Kennen Skills

Kennen Skills
Kennen Skills

Mark of the Storm (Passive) This passive is pretty clear cut, it allows Kennen to stun his enemies and also gives him a small energy return upon stunning them. This passive forms the basis of Kennen and managing it separates the good Kennens from the great.

Thundering Shuriken (Q) Kennen's Q ability is a fast moving, single target skill shot on a reasonably low cooldown. It is great early game for last hitting and harassing the enemy. It is very important to get good at landing this skill as it is a must addition to Kennen's combo.

Electrical Surge (W) This ability gives Kennen a free Mark of the Storm every few attacks and is a great extra damage boost throughout the game thanks to its decent range. This skill also turns Kennen into a farming machine mid-late game.

Lightning Rush (E) This skill is simply amazing both offensively and defensively, it allows Kennen to initiate on a champion or escape potential ganks. Combined with Electrical Surge this skill allows Kennen to easily farm mid-late game as mentioned previously. This skill can also be used to initiate for Kennen's ultimate.

Slicing Maelstrom (Ultimate) Kennen's ultimate has amazing area of effect damage and the potential to stun multiple enemies. Timing is of great importance when activating this skill.

Kennen Skill Order

Kennen Skill Order
Kennen Skill Order

Kennen's skill ordering should be:

Ult > Thundering Shuriken > Electrical Surge > Lightning Rush

Kennen has two different skill paths that he can use in lane depending on his lane opponent and your preferred playstyle. One is to max Thundering Shuriken first while the other relies on Electrical Surge.

Maxing Thundering Shukrien first gives Kennen great long range harassment and is best for ranged champions (making it generally the default for mid lane Kennen). The alternative (maxing Electrical Surge) relies on Kennen harassing his lane opponent with auto-attacks and relying on the extra damage every 5th attack, this works very well in top lane as most top lane champions are melee orientated (if you go this path it is important you take reduced minion damage).

Regardless of which path you take you will want to leave Lightning Rush till last as it is used for the utility.

Swamp Master Kennen

Swamp Master Kennen
Swamp Master Kennen

Kennen Runes

Kennen Runes
Kennen Runes

Red (Marks) - Magic Penetration

Yellow (Seals) - Armor

Blue (Glyphs) - Ability Power Per Level // Magic Resistance // Health Regeneration

Purple (Quintessences) - Spell Vamp // Health // Ability Power

Kennen has a number of rune options which will change based on your lane match-up and your available runes.

Magic Penetration Marks are an obvious choice to boost your damage output and there are no other options available in this slot. Seals are also straight forward with Armor being the best option to reduce incoming damage from enemies and minions.

Glyphs are where your options start to open up, you can go for the aggressive Ability Power Per Level, the defensive Magic Resistance or the passive Health Regeneration depending on your preferred Kennen playstyle.

Quintessences are best run as Spell Vamp as they provide great early game sustain on Kennen and combined with masteries and items can give Kennen a great deal of sustain. Alternatively you can choose to run Health or Ability Power based on your available runes.

To learn more about making effective rune choices, visit the Rune Page Guide.

Kennen Summoner Spells
Kennen Summoner Spells

Kennen Summoner Spells

Best Summoner Spells:



Flash and Ignite are two very powerful summoner spells on Kennen. Flash is nice to help you initiate with your ultimate or escape from ganks. Ignite adds to Kennen's strong burst damage and will ensure you don't miss any close kills early game, helping you snowball into mid game.

Other Good Summoner Spells:



Your other option for summoner spells are Exhaust and Teleport, although these are only useful in very specific cases. If you use Teleport effectively you can help secure objectives for your team and use it to gain an item advantage over your lane opponent. Alternatively you can run Exhaust for the soft crowd control it provides.

Kennen Masteries - Kennen With A 9/10/11 Mastery Setup

Kennen Masteries
Kennen Masteries

Kennen has a number possible mastery options, including 21/0/9 or 21/9/0 (aggressive) and 9/21/0 (defensive). The mastery build shown here aims to cover a number of Kennen's weaknesses to support his top lane abilities.

Grabbing 9 in the offensive tree is a must for the magic penetration mastery.

The defensive tree offers an increase to armor, health and offers reduced minion damage which allows Kennen to trade with his lane opponent better (especially if you are maxing Electrical Surge first).

While the utility tree offers extra energy, movement speed and all the all important Spell Vamp to synergise with Kennen's rune choices.

To learn more about masteries and your mastery options, visit the LoL Masteries Guide.

Kennen Build
Kennen Build

Kennen Build

Final Item Build:

-Sorcerer Shoes

-Will of the Ancients

-Rabadon's Deathcap

-Rylai's Crystal Scepter

-Zhonya's Hourglass

-Void Staff


-Open with Boots of Speed and Health Potions, this gives you a nice starting movement speed and some sustainability in lane.

-First trip back to base your goal should be Hextech Revolver for the spell vamp. If an AD champion is giving you trouble and you don't have enough for a Chain Vest then consider picking up a Doran's Shield. A Spirit Visage is also a decent choice (especially against an AP champion) as it boosts your health, magic resistance and boosts spell vamp.

-From here you'll want to finish your boots, grabbing Sorcerer's Shoes.

-Your build will now depend on the game situation. If you need more damage build a Rabadon's Deathcap, if you need to tank up look towards Zhonya's Hourglass and Rylai's Crystal Scepter.

-As you approach late game you'll want to finish off your Kennen build with a Void Staff and Will of the Ancients.


-Abyssal Scepter (If you need magic resistance).

-Guardian Angel (A great passive and offers both resistances).

-Quicksilver Sash (If crowd control is giving you trouble).

League of Legends - Kennen Commentary - By Sykkuno

Kennen Tips

General Kennen Tips

  • As Kennen it is very important you time the use of your ultimate, combine it with Zhonya's Hourglass to dominate the enemy team.
  • Make sure if you use Lightning Rush you hit something (unless you are using it to escape), it has a large energy cost and you need the refunded energy.
  • Be careful when Lightning Rush is on cooldown as you do not have an escape ability (either after farming a minion wave or using it against a champion).
  • You can still be targeted, slowed and stunned while in Lightning Rush but it does give you a magic resistance and armor boost. This makes it a very powerful escape tool and a great initiator for a 1v1 fight.
  • Don't forget you can pop Zhonya's Hourglass during your ultimate if you don't think you will survive or you are sure the enemy will not move (activating it means you lose the ability to chase enemies with it).

Early Game (Level 1-6) Tips

  • Use your Thundering Shuriken to harass your enemy and to help you last hit from a distance (keeps you safe and also heals you through spell vamp).
  • Alternatively if you are maxing Electrical Surge first you want to track the passive effect carefully while also auto-attacking your lane opponent to get the passive up quickly.
  • If the enemy is being difficult to hit with Thundering Shuriken you can reposition yourself quickly with Lightning Rush to hit them (or consider maxing Electrical Surge first).
  • Start analyzing the strength of your lane and which item path is best.

Mid Game (Level 7-12) Tips

  • Start ganking others lanes and focusing on killing your lane opponent. Lead with Thundering Shuriken if the are in the open and follow that up with Lightning Rush (close the gap and give them another Mark) and then finish with your ultimate and Electrical Surge. If the enemy is blocked by minions, consider leading with Lightning Rush.
  • Red and Blue buff work well on Kennen, if you manage to steal them from the enemy jungler you can play very aggressively. (You should not take them over other more important champions on your team).
  • You can start using Lightning Rush and Electrical Surge to farm up uncontested minion waves quickly.

Late Game (Level 13-18) Tips

  • Focus on correctly timing your ultimate during this stage of the game. Lead with Lightning Rush tagging as many enemies as possible before using your ultimate, this will ensure they get stunned within it, disabling them for your team.
  • You should be constantly poking the enemy with your Thundering Shuriken to weaken them before the team fight.
  • Continue to farm up heavily (and push as required) with Lightning Rush and Electrical Surge, Kennen is capable of destroying entire minion waves instantly late game.

Karate Kennen

Karate Kennen
Karate Kennen

Did You Find This Kennen Build Helpful? - What Is Your Opinion On Kennen? Got Your Own Kennen Tips?

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    • SimilarSam profile image

      Sam 5 years ago from Australia

      @gzsaif: It's on the end of a very long to do list, its tough when you have 50 guides. Thanks for updating your guides.

    • profile image

      gzsaif 5 years ago

    • profile image

      gzsaif 5 years ago

      Yes.I'd like you to check the guides i wrote for kennen as well.Pls crique on it.And yes @ sammysammay,i see u writing guides about LOL.Can u help me a bit? Im new.