Many pro players, including legendary T1 mid laner Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok, love to experiment in solo queue whenever a new champion debuts. His current Zeri build has a 100% win rate, not in the bot lane, but rather, in mid.

Faker, like other pro mid laners around the world, were the first to use Viego and Gwen in the mid lane in ranked play before Riot Games adjusted their numbers and solidified their roles as a jungler and top laner respectively.

The newest marksman in Runeterra was just released this week. We take a closer look at Faker’s go-to mid lane Zeri build and why it’s so effective.

Zeri champion abilities

Passive – Living Battery

  • Zeri gains Move Speed whenever she receives a shield.
  • When she damages an enemy shield she absorbs its energy, shielding herself.

Q – Burst Fire

  • Passive: Zeri’s basic attack deals magic damage, scales with AP, and is treated as an ability. Moving and casting Burst Fire stores up energy in Zeri’s Sparkpack. When fully charged, her next basic attack will slow and deal bonus damage.
  • Active: Burst Fire shoots a burst of 7 rounds that deal physical damage to the first enemy hit.
  • Burst Fire scales with AD and is treated like an attack, with the first round applying on-hit effects. Its cooldown matches Zeri’s basic attack timer.

W – Ultrashock Laser

  • Zeri fires an electric pulse that slows and damages the first enemy hit.
  • If the pulse hits a wall it fires a long range laser from the point of impact.

E – Spark Surge

  • Zeri dashes a short distance and energizes her next 3 casts of Burst Fire, causing them to pierce through enemies.
  • She will vault over or grind along any terrain she dashes into, depending on the angle.
  • Hitting a champion with an attack or ability reduces Spark Surge’s cooldown.

R – Lightning Crash

  • Zeri discharges a nova of electricity, damaging nearby enemies, and overcharges herself for a moderate duration. While overcharged, Zeri gains increased damage, Attack Speed, and Move Speed.
  • Attacking enemy champions refreshes the overcharge duration and adds another stack of Move Speed.
  • While overcharged, Burst Fire’s damage concentrates into a faster triple shot that chains lightning between enemies.
Zeri is League of Legends' newest champion
Credit: Riot Games

Summoners all around the world who have tried Zeri might want to check up on their “Q” key on their keyboard.

Designed as a marksman who doesn’t rely on her auto attacks, Zeri uses Burst Fire (Q) to last hit and deal damage, so spamming Q is the way to go.

The only time you want to auto attack is when her secondary orange bar is fully charged, which causes her next basic attack to slow and deal bonus damage. Weave this in between Burst Fire to maximize your damage.

Besides this unique mechanic, Zeri’s biggest selling point is her mobility. I hope you like kiting because she’s short ranged, and you’ll constantly need to reposition with Spark Surge while spamming Burst Fire to keep your distance from threats on the enemy team whilst dishing out damage.

Faker’s mid lane Zeri matchups in solo queue

Faker on stage during Week 5 of 2021 LCK Summer
Credit: LCK

So far, Faker has played three games of Zeri on his Hide on bush account, going up against Vex, Irelia, and Corki, and has not lost once.

In his debut game against Vex in the mid lane, he had a stable laning phase, where he focused on farming for the first 10 minutes. In Faker’s Zeri build, he buys Doran’s Blade as a starting item, then rushes Berserker’s Greaves.

When it comes to his Mythic item, Faker buys Trinity Force as his core. The next item in his Zeri build is Titanic Hydra, which adds to the on-hit damage of Burst Fire and makes her a little more durable with the extra health.

For more splash damage in team fights, Faker then goes for Runaan’s Hurricane, followed by a late game Last Whisper which would have most likely been upgraded to Lord Dominik’s Regards.

While he did not get to his sixth item in all three games, a Guardian Angel would be practical to round off this Zeri build.

Faker's mid lane Zeri build as seen in OP.GG
Credit: OP.GG, ONE Esports

Depending on his lane matchup, Faker adjusts his runes too. For the first two games, he ran Precision and Sorcery, but against Corki, he opted for Resolve as his secondary tree instead with Bone Plating to deal with his poke.

Faker’s mid lane Zeri Summoner Spells

  • Heal or Exhaust
  • Flash

Faker’s mid lane Zeri runes

  • Precision: Lethal Tempo (keystone rune)
  • Presence of Mind
  • Legend: Bloodline
  • Coup de Grace
  • Sorcery: Celerity (secondary tree)
  • Gathering Storm
  • +10% attack speed
  • +9 Adaptive Force
  • +6 Armor

Faker’s mid lane Zeri build

  • Berserker’s Greaves
  • Trinity Force
  • Titanic Hydra
  • Runaan’s Hurricane
  • Last Whisper (into Lord Dominik’s Regards)
  • (Guardian Angel)

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READ MORE: T1 Faker reveals why he picked Tryndamere mid into Corki