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[Counter Video] Akali, the Fist of Shadow

Akali, the Fist of Shadow

Akali defines assassin. With excellent burst, some nice poke and one of the best chasing skills in the league she is a force to be reckoned with. With a good early game Akali can easily carry her team to victory.

Akali's strengths

Twin Disciplines

Akali's passive generates her extra spell vamp through attack damage, and extra attack damage through ability power. Good Akali players will have dedicated rune pages to proc these passives so watch out for that bonus damage! The spell vamp scales better into late game but it still gives her a good amount of sustain.

Shadow Dance

Shadow Dance allows Akali to potentially jump to someone three times. Gaining another Shadow Dance upon killing an enemy champion if you leave her unfocused she can zip around a team fight. This ability also lets her position herself and escape sticky situations through using it to juke (it can even be cast on enemy minions.) In the lane phase this skill increases Akali's potential zone meaning she forces her opponents to leave more room between them self and her which can deny them CS. Finally, this skill is what makes her such a strong carry if she has a good lane phase as it allows her to stick to key targets.

A good skillset

By this I mean her skillset melds very well together. Mark of the assassin allows her to burst down an enemy, then using her twilgiht shroud she can wait for her cooldowns and go again. Being able to dive into the fray, burst a target and then hide in plain site is extremly strong for an assassin style champion. You can't kite Akali easily especially if she picks up a Rylais and her gunblade, also if you don't have an oracles she can force you to not be able to focus her - so purchase some true sight!

Team Fighting

In a team fight Akali really only suits one roll.

  • Assassin, You should know who you want to kill before the fight starts - usually the enemy AD carry.

The importance of CC'ing and focusing Akali

It is probably obvious to some, but I will still cover this just in case. If you do not stop Akali in a team fight she will be able to easily destroy your team. As a general rule of thumb you should focus champions with "reset" abilites, another example is Katarina. The only time you shouldn't be focusing Akali is if there is another enemy champion that had either a really good game or posses more threat, however this is hardly the case. As you can see in the video there is a small skirmish where I am not focused in the slightest; even though I am not too strong at the point I easily pick up the unoffical quadra kill.

Buying True-sight

True sight comes in two forms - Oracles Elixir and Vision Wards. Denying Akali the saftey of her shroud means that once she commits to a skirmish she will struggle to escape. Being able to target her allows you to land that important CC or better just kill her. In the earlier game where you don't want to invest in an Oracles, especially if you are the enemy top laner, buying vision ward is worth it. Only use this ward when you are going for the kill though, in example your jungler has come to gank. It only costs 125 gold to take away her utility.  

Don't let her proc Mark of the Assassin

Akali's poke in the lane phase will come form her Q, "Mark of the Assassin. If Akali attacks you whilst the mark is still active on you she will deal a burst amount of magic damage. Ensuring she can hardly do this is the lane phase is crucial to not being bullied out of lane. The mark lasts on you for six seconds so try to avoid getting in melee range of her whilst this is up.

Champion counters


Lee Sin                                                                                                    

Lane phase

Max your shield so that you can use it to lifesteal off of the minions. Play mainly a farm lane until you are able to output a lot of damage. You should be able to win any trade even if Akali procs her Mark of the Assassin as you can rotate through your skillset and attack her down. Every time she throws a Mark at you use your shield to block the initial damage and heal up. Remember that you can reveal her if she stealths.


The optimal time to engage for harass is when Akali uses Mark of the Assassin to last hit a minion. This opens up around a five second window of time you can go onto her as she has not got her best damaging spell. Throughout the lane phase you should focus more on farm than fighting her. If you fall onto low health and she attempts to go for the kill a Dragon's Rage to the face will peel her off of you. As she is flung backwards she should not be in range to Shadow Dance towards you. If she falls on low health try to do the skill order I show in the video, if you pull it off you should have snagged a kill.

Late game/Team fights

Depending on your Lee Sin playstyle you may be ignoring Akali in a team fight all together and be more focused on getting to their AD carry or protecting your own. Regardless of how you play Lee you should still use your Tempest to reveal Akali for your team if they are not purchasing Oracles or Vision Wards to deny her Twilight Shroud. You can use Dragon's Rage to remove Akali off of a friendly team mate who she is focusing and deny her another stack on her Shadow Dance.


Remember that Akali deals both magical and physical damage so she is not the easiest champion to stack resistances against. Generic items such as Guardians Angel work well against her as if she uses her burst on you it is wasted, also you gain both types of resistances. Overall magic resistance will help you the most against Akali so if you only have one item slot prioritize that. Buying a vision ward to deny her invisibility is not too bad of an idea, in the context that your Tempest is on cool down. Finally, carrying a normal Sight ward to Safeguard to in dire situations is also not a bad idea.



Lane phase

Akali should try to deny you your passive by throwing her Mark of the Assassin onto you whenever she can.  You should be able to bully her our of lane after a few engages and punish her when she trys to go CS. Your lane phase as Garen is pretty simple. Just don't let her get away poking you.


As soon as you see her come close to last hit you should position yourself so that you can Silence her and use Judgement to harass her (as shown in the video). She should either retreat or use her Twilight Shroud at this point. Don't hang around as your Judgement times out as she can return the trade easily. Don't forget Akali gains bonus resitances whilst in her Twilight Shroud. At level six Akali should just not be able to engage on you as she will walk into a Silence, Judgement and then finished by your ultimate.

Late game/Team fights

In team fights try to Silence Akali when you can, but there are probably other enemies who need to be silenced first in example their AP carry. Try your best to keep Akali off of your carries and you should be fine. 


Do not change your build to play against Akali, Merc treads are as far as you should go - if you don't get them already. Make sure to use the True-Sight tip as mentioned before so that when you can kill her with your ultimate she can't hide away.



Lane phase

Akali can easily win this trade if you play wrong. As Renekton you need to play as a lane bully. Up until around level 4 you should be able to win every trade without question as long as you use your rage bar optimially. If you play passivley and let her free farm you have handed away your lane to Akali's control (like the Renekton does in the video)You can also sustain well with use of your cull the meek so you should never be pushed out of lane by her. If she uses Twilight Shroud use your Slice and Dice with cull the meek to keep poking her.


Abuse your skillset as often as you can to poke her down in the lane phase. Whenever she uses her Mark of the Assassin to last hit go in with Slice and deal as much damage as possible. IF you don't force her to play passive you will lose grasp of your lane. Shutting her down early will also deny her snowballing which is huge for Akali. 

Late game/Team fights

In teamfights you will most likley not be focusing Akali, however using your Ruthless Predator to stun her is a good idea. If you see Akali focusing your carry, with slice and dice you should easily be able to keep up with Akali and help protect your strongest team mates.


As Renekton you should not need to build defensive against Akali until late game. Akali doesn't need much item counters. If you find that you had a weak early game, lets say that you were camped by the enemy jungler, then Hexdrinker is a good choice. Once upgraded to the Maw of Malmortius you have one of the best items for Renekton as the unique passive from the item synergises with Renektons passive.


Hope you enjoyed! The most upvoted comment in the reddit thread will be the next champion that I make a counter video for, so go make your vote count!

- Fourpaws. 

Tags: Counter Video, Akali, Fourpaws Blog
Posted by HTTL on July 16, 2012
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