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All Guides Shen Guides Stand United! - Challenger Shen Guide
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Shen Statistics for PVJ

Author's performance with Shen compared to the ranked average.

Value
Average
Games Played
7
Win %
41
Kills
3.6
Assists
10.3
Deaths
5.4
KA:D Ratio
2.6
Gold Earned
10.6K
Creep Score
135.4
Average

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  • Author Champion Statistics
  • Guide Details

Summoner Spells Back to Top

dot-pattern.pngToplane Shen takes Flash and Teleport every game.
179.png

4.png Flash

Flash is the most versatile summoner spell in the game: It allows you to make plays, escape ganks, cross terrain, etc.

12.png Teleport

Teleport is necessary for almost all top laners, because it allows you to have an impact on the map. Teleport is used to help other lanes or return to your lane (i.e. after using your Ultimate). A Toplaner without teleport is like a fisherman without a rod.

New Runes Back to Top

Your primary rune tree will always be Resolve on Shen, the secondary tree should be chosen based on your preference and the matchup. Resolve gives Shen flat and scaling health, which is better than the base stats provided by the other trees. Above you can see a couple of example rune pages. The first one is a standard page that is ok in all matchups.
179.png

Primary: Resolve


Grasp%20of%20the%20Undying.png?width=32 Grasp of the Undying

Grasp is the best keystone rune for Shen. It offers damage, sustain and scaling health. Shen's laning phase revolves heavily around taking quick trades with Grasp and Shadow Dash. Arguments can be made for Aftershock, but Grasp is more reliable and gives Shen everything he wants from a Keystone.

Demolish.png?width=32Bone%20Plating.png?width=32 Demolish/Bone Plating

Demolish is one of my favorite new runes, because Shen has always had problems with taking down towers while splitpushing. It feels satisfying to hit a tower for over 1k damage. However, Demolish is not always the optimal choice. When facing harder matchups, you won't get the opportunities to use Demolish as often as you would like. Bone Plating is a strong rune that empowers your laning phase and negates a lot of poke in lane. In combination with Second Wind, Bone Plating makes the laning phase much easier for Shen. 

Conditioning.png?width=32Second%20Wind.png?width=325abd57da0f30230001f3edd9?width=32 Conditioning/Second Wind/Chrysalis

Second Wind is my personal favorite from these three runes. Shen's lack of sustain is one of his weaknesses and Second Wind helps a lot with that flaw, especially in harder matchups where you are fighting a lot. Conditioning is good when you feel safe enough to take it. The resists it provides are very useful in the mid- to lategame. Chrysalis is good if you want to kill your opponent early. It increases Grasp and Shadow Dash damage and provides you with a good chunk of health for early game fights.

Overgrowth.png?width=32Revitalize.png?width=32Perseverance.png?width=32 Overgrowth/Revitalize/Unflinching

I almost always take Revitalize now. It increases your passive shields, your ultimate shield and even the sustain from Second Wind. Unflinching is a great option for games where you're facing tons of cc. Overgrowth is a very slow rune that only gets value in the very late game. If you want to scale to be a super tank you can consider taking it.
179.png

Secondary: Domination


cheap%20shot1.png?width=32Taste%20of%20Blood.png?width=32Sudden%20Impact.png?width=32 Cheap Shot/Taste of Blood/Sudden Impact

Cheap shot is like a miniature Grasp of the Undying. It's easy to proc due to the slow on Shen's Q. Taste of Blood gives Shen some much needed sustain. Sudden Impact is the manly rune choice. It makes your early game all-ins surprisingly lethal. Take this if you want to kill your opponent in lane.

Ravenous%20Hunter.png?width=32Ingenious%20Hunter.png?width=32 Ravenous Hunter/Ingenious Hunter

Ingenious Hunter allows Shen to snowball after a few roams or teleports. This rune has insane synergy with Titanic Hydra, Locket of the Iron Solari and Gargoyle Stoneplate. Ravenous Hunter is a very potent rune when facing pure tanks like Cho'Gath. Ravenous Hunter allows you to spellvamp from the max health damage in your Q.
179.png

Secondary: Precision


Triumph.png?width=32Presence%20of%20Mind.png?width=32 Triumph/Presence of Mind

Triumph feels very good, especially in teamfights. Surviving because of a triumph heal is one of the most satisfying things in League. Presence of Mind is an interesting rune that could be viable on Shen. Having the possibility of reducing your ult cooldown by 50% in late game teamfights intrigues me. But unfortunately PoM is currently bugged and does not reduce cooldowns while the user is dead. If Riot fixes this it could be a good rune on Shen.


Legend%20Alacrity.png?width=32Legend%20Tenacity.png?width=32 Legend: Alacrity/Tenacity

Tenacity and Attack Speed are very powerful stats. Take Legend: Tenacity vs. team compositions with a lot of crowd control. Legend: Alacrity feels good and it is a good option if you want to do more consistent damage.

Last%20Stand.png?width=32 Last Stand

Shen is a duelist and Last Stand gives him an edge in close fights. Last Stand is extremely good versus other Tanks, because duels last longer at low health levels.
179.png

Secondary: Sorcery

The%20Ultimate%20Hat.png?width=32 The Ultimate Hat

Stand United has one of the longest cooldowns in the entire game. The Ultimate Hat reduces Stand United's cooldown by almost 30 seconds in the late game. Those 30 seconds can be the difference between a won teamfight and a lost one.

Transcendence.png?width=32 Transcendence

Transcendence gives +10% CDR at level 10. Shen won't usually end up with over 40% CDR so the Overcap passive is wasted. Transcendence is not my favorite Rune but if you're taking Sorcery and The Ultimate Hat you want to ult as much as possible. With 40% CDR and a fully stacked Ultimate Hat, Stand United will be on a 80 sec cooldown.
179.png

Secondary: Inspiration


Magical%20Footwear.png?width=32Perfect%20Timing.png?width=32 Magical Footwear/Perfect Timing

Can't complain about free Boots! The extra movement speed helps you chase and escape. The net worth of this Rune is 420g (300g + MS). The only downside is that you can't rush Ninja Tabi. Perfect Timing is not as good as it used to be, but if you're planning on building Gargoyle Stoneplate it's an ok rune.

Minion%20Dematerializer.png?width=32 Minion Dematerializer

Minion Dematerializer is surprisingly good. It allows you to secure cannon minions which are now worth A LOT of gold. Take this in matchups where its hard to secure all cannons. Try to use atleast 1 Dematerializer on every type of minion (melee, ranged, cannon) so that you get the maximum value from its bonus damage buff.

Cosmic%20Insight.png?width=32 Cosmic Insight

Cosmic Insight gives a bundle of stats that are all useful. Shen's cooldowns are very long, so even a small amount of CDR helps a lot. Summoner Spell CDR is good because Teleport and Flash are so impactful. Shen makes use of the Item CDR through Titanic Hydra, Locket, Gargoyle, etc.

Abilities Back to Top

Q
E
W
Q
Q
R
Q
E
Q
E
R
E
E
W
W
R
W
W
Passive
Q
1
4
5
7
9
W
3
14
15
17
18
E
2
8
10
12
13
R
6
11
16
ShenP.PNG

Ki Barrier is a surprisingly strong passive. It allows Shen to trade better in lane and tank for longer in teamfights. It's also great for turnarounds - some people just never remember the shield. In theory, a level 18 Shen could keep his shield up 100% of the time in teamfights with proper use of his abilities. Learning how to use Ki Barrier effectively is a big part of learning Shen. Your Q is the main method of triggering Ki Barrier due to its low cooldown. Try not to overlap Ki Barrier with your W - Spirit's Refuge: You'll miss out on value.
179.pngShenQ.PNG

This is Shen’s main ability and it should be maxed out first. It gives him great damage, chase potential and easy passive procs. You should always try to keep your enemy between you and your Spirit Blade to maximize your damage output and the amount of Ki Barriers. Mastering the use of your Spirit Blade is a major key to success with Shen. Twilight Assault increases Shen's AA-range to 200, which is very useful in many situations. It's important to use all three of your empowered attacks to get energy back (Shadow Dash passive), otherwise you'll find yourself running out of energy. Twilight Assault allows Shen to farm under tower with ease. With 3+ points in Q, you can kill caster minions with 1 Q after they've been hit once by your tower.
179.pngShenW.PNG

Spirit’s Refuge might seem like a lackluster ability, but a good W on your carries in a teamfight can mitigate so much damage that it could turn the whole fight around. Spirit's Refuge is always at your Spirit Blade's location, this means you can move it with your Q. Your W is good against champions like Renekton, Camille, Mordekaiser etc. because their trading patterns involve an autoattack enhancer. Rank 1 Spirit’s Refuge has a 18 second cooldown, so opponents can punish you for wasting it. Using your W correctly in teamfights can be tricky sometimes as you might have to leave your Spirit Blade near your carries and avoid using your Q. Spirit’s Refuge blocks Jungle Monster basic attacks including Rift Herald and even Baron Nashor (but not the Dragon).
179.pngShenE.PNG

Shadow Dash, Shen’s most iconic ability after his Ultimate. This is Shen’s playmaking tool and one of the reasons why I play him. Taunt is an extremely powerful form of Crowd Control: It allows you to protect your teammates and pick off enemies. Taunting someone pulls them towards you, this means you can Shadow Dash assassins away from your carries to give them breathing room. It’s also really good if you’re getting pushed to your tower in lane because taunting someone gives them tower aggro. The threat of Taunt allows you to CS safer under tower. Similar to his W, Shen’s E has a long cooldown which can be abused by smart opponents. Shadow Dash can be combined with Flash to change the direction or extend its range. This allows Shen to pull of amazing multi-man taunts in teamfights or when getting ganked. Missing your taunt can lead to lost trades or teamfights.
179.pngShenR.PNG

And here we have the reason why we pick Shen: his ultimate, Stand United. Stand United is such a powerful ability, it allows you to split-push without leaving your team in danger. Shen's Ultimate combined with Teleport gives him more global pressure than any other champion in the game. If you have Twitch (stealth), Zac (long range gap-closer) or Nocturne (semi-global dash), etc. in your team, you can use Stand United to engage sneaky ganks and catch your opponents completely off guard. Stand United's cooldown is extremely long and wasting it can set you behind by a lot. The more you play Shen the easier it becomes to quickly judge whether an ultimate is worth or a waste. Stand United's shield is increased based off the target's missing health, but it's still sometimes better to ult in advance, because you have to take the 3 second channel time into account when ulting. When you want to ult, make sure there are no enemies near to cancel your ultimate. Silences, roots, stuns and knock-ups will interrupt the channel.

Items Back to Top

Starting Items

    Doran's Shield will always be your starting item as Shen. It gives sustain, health and easier last hitting.
    If you have extra gold on your first or second back pickup a refillable potion.
    Don't forget to buy control wards. A tank should be carrying 1 to 3 control wards almost always.

Core Items

    Core Vs. Heavy AD
    Core vs. AP
    Example Full Build

Situational Items

    The indestructible build when facing 5 physical damage champions.
    If you're super fed and want to do a lot of damage.
    When you have a fed carry and 1 support just isn't enough.
Your starting item will always be Doran's shield. Shen needs atleast 1 waveclear item. Your first item will almost always be either Titanic Hydra or Sunfire Cape. For boots, you'll want to pickup either Ninja Tabi or Mercury's Treads. Your full build should contain 1 or 2 damage items at max, and the rest should be tank items. Always build according to the game: Who's fed? Who can kill me? What is my job in this game?
179.png

3748.png Titanic Hydra 3748.png

Titanic Hydra is your go-to item when you want to do damage and snowball the game. It gives Shen a surprising amount of damage from early to mid game and allows you to waveclear easily. Taking Ingenious Hunter makes Titanic Hydra even better on Shen.

3068.png Sunfire Cape 3068.png

Sunfire Cape is a good waveclear option vs AD Champs. The recent buffs made it viable again. Sunfire Cape is 600g cheaper than Titanic, which is something to take into consideration.

3194.png Adaptive Helm 3194.png

Adaptive Helm is Shen's favorite MR item, because he doesn't benefit from Spirit Visage's healing passive or from Abyssal Mask's mana components. Build Adaptive in games where you're facing multiple magic damage dealers.

3190.png Locket of the Iron Solari & Gargoyle Stoneplate 3193.png

Locket + Gargoyle is an insanely powerful item combination. Locket's shield scales from bonus health so use Gargoyle first to give your team a fat shield. Build these if you're teamfighting a lot. Note: With the nerfs to Locket in Patch 8.7, it's not as good. Still a viable purchase in games where you need to protect your carries.

3078.png3053.png Damage Alternatives 3091.png3115.png

Sometimes you feel like doing more damage, so you might want to buy an extra damage item. Wit's End is one of the most cost effective items on Shen and it's a great option if you're facing multiple magic damage threats. Trinity Force is super expensive but if you're so far ahead that you can afford it, then go ahead. It gives a good chuck of stats including +20% CDR, which lets you ult a lot more. Sterak's Cage synergises well with Trinity Force and gives you Tenacity as a bonus. If you're feeling really adventurous, Nashor's Tooth is the item for you. I warn you: Playing tank Shen might become a bit too boring if you get used to building damage items.

Matchups Back to Top

Click on a champion below to see the author's notes on that particular matchup.

  • Aatrox
    Easy
  • Akali
    Medium
  • Camille
    Medium
  • Cho'Gath
    Medium
  • Darius
    Hard
  • Dr. Mundo
    Easy
  • Fiora
    Medium
  • Gangplank
    Hard
  • Garen
    Easy
  • Gnar
    Hard
  • Gragas
    Easy
  • Heimerdinger
    Medium
  • Illaoi
    Medium
  • Irelia
    Easy
  • Jarvan IV
    Medium
  • Jax
    Medium
  • Jayce
    Hard
  • Kayle
    Medium
  • Kennen
    Hard
  • Kled
    Medium
  • Malphite
    Easy
  • Maokai
    Medium
  • Mordekaiser
    Easy
  • Nasus
    Easy
  • Nautilus
    Easy
  • Olaf
    Medium
  • Ornn
    Hard
  • Pantheon
    Hard
  • Poppy
    Easy
  • Renekton
    Medium
  • Rengar
    Hard
  • Riven
    Easy
  • Rumble
    Medium
  • Shen
    Medium
  • Singed
    Medium
  • Sion
    Easy
  • Swain
    Hard
  • Tahm Kench
    Medium
  • Teemo
    Hard
  • Trundle
    Medium
  • Tryndamere
    Medium
  • Urgot
    Medium
  • Vladimir
    Medium
  • Yasuo
    Medium
  • Yorick
    Medium

VS

Aatrox

Easy
Block his aatroxw.png3rd hit with your W. Never trade when he is close to 5 stacks. Be aware of his aatroxpassive.pngrevive passive and don’t dive him carelessly.

Recommended items: 3047.png3076.png

VS

Akali

Medium
Try to negate her poke with your passive shields. Block her akalimota.pngQ-AA with W. Sunfire cape lets you see her in her akalismokebomb.pngshroud. She can kill you level 6 with 2 or 3 akalishadowdance.pngult stacks. If Akali doesn’t snowball she'll quickly fall off.

Recommended Items: 3076.png3194.png

VS

Camille

Medium
Always (try to) dodge her camillee.png Hookshot, Camille’s camillew.png Sweep is often easy to dodge by moving towards her. Block her second camilleq.pngQ with your W. Camille is exceptionally good at setting up ganks due to her camillee.pngE and camiller.pngUltimate, so you have to be very careful when pushing against her.

Recommended items: 3076.png

VS

Cho'Gath

Medium
You lose short trades because of his lane sustain. Try to Shadow dash out of his rupture.png Rupture. Try to predict when he will ult and block some of it with your passive shield. Don't ult near him because he can either feralscream.pngsilence or rupture.pngknock you up.

Recommended items: 3194.png3076.png

VS

Darius

Hard
Darius has kill pressure on you throughout the game. Never dash into him unless he's used his abilities first. Block his AA-dariusnoxiantacticsonh.pngW with your W and move/dash to him when he dariuscleave.pngQs to deny the heal. Shen can’t duel Darius in the late game because of his passive and true damage dariusexecute.pngult. In teamfights try to peel for your carries and deny Darius from getting the reset on his ult.

Recommended items: 3075.png

VS

Dr. Mundo

Easy
Dodge as many infectedcleavermissilecast.pngCleavers as you can and block his masochism.pngE with your W.

Recommended items: 3194.png3076.png

VS

Fiora

Medium
You can fight her early, but she will always beat you in a 1v1 unless you’re super far ahead. If you get a gank, you have to taunt-flash her or otherwise she will fioraw.pngparry your taunt. Always dodge her fioraw.pngRiposte, because the attackspeed slow will cripple you completely. Try to deny her fiorar.pngUltimate heal by blocking the vital procs with your W or by standing next to a wall.

Recommended items: 3075.png3047.png

VS

Gangplank

Hard
You have to bully or kill GP level 1-4 or you lose the matchup completely. If he has a gangplanke.pngbarrel up, dash in and taunt him and immediately kill the barrel to win the trade. Wait for him to gangplankw.pngOrange your taunt before Q-slowing him. Don’t be afraid to use W or your passive whenever it is up to block his gangplankqwrapper.pngQ poke.

Recommended items: 3143.png

VS

Garen

Easy
Block his garenq.pngQ with your W and you basically won the lane. Play carefully around his garenr.pngultimate, it actually hurts.

VS

Gnar

Hard
Gnar can constantly harass you and kite you later with 3022.pngfrozen mallet. Try to get as much farm as you can while staying healthy. Look for ults and win the game through global pressure. You can use W to prevent him from proccing gnarw.pngHyper.

Recommended items: 3047.png3194.png

VS

Gragas

Easy
Don’t E before he uses gragase.pngbody slam. Block his gragasw.pngW with your W. Don’t ult near him because he will cancel it (with E or R).

VS

Heimerdinger

Medium
Stressful matchup because you have to consistently dodge his heimerdingerw.pngRockets and heimerdingere.pngGrenades. Your W blocks heimerdingerq.pngturret autos (even his heimerdingerr.pngR-Turret) so use it to trade with him in his turrets. Once you get through the laning phase he can’t win you 1v1. If you ult bot at a bad time you’re most likely going to lose your tower. Build 3194.pngAdaptive Helm as your first item.

Recommended items: 3194.png!!!

VS

Illaoi

Medium
Playing against an Illaoi is like a minigame where you have to dodge her illaoie.pngE and tentacle attacks. If she hits her E you dash out of range. If she misses her E you dash in and take a short trade. When she illaoir.pngults you dash out and reengage when the ult is over. Buy boots early.

Recommended items: 3076.png1001.png

VS

Irelia

Easy
Use your W right before she ireliaequilibriumstrike.pngstuns you. You can beat her in a 1v1 if you’re even. This matchup is mostly decided by wave management and macro play. Watch our for her ireliatranscendentblades.pnglevel 6 powerspike.

Recommended items: 3076.png3047.png

VS

Jarvan IV

Medium
Try to dodge his jarvanivdragonstrike.pngQs in lane. You can block his jarvanivpassive.pngpassive AA with W. If he misses his jarvanivdemacianstandard.pngE-Q you can punish him with a taunt into an extended trade. If you’re getting ganked be sure to save either your taunt or flash to get away from his jarvanivcataclysm.pngult.

Recommended items: 3047.png

VS

Jax

Medium
He wins level 1, after that you’re pretty even until midgame. When Jax activates his jaxcounterstrike.pngE, you should wait a bit and then Taunt through him to dodge the stun and force him to follow you. Then you drag your spirit blade through him and use the empowered autoattacks to win the trade. Don’t even think about dueling him in the lategame, he is Jax!

Recommended items: 3047.png

VS

Jayce

Hard
Jayce players are a pain the ass for any melee top laner, even more so for Shen because he doesn’t have any ranged abilities or waveclear. The constant autoattack harass can be tilting, but you should remain calm and try to get any cs you can. Landing a taunt doesn’t always guarantee a good trade. Pick your trades carefully and you will eventually outscale him. Try to save your W for his Cannon W or first melee attack (bonus damage).

Recommended items: 3047.png

VS

Kayle

Medium
Kayle's early game is pretty weak compared to yours. Kayle does a lot of damage, but she’s easy to gank. If you land a taunt she’s screwed. Kayle scales super well so be careful about 1v1ing her in late. You can protect your carries from her with your W and Taunt. Your job in late is to protect the lane she is split-pushing.

Recommended items: 3194.png3047.png

VS

Kennen

Hard
Kennen is very similar to Jayce. Get as much cs as you can while staying healthy. Pay attention to his kennenbringthelight.pngW stacks and block the empowered autoattack with your W. If he uses kennenlightningrush.pngE to waveclear you can get a good trade or even kill him with a taunt into Q.

VS

Kled

Medium
His kledq.pngQ is a pretty slow skillshot and it’s relatively easy to dodge from max range. If he has kledw.pngW up, let him get 1 or 2 AAs on you and then use W to block the remaining attacks. Don’t wait too long before using E to escape his kledq.pngQ because it will interrupt your dash. Your W stops Kled from getting kledpassive.pngSkaarl back so use it to your advantage. Kled’s kledr.pngroams are really telegraphed so you have more than enough time to ult wherever he’s ulting.

Recommended items: 3047.png

VS

Malphite

Easy
Malphite’s kit is so binary there's not much to say. Try to block his seismicshard.pngQ poke with your passive shields. You beat him at all stages of the game and his only way of stopping your ult is his ufslash.pngult. Don't bother trying to kill him 1v1 in the late game, he's too tanky. The attackspeed slow on his landslide.pngGround Slam is pretty annoying for Shen, so try to dodge it.

VS

Maokai

Medium
You beat him early but lategame his passive heals become way too big and you can’t kill him solo. Your W doesn’t stop his maokaipassive.pngpassive heal (even though it should). He can interrupt your dash with his maokaiq.pngQ so you should wait before using it. If you get a lead you should play really aggressive and deny him resources.

Recommended items: 3111.png

VS

Mordekaiser

Easy
Mordekaiser is useless if he’s behind but if he gets ahead of you he’s going to be a big problem. You should block his third mordekaisermaceofspades.pngQ with your W. Mordekaiser has no escapes so ganking him is super easy. Ask your jungler to gank top and snowball your lead to other lanes with your Ult. Don't get baited by his mordekaisercreepingdeathcast.pngheals and shields.

Recommended items: 3194.png

VS

Nasus

Easy
Nasus is weak in the early game and you can bully him. Try to prevent him from getting free nasusq.pngQ stacks. Blocking his Q in trades is very important. Your TPs and ults are much more impactful than his. Post-6 try to bait him into using his nasusr.pngultimate and then disengage. Once his ult is down he has no way of beating you.

Recommended items: 3076.png3047.png

VS

Nautilus

Easy
Nautilus does a surprising amount of damage with his nautilussplashzone.pngE in the early game. You can block his rooting nautiluspassive.pngautoattack and nautiluspiercinggaze.pngW-AAs with your W. When running away from him try to wait until he nautilusanchordrag.pnghooks and then dash away. If you dash first he can interrupt it with his hook. If he’s diving you activate your W just as his nautilusgrandline.pngult hits you.

Recommended items: 3111.png

VS

Olaf

Medium
Arcane%20Comet.png?width=32Arcane Comet Olaf is annoying to play against. Olaf's early all-ins are very powerful. He can chase you forever with his olafaxethrowcast.pngQ and you can’t taunt him because of his olafragnarok.pngult. Olaf falls off pretty hard in the late game. He has no way of stopping your ult so you can escape with it if necessary.

Recommended items: 3047.png

VS

Ornn

Hard

Ornn is the best toplaner right now. He's downright broken. Your first mistake was letting him get through champion select. You can block his Brittle-AAs with your W, but it will still knock you back. Try to dodge his ornnw.pngW and never stand near walls or his ornnq.pngPillar. He can interrupt your Ult with any of his abilities. Just ban or pick him.

VS

Pantheon

Hard

Pantheon, the bane of all top laners. Pantheon is an extremely dominant lane bully for the first 10 minutes of the game. His constant pantheonq.pngQ spam will eventually result in a kill if the opposing player doesn’t know how to play against it. You have to play extremely safe in the early game vs a Pantheon (even more so if he has ignite). Let his first Q hit you without blocking it, this will proc the Doran’s shield regen. Block his second Q with your passive shield and after that keep on using your passive whenever you can. If you dash at him early you will die. Get as much cs as you can and stay healthy because he can burst you to death from ~50% HP. Pantheon falls off extremely hard in the late game so you can most likely duel him around level 14. Be ready to ult where he is pantheonrjump.pngulting! If you get your jungler to gank top, keep in mind that he can use his ult to escape the gank if you use all your hard cc right away. His pantheonpassive.pngpassive shield blocks your Q bonus damage. You can interrupt his pantheone.pngE with your taunt.

VS

Poppy

Easy
Poppy hasn’t seen much play since the nerfs. She doesn’t have kill pressure on you and you outduel her at all stages of the game. Don’t dash on her before she uses her poppyw.pngW. You can stop her poppyr.pngult channel with a taunt if you’re quick enough. Always walk out of the second part of her poppyq.pngQ. Try to walk onto her poppypassive.pngshield to deny it.

VS

Renekton

Medium
Renekton is a lanebully, but Shen is one of the best counters to him. This matchup requires experience but once you get used to Renekton’s trade pattern you can win him in lane. With enough experience you’ll block every renektonpreexecute.pngstun. If you block the stun you’ll win the trade every time. Renekton’s renektonreignofthetyrant.pngult is similar to Nasus’: You want to bait it out, disengage and then reengage.

VS

Rengar

Hard

Good Rengar players are frustrating to play against, because they will take short trades from brushes and heal any damage you deal to them with rengarw.pngW. You can trade with Rengar when he has just used an empowered ability. This will guarantee that he can’t cleanse your taunt. If Rengar rengarr.pngults to jump on you or your teammate, use W when he’s mid-air to block the guaranteed crit.


Recommended items: 3076.png

VS

Riven

Easy
Riven is difficult to chase or get away from, but a good taunt will turn any fight in your favor. When you see Riven dashing towards you be ready to activate W before she rivenmartyr.pngstuns you. This will deny her from using her rivenpassive.pngpassive AAs. In extended fights try to dash ’under’ her riventricleave.png3rd Q to dodge the knockup. The outcome of this matchup is heavily influenced by the skill of the riven player. Under high diamond Shen should win it most of the time.

VS

Rumble

Medium
This matchup used to be much harder but 1054.pngDoran's Shield and Second%20Wind.png?width=32Second Wind make it much easier for Shen. You can play very aggressive against a Rumble if you keep your ward coverage up. Save your W for when he rumblepassive.pngoverheats and block the bonus damage autoattacks. Post-6 don't waste your dash, because you need it to escape his rumblecarpetbomb.pngultimate. Rumble players are used to being the bullies, so playing aggressive against them can work surprisingly well.

Recommended items: 3194.png

VS

Shen

Medium

wtf 2 shens


GO BACK TO RANKED!

VS

Singed

Medium

Don't chase Singed.


Recommended items: 3194.png3194.png3194.png

VS

Sion

Easy
There are two different common Sion builds: Tank and Full AD. Shen performs better versus the tank variant, but can handle AD Sion aswell. When you see Sion charge his sionq.pngQ IMMEDIATELY dash at him (Unless you want to escape ofc). If you dash quick enough he can’t knock you up and you will interrupt the channel. After that just stay close to him and chase him with Qs. Sion’s sionr.pngult is easy to dodge by moving and even more so with a dash. The only way you lose to a Sion is if you take a fully charged Q to the face. Sion players like to sionq.pngQ in bushes because you won’t see the range indicator. Just keep this in mind and don’t get hit by his Q. You can protect allies from his sionpassive.pngzombie form with your W.

VS

Swain

Hard
Swain is very difficult to play against as Shen. Your W is almost practically versus Swain and he will beat you in extended trades due to his ultimate. If you dash in he will swainshadowgrasp.pngroot you and then you take a full duration swaindecrepify.pngE-Q to the face while he walks away. The only opportunity you have on him is in the early game if he uses his cooldowns to clear the wave.

Recommended items: 3111.png3194.png

VS

Tahm Kench

Medium
Tahm Kench is a tank that deals a surprising amount of damage, similar to Shen. You beat him by not letting him get tahmkenchpassive.png3 passive stacks on you. Your W is very important. Use it when you think he wants to go for a trade. If he can’t get his stacks on you he has no way of winning the trade. You outscale him pretty hard and your ultimate is way better than his. If you get a good trade don’t be afraid to keep chasing him until he uses histahmkenche.png E. That’s when you back off (now he doesn’t get to heal through the grey health).

VS

Teemo

Hard
Teemo will toxicshot.pngharass you pretty hard in the early game, like any ranged top laner. You can’t win short trades vs him because of his blindingdart.pngblind. However, extended fights fall in to your favor. Most Teemos build like a tanky ADC with frozen mallet. If you miss your taunt he can movequick.pngchase you down and kill you, so wait for the perfect opportunity before using your E.

Recommended items: 3194.png3047.png

VS

Trundle

Medium
Trundle is generally the counter to tanks, but Shen’s kit functions well against this troll. Blocking Trundle’s trundletrollsmash.pngchomp with your W allows you to get good damage on to him without taking any in return. Good Trundle players will stop your dash with their trundlecircle.pngpillar. Get a feel for your opponent and you’ll see if he can do this consistently. Trundle’s trundlepain.pngult is extremely strong vs any tank and I would advise you not to duel him when he uses it. His late game 3074.pngsustain is too much for Shen so don't even bother fighting him.

Recommeded items: 3047.png3076.png

VS

Tryndamere

Medium
Tryndamere feels very oppressive, but beating him is possible. Tryndamere with a full tryndamerepassive.pngrage bar is one of the strongest early game champions. Tryndamere with no rage is one of the weakest. The key to beating tryndamere is playing aggressive from the start, you can’t let him hit minions for free and build up that rage bar. Zone him with your Q from level 1 and force him to use his rage to tryndamereq.pngheal instead of fighting you. If Tryndamere gets ahead you’re in for a train of pain. He can dive extremely well with his ultimate and is hard to stop from snowballing.

Recommended items: 3047.png3143.png

VS

Urgot

Medium

Try to dodge his Q poke in lane. Your W blocks his urgotw.pngPurge-attacks so use it wisely. Urgot's urgote.pngE is a very telegraphed dash, making it easy to dodge. His urgotr.pngultimate executes you so you better dodge it or back off if he hits it.


Recommended items: 3047.png

VS

Vladimir

Medium
Vladimir is super annoying to deal with. He can poke you until the end of the world because he doesn’t have mana. He vladimirq.pngheals any damage you deal to him in lane and escapes ganks with his vladimirsanguinepool.pngblood pool. If the Vladimir is bad you might get a taunt on him and kill him. If you get a lead you can start bullying him and denying him gold and experience.

VS

Yasuo

Medium
Yasuo players have extreme variety in skill. Beating a Yasuo with Shen is easy, unless the yasuo knows how to play against you. Yasuo can block your Spirit Blade with his yasuowmovingwall.pngwind wall, denying your empower autoattacks. This cripples Shen completely and allows the Yasuo to destroy you. Bypassing this is pretty simple: you have to hit your taunt! When he’s taunted you can freely Q through him without a fear of him stopping the blade with his wind wall. After he’s slowed by your Q you can hit him 3 times and back off. Yasuo’s yasuorknockupcombow.pngult gives him huge bonus armor penetration, so dodging the tornado is extremely important, especially in late game duels. Shen’s W blocks Yasuo’s Q. The tornado is only blocked by it if you’re the first target getting hit by it.

Recommended items: 3076.png3047.png3143.png

VS

Yorick

Medium
Most of Yorick's damage comes from his yorickq.pngQ and his yorickpassive.pngghouls. Both of those are blocked by your W. He has no movement abilities so you can hit your taunt without much effort. Always wait for him to summon his ghouls before you use your W. If you get caught in his yorickw.pngtrap after you’ve wasted your E and W you’ll get chunked or killed. Smart usage of your W wins this matchup. Lategame he has no chance of dueling you. Once you get 3748.pngTitanic Hydra you can oneshot his ghouls with the cone attack.

Recommended items: 3076.png3047.png

Pros and Cons Back to Top

     6262.png Pros

  • Map pressure
  • Strong early game
  • Playmaking potential
  • Supportive capabilities
  • Tank shredding
  • Dueling

     6154.png Cons

  • Requires good map-awareness
  • Weak waveclear
  • No built-in sustain
  • Long ult cooldown
  • Lack of CC compared to other tanks

Game Plan Back to Top

Laning phase


It's important to remember that you have to adapt your playstyle to the opponent you're facing in lane. Knowing your matchups well is key to becoming better at League. In General, you should have two major playstyles: Aggressive and Passive. In SoloQ, an aggressive playstyle should be your go-to option, because you can't trust your teammates to win their lanes. If you're not winning your lane, you can't complain about your teammates either.

Shen is very strong in the early game, he can beat almost anyone in an all-in before level 6. Shen's weakness is his lack of sustain and waveclear. He is suspectible to getting poked out by ranged bullies like Jayce, Gnar and Teemo. Exploring the damage limits of your trading combos is important in mastering Shen (or any champion).

Here's my plan for the laning phase versus Gangplank as an example:

Pre-minions: Setup Spirit Blade in the last toplane brush (Walk there and press Q), camp in river brush/tri-brush for a possible all-in if he walks through after leashing for his jungler.

Level 1: Hit minions to stack Grasp of the Undying and position yourself so that GP is between you and your Blade. Once Grasp is stacked, use Q to slow GP and attack him 3 times to proc all of your empowered Qs.

Level 2: Try to get level 2 before GP. When you level up, instantly Shadow Dash at GP and force an all-in. If you hit your taunt, he will die or atleast use flash (depending on his position relative to the tower). If you get a kill, shove the lane and recall.

Level 3-5: Look for all-in opportunities and if ahead, zone GP from creeps. Deny as many barrels as possible. Keep wards up, force their jungler to come top but don't die to the ganks.

Level 6+: Keep the lane pushed with Tiamat/Bami's Cinder and communicate with your team that you want to make a play with your ultimate. Get ward coverage into their topside jungle and no matter what, don't die!
179.png

Split-pushing


Shen's primary job as a toplaner is to split-push. Split-pushing is an extremely powerful strategy to win in SoloQ and organized play. Split-pushers attract pressure away from their team to create advantageous opportunities. With Teleport and Stand United, Shen has no problems with joining his team from the opposite side of the map. And that's exactly where you want to be.

After the laning phase the importance of your macro skill rises exponentially. Macro is the large scale gameplay in League. This means map movement, objectives, wards and teamfight set-up. Micro is how you execute those things in reality (combos, kiting, last-hitting). Shen is a very macro reliant champion. You need to be in the right place at the right time.

As a rule of thumb, you want to split-push on the opposite side of the map to the next objective. So if Baron is spawning and both teams are looking to get it, you want to be in the bottom lane with your Ultimate or Teleport ready. If an Infernal Drake is spawning, you want to split-push in the top lane. When you're split-pushing, it's extremely important to have enough ward coverage to stay safe. Don't be afraid to buy 2 or 3 Control Wards whenever you visit the shop. Dying is the last thing you want to do, unless it guarantees your team an objective. Just keep pressure on a lane and teleport to your team if they need you!

Once you get more experience with split-pushing and map movement, you'll notice your games becoming much easier.179.png

Teamfights

Identifying your role in teamfights is one of the most overlooked aspects and something that I personally struggled with at the beginning. Knowing what to do and where to be comes with experience but I can give you a couple of tips that I've learned while playing Shen.

1. Identify priority players: Who's fed on the enemy team? Is my ADC playing well? Who needs to die or survive in order for us to win the fight?

2. Your role: Do I need to engage? Do I need to peel for my carries? 

Before the fight begins, you need to check who's fed and who can carry. If the enemy team only has 1 major threat, it might be best to engage onto him and try to burst him down. If you can rely on your ADC or Mid, it might be better to stay near them and disrupt enemies who try to kill them.

3. Key abilities and mechanical execution: Once you have figured out who's fed and what your role in the teamfight is, you need to plan how you're gonna fulfill your job.

For example: If your role is to keep your carries alive and the enemy team has a fed Camille you need to pay close attention to her movement. When you see her jumping onto your carries, Shadow Dash infront of them and taunt the Camille. She will most likely Ult and then try to use her Q on your carry. Most of Camille's damage comes from her true damage Q. So you need to be prepared to block her Qs with your W - Spirit's Refuge.


Tips and Tricks Back to Top

shene.png4.png Shadow Dash + Flash


The notorious Taunt-Flash. Instead of flashing first to get into dash range of the enemy, you can flash at the end of Shadow Dash to extend its range or change its direction. Using E first, then flashing gives your opponent less time to react. You can also surprise the enemy completely by dashing away from them, then flashing backwards on top of them. When engaging teamfights, you'll want to taunt as many people as possible. To do this, you should try to taunt through one person and then flash on top of another. The possibilities with Shen's Taunt flash are endless and I advice you to practice this mechanic in the practice tool. Mastering the Taunt-Flash is an important part of mastering Shen.

shenq.png4.png Chasing & Twilight Assault + Flash


Shen gains attack speed and deals increased damage if you pull your Spirit Blade through an enemy champion with Q. The enemy will also be slowed when moving away from you, making Shen great at chasing enemies. You should always try to position in front of the enemy and move in between autoattacks. It's often necessary to flash in front of the enemy to get the slow on them. The fastest way to do this is by casting Q first, then flashing to redirect your Spirit Blade's path. The timing might take a while to get used to, but once mastered this trick will improve your Shen gameplay immensely.


About Me Back to Top

Hi,

I'm Petu, I'm 18 years old and I live in Finland.

I've played League since mid-season 3. I started off in Silver then climbed to Plat in S4, reached Diamond in S5, visited Master tier in S6 and finally accomplished my goal of getting Challenger in S7. I ended the Season with over 1k LP (Rank 5 EUNE), my smurfs are Challenger 500lp EUNE and D1 EUW. In Season 8, I reached Master tier on EUW.

I played one game of pre-rework Shen and found him super boring, but when he got reworked I started playing him a lot. Shen was not played much after his rework but he quickly gained popularity in the professional scene after a couple of buffs. His Spirit Blade mechanic instantly clicked with me and I still love playing him. In April of 2017, I was rated as the best Shen in the world (according to LeagueOfGraphs). I've consistently been in the Top 10 Shen players on LolSkill. These sites obviously only give a rough estimate, but I think I can confidently say that I'm one of the best SoloQ Shen players (excluding pros).

I have a Youtube channel where I post LoL videos, mostly Shen.
I'm pretty inactive on Twitch, but I'm planning on streaming more once I'm done with my final exams.
You can contact me on reddit: /u/petuthebeast
 
You can check out my Season 8 Shen montage here:

Changelog Back to Top

heimerdingerpassive.png Version 1.1 (Patch 8.8)

16.4.2018 - The guide has been updated with rune and item changes.

heimerdingerpassive.png Version 1.0 (Patch 7.24b)

27.12.2017 - The guide has been published!
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