Alistar isn’t just a proud defender of ADCs in the bot lane. He can one-shot an enemy champion with a few ability power items and carry games himself.

And in this post, I’ll give you the best AP Alistar build for season 13 of League of Legends.

But before we do so, please note that this is an off-meta playstyle for mid lane Alistar or support Alistar. And it’s perfect for ARAM and URF games as well.

However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t play Alistar AP as a jungler or as a top laner. In fact, the build is pretty good at giving you enough damage throughout the game.

And you should be quite comfortable playing it if you’re already familiar with Alistar as a champion.

That said, let’s jump into the actual build and see how all the runes and items synergize together!

Is Alistar AP or AD in LoL?

Alistar W - Headbutt AP ratio

Alistar is an AP melee champion that’s mostly played as a tank. People usually play Alistar as a support in the bot lane with tanky and supportive items.

However, since Alistar’s abilities do magic damage and scale with ability power, you can also build Ali with a full AP build to do more damage.

Except for his auto-attack, Alistar doesn’t have any other way of dealing AD damage. His power comes from his W + Q combo, which is pure magic damage.

On top of this, on-hit effects like Lich Bane also cause Alistar to deal bonus magic damage. And even though they work through auto-attacks, the magic component is the main one.

As a support, Alistar doesn’t deal too much damage. However, he’s a big threat in the early game when his abilities are really powerful. 

Alistar’s damaging and scaling numbers aren’t bad at all, so he’s pretty good at dominating the early stages of the match.

How to Play Alistar AP? (Tips)

Alistar vs. Lucian

If you’ve made it through the whole AP Alistar build and you’ve read all the necessary information, it’s time for some practical tips.

Here’s what I’ve learned after over a dozen games of AP Alistar this season.


The first thing we need to talk about is Electrocute. For a champion that doesn’t have an overloaded kit, every source of damage actually helps.

And like I mentioned above, Alistar can proc Electrocute in many different ways. So, here are some of the combos to ensure that Electrocute will damage your enemy and help you burst them down.

  • W + Q + AA
  • AA + Q + W
  • W + Q + Hextech Rocketbelt
  • Hextech Rocketbelt + W + Q
  • W + Q + Ignite


I also mentioned that Alistar does more damage early on rather than in the late game. His abilities can really hurt the opponent, especially with Electrocute.

Because of this, you’ll want to be trading a lot. Once you hit level 2, go for a quick W + Q + auto-attack combo. This will do a lot of damage to your opponent. 

However, be ready to quickly disengage because Alistar has no follow-up damage after his combo. So, don’t sacrifice your health by staying a few extra seconds.

Of course, some enemy champions will be easier to beat in lane than others. But the important thing is to take advantage of Ali’s damage as early as possible.


Once you’ve slain your lane opponent a couple of times, you should focus on ganking. This should also be your decision if you can’t beat your opponent in lane.

Alistar has one of the best ganking tools in League. His combo is a mini-Malphite-ult on a 10 seconds cooldown. And it’s all point-click, so he doesn’t even need to aim skillshots.

In other words, Alistar can have fantastic ganks because he can push enemies away and knock them up as well. This is extremely good for solo queue, so take advantage of it too.

Read Also: AP Tahm Kench Build Guide

Full AP Alistar Build – Runes for Season 13

AP Alistar rune page
  • Electrocute
  • Sudden Impact
  • Eyeball Collection
  • Relentless Hunter
  • Celerity
  • Gathering Storm

ELECTROCUTE is by far the best keystone for AP Alistar. It has an amazing synergy with his ability kit and how he deals damage. And it adds so much power, especially in the early game.

After three consecutive attacks (basics or spells), Electrocute strikes the target and deals additional damage. This damage is adaptive, which means that it will be magic if you’re building AP.

SUDDEN IMPACT is another rune that will definitely improve your damage. Sudden Impact grants a bit of magic penetration when you dash, Flash, or exit a brush.

In other words, the rune will always give you bonus magic penetration when you use Alistar’s W – Headbutt which is the hardest-hitting ability in his kit.

EYEBALL COLLECTION is a simple rune that gives you additional ability power as you’re going through the early game. You don’t have to do anything special for it, so it’s a free way of powering up.

RELENTLESS HUNTER is a fantastic rune for any ganking champion in LoL, including Alistar. It increases your out-of-combat movement speed based on how many Bounty stacks you have (max 5).

It doesn’t matter which role you play AP Alistar in, Relentless Hunter will help you out a lot. With so many bonus MS, you’ll be able to move around Summoner’s Rift much more efficiently.

This also means that you’ll gank more often and give your team more advantages overall. But if you only play AP Alistar on ARAM, you might want to take Ultimate Hunter instead.

CELERITY is the second rune you take for increasing your movement speed. And basically, it gives you a 1% bonus movement speed permanently for the rest of the match.

However, this rune also improves all of your movement speed bonuses, so it’s always worth taking it.

GATHERING STORM is the last rune you’ll need to pick up and it’s basically insurance for the late game. Every 10 minutes it gives you bonus ability power and makes sure that you stay relevant until the end of the match.

Read Also: AP Gragas Build Guide

Full AP Alistar Build – Items for Season 13

AP Alistar item build
  • Ionian Boots of Lucidity
  • Hextech Rocketbelt
  • Lich Bane
  • Zhonya’s Hourglass
  • Cosmic Drive
  • Rabadon’s Deathcap

IONIAN BOOTS OF LUCIDITY offer the most value for the cheapest price. They fit very well on AP Alistar because they significantly reduce the cooldown of his basic abilities during the early game. 

And because of that, they allow him to do more damage overall.

HEXTECH ROCKETBELT is the mythic item you’ll need. It synergizes the most with Alistar’s playstyle and allows you to proc Electrocute much easier.

Obviously, Hextech Rocketbelt offers many beneficial stats such as AP, ability haste, health, and magic penetration. But the primary reason you go for it is its active dash effect.

With Hextech Rocketbelt, you can easily enter in a range of your W+Q combo even if the enemy’s running away. It’s very convenient for setting up ganks or assassinating opponents, so definitely use it.

LICH BANE is one of your core items so you need to purchase it as soon as possible. And the reason why you need to spend your money on Lich Bane is that Alistar’s auto-attack is a vital part of actually dealing damage.

When you play this build, you’ll notice that you’ll need to auto-attack nearly all the time. And Lich Bane increases the damage of your basic attack, further improving your burst.

ZHONYA’S HOURGLASS is a must-have defensive item for AP Alistar. Since you won’t have any tank items, you’ll actually be very squishy.

Zhonya’s, on the other hand, gives you bonus armor and allows you enter Stasis. With Stasis you can dodge a lot of damage and survive key moments in team fights.

COSMIC DRIVE is another fantastic item that you need to get as early as you can. And it has a perfect synergize with your Celerity rune.

After striking an enemy champion with three consecutive attacks, Cosmic Drive will grant you a burst of movement speed. On top of that, it also grants bonus ability power, allowing you to deal even more damage.

RABADON’S DEATHCAP is the last item you need to put in your inventory. It costs a lot of gold but it’s always worth it.

The main reason you purchase Rabadon’s Deathcap is to increase your raw power. This item will almost double the damage your abilities do, so it’s a good way of spending your gold, especially in the late game.

Read Also: AP Braum Build Guide

Optional/Situational Items in the AP Alistar Build

When it comes to situational and optional items for AP Alistar, there are a couple of them that you need to consider.

First, Luden’s Tempest can be a great mythic item if you don’t like using Hextech Rocketbelt. It improves your burst and helps you manage your mana much easier.

Demonic Embrace and Void Staff are your anti-tank items and you’ll definitely need them when you’re facing tanky champions. 

On the other hand, Banshee’s Veil can be a great counter item to mages, especially the ones that can control you like Syndra.

Summoner’s Spells and Ability Order for AP Alistar

Alistar doesn’t have too many options when it comes to Summoner’s Spells. And as long as you have Flash, you’ll be doing just fine.

However, Ignite is good for bot and mid lane if you’re looking to be aggressive. But if you’re in the top lane, Teleport might be a better option.

Similarly, Exhaust can help you counter assassins and bursty champions.

As far as ability order is concerned, you should always max out your Q first, then your W second. Q helps with clearing waves and has a shorter cooldown than Ali’s W.

Here’s the whole ability order for AP Alistar, level by level.


Read Also: Full AP Blitzcrank Build Guide


That’s all on how to build and play Alistar AP! This champion is very fun to pilot, especially with such an aggressive build like this one. He does tons of damage which always surprises your opponents.

But this isn’t only an off-meta support build for Alistar. It’s actually a carry playstyle developed to help you win more games with this champion. And I totally love it!

If you’re interested in more similar builds for all champions in League of Legends, head over to Runetarium’s Guides & Builds page. There you’ll find every information you need!

Good luck and have fun!

Last Update: March 2, 2024