I have had more fun playing Ares than any other god so far, which is why I decided to post this build guide. I don't claim to be the best or know it all, just want to share my thoughts on Ares. Ares seems to be able to do most every job on the battlefield, initiator, support, harasser, solo, tank, ranged(as a finisher) and with the right(or wrong) build some melee as well. He is somewhat limited in the damage department but certainly has enough when combining his abilities to get the job done. Ares is just a tough customer who can't be ignored.
I'm not going into exhaustive detail with this guide, I just want to share my item builds and rationale. So lets get started.
Mystical Mark Winged Wand
I grab a point in each ability to start then generally co-level and , leading with searing flesh. Leveling last. Level as available.
This build gives Ares the magic damage he needs to be a constant threat. His points in and the aura damage from Mystical Mark allow him to effectively protect/farm minions, keeping his leveling on par. The item build here incorporates an early aegis and sprint, as they are such strong, cheap assets. However, due to buying these, the rest of the item build focuses on most bang fer yer buck, as you don't usually have a lot of extra money for higher end items(update:they dropped the stats and prices so more money to spend on higher end stuff). The early aegis and sprint give this high magic build the survivability Ares needs. You have to play defensively with Ares early game at least until he gets his mystic mark and both abilities up.
Once defenses are up, I like to play aggressively with Ares, mostly because I can. I'll often get ganged up on by several gods at once chasing down kills behind enemy lines. This is when you pop aegis and then sprint merrily away. Totally worth it and will save your hide most of the time. If I want to play very aggressively I'll buy instead of Mystical Mark for the higher hp and physical protection. It DOES make a difference. If they come at you with high magic substitute .
If you want to be even tankier and can afford it, buy before (or after) and throw, your choice, either Winged Wand or on the end.
I have found Ares doesn't usually need the extra health from G.o.I., due to having aegis/sprint(I would buy G.o.I. otherwise for the high magic and health). The costs 2050, costs 2100, Winged Wand costs 2150 while costs 2850. The extra health you pick up on Gem of Isolation might make it worth the extra cash if you're up against heavy melee, but I wouldn't buy it just for the extra mana(unnecessary) or slow effect.The slow isn't, imo, worth the extra 700, especially if your picking up winged wand, which gives a 10% speed boost on top of the 31% you have already. Its better to put that cash toward extra magic power with obsidian shard or winged wand.
Taking the seems to provide all the mana I need for this build, but you can always take or the cheaper Winged Wand if its not enough. Shackles has a slow already and speed is good this build, if you include winged wand.
Something I haven't been taking advantage of but I should mention is if your short on cash end-game and can't afford a last item throw 400 at .
Ares' passive is utilized by Mystical Mark and , but I don't find it beneficial to choose other aura items simply for the passive bonus and they tend to be more expensive as well. Your mileage may vary.
This build consistently gives your team access to all the assists it needs to win, thanks mostly of course to no escape. You'll take your share of kills too with the powered up searing flesh and cherry picking with the shackles.
Thanks for checking out my guide, I hope its of some use and you have as much fun with Ares as I do. I don't have the best stats as I enjoy playing aggressively and engaging often but you can see with my King of the Arena build I (mostly)survive well and bring the assists in. Ares doesn't get the highest kills as he is a support role but due to his survivability you can often hunt down the fleeing wounded and finish 'em off with the nice range on shackle and still make it back to your team alive. Another thing I've noticed with Ares' high magical and physical protection and using the aegis/sprint, you can wade in and get the enemy to spend their abilities on you without putting yourself in much jeopardy. This is a big help to your carriers. Any comments or feedback are welcome.
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