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The former general of Liu Bei has undergone quite a significant change. He used to make a pretty capable tank, but now has changed role to bruiser support. His move priority doesn't change, but the situations in which they're used has slightly.
If you're a fan of bruisers that can keep on chugging, this is the god and build for you. If you want really big numbers and lots of kills, you may want to go with a different god.
This build is intended to either solo lane, or support in team fights. You're not there to do epic damage, but to make sure the others on your team can. With your healing and ability to slow and stun, you become invaluable as either an initiator, or as a monkey wrench.
This Guan Yu is about his abilities more than he is his basic attacks, so lowering the cooldowns are obviously going to be important.
This begins your protections from the heavy melee you will be facing, while giving you and your team the physical penetration they need. If you are the only physical on your team, then it would be worth using the focused voidblade. If you find yourself having survivability issues, or find yourself being focused, then using the Hide of the Nemean Lion is also a great option, one which doesn't lose you very much ap (due to the next item) but provides your team with no bonus to their pen.
ankh of the bear
Since you're going to be protecting yourself from the heavy amounts of physical attacks you'll be receiving, you may as well get some ap out of it. The Ankh of the Golem ends up with giving you the same ap, with the tradeoff being 15 protection for 350 health. Since your main damage dealing move also ups your protection, I tend to go for the bear. Your mileage may vary.
Eye of Retaliation
This one is here simply for the giant attack bonus it's going to give you. Even with Conviction you're not likely to be at full health all that often, and this takes advantage of that lost health to give you more of that delicious ap.
Another item here for the ap, but also for the pretty decent crits when you are throwing out those basic attacks. You're not really a crit fisher, but it's a nice perk.
This gives us two of the things we want a lot of: cooldown reduction, and ap. Since you're skill-heavy, this gives your basic attacks that extra umph that you may feel you're lacking when your skills are on cooldown.
Guan's passive is what really fuels his sustain. The secondary effect isn't really important in this build, but it's still something to take note of. Try to take hits from the minions , or short ticks from the edge of some weak area effect abilities so you build it, but take as little damage as possible while doing so.
Maxing this second instead of third will allow you to maintain a decent level of support throughout the game, while maintaining a threatening amount of damage. This skill is amazing when solo laning, as the minions tend to hit you a lot and build your passive. This can be a considerable source of sustain for not only you, but your allies as well. Heal your allied gods and you get a small cooldown reduction.
This ability, while it can do ok damage, is used mostly for the maneuverability an the slow effect more than anything else, and thus is maxed last. This is the ability you initiate with, or the ability you use to run away when needs be. Hit an enemy god and you get the same small cooldown reduction as before. Great ways to reduce your cooldown timers.
This right here is your primary damage ability. If you hit your enemy with every hit of it, it does 550+200% of your ap. Not too shabby. It's your harass, it's your self buff, it's your bread and butter, and thus needs to be maxed first. This can be particularly nasty on some of those squishy mages (such as Poseidon, Anubis, or Agni).
Guan's ultimate does pretty decent damage, but in this build what you're after is the slow, the stun, and the escape. This gives you the ability to keep up with nearly anyone, slow them down, and stun them, allowing you or your team to mop up.
Excellent Team Support
Vulnerable to crowd control, specifically slows.
No range capability whatsoever
Guan yu makes an ok jungler, but he makes a better solo laner, allowing another, such as arachne or fenrir to jungle, and get more out of it. If you insist on jungling, early game your best bet is to get you a blue, and try to keep it on you as long as possible. With nigh infinite mana, keeping your health solvent ends up as a nonissue.
For the lane, don't be afraid to use taolu's assault on the enemy minions, even if (especially if) you hit the enemy gods as well. This will get the minions to throw a hit your way, and start charging your passive. You can get the enemy to retreat pretty early if you can land a good number of your hits on them.
If you have an initiator, wait for them to go in, and them follow afterwards with your Cavalry Charge, keeping your opponents locked down. After that, hesitate for just a moment until your stun wears off in order to hit them with your Warrior's Will so the slow lasts as long as possible. By this point you've been hit a few times, and your allies have as well, so a Conviction is in order. Follow up with taolu's assault and basic attacks mixed in before or after.
If you don't have an initiator on your team, then congrats, you're it! You may need to sub one of the active items for blink to position yourself to properly start, but the order remains very similar to the above.
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