Lots of you seem to think that Veigar needs a Rod of Ages because that extra health is going to be a huge difference-maker. I'm not here to tell you that the Rod of Ages is the devil, but I'll say that I strongly disagree that "it is a mistake to not have it." As a Veigar, you should never put yourself in a position to be hit for large amounts of damage, and if you are in a position to do so, the extra 725 health is going to save you for roughly 1 second longer. I'd much rather play smarter, not put myself into a vulnerable position, and have more AP and mana regen.
Here is my issue with building the Rod of Ages in lieu of the Archangel's Staff. Now, once again, this is MY OPINION, and is more in line with my playstyle. Is this the "correct way" to build a Veigar? Up to you. This is just my preference. Anyhow, on to my reasoning. If you build a Rod of Ages then that means you have to get a mana regen item at the start (likely a Chalice or a Tear), because otherwise you will run out of mana entirely too often, as Veigar sucks up mana big-time early game. So, the problem is that the Rod of Ages has no mana regen item that builds up to it, so essentially you're making your first item that will build to nothing (unless you go Tear and build an Archangel's Staff later after Zhonya's in a VERY long game). It's not TERRIBLE to have an item that doesn't build to anything, but I am a creature of efficiency. If I am devoting gold to an item, I want it to build to something. That's why I start out making my Tear, then going Sorc Boots, Soulstealer, Archangel's, and then Zhonya's. If it's a long game I'll go Abyssal Scepter after that. If I'm making a Rod of Ages in lieu of the Archangel's then I'm having to "start over" in terms of building it, thus putting me behind for getting my next items, specifically Zhonya's, which is the benchmark for when I transition from a mean Veigar to an extremely lethal Veigar.
Also, Archangel's gives you 20 more AP than Rod of Ages, and as the game continues it just gives you more and more (2% of your max mana). In a long game it could yield you well over 100 AP from a single item. Coupled with Zhonya's 25% increase, that is 125+ AP from ONE ITEM, plus tons of mana regen.
I chose Veigar because I love playing a highly-maximized glass cannon. I want to deal as much damage as is possible, with absolute wanton disregard for my own well-being. I play smart, I only push with stun, and I don't run around by myself after mid-game. You may think that this is a detriment, because I must just die all the time by not having that extra 725 health from Rod of Ages. Wrong. I don't. Ask my teammates, I don't die all that much. And the vast majority of the time that I do die, the 725 extra would not have prevented it. I'd much rather the extra AP to ensure that when I stun someone, the hell that is about to be brought to them will put them into black and white, not letting them run away with 100 health as I relish in my ability to live for 1 second longer with my 725 health.
And as for Brilliance pots, I don't do them, I'd rather use the cash for an Abyssal Scepter. I've tweaked this build a million times, and I have played well over 200 games with Veigar, so this all comes from a lot of experience. I am not just a casual Veigar player, I literally choose Veigar every single time I play unless I'm burned out and want to play a pug game as Fiddle or something.
So Roku, why don't you build a Soulstealer? That's 140 AP. In your guide, your justification of that is "Strengthening a champion's strengths just makes their weaknesses weaker." I take the opposite route. I say exploit your strengths. Make your AP so high that everyone has to get a Banshee's Veil just because of you. Be so destructive that your opponents just run from you unless it's a team fight. I have way more fun popping in, nuking a champion to his demise, popping out, and then rinse/repeat.
Your build of Tear, Sorc shoes, Rod of Ages, Zhonya's, then Archangel's just isn't nearly enough AP to nuke a champion down in one round of spells. Your Veigar is more utility than mine, obviously, so it certainly has its effectiveness in other ways. I simply prefer the complete offensive. Your guide was certainly helpful though for seeing other perspectives and considering other avenues. You certainly know your stuff, and I have no doubt you're a good Veigar based on reading it, but you and others should realize that not everyone plays the same way, and thus they will have different item builds. And some of those builds might not include any Rods of Ages. And that's okay. Also, note that when I play against other AP champs I tweak my build to get some MR, and I typically go for the Abyssal Scepter earlier.
Originally Posted by Pharmacologist
Yeah not building a rod of ages on veigar is a mistake. "Glass cannon" approach is not effective against good players. You will get focused, tossed, stunned, and destroyed before you do even your first 3-hit combo. Or at least a rylai.
P.S. Veigar should NEVER EVER EVER get Rylai.