These are some tips and tricks which I've learned over 1,500 hours in this game. These will not make you suddenly good, but should make things less painful for you and your teammates. I've played all of the gods multiple times and in multiple roles and have an even win ratio overall, so I'm not a complete potato. You should be able to make your own builds viable with these tips and tricks, though i recommend testing it in practice and letting your team know beforehand if you are doing anything weird.
Starter items are an absolute must for almost every case. Assault and Siege are the only modes where it isn't absolutely necessary. Otherwise it is asking for a needlessly painful early game or an outright loss.
In Conquest solo lane can sometimes start tier 2 boots and a few health potions and teleport. This is risky because the plan is to back after you get full boots and have a massive power spike. That also means your teleport is down and if the enemy jungler kills you, it is very painful to get back into the game.
Another item that is an absolute must is boots. Boots are essential either after the starter item or after a stacking item. Tanky characters can swap them out for items that offer less movement speed late game after all other items are complete. Junglers probably are going to have another movement speed item to keep pressure on all the lanes and farming better than the other jungler. Stacking items should always come after a starter item.
Transcendence and Devourer's Gauntlet for physical gods and Warlock's Staff and Book of Thoth for magical gods. These are great for a midgame power spike but are not completely necessary. Do not build these if you are the tank. The reason why you should not build these items immediately is because the starter items allow you to stay in lane and give a more immediate power spike. By building stacking items, you allow the other side an advantage until it is fully stacked. That is also why getting boots finished before stacking is sometimes a good idea so that you can get back to lane faster when you are stacking. If you can fully buy the item before boots, you can, but be careful and do not be as aggressive.
Shaman's Ring and Soul Eater can be stacked later in the game (3rd or 4th item) because they stack easier than the other two. The stacking items for tanks are Guantlet of Thebes and Hide of the Urchin. These items are also better 3rd or 4th item for very similar reasons. Guantlet of Thebes for the support and Hide of the Urchin for the solo or support based on how they stack and the playstyle that comes from them. Stacking items are definitely not necessary, but they can help out depending on what is needed that match.
If there are more than 4 gods on the enemy team of the same damage type, buy defense of that type or extra defense if you are the tank. Buying defense on an adc or mage is acceptable in these cases. Usually the mage will naturally build some health considering they are the most susceptible to ganks. Builds are not going to be one fits all and should change based off of situations. Experiment and find what works for the situations. Have fun.
Roles and Damage Types
Before the match begins the team should consist of 2 Physical or Magical dealers and then 3 of the other one. Or in Joust at least one of each type. Siege should be balanced with one tank of each damage type and a damage dealer of each type. Early game might go well for a full Physical or Magical team, but late game after everyone builds defense will be nearly impossible.
Support is usually played by Guardians, but can be played with gods with a lot of cc like Hades and Ne Zha, clearing cc like Baron Samedi and Hel, or just tankier characters like Nike or Zhong Kui. The problem with Physical supports is it usually requires either the ADC to be a Mage or the Solo or Jungle be a Guardian or Mage. Wards are needed to ever leave lane and be useful.
Solo is played by many different characters who can sustain themselves. This lane is about outfarming your solo laner and you will need sustain to do that. Most gods that can be in this lane are tanky, have some self heal, or both. Wards are necessary if you ever want to leave lane or have the enemy pushed farther away from your tower. Normally Warriors, but the most flexible in terms of which god type can be used here.
Mid is generally played by Mages but can be played by gods with a lot of ability damage, but preferably those with ranged basic attacks, like Hunters. This lane is in the middle so it is easily ganked by both sides. Wards are necessary to avoid being an easy snack for the enemy Jungler.
ADC is the second half of duo lane, being the minion clear and damage dealer. This is the role which does best at taking towers with a large focus on basic attacks. Abilities do nothing to towers and Phoenixs. This role can become like solo lane if the Guardian can safely leave the ADC to gank mid or help the Jungler. Usually played by ranged basic attack gods, mostly Hunters.
Jungler drops buffs and helps turn the tide of battle in your lanes favor. The Jungler should focus on farming and ganking only when securing kills or making sure your team isn't getting killed. The Jungler should also be warding to potentially get larger objectives like Gold Fury and Fire Giant in Conquest and the Wild Juggernaut in Siege. Generally played by Assassins.
Solo and Supports are the tanks and squishier characters should stay behind them. Support starts in duo lane, the long one. Solo lane starts by themselves. Support actives should be AoE to help their ADC survive. Solo can also get AoE actives, but generally want Teleport Glyph as well unless if they have a quick way to lane, like Sun Wukong, Vamana, or Erlang Shen.
AoE actives are:
Heavenly Wing against an enemy team with a lot of slows or for escaping enemies after a bad fight. It can also be used for chasing enemies, but chasing enemies can end up turning the fight back around. Better use as a defensive active unless if all enemy positions are known.
Cursed Anhk if there are a lot of enemy healers, but is not picked up as much as the other relics, Really only used if the healer is the biggest issue on the enemy team and anti heal is not enough.
Meditation: Mainly an early game item for lanes with lots of mana use, but if their isn't a team healer this could still be useful. 1 for making the enemy use an item for antiheal. 2 the mana sustain is useful throughout the game.
Shell is great against high burst damage, but late game is generally used to deny the enemy ADC kills with the block stacks.
Horrific Emblem is a great early item to catch an enemy off guard and securing kills. Later they will get Heavenly Wing to counter it, but this will have a shorter cooldown and still turn the tide of some team fights by reducing enemy damage.
Belt of Frenzy is like Cursed Anhk and not as used, but can be great for attacking objectives or even countering late game Horrific Emblem.
An active both roles can get which are not AoE, but still is great in team fights is Thorns. This is generally a second active, because the tank is usually not tanky enough to use Thorns to its full potential.
ADC, Mage, and sometimes Jungle are squishier targets and tend to get bursted a lot. These actives will keep these Squishier characters alive or do more damage. Unlike Tank Actives, these generally only affect the user.
Aegis is one of the most used relics and gives complete immunity to large amounts of burst, but still susceptible to cc and cannot heal through it.
Beads is the other very popular relics because it cleanses and leaves an immunity to cc Bracer is good for those without a heal or lifesteal to recover from large amounts of burst, but is countered by antiheal. That also means that they have to use an item slot to counter it.
Phantom Viel is one which some would argue the tank should have. This is generally used to counter Odin Ult for characters which do not have leaps or other ways out. The reason why the squishy character should actually have it is because the tanks can handle being inside of an Odin Ult, but a squishy will have a death sentence if someone with Phantom Viel is not near which is probably why they gave some damage mitigation as well late game.
Blink is generally found on the Jungler but the Support and Solo can use it if they are not good at initiating fights. This is mostly to catch the enemy off guard and close the gap for melee characters to minimize damage taken.
Sunder can be used on the Jungler, but is not very useful until upgraded. This can completely take someone out of a teamfight and early on can be used to essentially execute a target with less than 15% health.
These will just show the priority of items to build damage, but both are most likely needed. Lifesteal is also good for damage because that is what the return health is based off of. Movement Speed is needed for Junglers to be efficient and most MS items have power. Warriors and Guardians should generally not be building damage unless if they are being played in roles not solo or support. Some pen is always needed to do efficient damage.
Mages generally scale better off of their abilities so 1st power and 2nd pen. Obsidian Shard for burst damage, like He Bo and Spear of Magus for tick damage, like Anubis.
Guardians have higher base damage and less scaling on their abilities so 1st pen and 2nd cooldowns. Obsidian Shard is probably going to be the best and then stack more pen.
Hunters work better with basic attacks so 1st attack speed and 2nd pen if going the Qin's Sais route. If going the crit route, 1st crit chance and 2nd power. Executioners is a good pen item.
Assassins work like Hunter if basic attack based, or like a close range Mage if ability based. Ability based Assassins should get 1st power and 2nd pen. Cooldown is usually good as well for ability based Assassins. Titans Bane is generally the pen item of choice with other pen added based on need. Basic attack Assassins should generally go the Qins Sais route, but some like Mercury and Ne Zha do well with crit.
Warriors work similarly to Assassins, but the ability based Warriors should focus 1st pen and 2nd cooldown like Guardians. Qins Sais is the route for basic attacking Warriors.
- Obsidian Shard and Spear of Magus do not do well together.
- Executioner and Titan's Bane do not do well together.
- Stone Cutting Sword does better with Executioner than Titans Bane.
Generally the only ones building tanky should be those who can play support or solo. For efficient health, both defense and health are wanted. Abilities are generally countered by health. Basic Attacks are generally countered by defense.
HP5 is good on gods without a self heal and staying in lane longer. Cooldown is good for getting cc up. CCR is generally useful for being able to do more in fights besides being a well- animated punching bag and getting through the enemy cc. Getting two fully physical defense items is generally good for 3 physical gods because you can tank tower and objectives. If it is 3 magical gods then a balanced mix is good.