These Lee Sin Combos Will Up Your Playmaking Potential

Looking to take your Lee Sin game to the next level? Here’s a comprehensive guide on all sorts of Lee Sin combos to improve your mechanical skills. From simple animation buffers to some of the toughest insec combos, these tricks will turn you into a playmaking machine.

These Lee Sin Combos Will Up Your Playmaking PotentialLeague of Legends is a game with a large cast of playable characters, and while some are more unique than others, there are few who can match the skill ceiling of Lee Sin. He’s a champion with great mobility, good damage, and most importantly, immense playmaking capabilities. With a well-timed Lee Sin insec combo, you can instantly win fights, take objectives, and nab some sweet, sweet LP.

But to be good at Lee Sin requires a lot of practice, and that’s where I come in. This guide covers all sorts of combos and tricks that you can use to unlock Lee Sin’s full potential. Spoiler alert: Lee Sin has a lot of combos, so you may want to grab a snack for this one. The Lee Sin combos you’ll learn here can be applied to any build or role. If you’re interested in trying out Lee outside the jungle, check out our top lane Lee Sin guide.

For the purpose of clarity, we’re referring to Lee Sin’s abilities in this guide based on their default keybinds. That’s Q for Sonic Wave, W for Safeguard, E for Tempest, and R for Dragon’s Rage. I will also refer to Resonating Strike, Lee Sin’s second part of his Q, as Q2.

Animation Buffers

Flash Input Buffers

If you’ve played League for a while, then you’ve probably learned of Flash Input buffering at some point. Basically, the idea is to press an ability, then use your Flash summoner spell immediately after. Depending on what ability you used, it will cast while you’re flashing.

Flash input buffering is helpful when you want to quickly reposition without giving your opponent any time to react. For Lee Sin specifically, you can buffer your Q, E, and R abilities with Flash. Here’s a quick demonstration of all three in quick succession:

Flash Input Buffers

The timing of when your abilities resolve depends on what ability you buffered:

  • Your Q skillshot will originate from your position before you flashed
  • Your E will damage enemies around you after you flashed
  • Your R will kick the target away from your position after you flashed

You can use Flash input buffers in a number of ways. For example, you can Q > Flash to get in R range while the skillshot is still traveling. You could also E > Flash to tag enemies with a slow on the recast. This lets you catch up to enemies if your Q and W are on cooldown.

R > Auto

This neat little buffer gives your kicks a little extra damage. By quickly issuing an Attack command on the enemy champion right after using R on them, you can hit them with a single auto attack as they’re being kicked away. Since Lee Sin is an AD champion, your auto attacks do a decent amount of damage. Weaving one in right after the auto can help you score kills and succeed in ganks.

Note that if you auto attacked the enemy right before R, you likely won’t be able to pull this trick off. This is because your auto-attack timer would still be on cooldown right after pressing R. Aside from this, you need to be close enough to the target in order to buffer an auto. Kicking them away at maximum R range will put them too far away from your own auto attack range.

Mid-Dash Buffering

This last animation buffer is an interesting one. By casting your Q and W in a specific way, you can cast your other abilities while you’re in the middle of a dash. To pull it off, you’ll need to use your W on a target other than yourself. This can be a ward, allied champion, a minion, or some other object that you can dash to. The combo goes like this:

Q > W > Q2

The timing of this combo is very strict. You need to press your Q2 (that is, the second part of your Q) after you cast W but before you reach your W target. If you arrive at your W target and then press Q2, the combo won’t work. 

And though this may be the most common method of buffering abilities mid-dash, you can also do it the other way around: 

Q > Q2 > W

You can dash to any valid W target in this case, and that includes wards. As with the previous combo, you need to make sure the first dash never completely resolves. In this case, you need to W before your Q2 lands. If you still see the Q mark on the enemy while you’re dashing away with W, then you did it right. This method of mid-dash buffering is more niche, but it’s helpful when executing certain Lee Sin insec combos.

When done successfully, you can use any of your other abilities and even your active items while dashing. And yes, this includes your R — more on that later.

The Ward Hop

Whether you consider it an unintended bug or an intentional feature, Lee Sin has the ability to cast W on wards. Doing so is known as a ward hop, and it’s a crucial part of many insec combos. Because wards are typically used for granting vision, you won’t always find allied wards right where you want them to be. Instead, you’ll need to place the wards yourself and then immediately cast W on them afterward. 

Ward > W

You can use either your free Stealth Ward or a Control Ward for this combo. Note that Farsight Wards do not work for ward hops. Unlike Stealth and Control Wards, Farsight Wards are untargetable. If you want to travel even further, you can combo your ward hop with a Flash. You can Flash before or after a ward hop, but a common way to use the two in quick succession is by buffering your ward placement. 

To do this, you need to “place” a ward in an area that’s just out of range. This will cause Lee Sin to place a ward at that location upon getting close enough. By default, placing a ward this way will also cause Lee Sin to walk toward that location, but if you press Flash immediately after buffering your ward placement, he’ll place the ward right after the Flash. Press W immediately after on the same spot, and you’ve just performed a flash ward hop.

Place ward out of range > Flash > W

This ward hop combo is faster than flashing and then ward hopping, but it also comes with a huge risk — if you try placing a ward too far away, you’ll mess up the combo. The only way to ensure you consistently pull this combo off is by performing it again and again in the Practice Tool. Try doing the combo over a short distance first, then gradually increasing the distance until you reach the maximum possible range. 

Lee Sin Burst Combos

Chaining Lee Sin Combo Abilities

A good way to think of Lee Sin he’s kind of like a fighting game character — you can chain abilities in different ways and lead your combos with different openers. While there may not be any “ideal” way to burst enemies, there are some general tips you may want to keep in mind:

  • Try ending combos with Q2. Q2 does more damage the lower your target’s health is, so you want to get them as low as possible before casting Q2. If you can’t finish the combo with Q2, try delaying it for as long as possible.
  • Weave in auto attacks. Lee Sin’s passive gives him attack speed and refunds Energy on his next two attacks after casting an ability. This can give you a lot of extra filler damage in the early game. Cooldowns are still relatively high at this point, and your autos will matter.
  • Make use of your surroundings. In the clip below, I used the Control Ward that the enemy Qiyana was trying to clear. This lets me get into melee range of her without wasting my own wards. Lee Sin can interact with allies and enemies in many different ways, so keep an eye open for any opportunities like this.

The clip was taken a few years ago (RIP old Tiamat), but it’s still a good showcase of how you can think about Lee Sin combos.

Animation buffers with flash or Q > W > Q2 are helpful, and they can catch opponents off-guard, but they’re not necessary to burst effectively. 

Making the Most Out of Your R

League players know that Lee Sin’s R knocks a target back, but not everybody knows that it also roots them during the ability’s cast time. This is important because unless your opponent buffers a movement ability as you’re casting R, they can’t reposition or move at all. It’s what makes Lee Sin insec combos so reliable.

One other important fact to note is that Lee Sin’s R will always cause opponents to be airborne for 0.8 seconds. Even if you kick your opponent onto a wall, they’ll still be airborne for that full 0.8-second duration. This gives you just enough time to throw in a Q while they’re knocked up. Because you can’t cleanse knock-ups and knockbacks normally like other forms of CC, it’s impossible for your opponent to dodge your Q.

Here’s a clip that shows both of these R tips in action:

Making the Most Out of Your R

I quickly Flash ward hop in front of the LeBlanc and kick her immediately so that they have no time to react and dash away. While the LeBlanc is being knocked back, I cast Q in the direction they’re moving, and this secures me an otherwise difficult kill on one of League’s most notoriously mobile champions.

Lee Sin Insec Combos

Ah, the insec. It’s Lee Sin’s signature combo, and what makes him so unique compared to any other champion. The term “insec” comes from a retired pro player of the same name, who popularized the technique. InSec’s famous clip of kicking yellowpete’s Varus into his team showed the world just how much potential Lee Sin had, and the name stuck.

The original InSec kick with Lee Sin.

Today, an “insec” refers to any sort of combo that knocks an enemy champion back to your teammates. It’s even used on champions other than Lee Sin, though some champs have their own version of a knockback combo, too (think Azir and his Shuriman Shuffles). The insec has evolved over the years, and here are just some of the many potential plays you can make with Lee Sin.

Kick Flash

The kick flash isn’t really considered an “insec”, as you’re using Flash instead of a ward hop to reposition behind the opponent. Generally speaking, an insec combo will contain a ward hop in one way or another, but I added this combo just because it’s as functional as any other insec. It’s also the easiest combo to perform, making it ideal for beginners who want to start kicking.

The combo simply involves the R > Flash animation buffer. You close the gap between you and your target, then R > Flash to kick them to your team. Typically, you would gap close using your Q:

Q > Q2 > Kick Flash

If your Q is down or you want to save it for later in the fight, then you can use a ward hop instead. While ward hopping alone doesn’t let you travel as far as your Q, it’s more consistent, as you won’t need to worry about landing Q in the first place. Once you’ve ward hopped near your target, you can either do a kick flash or simply press R if you’re already behind them.

Ward Hop Kick Flash

Ward Hop > Kick Flash

Unfortunately, you won’t always get to be up and close with the enemy ADC in actual games. Because of this, ward hop kick flashes only really work when the opportunity presents itself. If you take advantage of flanking and hiding in fog of war, you may be able to find angles where ward hop kick flashes are possible.

Flash Ward Hop Kick

While this combo doesn’t really have a name, it’s one that you should definitely get some practice on. By using your flash ward hop into an immediate R, you can pull off a very quick insec combo. It boasts a similar range to your Q, as you’re combining both a Flash and a ward hop. It’s also incredibly difficult to react to due to its speed.

Flash Ward Hop Kick

Flash Ward Hop > R

This kick is extremely effective against opponents who don’t know how Lee Sin works. Most players are wary of Lee’s Q, as that’s what you’d usually use to perform insec combos. As a result, they’ll try to dodge your Qs at every opportunity. But with this combo, you can kick a target without relying on your Q, and not everybody expects it.

Flash Ward Hop Kick in Action

The combo has a lot of potential despite being relatively simple. It does use your Flash, though, which you only get every five minutes (unless you have summoner spell haste). Reliable, but also quite costly.

Classic Insec

This is the basic Lee Sin insec combo that everyone is familiar with. While it does look very simple by today’s standards, you do need a bit of practice to get used to the timing of your ward hop. You need to use the ward hop only when you’re in range of getting behind the enemy. Trying to ward hop early while you’re still out of range will only result in a failed combo. 

Q > Q2 > Ward hop > R

Notice how the ward hop happens after Q2 lands. It makes the combo a bit slower but gives you that extra Q2 damage. There are benefits to canceling Q2 early, but in many situations, every point of damage matters.

Fast Insec

A quicker version of the classic insec. this combo sacrifices some damage for a faster kick that’s also harder to react to. You press your buttons in the same order as you would in a classic insec. The timing is slightly different, though:

Q > Q2 > Ward hop before Q2 lands > R

As you can probably tell, the combo makes use of mid-dash buffering. Because you ward hop before your Q2 lands, you’re able to cast abilities as you’re ward hopping. This lets you root the enemy target in place as you’re ward hopping behind them. Against champions with a movement ability, this faster variation of the insec punishes those that don’t react in time.

Chinese Insec

China is home to some of League’s most mechanically gifted players, which is why many difficult combos are associated with the region. Dubbed the Chinese insec, this combo combines Q > Flash buffering and Flash ward hopping in one, sweet sequence. It’s such a satisfying combo to pull off, especially if you do it right for the first time. 

Q > Flash Ward Hop > R > Q2

A couple of things are happening here. Firstly, the Q > Flash buffer lets you move even while you’re still “casting” your Q. Secondly, your Q is guaranteed to hit as long as you aim it right and your opponent doesn’t buffer any movement abilities of their own. When done quickly enough, you will be casting your R just as your Q reaches the target.

Other than looking really cool, Chinese insecs let Lee Sin return to his team after kicking the target. While most Lee Sin insec combos leave Lee at the mercy of the enemy team, even when done right, the Chinese insec basically turns your target into a free ride back to safety. 

Chinese Insec in Action

If you find the Chinese insec too challenging to pull off right away, you can try this variation instead. It uses a ward hop into a kick flash instead of a Flash ward hop to get behind the enemy, and while it is a bit slower, the resulting combo is, for the most part, identical.

Chinese Insec Variation

Q > Ward Hop > Kick Flash > Q2

The only real downside to the Chinese insec (other than its difficulty) is that it uses everything in your toolkit, so it’s an all-or-nothing combo that’s very risky even if you manage to pull it off.

Ladder Insec

As the name suggests, the ladder insec uses a second target as a ladder in order to reach the target that you want to kick. To execute this combo, you’ll not only need enough practice but also have the awareness to spot split-second opportunities when your opponents line up just right.

Q > Q2 > Ward Hop > R

Ladder insecs use your Q in order to get closer to your target, so you’ll need to land it on a nearby enemy. This doesn’t have to be an enemy champion — if there’s a minion or even a jungle monster that’s close to your target, you can use that as a ladder instead. Here’s what ladder insecs typically look like in an actual game:

Ladder Insec in Action

Remember that your Q target can move further away from your primary kick target, so it’s not as reliable as other insects. You can also use Flash instead of a ward hop, but the range is a lot shorter, so it’s even less reliable than a ward hop.

Phantom Ladder Insec

The phantom ladder insec generally refers to a faster, more flexible version of the ladder insec that uses a Flash ward hop to increase your potential travel distance.

Phantom Ladder Insec

Q > Q2 > Flash Ward Hop > R

To be able to execute phantom ladder insecs, you’ll need to be able to reliably Flash ward hop in actual games. Don’t be discouraged if you fail the combo the first few times — it requires both mechanical skill and specific positioning from the enemy team, so things won’t always pan out as it does in your head. Once everything clicks, though, it should look a little something like this:

Phantom Ladder Insec in Action

Much like the Chinese insec, the phantom ladder insec does require a bit of practice before you can reliably pull it off in actual games. Until you’re comfortable with Flash ward hopping, this simpler variation of the combo should be your go-to in the meantime.

Phantom Ladder Insec Variation

Q > Q2 >  Ward Hop > Kick Flash

The key to a successful phantom ladder insec is environmental awareness. Look for any potential target to ladder from, whether it be an enemy champion, monster, or minion.

Drive-by Insec

While incredibly niche, the drive-by insec has the potential to be one of the most effective (and most stylish) Lee Sin insec combos in your arsenal. It’s a combo that is far from reliable, but when you can pull it off, it can lead to some surprising teamfight victories.

Making use of mid-dash buffering, the drive-by insec involves kicking your target while you’re dashing to another target with Q2. The reason why you use Q for the dash buffer is that it has the most potential range out of any of your dashes. This is what the combo looks like:

Q > Ward Hop > Q2 before reaching the ward > R target mid-Q2

If you thought ladder and phantom ladder insecs were situational, drive-by insecs require very specific things to occur. Firstly, you need to be able to land your Q on a target. Since you aren’t CCing the target with your R, they can easily dodge the Q at maximum range.  And even if you do land the Q, your kick target must be between you and the Q mark. 

Since you usually want to kick the ranged carry who sits behind their teammates, opportunities are rare. You can reposition to an extent with your ward hop, but other than that, it’s all dependent on their positioning. And don’t forget, you need to be able to buffer your abilities, too. This can be difficult if you haven’t mastered mid-dash buffering.

In the event that you do find yourself in the perfect situation, however, and you’re able to pull the combo off, congratulations — you’ve just performed an incredibly difficult insec play. When DWG KIA’s jungler Canyon managed to pull it off in a professional game, it became an instant classic.

The Canyon drive-by kick

Fun fact: Canyon was kicking Teddy’s Sivir. He activated his E, Spell Shield, on the off chance that Canyon went for the kick. Canyon still managed to kick Sivir, though. He used his Chilling Smite summoner spell to remove the spell shield before using R.

Final Thoughts

And there you have it — just about every common Lee Sin insec in the book. It’s a lot, yeah, but that just goes to show how much depth lies within Lee Sin’s deceptively simple kit. Practicing the combos regularly will give you the muscle memory to perform them when the opportunity strikes. While he may be a tough champion to pilot, Lee Sin’s satisfying to use once you’re familiar with his kit. And, if nothing else, you’ll look a whole lot cooler when playing him.

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