4 days ago
2
Patch 3.3
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Free Agent - NA

Rei isn't the definitive best dueler or healer, but she provides many benefits to her team while maintaining a powerful presence on the battlefield. A good build is incredibly important, as Rei is a mediocre support at best without some of her core cards.

As I use Rei more this guide may be updated as new updates or experiences may change my mind.

Talents
Build Section
Notes

First let's take a look at Rei's talents, as each can have different purposes when being picked and can often help decide a fight.

Extension
Extension

Extension

Increase the range of Chain Heal bounces by 40%.

Level 1

Notes

Extension is the most popular of the talents to be picked, and it's not hard to see why. It is easily the best talent pick for most games as it provides a passive buff which doesn't impact core gameplay too much. Choosing Extension is never a bad pick, especially if you plan on being the main healer on your team.

Restraint
Restraint

Restraint

Spirit Link

While Envelop is active and you are Linked to an enemy, prevent them from Healing.

Level 1

Notes

Restraint fills a very niche role in very few games, but you should always be careful when deciding to pick it. Base this almost solely off the composition of the enemy team. If there are 3 or more supports and a tank, then this is likely a good pick. If you believe the enemy tank could out-heal your team, then you may want to go for it. But overall, this perk is unimpactful at best, given that Envelop lasts 3 seconds with a cooldown of 14 seconds. Even if it was perfectly timed, healing will still be available for the enemy almost 85% of the time, while you are forced to stay in range as well as reduce the healing effectiveness of your team. Building cauterize will usually be a better option.

Focus
Focus

Focus

Spirit Link

Spirit Link's Cooldown is increased to 7s and it now only lasts for 4s, but its base effects are tripled.

Level 1

Notes

Focus is a very special talent of Rei that I personally use almost every match but I would not recommend. It is by far the best perk for 1v1 situations and can be used if you decide flank Rei is a wonderful idea.
On first glance it may seem this talent is advisable as the overall effects of Spirit Link are greater than normal. For ultimate boost the standard Spirit Link will net 3.5% ultimate charge every 7 seconds whereas Focused Spirit link will provide 4.5%. The statistics are misleading however, as this ignores 2 major factors that are essential to Rei's loadout.
Firstly, it does not triple the percent boost that linked players receive from Chain Heal. This alone would not make it bad but you would have to perfectly time each chain heal in order to get the boost at all, considering that allies would not be linked for over half the match.
Secondly, switching targets quickly is very helpful for Rei for both Envelop and Vivify, as both are powerful when linked to the right ally. This also factors in the fact that sometimes Spirit Link will not link to the person you aim at, so being able to switch to the intended target is ideal.
This all makes Focus the worst talent, right?

Well, not exactly. In theory Focus is the most powerful talent with a coordinated team, but it is extremely difficult to use. It is, however, great when deciding to flank or 1v1 flanks. Linking to an enemy can provide great boosts that can help you take down all but the most powerful tanks in the game. With the right cards, Spirit link can deal 200 damage per second, slow 30%, and straight up cancel 20% of damage done to you by that player. Provided you link to an enemy first, this beam has infinite range, almost guaranteeing 600 damage on an opponent (some opponents such as Atlas can unlink through time travel). A 30% slow will almost completely nullify champions such as Maeve, Victor, or Evie, making Rei the queen of killing flanks as a support.
Focus comes at the great cost of being a terrible healer for your team, but provided you spam Spirit Link enough, it may be worth it.

Builds
Build Section
Notes

Rei's builds are extremely important as her cards are very powerful and game changing, allowing Rei to become a halfway viable support.

Support Builds
Notes

Although I usually pick aggressive builds with Rei when I play with a coordinated team, actually healing your team is normally good if you are the only healer.

Hard Support
Magic in the Blood

Magic in the Blood

Weapon

Reduce the Cooldown of your next Chain Heal by 0.5s after hitting an enemy with Sigil. This effect stacks.

Level 5

Refreshing Break

Refreshing Break

Chain Heal

Grant 1% Ultimate Charge to each player to which Chain Heal bounces.

Level 5

Arcane Manipulation

Arcane Manipulation

Envelop

Reduce the Cooldown of Envelop by 0.8999999999999999s.

Level 3

Rest and Relaxation

Rest and Relaxation

Weapon

Increase your maximum Ammo by 2.

Level 1

Spring to Action

Spring to Action

Spirit Link

Increase the Healing Spirit Links provides every 1s to your linked friendly target by 20 Health.

Level 1

Extension

Extension

Increase the range of Chain Heal bounces by 40%.

Level 1

Notes

Rei is a very unique support in which her primary focus isn't healing, but damage mitigation and ultimate charge buffs. Envelop is just as important of an ability as her chain heal, as putting a cap on damage your ally can take can tank some of the harshest heroes such as Bomb King and Kinessa as well as letting two people tank any ultimate that deals burst damage such as Skye's. Another point could easily be taken off Arcane manipulation to be put on Refreshing break if you value your team's ultimates more. Overall, I would consider this build

Essentials

Magic in the Blood (5 Points)

I consider Magic in the Blood to be, by a mile, Rei's best card. Sigil deals 450 damage per shot, meaning you should never not be shooting at any enemy you can see. Reducing the cooldown of her healing is what keeps Chain Heal from being outperformed by almost any other healer. Provided you are constantly dealing damage, Chain Heal's cooldown will effectively be almost 2.5 seconds instead of 4, keeping your team in the fight much longer. I would advise keeping this card as high priority unless you don't plan on being near your team at all. Even in aggressive builds, being able to heal yourself faster helps both you and your team.

Refreshing Break (4-5 Points)

Refreshing break is another essential card for support Rei, as it provides the buffs that she needs to keep the team in the fight. This can easily be used to charge a game changing ultimate or just passively charge the entire team's ultimates to have a massive advantage in any push against the enemy.

Arcane Manipulation (2-3 Points)

Envelop is an often underrated ability as it caps the damage your linked ally can take to 275 per instance. This is crazy good, and reducing often it happens can nullify several hard hitting attacks. I normally take Arcane Manipulation over Enveloping Magic because 275 damage is already a very low number that there is little need to go under that.

Interchangeables

Almost any of Rei's cards are good at this point in the build, with very few I would not recommend to use such as Threat and Subject, Desperate Defense, or Enveloping Magic. I'll address some of my favorite and popular ones in this section.

Rest and Relaxation

Having 2 or more extra ammo for Sigil is just nice to have as you should never stop slinging the balls of death everywhere. Never getting deft hands means that more ammo is never a bad choice. I often see this one having the most impact for a card with 1 point allocated.

Spring to Action

As the most interchangeable card, this one just boosts the passive healing of Rei just a bit. Be mindful to always be linked to a person who needs it to make full use of a card like such.

Future Generations

Although I see this card a lot, I personally harbor no good feelings for this card. I just cannot see a champion with 2200 tanking 2000 damage and surviving a great deal of the time. That being said, it isn't ever a bad card to have as a filler.

Leipori Prayer

Another that I see a lot, Leipori Prayer is a decent card to have as a filler. I personally do not use it as bounces occur the most between tanks and there are some tanks who do not reload often such as Raum or Yagorath. Overall not a bad card to try and passively boost your team's dps though.

Items
Build Section
Standard Support Items
Chronos

Chronos

Armor

Reduce the Cooldown of all your abilities by 10%.

Level 1

Cauterize

Cauterize

Weapon

Your weapon shots reduce the effect of healing on your target by 25% for 1.5s.

Level 1

Veteran

Veteran

Armor

Increase your base maximum Health by 4%.

Level 1

Haven

Haven

Armor

Reduce the Damage you take from Direct and Area of Effect attacks by 5.5%.

Level 1

Resilience

Resilience

Armor

Reduce the duration and effectiveness of Crowd Control and Slows by 25%.

Level 1

Nimble

Nimble

Armor

Gain 7% Movement Speed.

Level 1

Morale Boost

Morale Boost

Armor

Increase your Ultimate charge rate by 10%.

Level 1

Notes

My 4 go-to items normally consist of Chronos, Cauterize, Veteran, and Haven; a combo which prioritizes keeping me, and therefore my team, alive while stifling the enemy's healing. Often Veteran can be substituted for other items of preference such as Resilience if the enemy has a lot of CC or Nimble if you are feeling able to avoid more attacks and want to keep up with the team

Morale Boost fills a niche spot if you want to often use Vivify on someone with a lot of health like Raum or Yagorath.

I exclude items such as Illuminate due to Rei's unique ability to track invisible champions such as Skye or Saati through Spirit Link.