Best options to face Kai'Sa in League of Legends
Kai'Sa has mixed damage in her kit and combined with her clear power spikes makes her one of the best choices on the lower route, especially with the right itemization. She has gone through several weakening and strengthening since her release and while some have been enough to push her out of the meta. While she will likely receive weakenings to level down compared to other champions, her mixed damage profile will always put her in a great spot for various compositions.
She fits well into compositions with a lot of physical damage, as enemies will likely focus on making armor to deal with most threats and ignore itemizing magic resistance items, which are crucial against Kai'Sa. While she can carry games on her own due to her mixed damage profile, invisibility, and overall durability, she has some clear weaknesses to help you prevent her dominance.
Here are the best options for defeating Kai'Sa on the lower route.
Kai'Sa is a difficult champion to face due to the nature of her kit and the possibilities she has. Some Kai'Sa players choose to attack from a distance and try to slowly decrease her amount of Life, while others may want to play melee range and activate the passive as quickly as possible for a huge burst of damage.
Regardless of play style, Kai'Sa is vulnerable when she approaches, as she does not have a head start and relies solely on the movement speed of her Overload (E) from the start. When she uses this ability, she will receive an attack speed bonus, so it is important to avoid switching during the time after activation if you don't want to lose the switch. When the empowerment is over, you can turn on her and use your tools to swap during the route phase.
When Kai'Sa reaches level six, she will have access to the usa ultimate, which is a high-speed advance with a shield on top. You should avoid going switches afterwards unless you are sure you can penetrate the shield to deliver the killing blow. At the same time, you should be careful not to get poked, because if she hits a Void Explorer (W) when you are low on Life, she can follow up with her Killer Instinct (R) and kill you with a quick burst of her Q.
Kai'Sa is one of the more unique LoL champions, as her abilities can be upgraded just like Kha'Zix, except that her spikes are easier to acquire by getting the specific stats, such as attack damage, ability power, or attack speed. You should be careful with her bonuses, as her damage increases greatly if her Q or W is evolved and at the same time she gets a small invisibility period on her E.
Miss Fortune is a great champion who can handle Kai'Sa very well on the lower route and use her power to convert leadership to other routes as well.
In the beginning, your goal should be to try to hit troops while Kai'Sa is behind them for huge amounts of damage with Two for One (Q). If you get some critical hits with this ability, you can force Kai'Sa to stay back and prevent her from getting troops. If you freeze the route, you can build up a big advantage over the enemy lower route and nullify her presence for early game objectives like Aralto, Arongueijos, or Dragons. If you are freezing, beware of ambushes, as players often rally to break a wave of frozen troops to help their teammates.
If you can't freeze the wave, try to push Kai'Sa under the tower and engage her in exchanges as quickly as possible, as her initial damage is much higher. When you reach level six, your ultimate can destroy Kai'Sa if she is not careful with her positioning, so try to force flash her in a few trades to give you a chance to get a guaranteed kill with your ultimate during the next trade.
If you played the route phase correctly, you should have a gold advantage, which will allow you to group up early with your team and help them push turrets, take neutral objectives, or storm the enemy jungle. In team fights, try to be a good source of damage for your team and avoid chasing Kai'Sa, only do this if she is very poorly placed and an easy target to take out.
Samira is an option to take on Kai'Sa. She has a great kit for fighting Kai'Sa thanks to the Sharp Vortex (W) skill, which can stop the Icathian Rain from exploding. With this ability on reload time, Samira has the advantage in early game exchanges and can poke Kai'Sa quite hard, or even take her down if she is poorly positioned.
Her mobility skill Indomitable Impetus (E) is a great tool against Kai'Sa, as she has no mobility outside of her Overload (E), and you can start to get favorable exchanges early on and build up small leads that will build up over time. If you keep trading with Kai'Sa when her Q or E is in recharge time, you can force her summoner spells or take her down if she has none.
Once out of the route phase, you should have a solid gold advantage if you follow the tips above and are able to group up with your team while Kai'Sa is stuck trying to get back into the game. If you helped your team pick up some towers or objectives, feel free to go back to the lower route to accumulate some experience and gold. If Kai'Sa tries to confront her, use your Sharp Vortex (W) to negate her explosion and turn on her with your combo to kill her. Keep her under control and don't allow her to shoot down troops freely. Don't let her reach her power spikes, which improve her abilities, because she will become much more powerful than you.
Unlike Samira and Miss Fortune, which have some margin for error, Vayne is a skill combination that requires you to play your route very well, avoiding unfavorable exchanges and being aware of the route's current status. You don't have the burst damage of Miss Fortune, nor the mobility of Samira, but you have a lot of sustained damage, which you should be able to do when Kai'Sa has her abilities on recharge time.
Try to activate Silver Darts (W) every time Kai'Sa tries to take her last hits on troops. If she uses her Ichathian Rain (Q) to take out troops, engage her and try to hit a good Condemn (E) to punish her. By doing this combo two or three times, she should be low enough in Life to come back and give you time to get your main items.
Once you have your mythic item, such as Killer-Krachem or Immortal Archer, you can easily beat Kai'Sa if you keep her under control and she is not in a snowball. Feel free to camp out in bushes and ambush her with your Final Hour (R) on the invisible Roll (Q). By the time she realizes what is happening, she will be dead to your damage.
In team fights, look for flanks on the unsuspecting Kai'Sa and do not stay close to your team, try to use the invisibility part of your ultimate for large flanks to exclude the opposing Kai'Sa from the Rift and change the course of the battle in your team's favor to easily get a victory.
Items to face Kai'Sa
Galvanized Steel Boots
This is an alternative boot option to the traditional Berserker's Grevas if you want to reduce her basic attack damage. While she has a lot of mixed damage and ignores most of the reduction, it is still a good investment if you are having trouble dealing with her. It is a great investment against compositions that have multiple champions that do physical damage.
This is a cheap item to help you early on against Kai'Sa's pokes. If you are going for an itemization that has Vampiric Scepter, you can rush it to nullify the initial pokes from your W or Q and keep you healthy to stay on course for long periods.
This item is a great defensive option if you are having trouble dealing with Kai'Sa's blast or his teammates. It provides a lot of stats on top of a passive shield that can be easily maintained and helps you survive team fights so you can deal damage.
Immortal Shield Bow
This is a great mythic item to prevent Kai'Sa from destroying you if you are low on Life. If you are facing a compound full of assassins, you can use the Immortal Shield Bow to increase your survivability. It has a great build tree, which allows you to sustain yourself from Kai'Sa's nudges and survive her all-in if she decides to initiate.
This is the offensive Mythic item that you should choose in most of your games because of its damage potential. With it, you can turn the tide against Kai'Sa if she misses and take her down before she realizes where the blast came from. It is an essential item today for most shooters due to its great build tree. While the mobility part of the advance is not as useful, the damage part will be useful against Kai'Sa.