Build Guide by JodiLynn
Not Updated For Current Season
This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.
Jarvan IV Build
Not Updated For Current Season
The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.
Hi, welcome to my Jarvan guide! It's my first time, be gentle. By no means should you take my word to mean much of anything, and as always this is a GUIDE not a set-in-stone kind of thing. Build how you want depending on who/what you're facing. A note about this guide: I play 3v3 almost exclusively, so I have not tested it at all in 5v5. I'll be talking about how things play out in the 3v3 metagame, so be warned.
OK so in the Champion spotlight they describe Jarvan as a Tanky DPS. I don't build much tankiness into him, I go straight for the DPS. You could certainly change some things around if you're getting taken out a lot, and in fact you should! Let's get to work shall we?
Let's talk runes. We know that Jarvan's ability reduces armor, and that his abilities are (mostly) scaled off of AD. What better way to enhance that than with greater mark of desolation greater quintessence of desolation Armor Penetration Marks and Quints? I think it's a no brainer there. We want to give Jarvan some survivability (he's a tanky DPS right?), so we give him some Dodge Seals. In that same spirit of survivability, we're gonna give him some Magic Resist Glyphs as well. You could absolutely go with some different runes if you're having trouble, for instance if you find yourself running out of mana a lot you could go with Mp5 Seals. It's all a matter of choice!
These are just your standard 21/9/0 DPS Masteries. The Cripple is essential. It's another way to lower armor and to slow your enemy. Taking more Magic Resist and Dodge masteries in the defensive tree just boosts what we've got going on with those runes. Synergy? Yes please.
This is another area where you could change it around if you'd like, but I'd like to explain why I take this specific skill sequence. A lot of people say to take the E ability first, but I don't find that it makes much of a difference in the opening gank on the bottom lane. For sure it gives your team some added attack speed, but what does that speed do if they have armor? What DOES make a difference you ask? Being able to poke your spear into that little bush before going in, potentially lowering everyone on the opposing team's armor. Got a Caitlyn with you? Have her shoot Piltover Peacemaker while you Q your lance in there. Same goes with Kennen's Shuriken, Mundo's Cleaver, etc. etc. etc.
So our priority is the Q skill which will not only lower armor, it does some nice damage that's scaled with AD and will take a lot of life off minions helping you farm.
Our next priority is the E skill. You want to get this on lvl 2 so that you can use it to scout bushes, do AOE damage, and throw people into the air when paired with your Q.
Our W skill is a nice little damage soak/slow, so we want one point in it early. Its prime usefulness comes later though, so this is maxed out last.
Of course you want to take a point in your ult every chance you get.
Let's face it, Jarvan is SLOW. So we start with some good ol' Boots of Speed, and 3 health potions. First trip back to camp will buy your Berserker's Greaves (or whichever boots you prefer) and Zeal (if you can't afford all of Zeal, it's up to you which part to buy). A note about your boots: if you are worried about survivability, choose other boots besides Berserker's. Ninja Tabi are a great way to go if facing heavy AD teams (and they synergize with your dodge runes/masteries), and if you're facing heavy AP teams then Mercury Treads are the way to go (again, synergizing with your runes/masteries). In certain instances you COULD buy Boots of Swiftness, but I'd only get them if you're planning on getting really REALLY mobile and being nothing but a gankmachine. After Zeal, upgrade it to Phantom Dancer. Attack Speed and Mobility are what you want to help Jarvan build up his farming ability. Next we're going to get a BF Sword into Black Cleaver. Remember what I keep harping about, that synergy thing? Yeah, this is your meat and potatoes right here. Attack Damage and Speed, along with the ability to lower armor. greater mark of desolation Runes+ Q+ Black Cleaver=serious armor reduction. After that, we want some staying power. That's where we get our Vampiric Scepter into a Bloodthirster. Once we have the PD, Cleaver, and Bloodthirster, we're doing MAJOR damage. Icing on the cake? Infinity Edge. You should be critically striking for around 1000 damage now, and it's at least every other hit that does that. That's not counting how much damage your abilities are doing, that's just your autoattacks. Last item is completely up to you, but if your game is going on long enough to get this far, you're going to want some more survivability. Guardian Angel gives it to you in spades!
We're looking for ganks and crowd control with Jarvan. With that in mind, what other spells should you use besides ghost and exhaust? You could use flash if you'd prefer that instant teleport it gives, but I'm not much of a fan of it. If your cursor's in the wrong spot, you're dead. So we take Ghost for the ganking possibility; and it's also a great OMG I NEED TO LEAVE spell. Need to get to the bottom lane from the top lane right quick? Ghost. You can also use it to catch up to a fleeing enemy that's JUUUUUUST out of range of your ult. Exhaust is also the icing on your Crowd Control Cake. Imagine this: you icon=cataclysm] Ult in, trapping them. Use your E/ Q combo, knocking them into the air. Use your W to shield yourself and slow them, then hit them with Exhaust. If they can get away from you after that? You're doin it wrong yo.
Let's talk about how to use this guy eh? As stated earlier, we're focusing on the 3v3 map. So we need to buy our
hp and get going to that gank ASAP! Quick quick quick is what you want to do. Just as you get near whatever bush you're going to gank from, check it with your Q. Shove that spear in there, and if the enemy knows what's good for them they'll bail. If they don't? Bonus.
Exhaust the squishy and have at it with your victim's armor reduced to almost nothing. Think they may get away?
Ghost. If your gank goes badly? Hit
Ghost out of there.
After the gank, try to get to the top lane to solo. I'd only give up the solo lane to a ranged DPS, and that's ONLY if the enemy has a ranged DPS that's going to solo. Focus on farming. Jarvan's a great farmer! What you want to do is hit every minion once, taking advantage of your passive ability. When you've done that, hit as many with your Q as you can. This will take out quite a few (if not all) of the creeps, and you can watch as your enemy laner drops his jaw and runs off screaming into the jungle.
Speaking of jungle, Jarvan loves the jungle. He's not a jungler per se, but he does like to get those buffs and extra gold/xp. Once you've taken out your lane's turret? Jungle til you can afford your next big ticket item. ALWAYS look for ganking opportunities when in the jungle. Don't jungle the top when your teammates are defending your turret, you have to defend your lane AND jungle at the same time. If you're doing it right, that's no problem at all.
Teamfights: YOU are the initiator. Jarvan's ult is made specifically for this task. And for the love of all that's unholy, make ABSOLUTELY SURE you're only gonna ult on one foe. You see two enemies running together? DO NOT ult them (unless they're fleeing with no health, in which case have at it). If you do, you're now stuck in this little circle of death for 3.5 seconds. While you dish out an amazing amount of damage, you're not a god. You're probably gonna die. And it's your fault. Shame on you. Anyway, ult up one of your enemies, lay down the E, Q to the flag which knocks them up, then hit W and slow them as soon as the arena goes down. If you've done it right, they're dead. If the team fight is still going on, it's a simple matter of your E/ Q combo along with your W to keep up that CC and keep your enemies from retreating while your team pounds away at them. Don't forget to Exhaust the tank as the teamfight winds down! If you think you're gonna die? W then Ghost out of there.
All in all, I'd say that Jarvan is just an amazing character with all kinds of possibilities for his skills. He's my favorite character by far. His dominance on the 3v3 map is going to grow by leaps and bounds, and soon he'll be one you see in every team that doesn't have a Tryndamere or Olaf or Yi (and some that do). Hope you like my guide, see you on the Fields of Justice!