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Poppy Build Guide by Zirket Was

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Zirket Was

[After rework, patch5.24, incomplete] Poppy Jungle Assassin

Zirket Was Last updated on January 7, 2016
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Team 1

Ability Sequence

2
3
5
7
9
Ability Key Q
4
14
15
17
18
Ability Key W
1
8
10
12
13
Ability Key E
6
11
16
Ability Key R





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.



Masteries

Fury
 
 
Sorcery
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Vampirism
 
 
Natural Talent
 
 
 
 
 
Bounty Hunter
Oppressor
 
 
 
 
 
Battering Blows
 
 
Piercing Thoughts
 
 
 
 

Ferocity: 0

Wanderer
 
 
5/
Savagery
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
5/
Merciless
 
 
Meditation
 
 
 
 
 
Bandit
1/
Dangerous Game
 
 
 
 
 
5/
Precision
 
 
Intelligence
 
 
 
 

Cunning: 18

Recovery
 
 
5/
Unyielding
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Explorer
Tough Skin
 
 
 
 
 
5/
Runic Armor
 
 
Veteran's Scars
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Insight
Perseverance
 
 
 
 
 
Swiftness
 
 
Legendary Guardian
 
 
 
 

Resolve: 12


Guide Top

Introduction



Hello, i'm Zirket Was and i'm a EuroWest player. I tend to main melee tanky champion ( Garen, Sejuani), and to know a lot of my main (i'm kind of a one trick pony player, i know...). I'm rankless and have no ranked game in my portafolio, but that is mostly because i play with 09FPS and 200mps everygame. And i generally don't feel like I wanna start playing ranked.

I'm writing this guide to explain how to build poppy in jungle, as for now she tend to have a 32% winning rate. I tend to dismiss that as the result of wrong item build and mastery choice. We are, after all, at the first patch after the rework, that did change a lot how poppy work. I also feel like the hero's spotlight on the new poppy is kinda of deceiver on how she work, making her look like some kind of utility Garen. (She seriusly recall Lee Sin to me)


To start things up, I want to point out the two mastery that in my opinion are more synergic with poppy: Fervor of Battle and Thunderlord's Decree . I do believe that Grasp of the Undying is pointless as poppy's ability doesn't sinergize well with lots of health (she is not Tahm Kench or Garen). I will explain more on that later on in the guide. Do know that I'll point out distinct note for everything in regard of both mastery.

Any grammar corection, any adevice and any pointing out error that i made will be more than welcome! So do feel obliged at commenting.


Guide Top

Pro/Con

Pro Con
+After level 4, she can complete the jungle whithout losing much life thank to Iron Ambassador
+High roaming power and gapclosing power
+Build-in (enemy) %max HP damage
+Strong gank - but it need skill to perform-
+Ultimate isolate enemy champion
+Great at building defence stat, like Malphite
+ Heroic Charge knockback opponent
+Jungling solve her bad early game
+Jungling give her a mana item and sustain item at low price
+She is really good at counterjungling, as there it's way easier to land well Heroic Charge
-Somewhat item reliant
-Unlike Malphite and Tahm Kench, building defense stat don't augment your damage output.
-Need proper positioning before engange
- Heroic Charge can't be used to escape
- Heroic Charge need a ward and legitimate target to jump over terrain
- Keeper's Verdict is a channeled ability, making it difficult to use it defensively or as a reaction.
- Steadfast Presence is difficult to time defensively
-Her Iron Ambassador's shield need to be pick up like Draven axe. It isn't reliable in some occasion.
-Problem at sticking on enemy
-hard to flee due to her low base movement speed if not itemized correctly!
-She is really weak if she doesn't land properly her Heroic Charge
-You need to learn Lee Sin's R-Flash combo
-She have big issue whit lag
- Keeper's Verdict need a lot of training, good decision making skill and reliable teammate to be used effectively.
- Keeper's Verdict is all around the worst ultimate in game to play
-Her cooldown are to big
- Hammer Shock AOE is to small and narrow, and the slow not enough
-She can't win trade whitout landing Heroic Charge well!
- Keeper's Verdict and Heroic Charge may save and help enemy team if not played correctly!


Guide Top

Runes and Runes option

Marks

Greater Mark of Armor Penetration I personally prefer armor penetration as my Poppy mark. Together with Hammer Shock 6%/12% MaxHP damage, i feel that it make for a great anti tank (but even anti squissy) mark choice. It does get kind of out of hand whit Precision letting you stack high flat armor penetration. I also like them because they are fine whit bot Fervor of Battle and Thunderlord's Decree , and whit bot a damage build and a tanky one.

Other option are Greater Mark of Attack Speed if you wanna play fervor, and Greater Mark of Hybrid Penetration if you plan to build Guinsoo's Rageblade. I feel that Greater Mark of Attack Damage aren't a good choice, tough, because she don't need them to last hit, and she already have little problem in the jungle. They would add 46 damage at level 2 on a simple EQ combo, tough. On line, i would probably pick them.

Quint

Unlike the Mark, you have way more choice for your quint! Other than Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed and Greater Quintessence of Hybrid Penetration, you can choice to pick up Greater Quintessence of Cooldown Reduction, Greater Quintessence of Armor, Greater Quintessence of Magic Resist and Greater Quintessence of Life Steal. The first three are good on tanky build: CDR let you spam more Hammer Shock, and Armor/Magic Resistance stack well wit Steadfast Presence. Armor have added bonus of less damage in jungle, while Magic Resistance let you concentrate on building armor sooner.
As for the life steal, it make poppy even more safer in jungle and let you postpone a lot building a Vampiric Scepter
Another option are Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed, as poppy base Movement speed is really low, and unlike Garen she can't trust to much her move enancher ability (due to the otragious long cooldown!). To be franck, i actually prefer MS quint while lining, and i still pick up only one/two.
After having play Poppy a lot, i've to say that i'm favoring a lot 3-2 flat armor quint (and one movement speed) and 9 scaling armor seal. This give you the necessary defense to build an early Warrior/Cinderhulk without to much drawback.

NB: After having played Poppy extensively, I have to warn you on how much important are the quintessence in lining, as different Quint means you should also have a different initial item in line!

Seal

Although I do believe that 9 scaling armor may be better all around, I pick 4 flat armor out of laziness in the early jungle camp clear. By level 3/4, when you do the first gank, you have Steadfast Presence that pretty much give you 7-8 flat armor and make up for that. And at level 7, Scaling became more useful than Flat. The only other option is either Greater Seal of Health or Greater Seal of Armor, but i tend to advise you against them.

Gliph

More or less like the Seal, I advise to just pick Scaling defense runes. Unlike the seal, I have the advice to pick 3 Cooldown gliph if you picked up that kind of mark. This way, Poppy will have 10% Flat cdr or 20% Scaling cdr, making it easier to build item around to reach the cap (and don't leaving that 2,5% cdr lingering around). I kind of advise against 9 flat CDR rune, as that would bring you at 15% flat Cdr, but if you pick them, do pick one flat CDR quint and 2 Quint of something else.


Guide Top

Mastery build pro/con

Fervor VS Thunderlord
+Work great whit Enchantment: Devourer
+Open you up at building item that wouldn't be so great otherwise
+Constant Dps after combo Burst
+Need only devourer to be effective.
+Landing well EQ is worth 8 stack, the first AA bring at ten.
-Any E-Q-AA combo land it
-Best whit extra armor penetration item
-More effective at building straight tankiness from the start
-Extremelly bursty with a Sheen


Guide Top

Fervor of Battle's mastery build

Masteries
5/5
1/1
5/1
1/5
5/1
1/5
5/5
1/1
5/5
1/5

This is my to-go Poppy's Fervor of Battle Build. As it's now, Fervor charge really fast for melee kind of champion, and in the case of poppy that engage whit an EQ combo, you pretty much start your first AA at 4 charge in the worst case scenario. 6 charge, if you poked the enemy champion for gaining poppy shield, but this is unlikely as a jungler. Landing an Heroic Charge stun is worth 4 stack, and a follow up Hammer Shok is another 4. Whit just that, Fervor is an Interesting mastery, as it pack quite the damage even if you choice to build tanky item and no extra damage one. Whit just a Enchantment: Devourer enchantment you can splash high damage, whitout need of extra damage item. Still, this isn't like the reliability of Riven with fervor.

Ferocity Mastery

Tier I: bot Fury and Sorcery are good on poppy, but as we are going to build the Enchantment: Devourer i prefer to have more attack speed. That also work well whit having more lifesteal, by the way.
TierII: I suppose that Feast could be pretty good on Poppy to stay healthy in line, but Double Edged Sword just give you to much extra damage to be looked down to. Also the 25 cooldown for feast make me grind my teeth when i look at that ability, making me never actually have tried it.
TierIII: The sustain of Vampirism work wonders with Iron Ambassador's shield. It's really better then 10 AD at level 18.
TierIV: What to say... Hammer Shock do indeed slow a bit, so you could take theoretically Oppressor , but as you will go around the map hunting squishes, Bounty Hunter don't feel so hard to charge. Also note that you will probably build only tank destroyer item, so killing pretty much any champion isn't so impossible.
TierV: your whole kit deal physical damage. You will bring Mark of Armor Penetration. You will build Blade of the Ruined King, The Black Cleaver or Youmuu's Ghostblade. Extra armor penetration want be bad at all. Battering Blows also work additively whit the mark, as it's calculated before them for the final damage. (The order is %Armor reduction > flat armor reduction > %armor penetration > flat armor penetration. that means stacking a lot of %armor penetration don't make your runes less worth.)
Key Mastery: Fervor of Battle charge fast on poppy. As I've already explained, the simple engagement combo give you 4 stack out of her 10, and the remaining 6 are pretty much reachable in 3 hit. As poppy tend to rely on auto attacks after having cast Heroic Charge and Hammer Shock, that means that she does have great benefit out that single mastery. This also open poppy at building straight armor-health/magic resistance-health item after the Enchantment: Devourer, making her some sort of strange Nasus.

Cunning

Tier I: bot of the first two cunning's tree mastery are good, even if they give little extra stat. Wanderer is better late game to roam, as it give around 10 ms. Don't belittle it, as 20 ms is the difference between normal boots and Boots of Swiftness. Savagery add 5 damage on single target spell ( Heroic Charge) and autos. As we'll play with mark of armor penetration, we dial less damage to monster. This mastery solve that early game little problem.
Tier II: all three of this mastery work well in jungle, but Assassin is probably the best, working as an extra Sorcery .
Tier III: Meditation is good only early game to smooth Heroic Charge absurd 70 mana cost. Merciless instead let you deal a lot of damage to weakened enemy, and do count that EQ combo usually do deal kind of half the opponent life on squishy champion on early gank.
Tier IV: i don't like bot Bandit and Dangerous Game on poppy jungle. There is the option to take one point into Unyielding here, that work in a recoursive way with Steadfast Presence. That is up to you.


Guide Top

Thunderlord's Decree Build

Masteries
5/5
1/1
5/5
1/1
5/1
1/1
5/5
1/1
5/1
1/5

This, instead, is my to-go Poppy's Thunderlord's Decree build. Whit this build, my aim is to sacrifice some attack potential for a bit more of tankiness. This is even more effective for building Poppy as a jungler tank, because Thunderlord and Precision will keep the damage high. The main difference is that this build work less well with the base Hunter's Machete enchantment. Enchantment: Warrior is the one that work better whit this build, but even then, building Serrated Dirk before that is usually better. Another possibility is to sacrifice thunderlord for Strength of the Ages , and then build Glacial Shroud and Spectre's Cowl before the Enchantment: Cinderhulk. At the expanse of a lot of damage. Grasp of the Undying and Bond of Stone are generally less good as the don't work well with Poppy's ability. Poppy is more effective stacking lot more armor than health, so GotU tend to deal less. On the other hand, if popped from Iron Ambassador improved attack, that doesn't count as ranged attack and want be halved in his damage. As for BoS, that is an acceptable mastery, but it's kind of really better just on support champion. Still! BoS is better than Grasp of the Undying when jungling with poppy, as it's still extra damage reduction.
Cunning Mastery
Tier I: bot of the first two cunning's tree mastery are good, even if they give little extra stat. Wanderer is better late game to roam, as it give around 10 ms. Don't belittle it, as 20 ms is the difference between normal boots and Boots of Swiftness. Savagery add 5 damage on single target spell ( Heroic Charge) and autos. As we'll play with mark of armor penetration, we dial less damage to monster. This mastery solve that early game little problem.
Tier II: all three of this mastery work well in jungle, but Assassin is probably the best, working as an extra Sorcery .
Tier III: Meditation is good only early game to smooth Heroic Charge absurd 70 mana cost. Merciless instead let you deal a lot of damage to weakened enemy, and do count that EQ combo usually do deal kind of half the opponent life on squishy champion on early gank.
Tier IV: i don't like bot Bandit and Dangerous Game on poppy jungle. But Dangerous Game do work better then [[bandit as it give a little extra heal.
Tier V: Intelligence is extremely useful as it give extra CDR on such a CDR hungry champ. Pick that if you haven't picked the armor penetration mark and quint. If you DID pick them, Precision make you reach insane Armor Penetration. As Youmuu's Ghostblade and Maw of Malmortius are good in any case on poppy, you can guess how much damage you can squish out even on tanky bruiser.
Key Mastery: Thunderlord's Decree is simple impossible to not cast. EQ(AA) is pretty much something you will do every single engage, making it a pretty safe Mastery

Resolve

Tier I: Unyielding work in a redundant way whit Steadfast Presence. Whit that i means that it have the same interaction between Vladimir's Crimson Pact and the old Archmage mastery. The bonus stat from one of the two effect is then boosted by the other one. Like this, you have a total of 17.6%/30.2% extra armor and magic resistance. Just too good.
Tier II: Explorer because Tough Skin is bad as a jungler. And I'm a creeper for movement speed.
Tier III: 45 health make no sense outside lines, so just grab Runic Armor for more sustain out of lifesteal and an improved shield.
Tier IV: Poppy do tend to clear the jungle too fast, and Insight make Smite be able to catch up whit that. Also it take away a whole minute of cooldown from that bloody Flash.


Guide Top

Ability usage and play tips

First we must discuss the Passive:

Poppy's passive work as an improved autoattack. This mean that the attack can still crit. It also give her decent extra magic damage, and apply on-hit effect exactly like if it was a melee attack (that comprehend the Titanic Hydra on-hit aoe). This ability recharge every 18/14/10 second and spawn a shield that protect for 15% of her maximum health and last for 4/5/6 (improving at level seven and thirteen). This ability is better in line then in jungle. You rarely will be able to use it on a gank.

Tips:
  • Start your camp by trowing the shield, use Heroic Charge, then pick it up at the end of the stun duration. This will ensure that your shield is always up when you start a camp, and that you will have more life at the end of his duration.
  • The ranged attack apply on-hit effect like if it's a melee one. Frozen Mallet will still slow by 40%, to make an example.
  • The extra magic damage wont be doubled by Enchantment: Devourer
  • The shield always bounce near the opponent and a wall. This is meant to be use for baiting enemy on walking on it, so you can stun them whit heroic charge. In fact, the shield is by no means as effective as Malphite's Granite Shield in gank or teamfight (because it must be picked up).
  • The ranged attack of Iron Ambassador let you discharge from range bot Sheen and Titanic Hydra empowered Autoattack
Hammer Shock is Poppy's main font of damage against in the jungle. Hitting whit bot part of the spell give you an impressive 130% Attack Damage + 12% of the opponent's maximum health attack. Low mana cost, low cooldown when maxed, this is your main spammable spell. And do count that it will always deal bot side of the spell on enemy jungle monster, as they don't move much. On the other hand, it's kind of hard to hit both side in a gank, unless the enemy get stunned.

Tips:
  • Starting jungling by taking Hammer Shock before Heroic Charge make you have less life when you start your second camp. Pick it as the second ability, end then consider to upgrade it again before you gank.
  • The ability is actually an aoe, even if his area of effect is pretty small.
  • Spell Shields do block it.
  • Work better on rotted opponent. Best used combined with Heroic Charge.
  • Ineffective with hard-stacking armor stacking enemy. That make stacking Anti-Armor Stat really effective.
  • As it hit twice, it apply spell effect twice.
Poppy's Steadfast Presence is a one point wonder. It give poppy impressive roaming power and extra hardiness. It's best used, tough, to stick to enemy that you are ganking. It help preventing enemy to dash away from you. Also, just a point on it give you at least 5 armor. This is also the corner stone on why you should buy tanky item on Poppy.
It also destroy heavy mobile champion that love to jump on enemy if timed well -like for example, an enemy poppy!-.

Tips:
Heroic Charge is kind of awkward to use. It's a powerful jump-on ability, and thank to his ability to move opponent target, you can use it to move it nearer to your tower, making him have more space to travel to escape and getting him nearer your ally. Do remember that you shouldn't cast it frequently in battle unless you are sure to stun your opponent this way, as it does cost fairly a lot.

Tips:
  • You can use it to escape by jumping on minion
  • You can jump over wall granted that you have bot vision and an elegible opponent to aim.
  • In late game fight, it's worth using to jump on enemy squishy carry even if you don't stun.
  • It's easier to stun with it in the jungle, so try to force your duel in it.
  • It can be used to knockback an enemy inside at your team.
  • Spell shields will block the knockback and damage and cause Poppy to stop short at her target.
  • Each burst of damage when Heroic Charge collides with a wall will proc spell effects.
  • Heroic Charge takes into account impassable player-created terrain such as Jarvan IV's Cataclysm, Anivia's Crystallize, Azir's Emperor's Divide and Trundle's Pillar of Ice.
  • Heroic Charge is still Poppy's cornerstone ability: landing it whit a stun make it open for a full Q damage and a good amount of free AA, while not doing so means half damage!
  • Heroic Charge is similar in usage to Lee Sin's Dragon's Rage! This mean that you can flash before you start the dash. E at the target you want to attack so that Poppy moves towards them, then the instant before you get into range then Flash.
    Here a video on how to pull that off (or at least how lee do it, until I find one with Poppy)
    Spoiler: Click to view
The new Poppy's Ultimate is an incredible good teamfight tool, although it have his problem. The strength of being able to remove an enemy champion come at the expanse of being a channeled ability, much like Karthus's Requiem. That means that not only enemy can interupt it,but that it take time to charge. It can also be casted istantly to just knock opponent up (this make them untargettable), but it does work only in melee range.

Tips:
  • Do not start channeling if you don't plan to use it,as it have a fairly long cooldown even if canceled, and an huge mana cost.
  • You can start channeling it outside enemy field of view, like in bush or behind a wall.
  • Whit proper warding, it can be used as an escape tool while splitpushing.
  • It can be used to finish off low life enemy, but in case the damage would be not enough you could end up just saving them from death by the hand of your teammate.
  • Can be used to send away enemy like Fiddlesticks or Heimerdinger. On the other hand, a fast relise make them intargettable on their position, thus giving them a free Zhonya's Hourglass active!
  • You can use the fast relise to proper position yourself before an Heroic Charge
  • It take so much time to travel that can be sidestepped.
  • Spell shields will block the ability.
  • This ability is considered to be a projectile for Unbreakable and Wind Wall
  • Keeper's Verdict does not allow the activation of Yasuo's Last Breath, as the targets are rendered untargetable.


Guide Top

Build tip and Core item analysis

To put in order on wich stat Poppy work well with:

Cooldown, Armor and Magic Resistance.
Attack Damage, Health, Mana and any form of Armor Penetration.
Attack Speed
Critical Chance, Life steal

Spoiler: Click to view


NB: When building item on poppy you have to count 3 fact:
  • (1) she is innately squissy and need defense to keep up on trade, especially because she is really weak to CC.
  • (2) Although her ability are unreliable outside line phase, she does need damage!
  • (3) She have serious movement speed problem even with 3 ability out of free to gap close/gap make.

This means you have to favor this three aspect before building anything else, unless you want to build a glass cannon champion like Master Yi (it's actually possible). That is also the reason why Trinity and cleaver are the two core item you should buy first.

Core Item


Poppy have something like "two core" not only she need to build two core item to work propelly, but she even have two possible core option: The Black Cleaver+ Iceborn Gauntlet(+ Mercury's Treads) or Trinity Force+ Frozen Heart(+Ionian's Boots of Lucidity).
With the BC+IBG+MT you have pretty much all the stat you need, extra tenacity and armor shreding. With TF+FH+IBoL you have a stronger Sheen effect, more stat that you need sooner, more armor, an anti atk spd aura, furter reduced summoner spell cooldown and a strong poke on your passive (pop an ability to discharge a ranged sheen). Sacrificing IBoL for the mercury give you, again, all stat you need. Although, to be franc, building the full core that you would buy on line in jungle is kind of complex, and most of the time you only choice just an item (i usually buy Trinity or hearth)

Cleaver Core

The Black Cleaver give a lot of CDR, Attack Damage and Armor Reduction. Also the health isn't bad. It's probably poppy main Attack item, and the only "straight" health item you should buy. It's vantage point are the high CDR that it provide plus the Phage bonus speed, as Poppy have huge problem at sticking to enemy.
Iceborn Gauntlet give a lot of CDR, Armor, Armor, Slow and Sheen. It's a really good armor on Poppy. In jungle it could be actually better Frozen Heart, and I actually choice the later in jungle. But! If you didn't/want pick up Trinity Force, this is still a good Sheen upgrade choice.



Trinity Core

Trinity Force is a mixed bag. You have a lot of useful stat, but less of each. You build the stat faster, but it cost an eye. Still! Trinity cost only 300g more than Black Cleaver, and let you open to build Ionian boot. Also, in jungle that means, together a Enchantment: Warrior you can pick Youmuu's Ghostblade for CDR cap and insane armor penetration!

It's also a stronger Sheen's upgrade then Iceborn Gauntlet, as it give more spellblade's damage and more movement speed. The true downfall is the lower CDR and the absence of armor penetration, in my opinion. You *could* buy Trinity into Cleaver, i guess, and pick up Boots of Swiftness to forget about poppy movement problem.
Frozen Heart is kind of hard to deal for adc, as they kind of get countered by it. that make this item wonderful! It's also 105 armor and an extra mana item, for having a big mana pool. Still, it's troublesome to fit in an Enchantment: Warrior build, where you should pick other defensive item. ( Thornmail!)


Jungle Item Option

Enchantment: Devourer is the enchantment to go whit Fervor of Battle . It's good mainly because it give back Poppy mixxed damage output. It also charge pretty fast, due to poppy being really good at clearing the jungle (and even killing the dragon without peculiar build). The only downfall is that without Fervor of Battle it's bad on her, but if you have fervor+devourer, that solve poppy bad sustained damage. It also let you build The Black Cleaver+ Iceborn Gauntlet Standard core.

Enchantment: Warrior is the main enchantment to go whit Thunderlord's Decree . It give a lot of stat that poppy need fast, but at the price of making poppy standard core somewhat less efficient. What i do is pick Enchantment: Warrior>> Ionian Boots of Lucidity - Distortion>> Thornmail/ The Black Cleaver. This way you have an halved cooldown Flash, that is needed for efficient gank.

I really, really, dislike Enchantment: Cinderhulk. Poppy don't naturally scale well with health! Yes, her shield does, but the shield is more a line tool to bait enemy near wall. You do proc it everytime in jungle, but Poppy is just awesome by itself at clearing it! I really have to advise you against any straight health item, BC e TF are exception for they give bot cooldown, Phage passive to stick on target and cool effect. It really don't help much in your gank, trust me. If you are set on this enchantment, do please complete some armor/magic resistance item first.

Stalker's Blade is the main jungler's blade for Poppy. It give her a reliable CC -and oh my thunderlord! if she need it-. Skirmisher's Sabre is probably to be used only against invisible jungler, like Shaco when counter jungling.

Boots Option


Mercury's Treads is a good option as Poppy should pick up some heavy armor item more or less automatically. It give a Tenacity boost and a good amount of magic resistance, that all around work well with Poppy's Steadfast Presence.
Ninja Tabi is an option, and one that i advice only against heavy AD enemy team, or if the enemy ADC got to feed. Frankly, i believe that any time you need the tabi, you should pick up even Thornmail.
Ionian Boots of Lucidity are my favorite boots choice, even if to be franc it's probably better top line where you can pick bot Flash and Teleport. As Poppy is extremely CDR hungry, and need a lot to place her Flash in aggressive way. Whit Enchantment: Distortion and Insight it reduce Flash's cooldown of the 40%!
Berserker's Greaves is an option only in Fervor of Battle + Enchantment: Devourer build. Poppy isn't good at following up after her EQ combo, and without the mentioned perk, she don't deal enough damage out of her auto's.


Guide Top

Early/mid Build Path option

As I have already mentioned, poppy need to build minding always three distinctive aspect simultaneously: building Attack Damage, Defensive Stat and Movement Speed/Slowing item.

Whit that said, this is the main reason why The Black Cleaver and Trinity Force are the all around best item to start whit for Poppy.


In Jungle, though there is a huge problem whit that: you must start whit Hunter's Talisman and Hunter's Machete! Missing them out not only kill your sustain, but make you gain way less experience from Jungle monster! But at the same time, they don't provide the 3 stat that Poppy need to be efficient in battle. To solving this problem, there is XXXX possible start:

1. All-in Fervor/Devourer

-> -> -> ->

This way poppy is played as an hybrid devourer champion. Even if poppy don't have empowered auto-attack like Warwick, Master Yi, Jax and Xin Zhao, she does have the gap closer. With this said, she does work in pretty much the same way, jump on staff and shred to pieces. And be bloody squissy and weak to stun. It's part of the package. Her really high base damage on the ability also cover for the absence of empowered damage on the autos, mind it. The only true problem is that Heroic Charge move the enemy, and this can be of their advantage. Also, the stun isn't reliable, unlike Warwick and Jax.

The only note that i feel to add is that it can be played whit The Black Cleaver instead of Blade of the Ruined King, as this way you have access to Phage and don't have to rely on the BotRK/ Bilgewater Cutlass activated ability to stick on target.

2. Trinity Start

-> -> -> -> ->

When you get down on why to complete the hunter's blade as your first item, there is a lot of good reason: cheap, strong in the jungle, give lot of free stat and special passive like the Cinderhulk and Devourer enchantment. Sadly, they don't work so well on little Poppy, due to her itemization problem. Whit that said, sacrificing the complete blade for an earlier Phage solve all three main poppy's problems, to then being completed in a earlier trinity. On the math, an early Tracker's Knife - Warrior cost 2625 gold, while at 3000 gold we get Phage+ Sheen, that net way more useful stat at the expense of (in fact) not so much damage after all. (I'm counting that you should still buy Hunter's Talisman and Hunter's Machete!)

After this, you should complete the trinity, take the blade, and before purchasing the enchantment, go for some other defensive stat or another bruiser item for poppy. ( The Black Cleaver, Frozen Mallet, Titanic Hydra, Iceborn Gauntlet, Maw of Malmortius... you have plenty of choice).

3. Warrior into Black Cleaver

-> -> -> ->

This build provide a big damage output, at the price of the tankiness (and the early movement speed too!) I find that it work at it's best whit a full set of Flat Armor quint and scaling armor seal, as we will be delaying a bloody lot building resistance stat. Whit that said, i must add that i find a Dead Man's Plate a way better follow-up item then the usual Frozen Heart/ Iceborn Gauntlet, as we will be already near to the CDR cap. After that, i would add only Thornmail/ Randuin's Omen for the extra armor.

4. Cinderhulk into Titanic Hydra

-> -> -> ->

You may wanna ask why, whit Cinderhulk, i'm advising the Titanic Hydra instead of The Black Cleaver. The reason is mostly that just have more synergy whit the Cinder, providing more damage. You really have to try to understand what i mean. But if you want some mat, this way you have something like extra 80 damage on AA, instead of the 55 of BC (and more or less the same damage on ability cast). Yes, you sacrifice the Phage passive, (and the CDR) but you can just buy a subsequent Iceborn Gauntlet or Frozen Mallet for that (or even Phage into The Black Cleaver too)
NB: I do feel that some early Movement speed quint or Flat Armor quint to be really important on this start!


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Offensive Item Option

As a special note, i must underline that you should almost never build straight damage when playing whit Thunderlord's Decree . Youmuu's Ghostblade is mostly the only exception as it provide CDR, high AD, Penetration that go well with Precision and the movement speed active that work as a free Ghost. Even with Fervor of Battle you still should pick straight damage only if it work well with Enchantment: Devourer

Maw of Malmortius is incredibly good on Poppy: lifeline/ Lifegrip work incredibly well with her Steadfast Presence, as it trigger every time whit the under 40% 24% bonus. (MoM shield scale with magic resistance). The attack damage+ armor penetration combo is also really nice if you follow my armor penetration's mark advice. I highly recommend this as an option for magic resistance item.
The new Youmuu's Ghostblade is an incredible effective damage item, IMHO the new strongest damage item. With the sky high 65 AD, 20 armor penetration, it's the most you'll get on an offensive item. The extra CDR and the active are also invaluably good on our lil Poppy! Especially in super aggressive build where you wont buy Dead Man's Plate. The only problem is making it fit into poppy need to reach the 40% CDR cap really fast.
The Bloodthirster is a mixxed bag item: skyhigh damage and lifesteal, but poppy deal mainly damage through is ability, unless you are playing my Fervor of Battle build. The shield is also nice in teamfight, especially together some healing champion like Sona. This is still a late game item choice. It's incredibly good to fight baron , btw.
The Ravenous Hydra add skyhigh ad and lifesteal, that are priceless in baron/dragon kill. The extra aoe active is also a nice add in your quest to burst down enemy champion. After play a lot, i drooped this hydra for her twin, the titanious, as the active doesn't work well with poppy's passive. The total absence of defensive ability is also a good reason to drop it, outside lining phase. That you want be doing.

Death's Dance is my less favorite lifesteal item. Yes, it isn't a truly lifesteal item and heal even with poppy ability, that are her main source of damage, but her ability are actually aoe (with the exception of Heroic Charge. Also the cdr is mainly wasted, as there is way better cdr item for Poppy.
The Titanic Hydra is an option for a Health/AD item, but should be picked up only in tank/bruiser build. Still, I really don't like this hydra on Poppy, and find it really a sub-optimal option. I really advice against building this item, The Black Cleaver, Trinity Force and Sterak's Gage are better in this role. Still, after building it a lot, i have to say that it isn't bad, as soon as you start to use the active in tandem whit Poppy's Iron Ambassador. It's also kind of strong together Enchantment: Cinderhulk, but doesn't answer to poppy movement speed problem.
Blade of the Ruined King is a good option only whit Enchantment: Devourer+ Fervor of Battle . It really lose a lot otherwise, and after a lot of crash-testing I can say it's not really worth outside of the jungler build. Still, the extra health% damage is quite good even in gank. NB: Poppy jungle clear is so fast that this item isn't really needed. Also, the slow active is priceless on Poppy.
The Frozen Mallet is a working option for Poppy, as after the initial ability's burst she rely upon on AA a lot. Still, exactly like Titanic Hydra, i found this another sub-optimal option for a Health/AD item, although it DOES solve all poppy main problem, like The Black Cleaver. It mainly work only with Enchantment: Cinderhulk, mind it!
Do buy this item only against heavy stacking armor enemy. It isn't wort otherwise. Looking at Taric and Malphite if you need name.
Guinsoo's Rageblade is just over powered nowaday. Poppy don't use so much it's ability power? Who cares, not even Master Yi does, but it still pack an heavy wallop together the Enchantment: Devourer! The only downfall is the absence of any lifesteal, really. More magic damage on hit, more damage for ability, an aoe to push harder... yes, it just lack lifesteal, and then it would be all you need on an item.
Wit's End is a peculiar item, that i used to build only on Warwick. It add a good amount of magic damage, and more then that, magic resistance reduction. This is incredibly powerful, as usually assassin have already little of that. Exactly like Guinsoo's Rageblade, this item is good mostly with Enchantment: Devourer, and lack lifesteal to be really useful in fight, do mind that! But it's really fun (at least on Warwick, to build this item and see the enemy surprised of the obscene damage.
NB: I NEVER have builded Mercurial Scimitar. This is mainly because i never used a champion that needed it. Poppy is different, she is weak at stun (looking at you Jax, gnnnn....), she do could use life steal, but she do need item mainly bruiser oriented more. Scimitar provide all. The MR is lower then Maw of Malmortius, but the Atk Damage is sky high, so I think it may be an option, if i will ever build it. It does look the best lifesteal item option, on the paper.


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Tanky Item Option

Imo, building straight defensive item on poppy isn't good, as you miss on her natural enhanced tendency to use armor and magic resistance in greater efficiency. Poppy always need at least one Bruiser item, and whit how the jungling item work, you do need even more to buy high resistance outside of them. Health/resistance item are to be builded always from your forth item onward, remember.
NB: I explained Frozen Heart and Iceborn Gauntlet in the Core item session. Although they are way less core in Jungle.

Hand down, my favorite item (period). Dead Man's Plate is priceless on Poppy, due to her serious movement problem. The main problem that i see is the fact that poppy do work well with the Glacial Shrouds upgrade, and I always fell guilty at not buing it. Still, this item let you roam faster, and as a jungler, I do need that a lot! The extra damage on the first AA also work really well with Iron Ambassador, and with Titanic Hydra active, open up to a seriously strong first attack.
With really high base defensive ability, and an aoe slow, Randuin's Omen is actually incredibly strong on Poppy. As probably the strongest anti-AD item, i do feel that is actually better for high AD enemy team, as poppy really need the added bonus speed of Dead Man's Plate more, imo. (or the extra CDR and damage of IBG). Do mind that this item is worth 70 armor, on poppy!
Thornmail have many good side: it's a cheap way to build a lot of armor, (a big lot, 117/130!), and the fact that don't give health is counterbalanced by the fact that Poppy always need to buy some early Health/AD item. So it's actually worth to buy even without Enchantment: Cinderhulk, even if it's way less effective. Do remember that this is worth only against heavy AD item or some feed AD midliner. (or ADC)
With the access to the dreadful Spell Shield, Banshee's Veil is pretty much the item-to-build every time you don't pick up Maw of Malmortius. You should pick up this item in really just a few occasion, like when building Enchantment: Cinderhulk, or when your enemy team is AP heavy, or when you deal with champion like Warwick and Karthus.
Odyn's Veil is really to much underestimated, even when i love to play it. Although the defense stat are in no way comparable to Banshee's Veil, the extra aoe damage and 10% magic damage reduction make it awesome against heavy AP team. This is the primary example of "counter item", like Last Whisper, as you do buy only in some special occasion. Still, against that feed Ahri that melted you down, this item assure that "next time" you will jump on her and unleash 500 damage. It's cool. Or at least i find it funny.
The retry Guardian Angel is incredibly good on poppy, as it provide bot the base resistance (and a extra-cool passive) to go with the health of your second item. Especially with the Enchantment: Cinderhulk, this is important as you will be really behind in building resistance at that point of the game.
Zz'Rot Portal is exactly like Guardian Angel, but if you did build Enchantment: Cinderhulk, this item will let you poke at the enemy tower way harder. Also the extra health regen isn't bad. Sadly, now it doesn't provide anymore more resistance then the angel, or it would be way more worth.


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Alternative Build: Poppy Jungle Tank Guide

First thing first, what does we mean as building Poppy tank? Armetti's Jungle tank guide for Poppy provide a built path of tankiness into bruiserness. I actually like the guide, and advice to follow it if you wanna play her more tanky then i do.

The fact is, I find that Poppy isn't a good tank to begin with. It's true that her damage always matter, but that doesn't change her bruiser/assassin nature over her tanky nature. She doesn't have sustained damage, unlike all other tank, nor any form of damage mitigation and sustain.

With that said, she can be played tanky, as she does provide something to the team: her anti dash Steadfast Presence and her ultimate. (That's either the most bonkers knockback in the game or a 1,5 second stasis) But let clarify, that "playing Poppy as a tank" means for me to play her with the idea to maximize her resistance to damage, at the sacrifice of her damage output. I find that she is actually weaker played that way, frankly speaking, compared to played bruiser-like, but well, anyone have is own taste, i guess.



First of all start Hunter's Talisman (always, if you don't have extra atk speed runes, or else Hunter's Machete if you do start blue). Upgrade into Stalker's Blade and pick up the Enchantment: Cinderhulk. Pick up either Dead Man's Plate and then Banshee's Veil or Warden's Mail and Spectre's Cowl (to upgrade in Randuin's Omen and Banshee's Veil). Pick up either Ninja Tabi or Mercury's Thread for boots (ehi, you want maximum resistance, no?).
After that i would pick up the Warmog's Armor for some sort of sustain and either Frozen Heart or Iceborn Gauntlet. If I'm picking IBG, i would also pick Sheen around midgame, to be frank. Remember that FH and RO atk spd debuff do stack together, if you are against some heavy AD team.


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Proper explanation on when to buy

Most player have incredibly high problem at understand how much it's important to build in response to occasion. High damage champion, like Riven and Ahri don't have this issue, as "you should just buy more damage". But for tanky champion, like Dr. Mundo, it's incredibly important to decide what resistance to build sooner (although they just have to choice between two item, most of the time).

Whit a bruiser champion like Poppy, things get even harder for novice player. Putting aside Poppy actually pretty high skill cap, she is even a champion that need to make many important early game choice, as she highly depend on too many statistic to be truly efficient.


As in the Jungle you are supposed to met all liner and gank, it's important to understand what you need. The most important "occasional" item that you will have to buy are the following: Spectre's Cowl/ Hexdrinker, Quicksilver Sash, Chain Vest/ Warden's Mail, Last Whisper and Tracker's Knife.


Spectre's Cowl/ Hexdrinker are two option for dealing whit the same thing: that fed enemy AP user. They are similar in use, but different in goal: the first is upgraded into Banshee's Veil, the second into Maw of Malmortius. Also, the first provide raw health, while the second provide AD and a shield that protect only from magic damage. I mainly want to build the first if i don't have much Health item (or i have the titanic hydra), and the later if i do have.


Quicksilver Sash is an incredible counter item. It cancel many ultimate, like Vladimir's, Zed's, Warwick's and Fizz's, just to say the most obnoxious. Just remember for the later 3 that you still receive the damage if u don't move away! It's also really good to cancel ol'jax bloody stun (geez if I hope he get nerfed) and to smother our bad match up against Morgana. The Mercurial Scimitar is also good, even if it's an ultra late item.


Chain Vest/ Warden's Mail are the items-to-go if enemy team have either a lot of AD based damage dealer or have a really feed AD champion. I mainly prefer Chain Vest over the Warden mail but that's is because in this case i prefer to build Dead Man's Plate and Thornmail over Frozen Heart and Randuin's Omen. It's also cheaper, as you sacrifice the bonus attack speed reduction on your enemy. Do note that this item don't provide health!


Last Whisper is to be build only against those pesky heavy armor stacking guys, and this means mainly Malphite, Rammus and Taric. Also, you should buy that only if they start to build just to much armor, and not before. As this isn't an early/mid game issue, and it's not such a given that they will stack so much armor, this is an item bust brought late.


Tracker's Knife is something to build if you feel comfortable to left out Stalker's Blade and want to have more coverage on some of the most sensible spot of the Jungle against champion like Nocturne and Shaco.


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Proper ganking explanation (whit picture)

For Poppy, i prefer to use the following three path:

Gromp into Blue

Spoiler: Click to view


This is probably the fastest, the safest and the one that open to the best gank.
First of all, Gromp >> Greater Murk Wolf means less critter and more life on the main monster, making Bot Hammer Shock and Heroic Charge more effective. Also the Gift of the Toadstool is arguably better then Gift of Heavy hands ( Ancient Krug ) for the early clear.

From there, you take Blue Sentinel and go heal by autoattacking Rift Scuttler . From there, you can get your first gank going.


Gromp into Red

Spoiler: Click to view

This clear route late you start Gromp >> Greater Murk Wolf for the extra health and then complete by taking Red Brambleback 's Crest of Cinders , that is actually better for your early gank. After The Brambleback, you can either pick up Crimson Raptor or heal at the Rift Scuttler for then gank.


Krug Start

Spoiler: Click to view

For when you actually prefer to start bot line in anycase (i really don't know why would you) this is the best path you can take. Sadly, this even the worst, and sometime isn't even so much easy to complete without a third Health Potion.



Spoiler: Click to view


You should always try to not gank from the bush, whit poppy, but from near the enemy tower: This way, not only you often avoid the possible ward, but often after some gank, you move where enemy midliner start warding the river, at the vantage of your team. Even more important, your Heroic Charge have not only more chance to knockback your enemy mid liner nearer your ally, giving him more road to travel for escaping.



Spoiler: Click to view


Exactly like the mid gank, this maneuver assure that your Heroic Charge don't help your opponent by knocking them further away from your allies. This way, usually, you also break the enemy formation, putting enemy adc further away from the support.

Attention!

Not ganking this way may make your Heroic Charge unhelpful for your gank!


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Poppy's Team synergy

This may be a little obvious knowledgeable after you play Poppy for a while, but she work well with champion that provide one of the four stat: stun, wall making, Knock-backing and Armor Reduction. Said that, this may be a pointless chapter of the guide, but i'm gonna add for the sake of completeness.

Stunning champion let poppy land bot side of her Hammer Shock before re-positioning for landing a better Heroic Charge, knock-backing opponent toward your tower. Prime example are Jax and Pantheon for the top line, Lux, Annie amd Brand for middle, and Leona and Morgana for bot line.


Wall-making are good as they give you more chance to land your Heroic Charge's stun. That also means more teamfight chance to land your maximum damage potential, and to break even further the enemy team in smaller group. For an example, a charged Keeper's Verdict on a tank, and a follow-up Heroic Charge on the enemy that got Cataclysmed by Jarvan IV usually means a won teamfight. Prime example of wall-makers on top of my mind are Jarvan IV and Trundle for top line, and Azir/ Anivia for middle line.


Knock-backing champion are good in a straight-forward way: they give even less chance to opponent to escape insac-ing. Alistar and Lee Sin are the prime example of the following ability that come to my mind, even if I find the rare to have in our team.


Armor Reduction is pretty straight-forward: Poppy whole kit is AD based, and she have The Black Cleaver as a core item choice. Having another champion that use that item or that have build-in armor-shreding let you deal overall more damage. Jarvan IV, Jayce, Renekton, Trundle, Wukong and Xin Zhao are the prime option that come to my mind for top, Kayle for mid and Kog'Maw, Taric and Corki for bot line.



Whit all that said, the tree champion with who Poppy have the best synergy are, in order: Jarvan IV, Trundle and Xin Zhao. They are all rare pick for a top line champion, but aren't so for jungle (Troll king aside). The only thing I may need to point out is Xin/Poppy teamfight synergy, I guess. A Poppy's ultimate on a champion, followed up by Xin's ultimate on another, may open up Poppy for wall-stunning a third one, turning a 5v5 in a 2v5 butcher's house.


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Tip at fighting against Poppy

This may be the worst part of any guide, the one where the guide's maker highlights the champion exploitable weakness... it's still a part that I find important, and that should be add to any decent guide, IMO. So let me explain how I tend to fight Poppy:

  • No matter what you think, when Poppy gank you stay away from wall. A full stuncombo often deal half the life of an adc, at early level.

  • Don't try to duel Poppy in the jungle, unless you are playing some stealth assassin champion (looking at all of you Shaco player!). That's because there Poppy's charge is relatively easier to wall stun, enabling Poppy's maximum damage output. In fact, outside river, it's actually hard to not stun.

  • If she is in a line, DON'T PICK UP HER SHIELD. I'm tired of explaining that the shield is a bloody bait for enemy! It will always land somewhere near you and a wall, in a way that she may Flash+ Heroic Charge you. Even if she pick it up, it doesn't last that much, to be franc, so you really should just wait for it to expire, and hope she will try to force a trade with it, to bring her further away from her tower and punish her hard.

  • When she start spinning her mallet, hello, that's the ultimate. Start moving in a inconsistent way to make it harder for Poppy to aim you, always in a motion that is dx/sx of Poppy. When she unleash it, that spell is actually dodge-able, so aim for that. With that said, good Poppy's player will try to pull out Fiddlesticks charging-in-a-bush-the-ultimate's kind of stunt. Keep the map warded!

  • Even if this may sound stupid and obvious, that may not be so to every one. So let me tell you a big secret: after you get hit by Hammer Shock move on the dx/sx. That halve the damage. Don't stand still. I can't count anymore the trade where unstunned player get bot side of that spell even when unstunned. What make the charge stun strong is how heavy the Q hit you.

  • Dead turret count as impassible terrain, so watch out for Poppy Flash+Charge combo on them. Especially in the midline.

  • Poppy is extremely bursty, so if you have a damage reduction spell like Garen's Courage, blow it when she charge you.

  • Outside Jungle, she have no sustain. Kitting and harassing Poppy work great, regardless of line.


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To do list


To do:

Add more image and space between the object to make the guide way more readable! I should make everything more ordinate.


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Changelog

21/12/15: add boots analysis and offensive item analysis
26/12/15: lot of correction, adding, note, and tanky item analysis. Moved Thunderlord as first option, as it is more safer than Fervor (not everyone is a hardcore suicidal as me)
27/12/15: early/mid game building option done.
29/12/15: add an explanation on how to gank and the jungle clear path
05/01/16: add synergy of Poppy whit possible team-mate, change some information in the item intestation
07/01/16: add tip at fighting Poppy and tank build explanation