Kog'Maw Build Guide by Lolwatnaw
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.
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.
Kog'Maw has been looked on strictly as a hybrid/AD carry. However, there is always another way to play a champion, and this definitely applied to AP Kog'Maw. AP Kog'Maw scales very, very well thanks to his decent ratios on all of his abilities (.7 on Caustic Spittle, .01 on Bio-Arcane Barrage, .7 on Void Ooze, and .3 on Living Artillery, .75 against champions) and his bizarre range on all of them. In addition, with CDR, all his abilities are potentially spammable, allowing him to dish TONS of damage throughout the fight.
His main role in a team is a poker. With his spammable, incredibly long range ultimate, he can drop the enemies' health bars into low amounts at a safe distance, letting your team easily push/team fight.
Pros and Cons
First off, you have massive range. A 1000 range, line AoE, slowing nuke is nothing to scoff at, neither is a spammable, 2000 range, relatively low mana cost small AoE nuke that can you give immense control in a teamfight. Void Ooze is incredibly good at kiting enemies and setting up for AoE. Caustic Spittle is a nice little skill that gives you a better animation, a little more damage, and armor/MR shred. Bio-Arcane Barrage will still hit hard, and with several levels of Caustic Spittle, you'll be able to DPS well. Living Artillery is absolutely ******ed, being one of the best and most powerful pokes in the game. It'll allow you to destroy the enemy team at a distance that they can't reach without jeopardizing their own position. You are also more bulky than other ranged champions.
AP Kog'Maw has a high skill cap, as you NEED to know how to hit your Living Artillerys and position your Void Oozes. It won't be as simple as other Kog'Maws simply because you can't just pop Bio-Arcane Barrage and expect you to do something. Also, positioning is a HUGE deal to Kog'Maw, as getting out of position will easily allow you to get picked off by melee champions, assassins and bursters.
AP vs the World
You may be wondering, "Omg why whould i play ap instead of ad / as"
Well, there are several reasons why you should play Kog'Maw as a caster.
- Your Living Artillery will do massive amounts of damage, more than AD or hybrid, making AP much better suited for poking.
- AP scales VERY well, having all Kog'Maw's abilities scaling with AP, and pretty decent ratios too.
- Because you're almost always using Living Artillery and Void Ooze, you'll be even less in danger of getting focused by melees than if you played AD or Hybrid (even if they did have Bio-Arcane Barrage on, since 750 range still can't fully kite melees, but 1000 ( Void Ooze) and 2000 ( Living Artillery) really can).
- You annoy the hell out of your opponents. Like, Teemo annoying.
- AD's quality is it's independent from Bio-Arcane Barrage (or at least less dependent than hybrid), but that is not necessarily a good thing, since Kog'Maw's base range is a measly 500, and since you need CDR to keep it up, Hybrid and AP is much safer.
- Although AD Living Artillery is definitely more powerful than Hybrid, it still won't do as much as AP.
- AD's DPS is still beaten by Hybrid (in most cases).
- Although hybrid is definitely king of DPS, AP is less hampered by MR, thanks to having more spell pen. than hybrid, and its abilities scaling better.
- Hybrid's Living Artillery will always be weaker than AD's or AP's. No questions asked.
Really, it depends on your preference. If you want to play pure DPS, go AD or Hybrid. If you want to play a ******edly annoying caster that can drop your health from 2000 range, then keep reading.
9/10 times, if you're actually sniping the enemy, you won't be dying, thus not triggering this ability. However, on the occasion that you fail to kite the enemies' melees or an Annie flashcombos you, then make sure you run right into the enemy. Make use of that 550 AoE true damage. If you play Karthus, then you should know what to do.
Your least important spell, but it's still pretty good. At level 4, you get one point into this for the armor/MR shred, attack speed, and slight nuke. Really, it's not much of a priority as Void Ooze and Bio-Arcane Barrage, since the other two abilities actually have ******edly long range, and since even after the buff, Caustic Spittle makes you have to get a bit close, it won't be worth it, since 625 range is all a melee champion needs to close into you. However, late game, use whenever possible (an enemy happens to be in range), or whenever it's up if you're feeling brave (it'll do more single DPS than Void Ooze since it has a shorter CD).
Your second most important non-ultimate ability, although for other Kog'Maws this'll be their most important ability. Not only does it shred tanks like nobody's business, but it also gives you a TON of bonus range, so if you do happen to have to auto-attack, pop this baby and fire away. Oh, and with some bonus AP, spell pen., CDR, and attack speed from Caustic Spittle, you can do a little DPS, but not nearly as much as AD or Hybrid.
This is, in my opinion, your most important non-ultimate ability. Although it doesn't do too much damage early, with some AP it can be almost as stupid for poking as Living Artillery. Early game, this will be a great way to harass the enemy, as well as Bio-Arcane Barrage. When this baby starts getting the levels, the slow starts kicking in, and my god it can really debilitate the enemy. With a 44/52/60% slow at levels 3/4/5 (respectively), you can easily keep your enemies in place to fire some Living Artillerys or just pelt them with Bio-Arcane Barrage auto attacks. Really, it's better than Caustic Spittle despite the lower cooldown and higher mana cost, just because of the incredibly higher range and that it's AoE.
The slow is a great way to kite, escape, and setup AoE (Fiddlesticks, Galio, Amumu, etc.)
This is also your only escape mechanism outside of Flash, so if you do get caught, then my god make sure you hit the enemy with it, and hit them well.
Gentlemen. I present to you, the ability that defines AP Kog'Maw, or just Kog'Maw as a whole. This will be THE most important ability that you've got when you get a point into it. As soon as you get a point into this baby, your lane dominance instantly changes, with you being able to harass the enemy safely, and they can't effectively retaliate. Combine this with Void Ooze, and you've won your lane. Mid game, when you start pushing, use this to poke tower hugging enemies, to either ward them off or get your team an easy tower dive/tower. Late game, use this every second you see an enemy in range. A rule of thumb, however. If it isn't late game, try not to stack the ability's mana cost stack too much, as it can really destroy your mana pool, even if you have Clarity. However, if it's late game, and you have golem buff, then fire away baby.
This ability will easily tell apart the goods and bads. The goods will hit most of their Living Artillerys and successfully poke the enemy safely. The bads will usually miss most of their shots or get some in at the expense of their positioning.
I do a standard 9/0/21 caster set-up. I get Expanded Mind instead of Utility Mastery simply because I get more mana and AP (with Archangel's Staff). But if you're sure you'll be getting a lot of golem buffs, then by all means, invest your points into Utility Mastery .
ALWAYS get this spell. Although you can kite enemies with Void Ooze, it still isn't exactly the most reliable escape mechanism, so Flash will definitely save your butt in occasions that their team gets to you.
You can substitute Flash for this if you'd like for chasing, but personally I think Flash is just downright better.
For your secondary spell, there are several choices you can make:
I usually get this for my secondary spell, simply because it lets me spam longer. If I'm trying to finish an enemy off with Living Artillery but find myself low on mana since I've been spamming a lot in the fight prior and I'm without golem buff, then I pop Clarity and finish the job.
Although you may argue that only supports should get this, I say otherwise. Although it is definitely a supportive spell, it can really give you a lot of map control, allowing you to control baron nashor , dragon , and other jungle camps. It's also good if the sight debuff on your ultimate does happen to wear off and you want to be sure where your prey is.
Say you're farming bottom and the enemy team happens to start baron nashor . Pop Teleport on a ward or a creep in the middle lane and be right there to fight for it. It's also good for setting up ganks or simply getting back into lane.
But really, who would farm bot when Baron is ripe for the picking anyway?
Good early game, however, because of its range, it won't be as useful to you as it would to other casters.
Eh, it has a short range but it's good for counterganking and warding off melees/assassins.
If you want to be an a**hole, you can get just get Ghost AND Flash and induce massive Teemo rage.
Start yourself off with a Sapphire Crystal and two Health Potions. Farm up 595 gold, then head right back for a Tear of the Goddess. If you want early bulk, then go ahead and get catalyst the protector, but Kog'Maw is actually pretty beefy for a ranged champion anyway, starting with 500+ health right off the bat without any bonus health. After your Tear, you can get Fiendish Codex, or you can just get it later.
After you get 750 gold, buy yourself some Sorcerer's Shoes. Then, it's time to farm up for your next big item: Needlessly Large Rod. Build this into Rabadon's Deathcap, and build your Tear into an Archangel's Staff. Then buy yourself Morello's Evil Tome for some CDR.
At this point, your build is basically done, so it's time for some luxury items.
Although it is luxury, you will almost ALWAYS get this item if the game drags out. It's just that valuable.
If you do happen to get Void Staff, you can swap your current boots for Ionian Boots of Lucidity if you want to cap your CDR, or you can save Sorcerer's for the extra spell pen.
It's all Kog'Maw ever asked for. A sizable amount of health, AP, and the most notable quality: the slow. With this slow, you'll be able to kite your enemies harder than ever, and thankfully your slow WILL stack with Void Ooze, making your enemies sitting ducks for Living Artillery.
If you're just looking for raw AP, then get Zhonya's. It also comes with a nice survivability effect+armor, so that's always nifty.
If you're desperate for some survivability, then Banshee's is definitely a good choice. The spell shield will let you live much much longer, but really yo don't need that much survivability if you're efficiently sniping the enemy.
Unless they have an enemy Warwick or Malzahar that's always suppressing you and you want to save a Cleanse effect for them, it's usually just better to get Banshee's Veil, or just more AP.
You're not even going to be that close in the fight, so it's usually best to leave this for your offtank/tank/support.
If you're actually considering getting this, then you're usually doing something wrong.
What the hell is wrong with you.
Really, Sapphire Crystal is just one of the best starting items for a mana consuming caster, and Kog'Maw is included. Plus, you can build it into a very valuable item.
Better than Mana Potions, 'nuff said.
Late game, you are going to spam A LOT with your Living Artillery, which is why you get Tear. Gives you mana and mana regen, so you can spam your ulti for a very, VERY long time. Also, combined with golem buff, your mana pool with be almost always full, and you'll get a buttload of AP from AA too.
One of the best boots and only boots you can get a for a caster. Next.
Monstrous amount of AP, and a great AP bonus that scales off of your current AP. I mean really, there isn't ANY reason you shouldn't get this after boots and Tear.
It's cheap, gives more AP than other Fiendish Codex upgrades, and more CDR than Deathfire Grasp. Really, this is better than Deathfire Grasp for Kog'Maw because you don't have to get in close to get all the perks of the item. Also, once again, it's CHEAP.
One of the best caster items you can get late game, second to only Rabadon's Deathcap. Really, you WANT the spell pen., especially if they figured out that you're a real threat.
Although there may be items that give better bulk than this, this is just a great all-rounder for a caster. It gives CC, bulk, and power. I mean, why else WOULDN'T you get this (unless you're Anivia, then Rod of Ages is just better)?
Early Game - Harassing and Lasthitting: Level 1-6
Buy your starting items, then head for mid lane. Get your first skill point, then wait for minions to spawn. During this time, you can:
- Guard your jungler
- Invade their jungle
- Early team fight
- Tower hug
- **** around on all chat
Whatever you do, you want a clean start, and you want to walk into lane with full HP and (hopefully) full mana. Now, it's time to start last-hitting and harassing.
Lane dominance is usually decided by the amount of harassment one of the player inflicts on the other, effectively causing the other to recall early or tower hug.
Thankfully, Kog'Maw is a great harasser and zoner thanks to Void Ooze and Bio-Arcane Barrage, allowing him to easily outrange and outharass his opponents. Keep lasthitting minions, and keep an eye on your enemy. Whenever they are in range predict their movements and land a Void Ooze to keep them away and harass. If they start retreating or if you just want to harass some more, Caustic Spittle if you have it and/or pop Bio-Arcane Barrage and auto attack.
Most of the time, it'll be a nice cruise to level 6. However, if the enemy is outlaning you, it's best just to stay away, lasthit, and fire Void Ooze if possible, all while at a safe distance. Recall after either you've hit level 6 or you get enough for Tear of the Goddess, then head back to lane. Once you've gotten Tear of the Goddess and Living Artillery, you will usually turn your lane around if you're either tied or struggling for lane dominance. Make sure you actually hit your ultis, you don't want to waste a single point of your mana. Also, try not to use more than 2 Living Artillerys in succession, as it will DESTROY your mana pool, unless you are absolutely sure you can kill an enemy with it.
Continue lasthitting and harassing your lane.
Tear of the Goddess, Sorcerer's Shoes, Needlessly Large Rod/ Fiendish Codex
Mid Game - Ganking and Pushing: Level 7-13
At this point of the game, you should have Tear of the Goddess, Sorcerer's Shoes, and Fiendish Codex/ Needlessly Large Rod. If you did really well, you might even have finished Rabadon's Deathcap/ Archangel's Staff.
If you're winning, you should usually have at least taken one of their towers and/or gimped the enemy in your lane.
At this point, you should be:
- Continuing to push lanes, assisting in poking enemies and taking down towers.
- Assisting in ganking other lanes or their jungle.
- Continuing to farm your lane.
Really, because of the sheer unpredictability of mid game, it can be hard to describe what you should do. Make sure that you always ward dragon and brushes, and make sure you check bushes with Living Artillery before you go into them. Make sure you guard lanes under attack, as you excel in doing so because of your ability to easily clear minion waves with Void Ooze and Living Artillery.
A rule of thumb: If you hit 7 rather early, one Void Ooze+ Living Artillery will clear a wave of ranged minions. Otherwise, you will be able to do so at level 9.
Mid game might last for a while, or be very short.
This point of the game will usually decide the outcome of the game, as the winning team can easily net an easy baron and some towers/inhibitors.
Continue ganking, pushing, and defending lanes.
Archangel's Staff, Sorcerer's Shoes, Rabadon's Deathcap, Fiendish Codex/ Morello's Evil Tome
Late Game - Pushing, Baron, Team Fights: Level 14-18
Late game usually comes around when both teams start establishing baron control and team fights are common.
This is the point of the game where Kog'Maw excels the most. Your spells will hit extremely hard, your Living Artillery range is completely maxed out, and you'll be able to poke harder than ever. You'll be able to do even more burst as you start maxing out Caustic Spittle, also resulting into higher DPS with Bio-Arcane Barrage.
During teamfights and pushes, ALWAYS stay away from the teamfight, close enough only to fire your Living Artillery and Void Ooze. If no one is focusing you and the enemy has already blown most of their skills, you can start using Caustic Spittle and auto attacking with Bio-Arcane Barrage. However, be wary of your position, as bad positions embraces melees and assassins.
Your Living Artillery is amazing for controlling the map, being able to check brushes and buffs without being too close by. Always make sure you use your ulti to check a brush first before your team moves into that brush.