Jayce Build Guide by ExEmperor
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.
HELLO EVERYONE, the name's ExEmperor, this would be my first guide EVER... I usually don't do this, but Jayce is such a fun champion that I just have to make a guide to show my appreciation. Keep in mind that this guide will be my preference and while other guides might be better, my build suits my play style better and I hope this guide will be some kind of help to you or at least give another perspective of how you can play this AWESOME champion.
I've been playing with him since his release, stopped for a while to try out other champions *cough* Zed *cough*... But now I've been playing him whenever I can. I've tried this build in ranked and will update this with the results as soon as I get the chance.
So without further ado... LET THE GUIDE BEGIN!
Pros / Cons
= Always relevant in teamfights
= Have Knockback
= Passive gives movement speed and debuffs
= Very versatile with item builds
= Good, responsive AA
= Have a gap closer
= Ranged form is short
= Not a tanky top and has low sustain
= High skill cap champion
Jayce can be an intimidating champion to use with his melee/ranged forms, but don't let that discourage you. The rewards of being able to play him and dominate will leave your opponents thinking not to mess with you anytime soon.
Hextech Capacitor - This is Jayce's passive. It gives you a nice movement speed every time you transform. Best of all, this passive ignores unit collision
We'll start with Jayce's melee form, Mercury Hammer:
To The Skies! - This is not Jayce's damage source. This should be used as a gap closer when you know you're going to win the trade. Keep in mind that while this is a "click on enemy" ability, this ability can be dodged if the enemy used flash or any blink ability, because this ability lands on where the enemy champion was and not where the champion is. This ability also gives a good slow movement speed if it hits for a brief 2 seconds.
Lightning Field - The only reason you want to get this is because of the bonus passive for the mana it returns for every hit. If it's activated you'll have a small AoE magic damage, but it's better than nothing, always activate this while in the air when you use your Q for some bonus damage.
Thundering Blow - THIS! This is what separates skilled Jayce and a pro Jayce. While the damage that it gives is huge, what you want is the nice knockback. The positioning of your knockback is usually critical during teamfights. Since you'll be using this usually after your Q, it is essential that you knock the enemy back the right direction.
Now we'll move on to Jayce's ranged form Mercury Cannon:
Shock Blast - This is Jayce's main poke ability. Think of Nidalee's Javelin Toss... But with AoE. This is what you should be poking your enemies with. Keep in mind that this ability is a skill shot, and the CD is the LONGEST 8 seconds you'll ever experience. During laning phase this is what you should open with before engaging.
Hyper Charge - Once activated, Jayce's next 3 basic attack will cap to the maximum speed (attack speed won't change even with items). The attack timer reset so make sure to use it right after your auto-attack.
Pro-tip: This ability works also in hammer form. Once you activate it, you can transform to your hammer form and get 3 quick hits.
Acceleration Gate - When activated a line appears that gives MASSIVE speed boost for anyone who crosses it for a brief moment. The other use for this is to combine it with your Q. When you shoot your Q through the line. Your Q deals way more damage and travels farther. This is what makes Jayce, Jayce. The EQ combo is devastating for enemies. Always open fights with this combo to get the enemies health lower before engaging, so you get a small advantage.
Jayce's ult is Mercury Cannon/ Mercury Hammer. You will get this at level 1. Each time you transform your basic attack has a unique passive.
With your Mercury Cannon, your first attack will reduce the target's armor and magic resist. If you can land this before any of your other abilities, you will have a huge advantage 1 v 1.
With your Mercury Hammer, your first attack will deal an additional magic damage. While in this stance, your armor and magic resist will be increased, making you tankier.
- Jayce's first attack in ranged form will be slower than usual, so keep this in mind while farming
- Going against enemies like Darius, Singed, or any enemies that don't have gap closers, you can get free harass in hammer farm by going Q on them and then knock them back with E.
- When your jungler ganks and you're in cannon form. Use your gate to give you a boost and switch to hammer form to land your Q, remember that the enemy is slowed for two seconds. Use this precious time to get in FRONT of them and knock them back with E.
- In teamfights, you're not a tank, do not charge in when your team isn't there to deal good damage
I start with my E first because it's more useful in level 1, unless you're invading. You'll be using your ranged form most of the time to farm in the early levels and your Q isn't even worth spamming in early levels.
But always max your Q first and then your E, W will always be last and your R in 6/11/16.
Starting Items & First Back
What many people don't realize is that the ol' Boots of Speed and 3x Health Potion is so last season... HAHAHAHA... too lame? Sorry...
Anywho... In all seriousness, I chose to use Crystalline Flask and 5x Health Potion or Crystalline Flask and 3x Health Potion, 2x Mana Potion. Add Sight Ward in there also.
People might argue that having boots is important for movement speed. The problem is... The boots got slightly nerfed, while it's still Viable (see what I did there?), Jayce consumes mana, and without knowing if you're going to dominate lane, it's hard to know if you can gain mana with your hammer form.
First back, you should at least have 1200 or even 1500 gold. Buy your Boots of Speed and buy Tear of the Goddess and if you have extra gold... You can start building your The Brutalizer.
You can think that Tear of the Goddess is a situational item, but getting this early is beneficial to get that Manamune and upgrading it to Muramana in late game. Brief explanation of why this item is essential will on the next section.
This item is a must have for any top bruiser. It gives health, attack damage, and armor penetration. It also gives a nice CD reduction. This should be your very first core item since it helps you in every category.
70 attack damage and 30 plus bonus? Lifesteal is a bonus. You're a bruiser and you need to be recognized? This is the item for you. Fully stacked this item gives 100 attack damage. Goodness... EQ away!
This item gets upgraded to Muramana automatically after 750 mana bonus that you will gain from Manamune every time you attack or use abilities. The active toggle from this ability gives you magic damage according to how much mana you have. It also has a bonus 20 attack damage attribute that you will surely appreciate. Even in late game, Jayce's mana is lacking especially during stand-off. You will be spamming your EQ combo and you'll at least use that 4-5 times. Your E and Q combined mana cost? 140 in level 18. Multiply that by 4. 560.
Usual Jayce build will have around 1100-1400 mana. 560 mana cost before the fights begin is just a lot. Putting it on a bigger perspective. Not all your games will be you dominating, especially in solo queue. In late and close game, staying alive and staying with your team is essential. You spamming that EQ will results in low mana, especially with low mana regen, it'll be painful to go b, when your team needs you.
35% of armor ignored. You need to shred those people building armor and this gives you a nice bonus of 40 attack damage.
Items you might want to get/ Situational:
Team is winning and you want to finish it soon? Get another The Bloodthirster or Maw of Malmortius
Tight game and you're getting destroyed easily? Guardian Angel or Frozen Mallet
Items you might NOT want to get:
Infinity Edge: While the damage are great the passive isn't... You're not an auto-attacker and more of a high burst damage with decent sustain damage output and you're DEFINITELY not a critical hitter.
Runaan's Hurricane/ Ravenous Hydra: Yes... They are great items, but you're a hybrid champion, so buying a SUPER expensive item when it only works for one of your forms isn't worth it. Unless you're going ADC Jayce then Runaan's not for you.
Warmog's Armor & Atma's Impaler: You're not a tank... Why not go for more AD? Not worth the price.
If you're duoing or in a team with people you know, this item is so great. Being a solo top, the trip to bot lane for a gank is time consuming. In that time, your enemy can free farm and might even take a turret, while your journey to bot lane or mid lane can be for nothing. A coordination with bot lane and good warding enable you to teleport to the wards and sends a message to the enemy's bot lane that pushing the lane can be a bad idea and can results in death.
Fun spell to use. People argue that Ghost might be better. Well here's this: Flash can get over walls. I usually take this in solo queue, rather than Teleport.
I usually take it over Teleport in solo queue. Gives you that last second kill. Just a great complementary for Jayce.
Other Summoner Spells are doubtful, but if it suits your playstyle then go knock yourself out.
I build my runes with a balanced output in mind.
9x Greater Mark of Attack Damage is great on Jayce. Jayce's starting AD is relatively weak, this gives a nice boost and it makes it easier for you to last hit. Your starting base AD is only 46. Compared to other Top laner you are at a disadvantage. This makes up a bit for your lack of base damage.
9x Greater Seal of Armor can be substituted with Greater Seal of Scaling Armor. I chose to take this because it helps for that little boost of "tankiness", which Jayce lacks. I prefer the former than the latter, because armor comes more easily in late game and you're trying to get an early advantage so it's better to have flat armor.
Consider this: Darius base armor without Runes or anything is 20... While you only have 13.
9x Greater Glyph of Magic Resist you need some defense against AP Carries, and if their top is an AP, you just won in your banning phase. I used this simply for precaution, such as Akali or any AP top.
I spread my Quints to make it even more balanced, not favoring one over another.
I take full points in Durability and take 2 points in Hardiness to add some survivability and a little bit sustain, which Jayce lacks.
I take full points in Meditation , because Jayce consumes mana like there's no tomorrow in the beginning.
As a solo top you have no support and you're alone until mid-game and by then you better be able to start contributing to teamfights.
I know there are websites that can tell you which champion counters who, but in this list I'll only talk from my experience. (List will not be in order)
Irelia This woman can hit like a truck! She has everything that you don't: sustain, stun, and innate tankiness. You might say you have range, but her Q closes the gap, and her stun is long enough to outtrade you. She also have true damage, and each hit is basically a lifesteal, it's like your W passive, but instead of mana it's health. In this matchup, you can forget of trying to get kills and focus on farming because your role will be bigger later in teamfights.
Cho'Gath Just too tanky... His sustain is just too high. Your poke doesn't faze him since he'll just regenerate his health. BUT! If you're a risk-taker, you can win this matchup by playing super aggressive. Just be careful of his knockup and keep in mind that he can silence you. Tips for this matchup would be to keep poking your EQ combo since you will have Tear of the Goddess, a little help with the jungle would be nice until he's level 9, where he would have his tanky items. By this time, you will have a presence on the lane.
Wukong Sneaky monkey. This is a tricky matchup. I've won some and lost some, but one thing for sure, even my wins are tough. Be careful of his decoy, lots of Jayce that I've seen used their abilities on the decoy and that's when Wukong gets the advantage when Jayce's abilities is on CD. This matchup is skill-based, but the favor goes towards Wukong.
Jarvan IV Another toss-up matchup. You have the advantage, but it'll be super hard to kill him because of his tankiness. He'll rely on teamfights for his effectiveness, your job is to make it the his journey to level 11 or 12 super difficult. What you need to be scared of is the ganks, because his Cataclysm is deadly... Especially if you don't have Flash.
Nidalee The true counter to Jayce. Avoid this matchup. This is just hell for you if you're Jayce. The only way you win this is if Nidalee going AP, but if she's going AD, it's just hell. Farming will be something you crave. You'd have better chance of switching with mid or just turret hug.
Pantheon An annoying matchup. Pantheon can harass you and more. Avoid going 1v1 and NEVER overextend; he will win EVERY trade.
The champions listed above are, once again, from my experience. Xin Zhao has been said to counter Jayce but I've never had trouble going against him. These are champions that I've had trouble with time and time again and in a consistent basis.
General Tips for Top Lane
- Buy wards... I can't stress this enough cause I see a lot of top laners ignoring wards since they think they're ahead in kills.
- Communication... A simple MIA (missing in action) is enough. Be paranoid. Calling MIA also helps to not get blamed if your teammate got killed by someone from top since you called MIA and they didn't heed your warning.
- Don't rely on your jungler to help you. While it's their job to gank, it's YOUR lane. A skilled top player would be able to hold his own lane unless he's triple-teamed.
- Don't push your lane. Simply last hit. Pushing your lane leaves you vulnerable to ganking.
- Do not take tower early. This might be debatable, but from all my experience, taking a tower early can cost you CS (creep score). It's best to take tower around the 14-16 minute mark.
- Do not pick top if you're first pick in draft or rank solo queue. Please... I know it might be your favorite lane, but you can easily countered. You can pick Jayce as first pick and they can pick Pantheon or Irelia which counters you... Hard...
- Find a duo partner... Preferably an ADC or Support. Being good at top while the others are feeding is painful, but having a partner who can play can actually turn the tide of the game.
Thank you for reading my guide. Every comment is welcome. I'd appreciate it if anyone have constructive criticism for me.
Add me in LoL if you'd like: ExEmperor
Special thanks for the Jayce fan art. I found it browsing it in google, but never found the original artist. If anyone knows please tell me.
The one I used in the "Thank You" section is by -soy-monk-. You can find the original work in here.
Hope you had fun using Jayce. If anyone have used my guide in a game I'd appreciate it if you can tell me how you did.
- Gave a brief explanation on
- Greater Seal of Armor explanation
- Other brief explanation on Summoner's spell