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.
My masteries are 9-21. 9 in offense for the magic penetration and 21 in defense for as much durability as possible.
For runes i take HP Quintessences, as they give a nice boost early game. Magic Penetration Marks for obvious reasons, dodge Seals and Magic resist Glyphs for more tankyness.
There are a few ways to build Cho'Gath. Which variation you choose highly depends on the composition and playstyle of the enemy team. The items showed bove are for the tank build.
- Early Game:
To start with, i always take a Doran's Ring because of the health, and more importantly the mana regen, and a Health Potion. You can sell this one later as it gets useless and you might need the space/money. Try not to spam your spells too much at the start as this big guy runs out of mana very easily. Instead use Fissure to help your laning partner to escape from ganks, or to occasionally harass your enemy.
Lane for a while, and by the time you are lvl 6 you should have a decent idea about the quality of the enemy team. Go back to your base and get Mercury's Treads.
- Mid game/late game:
This is where you make a choice:
A. They don't play very well, and you are almost harassing them to death.
If this is the case, you're lucky. Buy Rod of Ages as your next item, starting with the Blasting Wand. This item gives great AP and some survivability + mana for more spamming. Keep harassing your opponents and you should be able to get the tower down pretty easily. Use Feast primarily for taking down enemies, as it will be dealing HUGE damage. Feasting on minions to get stacks is ok as well, but you won't really need them.
After Rod of Ages go for Rabadon's Deathcap. By now you should be a great pusher/farmer, taking down minion waves with just 1 Rupture. Next get Rylai's Crystal Scepter for the slowing effect, Void Staff for the Magic Pen and finish with for example a Lich Bane.
This build will deal insane damage with Rupture, Feral Scream and Feast, and even your Vorpal Spikes will eat away about 200 HP per hit.
B. They are able to hold their lane well, and/or push you back to your tower.
In this case you'd best go full tank. After your Ring and Boots immediately go for Warmog's Armor. Farm minions to stack your armor's passive and play defensive. If you lane with a carry like Master Yi or Jax, give him the kills. Try to feed your carry and babysit him (= stay very close to him so he'll get away if ganked).
Your next item(s) will depend on the enemies you play against:
- When you play against a mixed team, get Banshee's Veil or Thornmail, depending on who you lane against. Then you buy the other one, so you're a balanced tank in teamfights. After those 2 get Guardian Angel (i really like this item as it gets on the enemies nerves).
In some cases you'll be playing against a full AP nuke team or a full melee carry team. In those cases you just build full Magic Resistance or Armor.
Its possible to mix the AP build with one of the Tank build variations, but it will decrease the effectiveness of both offense and defense. Try to focus enemies with Madred's Bloodrazor in teamfights, as you'll suffer a lot of damage from them (due to Warmog's Armor and Feast stacks).
So in short: If the enemy team sucks, go AP and nuke them. If they are good, go Tank (items depending on their team) and babysit your carry.