Build Guide by Flozzer
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This is going to be a quick guide to help explain all the things I did and why. This build works for me and will work for most other people as well. Please note that it isn't perfect (no builds are) and that it might not work for some people.
Please read it all as the tips all mix in with one another to form one big super tip!
And if you are going to downvote, try it out before doing so even if it's a bot match. And if you have please leave constructive criticism.
The best item to start of with as Cho is by far the Regrowth Pendant. With this item you can stay in lane for a very long time and not have worry about anything. If you are low on health just stay back a bit and let your health come back again! Remember to not go all the way back to your tower, just stay behind your minions to keep gaining experiance.
The next item you want is Mercury's Treads. Of course buy level 1 boots first is you can't afford it yet. Merc treads are very important to any tank as you get Magic Resist and Tenacity. Tenacity is great as it reduces the duration of stuns, slows, taunts, fears, snares, sleeps and immobilizers. Merc Treads reduces these by 35%.
The next item you want is the catalyst. If you can't afford it yet get a health crystal first. The catalyst increases your health which is always good and increases mana as well. The increase in mana is good thing to have becasue you can then use more skills and feast more often as you might not have had the mana to do so. The Catalysts passive is also a great thing to have early on as you level up faster and it could be the difference between living and dieing when low on health.
Next you want to go for the Rod of Ages. This item is very important as you get the AP needed to increase the damage of your skills. The earlier you have a Rod of Ages the better as it sets you up for mid/late game as well as giving Cho the things he needs namely Health, Mana and AP.
Some people might want to get Rylai's Crystal Scepter before Rod of Ages. It's not bad but as i've already said it's best to get your Rod early.
The next big leap is going towards your Giants Belt giving you an invaluable big chunk of health. As you already have some AP this focuses more on your tanky area increasing survivabilty dramatically.
The Giants belt then builds into your Rylais Crystal Scepter. If you don't have the money to buy it get the Blasting Wand or Amplifying Tome based on what you can afford. (If you can't afford the Blasting Wand, get the Tome). Having a Rylais on Cho'Gath is very important as the slow effects and Rupture slow effects stack. Great for chasing a running enemy, stopping an enemy chasing an ally down or just in general beacause it annoying having to move incredibly slow. Again, just like the Rod of Ages, Rylais Crystal Scepter increases your health and AP so you don't have to sacrifice damage in order to be a tank. A tank is pointless if he can't deal any damage. Remember that you will also have your Feast stacks increasing your health even more.
Now it's time to really get tanky. Remember the Regrowth Pendant you buy first? That builds into a Force of Nature. Because you will have at least 4000 health even if you have a few stacks of Feast, The Force of Nature gets your Health regen pumping up with it's passive. When Cho'Gath has all 6 stacks at level 18 he gets 14 health per secondfrom it's passive. Add that to it's 40 per 5 and you get 110 per 5. That's 1320 a minute!
A good tank isn't just stacking health, health and more health. You also need Armour and Magic resist. The Force of Nature adds needed magic resist to Cho'Gath.
By now you should really be level 18 and have a fair number of feast stacks, if not 6. The Guardian Angel is a great item to have as you need to keep the stacks to keep being an effective tank. It also gives you Armour and Magic Resist which all tanks need.
Some people may not like having a Rabadon's Deathcap on Cho'Gath but it does increase your AP loads which is good for that late game damage. Thanks to your Feast skill, health isn't needed as much in items so dealing damage is the way to go and with a Rabadon's you deal a great deal more. With the Rabadon's you will have 410 AP.
Alternative last items:
The Void Staff isn't really needed unless the enemy team stack magic resist. With the Void Staff you can still deal out large amounts of damage with Rupture or Feral Scream.
Zhonya's Hourglass is nice item to have as it increases AP and Armour. Good if the enemy team have a lot of melee champs like Yi. It's passive is also renders you invulnerable for 2 seconds.
Randuin's Omen is a great item to have on a tank. It will annoy people with constant slows from hitting you and you get added Health and Armour plus even more Health Regen.
I personally think that having Warmog's on Cho'Gath is pointless mainly because you already have the bonus health from your Feast skill. However it does give you a lot of added health so it is a viable option but I think it's better to get an item that will allow you to do more damage.
I prefer to use Greater Quints of Fortitude over Greater Quints of Vitality as you get more health in the beggining of the game. Later on health in small quantities isn't as important as the Force of Nature recovers the amount the Greater Quints of Vitality's give you in a second.
With the Greater Mark of Insight you have added Magic Penetration which helps on Cho'Gath as he deals magic damage.
Greater Seals of Fortitude don't really need an explaination as they increase health, yay!
Greater Glyphs of Celerity are pretty nice on Cho'Gath. I prefer these over Greater Glyphs of Focus as cooldown reduction isn't as important in the beggining but later on when you have the increased mana to spam skills. It also decreases the time needed on your feast by around 6 seconds which is great since it's a powerfull attack.
The Defense masteries are obviously the best for a tank as you take reduced damage.
I have also gone for Archaic Knowledge though which penetrates 15% of the targets magic resistance. This is a very large amount for a mastery and let's Cho'Gath deal extra damage and keep dealing damage throughout the game when people start adding magic resist and armour.
Rupture is the most important skill to upgrade out of the 3 normal skills. It knocks the target into the air and deals a fairly large amount of damage. Cho'Gath normally always lanes with another team member. This is nice as you can rupture an enemy and both of you can attack him.
Feral Scream is a very good skill to have but only late game when all the teamfights happen.
Early game it is outclassed by rupture and having both doesn't really work as it costs too much mana. It's better to get it later on when you can make the most of it's AoE effect in teamfights.
I've had a look at some of the builds made by other people and they all seem to upgrade Vorpal Spikes last. I think that this is a bad idea as it makes farming a lot harder than it needs to be. I've written and explained a lot about this in the Farming section.
Feast. An amazingly powerfull attack that can turn the tide of battle in your favour.
It's best to use this move as soon as it's ready on a minion or creeps in te jungle (I've explained more about this in the Creeping/Jungling section). Best for last hitting an enemy as you get a stack this way but when you get 6 stacks always keep it ready for a champion as using it on anything else is a big waste.
First of all Clarity is essential to have. You cannot play Cho properly without it. I personally like to rupture a lot to keep them away and do lots of damage overtime. I always run out of mana and clarity sorts this out early and late game.
Flash is also a very important spell to have. Ghost can also be used however I like flash more as you can teleport over walls and obsticales when other champions can't unless they also have flash. It is also great for a quick get away whereas ghost is used for a gradual one. These spells are important because you want to keep as may stacks as possible. Becasue of these stacks Cho can became a good tank without having to sacrifice AP and damage.
Farming is essential to any champion really and is easy to do with Cho'Gath. This is because of Vorpal Spikes. I upgrade Vorapal Spikes early into the game to get that boost and it keeps the enemy champions at a distance as if you attack a minion in front of them they also take damage. This also works for killing multiple minions as they take damage as well.
Last hitting is always the way to do things. As Cho you can afford to take the risk of taking some damage to get the last hit on a minion close to other champions as you gain some health and mana back thanks to his Carnivore abilty. *This does vary on the enemy champions however and don't do it if you are already at low health. Keep at the back of your minons to gain experiance and becasuse of your Regrowth Pendant you gain health back quickly for you to go in and farm again.
Creeping / Jungling
Cho'Gath is a great jungler. He can one hit most creeps using his Feast skill. I usually go for the 2 golems if I'm laning on their side, hit one with feast, rupture the other one and kill it off. You can also take most creeps our with just a rupture and finishing them off with normal attacks as you have upgraded Vorpal Spikes which increase damage and hit the other, weaker creeps surrouding the big lizard or blue buff golem.
Another great way to get money and experiance is by killing the wraiths. This can usually be done with a rupture and 1 or 2 normal attacks with Vorpal Spikes. If you get aenough AP early game you can rupture them in 1 hit so you can do it over near your tower. I always go for the wraiths when i'm near them and in the long run can get you a lot of extra gold. If you are very sneaky you can also kill the wraiths in the enemy jungle.
Wolves can also be killed quickly by using a Rupture/Vorpal combo.
As you have all that tasty health at your disposale it is your job to protect your teamates and engage the teamfights as the enemy will almost always attack the champion that comes into range first leaving your more squishy teamates to refrain from getting attacked.