Jhin Build Guide by AntKou101

League of Legends Build Guide Author AntKou101

Crits Cannot Be Dodged

AntKou101 Last updated on October 20, 2016
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
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.


Natural Talent
Bounty Hunter
Battering Blows
Piercing Thoughts

Ferocity: 18

Dangerous Game

Cunning: 12

Tough Skin
Runic Armor
Veteran's Scars
Legendary Guardian

Resolve: 0

Threats to Jhin with this build

Show all
Threat Champion Notes
Sivir Stay away from minions when she uses her bouncing autos and dodge her Q and she will deal almost no damage because of her low attack range. Bait her E before W'ing her.
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Short Guide

Ignore this chapter if you want a more detailed guide. Reed this for the most important information.

In Lane
- trade with your crit (4th shot), you can zone enemies with it
- try not to all in (if you want to trade more heavily, make sure you have enough shots left)
- never stay alone, don't 1v1 enemy ADC

- kite enemies with your increased movement speed on crit
- don't follow if a teammate engages poorly (you are very immobile)
- let your team make picks (more on that in "Abilities")

- find a balance between AD (more damage), AS (more movement speed on crit) and crit chance
- build accordingly to yours and the enemies team composition
- build defensively when necessary

- never stay at the frontline, don't "poke" with your autos
- wait until most cc has been used, then join the teamfight
- stay safe (care about enemy assassins)
- always attack safest target (better attack enemy tank than die attacking enemy ADC)


- use to last hit minions if you can't auto
- make it jump on low-health minions and then to enemies for strong poke
- avoid pushing the wave to far unintentionally

- use to snare enemies after you (with autos or E) or an ally has dealt damage to them
- try to snipe very low-health enemies with it (DFT applies fully)
- use it to escape when an enemy steps on a trap

- when pushing, place traps behind you so you can escape if the enemy jungles comes
- use E for vision
- throw an E into a teamfight where it won't get noticed and deal a lot of damage
- try to snare enemies with your W when they step on them

- don't use this too early (you will deal more damage with your autos)
- care a lot about your positioning when using this (don't stay too far away or too near and make sure the enemies can't walk to the side)
- try to predict the enemies dodging movement
- try to focus low-health targets

This should get you covered when playing Jhin without reading the whole guide.

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They are like puppets, I pull their strings, and then, they dance.

In this guide I will show you how I play Jhin with a crit build - as compared to the Ghostblade Duskblade build.

I play Jhin since he got released and already have over 300 ranked games with him. He boosted me out of silver to plat.

Here are some plays you might enjoy (which are from ranked games I played):

Jhin #mechanics #outplays
Jhin #pentakill

Jhin is a very exciting champion with a very interesting character and voice I love playing.

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Pros / Cons

While I play Jhin in almost every game if I'm ADC (except if Jhin is banned or picked) there are some clear disadvantages where Jhin is not an optimal choice.

- insanely high auto damage, your crits can deal more than 1500 dmg late
- insanely hurting abilities (+ bonus magic damage from DFT)
- great kiting potential lategame
- relatively easy laning phase
- unbelievable useful snare (use W to make guaranteed picks for your team)
- the violin music when ulting is so beautiful

- low mobility (enemies will kill you fast if you can't escape them)
- squishy (Jhin doesn't like cats for example, which don't like him and kill him instantly without building defensively)
- CC (oh, there's a Vi ult, I better QSS it! What the hell, why is it not stopping... grey screen)
- totally useless during reload (oh, look, that Sona has only 20hp, but I have to reload now and everything is on cooldown... AAAAND she's gone!)
- untargetability and blocking shields (Yasuo wall, Fizz E, Braum shield, Pantheon shield, ...)
- spell shields may render your W useless when not baited (Sivir shield, Morgana shield, QSS)

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Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist

Greater Mark of Critical Chance

Greater Mark of Lethality

Greater Quintessence of Life Steal

Greater Quintessence of Lethality

I usually go for scaling armor and magic resist runes because you won't take much damage early. The additional armor and magic resist will help you later in team fights as they outscale the flat runes at level 6 (magic resist at 11).

If you play vs a poke mage like Karma, Soraka or Zyra, go for flat magic resist.

The 1% crit chance is just nice to have and the 1.5% additional life steal will make you sustain longer in lane.

I prefer armor penetration marks and quints as they are strong throughout the game and will make your crits feel stronger. You will not need the tiny bit of AD you'd get from flat AD and the scaling AD runes are weak early, but you may want to choose them for easier farming.

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Amor Pen vs AD

Using the runes above you get 15 flat amor pen from runes. If you'd take AD marks and quints, you'd get 12 AD instead.

Let's calculate the damage you deal with your attacks early:

Jhin has 56 AD + 8 AD from Doran's Blade at lvl 2 where you typically start your first extended trades. Let's take a general enemy ADC who has 30 armor (21 base + 9 from runes):

No runes:
64 * 100/(100 + 30) = 49 damage dealt

Armor Pen Runes:
64 * 100/(100 + 30 - 15) = 56 damage dealt

AD runes:
(64 + 12) * 100/(100 + 30) = 59 damage dealt

AD runes deal slightly more damage per auto early

What about late? Let's assume that the enemy ADC has 90 armor now and you have 500AD (+IE crit)

No runes:
500 * 2.5 (crit damage) * 0.75 (crit passive) = 938 damage
938 * 100/(100 + 90) = 494 damage dealt

Armor Pen Runes:
500 * 2.5 (crit damage) * 0.75 (crit passive) = 938 damage
938 * 100/(100 + 90 - 15) = 536 damage dealt

AD runes: (Let's assume the passive multiplication is 100%, doubling the AD)
(500 + 24) * 2.5 (crit damage) * 0.75 (crit passive) = 982 damage
982 * 100/(100 + 90) = 517 damage dealt

Armor Pen runes deal significant more damage per auto late

This is the case because you already deal a lot of raw AD damage (there's no big difference), but the enemies' armor is reducing it by a percentage. If you get armor pen, you reduce the percentage reduction instead of increasing your raw AD more, which is more effective, because lowering the damage reduction from the enemies' armor is making all of your AD you have late stronger, which results in an increase of damage dealt late.

The goal is to balance AD and Armor Pen. Runes give 15 Armor Pen vs 12 AD, which means that you get more points of armor pen than AD. In game though there are no items giving armor pen without neglecting crit chance (which is sooo important for your survival), which is the reason why I prefer armor pen over flat AD.

What about tanks though? Talking about balance, when enemy tanks stack armor, each point of armor increases the damage reduction by a less and less growing percentage. Let's make the same calculations with an enemy tank with 300 armor.

No runes:
500 * 2.5 (crit damage) * 0.75 (crit passive) = 938 damage
938 * 100/(100 + 300) = 235 damage dealt

Armor Pen Runes:
500 * 2.5 (crit damage) * 0.75 (crit passive) = 938 damage
938 * 100/(100 + 300 - 15) = 244 damage dealt

AD runes: (Let's assume the passive multiplication is 100%, doubling the AD)
(500 + 24) * 2.5 (crit damage) * 0.75 (crit passive) = 982 damage
982 * 100/(100 + 300) = 246 damage dealt

Here you can see that AD runes actually deal slightly more damage, but only by a small amount. Against tanks you should get %armor pen items like Last Whisper or Black Cleaver, which reduce their armor by a large amount before applying flat armor penetration. In that case, the flat armor penetration runes will get stronger again and deal more damage.

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Why choose these masteries?

As an ADC, 18 points in ferocity are necessary for maximum damage:

In the first row, get 5 points for Sorcery because it makes abilities stronger which is more useful than attack speed.

In the second row, Double Edged Sword will give an additional 3% damage, which is more useful than any other mastery here. You already have one life steal quint so you don't need Feast except vs hard lanes like Caitlyn and Expose Weakness isn't useful at all.

In the third row, you can choose what you want. I prefer Bounty Hunter as it can deal more damage and doesn't only apply when the enemy is CC'd. You can go for Oppressor as well.

Forth row, you should take Battering Blows because Jhin deals almost only physical damage (except your E and DFT).

For the last row, you definitely want to go for Deathfire Touch . Sometimes I think that this mastery has been made exactly for Jhin as he has such a large amount of AD and will deal a lot of additional damage on his W and R.


For the first row, I usually spend 3 points in Savagery and 2 points in Wanderer .
Why? you might ask. Well, it often happens that you have your crit up and the enemy ADC is almost in your attack range and with a slightly increased movement speed you will be able to catch and crit him.

Second row, Secret Stash will give you these cookies that not only give more hp but also some mana, which you may need when you are low on mana.

In the third row, Dangerous Game is what you want. This will save you from death when you fight in botlane and you killed the enemy ADC with almost no health and prevent you from getting killed by the enemy support or minion aggro.

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Usually I play Jhin on crit as crit makes Jhins autos so much stronger than they already are.

When the game starts, I look if both my and the enemy has a sustain support (like soraka, Janna, Lulu) and only then I start with Cull. In all other games I start with Doran's Blade as it gives you more life steal and hp.

I always rush Essence Reaver if I can (If enemy Kata is fed before you finished it, go for Hexdrinker first.

When going back, I try to have at least 1300 gold. The B. F. Sword just gives the best stats and results in a huge power spike, making your crits hurt much more. If you have at least 1100 than that, go for Caulfield's Warhammer for some CD. If you have less than that, go for some Long Swords and Boots of Speed.
If you don't have enough gold for the B. F. Sword after you bought Caulfield's Warhammer, you may want to build Youmuu's Ghostblade if even selling your Doran's Blade doesn't give enough gold for it. The Cloak of Agility is a very weak item early so try to buy it last just before you finish Essence Reaver.

Always try to have at least one Health Potion (pref. 2, depending on lane) and try to buy a Vision Ward and place it. (If your base is top, place the ward in the tri-bush between Gromp and river, if your base is bot, carry the ward and place it when the enemy clears out your support's ward or keep it for dragon.

After Essence Reaver you can usually go for either Infinity Edge or Rapid Firecannon. Go for IE if you are ahead or RFC if you need more mobility / bigger attack range (but less damage early).

Generally Berserker's Greaves are a good choice on Jhin as the attack speed will increase your damage and kiting potential while providing almost the same mobility as Boots of Swiftness (don't buy Berserker's Greaves if you need the Tenacity it provides.

After you have built your 4 main items (3 core + boots), you can either go for more damage (if you're fed) or for some more defensive items (if you're behind or equal). Generally, don't avoid buying some defensive items as you are still a squishy. Dealing less damage is still more damage than dealing no damage (because you died)! I'll list all the items I'd build on him and explain when to build them:

Core Items

ESSENCE REAVER "The essence of a thing is found only in its absence."
This item is core on Jhin because you are a caster. All of its stats are useful: Attack Damage, Crit Chance, Cooldown Reduction and Mana Restore on Crit.
After finishing this item you are going to have a huge power spike because you can keep spamming your abilities faster without going out of mana and still get a huge amount of AD!
INFINITY EDGE This item is core on Jhin because it increases the damage of your crits (and your 4th ultimate shot), gives Attack Damage and Crit Chance.
Stronger crits make more sense after you have some decent crit chance, that's why you should build this item after Essence Reaver.
RAPID FIRECANNON "Rapid fire? Huh. Where's the drama in that?"
This item is core on Jhin because it increases the range of your strong autos and provides some decent Crit Chance and Attack Speed, which increase your kiting potential by a lot.
If building this after Essence Reaver and Infinity Edge, you are going to have 70% (or 71% with runes) crit chance, which means that now 2 of your 3 autos will crit (besides your 4th auto) and you well get a boost of movement speed each time. Furthermore, crit chance increases your AD by a percentage, so the more AD you have (ER + IE) the more the increase gets.

Offensive Items
LORD DOMINIK'S REGARDS "Sometimes, silence is loud."
Choose this item if the enemy has tanks building a lot of armor, like a Malphite top or a Shen support for example.
Generally, you have to know whether your job is to kill the squishies or the tanks. This depends on whether your team has assassins (who are strong vs squishies) or bruisers (who are strong vs tanks).
PHANTOM DANCER "Start the music. I will make them dance."
Build this item when you need some extra mobility through crits. Don't buy this item to duel other people, you are a weak duelist.
You can replace boots lategame after you have your full build with Phantom Dancer or a different crit item as you are still mobile in team fights through crits, especially when your team has cloud drake stacks.
STATIKK SHIV "I do prefer my work to have a brisk tempo."
Build this item if your team lacks waveclear and you need to push waves fast (for example during a siege).
You can also replace boots with this item in lategame.
YOUMUU'S GHOSTBLADE I usually don't build this item because it has no synergy with the crit build. However, you might buy it if you think that the crit build is not optimal (because you need more mobility and tankyness through other non-crit items) or you lack the gold to get the B. F. Sword for Essence Reaver.

Defensive Items
MERCURIAL SCIMITAR "Art is such a fickle thing."
This item gives you the QSS active which is extremely useful especially if the enemy has some dangerous CC. Life steal and AD make this item a lot less defensive as you might think.
THE BLOODTHIRSTER "Red is a primary color."
Build this item if you really want some solid lifesteal (which is a good choice when you have a lot of AD). This item is (similar to Mercurial Scimitar) a not so defensive useful item, as it also gives you a shield which not only blocks magic damage like Maw of Malmortius but all types of damage.
This item will make you unstoppable in lategame teamfights when you are fed. You should consider getting it after your core items (+ boots) if you don't need other items.
DEATH'S DANCE This item gives you some cooldown reduction and life steal on all abilities dealing physical damage. Unfortunately your Q is an AoE ability and heals for only 5% and and W and R have such a large range that you won't need life steal.
Besides that, the passive is almost useless, as you will rarely survive a burst if you get focused (because of bad positioning). I rarely build this item. If you need life steal, better choose The Bloodthirster.
MAW OF MALMORTIUS Build this when the enemy has a lot of AP, especially AP-assassins like Katarina, Evelynn, Diana and so on. You can usually start with the Hexdrinker part and choose later if you want to finish it.
You may also want to sell Hexdrinker and buy The Bloodthirster if you don't need the magic resist because this item is lacking life steal.
FROZEN MALLET Build this item if you need more hp to survive assassins and for better kiting the enemy (by slowing him).
This item has - compared to other defensive items - a good synergy with the crit build. On top of that, it can help you out even when you are behind and getting bursted by AD-Assassins like Zed, Talon, Rengar, Shaco, Kha'zix, you get it.
TRINITY FORCE This item gives you health, mana, cdr and movement speed. Build this item when you are definitely not going to build another crit item (for example with a full defensive build vs CC-heavy team and no peel). You still get the 40% cooldown and enough mana without more crit items.
You really shouldn't buy this item if you are ahead because the stats it provides are pretty small and the passive quite ineffective.
THE BLACK CLEAVER Only build this item if the enemies have a lot of armor but you still need the health and can't get a Last Whisper.
Again, the same passive as with Trinity Force will give you more movement speed and cooldown reduction without more crit items. That's why you shouldn't build both of them.
STERAK'S GAGE This item is intended for bruisers, not for ADCs!
There are some games where your complete team exists of squishies (like Nami support, Diana jungle, Zed mid and AD- Fiora top. When your team has no tank, sometimes it makes sense to be the tank (especially if you lose your lane but the other lanes are doing comparably well.
In this case, you don't build any crit at all, but you build Frozen Mallet, The Black Cleaver or Trinity Force and then this item, as it's stats are pretty useless by themselves.
I have built this in only a couple of games and there's a reason why tank-Jhin is not in the meta. Just hope your squishy team can destroy the enemies while you tank the enemies' damage.
GUARDIAN ANGEL "Gold is my power color."
Try to avoid building this item as it doesn't give you any offensive stats. Only build it when you know you are going to die in a teamfight (when there's a fed Rengar or Shaco or your team doesn't stop Akali from killing you.
Besides that, you might want to build this if the game goes on very long and death timers exceed one minute.

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Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

Always max R over Q over W over E.

Don't start with Q when the game starts! Wait, until you arrive in lane after helping the jungler and then max Q because you should max W first when you are going for an invade.

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and are the summoner spells you will take on 99% of your games.

, , or may suit your cases in some very rare cases.

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Ranked Play

When playing ranked, the optimal solution is to have a support with whom you can duo queue, because Jhin has a good synergy with some supports, but also a not so good one with other supports.

Supports can be divided in three categories:

Kill: (Blitzcrank, Leona, Thresh, Nautilus)
high-risk-high-reward champions that are dependant on all-ins (with CC) to win the lane

Poke: (Karma, Zyra, Morgana, Brand)
champions that debut or poke the enemies to either kill them or force them out of lane

Sustain: (Soraka, Nami, Sona, Janna)
champions that buff or heal the allies and allow them to trade unfavourably without being punished

Some champions fit in multiple roles, for example Soraka Q is a strong poke early, Morgana Q is a deadly skill shot if hit and Alistar E is a sustain ability.

As a side note, usually poke beats kill, sustain beats poke and kill beats sustain. So you need to know whether botlane has a favorable matchup (ex. your support is kill and the enemies' support is kill or sustain) and play accordingly.

From my experience Jhin has the best synergy with kill supports because of their CC-heavy kit, and a not so good synergy with poke and sustain supports. This is because of the lack of his mobility. Jhin has no dash to follow the enemy once he's rooted and they usually escape with a sustain or poke support, even with a hit W. If your support has CC though, you can chain CC your W in a way that the enemies have no way to escape once CCed.

Blitzcrank W -> Blitzcrank E -> Jhin W -> Blitzcrank Q
Morgana W -> Jhin W -> Morgana Q
Leona E -> Jhin W -> Leona Q (for maximum Leona passive damage)

When you hit one of the above combos with your support, the enemy is either going to die or at least burn his spells, because they are so deadly. That's why I recommend playing with a support you know, so you can coordinate your combos better. Usually, at lvl 2 there are already enough abilities to force a favourable trade.

Generally though, don't follow or engage if you think you are going to die. And don't expect your support to follow you when you hit a W for example. Just play it safe and wait until they make their plays.

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In Lane

I consider Jhins laning phase to be very strong. The most difficult thing is to use your limited autos and Qs efficiently without losing too much farm. You can practice this though in custom games by just picking a Cull and farming until you have 100CS and then checking the game length. With enough practise you will not lose almost any farm at all due to your passive reloading.

What makes Jhins laning so powerful though?
1. Guaranteed crit + 15% of missing health bonus damage early
Your fourth shot is so deadly, you should try to get this on enemies and not on minions if you can. Try to keep the shot as long as possible if you can't hit an enemy with it and there are no low-hp minions. This shot is a great zoning tool, which can make the enemy lose a lot of farm if used correctly. You can even use abilities to postpone the reload. If the enemy is near you you can chase him (your masteries will make you faster than him).

If the enemy has a kill support, you have to make sure by either staying behind minions (vs Blitz, Thresh, ...) or don't engage at all if it's too dangerous (vs Leona, Bard). It's usually better to just wait for your poke support to poke the enemies down. If you have a sustain support (which will be almost useless without any poke abilities) you have to farm safely or make sure that you won't get hit.

With a kill support, you can win trades by baiting the enemy supports skill shots. If a thresh uses his lantern on you (because you baited moving to a minion to kill it but dodged the skillshot) your kill support can immediately engage in a situation where your team has 1 more ability than the enemy.

If the enemy has a poke support, you have to be sure that you don't take much damage. The amount of damage you can take varies depending on your support. If you have a sustain support, you can allow to take more damage because your support will heal you up, making the trades more favorable. If you have a poke support, try to time your engage so that the enemies take more damage (by focusing one enemy while the other one is out of range). If you have a kill support, you have to either engage early or let yourself getting zoned and missing some CS or losing health.

If the enemy has a sustain support, you should reconsider whether your trading is worth at all. The enemy will heal up while you will keep the damage taken. If you have a heal support, go for it, but try to focus one target (usually the support) to "outsustain" the enemies healing. It's more important to have a better farm here than to net kills. If you have a poke support, try to make only favorable trades (where you are sure that you will not take much damage) and try to get one enemy low with support poke-Jhin W combos without taking too much damage. Alternatively, let yourself getting zoned and try to get as much CS as possible without dying. If you have a kill support, this is a very easy game. The enemy support's healing won't sustain your all-ins, leading to strong zone control of your support and to kills if the enemy is too greedy.

2. Jhin W
Jhin's W is a very powerful ability, because it allows him to have a better mobility by reducing the enemy's mobility. As Jhin deals a lot of damage over a small period of time, you can snare enemies after they take damage or step on an E and decide whether you want to finish them off or end the trade.
A very strong combo you can do yourself if you are not getting zoned is:
Jhin Q -> Jhin crit -> Jhin W
If you hit your Q before your crit, your crit will deal more damage, as the enemy will more missing health. You don't have to use your W immediately, just use it instantly when the enemy dashes to you to extend the trade. The W becomes much less dodgeable when the enemy doesn't expect you to use it.

All in all, Jhin's passive and W make him very strong in lane, especially in conjunction with poke and kill supports who have great synergy with the W.

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Basically, you want to constantly poke with your crit and Q combo, never trade for too long, and stay back in teamfights until most CC has been used.

I haven't finished this guide yet. There are some more details I'd like to mention, but for now I think the basics about itemization are enough. I'll update this guide when I have some time. Leave me comments with your opinions about this guide.

...and let them feel your crits!