Galio Build Guide by Contrakt
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.
7/4/2011 - Guide freshly released
7/5/2011 - Summoner spells edited. Clairvoyance added to the list. Idea originated from Keels
7/5/2011 - Guardian Angel tooltip edited. (Edit in Parenthesis) Idea originated from Mooninites
7/5/2011 - Added elixirs to end-build.
Introduction to Contraktt
Hi there, I would consider myself a "long time" player. 550 wins at the moment.
I bought Galio on the day of his release and never realized his true potential until a while back. After some great experience with Galio I decided it's time to make a guide for him. Too many people making him look like a sub-par champion.
Introduction to Galio, The Sentinel's Sorrow
Galio has some amazing utility in every single one of his abilities. Not one, nor two, but all four of his abilities are helpful to your team in the very best ways.
Runic Skin --Your passive that does not help you be a better tank, like some tank passives. This passive helps you put out more damage. So by being more resistant to magic, you then become more deadly with your own magic.
Resolute Smite --This is your most often used spell. Does the most burst damage (Besides your ult, of course) and early game, can net you and your laning partner an easy kill. Along with Righteous Gust you can easily get up to 150-200 minion kills by end-game. I "rush" this to max level first, due to its great slowing/damage potential throughout the entire game.
#1 --Decent range
#2 --Great burst to most any champ early/mid game
#3 --To get the most out of the slow and damage it provides, use it before and after your ult.
#4 --Want to know a secret about it? I'm not sure if Riot knows this or not, but if you cast Resolute Smite into the brush... It will NOT light up the area. It will NOT show you enemy champions if they are or aren't there. What it DOES do.... Mwahaha... What it DOES do is if your Resolute Smite DAMAGED any one champion, you will target them. If you're not sure what I mean, then in the top left corner of the screen is your champion. Directly right of your champion is your target. If you use this spell in the weeds, and it hits someone you will see their box up in the corner next to yours. Simply put.. You are targeting them, even though you didn't light the area up, nor did you ever reveal them. You can use this trick at any level during any point in the game.
Bulwark --This is a pretty useful shield. There are much better out there but this one has its specialties.
#1 --It gives you armor and magic resist while applied to yourself.
#2 --Your passive will provide more ability power while applied to yourself.
#3 --It will heal YOU consecutively when the wearer of the shield takes damage. Does not heal the wearer, only heals you.
#4 --This shield, when applied to you, is the perfect lead-up to the use of your ultimate. It provides extra protection (while everyone is beating the pulp out of you when they're taunted) and it also will INCREASE the damage of your ultimate because it increases the amount of power your passive gives you. Just an overall amazing spell to apply to yourself during your ultimate. When you're through with your ultimate, always apply this to your carry (Yi, Ashe, Miss Fortune, Tryndamere) Applying this to your carry provides two great things. Gives THEM more armor and magic resist, and gives YOU health when they get hit.
Righteous Gust --No the fun doesn't stop yet, this spell provides some damage, not great. What it mainly provides is a great range, and a speed utility for you and your team to either run from a gank, or to initiate a fight.
#1 --Will only speed up allies in the direction you shot it. Like going with the grain of wood, you cannot be sped up by running through it BACKWARDS.
#2 --Does not effect enemies movement speed.
#3 --If your team just scored an ace, and you're pushing mid hard, then you can use this to actually speed up your minions, to get them to the turret faster.
#4 --You can choose one of two things.. Use this spell to get into the team fight faster, allowing you to rush in quickly and use your ultimate, OR you can use it after your ultimate to easily chase down running enemies. It's all a matter of what looks best given the situation.
#5 --With this spell at level 2, and Resolute Smite at level 4 (That means about level 7-8, depending on how fast your build is coming along) you can clear caster minions quickly and effectively.
Idol of Durand --This spell is downright amazing. AoE 2.5 second taunt and at the end a burst of damage to ALL targets within range of your channel. This spell is extremely situational. Very easy to mess it up, and very easy to look like a complete noob with it too. BUT, if you do it right, you will scare the piss out of anyone that is stuck in your channel of doom.
#1 --If you are going the main tank role, you must always use this spell first to initiate the fight. It will do burst damage and also allow your team to beat the hell out of the fed Katarina caught in your ult, leaving her useless and scared. The best way to use this is to go unnoticed and then quickly pop your Bulwark on yourself, and Flash into the middle of the enemies, pop your ult and watch the mayhem from inside your stone shell. When your shell bursts, make sure to slow them down with Resolute Smite and then point your Righteous Gust in the right direction and clean the rest of em' up.
#2 --If you're straying from the TANK role because you have an amazingly tanky Cho'Gath that never dies, then be sure you save your ult until the enemies decide they're useless and they need to turn to retreat. Pop your ult and be sure retreating is NOT an option.
3# --Try to NOT use this on a single kill if you don't have to. Earlier in game though, during the laning phase, it's ok. Netting a kill or two with your ult on bottom lane with your partner is perfectly acceptable while laning. Later in game though, if you find a random jungler, try not to ult them, makes you less effective when their whole team shows up.
My rune set-up is very standard.
Greater Mark of Insight
Magic Penetration because all of your damage output is magical based.
Greater Seal of Resilience
Armor simply because our items provide a ton of magic resistance and it's always good to have a rounded set-up for early game.
Greater Glyph of Warding
This is obvious. Magic resistance for the passive, and also just because we are a tank, aren't we?
Greater Quint of Fortitude
This gives you a nice boost in health early game. Making you scary even from level 1.
I also have a very standard mastery set-up.
I set it up to be tanky from the get-go. But I also stray off into the offense tree to get that bit of precious magic pen that will make your spells just that much more effective. Pretty straight forward, nothing too unusual.
My item set-up is literally the same EVERY SINGLE GAME. I do not change it at all because I find this is absolutely the most effective one for the "tank" roll on Galio. There is just ONE item that differs depending on the enemy team composition.
--First because I like to be able to harass a slight bit, I know for a fact I won't be able to FARM well until level 7-8. So I grab mana regen at level one so I can stay strong in lane.
--When we get back to shop for the first time I usually have enough gold to afford this and at least level 1 boots. The chalice allows for insane ability to farm minions without seeing your mana dent too bad.
--These provide more Magic Resist, run speed 2, and also our full cut of "tenacity" the new bit of tankiness Riot provided to us a while back. Perfect boots for Galio, no exception.
--I will get this as my 3rd item every single game. No doubt about it. It provides MR, Armor, and that extra life you need if you make a mistake or get focused in a team fight. 95% when I buy this item I'm still at 0 deaths. Also, this item is just ANOTHER reason for them to fear you more. If they see a Galio running around with this item at level 10 they're going to be like, "Wow.. He has THAT? Already!? Stay away!" (EDIT: On a side note: Guardian Angel is a 5 minute cooldown automatic respawn, basically a zero death timer. If you're confident in getting it early, do so. It provides MR armor and a free death. If you'd rather skip it and leave it until later in the game, feel free to skip it. It will not effect your game, as you're just skipping forward to another great item.)
--These two items here are a trade off. Thornmail provides extra damage to AD carries and will basically make that fed Ashe kill herself as you sit there and /taunt. On the other hand, check out their team. If they've got a Veigar, Leblanc, Malzahar, Karthus, and Amumu. You might wanna go, "Hmmmm that SURE IS a lot of magic damage. Boy I sure would look stupid for getting Thornmail." Exactly. If they have quite a bit of magic damage pick up Force of Nature instead.
--Banshee's is a great item for nearly any champion. It provides some great MR, a boost of health and mana, and also will block a deadly Ashe arrow, or Malzahar's ultimate, or even Blitz's Rocket Grab right through the brush. It can be a lifesaver. I pick it up every game, if they haven't surrendered already.
--Last but NOT least. Randuin's. What a great item this is. I usually would pick this up earlier on any other tank. But on Galio I grab it very last to finish up my build. Has a great active that you should pop when the enemy team decides to run, or if your team is in trouble, then you can pop the active and escape. Unforunately though, it provides no MR, and comes up last on the list. Although waiting until the last item slot is smart in a way because if you read the active, it becomes stronger the stronger you are.
--Is an absolute must on tank, support, dps, or even healer Galio. I don't care. It's a must! Flash is a must for ultimate positioning, mainly. It is a great get-away tool and also an initiator. Downright a MUST.
--The usual Contrakt would flame people for carrying Summoner Heal. But the ignorance faded and I've learned that Summoner Heal can not only save your butt in a tough situation, but it can also heal that carry of yours when they're a sliver from dead and they need a boost of health to keep going. End game it becomes less effective but effective it remains.
--Clairvoyance isn't a bad option either. I just played a game [7/5/11] running with Flash/Clairvoyance and pulled 11-1-25 with a victory. As far as I saw there really wasn't much of a difference without heal. Clairvoyance is always handy to check out Baron, Dragon, potential ganks, pretty much anything. If you're not into heal, Clairvoyance looks to be another great choice!
Pros / Cons
--Great early game damage
--Greatly mana efficient from level 1 (As long as build is followed)
--Naturally high health
--Decent AP Ratios on all spells
--Every spell is helpful to the team in some way
--Solo lanes extremely well
--You're just a beast
--Doesn't really wield much burst end-game
--Every ability is a skill shot, some dislike this
--Slower than some champs
--Sometimes you're so scary, that you can't make any friends. They're all too scared of you.
Champions to Watch Out For
Champions that stun:
Champions that taunt:
Champions that have "pop-up" abilities:
All of these champions are dangerous to your effectiveness. I've had it happen. I flash in pop my ult and Xin Zhao instantly popped me out of my ult. It's frustrating, but it happens. Just be cautious of certain champs.
Galio and Communication... A near must!
I would never tell you to not play Galio if you don't have instant communication with your team, but having that luxury is great, and will improve the time you and Galio spend together. The more your team knows, the better you will be. Pinging a spot, to let your team know where you will be ulting, sometimes just isn't enough..
When I play Galio I'm usually either on a program that allows chatting between allies, or I'm in the same room as my allies in real life. It just makes your life much easier when you don't have to type, or ping.
Have no fear though! Even if you have to ping or type, you will still have fun, and most likely do well.
I hope that this guide will help more Galios become successful in taking on the "tank" role. Too many people look down upon Galio and think Rammus or Shen would serve better.
In my very own opinion I think Galio is a better tank than most. He has an AoE taunt. He has a group speed buff. He has an AoE slow. and also a damage reducing and self-healing shield.
WHAT DOESN'T HE HAVE!?
I hope you give Galio a try, but if you see me in game, you better find someone else to play bro, or we might have some problems! :)
*All information found, tested, and written by Contraktt himself. No ideas, quotes, or thoughts have been copied in any way in this guide.
All comments, upvotes, and downvotes are appreciated. If anyone has something that I could add into the guide, I can and will do so (Credit going to the idea creator, of course) This is my first guide. I hope it has done its purpose and shown you the way to success with Galio.