Gangplank Build Guide by pillows

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League of Legends Build Guide Author pillows

Gangplank - Max Crit and CDR

pillows Last updated on July 15, 2011
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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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 0

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 9

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I have noticed that Gangplank is largely neglected on this site, with very few quality guides out there. The top guide at the moment is a good build, but not optimal for Gangplank, and so I thought I would share my experience with the pirate!

This build focuses on two main stats, which play to the strengths of Gangplank:

1.) Crit - Parrrley is basically a ranged physical attack which benefits from on-hit items and your crit. You want this to hit HARD, and a guaranteed crit will make the enemy team fear your harassment.

2.) Cooldown Reduction - With 40% cooldown reduction, Cannon Barrage will be up every 48 seconds, and Parrrley every 2.4. Raise Morale becomes a 10 second cooldown, allowing for 100% uptime, and Remove Scurvy is up every 7.2 seconds. With Parrrley on a 2.4 second cooldown and 100% crit, you can poke better than any champion in the game, except maybe Nidalee.

When both teams are milling around by a tower exchanging harassment, you will make them realize very quickly that they must act or retreat, putting your team at the advantage. Remove Scurvy allows you to harass in this way without fear of being hit by an Enchanted Crystal Arrow and having everybody jump on you.

Once the teamfight begins, your speed, CC removal, and high burst damage allow you to quickly target and focus down low armor targets and then escape into the bush until the enemy switches focus. You can repeat this until the damage dealers on the enemy team are dead, and even with a relatively small amount of armor penetration, no tank can take you down without support.

This build is quite expensive, but Gangplank can farm very easily with Parrrley, and you should have no trouble getting items very quickly.

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Greater Mark of Critical Chance - Our goal here is 100% crit chance for devastating harassment with Parrrley.

Greater Quintessence of Critical Chance - Again, crit crit crit.

Greater Seal of Scaling Mana Regeneration - Gangplank needs mana to consistently use Parrrley to both harass and grab last hits. This is our only concession to mana, and should be enough if you are careful how you use your skills.

Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction Greater Glyph of Scaling Cooldown Reduction - With these glyphs and our items we should end up with 39.8% cooldown reduction, allowing Gangplank to spam his abilities with nice low cooldowns. Cannon Barrage will be up every 48 seconds, and Parrrley every 2.4. Raise Morale becomes a 10 second cooldown, allowing for 100% uptime, and Remove Scurvy is up every 7.2 seconds.

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Masteries are standard 21/0/9, making sure to pick up improved Ghost and Exhaust. The extra experience and mana regen from the Utility tree will keep you in the lane, while offense gives us additional crit, crit damage, armor penetration, reduced cooldowns, and just more damage.

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Summoner Spells

Ghost - Allows you to chase or escape as the situation demands. With Remove Scurvy to clear CC, ghost will allow you to escape all but the worst ganks.

Exhaust - Your role in a team fight is to murder squishies and shut down enemy carries. Exhaust gives you the edge you need to win any 1v1 fight or to shutdown the AD carry in a teamfight. A great spell for Gankplank.

Other options:

Flash - Flash is so good that it is a viable option on almost any character, but as Gankplank you don't really have any abilities that benefit from it like Annie or Amumu for example. Personally, I feel that Ghost + Remove Scurvy allow you to escape ganks without the need to jump walls, in addition to providing greater chasing power vs fleeing champions.

Ignite - Ignite can help you pick up those early kills, but personally I think Exhaust serves that role just as well while also providing additional utility in the form of a disable. Ignite will not let you save your AP caster from that Xin Zhao!

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Skill Sequence

Cannon Barrage - Your global ultimate, allowing you to turn the tides of a teamfight, pick up kills/assists from across the map, or save a tower while you push an inhibitor with your team. Pick it up whenever it is available.

Parrrley - Your bread and butter. Max it for greater damage and more gold, allowing you to farm better than almost any champion in the game.

Raise Morale - An AD and Movespeed steroid that grants you as much damage as a B. F. Sword and a smaller bonus to all allies in the vicinity. A wonderful skill with great group utility, max this after Parrrley.

Remove Scurvy - A great skill that completely removes any CC, allowing you to escape ganks and hunt down squishy carries with impunity. We take one point in this early for the utility, and and max it last, as increased ranks only grant greater healing (marginal) and lower cooldown. While the cooldown reduction is nice, our other skills affect our power much more directly. Just know when this ability is available, and play more carefully when it is not!

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Starting Items
Brawler's Gloves and 2x Health Potion - I like going for the early avarice blade on Gangplank, and together with your runes, the Brawler's Gloves starts you off at a respectable 24% chance to crit. With 2 potions and your mana regen runes, you should be able to stay in the lane until you gather 700 gold to upgrade to Avarice Blade and purchase your Boots of Speed. If you are doing really well in the lane, feel free to stick around until you can also pick up Sheen.

Ionian Boots of Lucidity - With a high base move speed and a Raise Morale, Gangplank doesn't really need faster boots. The cooldown reduction on these boots, along with the rest of the build, allow Gangplank to reach 40% cooldown reduction while still leaving blue buff for a more mana hungry AP carry.

Trinity Force - An all around great item for Gangplank. It builds from Sheen which has perfect synergy with Parrrley, and the extra health, slow, movement speed, and crit are all core stats for Gangplank.

Infinity Edge - Absolutely essential for this build. You will crit 100% of the time, and with Infinity Edge those crits will hit MUCH harder.

Youmuu's Ghostblade - Builds from Avarice Blade, and gives you increased damage, armor pen, and cooldown reduction along with a very useful active that will allow you to chase down and quickly dispatch any lone champion before their team can support them.

Phantom Dancer - Crit, movement speed, and attack speed to apply your passive faster and increase your damage. An all around great item, we get this later in the build because it needs a solid base of damage to truly shine.

The Bloodthirster - Your last item is very situational. Bloodthirster gives you much needed lifesteal for survivability, and you can stack the passive VERY quickly. However, if you are playing against a tanky dps team that stacks armor, you might go for a Last Whisper. If you feel you need some extra survivability, Banshee's Veil or Guardian Angel are both very solid choices.

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How to play

Gangplank is very strong in either the top solo lane, or bottom with a support. He can farm last hits with impunity with Parrrley, while offering solid harassment that will keep your enemies off the creep wave.

Early game, your mana will be somewhat limited, and so be mindful of whether or not your harassment is effective. If you are bottom lane, and the opponent has a Soraka who heals all the damage you do while providing infinite mana, focus instead on last hitting. Use Parrrley and your auto-attacks to punish overextending, but don't worry as much about harass until you build some items.

Your high movement speed allow you to quickly traverse the river to support a teamfight, protect your jungler, or gank the mid. Just make a habit of walking into the river bush in between parleys, or back to the tower after you push the lane, so your opponent is forced to call mia constantly. You can then casually walk into the bush, use ghost and Raise Morale and get to the mid likely before the mia call goes out. With your built in slow and high burst damage, you can easily pick up kills this way.

Once the game transitions into mid-late game, Gangplank still shines in teamfights. Use Cannon Barrage at the slightest provocation, as the cooldown is quite low. Judge the situation to determine placement. Did the enemy initiate, and have they committed to the fight? Use it directly on top of them. Is your team chasing, or have they caught a few out of position? Use it slightly behind the enemy to cut off an escape route, or to prevent reinforcements from running in. Are your allies in a bad position, and trying to disengage? Cast it slightly behind them giving them room to escape.

Never initiate a teamfight, unless it is with Cannon Barrage from a safe distance! Know your role in a teamfight. You are quite squishy, and the enemy WILL learn to focus you down quickly. Enter teamfights from the side or the rear, after the tanks have initiated and cooldowns have been blown. Assassinate the ranged carries and then quickly back out. Use Raise Morale on cooldown to support your team. Use your Remove Scurvy only after the enemies blow their CC on you. NEVER use it for the heal unless you are SURE that they have nothing left to lock you down with. Nothing makes me more sad than to see a Gankplank at low hp running from a fight use Remove Scurvy to heal, only to be hit by a root and killed.

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Gangplank is a very strong champion, and the latest buffs have only made him stronger. His built in slowing attack, high speed AD steroid make him the perfect ganker, and a respectable anti-carry. His harassment is top-notch, his team utility is very nice, and he can alter the course of a teamfight with Cannon Barrage.

This is my first guide, and I am open to any suggestions or criticism! Thanks for reading, and have fun with the pirate!