Build Guide by Zanotti
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Not Updated For Current Season
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**Updated January 18th, 2011 Just as a heads up from Patch v188.8.131.52
**Updated January 11th, 2011 To Reflect Return of Judgement's Pwning Power
**Updated December 14th, 2010 Upon Reading Hurtful Patch-notes
People hate him so if you try to go anything other than a tank you'll get pummeled. If you don't build a tank and you suck then your team will just chirp you into the ground. Tank Garen is the way to go because he promises he will never die.
Today's (Jan 18/11) Patch has given us two gifts as follows:
Garen * Judgement bonus attack damage scaling increased to 1.2 from 1.0 per second AND our Defensive Mastery Ardor gives us the full 4% Attack Speed increase at level one. These should translate into more early, but mostly, mid game kills. The 20% scaling bonus on Judgment will coincide with Frozen Mallet nicely.
They just nerfed this build by making the passive on Sunfire Capes Unique so I went ahead and took the second one out of the build. The main items for this build are really just Mercury's Treads, Sunfire Cape, and Spirit Visage. These items provide a great balance of both Armor and Magic Resistance to keep your opponents frustrated. I've opted for Mercury's Treads because after further playing I've discovered that breaking stuns and slows substantially faster will allow you to be more effecting in team fights while the Boots of Speed were a much narrower option. Still! Rush the cape because it will help your farming exponentially while the boots help you be at a team fight on time and Spin/Move faster under constant CC.
I've also had greater success building more situational in terms of Magic Res and Armor. Based on the other teams make up and capabilities the order of Force of Nature, Thornmail, Randuin's Omen, Frozen Mallet and Guardian Angel are up to you. Randuin's is always a solid pick and to make sure you use it's active bind the #1 item slot to your mouse wheel and place it there. That way there's no excuse of hitting the wrong button or w/e. I've removed Warmog's Armor and Atma's Impaler because of the comments I've been receiving and to be honest games never really play out to have those two items as the best choice. Force of Nature, however, is the right choice for Magic Heavy Teams follows by Randuin's Omen and Guardian Angel. For Physical DPS teams Thornmail, Randuin's Omen and Guardian Angel is the right combination. THE MAJORITY OF GAMES WILL SEE A MIX so be prepared to find a balance.
If you are lucky enough to face a team which focuses one or the other that will be an easy game for you. To be successful you need to build based on what the other team is doing. Within 15-20 minutes you can see their builds and who is giving your team trouble. I don't see the new Sunfire capes as a nerf but rather a chance to silence people who think Garen is a One Trick Pony. So the build is not more difficult now it just requires you to use your noggin a bit more and build to minimize the damage of your enemies. Frozen Mallet gives a great combination of buffs so take it when you feel confident in your team's abilities and need a touch more CC on your team. It's more of a fun item when you're doing great than a core item to this build.
I've recently been debating removing Thornmail altogether from this build as your damage mitigation makes that item better suited to higher HP champs. I'm going to do some testing and get back to you on that question. Main idea is if they are not hitting me for a lot they won't be taking much of Thornmail's Passive Damage. Perhaps a different item is needed but we'll find out soon enough.
E-Judgement > W-Courage > Q-Decisive Strike (1 Point @ level 2 Only) > Ult When Available
Judgment has been placed back to its former grandeur so my early and mid game kills have been going very well. The damage increase from that big nerf two patches ago is quite apparent. Utilize this to harass and always remember to heal up with your passive (Increased benefit from Spirit Visage) before engaging 2 enemies early on; engaging 3 people solo is still inadvisable.
I now rush Courage after Judgment because it's damage mitigation early on will compensate for your lack of items and it's alway cool to yell "DEMACIA!" when spinning into a team fight. The full 25 points into both Armor and Magic Resistance account for roughly 900 gold worth of damage mitigation. It's like Costco for Garen so Max out its benefits early and you will reap the rewards.
This also happen --> Decisive Strike base damage reduced to 30/45/60/75/90 from 40/60/80/100/120! So don't waste your hard earned points on this skill (other than the point at lvl 2 for the speed increase and silence) only take it when nothing else is available. **This bonus damage effects turrets so you need to make a decision to use it on turrets while pushing or to save it as a get away tool when the enemy team realizes what you're doing.
Ult (Demacian Justice) is still hilarious. I've started popping it a little earlier on tough carries, or Cho'Gaths, which usually results in them freaking out and leaving the fight while your team explodes on their support. Assists are good enough for me late game. Early and Mid Game is really your time to shine now!
You have a large sword and even bigger balls but that doesn't mean you should just be an idiot and fly around trying to auto-attack everyone while taking minion damage and turret diving before you're ready; Oh You'll be ready someday. Your greatest asset is the complete warehouse annoyingness you can unload. Spin to kill minions and harass enemy champs, pop your Courage if they attack you, then Q to escape or harass a bit more. If you are full health you cannot be 2 man ganked early on. So stay full health! Hang in a bush, let your carry get some minion kills, regen your health, wait for cooldowns. Be a wise Demacian General and bide your time. You can and will lane indefinitely. Playing conservatively doesn't mean hanging in back all the time it means choosing situations in which you will get the greatest benefits. Also early on people we run from your Judgment instead of attacking you back so smack, run, wait for them to make another mistake.
After you've stayed in lane for your first cape and full boots head to lanes that need hurting and if your team is competent hit the jungle offering blue buff to friends and family or snatch a red for yourself if you are on a hot streak. Note: Early game if the kills don't come to you don't go looking for them. Patience.
Now that you're rocking your cape and your Spirit Visage and are on your way to FoN you can start dominating teamfights and ganking lone wolf idiots on the other team. A good team allows you to kill and not be killed. Tell people in a firm tone, "I am your Daddy. I will protect you from harm and let no one invade your personal space. Be good children and dps targets down before you sacrifice me to the other team and I will reward you with kills/assists".
Steps to win Team Fights:
1) Organize and state that you are the initiator!
2) Silence any mages FIRST! aka Veigar, Ryze, Annie, Ezreal, other A-holes
3) Spin. Then, whilst spinning, pop Courage -> Multitasking and people ulting you will do nothing
4) a) Be a Douche and KS enemies that will die anyway with Sky Screamer Sword b) Use it on that fat tank that won't die through conventional means (if a Cho is in your game he should have his name written on your large sword every time)
5) Walk around regenning health, give high fives to Teemo, and write the jungle book when you have a spare second or two.
6) Repeat until the other team Rage Quits! This does happen a lot it's demoralizing to explode on Garen and do nothing. The really foolish ones make it their goal to kill you but by the time you get close to death your team has had free range on their faces.
Late Game? More like Hilarious Time
Now you are un-kill-able! with a Janna and your items you'll be pulling hilarious harassing and escaping while your team takes down turrets and comes to kill your enemies. Consider this a thank you from them as you've nurtured their growth for 18 levels. Now in your old age you are still manly but do relatively less damage to the people who want to kill your babies.
Start a family with a Janna (Hextech Skin is Preferable). Refer to yourselves as Mommy and Daddy. Tell a small Yordle you're going to adopt them into the family; Teemo or Kennan are small and willing to have a home. This will make your team have an emotional attachment to you thus allowing you to have backup and a small 40 minute community. LoL is a psychological game. People will be afraid of you, your team needs to be a family, the other team will not lane later on, and you will never die (as promised). Janna is my preferred laning partner and her Ult, slows, tornadoes, and shield do nothing less than make you so awesome you'll wanna call that person up and thank them personally for their amazing service. I Love Janna! No Lies.
In all seriousness just eat damage, tank turrets, kill their tanks, silence their mages, exhaust their phys dps carry, and be adored by the masses. If you have done these things then you will win. This works for both 5v5's and 3v3's. Remember to build situationally and never stop farming when appropriate (Usually your kills will be enough).
Thanks! for the continued support and pushing this build to the top I really appreciate it. Let me know any changes you'd like to see and I will gladly give them a serious go in my games. Special Thanks to Switz7 for his skillful Janna play and making me look good every game. I'm Isengar in game btw so add me and I'd love to play with you.