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Hecarim Build Guide by DBR Fourdux

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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.


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League of Legends Build Guide Author DBR Fourdux

Hecarim, the Shadow of War - in the Jungle!

DBR Fourdux Last updated on April 20, 2012
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Team 1

Ability Sequence

2
7
8
10
12
Ability Key Q
1
3
5
9
13
Ability Key W
4
14
15
17
18
Ability Key E
6
11
16
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.



Masteries

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sunder
Archmage
 
 
 
 
 
 
Executioner
 
 

Offense: 9

 
 
 
 
 
4/
Durability
Vigor
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
3/
Honor Guard
Mercenary
 
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Juggernaut
 
 

Defense: 21

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Strength of Spirit
Intelligence
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Mastermind
 

Utility: 0


Guide Top

Introduction

The use of his skills properly to initiate a teamfight is what makes Hecarim a strong pick. Similarly to Maokai, his strength is taking advantage of an out of position carry and isolating them for your team to take down quickly.

As discussed above, using Ghost + E + Shurelyas will put you at a massive 700~ movespeed. Use this combination and then Ult so that the targetting circle (where Hecarim finishes his charge) is placed just behind their carry (so they are feared towards your team). Then attack the carry and proc the E knockback - this will hit EXTREMELY hard due to the movespeed bonuses, and the follow up Sheen attack proc. You can chunk a carry down 40-50% of their HP alone with this combination and a Q + W.

Aside from the initiation, hit as many as possible with your W aura for the most possible sustain, and keep spamming Q for best damage output. After the initiate, your E is a fantastic tool for peeling bruisers off of your carries, followed up with Tri Force slow procs.


Guide Top

Runes

I run a fairly standard rune setup on Hecarim for AD junglers.

- 3x Flat AD Quints - a good boost to early clear times and ganks before you pick up damage items.

- 9x Attack Speed Reds - Helps with clear times again, especially early when your Q and W don't rip through camps as quickly as they do a little later, and a good speed increase on the bigger camps (Golems/Buffs).

- 9x Flat Armour Yellows - Standard jungle, keeps healthier on first few clears and against invades from common AD invade junglers like Lee Sin and Shyvana.

- 9x Magic Resist/Level Blues - A good boost to survivability for mid-late game before you get any real MR from Maw/FoN.


Guide Top

Masteries

It is not really worth running 21/9/0 or any other offence-focused variant on Hecarim as his clear times come through his W and Q, and he lacks the real natural tankiness to run a full offensive mastery and item build. Running in defence helps numerous aspects of Hecarim's kit; Initiator gives bonus movespeed for stronger E's to initiate, while Juggernaut gives more health and tenacity to let you stick to their carries easier after the initiate.

It is also viable to run 0/21/9 taking points in Mana Regen and movespeed in Utility if you are running with a particularly mana-hungry mid (Hecarim's mana is quite bad before Philo + Sheen).


Guide Top

Items

Starts

There are three starts I would consider viable depending on your and the enemy's team setup. I would consider Cloth + 5 pots against very strong early invaders such as Lee Sin, Dr. Mundo and Shyvana to keep health as topped as possible throughout the jungle. Regrowth Pendant and 1 pot is my preferred start for the early Philo, but I would not run this if I suspected a strong invade from the enemy team as it gives less security against AD champs and is lower sustain for the first couple of clears. Finally, Boots + 3 pots is strong if you want to gank a lot early, but sustain is very poor with this build and very strong help at the beginning of your jungle is needed (taking next to no damage from blue).

Early goals

I prefer to run a gp/10 build on Hecarim as they both build into strong items for Hecarim in mid-late game. Turning your Regrowth Pendant into a Philo Stone and picking up Boots 1 on your first back is optimal. After this, you want to pick up a Heart of Gold and Merc Treads/Ninja Tabi depending on the enemy team and the progression of the game. After this, your next goal is to rush a Trinity Force as quickly as possible (Sheen > Phage > Zeal). Sheen gives you a noticeable damage boost with your Q spam active, Phage provides natural tankiness and lets you stick to carries with proc luck, and Hecarim uses all of the stats on the complete item to great effect. If you can get a Tri Force by around 20-25 minutes, you will be a very strong presence on the map.

Mid Game

If there's any significant threat on the enemy team at this point, I'd consider investing in a Chain Vest (potentially a Lord's Mail) or Negatron Cloak to give you a little more tankiness in team fights. If you are not being bursted and want to help your initiate on the enemy team, the next item to pick up is Shurelya's Reverie. This item is fantastic for Hecarim - it has great health and mana sustain (his mana should not be a problem after Tri Force and Philo, but Shurelyas is even better), CDR for his ult + W (both quite long cooldowns) and a great on-use for initiation with R > E carry towards your team combo. In addition to this, I'd try and complete a Hexdrinker and progress towards the Maw of Malmortius.

Late Game

At this point, aim to complete the Maw of Malmortius and then focus on tankiness. Obviously, your judgement is the best in this scenario; if the enemy team is completely dependent on their AD carrying the game, focus your efforts on completing your Randuins and forgo Force of Nature for a Frozen Heart. If their AD is underfarmed and their mid is a huge presence in teamfights, invest in a quick Force of Nature and then finish your Randuins for the on-use effect, limiting the AP player's mobility.

Building any more damage items than Tri-Force and Maw is mostly useless unless your team is already very tanky and can protect you (e.g. good Cho'gath player top). Tri Force will give you good mobility and decent damage in teamfights, and Q + W puts out decent damage used on cooldown. Do not overrate Hecarim's passive and build items like Boots of Swiftness, Phantom Dancers etc. Movespeed is actually most useful for his E, not the small amount of AD the passive provides.



I've included an optional damage oriented build as the second available build above. It can rip apart carries very efficiently but as mentioned needs good protection from your team, especially before GA (which will probably be very late game if acquired at all, or before Last Whisper if the enemy is low on armour).


Guide Top

Skill Sequence

Hecarim is actually extremely versatile in this regard. While E should almost always be left at Rank 1, the skill order of his Q and W depends on the player, the enemy team, and how aggressive you want to be early game. I typically get a lot of ranks in W early (after the initial W > Q > W > E order). This gives exceptional sustain through the jungle, which is important running a Regrowth into Philo build to keep as healthy as possible through the jungle.

If you want extremely strong early ganks, investing more points into Q is the better option, though as noted above, your sustain strongly depends on W ranks and you will be vulnerable to counterjungling if you max Q without getting a few points in W, though I frequently put a few points into Q after the 3rd rank of W as shown in the skill order (otherwise your damage on ganks and early fights around dragon for example will be weak).

There is no real ultimate skill order, you must adapt to the game, and your desired playstyle, to know when to max Q or W (even levelling them at a similar pace is very viable). I will usually max W first as it's a good safety net against unpredictable situations.


Guide Top

Summoner Spells

Smite for jungling obviously.

Ghost is a strong choice over Flash because it synergises so well with his E, and augments his role as an initiator. A Ghost + E + Shurelyas, followed by an ult into the enemy team, and then attacking their most out of position carry, can push them very far towards your team to hopefully negate a threat very early.


Guide Top

Team Work

The use of his skills properly to initiate a teamfight is what makes Hecarim a strong pick. Similarly to Maokai, his strength is taking advantage of an out of position carry and isolating them for your team to take down quickly.

As discussed above, using Ghost + E + Shurelyas will put you at a massive 700~ movespeed. Use this combination and then Ult so that the targetting circle (where Hecarim finishes his charge) is placed just behind their carry (so they are feared towards your team). Then attack the carry and proc the E knockback - this will hit EXTREMELY hard due to the movespeed bonuses, and the follow up Sheen attack proc. You can chunk a carry down 40-50% of their HP alone with this combination and a Q + W.

Aside from the initiation, hit as many as possible with your W aura for the most possible sustain, and keep spamming Q for best damage output. After the initiate, your E is a fantastic tool for peeling bruisers off of your carries, followed up with Tri Force slow procs.


Guide Top

Summary

Hecarim is a very fun champion, and brings a lot to the table if your team is in need of a strong initiate and zone potential against enemy carries. I'd definitely rate his initiate as one of the strongest in the game if it is executed well on a mis-positioned enemy carry. His jungle is quick and reasonably strong in sustain, reducing the risk of being heavily counterjungled by their jungle/top player, an important aspect of jungling in the current environment.

I wouldn't rate him as a top-tier jungle pick like Lee Sin, Shyvana, Dr. Mundo or Udyr, but he is situationally stronger than those listed and exceptionally fun to play.