Build Guide by ushawar
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.
Introduction to Jax
This not your typical, "Hay guise get deez items and own everyone with no skill required." This guide was created to both help players optimize their Jax play, and show new players the ropes. So with out further ado, on with the show!
Who is Jax?
Jax is a ability power/attack damage hybrid that specializes in doing strong damage while surviving in the heat of battle. The League of Legends decided that he was far to powerful to use a real weapon, so Jax was forced to wield a lamppost. This, however, has not greatly affected his battle prowess.
What role does he fill?
Jax is tanky dps. His only real utility is Counter Strike, so be sure to play with other CC champions for maximum effectiveness. However, Jax (with equal items as opponent) is probably the strongest 1v1er. I feel confident at most stages in the game (especially after level 10) that i can take any enemy 1v1. Jax is also an amazing farmer, jungler, harasser, and chaser.
Don't consider anything else. You are a dodge champ and sacrificing 1/3 of your dodge isn't worth it. I've seen other Jax's who run with merc treads against CC heavy teams, but the loss of dodge will hurt your survivability and Counter Strike uptime.
Every single item that makes up Trinity Force is extremely good for Jax. Jax is one of the most frequent ability users in the game.
Sheen gives you massive burst with every empower, jump, and CS. I always get this first to allow for greater harassment early game. Also, the mana pool will help you sustain yourself in a lane for much longer.
Zeal is your chasing capability. While not essential to get first or even before phage, its attack speed boost works great with your ult and the crit % can occasionally get you a lucky kill.
Phage is often my third item because the slow is somewhat lackluster. However, if you are getting harassed by a strong caster, the health crystal can be a game changer.
With its three elements combined, Trinity Force is probably the best item for Jax in the game. Jax makes great use of attack speed, attack damage, ability power, and crit. The three effects of the items are enhanced from their former selves. Sheen powers up, Zeal's movement speed is increased by 4%, and Phage's slow is up to 35%. While the proc chance on Phage's slow is 25%, with the final 30% increased attack speed of this item, it makes it much quicker to apply the slow which is why I recommend getting the Phage after zeal.
This is an absolutely required item for Jax's sustainability. After a tough team fight or harass, Jax can head away into a lane or the jungle to heal to full with ease. In an intense team fight, every Empower, Leap Strike, and Counter Strike yield significant health, while your auto-attacks feed even more hp back to you. This item has incredible passive attack damage and ability power as well.
Hex-Blade's on use effect is an amazing tool for keeping Jax on target. I like to use it right after a Leap Strike (while I'm still in the air) to ensure that even if my target teleports away, they won't get very far.
This is where you start to bring the real hurt. Some builds recommend getting this first, but I find that its effectiveness is far greater after getting Trinity and the Hex-Blade. A jax with only a Rageblade is going to be a glass cannon, and with a headstrong playstyle, you will get killed frequently.
The passive attack damage and ability power are great for such a cheap item, but it's the unique effect of this item that you're really going for. The unique effect is very similar to your ult. Every ability and auto attack you gain a stack (up to 8) that dramatically increases ability power and attack speed. With a Trinity and a Rageblade, Jax nears the attack speed cap (2.5 attacks/second) after only a few attacks.
This is where you need to decide about defensive items!
You have insane damage output, even against most tanks, but that will get you nowhere if you get instagibbed by AP-stacking casters... or Tryndamere... lol. While I only write about Force of Nature and Warmog's Armor, keep in mind that Guardian Angel, Banshee's Veil, and Thornmail are also all viable options. It just depends what your enemy team comp is and who on the other team is doing the most damage.
Force of Nature-
76 magic resist. Now you get to laugh at casters. The Hp/5 is nothing to sneeze at, but it is not why you get this item. The movement speed is also more icing on the cake. You get to move at extreme speeds so that only Yi can really escape from you, and then you still have ghost.
This item is really just for the luls. With your massive dodge, MR, and obscene damage, 4500 HP (with full stacks of Warmogs) will make enemies quake in fear as you tower dive without feeling the blasts. I almost never get to this point in the game, you are not invincible at this point, but you're also not too far from it