Jax Build Guide by MajorLoL
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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.
Now here's the deal. Jax is just awesome. Plain and simple. But...with his new rework(A.k.a A nerf disguised as a rework) He's not as tanky as he was before. This isn't all bad, because now he does more damage, and can take out most of his enemies easily. I've tweaked my builds for Summoner's Rift alot in the past few days, and now I think it's just right for the new Jax. His late game can only be countered by the best of the best when it comes to nukers, entire teams focusing you, and.... the dreaded Ignite + CC.
Regardless, Jax is still a hell of a lot of fun to play, and I can't even express how much ownage he dishes out when he gets fed. This is why I bring you my Hybrid Jax build guide. Here's his Champion Spotlight:
>(This guide is not done yet)<
Why Hybrid Jax?
AD Jax: Powerful attacks(Duh), and epic attack speed and power with Relentless Assault. This is nice and all, but not only will Leap Strike not deal as much damage as it could, Counter Strike will do no damage, Empower will not deal as much damage, and the 3rd attack bonus on his ult will be puny. Any other ad carry that actually scales with AD alone would be able to clean AD Jax up quickly if Jax wasn't fed early.
AP Jax: I just find this one silly. Here's the basics in one sentence: Nuke Leap Strike,relatively strong Empower and Counter Strike, and strong 3rd attack. Didn't seem to bad, when you consider that after an empowered Leap Strike and a Counter Strike, you won't be doing **** all. Relentless Assault can't be counted on to constantly send out those 3rd attack strikes.
Hybrid Jax: Nothing is as powerful as it would be if you just went strait into one thing, BUT if you count that nothing is left out, not only are you doing more damage, but you get more sustain from high attack speed and Hextech Gunblade. Jax needs to be able to do damage with his abilities.
The most important part is it's hard to be countered. To stop you, the enemy will need both MR and Armor. If they have both, they wont't have much damage. The only people that focus on items builds like this are tanks, and since you won't be attacking tanks (I hope.), you'll be doing tons of damage either way.
So why Trinity Force on a Hybrid?
Well think about it. Power the **** out of an empowered Leap Strike. Chance to slow. Extra speed and attack speed. Bonuses to both AD and AP, you can't go wrong with this item in almost any champion that uses both AD and AP.
Amazing Damage Dealer
E Skill makes you almost unkillable in 1v1s
Picked on by more than one person until Late Game
No ranged abilities
Can be abused by ranged with CC*coughcough Vaynecough*
Laner MasteriesDoran's Ring is too helpful, so with the extra AD power it gives a good balnce of AD and AP early.
Jungle Masteries Bladed Armor to make jungling a teensy bit faster. AD is even more useful here because of the Vampiric Scepter.
Easy to see,I go 15/15/0 for the full 10% Armor Pen AND 10% Magic Pen, because while Jax is a really good burster, which is why people like Rabadon's Deathcap, most of his damage comes from auto attacks. This is why Nashor's Tooth is also good on him. The armor pen is so he has good damage when all his spells are on cooldown between the extra magic-scaling damage from Grandmaster's Might. This is also the reason for Wit's End. The Magic Pen helps with EVERYTHING else. 15 in defence helps with Jax's resistance and ability to skirmish with other people.
Dominion Runes and Lane Runes
Greater Mark of Precision
Greater Seal of Armor
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
Greater Quintessence of Precision
Extra survivablity is never bad when laning, because it helps you stay in the lane for more farm.
Greater Mark of Precision
Greater Seal of Armor
Greater Quintessence of Precision
Greater Glyph of Attack Speed
Jungle runes can be varied, except it is best to keep armor runes. ArmorPen and AD reds work very well too. Same goes for quints.
Jax's skills work perfectly together to dish out damage and keep yourself in a fight.
Here's a rundown of all his skills in my own words.
Relentless Assault-What used to be Jax's passive ult is now his passive, and it's a great one at that. This is what makes Jax's jungling and skirmish power so good. It increases his attack speed and does really well with his ultimate.
Leap Strike-Q Jax's powerful Q has many uses, from nuking people to escaping. This is a very important part of Jax's laning harass and chasing power. Think of this skill like Shunpo for all you Katarina players. Nuke enemies while chasing, escape while laughing.
Empower-W This is a big part of Jax's strength. It powers up Leap Strike when used before jumping on someone. It also resets his attack timer which is useful when Jax doesn't have a lot of attack speed yet. It becomes less of use to use to reset the attack timer once you get a Recurve Bow but it's still useful for all the power it gives to the next attack or Leap Strike
Counter Strike-E What makes Jax...Jax. This is what makes Jax unique from all other champions. Dodge all attacks for a good bit. This is so useful for escaping and fighting alike. In team fights this can be the most useful skill, especially if you get an amazing stun on more than 2 people. It's like Amumu's ultimate on a small radius, and can change the face of a team battle.
Grandmaster's Might-R More damage when activated, but the most important part of it is the passive. Every 3rd attack will deal bonus damage that scales with AP. This is a huge part of Jax's sustain(due to Hextech Gunblade) because it gains from spell vamp and it's a huge part of his main damage output: Auto attacks.
What I use:
Get around faster, get away faster, chase faster. You cant go wrong with Ghost.
Someone cross the boundary and are now running away? Not if Exhaust has anything to say about it.
Flash is not as good in Dominion as it is in Summoner's Rift, only useful for running away, not catching people like Ghost can do.
Okay for getting the kill or ensuring someones death, but not really important when playing the jungler or in Dominion.
Obviously you won't use this anywhere but when jungling. It's useful for jungling only. Technically with a good leash you can go without it, but you'll get into that later in the guide.
(Dominion Only) If you're almost dead and you're cornered by the enemy team, Garrison could save your life. Also great for tower diving people who will kite you around the Capture Point's turret.
I mean it gets rid of CC and all, but why waste you're summoner spell on this?
Not necessarily a bad spell, but I mean come on, you have Hextech Gunblade for a high amount of sustain.
If you're having mana problems,then there is a problem.
Support's job. Getting this is near crazy.
Ahem..."That is NOT my job."
My reasoning for the items is quite obvious,they all either make Jax tankier or dish out more damage.
I do not believe Jax has core items anymore, because of how versatile he is. You do not go into a game with Jax knowing what you want to build anymore, as the outcomes matter. With your defenses from your ultimate depending on what type of damage you built, how you build changes everything.
Doran's Ring is meant for good sustain with mana, because constantly getting into fights will deplete your mana very quick. That's why I take it when I lane, and there's no problem with stacking it. Prospector's Blade is an amazing start on Jax in Dominion, because the beginning fight will usually be very hard to stay alive in for somebody like Jax, who should be the initiator thanks to the extra 200 health from Prospector's Blade
These are the boots I believe are best for Jax. You can get out of CC faster and it gives MR. Now who doesn't like MR. Two other choices would be Ninja Tabi which is better for AD oriented teams, or Boots of Mobility. Boots of Mobility is DOMINION ONLY.
For anyone that doesnt like using Boots of Mobility, I say, in Dominion, you cant go wrong with it. Its a great way to get around the map, which you always need to do, and can help in chasing someone. Its also good for running away from someone thats fed like Xin Zhao or Tryndamere.
It can make an event that would have ended in you dying into something...well...like this:
I'm black myself, and I can honestly say this doesn't offend me.
Hextech Gunblade is your best and most important fighting item, AD, AP, Life Steal, Spell Vamp, Helpful Active(If you can remember to use it), The whole shibang! This item can keep you in a 2v1 and bring at least one person down with you, unless there's a fed nuker in the mix like Veigar.
"Why wont this ******* die!Jax OP."
Wits End is an amazing item and will be all the attack speed you need, Not to mention the nice 42 extra damage with every basic attack. Magic Resist isnt too bad either. An awesome variant to this is Ionic Spark, which I have realized can be very helpful in team fights and even just 1v1s, definitely not a bad pick.
Guinsoo's Rageblade is such an amazing item for Jax, It gives both AD and AP, which is always nice, because the more AD and AP you get, the more useful Hextech Gunblade becomes. The passive of this item stacks with Jax's passive, and gives you a lot more attack speed the more you attack. This is good because as Jax, 1v1ing people for a good while is exactly what you want, unless the person is COMPLETELY fed and have too much lifesteal for you to beat them. I've seen many Master Yis and Nocturnes that I just couldn't beat because of how well they were fed.
The Rylai's Crystal Scepter and Entropy are both for the same reason. Together,they give you 775 HP, which is nothing to scoff at for just two items. Second, Rylai's gives you slow from your Leap Strike and a nice 80 AP, this will allow you to get a hit off on them if their teammates arent around to stop you,which allow Entropy to slow the target. At this point, if your target isn't smart enough to turn around and accept their fate, you'll have a free kill just by wailing on a person that got too cocky. Just remember to actually activate so you are not going in by chance.
Now theres two options I like to go with after I have all the Damage Items I need, which are based on the composition of the enemy team. They are Force of Nature and Frozen Heart. Both are extremely helpful in a fight, especially with their passives. In my opinion, FoN is a more helpful item, but if they have a team of AD Carries, obviously you dont want to waste your last item on stacking magic resist for no reason other than the Health Regen.
Make Jax a health monster with this item and nothing can go wrong. This item is too good on someone like him.
Everything can be used by Jax, even the crit because of how fast Jax's attack speed gets. Trinity Force gets everything Jax needs into one item, can't go wrong with it.
If you dont even need tankiness in a game-because you're doing so well, you can always go for more damage, because who doesnt like going for packing a bigger punch?
As you may have noticed, the builds have no armor except for the meager amount given by Wriggle's Lantern. I did this because Jax has a simple defense against auto attackers, but if they're really a problem, you need armor. This is why I feel it's necessary to disclose what items are most useful for providing our good old bruiser good protection.
The well-known Atmogs combo works great on Jax. If you do this combo, Jax's damage goes in favor of AD, and will appeal to builds with more attack speed. Zeke's Herald and Ionic Spark synergizae with this combo.
Probably the best item against auto-attackers in game. Protect you well and eliminates and mana problems you may run into. Get this if Counter Strike won't be enough protection.
LOL JK. THIS ITEM EFFING SUCKS, DO NOT GET IT. IF YOU DO I WILL FIND YOU.
If it's not auto-attackers but AD champions that are messin with you( Renekton, Pantheon, etc.), this is the final say in protection. When I first saw this item, I had no idea what was so good about it, but the passive and active mess with all AD Champions in the area.
A good substitute to Wit's End if there's no AP champions bothering you.
Oh the AP carries. These guys suck when you play Jax. Why? Well most champions who have any sort of defense have a good defense to people such as Brand, Annie, or Veigar. As you already know, Jax's special defense is Counter Strike. Counter Strike helps with auto attacks and auto attacks alone. This leaves Jax completely defenseless to AP bursters. There's many ways to mitigate this damage, through Magic Resist runes, masteries, and of course items. Here I will list the items recommended for MR on Jax:
Of course the item I choose in every build. It's useful for more than just damage. It gives a ton of MR after a few stacks!
A strange pick, I know, but this item can wreck on Jax. It gives AP and a great amount of Magic Resist. It's ok to use this on Hybrid Jax, as many builds you variate with will have AP as the dominant damage source. This is mainly because these items usually come with good defense or health. Ex: Zhonya's Hourglass, Rylai's Crystal Scepter, Rod of Ages.
I tried this item out on one occasion, and it was when two fed AP carries were destroying us. Were. This item will save you on a number of occasions. It also helps Jax pull off the amazing clutch 1v3 fights he could easily do before his big nerf. The more you get hurt, the more damage you do with this item, and I can't stress how valuable that is on any bruiser.
These 3 items will be your best friends when AP carries are getting you down. If you think you just need plain defense, go for Banshee's Veil or Guardian Angel. CC messin' with you? Pick up Quicksilver Sash for a cheap and easy Cleanse effect. If you don't even need the health, Force of Nature will suffice. Lich Bane would be helpful if you go an AP build. I'm not encouraging AP Jax, but that item would be acceptable if you decide to go that path.
Of course anything in a sample build can be changed. This is just an example of what you may have to build one game. You never know.
Gameplay in the Lane
Jax is an avid harasser, because Empower damage is added on to Leap Strike. This means you can jump on people and do a massive amount of damage. This is when you decide whether to stay and fight (or chase the enemy for more damage), or run like hell. It's important to not provoke a fight you can't win with this harass, because early game, Jax isn't the best fighter against other tanky melees. However fighting squishy champions early game is light work.
Keep in mind Jax has no sustain, therefore many champions can actually beat him early game. Remember this.
Jax can begin his carry very early if he is allowed to farm or get a kill early. In the lane, Jax is a big bully to squishies. By this I mean if anybody tries to farm, Jax can immediately jump right on them with an empowered Leap Strike. Early game this does a LOT of damage, and will chop down the health of your enemy with every jump.
When Jax reaches level 6, his auto attacks become the most important part of Jax's damage output. This is because of the extra power from Grandmaster's Might. This extra attack power will grant you bonuses from spell vamp as well as life steal, and will keep you healthy in fights. More importantly spell vamp will help with Leap Strike, too.
This leads to zoning. Zoning is controlling space, basically. Jax can do this easily because of the power in his empowered Leap Stike. Like I wrote before, Jax is a big bully, and after level 6, he should act as such. He's a very hard opponent if you go for some more tanky items or a Wriggle's Lantern early. Remember that the build should not be strictly followed. Sometimes you may have to start Doran's Shield, or even Cloth Armor or Null-Magic Mantle to build into boots. This is so you can zone effectively, and make sure you don't get zoned yourself. Nobody wants that. This is the importance of variation coming up again. If you think you can overpower your opponent regardless, just go for whatever you feel like getting, and you may even follow the build.
After reaching level six with a Guinsoo's Rageblade, there's a combo which for now I use to start out a fight, which does as much damage as possible.
It goes like this:
- Auto Attack
- Use Empower to reset your attack timer and get a free attack in
- Activate Counter Strike, and then Leap Strike on the opponent
- An attack with Grandmaster's Might proc will come up
After you've completed this combo, the target will be stunned and primed for any auto attacks and abilities coming off cooldowns you'll have ready.
- Blue Buff(Get a leash)
- Back to Wolves
- Red Buff (Pull it into the bush, so you can see if you're being watched)
- Gank or go Back
This route maximizes experience points recieved when jungling, while keeping mana levels high and ready for ganking.
On the Battlefield In Summoner's Rift
Whenever a fight starts, wait for the first initiation. It doesn't matter which team's tank initiates first. Either way, when that teamfight starts, jump right on the carry. Whether this carry is AP or AD, what matters is you're beating the most valuable part of their team to a pulp, and in most cases if that team doesn't have enough CC or Ignite, you'll succeed. What's even better, is if you jump on their carry, all attention should turn to you, unless the enemy wants to lose their carry.
This is what you want. The whole team will turn on you while you're healing off of whoever you're attacking. It's like the whole team focusing a Swain that doesn't have his healing reduced. He's not gonna go down for a long time, and you can usually win a fight if you were allowed to take down their carry. What makes Jax so good for this role, is his powerful chasing abilities. He can dodge all attacks while charging a stun, while making a dash for the carry. If you can stun their carry, that carry won't get away so easily if you have your Rylai's Crystal Scepter. What makes all this Anti-Carry type play so important, is that you have 3 other people behind you and the tank... meaning if all attention was on you they're all doing tons of damage. If all attention wasn't on you, well I feel sorry for whoever you jumped on. With all the different variations of the builds I've listed, there's plenty different outcomes when it comes to teamfights.
If you built glass cannon, like people used to do, you probably won't have an free pass to the carry. Jax shouldn't be jumping into a crowd of people with only 2000 health. This is why I rarely get to follow my main builds for all 3 different scenarios. I mean sometimes I may switch Trinity Force or Rylai's Crystal Scepter for tank items. Reason being those are my two health items and are for the most part optional. If you were forced to build any tank items you should at least have Guinsoo's Rageblade, Hextech Gunblade, and one of the MR items I included.
Jax's Role in Dominion
I usually stay up top unless bottom needs help. After top is secure, I only go where needed. If im not needed anywhere, and my team is handling themselves well, I'll try to capture or at least weaken a point the enemy team owns. I just have one rule, Dont do anything stupid. Especially because your absence could cost your team a Capture Point they WOULD'VE held if you didn't go and get yourself killed doing something stupid. Just make sure you're always helping your team in some way.
I remember my first time I played Dominion, I kept wandering because I was indecisive about what to do and not only lost a ton of experience I could have had, but it cost us a few capture points.
Here's a clip of Jax doing his job as slayer:
Just getting around to my Rylai's Crystal Scepter /league-of-legends/champion/pantheon-44
-ALWAYS, and I mean ALWAYS, carry a ward early-mid game. It can save your life... literally. Leap Strike can jump to any unit, and that includes wards. It's even shown in the spotlight. Wriggle's Lantern makes this tip easy to follow.
-Always use Empower to reset your attack timer if you weren't forced to use it for power on running people. This is important for maximum damage output.
-Please only Leap Strike on somebody you plan on running from if you know you can run from them. By that I mean Leap Strike is your escape mechanism. Say you're in top lane and you feel like harassing the enemy, but you know you'd lose the fight. Using it to jump in on them can lead to easy death. People like Tryndamere or Lee Sin who can easily stick to you will punish you for doing so.
-Should be obvious, but I used to forget this. Always remember that the use of Grandmaster's Might can make or break a fight between you and other champions. This is especially important if you were facing more than one person alone.
Will add more when I feel like it or get more suggestions.
9/22/11 Guide made
9/27/11 Made Guide more colorful,coded names and items,and added pics
9/28/11 Swapped Frozen Mallet for Entropy,goes better with his Slayer Role
9/29/11 A little revamp on the Masteries,Runes,and Item sections
9/29/11 Added Summoner Spells section
9/30/11 After the realization that attack speed comes too late,I moved items around,just a bit
10/14/11 Editing,added video and new section: Jax's Skills
10/15/11 Now have to comment to vote,got my first dislike :(
10/25/11 As a result of the Hextech Gunblade being nerfed,Ive bumped up attack speed.
12/25/11 Jax geting completely reworked,therefore the build's getting reworked
1/12/11 It's time to revert this guide to all Jax material! :D
1/17/11 Finally revealed my full guide.
Now get out there and own with the Grandmaster Of Arms.
Side Effects of using Jax may include raging enemies, herpes, inability to die to a single person, leukemia, deepening of voice, depression, noticeably higher popularity, hypothermia, winning games, and Death....lots and lots of Death.
Heres a picture of John C. CalhounNice lookin guy eh?