Jax Build Guide by NeMuNe
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.
Welcome to the champion of imprinting people with lamp-shaped bruises! With this champion, you will be called "OP" consistently due to your overwhelming strength through your burst damage, and overall fighting capabilities. Have you ever searched for a champion who could release MASSIVE damage, be incredibly tanky, AND have a stun that you can spam? Look no further! This is the right champion for YOU! ^-^
-Great burst damage
-Great damage dealer
-Nothing can escape you
-Unrivalled 1v1 champion
-USES A LAMP POST TO BASH PEOPLE'S HEADS IN.
-VERY squishy in beginning
For runes, I take Greater Mark of Desolation for some nice flat armor penetration, although if you prefer to, you can always change it to Greater Mark of Insight for flat magic penetration. The red runes are completely up to you! ^-^
For yellows, I take Greater Seal of Evasions, and for quintessences I take Greater Quintessence of Evasions. Why? Because this gives you 13% dodge at the BEGINNING of the game (include mastery dodge bonus)! Once you hit level 3, this becomes 23%! Wow! And guess what happens once you get your boots? That's right. 35% dodge. See that Master Yi over there? He'll only hit 2 out of 3 shots, each dodge granting you a STUN to halt his moves while you bash his brains open with your mighty lamp post.
For blue glyphs, I take Greater Glyph of Focus, because accompanied with Nashor's Tooth, you obtain 3 second cooldowns on your Leap Strike AND your Empower! WOW OP right?!
I enjoy this 21/9/0 mastery composition. Why, you ask? From my offensive masteries, I have nice armor and magic penetration, perfect for Jax. Also, I skip the critical damage masteries because Jax is all about bursting champions down, and is not meant to be built as a critical hit champion. The dodge bonus from your defensive masteries boosts your dodge % at the beginning of the game from 11% to 13%! And also, if you dodge an attack, you MOVE faster!!! Wow talk about chasing! "Why would I get a dodge if I'm chasing someone" you may ask? Simple. 1st, he'll most likely fight you before fleeing at your presence, granting you one stun. Secondly, if you are in lane, if you Leap Strike onto him, the enemy minions will aggro onto you, 100% granting you ANOTHER stun, and a BONUS 10% move speed! AWESOME!!!
I begin with a Cloth Armor and FIVE health potions. "FIVE? ARE YOU A NOOB? WHO TAKES THAT MANY?!" Yes, Five. Why? This allows you to be hyper-aggressive in lane, and enables you to feel safer then if you only took three health potions. The gold difference between 3 health pots and 5 health potions is only 70 gold; a measly 4 minion kills! Also, the Cloth Armor enables you to be FAR more tanky and take much less damage against minions.
Next, using the cloth armor, I build Ninja Tabi for it's hefty 12% dodge. Combined with my runes and masteries, that's a 25% dodge chance! Without your bonus dodge % from your stun ability! WOW!!!!!! 1/4 of all attacks are... you guessed it... Gone. Accompanied by your beginning point in stun, you'll have a hefty 35% dodge. Talk about the enemy failing to hit you.
Next, I purchase Bilgewater Cutlass. This item is your "YOU CAN'T LEAAAAAAAAVE!!!" item! Accompanied by your Exhaust, the enemy will NEVER be able to get away from you before getting decimated by your mighty lamp post. From there, I finish building Hextech Gunblade.
Next, I purchase Guinsoo's Rageblade, because it synchronizes perfectly with your ultimate, and is one of the core items of Jax's build.
Next, I purchase Nashor's Tooth. Why this item? WHY THIS ITEM??? THIS ITEM IS OFTEN OVERLOOKED, but is ONE of the MOST USEFUL items I have come across. This item gives you 50% attack speed, nearly the amount of a Phantom Dancer, grants you 55 AP, +10 mana regen per 5 secs, AND gives you a hefty 25% cooldown reduction!!! WOW! Say hello to 3 second Empower+Leap combos.
Next, I purchase Rylai's Crystal Scepter. This item is GOLDEN. It grants 500 base HP, and grants a bonus 160 HP from the 80 AP it grants! That's a total of 660 HP! Once you have this item, you crack 3000HP and is incredibly tanky! More to note; this item grants the most insane SLOW ever. Coupled with your Hextech Gunblade, and Exhaust, say GOODBYE to fleeing enemies. Forever.
My final item is Atma's Impaler. Thanks to your massive 3000+ HP, you get an easy 60+ AD from Atma's passive, and coupled with the armor bonus, makes you incredibly resilient against Physical Damage.
EDIT: If your team is completely devastating the opponents, feel free to build the Rabadon's Death Cap in place of Atma's Impaler, as Rabadon's will enable you to deal unimaginable amounts of damage, though being less tanky then building Atma's.
Start with one point in each category, and then maxing:
Empower -> Leap Strike -> Counter Strike
And of course grabbing your ult whenever it comes in handy.
Reasoning behind Empower over Leap Strike first: Empower is your main damage dealer. A maxed out Empower deals 215 flat magic damage, where a maxed out Leap Strike deals only 135 flat magic damage. As you can see, there is an 80 damage difference. Sure, one can argue that using Leap more often will grant you stronger chasing abilities with less cooldown, but with Exhaust and Bilgewater Cutlass (eventually developing into Hextech Gunblade), there's no NEED to chase in the first place. And if so, at the end of the slow duration you will have waited enough time to cast another Leap Strike. Empower also assists well in last-hitting minions.
Exhaust: I can NOT emphasize this spell enough. You are Jax. You are the absolute KING. KING. KIIIIINGGG of 1v1ing champs, and now even if there's a super fed enemy on their team, pop exhaust, and they deal nothing to you while you deal massive damage to them, and also limits the foe's fleeing options thanks to the slow. Overall, an EXCELLENT spell to use.
Flash: The GTFO spell. Great on Jax, for if you're focused in a team fight, flash out, then Empower + Leap Strike back in to continue to deal massive burst damage if you so desire.
Cleanse: I'm not a big fan of this, because you should be jumping in AFTER the cc's are blown, but this spell CERTAINLY can be a huge life saver.
Ghost: Great for chasing; but who needs it after you have so many slows?
Ignite: Great for getting some early kills! Not a big fan of this, but it can very well suit you!
Aside from these spells, any other spells you wish to take is practically useless on Jax, and should be given to your tank or your supports.
How to Use Skills
Remember that your main burst should be Empower + Leap, and if you have a Dodge, Empower + Leap + auto attack + Counter Strike. This burst is INCREDIBLY deadly once you get 3 second cooldowns on your Q, W, and E spells. The stun makes them unable to do anything to you while you just walk away, content with your damage.
If you are EVER in a 1v1 situation or in a team fight, your duty is to be the SLAUGHTER MACHINE by mashing buttons. Literally. MASH W and E as if it was for your life! Stunning them every 3-5 seconds, demolishing them, this is just SICK in 1v1 scenarios, or if you're ganking someone, or having a team fight.
As for farming, try to auto attack, Empower, and then on the third attack your passive ultimate triggers, devastating minions. Using your Counter-Strike also devastates mobs of minions.
When you are faced with a heavy caster team, be prepared to pop in your active ultimate whenever you can in team fights, or in 1v1 situations. This ult gives you MASSIVE amounts of magic resist, and can often save you from the ultimate of karthus by popping in that magic resist.
Another thing, do NOT be concerned to not use Hextech as part of your burst damage. Hextech does 300 damage. That's literally another Empowered, and it SLOWS. Also, it has a short cooldown, so use it often! :D
In summary, Jax is the funnest champions out there. He can be annoying, he can deal damage, he is tanky, and most of all... he uses a lamp post to bash people's brains in. Jax is one of the strongest DPS champions in the game, and the fact that he is a Hybrid champion makes him fun to customize. Take what you want from this guide, and form your own playstyle; whether you prefer more AD or more AP.
Thank you! Criticism is always appreciated! ^-^