Cho'Gath Build Guide by Symphunny
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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.
Welcome to my first guide (I'm terribad at organizing info), don't be too harsh. I wouldn't call myself the best player out there but I at least don't think I'm the worst. Try the build out before judging (:
Cho'Gath has been one of the first champs ive played when i first started LoL. I thought "holy shyt, he's so huge trololololo" I always laned with him and never had a thought about jungling. Then stonewall made me realize how epic of a jungler he was, so i started playing more matches as a jungler and i just wanted to share with the rest of you :D
Important Note: Cho'Gath can be jungled even if your very low level or cant even afford runes. Here is a video from Stonewall008 explaining the versatility of jungling with Cho'Gath
On a side note, the other 3 builds are not actual build but builds that show you some starting choices.
Pros - Cons | Jungle - Lane
A jungling tank.
Feast is a second smite, grants you the ability to counter jungle even harder.
Doesn't require Madred's Razors or Wriggle's Lantern
2 very strong CC
Many different route and starting item choices (I only cover one in this guide)
Can jungle without runes.
Because of Feast you dont need necessarily need to buy health items, instead you can get wards, and have great map and dragon control.
Ganks are very hard to accomplish
Ganks depend on landing rupture
Probably better in lane.
Need farms to be scary. (However not that hard with your Q+W combo.)
If you die a lot and can't keep stacks, then your not going to do well.
Depends on a good team.
I honestly don't like laning with Cho'Gath because its harder to keep your stacks on Feast. Also, Cho'Gath needs the levels to become stronger because he is also a mage. Therefore, either solo top or jungle.
This guide covers jungling Cho'Gath so if your interested in or prefer laning, check out Potatisfarfar's laning Cho'Gath guide, A gentleman's way of playing Cho'Gath
Before We Start - Basics of Jungling
Before we begin jungling, we definitely must know the basics.
Initial Spawn: 1:40 Respawn Time: 1:40
Initial Spawn: 1:55 Respawn Time: 5:00
The Big Cheeses
Initial Spawn: 2:30 Respawn Time: 6:00
Initial Spawn: 15:00 Respawn Time: 7:00
Why is this important?
All pro junglers will know the spawn times and will know to time important creeps such as blue buff, red buff, dragon, and baron. Knowing when these creeps spawn will give you and your team an extra edge in getting the buffs, dragon, and baron. It will also aid you in invading or stealing such creeps.
For a more in-depth guide about basic need to know jungling, visit hahano's Jungling 202: Beyond The Basics
Wards and Warding
The above 3 items win games.
It is the job of everyone to ward. However, many people would rely on the jungler and support to ward the most. Cho'gath can ward easily without lacking money to invest into other items. This is because of his ultimate, Feast. Instead of buying health items, Cho'gath can use the gold for wards and oracles.
This shows the most common and important spots to ward.
Warding secures buffs, dragon, and baron.
Runes and Masteries
Greater Mark of Attack Speed ~ Helps a lot with jungling.
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration ~ Having no Magic Pen, getting this increases damage and gank effectiveness
Greater Seal of Armor ~ Need them armor.
Greater Seal of Evasion ~ If your a fan of dodge and a 0-9-21 mastery setup taking Nimbleness
Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction ~ CD is always good
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist ~ Makes you more tanky even though your tanky enough.
Greater Glyph of Attack Speed ~ Not recommended, more attack speed faster jungle.
Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power ~ Not Recommended, Nice late game AP
Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed ~ Faster jungling
Greater Quintessence of Health ~ More starting hp = more safe
Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed ~ Faster jungling, good for positioning and getting to places
Cho'Gath doesn't need runes to jungle although its highly recommended
-grants faster time
~offensive and defensive stats.
~much much safer
For masteries, typical 1/14/15 will do.
Taking improved smite for the extra gold and cd.
Taking reduced dmg from the defensive tree
Taking movement speed, improved ghost, reduced death time, gold per 10, and buff duration will aid you when jungling.
Another approach can be the 0-9-21 setup. However its more dangerous to you because you take more damage from creeps, but grants you more utility throughout the game.
Taking increased armor and magic resist and health regen.
Taking movement speed, improved ghost, reduced death time, gold per 10, increased buff duration, CD reduction, mana regen, and reduced summoner spell time.
These masteries should be used if you are experienced and have all the runes needed for jungling. However, if you want to play safer, use the first set of masteries.
Something Important to Note
"In order to jungle with whatever runes you want you must make sure to counter balance your stats.
Counter Balance means either you go full on offense to clear fast before jungle camps deal substantial damage to you or you're tanky enough that, even though they're wailing on you they aren't dealing a lot of damage. While you can go super offense or survivability - a balance is best."
Also, if your going to have offensive runes and starting item, I would suggest going more into the defensive tree. If your going more defense for your runes, then you should get an offensive starting item and more utility down the utility tree.
Skills Sequence and Info
Begin with a point in Vorpal Spikes or else you gonna have quite the hard time jungling. After get a point in Rupture as it can help you jungle and give you ganking potential. Then another point in Rupture for the additional damage and jungling speed.
Whenever Cho'Gath kills a unit, he recovers 32 - 66 (+2.0 each level) health and 3.25-7.50 mana (+0.25 each level).
Your passive gives you health and mana every time you kill a unit. This gives you great sustain in the jungle.
Ruptures the ground at target location. After a short delay, enemies are launched into the air for 1 second, dealt 80 / 135 / 190 / 245 / 305 (+100% of ability power) magic damage, and have their movement speed slowed by 60% for 3 seconds.
It is crucial that you know how to use this skill. It can stop enemies from running, save your life, gank, and change games. The 60% slow is just amazing and ridiculous.
Also, practice landing ruptures, its very important that you hit.
Easier to Rupture a CC'd enemy
Cho'Gath screams in a cone in front of him, silencing enemies for 2 / 2.25 / 2.5 / 2.75 / 3 second(s) and causing 75 / 125 / 175 / 225 / 275 (+70% of ability power) magic damage.
Another heavy CC skill. Cho'Gath is know for his crazy AoE skills such as this one. Feral Scream is one of the longest AoE silence in the game. Learning to use it is critical as for it can be used to stop a channeling fiddle from stormraping your team.
DO NOT USE THIS TO KS, ITS NOT WORTH IT, INSTEAD SILENCE A MAGE AND SAVE A LIFE.
Toggle: Cho'gath's physical attacks launch spikes which deal 20 / 35 / 50 / 65 / 80 (+30% of ability power) magic damage to a line in front of him.
Vorpal Spikes is your jungling skill. It does AoE dmg along with your basic attack. Without this, Cho'Gath probably cant jungle efficiently. I usually put only 2 points in it because your going to have to need the Feral Scream's long silence more.
Other than that, always have this on.
Devours an enemy unit, dealing 300 / 475 / 650 (+0.7 per ability power) true damage (1,000 to minions) that ignores armor and magic resist. If the target is killed, Cho'Gath grows, gaining extra health (max 6 stacks). Cho'Gath loses half his stacks (rounded up) upon death.
Now this, this is quite the amazing skill. Feast does the most single target true damage nuke in-game and gives you a lot of health. In the jungle, Cho'Gath doesnt need to rush health items because of this and you can use the spare gold to buy wards/oracles for your team.
Why Feast so fantastic:
1. its your ksing skill.
-whether your stealing buffs, dragon, about to die enemy (although you probably should give the kill to your carry), or baron it works great because it does 1000 dmg to neutral monsters and minions.
2. gives you health, at rank 3 with 6 stacks, you get +900 healths!!!
3. its hella fun :D all
2 point in Rupture for ganking potential and increased jungling speed.
Feral Scream is easy to land, AoE silence, duration with rank, definitely max this first.
Rupture is next because it does damage alone with a nifty slow.
Vorpal Spikes last for more damage upon basic attacks.
Feast of course getting this whenever available granting you more hp per rank.
"No Dammit I hate Feral Scream"
1 points in Vorpal Spikes for jungle potential.
2 point in Rupture for ganking potential and jungling speed.
1 point in Feral Scream denies Flash - improves ganking potential and adds more dps.
Rupture Damage increase by rank. 100% AP ratio, you'll hit like a truck. Also clears creep camps without using mana because mana cost stays the same all ranks.
Feral Scream Increases silence duration and damage. By 13, you should be able to clear minion waves fast!
Vorpal Spikes Adds more damage to your autoattacks. Combine with red buff can actually make you quite a dps.
Feast of course getting this whenever available granting you more hp per rank.
Feral Scream First
I recommended Feral Scream first because I gank A LOT. The silence duration is much needed so they don't Flash away. Although the mana cost goes up by level, its best to get this if you a) gank a lot b) not going to jungle as for you well be ganking c) if mid game starts and you need to silence casters in team fights.
Maxing rupture significantly increases your damage. However, your ganking potential stays the same because rupture's slow doesnt get any higher than 60%. The damage per rank is 80 / 135 / 190 / 245 / 305 (+100% AP). I would suggest ranking up rupture first if you are going to stay in the jungle because it can destroy creep camps.
The Number One Must Have for ALL Junglers is Smite.
Your Second Summoner Spell.
Tier 1 Choices
Ghost ~ Used to escape or catch up.
Flash ~ Used to escape or catch up.
Tier 2 Choices
Exhaust ~ Slows, helps you land rupture. Weakens hardcore carries. Need I say more?
Cleanse ~ I honestly dont know. Good for removing stuns so you can run away.
Ignite ~ Quite offensive, used to pick up kills or reduce healing.
Teleport ~ Get around places, protect towers.
Fortify ~ Saves your towers, passive gives you more dmg to minions lol...
Clarity ~ Heals your mp, you have blue buff and late game youll have Rod of Ages.
Clairvoyance ~ Leave for your supports.
Heal ~ You have your passive Carnivore
Revive ~ dont....
Rally ~ i never seen it in game before.
Jungling Route and Core Items (Sustain Route)
Why is Cho'Gath such a good jungler?
Because of his passive Carnivore and his E Vorpal Spikes and his ulti Feast
Begin at the enemey wraiths if its safe enough, if not, move on to your wolves. Afterwards, continue to your wraiths if you stole the enemy wraiths. Then continue to your wraiths. Afterwards, clear the lesser golems. At this point, you can choose to go back and get your philosopher's stone and sight wards (recommended) or you can choose to gank if possible, or continue jungling.
Late Early Game to Mid Game
Items: philosopher's stone sight ward(get 1 or 2 every time you back) and if possible
Go and get your blue (if its there LOL) and you can do many things at this point
-go with the flow
Core Build:philosopher's stone
sight ward (
Optional and if you dont die often ;])
Then you finish your boots ( Mercury's Treads #1 boots on Cho'Gath, you see those Boots of Swiftness boots on Cho'Gath? thats a no no.) and build a Catalyst the Protector and into a Rod of Ages for HP and AP :D
"Gah, I hate starting with both Regrowth Pendant and Cloth Armor"
If your going to start with a Doran's Ring, then your probably not going to get a philosopher's stone, however, you get boots earlier granting you higher successful ganking potential.
More Detailed Jungling Route
Yes i realize all that in the chapter before is filled with complicated info about jungling. Well jungling is difficult and requires a lot more skill. You need to know when to gank, when to continue jungling, when to lane, and how to help your teammates.
I am going to write a thorough jungling route as if your not going to gank or no ganks available. And if no lane needs to you to hold or if they are all push, and things of that sort.
This route gets you to level 6.
1. Begin at the enemy wraiths if possible. Smite the big blue one. Position yourself to hit the remaining small wraiths.
a. If you cant steal wraiths, skip them. (However the following info will be as if you have stolen them.)
b. You should have a little more than half a level.
2. Clear your wolfs. Position yourself to hit all 3, focus the big one first.
a. You should have leveled up after killing the biggest wolf.
3. Move on to your wraiths. Rupture them all and position yourself to hit at leash 3.
4. Move onto your golems.
a. After killing one of them, you should be level 3.
5. Now you go back to base.
a. Get your Philosopher's Stone and either buy 2 health pots or a ward.
6. Go to your blue golem. (Hopefully it wasnt taken)
a. Auto attack the golem and rupture whenever. Smite as it gets around 500 hp.
b. Use a health pot in the progress, he hurts.
7. Go to your wolves again and kill them with rupture and auto attacks.
a. When you finish, you should have reached level 4 and have a point in Feral Scream.
8. Go to your wraiths and Rupture + Feral Scream combo, then auto attack.
9. Go to your twin golems. Rupture + Feral Scream. (Your Philosopher's Stone should help you regen hp and mp.
a. You should have gained a level here, 2nd point in Feral Scream.
10. Go to your red buff. Rupture + Feral Scream again and auto attack, use your spells whenever they come off CD.
11. Now go to your wraiths, wait for them to respawn.
12. Move onto your respawned wraiths.
a. At this point, your should be level 6. Grab a point in your health steroid, Feast.
13. Go to your respawned golems and feast one and smite the other.
a. If you havent stolen the enemy wraiths, you should have leveled to 6 after killing one golem.
And that concludes your jungling to six. I really really recommended helping lanes and not just jungling all the time. Often will your teammates rage at you.
After Core Items
So you finished building your core, made the map ward city, eaten and trololol the enemy team, and have quite the gold, its time for you to be a Cho'Gath and do your role.
All tanks should know how to go with the flow. Tank accordingly to the enemy team. Whos fed? Whos not?
Normal teams would be composed of 3 AD and 2 AP or 2 AD and 3 AP. Its up to you to decide what items to get.
Top Counters Against Physical DMG
Frozen Heart Absolutely wonderful item, slows attack speed around you, gives you 500 mana, 20% CD, AND 99 armor.
Randuin's Omen Another great item, gives you an AoE slow, good 75 armor, health, and health regen, and a 5% CD (lol).
Atma's Impaler A great item that syncs well with Cho'Gath's tremendous hp (and gives pretty good armor!). Atma's Impaler also syncs very well with Wit's End, as it can make you into a tanky dps champion.
Sunfire Cape I personally dont like this item on Cho'Gath. Sunfire imo is more of a DPS offtank item for champs like Renekton.
Zhonya's Hourglass A meh, item. Gives 50 armor, and 100 AP. Good if your gonna be offensive. But has a active that contradicts the meaning of tanking. Also pretty hard to build, i never get it xD.
Wriggle's Lantern A cheap and useful item that Cloth Armor can build into. Also gives you a free ward every 3 minutes. I wouldnt suggest this however because it gives AD and the armor given is not enough late game. (However, if you have Wit's End and Atma's Impaler, then it would make you into quite the AD tanky dps.)
Top Counters Against Magical DMG
Force of Nature One of my favorite items. Force of Nature, gives great 76 MR, 8% movement speed for dat big Cho'Gath, and crazy health regen!
Abyssal Scepter Another great item with many uses on Cho'Gath. This gives you a good 57 MR and 70 AP along with an AoE enemy debuff!
Banshee's Veil Very useful item on Cho'Gath. Gives you HP and MP to make you more supersized, gives you a decent 50 MR, and a spellshield every 45 seconds!
Wit's End A fantastic item thats very underestimated. Wit's End gives good attack speed that synergies well with Vorpal Spikes. Its also cheap compared to the effect it gives.
Quicksilver Sash This item is basically a free Cleanse. Its very cheap and gives a good 56 MR. I would suggest this over other MR items if the enemy team is packed with heavy CC (stuns, fears, taunts)
A Little Mix-Mix: Situational/Other Items
Trinity Force A very expensive item, however granting good all around stats. Fellow MOBAFire member, DuffTime influenced me to suggest this item on Cho'Gath. It actually works pretty amazingly if you want to lean toward the more tanky dps side. Definitely will make you hurt. (I will put a link to DuffTime's offtank Cho'Gath guide as soon as he's done)
Shurelya's Reverie Shurelya's Reverie This item is cheap and the active is very good. However, I honestly dont think its worth it on Cho'gath. Shurelya's Reverie gives hp and a much needed 15% CD for a very low price AND your philosopher's stone builds into this. The active can be used for you to catch up to your enemies and Feast on if your Ghost or Flash is on CD.
Warmogs on Cho'Gath? No.
THAT IS A NO NO.
Why is Warmogs so bad on Cho'gath
-Cho'gath already has his ulti, Feast for giving him health.
-Warmogs is quite expensive, the 3000 gold can be used to invest into something else.
-If you get warmogs, you will lack either, armor, magic resist, or ability power, but will give you tons of health. This is bad because if the enemy team is smart, they would automatically get Madred's Bloodrazor.
Rabadon's Deathcap on Cho'Gath!?
Yes, Rabadon's Deathcap is viable on Cho'Gath.
Because, if your not a threat, why would anyone wanna target you?
When to build Rabadon's Deathcap?
-When you are not getting focused.
-When you are smoking the enemy team with a score of 10-0 and carrying.
Its so expensive, are you sure its a good item on Cho'Gath?
Yes, your role is to tank for your carries, if your not doing dmg to get the enemy carry's attention and focus, then you fail at tanking. Might as well get some AP and wreck them and make them want to focus you.
Yes, its expensive, however, you are able to farm a lot from your Vorpal Spikes as well as your Rupture + Feral Scream Combo that can wipe out minion waves. Not to mention your Heart of Gold and your Philosopher's stone's gold per 5 second effect.
Lets have a look at your skills.
Rupture: it has 1:1 scaling, you can hurt with this. AoE too!!!
Feral Scream: 0.7:1 AP scaling, still good. AoE dmg as well.
Vorpal Spikes: meh, 0.3:1 scaling, but still, makes your auto attacks kinda hurt squishy mages :3.
Feast: oh ho ho, 0.7:1 scaling like your Feral Scream but this skill at ranked 3 can nuke 650-1000 TRUE DAMAGE, way to finish off the last enemy champ, most likely the tank. (:
Final Core Items - Guardian Angel
If you dont like Guardian Angel and think that when you get it, people will avoid attacking you, then be my guest and continue building from the After Core Items Chapter.
Personally i like Guardian Angel because it gives you both armor and magic resist. Plus it revives you every 5 minutes, which is a great thing for Cho'Gath if he wants to preserve his Feast stacks. In fact, Cho'Gath needs those stacks to tank effectively. So best if you don't die much, or else your going to take another minute for each stack lost and another team may possibly start. And im also one of those people that loves a perfect game.
Guardian Angel also makes your ARMOR and MAGIC RESIST balanced, making you extremely hard to kill. And another thing, when your low like 1000- health, people would wanna kill you, trust me, every time, this greed takes over everyone, you get killed but your carries ace them, and after youd just revive and t-bag their bodies, you know. xD
Actually, you don't have to wait for Guardian Angel to be your last item. I normally get it after my Rod of Ages because i wanna preserve my perfect scores, haha.
I would appreciate feedback, compliments, and criticism. Its my first build and suggestions to make this guide better would be nice (: And if some info is incorrect, please inform me in the comments.
All in All Cho'Gath
I want to reiterate how I feel about Cho'Gath. An AoE knockup with a 3 second slow. A 3 second AoE silence. An 800+ true damage ult. An ability that makes your attacks do an additional 200+ magic damage. And you can still build him tanky as **** while still hitting insanely hard. He can fill the true role of a tank, dishing out enough damage and CC to get focused while your carries pick off everyone one by one.
Heres some games I've had.
ALWAYS TRY TO BE HUGE. ALWAYS HAVE 6 STACKS. BIG CHO GOOD CHO.
jhoijhoi, for giving me advice on how to improve my guide and for making me the awesome opening and ending banners.
Potatisfarfar, for letting me refer to his awesome Cho'Gath laning guide.
hahano. for letting me refer to his in-depth Jungling Basics guide.
PsiGuard, for suggesting possible improvements on the guide and giving a long criticism that helped further improve guide.
-blue start (aggressive route)
-twin golem start (superior route)
I'm planning on experimenting different starting items after all, Cho'Gath is amazingly versatile.
- -insert many ideas that come to me during school that i cant think of right now-
-credit and take into account what PsiGuard stated.
-Add more items for suggestion.
-redo/readd newer and better pictures for jungle once i get my lochness cho skin<3 (need it to be on sale)
07/19/11 ~ Guide Published
09/01/11 ~ "Added Pros - Cons | Jungle - Lane", "Before We Start - Basics of Jungling", "More Detailed Jungling Route", and "Rabadon's Deathcap on Cho'Gath!?".
09/17/11 ~ Started Revising a little: Added Change Log, Combined Runes and Masteries, Added Wards and Warding Section, made cheat sheet prettier, tweaked a few things, made guide prettier, changed skill order of EQEW to EQQW, and added more items to buy after your core items.
09/24/11 ~ Make a tweak with the cheet sheet, moved Abyssal Scepter in front of Guardian Angel.
09/26/11 ~ Not a change but an accomplishment. This guide became the 2nd top Cho'Gath guide. I would like to thank all of you guys for upvoting and reading my guide!
10/07/11 ~ I would like to thanks everyone for the positive feedback and support.
An amazing accomplishment of 20 positive votes in a row!