Build Guide by Zipstring
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So I was fortunate enough to purchase the champion while the shop was briefly available. I played several games with him, went about 50/50 on win and loss ratio without ever feeding the other team thankfully. His moves are not complex, but do require a certain understanding of how to use them. If used properly and in the correct order he can be devastating, especially early game. I was able to hold a lane by myself AND push 2 champions behind their turret until our Warwick was done jungling. This champion is an exceptional pusher and great for team fights end game. If your looking for a quick killer this is not your guy, however if your looking for someone who can stay in the fight and push your team forward this is definitely your guy.
This build is just the most common build ive used so far and is subject to change as i get more familiar with this Champion.
I selected these runes because the majority of the items you will be getting is geared towards tank type. These will help you early game keep the opposing champs at bay while slipping in a few ganks also.
I picked a 9/0/21 mastery set up because this champion does have issues with mana. If you dont have mana then you are no good at all. Using the Utility tree helps keep your mana regeneration up and allows you to stay in your lane longer. The offense tree gets you that extra %15 magic penetration, which is devastating paired up with the runes and your ultimate.
These items seemed to be the most efficient for my particular play style because they allowed me to stay in the field longer and do some decent damage as well. Maokais health is pretty awesome so these items work great for that. I'm continuing to try different items so suggestions are welcome. I have been thinking of a straight AP build that i think would be great with this guy and look forward to putting it together soon.
The skill sequence will depend on your style of play. I prefer to beef up the saplings so i can keep the opposing champions hugging the turret. In addition to that at around lvl 9 1 sapling can destroy an entire wave of minions, further pressuring the enemy champions. My next favorite skill being Twisted Advance. This skill lets you get in there and do some damage to them and hold them in place for 2 seconds, great skill for over-extending champions. I would usually do Sapling Toss -> Twisted Advance -> Arcane Smash. This combo is devastating, especially if you catch them behind minions.
These spells will keep you in your lane long enough to get ahead of the other team. Clarity is a must or you will need to be going back for mana often. Teleport works for me, but i can see several other spells being useful also. I think Flash would be my next choice for some extra reach on Twisted Advance.
All in all, this champion is incredibly fun to play. Win or lose your going to have fun either way.