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.
Malzahar is the highest pure damage caster their is. He has an average amount of CC, no support at all, he is almost exclusively pure damage. Very high AP ratios on all of his abilities combined with extremely large base damage will allow you to punch through enemy squishys laughably easily. Expect to be getting results like this once you learn malz with this build:
Pros / Cons
- One of the best (if not THE best) farmers in the game.
- Playing smart will mean you have NO mana problems all game.
- Immense high base damage will allow you to still hurt even when not fed.
- This build has high flat magic pen by the time mid game comes along which will mean you deal crazy damage in ganks and early team fights, especially to squishys.
- Your ult makes you almost unstoppable 1v1, gangplank and kassadin being your only real threats.
- Your high scaling and %health damage makes you the one of the few casters that carries VERY HARD late game.
- You do a LOT of damage, I've killed a tyrnd from full so quickly that he didn't have time to use his ult.
- OP ult, R = that champ is shut down, W+R = that champ is dead.
- Very squishy
- You get focussed a LOT. (getting zhonyas mitigates this problem... for 2secs anyway)
- Your a very bad ganker without your ult.
- During extreme early game your a terrible farmer... not really a problem tbh.
What you can and can't do
This I'm putting down here to stop people from using this build, going 0/10 and complaining that it sucks, you are an amazing champ but you have limits. Also there are some things that you can do many people don't realise. Here those things are:
What you can do:
- Nuke any carry or mage down from full (aslong as you don't ult a banshees -_-) once you hit lv9.
- 1v1 WITHOUT your ult. Many people say that malz is terrible 1v1 without his ult, how wrong they are. When that ashe attacks you, she tends to stand still if you stand still, dropping your Q+W+E on them will do a LOT of damage, usually enough to kill them before they kill you, or at least afterwards. You need to be smart though. It's not going to work if your on half and their on full and it isn't going to allow you to beat a fed xin either. But don't run away from EVERY 1v1 just cos you don't have your ult.
- Kill tanks, unlike most casters. Don't waste an R on them but your W makes you an amazing anti-tank, which is why malz is so good right now due to all the bruisers out there. Remember to pop the banshees with your Q though and place it so that the 2 beams hit at different times (so the first pops and the second silences).
What you CANNOT do:
- 1v1 the following champs (even with your ult): Gangplank, Kassadin, Morgana.
- Ult someone with a quicksilver sash, you can, but you definitely shouldn't... EVER.
- Initiate... (-_-)
- 1v3+, in some situations (ie: your very fed) you can 1v2 as you silence the caster and ult the other then turn and finish the caster. 3 champs are going to have a cc that interrupts your ult and are going to kill you a LOT faster than you are them, against noobs maybe... but I wouldn't try even then.
- Carry a game without at least a semi-good initiator/tank. You need a team that is able to absorb some damage and start a fight because if you get focussed and you die before you deal at least a decent amount of damage you are going to loose that game, if you are lacking here then buy a zhonyas after the archangels.
Marks & Quints:
Your high base damage and the fact that we buy 40 flat magic pen in items means that we are at a total of 54 flat magic pen... early game the squishies are going to have either 30 MR or 55 magic resist (merc treads dependent), reducing that to to 0 or negative means you will do A TON of damage. Magic pen marks are better than anything else.
Quints are less important, flat HP, movespeed and AP quints are all viable aswell.
I take mp/5 per lv because I find that in mid game team fights (ie: before you have archangels) you can run dry on mana at very annoying teams. In lane you have no problems due to your E so flat are worse. If you do not want to be able to spam abilities in earlier team fights feel fee to take something else (flat armour or HP/lv are 2nd best) but I do strongly reccomend these.
CDR/lv. Flat AP, AP/lv, flat CDR and even flat or per lv MR are all good for malz. But personally I find CDR/lv is best because it provides the biggest benefit towards late game, which is when most games are decided. Flat MR will help immensely in mid however if your against a strong caster like vlad, cassiopia or god forbid kassadin.
9/0/21... because your a caster. Extra defence is really not going to help, if your going to die then your going to die.
At the summoners portal you have 2 real choices:
Pendent +2 HP pots
Blue Gem +2 HP pots
Pendent I get most of the time but against more relax champs that will let you farm (if the support went mid for example) then blue gem will be better as you can rely on your e for mana regen more and the larger mana pool will allow for more kills before you have to 'b'.
Ideally you now want to lane until you hit 955 gold (boots + tear) but if your having a hard time then going b at 605 is better. I tend to usually stay in lane until I get a kill however. Farming is very important for items at this stage and you probably want to be able to last hit 5/6 minions. I know that sounds difficult especially before your e starts to do a lot of damage but it will allow you to control the lane easily enough that you should be able to get your boots, tear, revolver and haunting guise by the 15min mark aslong as you hit the 3 kills aswell. I tend to go back once I can afford tear + boots, then sorcerers boots + tome, then revolver + tome, then guise. After that laning phase should be over in which case you should try to avoid going back until archangels (1860 gold) but generally go back whenever it is neccassary to do so.
After archangels is complete you will have your health and mana problems sorted and your core built. So we can go straight into pure AP with a rabbadons. It will turn you huge amounts of damage into GODLY levels of damage. I generally don't finish rabbadons in 20% of games due to 20min surrender and in the rest of games I usually finish after rabbadons, if you don't then you want to complete your WoA and then go for a last situational item:
Zhonyas: If you're getting focussed.
Void Staff: If they have MR.
Deathfire Grasp: If they have high HP tanks and lots of bruisers. (can be used mid-ult)
Rylais: If your team is lacking CC.
Banshees: If their team has lots of CC.
Abyssal sceptre: If you have a few other casters and none of them are getting it.
2nd Archangel Staff: You're already face-rolling but their team is refusing to surrender and somehow you haven't won yet then this will make that face-rolling just that bit more fun.
If your getting focussed a LOT, your team is HEAVILY lacking in CC or their entire team is stacking MR then get the appropriate item (zhonyas/rylais/void staff) before rabbadons. One last thing to note is that you should chug a blue elixer when you get baron and whenever a big team fight is coming up. I always chug one before my last item slot is filled aswell.
Unlike many malz guides I do not suggest getting deathfire grasp, for 2 reasons. First it makes you feel more like a 1 trick-pony as it focusses on your ult combo. The second is because you don't ever need the active to kill... if you actually buy damage items instead of this and choose the right target. One last point is that the cooldown reduction is wasted as you should be the one that gets blue buff being the AP nuke and that takes you to 39.6% cooldown reduction.
Farming with malz is easy. At summoners portal use q twice. At lv1 and lv2 ONLY last hit without using abilities, then at lv3 drop q+e on the front 3 minions of a intact wave (waiting until the minion you e is below half health) this will spawn your first voidling and assuming you bounce and AA correctly should allow you to last hit the entire wave.
After that let the cannon minion wave push you, then e the other 2. Never use your q on a minion wave unless it will spawn a voidling OR it will result in e passing to the enemy champ.
Once you hit lv5 farming becomes easy, harass and farm with e, use e for everything. At lv6+ wait for the oppurtunity then land your silence + e on the enemy, then flash and w+r. You should do this at LEAST 3 times by the 15 min mark. Whenever your flash is off cooldown you should be able to get a kill. When you get the kill then immediately push the wave to their tower as fast as possible before you b, this will save you minions kills and deny them.
Finally when going b you should try to wait until your tele is ready and push to the enemy tower before you b.
Gank if it is necessary, or if your flash is on cooldown AND your ult is up. If your flash is up you should try to kill the mid rather than gank as it will give your team the bigger advantage in the long run. In a perfect game you will manage to kill mid and gank 3 times each.
When going for a gank, push the minion wave to the enemy tower (using q/w if neccassary) then pull back and go top/bot.