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Maokai Build Guide by Ricemastah

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.


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League of Legends Build Guide Author Ricemastah

Maokai - Decorating the Tree

Ricemastah Last updated on August 24, 2011
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Ability Sequence

3
10
12
13
14
Ability Key Q
1
5
7
15
16
Ability Key W
2
4
6
8
9
Ability Key E
11
17
18
Ability Key R





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.



Masteries

 
 
 
 
 
Sorcery
Alacrity
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Brute Force
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Lethality
Improved Rally
 
 
 
 
 
 
Havoc
 
 

Offense: 0

 
 
 
 
 
Strength of Spirit
4/
Evasion
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
4/
Veteran's Scars
Willpower
 
 
 
 
 
 
2/
Ardor
Reinforce
 
 
 
 
 
 
1/
Tenacity
 
 

Defense: 21

 
 
 
 
 
4/
Awareness
Expanded Mind
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Quickness
Blink of an Eye
 
 
 
 
 
Intelligence
Mystical Vision
 
 
 
 
 
 
Presence of the Master
 
 

Utility: 9


Guide Top

Introduction to this Guide

As for this guide as a whole, it should be fairly straight forward in the material. Each section will be properly headed and have corresponding writings and reasons for the statements made. The guide will start with an overview of the hero and their role in the team and will then move into more specific aspects of the decisions made when playing. It should be fairly encompassing and very lengthy as a whole, but please enjoy reading and good luck with the guide.


Guide Top

Overview of Maokai




Maokai is mostly a tank/support hero. Even though he has a lot of nukes, they aren't very strong. Since his skills aren't great for hero killing, I've decided to build him as a strong support hero, but we'll get to that later.

Maokai is the kind of hero that you'll find yourself playing when you want to tank and use spells at the same time. Rather than tanking and auto-attacking, Maokai has a wide berth of abilities to support his team, making him more complex. Overall, he's an excellent initiator and support, as well as a nice crowd controller. On the downside, Maokai is hard to build and slightly difficult to play.


Guide Top

Abilities


  • : Your innate ability allows you to stay in the lanes longer by regenerating your health after spells are cast around you. Try to lane with people who use a lot of spells
  • (Q): A linear knock-up and slow ability with a small area and range. Use it in conjuction with twisted advance to ensure it hits
  • (W): Your initiating and rooting skill, a reliable one target spell. It's the start of your skill sequence
  • (E): This is your creeping spell, with a good casting range and moderate AoE damage. You can start with this spell and then Twisted Advance immediately after to have the sapling explode on your target, but it's best used for creeping
  • (R): Maokai's ultimate lays down a large AoE where friendly units take less damage. He can hold it as long as he has MP and the damage that is reduced is stored; Maokai can toggle his ult again after any amount of time and deal damage with it


Guide Top

Runes/Masteries/Summoner Spells

Runes:
Honestly, runes aren't really my thing. They give that extra edge to put your hero over the top, but for a tank, the things that we need are too broad for me to get a hold on. You can build your runes however you like, but most people will get flat HP runes or armor. In early game for competitive players, these runes shine the best. They'll give you the small boost for a few extra hits, allowing you to survive and stay in your lane. Casually though, runes aren't that big a deal.



Masteries:

Masteries
3/5
3/1
4/5
1/1
3/1
4/1
2/5
1/1
3/5
1/1
4/1
1/5


The 0/21/9 is your basic tank mastery page. This one's pretty generic, but it's how tanks work. I don't really recommend Defensive Mastery (your champ takes {1/2} less damage from creeps) because it's a pittance when you're building armor. Other than that, the rest is fairly basic.


Summoner Spells:
Probably Best:

Still Good:

Probably Bad:


Guide Top

Skill Sequence

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

I would always start by getting each of Maokai's skills, but I'll focus on Twisted Advance if your lane partner for ganks or Sapling Toss if you need the extra creep kills

Don't get ( Vengeful Maelstrom) right away because the cost is way too high and it doesn't help that much.


Guide Top

Items

Because of his ult and other spells, Maokai is extremely mana dependent, so you'll need either MP or MP regen. Since we're building him like a tank, we need general tanking stuff also. It's a lot of things, so I'll cover the bases: Armor, Magic Res, HP/MP regen, Aura, MP. Boots are in there, of course, and we can even get cooldown reduction.

Item Sequence











Mana Potion
35

Faerie Charm
125

Nomad's Medallion
850

Boots of Speed
300

Meki Pendant
390

Null-Magic Mantle
450

Chalice of Harmony
800

Kindlegem
800

Talisman of Ascension
2400

Boots of Swiftness
900

Glacial Shroud
1000

Warmog's Armor
2850

Force of Nature
2610

Frozen Heart
2700

Abyssal Scepter
2750


Since you've probably noticed that the item sequence above is convoluted, I'll explain the sequence while I'm explaining the choices. It starts off with the small items because you might be poor and it finishes quickly later towards the end of the game.

Early Game:
Item Sequence











Mana Potion
35

Faerie Charm
125

Nomad's Medallion
850

Boots of Speed
300

Meki Pendant
390

Null-Magic Mantle
450

Chalice of Harmony
800

Kindlegem
800

Start with the Regrowth Pendant for regeneration while you lane and then build into your other regeneration/support items.



Mid Game:
Item Sequence











Boots of Swiftness
900

Glacial Shroud
1000

Warmog's Armor
2850

Force of Nature
2610


shurelya's reverie is an excellent support item to grab for mid-game when you start ganking.

Boots of Swiftness are my preferred choice, but any of the other armor ( Ninja Tabi or Mercury's Treads) boots are okay too.

Glacial Shroud is cheap and works perfectly at this point where you'll be needing the armor and MP. I wouldn't get the Frozen Heart this early because of the price.

The order between Warmog's Armor and Force of Nature is also up to you, depending on if you need magic res more than HP. If you value Armor over HP, you could swap out Warmog's Armor for Randuin's Omen.


End Game:
Item Sequence











Abyssal Scepter
2750

You can finish off your build by buying the Glacial Shroud into the Frozen Heart and if you want to sell your Chalice of Harmony for the Abyssal Scepter or a Banshee's Veil.

So by the end of the game, your build should look like this:
Item Sequence











Boots of Swiftness
900

Force of Nature
2610

Frozen Heart
2700

Abyssal Scepter
2750

Warmog's Armor
2850
  • HP: 3733; 119/5
  • MP: 1578; 17/5
SPACE
  • Armor: 192
  • Magic Resistance: 166.88
  • Atk: 117
SPACE


OR:
Item Sequence











Boots of Swiftness
900

Force of Nature
2610

Frozen Heart
2700

Banshee's Veil
2450

Randuin's Omen
2900
  • HP: 3088; 99.6/5 (-645,-19.4)
  • MP: 1953; 17.96/5 (+375, +.96)
SPACE
  • Armor: 267 (+75)
  • Magic Resistance: 159.88 (-7)
  • Atk: 117
SPACE




Other Stuff:
In highly situational events, other items you would consider are the Thornmail in case of heavy DPS heroes or even a Guardian Angel to round off the defenses as well as its nice reincarnation. If you're looking for a good time, Atma's Impaler is an excellent item with your Warmog's Armor.


Guide Top

How to Play Maokai

This section will look at his skills and the different situations you'll find yourself in.

Laning:


Creeping:
Down-time:
  • Try to find empty lanes
  • Jungle
  • Don't spend too much time moving

Hero Killing (Alone):

Team Situations:
  • Don't be afraid to die. Initiate against the closest target with Twisted Advance
  • Place Vengeful Maelstrom on yourself (enemies will crowd around you when you initiate) or on the enemy team (your team will swarm the enemies in the field)
  • Spam the rest of your abilities and active shurelya's reverie as well
  • Use summoner spells as necessary to chase/escape

In all of these things, make sure your build accommodates whichever aspect of gameplay is the most important.


Guide Top

Summary

That's basically about it for Maokai. All of the things are there, read and repeat until it starts to make sense.

Thanks to:
jhoijhoi for an excellent guide on how to code a guide

Anyway, feel free to comment and question, I'll try to help out, but Maokai isn't my strongest hero. If you'd like to see other guides or anything, send a message and I'll try to get to it if I can.