Mordekaiser Build Guide by MonkMiroku
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.
IF YOU INTEND ON VOTING OR COMMENTING, READ THE ENTIRE GUIDE. IF YOU'RE NOT GOING TO, JUST GET OUT NOW.
Firstly, I'd like to say thanks for deciding to give this a read. This is a very thorough guide, so if you're a TL;DR type person, get out. If you're going to vote, which I'd love for you to do, please READ THE ENTIRE BUILD, AND TRY BOTH THE BUILD AND STRATEGY first. Everything is carefully thought out and explained for the most part. IF you have a question, please ask it. Other than that, Lets get on with the part you care about.
CHECK BACK FREQUENTLY!
I update my builds a lot. I'll likely put more builds on this as time progresses. Just check back every now and then, and make sure to check the changelog!
In the past, I have been apparently seemed a bit "unresponsive" to criticism in the past, (feel free to thumb through the comments and check) and I'm here to make sure that's not the image portrayed. I logged in today, as I do generally every day, and read some of your comments. Note that I always add things in to try and make the build better, based on your opinions.
The biggest topic of argument was the Haunting Guise. I have since put in alternatives to this, but didn't get much notice on it. Keep up with the changelog! I edit my build's a LOT to accommodate for flaws.
Also, if you're going to comment, PLEASE read the entire build, and if you're gonna criticize something, BACK IT UP. I can't improve that which I don't see a flaw in!
Enemy Item Awaredness.
Please realize that League of Legends isn't a game where you can cookiecutter build items and get the same result every time. You need to pay attention to what your enemy team is building and counterbuild accordingly. Builds are a LEARNING AID, not telling you what to do. There will be times you need to stray from the build to make up for things your team is missing. Get MPEN if your team is having trouble taking out Galio. Get APEN if your team is having trouble taking out Rammus. Get MR, or a Zhonya's Hourglass if you're getting smacked around by nukers like Ryze or Annie. Get Thornmail if you're facing a decent Tryndamere. Get a Sword of the Divine to stop Jax from trollfacing you.
Enemy item awareness is detrimental to team success. At least one of your team members should be geared towards killing at least one of your team mates. Leave no weakness uncovered.
Genral info and Pros / Cons
These apply to the build, not Mordekaiser himself.
I've equipped this guide with two types of Mordekaiser. Build A is geared at never dying, but still deals a GREAT amount of DPS. Build 2 is just rapeface DPS. However, no matter how you build Mordekaiser, he's going to be a bit tanky because of his shield. Keep that in mind.
+--+ Damn near immortal, sporting 50% spell vamp, 20% normal vamp, a ton of armor and mresist, and a second life with Guardian Angel.
+--+ Still packs a powerful punch, with nearly 500AP and 69/15%MPEN, doing true damage to squishies
+--+ Can get jungle buffs if need be, to make yourself even more unstoppable.
+--+ Could potentially solo Baren at level 18 (UNTESTED)
+--+ Cheap build for the most part
+--+ No crowd control whatsoever
+--+ If focused early, could be problematic
+--+ Significantly Heavier nuke damage
+--+ More lifesteal/spell vamp for higher survivability
+--+ Includes a crowd control mechanic
+--+ Can still jungle
+--+ Significantly more expensive build
+--+ Much more prone to damage than Build A, but heals more also
+--+ Being focused early will wreck this build.
This is what makes Mordekaiser Mordekaiser. Probably single handedly THE BEST passive in the game. At rank 3, 30% of all spell damage Mordekaiser does is contributed to his grey shield bar. At level one, you have a cap of 120, and it slowly creeps its way up as you level to 680. SIX HUNDRED AND EIGHTY. That will withstand up to 3-5 turret shots on its own, let alone enemy teams. Whats even better, is it's ridiculously easy to charge. One Creeping Death on a minion wave, or 2-3 champions will instantly fill it. Being able to monitor this shield could mean charging into a 1v5 and coming out with an ace. Oh yeah, did I mention you went in with only 500HP?
As our boy Morde is the master of metal, this is a reference to of course, "Iron Man" by Black Sabbath
Mace of Spades
Few people realize just how powerful this skill is. It does damage to a target, then if it's near other things, it shockwaves up to 3 other enemies near it. If they're alone, it hits twice as hard. Though we don't stack crit other than our 1% from mastery, if you DID manage to crit on a target that is alone that's 4X damage. This is a EXTREMELY good damage skill for lower levels, and still packs a very hard punch later. It scales with both your AP and AD (although the AP scaling is better) so your Hextech Gunblade's AD will still give one of your skills benefit. This is your second best damage skill, and is godly for harvesting minions without wasting your Siphon of Destruction when you may need it to charge your shield.
This is a reference to Motorhead's "Ace of Spades".
An offensive, and defensive shield. Morde summons shards of metal to surround himself for 6 seconds, dealing decent damage to anyone who stands in its way. It can be cast on minions, and other champions. It also provides some armor and magic resist. ALWAYS enter a fight with this. Although I generally don't go for this, if you have CDR capped at 40%, Creeping death will have less than a second downtime. Also, if you're being harassed, put this on a minion to make it do your dirty work for you, and chip from behind with Siphon of Destruction. Using this in minion waves is also a great way to fight enemy teams when not backed up by your own minions, as it sustains the shield over its duration. Enemy creep waves are Morde's best friend.
TIP: One thing I learned on accident one time, is that you can put this on a minion thats fighting the enemy minion wave, then charge into combat out side of a minion wave. This way for the duration of the shield, you still gain shield from your passive, as the minion is still dealing damage with the shield, despite being a considerable distance away. Doing this however, does lose you some mag resist and armor, so its not exactly recommended.
This is a reference to Metalica's Creeping Death of the exact same name.
Siphon of Destuction
This is your bread and butter skill. If its not rank 5 by level 9, you're doing something wrong. It deals a great deal of damage, scales well with your AP, and for every enemy it hits, gives you extra shield. It's OP. Chances are if you hit at least 3 enemies with it, it will fully charge your shield. Don't spam it in longer fights, and save it until your shield is getting low, to maximize the amount of shield gained.
This is a reference to Megadeth's "Symphony of Destruction"
Children of the Grave
An OP Ult, but takes skill to use. This does % based damage, so no matter how bulky a enemies HP bar is, it will do some considerable damage. It does half the damage initially as one chunk, and the rest over 10 seconds(which might I add is the longest DoT in the game). Whats even more bad *** is that this incredible amount of damage, is also heals you. Meaning if you're caught in a tight spot and need HP, pop it on their tank to get the most HP out of it as you can.
But here's where it gets awesome. Remember how earlier I said Iron Man is how some Morde's can walk into a 5v1 and come out with an ace? Well this is why. Atop the healing benefit of this skill, If the target you cast it on dies during its duration, you get to command the ghost for 30 seconds. You can't use its skills, but it does keep all item benefits, and attack damage of the champion. This is pure win for pushing turrets. You can command the ghost by holding alt.
THIS, is how you can turn:
of course there are other combinations, but I just got the big ones assuming the other team stays clumped. This wins wars strait out. Use this on the lowest HP member if you're using it offensively, or on a tank to use it defensively.
Children of the Grave is a reference to Black Sabbath's Children of the Grave by the same title
The utility tree is the way to go, because the 6% CDR along with the 15% summoner spell reduction is too good to pass up for Morde. Couple it with the 3% CDR and 15% spell pen from the Damage tree, and you're starting out with some jesusly stats.
Though you can take tank tree as your primary, and take less damage overall, Mordekaisers main tank component comes from his shield. His shield, comes from his spells. The more you can do with your spells, the more shield you get. The more often you can cast them, the more you can get back faster. So, the bit you get from the tank tree wont outweigh utility. Sorry.
I'm not afraid to copypaste my reasoning from my Vladimir Build:
I chose Greater Mark of Magic Penetrationx9 because this build heavily revolves around MPen, and these are the best. After doing the math, you get a whopping 8.55 MPEN from the starting gate. That will significantly help harassing early game.
There is no question that this is your top pick.
I chose Greater Seal of Magic Resist because there is no clear choice for Morde. Another alternative would be Greater Seal of Ability Power for more AP, but I chose Magic Resist because everyone has a naturally lower Mresist than armor, which really helps early game against champions like Brand and Vladimir who can do some serious chip damage early game before you have a good shield cap.
I chose Greater Glyph of Ability Power because glyphs alone you get 8.91AP on the starting gate, which can prevent a 3HP trollface getting away after a Siphon of Destruction. Along with your start game AP, and the extra 14.85 from your Quintessence of Ability Powers you'll be hitting very hard from the start.
Another good choice would be CDR runes, to help keep shield generation up. I personally Like killing more than surviving, and in Morde's case killing=surviving because his killing gives him shield, so I chose Potency. It's preference though. The extra split second could save your life though in shield generation. I still find it better to get Blue Buff or a Elixir of Brilliance personally.
14.85 AP from the get go. Nuff said.
Other alternatives however, would be Greater Quintessence of Magic Penetration for even more MPen, but this pen is focal around it so I font think it'll be needed. Also HP Quints would also be helpful because morde has a naturally low HP pool. Movement quints could also help you get in and out of battle faster.
Potions and Elixirs
A very overlooked mechanic on League of Legends is the consumables. Health and Mana potions are extremely useful mid game, and can still be useful late game if you know what you are doing. Elixirs are cheap, persist through death, and can turn the tide of battle.
Pretty strait forward right? 200 HP over 20 seconds. Many people dont understand just how invaluable that is. At level 7, Ignite will do 50+140 damage over 5 seconds. Using a health potion will make it so it only does 50+90 over the 5 seconds, and you'll heal the rest of it off. It can be a life saver. It can also save you from other Mordekaisers Children of the Grave or Brand's stupid passive. Going to skip the mana potion, Mana is for ******* anyways.
Elixir of Fortitude
People don't realize that when you pop this (granted you don't already have the red pot buff active) you GAIN that 200ish health instantly. This can save you again, from Ignites, or even a cheeky Requiem kill, at least until you can get a Zhonya's Hourglass. The extra AD isn't extremely helpful, but it does make your Mace of Spades hit harder, so kudos for hat. Generally you will not need these, because your shield will stop most BS that happens, as long as you can Siphon of Destruction something shortly before.
Elixir of Brilliance
THIS ITEM IS AMAZING. Its 20-40AP, for only 250 Gold. On top of that, it lasts 4 minutes. If you last hit every minion in a standard wave of 6, you get 120ish. Two minion waves and you get this. Atop that, 10% CDR which is great considering it doesn't consume an item slot. Even if you have all 6 slots filled up, if you buy a pot/elixir it will automatically consume it for you. This item will save your life with the CDR and stop annoying enemies from escaping with 2HP. I don't know how many times I've been pissed they barely got away, not because I didn't have the potion, but because I forgot to drink it. (I try to hold off on using it until I'm about to initiate combat, to get its full duration) Get one whenever you can, whether it be buying one when you're halfway to a Needlessly Large Rod or have 250 left over from finishing your Hextech Gunblade, you want to keep that blue pot buff up at all times.
Elixir of Agility
I've never used one of these on Morde, but it could potentially benefit him. The 11-22% increased attack speed would be great for giving an extra kick to turrets, and the 8% crit could give your Mace of Spades an edge. I would definitely take a Elixir of Brilliance or Elixir of Fortitude over this however. The AP elixir is self explanatory, and the fort elixir gives flat AD bonus, which gives a guaranteed damage boost to [[Mace of Spades instead of 8% chance.
This is rather expensive to buy, which is why I'm glad they are adding a alternative, the Oracle's Extract. This item gives stealth detection until you die. This is a must have for enemies like Twitch or Evelynn], but, it can also be useful for other champions like [[Teemo who's mushrooms become visible from it, or Talon and Shaco who can use their ults to initiate or flee from combat. However, this costs a whopping 400 Gold. It definitely makes you cherish your life a bit more, and makes you play more careful knowing you have to shuck up another 400 if you die.
Again, I look forward to the new Oracles Extract. Its a 250gold alternative that lasts 5 minutes or until you die, but has the same effect. It will be useful for people who have a higher tendancy to die in team fights, like Vladimir who gets focused hard. Morde es neva die though, so the Oracle's Elixir isn't a bad choice.
That about sums it up for the Pots/Elixirs.
Quite possibly the best Summoner Spell in the game. Great for engaging, and disengaging combat. Helps turret dives, getting back from a death, and many other options. Simply a great choice for any champion.
ABSOLUTE MUST HAVE FOR MORDEKAISER. It does True damage over time, and a much overlooked side effect is it reduces healing by 50%. This will stop someone who is suffering from Children of the Grave from popping a health potion and trollfacing you. Absolutely one hundred percent of the time pick this.
Get out of ******** free card. Enough said.
A decent skill, considering it also drops their damage against champions like Tryndamere, but overall the utility of Ghost would be better in my opinion.
A highly overlooked summoner skill. This can make or break a game sometimes. Also, when it isn't on cooldown, you deal an extra 9 damage to minions, which is sometimes useful. however, farming is Morde's middle name. I'd let your main tank take this or someone who has a bit of a harder time farming. If no one takes it though, you might want to consider swapping ghost out for it.
any other champion and this would be in the "The Ugly" pile. But, Morde es #1, and Morde Es Neva die. But, on the off-chance you do, you can use this to get right back up and really piss them off. On top of your already ridiculously hard to kill-ness, and your and your Guardian Angel, the chance of you dying more than once every 5 minutes for your Guardian Angel is low. If you do somehow die, pop Revive and re-initiate and by the time they take you down, your Guardian Angel is back up. by the time they kill you while its down, your Revive is back up. Pure trollfacing.
Decent skill for mapwalking. Definitely not one to grab for 3v3 though. I'd rather take Ghost and Ignite any day.
Purely OP skill, but I always forget to use it first off. Also, unless your doing ranked, you don't know if the enemy team has a lot of CC, and may waste it when you find they have close to none. I'd much prefer to get Mercury Treads or a Quicksilver Sash than waste a summoner skill. Still not a terrible pick though
Not at all a bad skill, and is often underused. But, champions with rediculously long ranged ults like Ashe, Lux, Ezreal, and Karthas can benefit far more from it.
Decent for early game, since all of Mordekaiser's skills cost HP. However, it loses its usefulness later. Not a terrible pick, but not a good pick in my opinion.
I've never seen this used very effectively, but it could be used for turret pushing fairly well. Using it in 1v1's could help significantly though. Again, I've never seen it used effectively, so I cant say much about it.
Best skill ever for Morde seeing as he is always out of mana.
Morde can jungle simply by standing near stuff. He doesn't need the summoner's pity with Smite.
Awesome Summoner Skill and should be used at every last option. Oh.. wait..
Siphon of Destruction> Children of the Grave> Mace of Spades= Creeping Death
Siphon of Destruction should be leveled every time you have a chance. If you aren't putting a point in at levels 1,3,5,7, and 9, you're failing as a Morde already.
Secondly, Children of the Grave is the obvious choice. It's great for killing champs like Tryndamere who have temporary invincibility, or someone who used Zhonya's Hourglass under a turret.
Notice I said Mace of Spades was EQUAL to Creeping Death. This is because the last two aren't quite as obvious. The shield will help you do more damage to more enemies, but Mace of Spades will put you on edge because it deals heavy damage to targets who are alone. Good players know not to fight a Mordekaiser in a creep wave, so you will do double damage quite a lot from this. It is really situational really. many guide's say to get it at level 4 then forget it until level 14.That. Is. Horse****. I can fully understand ranking one skill up first, by the time you get it you have rank 1 in your other 3 skills. But neglecting one skill all the way until level 14 just won't cut it in most cases. If you don't put a point or two into Mace of Spades and go strait Creeping Death you're going to lose out on a LOT of damage. Don't forget that all of Morde's skills are AoE except Children of the Grave. If Mace of Spades is slacking, you're losing potential damage-to-cooldown ratio.
Smart Casting and Key Bindings.
Riot included a great system called Smart Casting. to do this, you just hold shift when doing a skill. I'm an old WoW player, so when I joined LoL I immediately changed QWER DF to 123456. But, I just recently learned about Smart Casting.
What is Smart Casting?
Smart casting makes you cast skills without having to click. If its a normal -click on enemy in range- spell, it will cast whatever your mouse is pointed on, like your Creeping Death or Children of the Grave. If its a skillshot/cone attack, such as Siphon of Destruction it'll do it in the direction your aiming the mouse. If it's a self-target thing, like Sanguine Pool, it'll autocast it, as normal.
Shift is kind of a hassle to use.
Yes. It is. It's a pain in the ***. the only *button+skill* configuration I find easy to do is CTRL+Button, because if you are using a normal desktop keyboard, it's easy to hit with your palm. HOWEVER, I use CTRL+1-6 for my item slots. So here's what I did:
Like I said, I use 1-6 instead of QWERDF. So, what I did is I left 1-6 alone, and made QWERDF my smart casting buttons. This enables me to quickly switch from smart casting to "dumb casting" I guess, with the shift of only one row of keys. If you're a QWERDF user, I'd recommend making your smart casts 1-6(an inversion of my setup basically) to achieve the same type of effect.
Of course, Key Bindings are always based on preference. Use what is comfortable to you. HOWEVER, all pro players are going to have the following:
-Normal Spells bound.
-Smart Casting bound.
-Use Item Slots 1-6 bound.
-Lock/Unlock Champion Camera Lock.
PRO TIP: It is worth making a easily accessible button bound to "Self cast skill #2". Why? because even with smart casting, if you're in a minion wave it could potentially miscast Creeping Death onto a minion. If you intend to play Morde and only Morde, I guess you COULD change your binding for your smart cast to this, but I like to keep my keyboard universal for my characters.
I'd highly suggest you make it a mission to have your keys bound properly in a way that is comfortable for you.
Escaping and Chasing
Morde may not be a main tank(though he can be), but he sure is built like one. With Iron Man and Children of the Grave you can take on many enemies at once and come out on top. Still, you have to know how.
If you're trying to escape, Ghost is going to be your last line of defense. Unfortunately, unlike Flash, Ghost can be ****ed over by Exhaust or similar things like Time Warp. You want to get as close to your turret or safety as possible BEFORE using Ghost. If at all possible, save Ghost for chasing. If you brought Exhaust, use it and run, or finish the job, because they'll be doing less damage for its duration.
Remember that Children of the Grave can also be a heal. To get the biggest benefit, use it on the enemy with the most health.
Also, if you're running away but are near creep waves, Siphon of Destruction them to instantcharge your shield. Remember that so long as that grey bar remains, you're HP bar is invincible.
Unlike escaping, ghost is your first choice! Get as many hits on them as you can, and stay close so Creeping Death can do its duty. When they get close to being under their turret, IMMEDIATELY cast Children of the Grave and then Ignite. The order is important! Children of the Grave boasts being the longest DoT in the game, clocking at 10 seconds. Ignite, however, is a parsley 5. If you cast Ignite first, there's a good chance one second of it will tick before you can get Children of the Grave up. The idea is you want the 50% healing reduction on for as much of Children of the Grave's duration as possible. If its possible, popping it on them once Children of the Grave has 6 seconds on it is best. It ensures they can't very effectively heal through the last 5 seconds.
The Mace of Spades
You may have noticed I mention this skill probably more than the others. If you haven't, you will in the next few sections. What makes this skill special is it benefits from both AP and AD. It hits very hard on enemies which are alone, so having a Hextech Gunblade makes it hit even harder.
Having about 60 extra AD, which you get from the Hextech Gunblade if I remember correctly gives you almost 100 extra damage on this skill, making the Hextech your best friend. This is a POWERFUL melee attack, and will win fights for you. Leveling it up before Creeping Death has become a preference of mine, because it does drastically increase damage output, and makes Morde a bit more viable for early game.
Best of all, its CD is short, and between it and Siphon of Destruction you can clear minion waves in seconds. I'd grab Creeping Death at levels 4, and 10 then forget about it until Mace of Spades is maxed out.
Items for Build A
Unlike other health-based champions, poor Mordekaiser has no natural way of regaining Health like Vladimir or Dr. Mundo. This is normally overcome in one of two ways.
1: Force of Nature the HP5 and the passive .35% of HP per second normally counteracts the HP cost.
2: Lifesteal or Spell Vamp. Since Morde is AP based, Spell vamp it is. No matter what spell vamp item you get, you need a Hextech Revolver to start off.
Both of these options are good, but the Hextech Revolver is cheaper, and has more to offer Mordekaiser. Like Vladimir, more AP actually makes him more tanky. (more damage dealt with spells = more shield gain. Also, with life steal more damage done = more HP. double win)
Either go for your T2 boots next, or upgrade to Will of the Ancients. Generally you will go for boots first, but if you're constantly having to go back to the spawn for health, get Will of the Ancients first.
Sorcerer's Boots are the standard AP caster boots. So many people underestimate how much Spell Pen matters. having 0% damage reduction will help far more than any amount of AP ever will. The only other option would be to take Ionian Boots of Lucidity for the CDR. The few split seconds of cool down reduction can save your life. At 40% CDR you can almost chain your Creeping Death infinitely.
Will of the Ancients
One of my favourite AP items in the game. It gives 80 AP total, 50 flat and 30 in aura form, as well as a 25% spell vamp aura. This is a tide turner for team fights, when your whole team is healing for a quarter of their spells. Additionally, its cheap. This will drastically help surviving. In creep waves one Siphon of Destruction can heal you for hundreds of HP at a time. Later after you've finished your build you may change this out for a Hextech Gunblade as its stuff stacks, however.
Oh mah gawd. This has to be one of the most underrated items in the game. Other than runes and Sorcerer's Shoes, this is the only item in the game that has magic penetration. You can get 40% from Void Staff, but that won't always cut it. The object is to get it as close to 0 as possible, not just reduce it. Okay, my bad. Abyssal Scepter Also has some by technical standards. Although it doesn't benefit doubly to Mordekaiser like it does Vladimir, it's still an amazing item for its price. 1500 gold gets you a almost guaranteed 15% damage increase on squishes. Definately worth picking up.
By this point you should have 40/15%MPEN, and doing true damage to most squishes.
Please keep an eye on enemy MR, if you don't need the MPen, move on to the Abyssal Scepter. If the MPEN is needed later you can always get it then.
The third and final MPEN item. After having this, you'll have 68.55/15%MPen. Enough to rip through all squishes, and a good amount of tanks. Along with some good AP, and much needed Magic Resistance. This is a good tank/dps item, and starts our building on tanking.
As if you weren't unkillable enough, lets grab a Guardian Angel. Now you have two lives. You start with a decent amount of HP back, and most likely your Q W and E skills are recharged. Smack a creep wave with Siphon of Destruction and either high tail it outa there, or finish the job. Along with this we get more Mresist, and some armor. Build the chain mail first because you're going to be lacking it right around this time if you have AD heavy champions.
Alternative: If you're facing a lot of AD champions, consider Thornmail instead. Coupled with Creeping Death they'll have no interest in standing near you, for it spells certain death.
What better way to top off a build than getting +20% Lifesteal, +25% spell vamp, +60AD, and +75AP with a damaging Exhaust active ability. This will make you just about unkillable in creep waves, with how much you'll be healing..
A second one!
Optional, really. Swapping your Will of the Ancients for a Hextech Gunblade may make you lose 5AP, but gives you 20% lifesteal and 60AD to make up for it. However, your 30AP/25% spell vamp is no longer an aura.. so choose carefully. Often times swapping for a second gunblade is the way to go. You could change out your Guardian Angel for a third, I did this once and it turned out rather well. The ridiculous amount of life steal makes you jesus in a can.
Items for Build B:
All of these are the same as Build A, and for the same reasons. Read up above for the reasons, its way to much work to explain the same stuff over and over. One difference is you don't upgrade to the Will of the Ancients in this one, though you can if you want to. Please keep note that there are alternatives to the Haunting Guise, listed below.
Rylai's Crystal Scepter.
One key difference in this build is Rylai's Crystal Scepter. This packs a nice amount of AP, and HP into one item, as well as crowd controlling abilities. This item is pretty straitforward.
140AP. The passive increases all AP by 30%. That's a ****ing lot.
Again, see the Build A reasonings.
KEEP THE HAUNTING GUISE.
At late game, everyone has on average between 40 and 60 magic resistance before stacking any more on. Lets say they have 55+ Mercury Treads for a total of 80 for worst possible case scenario on a squishy.
With the Guise:
minus 15% from mastery = 68, then minus 68.55 from runes, guise, boots, and scepter. Zero. You're dealing TRUE DAMAGE.
Without the guise:
minus 15% from mastery = 68, minus 48.55 from runes, scepter, and boots. 19.45. In game, thats equivalent to almost 20% magic damage reduction.
No matter what AP item you get to replace it, except maybe a Void Staff, in which case it would depend on the enemy's Magic resist value at that point, is going to give you a 20% damage increase. Sorry.
End result? Guise= Worth it.
REGARDLESS of what the enemy team is stacking, keeping your MR at a maximum is a must. If they are stacking MR, you need it to make sure you can cut through them. If they aren't, you want to do as much damage as you can to shut them down first.
Just make sure to pay attention to the enemy MR and decide whether or not you need this. If you have doubts, get it. It can always be sold later if you have to. This is an amazing early game item, but may lose its effectiveness after you have your Abyssal Scepter. Its a judgement call.
ALTERNATIVE to the Haunting Guise
Since you keep hating on the Haunting Guise, Ive made an alternative. The Void Staff won't necessarily always give you the same result, which is why I prefer the guise, but it is the only viable alternative. It provides more AP, but sacrifices 200HP, which isn't that big of a deal really, but facts are facts.
If you're facing heavy MR tanks, you will need the Void Staff. If they get too high, you may need to keep both the Void Staff and the Haunting Guise to cut deep enough to be able to shut down the tank. Remember, if none of your team can take out a tank, then its over. They'll proceed to go through your turrets just because they can.
You wont ALWAYS need a third MPen item, but it will never hurt you to have one in case the enemy picks up some MR. Keep an eye on your enemy's stats. Although at level 18 natural MR can get as high as 80, it likely won't go much higher than 50. At this point, you'd want to get rid of the Haunting Guise AFTER the rest of your build is completed.
Good replacement items include
For an extra punch
your Mace of Spades will hit like a truck and better survivability
Rylai's Scepter bit of CC
for extra AP armor and a nice active
Great regen! Good MR!
HP and AoE to stack with Creeping Death for insane AoE.
for Armor & AoE
. Armor, AP and nice active
CC, a bit of AD for Mace of Spades and a TON of HP
Amazing Situational Items
There are a few situational items that just blow my mind as to why I never used them before. They are well worth mentioning here in its own special section.
The Quicksilver Sash
The good ol Cleanse, only it doesn't take away from your Summoner spell slots. If you brought Cleanse out of noticing you had a lot of CC on the enemy team (ranked) it may be worth picking up for double the cleansing. Atop everything, a nice 54Mresist to shut down Mpen stackers on the way.
I used to never think this was worth getting, and was a waste of time in the way of Mercury Treads], which to an extent it is. [[Mercury Treads are cheaper, but lack the same mresist and cleansing ability, plus you need Mpen or CDR boots way more. This allows you to cleanse ANYTHING, from Ignite to Light Bind to Children of the Grave and more. Definitely worth the 1500 gold.
This item needs no explanation. HP, Magic Resist, and most importantly blocks one enemy ability every 45 seconds. This item is a real pain in the *** for the enemy. Although you'd think "Oh it only blocks one, they'll still focus me down fast..." that's not the case. They see it and they think "I'll let someone else pop it, I don't want to waste my mana/hp/energy or whatever to pop it." They will purposely avoid you until it is popped because no one wants to make the first hit. Champions that heavily rely on stun or bind, like Lux or Morgana will QQ if they see that you have this up, but its better to have a Quicksilver Sash in my opinion, especially if you can take the hit (which Mordekaiser often can), because it makes them waste it and your team can just unleash on them. For squishies however, you definitely want to have Banshee's Veil for the intimidation factor.
Not as situational, but will piss people off. People will see the aura of the Guardian Angel and immediately look somewhere else to not bother with you, because you're not worth it. This is great for making you not the focus, for champs like Vladimir who are hammered from the very start. If you are focused, unless help arrives during the rebirth, chances are you're dead anyways unless you were in a 1v1 and the enemy made it out with a trickle of health, and just wanted to waste your angel, in which case they succeeded most likely. I like to get it on Morde if the game is running long, just to piss them off. Rebirth, Siphon of Destruction to build shield up, and get away / finish the job. Once its on CD however, I often resell it. Bad habit most likely. This is better for allies with a taunt, like Shen or Rammus.
An overlooked item, but not bad at all. It works similarly to Blitzcrank's mana shield. Drop below 30%, get a 300 damage overshield. This item isn't expensive, but I'd see it losing its effectiveness late game. Could potentially save your life though, that 300 points worth of shield could be the split second you need to get your Iron Man shield up. the extra AD for your Mace of Spades and MR to boot doesn't hurt for its measly 1800 gold either.
Doubling your already doubled damage from a standalone hit of Mace of Spades? I think yes. I would NOT however, grab this if you have a lot of trouble closing distance between you and your target. It does require you to get a melee hit in, so be wary on that. 80AP, 30MR, and 7% speed boost to go along with it also helps.
Shurelya's Reverie Sherelya's Reverie
Another underused item. Basically works as a group charge. GREAT for initiating and escaping group fights, or assisting others to escape with low HP. Also useful just to simply chase, like Ghost. 330HP, 30hp5, the mp5 doesnt help, but the extra 15% CDR will for sure. I'd take this if you were playing a tanky/support Morde.
Wanna **** up Tryndamere or Master Yi's day? This item is how to do it. Some champions like Master Yi rely on hitting fast, rather than hitting hard. Well, they are also often squisher than the rest of us. When 30% of their damage is being recoiled as magic damage (which is modified by your mpen might I add) back at them, along with the damage you're doing already, they will go down quickly. Add Creeping Death and a Sunfire Cape into the mix, you're basically like the Lich King with the Remorseless Winter aura around him.
GREAT Item for just about any champion. Combines the effect of Lich Bane and the slowing of Phage to give a really nice item. Downside? It's the most expensive item in the game, and the 250mana it gives is useless to you. But, this also does stack with Lich Bane so if you want your Mace of Spades to really shine, you know what to do.
Although we use a LOT of Mpen in this guide, sometimes it just doesn't cut it.. Especially against stackers like Galio. You may need to get this just to make a dent in them. Someone on your team has to do it right?
Great defense mechanism, as it slows those who attack you. Upgrading do a Randuin's Omen isn't a bad idea for extra armor also. the armor and HP5 is also nice. Best of all, at 1350, its cheap.
GREAT item. 30AD, 15% crit, 15%CDR, and 20APen. But what really tops it off is its ACTIVE. 20% speed boost, 50% attack speed boost, for 4 seconds, and attacking with melee attacks can up that to a 8 seconds. Its only got a 60 second cooldown, so its invaluable for chasing when you really can't catch up. Kinda has a random cost value though, at 2687. Dunno what that's about. Bit expensive, but has good stats for a melee-kaiser or a hybrid who needs a distance closer.
100 AP, 50 armor, and an active for 2 seconds of being invulnerable, and untargetable. Downside? you cant move. But, its useful for soaking up ults, like Hemoplague, Cannon Barrage, Finales Funkeln, and above all, Karthus's cheap *** Requiem. MUST have against Karthus, unless you're a bamf like Vladimir and has one built in.
In 3v3's, Morde should always go top. No questions asked.
5v5's however, he has a choice. Lane top/bot with a buddy, or you can actually lane mid. This part will comprise of what to do if in top or bot lanes.
Firstly, know who you're laning with. While Morde's basic attack is melee, he can be played effectively as a ranged character in terms of poking. People with stuns, such as Veigar, are extremely helpful in getting a Mace of Spades hit on, which will do devastating damage early game. However, Mordekaiser's two undisputed best laning partner is either Orianna or Zilian. Orianna has a shield with a short timer, and can do a lot of lane control with her ball. using Orianna's ball shield when your natural shield is down, you can literally be just about immortal. Zilian Should need no explaining. He gives Morde an extra life. Morde es neva die.
Morde is a champion that doesn't even flinch at chip damage. Many of the times, they'll go in to get a hit on you, and it will for the most part only damage your shield. Later, you can take Lux's Finale Funkeln as a direct hit and not even flinch.
Do NOT be afraid to OC, ESPECIALLY if you're Guardian's Angel is up. As long as you have a decent amount of shield up, you can take a few hits of a turret before taking damage. If there is minions in it, shield up before charging, and you'll be getting shield back while your taking turret hits. Morde is easily one of the best OCers and best pushers in the game.
Most champions that lane mid are ranged, but Mordekaiser is a good champion to lane mid also. Why? Because mid is all about chip damaging the other player, which as stated in the section above, Morde almost never takes. Just as well, the faster Morde levels up, the higher his max shield capacity is, which makes him even more indestructible. Getting to level 6 to secure your early game kill with Children of the Grave is very important.
If for any reason your mid lane opponent goes MIA or recalls, make sure your team knows and is ready to call MIA while you push the turret. You should have the first mid turret down by about level 10 s Morde. Hes very very good at it.
If you're going to recall, do it once you've killed or made your mid opponent recall. If you must recall, get someone on top or bot to come and cover for you. Mid tower are very important to keep if at all possible.
All of your skills are AoE except Children of the Grave. Use your ult on a low HP enemy, to gain an ally on your side to really get an advantage. Keep your shield up whenever possible, creeping death at all availabilities, and if someone gets alone, [[Mace of Spades] them for tremendous damage.
You will likely get focused, but it won't matter. The more you're focused the more Creeping Death will recharge your shield. The more grouped up they are the more you can get back with Siphon of Destruction, and the more spread out they are the more you can use your Mace of Spades to its full potential, even though when it does splash it does a ton as it is.
"There's something utterly horrifying about a man who isn't afraid to charge blindly into an entire enemy team..." - G. PrinceBouton
Mordekaiser was my first love. Today, he's tied for first place still with Vladimir. Morde is the most unkillable champion in the game in my opinion, but does require some skill to use. I've made this build after a lot of research, and will continue to update it as time goes by, and probably add new builds to it along the way.
And I apologize, I don't have a boasting picture because during the testing of everything I swapped between Vlad and Morde a lot. I'll get one soon promise.
8/28/11: Build officially launched.
8/28/11: Fixed a mistake where I had Greater Seal of Ability Powers where Greater Glyph of Ability Power should have been. Thanks for the catch, Eruner!
8/29/11: Continual complaining and lack of common sense has created the addition of the "Keep the Haunting Guise" section and the "Alternative to the Haunting Guise" section.
8/29/11: Added the "Enemy Item Awaredness" section to help scrubs who think deviating from a build is a bad idea.
8/31/11: added "Changes" section, along with heavy revision of the "Alternatives to the Haunting Guise" section. Also added alternatives to runes, boots, and a few other things. Added a section on Pots & Elixirs, the Mace of Spades, and Situational Items. End story: Big update.