Build Guide by Alahric

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Alahric

Mordekaiser - The Flaming Pwnage

Alahric Last updated on December 25, 2010
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 9

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 0

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 21

Guide for Mordekaiser - The Master of Metal
Please comment and try the build and strategies before voting. Thank you.

Table of Contents (CTRL+F)

I. Preface
II. Introduction
III. Main Summoner Spells
- Considerable Summoner Spells
IV. Core Item Build
- Situational Items
V. Skill & Rune Explanations
VI. Laning & Play Style
- Early Game Phase
- Mid Game Phase
- Late Game Phase
VII. Closing
- In-Depth Analysis

I. Preface

This guide will cover up the ordeal of Mordekaiser being forced to tank. While instead of being a meat-shield for your team, I want you to be a little more useful. In order for them to focus you, we need you to draw some attention to yourself. In other-words; threaten them. If you want to contribute with Mordekaiser, this guide is suited for you.

Abbreviated Terms
AA = Auto-attack (Basic Attacks)
FB = First Blood
AP = Ability Power
AD = Attack Damage
MD = Magic Damage
AS = Attack Speed
MS = Movement Speed
LS = Life Steal
SV = Spell Vamp
MP = Magic Penetration
ArP = Armor Penetration
DPS = Damage per second
CDR = Cooldown Reduction
Crit = Critical hit
MR = Magic Resistance
HP = Health / Hitpoints
HP Regen = Health Regeneration per 5 seconds

II. Introduction

Mordekaiser is able to get fed by simply using Siphon of Destruction + Creeping Death, and walking around the minions. You will also contribute in teamfights with your AoE-DoT stacking and you'll have a ton of survivability combined with Iron man. You are supposed to initiate, soak up some damage while doing some massive AoE yourself. However, you have to remember that you are not really a tank! Mordekaiser is unable to save his allies, which means that hes actually just a Semi Tank like Mundo. Making him only viable when your team has a full composition, remember, don't go with a team full of squishes.

1. Able to flirt with death
2. Amazing Farming Potential
3. Excellent Semi-Tank, AoE dmg

1. Unable to save his allies
2. No natural Crowd Control
3. Constant QQ'ing for being OP

III. Main Summoner Spells

Ignite: For once go ahead get it, I see a lot of people get ignite for no reason at all. I guess it's because they want to get kills, I mean a Soraka with Ignite? You however, need it for bursting potential to finish off people with your Ultimate. Also, there is nothing worse than seeing your target get healed after Children of the Grave.

Ghost: I think this is a hell of a lot better than flash now, especially on a more tanky character like Mordekaiser. Most of the time you're going to use it to flee which will decrease the amounts of deaths you get, otherwise it's good for rushing people with the Ignite + CotG combo.

Considerable Summoner Spells

Exhaust: This will help you gank, and possibly get first blood. Instead of being used to disable another enemy champion, you often just want to slow and the penetration given by the cripple mastery. In that case it is sort of wasted, but it does allow you to reach those kiters.

Flash: This used to be one of my favorite spells when Mordekaiser got released, it allowed one to instantly rush their opponents to use Ignite + CotG. This still works, but you'd be better off with Ghost with the range nerfs. Other than that it can be used to get over cliffs, trees, and bug abuse.

Cleanse: Whenever you are CC'ed by snares and stuns, you will often have difficulties trying to charge up Iron Man. That's why we have a few people considering Cleanse, but with the nerfs it less viable in terms of actually saving your life. Not to mention the cooldown penalties that never seemed to stop.

Heal: If the player has a between summoner level of 1-5 I would consider Heal if the user is new to League of Legends, otherwise it's a bit overkill. I mean you will have around 3000 health anyway. At level 18 this spell will heal around 500 Hp, you do the math.

Fortify: In solo-queue this spell is more of less useless, who cares about the turrets? While in pre-mades, you will see that you are not fit to carry this one out. For one; you do not have any CC, and second of all; you are very dependent on your summoner spells.

Teleport: Helping you out in 1v2 or mid, this one can be beneficial if you want to go quickly get back to your lane and still have a turret. I recommend this for the first time solo-lane Mordekaiser, keep in mind you can only do this if you have a Jungler so you will know when to take it. When you have more experience, get Ignite + Ghost.

IV. Core Item Build
Sight Ward

These are the primary items I get, starting with Doran's Shield and a simple Health potion for a good start. Our main focus in this item build are the Sunfire Cape, and the whole idea is to deal an insane amount of DPS in AoE combined with Creeping Death. And so, to enhance this power you will need Magic Penetration, why? Because this is the most beneficial stat for your abilities and even your Sunfire Capes. This makes Sorcerer's Shoes and Abyssal Scepter exceptional.

Doran's Shield: I recommend this item if you are new to Mordekaiser, having trouble staying alive, having a bad day, or just like to start with Doran's Shield cause you're Pro. Now I see a lot of high ELO players using it for some odd reason, but I guess that's only to get the best start as possible, I've used it myself and I think it's not a bad choice comparing it to runes and such.

Regrowth Pendant: This is by far my favorite starting item, Doran's Shield is slightly better in some cases. But in the long run you'll benefit more from this item than all the Health Potions. If you get harassed beyond Iron man you can try to stay out of harms way by avoiding using your spells and just stay within experience range, this will get you back in the game.

Health Potion: I recommend getting at least 1 of these after you got Boots of Speed, they will ensure that you can stay in the lane long enough for you to purchase your very first Sunfire Cape. They will become useless once you got a lot of Health, so you should only use them if you got under 1200 Hp.

Sorcerer's Shoes: Well It appears that your AoE-DoT stacking will get more damage from Magic Penetration, that's why I also added Insight Marks in the rune build. You should get them if you want to do more damage, and have no problem with CC.

Sunfire Cape: The Key item in this build, once you got 2x Sunfire Cape early on, and level 5 Creeping Death you will know the extreme farming potential of Mordekaiser. This will allow you to purchase an even greater item build late-game, but adding three Sunfire Capes is a bit overkill imo.

Force of Nature: Since I lack of health regeneration, magic resist, and by the fact that a little movespeed is always good on Mordekaiser. I find this Item to be just perfect once you got 3000HP. This will allow you to do whatever you want and you'll never have to return to your base because of the lack of health.

Rylai's Crystal Scepter: Personally I've never liked this on Mordekaiser, but it could help you improve your main damage output while adding a bit survivability. With the patches this item is now exceptional, you will find the AoE slows to be a lot more potent than single target. If you miss that, then you can always get Lizard Buffs.

Abyssal Scepter: Just like is to Taric, Abyssal Scepter will help you pwn nabs with ease. This should be taken as your magic resist item if you are having no challenge what-so-ever to boost your damage, remember it's the magic penetration we want, but by all means, try it in more serious games and see how it works out for you.

Situational Items

Mercury's Treads: If you fight someone with a huge stun that might just ruin your day, I'd go for these instead of Sorcerer's Shoes. You know those stuns that just **** up everything, Ashe's Arrow, Morgana's Dark Binding, Annie's Tibbers, etc.

Frozen Mallet: If you just can't seem to win the game, this item will fix that. All you have to do is get a ranged pet and can easily Ace the other team. This also allows you to keep another champion locked to you, which means that you can use Sunfire Cape + Creeping Death to it's full effect.

Randuin's Omen: Since this is more of a teamplaying Mordekaiser I think Frozen Mallet and Rylai's Scepter is a bit overrated, this is my CC item of choice. I mean your team should be able do enough CC for you to work so there's no hurry in you getting this, but for the love of god: Don't forget to use it!

Aegis of the Legion: If you want to contribute to your team you can always get Aegis of the Legion as your Magic Resist item, unless someone else already got one. As one of the cheap items you can get more regularly I think this one should be taken most of the time unless you don't feel like dying, it's cheap and it protects your squishes, what more can you ask for?

Thornmail: If your opponents are all auto-attack ftw, or just got one annoying Twitch, you should get this while initiating. Trust me, when someone has feeded the entire match they can turn the tables if they get one of your squishes and starts to get fed. Once that happens it's GG if your team sucks, little to nothing you can do with Madred's Bloodrazor and Last Whisper.

Warmog's Armor: The infamous Warmog's Armor, I see some Mordekaiser's focusing on this item asap. It makes me sad really, it's my legacy after-all. If the Mordekaiser is doing 2v2 this will fail until the very late-game. Otherwise it can be devastating for the 1v2 Morde, but then it's better to use Sunfire Capes.

Trinity Force: I considered this item more viable than Frozen Mallet for two reasons, it used to make your Q hit like a truck and it will boost your movement speed significantly. Since it scales with base AD you don't need to worry about not using it to its full potential, the only thing that is wasted on this item is the mana from Sapphire Crystal.
EDIT: Q no longer scale with all damage on singel proc, only bonus, making Trinity less viable

Guardian Angel: If you are able to purchase this item it's all over for your opponents if your team can deal the DPS and are able to stay alive with some support. As a late-game item I have to say that this is absolutely necessary if you want to win the game. It can be annoying when everyone runs around with this item but you just have to deal with it.

Hextech Gunblade: This mostly just works like exhaust which is used to severely slow a target, while dealing somewhat a moderate amount of damage for bursting potential. This is a luxury item that only helps you focus down fleeing targets, however there is one particular component of the Gunblade, Spell Vampirism: makes all your spells free.

V. Skill & Rune Explanations

Iron Man: One of the greater passives in the game, built into character and even has it's own bar. They don't do enough of this, do they? Anyway, we'll count ourselves lucky with the single most in-genius survival mechanic. This will keep you out of harms way during the laning phase, and this is why you can survive longer than most champions.

Mace of Spades: Simply making your next auto-attack spread to three other targets with some bonus damage, if it's single target the bonus damage will amplify by 80%. It used to be a lot more potent in terms of focusing Mordekaiser on this ability, but with the patches that's no longer viable. Hey, look at the bright side we do get more bonus damage.

Creeping Death: The most underestimated skills of all time, I'm sure most of you who look at this guide will ignore my request. Don't, just level this up instead of Mace of Spades, it will add up to the Sunfire Capes. It has three uses, the first one being farming. Second one is AoE damage, while the third is boosting armor and magic resist.

Siphon of Destruction: My favorite ability in the game! Hands down, this is why we love Mordekaiser! It has suffered some early-game nerfs, dealing only 50 damage, but later on you will find that filling up your iron man in one blow is very useful. Just make sure you hit more targets at once, that's the key to mastering Mordekaiser.

Children of the Grave: With a few tweaks it actually got better to use at the start of the fight, all this skills requires is your very judgment. Who do you want to focus? or who should you focus? Combined with Ignite, it has a tendency of instantly taking one member of the enemy team down in a few seconds. The squishier the better, which is why I prefer ranged DPS.

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration: Magic Penetration, the very essence of enhancing Mordekaiser's abilities. You do know he is all magic damage, right? If not then you have briefly been mis-informed. It even enhances the DPS of your Sunfire Capes, or rather purifies it. Any Mordekaiser who doesn't get these, simply can't afford them.

Greater Seal of Evasion: In other-words, Dodge. It's probably one of the most questionable, yet it bears a simple logic. Out of all the health enhancing runes, I consider one dodge to be more beneficial than all of them. Who cares if you get 160Hp at level 18? Besides, it adds up to Iron Man, not your precious health.

Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist: Magic Resist is scarce, I do know we get Force of Nature and even Abyssal Scepter, but early-on it's almost a living hell to face magic orientated match-ups. Why not Warding Glyphs then? Well even though it would be a little more beneficial early-game, it does get surpassed at level 6 by Shielding.

Greater Quintessence of Health: Pure Health runes, or often refereed to as the best quintessences in the game. Let me put it this way, any Champion that has Health will benefit greatly from them early-game. Combined with Doran's Shield, it does get kind of intimidating. Otherwise there's always CDR and MS%, you decide.

V. Laning and Playstyle
Early Game:
The so called laning phase, now that pre-game is pretty much taken care as you know the reasoning and behind my Mordekaiser build. I guess adding my personal strategy, as well as a few tips, would be appropriate.
Just take something out of preference: 1v2 > Mid > Bot / Top.

Choosing your laning-partner:
Mordekaiser is a solo-champion, he only has one purpose in the game and that is to brutally kill his victims. I strongly suggest going mid, or by all means take on a solo-lane vs. 2! No objections, trust me when I say that there are no other champions more suited for the role. This is because Mordekaiser can lane against anyone, but you'll have a hard time around nasty combos such as Taric + Sivir, Janna + Ezreal, and especially double stunners like Pantheon + Amumu. When it comes to laning-partners it really doesn't matter, but I consider ranged DPS to help out a lot by giving you a kill or two. Also healers will allow you to go all in without thinking about recovery, but even so you should still be careful around turrets and avoid getting harassed beyond Iron man's limits. (Nidalee, Soraka, Sona, Taric, Tristana, Ashe, Ryze, etc.)

The Laning Phase:
Now that you are laning, all you need to do for the first 4~6 levels is to survive. Meanwhile you have to take your stand and harass, but don not drop in health! It's essential to not spam all your abilities as soon as the cooldowns are up, if you do then you will only hurt yourself. If you get severely harassed beyond Iron Mans limits you will get low, and if you're low will be put at great risk since all your spells are health funneled. Until then you have to wait for the creep wave to come to your tower and focus on last-hitting until you are sure you have gained lane-controll. In additional to not spamming you have to make sure to fill Iron Man to ward your precious health. Enemies will often test you, so be sure to keep Iron Man up with a Siphon of Destruction and Mace of Spades while staying behind your minions. This is the first step to mastering Mordekaiser, if you have to go back to your base early on you have failed. For starters; Siphon of Destruction should be used on as many minions as possible, while Mace of Spades will fill up the rest. Also don't underestimate Creeping death, if you cast it on yourself and stay in-between all the enemy minions you can actually deflect all the auto-attacks of an Ashe early game. Once you have gained control over Iron Man and your own health you can start getting control over the lane by simply using Siphon of Destruction to hit the ones you are laning against. The thumb rule here is "Fill up Iron Man -> then harass", most of the time I kill two birds with one rock. Once you reach level 6, or if you severely harassed one of them you should be able to land a kill with Ghost, then Siphon of Destruction and Ignite + CotG. This often requires you to tower rush, otherwise they are just being careless.

Mid Game:
I recommend recalling once you get around 1000 gold and buy Boots of Speed, Regrowth Pendant, 2x Health Potions and a Sight Ward as necessary. Or you could always just get Sorcerer's Shoes and a health potion, then buy Regrowth and start looking towards Force of Nature while picking up a Chain Vest. Later that will be used to get your first Sunfire cape, which is the whole point of the build! Once you got it you will be farming with ease, the rest is history. Just play safe for now though, but you should take advantage of every possible opportunity to get a kill.

Pushing and Ganking:
Until you've demolished the turret in your lane, you should stay there and farm. With a teammate you can pull this off easily, if it's solo-lane you need help from an enslaved enemy. Now there is a slight possibility that you will get ganked, meaning if you see too many people missing or a fed mid you should switch. This is why warding is very important when you are pushing behind enemy lines, this way you can avoid getting killed which is a huge setback! The thumb rule here is to trust your judgment, so you always have keep an eye on the map. If you want to gank yourself however, there are only two different ways for you to kill someone: 1) Harass or find a someone with low hp, then simply rush them with Ghost as you see fit and use Ignite + CotG. 2) Focus down a target in teamfights by doing AoE damage followed with Ignite / CotG, and then chase down the rest and kill them one-by-one! What? It's perfectly normal, they don't call him Mordekaiser for no reason.

Teamfights and Defending:
You have been sent to the Uriaspost of your team, you have to go in first and try to soak up as much damage as possible. Yes you're kinda like Jesus, and a sponge, you are the one who sacrifices himself for the greater good of your team. Thereby after you scourge your enemies with your hellish presence, rape every last one of them while making them QQ all over the chat. Most of the time you will find yourself being called "The Tank" so initiating and leading the team is a no-brainer, however this is not the correct term and quite overused since the title will always be given to the champion with the most survivability, but they aren't necessarily the best tanks. Keep in mind that a good tank stays with his team and makes sure that everyone attacks him instead of the others, in other words ensures that his squishes stays out of harms way with CC and such. However this is not your case, you only have one purpose and that is to kill, yes you live by the credo: Kill, or be killed! You have to become such a huge threat that people have an urge to attack you for your very presence, which means AoE focus and being first in-line. Seems like a plan, but even so you still need some CC on Mordekaiser, this can only be done by getting slowing items and a good team. In addition to this you become a target as in two for one by utilizing your pet which can only be obtained by focusing down a squishy ranged target on the other team. The only drawback is if your team feeds and you are the only one left, if this happens you are totally wasted. The only way you can succeed with this strategy is if you passively get fed by farming, and stay alive or successfully execute a 1v2 lane. The killing you do might give you a few extra items, but it won't let you pwn thus uber fed guys unless you focus them with CC and Ignite + CotG.

Late Game:
Now that the Inhibitor is down you should start taking down the other towers and finish of the game, but be careful and stay with your team at all times. Trust me; you do not want to get caught alone at this stage of the game, unless you are totally pwning them. Still I would have to say, your overconfidence will be your downfall most of the time. Remember that in teamfights you are the first-man in, force them to use their abilities then get your team to ambush them. Btw, don't forget to use your activate items if you have any!

Tips & Techniques
1. Make sure that Ignite + CotG combo will kill your target.
2. Harass with Mace of Spades by hitting a minion close to your target, followed by SoP.
3. Make sure to get a Lizard buff, easier to get a kill and your pet can not use the slow.
4. Don't forget to use CotG defensively while fleeing, this can sometimes save your life.
5. Do not spam your abilities early on; this will eventually get you low!
6. Keep in mind that enemy minions and creeps are ideal for your survival.
6. Teamwork is very important; you don't want to die in vain so make sure they back you up.
7. Your prisoner can not use the Mace of Spades charge, too bad with the patches ruining that.
8. When taking down a turret with a prisoner at your disposal you should use Creeping Death to boost its survivability.

Finishing the Game:
At this stage you should be level 18, while the other champions are around level 12-16. I recommend taking advantage of this while you got the chance, your primary objective is to get an inhibitor and thereby keeping them busy for both you and your team to push the other lanes. If this seems to be impossible you will need to crack a few skulls to get the omelet! If they are to hellbent on stopping you, then you will need to score an ace. Hey, don't feel bad, it's a lot more fun to do it this way. When it comes to the teamfights at this stage of the game you should be a little more careful, however you can still kill two birds with one rocks. If you got your ultimate ready you can easily score a double kill, and with a lizard buff or a slowing item you can go in a spree and potentially score a triple, quadra or even penta if you are lucky and if your team acknowledges you! If you manage to pull this off you should still respect your opponents and not get too cocky and **** your self-esteem all over the chat. Finally I want to say that you should not fuzz about K/D/A, I can assure you that it will always be in plus as long as you are a teamplayer and contribute.

VII. Closing

You've faced the wrath of my giant wall of text, well I doubt you read a single word but at least you made it through. I guarantee you; if you follow this build, know the basics of Mordekaiser, and especially get to have 1v2 or mid lane. You will succeed, even tested it on a perma noob who has never played Mordekaiser before (level 30). However, there will always be sacrifices, and there will almost always be deaths. It's all for one thing, victory, in the end that's all that truly matters.

Cleanse - No longer counters Ignite or Children of the Grave!
Black Shield - No longer blocks Ignite or Children of the Grave!
Spell Shield - Blocks any debuff like Ignite or Children of the Grave!
Banshee's Veil - Blocks any debuff like Ignite or Children of the Grave!
Enemy Minions - Don't fight without them, they are like food!

In-Depth Analysis: Heat 'n Serve 5 minute guide
PS: I just ****ing love this template, major props to SixSonatas