Warwick Build Guide by nimbuslift
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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.
Hi everybody NimbusLift here and I want to bring a new element to my favorite champion, Warwick. Most Warwick's I see play him as a one-dimensional tank initiator whose only real skill is pressing R. I think playing him as pure tank is a waste of his most valuable attributes, particularly his attack speed and movespeed buffs. Since he is melee and has no dash escapes like Lee Sin or Riven I feel like the best option is to utilize his massive movespeed potential while building him up with armor and health in case of trouble. Anyway, this guide is for those who want to play Warwick like I believe he is meant to be played as a terrifying dps jungle presence.
Greater Mark of Attack Damage
Greater Seal of Armor
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage
Greater Quintessence of Life Steal
I take damage runes, armor seals, magic resist glyphs, one damage quintessence and two lifesteal quintessences. These allow you to jungle effectively without taking too much damage, and keep you viable against ap champions early and mid game. I am experimenting dropping the lifesteal quints in favor of damage quints, but so far the extra lifesteal adds a nice element to Warwick's sustainability.
Taking the basic ad points in the offense tree plus Double-Edged Sword since with your movespeed you shouldn't be taking more autoattacks than you're dealing. In Defense I take the obvious jungle masteries, hp regen, health and armor. Make sure to take both Swiftness and Legendary Guardian as these, combined with Boots of Swiftness and Spirit of the Ancient Golem make you very difficult to lock down. I also take Runic Blessing to allow me to take blue with no leash and no potions.
| Eternal Thirst: Each of Warwick's autoattacks deal 3 / 3.5 / 4 / 4.5 / 5 / 5.5 / 6 / 6.5 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10 / 11 / 12 / 13 / 14 / 15 / 16 (2.5 + 0.5 / 1 at each level) additional magic damage and heal him for the same amount. Each successive attack against the same target will stack this amount of healing and damage up to a maximum of 3 stacks. The stacks remain for 4 seconds.
This passive is immensely powerful. With it, Warwick can jungle without losing health, meaning he can gank with full health every time and is never really forced to go to base before he is ready. This also makes him a formidable dualist when combined with Hunters Call and is a nice little sustained hybrid damage option.
| Hungering Strike: Active: Warwick swipes at a target enemy, dealing magic damage for the greater value between a flat minimum amount or a percentage of the target's maximum health, plus additional bonus damage based on his ability power. Hungering Strike can only deal the flat damage to minions and monsters.
Warwick heals himself for 80% of the damage dealt (after reductions).
Two things about this skill. First, it reaches maximum potential between levels 5 and 7, when it works like a small magic nuke against enemies. It's total power begins to fall off once enemies start stacking magic resist, but never falls off against squishier champions. Second, it costs a fair bit of mana, so when jungling use with discretion. Running out of mana during a gank is not only embarrassing, but can bait your own team to doom.
|Max Magic Damage To Champions: 8 / 10 / 12 / 14 / 16% of target's maximum health (+ 100% AP)
Flat Minimum Damage: 75 / 125 / 175 / 225 / 275 (+ 100% AP)
| Hunters Call: Active: For 10 seconds, Warwick increases his attack speed and increases the attack speeds of all allies within range by half as much.
Although I think Warwick would not be complete without his full ability set this is arguably his most powerful asset. Even at level one it grants 40% attack speed, meaning you can take the large wolf down during the 10 seconds Hunters Call is active. Mid game, once you start finishing items, this skill becomes a must have skill for teamfights, as it's relatively docile animation turns into a deadly surprise for the enemy. Your team gets half the bonus; think late game Vayne with an extra 40% attack speed. Mmm.
|Attack speed: 40 / 50 / 60 / 70 / 80%
Ally Attack Speed: 20 / 25 / 30 / 35 / 40%
| Blood Scent: Toggle: Warwick reveals enemy champions within range with less than 50% health. While any enemies are revealed this way, Warwick has increased movement speed.
Simple enough: Warwick gains immense movespeed when in the area of low health enemies. While it's low early game range makes it tempting to level first, it is not as valuable as either of his other skills. It can be a late-game game-changer. I have caught many a foe who is recalling after spotting them with Blood Scent, sprinting over and landing Hungering Strike followed by a quick Trinity Force proc. Also, remember that this is a toggleable skill. When ganking a low health enemy turn it off until they can see you and you will find much greater success.
|Movement speed: 20 / 25 / 30 / 35 / 40%|
| Infinite Duress: Active: Warwick blinks to the front of an enemy champion and channels for 1.5 seconds, suppressing the target for 1.8 seconds and dealing magic damage 5 times in 1/3-second intervals. Warwick gains 30% life steal for the duration. Each damaging strike applies on-hit effects, life steal, and maximum stacks of Eternal Thirst.
This is a difficult ultimate to describe. You suppress a single enemy champion for just shy of two full seconds and deal a fair bit of damage. Use this against an enemy adc right after they begin their assault or against an enemy apc to interrupt a combo. While some (rare) occasions dictate otherwise, make sure the enemy team is unable to interrupt you during your channel so as to deal maximum damage.
|Magic damage per hit: 50 / 67 / 84 (+ 40% bonus AD)
Total damage: 250 / 335 / 420 (+ 200% bonus AD)
Probably Warwick's only realy combo, seeing how his other two abilities are neither cc nor damage. However I think it is particularly crucial to land a Hungering Strike before casting Infinite Duress whenever possible. I suggest waiting on Infinite Duress until you really need it to secure a kill, but when it comes to ganks, always try to use this combo for maximum damage.
Other Skill Tips
- When ganking or joining teamfights, make sure your teammates are in range of Hunters Call before casting it.
- Once your mana pool reaches sustainable levels later on, don't be afraid of spamming Hungering Strike. Alternatively, save Hunters Call for when a fight breaks out. You will want it for it's maximum duration.
- If you are forcing Infinite Duress chances are you are misusing it and not helping your team. If it is continuously being interrupted, try fighting first without it, then using it once you separate their carries from their tanks.
His skilling order is relatively simple. Take one point in each skill first so you can feel free to gank with full power at level three. Next work on maxing you Hungering Strike, as this will be the source of much of your early game damage. Priority number two is Hunters Call, as this will eventually become your main source of damage mid to late game. Finally, take Blood Scent later in the game so that it's bonuses stack more effectively with Boots of Swiftness, Spirit of the Ancient Golem(tenacity), and Trinity Force. As always, take Infinite Duress at levels 6, 11, and 16.
|The most important starting item on Warwick as it makes him clear the jungle much faster and buy Spirit Stone sooner.|
|These are an excellent purchase for one of the only if not the only champion who can jungle potionless. I recommend placing on in tribrush around 1:40 to stop any level 2 or 3 ganks from the enemy jungle coming out of red.|
|This item is most beneficial for the 8% health and 4% mana you get back by damaging monsters. This effect does not work on lane minions, so even though by late game you can push effectively, be wary of staying in lane with low hp for too long.|
|Warwick needs to have a large health pool in order to withstand magic damage without a ton of magic resist. Also, out of the three items that build into Trinity, Phage is definitely the most effective on Warwick. With red buff and phage it becomes very difficult for enemies to disengage you.|
|Boots of Swiftness give 25% reduction against slows and, unlike Boots of Mobility, always give you maximum speed. These attributes stack well with Warwick's chase potential, and make it much more difficult for supports to keep you off their adcs.|
|Of the three Spirit items, this one works best on WW. An argument can be made for Spirit of the Elder Lizard, but I find the tankiness much more appealing than the dismissable burn damage. Remember to use your conservation stacks whenever possible. Killing ten large monsters means an extra 400 gold. Worth it!|
|Here is where we take a new path on jungle Warwick. He synergizes well with most every aspect. He is a mana hungry champion, so the extra mana can be useful in a pinch. The health is good for his tankiness, the damage for his ultimate (and because of Hunters Call), the AP stacks 1:1 on his Q, and the attack speed makes him even more threatening. The critical strike is also really cool, especially when building into Atma's Impaler.|
|I rarely see this item because very rarely is it viable. However in this build we are set to maximize it's very deadly potential. We already have 10% crit from Trinity Force; Atma's Impaler gives us 15% for a total of 25%. Both our previous items grant bonus health, which Atma's Impaler uses liberally. Finally we have one of the strongest AS buffs in the game in Hunters Call, maximizing output on your crit chance. We also need armor at this point, which Atmas provides for us.|
|If their team is heavy ad, take this item fifth. It's health stacks up your Atma's damage output, the aoe slow can secure a near kill and the passive slows will keep Vayne off your back.|
|If their team is heavy ap, by this I mean two or more ap nukes, take this item. It synergizes just as well as Randuin's Omen on Warwick, and although I think he doesn't usually need that much MR given how much health he has, the cdr and bonus healing effects are phenomenal. Opponents begin to feel frustrated when they are getting suppressed every 60 seconds.|
|This is one late game item I highly recommend on Warwick. His attack speed at this point should be solidly above 2.0 when Hunters Call is activated, making the percent damage devastating for opposing tanks. As Warwick you won't general be targeting their high tank targets, but once those squishies have been taken care of this will help you finish the job. The lifesteal is nice too.|
|If the enemy is stacking armor rather than health. Against low damage output, high tank teams, you may decide to take both Blade of the Ruined King and Last Whisper. Generally speaking you won't be taking both, but sometimes the game calls for it.|
|If their team has a disable that is constantly bothering you, or if your team needs a faster initiation, this can keep them from interrupting your ultimate.|
Flash is the trademark summoner spell for every lane, every time. A select few champions benefit from swapping flash for Ghost or Teleport, such as top lane Warwick. However, in the jungle you want flash to stay safe while making enemies afraid of the double blink. Try to save this unless you really need it. But if you do need it don't hesitate to use it.
The only jungler I would ever suggest going without smite would be Nunu. Even then I usually take it because it is ranged true damage for securing the most important objectives to you. Warwick loves his blue and red buffs, and I can guarantee if you go without smite and start losing objectives you will start losing the game.
Creeping / Jungling
Warwick is the original jungle boss, and through all the buffs and nerfs he has seen in my opinion he still reigns supreme. Many think he is only a post 6 ganker, but this is false. He does however require the lizard buff to be effective pre-6. With that in mind, lets look at his jungle route.
1. I take blue, wolves, then red. This route gives you level three with a fresh lizard buff, meaning you can either gank immediately if any nearby lane is being pushed. Also, keep an eye out for lanes that your team are pushing, as those are susceptible to enemy ganks and it is your job as jungler to provide effective counter-ganks. Taking this route usually means your blue will respawn ~7 min and your red ~8:10, so keep that in mind when preparing your first buy. It takes ~25 seconds to get from base to blue w/o boots, but if you are off by a bit don't worry, you can always take wolves/wight while you wait.
2. You should hit level 6 either just before or right after you take blue for the second time. From now on if your mid laner requests blue, let them have it, as your spirit stone will provide you with plenty of mana. Now that you are level 6, you have two options. Either you can go gank immediately or repeat your original jungle route. Keep in mind that although ganking is a huge ie. massive ie. quintessential part of playing jungle, lanes are not always ripe for it. If your lanes are pushing to enemy towers, showing your location without any exp/gold to show for it gives your opponent an advantage. If no ganks are immediately available, grab red, then return to the ganking mindset.
3. Now you are level 6+ with both buffs. You can afford to hang around and camp a lane for a bit to help your teammates. I generally prefer to camp bot because of the opportunity for dragon should you successfully kill the enemy bot laners. However do not hesitate to camp other lanes if your laner so requires your assistance. If you see an opportunity, ping for it in advance, and try and save your ult until you need it to secure a kill. Using it immediately is great for the surprise factor, but a quick flash away and you are back to sitting on cds.
REMEMBER YOUR TIMERS! Blue, red, dragon, remember their timers. Enemy flash cds and ward expirations are crucial. Watch for enemy ward placements, and try not to use your trinket unless you are sure you will uncover an enemy ward. If your trinket is on cd, find alternative routes to engage the enemy or wait til it expires so as to remain undetected. Taking a longer route may seem risky, but if your teammates play it safe your invisibility will pay off in the end.
- Warwick is an excellent tower defender. His sustain makes him very difficult to poke down, and any attempted dives will have to cope with both his continued sustain and his ultimate suppression. A well timed R on a diving Trist can quickly turn the tide of battle.
- It is very difficult for an enemy team to peel a Warwick off their carries. At worst this means you get focused while your carries annihilate the enemy team; at best their tanks ignore you and you destroy their back line.
- The Warwick ulti. Feared and misused, Warwicks ultimate should always result in disorder for the enemy team. I think it is one of the more intangible ults and that each player must get a feel for when they should use it in a teamfight. That being said, it's damage potential when combined with Q and trinity's proc should always result in someone being below half health, the point at which WW enters kill mode with the highest sustained movespeed in the game.
- Contrary to popular belief, Warwick is not your teams primary initiator. While a full tank Warwick can be useful for this purpose, it leaves him a dog scratching enemies rather than taking bites. I recommend using him as a secondary initiator, and leaving the hard initiations to someone with correspondingly hard cc.
- Being alone. Warwick needs his team. While he can duel just about anybody, in teamfights if he is caught out alone he will not have a good time. This goes for almost anyone, but especially WW. Even though we can take care of his ms mobility problems, he still has no dash, and with his blink ultimate we can still find ourselves in a bad place in a hurry.
I would like to thank your for taking the time reading through my long-winded explanations and suggestions. Regardless of your exact reaction I encourage you to give this playstyle a try. Warwick is a unique timing champion, not always flashy, but definitely effective.
Feel free to leave comments!