Olaf Build Guide by VayneOne
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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.
Greetings Summoners, and welcome to my laning guide for Olaf the Berserker! I bought Olaf about a week ago and I've been playing him non-stop. I find his playstyle to be quite....addictive...to say the least. Before buying this champion, as I always do, I decided to scrounge around and read everything I could to learn about him. What I found was comment after comment of people saying "Olaf falls off late game because his E doesn't scale with anything". I personally find this to be untrue. If anything, depending on early-mid as for any champion, Olaf can really shine in late game. His E may not scale, but think about it for a second...that's true damage. True damage means no armor reduction so it's is exactly as it says, pure damage. I could go on and on about this but I think I'll get to the guide.
As far as runes go, I have yet to really toy around with some combinations but this is my typical AD rune build. I run this for most of my AD champions, Olaf included, though I'm sure somewhere out there is most likely a better suited Olaf rune page. Lately I've been favoring Armor Penetration a lot, and I mean a LOT. With Tier 3 Armor Penetration runes and Tier 3 Armor Penetration Quints your early game damage can really hurt a lot. Combined Marks and Quints equal out to about 25 Armor Pen, which means close to no armor reduction or even no armor or possibly negative armor reduction to the typical un-runed or low-runed champion. For Seals I like to take all Armor. I do this because although not in the beginning but close to mid and up Olaf really needs health to do his damage. These armor seals will help keep you alive long enough to farm the gold to buy those health pieces. Glyphs of course, for more survivability in case you lane against an AP champion, I choose Magic Resist. According to the guide it says that I prefer MR/per level but this is actually untrue. When making this guide I was unable to choose the Glyphs of Warding so instead applied glyphs of shielding just as a reference. Some people may find the per-level runes more fitting and that's fine also. As stated above, quints are Armor Penetration as well.
When making mastery pages for certain champions I tend to find a guideline via someone elses guide just to give me an example. What I did with this mastery setup is no different. When I first played Olaf I used a pre-made guide from good ol' Mobafire. To be precise, I used this guide: http://www.mobafire.com/league-of-legends/build/the-way-of-the-trinity-force-atmogs-114755
As far as the masteries go, I did however stick to this guides build with only some minor changes. First I took the point from Summoner's Insight in the Utility section and put that point into Summoner's Wrath in the Offense section since I use Ignite. Other then that I removed the point from Runic Affinity and applied it to Improved Recall instead. 1 second may not be much but when your hiding in a bush with an enemy actively scouting you for that finishing blow, sometimes that 1 second is what counts.
I enjoyed the time I spent playing Olaf using the above stated guide in the mastery section, but I felt personally it was a bit to slow for me. After some many matches I decided to start running my own build without following something that I'd found. What I decided is after boots and pots for the initial game giving you the speed and health to chase as well as run/survive, was to buy Madreds razors to help with creep farming as well as grabbing some cheap and easy damage. After Madreds I buy my Tier 2 boots with which my MS becomes 415 with the added benefits from masteries. Tier 2 boots however are not the only option here. If I find I'm doing well enough without them I tend to grab Wriggles Lantern first then followed by boots. I enjoy having Wriggles for three good reasons. 1) You still have the creep damage from Madreds to help you farm quickly. 2) You now have added Life Steal. 3) And this is my favorite, the active of the lantern allows you to drop a free sight ward every 3 minutes for 3 minutes.
Next I find I like to build Phage. I do this because of two reasons. Reason One being the added damage. It's still early game at this point so the damage really helps. Reason Two being the slow proc helping you stick to your targets as they flee when your Q is on CD.
Now that Phage is done and you've successfully started to kill people without them escaping so much, it's time to start building health. First things first I grab a Giant's Belt. This item can be somewhat costly depending on how well/bad your doing but the large pool of health it offers is worth the wait. It provides you with more survivability as well as empowering your W some more. From there I grab the two other lesser items to create Warmog's. In order I buy the Ruby Crystal first allowing a larger health pool again then followed by the Regrowth Pendant giving more HP/5 during the time it takes to earn the 980 gold for the full on Warmog's.
So, now that the Warmog is complete and the health pool has substantially increased (even more so as you continue to clear creep waves) it's time to get back to building damage so you can keep up. From here I believe it's the obvious choice but I enjoy Atma's Impaler as much as the next guy with a large sum of health. This will drastically increase your AD allowing you to be either slightly ahead or about on par per average game in the likes of AD. When I build Atma's I build the Chain Vest first for that extra bit of defense, followed by the Cloak of Agility or the full on Impaler as crit chance isn't doing much for Olaf here.
By now mid game is most likely starting to transition into late game if it hasn't already. From here I buy yet another Giant's Belt grabbing all that extra AD from Atma's and leading to the Frozen Mallet. I use the Mallet for the added AD as well as the slow proc from Phage and the added bonus health. This item is exactly what Olaf needs all the way around.
After the Mallet if the game hasn't come to a "GG" yet I buy another Madred's Razors giving me slightly more AD. The next item purchased can be either the Pickaxe or the Recurve Bow depending on your taste, I take the axe of course for the damage and then from there I buy into the Bloodrazor. I do this because at this point in late game tanks and other bruisers are most likely to have large health pools just as I do. With this item I can do massive amounts of damage to not only the carries and squishies but the tanks as well. Mopping up was never so easy after a team fight in mid.
The skill sequence I tend to use with Olaf is pretty simple and is as follows.
First, I as should be done in my opinion, start with my Q to do damage as well as slow the enemy. From there I run in with E to do some brutal damage and possibly pick up my axe. If I manage to pick it up I throw it again otherwise I continue to melee until CD's recover. I know a lot of people may use R when running into a fight but I personally prefer to save this for team fights or when I'm trying to run/get away from a gank/death. If I feel like I want the extra damage and that I'm gonna need it I use W after the initial Q otherwise I save it also for when I start to take damage.
By saving W for when I start losing health I let my passive kick my Attack Speed into Overdrive allowing me to hit faster and harder when I do activate it as well as restoring my health at a faster pace thus evening the odds or diminishing them for the enemy.
Typically, this is what it looks like: Q, E, Q, Melee, E, W, Q, Melee, R (if needed at this point).
Ah, Summoner Spells, what legends are made of. I've seen so much controversy about which summoner spells should be used with Olaf. A lot of them pertaining to Ghost and Exhaust. I don't use either of them. Sorry, but I find them pretty well useless for my type of Olaf. Instead, I use Flash and Ignite, the typical for my Tanky/DPS builds.
So, why Flash and Ignite? Simple. Flash for those times when your ult is down. "But Ghost you can run faster without collision for longer!" Your right, that's very true. Think about it though, how often are you near a wall that you can Flash over? That's right, your there a LOT. In a typical situation I find I can almost ALWAYS survive long enough to Flash through a wall and guess what? That's right again, I live to fight another team fight without marring my record or feeding an enemy. On top of that, if my team makes it to the fight in time I can come back with some serious Attack Speed flaunting guns and assist my teammates and nuke some squishies in the face. Granted doing that usually nets a death, but hey 5 assists for 1 death is great in my book, or even 1 or 2 kills with 3 or 4 assists for 1 death. Sounds more then an equal trade to me.
Ignite on the other hand, well.....ignite is fairly simple. As I stated earlier in this guide Olaf can have trouble netting kills early game due to escapes. Well, Problem Solved! Burn those little ninja's and they'll rue the day they ever stayed in the fight as long as they did! Muahahahaha! BURN! *Fine Print* Who says Brand and Annie are the only ones that can have fun with fire :D
Pros / Cons
Yeah...most guides I see have the fancy shmancy pictures of abilities and what-nots in the middle of all this. Well, I'm lazy so this one doesn't.
Great DPS with a TON of Survivability.
Utility out the Yin-Yang.
Great against almost any enemy with True Damage.
Can Jungle with good speed as well as good ganks.
Madred's Bloodrazor Hurts...a Lot.
Sometimes hard to secure kills without Phage early game.
Focused hard in team fights.
Creeping / Jungling
Just to get this out of the way, there are tons of other Olaf guides that offer good Jungling routes/advice/strategies and builds. My build doesn't involve jungling though Olaf is quite good at it. The most I jungle is killing the jungle mid-late game for cash (Red/Blue not included, other members of the team need those derp).
Creeping, ah yes a fantastic art with Olaf. With my build I up the rank of my Q to max first. I do this because not only will it begin to do good damage but it's great for creep waves. Get a large wave in front of you and position yourself so you can throw your axe the minimum distance hitting the most creeps and you'll pick your axe right back up without having to chase it thus reducing your CD intensely so you can throw it again if need be. At rank 3 and above with your Madred's Razors you can basically one-shot the remaining creeps. Another strategy I like to employ is when a creep wave is just rolling in throw your Q right down the line and hit them all for some quick and easy clearing with minimal received damage.
Some of the other guides I've read talk about Olaf taking a lot of farm due to his expensive build items. Guess what. I don't buy Trinity Force so HA! I don't spend as much as you. Another thing some other guides have mentioned before is that Olaf can have a hard time farming. This as well is quite un-true. What I just stated with the creep strategies can clear entire waves even multiple built-up waves in no time flat.
Team work is pretty simple with Olaf as well. Heh, the more I talk about Olaf the more I realize he can be a pretty easy champion when you know what to do. As far as teamwork your Q is a great tool. Not only does it do damage but it slows the enemies down for yourself as well as your teammates. What's better, it doesn't slow single enemies. We're talking about a half-AoE skill shot here, real good stuff. Whatever's in the line your axe flies across gets hit for damage and slowed. The damage isn't reduced per target hit and has a slightly larger radius then the axe itself, not to mention it has a great range that IS adjustable as the Olaf sees fit.
After his Q there is just so much to bring to a team fight. Your an un-crowd controllable armor-piercing long living killing machine....to put it lightly. Please, tell me how that doesn't count for teamwork eh?
Aren't all of his skills unique? I mean...they are his right? Not anyone else's? I don't see Shen or Ashe throwing axes at peoples heads, haha. Seriously though, Olaf is just as unique as the next champion.
For starters, his Q is a skill shot that does damage and slows anything it hits in a line with an adjustable range and no damage reduction per target hit.
Next his W. Absolutely marvelous skill. When you start to enjoy the lifestyles of large health pools this beaut of a skill really shines. Not only does it increase your base AD by a flat amount, but the more Health you have the higher the damage by 1% of your max HP! That's right! Hulk Sma....I mean...Olaf Smash! Even better then that though is that it adds a large chunk of Spell Vamp and Life Steal to boot!
Now for my favorite of Olaf's kit. Nothing I love more then running in and watching someones health disappear in a "flash of lightning"...meaning when I bash their skull with my E. The glory and "uniqueness" or at least ALMOST "Uniqueness" of this skill is that it does true damage, and it does a large portion of true damage comparatively in early-mid game. Even better then that though, it doesn't cost mana. Instead it cost's a small portion of healh. Meaning what you ask? God why would you ask that. It means you can smash all day long when you have the health to afford it unlike mana when you have to let it recharge.
Finally, his ULTIMATE ability. Truly ultimate indeed I say. This thing is so uniuqe I purposely spelled unique wrong. Did you catch it? That's right, go back and look. Anyways, as I was saying.... This ability is absolutely incredible. With this, Olaf becomes "UN-CONTROLLABLE" for 6 seconds. When I say un-controllable I mean no form of Crowd Control can affect him. Even more so, it can be used WHILE under the effects of crowd control. Taunt? Psh. Snare? Root? Stun? Get outta here. Like the man M.C. Hammer himself said, "Can't Touch This".
And so, thus concludes what makes Olaf unique. If I missed anything, it's because I was lazy and my hands hurt from typing this build out.
Ah farming...oh wait...didn't I already cover this? Jeez. TL;DR right? Lazy....and I thought I was lazy for leaving stuff out just because I didn't want to type so much and now you have me writing all this just because you didn't want to read and skipped ahead to the good stuff.
You know what this means? It means GO PLAY HIM and FIND OUT. It's so easy. Last hit like with all champions. As I said before, use your Q to where you pick it up immediately after you throw it (you should do this with dragon and baron as well to maximize damage output in a shorter period of time). Doing this pretty well nukes the creeps/jungle monsters in no time flat giving you incredible creeping speeds you creepy creeper you.
What my build has done
With the exception of Zeke's Herald and The Bloodthirster of course which at the time was purely situational and I built it instead of the Madred's Bloodrazor since I was already smashing everyone without it. The extra Life Steal was the added sustain I needed to pull all this off, with the help of my wonderful team of course. Also note, I only built the Bloodthirster and Zeke's because I had plenty of extra cash since I was totally owning with double kills on bot from the start. Typically I enjoy my build as it is due to it being a cheaper alternative.
This is the End...
...My only friend, the end.... umm....sorry. I'm old and I like old music... *cough*
Thanks for reading....if you did.
TL;DR ^ read the above lazy.
<3 to all you readers who put up with my antics through and through this guide :D