Cho'Gath Build Guide by Old Spice Bear
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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.
This specific Cho'Gath build excels during mid/late game, because you will have tons of Health thanks to Frozen Mallet and still will dish out enough Damage to eventually kill the opposing Carries. Playing Cho'Gath as a jungler creates a complete new dynamic of terror in your opponents mind, because they mostly underestimate the damage you can deal with your Vorpal Spikes.
The first build was created for more experienced jungle Cho'Gath players and also for more competitive games. However, I always recommend to try the second build, in order to get a feeling for this specific way of playing Cho'Gath
Here is a short list of abbreviations, which I used for this guide:
- AA = Auto-attack (Basic Attacks)
- CC = Crowd Control (Stun, fear, slow, snare, etc)
- FB = First Blood
- AP = Ability Power
- AD = Attack Damage
- AS = Attack Speed
- MS = Movement Speed
- HP = Health
Cho'Gath is an exceptional multifunctional Melee DPS Champion, who is also able to take some damage and act like a tank, which will be your most important role late game.
Your effectiveness depends on your ganks, so make sure that you practice how to position yourself. Keep in mind that a good gank does not always result in a kill, it is often good enough if your opponent has to use Flash, Ghost, Exhaust, etc. to escape, given that it will help your teammate to play more aggressive and maybe get a kill on his own. Your first jungle Trip will get hairy if you don't play smart and ask other people to help you (I will explain this later in this guide).
Also, your opponents will recognize that, at some point, you will be a very tanky melee DPS champion and that they really have to start to focus you, otherwise the opposing carries will get smashed by your autohits and Vorpal Spikes. If this happens, you have fulfilled your role and your own carries just can focus whoever they want, without getting focused on their own.
Do not be discouraged, if you do not have fantastic stats - the most important thing is that your TEAM wins and that you have fun while doing that.
And last but not least: Always try to be smart and use Rupture// Feral Scream on the opposing Carries!
Pros and Cons
Based on the last chapter, here are the pros and cons of this specific build
- Great Jungler post Level 4
- Due to his Feast, Cho'Gath is a natural tank.
- Feral Scream is one of the longest Silence Spells in-game
- Late Game nearly unkillable 1vs1
- One of the best pusher/farmer in-game
- Dances like a happy Teletubby
- Squishy early game
- Vulnerable to counter jungling
- Ganks need a lot of exercise in order to be successful
- If he gets focused early game/mid game he will not be as tanky as he should
- You nearly won't understand a word he says
No matter which build you will try, the skill sequence will stay the same.
Cho'Gath kills a unit, he recovers health and mana. The value restored increase with Cho'Gath's level.
This passive is the primary reason, why jungling is even possible. You will always get health back after killing a unit. Thanks to this passive, you will not need any Health Potions after the start of the game (or eventually after your first trip back).
This spell will be usefull in more than one way: On the one hand, you will be able to pop up minions in the jungle to get one more auto hit, before getting attacked by them. On the other hand, it is a great chasing spell, if it is used properly. Low life enemies should not be able to escape, if you do not want this to happen. Try to guess, where your opponents will be positioned, when your ability triggers, so that you really pop them up into the air.
Cho'Gath unleashes a terrible scream at enemies in a cone, dealing magic damage and Silencing enemies for a few seconds.
Pretty self explanatory, Feral Scream will help you to silence your ganking victims, so that they cannot use Flash to escape. While being in teamfights, try to land your Feral Scream on the opposing AP carry so that they are unable to use their combination of their spells. Usually you will be able to hit multiple enemies, but always silence the hostile AP carry.
Cho'Gath's attacks passively release deadly spikes, dealing damage to all enemy units in front of him.
The synergy between Vorpal Spikes and Carnivore is just wonderful. You focus i.e. the big wraith in the jungle and while doing this, the small wraiths also get injured/killed, which restores health and mana.
Furthermore, most people will underestimate the additional damage, your auto hits will deal. So maybe, they will just keep attacking you a fraction too long, so that you can use your other spells, to land that kill.
Always think about deacitvating this spell, when you are hitting a turret and do not want to hit opposing champions.
Cho'Gath grows, gaining maximum health (maximum 6 stacks). Cho'Gath loses up to 3 stacks upon death.
This beauty is the reason, why you can ignore getting health items like Heart of Gold in the early game. Just last hit a minion, or an opposing champion to get an additional stack. There are two things to remember, if you want to use it on enemy champions:
- While ganking, try to kill hostile champions, so that you also get one more stacks. Only do that, if you are sure that they will not escape.
- In Teamfights, try to land a complete spell combination onto one of the opposing carry champions. More often than not, you will kill this carry, due to the fact that your team also will hit the carries first. However, sometimes it is necessary to utilize this spell on the enemy tank, so that you can weaken them just enough, so that i.e. Tremors does not deal a high amount of damage to your team, and your team can kill the tank first.
Always remember: Feast will deal 1000 true damage to minions! Check the targeted minion's health, if you will actually be able to kill it, with this ability.
To conclude: These spells are the reason, why Cho'Gath is such an exceptional jungler and late game bruiser. All of his spells deal magic damage, except Feast ,which deals true damage and only stack with AP, not with AD.
The summoner spells are pretty much the only point, which does not require a long explanation. However and due to the pure reason of education, let us look at the proper summoner spells and the not so viable, but not completely bad options.
- Try to secure the kill on the minion your team is attacking at the moment, so that it cannot be stolen by the opposing team. Mostly this will be dragon and Baron Nashor.
- If you know, or even can see that the enemy team is aiming to kill Baron Nashor or Dragon, you can try to steal it. Just walk/ Flash close enough to "last hit" the minion. However, always think about the game situation: Will your potential death mean a loose for your team, because the opponents can destroy your nexus, or is it even possible to first steal the minion and then even get kills.
Never forget: Always check, how much true damage smite will deal to your target minion and use it to kill the minion. You do not want it to survive with 100 health, or so.
Ghost with Flash. Flash will maybe help you to close gaps even better than Ghost, but if your enemy also utilizes this summoner spell, you probably will not get a kill. Moreover, you can Flash over walls to escape from bad positions, you placed yourself in.
Flash or Ghost. This scenario will be rare, so be cautious to play a game with Exhaust and Smite
Exhaust: You will not have any escape mechanics, so do not get caught by more than one opponent (whom you probably will kill).
Greater Mark of Attack Speed
Greater Seal of Armor
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist
Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed
Greater Mark of Attack Speed Given that you rely on your auto attacks, you really need some bonus attack speed. There should not be any dispute about these marks, but Greater Mark of Desolation are also considerable, but your jungle walkthrough will be much slower.
Nontheless, your late game damage output will be better than with Greater Mark of Attack Speed.
Greater Seal of Armor The minions in the jungle only utilize AAs, so you need armor to have some kind of sustain, because the first jungle trip is not easy and you will survive with not much health.
There do not exist any other considerable seals.
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist Due to being a tank at mid/late game, you can need some support via your runes. Thats why MagRes per level glyphs are the best choice.
The only glyphs, which require some attention are Greater Glyph of Attack Speed, given that your jungle walkthrough will be even faster.
Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed These runes will definitely help you to gank more often and more easily, even with Regrowth Pendant as starting item. Furthermore, they even help you being faster, while using Ghost and landing more AA's and therefore Vorpal Spikes. All in all, they are probably the best Quintessence Cho'Gath can have.
Considerable Rune Choices:
Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed In order to being able to completely clear the jungle on your first trip, you need even more AS than you will get with your Greater Mark of Attack Speed.
If you do not like playing with these quintessences, consider Greater Quintessence of Desolation. Your late game damage will increase, but you will have a lot of trouble in order to get to level 6 quickly.
Under reconstruction due to Season 3 Patch
Regarding the season 3 patch, the jungle route did NOT change!!
Basically Cho'Gaths strength is his great sustain in the jungle past level 3. The first jungle trip will be a little bit tricky, but with a nice pull at the blue buff and some practice you will be definitely able to master it.
Start at the blue buff and ask for a nice and long pull, even though your allies may loose some experience, it will help you to clear the complete jungle and gank one lane. You probably will loose some health, so utilize one Health Potion while finishing the blue buff itself and the two small lizards. By the way: Always focus the big golem first.
Right after killing the blue buff, move to the wolves, focus the big wolve first and just auto hit them, until they are dead. Try to time your Rupture, so that you can land one auto attack, before your spell throws them up into the air. If your timing is correct, you can avoid getting attacked twice by each one of the wolves. Additionally, you will be able to utilize your Rupture twice while killing the wolves. Try to time it inbetween your auto attacks, given that you will not loose any possible damage.
Continue with the wraiths in the same manner.
Now its decision time (again): Kill the red buff, in the same way you assassinated the blue buff. However, if you think using Smite is not necessary, do not use it. If you did not use Smite it Go to the small golems and use it onto the bigger one.
All in all, you should have enough health, in order to gank a lane. If it is not possible teleport back to your base, get your next item and try to gank a lane or continue jungling (depends on the game situation).
Finally, always remember one thing: Warding is essential! Do not be too cocky to think that your foes will not counter-jungle. Always place a ward next to your wraiths, at the tri-bush (next to your bot/top lane) and into the bush in the river next to Baron Nashor. Furthermore, these wards may help you getting a kill, if one of your opponents tries to escape with low health.
In order to successfully gank a lane, first of all tell your ally champion that you intend to gank his/her lane. This sentence seems fairly unnecessary, given that you should always stay in touch with your teammates, in order to win a game. However, more and more junglers do not try to communicate with his/her own team and therefore just go and gank a lane without reaching an "agreement" with his ally.
Sure, if you watch the minimap, you will probably notice, if your jungler intends to gank your lane.
Nonetheless, while ganking timing is the most important thing! Especially as Cho'Gath, due to the fact that you have to utilize your Rupture properly, in order to pop your foes up into the air, to actually kill your foe.
Here is a step to step conclusion for a successful gank:
- Communicate with your ally. Tell him a few seconds before you will initate the gank.
- Pray, so that your lane partner really recognizes that you actually are about to gank his lane.
- Utilize your Rupture correctly, in order to pop up your foe.
- Silence your enemy with Feral Scream, so that they cannot use any of their escape mechanics, e.g. Flash// Ghost.
- AA your victim, while having your Vorpal Spikes ability activated (works perfectly, if you have killed the red buff recently).
- Hope that your ally deals some damage.
There is only one thing that is certain, while you gank a lane: If you are able to pop up your foe with Rupture, you will almost certainly kill him. Hit Feral Scream correctly, to ease things up.
Due to the patch, released at 2/8/12, Cho'Gath has been greatly buffed. They are pretty self explanatory and therefore do not need any extra explanations. Here are the various changes:
- Magic Resist per level increased to 1.25
- Attack Range normalized to 125 from 130
- Cast time reduced to 0.5 seconds from 0.672
- Delay normalized to 0.625 seconds from 0.5 - 0.75
- Feral Scream
- Cast time reduced to 0.5 seconds from 0.6417
- Vorpal Spikes
- Width now increases based on Cho'gath's size.
- Now grants Cho'gath up to 50 additional Attack Range, based on Feast rank and
amount of stacks.
- Cast time normalized to 0.5 seconds from 0.43
- Range increased to 150 from 100
Still to come
- How to utilize this build for a solo lane.
Furthermore giving advice against which champions it actually makes sense to play with an AS Cho'Gath build.
Hopefully, you understood the idea behind this guide and are giving jungle Cho'Gath a try. But the most important thing about this particular way of playing Cho'Gath is the fact that it will allow you to have fun as hell.
Last but not least: I have to spread some love for all the guys that helped me creating this guide and had enough patience with me, while I played jungle Cho'Gath over and over again.
Furthermore, thanks to jhoijhoi for her guide template, which really helped me to understand the basics of creating a guide.