Shaco Build Guide by Jgx_
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.
Welcome to my Shaco guide; the first one I have written. This build is very similar to that of a DPS champion, such as Master Yi. However, Shaco should not be played as a DPS. From Level 3, he will deal insane burst damage when ganking if used correctly.
This guide will aim to show you not only how to build Shaco, but also how to use him effectively. If used correctly, Shaco can be by far the strongest (and most useful) character on the battlefield. He can be used for:
- Team Fights
If you liked this guide, please take the time to rate it and leave a comment. I also value any constructive criticism, so don't be afraid to have your say!
+ Ideal Ganker
+ Insane Burst Damage
+ Perfect Jungler
+ Can solo turrets
+ Flash as an ability
+ Quick Movement
- Nearly always focused in team fights
- Rather Squishy (even with lifesteal)
- Needs kills to be effective
Backstab: Shaco's passive. Basically what makes him the ganker that he is. It's there to be used, so use it! Always attack from behind when ganking. This helps you kill runners quicker, too.
Deceive (Q): Poof! You're gone. This has many different uses. It can (and must) be used when ganking, to allow you to get behind the enemy champion and utilise Shaco's passive, Backstab. It can also be used to get away from fights. It's pretty much Flash, but better.
- Allows you to escape (even over terrain).
- Stealthed for 3.5 seconds: Plenty of time to wait until everything is in position.
- Critical hit bonus after exiting. Always basic attack first.
Jack in the Box (W): Create a small ward that will attack nearby opponents. These last 60 seconds in total, but only 5 seconds when firing. They are stealthed until they first attack, and inflict fear on enemies when they reveal themselves.
- Good for clearing minions.
- Use them for jungling. They are like Smite in a box.
- They can be used for escape. They fear enemies when they reveal themselves, so use that to your advantage when running.
Two-Shiv Poison (E): Deals insane damage and slows enemies. What more do you want?
- Use it after basic attacking out of Deceive when ganking.
- Can be used to slow enemies if they are escaping.
- Gives up to a 30% miss chance to enemies. Use it to your advantage if caught in a 1v1.
Hallucinate (R): Create another Shaco. Let me make sure that you understand this: He can be controlled by holding alt + right-clicking where desired. Use this when in team fights, 1v1s or pushing turrets.
- Can be used to create a diverson and absorb enemy champion skills (and ultimates).
- Can be used to solo push a tower (without minions) late game.
- Enables you to jungle the Dragon as low as level 6!
Spells / Items
There are only a few summoner spells that work with Shaco, due to his Deceive and his Boots of Mobility.
Smite: A must for a jungle character. Huge true damage to monsters.
Ignite: Deals that extra bit of damage that will help finish opponents off. Extremely useful for early-game ganks to stop them getting away.
Exhaust: Similar to Ignite, however I do not recommend it as people will use Flash to escape to their turret if you are ganking.
: Shaco needs to get around as quick as possible to arrive in time for ganks, and to maintain his dominance in the jungle. These are the ideal pair of boots to do just that. (They are also useful for running if the entire enemy team is chasing you out of frustration, which they will be by the time you're done!)
: A relatively inexpensive item that gives Shaco just what he needs: Lifesteal, Damage and Armour. It allows you to jungle effectively, and ward important areas of the map (see below for a Warding Guide). I tend to buy this in parts. After reaching level 3, I go back and buy a long sword for the damage. I suggest you do not gank until you have one. You need the extra damage.
: The ideal item for Shaco. Compliments his Deceive and Two-Shiv Poison nicely. The added basic and critical damage makes his bursts extremely deadly.
: Extra critical damage. Extra movement speed. What more do I need to say? Like with the Infinity Edge, the extra critical damage works well. The movement speed allows him for even better map domination. The attack speed is useful if you are engaged in combat.
: This item is controversial. Please do not downvote this guide because you feel that it is useless on Shaco. I believe it works well with him. Extreme attack damage and a healthy chunck of lifesteal for added sustainability when you enter combat is just what he needs. If you don't want to fork out 3000 coins for it, there are some alternative items below.
- : Gives Shaco the protection he will need during the later periods of the game. Team fights will be inevitable and Shaco will play a big part in finishing them. There is no doubting his squishiness, however, and so one of these is perfect to combat it. If you die, you will be revived after a short while. This should be just enough time for the enemy team to be weakened enough to start to retreat. As your team presses forward, you are left to run home and heal. No deaths for you.
Trinity Force: A little bit of everything. Slow, strength, speed. If you're the kind of person that finds three weakened passives more useful than one full passive, get this. I'm not knocking it, I just don't believe it gives a strong enough bonus to be extremely useful on any champion, for the price that it is.
The Brutalizer: A cheaper alternative. Get this if you can't quick rack up the gold required. The extra attack damage, cooldown reduction and armour penetration package together nicely. All three of these bonuses work really well with Shaco. They allow him to deal more damage from his Deceive and Two-Shiv Poison, and at the same time, reduce their cooldowns so you can perform them again earlier. What's not to like?
Frozen Mallet: If lifesteal isn't your thing, but you want to increase Shaco's durability, this is the itemt to get. It gives a bonus of almost half his health, with some attack damage and a nasty passive that pretty much nullifies anyone's chance of escaping from you. The extra attack damage isn't much, but if you really wanted it, you would buy The Bloodthirster instead, wouldn't you?
Warding / Jungling
As Shaco, you'll be the team's main warder. This is due to two reasons:
- You aren't preoccupied with laning.
- You have a Wriggle's Lantern.
In order to be effective, you need to know what to ward and when to ward it. The following picture should give you an indication of what needs warding.
Top Priority: The most important places to ward. This is where the Baron and Dragon are located. In low-level games, these aren't so important. However, as you reach higher levels, they become more and more important. The Dragon is especially important to you, as you are Shaco. He should be jungled when possible. This means you do not want the enemy team stealing him.
Important: The brush in the middle of the map. The most common place to gank from, and therefore, the most common place to be ganked from. You owe it to whoever lanes in the middle to ward this area. It will save them from dying.
Low Priority: The brush linking the top and bottom lanes to the middle lane. Similar to the middle lane; it's a common place to be ganked from. Use the wards to help your team out.
Jungle: These mark the lizard elder and ancient golem . Only ward these if you've got somebody counter-jungling. If not, then your wards are better used elsewhere.
Shaco is, in my opinion, the best jungler in the game. This is because of his Jack In The Box. It deals damage to whatever it attacks, and takes the attacks from it. You should max it last, however, because ganking will be the most important part of your game.
It is important to understand the Jungle Respawn Times. Having seen a list of them on other guides, I feel I should include one. So, without further adu:
In order to jungle correctly, you must be as efficient as possible. If not, you run the risk of being left behind level-wise by everyone else. This is the path that I take with Shaco:
- Level 1. Lizard Elder: Buy one Health Potion and Boots of Speed. Run to the Lizard Elder as soon as possible. Once the game reaches 1 minute (the part where you hear "30 seconds until minions spawn", start to use Jack In The Box. Place them a reasonable distance away from the Lizard Elder, so they will not auto-attack him. Once you place 4, the Lizard Elder should have spawned. Attack him and lure him to your JITBs. They should, along with your basic attacks, take him out. Then just kill his two companions to reach level 2. Use the health potion if you deem it necessary. Do not use Smite here; it should not be needed.
- Level 2. Ancient Golem: After killing the Lizard Elder, run to the Ancient Golem. Place two (or three if you want to be safe) JITBs in the brush near to him. You should have leveled your Two-Shiv Poison. Use it to lure him out to the JITBs. Kill him, using Smite during the fight. Dispatch of the two Young Lizards that accompany him.
- Level 3-6. Ganking/Casual Jungling: Here, it is up to you what you do. I like to join the top lane (or whatever lane is solo), killing a couple of minions until I reach level 3. Then I
, buy a Long Sword and gank the middle lane, returning to the Jungle afterwards, to kill the Wraiths, Golems and Wolves. However, this should be adapted to the way the game is going.
- Level ~6. Dragon: Time to get the Dragon. You will most likely need a teammate's help for this. Place a ward near the area (to prevent ganks) and a Jack In The Box near enough to the Dragon so that it will auto-attack it. Then use your Hallucinate. Attack the Dragon, using Deceive to pop behind it and attack it for extra damage. Use Two-Shiv Poison as damage prevention; it should make the dragon miss some of its attacks. Once the Dragon is down,
and continue with your build.
- Levels >7: It's all down to you now. Jungle what you think is best. Help your team get buffs when they need it. Most importantly: gank, gank, gank. This is what Shaco relies on. I cannot direct you as to what to do next, because the game will have progressed to a unique situation. You must judge what is appropriate. Good luck!
At the end of the game, Shaco can solo turrets. This is useful if the other 9 players are engrossed in team fights, or hugging a particular turret. The technique is pretty simple:
- Get close to the turret (but far enough so that it does not attack you)
- Activate Hallucinate
- Hold alt and right-click the turret to get your clone to attack it.
- Follow in after your clone, as he takes damage.
- Use Jack In The Box to deal more damage and take an extra attack from the turret.
- Once your health gets low, use Deceive to zip out of there. However, if you are near-fully built, the turret should go down without any problems.
Thank you for taking the time to read my guide. I hope it helps you. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask them in the comments. I gladly accept all up votes. If you are going to vote down I would ask you to reconsider and, if you disagree with something I have said, notify me so I can look to rectify it.
I would like to thank jhoijohi for her information on making a good guide. It has helped form this guide into what it is.