Skarner Build Guide by Krazah
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Skarner is just...awesome. I literally have nothing else to say. In this guide I will explain my build choice, my rune choice, masteries, summoner spells and basically everything you need to know to be successful with this awesome champion.
Pros / Cons
Mid-Late game is VERY strong
SUPER fast (He can get across the map really fast + its great for his ult)
Hits hard and fast
His ult is amazing for initiation / singling out carries
If focused you are kinda screwed, the shield isn't THAT strong
Early game he is good but a bit weak
Your ult can be tricky to use correctly
I'll start with runes. Some of you may be wondering why I use AP runes for him. Well in the lane, most of his damage and harass early game comes from Fracture . With a nice chunk of AP it hits fairly hard. I like it along with the Doran's Ring
at the start. The increased ability power and mana regen is really noticeable.
This by no means an end all be all to what runes should be for him, but after many games already with him, these seem to work very well on him to keep him alive early game.
For masteries I went full utility. I did this for the mana, the decreased CD on flash, and because it really helps support him through the game. The masteries are pretty straight forward, choose what you want to use to fit your own playstyle but this seems to work very well. A more detailed explanation of how to play him with all of these will be in other sections.
His skills are as follows:
Energize Energize: (Passive) Basic attacks lower the cooldowns of Skarner’s abilities by 1 second against champions and 0.5 seconds against non-champions.
Crystal Slash: (Q) Skarner lashes out with his claws, dealing physical damage to all nearby enemies and charging himself with Crystal Energy for several seconds. If he casts Crystal Slash again while empowered by Crystal Energy, he deals bonus magic damage and slows all targets hit.
Crystalline Exoskeleton: (W)Skarner gains a shield and while the shield persists his movement speed and attack speed are both increased.
Fracture: (E) Skarner summons a blast of crystalline energy which deals damage to enemies struck and marks them. Any further damage dealt to marked targets by Skarner will allow him to consume the mark to heal himself.
Impale: (R) Skarner suppresses an enemy champion and deals magic damage to it. During this time, skarner can move freely and will drag his helpless victim around with him. When the effect ends, Skarner’s target will be dealt additional damage.
In lane, I always max out Fracture first. It is a great harass for early game and you can keep yourself in the lane longer by being able to heal up after being harassed. Fracture + Crystal Slash is the perfect way to heal yourself up.
After maxing out Fracture I max out Crystal Slash because of the slow and damage. Having that maxed is crucial to doing more damage as well as keeping people slowed while you are attacking them.
I max the shield out last. By the time you will be maxing this move out, you will start getting attack speed items and the shield will help boost it a lot. This is how I play him and it works pretty damn well, but its up to you whether you want to or not.
Flash: Flash is just an amazing skill. It can get you closer to an enemy for an impale or to keep attack, or it can get you out of a tight situation. This is self-explanatory
Ignite: I take ignite basically because its great extra damage especially against those who can heal. Other spells are perfectly fine, I just find these 2 to work very very well with each other.
Playing Skarner can be a bit tricky. Using your ult at the right time can be crucial and can actually make or break team fights. Pulling one of their carries into a group of your teammates and tearing them apart gives you an immediate advantage but you have to be smart about it. Don't just run in and go "AHMAGAWD IMA GETCHU GUISE!" and run in the middle of their team to the back just to impale someone...
His ult lasts 1.5 seconds...plan ahead and make the most of it. While the cool down is fairly short later on, be smart with the ultimate.
When attacking someone, open with Fracture , then keep hitting Crystal Slash while around enemies to keep them slowed and to do continual damage. As you auto attack your cool downs will reset and you can use your moves again. With the attack speed comes faster cool downs, and it is VERY noticeable.
Remember you ult does damage so if someone is getting away or someone is low, you can ult them and keep them in place. You can't use your Fracture while using your ult but you can use Crystal Slash .
Remember (part 2): like any melee, knowing when to go in and out of a team fight is crucial! Sometimes leaving the team fight for a few seconds and going back in is the best thing to do because the enemies take their focus off you. That way you can go back in and keep hitting them while their focus is elsewhere.
Skarner is a great champion and extremely useful to the team. If you learn how to play him effectively and can use your ult intelligently, you will be feared by the enemy team, I promise.
Let me know what you guys think of this guide, and please leave comments! Feed back is great. I will be changing this and updating it as I learn more and get new information. As with all of my guides, this is just a RECOMMENDATION! Build him to fit your own play style.
And give the build a try a few times before making your decision, a build won't make you a god at that champion the first time you play it...it takes time.