Skarner Build Guide by Bluster40
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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.
Introduction Back To Top
Hey there, it's Bluster40 guid!, this time with a guide on Jungle Skarner.
Skarner was regarded as a terrible champion when he was first released and after his release, laughed off, and called a troll pick.
I picked up Skarner during his second free week, and I was pleasantly surprised with him. He was a lot of fun and the more I played him, the more I realized his potential. He was a bit held back by some things, but not as bad as people made him to be.
Now with the recent buffs, Skarner is now even better than before. The changes seem minimal, but they really helped him out, especially his jungling. He's now one of the fastest junglers with great ganking capabilities.
Who and What is Skarner?
Skarner is a hybrid, tanky DPS champion. He does a good mix of physical and magic damage (more physical than magic, though.) He can serve well as a tanky DPS (which is his main job), and as an initiator and soak if built right.
- Good base stats
- Simple, but nice skillset
- Good damage
- Great sustain for top lane (That's not what this guide is about, but I feel it should be mentioned)
- Capable of permaslowing multiple targets, making him a potent ganker
- A great ultimate that makes him one of the deadliest gankers at 6
Scales very well into late game
- Fast jungler that clears well, along with being a great control jungler.
Big, badass crystal scorpion with a good story and awesome voice actor
- Lack of an actual gap closer (The movespeed from is great, but I'm sure an actual targeted gap closer would be great on him (but OP.)
- Somewhat blue reliant (Not so much since the recent buffs, but blue allows him to snowball through the jungle early on and clear very fast, without an early blue he can't do so and will be set behind. Skarner was crazy blue reliant before the recent changes.)
- Not the best ganker.
- Weak levels 1-3 in the jungle. This is generally the case for most junglers, though.
- I honestly can't think of anymore cons. I have a hard time thinking about a lot of negatives equal to a champion's positives for most, and like I said before, Skarner isn't nowhere near as bad as people made him to be.
Smite for obvious reasons. You need this for jungling. It speeds up your jungle, lets you secure buffs, dragon, Baron, and some extra gold from the Plentiful Bounty mastery.
Flash is, in my opinion, an absolute must on Skarner. It's just way too good on him, because of Flash ulting is very potent, being very sudden, and a good late game can win you games. Along with that, he doesn't really need Ghost because of .
Basic attacks lower the cooldowns of Skarner's abilities by 1 second against champions and 0.5 seconds against non-champions.
Very strong passive, albeit being somewhat counter productive as it can make you run out of mana faster (not as much since the mana cost change, though.) This is one of the things that makes Skarner a very fast jungler, allowing him to spam constantly and clear fast. The more attack speed Skarner has, the better this passive is, but you shouldn't itemize entirely for attack speed.
Q: Crystal Slash
Skarner lashes out with his claws, dealing 25/40/55/70/85 (+80% of bonus attack damage) physical damage to all nearby enemies and charging himself with Crystal Energy for 5 seconds. If he casts Crystal Slash again while empowered by Crystal Energy, he deals 24/36/48/60/72 (+40% of ability power) bonus magic damage and slows all targets hit by 25 / 30 / 35 / 40 / 45% for 2 seconds.
Cooldown 3.5 seconds
Cost 15 mana
On paper, the damage from this skill looks pretty meh. But because of it's low cooldown, it's good AD scaling, bonus magic damage on subsequent uses, and Skarner's passive, it adds up quite well. Mentioned above in the passive explanation, this skill is one of the reasons he is such a fast jungler, and a great farmer. At Rank 5 when it's empowered, this ability clears creeps quite fast. The slowing part of this skill is also very strong, you can basically permaslow a target in teamfights. When ganking and if possible, I advise running near the enemy creeps and hitting them with this skill once, so you can get the empowered buff so your initial Q on the enemy champion will deal the bonus magic damage and slow.
W: Crystalline Exoskeleton
Skarner receives a shield of 70 / 115 / 160 / 205 / 250 (+60% of ability power) for up to 6 seconds. While the shield persists his 15 / 17 / 19 / 21 / 23% movement speed and 30 / 35 / 40 / 45 / 50% attack speed are increased.
Cooldown 14 seconds
Cost 60 mana
Good shield with a substantial attack speed and movement speed buff. The attack speed benefits Skarner's passive well, and the movement speed lets Skarner close the gap faster on his prey, and makes him a good roamer.
Skarner summons a blast of crystalline energy which deals 80 / 120 / 160 / 200 / 240 (+70% of ability power) damage to enemies struck and marks them for 6 seconds. If any marked targets receive further damage from Skarner, or if they die when struck by Fracture, Skarner will consume the mark to heal himself for 30 / 45 / 60 / 75 / 90 (+30% of ability power). Subsequent marks consumed will heal for 50% of the last.
Cooldown 10 seconds
Cost 50 / 55 / 60 / 65 / 70 mana
Good harass/farming tool with decent range, and gives Skarner a good burst heal in the jungle to use here and there. Not much else to say. The recent change where they made it heal on a kill with Fracture was a nice bonus, as it was irritating Fracturing a creep camp, killing all of them with it but having the heal wasted.
Skarner suppresses an enemy champion for 1.75 seconds and deals 100 / 150 / 200 (+50% of ability power) 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 100 / 150 / 200 (+50% per ability power) additional damage.
Cooldown 110 / 100 / 90 seconds
Cost 100 / 125 / 150 mana
The defining skill of Skarner. This ultimate is very, very strong if used right. It basically makes you a walking Warwick ultimate without the initial blink to target. Once Skarner hits 6, he becomes an extremely strong ganker.
If they don't have Flash... well, like Skarner would say: "You'll never escape!"
Proper use of this ultimate will win you teamfights, and games, especially in combination with .
There are a lot of uses to this ability, such as:
Firstly, dragging an enemy into your team.
Dragging a dangerous enemy away from your team. (For example, a or wanting to ult your team. Just make sure you don't ult Morgana when her Black Shield is up.)
Simply using it for the suppression to lock down a target.
Saving allies by ulting a target away from them.
Interrupting channeled abilities.
Like mentioned above, .
Another thing to note is that if you are lucky and ult just as a target Flashes, they will still end up getting impaled, so they end up making a fool of their self and end up getting dragged to their doom.
If you're close enough as well, you can pull enemies though walls with this.
At the beginning of the game, make sure to have your team guard. If your team comp and their team comp permits, it may be possible to invade their jungle. But don't forget to be careful of invasion in your jungle.
Most of the early game is going to revolve around you clearing the jungle, attempting ganks, possibly counter jungling, the usual stuff as a jungler.
Make sure to communicate with your team when ganking, via chat or pings. Skarner is a formidable ganker as long as you know what you're doing, even better with proper coordination.
It's hard to describe what to do early game, as it can vary a lot. Sometimes you need to play more aggressive, sometimes you need to play more passive and wait it out.
Skarner is a great control jungler and invader, abuse this. If you're double buffed, go in there and steal his camps, or hunt down the enemy jungler and kill him.
Once you hit 6, you become a great, deadly ganker. Even just the sight of a Level 6 Skarner can force a Flash. Make sure you know if their Flash is up so you don't use it too early. If they Flash and distance allows, them, and get your team a kill.
Make sure to be warding around the map, and dragon/near dragon when the time for a possible dragon approaches (setting a at dragon is very important). You can solo dragon with Wriggle's, but you should always have your team help you out. If you have been doing well and got spare money (and are confident you won't die soon), consider picking up a oracle.
At mid game, there will be less laning and more pushing lanes, securing objectives, working with the team as a whole more often, with some trying to catch up/farm scraps, in which more teamfights will be happening. Keep warding, keep the buffs secured, work with your team, keep dragon warded and attempt it whenever the time seems right, but don't forget about Baron, as it is a possibility at this point.
Most games, you'll probably have ,boots, and probably one of the other Trinity pieces at this point. Of course, this varies from game to game.
ate game is where it all matters, a single mistake can turn the game around drastically, so don't screw up. Stick with your team, communicate, make the right plays, keep Baron warded. At this point in the game, Baron is more important than dragon. If they go take dragon, do Baron. If one of them is bot, do Baron. If they all backed and the status of your team permits, do Baron. Skarner scales very into late game. A Skarner with a full build is quite scary, so at this point you will be quite tanky, able to take a beating and dish out nice damage as well.
Skarner is very potent in teamfights.
Pumps out damage constantly withand good autoattack bursts with He can stick to a target well thanks to the slow from .
Can absorb well with and his overall nice base stats, and of course with tank items.
Decent sustain via .
And a great game changing ult if used properly.
Most of the time in teamfights, you are going to rush in there, their most important target, and drag them into your team. If the target doesn't have Flash up/gets CCed after the ultimate ends, they are dead. Sometimes you may need to save your ultimate to peel off a target from one of your squishies, or use it to interrupt a channeled ult.
Skarner also makes a good initiator, since he can soak well and has a shield with a speed boost. Doing a goodis very sudden and effective, and can win you games.
And that concludes my guide on Jungle Skarner. I hope you enjoyed reading this guide and make good use of it. Skarner is a very fun character in my opinion. I like the character himself and I enjoy playing him, albeit the flack he gets sometimes (which is less now since the buffs), and I'm sure he'll start to pick up a lot more in popularity.
If you liked this guide, please leave a like, as I greatly appreciate any and all I receive. If you want to as well, leave a comment, let me know what you think of the guide, or possibly point out an error I may have overlooked.
Until next time, play on, and have fun. Get on out to the Fields of Justice, because it's time to fight!