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Skarner Build Guide by sp00fz

League of Legends Build Guide Author sp00fz

Skarner: The Jungling Vanguard (Season 7)

sp00fz Last updated on April 7, 2017
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Hello! My name is sp00fz, or MustacheUnicorn, previously NambawanFFS and I play on EU West. I used to jungle back in season 2, but even though I moved from the forest to the mid lane, I still play jungler, and Skarner is one of my favorites. I play at Low ELO, I'm aware of that. But I do play with higher ELO-players during scrims. I have to climb, I just don't have the time for that at the moment (mostly studies...)MMM}

MMMSkarner is an amazing champion, and takes the role of Jungler/Tank/Initiator. I have played Skarner for over 500 games, and I think I have mastered him well. I think that I'll highlight a game sometime while I'm streaming (will probably be in Swedish, but you can see what I do). I don't really jungle that much anymore but he's really fun to play so I just might have a few games in the near future. I stream on BirdBite.TV now, check me out either on BirdBite or on Twitch! Please give me a follow to support my stream. Skarner, The Crystal Vanguard.MMM}

I hope you will find this guide helpful. Please leave a comment and rate!MMM}

I played him in ranked, low elo (Silver 5). April 4th, 2016.
It's in Swedish, sorry about that.

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MMMCenturies ago, there lived a race of creatures as ferocious as they were wise. The brackern were unusual beings blessed with the earth's primal magic, embodied in the form of crystals. Their kind knew of an arcane ritual to bind their life's essence to a crystal, communing with the magic embedded in it. With this power, the brackern thrived in the Odyn Valley, protecting both creatures and crystals alike. Despite attacks from those looking to claim the primal magic, it seemed that nothing could get past the brackern's defenses. Nothing, that is, until the devastation of a Rune War.
MMMA vicious battle was fought near the Odyn Valley and the unleashed chaotic magic poisoned the crystals. The brackern began to grow sick and die, and no amount of defensive magic could reverse the effects. To avoid extinction, their only course was to hibernate underground until the wars stopped. The strongest, most intelligent brackern hibernated closer to the surface to awaken first and assess the world's condition for the return of their race. The recent mining operations and violent escalation in Kalamanda were enough to awaken the first of these vanguards. When Skarner burst to the surface, he lashed out in anger and confusion. Reason eventually won out over his anger when he realized that the agents of the League who found him were simply functionaries. Skarner was invited to the Institute of War to share the brackern's story. In return, the summoners told him about the history that his kind had slept through. Much had been done to curb the unchecked use of magic since the Rune Wars, but it was obvious that the world was not yet safe for his kind to reawaken. For now, however, there is a place where Skarner can use his power to change the world into one to which his kind could eventually return: the League of Legends.

"The humans have not yet learned to control their magic - what once was Kalamanda is now a crystal scar on the history of this world."

New Lore:
MMMSkarner, the crystalline guardian, defends the entrance to a realm deep beneath the shuriman wastes. The few who survive trespassing his domain describe a creature of terrifying intelligence, anger, and precision. What this merciless creature protects, no one knows.

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Pros / Cons


¤ Good damage during whole game.
¤ Tanky + Shield.
¤ Supress-ultimate.
¤ Fracture is changed, great for ganks.




¤ Takes time to master.
¤ Hard to get strong if shutted down early.
¤ Have to be in control of the game.
¤ If falling behind, you won't do anything.

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When and Why Skarner?


Your team lacks a beefy fighter.
Your team lacks initiations.
Your team lacks cancellers and heavy CC.
Your team have a tank, but need peeling.


Skarner is strong and can cancel channeling
spells like Katarina and Nunu.
He's also a jungler that works great with many teams.
He got a great initiate and can pick out
your enemies. He won't die for nothing and
will deal a significant amount of damage.


If your team already have a fighter, you won't
need Skarner. Tank top is really strong right now,
so most of the time you can play Skarner.
You will have a good amount of damage, and beefy-ness.
If your team already have a jungler, don't pick
Skarner. He's not good in lane IMO.
(not really true, just my opinion.)

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    Start with
Hunter's Machete or Hunter's Talisman and Refillable Potion.
I prefer Hunter's Talisman but it's totally your choice.

Why Stalker's Blade?
MMMYou have a good amount of CC, why not add more? You could also use Tracker's Knife, but I find this just plain better. Get the Enchantment: Warrior for better damage, but get Trinity Force first to get the most out of your early game.

Why Mercury's Treads?
MMMThey work great with Skarner. You are a strong killing (while also being tanky) machine. Get that Magic Resistance and Tenacity to ease the game for you.

Why Trinity Force
MMMThe remade version of this item is so broken, and it's way too good for Skarner. That extra CDR is going to feel good.

Why Dead Man's Plate
MMMExtra slow, more health, more armor, more dmg. Do I need to go on? It's crazy!

Why Spirit Visage?
High magic resistance and health regeneration, packed with CDR and flat health. The passive works wonders and the item is stable and good as it is.

Why Guardian Angel
MMMThis will make you the baddest mofo out there. Great with more health for tankyness, but the stuff this item do to Skarner is plain insane. You have the highest base AD in the game, work around that. This is also a reason why Skarner usually gets Iceborn Gauntlet and Trinity Force.


This is how i build Skarner

The item gives him balanced amount of
Beefy tankyness and Tons of Damage!

Read further down the page to find
situational items that might work
to help you help your team.

Viable Items

This are some items that works on Skarner, but I won't add them in the Core Build for reasons.

Thornmail is GREAT for that extra armor. You should have enough, but if they don't even have any AP-scaling champions, this is awesome.

Zz'Rot Portal is like that super-item that at least one on the team should get. Works great, balanced stats.

Abyssal Scepter is a "hidden" item for Skarner. AP wont really help you a lot, it will make your stats a bit higher, but that MR shred is really good, especially since you will be in their faces.

Banshee's Veil is really good if they have a combo-burster like Annie or LeBlanc. Good MR.

Enchantment: Bloodrazor This item suits Skarner good. Attack Speed with on-hit dmg suits him great. Not core item or really suggesting this, but you will be fine.

Enchantment: Cinderhulk could work, since every item is fine of Skarner but I wouldn't really recommend getting Cinderhulk. You can get this if you are being delayed after Trinity Force and ended up getting items instead if the enchantment.

The Black Cleaver You will be dealing dmg, and the MS-buff you'll get synergize great with Skarner. Good if they kinda stack armor and you are unkillable.

Guinsoo's Rageblade just because it's op. You will get fully stacked so fast you can't even react. You will be dealing a good amount of damage if you get this.

Maw of Malmortius is getting picked up a lot this season, and it's because it's semi-op. Great MR (should count this in defensive items aswell..) and HUGE stats overall. Great passive.

Titanic Hydra is probably the best item to pick up if you need damage, since it gives you great stats, more AoE and an activate.

Sterak's Gage will make you the baddest mofo out there. Great with more health for tankyness, but the stuff this item do to Skarner is plain insane. You have the highest base AD in the game, work around that. This is also a reason why Skarner usually gets Iceborn Gauntlet and Trinity Force. I would recommend using this item instead of Guardian Angel if you want to deal more damage.


Get what you want, Skarner fits with anything.

The Big Do-Not-Buy-Section

This are items I have seen players getting on Skarner, but aren't even worth getting. I don't care if you carried games with these items. And yes, I have tested them. This is my opinion, and I will tell you why I don't want to buy them on Skarner

Hextech Gunblade
Skarner is a hybrid, that is true. But you are not a offensive, tons of damage-dealing carry. You don't need the Spell vamp, you could use the Life Steal... But it's not necessary. The activate is good but I don't feel that Skarner have space for this item. He don't need the dmg or ability power. If you think you need Hextech Gunblade, you are playing him wrong from this guide.

Nashor's Tooth
What!? I mean, come on! Why? Sure. Attack Speed for the passive and AP for more damage... But really? Nashor's Tooth? Don't be stupid. Nashor's Tooth are only there to take space from other items that are good for Skarner

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Flat Attack Damage
+ Better jungle
+ Stronger attacks
Flat Armor
+ Easier Jungle
+ Tankyness
Magic Resist/Level
+ Tankyness
+ Able to deal with Magic DMG
Flat Attack Speed
+ Helps Passive
+ Faster Jungle

This is the runes I'm using as today. You can probably change to Attack Speed reds and whatever Quints you want. Movement Speed works great, but anything goes.

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Just basic good-to-have stuff from
this tree. It's not game-changing
or anything, just really good.
If you want, you can put 12 in




I try to pick what Skarner needs.
Well, I think Tankyness and Utility.
If you pick Masteries like this,
you should be fine.

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Summoner Spells

You are jungling. YOU ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO PICK SOMETHING ELSE. Please, I don't care if you can clear the jungle without smite. Smite helps you clearing the jungle faster, and to secure Baron and Dragon.

I use Flash on Skarner to do crazy surprise-initiates, and also for chasing or being chased. I know that Skarner I play is really fast, but sometimes it can be good to jump a wall or something like that.

Viable Summoner Spells

When i started playing Skarner i used this instead of Flash. Mainly for the Impale but also because high movement speed on Skarner is strong! But he doesn't have a gapcloser and he needs to get in range to use Impale. Ghost works, but Flash is just a better choice IMO.

I have never played Exhaust on Skarner, but i think it might work as a "opposit" for Ghost. Instead of speeding yourself up, you are slowing enemies. Exhaust is great for ganking, but Skarner already have slow. It works, but Flash is still a better choice IMO.

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Skill Sequence

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

This is for ganking and being a tank. I max Crystal Slash for the slow, and Crystalline Exoskeleton for speed and shield. I pick Impale when i can. Fracture is really good, but the high CD keeps me away from maxing it.

Crystal Slash
Skarner deals physical damage to all enemies within range, also causing subsequent uses of Crystal Slash within 4 seconds to deal bonus magic damage if he hits an enemy.

MMMGreat ability for clearing the jungle and farming. But AMAZING for pre-6 ganks. Once you hit the slow on the enemy, you will force a flash, or else you will kill, or your laner will.

Crystalline Exoskeleton
Skarner shields himself for up to 6 seconds, gaining bonus movement speed that increases by an additional 16% over 3 seconds while the shield holds

MMMMovement Speed and Shield. Great for keeping you healthy in the jungle, but also to increase your high tankyness. It will also make your jungling faster. It gives everything Skarner needs!

Skarner launches a blast of energy forward in a line that deals magic damage and Slow icon slows all enemies hit for 2.5 seconds, as well as and marking them with Crystal Venom for 5 seconds. Fracture's missile slows down every time it hits an enemy champion.
Skarner's next basic attack against a target marked with Crystal Venom consumes the mark to deal them bonus physical damage and Stun icon stun them for 1 second.

MMMIt's really good for ganking. I love what they did with this ability. Get this early and max it out last.

Skarner rears his stinger, rooting his target for 0.25 seconds as he brings it down, dealing 60% AD physical damage, magic damage and suppressing them for 1.75 seconds. At the end of the duration, the target takes the same damage again.

MMMGreat Ultimate! Good initiate, good ganking, good to shut down carries. It will suck if your opponent gets Mercurial Scimitar or Dervish Blade, but if they don't you are dangerous!

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Creeping / Jungling

Standard Route

This is a good, fast route and your laners should help you.
  • Start where the bot lane is, either Blue or Red. Use Smite. Spam Q.
  • Use W and run to the nearest camp.
  • Take that camp, go to next camp/buff.
  • Take out as much as you can before you back.
  • Gank when you see an opening. Don't waste time waiting for something.
  • If you get Stalker's Blade early, you will get more EXP from the jungle.

You don't have to go exactly this route, this is how i often go when I'm not counterjungling low-lvl.

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THIS COLOR MEANS: Walk here if the ward is placed there.
THIS COLOR MEANS: Walk here if the ward is placed there.


THIS COLOR MEANS: Walk here if the ward is placed there.
THIS COLOR MEANS: Walk here if the ward is placed there.


THIS COLOR MEANS: Walk here if the ward is placed there.
THIS COLOR MEANS: Walk here if the ward is placed there.
You can use this on top if the lane is pushed there aswell, but walk in from the base/tower.

Skarner pre-6 ganks is all about slowing your enemies and deal damage. If they used flash, that is still a good gank. If they died, it's a really good gank!

When you hit Level 6, ganking is easy. You don't have to use your ult directly, and in most cases you don't even need to. If you are ganking an champions with high CC and/or jumping abilities you might want to use it early and tell your mates to deal as much damage as possible for the kill, or even stun then the same secound your ultimate turns off.

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Me: I don't want to name and shame people, thats why i blurred all names, except from mine.


Let me know how you did, and i will paste it on the guide!

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This is it. Hope you think Skarner is a good champion!

Thanks to jhoijhoi! Your guide helped me alot!

It would really help me if you guys spread the word about this guide!
If I help alot of players, I will make other guides for my other champions.

I want to give all my love to everyone who gave me a +1!