Kog'Maw Build Guide by LiLStormcloaK
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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
Please note that this build was made in season 2 and hasn't been updated yet for season 3.
Though you can try the build above for season 3. (remember it is just a test)
Welcome to my Kog'Maw guide, he is one of my favourite champions because he is just so fun to play! In this guide I will show you how to play him as an AD carry. Please leave any and all opinions on my guide, I'm very open to constructive criticism.
Pros / Cons
+ Very long range
+ High damage output
+ Safe farming in lane
+ Best skins in the game
- No blinks/escapes/gap closers
- Little crowd control
- Farm reliant
- Needs to be well protected
|greater mark of desolation||space||Greater mark of desolation provides Armor Penetration, which is better than flat attack damage because it deals more damage to your opponent.||space||greater mark of desolation|
|space||Greater seal of resilience provides you with needed Armor, very useful for survival in lane, as it is where you struggle. There is no alternative to this.||space|
|space||Greater Quints of strength gives you additional attack damage, helps you last hit in lane, and deal more damage overall. After all, dealing tons of damage is your day job.||space|
|space||Greater mark of strength gives you flat attack damage, I recommend taking these if you have trouble last hitting minions.||space|
|space||Greater glyph of warding gives you flat magic resist, this will only be beneficial is your likely to take high amounts of magic damage before level 6.||space|
|space||Greater quint of swiftness gives you up to 4.5% movement speed, once again, Kog'Maw highly values it. Good choice if your an expert at last hitting.||space|
|space||Greater quint of vampirism provides you up to 6% lifesteal, another good way to sustain in lane, if you choose this option, consider switching Vampirism over to Havoc or skipping Vampiric Scepter(don't do both).||space|
|greater quintessence of desolation||space||Greater quint of desolation gives you armor penetration. The choice between this and flat attack damage is again, down to your ability to last hit.||space||greater quintessence of desolation|
|space||Greater quint of fortitude gives you 78 health, it's a decent amount to lower the chances of you dying. But I found the lifesteal to be more usef than this.||space|
As an AD carry, your almost always going to put atleast 21 points into offense. For the other 9 points, you can put it all in defense, all in utility, or a mixture of both.
- The more AD the better, if really have trouble last hitting, consider taking out points and put it into butcher.
Butcher - The reason we have one point in this is because 4 points are required to move on, Summoner's Wrath would be useless with heal, and you don't need ability power.
Alacrity - Gives you 4% attack speed, it might not seem like a lot, but every little bit counts.
Weapon Expertise - An extra 10% Armor Penetration, how wonderful! This will increase your damage output, always take a point in this.
Deadliness - Attack damage per level, again free attack damage, the reason we take this over havoc is so that we can unlock lethality.
Lethality - Extra 10% damage on critical hits, since you will be building phantom dancer and infinity edge, you will be criting often, having that damage boosted by 10% ain't bad at all.
Vampirism - Gives you up to 3% lifesteal, very good for early laning, combined with your Doran's Blade and Vampiric Scepter, will give you a good amount of lifesteal throughout the entire laning phase.
Sunder - 6 more Armor Penetration, the more the better. Always put 3 points in this.
Executioner - We didn't come all the way here to pass up on this, extra 6% damage when they're under 40% health, good for finishing off opponents.
Other Viable Option
Summoner's Wrath - Take the point out of butcher and put it here if your using any summoners that fall under this.
Havoc - Increase your total damage output by 1.5%. Extra percentage damage is always good, but it really makes minimal impact, so I would recommend Vampirism the extra lane sustain.
So what's better you might ask? Vampirism or Havoc? Well both work very well with kog'maw, it all comes down to whether you want extra lane sustain or more damage is up to you.
Now you have the option of adding more points into offense, or put them in defense or utility. I would recommend either 9 in defense or utility, not a mixture of 2 or 3 of the trees.
9 in Defense
- If you choose to use heal or cleanse, you'll sant to take this, otherwise put it in resistance.
Hardiness - Like I said above, the extra armor would be more useful than the magic resistance.
Durability - Health per level, as in the name, some extra durability throughout the game, this also gives you access to veteran scars.
Veteran's Scars - 30 extra health, this might not seem like a lot, but it could make the difference between life and death.
Other Viable options
Resistance - Once again, if your not taking heal or cleanse, put the point in this, or if your know that you will he up against an AP champion, then move the points in Hardiness to this.
Vigor - Extra health regen is nice to have, but extra max health is better on kog'maw to make up for his squishiness.
I'm not going to go over the other 3 options, as veteran scars is the better choice.
9 in utility
- Reduces the cooldown of your flash by 15 seconds, I don't like this one myself, so it's really up to you, though I preferr it over good hands and improved recall.
Expanded Mind - Gives you mana per level, I personally like this on kog'maw, it could give you an extra shot of your ult for a kill. I recommend taking 3 points in this.
Swiftness - increase your movement speed by 2%, I really like having this since kog'maw dosen't have any speed boosts or blinks, outrunning your opponent will be the very important.
Runic Affinity - Increase your buff durations by 20%, this is pretty much the reason why you would be going for an utility tree. Kog'maw is a monster with red buff as you pretty much turn into Ashe with a huge range, also if you pick up a blue, you can spam your ult in lane and completely dominate it. And of course, never forget about baron.
Other Viable Options
Good Hands - Well 3 points will get you 10% less time spent dead, I prefer expanded mind because games usually dosen't last long enough for this to be very effective.
Improved Recall - Speeding up recall by a second could get you out of some clutch situations, but a shorter cooldown on flash would be more useful in my opinion.
Meditation - Mana regen, unneccassery, but it could be useful to fire off an extra shot of your Living Artillery to get a kill.
Scout - Increase your ward vision by 5%. Warding will primary be your supports job, so it's unneccassery to get this for yourself.
|Space||Flash - Defiantly necessary on Kog'maw, being his only escape, and could be used pick up a kill that's just out of reach.||Space|
|Space||Heal - As kog'maw you have a very weak laning phase, so heal is a very good option to keep yourself alive during the laning and baiting enemies into fights/tower dives.||Space|
|Space||Exhaust - Good spell to help you win 1 on 1 engages, I would recommend this spell if the enemy team has someone like Master Yi, or Tryndamere who would just go straight for you pretty much in every team fight.||Space|
|Space||Cleanse - It's a lot more stronger late game compared to heal, take this if the enemy has a lot of CC or you have a team that isn't the best at protecting you, take this versus lanes like Taric+ Caitlyn.||space|
Other Viable Options
||Ghost - Ghost is a good spell for escaping, but you don't have enough survivability to make the extra distance count, so I recommend Flash.||space
||Ignite - This spell has recently been used on AD carries, but it's not very good on Kog'Maw, why? Because his strength is his long range, and the range on Ignite does not pair well with this at all.||space
||Teleport - This lets you teleport you to an allied minion, ward or structure, the main use of this will be teleporting back to lane after being pushed out, so that you don't loose gold and experience.||space
Remember the order of these items could change depending on how well you're doing, or how your enemy are playing. For Ex. If they aren't building armor, You won't need Guardian Angel and could grab a The Bloodthirster first.
||This is a good early game item as it gives some stats for a cheap price, I usually grab two of these. You can sell these late game for an item slot as they will make minimal impact by then.||space
||Gives you much needed lifesteal to stay lane, since Health Potion will be less effective.||space
||Standard boots for an AD Carry. The reason we finish this before going on to buy something like Zeal is for the increased movement speed, which is very important to kog'maw who dosen't have any blinks and little crowd control.||space
||The reason I grab his first before Infinity Edge is because your Bio-Arcane Barrage gives you a lot of extra damage. So grabbing attack speed would be more beneficial in this case.||space
|Space||The best AD item in the game to grab, grab this after Phantom Dancer, provides you with tons of damage and increases crit percentage, along with critical chance.||Space|
|Space||By this time the enemy takes will most likely have over 120 armor at least, to deal with them, build a last whisper and along with the mastery Weapon Expertise , you will have 50% armor penetarion with additional flat armor penetration.||Space|
|Space||Now it's time to consider some defensive options, Guardian angel offers some armor and magic resist, along with a revive with a 5 minute cooldown. Personally its my favorite defensive item.||Space|
|Space||Provides you with 100 AD and 20% lifesteal when it's fully stacked. There is no better end game item then this, if a game is still going on, this should do the trick.||Space|
|Space||Gives you 10 AD and some health, I recommend grabbing this when you finish your build or if your team is about to engage in an important Baron, then you'll want to pot up to gain an advantage.||Space|
|Space||grants up to 22% attack speed and 8% critical chance, again, grab this when you finished your build or for an important upcoming fight.||Space|
Remember the order of items can be changed. For example if your opponents docent have a tank, you can skip last whisper, or if they are never focusing you, skip Guardian angel.
Situational Offensive Items
|Space||I personally hate building this item on my AD carries, but if you're getting destroyed in lane, then this could be a good option. You'll probably want to skip your Doran's Blade if going this route, otherwise you'll your main core items will be delayed for way too long, meaning that your team will probably lose most team fights as their AD carry will have an Infinity Edge, and your stuck with a Wriggle's Lantern and a B. F. Sword.||Space|
|Space||Gives you 15 armor shred on enemies per hit, with your high attack speed this isn't too bad, but it could be easily counter by just a piece of armor, and will make your Last Whisper less useful if you still buy it later. But if your opponents are really stupid and never buy armor, then this could be a good choice. Check the section below on Last Whisper vs. The Black Cleaver.||Space|
Situational Defensive Items
|Space||This item is great is the enemy team has very strong crowd control like Amumu, take this if you didn't take cleanse. Overall a very cheap item, that provides some magic resist and will surely save your life multiple times.||Space|
|Space||This is a pretty good alternative to Guardian Angel, if your biggest problem is an AP champion, this could be the better option.||Space|
|Space||I don't recommend this, but if need more armor, I recommend just buying a Cloth Armor and holding onto it for a while, or building Wriggle's Lantern.||Space|
|Space||This is a good item to take if the enemy team is filled with crowd control and that you don't have cleanse. The biggest downside about this is the higher price that may impact how fast you finish a major item.||Space|
Last Whisper vs. Black Cleaver
+ Gives percentage Armor Penetration
+ Can only be countered by selling armor
- Provides only attack damage
- Provides less attack damage
- Requires Pickaxe rather than B. F. Sword
+ Gives attack speed
+ Gives more attack damage
+ Benefits all ADs on the team
- Can be counter by buying armor
- Armor shred doesn't proc until after an attack
- Requires 3 hits first for maximum effectiveness
So what is better? It's really up to your personal preference, I would recommend Last Whisper as it's a much safer pick, but whatever you choose, do not get both as they counter each other.
Skills / Sequence
Icathian surprise(Passive) : When Kog'maw dies, he's is able to move for a few seconds with an increased movement speed, exploding after 4 seconds dealing 100+(25xlevel) TRUE DAMAGE.
Very good for getting revenge kills in lane and cleaning up in late game team fights.
Caustic Spittle(Q):Passively increases your attack speed by 10/15/20/25/30%. When activated, shoots a short range projectile dealing 60/110/160/210/260(+70% AP) magic damage, also reducing their armor and magic resist by 5/10/15/20/25 for 4 seconds.
Generally used as an auto attack refresh to last hit minions when necessary or taking down objectives like baron/dragon. The reason is because you should never be this close to any opposing champion, thought if someone like Nocturne gets to you, you can attempt to burst them down with this.
We max this second as it will be slightly more useful than the extra damage and slow void ooze brings.
Bio-arcane Barrage(W): When activated, Kog'maw gains an additional 130/150/170/190/210 range and deals an additional 2/3/4/5/6%(+1% Per AP) magic damage for 8 seconds.
This is the ability that makes Kog'Maw so good. Being able to out range most champions and deal extra damage makes it hard for others to get close to you, while dealing tons of poke damage. This is why attack speed would be more beneficial to build first on Kog'Maw. This is also a useful tool to farm safely with during the laning phase.
We max this first as it is your main steroid that deals the most damage and gives you the massive range.
Void Ooze(E): A skillshot that hits all enemies in a line, dealing 60/110/160/260+(70% AP), also leaving a trail that slowing enemy champions and creeps standing on it by 20/28/36/44/52% that lasts for 4 seconds.
This is the only form of crowd control you have, this should get used to chase, run away, and occasionally to shove lane.
We max this last because the attack speed and armor/magic resist shred is more useful than the extra damage and slow.
Living Artillery(R): Fires an artillery which lands .6 of a second after it has been launched, there is a visible indicator showing where it will land. It deals 80/120/160+(30% AP)+(.5 per bonus attack damage) to all enemies in the area, with an additional 125% towards champions(225% Total), also revealing them for the next 4 seconds. Each living artillery fired shortly after another will cost an extra 40 mana, cap at 200.
A basic Poke and finisher ability, but it could also be used between auto attacks to increase total damage output. make sure if you're using it for poke, wait for the extra mana debuff to end before firing another one. The only time you'll want to spam this is when your going for a kill.
TIPS AND TRICKS FOR AIMING
You're generally going to be using this skill to chase enemy champions out of your auto attack range. So try and fire it ahead of them, take their movement speed into to consideration. This way, they'll either have to take the damage or juke to the side to let you close the distance on them.
As you can see from the picture above, I have all my skills on smart cast except for Living Artillery as it messes up my aim sometimes. I recommend trying both ways out first, even if you only use smart cast, or never use smart cast.
Blood Boil gives you a large amour of attack speed and movement speed, letting you easily last hit and poke your opponents with ease, if they try to retaliate, just outrun them with boots and your increased movement. His Ice Blast and Absolute Zero are 2 strong slows that can make up for your lack of crowd control. Having nunu's Blood Boil will surely be a time where you would build Infinity Edge before Phantom Dancer.
Eye Of The Storm gives a strong shield and an attack damage boost. She comes with tons of crowd control, Howling Gale is a skillshot that knocks up all enemies in a line, Zephyr is a single target spell that slows an enemy and Monsoon knocks all enemies back and heals you, an amazing spell for protecting you against champions like Nocturne!
Help, Pix! is a strong shield that can also be used to stick onto an enemy and reveal their position, good way to help you snipe your Living Artillery. Whimsy can give you a very good speed boost or morph an enemy completely useless up to 2.5 seconds. Glitterlance is a very strong slow, again, makes up for your crowd control. Wild Growth is an amazing skill at protecting you, gives you extra health, knocks up all enemies' around you and applies an aura that slows all enemies around you, making melee champions almost useless. Also, remember that the extra health it gives is unaffected by Ignite.
Zenith Blade, Shield of Daybreak and Solar Flare will usually do the trick at level 6. She is also likely go live through it with her increased defense from Eclipse. Again, lacks the ability to heal.
Astral Blessing and Wish are 2 very strong heals, Infuse gives you mana or heals you. With her, you pretty much just want to focus on farming, your unlikely to die but unlikely get a kill. Consider using Cleanse or Exhaust with her.
Hymn of Valor combined with Power Chord are very strong early game poke tools to make up for your weak early game damage. Aria of Perseverance is a decent heal tagged along with a passive defensive boost. Song of Celerity gives you a speed boost, again very valuable to Kog'Maw who has no blinks. Crescendo is a large AoE stun that can secure you kills or help you get away.
Pulverize and Headbutt, try and take advantage of being pushed with a Flash, Pulverize and Headbutt into the tower. Triumphant Roar is a decent spammable heal, but grabs it at level 3.
Prismatic Barrier is a pretty good shield, but has travel time and may not be quick enough in some situations. She provides good crowd control through Light Binding and Lucent Singularity. Her finales funkeln can Help you push and deal a decent amount of damage.
Imbue is a rather weak heal, as he does max this second, and like Alistar, grabs it at level 3.
His Dazzle is a single target stun, combined with Shatter which shreds the enemies armor, can put out some burst potential, Radiance is a good AoE team aura.
Supports to avoid - Blitzcrank
Laning / Farming
Laning - You don't have too good of a laning phase, as your base stats aren't great and you scale well into the late game. During levels 1-5 your focus is just to farm, don't be too aggressive as most other AD carries will outmatch you early game. Try to use your Bio-Arcane Barrage to farm, you can easily be bursted down at level 2 by let's say a Taric/ Caitlyn lane. When versing opponents like Leona or Blitzcrank, try to dodge these skill shots by either staying behind minions or juking(which is more risky). You can ask your support to drop a ward in the side bushes if you feel unsafe. I also recommend letting your opponents push the lane to your tower, as it is where you will be the safest in lane.
Ganks from your Jungler - As you will most likely to be pushed under your tower, this could make for easy ganks, try to keep track whether the enemies have a ward in their inventory, if they do, check if they step out lane and ward. If your jungler comes, you can attempt to bait your opponents into a fight. When they're running away, make sure to use your Void Ooze to attempt to slow them down.
Farming - I'm sure many of you know how to farm under tower, but I just want to go over it to make sure that you guys do this right. You will likely be pushed to the tower, so here are things you need to know.
Melee Creeps - Let them take 2 tower shots and then auto attack
Caster creeps - Let your support/laning partner auto attack them each once, then let the tower attack them once, then auto attack. (If your Lane Partner isn’t in lane, you can do an auto attack followed by a Caustic Spittle to grab the last hits if necessary.)
Hopefully your able to grab most of the CS as it will help a lot for Mid-Late game.
Red and Blue Buff
Red Buff - Kog'maw becomes an even scarier monster with this, it deals damage over time and slows all targets that it hits with auto attacks. This buff lasts for 2:30, 3:00 minutes with Runic Affinity . During the mid-late game, you should attempt to get this from your jungle.
Note: The lizard elder has a respawn timer of 5 minutes.
Blue Buff - Blue buff will allow you to spam living artillery all day! You'll usually leave this for your mid/AP carry/caster, unless your mid dosen't need it(Ex.kennen), go ahead and take it for yourself. It gives you high mana regen and lowers your cooldowns by 20%, lasting 2:30, 3:00 with Runic Affinity .
Note: The ancient golem has a 5 minute respawn timer.
Dragon and Baron
Dragon - On summoners rift, dragon is also a key jungle creep, it gives each member of your team 190 gold, giving your team a large advantage especially early on in the game. Dragon is located above the bot lane. Try to have it warded. Good times to go for dragon is if your opponents had just backed or died, making it hard for them to contest, just make sure that your jungler is there so it doesn’t get Smite stolen. If your opponents are going for dragon, you can use your ultimate to check the dragon or opponents in safe a position if there is no ward there, there is always a slim chance that you could steal and sometimes scare them away.
Note: Dragon has a respawn timer of 6 minutes.
Your Living Artillery is a great way to check the dragon when there is no ward.
Baron - Baron is the most important and game changing jungle creep in the game. It gives you 40 AD and AP, 3% health regen and 1% mana regen, and 400 gold for each member of your team. This buff lasts for 4 minutes and is unaffected by Runic Affinity . It is key to have this warded at all times past the 15 minute mark(when it spawns), as if a team obtains this, it could mean the difference in a close game. Once again, you can use your ult to check if baron you suspect that it's being taken as it gives vision for 4 seconds.
Tips: Have your support or tank to buy an Oracle's Elixir or Vision Ward to clear enemy wards, then attempted to bait them into face checking it for easy kills, which will lead up to a free baron.
Note: Baron has a respawn timer of 7 minutes.
Your Living Artillery is a great way to check the baron when there is no ward.
Position / Team Fights
Your positioning in a team fight is very important in team fights. You want to try and stay in the back, abusing your long range. You should never be the one starting a fight, let you tank(Ex. Amumu, Shyvana go in first, follow behind and try to pick out high priority targets, such as their AD and AP carry. If you're unable to hit these targets safely in range, consider either hitting their tank as your Bio-Arcane Barrage and hopefully your Last Whisper does a good job of combating them, or try to reposition yourself, possibly in a bush on side or over a small wall.
Upon team fights you can do a pretty good job of poking enemies with your Living Artillery and long range. If your going to do this, make sure not to use all your mana and get caught a random Bandage Toss into Curse of the Sad Mummy or something.
I recently started making this guide, so I don't many screenshots of my victories in the past, the servers has been down often recently and queue times are longer than you would like. So currently I don't have many photos, but there will surely be more to come.
We won 4v5!
Got screenshots? Feel free to send them in.
I want to thank you once again for reading my guide, hopefully it has helped you out and I would really appreciate an upvote, along with your opinion on my guide and how I could Improve it.
A big shout out to JhoiJhoi's making a guide for making this possible.
Thank you MiisMaw for the great pictures!
And Mowen for her great guide, it's what made me start playing kog'maw and lead to the making of this guide.
Also IceCreamy for the feedback and review.
October 4th 2012 - 100,000 views, Hooray!
July 30th 2012 - Scout point given by MissMaw
July 1st 2012 - Re-re-reviewed by Icecreamy, 8.7/10, Scout point given.
June 30th 2012 - New banners added, made by MissMaw
June 26th 2012 - Format/Appearance reworked
June 25th 2012 - ReReview from Icecreamy, 8/10
June 24th 2012 - Additional content
June 23rd 2012 - Review from Icecreamy, 6.7/10
June 22nd 2012 - Guide Released