Mordekaiser Build Guide by Bellator
This build has been archived and is for historical display only.
PLEASE NOTE: This build has been archived by the author. They are no longer supporting nor updating this build and it may have become outdated. As such, voting and commenting have been disabled and it no longer appears in regular search results.
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.
BEFORE WE GET STARTED....
Since originally making this guide over a month ago, my ideas that surround playing Mordekaiser have changed significantly thanks to the contributions from many, many players in the Mobafire community.
I could sit here for the rest of the night thanking everyone and saying everything I want to, however I'll keep it short.
This guide is still a work in progress. Every day I'm getting new and better ideas on how to improve this guide, and how to play Mordekaiser in general.
I have some in-the-works at the moment, including more recommended build compositions in the "Core Item Builds" section, a revamp of the masteries explanation, skill sequence, etc.
There are some inconsistencies that will be weeded out soon as well, seeing as I changed my play style from the input some of you made in the comments and other places on this site.
Lastly, this won't happen all at once. This is a fun hobby for me as I love to help people as much as I can, I enjoy playing Mordekaiser and I hope I can really make this the best damn overall guide on the site. However - I still have to prioritize "real life" over this, updates will be coming out every week but, as I said, It won't just be magically done.
One last thank you to everyone, and especially YOU -the reader-. I hope you enjoy this guide and your game experiences past this guide as much as I've enjoyed my experience in making this guide and playing Mordekaiser this way.
Bellator (AKA StrangerDangr)
WHOA WHOA WHOA!
Whoa there, pal! Why aren't your builds that you show complete? What the hell is up with that buddy?
- Well first off, buddy, these are just there to show you how you're going to be starting off almost all your games. They show that, hey, you need resistances. You're an offtank, and no matter how you look at it you're going to need to get up-close and personal with the enemy. So you need your resistances. Now what you build those into? Completely optional, take a look at some of the recommended builds in the "Core Item Builds" section, or take a look at some optional items in the Items section. Totally up to the situation and your preference.
Hold on, cowboy, I still don't like this. Now I can't just look at this guide for a quick reference as to what I build next.
- Well, find what you like to build out of the recommended items, write them down or use one of the many online resources to list out these items. My build describes the starting items you're going to be getting with my build 99.999999999999% of the time, all of these items build into something else (Besides the obvious Health Potion and boots.)
Character Strengths and How This Build Emphasizes on Them
Mordekaiser is a very strong AP champion, with an overwhelming burst that can quickly turn almost any fight in your favor. This build emphasizes on these strengths by adding a significant amount of AP while still being incredibly durable and tanky, emphasizing on giving you plenty of resistances and cooldown reduction to keep your shield strong and active. An expensive build, yes, but Mordekaiser is an outstanding farmer and can easily afford it.
Mordekaiser works best as a "hit and run" champion. As an example, running in, using Siphon of Destruction and then running out, once his quarry is at relatively low health, you can run in and finish him using the rotation described later in this guide.
Siphon of Destruction does, frankly, an absurd amount of damage, especially with this build since it utilizes higher AP.
Why Mordekaiser is NOT A ****ING TANK
First off, let's take a look in what requirements need to be met to be a 'tank'.
Can you Initiate effectively? | No.
Can you prevent damage/escape well? | Prevent damage, yes. Escape well, no.
Can you take a carry out of the fight to be focused? | No.
Can you prevent a teammate from dying? | Not by defensive means.
Can you be ignored in a fight? | No.
This fits the criteria for a tanky carry more than an actual tank. At BEST Mordekaiser is an off-tank.
This is true no matter how you build him.
Pros / Cons
+ Very durable due to his passive shield, Iron Man
+ Can negate almost all forms of harassment if his shield is up.
+ Has the ability to carry teammates, especially with Children of the Grave which can turn 5v5 fights into 6v4.
+ Siphon of Destruction is a low-cost, low-cooldown and high damage cone ability which is the bread and butter of this build.
+ Snowballs EXTREMELY well if played properly. Early-game is very important to AP/Tanky Mordekaiser
+ Doesn't use any form of energy, instead uses health to cast abilities. Some people view this as a con but I view this a pro, especially since this build has more than enough health regen to make up for it.
+ Mordekaiser is a forgiving champion, due to his Iron Man passive, and his abilities.
- Mordekaiser is NOT a true tank. He has no CC abilities, nothing to save your teammates, and nothing to effectively initiate battles.
- Mordekaiser is a cooldown reliant champ. Without his Children of the Grave/ Ignite ready his burst is diminished to ****.
- Mejai's Soulstealer is a high risk, high reward item. Your early game is very important to this.
- Champs who stack high MR are very difficult to kill.
- Requires an exceptional level of skill, both with the champion and map awareness to play effectively. Although, this really goes with most champions.
Core Items Builds
* Randuin's Omen can be replaced with Force of Nature or whatever situational resistances you need.
I DO NOT recommend this build in most situations. This is more of my "LOL **** YOU" build when I'm absolutely dominating a game.
All the spell vamp you could ever use, and then amp it up with a Spirit Visage. Aww yeah. Top it off with a Guardian Angel for resistances. Definitely fun to play with.
(Very) Tanky - AP
This build allows you to have a ****-load of resistances while still granting you enough ability power to pack enough of a punch to keep your shield up. If you want to play a Mordekaiser that can truly tank, this would be the build to do that.
Items - Core. Situational. Luxury.
Starting out with this gives you the health regeneration necessary to spam your abilities and not have to pay the consequences of constantly losing health, coupled with a health potion this makes your early laning ability superior.
Most people see Mejai's Soulstealer on a Mordekaiser and think you're an idiot... Use this to your advantage, they won't focus you over your team's carry. This allows you to conserve stacks much easier.
The whole idea around Mejai's Soulstealer isn't so that you build ****-tons of AP, it's so that you can build, for example, Randuin's Omen AND Force of Nature to cover all your resistances, now you do plenty of damage due to Mejai's Soulstealer AND still have all the gold you need to build into a full tank - regardless of what ELO you're at.
In short, I try to stay away from this item. The health isn't that great the ability power is pretty minor and the slow really minor considering all your abilities are AOE.
Resistances and Everything Tanky:
This item will be your primary supply on armor in most scenarios, all the other stats don't hurt and the use effect is incredibly nice if you remember to use it - and use it at a good time (in the middle of a team fight, awwyeah)
And always remember...:
NO! Bad dog! BAD DOG! Warmog's Armor implys a bad pick.
Build this ONLY, if you are the main tank, and you are getting chain cc'd by a high dps, insane chain stun team, like Blitzcrank/ Alistar/ Soraka/ Annie/ Jax
Well, first of all, we have to look at the benefits of Warmog's Armor.
1. 1370 health
2. 45 hp/5, which is 7 hp per second.
This seems pretty good right? The best Health per Gold in the game, with 7 hp regen per second for only 3000g!
Lets look at Hextech Revolver.
Assuming you are using 9/0/21 and only have Hextech Revolver and enough magic pen to do true damage to minions, then this is what your abilities will do.
Mace of Spades (Q) does 222 damage to four minions, or 386 to one minion, and has a 3.6s CD, and costs 40hp.
Creeping Death (W) does 540 damage to an unlimited number of targets and has a 11s CD, and costs 50hp.
Siphon of Destruction (E) does 275 damage to an unlimited number of targets and has a 5.5s CD, and costs 72hp.
Children of the Grave (R) does 34% of an enemy champion's health, 17 instantly, 17 over 10s. You heal for 100% of this damage.
Now, Q would heal you for 888*.05=44.4hp, or 386*.15=57.9hp.
W would heal for 27 for each target it hits, if you catch the whole minion wave, that is 27*6= 162hp
E would heal for 13.75hp, becoming an effective "heal" at 6 targets, the whole minion wave (heals 82.5hp)
R would heal for 17*1.15= 19.55% of their maximum health before mitigation, basically that means that if they have 2k health, you heal for almost 400 when you ult them, and then another 400 over 10 seconds.
So, Warmog's Armor gives 1370 health, and 7hp/s.
Using all your skills on CD assuming you have 9% CDR, you use 28.5hp/s.
With a Hextech Revolver, using all your skills on CD against 4 targets (just for instance), you would be healing for 32 health per second.
What does this all mean?
It means that a Hextech Revolver will catch up to the health from a Warmog's Armor in just 54 seconds.
Also, Spell Vamp scales with CDR, actually heals you as apposed to just giving you a bigger pool of health.
To compare two items with similar costs, we will use a Will of the Ancients + a Hextech Revolver.
Q does 1008 damage to four targets, heals for 134.4, has a 3.64s CD.
W does 2544 damage to four targets, heals for 339.2, has a 10.92s CD.
E does 1292 damage to four targets, heals for 172.3, has a 5.46s CD.
This means that using all your spells on CD, you will heal for 36.9+31.1+31.2= 99.2 hp per second.
So you are caught up to Warmog's Armor in 14 seconds of skill usage.
This math is completely besides the synergy with Spell Vamp + Your passive, and completely besides the fact that you are doing more damage with the spell vamp items.
Warmog's brings you very little to the laning phase for such a big 3000g price tag.
Special thanks to Temzilla for this section.
Skill Explanations & Sequence
- Iron Man allows you to take an extreme amount of harassment without actually taking any damage to your health. This will turn the tide of most battles just by the sheer amount of damage you absorb.
- While some builds emphasize the use of this ability, this ability is just a small part of our spell rotation, with only minimal usage, unless you build towards Lich Bane.
- Creeping Death is a good offensive and defensive spell, dealing damage to targets in a radius around you as well as boosting your resistances. This can also be used on other targets than yourself, granting them the benefits while still boosting your shield for the damage it does.
- Ah, Siphon of Destruction. This is the spell you'll have tons of fun with. This will be your big hitter, with a short cooldown, high AoE damage and relatively low health cost. This is by far your greatest all-around spell. You should actively harass your opponents, running in, siphoning, and getting out. Most or all damage they might do to you on your way out will be absorbed by your Iron Man shield. Remember, you can use your siphon quickly on a nearby wave of creeps, if you hit them all you should easily reach your shields full power. This can assist you in all sorts of ways; Use your imagination!
- Your ultimate ability. This is what can truly turn any battle in your favor. Can be used defensively due to it's lifestealing component, or offensively to grant you a ghost of the enemy champion you cast it on... IF you can kill them.
NOTE: SINCE I'VE BEEN MOVING AWAY FROM USING Exhaust ON Mordekaiser FOR HIGH ELO PLAY, THIS SECTION IS BEING REMODELED FOR SUCH. THANK YOU FOR YOUR UNDERSTANDING.
You're soloing top lane against Katarina. You're level 7. She Shunpos in and it looks like she might be trying to kill you, but then she starts to back out. You have half health and she has near full health. Neither of you have any kills. You want to kill her. How do you do this?
- Siphon of Destruction
- Mace of Spades
- Creeping Death
- Children of the Grave
- Siphon of Destruction...
- What would've probably happened: She realized you were dedicating to her with the Exhaust, since she couldn't do anything she likely would've tried to kite around until she's either out of it, or she could Shunpo to a mob and get away. Exhaust would last up until you cast your ultimate. Whether or not she gets out of your range, chances are she's a dead woman walking. DoT spells are a pain like that.
Now, let's assume she turned around when you cast Exhaust on her an started to attack you. If she pops her ultimate that's wasted in the exhaust, so she just auto attacks you. (Try to aim your Siphon's so they hit her, as well as the enemy creep waves. This gives you a larger bonus to your shield.) By the time the Exhaust has worn off, you Ignite and then ult her. She will either try to Shunpo to a nearby mob and try to get away (and likely die from the DoT spells), or, she'll pop her ult and try to finish you. Chances are that she'll die before that happens, the lifesteal component of Children of the Grave helps with that. The chances of her winning this fight is incredibly unlikely.
- Of course, not every scenario plays out how you want it to (Nor is every scenario against a Katarina that solos top...) There are too many variables to judge that. This is simply an example to try to point out the skill order. The general order for most 1v1 or similar odds engagements would be similar or the same. Mostly rotating around your Siphon of Destruction, which is your 'bread and butter' spell.
- Siphon of Destruction
- Mace of Spades
- Creeping Death
- Children of the Grave
- Siphon of Destruction...
E > F > Q > W > D > R > E
(Notice a pattern?)
- If your target isn't dead by then, you either need to take stock of the situation and make a decision of whether you want to keep attacking or retreat, depending on the situation and your remaining health. As I've mentioned before, Mordekaiser is cooldown oriented and reliant. Without his ultimate, and Ignite his effectiveness drops considerably.
- To wrap it up, that will be your skill rotation. Use Siphon of Destruction as often as you can for harassment. When it comes down to it, your judgement must decide when it is an appropriate time to use your spells.
Mordekaiser. It syncs up well when used just before his Children of the Grave ultimate spell. Remember to use this BEFORE Children of the Grave due to the dramatic range difference between the two. Before I realized this mistake I'd have times where I'd pop my ultimate, and the target would Flash out of range of my Ignite, thus getting away by single digits of health points.
Mordekaiser early-game kills will mean the difference late game, with a good snowballing effect from dominating the lane early-game.
best summoner spell in the game. I don't necessarily agree with that statement, although it might easily be on of the most balanced or hybrid spells, seeing as it has very strong offensive and defensive uses. You can chase an enemy and Flash to them to get that last hit, or you can Flash away or over a wall to get away from pursuers. Personally, I find this spell to be superior to Ghost for Mordekaiser. Ghost is a more tank-oriented spell, that allows you to move around in a team fight easily. Flash is a superior last-ditch escape mechanism.
Mordekaiser players must strongly disagree with me, I don't like this spell for Mordekaiser, but it's a fine pick if you like this over Flash. Ghost strikes me as a "hit or miss" spell when running away, when Flash tends to be a complete get-out-of-jail free card.
A to point B. in under 5 seconds, no matter where those points are. Pretty damn nice spell to allow you to stay in your lane, not my favorite but this is definitely a viable spell to grab on Mordekaiser.
Cleanse is a good summoner spell, I discourage anyone taking this over any listed in "The Good" section. Those are spells truly suited for Mordekaiser. In ranked play, however, Cleanse can be an invaluable spell against teams with incredibly heavy CC.
If you're getting any other summoner spell, you're doing it wrong.
Masteries Explained - 10/5/15 and 9/0/21
NOTE: THIS SECTION IS BEING REMODELED.
I chose what might be considered a rather unorthodox mastery build, I'll explain it here.
I went into offense to get the bonuses in ability power, cooldown reduction, and spell penetration. As well as upgrading Exhaust and Ignite. All of these offer tremendous benefits to Mordekaiser
The increase in resistances is a bonus throughout the entire game, helping with survivability.
The benefits for going into the Utility tree far outweigh any benefits you get for either finishing off the Offense tree, or going more into the Defense tree.
I honestly think the usefulness of Perseverence is minimal at best, and not worth putting more than 1 point into. I put two points in because I needed a filler to reach Quickness.
The gold you receive from Greed is minimal, but it DOES add up over the span of the game. However, if there was something better to put it into in this tree, I would. Seeing as that is not the case, this is the best option.
Utility Mastery is a 'meh' ability for Mordekaiser, overall. He doesn't benefit from the red or blue buffs as much as most other champions would. However, the need for the additional movement speed throughout the game, as well as the lack of better options, makes this the best choice to go into. Having the buffs is inherently a good thing no matter what - but don't be hogging the buffs for yourself! Remember to share with your teammates who would benefit more from the buff than you would.
Drop Burning Embers .
Drop all points in Resistance and Hardiness .
Put all the same points in, but this time max out (3/3) in Perseverence and then put a point into Blink of an Eye .
Max out (3/3) in Intelligence and put one point into Presence of the Master
This second mastery build gives significantly more cooldown reduction, both in summoners and regular spells. I've explained before that Mordekaiser is cooldown reliant, and this helps to benefit that fact at the cost of Burning Embers and some resistances. However, you have to put a point into Blink of an Eye so this mastery build works better with Flash, although you don't have to choose Flash, and you can put that point there as a filler to reach the others.
Your primary source of magic penetration from runes. By far the best marks you can have while playing your heavy metal monstrosity.
Greater Seal of Vitality
20 HP per rune, multiply that by 9 rune slots... That's a pretty huge chunk of HP no matter how you look at it.
Flat armor definitely helps all game, it benefits your shield and certainly your early game. My preference for seals.
Early game ability power that just keeps getting sexier. Yummy.
"Cooldown Reduction never hurt so much.."
I've noticed that Mordekaiser really doesn't have that much defense early-game until he starts building it - getting a few of these really helps with his early-game defense and is easily a viable pick.
More magic penetration didn't hurt anybody... That we care about...
Ability power to destroy ERRRRRRRRBODY!
Q: Why do you swear often in your guide?
A: I'm not 9 years old. Grow up.
Q: Why not Warmog's Armor?
A: Read the ****ing guide.
Q: Why are you so sexy?
A: .... I'm that much of a stud. What does that have to do with the guide?
More FAQ's will be added soon.
- Replaced Warmog's Armor with Rylai's Crystal Scepter after this was brought to my attention by Guidemaker. Rylai's is an overall better fit for Mordekaiser, while still granting a considerable amount of HP, it also gives AP and a very nice slow for his abilities.
- Misc. Updates throughout the guide. More to come.
- Added Ghost to "The Good" section after some thought, it IS a good spell for Mordekaiser, I just don't prefer it. Many others do.
- Changed the builds significantly to just be a basic build that can build into a vast amount of situational items. Items section is in the works but I've been slacking (I admit it). It'll be here by the end of the week. I pwomise. <3
- Also, a thanks to Temzilla for criticizing and quite a few ideas I'm implementing into the guide to make it the best damn Mordekaiser build on Mobafire.
- Misc updates, improvements and etc.
- Added a "Runes" Chapter... I'm tired as **** though so I'll finish it and revise it later... Probably will remove this rather unnecessary rambling too... Yeah... Sleep depravity does this to you...
NOTES: Runes need to be updated. Currently in the works.
- Items will be updated, are currently in the works and will be completed. within the next few days.
- Also, screen shots will be added soon. Proof of concept, etc, other fun stuff.
- ^ Screen shots were added.
- Items section near completion, feedback or other items that you want put on there, feel free to recommend.
- The whole guide was revamped in one way or another, made it a lot cleaner and easier on the eyes. Enjoy :)
- More to come... Not done quite yet!
21:45: Published Updates - Enjoy.
- Minor changes and cosmetics.
- Minor cosmetics.
- Completed "Runes" section. Enjoy.
- Core build explanation in the works. Recommended items section also in the works. Items section being improved.
- Added Boots of Speed as a viable starting item, coupled with health potions.
- Added more links to the bibliography.
- Reworked the "Items" section, added a "Spell Vampirism" section to it as well.
- Changed up some of the centering and the layout of the guide, mostly small things here and there.
- Added a "Core Items" section, currently in the works. More recommended builds and such will be added soon!
- Added more humorous humor. And stuff. And things.
- Added a section describing why NOT to use Warmog's Armor on Mordekaiser. Special thanks to Temzilla for this.
- Special thanks to ShadowNet for the "Spell Vamp ES #1" Picture. :)
- Improved visual layout. Added some colors. Small visual improvements. Etc.
- Implemented ~some~ of the changes suggested by jhoijhoi. More improvements on the way every day!
- These changes include visual improvements and added text color.
- Removed the "Build #1 & #2" Section.
- Removed Mejai's Soulstealer build, I'll create a section describing Mejai's Soulstealer and it's uses, why/why not.
- Added a humorous section describing the item build, and why it's not 'complete'.
- Fixed up the screenshots, made them look nicer. Added another one of the match history screen.
- Moved the Summoner Spells section.
- Added a little more color ^_^
- Fixed some minor errors and such. Updated some colors.
- Some sections are still in the works, but I've published what I have.
- More screenshots! Yay!
- Added proper URL links to the bibliography section and a couple in the guide crediting various people.
- Polished up the Items section.
- Minor changes in a few places throughout the guide.
- Added a tanky build to the core item section.
- Changed Sorcerer's Shoes to Ionian Boots of Lucidity in the spell vampire build in the core items section. It didn't have enough CDR and that build was reliant on it.
- Switched Will of the Ancients for Hextech Gunblade in the Pentakill build in the core items section. The gunblade is just all-around superior.
- Merged the "Skill Explanation" and "Skill Sequence" chapters into one "Skill Explanation & Sequence" chapter
- Added chapter describing why Mordekaiser IS NOT A ****ING TANK.
- Added a "FAQ:" chapter.
- Added Greater Quintessence of Health as an alternative to the Magic Penetration and Ability Power Quintessence's that I recommended previously.
- Updated the Rune Explanation Page as such ^.
- Fixed Change log error.
- Guess what effect World of Warcraft has on people who are trying to write guides for another game...
Bibliography and References
Giving credit, where credit is due.
SixSonata's Revolutionary Build Format of Sophisticated Guides
Mordekaiser, The Master of Metal Wiki page!
jhoijhoi's Making A Guide... Guide!
Thanks to ShadowNet for the "Spell Vamp ES #1" Picture!
Thanks to Guidemaker for all his helpful criticism.
Special Thanks to Temzilla as well for the section on Warmog's Armor a link to his profile can be found here, it truly hasn't gotten the votes it deserves!
Last but not least, to Mydaddied for inspiring me to create this Mordekaiser build. The link to his build can be found here.