Hey so you want to play Teemo? Or you just want to know how The Rain Man does it? Either way, I am just revealing a few things that people have been guessing at about my playstyle.
Why is AP Teemo not viable?
AP teemo cannot farm well at all, is constantly HP starved, and is way too heavily reliant on shrooms to do damage. Basically the way I see it, every shroom you use in lane for killing creeps is one less shroom that can be used for lane/map control. As for AP Teemo's scaling with his E spell, its not nearly substantial enough to justify building AP, especially since in teamfights AP teemo will be the first target, and won't get off alot of autoattacks as basically a melee mage. Mages need to be able to sit at a distance and dish out damage while staying out of harm's way, and teemo's short autoattack range does not allow him to dish out damage effectively without putting him at risk.
Post-nerf Edit: AP Teemo is even less viable as shroom damage is nerfed, cooldown is insane, and AP Teemo has even less presence on a map.
However, some early game AP from runes might be viable. If you find yourself going more of an AP build, just make sure you can still fight in a 1v1 setting without getting instagibbed.
21/2/0 mastery build. Basically you grab arpen, spellpen, lifesteal. This build is pretty standard for any offensive based champion. I like it because getting 21 points in offense and grabbing the executioner talent allows you to finish off enemies as you chase them down. I feel that offense is much more optimal than full defense now because the tree is basically OP. You will still have some extra early hp from defense talents, but grabbing more in offense means that you will no longer need early doran's because you will have extra damage from offense. Now, you will be able to rush into phage and be outputting around the same amounts of damage.
Im using Arpen reds because they will synergize well with doran's blade +damage and lifesteal. Arpen will make laning phase easier, and will allow you to hit harder when you exchange blows with your lane if they are playing agressively. I have tried attackspeed, but early game you will hit even weaker than Teemo already does if you go this route. Flat MR blues give you good survivability early game, which is what Teemo is all about. I would definately not recommend MR/Level. HP/level yellows provide more survivability, and helps you lane against casters and physical compared to dodge runes which only help you against physical. And tbh, Teemo doesnt really have a problem laning physical anyways with blinding dart and wrigglers early game armor, so I would definately stick with hp/level. Flat HP quints give you more survivability, which is always good.
With flash ignite, you can bait kills and apply a healing debuff. Ignite adds some extra dot damage as well, and with red buff + maxed out E + shroom + ignite, thats alot of dots ticking out and to add to it the target is debuffed so heals wont be very effective. All in all, id say that if you can get a few autoattacks in with all that damage going out your target will usually be dead early game.
I max E asap as that is the ability that lets you last hit creeps and harass heroes easier. I pick this over Q because it allows you early game domination with autoattacks, and applies a pretty annoying debuff every time you hit a hero. I do not prioritize Q at all because after you hit somebody with a Q they are most likely going to back off anyways, so I think that an extra second of blind is not worth it. Because I don't max Q, I can max W which gives a huge burst of speed that can save your life, and help finish kills. Teemo's W is like a ghost on a really short cooldown, nerfed with the latest patch but still a very good skill nonetheless.
Basically the only way I see fit to play Teemo in his current state is tanky dps, played much like any melee champion. Grab an early wriggles, boots, and phage, and you will be as tanky as any tanky dps. Make sure you carry plenty of hp pots against tough laners, especially if you find that you are versus something with early ap harassment.
After you get these items the rest are up to you, if you are getting focused I would go for frozen mallet, and if you are feeling pretty safe I would go for cleaver. Guardian's Angel is also a good item, as it gets rid of that passive "global taunt" I was talking about earlier.
Also, don't forget to keep a few hp pots in your inventory as they can be the key to winning a lane if you are taking heavy harass.
versus matchups that have the potential to outplay you or against matchups that require you to have mobility. Boots are also especially good if you are planning to be pushing your wave out because you will be able to escape ganks fairly easily by activating your W and running through the top brush. There are not many junglers that have the potential to kill you if you play your lane right early levels.
Good for matchups with physical ranged harassment like GP or Pantheon. Survive their early game harass and win lane mid-late game, or once you grab your wriggles and a few pots.
Good if you know that you will be getting early jungle pressure. Also good for easier matchups like Riven, where their gap closers are smaller. Getting Dorans blade early will also force melee champions to go agressive on you, and if you have an agressive jungler ganking your lane constantly in the early levels you will be completely dominating your lane.
Good tanky/dps stats. Lifesteal is great for lane sustain, armor is always good, as well as the damage and the minion proc to help you clear waves faster without blowing your mushrooms on minions. You should be able to exchange hits with most bruisers and come out on top, especially if you use at the correct time.
Gives you extra early HP, and if you can get this early enough you can avoid getting doran's blades all together. The quicker you get this the more control you will have over your lane, as if you are constantly keeping your lane harassed and slowed it will be much more difficult for them to run up to you and gank you.
Great item for Teemo as he will be many times in a position to be caught by a stun or slow. The MR is also helpful to escape ganks from mid if you find yourself caught out of position.
Great utility item, makes your autoattacks annoying for any target and also gives you tons of base hp. Teemo also can chase down pretty much anybody at an insane movement speed, so frozen mallet will be great in those situations as well.
Allows you to shred tanks. Combined with frozen mallet you will be killing any target that dives, and they will also be slowed.
For a finshing item allows you to essentially play Teemo like a tank. You can get caught in bad situations, but it will turn out well for your team because of the fact that you have not only a TON of hp, you will have nice base defensive stats as well as a ressurect. GA is an end the game item in the sense that once you have it you will be able to basically end the game somehow or another.
People think Teemo's strength is in his early game. It is, in a way, but he is also very vulnerable. Play early game with caution and do not overextend unless you are sure that the chances of you getting ganked are low. Get an early phage after wriggles so you are somewhat tanky and you can control melee AD's pretty well once you get procs.
Here is where Teemo starts to shine. Shrooms are doing a !@#$ton of damage and the enemy lanes are barely getting their builds going. Wait until around 10-11 and ask for a red buff. Save 3 shrooms, Push your lane and force a dragon. Drop shrooms around dragon in case they come to contest it, and you will surely win this fight unless your team is just newbing it up.
(Edit after Teemo nerf - Shrooms still do solid damage, but just play more carefully as it is harder to bait kills with nerfed shroom damage. The increased CD isn't too noticable, the playstyle basically remains the same.)
Teemo's weakness is in late game. At this point you need to use Teemo's strong map control and possibly initiate a dual push. Teemo can push a lane by himself while the rest of your team is at another lane. If all go for you, back off and kite them through shrooms while your team gets free towers. If 1 goes for you, you should be able to 1v1 him, kill him, and take free towers while the rest of your team does a teamfight in another lane.
Teemo has a hidden passive which is Global Taunt. This means that in every teamfight Teemo will be the first to get focused by tanks and assassins. Your job is to kite everybody who focuses you through shrooms, survive, and possibly pull a kill as you do this. You should not worry about blinding enemy carries, or dropping shrooms in the middle of all the chaos as a smart team will seize any opportunity to land a stun on you and drop you like its hot.
As soon as you get a madreds, your ready to kill baron. By this time you should have a few shrooms to barons left and right choke points, and hopefully your roamer has oracled and has cleared wards around the area. In high elo play, if your team has disappeared off the radar for a length of time the opposing team is going to think that you are up to something. Baron many times isnt worth the risk, and be careful that you arent going to lose your advantage if you end up getting wiped and giving the other team a free baron.
If the enemy stacks MR, your other carry will need to capitalize because your damage will be sub par. Bot lane needs a farmable tank and roam, the tank should have good pushability in case the other team is gankhappy and roams 4 top, he can capitalize on that and push a tower or 2 while you hold the tower. Always good to have a jungler and roam, roam janna is good because she can come to your lane and make you even more of a juggernaut with shields etc.
Optimal Shroom Placement
In lane : Place shrooms in areas that will not be hit by creeps. Protect shrooms from creeps. The closer shrooms are to the main creep path, the higher the chance enemy champions will hit them giving you some extra harass in lane, which can lead to kills.
Outside of lane : Place shrooms so that you have them stretched to cover the river. If you are pushing hard, help mid with a shroom in the brush towards you.
Choke points : Any choke point with brush is good because even if the enemy oracles, they cannot see the shroom until they run over it. Choke points also give map control, because if you have a choke point with a shroom you have eliminated that much of the map that the enemy could be. Kinda hard to explain but yeah you get the point.