Jayce Build Guide by Preminance
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.
Old Jayce -Build Order
Old Jayce - Sample Build
New Jayce -Build Order
New Jayce - Sample Build
Not Updated For Current Season
What's up, guys? This is my first MOBAFire guide (or forum-related guide for that matter)... so if it doesn't look pretty, I'm sorry!
But! This doesn't mean that I don't know what I'm doing; everything I put in this guide is from my knowledge of the game and personal experiences of playing Jayce (and solo top). So far, he is my favorite solo-topper to play: "Why?" you ask? Well, let's find out!
"Old" Jayce vs "New" Jayce
What makes Jayce different from the rest?
A fairly simple question... with a fairly simple response. Honestly, the 9001% legit response is that HE DOESN'T FALL-OFF! Ever! No matter the circumstance, with this build, you'll be not only useful but excel in the overall game- (that means you'll carry!) Also... he has a gun AND a freakin' huge hammer, why wouldn't you choose him?
PLEASE leave some feedback! I need to know what to improve/add to this guide and make it better, so tell me anything I forgot or something you'd like to see. Thanks!
Pros / Cons
The fact that Jayce has 2 different skill-sets might make him seem a little overwhelming to some... and this part is to tell you that it's worth learning him! And he's actually quite easy to pick-up :p
+ Excels at 1v1s
+ VERY fun to play :D
+ Great escape/chase
+ Built-in mana regen to his autoattacks! That means SPAM SPAM SPAM!
+ Overall just freakin' amazing :)
- Little sustain early game (keep 'dem pots!)
- His main counter in lane is sustain, so champions like Warwick or Udyr would be hard to get kills on (so in that case, just farm :D)
Runes / Masteries / Summoner Spells
These are the recommended runes that I believe Jayce works the best with:
Greater Mark of Attack Damage
Greater Seal of Armor
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist
Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage
So now, I'll list the runes+masteries manually and explain why I have them and any substitutes.
/\ = Recommended rune
~~ = Alternative rune
Here are my recommended masteries for Jayce:
21 down the offensive tree is pretty much standard for any bruiser. Taking the points in Sorcery gives you a little more liability for escaping ganks/harassing with your skills. Jayce is probably one of the only champions I'd take Expose Weakness , Spell Weaving AND Blade Weaving on, because he can easily keep all 3 effects on at the same time, once you get comfortable with his kit.
The 9 in defense is key in early-trading vs your opponent - the damage mitigation from Block and Unyielding is very helpful and can ultimately win you a level 1 trade, thus giving you an advantage straight off-the-bat!
Generally (99.9% of games) I take the ever-so-common Flash /Ignite combo. However, there are some spells that are worth mentioning as replacements.
Here are your options for your first (utility) spell:
Now that you know your options, here's why I take Flash over Ghost:
Flash lets you INSTANTLY chase for that kill we were talking about earlier and INSTANTLY get away from the wolf... compared to Ghost that GRADUALLY does both. See the difference? And, do I have to re-iterate that Jayce is a freakin' track-star already? But, if you STILL think it's absolutely necessary, then fine. Take Ghost.
Since you NEVER want to play a solo-top without any form of escape ( Jayce has a lot of movement speed, sure, but he doesn't have a real escape method like Caitlyn's 90 Caliber Net.), either Flash or Ghost are necessary. However, an aggressive spell like Ignite is NOT necessary at all. This is why Teleport is a viable option; simply replace it with an aggressive spell you would've taken like Ignite or Exhaust.
Pro Tip on Teleport
Now that you've decided on a utility spell, let's look at the options for the aggressive ones:
Ignite lets you DO MOAR DAMAGE to the target while Exhaust GRADUALLY slows them down and lets you laugh as they do no damage for 3 seconds. Which do you want? Cuz in this situation it's up to you... I'd take either, but prefer Ignite cuz I'm always on-fire when I play Jayce (see what I did there?)
As for Barrier, you may be asking, "Why the hell is it under the aggressive spell category?" Well, I'm putting Barrier under the aggressive spells because the ONLY reason you'd EVER take it on Jayce is for THIS reason:
What I mean is if you're at about ~300 hp at level 6 and you're laning against a Riven who has ~500 hp at the same level, chances are she's gonna try and kill you. If you have Barrier, then you can WAIT FOR HER to engage on YOU (don't be stupid), pop your Barrier after a few hits, she ults... and you've won the fight. Final words on Barrier: "It's all about dem big plays 'doe!"
SPELLS TO AVOID
Utterly useless. Why? Well, what you're saying is you want to come back to life... just to die again? Cool, you're also about to get reported for feeding.
Did you think you were jungling?
"I WANT IT CUZ I GET BIGGER AND GET AP!!!!!!" Lol, no.
You're so fast already... if you use this, you're just gonna get Infected Cleaver'd again in 4 secs anyway rofl.
Jayce has ABSOLUTELY no mana problems. There is no point behind this spell.
Were you planning on pushing a tower with your new friend you made (or should I say... Promote'd)?
You're not the support, silly :p
Skill Sequence / Explanation
This section is a quick briefing on Jayce's skills as well as why you should rank them the way I propose.
(hammer) He jumps to a target, dealing an AoE damage-slow. (cannon) He fires a skill-shot AoE nuke that has a fairly small blast-radius. However, its damage (ESPECIALLY when used in-sync with his E) makes up for its lack of size. And it scales off AD, woo! MAX THIS FIRST! This is your main-damage output in the laning phase (in both the cannon and hammer mode) because you'll be focusing on buying your Tear of the Goddess
(hammer) He becomes electric-man, shocking people in a circle around him for a few seconds. This is AMAZING damage when in a 1v1 with someone or just chillin', farming creeps. And, the added-benefit to it is that you gain mana for EACH AUTO-ATTACK while holding your hammer! Truly amazing. (cannon) He "hyper-charges" his gun to shoot off 3 pulsed rounds. At ranks 1+2 they deal less damage than regular auto attacks, but once you get to rank 3 OHHHH BABYYYYY, does the damage come out! MAX THIS SECOND!
(hammer) He knocks back a target-enemy, dealing (damage that scales with your AD) + a % of their max hp. (cannon) He deploys a fairly large-range gate that, when himself or allies pass through it, gives a move speed buff that diminishes over time. BUT! A little secret and the main reason behind this being useful at all is that, if you shoot your Q through it... it buffs it by 40%! This means it goes 40% further 40% faster, and does 40% MORE DAMAGE!!!! :D MAX THIS LAST!!
R: Mercury Cannon/Hammer
Jayce's ultimate ability is that he can transform between a short-range melee fighter to a medium range "I can hit you, but you can't hit me" fighter. But, that'd be kinda lame if that was ALL his ultimate did, right? Here's the secret: (cannon) You shred their Armor and Magic Resist by a flat amount for a period of time. This is great when you're coming back to lane; just instantly hit them and shoot a Q off for some damage. (hammer) Your next basic attack deals additional magic damage. "Well... come on, that's all we get for having a huge freakin' hammer?" Actually, nope. Here's the best benefit about it: You also gain bonus armor and magic resist! This buff lasts FOR AS LONG AS YOU HAVE THE HAMMER OUT! Amazing, right? Here are a few things to remember:
- It doesn't cost mana! So you don't have to worry about this ability for performing a wombo-combo.
- It doesn't need to be ranked up! You will automatically get "increased benefits" from it when you reach levels 6,11 and 16!
- The synergy with your passive is actually useful! If someone comes up to gank you, or when you're heading back to lane, use it! The quick movespeed buff WILL help.
- You get different abilities according to which weapon you have selected, so you MUST pay attention! If you try to use your skill-shot Q when you're on hammer-duty... well, sorry :p
Playing Jayce: Early Game (Farming/Harassing)
If you are familiar with the role of Solo Top at all, then you know that the team heavily depends on you to do well in order for Mid Game (team fights) to go in your favor. If you're not familiar with Solo Top, then basically this means: IT IS ALL ABOUT EARLY GAME! If you perform well in the early phase of the game, then it will carry over into Mid Game, ESPECIALLY with Jayce.
But, this also means that Early Game is the MOST IMPORTANT phase of the game as Jayce! So, there are a few key things you must do in order to secure your status as a person NOT to be reckoned with: (These are listed in order of priority)
1. Last-hitting creeps (DO NOT push the lane to their tower until you have a Stealth Ward! I usually am safe pushing to about 1/2 way between their tower and the middle of the lane (where the creeps meet at the first wave)... but NEVER go to their tower before wards!) I recommend last-hitting in cannon mode because it's easier (you have range while most Solo Tops are melee), and you can do #2 A LOT more effectively.
2. Harassing your opponent (This means auto-attacking them with the cannon and using the almighty E+Q= BOOOOOOOM! combo (cannon-mode.) I don't recommend trying to 1v1 a melee opponent until level 4, then you have some HUGE harass.
Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to the almighty wombo-combo! This combo is all the harass that you'd ever need in top, even enough to kill your opponent in just A SINGLE combo! So, without further adu, here it is... the Wombo-Combo!
- Start off in cannon mode and use your E Thundering Blow / Acceleration Gate while setting-up a clear shot with your Q To The Skies! / Shock Blast... once you're sure it will hit (remember, it's AoE), launch your Q To The Skies! / Shock Blast through your E Thundering Blow / Acceleration Gate (applying the 40% buff that I already explained). This is a RIDICULOUS amount of damage, even at level 4!
- Then proceed to hammer mode, jumping on top of the poor soul you're laning against with your Q To The Skies! / Shock Blast (this is AoE as well). Try to remember to activate your W Lightning Field / Hyper Charge in mid-air to start it's AoE damage too. If you can, move behind them (they're slowed, remember?) and knock them back the way you came with your E Thundering Blow / Acceleration Gate, which deals a nice 8% of the max health (yes, at rank 1) too :D
- Land AT LEAST one auto-attack to proc it's bonus magic damage, and then chase them, switch back to cannon mode when you can, and finish them off with a final E+Q combo.
After you perform this wombo-combo, you'll be pretty low on mana. Don't fret, though! Chances are you either killed your opponent or made them recall... so all you have to do is switch to hammer mode and auto-attack the hell outta creeps! Remember, you gain mana for each strike and the mana gained increases as you rank-up your W Lightning Field / Hyper Charge.
In order to have a successful early game, all you have to do is perform the Wombo-Combo, wash, rinse, and repeat :) That's really it. BUT! Remember your priorities!!!!!!
Farming > ATTEMPTING to kill someone (you won't ALWAYS get the kill, you cocky bastard :p)
Follow this section accordingly, and I promise that you will ALWAYS win lane during Early Game.
Playing Jayce: Mid/Late Game (Team Fights)
So... now that you've picked up a few kills, have tons of cs (cuz, you know, you didn't miss ANY cs during laning, of course...) and have most of your core items, let the Mid Game commence! From here on out, your priorities change from cs'ing in lane to paying attention to your team. Whatever your team is doing, try and be there with them. Of course, there are exceptions such as every lane (mid, jung and bot) are at Dragon and the enemies don't have any Stealth Wards. In a case SUCH AS that, stay top and farm some more. But if you're preparing to fight or need to control Dragon, head on down and help out; you do A LOT of damage. Just use your head, and everything will turn out great :)
If you notice that your team is preparing for a team fight (such as: you're at an enemy tower getting ready to push it down), then you NEED to poke the enemy team. Jayce's poke is PHENOMENAL. All you do is (in cannon form) keep shooting your To The Skies! / Shock Blast through your Thundering Blow / Acceleration Gate. Prioritize the enemy squishies (their AD and AP carries are generally the two squishies) as your targets to hit. Following this build, that should do about 500-700 damage EVERY TIME it hits. That's an INSANE amount of damage. The object of poking them down is to get them low enough so that your chances of winning the team fight you're about to have are greatly increased (if not inevitable...) or so the enemy has to back-off from whatever objective you're trying to take, and you can safely obtain your gold :)
A good question that some of you might have been asking is: "So which weapon should I use during team fights?" Well, I'm here to give the answer! Based on what you've read so far about Jayce and his abilities, I hope that some of you are guessing or contemplating which weapon, cannon or hammer, is better in a fight. The answer: both! Confused? Let me explain...
There are different circumstances for both weapons, so I'll start with the cannon. Basically, YOU are the initiator for the team fights, so what better way to do so then with your Wombo-Combo! That's right, it's still packin' a punch! But, I'm getting ahead of myself... the combo is a bit different when used for an engage. So, it would start out by using your E Thundering Blow / Acceleration Gate then shooting your Q To The Skies! / Shock Blast through it (remember, you have the cannon out). "Who should I hit with the Q?" Well, everyone, of course! Just try and hit as many of the enemy team as you can with it; the more the merrier. Now that they're all missing ~250 hp or so, it's Hammer Time!
Go ahead and switch to your hammer, then proceed to find either the AD carry, or (whoever's doing better) either the AP mid or jungler.
NOTE: I'm assuming that your team is following up with you at this part, if they're not, then DO NOT engage with the hammer yet!
Now that you're ready to engage like a MAN, jump onto whoever you chose (using your Q To The Skies! / Shock Blast), activate your W Lightning Field / Hyper Charge and maul away at 'em! Remember that if it helps/if you're in position, knock (anyone) TOWARDS your team with your E Thundering Blow / Acceleration Gate! It also deals A LOT of damage once you start ranking it up (20% of their max health plus base damage plus 0.3 of your AD at rank 5.)
So, now we have the issue of stragglers. If your team didn't quite manage to secure all the kills, you have the toolset to mop-up, with ease, actually. All you have to do is chase them down (remember about your various move-speed buffs), whip out the cannon, and use your E+Q combo once more. If that doesn't finish them off, proceed with the wombo-combo :D
Late-Game and Mid-Game are basically the same... except you have to start worrying about the threats of your towers being pushed, inhibitors being destroyed, and baron being... baron'd. I'm not your teacher of LoL, so I'm not gonna tell you EXACTLY how to play the game, but I'll say this:
Just like in Mid-Game, pay attention to your team! ESPECIALLY during Late-Game, where one wrong move, or 1 person out of position means potential disaster.
REMEMBER: The Mid-Game phase is THE MOST IMPORTANT PHASE to your team! The match victor is usually determined by the outcome of the Mid-Game, so YOU need to play a heavy role in it!
Playing New Jayce
So... what is this "new Jayce", you ask? Well, in-short, he's an assassin. I'm pretty sure this build originated in Korea (of course) and more specifically from the top Jayce player over there. Basically, all you do is win lane (cuz you're Jayce) and get Muramana as well as The Bloodthirster. After that, you just stack AD and crit (and some armor pen for late game). The Bloodthirster's raw damage coupled with the active from Muramana means that you have an absurd amount of damage in such a short amount of time, using a quick q+e combo in cannon form and doing a hammer-smash combo right after, plus mitigation against poke from the BT's shield. Pretty cool stuff!
However, this playstyle is VERY different from "old Jayce" - you no longer want to poke with your e+q as much as possible; rather, you want to just kill any and everything you see. You are now a burst champion, meaning you want to get up-close and personal with their carries and then proceed to... more or less... return to the "old" playstyle and finish off the rest of their team during fights. Jayce's damage is absolutely absurd with this build - his W in cannon form shoots BUFFED auto-attacks (more attack damage and speed) that melt anyone under 2k hp (adc and mid, anyone?) The only other difference in this playstyle is maxing your W 2nd rather than E. You will rely on your ranged skillset to win lane, not melee, and your goal is not poking before fights with E+Q, so maxing E doesn't really make sense - it is now mainly a form of defense (both in cannon [speed boost for escapes] and hammer [knockback for repositioning/escapes] forms).
I know this nearly as in-depth as the "old Jayce" sections are, but I think it gets the point across. If you have any other questions on how to play Assassin Jayce, then please let me know in the comments and I will put more effort into it!
Item Builds / Explanations - OUTDATED
Instead of making various builds for various encounters, I'll just list every item you'd want to get on Jayce and explain why (also going more into depth adding if it's an optional item or if it's necessary.)
THIS SECTION IS VERY OUTDATED! Please refer to the items listed at the top for a current-meta build (their descriptions also help.) And I am very lazy, so if I get around to updating it, it won't be for a while.
Doran's Shield + 1 HP pot : Gives Jayce great trading potential because of the massive defense the shield gives, and also sustain, just incase you lose a few trades or get ganked.
Flask + 3 HP pots : There are two distinct times in-which you'd get this start - if your opponent has heavy harass, Elise, or if you're against a jungler that will level-2 gank you, Riven or Shyvana. Even if you're just bad at dodging harass, this wouldn't be bad to start with. The flask gives you an extra 300hp and 120 mana for laning and the health pots give you 750 hp... that equals 1050 hp and 120 mana that your opponent will have to take down before they kill you.
Mercury's Treads: Gives Jayce one of the only sources of M.R he's gonna get early on (besides your Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resists) and... tenacity! EVERY solo-top works better with tenacity. These are definite pick-up against any enemy with a slow ( Dr. Mundo), fear ( Fiddlesticks), taunt ( Rammus), or magic damage-ability ( Jax). You'll get these boots 99.9% of the time.
Ninja Tabi : If you're getting shut-out early game by an all or mainly AD champion up top such as Pantheon or Irelia, take these boots over the Mercury's Treads.
Tear of the Goddess : Buy this guy as soon as humanly-possible... getting your Muramana is key in mid-game, so you need it sooner than later! Be sure to pick-up some damage before/when you get it though, most likely your The Brutalizer, or else you'll fall-off when trading with your opponent.
Hexdrinker - OPTIONAL ITEM : If you're against a solo top who's majority of damage comes from magic (i.e: Rumble or Vladimir, then GET THIS. It gives you some M.R plus a shield that blocks magic damage PLUS some extra AD. This should also be an option when you notice that your mid lane isn't doing too well, and you'll need its buffs.
Trinity Force : I swear, Jayce was built specifically around this item. He benefits from EVERY SINGLE buff that it gives. This will be your main damage output after laning phase is over, so get it ASAP after your early game items.
Bloodthirster : Finally! A big source of AD and that long-awaited sustain you need! Congratulations, you're gonna be 73.564% more effective now! Woo! But really, BT gives Jayce that extra AD he needs to rape even more then he already does :p
Warden's Mail : Coming in at only 1000 gold, this item's benefits are extremely cost effective! It gives tons of armor, but also slows the enemy's attack-speed, which means less hits on you, which means less damage taken! A great item against lane-bullies that rely on auto-attacks, such as Shyvana or Quinn
Randuin's Omen : Finishing the Randiun's from the Warden's Mail not only gives you bonus HP, but it improves the bonuses you got with the Warden's Mail AND adds an extra move-speed slow on-top of it all! It also has a neat activate-ability (it slows + decreases nearby enemy's damage for a few seconds.) So in other words, makes you even more tanky!
Maw of Malmoritus : If you got the Hexdrinker early, then this item is a little cheaper then normal :p However, you probably won't need the Hexdrinker in most situations, so getting this item last makes the most sense. It gives you even more AD, improves the shield that Hexdrinker gives, gives more M.R and finally, gives you an extra AD for every 2.5% of your hp that's missing!
Final Notes on Build
Overall, this build adapts Jayce into what he's meant to be: A big guy with an even bigger hammer who likes to jump into entire teams and kill them all :) In other words, it gives you some pretty large HP amounts, lots of damage (remember, your abilities will do a lot of damage NO MATTER the phase of the game!), and finally some much needed survivability from the oodles of Armor, Magic Resist, and Lifesteal.
Summary / Conclusion
First off, I'd like to say THANK YOU for reading this guide! Please give it a rating and leave a comment! I want feedback :)
I am occasionally updating this guide with new info. - the most recent being the "new Jayce" playstyle and build. Next up, if I get around to it, is the "Item Builds / Explanations" section. I'm so lazy... so it'll be a while ;)
Once again, thank you very much for taking the time to read over this guide, and if you choose to follow it, I guarantee your Match History will look snazzy ;)