Udyr Build Guide by Funky Parasol
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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
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.
Why an Udyr guide?
I'm making this guide because many of the guides for Udyr on this site are very old and outdated. I love Udyr, he's a very fun, versatile, strong champion that not a lot of people play.
What's special about this guide?
I think most guides are unique in that they come from personal experience. Item/rune/skill lists aside, the walls of text in most guides are actually worth reading. I cover a few important points, some neat strategies, and a bit of psychology that goes along with playing Udyr.
Why jungle as Udyr?
There are tons of jungle champs, many of them not listed as junglers. Udyr is one of them. Udyr is also the fastest, safest, easiest, and sexiest there is. The ease with which Udyr clears jungle is not only great for learning how to jungle, but opens up opportunities more often for counter-jungling and ganking, as you're not tied up with cooldowns and low health. As far as why jungle as Udyr? Because his laning is atrocious compared to what it used to be, combined with the plethora of champions that dominate top, Udyr's not as viable as he used to be in lane.
But.. I've never danced before.
Stance dancing takes practice, and no, not how to faceroll QWERQWERQWERQWER. Which stance, when, and why. For jungling there's really nothing to it. Tiger as much as possible, switch between Turtle, and Bear between camps if you can spare the mana. Ganking is fairly simple, Bear to sprint in and stun, Tiger to shred, and if they flash or put distance, Bear again for the sprint and second stun (keep in mind the 6 second cooldown).
No no no, what I'm talking about is team fights. Those hectic, heart-pounding moments when you black out, everyone dies, and you forgot what happened and have no idea how you ended up balls deep in the enemy jungle with 47 hp mashing B as hard as you can. That part.. takes experience and practice.
Friendly Initiation, Looking Good
If you're lucky enough to have a competent initiator, you'll want to follow him in asap if you're up front, or be flanking from behind (ideally). Power your way with Bear/Ghost to their squishy who's been shredding your team, and smack 'em with a stun. If you can kill them, go for it, but look for anyone else who needs a stun around you. Stun important targets before they escape. If everyone's mashed up, smack everyone real quick. If you singled out your target, go to town on their face. No need for Turtle here, stuns and damage all around.
Friendly Initiation, Looking Bad
That moron jump in by himself again, and your awesome team followed just a few seconds too late, running single file to their doom? It's always a judgment call, but initially go in and stun high value targets, again looking for their carry. If your team is getting destroyed, try to pull some threat off more squishy teammates, as your escape & survivability is generally better. Activate Bear and stun targets just before ducking into bushes to break LoS, slow your enemy, as well as sprint to freedom. If nothing else, try and split the squishies away from their friends. Fun Fact: Squishies will almost always blow cooldowns and flash and anything to get out of range of Udyr in Bear form. Be a bully, if you can get Ezreal to waste his jump, then dash for him, you're guaranteed a stun and loads of damage.
Enemy Initiation, Looking Bad
Worst case scenario, your team is far behind, Amumu bandages in and ults your team. Make the best of it, stun anyone who's giving chase to your friends, but do so without dying. Udyr can easily recover lost health, or dash to a lane to steal a tower while the enemy blindly pushes forward. If nothing else, go steal the enemy jungle while 4 people destroy your tower, you can't stop them anyway. Above all, be efficient, don't waste time, and don't throw your life away to save the feeder or a half-dead Sona being chased by 3 people.
Skills & Summoner Spells
Which skills, what level, and why?
Level one take Tiger Stance and activate it before leaving, this queues up the bonus damage for the first thing you hit.
Level two and three take Turtle and Bear stance respectively, as swapping between Tiger and Turtle will keep your passive rolling while you jungle, and Bear to start a gank.
After that, prioritize Tiger whenever available, followed by Bear, then Turtle, with no points in phoenix until the end.
Udyr's bread and butter, this grants you tons of attack speed on use as well as passively. The next attack after activating it deals lots of bonus damage, so you'll want to re-activate this as much as possible to shred your opponents.
A small shield is gained upon activation, which is great for absorbing pokes in face offs, and of course great for jungling to stay high health. While turtle stance regenerates your health and mana while active, you'll want to be switching to Tiger Stance for the most part, and will mainly just benefit from the shield part of this.
This is the hardest stance to master, and separates the good Udyrs from the bad ones. Activate for a great sprint, and your attacks will stun targets! Of course only once every 6 seconds per target. Keep in mind you can stun 1 person, then another, then another, keeping a stun rotation in a team fight - this is the hard part. While ganking a single target is fairly simple, team fights require you switch targets frequently, stance dancing depending on multiple variables. Max this second.
While in this build this stance is ignored for the most part, the ability can still be used end-game to clear minion waves quickly. However, I find that I can clear most groups faster simply in Tiger with the attack speed buff.
Summoner spells, all two of them
Ghost is Udyr's best friend. Combined with Bear Stance and boots, you'll cover a massive amount of ground in seconds, allowing for lightning quick ganks that rival even the speed of flash. The best part of ghost is no unit collision. As an autoattack champion, pathing can and will destroy you. Getting stuck on minions is dangerous, embarassing, and often exploited by enemies to avoid ganks. Ghost & Bear combo can also be used to escape, putting serious distance between you and the 4 people chasing you, enough for combat to fade and boots to kick in, ensuring your freedom.
But, I'm jungling, don't I need Smite?
Smite is for girls. But seriously, smite is a convenience for actual junglers, and only necessary for either new players, non-jungle champs, or lazy people. With a leash on blue at start, you'll have Blue buff before taking more than 10% of your health which will already be healed on the way to wolves. Udyr simply doesn't need Smite, and it's detrimental to his game.
BUT, BUT.. SMITE! I NEEEED IT!
Do you really need it? Really? Have you jungled without it yet? Try it. I'd recommend trying some co-op vs AI to get familiar with jungling without it. You'll find that you definitely do not NEED it to jungle effectively. Another good argument is that Smite prevents counterjungling via smitestealing, where an enemy will steal a vital monster (red, blue, dragon, baron) with Smite. While this is possible, and you should pay attention to the team lineup on the loadscreen to look for Smiteless junglers, in my experience it isn't that common in unranked play. The most important thing, however, is that it's easy to counter. Check the nearby bushes, especially on your first attempt at Red. Later on, you should be warding as needed and be well aware of enemy positions before attempting something like Dragon. Dropping a ward behind dragon, as well as pulling Dragon into the river while killing it can easily prevent smitestealing.
Flash, ignite, exhaust, whatever.
- Flash - I personally recommend Flash from experience, despite my complete hatred for the ability and the fact that it exists. Flash is for girls, people who can't position properly, etc.. but everyone uses it, and it makes life easy. Really need that stun? Flash in Bear form, bam. Great all around, except the cooldown.
- Ignite - Ignite is great if you can manage to get someone really low but don't have chase or ranged or DoTs. Udyr has spectacular chase, combined with the fact that you're jungling and usually have Red buff, a final poke at low health after switching to Tiger stance will dish out a lot of damage, as much as ignite.
- Exhaust - Decent for starters, if you haven't gotten the hang of Bear, and serves only to cripple the auto-attack carry later on, as you will have plenty of slow from on-hit effects. I leave this for others to take.
How to Jungle
I noticed a lot of jungle guides don't really spell out how to jungle. Luckily, as Udyr, it's faceroll.
- Start at Blue, get a leash. Use a potion.
- Kill Blue and its minions, then head to wolves. You may or may not need to use another potion, depending on how strong a leash you got on Blue.
- After wolves, run across to Wraiths. Use a potion and be sure to toggle to Turtle stance, but back to Tiger asap. Try not to waste the Tiger active damage on a 2% hp minion.
- After wraiths, on to Red golem. Kill Red and its minions, using a potion as necessary to get near full health, and you'll be level 3 and have Tiger, Turtle, and Bear stance.
- If there's an opening top, now's your chance to gank, if not, take Golems.
- At this point, kill jungle camps as you see fit, I'd recommend learning the timers! 5 minutes for buff golems, roughly 50 seconds for everything else.
- LOOK FOR GANKING OPPORTUNITIES! This is the whole point of jungling, to be there for your team while not being there. You should easily get a kill or assist by level 5 at the latest, preferably before your first blue pill and purchase.
- I'll post a video guide eventually!
More to Come
I've got some of the basics of what I'm trying to say here, and am looking forward to expanding this guide. I've got plans for videos, screenshots, other builds, etc. In short: more to come.