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Hey guys, my name is Vapora Dark. In season 5 I was Master tier EUW on 2 seperate accounts and in season 6 I climbed to Challenger rank 131 in 11 days on the Russian server.
I hope you enjoy reading the guide as much as I enjoyed writing it, and most importantly, that you take everything you can from it! And if you do enjoy it, upvotes are very much appreciated!
Follow me on Twitter @VaporaDark if you wanna hear from me outside of the guide, I recently started using it and would like people to actually see the things I may choose to Tweet. :)
And if you ever want to see how I personally play Jinx, make sure to follow me on Twitch. I'm currently streaming every day between 7 PM and 11 PM UTC minimum, and most days I keep the stream going for a few hours even after 11. I'll usually be playing Tristana but if you want me to play Jinx or any other champion, let me know in the chat and I'll try and see if it's possible to play her in the next game!
Jinx is a hypercarry, and has one of the highest single-target DPS's in the game, receiving a huge semi-permanent 140% attack speed buff at level 18 from Switcheroo!. When opting away from this AS boost she instead has a massive 675 auto-attack range while dealing massive AoE damage.
For these reasons Jinx is one of the most impactful ADC's in the game you can possibly play, since a well played Jinx definitely does work.
Having said that, she does have some downsides though. She's less self-sufficient than other ADC's, since all she really has to protect herself is Flame Chompers!, while someone like Tristana has Rocket Jump and Buster Shot to keep herself safe. It's important that Jinx receives peel from her team if anyone tries to get to her, or she'll die before getting to use that DPS that makes her shine.
Another con is that she's very vulnerable in the early-game, her weakest stage, as her bad matchups are plentiful and she doesn't have the greatest tools for surviving ganks.
Fortunately she greatly rewards the player for getting past these weaknesses, so if you can master Jinx, you can be sure that it'll be worth it.
AD marks give the strongest relevant stats for your role. These will help you last-hit better, allow you to deal more damage in trades through auto-attacks and spells, and increase your DPS.
You take armor because it's the most stat-efficient rune you can take through seals. Flat HP seals also give good stats nowadays, but armor is just straight up a better stat to take on bot lane. Both aim to make you tankier but armor is better for that when you're laning against an ADC.
You take magic resist here because again it's the most stat-efficient rune to take, although here you have room for a little variation, given that the enemy bottom lane's main damage threat is 90% of the time physical. On caster ADC's, it's common to take 5 magic resist glyphs and 4 mana regen glyphs. On more auto-attack oriented ADC's it's common to run 4 or 5 attack speed glyphs and fill the rest of the slots with magic resist. If you prefer one of those variations it's still good to keep full magic resist glyph page in reserve in case you have to lane against a high magic damage support such as Annie, Brand or Sona.
The standard AD carry page consists of 3 attack speed quints. AD quints sound better in theory, just like AD marks are better than attack speed marks, but attack speed quints are just really stat efficient. Think that 9 AS marks give 15% AS and 9 AD marks give 8.55 AD, and 3 AS quints also give 15% attack speed, but 3 AD quints only give 6.75 AD, nearly 2 AD less than the marks do. AD marks are stat efficient, AD quints not so much. They're not inefficient, which is why they're good on a lot of other champions, but on champions like AD carries, who use attack speed so well, it's just more worthwhile to run AS quints as they're more stat efficient than the alternative.
As for the smaller masteries, it doesn't usually make a huge difference which you take and lots are viable, the ones I display on my guide are simply the ones I personally consider to be the best (and my opinion is subject to change).
Flash and Heal has been the standard ADC summoner spell combination since possibly mid-season 3. In fact, Flash has been the standard summoner spell to take on almost every single champion since forever. It's always been indisputably the best summoner spell in the game, so there's nothing you can replace it with, especially on a champion like Jinx.
Heal on the other hand, replaced Barrier when it got buffed in season 3 to give movement speed on the cast, which is the reason it's been standard over Barrier ever since, despite being affected by Ignite's Grievous Wounds. Aside from the small movement speed boost, which can be used both offensively and defensively, another reason why it's stronger than Barrier is it affects an ally, which is perfect for bot lane where you're laning with a support.
The reason you want a defensive summoner on ADC is that you have a lot of DPS, so the longer you can survive, the more damage you'll put out, usually out-damaging what you'd get from Ignite. And if it can go as far as to save your life, then that's even better, as ADC's are very important to have alive for both providing DPS and taking down towers, especially in Jinx's case given her tower shredding capabilities with Switcheroo!.
Get Excited!: The second most important part of Jinx's kit next to Switcheroo!. Get Excited! makes Jinx the queen of clean up amongst ADC's, and possibly amongst any role. It can also serve to help her kite, dodge skillshots, or just get out of sticky situations whenever she's able to get a kill or assist. Once Jinx Gets Excited once, it's hard to stop her getting more and more resets. Also it activates off tower kills/assists too, so it allows you to stay longer to kill a tower while still being safe.
Switcheroo!: This spell makes Jinx a high skillcap champion in more ways than one. The first is that the 1 second cooldown between switching guns makes it feel clunky as hell to quickly switch between the two guns, and when momentarily switching into one form you'll need to learn to wait for the 1 second cooldown to be over before switching back. The second is that you need to learn in what situations to use Pow-Pow, the Minigun and which to use Fishbones, the Rocket Launcher. The third is that Fishbones, the Rocket Launcher's splash damage makes it very good for harassing enemies by auto-attacking minions and getting the explosion to hit them, accomplishing the same damage but without attracting minion aggro. The fourth is that in a late-game situation while using Pow-Pow, the Minigun you're going to have an attack speed of 2.2 auto-attacks per second or higher, and that is very hard to orb-walk with. Though not for me obviously. :^)
Zap!: This is mainly used to slow down enemies outside of your range as you're chasing them down, but it also does a hell of a lot of damage if you can hit someone with it as harass in lane.
Zap!: This is mainly used to slow down enemies outside of your ran Flame Chompers!: This ability is by far your best form of self-peel short of killing someone and proc'ing Get Excited!, so it's important that you don't waste it since the cooldown is very high so you only really have one shot at using it well. Once dropped on the ground Flame Chompers! takes 0.7 seconds to arm, so you need to make sure to drop it significantly ahead of chasers to make sure they don't just walk over them. But at the same time, it's better you don't drop them too far ahead because that gives them more time to just walk around them, and you preferably want them to get snared rather than just suffer a small delay by walking around them. However, it is still preferable for them to be slightly delayed than for you to mess up the timing and the enemy just walks right over them. Because that, my friend, is how you waste your only self-protection.
Super Mega Death Rocket!
Super Mega Death Rocket!: Global abilities are always fun. The fact that it's an execute means that if you hit a non-tank that's 30% HP or below with it it's almost always going to kill them, even if they only get hit by the splash damage, so bear in mind that that's the HP at which you should aim to snipe enemies. Aside from sniping low HP/fleeing enemies though there's not much else to use it for though, since the damage it does is less than the damage you would do just by auto-attacking, and it's not guaranteed to hit.
Doran's Blade: Doran's Blade may give less AD than Long Sword, but the HP makes you tankier and more able to survive all-ins, which is invaluable. Going Long Sword + 3 Health Potions would overall give you more sustain, but if you get all-in'd and either die or get zoned away from the minion wave then it's not worth it. It's also a more gold-efficient start as Doran's Blade is a super cost-effective item and you'll be spending 50 gold on pots rather than 150 gold, and eventually Doran's Blade's HP + lifesteal will outsustain those 2 HP pots anyway.
B. F. Sword: This is what you should aim for on your first back. You'll be building Runaan's Hurricane as your first non-boots complete item, but before that you want some AD to back up all the attack speed you'll be building. If you can't afford a B. F. Sword on your first back, then replace it with a Pickaxe instead.
Berserker's Greaves: These are the only tier 2 Boots you should ever consider. You should almost always rush them right after B. F. Sword/ Pickaxe because on top of the extra movement speed that can be the difference that saves you from a gank/gets you kills, they're also insanely cost-efficient for getting attack speed. E.g., Statikk Shiv is an AS-crit focused item that gives you 35% attack speed for 2600 gold. Berserker's Greaves gives you 35% attack speed for 1100 gold. They're just a super good item to rush for this reason, especially since buying Boots of Speed early is almost mandatory, and then the ugprade gives you 35% attack speed for 800 gold.
Runaan's Hurricane: This item has immense synergy with Jinx. First off, the bolts it makes your auto-attacks fire increase in range depending on your champion's auto-attack range. At 675 Jinx has one of the highest auto-attack ranges in the game when using Fishbones, the Rocket Launcher, so she has one of the highest potentials for getting the bolts to hit multiple champions, especially when paired with Rapid Firecannon. Secondly, the bolts will spawn 3 Fishbone rockets which will all do 100% splash damage to all enemies hit, meaning Jinx's AoE potential increases significantly once she purchases Runaan's Hurricane. And finally, as a bonus the bolts also increase how much you lifesteal, since hitting 3 targets will result in you lifestealing for 150% of your auto-attack damage rather than 100%.
Infinity Edge: Once you've completed your previous 2 items, completing Infinity Edge is the next step that'll be a big powerspike for you, since it'll amplify your crits by 50% while leaving you with 50% crit chance, which'll be a huge increase in DPS.
Rapid Firecannon: This is the next best Zeal upgrade for Jinx, as it'll allow her to poke with rockets from 825 range, which is pretty safe in most circumstances. It'll also increase the range of Runaan's Hurricane's bolts, so you have more chances of spreading the rockets onto more targets. This item however can be delayed or even skipped if situational purchases such as Last Whisper or Quicksilver Sash are more important.
Lord Dominik's Regards: You'll want to build this in most games to deal with enemy armor, but the timing can be delayed, or even skipped entirely, depending on when enemies build armor. If they don't build armor at all you can replace it either with whichever lifesteal item you didn't go for, or with Guardian Angel.
Guardian Angel: This is a very good item when you know you're going to have a hard time surviving team-fights. Only build it as a 5th or 6th item, though you can build Chain Vest sooner if the armor is really that important.
Always start Switcheroo! at level 1 on Jinx, your other spells aren't good at that stage.
Using Pow-Pow, the Minigun, you should use your attack speed boost to push as fast as possible to beat the enemy bot lane to level 2. When possible however you should switch to Fishbones, the Rocket Launcher to shoot rockets at the caster minions when you think the splash damage will hit the enemy ADC. This will also help you push faster since you'll be auto-attacking 3 minions at once, but the main point is that you'll be efficiently using your mana to both push and harass, and you won't be attracting minion aggro despite essentially auto-attacking your enemy.
Whichever bot lane starts losing the push should begin to back off once they've clearly fallen behind in the push, to avoid trading against the bot lane with the minion advantage. Since you're Jinx you'll almost always be the one winning the push.
At this point you don't want to keep pushing, but rather begin to freeze by only auto-attacking the minions to last-hit. This is for two reasons. The most obvious reason is that when your minions get low from being auto-attacked by the minions you're intentionally leaving alive, the enemy ADC has to walk towards you if they want to last-hit it and take free poke in exchange, and rather than do that they will instead choose to miss that CS, placing you at a CS advantage.
The second reason is that while you want to push for your level 2 powerspike, your level 2 powerspike is useless if you push the enemy bot lane safely under tower. You want the minion waves to stay as close to the middle of the lane as possible, so that when you hit level 2, if the enemy bot lane don't let themselves be zoned far enough away you can just all-in them for a kill, or at least chunk them for a lot of damage.
At level 2 you should skill Zap! as it does huge damage at rank 1 if you can land it. Flame Chompers! is also viable if you're expecting to get ganked.
Throughout laning phase your win condition is almost always just to shove every wave into tower and force the enemy ADC to last-hit there. Jinx is great at harassing under tower with auto-attacks, but most importantly she's very bad at trading under even circumstances early on ( Zap! can't go through minions so all she has are auto-attacks), and so she needs to outpush the enemy bot lane whenever possible to obtain a minion advantage to trade with.
Whenever you're shoved under tower and can't poke anyone with auto-attacks, you should be auto-attacking the tower to make sure it goes down as soon as possible, since it's a +650g boost in power for you if your team allows you to take full local gold (as they should).
Outside of laning phase, your objective is to destroy the nexus. No I'm not kidding, that's literally the best way to describe it. Every action you take in laning phase is to set you up for mid-late game, every action you take outside of laning phase is to bring you one step closer to destroying the enemy nexus. The way you do this is by performing actions that will make killing the enemy team easier (acquiring gold, dragons, barons) so that you have less resistance, and destroying towers as a way to acquire gold, have better control of the map, and open up routes to the nexus.
At this point you should be grouping with your team as much as possible to teamfight and siege down towers. Jinx is great at sieging towers due to her large auto-attack range, but she can also be quite risky compared to someone like Tristana due to her low mobility making her easy to pick off if not positioned safely. However, if you can work past this she's extremely effective due to her sieging power, her strong waveclear with Runaan's Hurricane and Fishbones, the Rocket Launcher, and her ability to harass enemy champions from a distance.
Sieging towers is pretty simple, but you need to be careful about it. When both teams are alive and your team is trying to take a tower, it's your job to do as much damage as you can to the tower without dying. You need to do as much damage as you can while remaining safe. This means you can't just walk up to the tower and stand there auto-attacking until it dies; this leaves you open to get engaged upon, unless there's no resistance from the enemy team. Instead you have to repeatedly poke the tower. Walk up to it, attack it a bit, back off if someone dangerous is walking up to you. Now you might think "but what if they never stop protecting their tower? Doesn't that mean it's never safe for me to auto-attack it?". If they're constantly standing in a defensive position in relation to their tower, then they're in range for your team to poke them and force them back. They need to be in a place where it's safe for them to sit and look for a good engage, where your team has no way to attack them besides tower diving them, which only works when you're super ahead. And if they advance, that takes them further out of safety, so if you match their movements to stay safe from an engage, they'll be forced to move back for their own safety again, as they don't want to get engaged on either, nor poked down to a point where they need to back to recover their HP.
So you should think of sieging as slowly whittling down a tower. It almost never takes a single minion wave to destroy a tower (unless you have baron buff), it can take many, many waves, but slowly but surely, the tower will go down if you can siege it properly.
When you're attacking a tower with enemies nearby you always want to be positioned at max distance from the tower while you auto-attack, and in between auto-attacks you should move backwards then forwards, so that while your auto-attack is "on cooldown", you're not spending any more time closer to the danger than necessary. It's also good habit in case they start to try an engage and you're already automatically moving backwards the moment you finish your auto-attack, meaning you'll often protect yourself from an engage faster than you can actually react to it, so long as you notice in time to not move back towards the tower for your next auto-attack.
Against teams with very high wave clear (hello Anivia), it can be very hard if not impossible to siege down towers, especially inhibitor towers that actually recover HP all the time. Your options in these situations are to engage on the enemy team under their tower, which only works when you're reaaaaaaaally far ahead, get another lane to slow push then rotate to it when the wave is reaching the tower, or go get baron. The enemy team won't usually just give up baron for free though, and so you can use this to bait them into a fight. They'll need to constantly have vision on baron to make sure you're not doing it, which can be hard to keep up if your team places Control Wards and uses Oracle Alteration to clear their wards, so at some point they might have no choice but to face check baron to make sure you're not doing it. Even if you are, you can take the opportunity to turn around and team-fight, so long as your team hasn't become too low to fight.
Ever wondered how pros can get 300 CS at 30 minutes before? No, it's not completely down to "insanely good last-hitting mechanics". You can do it too, just by using a simple wave control technique. Watch this video to understand how minion waves work (it'll also go through lane freezing again).
So when 2 minion waves collide on bot lane, in the middle of the lane, you should be there to push those 6 minions. And then you leave bot lane. No, you don't stay to push the 2nd minion wave too and force your wave to hit the tower. Aside from being at risk if you do that, it's also just not smart to do it. Because once you clear the first wave and your minions advance to crash into the next minion wave, your minions will be on the enemy's side of the map, and as you just learnt from the video, that means that the wave will slowly but inevitably start to push towards your side of the map.
After clearing that first wave you just go pressure mid or teamfight or whatever, then you just return bot lane in 2-3 minutes when the enemy minion wave has finished pushing to your tower (and make sure to get there before the minions start dying to the tower). At that point it'll be a 15-20 minion wave. Assuming it's 20 minions, and you've been off of bot lane for 2 minutes, you'll be getting 20 minions for the 2 minutes you've spent off lane, keeping with the 10 cs per minute rule you always want to aim for (though won't always be able to achieve).
But even if it isn't quite 20 minions, the time that you've spent off of bot lane, you'll have spent farming mid lane, and maybe even jungle monsters. You'll essentially be farming 2 lanes at once, keeping you easily above the 10 CS per minute rule so long as you can consistently get to the bottom lane wave in time before the minions start dying to the tower. This won't always be possible, as CS isn't the most important thing in the game. Sometimes you'll be busy teamfighting, or making sure you're around in case a teamfight starts. But in general you'll want to go farm the wave as much as possible, then push the wave onto the enemey's side of the map to restart the push, both to get ahead in farm and to avoid having a huge minion wave destroy your tower.
When the wave that you're pushing is a cannon wave, that messes with this technique a little bit. Because you'll be killing the enemy cannon minion and letting your own cannon minion push uninterrupted, the enemy minion wave won't slowly push up to your tower. Instead your minions will continue to push forwards, very slowly. When it's a cannon wave, you should either push the 2nd wave too (if it's safe to do so, not at all safe to do when the enemy team is ahead in towers and enemy threats are unaccounted for on the minimap), or just recognize that you won't be able to get the wave to push back to you in this specific situation and settle for creating a slow push instead, rather than trying to create a farming opportunity for yourself later on.
The video also explains how to create a slow push, but this technique is very rarely useful in solo queue with how uncoordinated everyone is outside of very high Elo. Keep it in mind in case you ever think it could be useful, but most of the time it just ends up creating a huge minion wave for the enemy AD carry to farm, getting him ahead in farm instead of you. It's better suited for ranked 5s assuming your team understands the strength of a slow push, or if you're a high Challenger player and for some reason reading a MOBAFire guide.
In some situations, notably when you expect to be sieging for a while and especially sieging towers that are really close to the enemy base, such as inner towers and inhibitor towers, it's really not ideal to have to force yourself to go back bot lane to farm every 2 minutes. If you do the technique and you can't go bot you'll essentially have just created a slow push against yourself, causing the enemy minions to die to tower, wasting gold, damaging your tower, and possibly even destroying it. Rather than putting yourself in that situation, this is when you want to create a slow push against the enemy team, as they'll hopefully be too busy defending against the siege to send someone to clear bot. This way they'll be the ones losing minions to the tower, taking tower damage, and possibly losing a tower if it's already low. And if they do send someone to clear it, you'll either have an easier time sieging or your team will be able to dive the enemy team 5v4 under tower.
When it comes to team-fighting as an ADC, there is one golden rule which is the most basic team-fighting rule of all, and yet makes you an infinitely better team-fighter if you start following it; attack whoever's closest to you. If you stand at the back, behind your frontline, and just auto-attack whichever enemy is absolutely closest to you, you have the best possible positioning, as you'll only be in focus range of whoever's diving you, or whoever you're attacking. It's recommended in general to take down the enemy carries before the tanks, but as the ADC if you try to attack a carry then you're in range of every single member of the enemy team, and if they all focus you then you'll go down in under a second. By keeping your distance and attacking just whatever's closest, you'll be hardest to kill, and can therefore output maximum DPS by just staying alive and being able to auto-attack all fight long. The only time you should attack the enemy team's carries is when there's no other enemies standing between you and them.
The best players of all know not only when to follow that one basic rule, but also when to take even further measures to stay safe. Before you ever even get into a team-fight, you should have already analyzed what all the threats to you on the enemy team are, and play more safely or aggressively accordingly. For example, if a Shyvana is the one trying to dive you, you'd want to follow the rule of attacking whatever's closest, and just kite her while your team also hopefully tries to peel her.
But sometimes you need to turn the safety notch up another level and straight up walk away from someone that could be a threat to you. For example, if you're playing vs Zed, you cannot be one of the ones trying to focus him down while he still has enough cooldowns and HP to be a threat. Even if he's the only person in range of you, and you have 3-4 team-mates around you, you still can't be auto-attacking him until the threat he presents has been neutralized ( Death Mark goes on CD, or he gets so low that he'd die before he could burst you). All the skill and mechanics in the world won't stop him bursting you down in half a second if he gets near enough. And you not only need to stay out of his Death Mark range, you also have to account for the extra distance he can cover with Living Shadow, Youmuu's Ghostblade and Flash, and how quickly they can help him close the gap.
No, when you're playing against Zed and you see him running in your direction, you stay as far the f**k away from him as you can get. Don't help your team kill him, that's not your job. The assassin's job is to kill you, your job is to not die to him, and your team's job is to protect you from assassins by killing them. If the assassin commits their cooldowns onto someone else when they realize they can't get to you, that's when it's safe for you to walk back into the fight. Or if the assassin gets CC'd and blown up uselessly before they get to do anything, then it's also safe!
Champions that present such a large threat to you aren't just limited to assassins ( Talon, Zed, LeBlanc) that can burst you down within a second. Other champions, mostly if fed, can just out-duel you so brutally, that even if you have 2-3 team-mates helping you in an effective 1v3/1v4, you're still going to die if they can get in range of you. Champions that can commonly do this when fed are bruisers like Irelia, Jax, Renekton, etc. Champions tanky enough to qualify as tanks while still dealing huge damage to a squishy target like you, especially when fed.
Against champions like these, it's really necessary for you to watch out and keep your distance. You can try poking at them with Zap! and the occasional auto-attack, but you can't fully commit to DPS'ing them down until again, they either fall so low at your team's hands that they're no longer a threat, or realizing that they can't get to you, they commit their most important cooldowns (mobility and/or CC) onto someone else. In Irelia's case, it's safe to commit onto her when she's used either Bladesurge, as she won't be able to gap close to you or burst you with it (though Flash may still pose a threat), or Equilibrium Strike, as it'll prevent her using her deadly 2 second stun on you. And if she's used both then until they come off of cooldown she presents almost no threat at all, so long as you maintain good positioning and kite if she tries to walk towards you.
When following the rule of "attack whoever's closest", often you'll have to choose between two champions that are at a more or less equal distance from you, and it'll be optimal for you to attack one or the other, but it's hard to be completely certain about who the right target is. That being said, here are some things for you to consider which will hopefully lead to you making the right choice:
1) Which is the bigger threat?
You'll want to take out whoever's the biggest threat not just to yourself, but to your team as a whole, and disregard the weaker enemy. Sometimes it's not very clear cut, others you have to choose between a fed Riven and a 1/1/5 jungle Sion, in which case it's a very obvious choice which you should focus.
2) Who would die faster?
When the targets are equally threatening, you'll want to focus whichever one is squishiest/lower HP, as the sooner they're out of the fight, the sooner your team gains a numbers advantage. Sometimes even if they're the lower threat, it's still worth focusing them down first if they're going to die significantly faster, but only sometimes, and it depends on how big a threat the other possible target is.
3) Who's least likely to get away from you?
The less mobile one is the least likely to walk away and succeed in getting away. You'll want to focus the least mobile one as they're the ones most likely to die if they get low. A tank with gap closers like Zac (and let's just say his passive isn't up so you don't need to worry about that) may get low, then just leave the fight with Elastic Slingshot before you can finish him off. If your other option is an equally tanky Nautilus for example, he's less likely to be able to get away alive when he gets low, so it'd be smarter to focus him in a situation where it's just as easy to auto-attack both.
Generally, from top to bottom those would be the most important factors to take into account respectively, but sometimes one factor, if it's big enough, can over-ride a generally more important factor. For example, choosing to DPS down a negative KDA, full AD Lee Sin, over a fed Riven, because you can kill the Lee in about 2 seconds while the Riven is both tankier and more mobile, so takes a fair while longer to kill.
That's it for my Jinx guide. I hope you found this helpful and learn to play Jinx as well as you want to. I personally think she's one of the more fun ADC's and hopefully you'll share this opinion!
If you enjoyed this guide you may also enjoy Vapora's Guide To Tristana, my guide to my favourite ADC. They have very different playstyles but I find Tristana equally if not more fun to play. Otherwise you may still want to read it if you're wanting to improve your ADC skills because it's kind of like a general ADC guide as much as it is a Tristana guide.
Special thanks to Hopper for doing the banners and most of the coding. (Go check her shop out!)
If you're interested to see me play, follow my stream! I'll usually be playing Tristana by default but if you would like to see me play Jinx or anyone else, let me know in the chat!
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