Warwick Build Guide by 1drifter

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.

League of Legends Build Guide Author 1drifter

WarWick Lives

1drifter Last updated on September 13, 2011
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 9

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 0

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This is Warwick, The Draining, simplistic, but very powerful Wolfman.
Warwick is a great character due to his early jungling ability, You can edit this build to be junglable at level one if you get smite or you can just wait until level 4-6 when you get the madred's razor.

As for laning, Warwick's ability to control the lane depends on his opponent. I will jump more into detail on this below.

In any case Warwick needs money! So get out there and start killing those minis.

Note* a section for Domination will be added after its release.

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Runes and Summoner Skills

The Runes on this build are more coordinated towards melee battle, so make sure it can happen.
If you are battling more casters than melee builds then the seals wont be as helpful, but you never know until the game starts so no way to work around it.

The Summoner Skills I chose are Flash and Exhaust for a chase and kill method. I prefer flash over ghost because if you chase someone with ghost they can exhaust you to escape but flashing up to them gives you a surprise attack before they can react.

If you want a jungle Warwick just trade flash and smite out. You lose some mobility but you can jungle at lvl 1 without problems. Check the Jungle section for more.

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I play this 21-9-0. This keeps me strictly focused on attack early on to help when i get the bloodrazors. During laning or jungling it just makes things go faster.

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Now this is a big and important part of any build - the item selection.
Realizing what you need during any game is absolutely necessary.

--At level 1 - Grab the Longsword and a health potion

--At level 3-6 - Get your Madred's Razor.

--At level 7 you should have managed to get both madred's razor and the recurve bow.

--As a side note in the Twisted Treeline Warwick can solo the Dragon at this point. A very helpful tidbit for your entire team.

--At level 9-12 you should be completing your Bloodrazor and grabbing the Ionian Boots of Lucidity. I don't get boots early on because i find that i am a horrible chaser. If you are a good chaser, after you get madred's razor you could get the boots but the odds of killing a good runner are low. If you go without boots in the early levels play it smart until you get your boots.

So at this point you look terribly weak with only this showing to other players.

Fear not. Warwick's true ability comes out around level 12 as his passive reaches its peak.
From this point on, items depend on what you might need.

Lvl 10 +

--A generally good item to grab is the Kindlegem, giving you 200hp and 10% cooldowns(after your boots the total is 25%), and then upgrading it to the Spirit Visage(250hp 30MR 10% cooldowns and 15% increased healing and regeneration effects. The Spirit Visage directly works with your Passive skill boosting it from 54 at 3 stacks to 69 at 3 stacks.

--Thornmail is a must have if you are knee-deep in melee combat. This Armor not only gives you a whopping 100 Armor decreasing the damage you take but dishes out 30% of the damage back to your target ruining most or all of any healing he might be benefitting from. This item lets you get in the middle of a teambattle and possibly come back out alive.

--If you get the Spirit Visage you could just settle for a Negatron cloak to save money at this point, but if you are combatting mages you'll need the defense to hold your own against them. Even though you can get close easily with Infinite Duress if that doesn't deal killing damage the magical backlash you will get will be Painful or Deadly if it stuns.

--All 3 of these items do similar jobs, so this is where you get to choose by how you enjoy playing. My preference is the Phantom Dancer. It is the least expensive and gives a high crit. chance boost as well as some extra speed to catch those runners. The Bloodthirster is risky in my opinion. Dying causes it to empty and its base 15% lifesteal doesn't work too well in this build. The Infinity edge is the most expensive but is worth the price if you can keep up with your enemies(remember that Blood Scent is the last skill you max.)

--The Black Cleaver is a possible option. Having 30% attack speed, 55 Attack damage, and up to 45AP is a reasonable dealmaker. It is heavy on the moneybags for its abilities unfortunately.

--Warmog's Armor is nice to have because it gives you a third of your life as an increase before you get stacks on it. At its maximum this item gives you 1.5x your normal life(sounds great to me).

Possible End Outlooks

Other Items that could be used include Randuin's Omen, Sunfire Cape, Nashor's Tooth, Banshee's Veil or Wits End. I don't advise Trinity force as it is too broad for this build.

--Randuin's Omen gives you a bit less armor than the Thornmail but it comes with a small life bonus and a nifty CC activate ability. Great for using after you jump into the middle of a group. If i had to say then TM is for 1v1 or 2v1 and RO is for Teamfights.

--Sunfire Cape is quite a bit less armor than TM but it gives a constant damage effect. If you don't get attacked this can be quite annoying but ive never jumped in and not been the chosen target.

--Nashor's Tooth gives a nasty boost to Warwick's already high CDR, bringing it up over 50%. If you can spare a slot, this might be another way to increase your damage, but having ridiculously high CDR would more suit a Magic Pen. Warwick setup. Unfortunately, swapping to the sorcerer's shoes would lower your CDR back down to 43%, on the other hand, the Magic Pen. could bring another build of Warwick to light.

--Banshee's Veil is great when you first run into battle, canceling the first negative effect you recieve. Its MR is a bit lower than the Force of Nature but it returns the favor with a tad more life.

--Wits End hauls a tasty amount of MR for its lower price. Getting the hits in to increase your MR is simple with Infinite Duress and the extra magic damage per hit is useful, but any opposing MR will ruin the extra damage from this item. So without Magic Pen. this is not a viable option.

Boots - Why and Why Not
--NO! never get these. The attack speed is unnecessary with your hunter's call.

--Also a No. These might help in early game to catch those pesky runners and let you get across the map quickly but it is unnecessary with your blood scent which can see quite a ways at max level.

--Generic. I used to buy these but i always find myself wondering how EM2 people would still outrun me. So no.

--Good stuff. 15% ability cooldowns by itself reduces the timer on hungering strike by 1s when it is at maximum level (from 6seconds to 5seconds).

--Also a good choice. Some magic resist but Tenacity 35 helps greatly against technical enemies(slow,stun and all that jazz). I don't necessarily recommend these boots because you already get some magic resist elsewhere.

--These boots are great if you are battling a bunch of Melees. They bring your dodge value up to 20%! Not good against mages.
--Sorcerer's Shoes can work if you choose to go magic heavy in damage. Personally i think Warwick is better if he can use his skills more often to improve his survivability. Let me explain more on this.

---Thanks to Ssyrak on Pointing out the Sorcerer's Shoes were missing---

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Balancing Power and Defense

Warwick is one of the Many champions that can dish out both physical and magical damage at good rates. This makes him tougher to resist. My item setup is designed to bring both his PA and MA to an even amount in the endgame while also maintaining a powerful defense.

The Bloodrazor gives Warwick 4% of opponent's life in magical damage. At level 18 with most of the item setups i have listed Warwick's PA should be around 150. Most players at level 18 will have a life total(not item boosted) of around 2000-2500. 4% of that is 80-100 damage per hit. If you choose my preferred setup then Warwick's PA caps at 117. It is difficult to determine which attack type to focus on because different opponents will buy different resists.

If you are wondering how this build can work on such petty damage then you will have to look towards Warwick's Skills.

Hungering Strike -- Since i choose not to boost my Magic damage, this skill changes from straight damage into percentage damage early on. At max level this skill bites for 20% as magical damage. Although it does make sense to get magic Penetration, there isn't a good item choice to trade out.

The Ionian Boots vs. Sorcerer Shoes
Bite every 4s or Bite every 5s for around 15% more damage if the enemy has no MR items.

Hunter's Call -- This skill is great for any battles, giving you and your team the speed edge in battle for a short period. While active, your passive acts like a damage absorber, healing you for most or all of the damage you would be taking from basic attacks.

Blood Scent -- This skill is only helpful while active, so make sure it is active. It can be used as psuedoboots in early game but be mindful. You must fufill the condition or it does nothing(Enemy within skill range at 50% or less hp)

Infinite Duress -- Your only technical skill, but suppress is the best kind. It makes your enemy watch as you devour a good portion of his or her Health bar and they cannot react until the suppression is over or interrupted(stun/airtime etc).

NO pic for you!!! Eternal Thirst -- This is your passive drain skill. I like to call it Lifesteal in a bottle. This skill is Warwick's backbone and is a big reason to get the Spirit Visage. More lifedrain = longer lifespan.

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Jungling and Laning

This build is not made to jungle on the Summoner's Rift without Smite.
This build can jungle in the Twisted Treeline from level one if you choose to do so. It is not an easy task so i would stick to laning until you get Madred's razor.

Jungling - Warwick is great for the jungle. His ability to heal after consecutive hits makes most of the weaker enemies do little to no damage. The tougher boss mobs take a beating once you get your Razor at level 4.If you feel confident that your teammates can hold the lanes then by all means go and jungle to get your whole team more experience and gold.

For the Twisted Treeline all jungle monsters can be solo'd by level 7 safely.
For the Summoner's Circle all jungle monsters can be solo'd by level 9 safely.
(Execption is the Epic Boss Mob, The Baron, is doable with 2 people around lvl 16)

Laning - Warwick is a champion when it comes to Laning 1v1 against melee characters. Do not make Warwick go 1v1 Lane against character with ranged attacks like ashe at lower levels. If you do and you are not careful then you will exercise your right to die. Swap out to the doubles lanes if you think you cant handle your opponent. Some Champions that Warwick struggles against in 1v1 laning are --Akali, Ashe, Lux, and Heimerdinger.

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Becoming The Tank

Warwick may have mediocre life, but he is a great tank with armor. When you jump into team battles, do not be afraid of dying if you can secure a kill for your teammates. Running never guarantees that you will live.

In Early game focus on getting your Bloodrazor. On your way you will get Madred's razors which will cause your minion cleaning ability and your money collection to increase. Your ability to heal from enemies will let you hold the field much longer and open gank or killing opportunities on overly aggressive or weakened opponents. How does getting the Bloodrazor make you a tank? It doesn't, but once you have it living longer makes you that much more deadly.

In the Mid-Level range it is time to armor up and get your CDR items. Push towers using friendly minion support and hunter's call to break them down quickly. Again do not be afraid to die if you can destroy the tower. In single fights you will be a dominating force but watch the level differences. If the enemy is 3+ levels ahead of you they might steamroll over you before you get to do much. The same applies to teamfights. Target the squishies first and use your suppression to call a coordinated strike and bring fear to the 2 remaining enemies. The best way to know who is prime target is to play and learn.

In the End-Level range you are nearly fully outfitted. At this point you can tank 2 melee champions or 1 mage and melee champions reasonably well. So jump right into the fray of a teambattle. Become the Prime Target. Make them use their Ultimate Skills to kill you.

Three VIPs

1.The Bushes - Love them, hate them, hide in them, gank from them, Suppress from them, but do not tank in them. That won't do anything for your team. As for enemies in word...CHARGE!

2.The Boss Mobs - Watch for them, Kill em, get your team extra gold, grab some buffs for you. The speed one is very nice early game and the cooldowns is very nice lategame. The Health and Mana buffs are good all the time. The Baron buff...need i say more. As for enemies, use boss mobs as gank spots but don't try to ninja the buff. That will just get you tons of enemy aggro.

3.The Towers - Beat them down to the ground. Whether you do it together or alone, those towers don't recover so every point of damage counts. Just don't die doing petty damage to a tower. Protect your towers, and if luck is on your side it will help you kill enemies. Do not cower at a tower at critical life. An enemy might just take the hits to kill you.

Congratulations you have finished becoming the tank!