Yorick Build Guide by KarlitoElBurrito
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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.
First guide please add suggestions or questions
I am currently a 1600 ELO player. I use Yorick every time top lane is open. I have 81% win rate with him so I really want to educate other people on his OPness.
Yorick is an amazing sustain champion with no true hard counter. There are few champions who can even stand toe-to-toe with him in lane and farm equally.
This guide will be a basic run through on build order, skill sequence, and play style.
One of the most sustainable top lane champions
Ultimate that can change a fight from 5v5 to 6v5
Mana starved early
No true Crowd Control
The runes are pretty straight forward and basic for any bruiser. Flat AD to help harass early and last hit, armor because most top lanes are AD, MR per level because MR is OP late game.
I play Yorick very very aggressively, therefore offensive masteries allow you to do massive harass with quick bursty pokes. 9 points in utility is a must for whenever you happen to get a buff(baron blue red) and the mana regen is beyond crucial.
You level your E as fast as you can because the life steal it gives you is what makes Yorick sustain so amazing. Also it is a really strong poke on a short cooldown.
You get W once rank at level 4 just so it procs your passive.
You max Q after E because it is your gank escape and main damage source during trades.
During fights with enemies I usually just spam E to initiate so that I get the 5% dmg reduction and 5% dmg increase. Then if I can land an auto attack I activate Q and hit them w/ W right before I auto. This combo has AMAZING burst and the Q gives you a MASSIVE speed increase this allows you to do all your burst damage and run away before they can retaliate. The W slows them and does a small amount of damage but it's 5% bonus to your passive is why it's used, otherwise it's just a mana drain.
You start with a ward and mana regen pendent because yorick is very gankable early on. I love rushing level 2 pushing the lane hard so i have E and Q before the other top is level 2. I then drop the E Q combo and a couple auto attacks and almost all champions are at half health from just that. The bullying commences here, they now realize how OP you are and start to stay back. Now you just last hit minions and use your mana only to harass/sustain.
You use your ward depending on the game, if it's a slow jungle who's not a strong early ganker you can wait on using it or start w/ health pots(warwick, fiddlesticks, etc..) Against strong jungle gankers who start red you need to ward asap(Lee Sin, Shyvana, Shaco)
Using Ghouls to farm early will not only push the lane leaving you vulnerable to ganks but it will OOM you instantly. This is why you ONLY last hit. Yorick is a perfect champion for freezing top lane just outside of his own tower making him virtually impossible to gank. How this is accomplished is you wait for the enemy minion wave to build up and push toward your tower. As soon as the creep wave is just outside of your tower range you kill all of the melee minions, and leave the casters. The casters will destroy your minions quickly and once they're all dead you use a ghoul to tank the wave so it doesn't die to your tower, waiting on your next creep wave to come. When this is done correctly the enemy champion will not be able to get farm because you and your tower are right there.
On my first back i like to wait until at least 1025 so that you can buy your Tear Boots level 1 and a ward.
Second back I like to get manamune at least and if i'm doing well mercury treads as well. If their top lane is a strong AD champion that's giving you trouble getting Ninja Tabi is AMAZING. It is the cheapest Tier 2 Boots and the armor + 10% dmg reduction is amazing.
From here I buy either Phage or Sheen depending on how the game's going, if I don't have enough for Sheen straight up I think the individual parts of Phage are better so I get either a Ruby or Long Sword.
Once you have Trinity Force, Manamune, and Merc Treads you are a force to be reckoned with. You can either continue to freeze/win your lane or roam and look for ganks. I like to take both top towers generally and make sure the other team's top laner gets next to no farm so that late game it's a 4v5 more or less.
Once you have those three core items you can decide what to build, if they're AP heavy Spirit Visage is an amazing item to sustain you in team fights, Force of Nature is good too. Recently I've really started to like Hex Drinker and Maw of Malmortius. If they're an even mixture Warmog's is always good. If you get Warmog's you have to get Atma's after. At'Mog's is just too strong to be denied.
It's really up to you from here to decide how the game's going with your item build. Whatever items you like will probably work as long as the core remains steady.
Your job in mid/late game is to be at the front of your team. You can sustain a lot of damage and also initiate well. There have been so many times that their team focuses me to start a fight, i use my ultimate on myself go down and then just focus the hell out of their AD and AP carries taking them both w/ me before my revenant runs out.
It is often hard to get onto the target you want as Yorick so I just make sure I land my Q on the first enemy unit that gets within my auto attack range. The speed boost makes it almost impossible to stop you from getting your slow and an E off on whatever target you'd like. Also with all three ghouls up you have a massive tanking steroid of 15% reduced damage.
Yorick's ultimate is one of the least understood ultimates in the game. Using it correctly makes people scream OP and team mates who want to call you god. When your graves gets caught by 2 people and you make it there just in time to ult him allowing him to turn around and get his double kill 2 for 1 trade, you are loved.
Make sure people know that when they die and you've ulted them they're not still alive and so they should NEVER retreat.
I don't always use my ult on the AD carry, although that is almost always a good idea because it will make the Shadow very very powerful w/o needing to utilize its reincarnation.
I tend to use my Ult on whomever is being focused first if i think that they're going to die. The earlier you can get it out the better because it activates your passive as well. When you use your ultimate and all 3 ghouls you have a 20% damage steroid and 20% damage reduction!