Jax Build Guide by Biohazardish grumpr
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Have to build Jax AD!
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.
My Jax Experience
I'm not saying it's impossible I could of randomly played eight games in a row and won with Jax each time based on luck. I am however saying I have played the hell out of Jax, and here is how I came to the tanky AD w/ Sheen build I use today.
Well, when I originally started playing Jax I would roll the recommended hybrid build. Get a Guinsoo's Rageblade and a Hextech Gunblade, trust me, it's inferior. I can see why people would build it, it gives your ult both armor and mag resist, and well his abilities hit for AP! Trust me: it is inferior.
If your going for vamp, there is so much better life steal, if your going for AP, there is better AP, the Rageblade and his passive stacks hardly amounts to much compared to just buying Berserker's Greaves and his passive stacks.
The vamp and lifesteal you gain from the Gunblade hardly amounts to much considering for so much less you can skip out on the AP, get a Blade of the Ruined King and have a way better item passive.
I play Jax very aggressively and it dawned on me after awhile that my playstyle was essentially mimicking that of how I would play Master Yi or Fiora, where I'm just jumping on champions and trying to murder them as fast as possible, but the hybrid build doesn't reflect that.
Jax however is different from Master Yi and Fiora in one respect, he has some serious survivability, and he needs to be built to go fast, whereas they both get it naturally. Hence the need for a Zeal and the Alacrity bonus on your boots.
Before the Alacrity bonus was available, I would run a Phantom Dancer and Boots of Swiftness just for the extra go-fast. It's pretty awesome, but not as needed anymore.
Since Jax is basically one of the hardest hitting champs out there, and at times it seems the Sheen was created specifically for him. Like Nasus or Irelia. You should be all over the enemy champs, and you should be building to improve your Sheen and improve Jax's natural tankyness.
Jax's natural survivability needs to be balanced with his naturally huge dps. This is achieved through getting health and attack speed early, since he is low in those areas. Get the Sheen to be your damage for now. Your mid game centers around building up your DPS and your late-game consists of Atma's and armor/mag resist.
His Passive skill - Bonus Attack Speed Relentless Assault is truly less useful and way too situational to be a substitute for building attack speed. It stacks, up to 6, and has a fast refresh rate. If you can, hitting creeps or a tower 6 times before moving to a champion is ideal, but you really do a ton of damage and need to be in the mix always, its far worse to miss an opportunity to stun or get a double with the glory of this build, than it is to try and get all your stacks up and be within 1.5 seconds of the team-fight. This alone kills most Jax players, trust the build and you wont need to rely on his passive. It's still a great one, because the more you fight the scarier you get.
Basically you will rely on his Ult 'R' - Damage Shield Grandmaster's Might to give you mid-game armor and mag-resist. The more AD you have the more armor, more AP, more mag-resist. Save it for right after you jump someone, remember to master timing your Sheen. Its nice to pop and have your resists double as soon as people start targeting you. Having dropped a Sheen proc and not even started your combo yet.
His 'E' - Dodge Counter Strike is the skill you really need to master, and the one I recommend starting with. You dodge all incoming attacks, so basically have invulnerability on for a few seconds followed by an AOE stun. At level one, this alone will net you kills. Jax is exceptionally good in the early game 3v3 that takes place on Twisted Treeline. Dodging literally enough damage to kill you then stunning their entire team takes a lot more practice than you would think. It's all in the timing, when you start it, and when you drop the stun, remember, the longer you can let it ride, the more damage it will do.
The 'Q' - Jump Leap Strike and 'W' - Bonus Damage Empower are your primary damage combo. The moves themselves don't deal a ton of damage, but they both proc your Sheen, overall, you will be able to achieve much more DPS this way than trying to up the damage on your 'Q' and 'W'. Basically you want to get your 'Q' second and if you want to you can save the 'W' for when you are close to your Sheen. The only time I would recommend Empowering a Leap Strike is when you're trying to tower dive someone who is low on HP and get that last hit and get out. Otherwise you are wasting possible damage. Keep in mind, his Leap Strike can be used to jump to friendly champions, friendly minions, and depending on what patch it is: wards, shrooms, and jack-in-the-boxes.
Hopefully you have got it down now! The combo changes depending on who you are up against and how many, but lets say you are solo top against a Xin Zhao, he wants to fight you in a straight up standing one on one. Assuming you have your Berzerker's Greaves, Ruby Crystal, and Sheen, you are ready to go. He jumps to you, what's your combo? 'E' (wait for full duration)-basic attack-'W'-Basic Attack-'R'-Basic Attack-Stun-Basic Attack-'Q'-Basic Attack. If that didn't do it, the only explanation is they have buffed or reworked and this is out of date.
Teamfights? Oh you see an Annie run in and Tibbers your Malz? 'Q'-Basic Attack-'R'-'E' (because I'm sure their team has seen you and is on you, wait for full duration unless Annie starts getting away)-Basic Attack-'W'. Just time it right and you will be at peak performance the whole game. With each blow being either buffed by a skill, doubled by your sheen, and later, time-and-a-halved by your Trinity Force.
He's great in any game mode, and the build stays the same, except in modes where there is no Blade of the Ruined King you should get Sanguine Blade in it's place.
Start with Boots and Pots on Summoner's Rift, Boots and Ruby Crystal on Twisted Treeline, Boots, Ruby Crystal and a Long Sword with 2 Pots on the Crystal Scar. Your first three items need to be: Berserker's Greaves, Ruby Crystal, and a Sheen.
By now you should at least have your six and be farming really well. That's when the decision comes, do you get the Avarice Blade next? If you are doing a bunch of team-fighting, say getting ganked a lot or playing a Dominion, no get the Vampiric Scepter and then The Brutalizer to The Black Cleaver. There are many good reasons to skip the Avarice Blade and just get it later to make the Atma's Impaler. But if you are doing a lot of top lane farming, jungling, yes get the Avarice Blade it's worth it for the farm because Jax farms so ridiculously fast. But by mid game I'm normally running around with: Berserker's Greaves, Ruby Crystal, Sheen, Avarice Blade, Vampiric Scepter, and The Brutalizer.
By your probably making lots of money considering Jax is naturally a beast farmer. Your attack speed is high, your Sheen has got you hitting decent, you have crit, armor pen, CDR, attack speed, and life steal. You even have some additional health; its basically the full package.
Then you want to finish off your Black Cleaver, get either a Zeal or a Phage (depending on what you need the most, trust me this part goes fast with your cash flow), and Finish out your Tri-Force. Its also a good idea to upgrade your boots with Alacrity. You're now a fast moving, hard hitting monster, but it only gets better, finish up with an Atma's Impaler, the two Ruby Crystals in your build have netted you plenty of health, and you should have farmed an extra 600 gold by now with your Avarice Blade. Next up get either a Maw of Malmortius, or if they aren't using any AP build an Infinity Edge. Jax gets triples on the regular.
Now Jax is both unbelievably hard to kill with his huge amount of Armor on his ult, and his high HP and magic resist. Not just that his DPS is through the roof, with each Sheen proc hitting for 600, crits like crazy, armor pen, attack speed, a jump, a stun, life steal, a slow, yeah you're unstoppable. Now it's just up to how well you play Jax.
Late Gaming On Um
If you polished off the build, your ad is right around 300, you are critting all the time, how do you ensure you stay alive in a team fight? Jax seems like the guy to initiate at fist. It will work against 1 or 2, but in a full team-fight, let someone else drop the first stun, let's run through some scenarios.
Say its a Twisted Treeline match, you and Sion are bot, all three are down there and your Lee Sin is on his way, who should initiate? I would say wait for Sion's single-target stun, jump to that target and start your stun. What's my logic? Well, when you leap away from your team, you become the target, since your dodging their melee's will be on you while your in peak tank mode. You can stun everyone giving Lee Sin plenty of time to line up a good kick. Since everyone one their team is stunned and your team has caught up, you have sufficiently been a complete beast, serving a damage role like none-other. Their team will burn all their flashes and whoever's isn't off cooldown is dead.
Say its a Summoner's Rift match, you are running mid from top to gank, it's against a Kassadin, you have Ahri, let her land the Charm. Save your 'Q', run out and proc Sheen with your Ult. Basic Attack and then throw up the Counter Strike, Kass Ults away, now use your Leap Strike, activate your 'E', and net the kill.
Jax is a monster in any and all situations, and with this build he can be formidable against any team. Enjoy your perfect games!