Gragas Build Guide by Noob Police
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Safety and Aggression
Tanky Burst Ranked
Tanky CDR Ranked (Try This If Unsure)
Not Updated For Current Season
Intro To This Guide
This is the most comprehensive, in-depth, up-to-date, user-friendly, and all around best Gragas guide out there. No question about it. If you're wondering which guide to look at, look no further. I will constantly provide the best info on Gragas over any other guide so long as I maintain this guide. There are many guides with inaccurate data and outdated info, but not this one. Take the time to compare ANY other Gragas guide and if there is a difference in data (and there will be), I assure you that I have found the correct info.
Mouse over wherever it says "+NOTES" on the top parts of this guide to get more quick information, tips, and reasoning behind that section.
I put a fair amount of effort into this guide, so please reconsider any downvotes before testing my guide. And given that you are looking for a guide, I'd imagine you are planning to do just that. So thank you for taking the time to read this Gragas guide! If you liked this guide, please do remember to upvote it and comment, as it will help others find this guide and help me improve this guide.
This guide is VERY comprehensive. Use the tabs throughout the chapters to reveal more info. I would also recommend using the "Go To" tab that I've provided at the bottom of each chapter to move you directly to the chapter you want to view.
Important, Please Read!
Updated my "How To Play Versus..." section today!!! (8/21/2013) This section will be updated and improved even further within the next few days. Request more in-depth info on different versus if you want to see more tips and tricks against that character! :D
If you have an issue with this guide, please let me know why, instead of downvoting without saying something. You're not helping me, and you're not helping me help you or others. Thanks for the small effort on your part to be a positive part of this guide, instead of just being a negative nunu.
Abbreviations Of Terms
AP = Ability Power
AD = Attack Damage
MP = Magic Penetration
CDR = Cooldown Reduction
OOM = Out of Mana
HP = Health Points
DoT = Damage Over Time
AoE = Area of Effect
MR = Magic Resistance
CS = creep score
Gragas, The Rabble Rouser
Hey guys, this is Unumalum (Previously known as Eviidental) here with a new season 3 guide to Gragas for you!
I've considered doing a guide for him for a long time now but only recently saw the need to. Many guides are out of date and I want to give guidance to those with some questions as well as gain some feedback from other veteran Gragas players so as to make this guide FLAWLESS.
This guide will mainly focus on the most prominent (and my personal favorite) roll for Gragas: Ability Power Carry.
Gragas is one of my favorite ability power champions in league and it's crazy that not many people still play him. Gragas has high base health, high tankiness (due to steroid), high regeneration (both mana and health), high damage auto attacks for an AP (due to steroid), extremely high burst, underestimated utility in the form of a gap closer/slow, an attack speed debuff, and one of the biggest displacement spells in the game... and for the most part, all of that comes at a high range.
Feel free to leave any comments and constructive criticism below. And, don't forget to vote!
Pros and Cons
+Very easy to land abilities once you get used to missile speeds.
+High ranged AoE poke and burst from Barrel Roll and Explosive Cask
+Gap closer or a 5-7 second cooldown "Flash" and a wall jump on Body Slam
+Enemy movement slow on Body Slam
+Enemy attack speed slow on Barrel Roll
+Very high ability power ratios
+Scales well all game long
+Amazing at creep score farming
+Very tanky due to Drunken Rage
+Terrific ganker because of all of his abilities
+High team fight presence
+AoE displacement from Explosive Cask
+Low late game cooldowns
+Very safe champion for stealing the enemy buffs (suggest warding)
+Tier 1 solo lane champion for a very long time
+Can go toe to toe with almost any champion if his abilities are leveled and used properly (no hard counter champions even if some are "difficult")
-Has to be in melee range to land Body Slam offensively
-Susceptible to auto attack poke from ranged champions early in game
-High early game cooldowns
-Likes to jiggle his fat way too much.
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
Greater Seal of Scaling Health
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
Main rune set
Greater Mark of Magic Penetration
All of Gragas's abilities are dealt as magic damage, and as such are subject to reduction in damage by magic resistance. To combat this reduction you want to have magic penetration. This extra MP, along with your masteries, is very helpful. Your runes along with a few of the items like Sorcerer's Shoes and Void Staff assure your abilities are doing the most damage they can. All of the MP you will have using this build will allow you to slice through many enemies as if you were dealing true damage (meaning you do 100% of your ability's possible damage after enemy defensive traits are factored in), even to offtanks and tanks.
Greater Seal of Scaling Health
These are a great choice and seeing as how they are half the price of the flat Greater Seal of Health, and they give around 4 times as much health at level 18. The choice is almost made for you. Also the scaling runes have a larger amount of total HP per rune turnover once you hit level 5. And since you should be in a solo lane, you will hit level 5 quickly. With your Rod of Ages, along with these runes, you will have quite a hefty health pool later in the game. In Gragas's case, more HP in combination with Drunken Rage acts as both more effective armor and magic resist, since Drunken Rage grants reduced damage from ALL sources.
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
These runes help a ton. You get 12 MR in total right from the start, and since you will most likely be mid, this means you are negating quite a bit of damage from the enemies abilities. Even if your enemy is also running with magic penetration marks, you will still have 3 magic resist. While this seems like a bad thing it actually works in your favor quiet well, as this will allow any item you buy that has magic resist to be instantly more beneficial instead of instantly beingnegated by the enemy's magic penetration. I get flat runes over scaling here since the scaling magic resist only becomes more effective at level 9. By then you will have some more health and tankiness anyway from your items as well as naturally leveling up. Therefore, having a bit more MR later won't be nearly as effective as having a large amount early game.
Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
These are amazing to take with Gragas. Any extra AP you can get helps immensely due to his high ability power ratios on his abilities. It's also good to note that these runes work with your Rabadon's Deathcap as well. I take these over the scaling Greater Quintessence of Scaling Ability Power because they affect early game a lot (around 15 AP right off the bat, without any items). It would be one thing if scaling gave 3 times the amount of AP at level 18, and the turnover was really early game, however, that is not the case. Not only is the more-AP-per-rune turnover for scaling runes pretty late (at level 12) but the benefit of flat runes are that they give an immense amount of gold-free AP early game. Whereas at level 18, scaling runes only wind up giving you around 8 more AP, which won't have nearly as much of an effect late game as 15 AP from the start does.
These masteries are aimed at giving you the most damage output, while also providing some utility and sustain. If you have a preference to spending a few skills in other masteries feel free to do so, as only you can best know what's best for your play style. That's why this is a GUIDE not a "THIS IS EXACTLY HOW YOU NEED TO DO IT" lol... what a horrid title that would be.
Tier 1: Summoner's Wrath is just too good to pass up on Gragas. At low levels 5 AP and AD on Gragas can go a long way. This leaves you with 3 points left in this tier to put into Sorcery for some extra CDR. While you lose 1% CDR by not putting all 4 points into here, the AP and AD are well worth it. 1% CDR is hardly noticeable for anything more than your Explosive Cask which has a short cooldown anyways. Don't take another point away from a mastery lower in this tree to fill this mastery either, as this is not worth it.
Tier 2: Blast is the only real choice for AP champions in this tier and Destruction isn't worth your time as Gragas.
Tier 3: Havoc is an amazing mastery for any champion who is building damage. 2% damage can mean the difference between winning or losing a lot of fights. Arcane Knowledge is just going to further the damage you do to an enemy who has any sort of MR.
Tier 4: Mental Force gives you even more early game power and allows you to have a bit more AP all game long with no gold cost. Spellsword is REALLY good on any Gragas player who is going to be aggressive enough to land Body Slams on enemies. It scales well into late game and can add another bit of damage into your Lich Bane auto attacks.
Tier 5: Archmage gives 5% more AP... what's not to like? More AP = more win.
Tier 6: Executioner is so good on Gragas, seeing as how it helps secure a kill on any enemy you poke down below half health. Get it, get kills, profit.
Tier 1: Summoner's Insight is great for anyone who uses Flash. Meditation is a great early game tool to give you some extra mana and can even help you with some clutch late game almost oom spell casts. Improved Recall can be very clutch in getting out of tight situations, and allows me to get down into tier 3 with only 3 points in tier 2.
Tier 2: Mastermind is one that I love. It allows you to use Flash and Ignite 10% more often (stacks with Summoner's Insight in the season 3 way of percentage and THEN flat). A must have for most players putting ANY points in this tree.
Tier 3: Runic Affinity allows you to have that tasty blue buff or red buff for 20% longer. What's not to love? Get it, get buffs, profit.
key spell to use in your combo. Great for grabbing kills you wouldn't have otherwise, thus allowing you to get more fed than you would without it. Don't underestimate the damage of it, either. At level 18 it adds a whopping 410 true damage to your combo. Not only that, but it also reduces healing on the target by 50% for 5 seconds. This makes it a great spell for finishing off people who would have otherwise been healed or healed themselves as you try to use your combo to kill them. If you make it so they won't heal as much during your combo you will not have to burst their health bar down more than once; such targets are Dr. Mundo, Vladimir, and Swain. It also allows for much more success when tower diving, as once they are very low you can apply this and walk out of tower aggro to let them die to a tick of true damage. This is a great spell overall for Gragas, as well as any other carries.
must-have spell for almost any champion, even Gragas who already has a built-in "flash." Using this along with your Body Slam gives you a "double flash" effect, which can let you easily escape enemies, close long gaps, initiate any fight, get out of turret range, juke enemies into following you over a wall (only to Flash or Body Slam back over to safety), and MUCH more. It also comes in handy when Body Slam is down (even though it has a low CD), and to go over walls that you can't with Body Slam. This is another terrific spell for AP Gragas and one that I would never pass up.
These are the most recommended items to start out with at level one. You can get other items as you see fit, but these starting items will suit most players much better.
This is a great starting item as any solo lane AP character (even with the nerf in season 3) as it will allow you to damage enemies much more and keep mana up if an enemy is trying to catch you (so you can Body Slam out, or catch up to any enemy for that last spell and attack to land an early kill.
You want to start off with 2 of these. These will allow you to sustain in lane longer in order to get more experience, CS, and potential kills. All while making sure you are topped off on health for maximum safety.
Early Game Items
These items have all the stats with low enough gold cost to really help you get your game off on the right note. Try to have enough gold to get one or more of these items before you go back the first time.
This item is a "must have" on Gragas early on, so why not get two? Not only does it regen your mana quicker (making it less costly to farm, harass, kill, gank, etc. with your abilities) but it also gives you more AP and HP. This ultimately gives you a ton of damage and health compared to any other item for the amount of gold it costs and lets you stay in mid longer, due to both your passive and your new found mana regen (allowing you to make use of your passive without running oom). Once you run out of room in your inventory, simply sell a Doran's Ring and continue on with your high end purchases. Because it is so cost effective for early game power, consider buying two and hold onto them until mid to late game.
|Catalyst the Protector
Catalyst the Protector
If you find you have the money and are going the a build that uses Rod of Ages, feel free to buy it instead of your first or second Doran's Ring. This item does wonders for you sustaining in lane and even if you aren't getting AP from this item, the sustain is enough to allow you to bully down your enemies while getting enough gold to upgrade it. You can also buy the subset of this, the Ruby Crystal to give you more health while not having to save up 1200 gold at once to get this item (if you are going for Ruby Crystal I recommend having at least one Doran's Ring first. But if you can afford a Catalyst the Protector right off the bat, feel free to get it instead of a Doran's Ring).
Needlessly Large Rod
If you find you have the money for this item feel free to buy it instead of your first or second Doran's Ring or Catalyst the Protector. This item does wonders for your damage and will allow you to burst down your enemies in no time flat. You'll be getting kills left right and center if you manage to get one of these earlier than most. On top of its easy to see AP power, it also doesn't limit you on build path options. This is because even if you don't want to build it into a Deathfire Grasp or a Zhonya's Hourglass, you will almost ALWAYS be building a Rabadon's Deathcap. So by getting this item, you don't limit your potential to change playstyles like you would by getting a Catalyst the Protector.
While you might not get one of these every game, the pay off can be huge. AP, Health, and MP? Yes please! This can make you an early-mid game powerhouse. It's one of those items that you just can't go wrong with. The only downside is that it only upgrades into one item, Liandry's Torment, which isn't the best on Gragas until late in a game. The upside to this is that you won't play many games where you have a full 6 item build, in which case, you can keep this item around without spending money on Liandry's Torment. If you do get this item, don't feel bad for selling it late game if you don't want to get Liandry's Torment, as it will have served it's purpose for early game domination, and hopefully allowed you to receive more gold than you are losing by selling it at diminished price.
These items are not necessarily suppose to be bought together in one game but they are the core of most AP builds for Gragas which can set you up for different build paths. These are items which, for the most part, you should get sooner than later if you are going to get them.
Athene's Unholy Grail
This item is a great one for those Gragas players who want to spam their abilities, and spam often. Another use of this item is if you have a jungler or another champion from a lane who needs blue more than you all game long. This can be a very good solution to your mana hunger if you don't have blue buff (Ya fatty). Just be aware that while this item has a lot of benefits, it does not give you much tankiness from AD champions or those who have built some magic penetration. It also doesn't give you health which can force you to play a bit more passive until you get an enemy low. This will be one of the best items for those Gragas players looking to stay ranged for the most part, as you will be tossing out barrels as soon as they're off cool down, which can be very mana intensive.
Holy mother of damage!!! This is not just a "you might think about getting this item"... item. This is the one item you should almost ALWAYS be getting, EVERY game, no matter your play style, no matter the team comp. It is like Infinity Edge for casters... but better. It will give you tons of burst damage just by its own AP on the item, but it also increases the effectiveness of any other ability power by 25%. That's 25% more damage you're going to do from your ability power for the rest of the game. It's like Deathfire Grasp's 20% damage increase but 5% better (for AP before flat ability damage)... and CONSTANT. Get this item. The only downside is that it does cost a fair bit of gold. Try to get at least 1 time out of base where you build up 1600 gold before backing (which should be easy with Gragas and his farming/killing potential). Probably not the first damage item you want to go for, but it's one you want to get sooner than later.
In-depth Look At Skills And Skill Order
This is a photo of my health bar at level 9 with standard items. Notice on the top right how my health regen is +3.
Max range from center of the AoE: 1100 Radius of the AoE: 350 Max range: 1450
This is your main damaging spell. It is high ranged, with a big AoE, a sort travel time, a controllable delay function, and high damage. The main thing to note about this spell is its high AoE damage due to an extremely high AP ratio for a non-ultimate ability of 0.9 Meaning that for every ability power you have, you deal 0.9 of that with this ability, plus its based damage.
armor can be shredded by armor penetration and reduction, and magic resistance by magic penetration and magic resist reduction, NOTHING can reduce the amount of damage reduction Gragas takes from ALL sources other than (of course) true damage. Not only this, but it gives you mana and attack damage, allowing you to cast more abilities without running out of mana and do more damage with Body Slam and auto attacks.
Max range of dash: 650 Speed of dash:900
This is an amazing spell for slowing enemies, closing gaps, escaping from enemies, dodging abilities, moving over terrain, and doing some more high burst damage.
Range to Center of AoE: 1050 Radius of AoE: 400 Maximum Range: 1450 Maximum Knockback Distance: 800
This is one of my favorite ultimate skills in the game. It has an INCREDIBLE amount of usages. The first thing to note about it is that it has high base damage and an extremely high AP ratio of 1.0!!!!! It only gets better from here. It has a huge range which matches nicely with your Barrel Roll range. It has a MASSIVE AoE which can hit enemies in a lane over almost the whole width of the lane. If this wasn't enough it also has a displacement affect that knocks enemies a maximum of 800 away from the center of its impact.
^This is the most common route and the one that I most recommend. This allows use of all three on your main spells at level 3. While you are missing out on a bit of damage if you are just trying to harass with only Barrel Roll, you end up doing a lot more damage with a Drunken Rage- Body Slam-auto attack- Barrel Roll combo.
^This is another common route some players use, but I tend to not go this route as it can leave you VERY mana starved early, making you useless until you get more mana again. Not only does it hurt you on mana, but it also makes you much more susceptible to damage seeing as how you don't have Drunken Rage active on you until level 4. Conserving mana can make this route work well, but if the enemy is keen on trading poke damage with you, you might lose out if they have any form of sustain or mana regen.
^This last route is not the most common but can be used in 1v2 lanes where you need to stay ranged while farming or harassing, keep mana up, and have as much damage mitigation as possible. Remember that these 3 routes aren't the only way to level up your abilities.
Try to think about what you will most likely need in the next few minutes of the game, and why you will need that, before spending your point in any skill.
What Walls You Can Body Slam
Try practicing on walls in a custom game so you know which are thin enough to allow you to Body Slam over them. If done perfectly each time, there should only be a few thick parts that you can't get over. Here is a guide to which walls you can Body Slam over. Note that this is a GUIDE and you should practice and try each wall for yourself. Some players might not be able to pull off Body Slams that others can. This is a custom made map which took me a LONG time to make, edit, and double check in game. Please do use it to its fullest:
Which Lanes And Why
As an AP carry, Gragas scales extremely well with levels and items. To do so you need a steady flow of both experience and gold. With the current meta, this puts Gragas in mid or top lane. This is due to the fact that bottom lane is normally dedicated to support/tank and AD range, while mid and top go to the two solos. Usually, mid is an AP carry. Top is often someone very durable. Be it an offtank, split pusher, or a high health and/or sustain carry. One thing to note recently is that many teams are now switching around lanes to 2v1 versus an enemy carry in order to shut them down. While this is very painful for most carries, Gragas does respectably well against two champions because of his range, AoE damage, and sustain.
Gragas is great top and mid since he is very survivable with high trade potential versus most meta top and mid champions, and as stated earlier, needs to farm well. Also note that if you're using this guide in lower levels and you notice that the enemy does not have a jungler (or if the enemy switches their duo lane to top or mid), you are still a GREAT 1v2 lane, since you have long range AoE farm and safe harass. If played carefully you can still safely farm and harass the enemies in a 1v2, and even prevent them from farming last hits by making them risk taking a barrel to the face. After the first couple of levels you will be a higher level than both of them, and with the help of your jungle or proper usage of your Explosive Cask and a tower, you can easily pick up some lower level kills. Gragas is one of the, if not THE best 1v2 champions to date and still great against most 1v1 champions.
On top of these reasons, Gragas is also a GREAT Baron stealing champion due to his high burst and long range. Because of this, it's best if he's in a lane around Baron so he can have a higher chance at being around when the enemy team goes for it. When Baron gets really low, try using your Barrel Roll right onto Baron, and then toss out your Explosive Cask before exploding Barrel Roll at the same time Explosive Cask hits. This will do a TON of damage and, if timed right, will end up most likely netting you Baron along with a kill or two.
This will be one of the most important parts to your early game and can help you pull even further ahead in mid to late game. Farming is the MOST important thing to focus on early on (pre-level 6), but winning harass or getting a kill should not be ignored. Try to harass while getting EVERY minion you can. If the enemy plays too far forward or makes a stupid mistake, don't be afraid to punish them for it.
Gragas is by far one of the easiest melee champions to farm and/or push with. While this seems good, it's even better than you think. Gragas has VERY high AP ratios on his abilities which means that the more gold you have, the better items you get, and the more you will scale through items, which will in turn make farming even easier (much more so than a lot of other champions). All you have to do in most 1v1 lanes is walk in with your Drunken Rage up and last hit minions with your auto attacks while using your Barrel Roll or Body Slam to harass the enemy champion. This is a very safe way to get the most CS while not pushing lane and also winning the harass in lane.
If you need to clear a wave fast however, you're in luck. Gragas is one of (if not thee) fastest lanes clearers in game. Just toss a Barrel Roll in the middle of the enemy wave (in between the melee and caster creeps so it hits them all... and yes it can be done with most waves), Body Slam the caster minions if they're still alive (Or if you one shot the casters then auto attack the melee minions until they're low before using Body Slam on the melee minions), and then with your Drunken Rage active, last hit any you may have missed.
This clear speed also allows you to take wraiths with without missing out on the next wave of minions, or roam before your enemy can even call a proper MIA. For wraiths, you want to first walk to the wall near the big wraith, toss out your Barrel Roll over the wall to the wraiths, quickly use you Drunken Rage, and then promptly dash over the wall using Body Slam right after exploding your Barrel Roll. If you want to see a screen shot of the same combo, look at my >>Blue Buff<< chapter. At low levels you may need to auto attack a few times, but if you get enough items throughout the game you should have high enough AP to kill them all with just this combo and maybe one more Body Slam on the big wraith (because of the season 3 health buff). Grab wraiths OFTEN. If you're low on mana you might want to decide if it's worth it or not. However if you have the mana and the health to do so and your jungle isn't going to need them within the next 20+ secs... do it. This will allow you to stay FAR ahead on CS without risk of poke or a 2v1 gank while pushed up in lane.
Ideally, you should be aiming to hit 150-200 or so CS before 25 minutes. With Gragas, that is a piece of cake to do. I often focus on getting every CS and Wraith score possible if it becomes a farm intensive game, which puts me at about 300-350 CS if I'm taking wraiths every time they're up and even counter jungling the enemy wraiths.
Just remember, during the laning phase, you should try to use Barrel Roll and Body Slam to harass and AoE last hit, and make sure not to push lane too hard (unless you want to roam or deny CS under their tower). If the enemy team has a jungler you're scared of and/or one or more of them are MIA (missing in action), play passive or grab wraiths until you know it is safe to be pushed up in lane. Not pushing your lane too hard and/or saving your Body Slam for escapes when it is not completely safe will reduce your chances of getting ganked and dying to said gank early in the game.
If your lane is push to your tower and you want enemy minion CS don't be afraid to use your abilities to get them. Drunken Rage is a great tool for last hitting under tower as it will let you hit harder so you can get those minions before the last tower hit finishes them off. Melee minions at low levels are SUPER easy to last hit under tower. Let them take two tower shots before landing an auto attack with Drunken Rage up.
I'm going to briefly go over warding in this guide, as it can help Gragas out a lot more than people think. His range on Barrel Roll and Explosive Cask is long enough that at max range you can't even see the end of your ability's range without some other source of vision other than your champion. If he has vision he can easily do a vast number of things both in jungle, and in lane from max range.
I'll just be covering the top of the map, as you can invert this to get the same affect on the bottom of the map.
1-2: These are placed to grant vision of any enemy who likes to sit in the top bushes a lot, and to prevent junglers from camping you or your team from these bushes.
3-6: These wards are placed to give you full vision of any incoming enemy into top lane or jungle by your top tower. This will help keep you safe, as well as allow you to be more comfortable being aggressive or pushed up in top lane. The placement of #6 is such that it gives you vision of an enemy entering or coming from the blue buff area, and Baron Nashor. If you can't get a ward here, try to place one in the Baron pit itself for vision on Baron later in the game.
7-10: These wards will give you as much vision as most would ever need around the red buff area. #7 gives you vision of red buff if placed on the very outer edge of the bush. Ward #8 will not be needed that often unless attacking or defending a middle inhib turret. Ward #10 is a new place in season 3 which if placed in the middle of the ramp can give an IMMENSE amount of vision from the far wall of the river, to the wall of red buff and wraiths. Your long range can help you snipe away any and all jungle if done right. By warding red buff at ward #7, you can take away red almost every time with just one or two spells, thus helping your team in shutting down an enemy jungler.
11-14: These ward will be placed mostly by or for mid players. #11 and #14 provide a lot of safety in lane, while #13 and #12 are usually placed on the enemies side as a way of safely stealing the enemies blue and keeping vision on incoming ganks from the river. This can again, screw over an enemy jungler, or deny an enemy AP carry the buff.
These are not all the places you can or should ward, but if you need vision somewhere.... put a ward there. It's rather simple and I won't go too into detail about it at this point.
Early Lane Kills
This section is mostly for 1v1 lanes seeing as how if you were 1v2 you should most likely be playing VERY passively until level 6 at least.
I often get first blood in a game as Gragas. This is due to my runes (I run more flat AP runes than I've shown in my guide for early game power), the way I level my abilities, and how I opt to play as Gragas. You should be getting Barrel Roll at level 1, Drunken Rage at level 2 against most champions, and then Body Slam at level 3 or 4. At level one don't be afraid to toss out a barrel or two on the enemy right away as you will get a lot of the mana back with proper use of your Drunken Rage.
You are playing mind games with the enemy by starting off with quick harass just as much as you are actually trying to win lane. You want make them think you're a forced to be reckoned with (and you are... but you want them running scared). This will make them back off a bit and allow you to stroll in for some auto attack CS as Gragas (saving you health and/or mana). At level two you should get Drunken Rage against MOST champions (however I change to Body Slam versus a forward Fizz or anyone aggressive that gets in close enough and can be slowed to allow for my minions and I to hit them more and for me to be able to land Barrel Roll very easily). Your Drunken Rage will need to be on CONSTANT cool down watch as soon as you get it. As soon as it's down, DRINK. Make sure you complete the channel EVERY time (unless in danger). This will allow you to shrug off most auto attack and minion poke, and will allow you to win ability trades. From here remember to continue to farm while staying mobile and dodging skills. Drunken Rage often and Barrel Roll when you know you can land it (try to aim at the champion while they're not on minions if you don't want to push lane, OR you can land it when they are on their minions which will allow you to take easy CS while putting on some harass).
After you get your Body Slam, start posturing in lane VERY heavily. Get CS on minions when they're low but start moving around off to the side of the minions to get a clear shot at the enemy champion. Keep your Drunken Rage up. If they get too close Body Slam them and then land 1 or 2 auto attacks as these will do a lot of damage with your attack damage steroid from Body Slam, and then follow it up with a Barrel Roll. Make sure that your positioning of Gragas while last hitting is such that there are no enemy minions between you and your enemy or directly to the side of you both, as each minion hit with Body Slam will split the damage the enemy takes, or stop your dash prematurely. You WILL win this trade.
Keep farming as much as you can while poking them with single or combo abilities until they have about half health. If you've poked them to about half health before you land your Body Slam then you should be able to pick up an easy kill with a few Drunken Rage steroid auto attacks, an Ignite, and a Barrel Roll after it comes off of cooldown for good measure.
Here Annie was just above half health with more items than me, and as you can see my Barrel Roll just did enough damage to kill her using just Body Slam without Ignite or auto attacks:
Post Level 6 Lane Kills
Explosive Cask.... do I need to say more? High burst, high disruption, and high utility. Half health on an enemy? BOOM. Dead.
Once you're 6 get ready for some fun. If done right you should be able to use your Explosive Cask to knock an aggressive enemy from lane, all the way to your tower range for at least 1 or 2 tower hits. Then immediately Body Slam at them, doing more damage and slowing them under tower. From there follow it up with an easy to land Barrel Roll and even Ignite if still needed. If you're in a 1v2 lane then you can do this same move while also knocking one enemy away from tower, thus stranding your prey and allowing you to avoid any damage the other player might do to you in order to try to get you away from their teammate.
Here I toss out Explosive Cask behind Annie, and while it is traveling through the air, I ready my Body Slam and prepare for the use of Barrel Roll and Ignite:
Another simple way to land an easy post level 6 kill is to have your jungler come to the bushes by your lane and wait. When you find the right moment, Explosive Cask the enemy in a diagonal from the lane towards your jungler's position but also your own. Then use your Body Slam to close the gap and slow them on top of your jungler before following up with your Ignite, auto attacks, and Barrel Roll.
One other thing some Gragas players do miss when trying to play passive even after level 6, is the long ranged Barrel Roll Explosive Cask combo. Many Gragas players try to use Explosive Cask to get the enemy back towards them and end up knocking the enemy to safety with a sliver of health. Instead, try waiting until they are low and you can toss out your Barrel Roll onto them, and then immediately follow up with your Explosive Cask. You should then be able to double press your Q as your Explosive Cask flies through the air. This will allow for you to get your Barrel Roll burst and then your Explosive Cask as a finisher for the kill without worrying about which direction you knock them.
As an amazing AP carry you want to try to grab the blue buff whenever you can with Gragas. Not only does it give you more CDR so you can cast your abilities and combo more often, but it also gives you more mana regeneration which means you'll be able to spam all of your abilities that are on a lower cooldown, without fear of going oom. If you have a nice jungler who doesn't need mana, they should be able to let you grab blue whenever it is up.
And if you have a jungler who needs the first one or two blue buffs to be their most effective, let them have it but ask for them to give it to you later on in the game as they will not need it nearly as much as the game goes on. Your Drunken Rage should keep you topped off enough in lane to not need it too much if you have to wait for it for the first one or two spawns. As a compensation for not having blue, ask your jungler to gank middle lane a time or two more than he normally would. This can end up giving you just as much rewards, if not more rewards than having blue buff, depending on the level of ganks that you and your jungler can execute together.
Ganking As Gragas
Gragas is an amazing ganker who can travel to other lanes very fast as well as traverse terrain to avoid enemy vision. Use the chapters "Warding" and "What Walls You Can Body Slam" to get a proper idea of how to move through walls to avoid the most common ward placements while going to gank another lane.
When you decide to gank another lane as Gragas, try to do so by first making sure no enemy wards or minions spot you headed to another lane. The best way to do this is to back away from your lane (so the enemy minions don't spot you), and then use Body Slam to move over walls in the jungle or by the river (before you get into site of common ward areas). Spamming Body Slam as you move towards another lane can help you get there before your lane opponent calls MIA (missing in action) on you. This can take enemies unaware, and an unexpected ganks are often the most successful.
Once in another lane try using your Explosive Cask to halt any enemy's retreat, while knocking them into the waiting arms of your allies. From hear another Body Slam can help slow them down for your allies, and a Barrel Roll can help finish them off. Try using Drunken Rage before coming into sight of your enemies for some added safety.
Don't be afraid to chase past a tower as Gragas. By using Body Slam you can make sure you only take one or two tower shots, and then use it again to escape over a jungle wall to safety if needed. Your high mobility, long range, and natural tankiness should allow you to tower dive very effectively.
If you do gank other lanes pay attention to how they are doing in lane. If they're losing, try being nice and give them the killing blow, as this will give them more gold and allow for them to have a better chance at coming back to win their lane. If they are winning, don't worry too much about taking the kill. You're Gragas. You do tons of damage all game long. Having a bit more gold go over to you won't be the worst thing that can happen (and in many cases is the best thing to have happen). Some exceptions would be always giving the kill to champions like Kog'Maw or Vayne who, even if winning lane, will need as much gold as they can get to scale as best as they can into late game.
Escaping Ganks As Gragas
Gragas is well known as being one of the safest solo lane champions in game. This is due to a number of things. Going down the list you have an attack speed debuff on Barrel Roll which will make any scary auto attack champion almost laughable, you have a built in percentage damage reduction off of Drunken Rage which allows you to shrug off all but the most solid of gank attempts, then you also have a 650 range 900 speed dash on a 7 second cooldown meaning that you will have an easy escape every 7 seconds and you also have a 35% slow for 2.5 seconds on Body Slam so that even if you do get stopped short by an enemy you can still out run them. To top it all off you have Explosive Cask with an 800 knock back that has a spell radius of 400 making it both easy to land and extremely disruptive to any would be ganker... oh yeah, and you have Flash. The use of all these spells in combination makes you almost (if not entirely) ungankable, so long as you play smart. Know your limits and be aware of all enemy champions. So long as you don't let them all sneak up on you while your two towers deep (and Sona's begging you to go deeper huehuehue), then you should be able to avoid most deaths.
For added trickery when they're chasing you through the jungle, try going around a sharp corner (like the bushes near blue) as they follow, and once they lose sight of you, Body Slam back over the wall you just rounded. They'll turn the corner, and you'll be gone. Again... I could go on for hours (and might when I update this guide again), but for now I'll just say: BE CREATIVE with your jukes. Use my chapter "What Walls You Can Body Slam" to get a good idea of what jukes or escapes you can pull off.
How To Play Versus...
Will be improving this even more, but I feel OK with this for now. Just added Lissandra today. 8/22/2013
While many view Gragas as a bad champion these days, they mistake bad players who misuse the abilities of a misunderstood champion, as a sign that a champion is bad. Gragas, if played right, is one of the best champions in game. If you're looking for more instruction than just the basic (albeit in-depth) understanding of his abilities, this chapter will give you insight on how you should consider playing against champions you are likely to encounter in your lane.
Question Or Request??
This list should cover it on the most common versus. If you'd like me to add another champion I missed or more detail to one I didn't cover well enough for you, then please let me know in the comments. 1v2 lanes are mostly staying ranged and using Barrel Roll for CS and harass, so I didn't feel the need to cover those in-depth, however I can cover specific 1v2 lanes if requested. I will do my best to add any desired info within 24 hours of the comment. I will be checking comments at least once a day even if I'm not able to get to a computer, as I do have a smart phone and tablet.
This is one of those areas that Gragas is not only good at, but has the potential to be DEVASTATING in every sense of the word. As a carry in team fights, you will want to try to kill the enemy carries first while doing as much overall damage to the enemy team. Gragas can do this while staying safe due to his long range and high burst.
Try to poke down the enemy carries that are in range of you with Barrel Roll during a team fight. If none are in range or can easily dodge your Barrel Roll try hitting either the next highest priority target, or the most amount of enemies with one barrel.
Do this while using Body Slam to dive in and do damage while slowing enemies or reposition yourself in the fight (either back to safety, forward to get in range of an enemy carry, or to the side to do both). You can also use this to slow advancing enemies who are trying to kill an ally.
Make sure you're chugging Drunken Rage only during times when you either are waiting on all other cooldowns (and don't need to be moving), or before the fight / after you disengage (or to proc your Lich Bane.
The biggest thing to get right here is your Explosive Cask. When should you use it? How should you use it? What will be the outcome of using it at that decided time in that decided way? There are a lot of options to this spell and making sure you get the most out of the spell in every situation is going to take a little more brain power than asking a guide to tell you exactly what to do. Get used to it, get creative, be observant, be responsive, and adapt before your enemy does. If you have some questions about this spell or would like some tips or tricks on how to use it, go back up to the chapter labeled "In Depth Look At Skills And Skill Order"
Here's one example of what Gragas can do in team fights. This is a 4v5 pentakill in a PROFESSIONAL game as Gragas:
I'd just like to stress again the amount of effort and care that went into this guide. I've been an avid Gragas player for a long time now and I hated that there was never a guide that understood Gragas as well as I would have liked. Every time I read a guide, I felt like I already knew everything on it and more. Season three gave me the motivation to actually make my dream guide. It is my hope that with the old guides now outdated or inaccurate, those wishing to learn Gragas like never before, will turn to my guide. I will be as responsive to comments as much as I can and I will be updating and improving this guide as it goes along.
Please feel free to vote this guide up, and if you didn't like it then take the time to let me know what I should fix instead of just voting it down.
If you use my guide and get a good score (which you will), feel free to post the direct link of the screenshot of your score in the comments on this guide. Be sure to leave your summoner name, level, and which build you used from this guide (and why). I will try to get it up here as soon as I can. Thanks!
xXaDlEiAvDeXx's(11) first Gragas game using the Offensive Offtank build:
Plaplar's(30) first Gragas game using the Ranked In-depth build:
Thanks to jhoijhoi for her guide template called Making A Guide, which I used in almost every section!
A VERY big thanks to one of my best real life and in game friends B33p, for allowing me to screen shot a custom versus for this guide. He is a great player and my score was a bit higher than it might have been if he were playing a different champion and me not trolling him (I would ask him to stand still so I could screen shot something, and then after I got the shot I would spam my abilities on him before telling him that I had what I needed... huehuehue).
A VERY VERY big thanks to another one of my best real life and in game friends, Nevix021 for helping me come up with a few ideas to better the guide and taking the time to read through a lot of it even though he doesn't play Gragas. You helped me polish this even more! Thanks dude!
As I get more help and feedback I will be sure to thank any and every person who helps make this guide the best Gragas guide out there. Thank you to all you readers who read, voted up my guide, and/or comment on it!!!
A big thanks to Lam Cow for allowing me use of his Gragas Baron steal video! What a PERFECT play! If you want to see more of his LoL play, here is a link to his YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/patrick6101
This is where I will post questions to answers I couldn't find while researching for this guide. I want to know these answers so please comment if you know and I will be sure to note you as the source and put your name or summoner name in the "Thanks" chapter along with a link to one of your guides if you wish.
Question #1: What is the missile speed of Barrel Roll and Explosive Cask?
Question #2: What is the AoE of unit collision with Gragas without any skin or size increase (For when he Body Slams)?
Question #3: Did you find any typos, incorrect information, or a lack of important information in my guide?
Gragas Patch Notes And Guide Updates
In the section I will be keeping a log of every update or change that I make to this guide, as well as any change that Riot makes to Gragas that might affect him in this guide.