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Pyke Build Guide by u fool

Middle [10.12] Sink em’ all - Indepth Pyke Mid Guide

By u fool | Updated on June 13, 2020
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Runes: Roam

1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Domination
Hail of Blades
Cheap Shot
Eyeball Collection
Ultimate Hunter

Sorcery
Celerity
Waterwalking
Bonus:

+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+8 Magic Resist

Spells:

1 2 3
Ignite
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash

Flash

LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite

Ignite

LeagueSpy Logo
Support Role
Ranked #25 in
Support Role
Win 49%
Get More Stats

Items

Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
Extreme Major Even Minor Tiny
Show All
None Low Ok Strong Ideal
Extreme Threats
Ideal Synergies

Champion Build Guide

[10.12] Sink em’ all - Indepth Pyke Mid Guide

By u fool
Introduction
Thanks to u/GengisRice for the wallpaper!

What? Pyke mid? Isn't Pyke a SUPPORT champ? Well yes, but actually no. He is great for boosting your team's gold and gaining the advantage, but his position in the support role is poor. He is limited by his ADC and cannot generate gold for the rest of his team until mid/late game, where his presence is lacking. This is why you put this great champion in mid. By utilizing him in mid, he can roam and gank extremely quickly and stealthily (one of the most mobile and stealthy champs in the game). In this guide, I hope to go indepth on how to play Pyke as a midlaner.

Pyke mid has been one of my favorite things to play. It is very unlike other midlaners; his main goal is kind of like a jungler. Instead of winning lane and hard farming creeps, Pyke allows you to be more mobile and obtain gold from other lanes while allowing them to get ahead in their lanes as well. Pyke mid excels at roaming, and he puts lots of early game pressure on your opponents. With Pyke, you want to punish anyone who overextends and snowball the rest of your team (and yourself). Opponents must be cautious of their position and health at all times. If you get to land one ult, the course of your team's lane in boosted extremely due to the immense amount of gold you generate.


- Mobile and fun to play
- Stealthy and quick
- Easy and effective ganks
- High damage
- Good CC
- Makes a lot of money




- Squishy
- Falls off lategame
- Hard to lane
- Poor waveclear



So, do you want to play this champ in mid? It's not too hard, lets dive right in!
(Note: This guide is yet to be finished. More aesthetics will be added in the future so bear with me!)
Abilities Back to Top

Passive - Gift of the Drowned Ones

INNATE: Pyke's maximum health cannot increase except through growth (per level), instead he gains [1 bonus attack damage per 14 bonus health].

Pyke also stores 25% − 50% (based on level) of the damage he takes from enemy champions as Grey Health on his health bar, up to 80 (+ 800% bonus AD), with an upper cap of 60% of his maximum health.

When Pyke is unseen by enemies, he rapidly consumes his Grey Health to Heal power heal for the same amount.

Q - Bone Skewer


TARGET RANGE: 400 − 1100 (BASED ON CHANNEL TIME)CAST TIME: 0.25
COST: 70 MANA
COOLDOWN: 12 / 11 / 10 / 9 / 8

FIRST CAST: Pyke Winds up for up to 3 seconds, increasing Bone Skewer's range by up to 700 units while being slowed by 20%.

SECOND CAST: Pyke hurls his harpoon, dealing Attack damage physical damage to the first enemy struck, pulling them a fixed 550 units towards him and slowing them by 90% for 1 second.

PHYSICAL DAMAGE:
75 / 125 / 175 / 225 / 275 (+ 60% bonus AD)
Releasing the ability within 0.5 seconds causes Pyke to instead thrust his harpoon, hitting the closest enemy unit, prioritizing enemy champions.

If Pyke is interrupted during the charge, or the charge completes without reactivation, Bone Skewer is cancelled and the ability is put on full cooldown but refunds half the mana cost.


W - Ghostwater Dive


EFFECT RADIUS: 600
COST: 50 MANA
COOLDOWN: 12 / 11.5 / 11 / 10.5 / 10

ACTIVE: Pyke enters Ambush 2 camouflage and gains bonus movement speed that decays over 5 seconds. Enemies are notified if Pyke is within 1500 units of them.

BONUS MOVEMENT SPEED:
40 / 45 / 50 / 55 / 60% (+ 1.5% per 1 Lethality)
Attacking or casting abilities immediately ends Ambush 2 camouflage.


E - Phantom Undertow


TARGET RANGE: 550
WIDTH: 100
COST: 40 MANA
COOLDOWN: 15

ACTIVE: Pyke Dash dashes, leaving behind a drowned phantom.

After 1 second, the phantom returns to Pyke, stunning enemies it passes through for 1.25 (+ 0.1 per 10 Lethality) seconds. Enemy champions also take physical damage.

PHYSICAL DAMAGE:
95 / 125 / 155 / 185 / 215 (+ 100% bonus AD)

R - Death from Below


TARGET RANGE: 750
COST: 100 MANA
COOLDOWN: 120 / 100 / 80

ACTIVE: Pyke marks the targeted area with an X which he strikes after a 0.75 second delay, executing enemy champions below 250 − 550 (based on level) (+ 80% bonus AD) (+ 1.5 per 1 Lethality) health while dealing 50% of the amount as physical damage to enemies not within the threshold for execution.

If Death from Below hits an enemy champion or one dies inside it, Pyke will blink to the center of the X. For the latter case Pyke also gains the ability to recast within 20 seconds at no cost.

Each execution grants one Your Cutto both Pyke and the last assisting ally, instead of its natural assist gold. In addition, each enemy champion killed inside the X by an ally grants Pyke two stacks of Your Cut
Runes and Builds Back to Top
Thank you u/ErlendMcSwag!

Runes and builds come from personal experience as well as high ranked Pyke players such as:
Quyra (EUNE)
Davemon (NA)
EG dlwlrma (NA)


Primary Runes


<RECOMMENDED>

Hail of Blades will be your main primary rune for Pyke mid. Using Hail of Blades, you can burst down your enemy quickly, making up for your slow attack speed. If you are able to fit in multiple autos in your combo, this rune is much more successful and does more damage than Electrocute.
Electrocute is a great alternative rune to those new to Pyke as it does not require you to fit in so many auto attacks. In compensation, this rune does much less damage.
Predator is a rune you may want to take in order to roam quicker. Not many players use this rune because it lacks damage you may need.
Taking the resolve tree may result in a more sustainable lane. These runes usually do not provide enough damage for you, but in exchange give you a bit more tankyness.
Spellbook is a fun rune to take on Pyke. You may take smite and Phantom Undertow at level 1 and attempt to invade/steal their jungler's buff. You can exchange this for teleport or ghost to roam, or ignite and exhaust to make sure you land your Death from Below

Secondary Runes


Domination ~Best

Since both your Bone Skewer and Phantom Undertow limit enemy movement, Cheap Shot is great because it provides a ton of extra damage. After testing it out in several games, I found that Cheap Shot usually does more damage than Sudden Impact.
Sudden Impact is a great rune to take against squishy champs, as it gives you more lethality. Phantom Undertow, Ghostwater Dive and Death from Below can all trigger this effect.
Since you will typically take Oracle Lens on Pyke and sometimes Umbriel Glave, you can easily gain your bonus 18 AD and clear and control vision at the same time.
A good rune if you know you can snowball and get kills. This rune gives you up to 18 bonus AD, but you must get numerous takedowns.
Reduces the cooldown of your crazy OP Death from Below and allows you to risk a bit more with your placement and usage.

Precision ~Good

Great in teamfights, especially if you can get Death from Below to kill someone. You are very squishy, so every heal you can get helps.
Good for mana control. You can be more careless with hooks and using your abilities with this rune.
Great for your ultimate. The extra 8% helps you deal more damage as well as increase the maximum hp for Death from Below

Resolve ~Good

You have many impairs, such as Bone Skewer slow and Phantom Undertow stun. This is great if you are ganking and your allies are low on health. Unfortunately, the rune scales with max health, which Pyke can not gain from items.
Good if you are being pushed up against your tower. This allows for some unexpected damage but unfortunately the rune also scales with max health.
Amazing boost to your passive and allows you to come in and out of a teamfight super quickly
Pairs very nicely with Second Wind and allows you to heal up quickly after trades.

Sorcery ~Best

Amazing for your Ghostwater Dive and roaming because of the extra movement speed
Again, provides so much mobility, which is necessary for Pyke mid. Pairs great with Celerity.

Inspiration ~Okay

Stopwatch is an amazing item for Pyke because he is very squishy.
This allows you to snowball extremely. You get gold from Death from Below and combine it with this rune to grab some items way before the enemy does.
Any CDR helps on Pyke. His ult can become on an extremely low cooldown and can be used aggressively.

A typical rune page will have Hail of Blades and you can specialize your second tree depending on your matchup and playstyle (inspiration for early stopwatch, sorcery for roam, precision for dps).

Builds



Building is essential to being good at the game and is not as simple as one may think. Everyone can optimize their build, including Challenger and high ranked players. There are many different items, and comparing one item to another, especially in the context of team, gold, objective, and other differences can be very difficult during a game.

Start



You may choose to start Long Sword and Refillable Potion to rush Tiamat, Doran's Shield against hard lane bullies, or Doran's Blade if you want to harass your opponent. Corrupting Potion is extremely situational and gives much more mana and sustain, but I would not recommend it as it does not provide too much damage.

Remember: DO NOT UPGRADE Tiamat INTO Ravenous Hydra OR Titanic Hydra FIRST!! Stay on Tiamat and buy core items such as Youmuu's Ghostblade and Duskblade of Draktharr. BUY Ravenous Hydra or Titanic Hydra AS YOUR 4th OR 5th ITEM!



Rush


An essential item for Pyke mid. You need this for waveclear and farming, and can be used for auto resets and more damage. You may choose to upgrade this into Ravenous Hydra or Titanic Hydra later or you may sell it and get a different item if your team has enough lategame waveclear.
A must have. In order to gank efficiently, you need to have these boots. These are standard boots, but if you are being bursted down you may get Ninja Tabi or Mercury's Treads. The effectiveness of this item starts to fall off late game, where you already have a ton of movespeed because Ghostwater Dive scales with lethality.

Core


You will want to build lethality as much as possible on Pyke, so this is a strong andstandard lethality item. The movement speed is very beneficial towards roaming.
Another very strong lethality item. The passive is perfect for Pyke and Ghostwater Dive because it allows you to burst the enemy down quickly.

Important Items


The passive works extremely well with Pyke, as he is a squishy engager. This allows you to engage and play more offensive in teamfights as well as extended trades.
Many high ranked players are building this item as their third item for triple lethality. This item is great for ambushing and negating CC.
You want to build this as your 4th or 5th item - after you have built your lethality and dps. GA is useful for teamfights, but may be of less value until then. You may choose to buy stopwatch earlier if you see fit.
Combos Back to Top

Ability Sense



Pyke may not be the most mechanical champion, but he does have some combos and needs to be exceptional in both micro and macro to play well.

Pyke's P (passive) allows him to quickly recover after trades. Make sure to utilize this passive by using W or getting out of vision when you are low or have just traded. His passive can also help you detect where vision may be located, as you will not heal where the enemy has vision. This is useful for finding wards.

His Q is a good solo engage. You may choose to walk towards the enemy and use a short Q, which slows and is efficient, or attempt to hook them. Using a long hook enables you to play safe until you hit one, while a short Q may result in lots of lost hp if you did not trade properly. Be wary: in early levels, his Q can cost a lot of mana and has a long cooldown so it should not be excessively used.

His W is great for going unseen when roaming and boosting movement speed when you need to travel the map. Use W to heal up with your passive and engage or escape.

His E is used mainly for engages or escape. By hitting your E onto multiple enemies, you can allow the rest of your team to follow with ease. E stuns enemies, so if someone is trying to chase you down, E is great for escaping. You want to save your E and wait for a good time to use it, not necessarily just to stun a single person. When roaming, I generally like to only use W to roam as E has a long cooldown.

Pyke's R is the money generator, quick picker, and the teamfight ender. When using R, you want to take out people with lower mobility first - they wont be able to flash or move out of the X in time. Keep in mind who has summoners and who does not. In addition, stopwatch is a great counter to this ability and one should always be aware of that item. After using R in a teamfight, you may want to retreat with W and P up as you can be easily burst down. Repeat this until you have killed them all.

Key


Q (hook) = Charged up long hook
Q (short) = Quick stab
E (back) = Away from enemy champ
E (forward) = Toward enemy champ

Essential Combos


Q (hook) -> E (back)

Quick trade

Q (hook) -> E (forward)

Reverse direction

Q (hook) -> E -> R

Guarantee execute

Q -> flash

Flash to get more range

E (forward) -> Q (short) -> AA

Basic trade combo

E (forward, but not past enemy) -> Q (short) -> flash (behind enemy)

With this combo, you can E toward an enemy, Q to slow, then flash at the last second behind them to stun the enemy before they can react.

E (forward) -> Q (hook)

Hook the enemy into your team (go from behind, after stunning, use Q and the enemy will be launched backwards)

E (forward) -> flash

Extend your E and stun more people. After using E, you can wait and see if the enemy moves. If they do, you can try to flash behind them and stun.

E (forward) -> R

Extend your E using R or get close to your target

W -> E (forward)

Basic engage

R -> E (back) -> W


Quick execute in team fight

These combos are the building blocks for more complicated combos. This video shows lots of insane combos, so check it out!


Gameplay Back to Top

Early Laning



1 - 6

Laning for Pyke is difficult. Be cautious of your HP but do not be afraid to trade. If you are in a difficult matchup, try to freeze the wave and farm until you are level 6. Utilize your passive and get out of vision to heal. Your Q may be used to farm if you are able to trade easily. If a jungler decides to gank your lane early, then your team is in luck. Make sure the enemy is pushed up, then use your E or Q to engage, and you should have yourself a free kill.

At level 6, you may choose to back and get tiamat, or roam and gank a lane that is overextended. You may also choose to dive a lane with your jungler.

6 - 11

Start to roam once you hit level 6. Alternate between clearing mid waves and ganking/warding. Your R has a pretty short cooldown, so even if you miss it, you should still be able to do enough damage with your Q and E in a gank. If you feel stuck in your lane, wait for the enemy laner to recall or ask your jungler for assistance. I like to think of it this way: As a support champ in a solo lane, you are "ganking" your own lane. When your jungler comes, you can easily obtain kills if you set it up properly.

Where to go?



There are 3 main places you may travel to when roaming: toplane, botlane, and enemy jungle. In the current meta and patch, you generally want to play near botlane, as important objectives such as dragon will be located there. However, do not just ignore toplane.

Top may be considered one of the most influential roles currently, but snowballing your toplaner can allow them to carry the game. Ganking top is often unexpected and I am sure you can get all the toplane chicks (yes, Soraka).

Finally, you can roam/scout out the jungle. Finding out where (and where not) the enemy jungler is crucial information for your entire team, allowing them to make risky decisions such as pushing a wave.

Roaming



Roaming is not an easy task. It requires quick thinking and macro. You need to be able to understand what is going on and where exactly chances of you getting a kill or objective is highest.

Remember to recall only when the lane is frozen or crashing into their tower. Try to crash your minions before every roam. If a roam is not possible, you may always choose to take turret plates if your enemy laner is recalling. In addition, if your opponent laner has frozen your wave, try to roam, ward, or break up the freeze with tiamat.

When roaming, remember to ping and look for enemies that are pushed up or have lower hp. Using your W, you can traverse the map quickly without any wards spotting you. Activate oracle lens if needed in case the enemy midlaner might have seen you. Engage using E or a similar combo.

If your ally crashes a wave, you can choose to dive the enemy. Get your ally to tank, as you will probably survive 3 turret shots maximum due to your low health. Your W will NOT make you invisible from enemy turrets. Alternatively, you may always look for a hook to pull the enemy out of turret range if you do not think a dive will be successful.

Roaming does not mean you have to go to another lane. Roaming can be scouting for the enemy jungler, or accompanying your own jungler on an invade to catch the enemy off guard. In most scenarios, you can 1v1 an enemy jungler (jg XP difference, yay!) but note that enemy laners will most likely follow up to kill you.

Here are my 4 Rules of ROAM:

1. Remove either the enemy minions or enemy laner
2. Observe the minimap - is there an enemy that overextended? Where is the enemy jungler? Where will the opposing midlaner be?
3. Attack the lane you want to gank. Engage as efficiently as possible.
4. Make sure you are unseen and will not be cleaned up after. Good Luck!


Mid and Late Game



Once your teams begins to group up, you may feel like your damage is falling off, or you are being bursted down easily. This is where Death's Dance is essential. It allows you to keep attacking the enemy backline without taking too much damage and dying. Try to get in as many ults as you can to snowball the rest of your team. You may also want to buy Umbriel Glave and oracle lens and help your support clear vision. During this time of the game, your waveclear is very poor, so look to obtain gold from mostly kills. Try to maintain as much vision as possible and look for picks that allow you to secure objectives. If you are behind, try to farm and build Umbriel, DD, and armor items such as GA.

By this stage of the game, you should have a lot of gold and mostly finished your build. Mobi boots will be useless, so feel free to sell it and buy an extra item such as Trinity Force or another lethality item, especially if you are fed and snowballed. You will still be extremely mobile because Ghostwater Dive gives bonus movement speed scaling off lethality.
Tips and Tricks Back to Top

Here are some tips and tricks to help you master Pyke mid!


Ravenous Hydra can not cancel an auto, but Titanic Hydra can. Keep this in mind when itemizing. In addition, Ravenous provide direct AD, while Titanic provides less because of Pyke's hp scaling.



You can rush Duskblade as first item instead of Youmuu's if you feel like you lack damage in lane.



Think about what you need to max second: E or W. He can roam much better with W, but gets much more damage with E.



You can cancel the animation of Pyke's Q with his E, R, or Flash, but it is extremely difficult and inconsistent. A following ability such as E must be cast within a 10 frame timespan after the Q in order to cancel.



Patch Log Back to Top
Patch Changes and Effects on Pyke Mid

Patch 10.12
Predator (rune) and ghost (summoner spell) were buffed quite a bit. This could allow some experimentation with using these two on Pyke mid. Ghost could be really strong combined with Swifties and R killing potential since ghost now refreshes on takedowns. Predator could allow for extremely quick ganks, especially since you can charge up predator while using abilities like E and W.

Patch 10.11
"Marksman Update" - nothing significantly changed for Pyke, except for some ranged mid matchups (which you should be trying to play safe in).

Patch 10.10
Not many changes besides matchups. Some hard couunters such as Diana are now less oppressing.

Patch 10.9
Sanguine Blade was buffed. This is minor for Pyke mid, but may encourage more players to build this item as it is extremely good for picks and skirmishes.

Patch 10.8
Pyke has not been nerfed or changed directly. However, new death changes may change influence the midlane quite a bit. From levels 1-6, players gain 20% more experience from kills and 20% less experience from assists. At levels 7-8, this is changed to 10%. This means early game lane abusers get a slight buff. Because Pyke mid is a very supportive role, you may find it a bit harder to catch up on xp after a roam, especially if you did not get the kill yourself. However, it also means that if you are able to kill your opposing laner, you can boost yourself farther ahead without worrying about ganking. At levels 6+, Pyke should be able to 1v1 almost any midlaner, especially if you can hit your Q and E.

Patch 10.7
Despite a couple of minor changes to midlane matchups, not much has changed for Pyke mid.

Patch 10.6
Death's Dance was changed and some attack damage was removed for armor and magic resist. I think this is a buff for Pyke mid because it allows you to be much harder to kill in teamfights. By the time you build this item, you should have enough damage anyways. Besides that, I do not think anything significant was changed, except for some matchups. Pyke should still be able to win against Twisted Fate and Xerath.

Patch 10.5
Mobi boots increased in gold from 900 to 1000. I think though it impacts roaming a bit, it shouldn't be major. You should still be able to get Tiamat + Boots of Mobility if you rush Long Sword and have good enough farm by level 6. Ravenous and Titanic Hydra were buffed, which are some of Pyke's main items. Titanic got a buff to maximum hp % dealt, which is great for killing tanks quicker. Ravenous got 6% more lifesteal and a larger radius, which should help with Pyke's awful waveclear. Finally, Blade of the Ruined King, a item not usually built on Pyke, could possibly be built now. With the 4% max hp buff, it could be potent on him, especially with Hail of Blades. I don't think Pyke mid players will start building this, but we will see!

Patch 10.4
Hail of Blades was changed. Maximum time between attacks was increased to 3 seconds but the cooldown was increased to 8 seconds. I generally think this is a minor positive for Pyke because you will not be trading often in your lane, so the cooldown should not matter. The time between attacks allows you to have more burst.
Conclusion Back to Top
Thank you for reading this guide! Please give it a like if you enjoy it, it means a lot actually :) I will continue updating and improving this guide, so keep checking on the new builds and meta!
League of Legends Build Guide Author u fool
u fool Pyke Guide
[10.12] Sink em’ all - Indepth Pyke Mid Guide
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