Graves Build Guide by Adamoose
[11.10] MASTERING GRAVES JUNGLE | In Depth Graves Guide
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Runes: PHASE RUSH
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+15-90 HP (lvls 1-18)
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+15-90 HP (lvls 1-18)
Ability Order Skill Order
Threats & Synergies
Champion Build Guide
Who is Adamoose?
Hello ladies and gentlemen, I am Adamoose! I make educational jungle content on youtube & have been playing Graves since season 4. I am currently high diamond elo & am going to be pushing for masters/grandmasters this season.
My goal is to put out as much informative content as I can to help you jungle players improve & climb to your desired elo!
If you appreciate the hard work that went into this guide & enjoyed, it really helps if you could give my guide a thumbs up! :D
If you want to see this guide in video form, here's the video on my Youtube channel. (Click Below)
First things first, let’s dive into Graves abilities and how you can master his kit.
Graves Passive is called New Destiny
This is one of the most unique passives in the game. Graves shotgun shoots out 4 bullets at a time in a cone that cannot pass through units. Any non champions and objectives are knocked back allowing you to easily kite jungle monsters. It is usually ideal to get up close to enemies to ensure all 4 bullets hit and deal big damage. Keep in mind that towers and minions will block your attacks so fighting in minion waves and doing tower dives can be very tricky without some good positioning.
Graves Q is called End of the Line
You shoot out an explosive shell that detonates after 2 seconds, if it hits terrain it will detonate almost instantly. It's important to make use of your Q in choke points and out of vision into walls. If this ability is not dodged it will do massive amounts of damage. The downside is that with no terrain, the detonation is very easy to avoid.
Graves W is called Smoke Screen
This is simply a smoke grenade thrown out that will slightly slow enemies and reduce their sight range. Although this ability can seem useless at first since it has such a long cooldown, a well placed W can really change a fight. Enemies inside your smokescreen cannot auto attack anything outside and will not know how to land skillshots and most likely get hit by them as well.
This can be used as an engage while you dash in, or reactively when enemies over commit in a fight.
Graves E is called Quickdraw
Graves dashes forward reloading 1 bullet and gaining an armor stack for several seconds. This armor stacking passive is called true grit. If [graves] dashes towards an enemy champion, he gains two stacks. If you hit an enemy with an auto attack or use E, the resistance boost timer is refreshed. Refreshing your true grit correctly allows you to reach a maximum of 8 stacks
It is important to keep your true grit going while clearing your jungle and within fights to ensure you keep the big armor bonus this passive provides. This dash can also be used as an auto attack reset which you want to be using at pretty much every point in the game to increase your clear speed and DPS.
And finally, Graves Ultimate is called Collateral Damage
You shoot out an explosive shell that deals huge damage to the first champion hit. After hitting a champion or reaching the end of its range, the shell explodes dealing damage in a large cone shaped area. Your ulti also pushes you back a bit which can be used to help kite enemies diving on you. Although this is not the most flashy ultimate in the game, the long range and massive damage can be used to burst enemies down or to snipe low health targets far away.
Next up, let’s talk about the best rune setups for Graves in season 11. There are 2 main pages that are being run by all the best Graves players in the world depending on the situation. and
To start off, the current most popular keystone ran by Graves players worldwide is . This rune is just extremely strong on its own as it gives you a massive burst of movement speed to either kite away from enemies or to help chase down carries in the back line.
To close out the rest of the page, the next runes are pretty much always the same. for even more movement speed, for extra damage not only when starting off fights but also to clear faster in your jungle & to have even more movement through the river. Keep in mind that also gives you bonus adaptive damage in the river which can help with fights over scuttle and objectives.
Now let’s talk about secondary, by far the most common secondary is the tree. plus legend alacrity gives you that extra attack speed that greatly increases your clear speed and dps in the late game. If you are playing against huge amounts of CC you can also run legend tenacity but this is very situational.
is the next page that in my opinion has more flexibility in the way you can switch it up. I like to think of as more of a frontline set up. The initial movement speed is not as much as , but can be utilized multiple times in an extended fight. The healing also works very well with Graves since you are a tanky champion in general because of your bonus E armor.
Next up, is the most common option but is a special tech that like to run in combination with fleet and shieldbow. This can be a good option into heavy burst damage teams giving you an extra shield.
legend alacrity and legend tenacity are the best options in the third slot. As mentioned before, alacrity is the best option overall and tenacity will help you out against team comps with champions like rell & leona.
To close out the page, and are both viable options. When playing into squishy opponents and i'm looking to act as an assassin, is the go to. To be honest though, I find myself going more often since with fleet and the + setup we'll talk about in the (((((items section))))), allows you to pretty much act as a drain tank.
With this page, there are 2 main secondaries being run. My personal favorite is with and . gives you lethality when dashing in to help with burst while is even more sustain to add on top on what you already have.
Although less common, I have seen some top challengers running secondary with and either futures market or . I cannot tell you with confidence if this is the optimal page but the idea behind it is to save as much gold as you can to put into full damage early game.
To close out the runes, Attack speed, adaptive force and health is the standard. I see most high level Graves players running health since he already gains bonus armor from his E. If the enemy team is Full AD or AP, you can choose accordingly.
Now that you have Graves main rune pages, let’s discuss his item choices and in which situations each item makes sense to build. Graves is a champion that can make use of a lot of different items so it is important to understand WHY each item can be strong so you can make the right buy in every situation.
First off and most popular among all ranks, . This is just a great item in general with many uses. Its active dash gives you that extra mobility tool needed to close the gap versus long ranged carries or to outplay important skillshots such as blitzcrank hook or elise cocoon. When going I usually prefer running since this whole setup is based on mobility and bursting out of position squishy targets.
is a very strong 2nd item to pick up if you are not against a tanky team and want to one shot the enemy carries.
If you are looking to get a bit tankier, can also be a good pickup. The lifesteal and shield it provides can help counter teams with assassins or heavy upfront damage.
Before we discuss the remainder of the build, I want to talk about the other core mythic item, . is an item that has risen in priority over the last patches but for different reasons than . + and is an actually an insane frontline graves setup that allows you to become a drain tank vs low damage bruiser team comps.
is usually the best choice if your team is lacking frontline and you will need to soak damage for your carries.
and are great second items with this build to help you tank up damage and still have very high DPS.
Now once you have decided your Mythic item and secondary, the rest of the item choices are really up to you depending on the situation at hand.
or is an interesting debate. is usually the choice when playing against dueling junglers such as Olaf and Xin Xiao. can be used in games against squishy champions that you are trying to pick off and assassinate such as Taliyah and Ekko.
Both are good in their own ways so make sure to examine your jungle matchup before deciding.
For boots, and are pretty much always the options I choose, if i'm trying to play as a semi frontline. for Tenacity and vs auto attack based teams. If I am running + collector and looking to output as much damage as possible, berzerker’s greaves can be a solid option as well.
To close out your build there are many situational items so I will list the most important ones here. lord dominik’s regards for armor penetration, for anti heal, if you are fed for extreme damage, for armor and a second life in a fight, for a QSS cleanse, for sustain and armor, for extra healing and magic resist, for burst damage and a shield, for anti burst against mages and for some ability haste and movement speed.
Tips While Clearing
Before we hop into the jungle routes that best suit Graves, let’s quickly go over some general tips to improve your efficiency in the jungle.
Use your auto attack pushback to kite camps. It's important to always space yourself in between auto attacks so you do not take damage from your melee camps. You can also increase your kiting by using your E away from your target as an auto attack reset plus pushback.
While were on the topic of Graves auto attacks, another tip is to try and angle your autos in a way where u can hit multiple targets at once. Hitting targets straight on will most times slow down your clear speed especially against camps such as Krugs, Raptors & wolves.
Make sure to use your E to sneak over the dragon wall & rift herald wall to either sneak objectives or avoid vision. This can also help you take advantage of champions like Karthus or Olaf who cannot punish you for playing extremely aggressive since they can only follow you over with .
Lastly would be to keep your true grit stacks up between jungle camps. This is fairly easy to do when camps are close together but saving your E to keep your stacks going is crucial when crossing sides of the map. This will allow you to stay as healthy as possible while also making you very tanky for early scuttle crab fights.
There is also a recent tech that some graves players like to run. Although this playstyle is a bit more volatile, it can still be very strong into certain matchups to reduce their healing and win crucial 1v1’s. I usually recommend lower elo players to stick with since it is safer but can definitely turn the tides in some harder matchups to come out on top.
5 Camp Clear into Scuttle
This is the most standard Graves path that can pretty much work in every game. You can start on either side of the map and clear 5 camps to be on time for scuttle spawn at 3:15. The standard skill order is E start into Q lv 2 and 3. This allows you to clear as fast as possible and get that scuttle instantly on spawn. Just be careful since you will not have W until scuttle is secured. This can also turn into a full clear by finishing off your last camp after scuttle if there are no plays to be made, just make sure to assess this every game as it always changes.
Red + Invade
Now this path is more risky but strong with some experience on when to use it. This Invade is very powerful against weak level 2 junglers such as Rek'Sai, Zac & Elise. This really just consists of starting red buff and invading the enemy and bullying them out of their jungle. This path is much stronger if your laners have priority so do not force this if you have weak early game champions such as Kassadin on your team. If pulled off correctly, this can instantly put you in the drivers seat by not only stealing their camps, but also tracking the enemy jungler.
3 Camp Gank Path
Lastly is the 3 camp gank path. I don't necessarily recommend this very often since this will usually put you behind if you are not successful but it still can work in the right situation. It involves clearing 3 camps to hit level 3 and instantly ganking. This is very dependent on your laners having CC and gank assist. Keep an eye out in champ select for strong kill lanes such as Leona Tristana, Darius top vs a melee champ, or an assassin matchup mid. Where you want to start on the map is usually opposite of where you want to gank. This allows you to pick up both buffs and one other camp which is usually gromp or raptors, straight into a gank.
Strengths & Weaknesses
Let’s talk about Graves biggest Strengths and Weaknesses. Keeping these in mind can really make a huge difference if you are looking to consistently climb on Graves.
Graves biggest weakness is his reliance on other champions to set him up for success. The main reason for this is since Graves does not have any hard CC in his kit and can sometimes have a hard time locking down very mobile targets. The main reason I want to emphasize this is because this weakness can be easily shored up if your team has some sort of primary engage such as a leona or rell. When Graves is able to follow up on CC, the champion's value skyrockets.
To build on top of this, Graves also struggles into long range team comps. Champions such as Viktor, Seraphine & Caitlyn can make your life very difficult in teamfights since they can easily zone you away with their long range and zone control. Sometimes picking Graves into these types of team comps can make you pretty irrelevant so be weary.
Lastly, Graves can have a hard time when your team does not have lane priority. Graves shines when he is able to play aggressively in the enemies face, counter jungling and skirmishing. If you have a full scaling team that loses lane early, it can be tough to pull Graves off since he is not necessarily a good ganking jungler.
On that note, let’s discuss Graves biggest strengths & what makes him an absolute monster carry in the jungle.
Although Graves does not feel great to play with losing lanes, he absolutely shines when lanes are even or ahead. Graves with enough priority to contest scuttle crabs and counter jungle is extremely difficult for a lot of junglers to deal with. This is because he is such a strong dueling champion that can easily kite out a majority of the meta melee junglers. A great Graves player will know exactly at what times he can play in the enemies face, chunking them out, stealing farm and getting himself a massive EXP and Gold lead.
Another big strength that Graves has, is his relevance at every stage of the game. He is strong early game, mid game, and is one of the best late game junglers that there is. Knowing how to pilot Graves at every stage of the game is very important so that you can really impact the map at all times.
Lastly and most important in my opinion, is how Graves can keep up with the farming junglers in the game. Season 11 has really turned into a full clearing meta and Graves is definitely up there with the other top tier farmers. Although Graves clear is not as fast as champions like Udyr and Hecarim, he can still keep up much better than many other champions right now. This allows you to power farm your way into a mid to late game monster that has much higher carry potential than those other mentioned champions. Always remember to keep those CS numbers high and you will be a serious threat to deal with for the enemy team.