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Gwen Build Guide by NegativePhoenix

Top [12.17] Gwens Snipping and Sewing Services [Top & JG]

Top [12.17] Gwens Snipping and Sewing Services [Top & JG]

Updated on September 14, 2022
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League of Legends Build Guide Author NegativePhoenix Build Guide By NegativePhoenix 78 6 144,457 Views 5 Comments
78 6 144,457 Views 5 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author NegativePhoenix Gwen Build Guide By NegativePhoenix Updated on September 14, 2022
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Choose Champion Build:

  • LoL Champion: Gwen
  • LoL Champion: Gwen

Runes: Best Runeset To Me

1 2 3 4
Presence of Mind
Legend: Tenacity
Coup de Grace

Second Wind

+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+6 Armor


1 2 3 4
Normal Spells
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite


Threats & Synergies

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

[12.17] Gwens Snipping and Sewing Services [Top & JG]

By NegativePhoenix
How Patch 12.16 Affects Gwen
There hasn't been alot of changes in this current patch that directly affects Gwen, minus a couple matchups. No threats will be shifted due to it however, but I do want to point out before I am asked "Why haven't you mentioned the new Udyr?"

I will mention him more than likely next patch as I haven't had the chance to fight him yet and it makes no sense to talk about a character I haven't fought and make detailed assumptions about him, the only one I can make is that he seems like he will be a stronger skirmisher, so jungle and some top Gwen players, be ready.
I've had an uneasy relationship with Gwen for a while, however after major practice she's grown to be my favorite champion to play in the toplane. Most poeple will build the meta and go for full AP, however if I'm being honest, the meta doesn't let her be as strong as she can be. Her AP scaling is one of the best in the game. The build I managed to find for her gives her hellish more damage output in attack speed while also keeping her as a scary force to fight against.
Why Gwen
Gwen has one of the best scaling potentials in the game with her AP power and attack speed making it hard to fight her and outheal her, making her the one to come out on top to tell the tale of the fight.
Not only is she good against squishier comps, she's also heavily good against almost every tank being that her Q and passive were literally MADE to destroy tanks who get in her path. It's not hard to see why tank mains who know her, hate her.
Heavy healing later in the game, a tank shredding AP queen and one hell of a cute doll, she's a force to be messed with.
If you want to make sure that the enemy tank regrets existing, or the enemy team has too much health, Gwen is your go-to for applying her own version of "Tank-Be-Gone"
The Pros
-Impressive Scaling Power: Gwen has amazing scale into the mid-late game. Once she has Nashors and Rift, her damage makes it hard to 1v1 her. Even fighting her with others can be difficult if she's given a chance to get far enough ahead.

-AP/AS Strong Scaling: Her E no longer can work with just nashors in order to be useful, which is why rageblade comes into play. Using the above builds, you can easily abuse her on-hit damage with attack speed and her impressive AP scaling to make it hard to fight you without risks both in lane and teamfights. Since her E increases attack speed and is on a short CD later in the game, you're gonna be attacking on-hit heavily fast.

-Adaptable To Situations: Gwen can work in multiple positions. She can be heavily team oriented due to her healing and true damage she gains from her Q and the burst her ult gives along with scaling well even if her last 2-3 items are altered. If you need a splitpusher, guess what? She's the one on your team to do it. Her buff to her E gives you decent cooldown back on your E from hitting something after dashing, so when her E hits level 2-3, you can easily just infinitely loop your E to shred towers and make the enemy realize it was a mistake to think you wouldn't be able to destroy it in time

-Impressively Easy Build Path: Gwens build path for her first 3-4 items is straightfoward, which actually makes her build easy to remember. Not only that, your only super expensive item is Riftmaker, and even then after you get that you get your full build insanely faster than some champs, hence why you scale so well

-Cooldown Don't Exist: Thanks to all the buffs Gwen received in Patch 12.7, she basically has no cooldowns late game. With the new CDs on her abilities plus haste on your items, you can have your abilities up near instanly. Your Q at full build only is down for 2-3 seconds, and your E is only down for about 2-4 seconds.
The Cons
-Weak Early Game: Level 1, Gwen can actually outrade some champions, but for the most part from level 2-5 she doesn't have the best lane phase. If you play super smart you're able to make it seem like your damage is impressive enough not to fully mess with, but don't fully rely on her E level 1 as due to previous nerfs it isn't its full potential anymore. Play safe, get some pokes in and when your jungler comes or you get them low enough at level 4, then you can try for a kill if you have a good matchup

-Squishy Champion: Honestly even around late game until you're full build, Gwen is super squishy. I have found a build with Sunfire that works well to make her more frontline powerful in terms of tank if NEEDED, but only if your team lacks any frontline period excluding you. Still, she's squishy all around but is a glass cannon to make up for it.

-Bad Blind Pick: With how many champs could counter Gwen if the enemy gets the chance to do it, picking Gwen blind is a heavy risk option. If the enemy doesn't know how Gwen works or her style and picks a tank, it's good for you depending on the tank. Still in the end, she's not the best to pick blind into so choose her first pick at your own risk
Your Job As Gwen
Gwen has a versatile position on the team that can change what she has to do for her team and what she should do depending on the situation, so here's the best way I can describe it:

Normally, your job is to be the tank shredding frontliner for teamfights if you aren't pushing a lane alone. Tanks should be afraid of your presence because you melt them in sheer seconds due to your passive and Q true damage. When your team is making the big plays, it's important that you do your best to remove the tank UNLESS you catch an enemys carry out in the open. You'll want to remove them first to relieve alot of pressure off your team.
For the most part, this is your main placement on the team is being the one who melts down the tanks and enemy team and gets rid of them early in the fight, but let's just get the stages of the game explained as well:

Early Game:
As Gwen early game, your job is to either set up your jungler to gank your toplaner, or keep the enemy frozen at a spot that will punish them if they try to go for CS but also put them at a disadvantage if they don't. You can't do much on your own early past a level 1 all in until you hit 6.
Your best option is to play safe, and get some Q pokes in depending on the champion. Unless you've poked them enough that you can kill them at level 6+ or your jungler ganks, you won't be too focused on kills and instead getting your first item being Nashors tooth. Rotate for your jungler if they need it, you're not defenseless, you still do decent damage, but your 1v1 power isn't strong enough yet at this stage in most situations till you hit 6 so you'll be a bit team reliant here.

Mid Game:
Mid-Game will be iffy and depends where you're currently at and where your team is, but for the most part you'll be focused on splitpushing when you can, but helping in teamfights when possible. Your true damage and max health passive is the main reason you need to be there especially if the enemy team has heavily tanky members that have a good amount of health already.
You're a safe splitpush option once you have Nashors and at least Leeching Rod building Riftmaker since your 1v1 ability is insanely good. If only 1 enemy, possibly 2 depending on how fed you are shows up you could take maybe take them both on then keep pushing however anymore than 2 it's best to run, but you shred towers very easily, so your main goal should be to splitpush as long as it doesn't put your team in a bad spot in doing so.
Just keep in mind where your team is, what they're doing and what's going to happen and where you should be when it does happen.

Late Game:
At this point, this is where Gwen heavily shines. Late game your build is almost done, towers are pushed in and you can 1v1 basically everyone and win excluding certian ranged champions. During this stage, the splitpush tactic can still be there, but you're one of the strongest frontlines your team has so it's VITAL you be sure you can get to a team fight when you need to.
If you notice a splitpushing enemy it can vary on who handles it. If you have a teammate like a fed Jhin, Kha'Zix, etc who notice and the enemy is squishy and they can handle it easily, then do your best to support the team in the absence of a member.
It is however your job to handle the splitpusher if they're an enemy like Yorick, Sion, Illaoi, etc. as you're the tank shredder. You will obliterate and outheal most of these tanky champs if you play smart. As long as you can keep them in check, your team can feel safer.
In teamfights it's KEY to get the tank out of the way as soon as possible, but also to catch enemies who are dumb enough to get caught out and put out of the fight early if you can. Your W especially is key to taking out any enemy tanks and frontliners as nobody with range can get in the way of the fight, possibly even tricking enemy ranged champs into your range since your W stops outside attacks.

I mention splitpushing alot but this is not your main focus. As I said your main focus is to help your team in fights when possible since you're the frontline, secure objectives and if everything is calm THEN attempt to splitpush.
You don't wanna put your team in a bad situation because you decided you wanted to take a low health tower and suddenly the AD carry on the enemy team gets a quadra taking elder because you thought a tower was more important.

Keep your team safe, get rid of the tanks, structures, outplay the ranged champs and most importantly: Be your teams main source of frontline damage.
Your Job As Jungle Gwen
Disclaimer: You do NOT have to go tank gwen every time for jungle. I only pick it if we lack frontline power. If you have good tanks/frontlines, you can stay AP Gwen.

Jungle Gwens pressure potential for ganks is weaker, and somewhat relies on your laners CC if they have any to help keep them still. Granted while your ult does have a slow, it shouldn't be your main way to get kills like how reliant Fiddle or Evelynn are on their level 6.

Your ganks are gonna rely on your teammates ability to peel with you and their CC power overall. In the jungle you don't have much interferrence for farming excluding invasions at times, but certain matchups in that case are yours regardless as long as you play smart.

Personally, I prefer to start with blue buff on either side, however you can start with red if you'd rather go that route instead. This is how you should do depending on the side you start:

Blue Buff Start:
-Kill Blue, Gromp, Wolves, Raptors then either go for Red or contest for scuttle. Just know you're going to most likely run into the enemy jungler. After this, check your botlane/midlane or toplane/midlane to see how pushed in they are. Mid is riskier with how easy they can walk away, but top should be good first gank if you didn't 1v1 already for scuttle and your toplaner is pushed in. As long as your botlaners pay attention and your W is ready you should hopefully get a decent gank off to take Summs or get a kill.

Red Buff Start:
-Red Buff, Raptors, Wolves, Blue Buff then Scuttle. Same applies here with what was listed above depending on which side you're on.

Once the lane phase is over, your job as Gwen is basically the same as toplane once laning phase is over, except now you're responsible for getting objectives and possibly good ganks as well in most scenarios. Just watch for splitpushers and handle them if you can, get objectives and do your best to splitpush as well if it won't put you in a bad spot.

Gwen Jungle doesn't have alot of pressure without her laners, but trust me, it'll pay off in the long run if you can get assistance with ganks. Not to mention once you get Nashors, as long as others aren't fed, your 1v1, sometimes 2v1 power, is hard to compete with so you'll hit a good powerspike around this time.
Conqueror is Gwens best main keystone without question. The adaptive force this gives from early to late game provides you with nothing but amazing damage scaling and mid-late game healing

Overall, Gwen does use alot of Mana. Having this ensures you can stay in lane longer without having to leave due to mana loss, and late game combined with your healing it will make it hard for you to run out of health or mana easily. Overall, this is to me better than triumph in the long run

Tenacity is good throughout the entire game, providing you stun resistance against CC. If you can't dodge with your W or because the enemy needs to be in your face to use CC, this will make sure it's hard to keep you interrupted so that you can continue to fight longer without the risk of being forever stunned unless focused down by everything

This is overall preference. Last Stand can help you in situations where you're heavily in need of more damage at the last second in case you wanna give a good fight and can't get the enemy lower than you first and in team fights you're bound to get low if you don't have peel to keep you healed or to tank for you. Overall as well, Gwen excells in prolonged fights which this benefits heavily from

Second Wind Overall helps with sustaining your health during the laning phase. Good against both melee and ranged matchups, second wind makes you able to stay in lane longer after trades so you don't risk losing as much CS after trades

Pairs heavily well with tenacity, Unflinching will make you harder to keep CC'ed. Combining Unflinchings low health response to Tenacity plus Last Stands extra low health damage, you'll be harder to keep pinned down in a fight and be able to fight back with more force once the CC barely sticks around

Lethal Tempos changes were godsent for champions like Gwen as extended fights are a gwen mains dream as it ramps up over time with each hit fitting her on-hit playstyle.

If you'd prefer a bit more gold gain and health restore over mana restore in-lane you can choose triumph over presence. Keeping your health topped off if you're almost low even with your healing is a good way to make you a harder target to kill off

A good choice and competetor for Last Stand. It will scale off your opponent if they're missing 40% health instead of scaling off your missing health like Last Stand. It's just a definitely good way to execute enemies

I don't use this too often seeing as how one attack can just remove it early, however if you're against heavy combo champions like Yasuo and Akali or get ganked by Talon/Zed, this could be your lifesaver

Revitalize is good for extra healing or if you took tempo over conqueror. Once you get rift, this will help you heal insanely well and will also be useful if you happen to have champions on your team who can heal you like Soraka or Sona
Ability Rundown
The main reason your healing works so well. Snip Snip! and Needlework do extra bonus magic damage. Your Thousand Cuts Passive also heals for 70% of post-mitigation damage on champions and deals bonus damage to minions below 40% health
Gwen Snips her scissors into a cone between 2-6 times depending on her stacks. In order to gain stacks, she has to auto attack enemies and/or objectives only capable of holding 4 stacks at a time. The edge of the cone for Snip-Snip Deals magic damage, however the center of her ability deals true damage to enemies and applies Thousand Cuts. This will be your main damage source all game excluding your autos due to true damage and how fast you can build it up just by autoing.
Gwen creates a circle of defense around her called "The Hallowed Mist" that will last 5 seconds. You can move the circle by going towards the edge or recast the W once to bring the circle to center around you. Inside the circle, Gwen is untargetable and immune to almost all abilities and attacks outside the circle if the enemy is not inside the circle with her. It also grants armor and magic resist while she remains in the circle. Use this ability to get ranged champion poke off of you in fights, or get a bit of resistance against enemies if need be.

Gwen will dash and gain bonus on-hit magic damage +8% AP scaled. She also gains bonus attack speed and 50 bonus attack range for 4 seconds. If she attacks anything in those 4 seconds, her E dash cooldown will be reduced by 60%. Her E is also an auto reset and can be cast during all her abilities. This will be what causes your autos to do a **** ton of damage due to on-hit. As long as you hit something after using the dash, your E will always be up the entire fight.

Needlework has 3 active ult charges. The first fires only 1 needle, the second fires 3 and the third fires 5 needles. In order to activate the next two charges after the first, you must auto attack or use snip-snip on an enemy champion or minion. Every needle hit applies thousand cuts and slows enemies. Make sure you use this to burst enemy champions down fast. You can use it to slow running enemies too, but just be mindful to use each charge you need to hit any type of NPCs. You can also use plants too to make your ult charge usable.
Riftmaker is the first item to build and our mythic. Few champs can use this and profit off of it to the full power like Gwen can as it helps boost up her true damage scaling power thanks to the passive.
70 AP, 15 Haste, 300 Health and 7% Omnivamp plus it gives 8 AP and 2% Omnivamp on your other legendary items. Combine that with the fact you slightly heal already off your own abilities this just boosts your power up to make it where you're a force in the longrun.
Nashors Tooth
Nashors Tooth use to be the required first item in Gwens build but after her changes and move around, it's second. Granting you 100 AP and 50% attack speed once you have this, you'll notice for sure your E damage spike up. It's the most important item in Gwens kit rather you're building tank or AP Gwen overall.
Once you have this and your Nashors, your power spike will hit for the mid-game and it's all uphill in scaling from there.

Defensive boots are always a preferred go-to in order to have better sustain and should always be built before or immediantely after Riftmaker. Plated Steelcaps are the best against heavy AD and heavy ranged enemy comps overall, and Mercury Treads are best against heavy CC/heavy AP enemy comps. Overall these two are the most I'd recommend building, however if you'd prefer more attack speed in your build if you don't want to use rageblade, you can use Berserker's Graves instead, though I don't recommend it. If you want more magic pen and want damage over resistance or tenacity, you can always go Sorcerer's Shoes instead, though like I said I heavily recommend resistance boots unless you want more damage or attack speed
Guinsoo's Rageblade
Easily, this is what I'm sure most of you were confused about and wanting to know why you should build this. On Gwen, it's heavily useful and works well with her build and would actually be recommended if not for Nashor and Riftmakers good combination together. You ignore the first passive converting crit and will only focus on the second passive. Every hit you do grants a stack on rageblade, and after using your third hit, your on-hit will trigger twice and give you your Qs stacks much faster. So almost every time you go into a fight, the third auto hit will give you two stacks instead of just one, meaning your Q stacks build much faster than they would with any other item or build. The attack speed is insanely useful as well, making her on-hit power much more effective and overall increasing her damage output speed. Being at a cheap 2600 gold and giving her such useful overall passive on-hit stacking, it's a shock this isn't a meta item for her.
Cosmic Drive
Cosmic Drive easily makes the build list as a recommended item. It not only helps with her buffed E and Ult CDs be lower, but helps get your W up much faster which can influence how long you survive and just how long a fight could end up being. It's a good late game powerspike item, and overall is just the most useful if you want movement speed and extra AP
Situational Last Items

All items here are heavily good options for your last item or your 5th item even if you prefer not to take Cosmic. The most likely one you're going to end up taking is Morellonomicon for its grievous wounds against heavy lifesteal teams and good AP scaling for your build.
A good option if they have little lifesteal or you would rather not build grievous is Void Staff as it helps scale well with your AP, and provides you more damage against tanks who built mostly MR or that for some reason just don't take enough damage in your eyes.
Most people may opt for Rabadons Deathcap instead, however I would call this a snowball item on gwen that should not be built unless ahead due to high gold cost. If you're ahead and want that AP burst, go for it. You also have two options for Armor and Magic Resist. You can either go with Randuins Omen which is super useful against heavy AD teams you want to survive against in extended fights, especially since its active helps you gap close enemies and lowers their AD and Crit output.
You could also go Zhonyas Hourglass instead if you want to have AP and Armor. Stasis is ok, but in alot of situations it will put you in a bad spot so I tend not to use this too often unless as bait.
Against heavy AP teams, a really good item is Spirit Visage as you by this point will have majorly good healing, and Visage will grant you not only ability haste and MR, but grant you 25% increased healing as long as the enemy is not overbuilt on grievous.
Finally, you can instead go for Banshee Veil which will grant you a spell shield that blocks the next ability and gives you extra AP, however unless you're getting instant one-tapped by an enemy ability every time I'd avoid this.
Gwen is a heavily versatile and underestimated champion in league. Everything I've described and shown I've tested myself and given my honest opinion over based off of usefulness of situation, power to her kit and overall how well it can help her scale in the entire game.
If you're looking for a champion that can melt tanks and squishies alike who will always be on the frontline, who also ends up being an AP champion when your team goes full AD while she also uses melee, then Gwen is definitely a good choice.
She is hard to learn properly and harder to master, but hopefully with this guide you can learn like I did on the best ways to use her and how to make sure you get the most out of her kit than before.

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