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Gangplank Build Guide by Kippari

Middle [12.23] The Gangplank Compendium {All roles}

Middle [12.23] The Gangplank Compendium {All roles}

Updated on December 28, 2022
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League of Legends Build Guide Author Kippari Build Guide By Kippari 778 64 2,351,536 Views 64 Comments
778 64 2,351,536 Views 64 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author Kippari Gangplank Build Guide By Kippari Updated on December 28, 2022
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Choose Champion Build:

  • LoL Champion: Gangplank
    AD (Threats & synergies here)
  • LoL Champion: Gangplank
  • LoL Champion: Gangplank

Runes: First Strike

1 2 3 4 5
First Strike
Magical Footwear
Biscuit Delivery
Cosmic Insight

Taste of Blood
Treasure Hunter

+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+15-140 HP (lvls 1-18)


1 2
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
Ideal Strong Ok Low None
Who I am
Info about me

Kipp, a very avid diamond

Gangplank, Pantheon and Pyke mid player from Finland who wants to share his expertise on GP in this guild.

Guild contents
Info about the guild

In this guide I will teach you about
The King of Bilgewater, also known as
Gangplank. You will get to know about the items he can build, runes he can choose to play with, combo instructions along with additional tips, tricks and knowledge I have to share.

Life achievements


+ Strong level 1-3
+ Strong scaling
+ Flexible buildpaths
+ Fits into many teamcomps
+ Many playstyles
+ Chad pirate with cool skins

- Very high skill cap
- Harder to carry with in lower elos
- Hard to comeback with
- Struggles in many lanes
- Expensive powerspikes
- Has scurvy

Trial by fire
Gangplank's passive essentially gives him an Ignite + Ghost on his next auto attack, the cooldown is fairly long but can be reset if GP last-hits his Powder Kegs.
Tips & Tricks

[Counts as a ranged attack since 1.17] GP's Q is a shot from his pistol, which applies on-hit effects, it can also destroy his kegs but can't be used to hit turrets or wards. If Gangplank kills a unit with his Q he receives bonus gold and Silver Serpents, which can be used to upgrade his ultimate, there are three upgrades that all cost 500 Silver Serpents.
Tips & Tricks

Remove Scurvy
GP's W is a self-heal that cleanses all CC effects and scales with missing HP, can be used to bait enemies to follow you too deep into your own territory to get some cheeky kills.
Tips & Tricks

Powder Keg
GP summons a keg that has 3 HP and ticks down to 1 slowly, the tick gets faster at levels 7 and 13. Gangplank can use his auto attacks or Q to get the HP down and eventually destroy the keg. Enemies can also hit the keg and if they get the last hit they receive 10 gold. GP's barrels have increased critical strike damage on hit.
Tips & Tricks

Cannon Barrage
Gangplank's ult is an AoE that summons multiple waves of cannonballs that all deal damage and slow enemies in the area, it is also the main reason people sometimes play AP GP since it has 10% AP scaling per wave. I will now talk individually about all his three ult upgrades:
Tips & Tricks

Fire at Will
With this upgrade his ult gets more waves of cannonballs during the duration, it is the best one simply because the damage is greater and each wave slows enemies.
Tips & Tricks

Raise Morale
Gives allies a movement speed boost, can be used to either help allies escape faster or to help them chase down enemies easier.
Tips & Tricks

Death's Daughter
Creates a giant true damage dealing cannon ball in the center of the ult during the first wave.
Tips & Tricks


Dark Harvest
Primarily aken into squishy lanes where you know you'll dominate early, (one example being Kassadin). The main reward from getting many stacks is having some more burst on your Cannon Barrage during the later stages of the game.

Secondary Runes (Click to view)

First Strike
Good into most melee matchups where you can get the first hit in a fight by using either Parrrley or Powder Keg.
Unsealed Spellbook
Perfect if you're just planning to play for lategame and don't care about lane control, good into matchups that you don't maybe know too well or comps that have very aggressive champions that want to gank you early.

Secondary Runes (Click to view)

Grasp of the Undying
Grasp is a safe option in most matchups, gives good damage and health. I'd say this is a starter rune that newer players can fall back on if they feel intimidated but a more skilled GP player can easily pick another keystone depending on the situation, for example: Fleet Footwork for hard lanes where you need more sustain, First Strike for your average dueling lane and Dark Harvest against squishy fellas in mid.

Secondary Runes (Click to view)

Fleet Footwork
A situationally very useful sustain rune that I'd generally take for mage matchups that can be hard, for example; Azir, Syndra, Orianna and Anivia. Fleet also scales better than Grasp.

Secondary Runes (Click to view)

Arcane Comet
Comet is like Summon Aery, but with an actual cooldown. The damage is higher and the cooldown is only 8 seconds at level 18. If you're thinking about taking Sorcery first then think whether you want to dominate early or become a monster later on. Times when I take this rune are when the enemy picks a spam mage who I'm confident I can beat, for me personally two examples are
Syndra and Cassiopeia.

Secondary Runes (Click to view)

Shard runes:


Adaptive Force:
Generally the best option.
Attack Speed:
Not necessary but feels nice for early trades and can also be beneficial later on if you're not building Trinity Force.
Spell Haste:
CDR is uncapped, this wont affect much but if you just want a tiny bit more you can take it.


Adaptive Force:
Damage is nice, this is the most common option.
If enemy has a lot of AD and you're afraid, feel free to swap out some damage for a bit of extra tankiness.
Magic Resist:
If enemy has a lot of magic damage and you're afraid, feel free to swap out some damage for a bit of extra tankiness.


Works well with Overgrowth, if you're taking this you might be focusing more on building HP so this can be nice to have.
Pick this in an AD lane.
Magic Resist:
Pick this in an AP lane.

Flash is the most broken summoner in the whole game, and you need to have it in order to win.

TP is probably the best rune for Gangplank in the sense that it allows him to play aggressively, passively and anything in between. TP is also good in the sense that GP is a splitpusher before level 13, so he can TP to push a sidelane or he can TP to go help his team if he already is in a sidelane.

Ignite is good for getting kills early and weakening healing, mainly take this only if you are mid but it can also be flexed top in-case the enemy toplaner is a Dr. Mundo or a Garen for example.
Trinity Force
All-rounder item that gives GP a lot of stats he needs and wants in many games, very much a default option if you're not sure what else to go for but an Essence Reaver build is safer to go usually since it's a smaller gold commitment.

Trinity Force builds
Galeforce is my favourite AD mythic for GP simply because I feel like it offers him the most. It can help you finish off targets as well as act as both and engage and escape tool.

Galeforce builds
Prowler's Claw
Best for a oneshot build. Can be used at the beginning of a combo on a tankier target for the passive that makes the enemy take more damage, or at the end of a combo on a squishier target just in case you end up needing it.

Prowler's Claw builds

Liandry's Anguish
Has the best damage output overall, good stats, amazing passive that works well with
Demonic Embrace and the mythic passive is just the cherry on top. Especially good against multiple tankier enemies compared to the burst option.

Liandry's Anguish builds
Night Harvester
Fantastic for normal passive and mythic passive, has great oneshot potential with Death's Daughter. Pick this when going for pure burst.

Night Harvester builds

Iceborn Gauntlet
Synergizes with Parrrley and gives you tanky stats. Fun-to-use item with a very low risk and very high reward.

Iceborn Gauntlet builds

general building tips
Generally the best one since Fire At Will gives the greatest damage output and slow capabilities, Raise Morale 2nd for buffing allies and Death's Daughter last since it's not that strong nowadays.
The only times you take Death's Daughter before the 2 other options is either 1. You're playing with Dark Harvest, this is fun because you get more burst, or 2. You just backed and see the enemy doing Baron or Dragon, you swiftly buy this to try and steal the objective with the initial burst. Then after that you can pick whichever upgrade you want since they're both good and fit for different situations.
Raise Morale is good 1st if you have teammates that are based around chasing people, e.g. Olaf and Master Yi.

Top lane Gangplank requires knowledge of how waves can be manipulated and you also need to be constantly looking at your minimap, there are many guides with visuals on YouTube and such where you can learn a lot more than from a small text column could ever tell.

Here's a few tips on things you can do with waves:

1. If you're ahead and can win 1v2 or you see the enemy jungler botside, push in hard, it's very easy with a few
Powder Kegs. After you've pushed in you can either harass the enemy laner with more kegs or Parrrleys.

2. Just farm under turret, it's pretty easy but can cost a lot of mana early. You do this in hard lanes because it just might be the only safe option.

3. Freeze, quick lesson on freezing in general: When two waves meet and the enemy wave has more minions, let them kill your minions and just last hit as close to 0 as you can. After that depending on how many enemy minions are left you can choose a spot to freeze in, the general rule is to have more minions the closer you are to your own turret.

Top lane GP has some benefits that are simple to explain, you can get tank lanes which essentially mean free farm, and with bushes + alcove you can create some sneaky Powder Keg chains.


Gangplank in mid is not a super safe blind pick, so do play at your own risk.
Wave manipulation in mid is a bit trickier in my opinion, freezes are harder to do since the lane is shorter and you could possibly be facing a mage who can spam abilities on you like Syndra or Orianna.

In case your early game is going rough you can always just stay under turret and farm with Q, but if you are winning then you shouldn't feel afraid to step up and poke the enemy under their turret since GP can win 1v2 fairly easily with his kegs and ult.

A very simple thing you can do in mid is to decide your runes and summoners based on whether or not the enemy mid laner is ranged or melee.
Ranged: Teleport and Fleet Footwork.
Melee: Dark Harvest and Ignite.

Roaming on Gangplank becomes a viable option once you reach level 7 and have boots of some sort. When playing from red side you have the opportunity to setup Powder Kegs over the wall when ganking bot if the enemy is under their turret, this can help get the enemy low and maybe even secure some kills.

This section covers something only a player with a Gangplank OTP account should be aware of, that being said, let's get into business.




- In any of these 3 off-roles, I suggest taking Ultimate Hunter if you can.
- Just dodge if no one else wants to swap roles with you in champ select, you really don't want to play anything except top/mid with GP.

There are two goals you can strive for early game,

1. Getting kills:
Gangplank is very strong early game, and there are many scenarios where he can get kills easily around level 1-3. This is rarer in top, since the average enemy in top lane is tankier and harder to kill than a squishy assassin or mage in mid.
If your enemy is for example a Kassadin or a Teemo you can play as aggressively as you want, the only thing you have to be aware of is the enemy jungler.
If you're planning on playing like this you should go with Dark Harvest and Ignite to make slaying those landlubbers easier.
Early on you should be building AD if you have to back before you get gold for Sheen, a few Doran's Blades or
Long Swords go a long way.

2. Surviving at all cost:
By this I mean taking sustain runes like Second Wind and Time Warp Tonic and just farming as safely as you can, maybe starting with a Tear of the Goddess or Doran's Shield and taking Teleport to hit your powerspikes off of minion kills.
This is a good strategy in lanes where you're not sure if you can beat the enemy.

Regardless on whether you're ahead or behind, your goal should be to get level 13 and getting a few items before grouping to fights with your team, your Cannon Barrages are enough support.

Why do I need to get level 13?
If you're asking this you're quite new to Gangplank, at level 13 your Powder Keg's HP ticks down super fast, and with this your teamfight potential becomes much better since you won't have to wait as long to get a good combo off on the enemy.

You have good powerspikes pretty much after every completed item so just farm until you don't need to anymore.

Playing from behind:
If you died solo in lane a million times or got camped and poked out of lane your next move should be to afk farm as much as possible with Parrrley.
All you need to worry about is generating as much gold as possible, this means farming minions with your Q to get the bonus gold and Silver Serpents from them. You also should be pretty greedy and steal some jungle camps, Gangplank gets strong with a few items and maybe even if you were 0/4 after laning phase ended you can oneshot the enemy backline with a sneaky 20% crit barrel.

If you get flamed for farming for 10 minutes in a sidelane, just mute the flamer and get your items, it is what it is.

Get level 16 and at least two Cannon Barrage upgrades to stay relevant in the game, if you need to splitpush for the Silver Serpents and XP, by all means do it.

Crit Gangplank can easily oneshot enemies as long as he's gotten enough items complete, so look for One parts and try to obliterate the enemy ADC.

Tank/Bruiser Gangplank is a very good frontliner since he has a cleanse ( Remove Scurvy) in his kit.

If you have a "glass cannon" build you should be waiting to see squishy enemy carries and positioning you and your Powder Kegs out of vision before unleashing your whole arsenal upon them.

AP Gangplank can just sidelane and assist with Cannon Barrage to create a lot of pressure but if your team needs you then throw in a few Powder Kegs and frontline with Remove Scurvy.

Basic/Bruiser GP should start off with a sneaky Powder Keg + Cannon Barrage combo before going in for the Parrrley's and Trial By Fire hits to get the maximum damage off.

If you're behind you should tell your team to avoid fights while you farm in sidelanes to get gold for important items like in order to be more impactful. If you have to go along you should just try to stay back and peel with Powder Kegs.

Hard lanes:

Anything and anyone that outsustains and/or outpokes Gangplank is generally considered hard. In top, the common ones that are hard to win and you see often are Irelia, Tryndamere, Vladimir, Ryze, Jayce, Quinn, Vayne,
Viktor, Azir, Sylas etc.
What you can do in-case you stumble upon these champions; Start with Doran's Shield, Sapphire Crystal or
Tear of the Goddessand just try to farm safely until you get some items to further ease your existence in this miserable lane.
Note here, that some of these lanes I mentioned only get harder once entering the level 6 area of the game, these champs being Irelia, Tryndamere and Vladimir.

Irelia is fairly easy to kill for a Gangplank with Ignite, she only gets stronger after a few AD/AS components. If she has her passive stacked don't engage, only poke.

Tryndamere gets stronger once he gets his ultimate, Undying Rage, before that he is very easy to kill but you still have to watch out for his passive ( Battle Fury).

Vladimir is very squishy early on, and his cooldowns are pretty long so you can play around that very easily and maybe pick up a kill or two. The part where this lane gets harder is when he gets around 20% CDR, so pay attention to what items he buys early on.

Also as a note one of the lanes I mentioned gets easier for Gangplank at 6, that lane being Jayce, due to him not having a proper ultimate ability like GP.

Skill-based lanes:

This category includes mainly bruisers and some tanks. I will bring up some examples to make it a bit clearer:

Darius would probably be categorized as a super hard lane by a newbie Gangplank player, but with a bit of experience it gets pretty easy and even abusable depending on how good the Darius player is. The main way you can achieve a lead and start winning this lane is playing around Darius' cooldowns since they are pretty long early game, his Q, Decimate, for example has a 9 second CD at rank 1, it's also fairly simple to bait out, just walk up and right as he starts casting it either 1. Back off and use Parrrley once the cast ends or 2. Walk into him to deny the heal and damage and start punishing him straight away, this isn't always the best option since his passive, Hemorrhage, is very strong.
In conclusion: just play safe around his cooldowns and you should be fine.

Riven is also considered a fairly hard matchup for Gangplank, but in reality it's pretty much as abusable as any other lane if you play correctly. The best way to win a Riven is to bait out her E, Valor, and then trying to hit a Powder Keg and going in for a trade with Trial By Fire and Parrrley. She gets harder to manage at level 6 since her R,
Blade of the Exile, is pretty strong, but with proper kiting it won't be a big deal.

Mordekaiser, same principle as with Darius and Riven. If you plan on trading early on, remember to make the trades very quick since Morde's passive, Darkness Rise, is very strong and can quickly turn the tide of battle. I would say the best way to startle this tuna can menace is to widdle him down slowly using your Powder Kegs and not letting him heal with

Easy lanes:

This category includes squishy assassins, mages and tanks. Here are some examples of lanes o' ease:

Teemo is a very squishy little rat bastard who you should almost always take Ignite against, he's super easy to hit
Powder Kegs on and you can cleanse his Q, Blinding Dart, and the slow from his R Noxious Trap. Keep in mind that he can still be a bit tricky to fight early if he kites well due to his E, Toxic Shot.

Fizz is like Teemo early, very easy to beat but after a few item components he will become a threat. The main thing you gotta do is to poke him with Powder Kegs as much as possible to get his E, Playful / Trickster on CD, that's when you can punish him the most. Pro tip, take Ignite in this lane.

Kassadin is pretty much identical to Fizz with the exception of him not having any escapes before level 6, try to hit
Powder Kegs and end the game before he gets level 16.

Yasuo can be a bit tricky due to his mobility and damage but the lane is always winnable. Nevertheless you can take Ignite and play pretty aggressively.

Ornn has fairly long cooldowns early, so with proper kiting you can beat him pretty easily. You can either take Conqueror and just harass him every chance you get OR play very safe and pick Fleet Footwork/ Unsealed Spellbook if the enemy jungler is an aggressive ganker. Stay away from his Q, Volcanic Rupture because you really don't want to get CC chained.

LeBlanc is very straightforward and very abusable early on. Her trade patterns are always the same and allow you to punish her every time. Also with just a bit of training her E, Ethereal Chains becomes very easy to counter with
Remove Scurvy.

General notes:

Gangplank can go even in most lanes due to the bonus gold Parrrley gives, that being said there are many situations where he struggles significantly.
Any champion with laser or "plasma" auto attacks can disarm Powder Kegs fairly easily, e.g. Azir, Vel'Koz and
Senna (she is particularly annoying because her Q, Piercing Darkness can damage your barrels for whatever reason).
Gangplank struggles against poke early, so remember that Doran's Shield is always a viable option.

Gangplank synergizes very well with anything that can help him land his Powder Kegs easier, hard CC and slows are all he needs. There are also champions who fit well with Gangplank mainly because he has two abilities that slow enemies. Here are some examples:

Sejuani is a fantastic jungler who can help Gangplank stomp very easily. Her kit is perfect; Arctic Assault is a good engage tool that you can help with using either your E or R to slow the enemy, Permafrost is Sejuani's E, which she can stack up either with her W, Winter's Wrath or her auto attacks, the fun thing about this ability is that she can buff her melee allies to also apply stacks. The VERY fun thing about it is that Gangplank's Parrrley also applies stacks, so you can help her stun an enemy even if you're not in melee range. Also her ult, Glacial Prison is just fantastic for hitting your
Powder Kegs.

Zac is like Sejuani but a bit worse. He has 2 AoE CC abilities ( Elastic Slingshot and Let's Bounce!,) that can help you along with his Q, Stretching Strikes providing a slow and a stun.

Pyke can be assisted with Cannon Barrage to help him land his Q, Bone Skewer (also applies to other hook champions like Thresh and Blitzcrank), his E, Phantom Undertow and his R, Death from Below.

Olaf is a champion that really benefits from Cannon Barrage, especially if you start with Raise Morale.

In conclusion:
Hard CC and slows are helpful to you, but you can also use your own slows to make allies stronger.
Double/Triple passiveA very useful trick to learn, most commonly used for pushing turrets or taking objectives, but can also occasionally help in fights.

The reason I call it a Double/Triple, is because most of the time you only get two passive strikes, but if your
Trial By Fire is already off CD, you can get three hits at once.

Why is this combo useful?
Gangplank's passive stacks, meaning if he has two passive hits on the same target, the target will take individual damage from both Trial By Fires.
Cool, how do I do it?
It's very simple, your auto attack animation has to be idle, as in the timer is at 0,
after that you just Parrrley a Powder Keg, and hit the turret as fast as you can.

Triple barrelA fairly simple combo where you have two Powder Kegs already chained together, and after you use Parrrley on one of them, you place a third keg down to chain them all together. (You can do a melee triple barrel if you cancel your auto attack with the placement of your 3rd keg. It requires a lot more practice than a basic triple barrel.)

The more advanced version of the combo is to Flash after you use Parrrley, this is useful when you're chasing an enemy but don't quite have the range to do a standard Triple barrel.

The One PartAlso known as the 'Phantom Barrel', a One part is when you use Parrrley on a Powder Keg from max range and place another keg down as quickly as you can to create massive explosion which the enemy often times cannot react to.
The most important thing you have to remember about the One part is that you need to walk into it in order to cast your Q from max range, otherwise the combo will fail.

There's also a variation where you start within your Parrrley's range and Flash out.

I've studied this champion a lot, and a big difference I've noticed between high and low elo players is that the players in high Diamond/Master+ use One Parts in lane a lot more and hit them very consistently. If you want to have lane dominance and wish to carry on this champion you should try to practice One parts in practice tool and get this combo down.

The Three PartIt's a One part with a twist, the twist being a third Powder Keg. If you've grasped your head around a One part, this won't need much explaining.
The most common use of this would probably be in top lane during laning phase, you put one barrel in the brush in hopes that the enemy will walk there for safety, after that you try to One part from under them and chain the barrels together.
This combo is almost never used, the reason being it's super rare to predict an enemy's movement pattern like that.

- Fastest way to get good is to stop playing passively and start being more aggressive, go for early trades when your passive is up and take Ignite if it feels easier that way.

- Splitpushing for powerspikes is often necessary and the main ones you should be striving for are level 13, level 16, 2nd item and 3rd item.

- If you build Tiamat/hydra item then you should know that the AoE from the item's passive gives Silver Serpents upon minion kills assuming you are using Parrrley.

- Special Forces has the cleanest animations, so if you're learning and willing to spend some RP get that skin.

- Toy Soldier has a weird walk animation which can throw enemies off, can sometimes be useful.

- Be careful with Powder Kegs in areas where the terrain changes from jungle/lane to river, the map is weird and in some parts your kegs won't connect even tho it looks like they should.

- Don't greed with saving your Remove Scurvy for too long, the cast time might get you killed.

I'll just namedrop some cool streamers who are on fairly regularly and are capable of answering any other questions you might have on your mind about Gangplank.

Me, Kipp20, the GOD GAMER:
Follow me, now.

High elo GP main on NA.

Definitive Unit:
High elo GP main on EUW.

Gangplank is a strong champion who can be played mainly mid and top.

His best runes are Dark Harvest and Fleet Footwork (Fleet for lanes where you need more sustain and aren't sure if you can win 1v1, can also be swapped for Unsealed Spellbook if you know how to utilize it properly).

Gangplank can build AD, crit, bruiser, tank, AP and sometimes utility.

He can start with Powder Keg in abusable melee lanes and Parrrley every other time, can take Remove Scurvy at level two if the lane's not going well.

Ignite for squishy/abusable lanes and Teleport for everything else.
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