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Maokai Build Guide by Livramento

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Livramento

[3v3] Support - Maokai

Livramento Last updated on March 11, 2015
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Top Lane
Ranked #11 in
Top Lane
Win 51%
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

Not Updated For Current Season

The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.



Offense: 0

Legendary Guardian

Defense: 16


Utility: 14

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Hi guys, my name is Livramento and im a passionated twisted treelines player from EUW.
This is my first champion guide on mobafire about my main champion Maokai.
Please leave Feedback after Reading this Guide. Let me know if it was helpful or not and give me the chance to improve my guide.

My LoL Career:

I started LoL and Twisted Treeline in February 2012. My Main position was the jungle. I stopped playing after the jungle was reworked last season. My team decided to play the "support meta" and i'm the new support.
My favorite picks are: Maokai, Leona, Braum and Thresh.

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Spoiler: Click to view

In my opinion the best mastery page for melee supports like Maokai is a mixture of defense and utility tree.

Why Tough Skin over Recovery ?

In the support meta, you should clear a lot of jungle camps to gain more EXP and deny free jungle camps for the enemy jungler. In my opinion -2 DMG is better than 2 health per 5 seconds.

Why Oppression ?

Reduce damage taken from slowed,snared,taunted,stunned enemies by 3%. The interesting thing is the slowing part, Oppression synergizing pretty well with the active of Randuin's Omen. The Slow proc'ing the Oppression damage reduction, that is pretty nice in team fights.

Why Evasive over Reinforced Armor ?

The 3v3 Meta prefers AoE damage and AoE crowd control over crit damage. So I would say Evasive is more useful than Reinforced Armor .

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Spoiler: Click to view

This is one of the best rune pages for melee supports on twisted treelines. Flat stats are the most efficient, because 3v3 has a lot of early game trades and team fights. The 9x Greater Seal of Health are working better against mixed AD/AP damage and soak up more damage as 9x Greater Seal of Armor.
You can take Greater Mark of Hybrid Penetration or Greater Mark of Magic Penetration for some more damage with skills and Sunfire Cape.

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Summoner Spells

Exhaust/ Flash is your "best" summoner spell combo in the most cases. Flash to engage/disengage and Exhaust to shut down the enemy (-10 AR/MR, -30% AS/MS & -40% Damage for 2,5 second is AMAZING) and forcing some Flash's. Casting Exhaust on the most damage dealing enemy is the most important thing in 3v3 team fights.

Exhaust/ Heal is a good way to increase the potential of a late game comp or more experienced melee support players. This combo works really well with late game bruisers like Olaf, Trundle or Wukong. Both summoner spells are helping to keep the bruiser/AP Carry in team fights or other "critical" situations alive.

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(Passive) Sap Magic
Cooldown: -
Cost: -
That's your Sustain for laning, jungling and fighting. It heals for 7% of your maximum health, so Sap Magic synergizes really well with health items.

Arcane Smash (Q) Arcane Smash
Cooldown: 6
Cost: 45
Your bread and butter skill for harassing enemies, killing multiple minions for your Relic Shield passive and your follow up skill after engaging with Twisted Advance. This skill has low mana cost and you can spam it in team fights to slow/knock up enemies.

(W) Twisted Advance
Cooldown: 13/12/11/10/9
Cost: 75
Your engage spell for pick up's, ganks and teamfights. It's a gap closer and rooting the target for 1-2 seconds. After jumping on the enemy, you should follow up with Arcane Smash for the knock up. Save it to hold enemies in your ultimate or interrupting escape skills.

(E) Sapling Toss
Cooldown: 12
Cost: 60/70/80/90/100
Saplings are your scouting and warding tools. Placing some Sap's in the jungle and vilemaw pit for a vision advantage. Dont use it too often, the sap's cost a lot of mana. Use Sapling Toss if the botlane is going in the jungle to prevent incoming ganks or if you think the enemies can could go for Vilemaw.

(R) Vengeful Maelstrom
Cooldown: 40/30/20
Cost: 40 +30 per Second
Vengeful Maelstrom is your amazing protection skill, it reduces all non tower damage done to allied champs in the area by 20% (absorbing it) for a maximum of 10 seconds. AND if the ultimate ends, it's damaging enemies with the absorbed damage (+2 bonus damage per damage absorbed). Enough said -> use it in every fight.

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Skill Order

> Arcane Smash > >

• level up Vengeful Maelstrom at 6,11,16.

maxing first: Arcane Smash
it's better to harass/slow/knock up enemies frequently than root them on cooldown with Twisted Advance. The damage and slow scaling up with higher ranks.

maxing second: Twisted Advance
Lower CD and increased root duration, very good second max.

maxing last: Sapling Toss
The CD and sapling duration (35 seconds) is the same at all levels and the mana cost going up with every level. no need to max first or second.

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Item Build

Starting Items

Relic Shield:
Some bonus health for Sap Magic and a solid gold income with a bonus heal for both toplane champs.

Ruby Crystal:
2nd bonus health item. You are really tanky with Relic Shield, Ruby Crystal and runes in the first few levels. It can be upgraded later in a Kindlegem for Face of the Mountain or Aegis of the Legion.

2x Health Potion, 1x Mana Potion:
Sustain for Maokai to stay in lane and survive the early ganks/fights.

Hint: Dont start with Relic Shield + Doran's Shield. You're getting less bonus health than Relic Shield + Ruby Crystal. Furthermore it delays the Face of the Mountain rush.

Core Items

Face of the Mountain:
A very cost efficient item, it gives some gold and protect your teammates with a shield (60 seconds). In my opinion it's the best first item.

Locket of the Iron Solari:
Most of the time my second big item. Strong against heavy magic damage teams and it negating a lot of magical damage with the aura and the activatable shield.

Mercury's Treads: The meta building around AoE damage and AoE CC, so mercs are a must have.

Elixir of Ruin/ Elixir of Iron
Take a Elixir everytime you're going back to base (if you can afford it). Elixir of Ruin is good for rushing down towers, it increase your damage on towers and buffing the lane minions with bonus damage and movement speed. Use Elixir of Iron for objective fights like tower defending, contesting vilemaw or for finishing the game.


Hextech Sweeper Zeke's Herald

Hextech Sweeper:
Only useful against stealth champs like Rengar or Evelynn, but the 20% CDR are really nice.

Randuin's Omen:
Very good item against heavy physical damage teams or fed AD champs. The movement speed slow on the active ability is nice for team fights and decreasing the kite potential of the enemies.

Hint: the slow triggering Oppression .

Sunfire Cape:
Great item against only melee range teams, because the passive damage hitting all enemies in team fights. Good buy to get some damage as support, if your team are really ahead.

Frozen Heart:
Good buy after Randuin's Omen against ranged AD Carries or fed auto attack bruiser like Xin Zhao,
Jarvan IV or Udyr.

Banshee's Veil:
Great item at mid game against heavy magical damage teams or teams with single target engaging skills like
Morgana's Dark Binding.

Zeke's Herald:
Good item if you're already tanky and one of your teammates relies on auto attacking a lot like ADC's or Jax.

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Early Game

Wait in the base for your Mana Potion and walk with your bruiser to your lane. Take your Arcane Smash first and walk in the toplane bush near to the enemey turret. Try to zone the enemy laner with away from your minions and deny EXP. Push the lane (proc your Relic Shield) and continue the zoning. If you and your bruiser get lvl. 2 (rank up Twisted Advance) and the enemy is lvl. 1 engage on him with Twisted Advance + Arcane Smash + AA and try to kill him. If he's dead, back to base or need to stay under the tower, push the lane in the tower to deny farm. Now you have 3 possible options ...

1. roam in the enemey jungle and take the wolve camp or harass/kill the enemy jungler.
2. roam to your botlane and do a gank and maybe damaging the tower.
3. roam to your jungle and clear one or two camps.

After one of this actions you should go back to your lane and push the lane again in the tower, try to kill the enemy or damaging the tower.
if you got enough gold, go back and buy a Targon's Brace + Boots of Speed and some potions.

Hold the pressure on toplane with pushing/harassing and roam to the jungle or bot lane for kills and farm.
Dont try to go for the enemy altar in the early game, holding a second altar only gives a 10% AD/AP buff, so it's useless to fight for a second altar. only go for it, if you aced the enemy team or you have enough time for capping. It isn't worth to die for a altar in all stages of the game.

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Mid Game

Now you need to take down the outer towers on both lanes. try to force team fights, use Twisted Advance -> Arcane Smash + Randuin's Omen as engage and pop your Vengeful Maelstrom to absorb some damage. If you win the fight, push one tower down. Go for the other one or clear your jungle and port back. If you can kill the jungler (vs. jungle meta) or a high damage target (vs. support meta) try to kill vilemaw and push for getting objectives. clear both jungles with your team, your bruiser and AP bot needing the gold.

Now it's the time to contest the altar for the 10% AD/AP buff, you want feeling the increase in AD/AP in teamfight and the improved snowball potential.

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Late Game

around the 20-25 minute mark, the late game starts. Go back to base and buy items and elixirs. Force a fight or try to catch up a enemy, if one or two dead, you can go for a inhibitor, vilemaw or a nexus tower. trapping a enemy is the best way to finish a game.

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