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Elise Build Guide by PreachingBuilds
AP Forest Spider
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Fun and Versatile (can play in 3 lanes)
6 spells means she has a lot of unique gameplay
% damage on 2 of her spells, meaning she can do damage without buying damage
Long range hard CC
Free spells in spider form
Can clear waves really quickly
Destroys turrets with her spiderlings
Has a gap closer and an untargetable form
Can zone a lot of top laners, especially melee champs
Some inherent tankiness
Good base speed
Has a little bit of sustain
Many, many build paths
Is a spider
Takes a few games to learn how to use her spells effectively
Relatively squishy early on
Pitiful auto attack damage in human form (tough to last hit)
You need to master her cooldowns to team fight effectively
Requires knowing when to change forms
Very long CD on her CC and gap closer / escape
No slows (hard to stick to target)
Mediocre AP ratios
Not a great early mid laner, and a slow jungler
Each skill must be leveled individually (unlike Nidalee, where each point in R raises all skills)
Throughout this guide, I'll be addressing these weaknesses and how to get around some of them.
Getting a feel for her cooldowns is the single most important piece to learning Elise. Nidalee (usually) and Jayce are both mainly AD heroes, which means that if your cooldowns are down you can auto attack. Even worse, you can't see the cooldowns for the form you're not in, so you need to have a really good feel for what they're like. While Elise does have spiderlings, most of her damage comes from her spells, so those need to be used soon after they are up (and her ult cooldown needs to be accounted for) or you are hurting your long term damage output. This is especially true for her E in both forms - for example, you are running away in spider form (because it is faster), you need to morph into human and stun them at the right time.
Maxing Neurotoxin / Venomous Bite
Better poke damage
Reliable source of damage, especially vs melee opponent
Hits pretty hard with your +15 AP quints - you can wear opponents down
Much slower wave clear and turret pushing
You are vulnerable vs opponents that get in your face and can outduel your spider
Maxing Volatile Spiderling / Skittering Frenzy
Big burst damage, but unreliable unless you're right on them
Faster pushing (absolutely rapes turrets, especially around level 11 with the extra spiderling and W maxed)
Can brawl better (more AS)
Can punish opponents that like getting in your face
Low reliable poke damage (from Q)
Higher mana cost - you must have one of the mana items
As long as you have the mana, you get the fastest clear with Human Q+W, morph, spider W+Q, and keep repeating this. Basically keep using all your spells once they're off cooldown.
Elise jungle speed is kind of slow, so make sure you get a good pull early on. But she is a great ganker out of jungle.