Build Guide by Melchior
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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.
Firstly, I'd like to extend some thanks towards Hell_Pet and his Splatter Kog'Maw guide. It helped greatly in learning the potential for AP Kog'Maw, and I did lift some of the initial items from it. It's a solid guide, and worth checking out if you haven't seen it.
If you have any comments or criticism, please comment below. I'd be happy to see some suggestions, or hear about it giving you success.
If you didn't like the build, feel free to detail why.
Now, please, read this through before you start to comment.
This Build was me looking for a solid hybrid-build; caster Kog'Maw in the beginning portion of the game, and tank-melter in the later.
There are some flaws in going hybrid, though, such as a lower Mana and HP pool than most other builds. Armor Penetration is also going to be difficult to obtain, unless you sub out some of the Marks.
As I mentioned above, this build focuses on playing a slightly conservative caster Kog'Maw in the laning phase, poking from a distance and closing the gap to obtain a few kills. The catalyst the protectorCatalyst / Rod of Ages does provide you with a good deal of HP and MP initially, though.
Late-game, Kog'Maw gains large bounds of Attack Speed and some bonus AP to boost his Bio-Arcane Barrage's strength. His spells still do considerable damage, and in addition you're able to melt away anyone with a large HP pool (Mundo and Vladimir come to mind).
Best part is, if your enemy team is stacking Magic Resist, due to the set-up of your runes, you can still transition into a standard AD / AS Kog'Maw. A bit painful to your Gold count, but still very possible.
All Attack Speed as it helps your late-game strength, and can be used to transition into other builds if needed. I don't typically recommend AP Per Level Runes because you get plenty of AP from the Item Build and through Mejai's stacks.
If you do take AP Per Level over the Attack Speed runes, your early-game will be stronger at the cost of your late-game unless you bring an item to counteract the loss of the Attack Speed.
Magic Penetration Marks can be of help if you find your early-game lacks potency. I don't think they're all that necessary, though, what with the new Malady.
AP Per Level Glyphs can work if you don't mind losing a shred of Attack Speed.
Exhaust is taken because of its great utility in taking out a sole-target. Same goes for Ignite.
Exhaust's capability to shut down any physical carry for a few seconds, or slow down a retreating or engaging foe, is a very powerful tool combined with Kog'Maw's skills. Caustic Spittle with the improved Exhaust works well in focusing down someone quickly.
Ignite's a great tool in scoring the last hit on an enemy, or shutting down a self-healing capability (again, Mundo comes to mind). Couple this with Kog'Maw's great ability to harass with Living Artillery or Bio-Arcane Barrage for best results in finishing off a foe.
Other potential Summoner Spells include Ghost or Flash, depending on your play-style.
Ghost is extremely tempting, though, seeing as the build lacks Rylai's or Frozen Mallet (more on that later).
Your call, in the end. Just remember to adjust the Masteries in that case.
This is more of showing my reason as to why I picked X over Y, and such. Also a few tips and suggestions for alternative items.
Starting with an early Rod of Ages helps greatly with building towards a steady Ability Power early-game. Also gives you added survivability - always a nice thing to have. Taking it early also lets it reach its maximum potential even faster.
Moving on to Sorcerer's Shoes; I take this over Berserker's Greaves for the reason that your AP early-game will benefit more heavily from the added Magic Penetration. If you feel so inclined to do so, or need to because of the enemy team's item builds, then switch boots later into the game when your Attack Speed items are being built. More often than not, though, I keep the first pair since Magic Penetration is always nice on a hybrid.
No mention of Boots of Swiftness or other boots because Kog'Maw should be staying outside of reach of his enemies and taking advantage of brush whenever possible for ganks.
Then, we have Mejai's Soulstealer, which helps a lot with your AP and gives you stacks throughout the game. This especially helps Bio-Arcane Barrage late-game, as it boosts the %-based bonus damage. If you fear you won't keep the stacks, go for a Zhonya's Ring instead - or just skip it entirely and proceed to the next item. Your Magic Pen will come from the Sorcerer's Shoes and Malady, so if you're being focused, try going for a Zhonya's to deter the enemy for a few seconds.
If you take AP Per Level runes as opposed to Attack Speed runes, you should be able to sub out your Mejai's Soulstealer for a Last Whisper or Sword of the Divine.
After that, you can begin building towards a Guinsoo's Rageblade which marks your transition into the Attack Speed territory. A very solid item, as it still boosts your Ability Power, but also lets you use your Bio-Arcane Barrage a lot more effectively with the bonuses from the stacks of the Rageblade. Always buy the Blasting Wand component first, seeing as you have little use for Attack Damage in this build.
With the reworked Malady, it's extremely viable for a hybrid Kog'Maw due to its stacking Magic Resistance debuff and extra damage per attack. Coupled with your high Attack Speed late-game, it'll not only help you whittle down enemy Champions through your Bio-Arcane Barrage and auto-attacks, but also through your Void Ooze and Living Artillery.
Nashor's Tooth is a good end-game item, lowering your cooldowns and giving you a very strong bonus to both of the stats focused on in this build. Other options include Frozen Mallet or Rylai's Crystal Scepter if you want to lower your damage output for utility.
Elixirs of Brilliance and Agility are imperative to upping your AP past the 400 mark (at max stacks on Mejai's). This nets you 10% (6% base + 4%) bonus damage on Bio-Arcane Barrage, while being able to pump the Attack Speed from your item arrangement and the Elixir of Agility.
Get the Elixirs whenever you feel the need, or want to significantly increase your damage output. Just be sure not to overuse them and waste all your Gold on these. Generally, though, if you're good at farming or hunting Champions, you should make your Gold back in little to no time. They're an amazing bonus towards the end-game, where you run out of inventory space (seeing as Elixirs are applied to your Champion automatically if you have no space).
You won't have to worry much about Cooldown Reduction with Nashor's Tooth and the Elixir of Brilliance, but if you want to, feel free to get the CDR earlier if want to pursue a longer Ability Power start. I'd suggest just getting the Elixir of Brilliance over a rushed Nashor's Tooth, though.
You can make use of Madred's Bloodrazor with the new Malady, if you so choose to pursue it instead of building towards a Nashor's Tooth.
It should be fairly obvious due to mentioning it a few times, but you play Kog'Maw two ways with this build.
Early-game, you should play Kog'Maw as you would with an AP build. Poking with your Living Artillery and helping to gank with Void Ooze. Bio-Arcane Barrage is still useful at zoning and pressuring your opponent away from your turret - or, alternatively, provoking them into overextending to counter-harass. This also lets you hunt squishy Champions with ease, getting you good stacks with your Mejai's.
Transitioning into the more hybrid Kog'Maw means you're now more free to hunt using your Bio-Arcane Barrage and learning Caustic Spittle will aid your Attack Speed alongside your anti-tank ability. If your early-game was good, then your stacks on Mejai's and the powerful Attack Speed bonuses you're getting will serve you well to take down the more difficult opponents. With Exhaust, you can make quick work of most "tanky-DPS" characters in a matter of seconds.
Getting Blessing of the Lizard Elder, or more affectionately called 'Red Buff', is imperative to being able to kite your enemies without use of a Frozen Mallet or Rylai's Crystal Scepter .
Crest of the Ancient Golem, or 'Blue Buff', is really handy to have, as Kog'Maw's maximum MP pool will be rather low, so the bonus MP Regeneration is a very nice thing to have.
- Solid AP early-game
- Quick to melt high HP targets
- Can catch the enemy off-guard with your switch to Attack Speed
- Can transition into a standard AD / AS Kog'Maw build if AP doesn't go so well
- Low HP / MP pool late-game
- Build suffers if stacks are not kept well
- Not a lot of Armor Penetration
- Co-operate with your team to help get neutral buffs
- Replace Mejai's with a tool for easier kiting or Zhonya's
- Remember you have the range advantage; use allies as cover and snipe away
- When your team-mates are in trouble, help them out with Void Ooze and Exhaust if they're being hurt greatly
Please remember to leave some comments or criticism. Why you like the build, why you didn't, any success stories - all of that's good. Just keep it clean.
For those curious, I do test it myself. My record KDA thus far is 9/2/24, with the suggested build / no alternative items.