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Malzahar Build Guide by Aqua Knight


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League of Legends Build Guide Author Aqua Knight

[DETAILED] Malzahar: The Void's Cult [PATCH 7.8]

Aqua Knight Last updated on April 24, 2017
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Ability Sequence

2
8
10
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13
Ability Key Q
3
14
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18
Ability Key W
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Ability Key E
6
11
16
Ability Key R

Masteries

18 Ferocity

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0 Cunning

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12 Resolve

5/

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Threats to Malzahar with this build

Threat
Low
High
Show all
Threat Champion Notes
1
Teemo Teemo mid? I honestly don't know what to write here, I mean it's simple, farm until in range to kill him. If he tries to "outplay you" with his passive just Q wherever he is, you will get Deathfire Touch's red arrow indicator if you hit him.
Guide Top

INTRODUCTION

Hi guys I'm Aqua Knight, this is my Malzahar guide, and my first guide overall. I have been playing Malzahar ever since i was Summoner Level 18, or in other words for the past 4 Seasons. I finished Platinum II last season and I believe I have enough knowledge of the game and Malzahar himself to create this guide. I will be updating this guide every patch (to avoid confusion with new updates) unless extremely necessary (hotfixes or something...). But enough about me, let's get down to the reason you came to this guide, and is none other than...




MALZAHAR

You're probably here to learn about Malzahar, his gameplay, his tricks, his spells, and anything there is to know... Malzahar is a Battle Mage, as Riot classifies him, which means he's better in lengthier fights and skirmishes and he excels while in the middle of the fight on the contrary with the classical burst mage who likes to stay away and cast from range. This guide will teach you how to play Malzahar, what to do, where to be and who to ult. This builds aims on capping Malzahar at 40% cooldown reduction, which in combination of his ult's Nether Grasp naturally low cooldown, and the tankiness this build provides make for a pretty strong mid-late game combo. So let's get down with the basics.


Guide Top

BACKGROUND

Lore



"The land may melt, the sea may swell, the sky may fall... but they will come!" - Malzahar

Many men have gone mad beneath the glare of the Shuriman sun, but it was during the night's chilling embrace that Malzahar relinquished his sanity. Malzahar was born a Seer, blessed with the gift of foresight. His talent, though unrefined, promised to be one of Runeterra's greatest boons, but destiny plotted him another course; his sensitivity to the roiling tides of fate allowed other, unwelcome things to tug at his subconscious mind.

In his dreams, where the veil of separation is thinnest, a sinister thing beckoned. For some time, Malzahar was able to resist its prodding, but with each passing night the voice grew louder, or perhaps deeper, until he could withstand the call no more.

He ventured into the desert without supplies, drawn by the lure of a specious charm. His destination: a lost civilization to the east, known to ancient texts as Icathia. Few believed such a place ever existed, and those who did were certain that the sands had long since devoured whatever remained. When Malzahar's cracked feet finally failed him, he found himself kneeling at the base of a bizarre crumbling obelisk.

Beyond it lain the alien geometry of a ruined city and the giant decaying idols of dark and horrific gods. His eyes, seeing what others cannot, and what none should, were filled with the essence of the Void. His once shifting visions of the future were replaced with the immutable promise of Valoran beset by creatures of the Void.

Standing alone, but not alone, amidst the echoing dunes, he noticed the familiar voice escape his own lips in a parched rasp, bearing three words whose weight trembled his knees: League of Legends. Now infused with the power of the Void itself, Malzahar set off to the north to seek his fate.


Trivia


So as you can see Malzahar is the Prophet of the Void, and after believing his world would be beset by the Void, he was turned into an immortal human with the powers of the Void. Based on his official homepage he is friends with Kog'Maw, and enemies with Kassadin. Here are some trivia you may or may have not known about Malzahar, taken directly from his own wikia page:
  • Even though Malzahar (and Kassadin ) is Shuriman his ties to the Void directs all his focus to the ancient city of Icathia and what lies within it.
    • Malzahar might be attempting to make Icathia rise again just like Azir did with the Ancient Shuriman capital.
      • It is uncertain whether or not he is aware of the rise of the Ascended. Even if so, making way for the Voidborn takes precedence over a handful of actually mortal demigods that can be overrun by infinite hordes anyway.

  • Malzahar was brainwashed into believing the Void overrunning Runeterra is an inevitability and this in turned prompted him to become its prophet.
    • Malzahar has done everything to tempt the Void Walker into joining forces with him, going so far as to sending Kassadin's daughter into the Void itself.
  • The one resposible for luring Malzahar to Icathia might have been the same entity Aurelion Sol suspects of being commanding all the Void incursions into Runeterra.
    • Malzahar in turn lured Kog'Maw into Runeterra.
      • It could be speculated the hivemind entity is Kog'Maw's 'Daddy', the 'Terror who is coming'. In short Kog'Maw might be foreshadowing a cataclysm on an interdimensional scale so large the Rune Wars will seem a children's brawl in comparison.


You can always use the wikia page to check Malzahar's voicover, skins, etc... I personally think his voicover is pretty cool, but that's probably because he's my favourite champion.


Guide Top

PROS / CONS

So this build, combined with runes and masteries gives you a lot of AP, CD, and some health and a slow from Rylai's Crystal Scepter. Detailed stats are discussed further below, but for now, let's check the Pros/Cons:

PROS:
+ Excellent Teamfight Presence via Q,R
+ Awesome Dueling Power
+ Easy Waveclear After First Item
+ Useful Even When Behind
+ Excellent Objective Control
+ CC-Immune Passive
+ Excellent Ganker
+ Melts Opponents
CONS:
- Very Low Mobility
- Prone To Camping
- May Push Even When Undesired
- Easily Interruptible Ult
- Can Die Easily When Focused
- Mediocre Roamer
- Hard To One-Shot Anyone Unless Ahead
- Quicksilver Sash


Of course, it's not always bad if an opponents builds Quicksilver Sash, actually if anyone who builds it is not an ADC (or Marksman), then you essentially deprive them of an extra item slot, and you just focus someone else, or wait to bait it out.


Guide Top

SUMMONER SPELLS



So this is the basic summoner spell setup we will be taking, there's not much to say about it. Ghost has been meta after its buffs over in Patch 6.10. it provides you with stickiness, pseudomobility when needed, and an extra escape should things go bad. Now, as of Patch 7.2, it needs to accelerate for 2 seconds, before reaching maximum speed. This should affect you if you don't use Ghost in advance, so you can opt for Ignite instead but it's still a viable option. Its short 180s cooldown, or 3 minutes, is even lower coupled with Ionian Boots of Lucidity and Insight , going as low as 135s, or 2 minutes and 15 seconds! Flash is a must on almost all champions, and low mobility Malzahar is no-exception. Note that Flash's original cooldown is 300s, or 5 minutes, but with our summoner spell cooldown reduction this gets down to 225s, or 3 minutes and 45 seconds almost as much as Ghost!!.






These are your other alternative replacements to Ghost ( Flash should always be taken). Take Ignite if you feel that you don't really need the stickiness or chasing power of ghost, or if facing a Vladimir, Swain, or any healer as a matter of fact. While it provides extra lane pressure, you won't be needing it because there are very few cases where the opponent would escape with minimal health. And on top of that, it's nearly useless come late game, compared to our other choices at least. Ignite's original cooldown is 210s, or 3 minutes and 30 seconds. When we finish our Ionian Boots of Lucidity this gets down to 157.5s, or 2 minutes and 37.5 seconds.






Barrier is not that much viable, unless you want to be annoying... The only reason I would pick this is when laning against Syndra... It's the only way to survive that extremely frustrating, targeted nuke she has for an ult. Use it when she ults, and you survive. It's original cooldown is like Ghost's, 180s, or 3 minutes, and after Ionian Boots of Lucidity it gets down to 135s, or 2 minutes and 15 seconds.






Teleport is the go-to map awareness, map-pressure spell. If you think you can coordinate with your team for ganks and objectives, or even think that you will be stomped in lane (happens to the best of us, don't worry), Teleport is a decent choice. It also provides global pressure when it's up, as you can practically go anywhere with it. Don't try to backdoor though unless the nexus is like 1 hit away from victory, because with your low mobility you will never apply enough game-finishing pressure. Since Malzahar is an excellent duelist, if the team has 1 or 2 remaining players, you can go and try to do that, but I personally prefer to coordinate with my team. Teleport's original cooldown is 300s, or like Flash 6 minutes, and with Ionian Boots of Lucidity + Insight it gets down to 255s, or 3 minutes and 45 seconds.





Finally Exhaust, the last "viable" option. Sincerely I can see it beeing a good pick against something with huge burst, like Akali mainly, as it shuts her down hard. Other than that use it on the biggest damage dealer. Exhaust's original cooldown is like Ignite's, 210s, or 3 minutes and 30 seconds, and likewise, after Ionian Boots of Lucidity, this gets down to 157.5s, or 2 minutes and 37.5 seconds.




Unviable Choices:

So Heal is just weaker (and more permanent but whatever) than Barrier, with the added benefit of healing an ally as well. Oh but wait... You're playing a SOLO lane. 'Nuff said. So Heal's original cooldown is 240s, or 4 minutes, after Ionian Boots of Lucidity it gets down to 180s, or 3 minutes.

Ah... Cleanse... This spell... is just... so infamous to me. I will explain after listing the cooldowns. First things first, you have a passive that is infinite times better than cleanse and on shorter cooldown. There is LITERALLY NO REASON TO TAKE IT! It's original cooldown is 210s, or 3 minutes and 30 seconds, with Ionian Boots of Lucidity it goes down to 157.5s, or 2 minutes and 37.5 seconds.

!!! IMPORTANT NOTICE !!!


So the reason this... spell is so infamous to me is because I've seen my lane opponents pick it to "counter" me. So I will say this once: CLEANSE DOESN'T WORK ON NETHER GRASP!!!!. If you ever, EVER see an opponent picking to counter you, or ANY SUPRESS as a matter of fact, spread the word, I beg you: Cleanse doesn't work on suppresses.
UPDATE: It seems Riot finally decided to include the fact that it doesn't remove suppression in it's tooltip, but I still see a lot of people making the same mistake so please spread the word...

Last and probably least (along side of cleanse of course) comes Clarity. This build gives you enough mana to spam your spells, and your kit has built-in mana restoration via your Malefic Visions. So its only use is on your very starting laning phase, before your first back, because that is the only time you can really run oom. Clarity's original cooldown is 240s, or (like Heal) 4 minutes, and after Ionian Boots of Lucidity, we get down to 180s, or 3 minutes.


Guide Top

RUNES AND MASTERIES

RUNES


x9 Mark of Magic Penetration
x9 Seal of Scaling Health / x9 Seal of Armor
x6 Glyph of Scaling Cooldown Reduction - x3 Glyph of Magic Resistance
x3 Quintessence of Ability Power
So this my main Rune Page setup. Marks and Quints pretty are self-explanatory as they are basic for most AP Mid Laners. Now about my Seals... Before Malzahar got reworked in the mid-season magic, I was running the classical Rod of Ages -> Rylai's Crystal Scepter -> Liandry's Torment setup. After removing Rod of Ages from my build and adding Morellonomicon instead, I needed to compensate for the HP I had, and the best way to do so was by these Seals. You can run armor if you want, it's still perfectly viable, those are a personal preference of mine. As for the Glyphs, this simple setup should get you enough MR early game, but most importantly 10.02% Cooldown Reduction at level 18, which combined with Morellonomicon and Ionian Boots of Lucidity, (our first 2 items) gives you a full 40% Cooldown Reduction on your spells. The purpose of this build is to cap our Cooldown Reduction, and having the damage to use it.





MASTERIES


I run a 18/0/12 mastery setup, and I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to play Malzahar. That is because as stated before Malzahar is a battle mage which means he excels in lengthy fights hence the Ferocity/Resolve setup. The Cunning tree belongs to mages who want more utility or damage -- or in other words burst mages, and Malzahar is not one. Now let's analyze the trees and see what we can get. (Note: I will analyze the cunning tree as well for anyone who wants to run 18/12/0 or even 12/18/0):
FEROCITY
-Tier 1: Fury and Sorcery : Unless you want to play an aa-reliant Malzahar Sorcery is the right way.

-Tier 2: Fresh Blood , Feast , Expose Weakness : All are perfectly viable, Fresh Blood gives you extra poke in lane, Feast lets you farm and sustain yourself, and Expose Weakness is much more team-oriented as you can't proc the extra damage, pick which suits you most.

-Tier 3: Vampirism and Natural Talent : Void Swarm scales with AD and AP and I don't think having a bit of Life Steal and Spell Vamp justifies losing extra power.

-Tier 4: Double Edged Sword , Battle Trance , Bounty Hunter : You need as much damage as you can early so you can start a lead, so the instant boost form Double Edged Sword is much appreciated. Battle Trance also serves well, if you think you're gonna be focused too much to take more additional damage. Now if you believe you can go for late game, pick Double Edged Sword at your own risk.

-Tier 5: Battering Blows and Piercing Thoughts : Just a quick glance to our build path, runes, or even Malzahar's kit can show you which choice is right... But just to be sure... pick Piercing Thoughts .

-Tier 6 Keystone Mastery: Warlord's Bloodlust , Fervor of Battle , Deathfire Touch : So we have a choice between situational lifesteal (which Void Swarm does not proc), situational AD, and extra damage on every spell but Void Swarm, with better effectiveness on DoT Spells... I suppose you can go for Fervor of Battle , but do not try this in Ranked, just take the obvious choice (Hint: not Warlord's Bloodlust ). Anyway I HIGHLY recommend Deathfire Touch because Malzahar's DoT can take out the most out of its proc.
CUNNING
-Tier 1: Wanderer and Savagery : A final note, if you are going down this tree you're missing very important aspects from either tree you didn't choose. If you like to roam, or if you want to, take Wanderer , if you want to push the lane without leaving then Savagery is the mastery for you.

-Tier 2: Runic Affinity , Secret Stash , Assassin : I don't think you need Runic Affinity , because the only use it will have is if you ever find yourself with a buff, but the other options provide you with much more direct help. Secret Stash keeps you healthy in lane, and Assassin gives you a boost in damage in lane and when roaming top or invading enemy jungle.

-Tier 3: Merciless and Meditation : After a point in the game there is no need to regenerate your mana as your Malefic Visions cover the cost with one minion wave, and on the contrary Merciless scales pretty decently from early to late game.

-Tier 4: Bandit , Dangerous Game , Greenfather's Gift : Since you want to be fighting a lot Dangerous Game is the only useful option here.

-Tier 5: Precision and Intelligence : Hybrid Penetrations helps you during the early game, and Intelligence should really be taken only when going for the max 45% Cooldown Reduction. Your spells benefit at max rank with 5% cooldown reduction as such: Call of the Void is reduced by 0,3s, Void Swarm by 0,8s, Malefic Visions by 0,35s and Nether Grasp by 4s. Take these into account when deciding.

-Tier 6 Keystone Mastery: Stormraider's Surge , Thunderlord's Decree , Windspeaker's Blessing : If you made it this far I can't really congratulate you because you're playing Malzahar as a burst mage. But since you're here, Thunderlord's Decree is the optimal choice because you don't have enough burst for Stormraider's Surge , nor any shields or heals at all for Windspeaker's Blessing . Riot even made it so that Thunderlord's Decree can't proc with multiple ticks of DoT spells a couple of patches ago, making it an even worse choice for Malzahar. It's still the best of three, but not nearly as useful as Deathfire Touch ...
RESOLVE
-Tier 1: Recovery and Unyielding : Unless we build Zhonya's Hourglass or Abyssal Mask as a sixth item we have nearly no Armor or Magic Resistance, so Recovery is our best option.

-Tier 2: Explorer , Tough Skin , Siegemaster : Tough Skin is an awful choice, don't even consider it. Between the other 2 the choice is yours. Explorer if you want to roam and gank, and Siegemaster if you want to stay in lane and farm.

-Tier 3: Runic Armor and Veteran's Scars : You don't have any self healing or shielding, and unless maybe you have Soraka in your team, Veteran's Scars on the other hand helps you in your laning phase and stays revelant enough for late game.

-Tier 4: Insight , Perseverance , Fearless : You don't have any Resistances as stated above and thus you can't use Fearless . Perseverance isn't all that useful either because "below 25% or less" of your HP is usually one rival's spell. Insight provides you with something you CAN use in this tier and stays relevant all-game long. Besides this build relies on this specific mastery to reach its maximum potential.

-Tier 5: Swiftness and Legendary Guardian : So for some odd reason you made it in Tier 5 of the Resolve Tree. I suppose everything can work if you put your heart in it though i advise you to turn back while you still can. While the stats from Legendary Guardian are quite nice, their potential are limited if you don't itemize for them along the mastery. Swiftness gives you some way to resist CC other than Void Shift, so i suggest using Swiftness .

-Tier 6 Keystone Mastery: Grasp of the Undying , Courage of the Colossus , Stoneborn Pact : No Keystone here can really be used effectively by Malzahar, but if you really want one i suggest Stoneborn Pact , but Courage of the Colossus can be used as well. You're not gonna be basic attacking in-fight to make use of Grasp of the Undying , so that's out of the question. Stoneborn Pact won't give you any benefits other than a little % Max Health, but, once you get your Rylai's Crystal Scepter, every spell is gonna put marks on enemies, and Malefic Visions, being a DoT (Damage over Time), will proc it continuously. Of course, the ally that procs a mark will be healed by the strongest mark, which will probably not be yours, but still... On the other hand, the only time you'll be getting the shield from Courage of the Colossus is when you're ulting because it's the only hard-CC you have.

DEATHFIRE TOUCH VS THUNDERLORD'S DECREE



Now, you might think that Deathfire Touch and Thunderlord's Decree is a personal choice in the end, but let's see what Math has to tell about it:

Deathfire Touch : Your damaging abilities cause enemy champions to take magic damage equal to 8 + 60% of your Bonus Attack Damage and 25% of your Ability Power over 4 seconds. Deathfire Touch has reduced effectiveness when applied by area of effect and damage over time abilities.
- Area of effect: 2 second duration.
- Damage over time: 1 second duration.

Thunderlord's Decree : Your third hit by attack or damaging spell against the same enemy champion calls down a lightning strike, dealing magic damage in the area.

Damage: 10 per level, plus 30% of your bonus Attack Damage and 10% of your Ability Power (25-15 second cooldown, based on level).
Firstly let's take note of a few things about the two: Deathfire Touch has no cooldown, but Void Swarm can't proc it, while Thunderlord's Decree does have a cooldown and takes a full rotation of your basic spells to proc it without basic attacks. Also, the more a fight drags on, the more effective DFT becomes in comparison to TD.I will list damage dealt by both masteries on every phase of the game:

EARLY GAME: Let's begin with Deathfire Touch : Around level 3, with Lost Chapter, Doran's Ring and runes + masteries you will have 60 Ability Power. Your [E] Malefic Visions has a 14.75 seconds cooldown and your [Q] Call of the Void has 5.9 seconds. Call of the Void will deal 4 + 12.5% of your Ability Power in 2 seconds. That is 11.5 damage every 5.9 seconds. Malefic Visions will deal 2 + 6.25% of your Ability Power and will refresh the duration every tick!. That, in a total of 5 seconds, deals 9,6875 damage, not counting refresh duration. If you refresh the visions, it deals double that, or 19,375 damage. On average though, using both spells will deal 18 damage per combo, with a minimum of 14.75 seconds cooldown. Thunderlord's Decree will deal 36 damage every 23.8 seconds. Obviously TD is superior to DFT here.

MID GAME:At level 6 you have your ult and finished Morellonomicon and Ionian Boots of Lucidity, thus boosting DFT. Also you have 137 Ability Power and 33% Cooldown Reduction. Your [Q] has the same cooldown but your [E] now has 7.33 seconds cooldown and your [R] Nether Grasp 80 seconds. Your [Q] will deal 21,175 damage, and your [E] 26,40625 damage. If you refresh it once (with [R] or [Q]) it will deal 26,40625 - 52,8125 damage based on when you refreshed it (reaching maximum damage when refreshed at the last moment before it expires. If you refresh it twice ([R] first and [Q] after), it will deal 105,625 damage, though that is very hard to accomplish. Each instance of your Null Zone will deal the same damage as [Q]. On average you deal close to 70 damage with a full combo, or 45 damage without Nether Grasp, every ~8 seconds. Thunderlord's Decree deals 73.7 damage every 22.1 seconds. in 22.1 seconds, DFT will deal (with a full combo, and another [E] -> [Q] after) close to 95 damage. This scales harder in it's favor, the more the game goes.

LATE GAME: Let's look at max level and build, what the masteries have to offer. At level 18, with full build, and without counting Baron and Dragon buffs or Elixir of Sorcery, we have: 655 Ability Power, and 40% Cooldown Reduction. [Q] has 3.6 seconds cooldown, [E] 4.2 s ,and [R] 48 s. This means that every tick of Null Zone and [Q] will deal 85,875 damage, and [E] will deal 102,34375 damage. If you refresh it once it goes to 102,34375 - 204,6875, and if you refresh it twice it goes up to 409,375 extra damage. Thunderlord's Decree deals 246.5 damage every 15 seconds. Deathfire Touch deals 250 damage on average, every 4.2 seconds (and more if you re-apply [E] after you refresh it) on 15 seconds DFT deals 550 damage on a low average, completely outclassing TD every way.
In the end, unless you want slightly more early game burst, or to play with [E] -> [Q] -> AA and run, Deathfire Touch is much more optimal, and starting level 6, scales much harder.


Guide Top

ABILITIES, SKILL SEQUENCE AND COMBOS

So we made it to Malzahar's Abilities. Before we go to the skill sequence let's take a look at his abilities:

SPELLS:


VOID SHIFT (PASSIVE):


"Innate: Malzahar receives Void Shift if he hasn't taken damage nor been affected by crowd control in the last 30 / 24 / 18 / 12 seconds (at Levels 1 / 6 / 11 / 16). Damage from minions does not interact with Void Shift.

Void Shift phases out Malzahar, making him immune to crowd control and taking 90% reduced damage, lingering for 0.25 seconds after taking damage or blocking a crowd control effect."

As many people say, "this passive is Banshee's Veil on steroids!!!". I suppose it has some truth in it. This passive gives you all you need as Malzahar, a brief period of immunity to practically anything to make up for your immobility. It's really powerful because it blocks many key spells, but it also can be popped with a simple basic attack. Early game you will want to play safe to make most of it; if they try to pop it counter them with E + Q, generally they shouldn't be allowed to break it without punishment. Be most alarmed when it's down though; you are prone to anything and everything at that time: full combos, ganks, and even towerdives. Play passively until it returns. Try to keep it at all times because Malzahar because this forces opponents to play around it. Here are a few things to note:
  • Void Shift does not reduce true damage at all; true damage just breaks it.
  • Nocturne's ult, Paranoia, applies a debuff called shortsight (if i remember the name right). This debuff breaks the passive from global range. Essentially this means Nocturne is a pretty decent counter to our prophet.

CALL OF THE VOID (Q):


"Active: Malzahar summons two orbs at the target location perpendicular to where he is facing, dealing magic damage to all enemies caught between the orbs and silencing them."

-Range: 900 units
-Portal Width: 400 units
-Mana Cost: 80 at all ranks
-Cooldown: 6 seconds at all ranks
-Damage: 70 / 110 / 150 / 190 / 230 (+70% AP) magic damage
-Silence Duration: 1 / 1.25 / 1.5 / 1.75 / 2 seconds

This is our spammable long range spell. You will not want to use this much early unless it is to refresh Malefic Visions. You can also use it to farm from range when being zoned or bullied, but be careful as that pushes the wave. Positioning is everything with this spell, due to the nature of its placement. You will want to position yourself in a way that you can hit as many enemies possible, without risking yourself in the process. I advise you to play without smartcast the first few games to get used to it. A great tip to hit enemies is to cast it slightly behind them as their first reaction is to run away, and Call of the Void has a brief delay. Timing is also very important, as your silence can be used to interrupt combos and channeled spells (and Teleport). When the enemy is silenced, it's a good idea to flash + all-in them, because they can't react with shields, heals or even Flash away. Be wary though, in order for your all-in to work you must be very fast with your spells. Your Q refreshes your E so use that to your full potential. Things to note about Call of the Void:
  • Call of the Void has a slight delay, it's very small (0.5s) but still noticeable.
  • Call of the Void gives vision slightly where it's cast. Use it when heading to unwarded bushes, or even behind Dragon/Baron pit.
  • While Call of the Void damages everything in it's path between the orbs (horizontally), it also has a very very small vertical radius.
  • Casting Call of the Void and then dying will not complete the cast, and as a result, it will not deal damage, denying you many times a kill.

VOID SWARM (W):


"Passive: Malzahar stores a charge of Void Swarm periodically, up to a maximum of 2 at once.
Active: Malzahar spawns a Voidling at the target location for 12 seconds, that deals physical damage plus bonus magic damage on its attacks. Voidlings deal 50% damage to monsters, and 300% damage against minions affected by Malefic Visions. The first time a Voidling attacks a champion or large monster, Malzahar will spawn an additional Voidling with the same remaining duration that can in turn spawn additional Voidlings. This cannot happen if there is less than 9 seconds remaining on the swarm. Voidlings gain 100% bonus movement speed toward priority targets and if they're close enough to Malzahar."

-Cast Range: 450 units
-Range Between Malzahar and Voidlings for bonus Movement Speed: 600 units
-Mana Cost: 40 at all ranks
-Static Cooldown: 1 second
-Recharge Rate: 20 / 19 / 18 / 17 / 16 seconds
-Spawn Time: 0.35 seconds at all ranks
-Damage: (30 / 35 / 40 / 45 / 50 (+40% bonus AD) physical damage) + (10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 (+20% AP) magic damage)
-Damage vs Monsters: (15 / 17.5 / 20 / 22.5 / 25 (+20% bonus AD) physical damage) + (5 / 7.5 / 10 / 12.5 / 15 (+10% AP) magic damage)
-Damage vs Minions affected by Malefic Visions: (90 / 105 / 120 / 135 / 150 (+120% bonus AD) physical damage) + (30 / 45 / 60 / 75 / 90 (+60% AP) magic damage)

First things first, static cooldown essentially means that if you have 2 charges you can use them on a 1-second delay, and it cannot be reduced by Cooldown Reduction. So on to Malzahar's most damaging ability: Void Swarm. In the mid-season update, Malzahar's damage and ratios on every spell was lowered, just so they could add his passive and this ability. Void Swarm is your most flexible spell, as it can be used for myriad of reasons like: pushing the lane, bursting or melting the enemies, finishing a teamfight, bullying in lane, controlling objectives, taking buffs, blocking skillshots and many more that you will find. The default uses are: In lane, when facing against melees, or if a ranged enemy comes too close and tries to trade, throw them Malefic Visions and cast Void Swarm as they try to fight or run, and Call of the Void them as they run, but try to chase to avoid voidlings geting slowed. This can chunk more than half hp of most champions, but be wary, overusing it will cause you to run out of mana early in the game (until you buy Lost Chapter.) When farming, use Malefic Visions on a minion and then use one voidling to farm (one is more than enough). If your opponent kills it, spawn a second one. Use it also to block important but predictable enemy spells, like Blitzcrank's Rocket Grab, or even Ahri's Charm. Be wary though, the spawn time of 0.35 s makes it so you must predict when they use their respective spell to block it. Lastly, when fighting dragons, spawn two when fighting a single target dragon (Water, Air), and wait for someone to draw aggro when fighting AoE dragons (Fire, Earth.). Don't even bother using them on Baron Nashor. When you hit level 6, if you see the rival low enough, or if he tries to all-in you, W -> E -> W -> R to kill them, plus Q if they survive. This is also effective when you're being ganked, by killing the first enemy you chain Malefic Visions to the next and also give them aggro of the swarm. It's also very important to learn how to control your voidlings, which is explained below. Things to note about Void Swarm:
  • Your voidlings have "2 hp" which means they can take up to 2 champion basic attacks and spells before they die. Minions deal 0.5 damage on them, which means that it takes 6 minion basic attacks to kill a voidling. They also instantly die from turret shots. This hp is also affected by various on-hit effects (like Statik Shiv), dealing 2 full damage.
  • Their attacks can be dodged ( Jax's Counter Strike) and blocked ( Pantheon's Aegis Protection). They can also be disarmed ( Quinn's Blinding Assault), which means they can't attack, and blinded ( Teemo's Blinding Dart).
  • They have an attack speed of 0.831, 30 armor, 50 magic resist and a movement speed of 451.
  • Their priority targets are: If they can't find a priority target they attack the nearest enemy. Voidlings gain 100% bonus Movement Speed when moving towards priority targets, and when within 600 units of Malzahar.
  • Procs on-hit effects and Rylai's Crystal Scepter.
  • When voidlings reach 600 units away from Malzahar, they get slower for every 100 units farther away from Malzahar they are. This means that as they get farther, they also get slower.

MALEFIC VISIONS (E):


Active: Malzahar infects the target enemy's mind, dealing them magic damage every half second over 4 seconds. Damaging a target with Call of the Void or Nether Grasp will refresh the duration of Malefic Visions. If the target dies during this time, they pass Malefic Visions onto the closest enemy, refreshing the duration and restoring 2% of maximum mana.

-Range: 650 units
-Mana Cost: 60 / 70 / 80 / 90 / 100
-Cooldown: 15 / 13 / 11 / 9 / 7
-Damage over 4 seconds: 80 / 115 / 150 / 185 / 220 (+70% of AP) magic damage

Ah... Malzahar's signature spell, Space Aids. While your Call of the Void may be your long range poke/refresh, and your Void Swarm your versatile main damaging ability, this spell is your bread and butter, what makes this kit run. Malefic Visions is your secondary damaging ability, but your most reliable way of dealing damage. Early game you will not want to use this as much, unless you are sure you will chain it to 5-6 minions, or to poke using 2 voidlings and Call of the Void. You can also use it in combination with Void Swarm, in order to push (or clear) the wave. Doing this will allow you to chain Malefic Visions to all minions within range, and possibly to the enemy champion. If you see the enemy kills your voidlings, you can use it as a bait. With Lost Chapter, this ability becomes much better to use, either to poke, or farm. In teamfights, you will want to use it either on the target you want to ult, just before you ult, or the enemy mage/adc. When sieging use it on the caster minions (the minions on the back), and in combination with your Q, the Visions might pass to the enemy team, effectively poking them. When being sieged, use it on the melee minions as they come, while using Q on the caster minions. There isn't much more to do with this spell as it's fairly simple, just be smart with your swarm targeting. Things to note about Malefic Visions:

NETHER GRASP (R):


"Active: Malzahar knocks down an enemy champion. For the next 2.5 seconds Malzahar channels, during which the target is suppressed. A Null Zone is opened beneath the target that lasts 5 seconds, dealing magic damage every second to both Nether Grasp's target as well as all other enemies within it."

-Range: 700 units
-Mana Cost: 100 at all ranks
-Cooldown: 120 / 100 / 80 seconds
-Damage: 5 / 7 / 9 (+ 1.5 per 100 AP)% of enemies maximum HP in magic damage per second
-Suppression Duration: 2.5 seconds at all ranks

The strongest form of hard CC to ever exist on league and Riot decided that Malzahar should keep it, that's a relief. This is the only thing that actually gives you kill pressure and makes opponents double think before they all-in you. I can't say much about it just use it as much as you can, this in combination with Void Swarm and Malefic Visions takes out most squishies. You can use it to stop a carry or an assassin right in his tracks, to catch an enemy out of position (in combination with Flash), or even peel for your team. Generally your level 6 Flash + all-in is one of the strongest as it doesn't leave opponents with much counterplay. There is a trick I like to use and not many may know: When contesting Dragon or Baron, when you see the objective low on health, ult the enemy jungler, disabling him from using Smite leaving the task to your jungler and securing an objective in the process. Things to note about Nether Grasp:

SKILL SEQUENCE




Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

OR

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

The 2 skill sequences are pretty much the same except levels 2-3. If you're facing someone melee take Void Swarm at level 2 so you can bully him when he comes close to farm. If facing someone ranged take Call of the Void second so you can E -> Q them.

COMBOS



So your main combo is when you hit 6: Get in range and cast: W -> E -> W -> R -> Ignite(if you have), and Q when the R channel finishes. That alone should be enough to kill anyone level 6 bar Galio. When your jungler ganks, if he has some form of CC, a simple W -> W -> R -> Jungler's CC is enough (if you see you don't have time for a second W, just use 1). If not E them afterwards. In teamfights as mentioned above, try to ult an important target out of position, your team should take him out without needing any other of your spells.


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YOUR ROLE IN THE GAME

EARLY GAME:



Going in the lane for the first time, focus on your farming more than trading with your rival. Generally, only E him when he tries to pop your passive. Retain from using E on minions, because that pushes the lane, and even if you do kill all minions with it, you still won't get all your mana back, at least not without Lost Chapter. Roaming pre-6 is not advised, unless the enemy jungler invades yours, because you don't have the mobility nor the CC to apply pressure to anyone. You should also look out for any suspicious movement from your opponent, if for example he tries to walk in to basic attack you and the proceed to use his/her CC, it almost certainly means that a gank is on the way. In order to avoid dying from ganks, buy an early Control Ward and place it in one of the bushes, using your Warding Totem on the other. Never let the opponent take your Control Ward without retaliation, always trade them for it. Be careful when overusing your spells, as one full rotation of your basic spells can leave you low on mana. If you do find yourself low on mana, last hit with your basic attacks to gain some of it back from Doran's Ring. When nearing level 6 you will want to have around 200-300 mana so you can try and kill your lane opponent before heading to base. When skirmishing, try to stay cose to the enemy to avoid Void Swarm's self-slow. Never go for the objectives unless at least two of the enemies are dead, one of which is the jungler. Your power spikes are: level 2 or 3(depending on when you learn Void Swarm) and level 6. Your first power spike is your Void Swarm because no one expects the sheer damage output your voidlings have. Level 6 obviously because you have a suppress. Once you hit level 6 and finish Lost Chapter you are officially in to the mid-game. I highly advise you to return to base only after you can finish Lost Chapter, since it solves most of your mana problems.

MID GAME:


So you hit level 6. And you also have your Lost Chapter. Now you want to try and push with a simple E into minions -> W to slowly push the wave. Try to out trade your lane rival and go for the kill when you see he is close enough. Don't be afraid to just ult when the jungler is nearby, as most junglers have enough damage to kill your opponent around this time of the game. You can also look to roam if you push too far, or if you can't push (due to a Viktor for example), and try to help top or bot. It is advisable to always go for bot so you can start mounting a lead, and if all goes well, taking dragons. If bot lane is snowballing, there is no need for you to help, you should opt to help top lane instead. Another option is killing your opponent mid laner. There is a trick you can use, quickly clear your wave and hide in your bush. Your opponent will probably try to clear and follow, and while you wait in bush, you have a free chance to combo him.. Also try to keep track of things like enemy flashes, key spells etc... Try to contest dragon, with your suppress, your team has the upper hand. Your power spikes are: Finishing Rylai's Crystal Scepter and finishing Liandry's Torment and this is where you truly shine. Rylai's Crystal Scepter gives you chase and kite potential, as well as teamfighting presence, while Liandry's Torment can melt tanks and nuke carries. Focus on finishing these items, pushing tower, and most importantly taking dragons. When starting to build your Rabadon's Deathcap, the late game begins.

LATE GAME:


So far you managed to take some towers, get some kills, and hopefully amassed a dragon lead. The reason of why I'm so crazy about dragons is probably because, besides the obvious "you have more buffs than your opponents", my dragons affect my playstyle come late game to a large degree. I can't list every possible combination, but here is how you can use dragons as Malzahar:
-INFERNAL DRAKE: This one gives you 8 / 16 / 24 % extra AD and AP. In other words it gives you raw stats. Since it's a percentage it's much more powerful in the late game. Generally they are used for teaamfighting power. You should look to do just that, stay near your team, and fight as much as you can. When teamfighting, try to focus the one who deals the most damage and doesn't have, or has used Quicksilver Sash. Build your advantage, take more dragons, and victory will come.
-OCEAN DRAKE: This one gives you 4 / 8 / 12 % of your missing health and mana every 5 seconds if not damaged by champions or turrets for the past 8 seconds. In other words it gives you poke resistance, and poking resources. You should look to follow your team as they push and try to poke the opponents, mainly with Call of the Void. You can also try to follow an enemy splitpusher and stop them by dueling them. Poke slowly, send them back and take objectives, your lead will grow and win you the game.
-MOUNTAIN DRAKE: This one gives you 10 / 20 / 30 % additional damage as true damage versus turrets and epic monsters. In other words objective power. Try to lead your team's pushes by hitting the towers and capitalizing on enemy mistakes. Also look to safely solo the remaining elemental drakes when possible. Look to contest Baron Nashor, and use it for a final push to victory.
-CLOUD DRAKE: This one gives you 25 / 50 / 75 out of combat movement speed, or roaming potential. With this drake, you can go to other lanes and push with a simple Q -> E and return. You can also scout the map (always safely) and find any missing champions (never search when more than one enemy is missing). You have to outmaneuver your opponents gaining vision and splitpushing. This dragon allows you to play much more sneaky and sometimes you can even flank the enemy team. Capitalize on their mistakes and you will win.
ELDER DRAKE: This one increases your other elemental drake bonuses by 50% as well as a (45 x number of Elder Dragons killed) + (45 for every elemental drake killed) true damage buff on every spell and basic attack. A strong dragon, there is no real way of playing with it other than just enhancing any of the above strategies. You can also try to take baron, with the true damage, you should have the upper hand.


Now of course, you shouldn't try to do just one of the above, you could possibly have any combination of the above. Other times maybe you don't have the right team to splitpush or siege for example. Just take the above as a general guide. In teamfights, as stated above, focus the main damage dealer with your ult and voidlings but be careful of your positioning as it can cost you a timely death. You have two choices with your ult: Use it as early as you can on a key target out of position, or wait for the teamfight to play out casting your basic abilities, and using ult near the end, either when chasing or when an ally is in need. The first occurs much more frequently so don't hesitate to do so, with around 38% Cooldown Reduction mabe you will be able to ult a second time in a teamfight. Other than that, when contesting for objectives, look to scare the enemies away rather than help with the objective, and always ult the enemy jungler.


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FINISHING NOTES

This is all I have for now. I hope this guide helped you learn more about Malzahar, or even the game itself. Feel free to suggest anything you'd like me to add to this guide, finding mistakes, making suggestions or even asking questions, I will be glad to help in any way I can. Also feel free to friend request me if you are playing on the Eune server, with my summoner name Aqua Knight, and ask me any questions you may have about Malzahar, mid lane, other champions, the game or even if you want to chat, and I'll gladly accept. There are some other chapters I'd like to create like an analytical Items Section or Detailed Matchup guide, and I will do so in the future. Finally, I'd like to express my thanks to fellow summoners and friends: Aizenvolt, CyberGeorgeX and Bloodseeker33 for all the help (big or small) they provided. Another thanks to Aizenvolt as he is the one who convinced me to start and finish this guide in the first place. Make sure to check his Kassadin Guide if you're interested in Kassadin.


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GUIDE UPDATES AND MILESTONES

-Sunday 22 January 2017: Guide Published.

-Tuesday 24 January 2017: Reached 5.000 Views! Thanks for the support guys!

-Wednesday 25 January 2017: Updated for Patch 7.2. Some changes to matchups, added a few new ones. Ghost update for Patch 7.2. Added knockdown explanation in Nether Grasp's things to note.

-Sunday 29 January 2017: Reached 20.000 views, thanks a lot, you guys are awesome.

-Thursday 9 February 2017: Updated for Patch 7.3. Updated Talon matchup. Void Swarm update for Patch 7.3, including spawn time and voidlings auto-slow.

-Wednesday 1 March 2017: Updated for Patch 7.4. Upped Katarina's difficulty based on experience. Changed every E -> W -> W -> Q/R to W -> E -> W -> Q/R to accommodate for the Patch 7.3 changes.

-Thursday 9 March 2017: Reached 100.000 views, I appreciate every single one of you who reads this guide!

-Saturday 11 March 2017: Updated for Patch 7.5. Changed Resolve Keystone Masteries Section due to the new Stoneborn Pact . Added a seperate section for Deathfire Touch vs Thunderlord's Decree , at the end of the RUNES AND MASTERIES section.

-Saturday 25 March 2017: Updated for Patch 7.6. Slightly upped Fiddlesticks' difficulty due to his Drain buff. Changed Galio's matchup, but the new information is temporary.

-Saturday 1 April 2017: Reached 150.000 views, I will keep working to make this guide better for everyone.

-Sunday 9 April 2017: Updated for Patch 7.7. Changed Talon's and Galio's matchup information, and lowered their difficulty by 1 respectively. Updated Lux's matchup to accomodate for her buff.

-Sunday 9 April 2017: Updated for Patch 7.8. Updated Tier 4 Ferocity Mastery choices and explanation. Also updated Void Swarm to accomodate for its nerf.