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Diff's In-Depth: Winning Mordekaiser
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If you didn't know Mordekaiser's name comes from the German lamguage.
Morde means Murder and Kaiser means Emperor.
So that makes him the Emperor of Murder, cool huh?
Morde is my favourite champion and my best champion. He is easy to pick up and relatively easy to master.
True to his name, you will be killing everything in your path. You are a mobile bulldozer who leads the charge.
I have been playing Mordekaiser a while, and have to say he is an amazing character. Somewhere between tank, soak, and mage, he is an ambiguous figure hiding behind a metal suit.
I have always felt that Mordekaiser's strength was derived from his shield and abilities, and have never liked an AP Mordekaiser. This guide will help you on the way to maximizing the synergy of his abilities and his shield.
Now, I am fully aware that some people want to learn the inner workings of Mordekaiser, and this is a very good guide for you to do just that. The only difference is that I won't be proposing various builds for various occasions. I have one (flexible) build for all occasions. Now, I've read quite a few guides and what I hate is when people tell me that I will "pwn" and "ravage" the other team due to their build, without any reason why.
This is why, for my particular build, I will go into as much depth as I can as to why I believe this Mordekaiser is truly great. I will tell you how I play, what runes/items/masteries/etc I get and exactly why. I will not ever justify a choice with "because it owns". I do this not only to avoid sounding arrogant, but also because I want as many people as possible to try this simple yet amazing build.
This is what defines Mordekaiser. This shield will let you shrug off any pesky DPS champs and laugh at what some call nukes. It makes you generally invincible.
This shield is affected by armor and magic resist and we'll be making the most of that fact.
- Affected by armor and magic resist
- Is charged by any damage dealt by your spells
- Decays over time
- Max shield "health" cannot be increased or decreased by items.
Mace of Spades
You press Q and basically the next time you whack some poor soul on their head, you deal bonus damage. Shrapnel flies out and hits upto 3 nearby targets. Deals even more bonus damage if target is alone. It's nothing amazing but is useful for farming.
- Scales with attack damage
- Can hit more than one enemy. Try whacking the minion furthest back to bounce shrapnel to enemy champ
- Makes a great sound
I love this ability, probably my 2nd favourite (after my ulti). Activate this to surround yourself with an aura of rotating bits of metal. It boosts your armor, magic resist and does a lot of AoE damage. It makes you look both scary and cool. What's not to love?
- Eliminates the need for a Sunfire Cape
- Gives you armor and magic resist
- Can be casted on allies to help them survive
- Press Alt+W to self cast it quickly on yourself :)
- Awesome ability name
Siphon of Destruction
This is your bread and butter skill and what makes you a great farmer/pusher. It damages enemies in a cone in front of you and regenerates your shield based on how many enemies you hit (should be as many as possible)
- Main method to recharge your shield
- Its range is quite long, just a bit longer than the graphic shows you
- The more units you hit, the more your shield regenerates
- You can hit all the minions in a wave if you position it right
- Your main harass
Children of the Grave
Casts a great big white Morde ghost head over the enemy. It drains life - 50% on cast and the other 50% over 10 seconds. Also heals you and recharges shield. If the target dies while they have this ghost above them - they become your lovable pet! (Not so loyal though, the pet dies on you in 30 seconds)
- Can NO LONGER be cleansed!
- Heals you AND charges your shield! SWEET!
- Does damage based on %
- Creates an ethereal companion, just in case you get lonely
- This ability and Ignite is like poison ivy.. Really deadly!
- For someone so beefy, you have great damage output.
- Amazing pusher/farmer and toughness makes you one of the best laners in the game.
- Can poke and harass with ease - enemy will run (for you are a metal monster)
- One of the best ultimates in the game. Heals, gives you a pet and bonus stats with which you..
- Can win fights against the odds - 1v3 can quickly turn into 2v2.
- Incredibly fun to play
- Has no CC abilities
- Health bar will get low early on if you spam his skills. Needs early health regen item.
- No escape skill at all
- He's such a good pusher that you will probably push too far and deny yourself kills and last hits for your lane partner - invites ganks to your lane.
Once you do try it out, give me some feedback on how it went and any modifications that you think would be better to it.
I believe that Ignite and Ghost are the most advantageous spells to use on Mordekaiser.
Ignite is a must-have, since it goes hand-in-hand with your ultimate by improving your damage over time (DoT) and as an added bonus makes it harder for champions to heal their way to survival.
Ghost is a great escaping/chasing move, and lasts longer than other spells.
And now the other contenders:
IF YOU HATE GHOST
Cleanse: An excellent spell, especially since a CC'd Mordekaiser can't keep his shield up. However, I find that Morde can usually take the hits dealt to him, and then have time to make the choice of fight or flight.
Teleport: A great skill to have, but it means that you won't have a reliable in-combat escaping move. It's more of a defensive skill to protect any towers under siege or help out at a battle quickly.
Flash: Flash provides a great tool for characters who need to get out of tight situations quickly (Evelynn :P ), but big old Mordekaiser doesn't dabble in the fine arts of escaping. Flash will get you through a jungle wall or a hop skip and a jump farther from the enemy line, but if Morde has to flash, it probably means that the whole enemy team is on him and you're most likely going to die regardless.
Exhaust: Great for catching fast runners, cutting down enemy damage, and slowing down pursuit. But with Ghost, you can chase the runners for longer and flee from more people. As for the damage mitigation, you have more than enough soaking capabilities.
Rally: After all the nerfs to this spell, it is almost never used. You're pushing capabilities are already scary without this spell.
Heal: Your shield is your health. Instead of grabbing heal, just use your ultimate on some poor soul and get some juicy health back!
Revive: This is universally regarded as a nub spell but it has its uses. For example, respawning to help defend your inhibitor turret. You shouldn't be dying enough to make this anywhere near useful.
Smite: Smite laughs in the face of Mordekaiser's internationally decorated farming prowess. Why oh why would you ever need this?
Fortify: Mordekaiser can defend towers well enough on his own, and push like nobody's business. If you have some pre-existing mental condition that requires you to select this summoner ability, I would suggest you see a professional.
Clairvoyance: This is unnecessary. You don't need to see people. They will come to you.
Clarity: Oh wait my bar is grey not blue... oops.
Notice how I compare all of the above spells with Ghost. This is because no matter what kind of Mordekaiser you play, you should always always always take Ignite! Trust me on that.
You want to grab Archaic Knowledge it gives you an edge vs MR-stacking enemies, but anything over this is too much. You want to hit up Archmage's Savvy and then stick a point onto Deadliness. The rest is easy to figure out. You really don't need to waste the majority of your points getting that juicy Havoc, since the 5% extra damage won't be as beneficial as the Utility masteries you would miss out on. It's a pity that the Ignite mastery is just out of reach though :(
Believe it or not, you won't be needing any of this. Through experience, I have found that Mordekaiser gains more strength through offense than defense, and your points will be much better spent in Utility.
A few key points to naysayers: This build includes plenty of armor and magic resist, and an extra 6 won't do you that much good. Ardor? We won't be needing AP or crits, so that's a no. Veteran's Scars? You don't need health when you have a pretty grey shield to take the hits for you, so that's a negative. Tenacity? Has anybody really thought this guy out? Every 100 damage, you don't take 4. That's not that big a deal. Nope nope no no way no how.
The ultimate goal in the utility tree is the nice 15% off Summoner abilities. This is the most personal of all masteries, since Mr. Summoner is you. This'll give you the power to tamper with the game more, and tilt the odds in your favour. Doesn't that sound like a blast?
Since this may cause a little bit of confusion, let me show you why Utility is better than Defense for this big mass of metal called Mordekaiser.
Tier 1: Good Hands, Perseverance and Haste
- To avoid wasting points on masteries that affect mana, we need these (not that that's a bad thing). Less time dead is great for the couple of times you may die in a match. Less time dead equals more money, experience, and exercise (that suit is heavy!).
- The regeneration you will gain is almost trivial, but it's only a tier 1 spell anyway.
- Improving your Ghost spell is nice, and I think this point is fairly obvious.
Tier 2: Awareness
- As for any champion who relies so much on their moves, you will want to level up as quickly as possible. Besides, have you seen the alternative?
Tier 3: Greed, Utility Mastery
- 1 gold every 10 seconds is pitiful, especially considering the caliber of Mordekaiser's farming capabilities. But riddle me this: Have you ever been waiting around in the shop because you're 30 gold away from a great item? Aren't you torn between sticking around for the gold and getting rid of that tiresome Ashe who is all too ready to take advantage of your absence? With this ability, you'll be generating that 30 gold on the run, and won't need to let Ashe take potshots at your tower! Justified yet?
- Increasing the duration of monster buffs, particularly the lizard buff, does wonders for a character with no natural slowing moves. Plus, sometimes champions will helpfully do all the jungling work for you, and all you have to do is kill them and wrench the buff from their lifeless fingers (more fun than it sounds like)!
Tier 4: Quickness
- Moving faster is always nice, and this is just what it does.
- What, you need another reason?
- Fine. It has a pretty icon.
Tier 5: Intelligence
- This combined with Sorcery will give you a nice 10% cooldown reduction right off the bat. Since Mordekaiser's damage output is directly linked to his spells, being able to cast them more frequently is paramount, and it also makes you feel much cooler than people with long cooldowns.
- For those of you that argue that his spells are on such a short cooldown anyway, rendering the cooldown reduction useless, I say nay. First of all, Mordekaiser's ultimate is on a fairly long cooldown, and this drastically reduces it. Plus, coupled with the items I recommend, You will be able to almost max out your cooldown reduction. Even mere seconds shaved off abilities can be a matter of life and death, especially when Mordekaiser is so reliant on his spells to survive. On my side yet?
Tier 6: Presence of the Master
- Y'hear that? They called you "the Master".
- This will reduce the cooldown of your Ignite, allowing you to drop the infamous combo of Children of the Grave + Ignite more frequently.
Magic penetration is one of the main focuses of this build, so these marks are very important indeed.
Greater Seal of Vitality
Greater Seal of Vitality
These give you a huge bonus 175 health by level 18. It's like having a Ruby Crystal for free which is always nice. As an alternative, you could use Greater Seal of Evasion as it's more common and can be used effectively for more champions, however I find that it's unreliability is just not worth it.
These runes should be a staple to any character. Every character benefits from CDR, however Morde relies heavily on his spells for both his damage output and his survivability. If he can't cast his spells, he can't regenerate his shield = dead Morde.
These will boost your damage output since we won't be focusing on damage output. I like to have a Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed just so that I can hunt down any enemy champion if it so pleases me as I will now be moving at over 420.
Another alternative is a Greater Quintessence of Health for the bonus health but personally I feel the bonus it affords is not worth a Quintessence slot.
The Runes of Insight along with Sorcerer's Shoes brings your magic penetration to 30, which is on par with the base magic resistance of most champions that you will be facing - true damage for first levels :D.
The Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed will boost your MS and give you the speed advantage against your lane opponent that will allow you to take the offensive and out-harass them.
First off, you want Siphon of Destruction. This is your most important farming and damaging ability, so do I hear any complaints when I say to max this little jewel?
Secondly, you want his Children of the Grave (ultimate). Of course. Luckily, with this skilling order there will be absolutely no competition between Children of the Grave and Siphon of Destruction. If there is, then you didn't listen to me and bad things will happen.
Thirdly, you want to prioritize Creeping Death, since it has a really cool name. Besides that obvious benefit, you get a great defense boost while charging your shield with it's AoE damage. It's better than Sunfire Cape, and looks cooler to boot. This skill is Mordekaiser's most underestimated, since the effect is more subtle than the rest, but no less dangerous. Hence, "Creeping Death". Clever, isn't it?
Finally, you want Mace of Spades. Again, it's a cool skill, but don't be fooled. It deserves to be leveled last. Why? Look at the other skills, and ask yourself what would be sacrificed for a level in Mace of Spades? Siphon of Destruction is too important, Children of the Grave is your ultimate, Creeping Death gives you more damage to more people, plus armor and magic resist. Poor Mace of Spades just can't compete!
NOTE: I like to get a point in Mace of Spades at level 4 so I can have a good time spamming skills, but it is optional. That point could easily be invested in Creeping Death.
For a mixed enemy team, while you are playing well.
For a high physical damage enemy team.
For a moderate physical damage enemy team.
OMG I don't have time to build my 6th item and I want something before we finish off their base.
For a heavy caster team.
Now on with the:
Sorcerer's Shoes - You won't be building damage or focusing on AP, so every bit of MR you can penetrate is crucial.
Force of Nature - This item is amazing on Morde. The health regen makes your skills sustainable. The movement speed and magic resist give you great survivability and chasing/escaping abilities.
Randuin's Omen - Great armor, health and health regen. Combined with Force of Nature, you'll be regenerating health so fast that by the time you switch lanes, you should have regenerated a significant amount. The slow on Randuin's is what makes it amazing. You can change a teamfight with the active and the passive lets you take on DPS carries with ease.
Rylai's Crystal Scepter - Combined with Randuin's Omen, this is your second CC. You will now be slowing most enemies around you and the health and AP boost are welcome.
Abyssal Mask - This gives you some more magic resist and the aura benefits your whole team. You will now be penetrating 50 magic resist which basically means true damage to every squishy character around.
The other choices:
Apart from the "core" items above, you have a lot of choices to work with.
Thornmail - Gives you great armor and the passive blows up those glass cannons but it's not as beneficial to the team as Randuin's and for that reason I prefer Randuin's.
Sunfire Aegis - Increasing your AoE presence is great for Morde, however when compared to Randuin's benefits to a teamfight, Sunfire Cape doesn't come close. Your Creeping Death deals more than double the damage a Sunfire Cape does as well.
Zhonya's Hourglass - This is a wonderful item. The AP and armor boosts are great but the active is amazing on Morde. Put it this way, to take down Morde, you're going to have to focus a LOT of damage onto him. Now if you activate Zhonya's, they can't do anything to you. This leaves your whole team free to attack now that all their spells have been wasted on you. This only works if there's another tank on your team.
Hextech Gunblade - The cost of this item is no big deal for someone who is as good a farmer as Mordekaiser is. The spell vamp combined with your AoE damage, gives you great survivability as well.
Haunting Guise - This magic penetration will really help you hammer into your enemies. The low cost of this item means its great value for money as well. This is a cheap item so once it gets to REALLY late game, you might want to swap this out for a Void Staff for more magic penetreation.
Frozen Mallet - Health and a slow. The slow from Rylai's and Randuin's should be enough to not warrant a buy for this item, but if you don't like any of the other 6th item choices. This just might be the one for you.
Guardian Angel - A little bit of MR and Armor which is nice, but the passive would be what you're buying this for. Having their entire team focus you, only to find that you're still not dead, provides quite a boost in a teamfight. The problem however, is that Mordekaiser has no way to force enemies to attack him (ie. no taunt) so he has to rely on sheer intimidation and get in their face. With a Guardian Angel aura around you, they might be less likely to do that.
As you can see Mordekaiser is spoiled for choice at the sixth item slot.
The item choices I've selected as "core" are there because of the benefits they offer to the team. Abyssal Scepter reduces enemies' MR by 20. Randuin's and Rylai's slow the people around you and the enemies who are focusing you. You don't offer any CC to your team at all, and the least you could do is buy these two items to provide your team with a boost for a teamfight. Magic Penetration is a main focus on this build as you want to be able to deal a significant amount of damage without having to stack AP (which would reduce your survivability). This build allows you to maximise what you're hitting for while retaining your "tankiness"
"When I am Mordekaiser, I am ruthless. I drive my opponent hard up against their turret and bear down upon them with wave after wave of minions. I do not "chip away" at their HP, I go balls to the walls like a tower-diving maniac. This exhausts my foe and drains their morale. Every time our minions collide, they see a giant metal fiend with fully charged green and grey bars, ready to shrug off any incoming damage. This is the waiting game without the waiting. Deprived of mana and HP, my foe is powerless to resist the oncoming Master of Metal.
They cannot retreat to their fountain, for they are defending their tower with their lives. They are too timid to call for a 2v1 gank, since they themselves are at low HP and realize they are Children of the Grave fodder. Even if they call for a large gank, a 5v1, I win. I can easily note such a massive absence and take the necessary precautions. The other lanes suffer due to lack of champion presence, and when the would-be assassins arrive in the middle lane, they find nothing but confused minions and the fading echo of a baritone laugh.
I rarely find myself travelling to other lanes except to liquefy the occasional weakling if it so amuses me. The majority of my time is spent laying siege to my opponent. Slowly but surely, my actions will be noticed. Enemy champions slowly trickle to the middle lane, only to likewise be rammed against the tower, unable to push back against my metallic onslaught. With my absurd HP regeneration and damage mitigation ability, I am able to stand directly outside tower range while my minions and allies push other lanes.
This constant pressure on all three lanes is a force to be reckoned with. With your opponents locked inside of their base, they cannot retrieve buffs, slay the dragon, or cross tentacles with the mighty Baron Nashor. Map control turns into map domination, and I slowly starve my opponents of resources. 75% of the games are surrendered when I am pushing their middle Inhibitor Tower. Their lives become tedious -- trapped in the base with a metal behemoth anxious to lay his metal gauntlets upon the velvety substance of their souls, all the while being powerless to defend or push other lanes.
Slowly but surely my foes accept crushing defeat. There is nothing they can do."
The key to farming is your Siphon of Destruction. You should be focusing on minions with this spell and regenerating your shield based on the number you hit. This will keep your shield well charged and you will be able to withstand harassment with impunity.
But we all know he's amazing at farming. So let me give you some advice you may or may not know
- Positioned correctly, you can actually hit all the minions in one wave with one Siphon of Destruction. If you face the enemies head on and target the caster minions, you will be able to damage every one of them. It doesn't work every time, but four or five is still better than three.
- Through trial and error, I have found that Mordekaiser is best in the middle lane. He has the toughness to withstand harassment, the farming capability to harvest minions at an alarming rate, and can harass without interrupting his farming process. With such pressure applied to the enemy carry taking middle lane, their own farming operation will be hampered, and I find that the tower tends to fall at around 15 minutes of game time, regardless of whether or not you manage to kill them. Also, if you can't take the middle, try to get a lane to yourself if you have a jungler on your team. Doing this, you deny the enemy team's carry while giving yourself a leg-up. What's not to love?
- Whichever lane you take, make sure your battle is at your opponent's tower. Your pushing capability will surpass theirs, so take advantage of it! Even if no champion kills occur, the tower will take damage from minions, and thus will eventually fall.
- Again, even if you are playing against a good team, you will topple their first tower. If you are the first to do so, help others in their lane. Keep up aggressive pushes that the enemy will have to focus on to deter. If you think a backdooring champion is annoying, think about how the enemy feels about you!
- Remember to look at the map when participating in a deep-lane pushing excursion. I get a little antsy when I can see less than 3 champions on my map. Any less than that and I like to keep pushing, since with your shield and ultimate (ignite is a plus) up, you should be able to take 1-3 champions by yourself. But don't take my word for it! This is highly situational. Always assess the situation. Are there any champions on low health? You should know who can heal out of your ultimate, and focus those who can't. Many people underestimate the ghost you get, but it is surprisingly good. Not to brag, but so far my best ghost kill was with an ethereal Dr. Mundo!
- Even in a 1v2 or 1v3 or even 2v4-5 situation, enemies will be reluctant to initiate a battle with a Mordekaiser surrounded by minions. I find that enemy champions tend to hug towers and focus more on killing the minions you keep sending their way rather than attack you. Further reducing their urge to shred you apart (as if!) is the fact that you take so little damage from harassment, and have that shield to take whatever little damage they have dealt to you. It's surprising how scary you can be!
- Try for mid, or at least a solo lane.
- Always push, and always push hard.
- You are tough as nails!
- Focus the weak for a nice ghost companion. If nothing else, they can always take some tower hits.
- You are a big scary dude. Utilize!
Aside from that, you may or may not want to harvest neutral creeps when you pass through the jungle. Mordekaiser can easily polish off jungle baddies for some quick and easy gold and experience.
Just remember to always be pushing a lane when it is safe to do so.
Note: If I see any of you jungling with Mordekaiser instead of laning with him, I'll find you and bad things will happen. You are a million times more beneficial to the team in a lane.
Mordekaiser is ridiculous at holding a line. I have found that I can lay siege to the enemy base and distract their whole team while another team mate pushes a different lane. This is where teamwork will come in. You want enough people to deter any thoughts of enemy engagement, but as few people as possible so as to maximize lane pushes. You will need to make the call as to who goes and who stays depending on your team composition and how many enemies you are facing. I find that unless all of the enemies are present, just you and another is sufficient, providing you make sure they are scary like you. By "scary" I mean a character who is hard to kill, can deal a good amount of damage, can escape well, and has some form of healing or shield. Gragas is a good example. Not only is he a large (big boned) opponent, he can heal and deal good damage to questing enemies, while maintaining a good escape move.
Unfortunately, you will not fight all of your fights in-lane. Sometimes team battles occur in the jungle, away from large numbers of creeps. Here, your job is to take and deal as much damage as possible. Try and target low-hp champions with your ultimate, and even Ignite. Let your kill-stealing reflex kick in. Some people get a little frustrated when I pull this, but it is a necessity. With your ghost, you will bring your team up to a maximum of 5.5 people (let's be honest, the ghost isn't THAT good - unless you manage to snag an Ashe, in which case it is 6), so even if you lose a couple allies, it isn't crippling.
Mordekaiser is not really a tank. I believe he can be more readily classified as a "soak", which is someone who is able to withstand an absurd amount of punishment. Doctor Mundo comes to mind. I don't believe I am ready to classify Mordekaiser as any particular type as of now. I have a problem with calling him a soak because it brings sponges to mind, and Mordekaiser and sponges are not particularly similar. He is not a tank, either, since he has no real way of forcing champions to attack him. In fact, Mordekaiser is occasionally ignored on the battlefields because he is one of the toughest champions on a team. This is great, and I don't mind it at all. Particularly with this build, which focuses on damage with a fair amount of chasing, you may feel free to whip spells off at your enemies' backs as they chase your team. If you have either faith or a lethal amount of recklessness, you could even leave your team to fend for themselves and continue your push. When their team comes back (if at all) and tries to bury you with sheer weight of numbers, you stand between their base and them. Pick off the weakened champions first, and see if the tougher ones stick around for more.
Because Mordekaiser has such a powerful presence, ganks against him will often be deterred. This works to your advantage in that it allows you to keep the enemy champions in front of you. This allows you to hit more than one champion at a time with Siphon of Destruction.
An important note in battle is to try and position yourself so that your Creeping Death hits as many enemies as possible while still maintaining a clear view of the enemy champions, so you can hit them all with Siphon of Destruction. You should try to position yourself so that the start of the aiming cone for Siphon of Destruction is where your enemies are.
Focus: Ashe's passive means that after a while of not shooting, she will be absolutely dying to land a hit on you. At the very beginning of the game, use your Siphon of Destruction on the melee minions before she can get in range and attack you. There is almost no avoiding this first critical strike, but with your shield up it is merely a scratch.
Frost Shot: This skill is hardly leveled up early game, but be careful! It could spell your doom. The persistent slow effect makes it very hard to get away. If you are not completely in control of the lane, be wary about getting into range of Ashe. Not too wary, mind you. It is still a giant metal man versus some chick in a cape.
Volley: Ashe's signature move. Long range, slow effect, damage, excellent harass, we know it all. Easily countered, however, by standing behind minions. I would recommend using meat shields when your spells are on cooldown or your shield is down. Never be above using others as fodder!
Hawkshot: WATCH FOR THIS! You may not expect much of a "counter" for it, but hear me out. This move comes at 0 cost to Ashe, but it can grant you a wealth of information. Does she use this move before the creeps spawn to see her mid opponent? Great, she didn't get Volley or Frost Shot, so you can play more offensively. In the middle of the game, if Ashe uses this on either the top or bottom bushes, that means that she does not know what is in them! Hug that side of the lane, but subtly. We don't want Ashe to bait that side when there is really somebody lurking. There is no need for this if nobody is missing.
Enchanted Crystal Arrow: Oftentimes, if you have not had much of an opportunity to harass each other, Ashe will use this as soon as she gets it, and try to kill you or at least make you back off. Perfect. HP permitting, charge her, leading with your Creeping Death, following up with Siphon of Destruction, and ending her life with Ignite and Children of the Grave. Remember that this ability has a relatively short cooldown, and boosts the threat of your lane opponent significantly. If you are on low health and looking juicy, then back off a distance and move around. Be hard to hit. Once your health is back up, continue doing your thing.
Ashe's main source of damage output is physical. Instead of buying a Negatron Cloak after the core, pick up a Chain Vest. Consider Ashe countered and farm away!
Some Mordekaisers laugh at the mere thought of laning with Ashe, but I prefer to keep my wits about me. I stopped laughing when I was completely and utterly shut down by an Ashe in middle lane. Yes, it's true. I had thrashed many a Frost Archer in my day, and approached this one as I did all the rest. She responded to my violent gestures with graceful kiting and painful harassing. I was so thrown off that I actually ended the game 0/10. I still have nightmares, but since that match has never happened again. ALWAYS remember that Ashe out-ranges you, and with Frost Shot can kite you all day. If you find yourself against an extremely skilled Ashe, then focus on the minions. If she over-extends, reward her with a Siphon of Destruction. Bide your time.
Keep in mind that since her ultimate is global, you must alert your allies as soon as Ashe hits level 6.
Techmaturgical Repair Bots: Heimerdinger's passive means that he need not invest in HP regeneration items at the start. This passive also effects hit turrets. Due to this, you must never let your guard down and keep harassing either Heimerdinger or his turrets.
H-28G Evolution Turret: Try to fit these pests into your Siphon of Destruction. Keep harassing these at all costs. You must avoid Heimerdinger getting set up.
Hextech Micro-Rockets: The best counter to these is to keep your shield up. Generally it is either a very good sign or a very bad sign when Heimerdinger starts using these. Either he is getting desperate trying to keep you off his turrets, or he is dominating the lane and has mana to burn. Use your best judgement and pray for the former.
CH-1 Concussion Grenade: This is Heimerdinger's first method of defense against you destroying his turret. It's hard to predict the direction, but I would RUN FORWARD to avoid. Normally Heimerdinger leads with this as you expect him to run, but running forward will almost certainly keep you out of stun, if not out of the entire radius.
UPGRADE!!!: After level 6, Heimerdinger may use this as you attempt to destroy his turrets. The mana cost is steep, so even though you did not slay a turret, you have caused some damage. Cut your losses and wait for this effect to subside. Then resume normal harassing.
Heimerdinger's main offensive and defensive capabilities come from his turrets. They cost a lot of mana to place, but they are also fairly hard to take out. You want to focus on killing these turrets!
However, a Siphon of Destruction that only hits one turret would be almost completely wasted. Angle yourself so that you can attack the turrets as well as the minion wave and hopefully Heimerdinger himself. For minimal personal harm, wait until the turrets are attacking minions and then position yourself at your leisure. The goal is to keep pushing while also harrying the turrets. The minions will help attack the turrets and destroying them will prevent Heimerdinger from fully setting up. Luckily, his abilities are mana-intensive, so his defense will cost more than your offense.
Here you must win the waiting game. It's your HP against his mana. There will come a point in time when Heimerdinger runs out of mana. This is where you must pay close attention. He now has two choices. He could stay for the gold and experience, but remain out of mana, and thus not be able to push. This leaves you ample time and room to harass, farm, and even /dance if the fancy takes you. BUT - If he goes back, you must act quickly. If he still has turrets remaining, destroy them as quickly as possible, even if it means being a little suicidal. Remember, time is of the essence. Unless the main tower is at 25% HP or less or you there are some excellent (and I mean freakin' EXQUISITE ganking opportunities -- like no mana Annie on 100hp pushing a tower exquisite), teleport back home NOW. Buy whichever items you need next, and run back to the lane. Heimerdinger must NOT get the item advantage on you. Since he is playing defensively, he must bolster his own stats. You are free to counter him, and in the meantime make sure he can never whittle you down. You must dominate that lane!
Remember, unless it's an absolute emergency, your focus should be on dominating the middle lane. That is your job, and you have the potential to do it better than anyone else. Don't run around the jungle and waste time. When you push the first turret, start on the next. Just keep your eyes peeled for MIAs!
I would also recommend buying the Negatron Cloak portion of Force of Nature and one Regrowth Pendant as soon as possible. Since Heimerdinger's turrets, missiles, and grenades all do magic damage, this is an excellent counter and he will find harassing you very difficult indeed.
Icathian Surprise: Generally, this spell does not do enough damage to finish you off, but try not to underestimate it. Since it deals pure damage, look at your numbers. At level 18, this will deal 550 damage, so if you are below that look around for minions to charge your shield on or an enemy to cast Children of the Grave for extra HP. If all else fails, ghost away. It's pretty embarrassing to die like this, so try to avoid it!
Caustic Spittle: This attack is usually a pre-cursor that gives away the fact that Kog is about to go on the offensive. Keep your wits about you when he's launched this. Be ready to dodge his Void Ooze when it comes your way.
Bio-Arcane Barrage: This is the danger zone. This spell grants Kog'Maw absurd range, and an attack that will slice through your HP at an alarming rate. The first time I faced Kog'Maw in the middle, I was stunned at how absurd this matchup was. He could kite me all day and night, and with this ability he could lob projectiles from afar, and keep me at low health. What I did to counter is play very defensively, only emerging to charge my shield and kill minions when I can manage it. To counter this, and I suggest you do quickly, get magic resist!
Void Ooze: A useful slowing move, step out of this quickly since it will continually slow you while you remain in its slime trail. Will be the main harassing move of AP Kog'Maw, but is luckily easy to dodge.
Living Artillery: Not a huge threat, since as Mordekaiser you will be very tough indeed. If Kog'Maw tries to harass you with this, watch for the indicator and step aside. Also, exercise caution while in bushes, since this spell is very good for scouting, and even if it doesn't hit you, the bush becomes visible for a split second and you will be revealed.
Generally, a good thing to keep in mind is that your best counter to Kog'Maw is armor and magic resist. As they tend to fit a Madred's Bloodrazor into their item build, stacking HP is not a wise choice. Since he tends to be squishy before Frozen Mallet, a Thornmail would not be a bad choice if he is becoming a problem. Otherwise, Randuin's Omen would be an excellent choice, since it has a chance to slow attack and movement speed (great for defense or offense), plus its active (which you should ALWAYS remember!).
Strut: This ability is what I find to be very irritating about Miss Fortune. At the beginning, she is able to poke me from afar with auto-attacks, and escape to safety. However, if you attack her, she loses her speed boost temporarily. What I do to counter this poking is save my Siphon of Destruction for when she gets close, so I can tag her with it. If she stays away, feel free to use it to continue farming.
Double Up: Generally Miss Fortune will use this on you as a harass when you are behind minions. If you can't keep your shield up, stay to the sides of the minions, so that the bounce won't hit you. Again, watch for opportunities to damage her to disable her Strut.
Impure Shots: Not a large-impact spell, but be wary of it. If you can, try to burst Miss Fortune down instead of going toe-to-toe, since her damage only increases, whereas you are ruled by cooldowns for your main source of damage.
Make it Rain: Mostly used as a farming/slowing ability, watch out for this spell. Stay away from minion concentrations (which will also help to avoid Double Up, and if used on you try to get out of it. It may not do much damage, but it has a relatively consistent slow that may prove lethal. After level 6, it may be used to try to trap you in Bullet Time
Bullet Time: Be careful of this spell, and once Miss Fortune reaches level 6, be on your toes. You don't want to get yourself stuck between a rock and a hard place by being trapped in this long range, powerful spell. If she uses it unwisely, however, punish her! Quickly judge the situation, and decide whether to escape (always run out of the side, since the range is absurd) or to attack. If you attack, feel free to stride past the channeling tramp and give her a solid whack with whatever spells aren't on cooldown. Depending on how close you are together, you may have a whole second of free hits.
The best way to fight Miss Fortune is to use herself against her. Luckily, her skills are easy to take advantage of. Her harassing revolves mainly around the speed granted to her be Strut, which can be cancelled by damage. This is the best time to strike, since the speed difference between you is the smallest. Later in the game (mid-early game), her harassing stops hurting much, and you won't have to deal with her annoying pokes any more. A Chain Vest is a must.
Loaded Dice: Not very threatening. Bear this in mind when you look at his minion kills to figure out how much gold he has.
Wild Cards: Since most TFs build AS/AD instead of AP, this move will likely not be a threat. But just in case, keep in mind that they are very easy to dodge. If TF is too close, or you just want to be cool and/or lazy, just charge your shield on minions and watch the pretty cards fly by. I would recommend at least trying to dodge though, as the less damage you take the better. ALWAYS. Don't get caught up in the "invincible" mindset.
Pick A Card: Now, when you have trouble with TF, you have trouble with Pick A Card. Luckily, it can be fairly obvious when he is about to use it. There will be alternating cards above his head. If he is not in range, watch the cards. If it is blue or red, chances are he wants to use it on a minion. When he goes in for the attack, see if you can't show him a little love. If he picks a gold card (stun), he is after you. Back up as far as it takes. If worse comes to worst, he'll hit you and you'll be stunned. Then, since he had to chase you a little for that stun, your minions will turn around and attack him. His ability will be on cooldown, and you may have the opportunity to whack him. If he does this and then backs off frequently, charge up your shield with Siphon of Destruction when you see the cards above his head, and cast Creeping Death on yourself to minimize the damage that you take.
Stacked Deck: Another ability that should arouse caution. There are three things you should watch for. First is the most obvious, the ring of cards that appears around TF. This means he is about to deal extra magic damage on his next attack. If he draws a card that appears above his head, back off, he has to use it eventually. Second can be seen when you click on TF. You can see a buff that will tell you how many attacks he is away from being able to blast you. On 3 stacks, his next attack will deal extra damage. The last way is to simply count his attacks. Avoid if your shield is low, ignore if it is full. Turn his attack into yours.
Destiny: This is TF's signature, but it really only means two things. Firstly, alert your teammates when TF hits level 6. Secondly, this means that he will be able to return to base more frequently to pick up items, thus giving him an edge. With your core you should be able to handle him, but don't be afraid to push mightily in during his moments of absence so that you can return to base and suit up yourself. Weigh the costs.
As always, if you find yourself unable to match TF blow-for-blow, ignore him (a little bit). Focus on pushing his minions back to his tower, making it harder for him to kill them for gold. If you can't match him in damage, blow him out of the water with your farming. TF does not have a naturally large mana pool, so don't be afraid to be a little reckless and get him to waste his mana. Just don't be too reckless and get yourself killed, as hard as that may be.
Before I begin the analysis, I would like to say I am very pleased. Laning against Vladimir with other champions was a chore and a bore. He is a great harasser, and is a pain in the butt to deal with. The good news is that this now EXTREMELY popular solo-mid champion is a breeze to handle. He practically just rolls over and dies for you.
Crimson Pact: This is of little consequence to you personally. It means Vladimir is able to gain more as a caster by stacking HP, but the only way it affects you is that Children of the Grave will heal you more.
Transfusion: If there was a bread and butter skill to define all bread and butter skills, this would be it. The first thing to max, and the most popular spell to for Vladimir to cast. It has no cost, but a cooldown that only gets low once 3-5 points are invested in it. This is great news. Always keep in mind that part of the heal component is based on 25% of the spell's damage, so the less it does the less it will heal Vladimir.
Sanguine Pool: NOT OVERPOWERED! In fact as Mordekaiser, this ability is my best friend. Picture this scenario: Vladimir versus Mordekaiser in the middle lane. A fight breaks out as both champions vie for control over the center of the map. Vladimir hurling blood and Mordekaiser raining steel. Both champions are nearing one third of their life as Mordekaiser breaks out his ultimate+ignite combo. Seeking to escape, Vladimir sinks into a pool of blood and flees to the safety of his tower. He never emerges. See, Vladimir's ultimate does not make him invulnerable, it makes him UNTARGETABLE. This means any DoT spells applied before the pool will still affect him. Mordekaiser possesses a powerful DoT combo, and I have come to treat Sanguine Pool as my weapon instead of Vladimir's. Since it is his only escape mechanism, I see him use it all the time to escape from anything. When he tries to escape the finishing combo, all he is doing is jeopardizing his chance of survival. If he pools, he loses 20% of his current health, bringing him that much closer to death. If he doesn't pool, he is still open to attacks such as Mace of Spades. Win-win!
Hemoplague: Good Vladimirs will use this first, bad Vladimirs will use this last. This ability amplifies all damage dealt to you and finishes off the duration with a chunk of spell damage. Be wary, not do not fear this ability. Since Vladimir deals a reasonably pathetic amount of damage by himself, if you are alone with him you do not have much to fear. Unless you are weakened, chances are you can take him toe-to-toe by the minion waves, using them to charge your shield. Finish this silly chap off with the standard combo. However, if there is a jungling Warwick or a missing Shaco, be on your guard. Running from this ability could save your life. Again, use your discretion. If a dying (bad) Vladimir casts this on you to finish you off while you have low HP, quickly find something to cast your Siphon of Destruction on. It could save your life!
Out of all the popular solo-mid champions, Vladimir is one of the easiest to beat as Mordekaiser. His Transfusion deals little damage and so is easily countered by your shield and MR. If I have to, I sacrifice one of my Regrowth Pendants for a Negatron Cloak to completely and utterly shut him down.
Post in the comments section if you'd like details to counter a specific champion who isn't on this list and I'll work to make it happen. I'm a busy guy though so it might take a bit of time to get it done :)
I hope your Mordekaiser game has been stepped up to the next level after reading this guide, and look forward to seeing you on the battlegrounds, on my team, of course.
Feel free to ask questions, and let me know what you think. If I have missed anything, or you would like me to explain or add anything, let me know and I will do so.
Remember to vote/comment, and a little +rep would never go amiss :)