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Build Guide by kcvan

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League of Legends Build Guide Author kcvan

Gangplank: The Glass Cannon

kcvan Last updated on April 12, 2011
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Top Lane
Ranked #33 in
Top Lane
Win 51%
Get More Stats

Ability Sequence

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

Not Updated For Current Season

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


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 0

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 9

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This is A LOT of reading, I put all my experiences and passion for GP in this guide, so if you hate reading long guides, scan through items build//runes//masteries and go on your way without knowing why I chose what I did.

So you're thinking, wtf is this guy smoking? If I were you I'd probably think the same thing, but over countless trial and error I've come to this build. I personally feel that Gangplank is the definition of the words "glass cannon". If you want to build him tanky dps with a Frozen Mallet//Atma's Impaler, this go with a character who is naturally built as a tanky dps like Jarvan. In this guide I will explain my choices of items, masteries, runes, and play style.

This build is a mid-late game Gangplank and reflects my own play style, if your GP suits you better than this guide then PLEASE by all means use your play style, but this is how I feel GP should be played//built, bringing out his full potential.

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Play Style

This is a top/mid solo build (PREFERABLY MID SOLO). You start out camping your nexus and denying your melee minion, and by the time you hit middle you can deny another one. After this, ONLY deny the big tank minions, because if you keep denying others then you waste early game mana on a little bit of deny instead of more farm with parrley. I have a very passive early game (1-11ish), I farm farm farm farm farm farm all day every day. When should you blue pill you ask? whenever they do. Chances are you can outlane their mid with your hp pots//self heal//and clarity. I've played against almost every character imaginable mid lane, and found that the hardest characters to lane against are Kat, Corki, and Cait. Against these heros you want to play VERY passive, let them push and focus on last hitting minions with parrley and auto attack last hits whenever you feel safe. If you know that their mid lane isn't a harasser type then instead of getting 3 hp pots, I would grab 2 hp 1 mana pot for when clarity is on downtime. Once they go B you can blue pill back and grab your 2 phil stones + boots. If you had a even LONGER laning phase then by all means start buying your avarice blades. After you get your 2 phil stones you can almost deny your creeps once per wave without worrying too much about mana, and you'll be able to keep up parrleying with very little downtime. This is also your chace to get into a more aggressive play style. If you go up to last hit a minion and they come to hit you (assuming they're melee) punish them by hitting them a few times and when they back off, parrley them. Your passive will do a decent amount of unnoticed damage, causing them to blue pill more often. Also make sure you SAVE your ultimate for your side lanes//any fights that can outburst any time. Your ultimate early-late game can/will change the tides of a battle and could potentially land you a kill.

OK Mid game - Late game
So this is where you start to shine as a glass cannon. Why did you get 3 avarice blades and 2 phil stones? So you can have more early game farm, some early game crit, and a MUCH longer lanning phase with a Sh*T load of gold/10. The fastest I've gotten my infinity's edge was right under 18 minutes with 2 phil stones, 3 avarice blades, and boots of mobility. Remember you get an extra 400 gold by selling 1 phil stone for your IE slot. Now you have 61% crit with only a IE and 3 blades while still generating gold/second. Your crits should take a pretty decent chuck away from their hp, it should crit fro about 1k+ on minions and about 800+ on heros with low armor, meaning their ad//ap carry should fear you, and if they don't punish them in team fights.

Once you have your core build, your job is pretty simple. Poke poke poke poke until your heart can't poke anymore, and then poke more after that. Although you have enough ASPD//life steal//damage output to take out most heros 1v1, in team fights you run back and forth parrleying them, and when the time comes you ultimate when your tank or thier's intiates, and you go straight for their ad//ap carry, chasing them away from the fight. Do NOT CHASE. Once you chase them away with your major crit go back into the team fight and assist them by critting their tanky dps, and then main tank. If their carrys decide on coming back for more, they should be at pretty low from your first crit, meaning that when u crit again, they're dead. With this build you'll have an average NORMAL crit for about 1.3k, and a parrley for almost 2k. You can melee almost any hero to death unless they have thorn mail, and if they invested into more armor than mr, more fun for your AP carry.

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I don't advise it AT ALL. You have a slow gold income, and you won't be able to kill the jungle early game, giving you a huge disadvantage. If you have to choose from jungle or side lane, side lane it all the way and ask your partner if they can babysit you.

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Strong 1v1
Surprise element
Can usually 2-shot carries
Hit and run style keeps you alive
Will almost reach 2k parrley crit

Needs farm
Susceptible to ganks if Remove Scurvy is down
Weak late game if you get shut down early game (this can be applied to most heros in general though, but its more apparent with GP)

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Yes yes yes yes runesssss.

Ok, so what do you think when you think of Gangplank? CRITTTT. Yes this is what most people think when they imagine this character.

I take Furor reds, quints, and blues. Why you ask? Why not arpen red or mana regen yellows? Because they are simply not needed for Gangplank. If you need arpen to kill their tank, you're already doing something wrong by poking the tank. If you're running out of mana early game you're denying the wrong creeps too often and not using the summoner spell clarity to its full benefits. Flat CDR blues to give you a little boost early game Parrrrrrrrrrrrley//deny//heal//ultimate. Late game your parrley CD will be already pretty damn low, but if you feel like it isn't enough I'll go over substitute items in later sections.

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These masteries are pretty self explanatory. You're a farmer, get masteries that let you lane longer, crit harder, and dish out the pain heros and minions alike.

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OK so here's the biggie section.
Why 2 phil stone's? Because they let you lane INCREDIBLY longer than any other gold/10 item, and are very money efficient. I explained why 5 gold/10 item works with GP, now I'll explain my choice of items. (Also, having 5 gold/10 items give you a chance to keep up farm even if you're being denied in lanning phase, but be wise about when and what gold/10 item to buy, because if you've had a horrible early lanning phase, and all you have are phil stones and boots at 20 minutes already, you might want to reconsider getting a straight IE after those phil stones.

So by end game you'll end up with
2x Phantom Dancers
1 Infinity's Edge
3x Blood Thirster

Where did my boots go? I don't know!
With 2 PD's and 1 tier 2 boots you'll have over 500 move speed, unnecessary in my opinion. With just 2 PD's you'll have 436 move speed, pretty much higher than anyone you'll be approaching in the game unless it's someone with a speed buff like Janna or Zilean. with 2 PD's and IE you'll have 85% crit, which for me is enough crit to make it consistant enough to not max it out at 100$. If you find that luck is not on your side, you can substitute 1 BT for a ghostblade, giving you some damage, CDR, and that delicious 15% extra crit you need to max out 100%. You'll won't hit as hard but you'll be guaranteed to crit the enemy for a bunch of their life still.

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I want to wrap this build up with some of my experiences as GP mid solo.

There pretty much never a game where I'm pushing back unless they blue pilled and I'm still lanning. I'm almost always near my tower being pushed, but getting pretty much all the last hits and farm. Even if my opponent has 20 more kills than me, I still out farm them due to my parrley extra gold, and by the end of the game I'm usually 350+ minions kills, with over 25k gold farmed within 35 mins, or 40k+ within 50 minutes. Why so much farm you ask? Because BT's need stacks every time you die. This is one of the downsides of GP, he needs to keep farming even after his full build is completed. But back to the experiences.

So I've had a bunch of funny times with GP. I've turned the tides of battle in our favor more than enough times to have complete confidence in my build.

I'll just list the scenarios I've been in and outcome

Team fight mid tower 5v5, Tryndamere is at 1/2-3/4th hp, I run up, crit him before hes able to activate ultimate and we 5-0 their team at tower. I love GP for this aspect he carries with him. The enemy is thinking, "How much damage can he possibly do to me?". Thats where the element of surprise really going into your favor.

Another instance was when they pushed into our base and went straight for our AP carry. Katarina ulted and Ashe ulted, which was almost a complete disaster for our carry, if it not for me parrley critting kat for pretty much 3/4 of her hp and then melee critting her before her ultimate could do some massive damage, and then hitting Ashe 3 times in a row and killing her too.

These are just a few times out of the many that GP can be a team player and assist the team to victory. I can't tell you how many time I've crit someone for almost all their hp only to let the real carry steal the kill and get buff out of this world.

If you enjoy this type of play style, then you'll love this build, but be warned!

He is a glass cannon, a nuclear missile made of paper and if you don't play him right, it'll come back to bite you later in the game.

A farmed GP is a good GP. He's probably the biggest money sink character in the game, but the one of the best parts about him is that he doesn't need hero kills to be farmed, he can lane farm all game and come out victorious late game.

I hope you all are open-minded to this build, and I hope you test it out for yourself and see how strong GP can really be.

happy hunting!