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Garen Build Guide by drizzt103

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League of Legends Build Guide Author drizzt103

Garen. The Multi-Tool

drizzt103 Last updated on February 9, 2012
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Top Lane
Ranked #12 in
Top Lane
Win 51%
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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.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 9

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 0

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Yes its Garen, but he's not specializing in tanking, or even damage. No, I play him as a Multi-Tool. What I mean by this is simple. Jungler aside, he helps all four roles a little. He can tank some in team fights, drawing and taking the hits, he can kill, thereby helping the carry. He can take towers, thereby also helping the carries, and he can even support a little with thespell he packs, and his ability to draw enemies off the weak carries, so the carries can kill them, thereby getting assists. He does a bit of everyone's job for them, kind of tries to help everyone.

I prefer and for reasons i will discuss more in depth later, but needless to say lane sustainability is part of it. Also there will be a awesome first kill described below using ignite. Please read it through, and don't be afraid to try it. I warn you however, being a multi-tool is frankly one of the tougher jobs in League, since you are expected to help EVERYONE do parts of their job. It gets a little schizophrenic at times.

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The reason I pick the runes I do is simple. They work. Lets start with the two obvious ones. Theand . Whats not to love. I can tank Fiddlesticks' for all its available damage as long as I am equivalent level, and kill him and survive it. While he's ing me. -.- Seriously what's not to love. I can do the same to Master Yi AD build. Again what's not to love.

As to the , and the my logic is simple. Other then all Garen does is physical damage. Armor stops physical damage....unless you can pen it. It's what I've found works for me, but hey, mix and match, try some other things, you never know what you'll find that you like.

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I like the 21/9/0 i have going, it gives me just enough defense from magic and physical, but allows me to do more damage and more penetration, to make it that much more important for me to get focused in team-fights, or make it that much easier for me to kill. You could tamper with this however you want, I've not really played with it much, cause it works. But a variation right now I am trying is 20/10/0, with the final point going intoagain, because extra health is always good

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this is going to sound odd i know...but I literally have NO alternatives. Because I've never needed any. This build is consistent in its preformance. More kills then deaths and more assists then deaths. If you find an item you like more then one i've listed and it works for you, by all means, do it up, more power to you. But I've never had cause to doubt or try and 'shake up' the item set or indeed anything from this build.

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Skill Sequence

The skill sequence is taken once, but is leveled full first. Because you want that ready by the team fight stage. That is your assist/tank/draw their focus cannon. Just remember kids, to win. But all jokes aside, my tactics for initating my part in combat are as follows. Target the most dangerous caster (someone who needs their abilities more then auto attack) and him or her. Then proceed to pop (Less damage to you your face). Pop and spin on anyone in your way, but keep targeting the one you silenced if they are not dead. After this they should be dead, but if not, them, pop Decisive again (if its not off cooldown your doing it WRONG) and activate . Then proceed to auto attack any enemy champion till is back up. Rinse and repeat til you retreat, win, or die. (Pop Heal in here somewhere to be even more aggravating)

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Summoner Spells

I pickedand for reasons to be disclosed here. Lets start with . Yes i know Garen's passive. I'm well aware Garen having Heal is "noob" if by noob you mean PERFECT for this build. This build, early, despite what you may believe, needs EXP equally if not MORE then gold. Simple reason why?? Judgement and Demacian Justice. Your combo nuke for ANYONES face. My best games, I literally do not leave lane/roam until level NINE. You shouldn't NEED too. Garen's Passive and Heal means first off, there is one time (try to keep it as long as possible, trust me, you'll value it later if you've saved it for when you need it) where you DON"T need to retreat and run. You can pop it, probably get a kill, maybe two kills for it. Your passive simply means they can't just let you back off a bit, because you WILL NOT RECALL and they know it. so they will try to pin you to your tower whenever your lanemate is down. Problem being no one wants to tower dive a Garen.

Now . This little doozy is for a guarenteed first kill. Call top lane (unless enemy team has jungler, cause then its a solo lane. Then call bottom lane) Take someone with ranged damage and lots of it (Caitlyn, Lux, a /Crit speced Gankplank works well.) Proceed to take to the bush closest to their tower (being smart, but get there) Wait till they walk in (decide before hand who you two want, also insure your lanemate is either Lux, or is packing ). And they will walk in. Its called a face check, but I call it a death sentence. Proceed to the agreed target, as Lux, or whoever pops their first ability, and (or in Lux's case her first ability......which snares) proceed to and auto attack the **** out of them, and as the or snare wears off, try to pop again it should work, if not, no worries, cause your ranged companion will just auto attack the weak one and it will die. (Note Gankplank just spams . same idea.) Again, haven't played with any other ideas on this one, so mix and match if you want, but these are the two I've found do the job the best.

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Pros / Cons

- You can help initiate team fights. And you will draw some focus off your tank....allow him to tank longer, letting your carries do their job longer in relative safety.
- You can help carry. One on one, you are as tough as they come, and you can chop anyone up.
- You act like a tank, except if they try to avoid focusing you...YOU WILL KILL THEM
- You can Dive like a boss
- You can solo lane rather easily
- You can lane against basically ANYONE in the game
- You can lane WITH basically anyone in the game
- Your heal spell can save lives, and help carry stick around a little longer and confirm kills.
- Last but not least, you can even backdoor. Not as well as some champs, but enough to be a serious SERIOUS threat.

-You can only do a bit of EVERYONES JOB. You cannot be the actual tank, carry or support. you simply help them ALL do their jobs
-Very difficult to play, as you have to be FULLY map aware of EVERYTHING at ALL TIMES so you know who is where, and who you can help, and who you won't get to in time
-While you can lane against almost anyone, there are five champions I have put on a GTFO list. This is when you get a lane switch. You don't request it. You GET IT.

1.- I cannot stress the instant death his full combo will cause you enough. This is an early game fight you CANNOT WIN if you share a lane with this guy
2.- His passive poison shuts your passive right down, crippling your ability to leech level fast, thereby shutting you down.
3. - Its ****ing RAMMUS enough said. But if not enough said....Thornmail. Plus Sunfire Cape. Plus all his health stack and armor stack. Plus his passive. Tears weep them.
4. - This fight just sucks. His abilities out range you. He can clone himself, as you try to ulti wasting your ulti, and generally speaking, he can use his nimbus rush thing to tower dive at you, stopping you passive and decoy out. and rinse and repeat. You can win. but its not fun, or friendly or easy. Its a defensive fight, and those suck.
5. - This a hit and miss fight. Its literally a cautious yet aggressive race to ulti. If he gets level six and doesn't die before you, YOU LOSE NO QUESTIONS, you are Yi's little b***h for the rest of the game. If you do that to him, you bend him over for the rest of the game. Its literally NO middle ground on this one. NONE!!! (Note i don't doubt there is a little more to it then that, but from my experience that is basically how it breaks down.)

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Team Work

Alright we will start at the laning phase. Your role here is completely dependant on who you lane with. I will use three examples. Example one.....Rammus
If you are lucky enough to lane with Rammus, the first thing you need to realize, is your lane is probably outranged. Fear not, this is not a bad thing. together you two can tower hug and win defensive wars like a boss. But your role here is not the role of tank. Be careful. General instinct is to turn around and dive into a two on one at half hp if your lane mate is going to die. But that is because normally your lane mate will be SQUISHY and a CARRY. In this type of scenario, (Volibear is another example, as is someone like Amumu) in complete comparison, YOU are the carry, because you WILL confirm more kills then them. So let them die, and make sure you get out alive. Because its in their JOB DESCRIPTION.

Now, let us move to the idea of laning with a carry. This is the most likely scenario. I'm going to use Caitlyn. She is long ranged. thereby giving you MAD assist counts as long as you can get them low hp. She will be a carry, its her job. Which means in this case, if it comes down to it, its your job to die valiantly to save her sexy tits. Because CARRIES, if protected and allowed to farm and feed, WIN THE GAME. So in this role, you are the tank of the lane, and as such, certain responsibilities fall to you.

Finally we have laning with a heally/supporty mage type. this is the fun, yet difficult one. In this one you are basically a Bruiser. Your a glass cannon made of stone. As long as you play smart, you will not die, you will get kills and you may even get fed. *Warning to all those who make mistake of feeding this Garen......for his sheer ability to dive your whole team, and leave a mess of quarter hp or less champs in his wake for his team to mop up.....and still probably leave alive....tears weep them.*

Now after the laning phase ends (which for you shouldn't really be til like level 8, since you shouldn't have left your lane, once, unless the afore mentioned tank and carry situation with a Caitlyn or some such happened) We move to the roaming phase. It is here this build of Garen starts to shine. Map awareness is key, as is constant travelling, unless setting up a gank.
This phase is kinda short, unfortunately, but take your chance to farm the jungle, ESPECIALLY if the enemy team has a jungler. Troll his buffs, all of them, you can do it, easily. Hell if he tries to get you, pop , and start running away. If necessary pop Heal. But troll the jungle. its worth the money. also, by about level 10, you should get dragon. I don't mean solo, but if your heal is up, and your lucky, you can. I mean get help. Then by level 12, just as this phase is ending, you should, if you get the chance, literally solo it again, but you do need your heal up, but no luck is necessary this time.

Finally we come to Garen's favorite phase, which I lovingly call the 'clusterf**k phase'. It is more commonly known as the teamfight phase. In this phase, you finally have the opportunity to really shine as the Multi-Tool your meant to be. A prime example to be outlined below.

Enemy Team-, , , , Your Team- You (Garen),, , , and Galio
Teamfight strategy for you.
As a general rule, you want to rush the most dangerous caster (relies on abilities) as the tank initates. In the above example, that would be Fiddlesticks. If he pops , don't run, tank it and focus him. Your team should jump in if they are smart. Proceed to pop , and then on him and anyone who gets in your way. By this point, even if Rammus is your tank, you should be attracting a lot of attention, but ignore them all, get fid. If don't kill him, him. At the same time, pop if you have it (you will need it by now)
Now if fid isn't dead (lets say he ) you have two options. Let a ranged (Lux, Shoop da Whoop) person take him out, or him. If you decide to not finish him, find a low health one who is getting away and him. After that, spam and until you are dead or decide to run (you should run if your carries are already gone or dead) or until they all die. This is a great team fight strategy. And after the dangerous carries are down (Fid, Ashe, Teemo) or run away, don't be afraid to focus the tank. Volibear, in this situation, as long as you have some help, your armor pen and pure damage will allow you to ruin his day. and even if you don't kill him, an assist, after all you've already racked up, is worth dying for (note you should have raked in 1-2 kills and 2-3 assists at this point). Just rinse and repeat this team fight strategy. it works.

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So that is my first Mobafire build. I only posted this, because I KNOW i cannot be the only person out there who enjoys being a multi-tool character, despite the crippling challenges of the job. Its just so satisfying. The next one Im working on is for Jax. Anyway, please let me know what you think, be honest please, and give him a try, or at least read it all. I think I have basically justified my reasoning for everything, but if you have any questions, shoot, and I'll try to see them answered.