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Graves Build Guide by JohnReesest

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League of Legends Build Guide Author JohnReesest

Graves ADC Season 6 Smoke Em Out

JohnReesest Last updated on December 31, 2015
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Jungle Role
Ranked #23 in
Jungle Role
Win 47%
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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.


Natural Talent
Bounty Hunter
Battering Blows
Piercing Thoughts

Ferocity: 12

Dangerous Game

Cunning: 18

Tough Skin
Runic Armor
Veteran's Scars
Legendary Guardian

Resolve: 0

Threats to Graves with this build

Show all
Threat Champion Notes
Twitch Probably The easiest lane for graves, Your early game tankiness and damage is far superior to this guy. You will basically win every trade unless you screw it up very badly.
Varus You hard counter this guy, he charges Q you smoke screen his poke becomes nullified almost immediately, but understand he can still trade with blightstacks and e so don't get cocky.
Quinn Is Quinn even an ADC anymore? its honestly been a very long time since i've gone against Quinn bot lane, i still think you'd probably win this fight since you have pretty raw damages and you can quickdraw to dodge her blind, she can't do the same to dodge yours.
Kog'Maw Koggers is an easy lane, hes squishy, immobile, and has relatively horrible damage early game.
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Hello, I'm a Graves Main and this will be my first ever guide in over 3 years of maining this champion.

This guide is for the REWORKED Graves, Not the Pre-Rework.

I've Played alot of Graves and a fair bit of him reworked i know his kit in and out and how he fairs against most every carry in the game and what build paths work for me and should work for you, So I'm going to go Into Detail With everything about his Kit, His Abilities, His Matchups, Runes, Masteries, And his very Early Laning.

My stream is - (feel free to follow me if you find the guide helpful or find yourself stopping by)

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Alot of people are very skeptical about this rune page, So i will go in to depth on why i use it.

Quints - Flat AD, graves scales well off AD so its an obvious choice right?

Reds - 8 Attack speed, The graves rework makes him very clunky with low attack speed and his new Reload Mechanic these make him feel a bit more smooth than just Base Attack speed.

1 Crit Chance, This is purely optional, If you hit a crit in lane you will win the trade almost 100% of the time, it doesn't happen often but it can really be the difference in a fight if it happens to crit

Yellows: 4 Armor, You're going to be going vs another AD marksman bot lane these give you a little bit more resistance to those auto attacks.

5 Health, Now this is a sketchy part but trust me, As Graves your passive on your E gives you Armor and Magic resistance, so the aim here is to balance that out with some early health, This is especially potent for AP based supports as you can use your hp to help mitigate their damage as well

Blues: 9 Attack Damage, Purely preference based, you can swap for MR or Scaling MR i just like to play on the dangerous side, all up to your tastes, alot of Supports are AP based, so Magic Resistance wouldn't be a bad choice, but if you're greedy like me, then hey who cares right.

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This is your Typical ADC mastery page for Patch 5.24

With Thunderlords you have pretty insane kill pressure in lane and Graves can make use of Thunderlords very well due to the fact his Q counts as 2 abilities if they're hit by both ends.

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is the quintessential Item to Graves, No if, ands, or buts. It is far superior than Essence Reaver.
(On normal Auto attacks, Your shotgun shoots 4 Bullets, With a crit, it shoots 8, Instead of gaining 50% damage from crits with Infinity Edge you gain 2 extra bullets for a total of 10 when you crit, this is KEY for refreshing your E cooldown.)

Is your go to attack speed item as you will only be getting one of these on Graves, its Raw stats are good for Graves in general, but the Passive is what really seals the deal for Graves. Its already harder to kill graves than a traditional ADC, this item makes it even more of a nightmare, also the move speed is good too, since Grave's range is inferior to most AD's getting into range of them without putting your escape on cooldown is hard, With this it helps alleviate the pain of this problem.

Graves after his rework Scales not so well with attack speed, the Phantom Dancer listed above mixed with the runes explained earlier, put him at Near Attack speed cap (0.85) or slightly higher, these i would say are the go to boots, CC hurts every ADC, in fact it hurts basically every champion in the game, Wouldn't it be nice if you could lower the Duration's on those pesky Stuns/Roots/Snares, well you are in luck. Pick these up Vs a High CC composition, If not, Pick up Vs a Heavy AD composition, If neither of the Scenarios i explained Fit your game, Build either based on your own preference

This item Makes Graves an Actual Raid Boss, Due to his New Destiny passive and his Auto Attack Mechanic of Shooting up to 10 Bullets at once, Blood Thirster heals him for a metric **** ton, If you Couple This with a Spirit Visage as a defensive item, You can Literally outheal teams focusing you in a fight, its Ridiculous.

Since Last whisper was nerfed i'll keep this short, in 5.24 there are 2 upgrades past the last whisper which are "Lord Dominick's Regards" or "Mortals Reminder" These items armor penetration ONLY applies to BONUS armor, if you're Against a team that has No heavy armor Build don't even bother buying this item as it will be an Utter Waste.

Its gotten a fair buff in Season 6 and is definetly a Good item on Graves, Its not worthy of first buying (explained earlier) if you decide to not go for a defensive item, and you see that you haven't picked this up and have an Item slot available for it, go for it. More crit chance, More AD, The built in Mana-sustain is nice but it is completely Unnecessary

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Situational Items

If you're going to get a Magic Resistance Defensive item, GET THIS.

On Graves this item is Absurd if it is mixed with a Blood Thirster, I have literally outhealed being focused by 3-4 Champions with these 2 items, they are amazing

I used to love this item on Old Graves, This item still does have its benefits to it.

Attack speed isn't entirely wasted since its not a huge amount, the spell-blade passive only applies to one bullet i believe, but that's okay we're not exactly buying it for that anyway, the real reason to buy an item like this on graves is, the phage passive. the move speed while attacking units IS extremely under-rated on ADC's also the base move speed it provides is good, Crit, AD, Cdr, Hp

its a very stat efficient item you cant use spellblade to the fullest but, the rage passive makes up for that also with the combination of stats it provides.

The same reason as Trinity, if they're stacking armor and you still want the rage passive and some extra beef to your Graves, get this, it synergizes well with your auto attack, as it shreds each enemy with each bullet like the old Graves Buckshot did, works well on him

Deaths dance provides you with a bit more healing ontop of your Blood thirster if you're still getting bursted it also, provides a damage reduction that allows you to take some upfront damage as a bleed overtime in attempts to outheal it, if you're getting bursted this is an Okay buy.

This Item/Combination is an obvious if their team has the likes of, Skarner, Tahm Kench, Malzahaar, Or Warwick. On another Note Mercurial Scimitar offers some Lifesteal now, so thats a nice change.

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This is it, Your new Mechanic, don't be scared i was at first too. Alright diving right in, This Passive has Pro's AND Con's to it, the Pros are it does ALOT of damage, a Con to this is that, it requires you to be very close to your target to maximize the damage you deal. The absolute biggest Con with this passive is you are UNABLE to shoot over Units standing infront of you, this means you NEED to position well it is VITAL. The reload Mechanic is not as much of a crutch as you would think it is, if you can position well to make use of this passive... you're going to be terrifying to the enemy team.

This ability is VERY scary, although i preferred the old buckshot myself, this Ability HURTS you fire it out in a line, that makes a T at the end, and after about one second it blows up and does damage on the way back, as well as dealing damage while it travels, This ability is GREAT to proc thunderlords with, you need only auto attack once if they're hit by both ends, On a side note, this will instantly explode doing the initial and delayed damage if you're able to hit it off a piece of terrain or a structure, much like how Condemn works.

Is probably one of if not the best zone control utility spells IN THE GAME, yes it is EXTREMELY under-rated. With proper use of this you can 1v2 or even 1v3, While denying vision of others to join a fight deal with the closest priority target, or simply use it to keep enemies in a choke point, this ability has SO many uses, i couldn't explain every one, DO NOT underestimate it, it could be the difference of you 1v3'ing or dying for nothing.

THIS is the ability, THE ABILITY that makes Graves, Graves. When you use this you dash a short distance, Reload 1 Shell into your chamber AND (at max rank) gain 30 Armor and Magic resistance, staying in combat with an enemy champion or large jungle monster prolongs this passive, Hitting enemies will LOWER this CD by 0.5 seconds for EACH bullet hit, so if you were to have an Infinity Edge and Crit, you would lower this CD by 10 x 0.5 = 5 Seconds (assuming every bullet hits) also you can stack this passive up to 4 times which results in a total of 120 armor and magic resistance for F R E E, If you have 2-3 stacks or more on this passive, YOU WILL RIP PEOPLE APART while being seemingly unscratched.

Good ol' Collateral Damage, Alright this ultimate is pretty good, it has good laning and teamfighting presence, when you get level 6 and have this, (assuming the lane is even or you're winning) THEY HAVE TO RESPECT YOU, if not you CAN kill them, this ultimate is VERY strong at level 6, but loses a bit of its punch later on, but it still is nonetheless a very good ultimate.

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Farming with Graves is, awkward, very awkward now that his auto attacks are drastically different than any other ADC. That being said, my normal go to method bot lane is, when the first minion wave appears, i get it before it hits mine, shooting the minion in the front, knocking it back.

Then I will useto start shoving, Graves is a VERY good early game wave shover, use this to your advantage, By that i mean, SHOVE and get level 2 AS SOON AS YOU CAN. it should almost 100% be you getting level 2 first.

On a side note, if you end up dying in laning phase, don't worry.. you scale into an absurd force, mid and late game. People underestimate Grave's late game, believe me its ****ING STRONG.

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Unique Skills

The only real Unique Ability for Graves is his PassiveIf you plan on getting into playing graves, YOU MUST learn this mechanic it is VITAL. as i explained earlier, the reload mechanic tied into this passive is not as much of a crutch as the inability to shoot over or past units.

I know I'm kind of beating a dead horse but, DO NOT TRADE IN A MINION WAVE YOU WILL LOSE. Positioning correctly with Graves is KEY, yes, you can still 100- 0 people with your Combo

But being entirely dependent on that is a HORRIBLE game plan, Your newly reworked auto attacks do TONS of damage, with an and a respectable amount of Critical Chance, You can Refresh your cooldown OFTEN and you can keep dashing, Keep stacking your true grit, getting tankier, and tankier, This is THE difference between a good Graves and a Bad one.

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Team Work

Alright this is aimed for those Mid game skirmishes, etc,

With Graves you want to look for Picks, he is a pick comp ADC
Is amazing for getting picks, if you find someone caught out, you can effectively use this to deny their vision and slow them while your team and you jump them, Also if you see the enemy team is close and in a choke point, You can use this to zone them from their ally, giving you a safe Pick.

In a team fight be extremely weary of starting off with as it now knocks you back, so it can really knock you out of range and delaying your entrance into the fight due to your lack of range, instead try to get into the fight with your front line, DO NOT Into a fight EVER you need that cooldown UP, incase the enemy throws a skillshot CC at you or because you need the reload to keep the damage up.

Graves excels at splitpushing in his new state, he can very easily handle himself alone when hes reached his mid game, if you play it properly you can fight 1v2 or even more. the enemy has to dance to your song so you control them.

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Skill Sequence

Alright so here we will discuss some of the Combo's for Graves, These are only really potent earlier on, when it comes to late game you want to transition to an AUTO ATTACK based champion using your skills only as fillers while you're reloading or for aoe in a clumped fight.

The Combo, if you followed the guide is, as soon as you get to level 2, you want to take advantage of your level lead,into the enemy gaining resistances, make sure you can get behind their minions so you have a clear shot at them. next Auto Attack, then Once you've completed the Cast, Auto Attack again. If the enemy is hit with this full combo at level 1 you will more than likely Nearly kill them, force a flash or heal, and just gain the pressure in lane you need the be able to farm without fear.

The level 6 All in combo Would probably look something like this,

Walk up to them Auto Attack, Then use (it refills you to full ammo Capacity and acts as an Auto Attack reset) Auto Attack then, If you pull that combo off flawlessly and they're hit with every part of it, They WILL die.

This is just a random clip i found lying around to give you an idea, Take note i position my so it will hit the terrain behind the tower

Later on you really want to be playing Around your Graves has alot of strong abilities, But this one is bar none THE strongest, and Makes him a terrifying duelist Try to NEVER use this when you have full ammunition (ONLY if you need to dodge a VERY important skillshot or are in dire need of getting distance from someone/something) later on in the game, full build you can essentially, Auto Attack Auto Attack, Auto Attack and 100-0 An enemy carry.

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Pros / Cons


- Very High Damage Output
- Probably The hardest ADC to Kill
- Has a decent early game for how strong his Mid/Late are
- Mastery of this champion is VERY rewarding
- Still a safe pick for the most part


- Shortest Range ADC in Entire Game
- Passive Players Turn Around right now You HAVE to go In
- His Auto Attacks CANNOT shoot past units and structures
- He has a pretty easy Skill Floor but his Skill Ceiling is ENORMOUS


You wont become a menace with this champion overnight, you gradually get better, and you can ALWAYS get better its one of the funnest and most rewarding parts of Graves, hes so versatile and fits a lot of team compositions, and goes well with a good amount of supports I'd even go as far as to say that Graves has probably THE BEST 1v2 capability out of Every ADC in the game.