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Malzahar Build Guide by ExiledPhobos

Middle Introducing the Space Arab! - In-Depth Malzahar guide

Middle Introducing the Space Arab! - In-Depth Malzahar guide

Updated on December 14, 2017
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League of Legends Build Guide Author ExiledPhobos Build Guide By ExiledPhobos 7,241 Views 0 Comments
7,241 Views 0 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author ExiledPhobos Malzahar Build Guide By ExiledPhobos Updated on December 14, 2017
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Arcane Comet
Manaflow Band
Gathering Storm

Magical Footwear
Cosmic Insight


LoL Summoner Spell: Barrier


LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
Extreme Major Even Minor Tiny
Show All
None Low Ok Strong Ideal
Extreme Threats
Ideal Synergies
Ideal Strong Ok Low None


Hello everyone and welcome to my Malzahar guide. I'm ExiledPhobos, a veteran League of Legends player since 2009 and I have managed to climb as far as Platinum 1. I stopped playing since 2014, but I made my return two months ago reaching Platinum 5 in Flex and Gold V in Solo Queue and I plan to reclaim my former elo and climb as high as possible.

My English.exe file will be crashing at some points during the guide, so feel free to notify me of any mistakes so I can fix them and make this guide as best as possible. Also, feel free to provide me with feedback about the guide, the build, the items and if anyone has any suggestions about adding new chapters in the guide, you can always tell me, I don't bite (not much anyway :D). Also, feel free to send me screenshots with your accomplishments if you eventually decide to try out my build so I can add them to the Hall of Fame.

I know most of you guys are coming here for the build, some tips and the ability chart, but here we will discuss many things you will find useful for the Prophet of the Void as well as alternative item options and runes. So, I will be as brief as possible and straight to the point. Also, don't forget to spam this song if you decide to play Malzahar, it's the most appropriate one! (credits to DiscoHeat for coming up with it) ;)
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Pros / Cons

Malzahar is a unique mage that can perform huge DPS (damage-per-second) that becomes increasingly stronger as you buy more items. He can also pull of some strategies that allow you to play extremely safe while not staying behind, but we will discuss them later in the guide. For now, let's see his Pros and Cons:

+ Excellent wave clear early in the game
+ Strong presence in teamfights
+ One of the best peels for the backline
+ His passive provides some CC immunity
+ Huge DPS that scales with opponent's health

- Low mobility and no escape mechanisms
- Can't roam very well compared to other mages
- Will be mana-starved if you abuse his combo
- His combo is somewhat slow
- If you are ahead, you will be focused

His cons may sound a bit scary and terrible, but we will also discuss some tips and tricks to make Malzahar an easy, extremely safe champion that will finish a game with the least deaths possible.
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Summoner Spells

Flash is, of course, a no-brainer. It can be used in a myriad of ways, like closing gaps to get in range for your combo, escaping ganks, escaping an assassin in a teamfight or jumping over walls to prevent the enemy team from catching up to you. Use it wisely and only when you are certain you need it, it's your only escape tool in dire situations.

While many people don't really prefer this spell, Barrier can become a life saver. When dueling your opponent, you may suddenly realise he deals more damage than you and you underestimated him. Or, you may get ganked by the enemy jungler and even dived below your tower. Nothing feels as good as watching your enemies become frustrated when you pop it and save enough health to survive many encounters. It can protect more HP than Heal, but it doesn't provide the small movement speed boost Heal has.

Ignite is my third favourite choice since it adds true damage to your kit and allows you to finish an enemy easier. However, you are going mid and many mages can outrange you making this spell somewhat useless. Also, your ultimate Nether Grasp has slightly more range than Ignite and since it requires you to stay still in order to cast it, Ignite is useless once more unless you want to waste your Flash to cast it. Pick it instead of Barrier only if you feel confident and you're up against small-range or melee champions like Annie or Akali.

A nice choice when you're paired against a hard-pusher champion. It will allow you to quickly recall back to your base, get the items you need and get back to lane in a flash without losing too much of your tower's HP. Also, it can be used to gank other lanes as long as they have placed a ward in a favourable position. Again, this requires some form of teamwork that you will encounter only if you play with your friends and can use a voice chat service to set the gank up. Keep in mind that it has a big cooldown.
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Picking Arcane Comet is a better choice compared to Summon Aery. The reason is that Comet deals 100 damage + 0.2 bonus AP and + 0.35 bonus AD at max levels while Summon Aery will only deal a pesky 40 damage + 0.1 bonus AP + 0.15 bonus AD. While Aery is a good choice for early game and works well with your Malefic Visions, Comet is the better pick for late game. And you aim for the best late game possible.

Manaflow Band allows you to cast a free spell every 60 seconds and provides some small mana regeneration, allowing you to stay in lane longer, use more spells and farm easier. It's a better choice compared to Nullifying Orb and The Ultimate Hat since it helps your sustain in early game and you won't be forced to retreat back to base after every two combos.

Transcendence provides free Cooldown Reduction AND 2 AP for every 1% extra CDR after you reach 40% CDR. If you're planning on picking several items that stack a lot of CDR, it's your best choice. However, I prefer it over Celerity and Absolute Focus because of its 10% CDR and the fact you will have all the movement speed you need from Magical Footwear.

Gathering Storm is the best choice since it will make your late game a lot better. Every 10 minutes it provides you with increasingly higher amounts of AP, which is something you definitely need. Since most games end at around 30-40 minutes, you will get 48-80 AP respectively, which is huge. Some people argue that Scorch works well with Malzahar, but I believe that 80 AP sounds a lot better than 60 bonus magic damage every 20 seconds, don't you think?

As for the Inspiration Tree, Magical Footwear is a very good choice because it provides you with free boots at about the same time you would buy them normally, saving you 300 gold. It also gives you a 50 gold discount when you upgrade them and provide you with 10 extra moving speed. Long story short, you will get Sorcerer's Shoes with only 750 gold (while their full price is 1100 gold) and you will have some solid movement speed to dodge skillshots and cover ground faster. Sounds like an excellent deal to me.

Cosmic Insight is commonly picked by supports like Janna or Soraka, but it works nicely with Transcendence, giving you 15% free CDR at level 10 plus more AP when you reach 45% CDR. It also decreases your Spell and Item CDR, but that's not the main reason you pick Cosmic Insight here.

An alternative Rune tree for Malzahar would be the following:

The only similarities with my personal preferences are Manaflow Band and Transcendence. You pick Summon Aery and Scorch in order to deal more damage at early levels, which is fine if you want to snowball or simply bully the enemy laner and force him to farm under turret. You also pick the Precision Tree for Triumph, which can save your life in teamfights or in dives and provides extra gold per kills or assists, and Coup de Grace, which deals 9% extra damage against enemies that are below 40% HP and gives you extra AP per kill or assist. These two choices help you fight enemies with more efficiency and help you secure kills, but they don't help much in late game compared to the runes I described above. Still, it's a matter of personal preference so pick whichever one you like.
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So, you picked your runes, you know which items to buy and which skills to max first. All that's left to learn are Malzahar's combos, your lane behaviour and your role in teamfights. Let's start with the combos.

Malzahar has several combos that you can use to poke your enemy and deal serious chunks of damage. If you want to use a combo before level 6, simply skip the step where you cast your ultimate Nether Grasp. The combos are:

The Unexpected Bully: E > (let it come out of CD) > E > W > R > Q > AA

The reason you wait for Malefic Visions to come out of CD is because you want to have two stacks in your Void Swarm and summon 3 Voidlings, not 2 when you cast it. Use your Nether Grasp to lock your enemy down while your Malefic Visions and your Voidlings deal DPS at the same time as your Nether Grasp. Save your Call of the Void for the moment you feel like your enemy will try to begin his combo or even better use it during his combo to interrupt it and force him to retreat. You can also use it directly after your Nether Grasp is finished casting to prevent them from escaping with Flash. Chase them with auto attacks as much as you can and use your abilities to finish them off.
The Classic: E > Q > W > R > AA

The most classic of combos and one of the fastest ones. You use your Malefic Visions and Call of the Void to deal DPS, silence them and get the double stacks for your Void Swarm, then you lock them down with Nether Grasp and auto attack them as much as you can for the kill.
The Pokemon Master: E > Q > W > Q > E > W > R

This combo is a bit more tricky than the others and we will assume you have 40-45% CDR. First of all, keep in mind your Call of the Void will always come out of Cooldown before your Malefic Visions. You start by casting Malefic Visions, then Call of the Void and Void Swarm to summon 3 Voidlings. While you auto attack them, your combo is once again available after 4-5 seconds and then you cast Call of the Void, Malefic Visions, Void Swarm and Nether Grasp to lock them down. This means that your enemy is taking DPS from your Malefic Visions and your Nether Grasp while 4-6 Voidlings(depending if your enemy killed any of them) are chopping down his health. It's a strong combo that takes some more time than the others to pull off, but it's also extremely lethal.
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Lane Behaviour

In lane your enemy mid laner will determine your own behaviour. If he likes to get into range and stick close to his minions, feel free to bully him with your Malefic Visions, Call of the Void and Void Swarm. If he prefers to farm, it's all coming down to each champion's range. For example, if your enemy Annie or Akali prefer to farm you can come closer and use your abilities to harass them. However, if you have to deal with a Xerath, trying to approach him would mean taking damage without dealing any. Play smart and study Malzahar's range in order to learn when to attack, when to poke and when to simply farm. Also, remember that your passive Void Shift allows you to scrub one type of CC spell off you and take 90% less damage from it, making trades a bit easier. Simply use it to prevent Ahri from using her Charm on you or Karthus from slowing you with Wall of Pain, use your combo on them, auto attack them a couple of times then retreat until your passive comes out of cooldown and repeat.

I'd like to add here that Malzahar is my favourite mid champion because he can easily farm while he recalls, waits for gold in his base or simply falls back to his tower. His combo means that you will have the best laning phase of your life and ensures that the enemy jungler will never bother to gank mid unless he wants to give you a double kill. The trick is simple: Use your Call of the Void over the meele or ranged minions to reduce their health. Then cast your Malefic Visions on one of them and your Void Swarm to summon 3 Voidlings. Your Malefic Visions moves from target to target as they die and your Voidlings deal 300% damage against minions that are afflicted with Malefic Visions . This means that you can follow the aforementioned steps, push your lane like crazy and then fall back to your tower as Malefic Visions and Void Swarm do your farming for you. And that's your primary farming tactic, push the wave with your combo and retreat to prevent the enemy jungler from ganking.
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In teamfights you generally want to stay in the back lines and use your skills to deal damage to the nearest enemy while your tanks take all the enemy damage for you. If someone from the enemy team tries to jump on you or your ADC like Rengar, Zed or Kha'Zix, use your Nether Grasp to stop them on their tracks and give your ADC the chance to fall back and kill their would-be assassin. Another tactic is to buy Zhonya's Hourglass and use your Flash to one-shot a priority target like a fed Miss Fortune, then use Zhonya's Hourglass to survive and give your team the chance to catch up with you. However, this tactic has higher risks like getting your Nether Grasp interrupted by CC or dying so I would not recommend it.
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Hall of Fame

Here I will post some personal scores with Malzahar. Feel free to try out my suggestions for yourselves and send me screenshots with your accomplishments.

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If you managed to survive my endless jabbering, congratulations! By now you know the best runes for Malzahar, the best items, some tips for farming and poking your enemy as well as how to behave in teamfights. All that's left is the key element in mastering a champion in order to perform well with him:


Pick him in normals until you feel comfortable with him and then hit the ranked with him, you will see how well this champion performs and how great of an asset he is for his team.

I wish you well and thanks for reading my guide! I hope I will see you in EUW if you play there and remember to bow to the void! Or be consumed by it!
League of Legends Build Guide Author ExiledPhobos
ExiledPhobos Malzahar Guide
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Introducing the Space Arab! - In-Depth Malzahar guide

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