Malphite Build Guide by remotenightowl
Your votes and comments encourage our guide authors to continue
creating helpful guides for the League of Legends community.
+65 health and +10 ability power or +6 attack damage, adaptive
Welcome to your guide for Malphite in Season 7. As a top lane main from Season 3, Malphite was the second top lane champion I picked up and have loved him ever since. In short, he is a massive tank that deals significant damage as well as providing crowd control that has the potential to carry the game. Please following along with this guide as well as the YouTube guide provided in the link below. Enjoy!
Season 7 Guide - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GdsG0ajd5Bg (New)
Season 6 Guide - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pEwxDASZK6I (Old)
So, for your build.
- Typically your going to run Ninja Tabi for boots. However, if the enemy team is AP heavy, then Mercury's Treads is your better option.
- Malphite is a natural armor stacking tank, with his W Brutal Strikes stacking armor passively, so a heavy armor build is necessary. The key items you will buy are Sunfire Cape, Iceborn Gauntlet, and Thornmail. These provide heavy armor as well as damage, HP and cooldown reduction which is a necessity on Malphite. Ninja Tabi for boots if the situation calls for it. Also since armor items got buffed and most team comps are at least 3 AD usually, Thornmail will deal even more damage and have a higher gold value.
- Magic Resist
- Malphite needs some MR for durability and dealing with mages. The key items here are Abyssal Mask and Banshee's Veil. Abyssal Mask helps give you extra durability against mages while buffing all your magic damage with it's passive, while Banshee's Veil give you a spell shield as well as ability power now. definitely 2 must buys on Malphite now.
- Like I said, Abyssal Mask gives some increased magic damage, so Malphite can dish out some burst damage. Also, Thornmail is even better with increased armor values so it deals even more damage. Since Riot changed the passive to stack with your armor like Rammus, you will have over 100 extra magic damage plus 15% of the incoming damage dealt back to attacking champions so you will be hitting even harder. In addition to this your Sunfire Cape will provide passive magic damage, and Iceborn Gauntlet gives you a Sheen proc that also acts as a slow with your auto attacks.
- Against AD Top
- Rush Bami's Cinder, then finish your Tier 2 Boots followed by a completed Sunfire Cape. Then build Iceborn Gauntlet.
- Against AP Top
- Rush Bami's Cinder, then finish your Tier 2 Boots. Immediately build your Abyssal Mask and then complete your Sunfire Cape.
- The ladder 2 scenario's are for the laning phase. Finish your 4th and 5th items from the build I provided, then finish your 6th item based on the late game situation.
For standard runes your primary keystone will be Grasp of the Undying. Followed by this we have Demolish for tower damge and split pushing, Conditioning for additional tankiness by adding Armor and Magic Resist, and finally Overgrowth for even more health stacking. For you secondary tree you are going to run The Ultimate Hat for your Ultimate to gain additional CDR, and Scorch to help with being a lane bully. Remember these are standard runes to feel free to experiment and find what works for you.
Malphite has a good damage kit, but with high mana costs. Maxing his abilities are also situational so let me explain. If you are against a ranged top laner max Seismic Shard first. If you do this then you must max Ground Slam second and Brutal Strikes third because of how valuable the attack speed slow is. If you are against a melee top laner, then max Ground Slam first. This then allows you the luxury of either maxing Brutal Strikes second or Seismic Shard second. Personally I max Brutal Strikes second in this scenario because you can stack armor faster and it will be worth it with your Ground Slam already maxed. Seismic Shard doesn't scale that well past early game and since you start to team fight at this point the movement speed steal from Seismic Shard isn't worth as much as the extra auto attack damage and armor buff from Brutal Strikes.
- Ground Slam -> AA -> Seismic Shard -> AA -> Brutal Strikes -> AA
- Basically this (or any of your abilities) cast in this order is a standard combo. One quick note however, your Q Seismic Shard is a good engage in lane before 6 or if your Ult Unstoppable Force is on cooldown.
Unstoppable Force -> Ground Slam -> AA -> Seismic Shard -> AA -> Brutal Strikes -> AA
- This combo includes your Ult Unstoppable Force, for hard engaging in any situation your going to use it for.
- Make sure you auto attack in between abilities for the Sheen/ Iceborn Gauntlet proc. Remember, those items have a 1.5 seconds cooldown, so spacing it out with your abilities will give you your maximum damage potential. In a teamfight or a clutch situation however, you can initiate with your Unstoppable Force and then just face roll your other 3 abilities for quick burst damage, rather than spacing everything out so you can get all of your crowd control out at once.
- Also, activating your W Brutal Strikes does not deal extra damage to a tower. It will proc Sheen/ Iceborn Gauntlet which will deal extra damage, but only for that 1 auto attack.
Pros / Cons
- Natural Tank for sustain and peel
- Hard CC for carrying game
- An Attack Speed Slow ability
- High Sustain Damage for a Tank
- Stacks armor like crazy
- Weak against AP heavy teams
- Needs Cooldown reduction from items
- High Mana costs early
- Can be kited easily
Since your running Teleport look for roam opportunities at level 6. Your ult Unstoppable Force knocks up and stuns anyone who is hit for 1.5 seconds, so it is one of the best abilities to follow up to in the game. For team fights it will either go 1 of 2 ways, either you initiate with Unstoppable Force, or you use Unstoppable Force to respond to an enemies engage. From there you either want to focus one champion down or engage and then re-position yourself to peel for your team. If you focus down an enemy, either focus the ADC or the primary threat if it is not the ADC. Basically your job is to knock as many people up as possible and then stay on top of their team. However, always look for the best opportunity to use Unstoppable Force, rather than looking for a 4 or 5 man ult exclusively, because sometimes getting a pick is better than landing a 5 man Unstoppable Force and picking up nothing from it.
Malphite is a great Top Lane pick as both a tank and a control pick. As I have said before this guide is only meant to supplement you with the tools necessary to play Malphite effectively, as it is up to you as the player to learn and execute it to the best of your ability. I have a lot of fun playing Malphite and with some practice you will to. Good luck to you and see you on the Rift!