Build Guide by Lokast
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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.
Maokai was strictly a support-tank character when he was releases. But after the newest patch, Riot gave him a great boost in the right direction. He is a fun champ for pushing, initiating with Sapling harassment. Hope you all enjoy my build, been playing him since day 1, I've included my AP support build, and my Tanky support build (all of which revolve around pure Health items, I will explain later)
Mark - Magic Pen
Seal - MP5 (Mana starved champ, support build helps with that)
Glyph - AP per lvl
Quint - AP per lvl (not Fort Quins, because of item build, want to maximize dmg)
I have two builds, first one.
- 9/0/21 : This is good for doing alot of dmg and helping teammates with improved clarity and minions buffs, late game you should always grab blue buff when its up, MANA is a BIG factor in maokai's dmg output.
- 9/21/0 : This is a build for newer summoners to Maokai, more survivability and dmg reduction. Once you have learned his spell rotation and can do good dmg, move to the 9/0/21 build. You'll never look back.
I like to build Maokai with pure Health items, reason being that the more health you have the longer you stay alive while using his Ult. Maokai's ult works in the way that the more dmg you take, when the ult explodes hit back for a percentage, (I've kill fed Cho'gaths at half health with the ult) need health.
I start with the sapphire crystal and a MP pot. This enables me to stay in the lane longer to harass with sappling. Then build the catalyst, and boots after, with enemy team has a lot of crowd conrtol get Merc's Treads, if they only have 1 or none get Sorcerer's Treads. Finish your Rod of Ages, and this is where the hurt begins, Get a Rylai's and Sunfire cape starting with Giants Belt both times (like I said Health is key). Grab a Deathcap to increse AP alot and finish off with Guardians, just incase they ACTUALLY kill you... then you get triple kill when they walk off. =)
I max out my (E) Sapling toss ASAP taking (Q) at level 4
next max out (W) for root and Ult whenever available
note: early game do not harass champs with saplings. use them to clear minion waves and farm gold. Maokai is very mana starved and you will hate when they try to setup a gank and you are out of mana.
skill rotation: HARASSMENT - I start with (E) on the enemy then use (W) to root them in place so sappling will explode on them, then (Q) when they try to get away.
WHEN ULTING - use (E) root them in place with (W), put ult down (R) exhaust them and (Q), rinse and repeat, (E)(W)(Q) and pop (R) when they are about to leave circle to hit with Ult dmg.
Summoner spells / Summary
I got Improved Exhaust (purely to keep enemies in Maokai's Ult)
and Improved Clarity (Maokai is still a support so when teammates need mana you got them, plus again Maokai is very Mana Dependent)
To summarize Maokai, he is a pain in the *** to enemies when played correctly. Following this build is completely up to you summoners, I'm sorry I didn't know how to do the fancy link thing with pictures, but trust me this build works...
Maokai had VERY good synergy with IMO: Nocturne, Swain, and Jarvin
-Good amount of dmg
-Hard to kill with all Health items
-Great team player with Ult
-Just plain fun to play, I never get bored playing him
-Early game mana starved
-Hard to solo lane with, but with new patch as long as you watch your mana its manageable.
I hope you all enjoy these builds and please give me back input, I've put a lot of thought into this build and it works...