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Maokai General Guide by zimooo2

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League of Legends Build Guide Author zimooo2

maokai tank / mage builds

zimooo2 Last updated on September 1, 2011
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Maokai as a tanky mage


Maokai as a tank

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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 0

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 9

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 21

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For this guide we will be looking at Maokai, the Twisted Treant. Maokai can either be played as a tanky mage or a tank. We will be looking at both in this guide. Maokai might cost a large pile of your ip but he is worth it.

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Mage Maokai

For mage Maokai the reason why we are choosing mana regen / level seals and glyphs is because early game (before the 30 min mark) Maokai has problems with mana. he has a low base mana with a high spell cost. with seals and glyphs at level 7 you can cast saplings as every time it cools down while having a stable mana. the magic penetration is self explanatory. The reason why I use speed quints is because it Maokai is a very slow champion and needs the speed.

Tank Maokai

For tank Maokai we are getting the mana regen for the same reason. for the magic resistance instead of armor is because you are going to get thronmail before force of nature meaning your are going to need the early magic resist. I also use the speed quints and tanky Maokai for the same reason.

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Mage Maokai

For mage Maokai we are stacking three rods of ages is because they give mana and a decent amount of ability power when charged. The point of the mana is that it will stack with the archangels staff. the ability power from the archangels and the rod of ages will then stack with the deathcap giving up to 851 ap with elixirs.

Tank Maokai

For tank Maokai you are also stacking rods of ages but only two. this is becuase they give you hitpoints for thronmail. the force of nature is for the magic resist and the hitpoint regeneration. the banshee's veil is for adds magic resist, hitpoints and mana but it is mostly for the spell shield.

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Summoner Spells

I am using ghost and clarity for both of my builds. clarity is needed because he doesn't have enough sustain otherwise. The ghost is needed because you will often be solo laning top and you will get ganked often if they have have jungler.

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Pros / Cons


- Seeds are good harass
- Amazing farmer
- has a snare
- has a slow / micro knock up
- ult is reduces damage by %20 and stores damadge
- his snare brings him to the target (good for solo fights)
- good pusher


- really slow
- his snare brings him to the target (bad for team fights)
- 6300 ip

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Farming with Maokai is simple. Until you have enough ap you are going farm all of the mages in a creep wave with one seed.
If it is an exceptionaly large wave that the other team has pushed you can use your ult, throw a seed, after it pops cancel your ult.

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Ranked Play

Ranked play is slightly different. You are more likely to be solo laneing. The problem with this is that you are going face to face with another solo laner meaning that you are going to push them hard and you have a high chance of getting ganked. Since you solo lane top there is a bush in river that you should throw saplings in after you push past river so that you know if you are going to get ganked. If you hear you seed poping and someone is at river it is best to use ghost and run as fast as you can back to your tower. It is likely that at this point you are at about one third hitpoints which then at that point keep on runing and ask your jungler to cover for you.

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Solo Laneing

Solo laneing on normal games should be easy for Maokai. What you are going to do is stand at your tower like normal except instead of waiting for the minions to get hit by the tower you are going to throw a seed at the mages and then punch the melee minions. It is not the easiest to learn how to solo lane Maokai and their is no real way to explain it so it is best to try it out for yourself since it takes practice.

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Dou Laneing

Dou laneing only happens if you do not have a jungler or you have a good mid and someone like mordakaiser. At this point a delema comes you dont want to push because you want your jungler to gank and you want your other player bot to get minion kills meaning you cant farm as well really hurting you to being a viable champion. One of the only ways that this can be a good idea is if you have someone like Aniva with you bot. Maokai, Aniva is a really good combo but I will talk about this later in the guide.

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Maokai Aniva Combo

This combo is an amazing combo. With Aniva's Ice ball stuning them, you can throw a seed dealing massive damage for the hit and the explosion. After this Anivia can throw an ice spike at this point early game they will be low hitpoints you can snare them and Aniva can put down an ice wall. The only downside to this is that you will need intense coordination to pull this off. I do not suggest trying this without at least 20 games of experience with Maokai.

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Skill Sequence

The reason for my chosen Skill Sequence is that seeds are required for farming and your main source of damage. Without seeds you are useless. The reason why I max out snare next is because it does a fair amount of damage. the reason why I max out the slow last is because it is only increasing the damage. although I max it out last it still is important to get for without it you are to easily ganked. Your ult is an obvious one to upgrade because it does more damage when you pop it.

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In summery I would highly advise at least trying Maokai on one of his free weeks. His Unique play style is a nice switch up from your normal champion. If you haven't played ranked it might be important for you to know that in my 20 games I have never seen Maokai banned. Not only is he a good champion for ranked he can cover either being a heavy tank or being a tanky mage. As I said before one of his only downsides is that he costs 6300 ip (975 rp). Thank you for reading my guide. There will be more coming for me soon.


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