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Maokai Build Guide by

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Maokai - The AP burst / AP tank / pure tank!

Last updated on November 21, 2011
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Team 1

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Top Lane
Ranked #22 in
Top Lane
Win 51%
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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.



Offense: 9

Honor Guard

Defense: 21

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 0

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Hi, I would like to start saying that after i met Maokai all the other tanks just dont seem to interest me at all. Maokai for me is a complete champion, he can do lots of stuff depending on your team and what is happening during the game.
I would also like to say that the AP burst Maokai IS IN TEST! I cant say for sure that it will work 100%.
I also apologise earlier for my spelling mistakes, im brazilian and I know my english is not perfect, so please if you have any doubt about what i meant some where because of my english writing feel free to ask in the comments.

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First impressions

Well here i will describe what i think of Maokai and how i like playing him:

-Early game: Your main goal in the early game is to buy your 3 first items, which are: Philosopher's Stone, Aegis of the Legion and Mercury's Treads. As you start with Sapling Toss you will have some mana problems but that is nothing compared to the benefits of this amazing spell. Sapling Toss (i will for now just call it "E") has lots of uses during the game. First of all its a really good harrasing spell because of its range and damage, mastering the timing and positioning for it to deal the full damage will increase the amount of gold you get and your enemies lose in a pretty big amount, you can use it to check bushes and prevent ganks, its duration on the ground is of 35 seconds so if you have some spare mana just throw it on that bush that might have an enemy champion waiting for an opportunity to kill you. Your high damage will start when you get level 4, that is, when you have all your skills, you will be able to immobilize during a good time an enemy so your lane partner or jungler can finish the job. Your best combo as Maokai is: E W Q and used in this way, throw the E on the enemy and right after that use W to snare him, that gives your E time to explode and deal the max damage and gives your lane partner time to get to your opponent, after your W snare the target move one step after him and use Q to knock him back a little and slow him, giving you and your partner even more time to kill him.

-Mid game: Now that you have a little bit more resistance and the team fights are starting every where its time to learn how to use your ult. your ult is an AMAZING skill in all the possible ways. When the fight starts make sure that it isn't moving forward or backward or using your ult will just be a huge waste of mana, i can remember all the times i ran out of mana before the time because i used ult and my team retreated right after i placed it on the ground. As you might have read, your ult is a SUPER defensive skill which reduces all the damage your team mates inside of it take by 20%, it means that if they would take a damage of 100, it would become 80 and even lower because of their armor and MR; but it doesn't ends there, its also a good damaging spell that absorbs that damage that was reduced and converts it to an area damage that will only hit the targets if you use the ult again, die or run out of mana. Also your ult is a good skill to help you escape, place it before you when running away and explode it right after you pass through it. Don't forget to use your Shurelya's Reveire to initiate or help your friends escaping. Here your E might be at rank 4 or 5 already, so use it to kill those minion waves and farm, i recommend using it on the mages as they will FOR SURE die and killing the warrior ones with basic attacks, that gives a lot of money and helps you to get stronger even faster.

-Late game: Here you will just have to decide what to buy next, if you are playing AP burst chose betwen Abyssal scepter and Zhonya's Hourglass; if you are playing as AP tank chose betwen Randuin's Omen and Banshee's Veil; if you are playing as Pure tank chose betwen Frozen Heart or Banshee's Veil, in this case these are the both the last item, they will just complete your build in the other two cases they will be the fifth item, you can always make changes depending on your enemy team, for example, if your enemy team has lots of AP's and just one AD focus on MR and the same for the opposite situation, lots of AD's and just one AP focus on armor.

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Summoner Spells

As you might have noticed each build has a different set of spells, all of them apply for each other. I like getting Flash all of the times and getting what i think I have lack of, for example, if you have lack of mobility across the map grab teleport, if you dont have engouth damage and want some kills in the early game grab Ignite and if you think that his skills spent a lot of mana get Clarity.

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Be greedy and steal the kills from your AD carry!

Think with me... in the early game you have a lot of damage, but as you are not a really strong AD and has high cool downs your chances of getting a kill are not big at all... then don't be afraid of using that ignite on your enemy , usually my scores are something around 4-6 kills/2-4 deaths/13-18 assists. all the kills i get are during the early game, that allows me to get my items faster and with that help my team faster, your AD carry will get tons of kills during the game (at least we hope he is... right noob Tryndamere?).

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Thank you for reading, sorry for the lack of Images and videos, its my first guide and i decided to start writing it at 1 AM and right now its 2:30 AM here...
I would like to say that i am not an expert when it come to runes, i just placed what i think i would use if i had them... (i just got level 30 and haven't bought my runes yet)
Please comment and tell me what you think, what i should change and what i should keep...
And again sorry for any spelling mistake.

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