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Mordekaiser Build Guide by Sushi_Cat

Middle [Pre-Season 11] Mordekaiser Guide |"Iron Stands Eternal

By Sushi_Cat | Updated on December 17, 2020
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Runes: Standard Mordekaiser

1 2
Precision
Conqueror
Triumph
Legend: Tenacity
Coup de Grace

Domination
Taste of Blood
Ravenous Hunter
Bonus:

+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+6 Armor

Spells:

1 2 3
Standard
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash

Flash

LoL Summoner Spell: Teleport

Teleport

LeagueSpy Logo
Top Lane
Ranked #41 in
Top Lane
Win 50%
Get More Stats

Threats & Synergies

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

Champion Build Guide

[Pre-Season 11] Mordekaiser Guide |"Iron Stands Eternal

By Sushi_Cat
Hello there, I am SushiElCade. A 360k Mastery Points Mordekaiser Main who has mained both Old and Current Mordekaiser. While I am no means the best Mordekaiser in the world, I hope I can help you learn Mordekaiser.





If you like metal, hulking suits of armor, big weapons, being a lord of death, and crushing your enemies' dreams with an iron fist, then Mordekaiser is the champion for you. Mordekaiser is a brute-force style champion that wants to get in the middle of fights and isolates single targets with his ultimate. Mordekaiser can do these things because he is the only champion in LoL that has potentially constant AoE damage. In addition, he is the only AP Juggernaut in the game. Mordekaiser is mostly played as a Top Laner. However, Mid Mordekaiser and Jungle Mordekaiser are both viable as well.


In this guide, we will go over Pros and Cons, Abilities, Item Builds, Match-ups, and even specific strategies you can apply to your games.

For more resources, I highly recommend you check out the Mordekaiser Mains Discord Server. There are many lovely people there (including myself) that would be happy to give you advice!

Links



Mordekaiser Mains Discord Server
Mordekaiser Mains Subreddit
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Pros


+ Extremely strong in the Mid-Game
+ Lots of AoE magic damage
+ Very powerful ultimate
+ Can easily 1v5 if sufficiently fed
+ Very good at pub stomping low elo games

Cons


- No mobility
- Falls off hard late game
- Your ultimate can be nullified if the enemy buys Quicksilver Sash
- Very bad at high elo
- Very little skill expression
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Mordekaiser’s Passive is Darkness Rise.

Mordekaiser’s damaging abilities give him a stack of Darkness Rise. At 3 stacks a circle of metal shrapnel starts flying around Mordekaiser. Enemies in the shrapnel lose 1%-5% of their maximum HP per second. Mordekaiser also gains 3% bonus movement speed Basic attacks and damaging abilities. If Mordekaiser does not attack any enemies within 4 seconds Darkness Rise deactivates. In addition, Mordekaiser’s basic attacks scale with 40% of his ability power. In addition, Darkness Rise does bonus damage to neutral monsters.

Mordekaiser’s Q is Obliterate.

Mordekaiser slams down Nightfall in a targeted area, dealing damage to everything in its radius. Obliterate does bonus damage if only one target is struck. Obliterate scales with 60% of Mordekaiser’s ability power.

Mordekaiser’s W is Indestructible.

Mordekaiser passively stores a potential shield. 35% of Mordekaiser’s damage is converted into his potential shield on his secondary resource bar. Mordekaiser’s potential shield decays by 8-25 every second when Mordekaiser has not attacked anything in 2 seconds. Activating W gives Mordekaiser a shield depending on how much potential shield he had stored, from 5% of his maximum health up to 30% of his maximum health. The shield lasts 4 seconds and starts decaying rapidly after the first second. Mordekaiser can reactivate W to heal for 40%-50% of his current shield.

Mordekaiser’s E is Death's Grasp.

Passively, Mordekaiser gains 5%-15% magic penetration. Upon activating Death’s Grasp, Mordekaiser pulls all enemies in its radius in a target direction and deals magic damage.

Mordekaiser’s Ultimate is Realm of Death.

Mordekaiser slows an enemy champion by 75% for 0.5 seconds. If the target is still in range and is still visible to Mordekaiser, Mordekaiser banishes the target and himself to the Death Realm for 7 seconds. The Death Realm is a 1v1 arena where you are forced to either fight or evade Mordekaiser. Upon entering the Death Realm, Mordekaiser steals 10% of the enemy’s attack damage, ability power, total attack speed, maximum health, armor, magic resist, and size by 10%. If Mordekaiser kills the enemy champion, he keeps the stolen stats until they respawn. Enemies outside of the Death Realm cannot interact with those inside the Death Realm, and vice versa. Nobody can enter the Death Realm besides Mordekaiser and the targeted enemy. Units outside will see each other as spirits.
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Flash is a very strong spell that is taken by nearly every champion in League Of Legends. Flash allows your champion to blink in a target direction. This spell has both offensive and defensive options, such as being able to get away from an enemy champion by just flashing or by flashing over a wall if necessary. ALWAYS take this spell on Mordekaiser.


Ignite gives Mordekaiser the ability to be much more aggressive during the laning phase. Ignite applies a damage over time (DoT) effect to an enemy champion. The amount of damage depends on the user's level. I only recommend Ignite in cases where Mordekaiser can easily snowball in lane and become a 1v9 Raidboss.


Teleport allows Mordekaiser to have much more pressure throughout the entire map. Teleport allows the user to teleport to any non-player ally unit or structure after a 4-second channel. While you normally want to use Teleport on minions, wards, or turrets pretty much anything can be teleported to. Things such as Rek'Sai's Tunnels , Teemo's Noxious Traps and Zac's Cell Division. Mordekaiser's Teleport ganks are very good because he can use Death's Grasp to pull enemies towards his teammates to secure eliminations.


Exhaust is a very situational spell that only helps Mordekaiser against AD Assassins such as Zed or Talon. Upon use on an enemy champion, Exhaust slows the target enemy and reduces their attack damage for a short period. In my opinion, Exhaust is overkill because Mordekaiser already has an easy time with most Assassin champions, and the ones he has a hard time with like Akali do not prioritize attack damage so Exhaust would be a waste.


Ghost is kind of a meme on Mordekaiser however it can be very effective. Ghost gives your champion bonus increasing movement speed upon use. This is very useful for Mordekaiser because it effectively removes one of his weaknesses of being kited. However, because of the lack of early kill pressure that Ignitegives and the lack of global map pressure from Teleport make Ghost a very fun but not consistent option.
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Conqueror

Conqueror is the most popular keystone for Mordekaiser. This is because Mordekaiser is one of the fastest Conqueror stackers in the game. While it he doesn't stack it nearly as fast as Pre-Patch 10.13 Conqueror, he still can get maximum stacks extremely quickly.

+ + Auto Attack (AA)

Because this simple combo hits an enemy champion 3 times, this triggers Darkness Rise to activate and generate another stack of Conqueror. After this, all you need to do is AA your target two more times to get the 15% healing. Keep in mind that fully stacked Conqueror heals for 15% of ALL damage you deal. This includes the damage from Darkness Rise and gives Mordekaiser constant healing while in combat. If Mordekaiser builds Spirit Visage Darkness Rise can heal him for 40 HP per tick of Darkness Rise. While you won't be out healing Aatrox or Dr. Mundo, the healing definitely makes a difference.



While before Phase Rush took a backseat to Conqueror, now it is on par with Conqueror in terms of usability. While it still depends on matchup, Phase Rush is very good on Mid- Mordekaiser as it makes really bad ranged matchups much more tolerable. For melee matchups, I would still recommend Conqueror

While other runes such as Dark Harvest, Grasp of the Undying, and Fleet Footwork can be run on Mordekaiser, they are too unpopular and not consistently useful enough to warrant detailed descriptions.
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Mythics


Riftmaker is the best Mythic item for Mordekaiser. Just from looking at it, the item feels made for Mordekaiser specifically. Mordekaiser benefits heavily from all of the stats given by Riftmaker. The HP, AP, CDR, and Omnivamp are all indispensable for Mordekaiser. In addition, the passive of Riftmaker practically gives Mordekaiser a second Conqueror to stack up. Because Riftmaker acts as a second Conqueror, this enables Mordekaiser to take some more niche runes such as Dark Harvest or Phase Rush. Riftmaker will always be your default Mythic as Mordekaiser. Unless the enemy team comp has a lot of ranged champions, go Riftmaker every game.



Hextech Rocketbelt is not quite as viable as Riftmaker is. However, it is still worth taking over Riftmaker if the enemy team has many ranged champions that make stacking up Riftmaker difficult nigh impossible. All of the stats on Hextech Rocketbelt are very good albeit without the Omnivamp offered by Riftmaker. In addition, the action is also very good for dueling and clearing waves quickly. Overall, Hextech Rocketbelt is not bad by any means. However, it pales in comparison to Riftmaker in general matchups.



Night Harvester is an interesting item. Just like Hextech Rocketbelt it is not nearly as useful as Riftmaker. However, the movement speed and bonus damage on abilities make isolated Obliterates hit extremely hard even when not fed. Hypothetically, Night Harvester could be used in a full AP one-shot build along with items such as Rabadon's Deathcap, Lich Bane, and Nashor's Tooth. Overall, it is an interesting item but I believe the Mordekaiser Mains community needs to do more testing in order to determine its viability or not.

Legendaries


Rylai's Crystal Scepter has always been a staple item for Mordekaiser even before the rework. The AP and HP the item gives are extremely valuable. However, the main draw of this item is the added slow on all your damaging abilities. This includes Darkness Rise, which is a disgustingly good combination. Rylai's Crystal Scepter is a good general AP option. It's even better for teams with lots of mobility however this does not make it niche like other items.


Demonic Embrace is similar to Riftmaker in that both feel as if they were made with specifically Mordekaiser in mind. Not only does it give AP, HP, and a % damage DoT just like the old version of Liandry's Anguish. While on paper, Demonic Embrace sounds extremely good the multiple nerfs this item has received has made it a very mediocre option for Mordekaiser. It is now in a state where it underperforms as a damaging and tank item compared to other options. However, if you need a mix of damage and tankiness specifically then Demonic Embrace isn't a bad option.


Cosmic Drive is not a spectacular item for Mordekaiser. Typically, after you complete your Mythic, Demonic Embrace, and Rylai's Crystal Scepter you want the rest of your build to comprise of Tank items. However, as a fourth AP item Cosmic Drive is viable. The AP, HP, and CDR are very useful. However, the thing keeping Cosmic Drive from being a must build is the passive. While not terrible, the passive is incredibly underwhelming when compared to the passives of Demonic Embrace, Rylai's Crystal Scepter, Void Staff, or even Morellonomicon. Overall, not a throw item but it's not terrible as a general option for a fourth or fifth item.


Nashor's Tooth is the topic of hot debate amongst the Morde Mains community. With some praising it as a must-buy every game with others saying it is a throw item. Personally, I believe Nashor's Tooth is neither of these extremes. Nashor's Tooth is very good to build as your second item when you are already extremely ahead. In addition, Nashor's Tooth enables Mordekaiser to splitpush to a degree. While his splitpush game is not as good as Yorick or Trundle it is still decent in its own right. However, due to the fact that Nashor's Tooth offers nothing defensively, it is very poor if you are not ahead.
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Gargoyle Stoneplate is a very good general tank item. If the enemy team does not have a single big threat and you need to 1v5, this item is an excellent option. Gargoyle Stoneplate is even better if you're laning against an AP champion. Because Negatron Cloak builds into Gargoyle Stoneplate, chances are you'll have already bought a Negatron Cloak beforehand.



As previously mentioned, Spirit Visage has an excellent synergy with Conqueror. Which is definitely it's most powerful asset to Mordekaiser. The MR helps, but because so many Mages have easy access ways to negate MR, such as Vel'Koz's Organic Deconstruction, Karthus' Wall of Pain, or Ahri's Orb of Deceptionare all common examples. That in conjunction to cheap Magic Penetration items such as Void Staff or Sorcerer's Shoes make MR a decently weak stat. However, the healing increase, the CDR, and the HP are all very good which is why this item hasn't fallen out of style.


I believe Thornmail is a very slept on option for Mordekaiser. A lot of Mordekaiser's hardest matchups are auto attack champions like Olaf, Vayne, and Fiora, so an item that punishes an enemy for auto-attacking you is an indispensable asset. Even if you cannot build a full 2900g Thornmail, the 1,000g item Bramble Vest is a cheaper alternative with the same Thorns passive and builds into Thornmail itself. While it doesn't make the matchups an easy win, it makes them far more tolerable.


Dead Man's Plate currently has a bug on Mordekaiser. The empowered auto attack from 100 Dreadnaught stacks gives Mordekaiser 2 stacks of Darkness Rise. While this might seem incredibly overpowered at first, it's not a game-changer mostly. The bonus movement speed this item gives allows Mordekaiser to globe-trot much more efficiently. So while not a necessary item, it is nice to have in situations where you need to move across the entire map quickly.


Randuin's Omen fills a very specific but important niche amongst the tank items. The reduced damage from critical strikes can make you virtually untouchable by a non-fed Crit champion like Yasuo, Tryndamere, or Caitlyn. The slowing active while not being extraordinary is nice to have, especially because it is the only instant slowing ability Mordekaiser has access to. Basically, only build this item if there is a fed crit hypercarry.
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Super Early Game:


The Super Early Game is Mordekaiser's weakest point. Darkness Rise does a laughable 1% HP per tick Level 1 and doesn't start doing even decent damage until around Level 7, where it does about 2.5% HP per tick. Try last hitting the first three melee minions with Obliterate for maximum CS efficiency. If you cannot do it, do not feel bad. Even the highest-ranked Mordekaiser mains sometimes whiff this. Try poking your enemy laner with Obliterate and either go for isolated hits with it or try to last hit minions while also hitting your laner. This assures you can always get the maximum value out of Obliterate. Do NOT throw out Death's Grasp willy-nilly, since it's the one thing keeping Akali or Darius from running you down in these early levels. However, if the enemy plays far too cocky Mordekaiser can still punish them hard, so you are not completely useless.


Early Game


By 7 minutes, First Blood will be decided and most people should have gotten their first back items. Now you can start posing a real threat. You can now play a little more assertively (depending on the laner of course). And now you are super difficult to gank due to Realm of Death. Now that Darkness Rise's damage is ramping up, you can really start to fight people. During this stage, try to roam to your Jungler if possible to utilize Mordekaiser's amazing skirmish potential. If you stomped your lane, you should have your first item by roughly 12 minutes. Early Game ends once either First Turret has been taken or when Turret Plating falls at 14 Minutes.

Mid Game


The Mid-Game is when Mordekaiser is at his strongest. This is because he already has his core items in Riftmaker and Demonic Embrace while the enemy team hasn't had a chance to rush any Quicksilver Sashs yet. In addition, skirmishes and team fights last much longer in the Mid Game. This gives Mordekaiser a larger opportunity to stack up Darkness Rise, Conqueror, Riftmaker, and Demonic Embrace to really start doing damage. If fed, Mordekaiser can easily 1v3 at this stage of the game. Due to Mordekaiser's powerful AoE capabilities, he can do a lot of damage to a lot of people in a team fight.

Late Game


Unfortunately, Mordekaiser falls off late game unless he has a significant lead. Late game team fights are incredibly bursty due to champions such as Vladimir, Veigar, Kog'Maw, Viktor, etc scaling to become 1v5 monsters. This causes a situation where by the time Mordekaiser has all his items and runes stacked up for the fight, the fight is already over. Even if you somehow have gotten your items stacked up, one or more of the enemy team members have probably bought Quicksilver Sash or one of it's equivelent items if you are a threat. Making Realm of Death useless against them. The most you can do in the late game as Mordekaiser is use Realm of Death on priority targets without Quicksilver Sash and try to clean up teamfights after you come back from The Death Realm.
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While Mordekaiser is not nearly the hardest champion in League Of Legends, he has some tricks up his sleeve that naive opponents won't expect. Try using these in some of your games.

- Death's Grasp can be placed directly in front of Mordekaiser to act as a push rather than a pull. It is one of the few abilities in League Of Legends that can function both as a push and a pull. You can use this unique mechanic to push overaggressive enemies into your tower, or use it to push enemies away from you in a pinch.


- Keep in mind that Realm of Death removes EVERYTHING that is not the enemy champion you sent to the Death Realm. Abilities, Neutral Monsters, {Note: as of Patch 9.23 a bug exists where Akali's Twilight Shroud and Ivern's Brushmaker transfer over to Death Realm due to a bug.}. You can use this mechanic to dodge skill shots that would have killed you otherwise. For example, let's say you are laning against Heimerdinger. Heimerdinger's Turrets do not transfer, making him an easy kill. Other abilities that act in a similar way to this is: Illaoi's Prophet of an Elder God, Zyra's Garden of Thorns, Azir's Arise!, and more. Player spawned units such as Annie's Summon: Tibbers, Ivern's Daisy!, Malzahar's Void Swarm, and more. (Note 2: If Yorick uses Eulogy of the Isles while inside The Death Realm, The Maiden Of The Mist will automatically die when Yorick exits.


- You can use an Auto-Attack on the same frame as Indestructible's Heal. While this isn't game-changing, it is convenient and does feel mildly satisfying to pull off.

- While we've all seen memes about sending the enemy ADC or Support to the Death Realm it can sometimes be better to use Realm of Death on the enemy tank. For example, let's say you are getting ready to team fight. Then BAM, Nunu & Willump slam into your team with Biggest Snowball Ever! and start charging up a 5-Man Absolute Zero. While other Juggernauts would be forced to run or Flash away, you are not just any Juggernaut, you are Mordekaiser. You can use Realm of Death to effectively remove Nunu & Willump from the map and save your team Iron Giant style. And in the Death Realm, you can seriously soften up Nunu & Willump with Darkness Rise or even kill him and steal his stats. While this is a specific example, you can apply this mentality while team fighting to prevent your team from getting wombo-combo'd


- Realm of Death can also be used as a stall tool. You can ult the enemy hyper carry and try to contain them for the duration of Realm of Death. The stolen stats should make them not hurt quite as much. If you do opt for this use of Realm of Death, definitely buy Zhonya's Hourglass for easier stall potential.

- You can use Flash while in the animation for Obliterate. This can result in some pretty flashy (hue) plays and can result in kills you might not otherwise get.

- Obliterate's hitbox extends ever so slightly behind Mordekaiser. While it's next to impossible to hit an enemy with it, it can be very useful for last hitting minions.

- Death's Grasp cancels all channeled abilities in the game such as Fiddlesticks' Crowstorm or Karthus' Requiem. WARNING: Realm of Death does NOT cancel channeled abilities, they just go off in Death Realm.

- It is 100% worth using Flash to get in range to proc Darkness Rise. Since a huge amount of your damage comes from it, getting it up in fights is your #1 priority.


- (Credit to Nomez on the Morde Mains Discord for telling me about this mechanic) If you build Hextech Rocketbelt, you can buffer Hextech Rocketbelt's active while you cast you Q, so you can instantly cast it after your Obliterate animation completes. You can also still use Flash while buffering Hextech Rocketbelt.

- Keep in mind that the active for Zhonya's Hourglass or Stopwatchdoes not cancel Darkness Rise if it is active. This can allow you to heal up a bit with Darkness Rise by it proccing Conqueror while you are in stasis.
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In conclusion, Mordekaiser is a very strong champion when in the right hands. Especially in lower elos where players make stupid mistakes much more often. Mordekaiser is a tanky, high damage Juggernaut who punishes anyone who steps out of line.

If this guide helped, please consider checking out my Twitch channel. I've been trying to stream at least once a week so if you're interested in Gold Mordekaiser / Volibear gameplay go check me out. Have fun playing Mordekaiser, and have fun dominating your opponents in the Death Realm, and I'll see you on the Rift!
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12/16/19 - Guide Published

1/13/20 - Updated information for Darkness Rise. Slight grammatical changes. Added Poppy, Volibear, Annie, Sion, Pantheon, Kled, Twisted Fate, Vladimir, Darius, Veigar, and Shen to the matchups list.

1/23/20 - Updated guide title. Added Cassiopeia, Cho'Gath, Viktor, Fiora, Camille, Ornn, Akali, Kennen, Nasus, and Sett to the matchups list.

1/24/20 - Added Quinn, Vayne, Rumble, Urgot, Garen, and Sylas to the matchups tab.

2/4/20 - Added Riven, Ryze, Renekton, Yorick, Rengar, and Tryndamere to the matchups tab. Updated title of guide.

2/15/20 - Removed Warmog's Armor from the guide. Not relevant or useful enough on Mordekaiser to justify being included. In addition, most of the beginner pandering text was omitted. You should know the basics of LoL before you try to learn specific champions. So if you're here you should know what basic game mechanics are. Also edited the introductory paragraph to further this directional change. Added Yuumi to Synergies tab.

2/22/20 - Added Darkness Rise's bonus damage to neutral monsters under the abilities tab. Edited Introduction. Updated Chapter-Headers so they didn't look like ****. Changed Guide header from Infernal Mordekaiser to Default Mordekaiser

2/26/20 - Added a variant of the Conqueror rune page geared towards poke matchups. Grammar corrections.

3/7/20 - Added the Protbelt + Q buffer under Tips And Tricks.

6/25/20 - Edited/pruned the entirety of the Runes section, updated mastery image, updated the Volibear matchup for Reworked Volibear

9/11/20 - Updated Pros / Cons

12/2/20 - Updated Items for Season 11
League of Legends Build Guide Author Sushi_Cat
Sushi_Cat Mordekaiser Guide
[Pre-Season 11] Mordekaiser Guide |"Iron Stands Eternal
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