Mordekaiser Build Guide by Aezuriel
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It Actually Works...
+6 Attack Damage or +10 Ability Power, Adaptive and +15-135 Health (at levels 1-18)
Since the Season 5 “Juggernaut” update, a "new meta" opportunity has remained open to run Mordekaiser in a duo-lane bottom. In fact, trying to solo Mordekaiser is more difficult, as Harvesters of Sorrow ( W ) is a significant portion of his damage/sustain, and is most effective when targeting another Allied Champion. This notion of running Mordekaiser in a lane with a partner is further supported by the passive on Harvesters of Sorrow, which allows him to gain bonus XP from minions he kills while another champion is nearby. While his support still receives 50% XP from normal XP splitting, Mordekaiser will gain More. This forces the enemy team to try and sustain a duo lane vs. a level advantage.
With the introduction to Season 8, changes to the Rune and Mastery system have enabled a Support build on Mordekaiser that is startlingly relevant in a meta of reduced resistances and powerful synergies. No longer are you required to give up the ADC position to have a Mordekaiser bot lane...
But Why? (...seriously?)
Mordekaiser does one thing better than any other support in the game ... Dragon Pressure. Having Morde Bot-Lane means that the enemy team has to consistently pay attention to botlane and dragon in order to ensure that your team doesn't turn a single advantage into a gamewinning snowball. Every dragon becomes like taking a rift herald for your team, and morde is still able to reach gamewarping levels of getting fed and/or creating unblanaced teams with his ultimate ability.
Conversely, Morde actually offers a number of synergies botlane other than dragon pressure, He can provide a shield for a teammate with a modest but relevant amount of healing. He also facilitates wave pushing/control and roaming very well, while still being able to get very tanky. Lastly, he gets to be very scary once he builds Rylai's Crystal Scepter, and he forces the enemy team to split their attention between the ADC and himself... which is a very useful trait to have on your team.
Summon Aery Augments the Shield from your [ W ] Harvesters of Sorrow. It is not huge, but When combined with Revitalize it is more than enough to blunt incoming damage so that you can clear and sustain in lane. Also remember that the Healing from Harvesters of Sorrow is also Affected by Revitalize.
The Ultimate Hat and Transcendence help to bring your Cooldowns down and enable more frequent skill rotations and more moments of panic for an enemy team member. Gathering Storm and Conditioning give you relevant stat bumps, to keep you scaling through the game.
Iron Man [PASSIVE]
12.5% of damage (doubled if he hits enemy Champions) is converted into an absorption shield which is capped at 25% of Morde's max health. This shield decays by 2% of his base health per second to a minimum of 6.25% of his max health.
Mace of Spades [ Q ]
each of Morde's next three basic attacks deal consecutively more damage This ability resets his auto-attack animation.
Harvesters of Sorrow [ W ]
Creates Auras around Mordekaiser and an Allied Champion for 4 seconds. They gain 75 bonus movement speed when moving toward each other, and the Auras deal magic damage around each character (which stacks if the Auras overlap. When closed, the pair are healed for a portion of the damage dealt (doubled vs Champions).
Siphon of Destruction [ E ]
Deals Magic damage in a targeted cone. For each enemy champion hit, Mordekaiser generates a bonus percentage of the shield from his passive Iron Man.
Children of the Grave [ R ]
Passive: Dragon Force* (Detailed Below)
Active: Mordekaiser deals a Burst of Magic damage and marks an enemy champion with a DOT. If the target dies while marked Mordekaiser gains a Ghostly clone of the Champion, under his control.
*Dragon Force [ R - Passive ]
Mordekaiser's abilities and auto-attacks curse the Dragon for 10 seconds. If the dragon is killed by Mordekaiser's team while it is cursed Mordekaiser gains a Child of the Grave clone of the dragon. Any other Ghosts under his control are immediately destroyed, and he cannot use his [R] until the enslaved dragon expires or is destroyed.
Mordekaiser should start with Relic Shield. It offers lane sustainability and health and allows Morde to keep his lane partner healthy and share farm as they are skirmishing in lane. Some lane partners may also choose to start with relic shield in order to facilitate faster wave clearing, and more gold-share.
You will almost certainly need to get Sightstone as early as possible. Quite frankly, If you are playing Morde bot... the enemy team should be focusing you harder than they would a Vayne. Having vision to see them coming is important to staying alive without feeding.
Boots are a Matter of taste, and Face of the Mountain can be completed as you deem necessary. However, after Sightstone and basic boots, you need to be thinking about Rylai's Crystal Scepter. With just this one item, Mordekaiser becomes extremely dangerous in teamfights and skirmishes, as all his abilities create CC, and gain additional benefit from the extra AP. Many games you won't get another AP item and focus more on tankiness. Regardless, Rylai's is your one must-have after Sightstone and boots.
Additional Items (as gold permits)
|Combination Armor/MR Item. This it for when you just need BOTH stats with no Frills attached.|
|If Face of the mountain isn't cutting it, and your ADC needs a little more help surviving, you can pick this up and double down on your shared stats with a teammate.|
|If you are looking for more AP/damage, 99% of the time, you want this to go with your Rylais.|
Early Laning Advice
Got your Items and head out to the map. Be prepared to Leash for your jungler by placing your W on him and walking away. The last thing you want is to steal the camp because your Auras overlap and you get priority damage.
Morde should be starting Harvesters of Sorrow. With a little luck and good positioning, you and your teammate can farm through the first waves while staying fairly healthy through the next few levels. However, don't be afraid to back off and miss a little farm, if you are taking too much poke. This is your weakest point in the game... you don't want to throw it away before 3. It is much easier to heal through subsequent waves than to try and push back in a snowballed lane.
Once Mordekaiser hits level 3, it is time to farm more aggressively in lane. Still be cautious... but from this point forward, You and your teammate should be constantly revolving around minion waves, and harassing enemy champions, if you can help it, both should be fighting AMONG the enemy Minions and maximizing the heal from Harvesters of Sorrow. Once you have vacuumed up the minion wave, back off and wait for the next, unless you managed to score some good harass on an opponent. You aren't trying to create kill pressure yet, just push waves and get gold.
You should be increasing Harvesters of Sorrow [W] in order to maximize your sustain vs harass, and your speed in clearing waves. Be constantly Vigilant in watching for early ganks, especially if you are harassing heavily.
Your farming rotation should be leaving you with more health. If you haven't yet, you should consider going back to buy items. You should also be keeping a third eye on Dragon as the enemy team will almost certainly come to gank you and take dragon before you do. If your team can prep and do dragon... even better. But don't for a moment think that the enemy team is going to let you take 1st dragon without a fight.
While this may seem obvious, I can't understate how Fixated the enemy team will be on dragon with a Mordekaiser on the field. Try to use this to your advantage. You can try to force the enemy team into a bad engage... or you can play it safe and let other lanes push turrets if the enemy team positions first and over-commits. Don't be so hasty to throw yourself in a failed Dragon attempt if you can use the enemy's fixation to down a tower elsewhere on the the map.
Level 7 onwards:
If lane phase isn't over, it might be anytime soon. As the first dragon and tower(s) go down, both teams will be itching to skirmish and leverage positional advantage on the map. Farm for as long as you can, but be prepared to get camped, especially if you have not yet been. Mordekaiser is likely to be enemy #1 on the opposing teams hitlist. If they want your tower that badly, back off. It can be far easier to continue farming a pushed lane than to constantly fend off dives at your tower.
General Notes as a Support
Similar to the Jungle Role, Support has a lot of complexity in terms of thinking outside solely what is currently on our screen. Despite your buildpath, one of the most important things that a support NEEDS to do is ward for their team. Sightstone should be one of the first two items you complete, in order to be able to protect your lane early -- and move out on the map and take objectives later. While changes to Season 8 allow you to skimp on this early ... a good rule of thumb is that the latest you can build your sightstone, is when the first turret of the game goes down.
Just in lane, a good support will keep a running threat assessment of the enemy team. Is either side favored in poking or wave clearing, is either side roaming better than the other? These are important things to take note of as you not only watch the map, but hone your "support-sense" for incoming danger. Even sudden changes in your enemy laner's behavior can be indications that something is amiss. Pay attention!
Aside from just a static assessment of champions, you also need to keep a running tab on performance. Is your Ezreal missing every Q? Is your jungler diving towers recklessly chasing kills? Just because you have a theoretical advantage doesnt mean your team can translate that into a realized advantage. If your team isnt performing as well as they should, hang back and encourage them to take fewer risks, in order to ensure their enthusiasm doesnt blow up in their face.
Sometimes despite your best efforts things just don't work out. Whether someone is feeding intentionally, or just doing poorly and refusing to take advice, sometimes the best thing you can do is cut them off. Don't go in trying to save them from suicidal plays and limit the amount of gold pouring into the enemy team. It sucks to have to let go sometimes, but you can do more for your team by staying alive and looking for other players/opportunities to lend your hand in creating positive advantages, rather than pouring more blood into the well.
Do I protect a friendly tower, or do I let it go?
This choice is one of the costliest in terms of trading and strategic thinking. Towers are the most visible things players see in regards to winning or losing the game of map control. However, Towers are MEANT to go down, minions will kill them on their own given enough time. Investing too much into protect ONE tower just for the sake of keeping it up can be a waste of effort ... and in some cases a death trap.
Ask yourself, how important is that tower to me for the foreseeable future?
Mid lane Towers tend to be the most important since they control access to jungle and the rest of the map. Second Tier towers are next after that, because they are usually the strongest defensible position that enables map access.
First of all, you have to decide if you can even defend the tower in the first place. Pouring a bunch of deaths and gold into the enemy team trying to save a lost turret is a recipe for an enemy snowball. IF it IS defensible, you have to judge if it is not simply worth trading for something else.
If your team is doing poorly, Sometimes you just want to let all the outer turrets go and fall back the the more defensible inner ones. While this may seem inconsistent at first, you have to look at it from the perspective of the enemy team. The area that you have to protect shrinks, and the area they have to attack grows. You can still ward your inner perimeter of turrets and have limited access to jungle. More importantly your team can move and react more quickly to each other than they can. This style of defense typically lasts until the first baron spawn.
If your team is doing well, you have to consider if saving that tower is worth it versus counterattacking and taking one of theirs. Assuming you trade 1 for 1, at worst that trade is even -- at best, you can use that opportunity to get a higher priority tower.
On a more advanced note, sometimes letting a singe tower go can be beneficial to someone on your team. Certain champions can really thrive on being able to farm a long lane, assuming you ward appropriately and control your area well. For example, Letting your outer bot-lane turret fall early can give a Vayne a little breathing room to farm, while freeing up your support to roam and do other things. Just remember to communicate with your team!
Roaming versus Staying in Lane
Later in the game, you will naturally roam, as your role requires you to move around the map and provide vision and objective play. However, even during lane phase, you may find opportunities to roam and do things in other parts of the map... but should you?
First and foremost, you need to communicate with your lane partner, and have a good grasp of whether they can handle being left alone, for even a short time. If they are just going to sit and try and facetank 1v2 you should probably just stay with them. Conversely if they are mature enough, you can leave them to glean a passive level advantage, while you go to assist someone else on your team until you get back.
Ask yourself... what is the objective of this roam? Will it facilitate other plays? or am I just wasting time away from XP. More importantly, what is the expectation that the enemy team will try to catch me in a bad position and capitalize on an easy kill?
Roaming with a purpose is good, but have respect for what the enemy team can do to react, and don't take unnecessary risks.
Supporting as Mordekaiser
The most important thing you have to remember with this strategy is that you are NOT a traditional Support. You have limited shielding and healing capability, and no CC whatsoever until you finish Rylai's Crystal Scepter You shouldn't aim to play a "normal" poke and trade lane ... you will lose.
Follow the level guide above to get a feel for games. Early, you are just trying to clear waves with your ADC and then back off. Don't sit under the enemy turret trying to harass, waiting for the enemy jungler to gank you. If you are getting pushed, clear waves with your ADC under tower. The Key here is that you are playing mostly a passive lane, and only really going all-in on a counter engage. Best case scanarios revolve around you pushing lane to the tower, and then rotating back to base to top off and buy, andd be back to lane before the wave pushes back to your tower. The more farm you and your adc can clear, the stronger you will be when fights matter more ... when you start vying for map control and dragon control.
Once you have Rylia's, you are a credible threat, however, you aren't trying to be the play-maker. Use your skill rotations judiciously, force the enemy team to think twice about head on engagements with your team. Use your ults intelligently -- often, just marking a champ will force them out of a fight, lest they be killed and join your team. This can often give you brief windows of a numbers advantage (even if you don't kill), as the marked player will often staying out of the fight just to "spite" your ult.
When your team takes a dragon, you should be using it immediately to take a tower -- or even a Baron. You don't have to be in front to do this! Just hang back with your ADC and be prepared for a counter-engage, while you micro your giant pet.
Try to be Timely in warding to take dragons and baron. The team that controls the area first and wards appropriately, taking scuttle when possible, has a positional advantage. If your team ISN'T ready to take dragon, don't force. Its better to back off rather than feed a bunch of deaths to the enemy team trying to steal one away.
Most importantly, just remember that you are playing what is truly a long game strategy in a meta that is predominated with early game rushes. Be patient, and be willing to take your time to scale. Preparation is the key to winning the longer game, and all the prep in the world can be undone in a heartbeat, if you get greedy and impatient. Most other supports are trying to peak during Lane Phase. You are aiming for Epic Monsters and Map Control instead.
To Be Continued...
I originally looked at Mordekaiser the season 5 juggernaut update. Since them I have played him off and on, and was surprised to see his viability as a late-game oriented support.
I am now updating it with the Season 8 Changes and look forward to getting more games in with him and adding sections as I go, to make this as detailed as some of my other guides. If there is anything you would like to see, leave it in the comments and I will try to get it in with my other updates.
Thank you for Reading, and don't forget to tell me what you think!