Build Guide by Yarick
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Rammus is a very sturdy tank with a nasty taunt amongst other things that can be used to setup a kill or defend a team mate. This build is focused around 2 things
1) assisting your lane partner and keeping them alive in an attempt to feed them
2) building a strong tank for the end game
Before selecting to play this character there's a few things to consider
1) is there any other tanks on the team? im normally the only tank on the team a 2nd off spec tank could be useful but I would choose a different char if there are more
2) do you have a good partner ideally you want a ranged DPS who you are in voice with but more on this later.
3) do you mind playing an assist char? as that's what Rammus is, sure you can pick up a few kills here and there but ideally you want your partner to be fed not you.
Spiked Shell during the build you will gain armour but this ability doesn't make a huge difference unless the opposing team is stacked on physical damage.
Powerball good for chasing champions, killing minions and a small but useful slow that can be used to setup kills or help team mates escape.
Defensive Ball Curl very handy at killing minions and stopping you from taking a good thrashing.
Puncturing Taunt for this build this is the ability you really want there's many ways you can use taunt and your lane partner will love you for it.
Tremors nice area damage on a short cooldown use this a lot and i mean a lot, if you taunt some one hit tremors, running away with chaser on low health hit tremors, large minion wave hit tremors, smacking a turret guess what hit tremors.
Rammus is built as a tank and so I have chosen the 0 21 9 approach.
The 21 Defence should be self explanatory basically any thing that will make me last longer is there ive missed out on strength of spirit as the low mana pool makes it not worth while and only 1 point in ardor as the build does not focus on attack speed or ability power at all so any more would be a waste.
The 9 in Utility were a littler harder to choose but i settles on Haste and perseverence quite quickly but found the last 5 harder to place, I finally settles on more experience and gold which is handy as you will get taunt quicker and more gold is never a bad thing.
The selected runes are there to boost your armour and resist as its this backed up with a good amount of health that will make you a good tank. By the end of the build you will have a good amount of health and so I chose theses runes as its harder to get good balanced items to take there place whilst health items are quite easy and simple.
The chart maybe wrong as I haven't written it down whilst playing but as a general rule of thumb I get one of each starting with powerball i then take them in the following order of priority
Defensive Ball Curl
the reason being you really want to get your taunt fully done as soon as you can and this will setup the kills.
Ghost and Cleanse is a great combo for any tank it enables you to stay in the fight that little bit longer and make a clean escape. Most Rammus builds have Flash so you can jump minion waves during power ball (which does look good and is fun) and I do rate this spell for attacking Rammus builds but this is not an attack build so I go for sustained speed and cleanse for a clean get away.
There are some key pieces of equipment that should really be explained, the following are what I believe are core items of the build.
A very handy item health mana regen and gold this should be first on your shopping list and is a core item of your build.
Health and a slow which is a good boost early game and can be upgraded later.
This is where the bulk of your health comes from, without this you wont last long in a team fight.
Upgrade Phage to this for more health and a more reliable slow.
Leave this quite late so you get the most out of Philosopher's Stone but its a nice health and cool down boost.
Elixir of Fortitude
Don't forget this health potion whilst I leave it till late game after I finish Frozen mallet before even considering it its a nice little boost
The rest of the items I feel are very interchangeable and and should be changed depending on who you are fighting
Aegis of the Legion
very handy item a health boost and a very nice aura that will look after you and the person your protecting. I normally purchase this item early in the build unless the opposing team is heavily unbalanced.
Another Balanced item that I normally leave for end game, this gives you a good amount of armour and resist for a reasonable price, and the revive will mess the other team about if you do die in a team fight.
Used against heavy mage teams the health, resist and spell block is very useful although its rather costly for early game and the mana boost is a bit of a waste.
Fighting a team with lots of characters like Master Yi then this is the item for you all you need to do is defensive ball and let them kill them self.
Normally used as a endgame item against physical teams its armour health and multiple slows just make it mean.
During the lane phase your job is to protect your partner in an attempt to get them fed. Now to do this you need some one who can do a lot of damage and actually needs you so there is little to no point being paired with a tank/tough/healer as you wont be an effective pair.
The following characters really need your protection and once fed do a devastating amount of damage to the other team
The following list do not need you to protect them as much but Rammus will work well when paired with the following characters.
Anivia doesn't pack as much damage as most and egg form normally saves her early game.
Corki Valkyrie can be used to escape
Ezreal Arcane Shift can be used to escape
Fiddlesticks with Terrify and Drain your not needed as much although when you both have your Ults going this is deadly
Kennen Lighting Rush can be used to escape but once again both using Ults is very deadly
Shaco whilst Shaco only has a little ranged attack you are very useful at setting up kills
Tristana with Rocket Jump she can escape
LeBlank Mirror Image will assist in her escape
Morgana the shield and the point she has more health than most makes you a little pointless
Ok so you now have your partner its time to protect them, you have two ability's that can stop an attack which are taunt and powerball. Taunt can stop a single enemy for upto 3 seconds which can also be used to setup kill and drag people in certain directions. Powerball can be used to stop multiple attackers that are close together but only for a brief moment giving your partner time to get just out of striking distance.
If you are against a stealth character in your lane such as Twitch you want to stay within a inch of your partner and as soon as Twitch jumps out taunt and defensive ball this will make twitch hurt him self as well as a little damage from your attacks and hopefully give your partner enough time to get the kill, this tactic requires you to keep a good amount of health up but if done well Twitch will rapidly become useless.
Ideally you want to be in voice chat with your partner so they know if your attacking or trying to help them escape as some situations require unusual actions that can confuse random players. The other benefit from being in voice chat is being able to quickly shout "taunted" signalling them to unload all they have got onto the character your head butting. Or if your paired with a character such as lux who has a shield and snare once you got them out of danger they maybe required to get you out.
Whilst you are a tank youare rather weak to start with and so be careful where you go especially before you get warmogs during the lane phase you are probably the strongest turret defender in the game so if your left on your own fall back to the turret if your lucky a enemy will overextend and you can taunt them into the turret.
As far as equipment go I start with Regrowth Pendant you could purchase a potion as well but I don't bother, on my first trip back I ideally want to buy Philosopher's Stone and Boots of Speed as this sets you up so you can stay in lane for a long time. After this you really need a health boost and I some times take Ninja Tabi before finishing Aegis of the Legion. After this you normally spend the rest of the game just bulking up on health, around the time team fights start you really need to have the 2 health items from Warmog's Armor and to complete this as soon as possible.
Team Fight Phase
During a team fight your job is to initiate the fight by taunting any none tank character on the other team and then hitting Tremors and Defensive Ball if your getting hurt (you normally are) if you do this correctly and your team is right behind you your target will be dead. If they are still focusing you at this point then great all you need to do is stay as long as possible and then run away possibly using Ghost and Cleanse if needed. If how ever they are hurting a weaker character powerball into them to give your team mate a chance to escape.
Once a team fight has dispersed powerball can be effectively used to chase or escape but remember chasing with powerball is often pointless if no ones there to back you up so be weary of your surroundings and consider if there trying to lure you off so they have a easy attack on the weaker characters.
You wont win every team fight its just the way the game goes but knowing what to do when its all going pear shaped can be the difference between winning and loosing the game. Ideally you want to make it so your whole team falls back to a turret and the fight restarts there but this rarely happens normally you end up making the decision of do I save my team mates but run into certain doom or do I flee and let them die. Your decision should be based on several things such as
how much health do I have?
does a nearby team mate have a shield they can use on me?
will power balling into the other team actually save my team?
is there team tanky or DPS?
these thing you need to make a split second decision on if you have enough health or a team mate has a shield that with your defensive ball you have at least a chance of walking out of this alive then try and save your team. However if the team is DPS especially short ranged DPS its often better you turret defend as I have been able to hold off a whole team solo at a turret long enough for mine to respawn but on the other hand a tanky team will just run in and spank you as you don't do enough damage to them so its better for your DPS chars to survive.
Tips and Tricks
There are many tips and tricks you will pick up whilst using Rammus here are a few that i use
Powerball everywhere this skill makes travelling a breese and combined with ghost in times of urgency you turn into one hell of a fast cannonball, which is very handy for chasing down fleeing enemy's or returning quickly to your turret. One thing to watch out for is you pass in front of the wolf camp its likely you will hit them on the way past so navigate this correctly.
Taunt into turret this is very handy during team fights or when people over extend during the lane phase just taunt them and step back. Also remember the turrets top priority is to target any champion hitting a friendly champion so wait for a a suitable victim before taunting.
Taunt out of turret similar as above but wander into turret range taunt a weak character the turret will often target you so defensive ball and walk the poor sod towards your team
Spam Tremors seriously this skill should be used a lot with its small cool down spam it at anything towers/large minion waves/taunted champions/hidden champions.
Wave Pushing despite only having his ult for good minion killing Rammus can effectively push waves with a combination of powerball and defensive ball (if the minions are targeting you) this with the speed you travel with powerball can make you the best person to leave the middle lane to push another before quickly returning and another bonus is if you get jumped on the way you have a better chance of surviving it.
Taunt and run the best example of this was in a game where after an attack our team dispersed and was falling back where I found a enemy sion on 3/4 health beating on a friendly teemo. Me and teemo we had about 5 bars of health between us so I had to do something or teemo would be dead and I would be next. I powerballed in to bounce sion off teemo and then taunted and defensive balled whilst walking away leaving sion to follow me and teemo to slap him silly. Once my taunt ran out sion targeted teemo again who stood firm waited till the last moment before hitting blinding dart and dropping sion. This is a very situational tactic and could have gone rather wrong but running into the situation as I saw it teemo was going to drop very soon and sion would stun and drop me as well so even if teemo would had ran off instead we would have been in a better situation.
Turret Diving Late game Rammus can happily take a beating from a turret so if your team is going turret diving ensure the turret is hitting you the best way to ensure this is to initiate it with a taunt and sit there with defensive ball on and Tremors. This can also be used to help weak characters pass turrets to they can give chase.
Defensive Ball Curl this ability saves your from so much pain learn to time it well and you will survive much longer
Cleanse this spell saves you so much and has a ok cool down on it use it wisely
Powerball when snared powerball takes a little time to get its speed up so if your snared use this time wisely and assuming your not surrounded warm up your powerball and you will get a fast get away
Rammus is a team player from the start as a body guard and setting up kills to the end as a tank that people actually want to target. He is best played as the protector of the team with a good amount of DPS characters to back him up.