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Skarner Build Guide by metalhydra273

Jungle [S13 Split 2] The Final One [CHALLENGER SKARNER JUNGLE GUIDE]

Jungle [S13 Split 2] The Final One [CHALLENGER SKARNER JUNGLE GUIDE]

Updated on December 5, 2023
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League of Legends Build Guide Author metalhydra273 Build Guide By metalhydra273 26 4 52,559 Views 1 Comments
26 4 52,559 Views 1 Comments
League of Legends Build Guide Author metalhydra273 Skarner Build Guide By metalhydra273 Updated on December 5, 2023
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Runes: Gotta Go Fast

Domination
Predator
Cheap Shot
Eyeball Collection
Relentless Hunter

Sorcery
Nimbus Cloak
Celerity
Bonus:

+10% Attack Speed
+6 Armor
+65 Base Health

Spells:

The Truth
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash

Flash

LoL Summoner Spell: Gustwalker Smite

Gustwalker Smite

Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
Extreme Major Even Minor Tiny
Show All
None Low Ok Strong Ideal
Extreme Threats
Ideal Synergies
Synergies
Ideal Strong Ok Low None
The threat list serves as an ordered tier list, with the hardest in each tier appearing first (besides the mirror ofc). They are also generally based on head to head matchups and often do not reflect Skarner's actual win-rate versus the champion. Skarner facilitates and is facilitated by his team, so enemy team composition and game states tend to hold the most weight in determining how likely you are to win. The threat list serves as my opinion of what junglers are generally hardest to deal with for Skarner, with several of these matchups fluctuatiing heavily based on the game state. If you're looking for ability order explanation, I've left that section in the built in notes to read alongside the graphic. It's not too long I promise...
You may now carry on.
FLASH VS GHOST
Don't get me wrong, Ghost is a great summoner spell with good synergy in letting you dps enemies down, force impossible to stop Impale scenarios, and allows you to keep up or outrun other Ghost users, but I can't let go of Flash here. The potential offensive tools it provides outclass Ghost 's for Jungle , letting you catch up to any Fracture procs or get closer to guarantee a stun, synergizing well with Nimbus Cloak, should you're range ever be slightly off, or it's necessary to go early to reach you target in time. Of course, you have the classic Flash Impale combo, which allows you to quickly surprise opponents or hasten your engage in a way that ghost doesn't do, as it can be more reactable to. These immediate cc proc windows gives you engage timers and angles you might not have otherwise and is especially paramount in high elo where players won't leave themselves exposed in a misposition for very long. Predator is also meant as a poor man's substitute when you want extra approach power.

Gustwalker Smite is generally the best for the extra speed and roaming power to keep up with a game full of dashes. Speed is always important in any game after all. When you gain it's passive, remember to chain bushes together to keep up that speed.
Predator is fun, that's why I run it. Before the nerfs it was a great option but now it's still alright (or at least better than you think), though clearly not as good as it used to be. Predator still has a lot going for it with Skarner. It gives him extra chase potential to open up picks, run down someone who just dashed away, or (the big one) make ganks more effective. Skarner's ganks are a bit lack luster as he doesn't get in well without a big flank and is reliant on landing e to catch up. With Predator, you close in on your flank faster and can get close enough to secure stuns more reliably. With the intial jungle pathing I run, I try to maximize its efficiency by buying it as early as possible, which has its pros and cons with potentially big early game ramifications (more on all of that stuff later), so remember to be a bit careful or even try it out in some normals first if you wanna emulate my strategy. The rune won't help you with fighting too much, but Skarner isn't a dedicated duelist with my build, so the utility brought by Predator is put to good use.

If you do wanna be more aggressive on your own or play for 1v1 duels (or just think Predator or that my strategy sucks) then I'd recommend running Conqueror instead if I had to pick something other than Predator.

The lesser runes are pretty self explanatory, focus on speed.
Domination Runes:
Cheap Shot gives you extra damage on your burst window after youe Fracture proc. Skarner can't consistently make use of the other options anyway, as Sudden Impact will only give you lethality on Flash plays or for when an enemy facechecks a bush with you in it, and Taste of Blood is purely a laner's rune.
You might find Eyeball Collection to be the most consistent way to stack adaptive damage gain as you should be achieving it naturally as a jungler through playing the game. Zombie Ward can provide extra utility if you think you'll be clearing a lot of wards, but it's likely to take a bit longer than getting 10 kill participations, so leave it up to preference for consideration. If you'd rather use Stealth Ward over Oracle's Lens, then Ghost Poro can be an option.
Relentless Hunter > Ultimate Hunter since AH will patch your ult cooldown anyway, and you aren't likely to spam it unless good opportunities come often. Skarner needs all the roaming power he can get to keep up with the mobility creep and lackluster clear speed compared to other junglers.
Sorcery Runes:
Nimbus Cloak is a must have for Flash users. the eztra boost of speed it grants is really nice to have as a failsafe in case you're barely out of range for the Flash Impale combo. It's also nice as an additional speed boosting option with Smite.
While Waterwalking is nice for junglers and will be useful for your objective Crystal Spires, Skarner gets a lot of speed boosts through both his kit and my rune setup, so Celerity is actually going to help give you a good chunk of extra movement speed throughout the game. On a melee champion like Skarner, having the ability to outrun your opponents will give you kills or force summoner spells that might've been impossible otherwise, so the rune serves a solid add for your build.
My core items are relatively straight forward in theory regarding the type of build I aim for, but I slightly vary between my picks depending on the team comps involved and the state of the game. I pick up Predator Boots early and aim to buy Sheen and Ionian Boots of Lucidity as soon as possible (in that order) for a nice early game power spike. From there I shift my build to rush either Black Cleaver or Spear of Shojin, then I close out the build by finishing one of the Sheen mythics, being Iceborn Gauntlet or Trinity Force. In short, I tend to pair them up based on if I'm looking for more tankiness + utility vs pure damage, but I will go into detail regarding each choice for better insights as this will be your bread and butter. Thankfully, if you're indecisive, these items share several components, such as Kindlegem, so you can decide to switch up your build strategy based on how the early game plays out.
Rush:
Black Cleaver is a good general use item that can be built in any situation. You can fully stack it quickly thanks to Crystal Slash's low cooldown. The armor shred it provides will help increase your ad teammates' damage alongside your own. This item is a must have against tankier comps. It works well with any of the sheen mythics, and will be your main go to rush item.
Spear of Shojin is a more aggressive alternative that is especially useful against squishier champions to increase your own damage. While it has less pure Ability Haste than Black Cleaver, it gives more stats and speed to help run down enemies and make you particularly dangerous on your own. While I don't consider it a big difference from its alternative, if armor shred isn't going to be very useful in the game, you may as well pick up Spear of Shojin for the extra individual firepower. Keep an eye on this one though, it may receive some nerfs that make it directly inferior to Black Cleaver for Skarner.
Mythics:
Iceborn Gauntlet provides some nice utility on the front line when you manage to get in, being especially nice to help you survive vs other melee champions. Skarner isn't often meant to be your team's main source of damage, so you'll often want to start getting some tankiness early on, and IBG delivers on a lot of the stats you'll be looking for. You may lack magic resist for a bit, but you'll be slowing enemies when you reach them with your auto attacks, and you'll be a bit tougher to slow down thanks to the mythic passive this item provides. I don't recommend rushing Iceborn Gauntlet though, as you'll notice a significant lack of damage. I always pair this item with a Black Cleaver rush, giving Skarner respectable damage while serving as a utility front liner aside from using Impale.
Trinity Force is a very nice aggressive mythic to maximize your threat potential and help snowball games. This item really helps you mow down enemy champions and jungle objectives alike. This is the item you aim for to really blow up squishies and be a pure damage threat yourself. While good with Black Cleaver, this mythic item will always be my choice if I'm running Spear of Shojin. If you're feeling unstoppable and don't think you'll require the tankiness from Iceborn Gauntlet, consider picking Trinity Force. All of the stats it provides are put to good use and your Sheen enhanced autos really pack a punch for Tons of Damage. Be wary that you may end up a bit squishy with no armor or magic resist, but if you're building Trinity Force you're playing for carry potential and for the game to either last long enough for you to build on that tankiness later, or to keep snowballing and advantage to win the game. If you have a particular amount of gold, you may consider rushing this item, though it's not necessary to do so.
Divine Sunderer may be tempting to take against tankier comps, but with my build Iceborn Gauntlet is usually a safer choice as a good generalist item to let you sit on tanks and carries alike. I mention it, however, for those who run Conqueror, as you will make better use of the sustain brought about by Divine Sunderer. It tends to be a mix match vs Trinity Force, and is definitely still good on Skarner, but without Conqueror I believe you'll prefer to run one of the other two Sheen mythics in any given situation.
Skarner mains know this already, but if you're new, Skarner's build can be incredibly versatile, with many solid options to make good use of. As a stat stick, you'd be hard pressed to find an item you can't get value from, but generally for the late game, you're looking for resistances, health, damage, and ability haste in that order. As important as ability haste is for Impale's cooldown, your core already contains a lot of it by design, so it's no longer a major priority, though more is welcome. While I tend to have my preferences for these items, I'll go over all of the items I personally like to consider when closing out my build.

Typically I build a defensive item 3rd after my core and from there it's pick of the litter among the listed. Since my build tends to lack it early, with my tank option ( Iceborn Gauntlet) only providing armor, I'll dedicate a section to MR items first before going into the others. If MR isn't needed, go straight for an armor item instead. Build order isn't as stagnant here, so buy which component you value more in a given scenario.
Magic Resistance:
Abyssal Mask is probably the most consistent of the MR items, providing its main bonus by being near multiple enemies, which will happen often in teamfights where you need it most. It has the added benefit of complementing your AP teammates' damage, giving it extra purpose for consideration in a build. The stats here are probably the best you'll get out of an MR item, even giving you some additional ability haste, so it can serve as a solid go-to when you need a dedicated MR item.
Force of Nature is another great item for the MR slot. The main differences between this and Abyssal Mask is how you gain the extra MR from each item's respective passive. Force of Nature is best considered against battle mages that will be hitting you a lot rather than playing to burst you, allowing you to ramp up both MR and movement speed without having to be in a teamfight to get the most out of the item's passive bonus. Champions like Azir or Sylas are examples where you can get good value out of Force of Nature, but you'll still also want to consider if Abyssal Mask is still worth more in the game scenario.
Gargoyle Stoneplate is getting a mention here as a generalist item when you want something to cover both defenses going into the late game. A dedicated MR item isn't always necessary, so Gargoyle Stoneplate and its shield can be enough to patch against an AP champion while also providing some armor to deal with the more present AD threats. Since the majority of your items include health, you'll be getting a hefty shield to work with to help shore up your front line issues and protect you as you attempt to get your cc off in teamfights.
Common Late Game Picks:
Dealing with auto attacking AD carries (ranged or not)? Frozen Heart is for you! Generally my most common armor item, but I may flex it out if a different effect is more pressing or if attack speed slow isn't gonna be very useful, like vs Jhin for example.
Sustain is pesky, Thornmail is a good choice against sustainers who auto attack you. Weigh between Frozen Heart or even build both if you want. If you need another item quicker, but want grevious wounds ASAP, don't be afraid to sit on Bramble Vest for a while.
A good offensive/defensive item to help you front line while also giving you additional AD. Skarner has a good base AD stat that ramps up to being in the top 10 in the entire game at level 18, meaning Sterak's Gage gives a staggering 70 AD if the game goes that deep. This is a good item agaisnt burst, and is one I like to consider either in the late game after I've gotten the resistances I need, or as a more aggressive alternative to Gargoyle Stoneplate.
Similar to Sterak's Gage, Guardian Angel is mostly an anti-burst option, punishing the enemy for using big damage cooldowns to stop you, or as insurance for if you make a misstep. This is almost purely a last item slot for hyper late game scenarios. I typically prefer Sterak's Gage instead of Guardian Angel in scenarios where either my team won't be able to protect me well while I revive and/or if the enemy comp can easily just re-kill me. Nothing is stopping you from building both if you want. Stopwatch can also provide good value in objective fights, allowing to stay alive in critical moments.
Niche Options:
Dead Man's Plate is a good, all-around stat block that Skarner appreciates when the uses of other armor items aren't as pressing, especially with additional movement speed. While certainly no longer apart of my core, it's still a good item on Skarner that I like to build occasionally as a generalist armor item.
A nice MR choice, Turbo Chemtank is often overlooked for other items. I see it is a luxury purchase to help you snowball the game. Alongside Predator, Turbo Chemtank will make it nearly impossible for the enemy team to stop you from getting in if your team is ahead. It could also serve as a useful late game option if you need an extra push to reach your target. I don't recommend it as a pure ME item, but it'll help shore up that side of your defense, and you should definitely try it here and then if you or your team is in a good game state.
Skarner has a love/hate relationship with cc, as you're prone to getting locked down and picked off before you contribute anything to a fight, whether you're tanky or not. Silvermere Dawn might be a good consideration against champions that like to block you out by stunning you. It also can fill a budget MR slot. Buy Quicksilver Sash and sit on it if you'd like to aim for a different item first.
A very situational item, Anathema's Chains can find use when there's a main, identifiable threat to your life. This can be a great crutch vs fed assassins or a singular AP threat to help you survive their burst and potentially punish them with your cc, which is aided slightly by the tenacity reduction given by the item.
An aggressive version of Thornmail to use when fed or when you don't care about resistences. The stats look pretty nice for Skarner, don't you think? Unlike with Bramble Vest, you may want to finish Chempunk Chainsword rather than sit on Executioner's Calling since you're building this to play aggressive and try and close out games with its damage.
For that one game where the enemy has a lot of crit. Randuin's Omen can be nice against the Yasuos and Tryndameres of the world. While I typically go with Frozen Heart, it's an alternative worth considering depending on the enemy team comp.
A good idea if Yuumi decides to be your friend that day. Spirit Visage can be worth it as an alternative MR item when you have a dedicated healer on your team to help you front line. It'll boost Crystalline Exoskeleton too, which is neat. Generally a very rare item for me to build, especially with me not using Conqueror or Divine Sunderer, but it is an option.
Warmog's Armor synergizes with Crystal Spires by allowing you to never back again. Can be useful in some hyper lategame scenarios.


BLUE SIDE CLEAR


RED SIDE CLEAR


While you would normally follow a standardized jungle pathing depending on what lane you want to hover first, I use a specialized pathing to get the most out of running Predator. Before doing this, I try to get my team to capture the Crystal Spire opposite of the Red Buff , as that's where I plan on doing/contesting the Rift Scuttler . The other Spire is both generally unimportant, and risky since teammates will always need to walk around the wall to get it rather than walking straight into the river due to how the map is. If your team does manage to get the extra Spire, you may consider the possibility of stealing the enemy Blue Buff with it.

SPIRES AND WARDING
On blue side, I'll try to call my Top Laner to take the spire by Baron for me as I look to find a Stealth Ward on the Top Lane tri bush. This is usually the safest and most reliable way to get meaningful information with your Stealth Ward pre 1 minute, as to potentially spot the enemy Top Laner in the bush, or walking through it later. If the enemy's level 1 isn't hostile and it isn't guarded, then warding the enemy jungler 's Raptors or Red Buff are also both good options. The idea is to Recall at around 50-55 seconds to have enough time to reach your own Red Buff , so for the initial tri bush ward I prioritize, I will Recall in the Baron pit and Stealth Ward right before the cast time finishes (try practicing this in practice mode, as the Stealth Ward range can be difficult if you aren't super familiar with League's wall hitbox mechanics). This ward only ever gets punished if either the enemy Top Laner or Jungler starts with Oracle's Lens without swapping trinkets, which, is typically, very rare. If the river gets dangerous early though, just place a Stealth Ward in the river's bush and leave.

Red side's strategy has significantly less nuance for warding, I Stealth Ward the Top Lane tri bush as soon as possible to potentially scout invades as I sit by the Raptor entrance. This also helps the Top Laner leash you without getting attacked on their way to lane. You'll also want one of the bot laners to grab the spire by Dragon since you'll be pathing towards that Rift Scuttler . There's no reason to Recall this time, as you're already on your red buff's side and you'll have to wait for Oracle's Lens's cooldown anyway, so just guard your Raptors to cover both jungle entrances in conjunction with the Stealth Ward.

Upon backing, I buy Oracle's Lens in case I want to gank at level 3 and the enemy laner placed an untelegraphed Stealth Ward. You generally want to look to gank early if your target is pushing up. If you see them walk towards the tri bush though, it's better to not give the enemy jungler the information that you're there or waste time for them to take your Blue Buff camps, so ignore it and back unless there's a super free window to gank where the vision would not matter. If your team doesn't want to motion for the spire, you have time to do it yourself, but you won't be able to back for Oracle's Lens and will need to walk back, so keep that trade off in mind if you decide to make it.

PATHING EXPLANATION
I will always start Red Buff , then go Raptors into Krugs . I don't see much of a difference between smiting Red or Krugs, so I tend to take it where I smite Krugs if I get a good leash, otherwise I smite Red. Anyway, this clear gives me the option of ganking either Top Lane or Bot Lane early at level 3, otherwise I back here and head to the Blue Buff side camps. Keep in mind you're more likely to find a gank on red side for top lane. Peek at the situation and debate if a gank is possible; if you know or suspect the tri bush you'll be going into to be warded, take the back as to not reveal yourself and alert the enemy to punsih you by stealing your Blue Buff camps. Look for a quick/successful gank and get back as soon as possible. You'll have enough to buy your Predator Boots to have on hand for your first non-mid clear ganks and if you took a bit longer, you may have enough to get a Control Ward as well. Clear you're Blue Buff (and if you have time before crab spawns or know you'll be uncontested, Gromp too), and take the Rift Scuttler . If no ganks are available, clear your remaining camps, and the currently respawning Raptors and Krugs . If you still don't have a gank, Recall and buy Sheen.

If you check out my games enough, you may notice how I slightly deviate things based on the situation. The guide written here is pretty generally how I structure my pathing every game. While you may miss out on a strong side lane early, you'll at least have 1 opportunity to hit each lane. Feel free to communicate this with your team if they're good at setting up ganks, and you can start a snowball earlier than you might've otherwise. It's a riskier setup that allows you to make the most out of Predator in your early game ganks pre level 6, but can open up punish opportunities for the enemy. If your level 3 gank takes too long, you may lose out on camps and ever important exp progress towards Impale. If you like my build, try to build up practice with this run if you find yourself losing momentum due to it, as an understanding of the goals/risks from this pathing should help you make the good decisions that allows it to potentially shine.
If your team can help it, set up for objectives early and often. Utilize Crystal Spires to add some extra pressure on the enemy team. Many comps struggle to engage against Skarner without being significantly ahead. If you're on the backfoot and the enemy sets up first, generally try to target the jungler if you're playing more for the objective itself than the fight. Enemies cannot use Smite while Impaled, so keep this in mind for steals or when preventing a 50/50. During the laning phase, don't be afraid to come mid to push in a wave if your Mid Laner is not roaming effectively. Skarner is meant to facilitate damage, so the more people roaming around, the strong your ganks/dives will be. This can also be critical for objectives, as setting up first with a strong 3 or 4 man can be instrumental in ensuring your macro runs smoothly.

Objective play comes down to how you teamfight, which is mainly about using Impale for Skarner. I will keep hammering this down, but game experience will help you a lot with figuring out your pick spots and positioning. One thing I must mention is that Skarner is not a great frontliner with all of his defenses generally being used offensively (his cc and Crystalline Exoskeleton movespeed). You'll tend to be weaving in and out and using your cc and Iceborn Gauntlet (if built) as needed to support your team. As you play with the build more, you'll come to learn when you're free to run the enemy down vs retreating a bit for cooldowns.

The meat of your teamfighting though, is deciding on an Impale target and executing on the play. Think of the game state. If the threat is too large and they have to be the one to get Impaled, communicate that with your team, and look to find a catch by any means necessary. Ideally, this is not the case and you have some options. If your team would benefit by breaking the enemy front line, or if a backline option isn't easily accessible, then take the frontliner and open up an opportunity for your team to break through and clean house. If your Flash is available, look to go for the biggest enemy threat. Consider team comps and game states in your decision. The more times you teamfight, the more you'll see what tends to work and what doesn't based on how the fights go based on your Impale.
Press the 'R' key on an enemy champion within range.

Ok so you already knew that, fine, but do you know when to Impale? Unfortunately, I do not have the power to instantly make your ults perfect, hell, mine aren't consistently perfect either. However, I will try to go over as many situations as possible where you'll be looking to impale somebody. Remember that your Impale timings are critical and will decide whether you are really making the most out of Skarner's strengths or not. Some ults will win you games, some blown ults will lose you games, and balking on Impales may waste a kill opportunity, and other times using Impale will cost you a better opportunity when it's off cooldown.

Let's start with some important micro notes. It's good practice to press R on your target before you're even in range. Don't tunnel too hard on this if you're just walking in, you don't want to limit your movement options. Instead, think about doing this if you have a bunch of speed buffs (to the point where you don't need to sidestep), if the enemy is juking in bushes, or if you plan to use Flash. Your ultimate will instantly activate upon getting within range. This allows for concise timings, and makes the Flash Impale combo strong thanks to impale's very short cast time. Enemies can not react and flash/dash out of the way if done properly. This is also notable against champions dashing into/over you. Champions like Lee Sin, Zac, and Rengar can get caught out of the sky if you Impale them before they enter your range. For example, if a teammate gets Sonic Waved by Lee Sin, I may stick to them and prepare to or constantly press R on the Lee Sin in order to catch him if he follows up with Resonating Strike. Using Impale prematurely also will help you deal with certain abilities. Here's an example against Nocturne (even though this was an unintended example).
Back to Lee Sin, if the timing is right and you believe he wants to Dragon's Rage you away, Impale him prematurely so that when you walk up and he kicks you, you will drag him along with you. This works against all kinds of repositions, such as knockbacks from Vayne or Poppy. This same logic applies to Blast Cone, such as in the following example.

What if you're in a duel? You can't do anything during Impale, right? Well assuming you haven't used Predator yet, you're in luck! There's been a bug where if you cast Predator during Impale, you'll be free to auto attack them during the duration. It may not always be a huge difference, but if you keep it in mind it can help shore up Predator's dueling weakness at least a little bit. More likely though, you've used Predator to approach your opponent. Consider who you're fighting. If the have crowd control, especially telegraphed onces such as Nocturne's Unspeakable Horror, time Impale to match their cc window. This will eliminate a potential advantage in the fight, and sets off a, likely, key cooldown in their kit. Twisted Fate and Yasuo] both have telegraphed crowd control to enable their respective ultimates, but you can disrupt this timing if your able to use Impale.
If the enemy has mobility, save it for before they reach a wall to show them you aren't done with them yet. With a good understanding of how the enemy will approach the fight, you should determine when the ideal Impale timings are assuming you need it to secure the kill. Against certain dedicated escapes, let's say a Jarvan IV or Camille is out of position. If timed properly, you can cancel their dashes by ulting them right as they start their escape. They will be out of a cooldown and should be a nice yummy kill for you or a friend. If you're on the losing end, Impale could buy precious time for you to get help or get your Fracture back to quickly proc it and book it out of there.

Some champions actually have very specific counter measures. For example, Skarner has a nice option that I've used to shut down many a fed Zoes by using Impale while she's in her ultimate, Portal Jump.

Lastly, 'unstoppable' champions are actually 'stoppable' by suppressions. This gives Impale special functionality against certain champions' abilities, so I recommend checking out this reddit post for more details. https://www.reddit.com/r/SkarnerMains/comments/g76b06/lesser_known_skarner_trick_you_can_ignore/
A couple notes on specific examples though: look to halt Hecarim's Onslaught of Shadows with Impale if he has a threatening engage angle or is looking to steal an objective from you

Moving on to strictly pick opportunities, let's consider who you're in a position to kill with Impale. Ideally I won't use Impale if I don't think I need to for a kill to be secured, but sometimess this can result in disaster. If the champion has sustain, mobility, or burst, it may be best to Impale them so they don't slip away or turn the tides on you and your team. Support s generally aren't threatening on their own, but if you need Impale to kill them, whether it be before a big fight to threaten a 4v5, or early in the game where you want to get your team gold, just bite your tongue and press the R key. If there is a clear target on the enemy team that you need Impale available to shutdown, it may be best to save it for that particular champion. Otherwise, it can be best to peel away a utility or front line threat that could disrupt the fight, and with their abscence gives your team extra pressure to secure objective positioning or engage in a fight. If a fight isn't looming and you have Flash, keep an eye on shutdowns and find the most valuable target to take down. If a game deciding objective is coming up, consider saving your Flash for the fight, but if a juicy kill can only be taken with Flash, it could also be worth getting your team the gold before then. That decision will be yours if the situation arises.

A quick aside though, most support champions have very little Impale priority, but Milio, Zilean, and Soraka are all relatively high priority, as they can each make your Impale efforts useless with Breath of Life, Chronoshift, and Soraka generally being a nuisance by providing her team with a lot of sustain.

There will be some reiterating here, but speaking of objectives, remember that unlike stuns, suppressions block summoner spell usage, meaning you can not use Smite while suppressed. Ideally, you're the one with objective control, and you simply need to bait the enemy jungler into a steal attempt and Impale them to shut it down. However, if you're the one trying to steal and must pull off the steal, try to find a way in by any means necessary, and time it such that you reach the enemy jungler and can Impale them to snatch away the Smite window. Of course, you can just get snuffed out, even with Flash, but it's an option to consider for contested Dragons or Baron . If a fight is all you need, look to take out the largest threat possible and refer back to the previous section.
Skarner's combos consist of methods to chain cc together and finding picks with Flash. Here are some major combos to keep in mind:
Impale + Flash
Though it's called "flash ult," you actually want to press R first for instant activation if in range. Doing it the other way around can work, and you can utilize Nimbus Cloak speed to extend your range a bit, keep in mind that it's not a true combo unless you use Impale first.

Fracture + Right click (Auto proc) + Flash

Fracture + Impale + Auto proc
side note: when practical while ulting, click behind the enemy at the last moment to cut them off from an escape route

Fracture + ( Impale + Flash) + Auto proc

Do this over walls to give the enemy a nice surprise.

If you let the Fracture proc sit for a bit before executing the combo, you can extend with a second Fracture after stunning with the first one. The more ability haste you have at the time, the more likely you'll be to have the option to extend your own cc chain.

Remember to use Crystal Slash and Sheen procs as much as possible during combos. Also if an enemy is already stunned, wait until proccing the Fracture mark such that you extent the stun window.

If you wanna see some combos in action, my latest montage details a lot of the flashier micro plays I'll make with my abilities. Hopefully seeing them in real situations helps you get a feel for what they might look like, though if a more tutorial esc video is desire, let me know. I might consider making one if it feels necessary. For now, you can check out that video here:
P.S. Impale + Predator + Auto Attack
Don't forget about the Predator bug for when it comes in handy!
Make sure to check tab often after the mid game. Too many times have I forgotten and tried to Flash Impale a carry only to find out the hard way that they bought Quicksilver Sash, and I just blew a 5 minute cooldown and potentially lost a game altering fight or pick. When an enemy has Quicksilver Sash, look to target other carries if possible, but if they're too much of a threat to ignore, remember that you have 2 forms of cc. Land Fracture first and force the enemy to choose which cc to block. Generally you'll want to proc Fracture first, but using Impale immeditaley after can be tough if they choose to eat Fracture's stun, as you'll need to reac to whether they use Quicksilver Sash or not. If you just need a stun and don't need to drag them anywhere, consider ulting first and right clicking to auto to get a quick stun to punish Quicksilver Sash usage. In short, you'll want to bait out Quicksilver Sash with one of your cc abilities and punish with the other.
Extras
Before I get into some final thoughts, here's a mini chapter of some fun extras.

Utilize Crystal Slash to spot out stealth. If you don't have Oracle's Lens available, this is about all you can do to counterplay it, but it at least could help you find out where an enemy champion is or is not before you can play the game again. Here's an old example of spotting in action.

Remember me gushing about playing with Singed mid? Here's some examples of it being oppressive early. Try to strike early and often. This also gives a rare example of a lane state where I consider ganking at level 2.

Tracking Junglers traveling towards your Crystal Spires is very good. Do that to set up ambushes (pun not intended).
A quick tidbit before you go. Fed Skarner is awesome. When ahead, you basically get to do whatever you want, running down the enemy and overwhelming them with pressure. However, Skarner when behind can struggle to get windows to do much. Keep your head in the game and look to play like a second support if that's what it comes to. Skarner is a utility champion, hyper carrying is not your goal. What Skarner does really well is playing off of fed teammates. If you only have one winning lane, play with that teammate. Using them can bounce you into a more relevant position where you can start doing things on your own again. Skarner's cc is almost always a threat if a teammate can facilitate getting you into the fight, and your stuns can give them the windows they need to dominate the game. You're not playing a super high skill champion. You can get away with some screw ups here and there. Skarner takes huge advantage of cocky enemies with shutdowns, so even if you wanna beat yourself up over bad early game play and what not, find a way to get someone ahead or play off of the person that's ahead.

Whether you're winning, even, or losing, Skarner does best when he can play off of a teammate going ham. Always keep tabs on the game state, weigh your options, and form a gameplan for yourself. It won't always work, but it can give you the tools into clawing back into games you have no business winning. Some comps will be brutal for Skarner, so if someone gives you a win con, make sure you keep it in mind when deciding how to play the game.
I'm metalhydra273, self-proclaimed proven best Skarner jungler in North America. I have spent the last 5 1/2 seasons in Master+, reaching Challenger in 2018, 2022, and this year as well as finishing Challenger in 2021. I currently stream weekly on Twitch, which also features my channel mascot, Metl (if their presence brought any confusion). Having started playing in early 2013, I've played as all 3 Skarner iterations, with the current one being my favorite thanks to having a consistent and fun to use cc option in Fracture that other iterations lacked. As a kid playing with a laptop (using touchpad for the 1st year!), I eventually settled on playing Skarner because I thought he looked cool. I am proud to say I have never been Bronze, starting my first 2 years as silver before steadily climbing the ranks over the years before finally finishing Challenger during season 11 in a wild end of season climb that saw me need to replace my laptop mid way to get it fixed, which inspired me to return to streaming and begin a regular content cycle. It's a crazy story I wish I saved more proof of, but it at least help set me where I am now. While I a coming off a down split where I ended in Master for the first time since 2018 (and roasted myself about it in a video), I've been working on a bounceback campaign thanks to my best ranked stretch ever and managed to reach Challenger this split. Now I'm looking to try and finish the job if possible, though keeping up with my low amount of games can be difficult.
As mentioned, having been playing for 10+ years I've gone through a lot playing Skarner and much has changed over that time. This guide will likely be the last one for Skarner as we know it, with any future ones likely being a repurposed version of this one with updates rather than something completely new, as I prepare for the uncertainty of Skarner's re-release sometime in 2024. When the time comes, I'll have to assess how much I like neo- Skarner, and if I plan to continue my work/life/league balance going forward after that. Maybe Project L contributes to pulling me away to allow for more loosely scheduled content and giving me some more freedom with my time, but that is yet to be seen.
As accomplished as I say I am, I'm basically an unknown, so I appreciate it if you're reading this and/or you're willing to show some support. I appear as metalhydra273 on Twitch, Twitter, and Youtube, so if you're looking for more content or updates, please visit my pages. If you have further questions or would like to leave feedback, feel free to leave a comment.
Thanks for reading!
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