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Shaco - Fight Through the Pain

Last updated on January 12, 2011
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

Not Updated For Current Season

The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 0

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 9

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Hello, fellow summoners! Name's Spradic Zoom, and this is my first build to be posted on this site, so bear with me. ^_^' Anyway, I'm starting with my favorite champion, Shaco, because I'm a sucker for stealth in any kind of multiplayer game, and he fits the bill most for me. But with the constant nerfs for him, us Shaco mains have had to stay on our toes for most of the ride.

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So during one game, where I wasn't doing so well, I was forced to recall more than I wished to. So I wondered, "Is there a way for Shaco to live longer without having to sacrifice damage output?" The most obvious answer was, of course, Lifesteal, but I wasn't satisfied with healing a bit, I also wanted a way to mitigate damage. Hence, the "Fight Through the Pain" build is designed to combine situational defensive items with Lifesteal in order to literally fight through damage output, healing by dealing damage. This is going to require some strategic planning, strategy, and observation from the player, so let's get to it.

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For the Masteries, I chose 21/0/9 because as FTtP (Fight Through the Pain) Shaco, you'll want to deal as much damage as you can. You'll also be using neutral monsters to heal in-between fights, so it's a good idea to pick up the Utility Mastery for those buffs, since you'll be getting them a lot. If you aren't too worried about damage, you can try 9/0/21 for extra Summoner Spells, or even 0/21/9 if you want to live longer with the Lifesteal, but you'll definitely want at least one rank of Utility Mastery, and I can't help but specialize in offense, especially since I tend to neglect my summoner spells late game.

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For Marks, I took Critical Damage for the extra damage with Deceive (<3 that skill). But if you don't plan to deceive into most fights, or want to be more of a help in general team fights, you can always go with Armor Pen or Attack Damage.

For Seals, I took Mana Regen, mostly because Shaco has a serious mana problem early game, and being able to regenerate more mana allows you to lane longer for more gold and EXP. But if you don't find mana to be a problem, either because you take more mana pots or because you get the Blue Buff more often, or if you want to focus more on late-game advantages, taking Armor or Dodge% Seals synergize well with this build.

For Glyphs, I chose Cooldown Reduction because it's just a great all-around thing to have. Whether you're spamming JitB's (Jack in the Box's), Deceiving all over the place, or throwing daggers every which way, cooldown reduction is always beneficial. But, if you don't think the CDR (Cooldown Reduction) is worth your Glyphs, then taking Flat Mana can solve your early Mana Problem, or Magic Resist can also synergize well with your build.

Finally, I take Movement Speed in my Quintessences because being able to move quickly is always important with Shaco as well, and it allows for an easier time ganking early game, even giving you a bit more leeway before buying shoes. But, if you feel you move fast enough as it is, any other kind of Quintessence is also just as viable.

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Summoner Spells

For Summoner Spells, I chose the classic ganking tools, Exhaust and Ignite. Those two tools together are very important for getting first blood with a teammate, and they overall make killing champions easier. But, if you don't like using those spells (Especially since the Exhaust rework not fully blinding champions anymore), you can try taking Flash, Teleport, Smite, or even Heal, since it works well with your defensive items. However, I'd stay away from Clarivoyance (Your JitB's are good for warding key areas), Clarity (Mana stops becoming a problem late game, especially with Golem Buff on most of the time), and Fortify (You shouldn't be worrying about your turrets too much). If you DO change your summoner spells, make sure to change the masteries accordingly.

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Skill Sequence

I take JitB first in order to get the Blue Golem Buff early game, but other than that, the general priority is Hallucinate, the Deceive, then Two-Shiv, then JitB. It's always great to have your Ultimate at max value, and you need your Deceive to cost as little as possible and deal extra damage. The debate between Two-Shiv and JitB is close, but since we're not going any AP (except for Ignite's Mastery), Two-Shiv's the better choice for me.

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You'll notice that I have a larger-than average list of items for this build (So the stats page is highly innacurate). That's because it's very situational - the items you get will change depending on what kind of damage your team's dishing out (see mid/late game). However, the item build roughly looks like this:

- Brawler's Gloves, Health Potion, Mana Potion.
- Upgrade Brawler's Gloves into Avarice Blade.
- Stark's Fervor
- 1st Defensive Item
- The Bloodthirster
- 2nd Defensive Item
- Upgrade Avarice Blade into Youmuu's Ghostblade.

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Early Game

When the game starts, you'll want to buy the Brawler's Gloves, Health and Mana Potion as fast as you can, then head to your team's Blue Buff and start stacking JitB's where the golem will spawn (Feel free to /dance while waiting for the cooldown). It takes some practice, but you should be able to place the boxes so that they almost all attack the Golem as is spawns. Take it down as fast as you can, then spawn one more and finish off the other two lizards (It should take 5 boxes to kill the golem, one more when dealing with the lizards. If you took a lot of damage doing this, then take your health potion now. You should also be level 2 by now, so get deceive and move to your respective lane's jungle brush. If you think you're going to be able to get first blood, then go for it, Deceiving in and spamming your summoner spells. But DON'T try this without your partner's help, even if the enemies are level 1, they can counter-gank you if they work together. Otherwise, just stick to your lane, placing JitB's in brush and last-hitting with Two-Shiv when you can afford it. When you get the chance, make sure to recall and upgrade to Avarice Blade for the extra gold, and keep an eye on who might need a good gank to teach him/her a lesson.


Sometimes, there is a jungler that needs Blue Buff to function, or your dumb JitB's seem to all not want to hit the golem, and you're forced to retreat. It's ok, just make sure you're fully-healed and enter your partner's lane anyway. Simply put, make sure to ONLY USE MANA WHEN IT IS NECESSARY. Otherwise, you'll run out of mana when you need it most, and either get ganked or let that gank get away from you. Without blue buff, you may wanna invest in more mana potions on your way to other items.

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By the time you reach Level 6, you should have gotten Berserker's Greaves and most of, if not all of Stark's Fervor for the lifesteal. At this stage, you're strong enough to stick to jungles, letting your former lane partner horde the minion gold and EXP. Use JitB's to handle mini-monster camps, and leave Hallucinate for ganks, Blue/Red Buff, or even the Dragon if you're feeling a bit risky or have a friend to help. Make sure to place JitB's around the jungle brush to inform your team of enemies trying for an ambush, or to inform your team when an enemy jungler might be trying for a particular buff, or even an early Baron. Try to only show yourself when attempting a gank or defending/pushing a turret.

At this stage of the game you should be on your way to building your first defensive item. Hopefully you have been keeping track of who's doing the most damage and how they are doing it (See general tips/tricks). A good guideline follows as such

If you're having trouble with
- A carry/physical DPS, then try Thornmail. It's really cheap for its armor and returns their damage back to them.
- A Physical Nuker, then try Frozen Heart. It's much more expensive, but it gives extra mana, which is good for Mid-Game, and its Cooldown Reduction is amazing for your Hallucinate.
- A AOE Caster DPS, then try Force Of Nature. It supplies the most Magic Resistance for its cost and bolsters your health regeneration.
- A Caster Nuker, then try Banshee's Veil. it's a bit more expensive and provides less Magic Resist, but being able to Block a targeting spell is the perect way to ruin those caster's combos.

If you're not having particular trouble with any enemies, you might wanna try Guardian Angel, Hexdrinker, or even skip to The Bloodthirster. This is where judgment comes in.

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Late/End Game

By now your team's congregating in a single lane in order to either defend or push, so team fights are much more important. The general idea here is to wait for a tank to initiate a fight, then Deceive in, deal amazing damage with your clone, using the Lifesteal to stay alive, then deceive away as soon as you can. At this point, you need to make a choice: If you're not-so-injured, you can crit on another champion for a boost of health and repeat the process. If you are close to dying, then get the hell out of there - simply being alive will pressure your enemies. In the meantime, find some neutral monsters to lifesteal on before jumping into the fray again or attempting to push a different turret. It is also important that you do your best to get the neutrals buffs and Dragon when you have the chance, since you will want to spend time in the jungle anyway.

You should also be nearing your second defensive item. Following the same guidelines as in Mid-Game should help. If the game lasts long enough, swap out your Avarice Blade for Youmuu's Ghostblade (don't forget to use the active!) and make sure to chug plenty of elixers.

Finally, this would be about the time you'd be strong enough to start backdooring turrets. Sure, it can be seen as cheap, but screw that, we're going for it. backdooring is relatively simple - use the jungles to make sure that you don't get seen by passing minion waves, and when you get close to the turret, activate your Hallucinate. hold alt, and right-click on the turret to have your clone tower dive first, then follow him, and use deceive as soon as the turret locks to your clone to move there faster. Then start swinging away, casting JitB to keep minions busy or deal further damage to the turret. If you did it right, you should be able to take out the turret within 15 seconds, then proceed to get the hell outta dodge or go for the inhibitor if it's now vulnerable. When an enemy comes to stop you, use Deceive to escape, or at least make them waste time chasing you down. Sure, you might die, but this late in the game, turrets are what really matter.

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General Tips/Tricks

To end the guide, I'll note a few basic tips and tricks for new Shaco players who want to start using this build.

- Your Deceive can teleport you through walls and other terrain. Use it to your advantage when getting away from or into a fight!
- Deceive's bonus damage works with your lifesteal. Use it to gain a boost of health in a team fight!
- Try to avoid using Deceive when jungling. If you get spotted or ambushed, you do not want to have your getaway spell on cooldown!

- Your JitB is extremely useful for revealing brush. Try casting it in brush before blindly walking in!
- Your JitB is also good for ambushing unwary champions. When casting them on brush, try to also be in brush so the enemies don't see you putting it down!
- Your JitB is the ultimate jungling tool. Use them to take the damage from neutral monsters while you beat down on them!

- Your Two-Shiv Poison is the only direct ranged attack Shaco has. Use it to last-hit minions when going melee is too dangerous!
- Two-Shiv Poison applies its slow when thrown. Use it to support teammates who are trying to chase or run away from a target without getting in the enemy's face!
- Two-Shiv Poison also applies its slow on normal atacks, but now when it's on cooldown. Avoid throwing them at enemy champions unless you're sure you can kill them within three seconds!

- You can use alt+right-click to move only your clone. Try sending your clone as a decoy for enemies or to tank turrets for you!
- Shaco's clone does not show the aura of neutral buffs. Be wary of relying on the confusion if you have buffs on your real self!
- Shaco's clone, like JitB's, can protect you while you make a clean getaway or recall from brush if you are desperate!

- Avoid using Deceive while in a turret's sight, and enlist help to gank enemies with an Oracle's Elixer!
- After buying The Bloodthirster, try killing at least 20 minions to benefit from its passive before risking your life!
- Furthermore, The Bloodthirster's passive is NOT unique. If you're having a really good game, try stacking Bloodthirsters for a true lifestealing experience! (You will sadly have to re-kill 40 minions each time you buy a new one though.)

Other than that, mastering Shaco just comes with experience. Please do vote and comment on my guide, and also do not hesitate to make criticisms or suggestions if you have them. For now, have a good time ganking!