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Skarner Build Guide by shrader

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League of Legends Build Guide Author shrader

Skarner Click and Drag

shrader Last updated on April 10, 2013
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Jungle Role
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Jungle Role
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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.



Offense: 0

Honor Guard

Defense: 21


Utility: 9

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(graphics done by my freind Alex Yerkes)

Centuries ago, there lived a race of creatures as ferocious as they were wise. The Brackern were unusual beings blessed with the earth's primal magic, embodied in the form of crystals. Their kind knew of an arcane ritual to bind their life's essence to a crystal, communing with the magic embedded in it. With this power, the Brackern thrived in the Odyn Valley, protecting both creatures and crystals alike. Despite attacks from those looking to claim the primal magic, it seemed that nothing could get past the Brackern's defenses. Nothing, that is, until the devastation of a Rune War.

A vicious battle was fought near the Odyn Valley and the unleashed chaotic magic poisoned the crystals. The Brackern began to grow sick and die, and no amount of defensive magic could reverse the effects. To avoid extinction, their only course was to hibernate underground until the wars stopped. The strongest, most intelligent Brackern hibernated closer to the surface to awaken first and assess the world's condition for the return of their race. The recent mining operations and violent escalation in Kalamanda were enough to awaken the first of these vanguards. When Skarner burst to the surface, he lashed out in anger and confusion. Reason eventually won out over his anger when he realized that the agents of the League who found him were simply functionaries. Skarner was invited to the Institute of War to share the Brackern's story. In return, the summoners told him about the history that his kind had slept through. Much had been done to curb the unchecked use of magic since the Rune Wars, but it was obvious that the world was not yet safe for his kind to reawaken. For now, however, there is a place where Skarner can use his power to change the world into one to which his kind could eventually return: the League of Legends.

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This is my first guide as you can tell by my lack of creativity and images,but its work in progress.

This guide only goes into detail about jungling!!

Skarner probably one of the most funnest champs to jungle with. He has one of the faster clear times and the funniest ult in the game Impale. This a guide for someone who plays Skarner very aggressively, so if that does not sound like your play style then this is not the guide for you.

In the guide ill explain how i play Skarner and what i do with him.

I am by far not the best player and this is just my opinion and choices for Skarner and may not be the best setup for Skarner but it works for me.

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Good gap closer
Fast clear times
Continuous slows
Successful Ganks
Naturally Tanky
Natural high base damage
Small built in Ghost

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Blue Dependent
CC hates on him
Team oriented late game
Item Dependent late game
Skill reliant

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I choose Ghost and Smite.

Smite- For the obvious reason, your jungling and smite is necessary to clear the jungle effectively and fast. Also it nets you 10G each time you use it.

Ghost- I run Ghost for many reasons, It beats out Flash for escaping or closing the gaps, and it works great with your alt as Flash does not work with your alt. Ghost also lets you scale the map quickly when needed and paired with your Crystal Slash and Crystalline Exoskeleton and boots not many champs can out run you.

Possible other choices.

Flash - Teleports your Champion to target nearby location.

Is alright personally i don't like it because you cant Flash with your alt unlike Ghost, but it is useful for escaping or those surprise ganks. If your good Ghost will beat out Flash.

Exhaust - Exhausts target enemy champion, reducing their movement speed and damage dealt by 30% for 2.5 seconds and reducing their attack speed by 50% for the duration.

Now exhaust is nice for the reduced damage and the slow to help getting those ganks but Skarner has effectively both of those effects built in so in my eyes its a waste.

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Passive- Energize
Basic attacks lower the cool downs of Skarner abilities by 0.5 and double against other champions.

Crystal Slash - Q Skarner lashes out, dealing physical damage to all enemies in a small area around him. He charges himself with Crystal Energy for 5 seconds if a unit is struck.If he casts Crystal Slash again while empowered by Crystal Energy, the ability deals bonus magic damage and slows all targets hit for 2 seconds.

This ability is your main slow and you want to use it whenever your attacking an enemy to keep them slowed and it does decent damage. This ability will allow your teammates to effectively kill your target.

Crystalline Exoskeleton - W Skarner receives a shield for up to 6 seconds. While the shield is still active his movement speed and attack speed are boosted.
Attack Speed Boost: 30 / 35 / 40 / 45 / 50 %
Movement Speed Boost: 15 / 17 / 19 / 21 / 23 %

This Ability also self targets, max this ability second.

Keep in mind this is a perfect skill to use when turret diving or chasing kill targets down to slow them and get the kill. Also when used correctly can keep you alive very well paired with later items.

Fracture - E Skarner summons a blast of crystalline energy in a line which deals magic damage to enemies struck and marks them for 6 seconds. If any marked targets receive further damage from Skarner, or if they die when struck by Fracture, Skarner will consume the mark to heal himself. Subsequent marks consumed and unit kills will heal for 50% of the last.This ability is useful late game for more damage healing, but only viable late game so max it last.

I use this ability later on the damage isn't amazing on it, but the heal it what shines late game ,helping you stay alive longer.

Impale - R Skarner suppresses an enemy champion for 1.75 seconds and deals magic damage to it. During this time, Skarner can move freely and will drag his victim around with him. When the effect ends, Skarner's target will be dealt the same amount of magic damage again. This is a small ranged targeted ability and mainly used to initiate a team fight or gank.

Always try to alt the kill target and use either ghost or W to get them as close to your teammates as possible , never waste your alt. Your alt can also be used to protect teammates to. (Example when my buddy was stunned and fiddle sticks alted on him i alted fiddle sticks and dragged him away.I could take the damage my buddy could not.)


At the end of your Impale if you turn around you get a bit of extra distance and set your self up for a nice slow with your Crystal Slash.

Use your Crystalline Exoskeleton when your Impale to drag your targeted champ a bigger distance.
(Ghost works even better)

When your dragging your enemy use your Crystal Slash and again when the Impale is up to get the instant slow.

Use Crystalline Exoskeleton to close gaps when the enemy flashes.

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Always ask Mid and Top/Bot to help leash and protect you from being counter jungled as it helps a lot. Since the recent patch the big wolf and warith have 300 more health then before make sure to get a good leash!

Jungeling Route

Wolves - They spawn first and re spawn quickly. Have someone help leash them. Spam your Crystal Slash every time it is up.

Blue Golem - Have your leash start it and run in there and spam Q. Have your leashers stop when the gloem is at 50%. Use a Health Potion here and as soon as you level, use your shield. Smite the Golem and finish off the little golems.

Wraiths -Run in use your Crystal Slash then your Crystalline Exoskeleton and spam Q every time you can. Focus the blue Wraith

Mini Golems - These can be tough, use your Crystal Slash then use your Crystalline Exoskeleton. Spam Crystal Slash and Crystalline Exoskeletonwhen there off cool down. If your below 50% hp use a potion or 2. Kill the bigger of the two first.

Red Lizard - Again hit your Crystal Slash then Crystalline Exoskeleton and spam both when off CD. Then Smite when the golem is low enough. Use your remaining potions here if you need to.

Wraiths - Run in use your Crystal Slash then your Crystalline Exoskeleton and spam Crystal Slash every time you can. Focus the blue Wraith

Wolves - Run in use your Crystal Slash then your Crystalline Exoskeleton and spam Crystal Slash every time you can. Focus the Brown Wolf.

After this I would recall and grab your full upgraded boots, then assess which lane needs a gank more and proceed to gank.

When Jungling never stop Farming always killing your jungle monsters and Creep scoring when your protecting lanes.


Generally if you want to kill dragon as Skarner i would wait till you have Spirit of the Ancient Golem and Iceborn Gauntlet completed so you have the survivability and damage to effectively kill dragon and not waste time doing so.

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Keep in mind you will not always have your Impale or Ghost up but for these scenarios i will tell you what i would do if they were up.

When ganking in general, there are a couples of things to keep in mind so you can choose the most optimal time and way to gank. The first chance you have to gank is at lvl 3 but you will be without your boots and your damage and survivability will be on the low side.

Personally i like to keep clearing the jungle until i have the 1000g that will let me buy my boots and full heal up.You can get your boots and 2 successful ganks off before the blue and red buff are up again.

Your job as a ganker isn't to do the most damage but you control your target so you and a teammate can get the kill.

Reasons to gank at lvl 3 are if your enemy is low or your lane is being pushed, otherwise i would just keep clearing.

Bottom Lane

I would start at bottom lane first as you will be on that side of the map. Always let the lane know that your going for the gank and be cautious of your teams mana and health so you don't screw your team over. The general rule is to target there adc first as the support is not the biggest threat. The best way to get a successful gank off is to catch your opponents off guard generally coming from behind them or from the river.

As Skarner the best way to maximize the potential of a kill is to Impale and use your Crystalline Exoskeleton on your target and drag them to your teammates and proceed to slow them with your Crystal Slash and attack you target until he is dead. If you can after the kill you attempt to get the double on there support. Remember you have Ghost if you need to catch up to someone who flashes or is a good distance.

Its never a good idea to turret dive if both opponents are still alive so i would back off here and if you wanna be daring then your on your own.

Mid Lane

If you choose to gank mid there is many ways you can go about this. Either going in from either side of the river or come in from behind them. Either way is fine because getting behind your opponent is in my eyes the best way to gank. If you can get this to happen then use your Impale and W to again pull your opponent as close to your turret or teammate as you can and continue to slow with your Crystal Slash if they Flash most of the time it isn't worth chasing but if its not on cool down Ghost is always a good idea.

Top lane

Top lane isn't normally the best choice to first gank as you wont be on that side of the map, but if you choose to gank top then it works like this. Access the lane to see whats the best way to go about the gank. If the lane is being pushed then i would go in from the river,if your teammate is pushing i wouldn't really gank, but if your persist ant i would go in from there jungle.

If you decide to go in from the jungle the basic plan of action would to be Ghost and Impale your target as far away from there turret as possible use your Crystalline Exoskeleton as a shield for when the turret hits you. Immediately while your pulling your target use your Crystal Slash once and then again when your alt is up to get the slow. If you think you can get the kill then persist even if the target goes to his turret.

If your top lane is pushed then go in from the river, you can either use Ghost or Crystalline Exoskeleton to with your Impale which ever you feel is more necessary to get the successful gank off. What i would do is Impale your target and drag him either to your teammate or your turret and then proceed to slow and chase him till you get the kill.

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Team fights

Now during a team fight most of the time you as Skarner will engage. Generally the best idea is to catch the kill target off guard Ghost, Impale and drag him to death. If you do this be ready cause as soon as you grab the enemy there team will engage and most likely target you.So you want to use your Crystalline Exoskeleton to keep you alive and when dragging the enemy run as close to your teammates as possible. If the kill target dose not die slow him with your Crystal Slash. After this point your main use in a team fight is to slow,damage kill targets and do decent AOE damage your Fracture can hit multiple enemy's and heal you so use it at all times., staying alive the best you can. Never suicide unless you know you can get some kills out of it.

Now if the enemy starts the team fight this is where it can be confusing on who to alt or if to alt. What i do is as soon as the fighting starts i use my Fracture to hit as many champs as i can then Crystalline Exoskeleton get into the middle and AOE slow everyone if the main kill target is close to dead i will Impale the next kill target and drag them in the most lethal direction. After that just slow enemy champs and stay alive.

Clean up

If the team fight is over and there team is running you as Skarner can chase very effectively if you feel daring to get some more kills for your team. If Ghost is up your golden, but you can always use your Crystalline Exoskeleton and Crystal Slash to chase and kill low targets running.


If your team is the one running for the team battle it is always a good idea to slow the chasing enemy champs to help keep as many people alive as you can, using your Ghost or Crystalline Exoskeleton or both is ideal to keep you alive and possible some teammates alive .

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Items when and why.

First items i grab from the start are our trusted Hunter's Machete and 5 Health potion, personally i think these are necessary to effectively clear the jungle completely with out needing to recall.

Most games i play end before i normally get to complete Frozen Mallet!

Hunter's Machete will eventually build into a Spirit of the Ancient Golem ill explain later in the guide.

Potions to keep you alive while your jungling as the jungle monsters hit hard early on.

After you fully clear the jungle if you dont have 1000G keep killing wolves and wraiths, or your lanes need a gank go show face. When you have 1000g recall and buy your Boots of Mobility.

Unique – Enhanced Movement: +45 movement speed. Increases to +105 movement speed when out of combat for 5 seconds.

I chose these boots because early on most champs wont be able to out run you paired with your slow and increased movement speed ganks become easy paired with someone that can do damage.These boots paired with your Impale, Ghost or you Crystalline Exoskeleton will let you click and drag your target a lot further giving you optimal time to get your gank off.

Skarner is naturally Tanky but if you feel these Boots aren't necessary you can use either.

Mercury's Treads
+25 magic resistance
Passive Unique – Enhanced Movement: +45 movement speed
Unique – Tenacity: The duration of stuns, slows, taunts, fears, silences, blinds and immobilizes are reduced by 35%.

Ninja Tabi
+25 armor
Passive Unique – Enhanced Movement: +45 movement speed.
Unique: Blocks 10% of the damage from champion basic attacks.

But I stress getting the increased movement speed enchant early on.

Spirit of the Ancient Golem is what i try to complete next if you don't have the full amount of gold to buy the full item get the giants belt first(early on that health increase keeps you alive more then the Regen. If you can afford that then start building your spirit stone.

+500 health
+14 health regen
+7 mana regen
10% cooldown reduction.

Unique Passive - Butcher: Damage dealt to neutral monsters increased by 25%.
Unique Passive - Tenacity: The duration of stuns, slows, taunts, fears, silences, blinds and immobilizes are reduced by 35%.

The 500 health and 30 Armour immediately give you early on survivability , longer sustain jungling with the health and mana Regen.

With the new patch this item loses it's 30 armor in favor for 10% cooldown reduction.

The two passives are perfect for Skarner jungle, Butcher help clear jungle even faster with that extra damage. Tenacity is very useful if your going to be the initiater for your team or ganking, using your alt then getting stunned is one of the biggest downfalls to his Impale.

Another great item the Iceborn Gauntlet.
+40 ability power
+500 mana
+60 armor
+15% cool down reduction
Passive Unique Passive - Spellblade: After using an ability, your next basic attack deals bonus physical damage equal to 125% of your base attack damage to surrounding enemies and creates a field for 3 seconds that slows enemies inside by 35% (2 second cool down).

This item provides some more survivability on top of giving you more mana when your middle requests blue buff!The cool down reduction is always a plus. What makes this item truly amazing is its passive ability giving you and amazing slow and damage increase! Definitely an item worth grabbing!!

After those items i start to complete my Runic Bulwark for different reasons.
+400 health
+20 armor
+30 magic resist
Aura Unique - Legion: Nearby allies gain 10 armor, 30 magic resist and 10 health Regen.

Again your getting Health armor and magic resist so your immediately going to be a pain to kill, which works great because if your playing aggressively you want to be able to take hits. Sometimes you need to go to an enemy's turrets to drag them away to get the kill which means your Crystalline Exoskeleton wont be enough to keep you alive. The passive on this item isn't amazing but early on it keeps a lot of you buddies alive. Most times when you gank you have your teammate bait and this passive will help them live if things get close.

Another possible item is Randuin's Omen
+500 health
+70 armor
Unique Passive – Cold Steel: If you are hit by a basic attack, you slow the attacker's attack speed by 20% and their movement speed by 10% for 1.5 seconds.

Active Unique Active: Slows the movement speed of nearby enemy units by 35% for 2 seconds + 1 second for every 100 armor and magic resistance you have. 60 second cooldown (500 Range).

Personally i don't normally need the passive because when i go for a gank there not going to attack me there running away. The active is nice but with your Impale and your slow the gank is normally over before you need the active.

These next items i don't build in any particular order just what i or the team needs the most but i try to get them all build by the end of the game.

We have Frozen Mallet
+700 health
+30 attack damage
Passive Unique – Icy: Your basic attacks slow your target's Movement Speed by 40% for 1.5 seconds (30% slow for ranged attacks).

If your team needs more damage during team fights and your pretty good at surviving i would pick this item over the other two. You get more survivability which you need cause most likely you will be going in first to get the pull going with your Impale. The attack damage will give you a decent damage output with your basic attacks and you AOE Crystal Slash. Finally the passive is just nice in general cause enemy's cant out run you so if you can keep them slowed it will allow your teammates to catch up to them.

We have Frozen Heart
+90 armor
+400 mana
+20% cooldown reduction
Unique: Reduces the attack speed of nearby enemies by 20%. (700 range)

I would grab this if your team has enough damage output to kill the targets, this will give you more survivability more sustain and let you alt quicker. The mana is nice when your going to be using you skills a lot like extended fights or poking for a good amount of time. The passive is perfect during team fights.If you get this item i you suggest not building anymore armor and either go for damage or magic resist.

We have Maw of Malmortius
+55 attack damage
+36 magic resistance
Passive Unique: Gain +1 attack damage for every 2.5% health missing.
Unique - Lifeline: If you would take magic damage which would leave you at less than 30% of your maximum health, you first gain a shield which absorbs up to 400 magic damage for 5 seconds. 60 second cool down.

This item is an amazing item and i always try to get on built. You get a decent damage increase and magic resist for those ability power users. The first passive just gives you an increase in damage since you have a lot of health you can have a lot missing have a great damage increase and not be worried about being killed to easily.

Now the second passive is what makes this item amazing. This free shield has saved me more times then i can count its a perfect ace up your sleeve when the opponent thinks they have you dead. Also during team fights it will 90% of time keep you alive at the end. When the shield pops most of the time the opponent has already used there big moves and now with this item you have a shield a lot of attack damage and your a force to reckoned with.

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