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Skarner - Mmm Tanks Taste Good
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Introduction - IMO
Remember riot tries to balance champs as much as possible. Since Skarner can chase people down you have to take out some damage to compensate for the fact that there is no getting away from him.
Also what's the point in playing a chasing champion if the enemy doesn't run and you can just kill them on the spot.
Skarner is not the toughest champ. Levels 1-6 I play him rather defensively by hugging my turret. The advantages I see in playing this defensively, when you get your ult the enemy may not be expecting that first grab n pull towards your turret. That's how I typically get my first blood. I know waiting till level 6 isn't that fun.
Some allied champs that can help with first blood early.
Xin Zhao - Massive dps and Three Talon Strike pop up crowd control complimentary.
Jax - Massive amounts of damage from Leap Strike help you get an assist when skarnes DPS isn't enough.
Kayle - Healing you/ulting you should you go in too deep.
Maokai - Rooting the enemy should you be forced to retreat. Also crowd controls are very complimentary of eachother.
Malz/Udyr hybrid scorpion of death
Most people view Skarner as an underpowered champion. He doesn't do damage like most champs and the recommended items won't get you there either. However if you build skarner right he might just be OP.
Malzahar was my main, I love the fear that a suppress Nether Grasp creates within the enemy team. So a new champ with suppress Impale got me ooozing with excitement.
Udyr was the first melee champ I fell in love with. He is capable of running people down Blazing Stampede, and unless you have flash or ghost you aren't getting away.
Skarner is the perfect blend of these two champions. His AOE slow Crystal Slash is better than bear stance in some situations. His ULT Impale can turn a team fight around.
Greater Mark of Attack Speed x9
Greater Seal of Attack Speed x9
Greater Glyph of Attack Speed x9
Greater Quintessence of Attack Speed x3
Most people would go with Armor pen. I find that skarner doesn't do enough damage early level for armor penetration to be worth it and that the last hitting minions through attack speed to be more ideal. By the time you can afford Black Cleaver the armor reduction from that item should be good enough.
Build up W Crystalline Exoskeleton next because your passive ( Energize) reduces cooldowns through auto attack and attack speed. The shield needs to stay up for the AS to reduce the cooldowns.
Build E Fracture last this seems to be the least beneficial. Also I strongly advise changing you E to smart cast. It'll improve ability spamming.
Build R Impale whenever you can. High priority. FEAR MY STING!!
When in combat W Crystalline Exoskeleton to charge in (save W for retreat if your a defensive player which is how you want to play lvl 1-5) Smashing Q Crystal Slash aover and over when your close enough to hit an enemy player or minion.
Use E Fracture sparingly as it will eat up your mana fast and is only good to use if your low on HP. Save you R Impale for team fights and turrets or for a gank if you can pull it off.
Start your mana pool first. IMO Skarner's biggest weakness is running out of mana too soon. I've tried both Chalice of Harmony and Tear of the Goddess. The problem with the chalace of harmony is the regen isn't enough mana for Fracture & Crystalline Exoskeleton spamming. If your team is fine with you having blue all game (most teams aren't if you have 1 Ability power ally they will complain about skarner "jacking" blue) then go with that and save your gold for more damage items.
Otherwise you just can't beat the Tear of the Goddess manapool for spamming R-Q-E
Don't upgrade tear into manamune until end game it's not as valuable as pure attack damage.
Always build the AD side of any item your building to keep the competitive edge.
Youmuu's Ghostblade Is also a great item for Skarner. However I haven't effectively incorporated it into a winning build.
Randuin's Omen As well. Since both items can be used for chasing people down. I only recomment Omen if you are planning on tanking for your team.
Ghost - Can be used with ult to pull enemy further within 1.5 second time frame.
Heal - C'mon who still uses this?
Revive - Gooo feeder!
Smite - If you are jungling this can speed things up. This isn't a jungle build. Do whatever.
Teleport - I personally love teleport and carry it every map. I am a split pusher though. Skarner is great for split pushing as he can chew through an enemy minion line like a fat kid through cake. Then when you see an enemy heading your way teleport to the opposite lane and push there. Keep your enemy at their base and alleviate pressure from your team.
Cleanse - Not my cup of tea. If you find yourself playing a heavy CC enemy team i build merc treads.
Fortify - You don't need this if you have teleport IMO
Clarity - Maybe this would fix skarners mana problems but then you take away from the offensiveness that is ignite.
Ignite - Love it. IDK how many kills I can attribute to ignite. It's pro with your W.
Rally - I've never been able to effectively use this.
Clairvoyance - If your going to jungle or want to keep an eye on baron for team this is a good grab. However I find that by level 8 you can farm enough gold out of the jungle to keep wards up for your team. Ward > Clairvoyance
Flash - You can't use your ult with this. If your chicken and need to run away lots you might want to grab this. I don't run from fights I can't win because I don't start fights I can't win.
Remember there are many ways to play most champs, Find what works best for you.
Don't let anyone tell you what summoner spells you need to take.
Many champs have an ability you can shut down with your ult. It really frustrates the enemy team when you shut down their
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