Vi Build Guide by Smartest2
Smartest2's Diamond Guide to Carrying Solo Queue With Vi
Your votes and comments encourage our guide authors to continue
creating helpful guides for the League of Legends community.
Choose Champion Build:
AD Jungle ONE SHOT Carry
AD Lane Vi
+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
Ability Order Smartest2 route
Threats & Synergies
Level 2 invade is what you need to watch out for. Ward your jungle entrance at around 1:20~ so that you'll see it coming.
An obnoxious opponent. Start your buff camp and ward river at 1:20~. Ask your top laner to watch your other buff for you so it doesn't get stolen at the start. Make sure to always drop your trinket in river bushes. With proper warding you can fend off any Shaco.
Evelynn is extremely difficult to deal with. You can only place one pink ward and she likes to mess around in your jungle. Try and rush level 6 as soon as possible and keep an eye out for her ganking your lanes since Vi has a strong counter gank, you may be able to pick up a kill or two.
Warwick is one of the easiest matchups. He leaves you alone, you clear faster than him, and you can gank more. Provided you get a lead, you can easily 1v1 him as well, even if he ults you.
Ward river around 1:20~, she likes to invade. Elise has a relatively strong early game, but we can easily squash her once we finish our jungle item.
Fiddlesticks is a fairly easy matchup. He doesn't really counter-jungle much. You can even invade him at his red/blue if you're feeling confident. Just wait for him to use his w or e on a camp before engaging and try and use your q to disrupt his drain.
Low risk to you, high risk to your team. Leave him alone in his jungle early game but try and get counter ganks off. Once he uses his q his damage output is fairly low. Mid-game we can 100-0 him.
Low risk to you, high risk to your team. Leave him alone in his jungle early game but if you see him looking for a gank, try and cheese him from a bush. one combo will drop him pretty low and without an evolved q he can't retailaite
We counter Lee Sin pretty hard. He has a strong early game so watch out for the invade. Ward river around 1:20~ before starting a camp. Try and avoid counter ganking Lee unless it's a favorable situation. We clear faster than him and outscale him hard.
Rengar can be tricky. He has an easy time picking off your teammates, but if you can anticipate where he's going to go you can easily out pressure him. Rengar likes bushes, watch to see where lanes are at to get a vague idea of where wards can be and cheese him from river bushes by top/bot.
Zac is relatively easy to deal with. Unfortunately for him our w takes off a large chunk of his armor and we deal %health damage on every 3rd ability/auto. He may be able to apply more early game pressure, but he is also extremely susceptible to counter ganks. See if your teammate is in a position to back you up and take him out. His jump has a high cooldown, and by the time it's back up we can use our q to disrupt it.
This can really go either way. Udyr can be an extreme pain to deal with. His early game counter jungling potential is very high. If you see him enter your jungle, immediately ping multiple times for help. we outscale him and outdamage him once we finish our jungle item (as long as he's not super far ahead)
Kindred doesn't pose much of a threat to us. We clear faster than she does, we are tankier than she is, we deal more damage than she does, we're better looking than she is...
Fights against rammus are as bad for you as they are for him early-mid game. 1v1s will quickly turn into mini teamfights. Rush 6 and look for the counter gank, you don't want to get counter ganked by a rammus.
Do not mess with an early game Xin. Ward river around 1:20~ and watch for the invade as you clear your second camp (buff). If you see him in your jungle, bail out and see what he does. If you underestimate his damage you won't live long enough to regret it. After we finish our Black Cleaver we can take him on pretty easily (provided he's not super far ahead).
Runes: Fun top lane route
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+10 Adaptive (6 AD or 10 AP)
Hello everyone, Smartest2 here. I am a diamond League of Legends player, I was mid diamond in 5's last season as well. Vi is currently my main jungler as she is BROKEN with the right build. She is best played in the jungle, however she can make for some really fun solo lanes. This is my first official guide, so please give me some feedback and let me know what you all think. I carry consistently with this build in high plat, it allows you to have absurdly high damage while being pretty tanky. You should be able to 100-0 most champs and can out-duel just about anyone.
DISCLAIMER: This guide contains a lot of text. Unfortunately there is no way to explain the things involved with carrying solo queue without writing out a novel about it.
- Fast Clear Time
- Insane Damage Spike
- Tanky Despite Damage
- Amazing Ganks
- Easy to Master
- Can EASILY Solo Carry Games
What Runes Do I Run?
I keep it pretty straightforward and grab the Domination and Precision tree.
Domination Tree Explanation:
Electrocute gives us that nice little bit of extra burst for our combo. Vi is really about the burst, and electrocute helps a lot with that.
Sudden Impact Goes off every time we Q, which only increases our burst damage. It pairs nicely with electrocute as well.
Alternatives: Cheap Shot
Eyeball Collection is what I personally take as it increases damage in the end.
Alternatives: Ghost Poro is actually VERY good, but requires you to know how to utilize it efficiently. If your focus is on damage, stick with eyeball collection.
Ravenous Hunter is my personal favorite on this slot. I like the little bit of sustain you get from the spellvamp. Sometimes this can really save your life.
Alternatives: Relentless Hunter to get around the map faster.
Precision Tree Explanation:
Legend: Alacrity is what I take on any aa based jungler. It progressively helps your clear time IMMENSELY and I highly recommend taking it on Vi.
Alternatives: None.. TAKE ALACRITY!!
Coup de Grace Is an underrated rune. It's really good as jungler when you're typically coming in to gank champions who have around 50% health anyway. It also helps your damage finish off an oponent when you look for 100-to-0 opportunities later in the game.
Passive - Blast Shield
Blast Shield activates upon hitting an enemy with an ability and grants you a shield equal to 10% of your max health for 3 seconds and then goes on cooldown. This really helps you survive in the jungle and you should try and proc it as soon as it is up while farming early game.
Q - Vault Breaker
W - Denting Blows
Denting Blows is our mind game, tank shred, burst, and jungle clear ability. Every 3rd auto on the same target deals bonus damage that based on the target's maximum health, reduces the target's armor by 20%, AND gives us a nice auto attack speed buff. This ability is in reality what makes Vi so strong. It allows you to face anyone, tank or carry, and deal high amounts of damage to them.
E - Excessive Force
Excessive Force is our amazing auto attack reset ability. It resets our auto attack animation and applies extra damage to enemy, while also damaging enemies behind the target in a cone shape, while also proc'ing on hit effects like Sheen since it is both an ability and an auto attack. It also slightly increases Vi's auto attack range which can be very useful! This ability is what makes lane Vi a lot fun!
Ultimate (R) - Assault and Battery
Ahh... good ol' Assault and Battery. The ability that makes Vi, well.. Vi. This ability requires the selection of a target and then charges at the target, launches them up in the air, before smashing them back down onto the ground. No forms off crowd control can stop you during your ult animation, not even Malphite's Unstoppable Force! This ability works really well when focusing the enemy ADC in the midst of a teamfight.
Let's take some time to discuss this ability sequence in detail by looking at different stages of the game. This ability sequence is fairly standard except for the mid game section, but for any new Vi players, I will try and provide a detailed explanation on everything.
We're going to start Hailblade instead of Emberknife as Chilling Smite works really well for Vi, giving us a damaging + slowing summoner spell. This lets us stick to targets, which is extremely useful for when an enemy flashes away during a gank, or even to secure a kill on an enemy champion that is barely out of range with very little health. We'll also pick up a Stealth Ward so that we can keep an eye out for the enemy jungler's movements, such as a level 2 jungle invade.
This item is wonderful on Vi! It gives us a little bit of everything that we need. We gain +25 Attack Damage which helps us all around, +200 health to make us a bit beefier (it may not seem like much, but with Black Cleaver's +400 health and Sterak's Gage's +400, we get a total bonus health of +1000 from our damage items), +35% attack speed from trinity itself which is a massive attack speed bonus to help us clear faster and win fights PLUS an additional 10% per legendary item from the mythic passive, +25 bonus movement speed after autoing, stacking base AD, +20 ability haste, and the most important part: that beautiful Sheen proc which deals an additional 200% of our base attack damage and can be abused by our low cooldowns. There really is no substitute for Trinity Force on Vi. Once you complete Trinity Force you will see that your burst damage can take out just about anyone.
Hearthbound Axe >> Sheen >> Kindlegem
I absolutely LOVE Mobility Boots and have NO idea why Vi players don't build it. It allows you to move around the map quickly and apply large amounts of pressure. Mobility Boots are wonderful for ganking as well, since you're coming in with so much movement speed that you can ideally position yourself to guarantee that Vault Breaker connects with the enemy. When ganks don't work out you can head to another lane immediately and make something happen, enemies have a hard time predicting your movements because you can bounce between lanes so quickly. since the movement buff only goes away when you're in combat you can use Vault Breaker to get from baron/dragon pit into the enemy's tri bush (depending on which side of the map your team is on) and rush the enemy from behind. It's also amazing when trying to escape, all you have to do is use Vault Breaker to gain some distance and then wait for the Mobility Boots to kick in and you're home free! I really find Mercury's Treads (the only other real option in my opinion) to be lackluster when compared to the playmaking potential of Mobility Boots. If you doubt me, play a couple games and build Mercury's Treads and then play a couple of games building Mobility Boots.
It's important to understand how your item build helps you execute your style of play. Think about lethality Vi which tends to come up here and there. Building lethality would allow us to instantly burst down anyone without much armor, but.... we can do that anyway? Anyone who doesn't really get many defensive stats (HINT: the enemy team's carries) can usually get insta-killed by someone with high amounts of damage and is typically focused first in fights (HINT: the enemy team's carries). So if we want to carry what do we have to be able to do? We need to be able to take out ANYONE, not just the 1.8k health +0 armor Tristana, before they can get away from us. Yes, even the full tank Malphite. One of our greatest strengths is being able to deal high amounts of damage to tanks. Without the enemy tank(s) alive, it will be hard for the enemy team to contest our actions. For this reason we take Black Cleaver. Even with just Trinity Force and Black Cleaver you will notice some absurdly high damage output.
At this point you should have reached your max potential damage (if you're not buying anymore damage items of course), and the goal now becomes to live long enough to be able to apply that damage. We have two item slots remaining at this point and from here it really depends on how the game is going. The only item that I recommend you always buy is Guardian Angel since it offers a good amount of both armor and magic resist, as well as a revive. However I usually tend to build Guardian Angel as my second tank item since it doesn't provide any extra health, and our health bar is a very important tactic that is easily overlooked by most Vi players. Let's go over a couple options depending on what the enemy team has.
(NOTE: the "Problem Champion" is the enemy champion who is fed and needs to be dealt with. If the enemy team has 3 AD champions but their mid lane Fizz is fed, Fizz is the "Problem Champion" that you need to worry about)
I've actually gotten a few requests to add some information about this from you guys that add me on the league client and ask me questions and TooTallFor69 from the discussion section, so I thought I'd throw in some material here. This section is purely what I think seperates good junglers from bad ones and does not cover anything specific for this guide. If you want to know how to improve your gameplay it's probably better to skip down to the next section. This is more of a compare and contrast.
First let's clarify that not all "low elo" junglers are bad, and not all "high elo" junglers are good (trust me). A good jungler is someone who knows how to play his champion AND role well and knows how to adapt to each game. This means understanding what and who a jungler is, and how that changes depending on who you are playing, who your allies and your enemies are playing, and the events that occur throughout the game. This section actually won't be focused on Vi, but on jungling in general.
1: Knowing your champion.
Base: This is an extremely point to focus on and remember. A Warwick jungle and Vi jungle play very differently. Warwick has a weak counter gank pre-6 and has a much harder time ganking without ult. However he has much higher constant damage and is innately tankier than Vi due to the fact that he only needs 2 damage items instead of 3. You should be focusing a lot on dragon control and can even solo baron later in the game. Your secondary focus is picking off an enemy with your ult or focusing the enemy adc in teamfights (somewhat similar to Vi. Learn who your champion is, what they are best at, and when you should play them.
The Good Jungler: Unfortunately mechanics do play a role in this. If your champion's kit involves skill shots, being a good jungler does mean you need to be able to land those skillshots the majority of the time. The good jungler will also know how various matchups work and where you stand vs the enemy jungler. The good jungler will make full use of this knowledge and will take every advantage he/she can. The good jungler will also know when to use which combo.
Base: This is an extremely important one. Your goal should be to ensure that your trinket is almost always down, and try and ward at key spots where the jungler will be likely to show. River bushes are good for this. Also if you have an extra 75g pick up a vision ward and set it down somewhere, that's permanent vision that will benefit your team and help you set up ganks for yourself.
The Good Jungler: Vision goes up a level when you can start keeping track of the enemy's vision. Just because a lane is warded doesn't mean you can't gank, you just either have to go in fast enough to the point where a ward doesn't matter, or you gank from a different route. Being aware of where enemy's are warding will help you naturally have plans set in mind. The good jungler will also try and maintain vision control over dragon and baron through scuttles.
3: Counter Jungling / Getting Counter Jungled
Base: This is a harder topic to pick up on. Counter jungling effectively is easy but requires a good sense of vision and map awareness. You don't want to get caught in their jungle and feed the enemy team some free gold. Ensure that you are either someone who can clear very quickly, have a lot of mobility to escape easily, or can take on the enemy jungler 1v1 fairly easily before you go counter jungling. An easy time to counter jungle would be when the enemy jungler ganks top/bot and you are located on the opposite side of the map. You may be able to go and grab the enemy jungler's camps, denying him XP and gold and making use of the pressure they are putting on the map.
It's even more important to learn how to deal with getting counter jungled. This can be hard. This can be really really hard. It is extremely tilting and demoralizing to have the enemy jungler come in and invade your jungle 5 times within the first 10 minutes. It sets you behind, gets the enemy team ahead, and demoralizes your team as well. So how do you deal with it? Well the answer kind of sucks but it depends on who the enemy jungler is. If the enemy jungler is Evelynn you should expect her to be in your jungle at level 2. It's important to ask your teammates for help when you get invaded. They won't always be paying attention to the map to see that you need help. Pings for assistance go a long way in this scenario.
The Good Jungler: Usually invades level 2 if his/her champion i sable to do so. You don't need to be able to 1v1 the enemy jungler, since the enemy jungler will be relatively low from fighting blue/red buff. The good jungler has a relative estimate of where the enemy jungler is at all times and will counter jungle/gank accordingly. The good jungler will counter jungle more often if previous attempts have been successful in an attempt to further the lead and tilt the enemy jungler, he/she will also ward the enemy's jungle instead of river, etc. The good jungler will be aware of enemy laners' positions when counter jungling in order to assess whether or not a collapse is about to happen. Additionally good junglers will let teammates know beforehand at the start of the game if they will get counter jungled (such as Evelynn match-ups) and ask allies to be prepared to help. They will still ping for assistance, but this additional step usually allows for faster reaction times.
Qualities of a Good Jungler
- Mechanically Sound
- Good Map Awareness
- Has Presence in the Game
- Controls Dragon and Baron
- Wards for Allies
- Counter Ganks
- Knows Which Lanes to Focus
- Utilizes Their Champion in the Best Way Possible
- Shotcalls for the Team Through Pings or Chat
- Let's Allies Know Where the Enemy Jungler is
- Does Not Waste Time
NOTE: This section unfortunately is going to have to be a giant body of text, I will do my best to not make it overbearing but there is a lot of information here that will help you improve as a jungelr. There is no way to easily cover the the things involved in carrying a game as it incorporates such a vast area. I highly recommend that you read over this section thoroughly as it covers many important things about carrying a game form the jungle on any champion, not just Vi.
The first thing you're going to have to understand as a jungler.. well a couple things. One, you are going to get flamed. That is the life of a jungler. Even if you carry your team you will surely get flamed. It comes with the role, get used to it and move on. I can't say I don't flame back, but it's true that it won't increase your chance to win. The second thing to understand, is that you are going to get terrible teammates here and there (or all the time), that's just a fact. Oh sorry, I meant "teammates who are just having a bad game".. gotta keep it politically correct. And as a jungler, you are going to notice misplays or bad decisions much more frequently than you would as a laner since well.. it's kind of your job to watch over things. Do your best to not let this tilt you and focus on winning your game and improving your game-play.
Alright so let's get to the good stuff. I've been in every division between bronze 5 and diamond 3, so I've noticed quite a few things that helped me climb. I am actually a top lane main, however I have found that it is easiest to control a game from the jungle. Nothing stops you from gaining gold other than consistent counter jungling, and your course of action throughout the game has many more options. So, how exactly do you carry a game as a jungler? Let us first go over a couple things that are crucial in order to answer this question.
The main factor in winning is quite simple: How skilled are you in comparison to the enemy team? There are three areas that determine your skill level.
Skill Area #1: Mechanics
The first and most obvious/well-known is your mechanical skill level. If you are consistently just breaking the ankles of your opponents with jukes and plays, and killing your opponents through sheer outplays, you will obviously have a much easier time winning. If you find that you are outplaying your opponents in nearly all scenarios, chances are you are in an elo lower than where you should be, and another area may need some work.
Skill Area #2: Champion Mechanics / Champion Mastery
The second area is champion mastery. In other words, your skill level on a given champion. A Riven main is much more intimidating than a Maokai main playing Riven, I think most people can agree to this. Champion mastery (or "maining" a champion) to me means that you fully understand what your champion is capable of doing at all times. This means understanding when you can kill an opponent, or even when you can turn on an enemy's engage. This ties hand in hand with your mechanical skill level, but they are two very different things. Mechanical skill level is your skill level as a player. If two people play a new champion for the first time against each other using all the same runes, masteries, skill leveling order, and item build, the person with a higher mechanical skill level will win the majority of the time. Whereas someone who has mastered Tryndamere, a champion which is much less mechanic intensive, will know the right time to ult (or use any of his skills for that matter), when he needs to run, when he can fight, how he should play his champion in a given match-up, and most importantly how to play his champion when he is behind.
It can take a large number of games in order to master a champion, and that is why people recommend that players who wish to climb should limit their champion pool to a few champions. This is to allow for your skill on those champions to constantly increase.
Skill Area #3: Game Knowledge
The third and most important area is game knowledge. This is often times overlooked, but this the area that teaches you how to win. This area is what covers things like objective control, when and where to ward, how to freeze a lane, where the enemy jungler will next appear, prioritization of objectives, etc.
I like to think that these three areas work together in the following manner: Game knowledge tells you what you should be doing, champion mastery tells you how you can achieve that goal on your champion, and mechanical skill allows you to execute the plan to achieve your goal.
It is very important to accurately judge your current standing on all of the 3 areas. Diamond players tend to have a higher amount of game knowledge than lower tier players, master and challenger players have a high amount of mechanical skill on top of that, as well as champion knowledge. For the purposes of this guide I will assume that you wish to become a Vi main and will continue this section with that pretext.
The two areas to focus on as Vi are mechanics and game knowledge. Mechanics cannot be taught and can often times be linked to experience (or number of games played). There are however, certain things to focus on.
Game knowledge on the other hand, can be discussed and taught. Let's go over what all is involved in carrying a game from an analyst perspective.
So the first and most important thing to focus on is the early game phase. This is what sets you up for an easy win, a difficult win, or a guaranteed loss. As a jungler this phase of the game is more complex than any of the other 4 roles. Their job is pretty simple, win lane try not to die, care for the enemy jungler. The jungler on the other hand, has to pay attention to many different things that are going on in a game and make sure his/her teammates have as many advantages as possible.
There are a couple goals we have as Vi. It's very important that all of these goals be understood, as they all contribute to getting that victory screen at the end of the game.
Goal #1: Staying Ahead of the Enemy Jungler
The first and most important goal is to stay ahead of the enemy jungler. You will be surprised at how much further ahead you are in comparison to the enemy jungler if you use my jungle route. Vi has an amazing clear time and I often times end up hitting level 6 before or at the same time as my solo laners. The mistake that most junglers make is that they get caught up ganking and forget to farm their jungle. When you get a lead on the enemy jungler, you can control the pace of the game, even if the enemy jungler ganked 8 times more than you within the first 15 minutes of the game. This may seem selfish to most players, but you need to recognize what your goal is. if you're playing Sejuani then yes, you need to gank at level 2-3 and just rotate the map. But our goal is to snowball and carry the game. Champions like Master Yi and Kha'Zix might come to mind when you hear that, but it's not quite the same thing. We need to set ourselves up for success in the early stage. Vi is dependent on her first item, once we have that we're in business.
Goal #2: Dragon Control
Our second goal is to control as many Dragon s as we can. The dragon buffs have evolved into something unique, and are now very beneficial to us in multiple ways. The biggest and most important part about obtaining a dragon is the morale factor. It boosts your team's morale when you pick up a dragon, especially your top laner if he has gotten ganked a couple times. You can solo dragon very easily as soon as you complete Hearthbound Axe and Sheen, as long as you make sure to buy a pink, you don't want to get collapsed on and killed while taking dragon and lose the buff to enemy team. That has the opposite morale effect. After you get your 2nd or 3rd dragon the benefits do become noticeable and the edge is always useful, regardless of which buff it is. Don't ignore dragon just because it's a Mountain Drake or Cloud Drake and not an Infernal/Ocean. Demoralizing the enemy is a HUGE part of jungling.
Goal #3: Vision Control / Map Awareness
The third goal that we have is vision control and map awareness. This applies heavily to early game and lets us set ourselves up for mid-late game success. Always ward river bushes or river entrances to help scout for the enemy jungler. This is CRUCIAL! Always check your mini-map every 2-3 seconds when you're jungling. Watch for the enemy jungler, the SECOND that you see them, ping the hell out of them (don't really, 2-3 times is enough). Let the lane that they're going to know that they have company coming in while your teammate can still get away. If the enemy jungler seems to be committing, try and take advantage of that. You can gank a lane if circumstances allow for it, or you can go and take the enemy jungler's camps while they are busy wasting time. This will continue to increase the gap between you and the enemy jungler. 3-4 camps is equivalent to the gold gained from a kill, so taking 2 camps actually equals the gap of a kill. Wait what? How does that work? Well you gain the gold from 2 additional camps you wouldn't have normally gotten, and you denied the enemy gold form two camps that they normally would have gotten. Thus you create a 4 camp difference between you and the enemy jungler. The xp gained/denied is also useful.
Goal #4: Objective Control
Our fourth goal comes into play mid game. More accurately, once we finish building Trinity Force and Mobility Boots. Learning to push objectives is an elementary concept in League of Legends, but it is important to know what objectives to focus at what times. Sometimes you can't prioritize a certain lane since games are unpredictable. A 5v5 might break out mid lane at 25:00 into the game when you wanted to rotate bot lane with your team. As a general rule of thumb, go to the lane that is furthest away from the jungle objective you wish to follow up on afterwards. If you want to set up baron, try and push the enemy team's bot lane inhibitor. If you want to pick up the dragon that's going to spawn in 2 minutes, try and pick up the enemy team's top lane inhibitor. Try to not let the game become stagnant. You want to keep pushing towers down. Don't do something rash and uncalled for like randomly diving in, but if the enemy team keeps wave clearing it instantly (if they have an Anivia for example) try and switch it up by split pushing.
Goal #5: Picks
Getting picks is probably the most crucial part to playing Vi. It is incredibly easy to pick off a wandering enemy in the enemy jungle with proper vision. If you follow the build I use, you will find that it is very hard for enemies to get away from you (provided they somehow survive long enough). The second you get a pick, FORCE SOMETHING. stay in the lane and push uncontested if no one is coming for you. Trinity Force let's us take tower's easily with our Sheen procs when we use Excessive Force. We can probably kill the next champion that tries to stop us anyway. The beauty of this build is in it's raw damage and tanking capabilities. You can still be the tank your team needs while dishing out high amounts of damage.
Summary of Goals
Let's summarize our goals as Vi
- Stay ahead of the enemy jungler in farm, gold, and experience
- Make sure to ward for your allies, try and keep your trinket on cooldown at all times
- Keep an eye out for the enemy jungler and let your teammates know about his movements
- Counter gank as much as possible unless your laner gets insta-killed and neither enemy champions are low
- Keep control of the dragon
- Counter Jungle when the enemy jungler wastes too much time ganking a lane
- Go kill the enemy jungler in his jungle once you hit 6 if you have an XP lead
- Maintain pressure on objectives
- Split push if you need to, you don't always have to sit 5v5
- Keep setting yourself up for the objective you want (bot inhibitor if you want baron, etc)
- Always look for picks, Mobility Boots let you rush to them in no time at all
Early game can sometimes be a bit confusing for people who haven't picked up Vi yet, or are not used to playing a carry style jungler and/or build. Most people just think she has strong early game ganks, which is somewhat true. However the mistake that most people make, is that they try and force ganks. There is no benefit to this, the ganks are risky if forced, and there's a high chance you will die to get the kill, or just waste a lot of time. It's important to keep an eye out for EASY ganks, not forced ones. This is extremely important when playing a carry jungler. Again, NEVER FORCE A GANK EARLY GAME.
You have a very fast travel and clear time due to Vault Breaker letting you jump over walls to camps that you would normally have to walk around, and Excessive Force giving us additional AoE and a nice auto attack reset. We want to abuse this and get ahead of the enemy jungler. I will discuss the jungle route in the next section. While it may sound selfish, sometimes you have to sacrifice jungle pressure in order to win games. It's all about understanding the best way to play your champion with the build you have selected. If we were going full tank Vi, we would need to be ganking, but we're going for the kill with our own giant hands.
Starting The Game Off / Early Jungle Route
After buying your starting items, immediately head to the entrance to your jungle by mid lane on the bottom half of the map to watch for an enemy invade. If you're on the blue side, head to the bush behind your red brambleback camp, If you're on the red side, head to the bush behind your blue sentinel camp. Ward the bush that is in the middle of the river at exactly 1:20. You will ward the same bush regardless of which side of the map you are on. The reason you want to ward this bush at 1:20 is that it will alert you if an enemy jungler goes for the scuttle after their first buff.
As a rule of thumb, you will usually start the buff that is closest to bot lane and start W, this will ensure that you get the best leash possible. After this take the next closest camp (raptors for blue side, wolves for red side) and grab q after clearing it.
This is the part where things change up depending on which side of the map your team is on. If you are blue side, clear wolves, clear Gromp , clear blue, then pick up river scuttle. But if you're on the red side, after wolves go PAST raptors and head straight to Krug , Q over the wall below them to get their faster and get some damage off. As soon as the big Krug is visible, smite it and use your e as an auto attack reset to stack up stacks of [gift of heavy hands] for the stun. The reason we do this is because we have very high attack speed for this early in the game due to w, and we have an auto attack reset with e. This allows for optimal use of Gift of Heavy Hands and lets us stay in the jungle longer by eating less damage. After krug , take red, then raptors, then river scuttle on top side.
You should now be level 4 with 2 points into q, while still having double buffs. Here is where we need to check if a lane is gankable, remember do not FORCE a gank. Look to see if the 2 lanes directly accessible to you are over extended and easily gankable. Do NOT attempt to gank enemies who have easy escapes or ways of stopping you unless your teammate(s) can bait a gank. If the enemy team bot lane is a full HP Sivir and full HP Morgana, I would not recommend ganking them early unless circumstances allow for it.
If there are no directly visible ganks possible without trying to force something, we return to our jungle. DO NOT BACK. From river scuttle, head back to the camp you first started at and clear the camps in the same order as the first run. If possible pick up the scuttle on the other half of the map. You should try and make sure you have at least 1300 gold before you back for the first buy. This lets us pick up stalkers blade and 2 long swords. That extra AD from the long swords is crucial for our damage.
Keep an eye out for the enemy jungler as you clear your camps. Once we hit level 5, we are a force to be reckoned with. You may be able to get a nice counter-gank off and pick up an easy double if you make sure to constantly check your minimap.
NOTE; never smite wolves or raptors the first time you clear them. Smite Krug and Gromp the first run. After that, it's all circumstantial. Use Smite to gain buffs you need. Using Smite on raptor to get true sight is usually the most beneficial after 2 rounds of clearing since it lets you set yourself up for ganks.