Jayce Build Guide by Vicious Skittle
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Feel The Thunder
+12 Attack Damage or +20 Ability Power, Adaptive
Threats to Jayce with this build
|Shen||Longsword Refill. Just make his life hell with bush dancing. Rush BC and take Teleport. Be careful of a taunt flash/flash taunt when a jungler is near. E him out of his ultimate and he's useless to his team.|
This guide focuses on both Jayce Mid and Top because they're pretty interchangeable and you won't have a huge playstyle change from the lanes. However, as a whole it's more focused for Top lane.
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Pros / Cons
+ Strong Lane Presence
+ Great early/mid game damage
+ Incredibly powerful poke
+ Excellent Utility
+ Incredible effective Range
+ Always has options
- Very hard to pick up/play
- Mana Management is important
- Falls of super late game
- Bad Passive
- Easy to mess up with
- Falls behind, stays behind
You max your Q first, then your W second and your E last. You can't put ANY points into the transform ability, so it's ignored. Jayce has 6 skill points of his skills instead of the normal 5.
Q first because it increases the base damage of both forms damage. It's your main poke tool and early utility with the Slow in hammer form. Simple really, damage is good.
W second because in ranged form it scales up the damage your W will deal per auto attack, going from a low 70% up to a nice 110%. It also lowers the cooldown drastically allowing for better tower pushing and general DPS. In hammer form it increases the AoE field up from 100 to a whopping 400 over it's duration, it's one of the highest base damaging abilities in the game. It's also magic damage, which is good for when you go in on a tanky opponent who built armour. It also has a nice passive, giving you mana back per auto attack. A good Jayce will abuse this when he can.
E last because it's your utility spell. In ranged form all it does is increase the movement speed bonus. An old nerf to Jayce was the removal of lowering its CDR, but now it's a flat mana cost and a flat CD so it's pretty useless to max second. In hammer form its your main utility thanks to the knock-back and % damage it deals, which is very nice but it's not good enough to pick up over Hyper Charge / Lightning Field.
|Hextech Capacitor||INNATE:Each time Jayce switches between Mercury Hammer and Mercury Cannon he is ghosted and gains 40 bonus movement speed for 1.25 seconds.|
This passive... sucks to be honest. It's only good for getting back into lane and running away from a bad trade (Transform into Acceleration Gate or Thundering Blow then legging it) or for following up on a Q E combo to all in a target. It's nice, it's noticeable but compared to something like Trial By Fire or Blade's End it sucks.
I max this FIRST all the time, every time. It deals a load of damage (448 base damage when shot through a gate in ranged form? That's A LOT.) With a huge bonus AD ratio. It also has a nice slow in hammer form, which is great for lane fights. You get this level 1 as well to Q auto Q in ranged form, then swap to hammer before Q autoing once more.
There isn't much to this ability. Press Q to fire a skillshot that deals damage in a small AoE, or press Q on a target to deal damage in a small AoE that also slows.
I max this SECOND all the time, every time. In cannon form, it's what gives Jayce some incredible DPS and super strong synergy with Fervor of Battle , Muramana and The Black Cleaver. Pressing W instantly resets your auto attack timer allowing for 4 auto attacks in a row at maximum attack speed which will deal INSANE damage to anything within your range. Towers get chunked, it stacks/applies fervor super quickly and the bonus damage from a Muramana is potential icing on the DPS cake. It's also pretty simple, just press W to attack really fast.
In hammer form, it has some nice dueling utility with the AoE magic damage (that has a huge base damage) enabling some scraps against tankier opponents. It's main benefit, outside of pushing a wave, is it's passive. Getting mana back on every auto allows good Jayce players to skip Tear altogether and buy just raw damage to fuel his fire. It's hard to know when it's safe to just whack at stuff in hammer form, but it's usually when you're under tower against a melee opponent or after you chunk them so if they get too close you can finish them off.
I max this LAST. In both forms it's main use is a utility spell. In cannon form, it deploys a gate that your team, including yourself can walk through to gain movement speed. It doesn't have a cast animation so it can be cast when moving without stopping. THIS is very important as it what allows for the "Q E combo" that I cover in the "Combos" section. Jayce can use the gate to disengage, engage or just generally improve his mobility by a fair bit.
In melee form it's a nice % damage ability in the form of a great self peel. If W wasn't so good, or the bonus you get from E was better you would max this ability second purely because of the hammer form damage. (However, right now you SHOULD NEVER do so.) In lane, you mainly use it as an extra auto attack that deals magic damage in a trade, or save it for when a jungler gets on you (or anyone for that matter that you don't want). Press E and they get knocked away, simple. Late game you can use it as an execute due to its damage and the fact once you press it (unless you started in hammer form) you can no longer do damage.
YOU CANNOT INSEC WITH THIS SKILL. A common misconception is that this works similar to Dragon's Rage where you can press E on a target, then flash behind them to cancel the animation and instantly smack them backwards. Instead, as soon as you begin the windup your target is "stuck" to go to whatever distance is locked. It also means it's unescapable (unless you lose vision) meaning if you E them and begin the animation, but they flash, they will be knocked to the location of when you press E, not after they flash.
So you can't put any points into this ability. You instead start with it at level 1, your other 3 abilities have 6 ranks instead of 5 and it gains more bonuses based on Jayce's level. Every time you activate this ability, you Trigger your passive Hextech Capacitor. When you transform into the Mercury Cannon, your first auto attack will shred Armour/MR. Late game, 25% is bloody huge. If you're able to auto attack to shred their armour, then do a full combo (with a LDR/Black cleaver) you'll be able to melt tanks like butter. It's very underrated, mainly because it's rare to get close enough late game to make it worth it (as you're squishy) and early game 5% shred is too small to really notice.
When you transform into the Mercury Hammer you gain a small amount of resistances and deal bonus magic damage on your first auto. The resistances stay for as long as you're in hammer form, meaning they don't disappear. The first auto that deals magic damage and scales off of AD, is what has made Jayce OP as of its implementation and general play from the pro's. It deals a whopping 200 or so extra damage late game thanks to the amount of AD Jayce will buy. Compared to it's old AP scaling, it pretty much deals double damage from first back onwards. Landing a Q E combo into a hyper charge, then transform to a Q to 3 auto attacks cleaning up with a E... Not many will survive past the first auto in hammer form. It's disgusting, plus it usually procs along side Thunderlord's Decree for even more burst
A quick tip is that first, it won't charge Tear of the Goddess, they removed that in like Season 3. Second, you should spam it whilst you run back to lane simply because it's faster than not doing so (plus it's free!)
Summon Aery is the best keystone for Jayce period. It helps with auto attack harass and it's the only rune that will 100% buff the damage of your Q E combo. It also has the added benefit of being able to shield allies with your Acceleration Gate which if you're using to speed up an ally to run away can save them. Overall just the best rune with the best tree.
Electrocute is also a solid option but in my opinion inferior for Jayce. Your full on burst combo might deal a lot more damage with this rune but its heavy cooldown and the fact you're poking more than bursting in top lane means Aery is usually superior.
For your first mini rune you have 2 options. Manaflow Band is the best choice in nearly every situation as it lets you pretty much ignore mana problems which can be a big problem for Jayce. Even if you go Tear it'll scale with your total mana pool. However sometimes the enemy team is just heavy AP based so Nullifying Orb has situational use.
One option here. Absolute Focus offers the most damage throughout the game after the Celerity Nerf. There is never a reason to pick up one of the other 2 runes in this tier.
Only one option here. Scorch is trash now that it's been nerfed so Gathering Storm is your only logical option. More AD based on game duration is nice for you at around 20 minutes where you get a free longsword to poke with.
You have plenty of choice when it comes to secondary runes, but the biggest standout is the most AD early (which is domination) and healing for lane/mid game. This means I suggest Taste of Blood and Ravenous Hunter. The healing you get from Taste really makes your lane pressure disgusting, and Ravenous scales so well once you get 3-4 kills letting you heal a lot from wave clearing.
However you do have lots of choice still. The Precision Tree makes last hitting eaiser the the small AS you get and Coup/Cut Down have great use against bursting targets and tanks. Bloodlines is also really nice as 8% lifesteal after stacking will quell all your sustain needs mostly.
The other domination runes also have good use. Eyeball Collection is solid because it's more AD, but I think it's not good enough as you won't be chain killing like a jungler or getting lots of vision control from roaming. Sudden Impact also seems good but the fact most of your damage comes from the Q E combo you won't get use out of it, it does have some use with using To The Skies! but I think the sustain is way more valuable. Relentless Hunter is just amazing for roaming, but offers nothing in combat and is something I would only consider mid lane.
You'll always take Flash on Jayce. No exceptions. You need it because an instant blink has a billion and one uses, plus you don't have a huge amount of synergy with Ghost alone.
Your secondary summoner, can be one of several. The default one that I usually take is Ignite. I take Ignite because it gives me more snowball potential, thanks to Jayce having an incredible early game. In the top lane, your opponenets will usually take Teleport so they're down a combat summoner meaning you can abuse them every time your Ignite is up. So long as they don't get free roams. In mid lane, same reasons.
The other spell I recommend is Teleport. Top lane, it's a no brainer because you have little map impact until the towers start to fall (and by then, champions start to scale up a bit faster than Jayce) so TP can help a losing lane, or turn an objective fight and even just help you if you fall behind. It has great utility and tonnes of uses, just not effective in combat. I'd take this maybe 30-40% of the time top, and 10-20% of the time mid (Usually against hyper roamers, like Twisted Fate).
A spell I only take against assassins and Yasuo, Exhaust is something you must be aware of. Against the likes of a Talon or Zed an Exhaust can ruin their day, but more importantly you'll be on the receiving end of it. When you go for that tasty follow up after a combo, or if you catch someone in the jungle, a support might come by and ruin your day with an Exhaust meaning you'll be in melee range, with no spells and an enemy target that's alive and DPSing. Keep track of enemy summoner spells, and ping them when they get used to make more informed decisions.
Lastly Ghost can be taken alongside Flash (NEVER take ghost INSTEAD of flash) for some low CD mobility. It's great midlane when you're always looking to roam, and ignite just won't do anything (such as against Lux or Xerath). I also never take it top lane, as Ignite or Teleport has a lot more consistent and applicable use.
This is your standard "all in" combo. You can do it in reverse by starting with a hammer form W > Q > E then during the knockback, change into cannon form to do an auto reset with W into a Q E combo.
Here is a clip of the standard all in at 50% speed (on a jungle buff, but you can do this on a player).
|Jayce loves this item. Giving 60 AD, 15 Lethality, a great active and a healthy 10% CDR it gives Jayce every stat he could want to kill a squishy champion. You usually will be building this first if you're ahead or even. Your Q E combos will deal 600 damage to a 1k HP ADC and your damage in general will just be HUGE. Always get this item either first or second.|
|Another item Jayce adores. Granting % Armour shred, extra movementspeed, a healthy chunk of AD, a nice buffer of HP and a whopping 20% CDR it's THE item for Jayce. The huge amount of CDR it offers means that's pretty good to rush against tanks like Malphite and should be what you buy first if you're top lane against a non squishy champ most of the time. I can't really say much more about it, it's great. Always first or second.|
|I'll admit, I didn't like tri force. I felt like it was far too expensive for the extra burst in comparison to the more HP, cheaper and armour shred. However, with the 7.9 change to BC's armour shred and the fact I've been less stubborn about builds I must say, Trinity Force is really good vs squishies. I must emphasise you need to be ahead to buy it (it's more than 2 kills worth of gold more expensive than BC) and the armour shred is a lot more valuble vs tanky champions, but the extra burst this offers is REALLY big.|
|One of the three Defence boots. You take this if your opponents have little to no magic damage and not much CC. Great against champions like Yasuo or Riven. Also solid if their ADC gets uncontrollably fed.|
|You take these boots when you don't hit 40% CDR from your other 5 items+runes, or if you want 40% ASAP. Due to the fact they're one of the cheapest boots, you can get these early and sell them for something situational once you get 40% from your other items. However, more often than not you'll be getting only 30% CDR from items ( Youmuu's Ghostblade and The Black Cleaver). If you plan on buying a Maw of Malmortius third, don't get these. If you get Maw 4th/5th item then get these boots for the early spike, and sell them when you buy Maw.|
|One of the three Defence boots. You take this if your opponents have a lot of magic damage and a decent amount of CC. Great against champions like Veigar, Morgana, Ahri and Kennen. The best defence boot if you don't need CDR and are not sure what boots to get.|
|One of the three Defence boots. You take this if your opponents have very little auto attack based damage and Tenacity reducible CC, or if they have some obscene slows. Champions like Olaf, Dr. Mundo and Shyvana are best countered by being able to keep away from them as no matter what other boots you have, if they get into melee range you're probably dead.|
|This is the definition of an assassins item. Giving a 65 AD, 15 Lethality, movementspeed out of combat, a passive that lets you sneak by wards and another passive that gives you bonus TRUE damage on your first auto for a couple of seconds from being off the enemy maps that scales directly with your Lethality. As you'll be stacking a lot of the stuff (14 from runes, 20 from GB and 15 from itself) the True damage it will deal will be 173. 173 Damage ontop of your total burst is insane, especially because it's true damage. It can be amplified by another 30 points if you get the Edge of Night but that's situational. I would get this if I'm fed, and I would get it 4th item if they have no tanks, 5th if I need to delete a squishy champion as fast as possible. You can get it third instead of BT if you're playing midlane, just to be a proper assassin.|
|At this point in the game, they'll usually have some form of tank on the enemy team. As The Black Cleaver only shreds armour once you deal damage, this item will allow you do deal a significant amount of damage to tanky targets if they soak your poke. Plus cleaning up fights if you kill their backline first becomes a good idea as you'll still be able to take objectives. This is a situational item that has replacements outlined below.|
|Simple item here, you buy this instead of Lord Dominik's Regards if the enemy team have a decent amount of healing/sustain. Dr. Mundo, Soraka, Vladimir and Aatrox come to mind for getting this item. Get the Executioner's Calling early if you're laning vs one, or get it when you start to need to fight past the healer.|
|If they have no real magic damage threats and you want to deal absurd damage whilst never being able to get poked out, then get this. 80 AD, 20% lifesteal and an overshield based off of lifesteal makes this item great against poke. I would get this|
|A great defence item that will replace your Mercurial Scimitar and free up your boots to get something other than Lucidity. Giving you 55AD, 10% CDR and 45MR with one of the best hybrid passives in the game. When you take damage below a certain HP threshold, you gain a magic damage only shield and you get extra AD/Lifesteal/Spellvamp for as long as you remain in combat. This item is great against magic damage burst that isn't helped by removing a CC affect. Such as a good Xerath or Katarina whom can one shot you easily without the help of CC. Solid defence item.|
|Due to the fact Jayce is very squishy, this item is a great "get out of Jail free card" if you get hit by some CC (and if you do get hit by CC, you're probably dead). Meaning it's a lot safer for you to run face first to an enemy squishy even if they have CC based peel (Like Leona or Morgana). Still, don't be looking to get hit by CC as you only have one use and most champions with CC have more than 1. Ontop of the great active, it has 65 AD, 10% lifesteal and 35 MR. This makes it great if you get hit by poke of your own, as most poke is magic and you'll have some lifesteal to sustain back up. This is a situational item that has replacements outlined below.|
|I'm going to cover all the pure defence items here. On Jayce, your goal is to kill a squishy champion fast enough that they can't do damage, or to Poke people out allowing your team to pressure objectives safely. So because of this, the only true defence item you should consider is Guardian Angel or maybe Sterak's Gage. GA now gives AD so I nearly always buy it as my last item unless I need some extra AD/lifesteal to duel a split pusher, or if I need to stop burst in every team fight and get a steraks. You can get actual tank items like Randuin's Omen against champs like Yasuo or 80% crit ADCs, but to be honest you're better off getting more damage to kill them first. Plus you should be ending the game before 6 items if you can help it.|
With the Assassin rework comes the changes to flat penetration, and the renaming to Lethality. Unfortunately, it's more complicated than the stat it replaced as it now scales based off the enemies level rather than being pure flat. This is basically to make it easier to balance those who use Lethality, and make it less annoying if you're a low level getting chain ganked by an AD assassin.
In this section, I'll cover the 3 Lethality items Jayce will/may buy and the Serrated Dirk component and what it will do for your damage.
All the formulas are taken from the lolwiki, it gives a nice and easy to understand chart of the exact flat pen you get based on the targets level.
As you can see from the table, the flat penetration you deal is based on the targets level. For Ghostblade, it's worse at every stage of the game. That being said it's a net nerf to Jayce's damage but the attackspeed on the active was kind of useless and now the item is decently cheaper giving a spike sooner. I buy this first or second every game with very, very few exceptions.
Comparing the new duskblade to the old is easy. The new one is a lot better. This is because the Pen you get from this item actually scales past it's old self at level 3 (where it's a flat 10 like pre change) plus the passive isn't bad anymore. It's why I now consider it an amazing item on Jayce, it will allow you to shift from a pokey assassin to a full on assassin.
A new item to the game that is the utility Lethality item. It has the same AD, lower lethality and a higher cost than GB, but it does have some great defensive applications. You wind it up before you dive in, and you can potentially ignore a peel attempt. This is great if you're stacking lethality or their peel is 1 spell wonder ( Dark Binding, Crescendo or Tidal Wave come to mind)
The component to all the lethality items, it gives a low 10 lethality and a meh 25 AD. Does it's job as a longsword based item, allowing Jayce to consistently get stronger every back. It's damage is like GB, worse in every way except at level 18 where it's even, but the OOC passive is the only benefit it has over the old now.
They also all share out of combat movement speed, this is great as a pseudo assassin, letting you run all over the map quickly. Split pushing and being a top laner, this a real nice overlooked passive.
Laning as Jayce is pretty straight forward for the most part. You're the king of the lane as you usually can out-trade/push most champions. Those that can stand toe to toe with you, are generally skill matchups.
Do keep in mind, as a solo laner you're on your own. Don't expect your jungler to gank (it's nice if he does, but don't expect it) and do your best to 1v2. What I mean by this is, assume your jungler won't gank, but assume theirs will. Make sure to keep wards up as being the lane bully means usually you'll be pushed closer to their tower than not.
Firs things first, is you should look to auto attack down the enemy as often as you can. After you auto, walk into a bush to drop creep aggro. Try not to just spam Q's early, as their damage is similar to an auto attack. I personally use it to force a level 2 quickly rather than to get any meaningful poke off.
Once you hit level 2, you can start to look to kill the opponent. If you hit level 2 first, walk at them and line up a Q into a few W auto attacks. If they're in a bad spot, you can go into hammer form to Q Auto (Don't use W early, it's a waste of mana). If you chunked them low enough, Ignite and finish of a kill for first blood. If they won't die to ignite, don't use it and just take the won trade.
After this point, you'll want to ward up so you don't get ganked. Top lane should be tri bush or river (blue or red side) and in mid you should ward a pixel brush and stay closer to that side so you can escape a gank easily.
Continue to harass, farm and kill your lane opponent. Also, don't be shy to roam to another lane. With your passive and Lethality item OOC movement speed, you can shove in a wave and attempt to pressure or kill an opposing laners allied team.
Try and get tower ASAP, as it'll give you more room to roam with and extra gold for you and your team. Once either your tower or the enemy tower goes down, this is usually the transition into midgane.
This is where Jayce shines. His Q E combo will deal 400-500 damage, his burst is one of the highest in the game and he can push down towers faster than an ADC if left alone. Here, you'll want to look to skirmish (NOT team fight). So anything with less than 5v5 is a skirmish, obviously you want this in your favour.
Group up around your teams target objectives, and tell them (nicely) what you want to do. No point in have a 5v5 stalemate mid, just gets boring and gets no one anywhere.
Start by rotating to all lanes killing the outer towers. Ask your team to group with you whilst you do so, mid will be the hardest usually so get bot and top first. Always look to catch out a squishy whilst making sure you're not vulnerable yourself. Keep warding, buying Control Wards and just generally being the guy making the first moves instead of reacting to other people.
Once the towers start to fall, look to keep taking towers (and maybe even an inhib) along side jungle control. Make sure the enemy jungle is clear of their wards, and lit up with yours. (Always have a Control Ward in your inventory if you have the gold. ALWAYS.) and continue to look for kills that will allow you to take objectives.
Try and snowball this into winning outright, by taking things like Dragons and Baron and then either sieging down without resistance or catching and killing several members of the enemy team.
As Jayce, you can force this all by yourself. If you say go top, and catch their ADC alone you can then either attempt to take the tower, or regroup with your team and force a 4v5/objective. This will last for a long time, as late game you'll start to be unable to find lone targets or unable to kill someone safely.
Jayce will begin to fall off after his GB BC DB powerspike. This is because your Q is no longer gaining base damage along side the AD you get, and your W is probably maxed too. At this point, your strengths still lay with Poking down targets and catching squshies, but just know it's a lot more risky to all in a target as people usually stop being alone at this point.
You'll mainly be focusing on baiting the enemy team into bad fights by poking down key targets then killing their team (or them) if they don't play properly. Which is common for every elo outside of chall, at which point you probably don't need to read guides.
Try and catch enemies in a rotation, or when you get alone time in a lane, blitz through a tower with your W and raw AD.
In a full 5v5 teamfight, you're at your weakest. Try to poke down the backline before it starts, but if that's not possible just stay in ranged form auto attacking until you can get a clear shot at one shotting anyone. Use your E to get extra mobility, and to pseudo peel for your AD/Mid.
So overall, Jayce is a lane bully that can transition into a godlike midgame monster, but falls off a bit late game due to his lack of true ultimate and 500 range. However, his lane pressure and midgame damage means he can single handedly carry a game and has the tool to do so against any comp.
He's mechanically demanding, and will always be at least viable due to his flexibility. Tank/DPS Jayce isn't meta right now, but it's still usable. So long as Black Cleaver isn't dumpster tier, he can find a place in top lane.
Remember, there is always Strength through Progress.
Headers: Janitsu. His stuff is a lot nicer than anything I could make artistically.
ATM there is only one person, because this guide is built from the ground up by myself. That being said, edits/changes can always be added to here.
Here is a link to the Patreon.Again I'll link to it and again I'll emphasise it's 500% optional. If you like my stuff and want to help me out, then I would appreciate any amount of money.