Skarner Build Guide by KajiKumihoAkukei
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You'll Never Escape! ~ Predato
+11 Attack Damage or +18 Ability Power, Adaptive
Ideal First Back
Example full build
VS Full AD
VS AP heavy
Threats to Skarner with this build
Hello and thanks for reading my guide!
I am KajiKùmihoAkukei, a player that loves playing Skarner, he is a great champion that can snowball a game very effectively if played correctly.
I was a Skarner main back in season 4 and at the start of season 5. Recently I picked up on playing him again and I wanted to make this guide, because Skarner is a great early game jungler and a good champion to help anyone trying to climb the ranked ladder.
This guide is made based on the experiences I have had in my games on the champion.
I hope you guys enjoy it, feel free to vote or leave a comment!
Good luck out there and always remember: have fun!
Flash and Smite
In almost every game you will take Flash and Smite as it is just the best set of spells you can get for Skarner jungle.
There isn't much else that can be said about it, you need your Smite for obvious reasons and most of the time it doesn't do you much good if you would take anything else than Flash.
Ghost and Smite
In some games it might be worth for you to take Ghost instead of Flash. This will mostly be when the enemy team doesn't have any escape tools (like a dash, blink, ...) except for Flash. This means you can just run up to the and use Impale without them being able to get away.
But even in this scenario I, personally, still prefer Flash.
Pros / Cons
+ Fun champion
+ Easy to master
+ Provides great cc
+ Great early jungle clear
+ Strong early 1 vs 1
+ High impact ult
+ Good objective clear
Skarner is a fun champion, he is very easy to master and his kit very simple. He provides a good amount of crowd control.
His e Fracture provides a slow and if you land a basic attack on a target hit by Fracture they are stunned as well. This makes Skarner really good at ganking and fighting 1 vs 1 in the jungle.
Because of his passive Crystal Spires you can take objectives very quickly and health as Skarner.
Skarner ult Impale is one of the greatest tools to set up ganks. If you Impale an enemy carry and drag them into your team, a kill will almost always be guaranteed!
- Weak late game
- Ability reliant
- Weaker out of jungle
- Summoner spell reliant
- No gap closers
- No real escape
Skarner is an early game jungler, which means that he needs to make an impact at the earlier stages of the game, because he falls off late game.
As Skarner the most of you utility and damage comes from your abilities, so you will need them to be up if you want to make an impact.
Skarner has no real form of escape, if you get caught out or make a bad engage, you can't get out unless you have Flash.
Skarner is a lot weaker outside of the jungle, because a lot of his early game pressure comes from his passive Crystal Spires. If you don't have Flash up as Skarner it is harder to catch someone out, unless you can run at them really fast and they have no escape.
Primary Rune Paths
Since the beginning of season 8 and the release of the new runes system, a lot of different builds and paths have been created and explored.
This left many players confused and indecisive about which rune is the best for their favorite champion.
In this chapter I will be talking about the 2 primary rune paths that are, in my opinion, the best way to go for Skarner. I will be talking about the Domination tree and the Resolve tree.
These runes complement both the tank build and the bruiser build, which one to pick will depend mostly on the enemy team composition and your own preferences in playstyle.
Primary Path ~ Domination
Taking Domination as a primary path gives you more play making options, you can take some good runes that allow you to set up ganks easier and get on targets faster.
|When going in to the Domination tree as Skarner you can't ignore Predator because ii gives you a quick way to get to the enemy when you are ganking.
Having Predator makes your ganks post 6, when you have Impale, so much stronger!
If you start channeling Predator while you are in the river, you will be too fast for the person you're ganking to get away without blowing at least a Flash.
Note: always make sure you fully channel Predator before engaging, or else you will just put it on cooldown.
|Cheap Shot is the best choice here for Skarner because of the bonus damage you can deal when you stun people with your Fracture + auto attack combo or when you snare someone with your Impale. This makes it by far the most effective rune to pick here for Skarner.|
|Vision is key if you want to win games. That's why Zombie Ward is such a good rune on junglers, especially since the removal of trackers knife.
This is the only rune I'd consider taking here, just because of how important it is to have good vision control.
| Relentless Hunter is a very good rune to take because of the increased movement speed it gives you out of combat. This rune can give you up to +48 movement speed out of combat.
Having this much mobility allows you to have a lot more pressure on the map, enabling you to set up more ganks or to countergank if you laners are in trouble.
| Ingenious Hunter is also worth taking, because of the increased up time of item actives it can give you. Fully stacked this rune can give you up to 40% cooldown reduction on item actives. This means you can have Predator up every 90 - 60 seconds and Righteous Glory every 54 seconds. Needless to say this greatly increases your ability to pull off successful ganks.
Furthermore, this also applies to your Sweeping Lens. Enabling you to clear out the enemy vision a lot more frequent.
Primary Path ~ Resolve
Taking Resolve as a primary path gives you more tankiness and survivability. You can tank more damage and be a beefier frontline for your team.
| Aftershock is the best keystone to take in the Resolve tree because it is so easy to proc on Skarner. You can proc it by hitting someone with Fracture and then hitting them with a basic attack, or, more importantly just by using Impale.
Taking aftershock makes you a lot tankier after you used Impale an enemy champion and it deals a nice amount of bonus damage.
| Bone Plating is very effective on Skarner because of how the champion works.
You are an engage champion, which means you will be in the middle of the action. So the damage reduction on 3 attacks or abilities is really helpful when you are trying to go in to Impale the enemy carry!
|Second Wind is the best rune to take here in my opinion because of the same reason as I explained with Bone Plating: it helps you survive longer. The only difference here is that Second Wind doesn't give you damage reduction, but increased health regeneration after taking damage.|
|Unflinching is the go-to rune here because it is just such a good rune on junglers. They can get the most out of the rune because Smite has such a low cooldown. For Skarner this means you can smite your target with your Stalker's Blade, stealing 20% of their movement speed and on top of that you get bonus tenacity and slow resistance because of Unflinching, making it very hard for enemy champions to get away from you.|
Secondary Rune Path
Sorcery is the secondary rune path to go for Skarner because it holds 2 runes that suit Skarners playstyle perfectly.
These 2 runes are The Ultimate Hat and Celerity.
| The Ultimate Hat is a great rune to get on Skarner because of how important his ult Impale is for his play making ability. This rune increases the up time of your ult greatly.
Note: The Ultimate Hat stacks manipulatively with regular cooldown reduction. Which means that if you are at 40% cooldown reduction, the rune will put your ult on a 49% cooldown reduction. This means that Impale will be up every 41 seconds at max rank.
If you get the standard build, you have 30% cooldown reduction, combined with The Ultimate Hat this means your ultimate is up every 47.6 seconds.
| Celerity is a rune that fits Skarner and his play style perfectly! It gives you + 3% bonus movement speed and bonus AD/AP. Since Skarner doesn't have any gap closers, he really benefits from movement speed to get close to his targets to Impale them.
That is why Celerity is a really important rune to take on Skarner. The bonus movement speed can make the difference between catching you target or them just getting away.
Note: Celerity grants adaptive stats based on the numerical bonus movement speed, not the percentage. This means that you get bonus movement speed based on every 1 movement speed you are above your base movement speed.
|Crystal Spires (Passive): Spread around the map there are 6 Crystal Spires: 2 on your teams red and blue side jungle + 2 in the river at dragon and baron + 2 on the enemy teams red and blue side jungle.
Crystal Charge: While within range of a Crystal Spire controlled by his team, or while an enemy is stunned with Fracture or suppressed with Impale, Skarner gains 70 - 120 (based on level) bonus movement speed, 43 - 160 (based on level)% bonus attack speed and restores 2% maximum mana every second.
|Crystal Slash Q: Skarner deals physical damage to all enemies in range. If an enemy is hit, subsequent uses of Crystal Slash within 4 seconds deal bonus magic damage. The AP ratio of this ability scales with bonus AP.
Basic attacks against non-structures (everything except turrets and inhibitors) reduce Crystal Slash's cooldown by 0.25 seconds, quadrupled to 1 against enemy champions.
|Crystalline Exoskeleton W: Skarner shields himself for up to 6 seconds, gaining initial bonus movement speed that accelerates by 100% over 3 seconds while the shield holds. The shield strength scales with bonus AP.|
|Fracture E: Skarner launches a blast of crystallized energy in the target direction, dealing magic damage to all enemies struck and slowing them for 2.5 seconds, as well as marking them with Crystal Venom for 5 seconds. Fracture's projectile slows down every time it hits an enemy.
Skarner's next basic attack against a target marked with Crystal Venom consumes the mark to deal bonus physical damage and stun them for 1.25 seconds.
Fracture's cooldown is reduced every time Skarner stuns a target with Fracture or suppresses a target with Impale. Fracture's magic damage scales with bonus AP.
|Impale R: Skarner brings down his stinger, rooting the target enemy for 0.25 seconds, dealing 60% AD physical damage, magic damage, and suppressing them for 1.75 seconds. At the end of the duration, the target takes the same damage again. Impale's damage scales with bonus AP.|