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Swain Build Guide by TheDeadliestMacarena

Top The Ultimate Tyrant

Top The Ultimate Tyrant

Updated on February 27, 2022
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League of Legends Build Guide Author TheDeadliestMacarena Build Guide By TheDeadliestMacarena 6,349 Views 0 Comments
6,349 Views 0 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author TheDeadliestMacarena Swain Build Guide By TheDeadliestMacarena Updated on February 27, 2022
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Runes: Long Live the Grand General

1 2 3 4 5 6
Presence of Mind
Legend: Tenacity
Coup de Grace

Taste of Blood
Ultimate Hunter

+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+8 Magic Resist


1 2 3 4 5 6
Basic Aggressive
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite


Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
Extreme Major Even Minor Tiny
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None Low Ok Strong Ideal
Extreme Threats
Ideal Synergies
Ideal Strong Ok Low None

Champion Build Guide

The Ultimate Tyrant

By TheDeadliestMacarena
Notes on Swain's Abilities
Good day, there! This is a guide for Jericho Swain, the Grand General of Noxus. This is a basic guide not meant for any lane alone.

Biography: Swain is Noxus' big daddy who has an even bigger demonic sugar daddy, hanging on his arm (wink, wink). I don't blame him. I'd want a demonic being to sponsor me, too.

Swain is a very versatile mage. You may turn him into a some lich king by simply siphoning and stocking up health, making him nigh unkillable. You can turn him into sorta DPS mage. Maybe give him lots of burst damage. When he goes full-tank, he transforms into a Final Fantasy Boss battle. He can go Top, Bot, Supp, Mid, and/or go full Thicc.

Swain is overshadowed, however, in popularity by other mages such as Ahri, Annie, Veigar, and Xerath, which is understandable. Swain's abilities require a great deal of patience and timing, because he lacks mobility, and his abilities eat so much mana and time early game. He is also very item-reliant. Not farming enough or getting ganked too many times early on could cripple you and your team.


E will Root champs. Wait for his Demonic Mage Hand to come back and then pull with his passive. W has a 2-sec delay before damaging. If you can pull the Champ close, Q for that sweet, sweet damage. Hit all three, and you can nuke some poor champ out of 40% of their HP, even early game.

Certain points to remember:

  • Death's Hand is a straighforward source of damage, although the first skill upgrade puts it on a 9-second cooldown and has a relatively short range. People can get away from it easily. Again, make it count. It activates in a 5-finger cone and will apply damage on anything inside that cone.

  • Vision of Empire skill has a windup effect, which means it doesn't do damage right away after being cast. Well, it gives you vision... but no one use this for vision. Steal objectives. Snipe enemy champs. I stole a crab from an enemy Lee Sin once, and watched him re-evaluated his life choices. It's a rule. Pull a 360-no-scope snipe on a low-health enemy champ in fog to complete the Swain experience.

  • Nevermove root has conditions. The ability needs to swing back from its full range, and THEN, it roots the first line of unit/Champ it touches. Also, it damages twice in one cast. You can only activate your passive ( Ravenous Flock) on one Champ.

  • In my crusty opinion, his Ultimate Ability, Demonic Ascension, is by far one of the best ults visually speaking. It's got that FromSoftware evil aura, and still be amazing gameplay-wise. Demonic Ascension not only gives DPS, but also increases the additional HP granted by your passive, heals Swain, and recasting it unleashes a devastating attack, called Demonflare. While using your Ult, you can still attack without cancelling it.
    • BUT... At Level 6, it has a 120-second base CD, and costs 100 mana. Early game, using this could cripple you. So make sure that trading with your enemy pays off. There is a red damage indicator under your health & mana bar. It tells how much HP you absorbed from enemies which adds to your Demonflare dmg. It's better to utilize it in a clash where it hits more than 1 champ,¬†or for a sure¬†kill.
When you're playing Swain, tactically position yourself and your abilities instead of just spamming them.

(Thanks, Hecarim. We love Runeterra's man-horse horseman.)

(Very good, Swain. Pull them near tower with E. Watch them rage at you over a game mechanic.)
Notes for Some Items
"Oh, you dumbass, that should be a core item". Yes, yes, it is. The Hourglass is very important to Swain. It provides you with armor, temporary invulnerability, and a chance to start a teamfight. In this guide, I concentrated on item builds with a specific goal, such as Quad-Burn, Get Slappa, and Glass Cannon. It's not All-Purpose Cream, but you have to adapt when you're playing. If you're falling behind your enemy's team, Zhonya's Hourglass should be your first line of defense.

Ah, yes... Grievous Wounds. You've been sorely missed. IDEALLY, Morellonomicon should be your main def against sustain Champs, who has at least one healing item like Bloodthirster. But if you're up against a fed Camille, for example, chances are you won't hit them first. Take Thornmail instead. I say IDEALLY because buying Grievous Wounds items is like trying to put out a fire with your spit.

This item doesn't add directly to your damage but drastically improve health, health regen, and magic resistance. Spirit Visage is my main go-to item in fulfilling my dream as an undead overlord. It increases all heals from his passive, his abilities, and from his items. If you're going for a tankier build, Warmog's Armor and Randuin's Omen are good choices as well.
Notes for the Runes
Jericho Swain is a boss battle by himself. When properly geared up, he delivers massive damage, refuses to die, and, just being an all-around teamfight god. The notes below are runes and builds I've dabbled with in the past. Most are pretty basic builds to switch around. Few are gimmicky and confuse me on how, in Runeterra's Void-sponsored cornhole, they even worked.

Try them. Surprise people, and probably, yourself. See if they work well with your playstyle. If it works, fine, you're doing great. If not, if it really pisses you off, call Marie Kondo up and release me from this joyless mortal coil.

The following item builds go well with Long Live the Grand General runes:
  • Lich King Swain
    Incredible sustain with Conqueror and Taste of Blood, and cause more problems late game with your Ultimate Hunter stacks. Get those bounties to get the full effect of this build.
  • Broilmaster Ala Riot
  • Crown Bully

Pokemaster and Pokemaster + Burn could be used with the following builds:
  • Broilmaster Ala Riot
    Do a 4X-Burn Build with adding Ignite as your summs while playing with Pokemaster+Burn. Flambé your enemies and add salt to taste. I also call this build, the Margarita of Pain.
  • The H in Jericho is Heart
    This increases your odds of slashing HP while also healing. Pokemaster lets you to stay in a fight longer with Taste of Blood. Ult cooldowns will be reduced thanks to Ultimate Hunter. These runes allow you to cause more problems in a teamfight by giving your team more sustain, by keeping yourself alive. Teamwork is crucial in this build. Stay close to your teammates. For 2 reasons:
    • First, your healing Mythic only works with other people not for you.
    • Second, you need those Bounty Hunter stacks so you either assist or kill, and you get both of those by joining in teamfights. So be a team player or be a burden.
  • Emotional Support Roast
    If you can't heal them, might as well cause some damage and assist. You can replace Cosmic Drive for something else, such as Zhonya's Hourglass to defend from burst damage, or Spirit Visage to increase your own healing. For fun, you can try Rylai's Crystal Scepter, and slow people down inside your Ult during a clash. Ultimately, you either start the fight or strategically peel HP for your teammates.
  • Get Slappa
    How annoying can you get with Arcane Comet? Since you're putting more focus on your basic abilities (Q, W, & E) rather than your Ult, you can replace Ultimate Hunter with Eyeball Collection. Gives you more AP.
  • Lich King Swain
  • Glass-Cannon

The following builds benefit from Hyper-Aggressive runes:
  • Glass-Cannon
    Your Q and W are prioritized in the Mage Sniper ability order. Vision of Empire has a lot of sniping potential. With your tremendous damage, you may steal objectives and wipe out players from across the map. It's a squishy build, but it's a force to be reckoned with.
  • Get Slappa
    With speed and haste, you're basically Sonic the Hedgehog with a blunderbuss.
  • Broilmaster Ala Riot

Thiccmaster Runes go well with:
The Thiccmaster set of runes (Conqueror+Green) is a more-defensive take on the Long Live the Grand General Runes (Conqueror+Red). You take this if you think your enemy laner could outrange or outpace you. They'll be able to attack you more than you them. Depending on which runes you switch out, they either give you more additional health, tenacity or more armor/MR.
  • Lich King Swain
  • Broilmaster ala Riot
  • Crown Bully

NOTE: These are not definite rune+item builds. You can mix and match them however you like. Don't restrict yourself. Also if I made a mistake on how items & runes operate, feel free to correct me.

If certain runes like Electrocute & Phase Rush aren't there like you expected, they probably didn't work for my playstyle. I mean, Swain's abilities don't chain very well, have too high a cooldown early game, and easily miss. Phase Rush is just weird for me. I just went with simpler runes. If you're just starting out on Swain, take the easy route first.

His Majestic Thiccness, Grand General Jericho Swain
League of Legends Build Guide Author TheDeadliestMacarena
TheDeadliestMacarena Swain Guide
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