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Jax Build Guide by Hirengul

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Hirengul

Wabba-Jax: Mercenary of Madness (AP Jungle/Top)

Hirengul Last updated on April 8, 2013
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Team 1

Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

Not Updated For Current Season

The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 9


Utility: 0

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To clear some things up...

This guide was created by me to teach players how I play Jax and to help instruct players in my play style so that they can attempt it themselves. If you would like a build that is 'standard' and 'makes the most sense', there are plenty of guides on how to build Jax in that manner, but this is not the place. This guide is all about learning how to play Jax in a creative yet effective manner. A guide on how to play Jax in such a way that at the end of a ranked game, the enemy team says to themselves "I can't believe that I got beaten by that."

That said, if you have ideas on different items to build or anything of that sort, feel free to leave your thoughts in the discussion section.

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The focus of this guide will be to make reader's familiar with my personal brand of AP Jax and the style of play associated with it. I primarily will play Jax in the jungle, but the build is viable in the top lane as well. If you wish to go for a safer build, try the 'defensive top' build. I personally prefer playing Jax as a high-burst/utility champion.

NOTE: To effectively run an aggressive AP Jax, you have to be able to think outside of the box at times to create good engagements and escape effectively.

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So...why play AP Jax?

  • 3 out of 4 of Jax's abilities scale primarily with AP and they all have short base recharge times (I'll go into this further in the 'abilities' section) that is further enhanced by stacking CDR.

  • AP Jax is one of the greatest of what I consider 'sustained burst' champions due to high damage and low cooldowns on his abilities.

  • Jax is a generally tanky champion, AP Jax being no exception, and his Grandmaster's Might active reduces a lot of AP burst damage--any armor you build will carry you through the rest of the fight.

  • Did I mention cooldown reduction yet? Oh yeah, his Leap Strike has a 3.5 second recharge at max with CDR stacked. This makes it very difficult on enemies to escape from your burst and gives you so many opportunities to escape, yourself.

  • It's really really fun!

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Pros / Cons


  • Awesome burst damage
  • Can escape from nearly anything
  • Fantastic duelist
  • AoE stuns
  • Awesome Gap-closers
  • A somewhat fragile front-liner
  • Burns mana quickly early-game if you aren't careful
  • Susceptible to poke if you are playing defensively
  • High-skill ceiling. To play him effectively, you have to get creative
  • No self-heals aside from health regeneration

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Good Against / Bad Against

Good Against:

  • Squishy targets
  • Targets without dodge/jump abilities (they can't avoid the stun)
  • Anyone with heavy reliance on basic attacks

Bad Against:
  • High health-targets
  • High MR Targets
  • Targets who shred/ignore CC like Olaf or Gangplank
  • Targets who can force you into an engagement
  • Targets who can kite you and poke hard like AP Teemo, Vladimir, or Ahri

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Champion Abilities

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

Relentless Assault
This ability is what manages to make AP Jax an effective farmer despite having relatively insignificant AoE damage. This will help that Madred's Razors get a lot of procs in if you are jungling to give you a relatively fast clear speed. Nothing too fancy hear, just stacking attack speed.

Leap Strike
This is very likely the greatest utility ability to this build. It does PHYSICAL damage that scales with your AP. Pretty awesome. At skill 5 with your CDR stacked, this baby has a 3.5 second recharge. Combined with a Rylai's Crystal Scepter, enemies will find themselves having a VERY hard time escaping, one thing that makes AP Jax such an effective ganker. That isn't all, though. This ability can be used on any target. That means it can be cast on minions/monsters, champions, or *drumroll* sight wards. Or anything that acts as a ward for that matter, such as Noxious Traps or Jack In The Boxs. This is why you will want to have at least a couple wards on you at all times--this allows you to, in escape situations, cast a ward in front of you and quickly jump to it (over a wall, preferably).

This is going to be your bread and butter damage ability. At skill 5 and 40% CDR, it will have a little under a 2 second recharge time and will proc the passive on Lich Bane (which will have a ~1.5 second cooldown) on nearly every cast. If you land this baby with the Grandmaster's Might proc, you will be dealing 450 + 205% of your AP in magic damage on that hit (before MR).

Counter Strike
For this build, you won't be benefiting much from the damage this ability offers, but it offers a great deal of utility, as the dodge effect prior to the stun is fantastic for dueling autoattack champions or running from ranged autoattack champs with slows such as Ashe or a champion with a Frozen Mallet. Dodges aside, it gives an AoE stun, which is awesome for ganking or locking down enemies in teamfights in the lategame. NOTE: if you are going to gank a target, activate this ability only slightly before your Leap Strike. This guarantees that you can actually get to the target to stun. I've seen too many Jaxes activate Counter Strike before they are in range of a Leap Strike, in which case enemies can simply kite you until Counter Strike ends, at which point they can turn on you, since now they know you will have no dodge or stun for at LEAST the next 6 seconds.

Grandmaster's Might
I've covered the essentials already. This skill will help clear faster and add more DPS lategame with the third-strike magic damage. It is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT that you use the active correctly. The active on this spell will serve you best in the midgame when diving turrets, escaping ganks, or in duels, preferably the latter two--it would be a shame if you burned your ult on a dive and died later because it was on CD due to your greed. Lategame, you will want to save this ability nearly EXCLUSIVELY for teamfights. If you hadn't noticed, the aggressive top and jungle builds actually don't build any MR--I'll go into this further in the itemization chapter. In the place of MR, you have your Zhonya's Hourglass active and your Grandmaster's Might to help avoid as much AP damage as possible. Remember, the core purpose of this build is a high-burst/utility champion.

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In this section I will give a brief rundown of the mastery trees used in each build, and why I selected some of the masteries that I did. Many of these selections are personal preference, and I would recommend adjusting them if your playstyle doesn't benefit from some of these buffs. If you are going to swap for alternative masteries, however, make sure that you know exactly what you are giving up.



Defense Tree:
I selected the standard Tough Skin & Bladed Armor combo to help the early game jungling with points in Perseverance for sustain, allowing for as much time to farm as possible. A token point in Hardiness & Resistance for a little Armor/MR in the early game. Safeguard is for safer diving to get that last hit during ganks--not recommended if you don't play aggressively.

Alternative defense tree options:
Offense Tree:
Pretty standard AP setup. Didn't grab CDR because the build gets to 40% (cap) through itemization. I dropped 2 points in Mental Force and 3 "wildcard" points to grab 4 points in Deadliness and 1 point in Weapon Expertise . Deadliness gives me a little bonus AD to spread damage more, and Weapon Expertise gives my basic attacks as well as my Leap Strike penetration.

Alternative offense tree options:
  • Mental Force :
    Take this for a more standard straight AP setup.

  • Butcher :
    Take points in this for additional damage to jungle monsters.

  • Destruction :
    Take this if you want to help lanes secure turret kills or to split push.

  • Havoc :
    Points in this to increase your overall damage--2% is relatively insignificant unless you are applying it to full lategame builds, which people rarely actually get to. I'd prefer putting points in masteries to buff your early/mid game.

  • Brute Force :
    Points in this to give you some flat AD, decent for securing last hits a bit easier if you're holding lane for someone, also adds a little damage in duels, I suppose.


Defense Tree:
Jax lacks self-heals, so I pretty consistently stick points in Perseverance to help sustain a little more if I am getting poked. I put 1 point in each Hardiness & Resistance each and 3 points in Durability for higher max health (my reasoning: Resistance and Hardiness have diminishing returns on more points, durability's health buff is linear) Aside from that, the standard 1 point in Safeguard for those dive opportunities.

Alternative defense tree options:
Offense Tree:
  • Refer to jungle masteries--the offense points are the same.


Defense Tree:
Once again, Perseverance for the sustain and a token point in Resistance & Hardiness , but this time we continue the tree! Tenacious & Relentless help you escape from sticky situations more easily and chase down people who are trying to kite you with cc. Other than that, grab all the health you can, a token point in Defender , one in Reinforced Armor since lots of ADCs stack crit chance & damage, that will negate a LOT of damage.

Alternative defense tree options:
  • Safeguard:
    Can chill under a turret soaking damage while your team wipes up the enemies, or tank turret damage when you are trying to rush them before enemies respawn.

  • Unyielding :
    Damage reduction is pretty cool.

  • Block :
    Still pretty cool. Over the course of 20 autoattacks you saved yourself from 60 damage. Not bad for one mastery point.

  • Good Hands :
    One would hope you don't get too much use out of this, but most games you will die a few times, and getting 10% of that time back is really helpful.

  • Legendary Armor :
    I would never get this mastery. With 3 points in it, at your full build with your ultimate active, this will give you about +8 Armor/MR added onto your 230 armor and MR. Pretty insignificant. And that's with your ultimate active.

Offense Tree:
  • Pretty standard. Some AP, AS, and Magic Pen, which are all good for obvious reasons.

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Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist

Greater Mark of Precision

Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed

Pretty simple setup:

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Summoner Spells

NOTE: Junglers should generally stick with Smite and Flash or Ghost with few exceptions.

Smite is pretty essential if you are going to jungle with Jax--that's about it.

Teleport is very nearly the top lane equivalent of Smite. Can be used to get back into lane to farm faster, Teleport to someone else's lane to gank (wards in bushes are nice to TP to), or you can run to someone else's lane to gank and Teleport back to your own. Can be used as a second skill for Junglers if you use wards effectively and don't allow yourself to be caught out of position. As noted earlier, a quick sight ward + Leap Strike can be a half-decent substitute for a flash. The primary benefit of using these 2 spells together would be that it would allow you to clear jungle fast with smite and also Teleport to wards you place throughout the map for fast + sneaky ganks. (ex: gank top lane, Teleport to a vision ward in the river bush bot lane, then gank bot or mid) I wouldn't recommend this unless you really know what you are sacrificing by dropping Flash or Ghost.

A pretty standard summoner spell, flash is very useful to Junglers particularly--you'll be spending a lot of time in the jungle, and if you are caught in a nasty position while in the jungle, you are surrounded by walls to flash over. Flash also allows for long-range ganks (flash then leap strike to your target). A pretty solid choice all around.

Another good choice for Jax. As noted before, his base move speed is high by default, and a ghost buff would only exaggerate that. Good for situations where you need to cover more ground to catch up to a target than what you would be able to cover with a Flash + Leap Strike. It is also quite effective for staying on a target once you catch up to them.

A decent pick if you are going to be doing a lot of starting engagements in the lategame--since you will likely be the initial target, a quick Barrier should hold off a few of the attacks/abilities and give you time to let your Grandmaster's Might do some work as well.

Once again another good pick if you are going to be doing a lot of engaging. This wont be absorbing damage so much, but it allows you to take cc off of yourself upon engaging and have a mini "reduced cc shield" for a few seconds after--if you are rolling a defensive build, this combined with Tenacious and Mercury's Treads will make you nearly (I said nearly not entirely) immune to cc for a few seconds, enough time to stun some people and get your Grandmaster's Might up.

An excellent mastery choice for top lane--an excellent ability for duels or for chasing down targets. If you are getting this ability, I might recommend dropping one point in Fury to get one in Summoner's Wrath . The buff to the spell from that mastery makes exhaust that much better for dueling, and makes it an excellent skill to use on carries in teamfights later on. (they do less damage, move slower, and take more damage so are a bit easier to take out)

As mentioned before, this build has no particular means of self heals other than health regeneration, so having a backup is useful. Keeps your sustain in lane up, can be used with groups of weakened minions to help take out towers, and can be popped in teamfights to take an edge off of some of the damage received--in some cases, it can be a life saver.

Classic skill, excellent for dealing damage at range for melee champions, especially when there is a very small amount of health before the enemy champion dies. Another good time to consider taking Summoner's Wrath , as the +5 AP/AD buff can be really helpful in the early game when you are dealing with such low numbers. Primary lategame function would be in dealing with champions with high health regen, such as Dr. Mundo or Volibear, or champions with great deals of life steal or spell vamp. (reduces healing by 50%)

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Core Early Game Items:

Madred's Razors:
The starting core item for the 'jungle' build. This combined with Jax's high attack speed gives you lots of chances to proc the passive to kill stuff quickly. Once you hit level 6 and start to get a decent amount of AP built, you can drop this and farm with relative ease using Empower and Grandmaster's Might's passive.

Seeker's Armguard:
The starting core for the 'offensive top' build. It gives you some armor to help withstand hits from enemy champions/minions and some AP to buff your damage. One of my personal favorite season 3 items due to its relative low cost in comparison to how much Armor and AP it gives you (45 Armor/35 AP @ max stacks)

Warden's Mail:
The starting core of the 'defensive top' build if you are facing an AD opponent in lane. It is relatively cheap and due to its slow effect, gives you opportunities to strike back enemies who hit you, making yourself more difficult to poke...also allows you to escape more easily from autoattacking foes.

Chalice of Harmony:
The starting core for the 'defensive top' build if you are facing an AP opponent in lane. This item is relatively inexpensive and gives excellent mana regeneration as well as some MR.

philosopher's stone philosopher's stone:
An extremely underrated item, in my opinion. It helps money flow by gold gained, and the HP/Mana regeneration helps you to stay in lane as long as possible, further increasing gold gain.

kage's lucky pick kage's lucky pick:
Another gold-gainer, this and Seeker's Armguard together will give you a combined 60AP, not too bad for the price. Builds into your Morellonomicon for the midgame, too.

Mercury's Treads:
Standard tank boots, they give you a little MR and also offers tenacity. Generally accepted as lategame boots, they are pretty good to get early on if you are laning vs. someone with heavy, lots of AP, or both.

Berserker's Greaves:
Standard jungle/aggressive boots, these will help you clear faster during the early to midgame and also help to increase general damage output from basic attacks + your Grandmaster's Might passive.

Core Mid Game Items:

Eleisa's Miracle:
Decent regeneration item built from [philosopher's stone]]--make sure that you finish building this at level 15 at the very latest or else it won't vanish from your inventory.

Rylai's Crystal Scepter:
This is one of the first 'complete' items that you will want to focus on getting in the midgame. This will make your ganks very very difficult to escape from, it will make you a bit tankier from the bonus health, and gives a solid 80 AP. All for a relatively low price considering the effects.

Morellonomicon: This item is one of the most important items in the build. For a mere 2200 gold you get 20% CDR, +75 AP, 12 mana regen, and grievous wounds on targets below 40% health. This basically makes you counter Volibear's passive straight off the bat, gives you intense sustain with the mana regen, and kicks off the beginning of your spell-spamming days as Jax.

Athene's Unholy Grail:
This item is essentially the tankier equivalent of Morellonomicon. If you need more MR, swap Morellonomicon out for this item in the build order. This item comes standard for the "defensive" build.

Late Game Items:

Frozen Heart:
This item is one of the final core items you will build for the 'defensive top' build--it grants a great deal of armor, gives 20% CDR that brings you to max, and reduces the attack speed of nearby enemies by 20%. This will give you another level of utility in teamfights and help make the 'tank' aspect of your build nearly complete.

Warmog's Armor:
You can build Frozen Heart or this item in either order, depending on what you need more, armor or health. This may be a better choice to build first if you are dealing with a more AP-heavy enemy team. This adds the final touch to your build to make you essentially a nearly full tank.

Nashor's Tooth:
An addition to the 'jungle' and 'offensive top' builds, this item increases CDR to bring you to a 20% if Morellonomicon has already been build. It also increases base AS to increase number of procs on your ultimate and adds autoattack damage, with a nice +65 AP to top it off.

Lich Bane:
This item is the centerpiece of the build. If things are going well in the game, you can choose to build this before Nashor's Tooth or even before Morellonomicon, but not before Rylai's Crystal Scepter. The sheen passive on this is affected by CDR, so benefits from both Nashor's Tooth and Morellonomicon's passive CDR boosts--Just make sure that you don't decide to build it too soon if you can't afford it--it is the second most expensive item in the build order and the only added utility from it is 5% movement speed, while the rest of the items in the build offer AS for clear speed, CDR, slows, etc. This will generally be the last item to build in the 'defensive top' build, as tankiness and overall team utility is prioritized over burst damage.

Zhonya's Hourglass:
This will be the last item to build for the 'aggressive top' and 'jungle' build orders. It will give you a little extra armor, but lots of AP and a nice 'stasis' passive that can save your life in a pinch (namely if you are waiting for ally support or a cooldown to finish).

Alternative Items:

Boots of Mobility:
Fun boots to jungle with. Clear speed will be slowed, so I might pick these up after I get Nashor's Tooth or if I am going to be more gank-focused. Running BoM with Enchantment: Furor on can be pretty good for ganking, as the BoM let you run to your target faster and the enchantment increases your movement speed on hit/single target ability cast once you have initiated, which synergizes well with Rylai's Crystal Scepter. Use with Ghost for the ultimate jungling experience.

Ninja Tabi:
These boots can be used in the lane phase for a 'defensive top' build if you are laning vs. an AD champion, especially one who focuses autoattacks.

Guinsoo's Rageblade:
An interesting pick in the stead of Zhonya's Hourglass if you feel like switching things up and going for more of a hybrid build instead of focusing primarily AP. You'll sacrifice armor/AP/stasis but gain AD, AS, and a 'last stand' passive that will buff AS + offer extra lifesteal/spell vamp until you exit combat. This item is also ~800 gold cheaper than Zhonya's Hourglass, so is better for a stronger midgame or early lategame.

Hextech Gunblade:
Another more hybrid-esque alternative to Zhonya's Hourglass. These items essentially cost the same, however Hextech Gunblade is easier to gradually build due to more affordable components than Zhonya's Hourglass that can be built gradually ( Zhonya's Hourglass requires you to drop 1600 gold at one stop, whereas Hextech Gunblade can be gradually built over time. Aside from that, this item once again sacrifices armor ( Zhonya's Hourglass is the only AP item with armor aside from Iceborn Gauntlet, which is not particularly effective to use in this build since it does not utilize AP/the build already uses Lich Bane). Aside from the armor and high-AP loss, this item offers more sustain via life steal/spell vamp and more higher effectiveness of standard autoattacks in duels due to AD, while also rocking a pretty cool AP-scaling slow active, an excellent tool for chasing down foes + can be used with quick jukes to shake off enemy champions who are chasing you.

Blade of the Ruined King:
This item is generally focused at AD champions, however I would consider it to be useful to this build due to the increased attack speed which will allow you to stack Relentless Assault faster and also get procs from Grandmaster's Might's passive off faster. The addition of this item to the build will help increase the build's effectiveness vs. high-HP targets (who normally pose more of an issue) due to the unique passive on the item that deals 5% of the target's current health as physical damage.Since the passive deals physical damage, this will give the build a good damage spread without having to build into AD. This item alone will help deal a great deal of damage due to the AS-stacking nature of the build ( Relentless Assault at max stacks + Nashor's Tooth + Berserker's Greaves + Blade of the Ruined King = 194% attack speed, resulting in lots of on-hit damage from Blade of the Ruined King as well as Grandmaster's Might. If the passive & AS weren't enough to make this item worth buying, it may help to know that it also gives some AD, lifesteal and last but DEFINITELY not least, an active that steals 15% of their MAX health. and slows the enemy by 30% for 4 seconds--10% less than Hextech Gunblade's active, but 2 seconds longer--this allows you to, in juke scenarios, simultaneously stun the pursuing enemy champion, steal 15% of their health to help bump your health to help secure escape, and leave them slowed for 3 seconds after the stun while you make a break for it. Overall, this is obviously an excellent item to consider.

A solid alternative to Nashor's Tooth worth considering. The sacrificed stats are 10% CDR and +65 AP, while you gain tenacity, 10% move speed, and +25 AD. Once again a viable option to a more hybrid approach to Jax. Tenacity is a priceless stat when dealing with lots of hard cc, the basic attack damage assists in general clear speed/damage spread/consistent damage, and the movement speed bonus buffs Jax from 448.95 move speed ( Berserker's Greaves, Enchantment: Alacrity, Lich Bane, 3x Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed to 489.95 move speed. Which I hear is pretty fast as far as sustainable move speed goes.

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General Gameplay

Part I: Countering With Itemization:

If you're playing in the top lane, the first question you will want to ask yourself is "what kind of a champion am I laning against?" It is very important that you build in an order that counters your enemy, especially in the early game, or you will find yourself having a difficult time. Here's some ideas to get you started:

Any High-Sustain:
These will be mostly champions with no mana & potentially self-heals. Common champions of this nature might include Shen, Garen, or Rengar. Don't let your mana cripple you. Build a philosopher's stone ASAP so you can stay in lane just as long as these guys, wait until their 'danger' skills are used and take hits at them to force them out of line, all the while chilling back and farming minions. If they have high self-heals, grab a Morellonomicon if you are playing aggressive to counter their heals and force them to go back to base.

Tanky/high sustain AP:
If you are playing an aggressive lane, grab a Chalice of Harmony relatively quickly to get yourself a solid defense to their damage as well as get some mana regen so that you can maintain a dominant position in lane. As the game progresses, build items like Mercury's Treads, Athene's Unholy Grail, and Rylai's Crystal Scepter to keep your lane sustain up while also dishing out some sick damage.

Squishy AP:
Grab Mercury's Treads if they have hard cc, possibly even Cleanse if you know you'll be laning vs. that champion and it is draft pick. Aside from that, if you're playing aggressive, get your own burst items rolling and force your creep back to their turret to kill their farm while they are out of lane.

Tanky AD:
Focus your Armor Seeker's Armguard/ Warden's Mailfirst then you can even keep Boots of Speed for a while to rush higher burst items such as Rylai's Crystal Scepter or once again Morellonomicon if they focus on self heals.

Squishy AD:
Most of the top lane squishy AD's will be melee range like Talon, so your focus after Seeker's Armguard should be stacking health and damage. Getting [[rylai's crystal scepter relatively fast may be a good idea to give yourself a considerable amount of damage, some health, and slow on your spells to retreat more easily/force engages when it is advantageous to you.

Part II:The Early Game:

General Laning Tips:

By now you should have a good idea of how to play versus what kinds of champions. Versus champions who have more advantages on you than you on them (see Good Against/Bad Against), it may be wise to play passively and focus farming minions until you can build enough to swing an advantage. When you DO have an advantage though, abuse it. Try to poke using a chain like this--(first cast on Counter Strike) >> Leap Strike >> Empower >> (second Counter Strike cast to stun) >> run back while they are stunned. It's extra nice if you can manage to get them with a third strike to proc your Grandmaster's Might's passive. After they go back, push creep to their turret to kill their farm (turrets killing your minions = they ARENT, thus do not receive gold) and either farm jungle, buy items, or help other lanes depending on the situation. (NOTE: This is a situation where Teleport is particularly beneficial, as you can help other lanes, buy items, and Teleport back to your lane when creep starts to return to your side of the map)

Part III:The Midgame/Lategame:


Around the midgame, the laning phase will come to a close and most champions will be roaming the map putting pressure on individual lanes with their teams and team fights will start up. Make sure even in this phase that you aren't aimlessly roaming. Have a goal. Be pushing a lane, setting up a gank, defending turrets, securing an objective, etc. at all times, and if none of these opportunities present themselves, farm the jungle when it is available/safe. Always be doing something to keep the enemy from making gold or be doing something to make your own team gold.

Team Fights

During team fights, your job will most likely be to initiate if you are building 'defensive top' or if you are playing aggressive, your role will be to burst down any high-priority targets (squishy ones first). Just because you are playing burst, however, doesn't mean all of your utility should go to waste. Try to stun as many champions as possible, though stunning 1 or 2 high priority targets is fine. Don't stay on a single target if they are successfully kiting you. You have Leap Strike, use your Jax "Surprise!" and switch to a different high priority target. If possible, make it your goal to be peeling these targets off of your main carries.

Order of Priorities:
  1. Peel threatening targets off of your carries with Counter Strike and Exhaust if you have it available. When these skills are on cooldown...
  2. Focus down squishy targets using your high-mobility and burst Leap Strike and Empower
  3. Make the enemy carries your primary damage targets

At this point, I think it would be important to emphasize one thing, which is:
I often see teamfights start out looking wonderfully--the carries are being targeted, everything seems to be going well. Then a carry starts to run. And people start to chase the carry while the other 4 enemies are still damaging your team. The end result is usually the carry living or dying (unimportant) but the other 4 enemies being alive and your whole team being dead.
If minimal effort is required, you can hunt down stragglers after a team fight is won, but do not over-dedicate. When the enemy team is dead is a prime time to secure objectives and push lanes--things more instrumental to the success of your team than MAYBE getting a single champion kill.

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Jungle-Specific Gameplay (Early Game to Midgame)

Part I: Knowing Where You Have to Be:

There are a lot of factors that can switch up what goes on in the jungle, and you will likely learn these things as you become more experienced with jungle play. For now, focus on learning general champion counters. If you know these, you will have a better idea which lanes you will be more useful in (if you counter one of the enemies in the lane) and which lanes you might not be so useful in (if the enemy counters you). Aside from counters related to yourself, it's good to know if your allies are being countered or not. If your team's mid lane counterpicked the enemy's mid, they might not need as much help as the top or bot lanes who both got counterpicked. Knowing these things will give you a better idea of what lanes will be a higher priority to help out when looking for ganks/making yourself more available in an area. Before you get into ganks, however, you will likely spend the first few levels simply farming the jungle...


Lesser Monster Camps: 1:40
Blue Golem Buff Camp: 1:55
Red Lizard Buff Camp: 1:55
Dragon Camp: 2:30
Baron Nashor Camp: 15:00


Lesser Monster Camps: 1 Minute for Wolves/Golems, 50 Seconds for Wraiths
Blue Buff/Golem Camp: 5 Minutes
Red Buff/Lizard Camp: 5 Minutes
Dragon Camp: 6 Minutes
Baron Nashor Camp: 7 Minutes

1. Before you get a leash on the blue buff, ask your teammates to help you with the wolves.
2. Clear the wolf camp (1:40 spawn time)
3. Get the blue buff/golem camp (1:55 spawn time)
4. Clear the wraith camp.
5. Clear the wolf camp again.
6. Get the red buff/lizard camp.
7. Clear the wraith camp again.
8. Clear the wolf camp again.
9. At this point I usually will gank a lane or go back to base to grab my madred's razor so that I can clear the jungle faster.

Essentially rinse and repeat this process--you can take out the lesser golem buff easier once you get Madred's Razors, but I usually stick to wolf and wraith before then, as golems take a while to kill and hurt at low levels.

If you find yourself in that awkward position where you got one of your buffs stolen, or got the worst leash of your life and couldn't quite kill the blue buff, let your team know what happened and inform them that you might be unable to gank at earlier levels, because you need to farm to catch back up to a point where you will be useful in a gank. (being underleveled/underbuilt does no good in a gank, you will often find yourself just feeding the enemy champions) If one or two of your teammates are willing to help, they can leash the red buff in the absence of a blue. This will help you do more damage/clear camps faster and potentially get in an early gank.

That's the basics of jungling. As far as tips for jungling with AP Jax go:
  • You will want to focus ganks a lot after you finish your Rylai's Crystal Scepter. You'll find that it makes your ganks incredibly powerful.
  • Be very careful if there are aggressive enemy junglers like Shaco. Often times they will sneak into your jungle early game (as early as level 2) and set up a gank to get an easy first blood. Jax doesn't gain a lot of his stopping power and sustain until he has leveled up a little bit and built at least a couple solid items.
  • Don't let the pressure get to you. A lot of times people will be stressed about losing their own lanes and will be screaming their fool head off at you about getting a gank. Relax and play smart. If you are low health/underleveled/etc., there is a good chance that if you gank you will not kill the enemy champion, and you will die in the process, thus feeding them, putting that lane and yourself further behind in the game.
  • Don't feel like you are really far behind if you aren't doing crazy amounts of damage/getting lots of kills in the early game. This build has a midgame/lategame power emphasis.
  • Have fun with it ^.-

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That's all I have for now, guys--if you think of things to add to the build or potentially change, thoughts/suggestions, let me know! I've played quite a few games as AP Jax, so have tested a lot of build orders, but I always seem to be finding new crazy things that work really well. So don't be greedy and keep your genius to yourself, share it in the discussions, please ^.-


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4/2/13 -

  • Guide was First Published
  • Added a group of 'alternative items' in the Aggressive/Jungle Purchase Order section and gave descriptions of these items and their potential roles in the build.
  • Added "To clear some things up..."