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Yorick Build Guide by DeathsAdvocate
Yorick, Digging An Entire Team's Grave. (A guide for 3v3)By DeathsAdvocate | Updated on January 11, 2013
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Yorick, the Gravedigger
One of the largest misconceptions about Yorick is that the role he fills is a simple one of either the tank or the bruiser. This misunderstanding is what often leads to failure with him. Yorick has some of the lowest starting base health and defensive stats in the game, in the beginning you are very squishy and are not a close range character. His role changes over the game, you start as a ranged caster, and then you shift into a bruiser state around the time you get frozen mallet, and then finally a high damage tank towards the end of the build. Understanding that you do not start the game as a herp derp close range right click to win character is vital to succeeding with yorick. Also note this build is largely designed for 3v3, while it will still work fantastically on other maps, the runes and masteries would be set up a bit different for 5v5, and the items would be a bit different on all the maps.
The map its self is pretty strait-forward, capture alters, jungle if your lane is to far pushed. Wreck the top lane with yorick. Be careful only to last hit and not push your lane, unless the bottom lane is equally pushed back so you know a gank wont happen. Ganks on this map happen faster, and more frequent then living in the top lane on 5v5 with a very ganky jungler. Map awareness does not cut it on this map. Your team has to call mia, and you need to do so as well. Even if you are 100% sure that person is still just standing in that bush right there, you need to call it. On 5v5 getting an mia is a courtesy, here it is a necessity, for the time it takes to go between lanes is mere seconds.
Remember yorick is not a strong ganker until after your frozen mallet, so try to encourage a long laning phase, and before that health-boost from mallet he gets bursted down really early, so its best to avoid committed team fights until then regardless. Also ask that your team just pushes their lane, rather then trying to gank yours. Once the ganking starts, the laning phase fades out pretty quickly, yorick lives for the laning phase. So you want to do everything you can to encourage it. While ganks may yield good results, they are also risky, its better to just encourage the laning phase by keeping people to busy to gank.
On alter control, just try to maintain your own, don't try to steal the opponents unless you are sure its safe, meaning you just won a team fight, and most or all of their team is dead.
On Vilemaw (I comonly refer to him as spiderman, he was the replacement for dragon). I can not stress this enough do not take him unless you are 100% sure its safe. Also his power rivals that of barron, and he has massive aoe damage, and a stacking dot. Yorick can take him earlier then most people since spiderman will waste attacks on the ghouls saving your team from that deadly stacking dot. However even with yorick, blowing your ult and everything, the earliest safe time to take him with your entire team is about level 15 assuming its an average game and you and your team isnt far behind. If you are killing him, make sure you and your team stand on opposite sides of him that way his aoe is only hitting half of you at a time. Many games go bye without vilemaw ever going down, and that is just fine. He is horribly high risk and high reward.
So your the bruiser, but whether there is an ap tank, or a mage, and their better be one of these on your team, beg them to buy Banner of Command and do so fast, not only is it a beautiful item that has great stats, and really helps bottom lane push, it also increases yoricks power exponentially since each of his individual ghouls gain its benefits granting a massive damage boost.
Have a balanced team, and remind your team of the TT specific items because they are really op. watch for ganks, be passive with spiderman and alters, discourage ganking, and you should preform very well.
Omen of War is your primary damage skill, and boy does it hit hard, not to mention making a very fast ghoul it makes Yorick insanely fast. So other than when you're bashing someone's face in with it, it has two other uses: either hit a minon with it to give you a large speed increase to either chase someone down or run away. If your geting ganked and you have at least a quarter of your health don't be afraid to turn around and whack the nearest guy for the large movement buff. Also if you time it properly and use it right after an atk, it resets his atk timer for a second atk.
Omen of Pestilence has a huge amount of utility. It should always be used to start your combo, drop it on the opponent before you use your e and rush in with your q. This also makes him a fabulous kiter drop it behind him as you run. Another unique use of it, beside the obvious bush check, you can drop it over walls to get vision, this helps prevent ganks, it also is treated as a minion so it blocks skill shots, and can pop Shaco boxes and Teemo shrooms. Generally you use this and your E for harassing, you sit there happily farming minions ignoring your opponent, until they get foolish enough to either try to farm minions themselves or try to attack you. As soon as they do, hit them with this and your e, and go back to what your doing. A few of these will drop them down to half health, about that time when you get to drop this and your e again, its time to chase them down because you will easily be able to kill them now. However note, you are not fantastic at strait melee early on, so you want to make sure to harass them down before you commit to melee.
Omen of Famine is his bread and butter, it's his primary ranged damage, and it gives insane life steal, use it to refill your health on minions or do very good damage to your opponent. Always level this first, it has amazing damage, perhaps not as much as your q, but the range on it makes it better. And of course it has the nice combo with w as I explained.
Omen of Death is his awesome and somewhat complicated ulti. I suggest always explaining how the damn thing works to your team, I get so sick of popping it on someone because they're about to die ...only to watch them run away and waste it because they think I'm Zilean. My main use of it however is pushing down buildings, not only is the extra damage nice, but you can aggro the tower with it. Yorick doesn't need minions to push a tower, towers will choose his ulti and his ghouls over him. In team fights always use it, and against a melee opponent it makes 2v1, not nearly as good on a ranged champ, but if you're in their face the extra damage it will do is nice. Now to explain how it works. It makes a clone of an allied champion (usually yourself) that makes auto attacks, you can control it with alt like most pets, if the person its cloning dies while its still going, it disappears and they come back at full health and mana for the remainder of the duration, and then they die again. As this is a high AD build you are the general target for it when you want the clone, but don't forget to use it if someone who is useful is about to die.
Understanding the way his passive synergies with his skills it is absolutly essential to understanding him. More AD means more damage the ghouls deal with there summon and there auto attacks. More health means they stick around longer which means more attacks on top of there awesome effects. So sure maybe having atk speed and crit would make me hit harder, but were not talking about me with Yorick, we are talking about WE, every second more those ghouls stick around is another few attacks, not to mention his passive when you have all 4 abilities active gives him a 20% DAMAGE INCREASE, on top of the 20% dmg reduction. AD is the only offensive stat that you care about as Yorick, nothing else scales with his ghouls which are his primary source of damage. Also health is the only stat that carries over to them, and them sticking around longer relies on that. Thus why Frozen Mallet is such an essential core item. Building him this way not only makes his survivability shoot through the roof, it makes him hit stupid hard.
To summarize Trinity Force is a popular item on him, but it is a complete waste of money due to the number of stats it has that don't scale with his kit at all, that is usually why a Yorick is sub par at best. If you waste your money on trinity for Yorick, I am sorry, but you are just bad.