Maokai Build Guide

A tree belongs in the jungle

Uploader PlayerFour
Updated 5 years ago
  • 9
    Greater Mark of Magic Penetration (+0.87 magic penetration)
  • 9
    Greater Seal of Armor (+1 armor)
  • 9
    Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power (+0.17 ability power per level (+3.06 at champion level 18))
  • 3
    Greater Quintessence of Ability Power (+4.95 ability power)
Skill Order
1 1 1 1
2 2 2 2
3 3 3 3
4 4 4 4
5 5 5 5
6 6 6 6
7 7 7 7
8 8 8 8
9 9 9 9
10 10 10 10
11 11 11 11
12 12 12 12
13 13 13 13
14 14 14 14
15 15 15 15
16 16 16 16
17 17 17 17
18 18 18 18

[highlight]Maokai is a tree. Trees belong in the jungle. /guide[/highlight] Maokai can fill a variety of roles, from bottom lane support to top lane solo. This guide, however, will focus on Maokai as a jungler. There is also some dispute on how Maokai should be built. This guide emphasizes the early-game dominance of Maokai as a burst damage dealer with great utility. Late-game, Maokai transitions into a disruptive off-tank with decent survivability and consistent CC. [highlight]What kind of jungler is Maokai? PROS/CONS[/highlight] [highlight]Pros:[/highlight] -Good clear time (~4 minutes to level 4) -Good early-game burst. -Great counter-jungler past level 4 ([imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] harass) -Great ganks (Targetable Root, Disruption, early-game Damage) -Great utility on every skill. -Free short-duration wards ([imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png]). [highlight]Cons:[/highlight] -FRAGILE before level 4 -Not the best 1v1 champion (but adequate) -Little Dragon presence. -Cannot carry as hard or tank as well as other junglers. More of a hybrid, niche role.

[highlight]Red[/highlight] [highlight]Magic Penetration[/highlight] makes Maokai's spells hurt for a little longer. Can also be switched for Armor Penetration (6) and Flat AD (3) for faster jungle. This, however, is not recommended because Maokai will never itemize for magic penetration, and can use every bit of it that he can get. [highlight]Yellow[/highlight] [highlight]Flat Armor[/highlight] is common on many junglers, and Maokai is no exception. These are mandatory for my jungle route. [highlight]Blue[/highlight] Glyphs are the most flexible: I use AP/lvl but Magic Resist/lvl and Flat CDR are both good options. [highlight]Quint[/highlight] I use [highlight]Flat AP[/highlight] to help my jungle. These are mandatory for my route.

[title][img=skills/maokai/p.png] Passive: Sap Magic[/title] [number]Each time a champion near Maokai casts a spell, he gains a charge of Magical Sap. When he has 5 charges, his next melee attack drains energy from his target, healing Maokai for 7% of his maximum health.[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] This passive is often ignored past the first few levels, but is great throughout the game. This makes Maokai unexpectedly hard to kill, especially in the mid-game. You want to charge his passive to at least [highlight]2[/highlight] before starting your jungle route. [imgsmall=skills/maokai/p.png] synergizes very nicely with a large HP pool (7% of 3000 is 210). This passive will almost always be active in teamfights, so make sure you autoattack. [title][img=skills/maokai/q.png] Q: Arcane Smash[/title] [number]Maokai slams the ground, the force of which knocks nearby enemies back and sends an arcane shockwave forward, dealing 70 / 115 / 160 / 205 / 250 (+40% of ability power) magic damage and slowing his enemies by 20% / 27% / 34% / 41% / 48% for 2 seconds. Cooldown 6 seconds Cost 55 mana[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] This skill is great. It has a VERY short cooldown ([highlight]3.6 seconds[/highlight] with 40% CDR). The small knockback is very useful for interrupting channeled ultimates or even stopping the enemy from attacking for crucial seconds. [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] works very well when coupled with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png] and [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] (more on this later). The knockback applies to the area around Maokai, while the damage component applies to both the knockback area and as far as the projectile animation goes. Therefore, it is possible to damage enemies without knocking them back (usually used when enemies are just out of range and need to be finished off). [title][img=skills/maokai/w.png] W: Twisted Advance[/title] [number]Maokai transforms into a cloud of arcane energy, quickly traveling to a target enemy. The target takes 80 / 115 / 150 / 185 / 220 (+80% of ability power) magic damage and is rooted in place for 1 / 1.25 / 1.5 / 1.75 / 2 seconds. Cooldown 13 seconds Cost 75 / 80 / 85 / 90 / 95 mana[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] Maokai's ganking power comes almost entirely from this skill. It has a huge range and a respectably long root, coupled with a bit of damage. Maokai becomes untargetable, which can be convenient when dodging skillshots. However, if Maokai is afflicted with a Damage over Time spell (Ignite), he continues to take damage even when untargetable. One downside is that [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png] is [highlight]SLOW[/highlight]. If the target flashes, he can drag Maokai very far away (think: into turret range). [title][img=skills/maokai/e.png] E: Sapling Toss[/title] [number]Maokai hurls a sapling, dealing 40 / 75 / 110 / 145 / 180 (+40% of ability power) magic damage on impact. The sapling becomes implanted in the ground, warding a nearby area for 35 seconds. When enemies approach, the sapling attacks, exploding in an arcane blast that deals 80 / 130 / 180 / 230 / 280 (+60% of ability power) magic damage to enemies. Cooldown 12 seconds Cost 70 / 80 / 90 / 100 / 110 mana[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] Saplings are Maokai's bread and butter for the early-mid game. Saplings do a LOT of damage early-game, especially when the impact and explosion both hit. This is crucial for Maokai's early jungling. This skill also has a very long projectile animation, so make sure to lead the shot by a large margin (the target should usually be around the edge of the circular targeting reticule). Saplings also make Maokai a strong counterjungler. Maokai does not even have to engage- by popping a Sapling over a wall, the enemy jungler will think twice about committing to larger buffs or staying in his own jungle with low HP. Late-game, Saplings become a short-term ward, which is still very useful when scouting Baron and random bushes. [title][img=skills/maokai/r.png] R: Vengeful Maelstrom[/title] [number]Maokai shields his allies by drawing power from hostile spells and attacks, reducing non-tower damage done to allied champions in the area by 20%. Maokai can prolong the effect as long as he has mana to spend on it. When the effect ends, Maokai unleashes the absorbed energy to deal 100 / 150 / 200 (+50% of ability power) (+2 bonus damage per damage absorbed) damage to enemies within the vortex. Maximum 200 / 250 / 300 bonus damage. Cooldown 40 second Cost 75 mana + 30 mana per second[/number] [title]Explanation:[/title] Theoretically, [imgsmall=skills/maokai/r.png] should be a very strong ultimate. It reduces damage by a flat 20%, and can return 40% of that damage to everyone in the radius (up to a maximum of 300/400/500). This is pretty huge, but the reality is that [imgsmall=skills/maokai/r.png] is not an intimidating ultimate; it is very easy to walk out of its radius. [imgsmall=skills/maokai/r.png]'s damage component should not be the focus of its use. Although 300 damage at level 6 seems like a lot, this rarely happens. Instead, I would focus on using the 20% damage reduction to its full potential, because your movements are easier to control than your enemies'. Caution: There is a significant delay after casting it before you can explode it. Therefore, cast early in teamfights and predict where the teamfight will move.

[img=skills/maokai/r.png]>[img=skills/maokai/e.png]>[img=skills/maokai/q.png]>[img=skills/maokai/w.png] [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] - This skill makes jungling possible, and must be maxed first. It also does a great deal of damage in the early-game, while falling off late-game. [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] and [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png]: These two are quite flexible. I tend to [highlight]favor Q over W[/highlight] from practice. Theoretically, [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png] would be better for the increased root duration, but [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] adds a significantly larger slow and more damage. You should experiment with these two to see what you prefer.

[highlight]Starting:[/highlight] [imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png] [highlight]First Base:[/highlight] [imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/health-potion3.png][imgsmall=items/sight-ward.png] [highlight]Second Base:[/highlight] [imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png] [highlight]First Big Item: [/highlight][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png][imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png] [highlight] Mid-game Core: [/highlight][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/mercurys-treads.png][imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png][imgsmall=items/sheen.png] [title]Reasoning behind Core Items[/title] [imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png]: Doran's Ring is a great first item because it gives more HP (amazing at early levels), mana regen, and AP for a faster and more sustainable jungle. It also allows Maokai to use his starting gold efficiently, as he does not need many [imgsmall=items/health-potion.png]. [imgsmall=items/mercurys-treads.png]: Merc Treads are the best item for Maokai because he needs to be in the middle of every teamfight to be effective. In order to maximize his utility, Maokai needs to be able to continuously disrupt the enemy team with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] and [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png], which cannot be done when he is CC'ed. [imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png]: RoA gives Maokai everything he needs. More HP is essential, due to a great synergy with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/p.png]. An increased mana pool reduces Maokai's reliance on Blue Buff (the early [imgsmall=items/catalyst-the-protector.png] can help Maokai sustain in his jungle as well). Additional AP gives Maokai larger burst for early-game. [imgsmall=items/sheen.png]: Maokai combos his abilities to burst the opponent. However, a large part of Maokai's playstyle involves autoattacking, especially due to [imgsmall=skills/maokai/p.png]. Sheen makes these autoattacks hurt more in the early-mid game. [title]Next Item CHOICES:[/title] [imgsmall=items/trinity-force.png]: The Aggressive Option. If you finish this now, you'll deal significant damage into mid-late game. However, if your team needs your CC more than extra damage, this is not the right choice. [imgsmall=items/frozen-heart.png]: A great option for [highlight]armor[/highlight]. It gives Maokai CDR as well as huge armor stats and an attack-speed debuff aura. Armor item of choice for Maokai. [imgsmall=items/force-of-nature.png]: The best item for [highlight]magic resist[/highlight]. Thanks to your [imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png], you should already have a significant health pool for the health regen aspect. This is usually a better choice than [imgsmall=items/banshees-veil.png] because it gives more flat magic resist and increases your movespeed (Trees are slow. Fast trees are scary.). [title]Final Build[/title] [img=items/mercurys-treads.png][img=items/rod-of-ages.png][img=items/trinity-force.png][img=items/frozen-heart.png][img=items/force-of-nature.png] -This build is expensive as hell and usually won't be finished, even if it is only 5 items. If the game is seriously that long, get another defensive item and consider selling your Trinity Force, as you will no longer be doing significant damage. Also, stocking up on [imgsmall=items/sight-ward.png] is a good idea. [title]Alternate Item Ideas[/title] [imgsmall=items/warmogs-armor.png]: Gives a huge health pool at the expense of early-game damage. Synergizes very well with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/p.png].* [imgsmall=items/abyssal-scepter.png]: Gives some MR and extra AP. This is best when your team is ahead or the enemy team is starting to ignore you. [imgsmall=items/lich-bane.png]: If you have invested heavily into AP ([imgsmall=items/abyssal-scepter.png], [imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png], etc), Lich Bane may be preferable to [imgsmall=items/trinity-force.png].* [imgsmall=items/shurelyas-reverie.png]: By incorporating an early [imgsmall=items/philosophers-stone.png] into Maokai's build (reconsider [imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png] at this point), Maokai gains additional gold per 5 as well as sustain. Shurelya's Reverie is also a great team support item and Maokai greatly benefits from the increased movespeed. [imgsmall=items/aegis-of-the-legion.png]: A late Aegis is a very gold-efficient way to get your team a little more survivability. This should be purchased only after Maokai's core items if your support player does not pick it up. *Credit to Darkened Vision

Here are some alternate builds that work under specific circumstances. [highlight]Gold Per 5 Build[/highlight] 1)[imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png][imgsmall=items/philosophers-stone.png] 2)[imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png][imgsmall=items/philosophers-stone.png][imgsmall=items/sheen.png][imgsmall=items/heart-of-gold.png] 3)[imgsmall=items/mercurys-treads.png][imgsmall=items/shurelyas-reverie.png][imgsmall=items/sheen.png][imgsmall=items/randuins-omen.png] [highlight]Heavy AP Build[/highlight] 1)[imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png] 2)[imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png][imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png] 3)[imgsmall=items/mercurys-treads.png][imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png][imgsmall=items/abyssal-scepter.png][imgsmall=items/lich-bane.png] [highlight]Rough Start Build[/highlight] 1)[imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png] 2)[imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png] AND [imgsmall=items/chain-vest.png]/[imgsmall=items/negatron-cloak.png] OR [imgsmall=items/sheen.png] 3)[imgsmall=items/mercurys-treads.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png][imgsmall=items/dorans-ring.png] AND [highlight]Tanky Items[/highlight] (See Suggested Above)

[highlight]NOTE:[/highlight] This route is no longer optimal for jungle Maokai after the jungle revamp. I will be fixing the route in-depth soon, but here is a quick guide to a simple jungle route: 1. Pre-cast 2 Saplings at Wolves. Cast a third sapling as wolves spawn (1:40). Can also do Wraiths, but will require more coordination on your team's part. 2. Ask for hard leash on Blue. The more damage your teammates do, the easier your jungle, and the more you gank. Smite Blue at 465 HP. 3. Proceed to clear jungle (Wolves -> Wraith -> Red (Smite) -> Minigolems). [title]OUTDATED/RECOVERY ROUTE:[/title] Best used in case of level 1 jungle invasion. Otherwise, this route is suboptimal for the new jungle. [title]Summarized:[/title] Mini-golems ([imgsmall=summoners/smite.png]) -> Wraiths -> Wolves -> Base Blue Golem ([imgsmall=summoners/smite.png]) -> Wraith -> Red/Mini-golems/Gank [title]Step By Step Guide:[/title] 1) Cast 2x[imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] at Fountain Turret (2 free stacks of [imgsmall=skills/maokai/p.png]) 2) Pre-cast 3x[imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] at Minigolems, starting at [highlight]1:05[/highlight]. Clear Mini-golems, [imgsmall=summoners/smite.png] one. 3) Clear Wraiths with 1x[imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] and 1x[imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png]. Make SURE [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] hits ALL FOUR Wraiths twice. 4) Clear Wolves, using whatever is necessary. Usually 1x[imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png], then 1x[imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png]. 5) Return to base. You should have ~300 gold, so buy [imgsmall=items/health-potion3.png] and [imgsmall=items/sight-ward.png]. Remember to use the ward early (on an entrance to your jungle, or even in the enemy jungle), or it is a waste of your money. 6) Clear Blue Golem, using [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png],[imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png], and [imgsmall=summoners/smite.png]. Don't forget to use 2x[imgsmall=items/health-potion.png]. 7) Clear Wraiths with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] and [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png]. 8) Now, it is up to you. You are [highlight]level 4[/highlight] and can either proceed to [highlight]Red Buff, Mini-Golems, or Gank[/highlight]. After Level 4, you can decide what is best for your team. There are several options: 1) Ganking the hell out of random lanes. 2) Ganking one lane to hell. 3) Counterjungling, using [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] for vision. Your burst combo does a lot of damage. 4) Clear your jungle as fast as possible if no lanes need your help. Your level / farm advantage will help significantly in the mid-game. *More Aggressive counterjungling routes may be added later.

[highlight]Max Burst Combo: [/highlight][imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] - [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png] - [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] impact, then [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png] for the Sapling's second impact. Finally, [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] to land a couple more autoattacks. If you're quick, you can even throw in a [imgsmall=skills/maokai/r.png] between the [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] and [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png]. [highlight] CC Combo (without Gap-closer): [/highlight][imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] - [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png] - [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] The short cooldown on [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] allows for huge CC potential. [highlight]Wall-Jumping: [/highlight][imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] - [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png] Allows you to jump across walls to neutral mobs / minions / enemy champions. I like to use this trick to get from Mid to Wraiths quickly.

Maokai is a strong jungler, but [highlight]ONLY AFTER LEVEL FOUR[/highlight]. His route to Level 3 is extremely fragile and susceptible to aggressive counter-gankers. It is, however, the safest route as the small camps are harder to invade. Later on, Maokai turns into a proficient ganker and counter-jungler. While Maokai may not be the best 1v1 champion or the fastest neutral camp thief, he can harass the enemy using [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png], which will force the enemy to think twice about committing to larger buff monsters or continuing to jungle with low HP. You may even be able to force the enemy support to waste [imgsmall=summoners/clairvoyance.png], which will give your team the advantage in map control. [title]TL;DR: Pros and Cons about Maokai's Jungle[/title] [highlight]Pros:[/highlight] -Decent speed -Great ganks -Great counterjungling -Great utility throughout the game [highlight]Cons:[/highlight] -Delicate first clear -Mediocre 1v1 potential (good burst, poor sustained damage) -Little Dragon presence (will require help to secure Dragon) [center][title][highlight]General Jungle Match-Ups[/highlight][/title][/center] [title]Good for Maokai:[/title] [img=champ/amumu.png][img=champ/gangplank.png][img=champ/jarvaniv.png][img=champ/malphite.png][img=champ/shen.png][img=champ/rammus.png] These junglers usually start off slowly, and stick to their own jungle before ganking (usually the lanes, not your jungle). Nevertheless, coordinated teams may send a laner along with their jungler to kill you early on - not much you can do about that, except better teamwork and [imgsmall=summoners/flash.png]. [title] Bad for Maokai:[/title] [img=champ/leesin.png][img=champ/nocturne.png][img=champ/shaco.png] These junglers (except maybe [imgsmall=champ/nocturne.png]) are almost always aggressive and will ruin your day before you even get going. I would advise communicating with your support teammate on when to use [imgsmall=summoners/clairvoyance.png] (namely, at first Wraith clear, then at Blue).

[img=champ/amumu.png] As a jungler, Amumu has very little 1v1 potential. Usually, Amumu players concentrate on ganking the side lanes, starting at level 3-4. Therefore, the counter to Amumu is to steal his neutral camps [highlight](counter-jungle)[/highlight] while he is attempting a gank. If you see him gank a lane and you are nowhere nearby, quickly go into his jungle and take whatever there is. This will put Amumu significantly behind in farm and level. However, make SURE you ward your own buffs, because Amumu can steal Blue (usually) or Red very quickly with his Despair and Tantrum. TL;DR: -Amumu ganks side lanes (starting lvl 3-4). Communicate with your team and ping where he might gank. -Counter-jungle Amumu to put him behind (You win 1v1) -If you can steal his blue, he will be VERY sad. -Keep your blue buff secure to avoid Amumu's counter-jungle. Amumu general route: Blue - Wolves - Wraith - Minigolem/Red - Base/Gank [img=champ/chogath.png] Cho'gath is a steady jungler with good ganks, as long as he can land his spells. In the jungle, Cho'gath is relatively safe; he is, however, dependent on Blue Buff. Cho'gath has little 1v1 potential, meaning you should be able to win against a Cho'gath on equal footing. After level 6, Cho'gath is very good at counter-jungling, thanks to his Feast. TL;DR: -Ward your jungle entrances once Cho'gath is level 6. -Out-gank the Cho'gath - You have better (targetable) CC -If you can steal his blue early (first or second spawn), he will be sad. Cho'gath General Route: Blue - Wolves - Wraith - Minigolem - Base/Gank (Level 3) [img=champ/fiddlesticks.png] Fiddlesticks is an easy 1v1 fight for Maokai, thanks to [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] disrupting Drain. He is also [highlight]VERY dependent on his Blue buff[/highlight] (ESPECIALLY first and second). Fiddlesticks also concentrates on ganking lanes, so you can either out-gank him or steal his jungle. Be wary of early dragon attempts. TL;DR: -Ward Dragon by level 4. -Stealing Blue will hurt Fiddlesticks SO MUCH. A level 1 invasion almost guarantees Fiddlesticks to be permanently gimped. -Invade his jungle. You can beat him 1v1. [imgsmall=skills/maokai/q.png] out of Drain, [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png] when he uses [imgsmall=summoners/flash.png]. Fiddlesticks General Route: [highlight]Blue [/highlight]- Wolves - Wraith - Red - Minigolem - Gank (Level 4) [img=champ/gangplank.png] Gangplank is a sturdy 1v1 jungler, with huge carry potential late-game. He doesn't get gimped particularly bad if you steal his buffs or camps, so [highlight]invading is not worth the risk[/highlight]. You'll do much better clearing your own jungle, then ganking repeatedly. TL;DR: -Do NOT fight Gangplank 1v1. He will wreck you. -Ganking side-lanes will be safer and more beneficial than counter-jungling. -Stealing Wraiths at level 1 is a decent idea (with your team's backup). General Gangplank Route: Wolves - Wraith - Minigolems - Base - Red/Blue - Gank (Level 3-4) [img=champ/jarvaniv.png] Jarvan is a mediocre jungler - he loses (barely) to Maokai 1v1 after level 4 (until he gets farmed). He is a good target to counter-jungle, because he needs mana to sustain himself and often gets low at the end of his first clear / at buffs. He will gank the sidelanes, but his E-Q combo knock-up is inferior to your [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png]. TL;DR: -1v1 fights after level 4 are acceptable. -His first clear is slow, so you can steal his wraiths or minigolems. General Jarvan IV Route: Blue - Wolves - Wraith - Minigolems - Base - Red - Gank (Level 4) [img=champ/leesin.png] Lee Sin is a very solid jungler. He has good clear times, flexibility, 1v1 potential... pretty much everything a jungler could want. Try to avoid 1v1 skirmishes and focus on ganking lanes instead. It is possible to harass Lee Sin in the jungle with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png], but it is high risk, mediocre reward. TL;DR -Do NOT try to 1v1 Lee Sin. -Focus your attention on ganking lanes. -Warn your team for level 2 ganks. General Lee Sin Route: Minigolems - Gank - Wraiths - Wolves - Base - Blue/Red/Gank [img=champ/malphite.png] Malphite is an average jungler. He has an average clear time and average ganks (much improved after level 6). His 1v1 potential is lacking, and he can be effectively counterjungled. It is a worthy investment of time to harass Malphite at his buffs with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png]. Also, placing random saplings in the enemy jungle can stop Malphite's passive shield from recharging as quickly, which can hurt his jungle in the early stages of the game. TL;DR: -You can 1v1 Malphite on equal footing. -Counterjungle with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] harass. -Gank the lanes frequently (your ganks are far superior pre-6) General Malphite Route: Blue - Wolves - Wraiths - Red/Minigolems - Base/Gank [img=champ/masteryi.png] Master Yi is a fast jungler who does a LOT of damage. Do not 1v1 him unless he has low HP and you can burst him down easily. Your spells are generally good against Master Yi, since your root and knockback are not affected by his ultimate. He is very mobile, but can only gank when your team is overextended or his team has good CC. TL;DR: -Can use [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] harass early, but it will become ineffective once he gets [imgsmall=items/madreds-razors.png]. -Do NOT 1v1 Master Yi, unless he is low enough to be bursted. -Gank the lanes - you have better ganks than Master Yi. General Master Yi Route: Minigolems - Wraiths - Wolves - Blue - Base - Red/Gank [img=champ/nocturne.png] Nocturne is a pretty solid jungler. However, it is possible to take advantage of his first clear route by clearing your wolves, then proceeding immediately to the enemy Wraiths, clearing with [imgsmall=summoners/smite.png] and any spell combo*. Afterwards, Nocturne is a very good 1v1 champion and should not be fought on equal footing. TL;DR: -Steal Wraiths after your wolves for a bit of counterjungling. -Do NOT try to 1v1 Nocturne. -Periodic Saplings in river / enemy jungle will help alert your team to Nocturne's ultimate. General Nocturne Route: Wolves - Blue - [highlight]Wraiths[/highlight] - Minigolems - Base - Red - Gank *Credit to Darkened Vision [img=champ/nunu.png] Nunu is a safe jungler, but after several rounds of nerfs, he is a fraction of his former self. Nunu is capable of clearing the jungle at a mediocre speed, and can be irritating thanks to his extra smite (Consume). He is a capable ganker with a near-permaslow as well as a movespeed buff. However, his 1v1 leaves much to be desired. TL;DR: -You can 1v1 Nunu on equal footing. -Be wary of Nunu's buff/dragon-stealing ability. -Have a teammate watch your wraiths at level 1. -Counter jungle by harassing with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] -Farming the jungle quickly as Maokai will also put you ahead of Nunu due to your superior clear time. General Nunu Route: HIGHLY VARIABLE. Blue - Wolves - Wraith - Red - Minigolems - Base/Gank [img=champ/olaf.png] Olaf is actually a very strong jungler who is often underestimated. He has amazing 1v1 potential, great clear time, and relatively sustainable. His weakness is that he gets very low on HP in his jungle, which makes him a perfect target for counterjungling. He WILL outscale you late-game, so try to get your team far enough ahead, either by counterjungling Olaf or by ganking the lanes. TL;DR: -Do NOT try to 1v1 Olaf. -Counterjungle aggressively using [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png]. -Try to keep the pressure on Olaf; he scales better than Maokai into late-game. General Olaf Route: Minigolems - Wraiths - Wolves - Blue - Base - Red - Minigolems - Gank [img=champ/rammus.png] Rammus is a safe and steady jungler but has amazing ganking potential. Rammus, however, has virtually no 1v1 potential, and should be counterjungled with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] harass. He will focus his ganks on lanes, so taking his jungle camps will put him behind on farm. An underfarmed Rammus cannot soak damage well and is a liability to his own team. TL;DR: -You can 1v1 Rammus on equal footing -Counterjungle by stealing camps and by [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] harass. -Use [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] in Rammus' ganking paths to alert your teammates. General Rammus Route: Wolves - Blue - Wraith - Red - Minigolems - Base/Gank [img=champ/shaco.png] Shaco is the bane of all delicate junglers. He specializes in making the jungle a living hell for the enemy. His counterjungling and ganking potential are unquestionably one of the best, and you will need the help of your team to stop him. After a certain time (usually around level 4), Shaco becomes much more manageable, but be sure to [imgsmall=summoners/smite.png] properly and keep your jungle warded. TL;DR: -Communicate with your team. If Shaco is overextended in your jungle, your lanes should be helping you. -Remember that the more time Shaco spends trying to kill you, the less time he is spending in his jungle. -Only 1v1 in safe situations after level 4; Shaco is a master at escaping and you'll waste time catching him. -Saplings and wards are important; keep your jungle entrances warded. -Level 1 fights strongly disrupt Shaco's jungle. Just don't walk into a nest and die. General Shaco Route: 1) Blue - Wolves - Wraiths / Gank 2) Blue Wraith - Red - Minigolems - Gank [img=champ/shen.png] Shen is a niche jungler; he is slow and has little 1v1 potential. You should take advantage of this by harassing him with Saplings in his own jungle, which will make him hesitant to start any large buff camps. It is possible to 1v1 him anywhere, but be careful of the enemy team coming to help. TL;DR: -Take advantage of his slow and delicate jungle. -Screw with him as much as possible, but don't neglect your own farm. -You will win 1v1 fights. -IF SAFE: Start enemy Minigolems - enemy Wraiths - your wolves. Shen is slow to start. General Route: Blue - Wolves - Wraith - Red - Minigolems - Base [img=champ/trundle.png] Trundle is a solid jungler with a steady and relatively safe first clear. He will later scale into a sturdy tanky DPS, but in the beginning, he is surprisingly squishy. Try to harass him early on (before he gets his first HP item). Nevertheless, Trundle will win prolonged fights due to his steady damage and debuffs. Trundle is good at ganking overextended lanes, so warn your team. TL;DR: -Harassing his jungle early on can stop him from getting crucial items. -Save [imgsmall=skills/maokai/w.png] to counter his Pillar of Filth. General Trundle Route: Blue - Wolves - Wraiths - Red - Minigolems - Base/Gank [img=champ/tryndamere.png] Tryndamere is a strong jungler with good sustain after the first clear. He does not rely on Blue Buff at all, so if the Tryndamere seems to be neglecting his Blue, you can try to take it for yourself (carefully). Tryndamere is a strong 1v1 champion and should not be fought on equal footing. Harassing with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] can work, but will become less and less effective as the game goes on. TL;DR: -Do NOT try to 1v1 Tryndamere. -You CAN try to steal enemy wraiths at level 1. -Harassing with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] is effective at early levels. -Try to gank the lanes, as your ganking potential is better than Tryndamere's. General Tryndamere Route: Wolves - Wraiths - Minigolems - Base - Red/Gank [img=champ/udyr.png] Udyr is a sturdy jungler whose focus is primarily to farm for late-game presence. This can be countered by counterjungling early, but invasion becomes gradually less effective as Udyr begins to get his core items (namely [imgsmall=items/wriggles-lantern.png]). He has a fast clear and is a solid 1v1 champion. To outplay Udyr in the jungle, try to gank the lanes frequently and effectively, as your ganking potential far exceeds his. TL;DR: -Do NOT try to 1v1 Udyr. -Early counterjungling can significantly slow Udyr's snowball into late-game (Before [imgsmall=items/wriggles-lantern.png]) -Try to outgank the Udyr. General Udyr Route: Blue - Wolves - Wraiths - Red - Minigolems - Base/Gank [img=champ/warwick.png] Warwick is a solid jungler with a safe jungle and good 1v1 potential. His clear speed is relatively decent, but his clear is very safe. You can try to harass with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png], but it will not be very effective. Instead, try to gank the lanes frequently before level 6 (and after), as your ganking potential is far superior in this time frame. If Warwick tries to counterjungle you (steal your neutral camps), call your teammates for an easy kill. TL;DR: -Do not 1v1 Warwick (courtesy of CXA). -Ganking is a better use of your time than counterjungling. -Be wary of Warwick counterjungling YOU. General Warwick Route: Blue - Wolves - Wraiths - Red - Minigolems - Base/Gank [img=champ/xinzhao.png] Xin Zhao is a solid jungler with an emphasis on 1v1 and ganking. His early jungle, however, is not very sustainable or safe. Early counterjungling with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] harass may cause the Xin Zhao to be much less effective, since he is unable to gank. His ganking potential is easily on par with Maokai's, so careful counterjungling is most effective against Xin Zhao. TL;DR: -Do NOT try to 1v1 Xin Zhao. -Early counterjungling with [imgsmall=skills/maokai/e.png] and stealing his neutral camps later can hurt Xin Zhao's jungle. General Route: Minigolems - Wraiths - Wolves - Blue - Base - Red - Minigolems/Gank

This guide was inspired by TheOddOne's post as well as one of Stonewall008's videos about jungle Maokai. I was very interested, since they claimed that Maokai was one of the strongest junglers. After that, I tested a variety of routes and came up with this one. This is by no means the "proper" way to jungle Maokai; it is a route that I found that works. [center] [imgext=][/center] Thanks for reading! Fear the tree people! *Special credit to Darkened Vision, who contributed some of the information in this guide.

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