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[Guide] Olaf - Tank/DPS madman

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Senior Member



If you like survivability and in-your-face action, Olaf is the champion for you. Nothing is quite as satisfying as absorbing damage like a sponge, and still dish out much more then your competitors. He is also one of the best anti-carries in the game, and you can cause a great deal of pain to dangerous characters.


RED: Armor Pen
YELLOW: HP/Lvl, Dodge, HP
BLUE: Mag Resist/Cooldown Reduc/Mana Regen

No question for red, this is really your best option. Survivavility is key for yellow. Blue is hard to say. I use mag resist for a tankish feel, but i can see the benifits of mana regen (If you really love to toss axes) or Cooldown Reduc (To get your insane ult up faster)


I would like to say there really is no wrong thing to do here. Olaf benefits greatly from increased mana/mana regen/cooldown of the utility tree. Most people would take 21 in the defense column, as this is truly where Olaf excells. I personally get 21 offense just for better late game harass.


Olaf tends to be a great jungler, but I don't really use him that way. If you do, Smite tends to be a must. I personally like Exhaust + Ignite on Olaf. Olaf likes to be the center of attention in team fights, so I choose what dishes out the most help when you are out manned. Olaf has a duration-cleanse ult, so there is no reason to double stack it. Ghost is another option, but ganking with Olaf is very difficult, even with it.

Beserker Rage (Innate): For each 1% of health missing, Olaf's attack speed is increased by 1%.

So lower health means faster attack. Not a bad passive, it really allows you to dish out some insane Auto Attacks late game.

Undertow (Active): (Q) Olaf throws an axe into the ground at a target location, dealing damage to units it passes through and slowing their movement speed for 2.5 seconds. If Olaf picks up the axe, the ability's cooldown is reduced by 6 seconds.
Damage: 65/110/165/200/245 + 30% of Attack DamageSlow: 16/22/28/34/40%

This is such a multi-functional skill its hard to get into all of its uses. It is great to farm creeps. Early game you can aim at a champion in the back of his creeps, damaging both him and the little buggers in your way. Late game the axe can almost insta-kill creeps. The slow also gives your team more chase, especially at later levels. Picking up your axe will almost bring up the skill immediately back up, allowing you to punish runners.

Vicious Strikes (Active): (W) Olaf's attack damage is increased, based on his health, and he gains massive lifesteal and spell vamp.
Damage: 12/18/24/30/36 (+ 0.4/0.7/1/1.3/1.6% of Max Hp) Lifesteal: 9/12/15/18/21% Spellvamp: 9/12/15/18/21%

If I was to pick a move I would call Olaf's bread and butter, this would be it. Adding both impressive lifesteal and spellvamp, Olaf becomes an unstoppable force in team fights. Combined with his Ult, it makes me wonder if he is even possible to kill with both activated at the same time. This move is also a tower killer, allowing you to nicely boost your damage to bring down unguarded towers.

Reckless Swing (Active): (E) Olaf attacks with such force that it deals true damage to his target and himself.

Damage: 100/160/220/280/340
Feedback: 40/64/88/112/136

If I was to teach young Olaf players ONE thing it would be to avoid this move like the plague. Although it sets up some nice extra damage late game, it offers almost nothing upfront. People may be allured to its tasty starting damage and try to rush it to 340, but it brings little to the table. Your Q and E are much more important to your overall character.

Ragnarok (Active): Olaf gains bonus armor penetration, is immune to disables and reduces incoming damage by a flat amount for some time.
Lasts: 5/6.5/8 seconds

Armor Penetration: 15/25/35
Flat Damage Absorption:25/45/65 flat damage absorption.

I love this move. Giving you a constant cleanse, you are literally a non-stoppable character. The armor pen combined with your runes makes their armor nearly useless. And even carries will struggle as you absorb a chunk of their damage. Its hard to explain how great this move is until you use it yourself.


Switch between Q and E picking up R when you can. Prioritize Q until you get your first R then prioritize E. This will give you sufficient slow to really damage your opponents, then enough life steal and base damage to both drop towers and destroy your pitiful competitors. Do not get W until you have no choice.


1) Start off with a shield. Its health/regen/armor is decent early game. You will find out that you can lane forever in the beginning of the game. KEEP IN MIND that you will struggle to get early kills. Try not to fret, you will get much better later. Don't overextend yourself, that is a quick way to lose your life.
2) Pick up a phage next, maybe even over your boots if you can get it first in one 'b'. The health and added slow will really make a difference. You will still struggle to get kills, i stunning teammate really helps.
3) Mercury treads. Chances are there is at least one character on the other team that this item will ruin them. If not, grab dodge boots.
4) Start Starks with an Emblem of Valour. The life steal stacks with your W, making you even harder to kill (If thats possible)
5) Finish Frozen Mallet. At this point, the game should be finishing up. Your added health lifesteal and slow have made you a killing machine. Enjoy it.
6) Finish Starks.
7) This is really an "anything goes" spot. Sometimes I get a BF for damage, other times I work towards a ghost blade for added speed and armor pen.
8) You should have ended the game by now. Whats wrong with you? At this point grab a Red pot and work towards either damage with BFs, or health for more survivability.


Some final notes on Olaf.

  • It can sometimes be a pain the first time using this character to hit using Q. Realize that the cross hairs indicate where the axe will LAND, this will not auto-target champs. So, aim past the champion to guarantee a hit.
  • When your health begins to drop, don't be that guy and start to run away. Your lifesteal and ultimate will surprise you at how well it will keep you alive. Any good LoL player has to know that sometimes the tank needs to stick it out even at low life to protect the team.
  • Olaf can take an entire teams damage for a bit, making him very useful at certain types of initiation of battle. Olaf can attack from behind a team, cutting off an escape route.
  • Always go for the carry first. I can not express at how good Olaf is at bringing the axe down on them.
  • Olaf is not a ganker. Sorry. At best, you can normally get people to smash their ghost/flash in fear.

Thats all for Olaf.

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Junior Member


So pretty much the same build as Phreak's build amirite?

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Senior Member


as a fellow olaf player with a w/l record of 13/4 (so far) THIS GUIDE IS HORRIBLE!

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as a fellow olaf player with a w/l record of 13/4 (so far) THIS GUIDE IS HORRIBLE!

post a better one? whats wrong with it. tips anything?

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Senior Member


well my thing is, would you think Vicisous strikes is really bad? Its actually really great myself I normally only put one point in axe for last hitting purposes and take liz buff instead for the slow.

The things about viscious strikes I look at which is nice is actually the damage it does to yourself. Now think about olafs passive. You attack FASTER the more health you have lost, so being at a lower health means W + (insert any slow) will most certiainly keep any champ within chasing distance. Along with W you are also gaining your life back so makes the damage you recieve negligable.

But I guess thats the way I think and how I play Olaf, so far i've done pretty well with him, as the Anti-Carry.