A Really Fun Unconventional Jungler

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ninbushido

Senior Member

02-16-2013

Zyra is one of the best unconventional junglers out there. Seriously. Take Q at level 1, ask for DPS on wolves and blue. Once she gets to level 2 with Smite on Blue, she really doesn't need to use Smite AT ALL. Her plants will tank the damage for her. Be sure to take out the smaller mobs first so the plants focus on the big mob (Big Wolf, Buff, etc.) Her plants' health bars are weird that no matter how much damage the attack did it will do a fixed amount to her plants, and her plants only have 6 health, so if you have 4 wraiths banging down on your plants it's going to die quickly. However, use Q into W plant and auto attack the smaller ones and you have two plants focusing one big mob. Her ganks are not bad either. W provides free wards for counterganking, and she has a slowing plant with an attack range of 400. Her E is a long ranged AoE snare. At level 6 she gets a sudden boost in damage and a wide, AoE knock up.
She is also a decent duelist in the jungle because she can kite and outmaneuver her opponents with her plants and her CC. She invades exceptionally well. She can do over-the-wall steals with her W and she can basically deal some damage and just walk out, leaving her plants to do the rest.

She is fairly blue dependant though and that may be one of her only, but greatest weaknesses. This is mitgated by grabbing Spirit Stone into Spirit of the Spectral Wraith, which is a perfect item for AP junglers like her, and Diana. With the mana regen she doesn't really have any problems, increased damage to minions and monsters helps ALL her damage with her plants and such. Spell Vamp heals her up quickly. And with the reduced cooldown on Smite she can roam the entire enemy jungle and be an annoying bich and just use her free vision to Smite-Steal buffs over the wall.

She still depletes her mana fairly quickly though, so grabbing an Athene's Unholy Grail will completely solve her mana problems. It will also put her at 40% CDR with her W passive and Spectral Wraith. The combination of two items already puts her there, and she can sell Spectral Wraith later if she wants, but she can still keep it due to the increased minion/monster damage to aid in taking Dragon/Baron.

She transitions mid/late-game exceptionally well due to her CC, she can fulfill multiple roles on the team. She can be a supportive character like she is commonly played in bot lane currently, she can be the second, consistent damage AP carry with decent burst, she can be a tanky AP, opting for more health items such as Rylai's and RoA.

A decent build I've found on her is:

Sorceror's Boots (Alacrity)

Spirit of the Spectral Wraith

Athene's Unholy Grail

Liandry's Torment

Rylai's Crystal Scepter

Situational

Liandry's procs on each attack of her plants, refreshing the duration. Spell Vamp procs on both her spells AND her plants, as well as Rylai's, synergizing with Liandry's for increased current health damage. Ranged slows on her Thorn Spitters and a multiplicative 49% combined slow on her Vine Lashers (which strangely are "melee", though they have 400 attack range which is 25 less than the lowest "ranged" champion). Situaional item can be defensive (Bulwark, Warmogs, Abyssal, GA, Zhonya's) or offensive (Rabadon's, WotA -- worth mentioning because with 40% spellvamp Zyra's healing with her AoE spells and plants is INSANE), depending on how the game is going. And of course Athene's provides her with basically limit-less mana.
Take all the increased damage on monsters/reduced damage taken + 6 true damage reflect to help with her first clear. After she gets her first blue it really doesn't matter anymore. The rest of her masteries, take as normal AP carry, but be sure to take the movement speed outside of combat in Utility because she is dreadfully slow, that's why I take them as well as Alacrity Enchantments.

TL;DR Zyra is actually a decent, possibly even a top-tier jungler.
Strengths: pretty strong ganks with long-ranged AoE CC, good clear after getting first blue, takes almost no damage in jungle due to plants tanking, invades and steals like a boss, can solo dragon at level 9 after Spectral Wraith and proper seed-nest set-up, and preferrably an Athene's for full CDR.. She can use her ultimate too to speed up the attacking, like Shaco uses his ultimate to tank dragon.
Weaknesses: low mobility, CC is skillshot, squishy, weak first clear, people will flame you in ranked, absolutely needs a leash and DPS on wolves and first Blue.


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Janna F Kennedy

Member

02-16-2013

Until lee sin walks into your jungle and 2 shots you. /thread


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BeelzeBuff

Senior Member

02-16-2013

Even NAUTILUS will invade Zyra


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Maximum Can

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Senior Member

02-16-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by ninbushido View Post
tl;dr


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ATastyDessert

Senior Member

02-16-2013

Try jungle Karthus. I hear it's really funny


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Pyrodruid

Senior Member

02-16-2013

Jungle Orianna works. You can do a blue, wolf, wraith, red clear in a bit over 3 minutes only using one or two pots with no leash. Take E at level one with armour seals or masteries. If you're getting a good leash, you can probably afford to take it at level 2. Try to keep the ball on you as much as possible for the armour bonus it gives. Level/build normally after that.