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[GUIDE] AP Kog'Maw - Destroyer of Worlds

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Right up here I'm going to post the quick-simple version of this guide for those who are in queue and just picked him, but I will continue with a long version for the rest of us.

Masteries: 9/0/21
Runes: MR Pen, HP, CD redux, and Dodge.
Spells: Exhaust, Teleport.
Skills: Max E, then Q, no points in W til 13.
Items: Archangel, Boots of Swiftness, Rylai's, Zhonya's, Haunting Guise
Playstyle: Stay away, and shoot with E and R. Q W are too short range.

Full Guide:
Alright, so that is the basics, and the rest of the guide will cover more step-by-step stuff, and the reasoning behind my choices.

An ideal rune page for Kog would be Flat Magic Pen Marks to increase damage, scaling mana regeneration Seals for survivability, flat Cooldown reduction Glyphs for more spam, and HP Quints. The completed page stats should be: 8.55 Magic Pen, 16.2MP/5, 5.85% Cooldown reduction, and 97.4 Health.

Summoner Spells:
Because of how you will be playing, these four really jump out at me as good for him, ordered in what I believe to be best to worst. Mix and match to see what works best for you.
Exhaust: The main reason I chose this one is to keep you alive, but it's also really good for slowing a person long enough to obliterate them.
Teleport: Useful for getting to the fight in time, defending, etc. It's teleport.
Ghost: Again, survivability. If you get into a team fight that you lose, well, they're after you next, so you'd need this to get out. Also good for chasing, but you're good enough at that without this, and slows help more than speed.
Cleanse: Survivability. Useful for making Ashe cry, etc. It's cleanse.


Offensive: 9
Archmage's Savvy 3/3: 0.60 AP per level
Cripple 1/1: Improves Exhaust to reduce enemy armor and magic pen by 10, while increasing its duration by 0.5 seconds.
Sorcery 4/4: Reduces cooldowns by 3%.
Archaic Knowledge 1/1: Your spells penetrate 15% of the target's magic resistance.

Defensive: 0

Utility: 21
Perseverance 3/3: Increases health and mana regeneration by 4%.
Spatial Accuracy 1/1: Reduces Teleport's delay by 0.5 seconds, and its cooldown by 5 seconds.
Haste 1/1: Increases Ghost's movespeed by 8%, and its duration by 1.5 seconds.
Awareness 2/4: Increases experience gained by 2.5%
Expanded Mind 3/4: Increases your champion's mana by 3.75% of your champion's maximum mana.
Meditation 3/3: Increases your mana regeneration by 1/second.
Utility Mastery 2/2: Increases the duration of neutral monster buffs by 30%.
Quickness 3/3: Increases your base movespeed by 3%.
Intelligence 3/3: Reduces your champion's cooldowns by 6%.
Presence of the Master 1/1: Reduces your summoner spell's cooldowns by 15%.


When the prophet Malzahar was reborn in Icathia, he was led there by an ominous voice which thereafter anchored itself to his psyche. From within, this voice bestowed upon him terrible purpose, and though Malzahar was no longer tormented by its call, the voice did not cease its unrelenting summons. This baleful beacon's gentle flicker -- now fastened to Runeterra -- drew forth a putrid beast that ambled across a threshold it did not understand, widening a fissure between the spaces which were never meant to meet. There amongst the haunting ruins of Icathia, Kog'Maw manifested in Valoran with unsettling curiosity. The spark which led him to Runeterra teased him still, urging him gently towards Malzahar. It also encouraged him to familiarize himself with his new environment, to the stark horror of everything he encountered on his journey.

The enchanting colors and aromas of Runeterra intoxicated Kog'Maw, and he explored the fruits of the strange world the only way he knew how: by devouring them. At first he sampled only the wild flora and fauna he happened across. As he traversed the parched Tempest Flats, however, he came upon a tribe of nomads. Seemingly unhampered by conventional rules of physics, Kog'Maw consumed every nomad and any obstacles they put in his way, amounting to many times his own mass and volume. The most composed of his victims may have had time to wonder if this was due to the caustic enzymes which stung the ground as they dripped from his gaping mouth, although such musings were abruptly concluded. When his wake of catastrophe reached the Institute of War, and enthusiastic Malzahar greeted him with an enticing prospect: taste the best Runeterra could offer...on the Fields of Justice.

'If that's just hungry, I don't want to see angry.' --Tryndamere, the Barbarian King

(Passive) Icathian Surprise
Upon dying, Kog'Maw starts a chain reaction in his body which causes him to move faster and detonate after 4 seconds; dealing 100 + (25 x level) true damage to surrounding enemies.
Once you die, you run up and explode. Fairly useful, the damage is good for finishing people off, and although I advise against while you are still learning the ropes as him, you can use it to snag first blood. For some reason, killing someone with Icathian Surprise causes the game to think that you killed them first, so if you can manage to get someone down to <100 health but they are heavily protected, try to close as much distance between you and him as possible. When you die, the speed boost should make it easier to finish the gap, and hopefully snag the FB.

(Q) Caustic Spittle
Passive: Increases Armor Penetration by 13/16/19/22/25%
Active: Kog'Maw launches a corrosive projectile which deals 60/110/160/210/260(0.7 ability power ratio) magic damage and doubles his passive armor penetration for 4 seconds (Removes the passive until available again).

This one is not terribly important to you, as you won't be using it for all the fancy bonuses it provides. To you, this is a nuke that also makes you do slightly more damage. While its short range makes it a close race between Q and W, this will be up more consistently, and the burst is higher to boot.

(W) Bio-Arcane Barrage
Kog'Maw's attacks gain 130/160/190/220/250 range and deal an additional 2/3/4/5/6% (0.01 ability power ratio) of the target's maximum Health as Magic Damage (Max: 100 Damage vs Monsters). Lasts 6 seconds.
While this is an excellent skill for some builds, it is not very good for this one. The main reason Q is better than W is because of how the play style reduces this skill's effectiveness. "Stay away and shoot" really doesn't allow you to get in enough danger to use this ability. While it's true that W gives better damage, it endangers you too much, and you can't cast while auto-attacking. Additionally, you should be targeting squishies, which this helps the least against. Oh, and it also has way too long a CD.

(E) Void Ooze
Kog'Maw launches ooze which deals 60/110/160/210/260 (0.7 ability power ratio) magic damage to enemies it passes through.
Additionally, it leaves a trail which slows enemies by 28/36/44/52/60% for 4 seconds.
This skill is amazing. You shoot a line of goop which deals ludicrous damage to everyone it hits, and additionally slows anyone who passes through the trail by a TON. The best way to use this skill is to use it instantly after your tank initiates a teamfight, so that it damages as many champs as possible, as well as making it nearly impossible for them to do anything but fight your tank due to the massive slow. Additionally, this skill can easily take out an entire creep wave, making it a great way to farm.

(R) Living Artillery
Kog'Maw fires artillery from a great distance (1400/1700/2000). After a short delay, the artillery falls dealing 80/120/160 (0.3 ability power ratio) magic damage and reveals targets for 4 seconds (deals 150% bonus damage to Champions).
Each subsequent Living Artillery in the next 6 seconds costs 40 additional mana (Max 250).

Remember how I said the last skill was pretty amazing? It pales in comparison to this baby. It is an incredibly high range, faster version of Veigar's Dark Matter, with little to no cooldown whatsoever. While spamming it does apply considerable mana burn, good placement, patience, and Archangel's reduces it to a mere suggestion.

Attached is a simple guide on hitting and leading with Living Artillery.

Skill Order:
L1 E Void Ooze
L2 Q Caustic Spittle
L3 E Void Ooze
L4 Q Caustic Spittle
L5 E Void Ooze
L6 R Living Artillery
L7 E Void Ooze
L8 Q Caustic Spittle
L9 E Void Ooze
L10 Q Caustic Spittle
L11 R Living Artillery
L12 Q Caustic Spittle
L13 W Bio-Arcane Barrage
L14 W Bio-Arcane Barrage
L15 W Bio-Arcane Barrage
L16 R Living Artillery
L17 W Bio-Arcane Barrage
L18 W Bio-Arcane Barrage

Items Walkthrough.
To start off the game, you'll want a Sapphire Crystal and 2x HP Pots. Play very conservatively and carefully, you should be able to last until you have around 1600 gold. I advise not backing until then, unless you absolutely have to. First time back you should be around level six (if not solo), and you should pick up Boots of Swiftness and Tear of the Goddess. Tear is priceless, as it will allow you to spam your Ultimate, Living Artillery, much more effectively. If you have enough, you might also want to restock on pots. From here on out, you will become progressively more fear-inspiring.

By level 8 or 9, you should be able to burst an enemy squishy from full to dead, as well as take out an entire creep wave with E. To quickly decimate squishies, lead with E for damage and slow, follow with Q and, due to E's ridiculous slow, you should be able to easily finish up with Living Artillery, see placement for details. Next item you should focus on getting is a Giant's Belt, to start off your Rylai's. Rylai's is what really makes this build. Additional slow on top of the already massive 60% from E stops them in their tracks, making them ridiculously easy to hit with R, gaining you easy money. After you get Rylai's, you should finish up your Archangel's, for the percentage AP, adding to your glory.

By now, you should be stomping heads and the game will be coming to a close. Try to buy as much of a Zhonya's as you can before victory. IF the game lasts longer, I'd recommend a Haunting Guise, but I highly doubt it will last that long. IF it lasts even longer, go for a Will of the Ancients.

Full Build:
Sapphire Crystal + 2x HP Potions
Boots of Swiftness + Tear of Goddess
Giant's Belt
Rylai's Crystal Scepter
Zhonya's Ring
Haunting Guise
Will of the Ancients

Playstyle Early:
The main goal of early game playing as Kog'Maw is to conserve your mana as best as possible, i.e. only using Void Ooze when the enemy creepwave is nearly dead. By conserving your mana you increase your survivability tenfold, making you both more threatening and allowing you to rack up the rather daunting 1600 gold needed before your first back. You should not be harassing enemy champions. I can not stress that enough. While as ANY OTHER CHAMPION it is a great idea, as Kog'Maw, you simply are not able to effectively harass while maintaining your impressive survivability and threat-level.

Playstyle Mid-game:
You have your ultimate, and you are using the guide on leading to harass champions. Your goal is still the same, to conserve mana and health. However, you can now easily take golem whenever you please, meaning that mana is no longer an issue. Since mana is no longer an issue, you can ignore my previous warning all the way. Get golem and harass as much as you can. Place your ultimate in conjunction with Void Ooze on the caster section of a creep wave to make good money, as well as keep those poor unfortunate souls on the enemy team far away from you. An additional cast of Living Artillery on the melee section should finish the wave, leaving you almost an entire wave ahead of the enemy. Try to do this on every wave without putting yourself in danger; luckily your long ranges should make that simple enough.

Playstyle Late-game:
Stay with your team. No matter who you are playing, that is the late game rule. You are easily as good a pusher as Sivir, your only fault being inferior damage to towers, hence why you stick with your team. When you get into team fights, this is how things will go down. First, either your tank or the enemy's tank will initiate, try to encourage you tank so he does it before they do. Next, you will cast two spells, Void Ooze and Living Artillery. Void Ooze should hit a minimum of three enemies if it is a full on 5v5, but try to maximize it. Now that Void Ooze is on cooldown, you will spam the ever-loving Jesse Perring out of Living Artillery, until Void Ooze is back up. Usually, Void Ooze will be used three times in a fight: once to initiate, once in the middle, and once to get a triple kill while cleaning up. Afterwords, charge forwards and use Living Artillery to the best of your ability to finish off the survivors, then push with your team while they are down.

-You will want to have Golem buff as close to 24/7 as possible, as it will help with the spam. Planting wards will help you know when it is up, and when enemies are trying to take it.
-When using Living Artillery, it can be a good idea to wait for the cost to refresh before cleaning up.
-If you are in a position where you are about to die, try to slow as many people as possible, so that you can make the most use out of Icathian Surprise.

Comparison to AD:
A lot of you people seem to think that AD Kog'Maw is the way to go, as Bio-Arcane Barrage + Madreds = 10% of a targets hp per hit. I am here to show you AP is superior, by crunching the numbers between my build and a rivaling AD build. I used Skitz24's Kog'Maw Guide as the AD comparison. NOTE: I am not saying Skitz24's guide is inferior to mine; both guides are good (although his is better written) and viable. I am simply saying that mine is the more effective choice.

AD Kog Maw:
372-617 DPS with scaling Cleaver Pen + 4% (+153 DPS) or 10% (+381 DPS) for 6 seconds. Max: 998 DPS, constant 770. Range 500
An impressive 1,000 DPS, but A: we can top that, and B: he has to get nice and close to range 450, and C: it is only that high for 6 seconds.

AP Kog Maw:
932 AoE DPS from Living Artillery with 1029 AoE Burst from Void Ooze (negligible DPS due to high cooldown (+92 DPS), but impressive burst). Range 2000/1400 for Void Ooze.

"1000 is higher than 932! AD Wins!!!" Nope. First of all, the other build only does 1000 DPS to a single target, whereas Living Artillery does 932 DPS to ALL champs that you can hit. Secondly, after 6 seconds, AD DPS drops to 770, whereas AP DPS is a constant 932 AoE, with severe burst from Ooze. Thirdly, our AD counterpart needs to get to 500 range in order to do his damage, where there are stuns, snares, pop-ups, and other things that deal damage to you and effectively lower your DPS. Us AP Kogs get to stay over 1,000 distance further away while doing the same DPS, but in an AoE. I think that alone proves AP dominance, but here's the rest of AP Kog'Maws skill damage.

Caustic Spittle: 1029 damage for the suckers that try to close in.
Bio Arcane Barrage: 11% (+334 DPS) with 1.127 AS = 462 DPS for 6 seconds. Laughable, but we're not really the auto-attack type of person.
Void Ooze: 1029 damage AoE shown above.
Living Artillery: 792 damage with 0.85 CD (without golem, which you should have) = 932 DPS AoE shown above.

Now it might seem like I just pulled a bunch of realistic looking numbers out of thin air and made the scales tip in my favor but I didn't. I used the Leaguecraft champion builder, which is immensely useful. AD Kog'Maw: http://leaguecraft.com/builder/Kog%27Maw/becac485513a91812fea2aebd24c39b0
AP Kog'Maw: http://leaguecraft.com/builder/Kog%27Maw/2b767e2a81e508b0f9a093336dc723d2

Additionally, here are the formulas I used to calculate the DPS and damage of spells.

AD Math
Damage X AS X Pen vs. Natural Armor + (4% avg health X AS) or (10% avg health X AS) for 6 seconds.
263 X 1.413 X 1.66 + (108 X 1.413) or (270 X 1.413) for 6 seconds. = Max 998 DPS, constant 770 DPS. Range 450.

AP Math Q/E
Base + (0.70 X AP) X Pen vs. Natural Resist
260 + (370) X 1.66 = 1029 damage, E is range 1400.

AS x (Base + 0.01 AP) + Base DPS
1.127 X (6% + 5.25%) + 127 = 462 DPS for 6 seconds

AP Math R
(Base + 0.30 AP) X Pen vs. Natural Resist X 150% to champs = Damage per cast X Times castable per second (1/CD) = DPS
(160 + 158.25) X 1.66 X 1.5 = 792 X (1/0.85) = 932 DPS AoE Range 2000.

"You don't use science to show that you're right, you use science to become right."

Closing Notes:
I am definitely going to update this frequently, as well as try my best to answer any questions.
EDIT 1: Better explained my reasoning behind Q>W.
EDIT 2: Better explained masteries, and included a guide on leading.
EDIT 3: Divided gameplay and item strategy, while detailing both further.
EDIT 4: Added comparison of damage as both an AD and AP build, and Lore.
EDIT 5: Changed to accommodate the most recent patch.

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Senior Member


Alright, sorry for the early post glitch, but now it's up, so enjoy!

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Senior Member


Well, I just tried this guide and liked it. Was a blast playing. Annoyed this piss out of the enemy team spamming arty dealing 300+ damg with a CD of 1 second

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This looks interesting! Definitely gonna try it.
Kog'maw is quickly becoming my favorite. Besides, who DOESN'T love spamming spells?!

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Senior Member


Gonna try this next few games. Sounds fun.

Been centering my build around W and lots of attack speed. (killing around corners/people thinking they are safe is always fun)

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Senior Member


your doing it wrong

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Senior Member


A few issues caught my eye with this guide.

1) Rylai's Scepter - My understanding is the slow effects are separate, not additive, and the larger of the two takes precedence. Thus, this will only cause your Caustic Spittle and Artillery to have an added slow effect, and does not add to Void Ooze. Not horrible, but probably makes it more of a luxury than a core build.

2) Leveling E over W - Even if you're going AP, I don't see how W is useless to you. It deals magic damage based on percentage of AP, and might just help snag you that early kill from the added range on an over-aggressive lane opponent. Caustic Spittle, on the other hand, requires Kog to get right up in their face - where you don't want to be. Your opening statement is to 'stay away, use E and R to win'... Well why not use E, W, and R to win. If they're in range for Void Ooze, they're in range for W - more DPS is never a bad thing.

I'm not saying you're wrong, as I'm not a Kog player (only tried him once so far... and loved it), these things just jumped out at me

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Senior Member


I play an AS/AP Kog'maw that generally builds Madred's, Nashor's, Guinsoo's and/or Frozen Mallet, and I rarely use the active component of Q. That's not just because Bio-Arcane Barrage is so central to how I play Kog, but because the active component of Q just isn't that good. If I'm using Q regularly I'm doing something wrong. The only time I really use it is when I'm desperately trying to burst someone down before I get killed. The range is just too short on it for the run-and-gun play style that Kog favours.

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The Burning Waffle

Senior Member


Clarity isn't a half bad summoners spell to have on KM, if you get into a tense situation and are throwing your ulti as frequently as you can, you can't exactly wait for a potion or your regen to bring your mana back up

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W isn't bad on an AP build. You get bonus % for your AP so it's always useful.

Also: mp5/lvl seals >>> dodge seals, especially for kog