[Guide] Let's Do This! A potentially new way to look at Jax

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Steelrambo

Senior Member

12-01-2009

I play Jax a lot, and I'm probably not the best player, but most of mistakes I make are due to errors in judgment, not my build of Jax. This is my first guide, and I'd love feedback not related to flaming. In this guide, I'll present a few branching ways to build Jax that I use situationally. Much credit goes to I Play Jax's Jax guide, which basically got me started on playing this character well.

So here goes...

Section 1: Skills

I'm going to ignore the description of each skill, and just discuss what each skill is good for.

Empower-- I don't use this skill early game very much, but I've seen other people play with it. It seems a better mid-late game chasing skill to get the last extra bit of killing damage.

Leap Strike-- This is by far my favorite skill that Jax has. Early, it's fantastic for harassment, and even for killing if you manage to draw a dumb lane opponent. It also works fantastically for chasing. It scales with AP, but I've never found a great way to build an AP Jax, so I'll leave that for other people to discuss. You want to max this skill out as soon as possible, along with Counterattack for purposes of early-mid hero kills.

Counterattack-- Also a great skill, and incredibly useful for all Jax builds. Getting a dodge and getting a counterattack is a great way to ensure that you'll get a few more hits in on your opponent, especially early. Maxing this out in tandem with Leap Strike early will ensure that you can take down fleeing heroes and squishy ones.

Relentless Assault-- Win. Take it at every possible opportunity.

Here's the build I use:

1. Leap Strike
2. Empower
3. Counterstrike
4. Leap Strike
5. Counterstrike
6. Relentless Assault
7. Leap Strike
8. Counterattack
9. Leap Strike
10. Counterattack
11. Relentless Assault
12. Leap Strike (Max)
13. Counterattack (Max)
14. Empower
15. Empower
16. Relentless Assault
17. Empower
18. Empower (Max)

I'm not sure if these levels actually work properly, but you get the idea, even otherwise.

Section 2: Masteries

I go 0/21/9 for the dodge bonus. I always feel like Jax's role as a late-game carry means that he should get the +exp from the Utility Tree. If you do this along with the +exp runes that I'll discuss, you should be grabbing hefty extra experience (+11%, I believe) and you'll be slightly ahead of whoever is laning against you. This will also allow you to jungle buffs effectively earlier.

Section 3: Runes

You want to stack attack speed and dodge runes for all areas but the Purple. This will allow Jax to get the hell out of the way a little bit more. Since he's squishy, this is exceptionally important in terms of survivability. Take Experience runes with your Purples. This will get you a slight step up on your lane opponent, allowing you to **** him up easier. Then you can get gold and keep building what you need.

Section 4: Items

This is where I'm going to branch out a little bit. I *always* start with Vampiric Scepter. My build usually goes like this:

Vampiric Scepter
Berserker Greaves (Discussion to follow)
Vampiric Scepter--->Malady (Buy Daggers along the way if necessary, but you want to get this item for its +AS, Lifesteal, and anti-hero debuff)
Last Whisper
Phantom Dancer (As much as you might want to, DON'T RUSH THIS FIRST. You want to make sure that you have the +AS already, as well as the Malady, for reasons just described)

I start all games with these items, in that order. From here, it can go in a few different directions. Sometimes, I'll take the Rageblade because of it's stacking AS and AP buffs. The AP works well with the proc on Relentless Assault and the AS works well with Relentless Assault, as well. I'll also take Phage--->Frozen Mallet if I'm having troubles chasing or have survivability problems. Ultimately, you will want an Infinity Edge if you are doing well enough to grab it. It's a beatstick and will help you kill anybody, and even *every*body. Bloodthirster and Black Cleaver help beat some respect into pesky tanks. Banshee Veil will allow you some survivability against casters. Ryze and Kassadin are the heroes most likely to elicit your purchase of the Veil. If you're doing really well, just start stacking Infinity Edges, and you'll win.

I don't take Ninja Tabai because I feel that the extra attack speed helps Jax farm early, and allows him to wreak more havoc on the person laning opposite him. Ninja Tabai does help with Dodge, yes, but Counterattack spamming is crippling to your low early-game mana pool and will leave you out of mana pdq. Even Leap Strike will do this, but the lengthy early cooldown on Leap Strike will discourage you from abusing your tiny mana pool to use it.

Feedback is not just welcome, it's solicited for this section.

Section 5: Summoner Spells

I generally go with Heal/Teleport because it allows me to clean up messes that my teammates cause, but when I'm running with a premade, I will go Smite/Flash to allow for better jungling and good gold in the early game when you're making your item build.

Section 6: Gameplay (The important part)

Early Game (Levels 1-6): Get solo as often as you can. You'll have some dip**** Ashe on your team who thinks she is entitled to solo mid, but she would be wrong. Call it and get there. Don't let anybody stop you. This is important because it allows you to get more experience and gold early, and get cracking on your build. Jax is a monster if he outlevels somebody and ganks him/her. When in your lane, use Smite to last hit creeps you'd otherwise not be able to grab, especially cannon minions. Focus on last hitting, and occasionally harassing the opposing hero. If the hero gets too cocky, grab a Counterattack by running into a few creeps when he's not looking, and Leap Strike him, and immediately Counterattack. Use the few seconds to get in a few meaningful hits, then get back to behind your creeps. Use good discretion in doing this, as you don't want to get yanked into a turret by a Blitzcrank or rooted and nuked by a Ryze. Don't die early, if only because you're not getting gold at a reasonable rate while you're dead. If you're playing this well, you may be able to get Malady by level 6.

Mid Game (Levels 7-14): At this point, you should continue on your build, but consider helping other lanes. A well planned gank should net you 2 kills, and all the gold that comes from those kills. People in other lanes should be at a lower level than Jax, and you should be able to obliterate them. Use the Leap Strike+Counterattack combo to cut down escaping enemies. If you need it, grab the Lizard Buff at about level 10 and use the slow on that to make sure people don't get away. Once you've killed the heroes in the lane of your choosing, take down the tower, and return to your responsibilities in mid. You'll want to continue this ganking thing for a while, since it'll net you good gold, and it's fairly low-risk if you manage to use some caution.

Late Game (Levels 15-18): You're a monster. Don't run into 3v1s (usually) or 4v1s, but you should be able to take most 2v1s, especially if you've garnered your Infinity Edge, or built up your Bloodthirster. Remember at all times that you're squishy, and that a well placed spell or two can cause you a lot of pain. When you get into a fight, try for as much sustained combat as possible in order to build up your Relentless Assault. If you've built the build I've suggested, your attack speed will cap out at 2.5 attacks/sec. This is what you want. People will have no idea what is happening to them until it's too late. You can also use Counterattack to disrupt channeling spells, like Nunu's ultimate and Fiddlesticks's Crowstorm.

Feedback is also welcome in this department.

Section 7: People you don't want to lane against

There are a few heroes that work as solid counters to Jax.

Ryze-- This creepy mother****er is not somebody you want to be caught alone with. If you don't harass him properly, or exercise a LOT of caution, he'll root you and nuke you to hell. This is a bad thing. Using caution can usually make this a moot point, though.

Heimerdinger-- Who *does* like laning against this guy? He's terrible for Jax because Jax has to walk into his turret nest to cause him any damage. This is hard to do when you're squishy and melee. Ask for help, or switch lanes if Heimerdinger shows up.

Ashe-- This is very doable, especially if you catch Ashe in a weak moment and jump on her/stun her. I hate how she kites, though, and you'll hate it, too. Make sure that you're harassing her properly and making her think twice about committing to attacking you. Once you get Relentless Assault, though, she's a lot easier to obliterate.

Kassadin-- Kassadin's silence is annoying, and you'll find considerable trouble dealing with him mid and late game if he's built properly. The problem with the silence is that it prevents you from harassing him effectively with Leap Strike. I haven't found any great ways to deal with this other than keeping him at bay enough that he won't farm gold. Wit's End could also help, instead of Last Whisper, in terms of keeping him without his enormous mana supply that he will need to drop the mid and late game nukes on you.


So this has been my first guide. As I've said throughout, I'd love feedback and ways to improve. I'll also answer questions as well as I can. Thanks for reading, and good luck with the master of the beatstick lamppost-- JAX!


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Indecent

Member

12-01-2009

I play Jax a lot and in theory a AS build is great for sustained damage. The problem however, is that with tons of AS, you are required to just stand and auto attack with a Counterstrike now and then. Now Jax is squishy as **** against Magic and sometimes the burstier damage inflicted with say a Phantom Dancer then straight to Infinty Edge is more beneficial to making sure you dont just get ff.


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tenebre

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Recruiter

12-01-2009

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steelrambo View Post
Vampiric Scepter
Berserker Greaves (Discussion to follow)
Vampiric Scepter--->Malady (Buy Daggers along the way if necessary, but you want to get this item for its +AS, Lifesteal, and anti-hero debuff)
Last Whisper
Phantom Dancer
My Twitch build (minus my wits end =D)

BTW, nice build, will try it this weekend


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Steelrambo

Senior Member

12-01-2009

Quote:
Originally Posted by Indecent View Post
I play Jax a lot and in theory a AS build is great for sustained damage. The problem however, is that with tons of AS, you are required to just stand and auto attack with a Counterstrike now and then. Now Jax is squishy as **** against Magic and sometimes the burstier damage inflicted with say a Phantom Dancer then straight to Infinty Edge is more beneficial to making sure you dont just get ff.
I agree with this statement, which is why I added the little thing regarding Infinity Edge. Farming for Infinity Edge immediately after Phantom Dancer, though, will lead to a lot of time in which you are underpowered compared to other heroes who are spending their gold more rapidly. While this can work in long games, Jax relies on being one cut above the rest in terms of items.

If you're getting FF'ed with magic, then it's important to get a Veil to allow yourself at least some time to get out of there. At any rate, the point in the game where you'll be picking what to do after Phantom Dancer is when you should be going to different lanes and ganking. If you're doing that properly, then you should be alright, since you've presumably picked a lane with heroes you can kill quickly and completely.


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Julien

Member

12-01-2009

Ive been playing a lot of jax lately, and experimenting with a dps/ap mix. My main items that carry me through mid game is a phage/mallet and ive really been liking getting the rageblade on him. I havent seen really anyone else get it for him. I love it. Afteri get the mallet and rageblade. If I am really getting targeted and really need the extra helth I go warmogs. Other wise I might go bloodthirster or some other from of life steal/damage.

For my summoner spells I like Ignite/flash/.

Ignite has helped me to more 1st bloods than I could ever count. I harass early with leap strike, and ill wait to proc a stun then leap in and continue that until I think I can get them all in one leap/stun and ignite. It also helps catch stragglers in team fights, without having to use leap strike


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Bait

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Senior Member

12-01-2009

i just don't like the guide. i don't agree with most of it.


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Steelrambo

Senior Member

12-01-2009

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bait View Post
i dont understand vamp scepter. i think doran shield is more fitting.

i don't think berserker boots are fitting on jax either.
The Vampiric Scepter gives Jax some staying power. It also upgrades to items that are important in the build that I've described. Doran's Shield is fantastic, but it doesn't help with what I'm trying to accomplish mid-game and end game. Doran's Shield also takes away from attack strength early, and netting an early kill is important to get on with the build.

As for Berserker Greaves, I'd like to hear more about why you don't think they belong on Jax. It helps with getting the maximum procs off of his ult, giving you a little bit more to work with when doing a gank, as I described in my strategy.

Thanks for the feedback, though.


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oOTeeNyOO

Member

12-01-2009

So i tried this stuff and man did i do good thanx!

Really good guide IMO!


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Steelrambo

Senior Member

12-01-2009

Quote:
Originally Posted by oOTeeNyOO View Post
So i tried this stuff and man did i do good thanx!

Really good guide IMO!
Glad to hear it :-D.


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Steelrambo

Senior Member

12-02-2009

Bump for great justice.