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The Art of Mordekaiser

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Many people will tell you that Mordekaiser is an underpowered champion, but this is a HUGE misconception. Mordekaiser is actually one of the best tanks in the game because of his shield. He's a great harass early game, and he can "add" champions to a team fight with a well-timed ult.

-Shield makes you an amazing tank.
-Abilities don't require mana.
-Mordekaiser with a Frozen Mallet or Railai's Crystal Scepter is a force to be reckoned with.
-Great harass, and he can get out with no penalty because of his shield.

-No built in CC or slow.
-Highly dependent on using abilities for his shield, so stuns/disables can be fatal.
-Squishy early game.
-Heavy nukers are one of his weaknesses, especially ones with disables.

Summoner Spells
Ignite: This ability is a MUST have on Mordekaiser. Ignite will get you first blood often, and when combined with your ult, it hurts BAD.

Exhaust: Another great ability on Mordekaiser. He has a lack of slow/cc until he gets a Frozen Mallet or Railai's Crystal Scepter, so this helps a lot with early kills.

Ghost: Like exhaust, ghost will help you chase. It will also help you run if you get stuck in a sticky situation.

Cleanse: Cleanse is another good one to have, since Mordekaiser is VERY susceptible to stuns and snares.

Flash: If you're a flash pro, go for it, but I would definitely recommend Exhaust or Ghost instead.

Runes (Updated with personal preferences 3/8/2010)
Blue: Cooldown Reduction or flat Health Regeneration are both good choices. If you stack Health Regeneration, you can forgo getting Regrowth Pendant as your first item. Cooldown Reduction is good for spamming abilities and keeping your shield up. (I choose cooldown reduction for blues.)
Yellow: Flat Health Regeneration, Dodge, or Magic Resist. All 3 will help with your survivability. (I choose health regeneration for yellows.)
Red: Armor Penetration.
Quintessence: Health Regeneration, Cooldown Reduction, or Armor Penetration. (I choose one health regeneration and two cooldown reduction for quintessences.)

Masteries (Updated 3/8/2010)

Deadliness 3/3
Cripple 1/1 (if you use exhaust) or Archmage's Savvy 1/3 (if you don't use exhaust)
Sorcery 4/4 or Alacrity 4/4 (depending on whether you want cooldowns or attack speed more)
Sunder 2/3

Resistance 3/3
Hardiness 3/3
Evasion 4/4
Defensive Mastery 2/2
Harden Skin 1/3
Veteran's Scars 4/4

Perseverence 3/3

Q - Mace of Spades - On next attack, Mordekaiser does extra damage. The extra damage can hit up to 3 additional targets. If there aren't additional targets, the extra damage is doubled.

W - Creeping Death - Mordekaiser throws a buff onto his target that increases their magic resistance and armor. It also deals periodic damage to every enemy around it. And it looks intimidating.

E - Siphon of Destruction - Mordekaiser deals damage in a cone in front of him. Much like Annie's incenerate. Also increases Mordekaiser's shield per enemy hit.

R - Children of the Grave - Mordekaiser places damage over time on his target, causing a percentage of maximum health in damage each second. If the target dies while under this affect, Mordekaiser creates a clone of the target, which has a percentage of Mordekaiser's max health (who is a tank). Mordekaiser gains a percentage of the slain character's stats while the clone is still alive. The clone gains any on-hit affects that Mordekaiser has (like Frozen Mallet, Black Cleaver, or Malady).

Passive - Iron Man - 20% of any damage dealt by Mordekaiser's abilities (note that regular melee attacks are not included) is converted into his shield. This is basically extra health. The attacks caused by the clone from Children of the Grave contribute to this shield.

Skill Build
1) Siphon of Destruction
2) Creeping Death or Mace of Spades
3) Siphon of Destruction
4) Creeping Death or Mace of Spades (whichever you didn't get before)
5) Siphon of Destruction
6) Children of the Grave

After this point, pick Mace of Spades or Creeping Death to prioritize over the other. Your priority will be one of the following.
Children of the Grave > Siphon of Destruction > Creeping Death > Mace of Spades
Children of the Grave > Siphon of Destruction > Mace of Spades > Creeping Death

I prefer to prioritize Creeping Death for the extra survivability.

Items (in work; updated 3/8/2010)
Rejuvenation Bead + 1 or 2 healing potions.
Phage or Giant's Belt (depending on whether you're going for Frozen Mallet or Railai's).
Boots of choice (if you don't have to worry about snares, I recommend Berserker's).
Railai's or Frozen Mallet
Spirit Visage
Approximately 5500 gold spent at this point. You are probably level 10-12.

After this point, you can either build tank, or add a little DPS. Mordekaiser's AP ratios are low, so I don't recommend going AP.

DPS (in work)
Malady or Black Cleaver
Malady or Black Cleaver (whichever you didn't get above; games usually end here)

Tank (in work)
Get items to counter your enemy. Lots of AP characters? Get magic resistance. Lots of physical DPS? Get armor.
Banshee's Veil, Frozen Heart, or Warmog's
Force of Nature, Guardian Angel, Atma's Impaler, or Warmog's

You usually won't be able to afford a more items before the game is over, but use your own best judgment during those situations.

Game Strategy
Early game
Early game you want to keep your shield up and harass as much as possible. Remember that when you use Siphon of Destruction you want to hit as many things as possible. This means you DO NOT waste Siphon of Destruction by hitting only a champion. It's not dealing enough damage yet to be used as a nuke yet. It's your primary ability to build up your shield, which will keep you in the lane longer. Don't be afraid to be a little aggressive, as your sheild will absorb hits for you. If you have ignite and exhaust, and your opponent carelessly wanders into the bushes where you and your DPS ally are waiting, first blood is almost guaranteed.

Mid game
Mid game is where Mordekaiser really begins to shine. At this point, you should have Phage and the boots of your choice, if not Frozen Mallet. Push! Push! Push! Your pushing power at this point is rivaled only by Sivir, and if you play your cards right, you should be able to survive 2v1 fights (usually killing one of them, possibly even get double kills if your enemies are greedy). People generally don't see Mordekaiser as a threat, and you want to use this misconception against them. If left alone, which happens pretty often, you should have their 2 outer towers in your lane down, if not the inhibitor turret, before the 15-20 minute mark.

Late Game
You're likely to be the tankiest person on your team. Initiate fights by hitting as many targets as you can with your Siphon of Destruction to power up your shield. Immediately cast Creeping Death on whoever is being focused (usually you or the melee carry). When your shield gets low, use Mace of Spades to bring it back up. Put Children of the Grave on whichever enemy is being focused down in order to make a clone. If you get the enemy carry, the fight is pretty much over, because now you have their carry's stats, as well as a clone of their carry, not to mention the fact that the clone has a ridiculous health pool that's based off your own.

With Mordekaiser, you should generally be looking at a ratio of around 12/4/8. You've got high last hit potential with your clone and Siphon of Death, and great survivability due to your shield. Mordekaiser + clone also makes towers fall like a stack of cards.

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Senior Member


Delete this quickly before people realize he's OP and qq for nerfs.

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+1 delete, dont nerf my mordekaiser

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Sweet guide - I added it to the lol wiki - gave you full credit!

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You marked it as by GreyPowerVan, not Arturrian. :P

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Lol did he really? Fail

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Junior Member


I usually prefer Exhaust and Flash over Ignite simply due to his natural lack of CC.

Spirit Visage is a great early item to get for Mord. It is cheap to build and easy to acquire quickly, and the CD reduction and healing bonus both work well on him. It also adds a good chunk of healing from his ult, as well as improving the effects of Warmogs and Warden's Mail if you end up going for a tank build.

I feel like Mord benefits a lot from having at least 1 IAS item; I've had a lot of luck with Rageblade and Berserkers. Phantom Dancer is also awesome for the bonus move speed and dodge, which helps with chasing as well as survival. Mandreds Razors also works really well, providing a good boost to damage and attack speed, as well as a little armor. What I build usually depends on the game, but i almost always end up with one of these.

I usually end up with Boots, Frozen Mallet, Spirit Visage, and Mandred's Razor or Phantom Dancer. If the game drags on longer than that Ill pick up Warden's Mail and maybe Guardian Angel, depending on the situation.

Just my 2 cents. Awesome guide.

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I actually played against a great Mordekaiser last night who used a Phantom Dancer. I'm going to do some more experimenting with item builds, but if you choose to go the more DPS route with Morde, a Phantom Dancer and Bloodthirster might be a better combination than Malady and Black Cleaver. It costs more money, yes, but you'll get a lot more kills that way. You won't have the great on-hit affects from your clone, though.

I also haven't tried out the Spirit Visage build, but have read about it elsewhere. I will definitely give it a shot and keep the guide updated.

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I did some messing around with items, and I see Spirit Visage as a viable item. I would definitely take yellow health regeneration runes if you went that route, though, in order to sustain your abilities better. I would still rush Phage and boots of choice before upgrading Rejuvenation Bead to Spirit Visage, though. The slow and move speed are just that much more valuable.

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I tried using Warmog's again last night. It is extremely nice but I just feel like it comes out too slow: building it feels almost like building an IE. Even with Mord's farming it just takes forever. While I felt fairly invincible once it was filled, I was having a lot more trouble early/mid game as I was scrambling to finish it and then fill it.

I did try to rush it first which might have been a problem: I would have been much more comfortable with rejuv beads/potion compared to a rejuv pendant. Maybe tonight I'll try a Spirit Visage => Warmog's build and see how it goes.