As one of League’s most consistent champions, Gragas retains his formidable in-game presence as a Mid, Top and Jungle pick, alternating between the AP damage dealer and Tank play styles. His impact on the game can be felt both in normal and competitive play, as he has been played across most competitive leagues, including the World Championship, without any noticeable sign of his popularity dying out anytime soon!
Given his outstanding versatility in raw damage output, crowd control, and sustain, The Rabble Rouser can be adapted to fit nearly any player’s personal preference, in terms of both the Runes and Items. As a Jungler, he enjoys the benefit of having all of his abilities deal AOE (area of effect) damage, making him particularly effective at clearing the monster camps.
Besides his fantastic Jungle clear, Gragas has also been gifted with more than enough ganking tools to allow him to consistently win advantages for his team, ultimately converting into a relatively high win rate.
Today, we will be focusing our efforts on Gragas as a Jungler, bringing you the best route and clearing guide, besides the optimal Runes and Items to dominate games with!
Flash / Ghost + Smite
With Gragas, there isn’t much of a debate surrounding his optimal Summoner Spells in lower ELO, as most players stand by the notorious Flash + E combo, which is virtually impossible to escape if executed correctly.
Still, players who use Gragas for his utility will argue otherwise, since in those instances Ghost is considered to be the better option, being paired with Nimbus Cloak and Celerity, but more on that approach in the following section.
The Best Gragas Runes
We are going to cover two of the most popular and effective play styles, starting with the more damage-oriented build.
Despite being built to deal magic damage, the ideal rune for AP Gragas in the Jungle remains Predator, giving him some additional movement speed and damage to lock down and execute targets with. Subsequently, players will want to run Sudden Impact, Eyeball Collection, and Relentless Hunter, for self-explanatory reasons.
For the secondary Runes, Celerity and Waterwalking will further enhance the added movement speed bonuses, allowing Gragas to make his presence felt all across the Map, applying pressure to all of the lanes.
High-ELO players take a different approach to playing Gragas, relying heavily on his ability to find small advantages for his team, focusing mostly on The Rabble Rouser’s utility to carry games.
These players will typically run the new and improved Glacial Augment, Magical Footwear, Future’s Market, and Approach Velocity, blending the movement speed bonuses with gold efficiency and overall utility beautifully.
As secondary Runes, we’d ideally emphasize further enhancing the movement speed bonuses, taking Nimbus Cloak and Celerity. It is also worth noting that these picks are most often run with Ghost instead of Flash, getting the most out of both secondary Runes.
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The Best Gragas Items
Starting Items: Hailblade + Refillable Potion
Mythic Item: Hextech Rocketbelt / Everfrost
Core Items: Boots of Swiftness / Sorcerer’s Shoes, Zhonya’s Hourglass, Rabadon’s Deathcap
Finishing Options: Morellonomicon, Banshee’s Veil, Lich Bane, Void Staff
The AP damage dealer build is relatively standard, with plenty of room for flexibility and play style adaptations. However, we cannot say the same about the more advanced, utility-focus approach.
Mythic Item: Everfrost / Frostfire Gauntlet
Core Items: Boots of Swiftness / Adapted Defensive Boots, Fimbulwinter, Frozen Heart
Finishing Options: Abyssal Mask, Cosmic Drive, Demonic Embrace
This build focuses on stacking HP through Frostfire’s Mythic Passive, combined with Fimbulwinter’s, leaving damage aside in favor of utility, leading their team to an early-to-mid game victory.
The Best Skill Order for Gragas
Q > E > W > R
However, at LVL 1 players should take W first, given its damage reduction, low cooldown, and AOE damage output. At LVL 2, taking Body Slam (E) as your next ability is going to be the way to go, investing in Q only from LVL 3 onwards.
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The Best Jungle Paths for Gragas
Despite The Rabble Rouser’s absolutely phenomenal Jungle clear, in order to execute him correctly, players need to spend more time pressuring lanes than clearing camps. A well-played Gragas path consists of using his kit to clear the mobs as quickly as possible, then using that tempo to gank and apply pressure across the Map.
We are going to cover the most advantageous starts from each side, but players should keep a few factors in mind when deciding upon where their Jungle pathing should start. These are:
- Which laners are going to provide more help in clearing the first camp?
- Counter-jungle opportunities, based on where the enemy Jungler is likely to start.
- Which lane would you like to gank first, depending on both the allied and enemy champions.
For the sake of tempo, Gragas players should stay away from the Krug camp, at least during their first clear, using that time to gank instead.
When it comes to ganking, regardless of which build or Runes you are playing, landing that first Body Slam (E) is going to ensure success in most instances. Predator will help in landing E, while Glacial Augment is going to make your target’s escape even more difficult.
Red Side, Red Clear
For our first clear, Red Side’s Red Buff start, Gragas is going to brawl Red with repeated uses of W, regenerating his Health with the help of his Passive ability. This will ultimately leave The Rabble Rouser with plenty of Health to continue his pathing without requiring the use of his Refillable Potion.
For the second and third camps, as depicted in the image, players will be heading towards the Raptors and Wolves, holding back from using Smite at both of these camps. W’s damage mitigation and E’s stun, combined with the AOE damage on both abilities will make clearing these multi-mob camps a child’s play.
As your fourth target, the Blue Buff may be slightly tougher to slay, which is why we’re going to cast our first Smite charge on it. Gragas can clear his first three camps at a speed that can only be matched by a mere handful of champions, and we want to maintain that tempo advantage.
Next on the list is the Gromp, which may once again take a bit more to kill, but the payout is rather good, leaving Gragas on full Health in most cases. Now, step into the River and break the Scuttler’s shield using Body Slam, bursting it down with the rest of your abilities before using Smite to execute it.
At this point, The Rabble Rouser can (and should) force a gank on either Mid or Bot, using his numerous movement speed boosts and Body Slam to lock down his target or to at least burn their Flash, winning a small advantage for his allies.
Red Side, Blue Clear
The Blue Clear has an added advantage, the extra help gained from having two allies assisting you with your first camp, the Blue Buff, instead of just one. This will allow you to start fighting the Gromp second, using your first Smite charge to keep you from spending too much time at the second camp.
Your next two targets are the easy-to-clear multi-mob camps, the Wolves and Raptors, both leading you towards your fifth and final camp belonging to your Jungle, the Red Buff.
Instead of keeping the second Smite charge for the Scuttler, players should instead cast it on Red to accelerate the clearing process, as Gragas still has plenty of means to secure the Scuttler with next.
Once your second Buff has been obtained, once again step into the River and break the Scuttler’s shield using Body Slam. If the enemy Jungler somehow manages to match your tempo and is about to contest, do not be afraid to 1v1 them, as The Rabble Rouser’s early sustain can win most trades.
From this position, you are free to force ganks on both Mid and Top, depending on which you find more likely to convert into a takedown or ally advantage.
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Blue Side, Blue Clear
Transitioning to the opposite side, the Blue Buff start’s pathing is going to be very similar to the previous one. Perhaps the only difference is that you will no longer have two allies helping you with the first camp, but that shouldn’t be too noticeable with a champion like Gragas.
After securing Blue, head for the Gromp second, again using Smite to accelerate your pace. On your way to the Red Buff stop at the two multi-mob camps, the Wolves and Raptors, securing those comfortably.
Use the second Smite charge on Red, as you are once again going to reach the Scuttler quite early into the game, having all of the necessary means to safely secure that one as well.
Having now entered the River to claim the Scuttler, you can start scouting the lanes through the mini-map in order to get an idea of which lane should you gank afterward, Mid or Bot, to which the answer should preferably be Bot, where you’ll have two allies to follow your engage.
Blue Side, Red Clear
As perhaps the fastest clear path, make the best use of the extra help, in an effort to win as much tempo as possible. This route is identical to the Red Side’s Red start, but that extra bit of time won by having two allies’ assistance is going to set you up for a slightly faster clear.
After securing Red, once again head for the two multi-mob camps, completely ignoring the Krugs, before reaching your Blue Buff. Using the first Smite charge to slay Blue will allow you to spend the extra time needed to also secure the Gromp, before heading straight into the River.
There, you should once again burst down the Scuttler by breaking its shield with Body Slam (E) and executing it with Smite once its Health bar drops below the threshold. This will now allow you to get a very early gank done on either Top or Mid, before your first reset.
The Best Tips and Tricks for Gragas Jungle
- The Rabble Rouser’s Passive, Happy Hour, restores an impressive 8% of his maximum Health upon using any ability, with a modest 8-second cooldown. However, very few players actually account for its cooldown, and would rather slam every ability even if Happy Hour is about to reset in a second or two. Unavoidably, there will be scenarios where that 8% HP will make a difference, so try keeping track of your Passive’s cooldown, rather than leaving it to activate randomly.
- For the players who run Flash on Gragas, do invest a few minutes to master his E + Flash combo in the Practice Tool, as it makes for an all-powerful Ace to have up your sleeve. Advanced players can execute this move instantly, effectively dealing damage and stunning their target in the blink of an eye.
- Now for those ready to try the Frostfire Gauntlet utility build, consider maxing W second and relying on it to survive as much as possible in fights, keeping your Explosive Cask (R) until W’s damage reduction effect runs out.
- Don’t always aim Barrel Roll (Q) straight at your target, as one of its other uses is as a zoning tool. It covers a rather decent surface area, forcing enemies to either walk around it, giving you time to close in, or to willingly take the damage and slow if they choose to walk over your barrel. This strategy is more effective in the later stages of the game, when team play starts having more impact over the fights.
Similar to how some champions such as Vi or Trundle can alternate between full Tank, Bruiser, or “glass cannon” full damage builds, so can Gragas, with the notable difference of dealing magic damage. This makes him an ideal pick in games where you happen to only have physical damage dealers on your team, which tends to happen ever more often since the start of Season 11.
With a limited number of AP Junglers, The Rabble Rouser is understandably one of the strongest champions of this class, being able to adapt to the practical needs of nearly any team composition.
With this being said, we hope you found our Gragas guide useful, urging you to raise your glasses and lock in the The Rabble Rouser as soon as you hop into your next game of League!
As always, make sure to keep a keen eye out on our website, where we consistently upload new League of Legends content, including guides such as this one!