With so many playable champions, League of Legends is no stranger to allowing certain picks to 1v9 games if played correctly, especially in some of the lower ELOs. Most of these picks are commonly found in either the Top or Mid lane, but it should come as no surprise that some of the champions in question can also make for more than decent Jungle picks, while retaining their solo-carry potential.
As a powerful duelist with plenty of Jungle clearing potential, Jax, the Grandmaster at Arms, is going to be the focus of today’s guide, as we walk you through the essential mechanics, Runes, items and the optimal Jungle routes, allowing you to duel games to victory!
Jax flourishes in 1v1 and 1v2 scenarios, especially against champions who rely heavily on basic attacks and skirmishes, and with a point-and-click gap closer, AOE stun and consistent damage output, the Grandmaster at Arms has some of the easiest to execute ganks in the entirety of the game. Scaling extremely well, Jax can simply snowball the game until he reaches three items, at which point he is nearly impossible to 1v1.
Without further to do, allow us to get started with the Ultimate Jungle Routes and Clearing Guide for Jax, the Grandmaster at Arms, whose timeless kit allows for an easy yet effective transition from the solo lane into the Jungle.
Flash + Smite
Jax’s Flash + Counter Strike (E) combo is an essential ganking, gap closing and teamfighting tool, thus substituting Flash for other Summoner Spells is not advised in nearly any scenario.
The Best Jax Runes
Seasons 11 through 12 have brought plenty of item and Rune changes into the game, many of which targeting these skirmish-oriented carries. As with most similar champions, the meta allows for plenty of flexibility, with this feat reflecting in Jax’s Runes as well. There are two common keystone options to play around, and we’ll begin with the more standard approach.
Conqueror provides the essential dueling stats for these tanky, aggressive picks, since fully stacking this Keystone can turn the tides of the fight on a consistent basis. After picking your Keystone, follow up with Triumph, for added survivability in multi-man fights, Legend: Tenacity and finally Last Stand, as you will often be fighting on low Health.
For the secondary Runes, the Resolve tree offers some pretty powerful options, such as Bone Plating and Overgrowth, which further enhance that element of sturdiness when it comes to surviving extended fights.
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As many of you are aware of by now, Lethal Tempo’s rework has turned this Rune into a player favorite, for both ranged and melee carries alike. A fully stacked Lethal Tempo is just as, if not more menacing as Conqueror, handing out added offensive stats.
For the rest of your Runes, follow up with Triumph, then pick between Legend: Tenacity or Legend: Alacrity, the second of which synergizing extremely well with your Keystone, and finally go with Last Stand.
As for the secondary options, picking up the same defensive enhancements from the Resolve tree as with the Conqueror build will work just fine, but players also have some more aggressive options in the Domination tree. We’re namely referring to Sudden Impact and Ravenous Hunter, but players are free to experiment with different picks, seeing which works best for them.
The Best Jax Items
Starting Items: Emberknife + Refillable Potion
Mythic Item: Trinity Force / Divine Sunderer
Core Items: Defensive Boots, Black Cleaver, Wit’s End, Blade of the Ruined King
Finishing Options: Sterak’s Gage, Death’s Dance, Guardian Angel, Randuin’s Omen
Trinity Force and Divine Sunderer are both extremely good Mythic options for Jax, due to their on-hit bonuses which are very easy to trigger, as the Grandmaster at Arms naturally relies on this mechanic, through his Empower (W) ability.
The rest of the build is rather standard for such champions, with Wit’s End and Blade of the Ruined King granting additional attack speed and on-hit damage, with some added Life Steal in the case of the latter. Wit’s End is more suiting in games where the enemy team has plenty of magic damage and armor-focused tanks, as otherwise players should be going for the Blade of the Ruined King, granted how valuable the added Life Steal is.
Black Cleaver is a core item for Jax, as it provides some very fitting stats and effects, similarly to Sterak’s Gage and Death’s Dance. The finishing options namely consist of items which grant both AD and some defensive bonuses, with Guardian Angel being a standard late game item.
The Best Skill Order for Jax Jungle
W > E > Q > R
However, in the Jungle players should be picking up E as their first ability, due to how effective it is against the Jungle monsters, maxing out W afterwards while investing into Q at LVL 3.
The Best Jungle Paths for Jax
Jax’s biggest strength as a Jungler stands in his gank threat, as the Q + E combo allows players to consistently land their stun on the enemy Laner. For this reason, the Grandmaster at Arms prefers shorter clearing routes, avoiding the Krug camp altogether in order to gain tempo.
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.
This champion wants to play the Jungle in the early game, building up his gold lead from the monsters and ganks before turning into a snowball machine, picking fights as often as possible when intercepting the enemy Jungler’s gank attempts.
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Red Side, Red Clear
Starting out routes and clearing guide from the Red Side’s Red Buff, the Grandmaster at Arms may not have the fastest first clear, but this is soon going to change as he unlock his second ability (W). Start by slaying the Red Buff with the help of your Laner, mitigating part of the damage using Counter Strike (E) and finishing the camp with basic attacks.
Next on the list are the Raptors, which are rather easy to kill thanks to Jax’s AOE damage and mitigation from Counter Stike (E), and the now freshly unlocked Empower (W), which is going to be aimed at the large Raptor.
Afterwards, it is time to head towards the other side of the Jungle, going to clear the Wolves as your third objective. This is once again going to be rather easy, applying the same strategy as with the Raptor camp, aiming to get the most out of your E and W abilities.
Players should be holding on to their Smite until they reach the fourth camp, the Blue Buff. Here, Jax is going to have an even easier time with the clear, as the duel with the solo mob will play out like a regular 1v1. Using W as often as possible and Smite to accelerate the clearing process will enable Jax to swiftly secure his second Buff, before turning his focus towards the Gromp.
The Gromp fight should not pose a significant threat, as Jax thrives against single-mob camps, and the healing it provides will leave players in a comfortable position in terms of HP.
Finally, step into the River to secure some extra vision, gold and experience from the Scuttler. Break its shield using E’s stun and land a couple of basic attacks to take it below the Smite threshold, executing it with the Summoner Spell’s second charge.
This route leaves Jax in a comfortable position to gank either Mid or Bot from before an early reset. If an enemy lane seems to be pushing in heavily towards your turrets, it usually provides plenty of space for you to walk up and start your E + Q combo.
Red Side, Blue Clear
Opting to start form the Red Side’s Blue Buff offers the advantage of having added assistance with the first clear, which usually results in added tempo. The basic clear strategy is the same as with the Red Buff, using Counter Strike (E) to mitigate some damage and slowly hitting away at the Blue Buff’s Health bar, until secured.
In order to leverage the extra tempo, head for the Gromp as your second camp, using the first charge of your Smite on it to further accelerate your pacing. Although players can lose a significant amount of HP at this camp, the heal it provides will make up for most of it.
Make your way towards the Red Buff, stopping to clear both multi-mob camps (Wolves and Raptors) on your way. If any of these camps appears to be costing you too much Health, simply use the Refillable Potion to make up for it.
Once at the Red Buff, duel it using repeated casts of W, paired with the stun and mitigation from Counter Strike (E), allowing the second Smite charge to execute it as soon as its HP drops below the 450 threshold.
Now, in order to convert the tempo, Jax players should be heading directly into the River, securing the Scuttler before the enemy Jungler has time to reach it. If you do find yourself having to fight for it, know that Jax’s early game dueling power can win most skirmishes, so it shouldn’t really be a threat.
Lastly, once again scout the lanes for the right window to gank, investing your time in the lane which is most likely to convert your efforts into a takedown or pressure, before resetting.
Blue Side, Blue Clear
Switching over to the opposite side of the Map, from the Blue Side’s Blue Buff the Jungle route is going to be very similar to the previously covered one. Pick up the first buff and immediately start hitting away at the Gromp, investing the first Smite charge into it to come out of the fight with full Health.
Now it is time to slowly head towards your second Buff, but make sure to stop at the Wolves and Raptors on the way there, securing those camps with the use of Counter Strike (E) and repeated Ws. Do not hesitate to use the Refillable Potion if needed.
At the Red Buff, use your core dueling tools so safely shred through its Health bar, before casting the second Smite charge to secure it. Jax players will commonly come out of this fight with plenty of Health to safely enter the River with.
Once in the River, break the Scuttler’s shield using Counter Strike’s (E) stun and keep hitting it with empowered basic attacks until secured, to then make your way towards either the Mid or Bot lane for an aggressive gank, using the E + Q combo.
Blue Side, Red Clear
For the final starting position, you are going to be mirroring Jax’s Red Side Red Clear, with the added advantage of having your Bot lane assisting you.
Secure the Red Buff using E and basic attacks, before making your way to the Raptor camp. This should also be cleared with heavy focus on getting the most out of your Counter Strike (E) and Empower (W), without the use of Smite.
Now heading into the other side of your Jungle, make a stop at the Wolf camp and clear it similarly to how you’ve done with the Raptors, turning your focus towards the Blue Buff immediately afterwards.
At the Blue Buff, do not hesitate to cast the first Smite, accelerating your clear whilst saving some Health for the next camp. Repeated W’s and Smite will have you securing the Blue Buff in no time, allowing you to transition into the Gromp.
As the final camp residing in your Jungle, take the duel with the Gromp and immediately head for the River afterwards. There, you should be investing your second Smite charge and E’s stun to rapidly slay the Scuttler, before attempting to gank either Top or Mid, depending on the factors we’ve covered earlier.
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The Best Tips and Tricks for Jax Jungle
- Jax players need to consistently land their E’s stun, which can easily be achieved using Q. Starting up Counter Strike first is going to allow players to recast the ability as soon as they reach their target with Leap Strike (Q), which is why the combo requires you to start with E and not Q.
- Remember that Counter Strike (E) also reduces the incoming AOE damage, meaning that in certain scenarios, it is more effectively used as a defensive tool. This is mostly true when you find yourself in the middle of combat, with multiple enemies focusing you.
- Grandmaster’s Might’s (R) active ability provides Jax with a hefty amount of defensive stats, for an impressive 8 seconds. Although tempting, players should hold back from casting R as soon as the combat kicks out, for it is highly unlikely that they will be the primary focus of the enemy team for the first few seconds.
- Lastly, Leap Strike (Q) can be cast on both allied and enemy targets, which includes Jungle monsters, minions, wards, Jhin traps and so on. Make sure to set up easy escape routes using wards, which Jax can use to jump over walls with.
Jax’s immersive dueling power and 1v9 potential has kept him among the strongest Skirmishers in the entire game, allowing him to single-handedly counter multiple enemy champions through one ability alone (E).
In the early game, Jax is tasked with securing the resources he requires through oppressive ganks, but as the game progresses, the Grandmaster at Arms is meant to be played as a solo carry, roaming the map to counteract any attempts from the enemy team to get back into the game.
Once Jax players reach four items, their 1v9 potential skyrockets, regardless of how the early game went, so there is always hope for a comeback when playing the Grandmaster at Arms.
And with this we conclude our guide on Jax Jungle, hoping that our readers have found it useful. We’re urging all of you to keep an eye out on our website, where we regularly upload more League of Legends content, stay tuned!