ELISE BUILD GUIDE: [S3:Jungle] Spiders lurk in the shadows. by Tensive

by Tensive (last updated 8 months ago)

976,859 Views 18 Comments
Greater Mark of Attack Speed( +15.3% attack speed)
Greater Seal of Armor( +12.69 armor)
Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist( +1.35 magic resist per level (24.3 at champion level 18))
Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed( +4.5% movement speed)
View Rune Details
Summoner Spells
View Summoner Details
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/2
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 3/3
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 mastery 3 1/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/2
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/2
mastery 3 mastery 3 3/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 4/4
mastery 2 mastery 2 1/1
21 Offense
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 mastery 4 2/2
mastery 1 mastery 1 1/3
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/2
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/2
mastery 3 mastery 3 1/1
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/1
9 Defense
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/4
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/2
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/1
0 Utility
View Mastery Details
Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Spider Swarm
QNeurotoxin/Venomous Bite
WVolatile Spiderling/Skittering Frenzy
RSpider Form/Human Form
View Skill Order Details



mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/2
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 3/3
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 mastery 3 1/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/2
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/2
mastery 3 mastery 3 3/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 4/4
mastery 2 mastery 2 1/1
21 Offense
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 4/4
mastery 4 mastery 4 2/2
mastery 1 mastery 1 1/3
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/2
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/2
mastery 3 mastery 3 1/1
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/1
9 Defense
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/4
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/2
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/3
mastery 2 mastery 2 0/1
0 Utility

Skill Order

Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Spider Swarm
QNeurotoxin/Venomous Bite
WVolatile Spiderling/Skittering Frenzy
RSpider Form/Human Form

Champion Matchups


Hi, I am a random anon on the internet but you can call me Tensive.
I have been playing League of legends since season 1, I started maining junglers at the end of season 1 all the way until now, I played Udyr exclusively but I picked up junglers left and right.
I haven't payed any attention to Elise on her release until I had to go top lane against her one day and actually saw how her kit works

- She has a long range stun
- She has huge base damage
- She has % max health and % missing damage
- She has a gigantic gap closer
- She has an attack speed steroid and a form of sustain
- Her base damage allows her to take the role of an assassin even though she is NOWHERE near as gold reliant as any of the assassins in the game

This just screamed "jungler" in my face
Even better, in season 3 items just buffed her left and right, not only that, but also season 3 allowed her little minions to tank jungle mobs for her, making her clear the whole jungle with only one potion or two,
She can't be any stronger than she is right now, people keep thinking of her as a top laner but I can't stop thinking of her as a jungler, one of the best junglers actually.

Ever since I tried her I considered her my try-hard pick. If I am ever trying to win then most likely I will be picking Elise jungle.
You can gank any lane at any time without relying on blue buff and red buff as much as other junglers, not only that, but she has a pretty strong midgame and lategame scaling, she counters bruisers and health stackers, she clears the jungle at a pretty decent speed making her not only a safe jungler but also a viable counterjungler.

What else do you want?
Elise in my opinion is the ultimate solo queue AP jungler.


Let me start off by saying that the purpose of runes is to remove your weakness, not increase your strengthes.
Someone like Vayne shouldn't bother with armor penetration for example since her lategame already kicks ass enough, instead she should focus on AD since it helps her in her weak point which is her pathetic earlygame.

So here we go, this is the default rune page


My personal preference is attack speed. It increases your jungle speed so you can clear camps faster and get to level 4 early on. Your first three levels are your weakest point, you want to get to level 4 as fast as possible since if you get caught before that you're not nearly as strong. Also your damage is nowhere near lacking, but your durability is lacking early on. so don't be afraid to skip that delicious Magic Penetration to give yourself more jungle speed.
Other options: Magic penetration.

Most enemy junglers are bruisers who deal physical damage, and basically 95% of the counterjunglers are bruisers too. Play it safe, you don't need anything but armor in this slot especially since your going to take a beating from the jungle monsters too.
Other options: None.

You need magic resistance because you don't get nearly as much experience or gold as the enemy mid laner would. He will be painful to deal with, and the best way to deal with him is to chop down his damage. These are a must get if the enemy mid laner is Malzahar or Brand.
Other options: Cooldown Reduction, scaling AP.

Her main escape tools relies on her jumping on enemy camps, she doesn't have any straightforward escape mechanisms, movement speed is your best bet. Quintessences are overall about personal preference though, just never take scaling stats on them.
Anything that aids your earlygame is great to use as Elise.
Other options: Flat HP, Flat Armor, Health regeneration, Flat AP.

One quick note though, don't take too much risk for great potential damage.
I know the default rune page is not as pubstompy as a full AD page would be, but it aids your jungling speed, sustain, and safety greatly.
In blind pick your best bet is the default page, but in draft you should pick a page with runes that are suitable for the enemy team.


Elise is pretty versatile in masteries because she doesn't have any real problems clearing the jungle, you can pretty much use any mastery page on her and she would still survive easily in the jungle.
Overall points into the offensive tree mean more durability, the defense tree means more durability, and the utility tree means more sustain.

So let's get started.

I take 21-9-0 masteries as my default simply because the little spiders make her immortal in the jungle. With this page you're going to deal some pretty nice damage at any stage in the game whatever you build.
You don't need much from the masteries to be able to jungle anyways, you're most likely going to end up clearing the whole jungle using only one potion if you get a decent leash on wolves and blue.

This is my favourite counterjungling mastery page, it doesn't scale as well into lategame but it works well with both builds (Tank/assassin) It gives you a lot of sustain and jungle utility, this is the page you're going to use if you're planning to do the hunter's machete + sight ward + two potions start. (You can move one point from the spellvamp mastery to biscuiteer if you want to)

If you are just going to counterjungle and planning to transition into a tank not an assassin then you probably should run these, but be aware that your damage will be much lower, and if you don't counterjungle properly (and enough) you will not make as much use of it.

Summoner Spells

You are a jungler, you NEED this summoner spell to secure buffs and objectives.
Don't underestimate this summoner spell, if you ever see the enemy jungler in the loading screen NOT taking smite then you should steal every single buff you can get from him. The reason you pick smite is not to aid you to clear the jungle - heck, you can clear the jungle with ANY mastery page, ANY rune page, without even smite, and you'd still probably have a remaining health potion or two - but you're trying to not only get ahead by farming, but also get ahead by applying pressure on the enemy jungler.
Also this is the most important summoner spell in the game starting from minute 5 and onwards. Since it's the time when the first drake spawns, becomes even more important at minute 15 and onwards since it's when Baron spawns.

For your second summoner spell, flash is the best all-around summoner spell. It can be used both offensively and defensively and it's pretty good at both uses. For offensive usage this can allow you to tower dive and get out alive without much harm, and to steal Baron and still get out alive by flashing over the wall at his lair, you can use it for pretty much anything.
Though you should keep in mind that you should hesitate to use it when you're in a sticky situation, "delaying flash" is when you get in a situation where you will flash anyways but you decide not to because you want to save it and you think you might end up not needing to use it, don't ever do that. This can easily result in you taking too much unnecessary damage or even dying.

Other viable options for summoner spells:

If you're running tank, this may end up benefiting you more in the end since it covers more space in total compared to flash, the difference between it and flash though is that flash is instant and you can run it on basically any character, while ghost benefits tanks or characters that get kited.
Don't get ghost if you're playing blind pick or if you're against someone like Jarvan IV or Nasus, ghost will end up being useless since you will most likely not be moving for most of it's duration.
Don't ever pick ghost on the assassin build, you can't survive their CC enough to be able to ghost out of sticky situations, flash would help you much more in these situations.

Every single time this summoner spell is up, one of your enemies will die in the laning phase. But if you get caught or counterganked you're F*CKED. It's great if you can handle the risk, but when you pick this you should save your rappel as much as possible. I do not personally recommend this summoner spell since your ganking power is more than enough, but it's still a viable option.

If you plan to counterjungle and destroy some enemy jungler like Amumu or Nasus who needs to get to his lategame, you might end up dueling him in his own jungle and since you're the anti-bruiser beast and they are trash duelists, they will end up running with low HP and this may finish them off. If you pick this spell you need to apply as much pressure as you can on the enemy jungler, if you don't.. he WILL outscale you. You need to be brave if you're picking this, because you're going to live in the enemy jungle.

Overall I prefer flash over these three options.


Passive: Spider Swarm

This passive is INSANE.
It makes you a strong duelist at midgame, lets you clear the jungle with just 1 potion to keep you at full health, and it tanks skillshots like Lee Sin's Q and Nidalee's spear (Yep, I know you loved it when I mentioned the spear)
To make the best use of this passive on your first jungle clear, try to start killing camps in your human form by throwing a quick Q + W then instantly switch to spider form, two spiders will do you well.
Don't forget these can tank drake, it's a little bit annoying to get right but they tank the attack speed debuff which makes killing drake a much easier process

Q: Neurotoxin/Venomous Bite

Neurotoxin is basically your bread and butter poke skill, the % health damage is pretty strong against this health stacking meta.
Use this skill on the big monster at jungle camps, he has the most health and he is your biggest target anyways.
And when you're ganking you MUST use this skill because even if you fail a gank, you're helping your laners by harassing the enemy for them. Every little bit helps a lot.
If you get in a 1vs1 fight for some reason with a bruiser like Lee Sin keep throwing your Q on him before you finally go in spider form, % health damage hurts bruisers a lot.
Venomous bite is another reason to play jungle Elise, it's another insanely strong skill that serves as a second smite on buffs or objectives like Drake or Baron. On Drake or baron it deals about 700 damage so one trick you can do do is to start the Q animation and smite the Drake/Baron instantly before Q animation is done, and bam. 1.7k damage smite.
Be aware, even though this is an amazing execution skill DO NOT try to take every single kill while ganking using it, it's wise to use it a little bit early to leave the enemy with a bit of health so your teammate can finish him off.
As an assassin you should save this for executing the ADC, do not use it too early or else you're just throwing potential damage in the ocean.

W: Volatile Spiderling/Skittering Frenzy

Volatile spiderling widdles down the health of the jungle camps greatly, and it becomes your best farming and pushing tool for lane minions, and probably your best poking skill.
Before teamfights start your best bet is to keep throwing this skill as much as you can, if you manage to throw like 3 or 4 of them before a teamfight then you basically won a teamfight with little to no effort.
DO NOT cast this when you're right in front of a wall, the spider will not spawn but mana will be consumed and the skill will go on cooldown
Also this is a great tool for checking a bush and scouting.
Skittering Frenzy is your jungle speed and sustain basically, also due to how your ultimate in spider form makes attacks scale with AP, it's your main assassination tool.
The health sustain part of it may be hard to notice earlygame, but it becomes pretty obvious later on.
Don't forget that your spider form skills have no cost, and this skill doesn't need a target. Spamming this skill does not hurt at all, always use it when jungling at every time possible.
One thing to put in mind that more attack speed makes your attack animation faster, which means chasing and autoattacking is easier (because when you chase someone you usually autoattack him from behind, this skill will make the animation much faster). It's not a waste to use this skill when chasing someone especially since spider form already has passive movement speed boost and you are using movement speed quints.

E: Cocoon/Rappel

This skill screams "one point wonder". I am saying it out loud, there isn't any better one point wonder in the entire game.
The first part of this skill is a fast travelling long range skillshot stun, basically if this thing hits someone when you're ganking, that person is going to either blow a flash or get half of his health bar ripped off. It's your only CC, but it's a stun. It has a pretty long cooldown at early ranks so it's the main factor that decides the success of a gank.
Dont' worry though, this skill is pretty darn easy to land. If you catch someone with this then you have to follow up with a Q + W. No discussion.
The second part is an EXTREMELY long range gap closer. This skill has an extremely unforgiving cooldown, you don't mess with it, you only land it if you know you will get the kill. Don't use it too early.
Also you need to remember that human form is your burst damage form, but spider is your sustained damage... sustained damage may not be enough to finish someone off, making that E go to waste.
You should treat this skill as if it's a summoner spell, be extremely careful when using it because if you jump somewhere stupid then you just blew your only escape spell and you're most likely going to die.
When tower diving, it's usually better to use your flash to jump in instead of rappel, because it would allow you to dodge a turret shot and reset aggro using your rappel.
Warning: Do not use this skill to go between camps quicker, treat it like a summoner spell or an ultimate.

R: Spider Form/Human Form


Human form = burst damage and poke.
Spider form = mobility and sustained damage.

Here's the catch, you can't fight at all in one form only. You're more reliant on form switching than Jayce.

Your autoattacks scale with ap, you have more armor and magic resistance. Nothing to explain here.
Spider form is your duelist/assassin form, human form is your poke/cc form.
Try not to have teamfights start without you poking the enemy team from human form, in teamfights there is no specific form you have to be into, but it's beyond stupid to jump in the middle of the enemy team, try to save your assassination tools until they scatter a bit, then target that enemy ADC and whoop his ass. Before you are in range of the enemy ADC you should be a peeler for your own ADC since you DESTROY bruisers.

Remember, see that full hp Lee Sin trying to kill you while you're at half hp? You can easily kill him if you manage to land all three of your human form skills. (Maybe Q a couple of times :c) If you do, you can just easily turn around in spider form, press W, and go nazi on his face. Just make sure to use spiderlings to dodge his Qs.
Also speaking of Lee Sin, don't forget that pressing R gives you the little spiderlings that makes dodging skillshots so much easier.
And don't forget when giving buffs to your teammates that your spiders will remain attacking even if you move away from the monster, they will take a while to go back to you so always remember to stay in human form after you got the buffs to low health.

This is your kill combo
(Human form)->

Skill Order

First four levels skill order:
If farming the jungle (No lanes to gank) or
If you go do the standard blue -> lizard.

Every little bit of AoE helps, dropping your first point in W allows you to deal serious damage to the small minions and your spider form W generally contributed to your jungle speed.
Now you get two points into Q because it helps you kill the big monster so much easier, they have a high health value and no magic resistance, so your % health directly damages them.

Skill maxing order:

: I see some people not maxing R first, I know what they are thinking about but let me explain..
Earlygame you're squishy as a jelly, you need every bit of armor and magic resistance possible since you most likely went with 21-9 masteries.
Also this skill adds to your jungle speed and sustain greatly, it gives you more little spiders, more damage perhit, and more armor. It's just ridiculous not to take it.

: Faster clear AND stronger ganks? What's not to like here?
This allows you to have ridiculous amounts of burst and sustained damage, there is no reason not to max it first.

: Yeah you find yourself maxing this skill RIGHT when you need it, it's pretty convenient. By the time you max this skill teamfights will start and you will poop your 100 W's before teamfights start and things will get pretty frustrating for the enemy team.

There is no possible scenario that can cause you to max this first or second. After maxing this skill, the cooldown becomes way better.
Still. Don't ever waste your rappel. EVER.


So this skill seems to be confusing some people, let me explain how it works.
There are two ways to use this skill.

First way is to simply target an enemy unit (Press E and just click on an enemy unit, or just hover over him with your cursor and press E if you're using smartcast).
You'll just instantly jump to them.


Second way is to press E and click anywhere, DON'T TARGET ANY ENEMY UNIT.

It will jump in the air and you'll see a huge green circle, you'll see any enemies in that circle even through walls except for stealthed champions. Press E again and target the enemy you want to land on.
In the screenshots you can see I didn't target the dragon since I didn't have vision on it.

So basically use the second way if you want to dash to someone through a wall even if you don't have vision on him (But you know where he is)

Item Builds

Starting options:
The default safest start for all junglers, Elise is no exception to this rule.
Skipping this item will make you jungle slower, which mean you fight monsters longer, which means you take more damage, which means that if the enemy jungler shows up you might be screwed.
You scale ridiculously well with this item because of your W too.

Want to steal the first blue of the enemy Amumu to make him completely useless?
This is a pretty risky start and it requires some teamwork so you shouldn't get this if you don't trust your team.
Your support could help you with this trick by buying the ward and placing it instead of you, but let's face it.. not gonna happen.
Get your items as fast as possible, RUN and place that ward right here as fast as humanly possible.


These will be your first 4 items almost every game, they give you basically everything you need at earlygame stage.

Health regeneration for more sustain, faster jungle speed and your AoE skill does more damage, builds into either Spirit of the Ancient Golem or Spirit of the spectral wraith, both of which you LOVE. You should replace this item with madred's razors if you're farming the jungle a lot (more so than the usual), but if you're spending your time mostly ganking then this is the way to go.
When you buy this item you should give up on your second or third blue and so on, since you have all the mana regen you need from it. This item should be at a higher priority than even boots of speed, but it's recommended not to recall unless you can buy them both.
If you're far ahead of your enemy, just give up on upgrading this item and buy bigger stuff.

This is your first actual boost in damage. Don't underestimate it due to the small amount of AP on it. You're buying it for the cheap early stats and the penetration that scales extremely well with your % damage. Also it builds from two small items that you can easily get one of them every time you recall.
Don't treat this like a defensive item, the HP it gives is rather pathetic compared to the base HP bruisers have. If you're forced to get some health then buy a giant's belt first.

You're not going to get focused with CC, if you are then you might as well get Spirit of the ancient golem instead of Spectral Wraith. These boots have a pretty big impact on your damage output, combined with abyssal scepter and Haunting Guise you'll be doing basically true damage to the enemy squishies.
If you're feeling that you need more beef then you should get giant's belt before these, if you find yourself spending all the time in your human form in teamfights then you could consider getting ionian boots of lucidity - especially if you're building tanky.

Bonus armor and magic resistance from spider form, might as well get more HP to be beefier overall, this item builds into either Randuin's or Ryali's depending on your build. If the enemy team mostly has one type of damage then you can replace this item with an early Warden's Mail or Chain Vest to counter that type of damage.
You're not forced to get it as the last of the core items. Heck, if you're ahead you can rush it right after boots and spirit stone.. health is a great way to secure your lead earlygame since it's the stage at which all characters deal a fair amount of damage, including tanks. So you'll be taking a lot of mixed damage at this point.


I did not expect that, but Riot absolutely crapped on this item. It used to be worth buying over spirit stone if you wanted to farm the jungle but now it just feels so worthless, it's easily outdamaged by spirit stone and spirit stone builds into actual items.
Decent jungle speed (boosts your W's damage and your single target is already high enough thanks to your Q) and gives you health/mana regen. Not only that, but it actually builds into decent items. I like this one since I gank a lot and I like to tax my lanes anyways.

Boot options:

Sorcerer's Shoes:

These give you such a delicious damage boost, it's a crime not to pick it up when given the chance.
You're not going to get focused anyways with CC since your range is pretty high and you're very unlikely to initiate teamfights since you'll usually be standing in the back of your team throwing Ws and Qs until one of your teammates does the job.

Mercury treads:

I used to buy it on everything, EVERYTHING. But then I realized that while some champions really need this, it's not quite necessary on others.
I can see these being important on bruisers but not really necessary on other roles since bruisers are the only ones who facetank in fights.
If against a team with AP on top and mid, feel free to buy these and rush abyssal.

Ninja Tabi:

Enemy top lane Tryndamere? Enemy junge Aatrox? Enemy ADC Vayne? Show these autoattackers how much you don't give a shit about them by buying Ninja Tabi and Randuin's Omen
If the enemy ADC is fed like hell, don't bother buying these, just go for straight up sorcerer's and buy damage items and do your best to kill him.
The ability to shut down a key target is MUCH more important than being able to survive against it for another second.

Boots of Mobility:

This item is all about personal preference, some people like buying it on all junglers (Including the already mobile Lee Sin) and some people buy it only on junglers who can make the best use of it.
Take Maokai as an example, Maokai can rush these and be pretty much an unstoppable ganking machine and still use it in midgame to easily initiate teamfights.
I did like it on Elise (It makes her cocoon so easy to land that it should be considered cheating) but I just didn't like it as much as I liked Sorcerer's damage boost.

Item options:

spirit-of-the-spectral-wraith Spirit of the Spectral Wraith:

Extremely fast jungle clearing, damage skyrockets, spellvamp, cooldown on smite reduced so you can secure objectives easier, and cooldown reduction which benefits Elise a lot since she is dependant on spamming skills. Buy if you're going for an assassin build. You should keep in mind that spellvamp heals for 33% of it's value for AoE skills (like your human form W)

Spirit of the Ancient Golem:

Since they added CDR instead of armor to this item, it became PERFECT. Now it can be an actual viable replacement for spectral wraith, if you're going with a beefy build this item is too good to throw away, and if you're being focused with single target crowd control spells. This item is the best tenacity item you can get, it's far better than mercury treads for the sake of your full build.

-> Haunting guise -> Liandry's Torment:

Perfect item for Elise, Haunting Guise gives her great stats, health and ability powers do wonders earlygame, and your damage mostly scales with magic penetration better than ability power. Also this item builds into another great item that not only shares the same great stats but it also skyrockets your sustained and poke damage. I can't see a situation where picking this item is a bad idea.

Abyssal scepter:

I love this item so much, it's your number one option if you want magic resistance, it also reduces the magic resistance of the entire enemy team, so if you have some crazy AoE mid laner he will worship you for having this. This item is a direct counter to runic bulwark, if one of your teammates bought it for some reason then you should not get it too, you could get something like Banshee's Veil or Spirit Visage to deal with the enemy's magic damage if necessary.

rylais-crystal-scepter Ryali's Crystal Scepter:

Let's start the list: It gives you more health, resulting in more overall damage since you're staying in the fight longer, more AP for more damage, gives you a slow which is not only awesome because almost all of your skills are spammable, but it's also awesome because it DOUBLES the bonus damage of your core item Liandry's Torment. Awesome item but if you want to buy it DON'T rush it. If you rush it you'll just go so far behind. Try to just keep an early giant's belt if you want to buy this since you might end up getting warmog's instead.

/ frozen-heart Iceborn Gauntlet / Frozen Heart:

Elise loves cooldown reduction, Elise spams skills a lot so that mana proves to be pretty helpful. Both of these items benefit Elise greatly, but Iceborn gauntlet is directed towards more CC while Frozen heart is directed towards more tankiness.
Personally I am a fan of Frozen Heart since I find myself needing that extra beefiness and reduction in enemy ADC's attack speed more helpful, but if you're having trouble chasing or if one of your teammates already has Frozen Heart then Iceborn gauntlet is your alternative.

Randuin's Omen:

This is the actual defensive version of Frozen heart, what I mean here is that when you buy Frozen heart you're buying it also for the CDR and Mana for spam and general increase in DPS, but this item is just straight up tankiness. Get it if you need it, you'll most likely be buying it a lot more than Frozen heart especially since BotRK becamse so popular.

Sunfire Cape:

This item requires a pretty complicated situation to be viable, but it's definitely pretty effective for that situation. Basically your top laner and mid laner are both squishy AD and you're forced to build tanky even though you're the only AP on your team. This adds to your overall magic damage. Be careful because this item causes jungle camps and Baron/Drake to get aggro on you since it constantly deals AoE damage. It can also take tower aggro, so be extra cautious when you have this item. But honestly it shouldn't matter much since you'll most likely be building tank if you have it.

Warmog's Armor:

Health stacking ftw. Great item to counter mixed damage, low damage pokes, and burst damage. Don't get this item if the enemy team has either too much % damage (For example BotRK, Liandry's Torment, Malzahar, Kog'Maw, Vayne... etc). Also don't get this item if you're just buying it to be tankier against the enemy ADC, even a simple thornmail will give you more effective health (http://leagueoflegends.wikia.com/wiki/Health#Effective_Health) compared to Warmog's armor against an enemy ADC lategame

Spirit Visage:

A more offense oriented magic resistance item, while it does not directly give a lot of health, it indirectly gives more health than other magic resistance items especially if you have spirit of the spectral wraith. How so? you get cooldown reduction and more health from regeneration effects, Cooldown reduction lets you spam your spells more and therefore do more spell damage and get more health back in return thanks to that health regeneration bonus. (Note: This item is outrageously overpowered on bruisers)

Guardian Angel:

Decent replacement for Frozen Heart on the assassin build, helps you stay in the fight longer. and since you have spellvamp and sustain from your W, you're going to take a lot of whacking before you die again. Be careful when you have this item though.. If you die in the middle of the enemy team not only will they kill you again - completely wasting the passive you spent a ton for - but also they will get 4 assists which is pretty horrible, you just put them all ahead just because of one item. Buy this if you're cautious.

Banshee's Veil:

This bubble is a nightmare for combo burst reliant champions like LeBlanc and Veigar, the spell blocking effect is pretty major. The problem of this item is that bubble proves to be kinda useless against spamhappy mages like Ryze. Basically get this against burst damage, don't get it against sustained damage. (NOTE: The buff made this item ridiculously powerful)

Quicksilver Sash:

I LOVE this item SO MUCH. If you're assassinating the ADC and someone tries to interrupt you, NOPE. Pop this and you're ready to go again. This is your third choice for a magic resistance item, the problem with this one though is that it doesn't give you any stats but magic resistance and you will have to sell it later in the game.

Do not buy:

Zhonya's Hourglass:

The thing about this item is that although it's undoubtedly one of the best early/mid game counter AD items for AP champions, Elise is not a "true" AP champion. Her scalings are not as strong as other AP champions. She does benefit from AP but she benefits way more from penetration.
Literally the only champion in the entire game who can ever manage to make you buy Zhonya's is Alistar. And even then you shouldn't engage until he blew his CC. And do keep in mind if he is saving his CC for you then he is not using it on your teammates, which is always a benefit since you can play a significant role by just poking while he is desperately waiting for you to engage.

Void Staff:

The true meaning of overkill.
This item takes a ton of time to build and it offers no defensive stats whatsoever, and you're only buying it for the penetration.
In general, most AP champions have to choose between this and abyssal scepter to pick up for penetration, but it's pretty one sided in Elise's case.
An ADC shouldn't have magic resistance high enough for you to be forced to buy this item.
Unless he for some reason bought Bansheee AND Guardian angel both at once, in this case the ADC will not even be a threat in terms of damage to begin with.

Locket of the Iron Solari:

Unless you're building some sort of support Elise which is something I personally consider pointless since you're better off picking Lee Sin for that purpose if you want a high mobility support jungler.
This is now officially a straight up support item, although it's still gold efficient it's not spending it in the spot you want.

Rod of Ages:

Don't ever buy this on any jungler, this includes Maokai and Cho'gath. This item forces you to rush it and you need to rush more important items. Also it's cost is so ridiculously high for a jungler to afford earlygame, and it gives too much of "meh" stats for you. Just don't. Please.

Rabadon's Deathcap:

I may or may not get flamed for this, but this item has two problems. It doesn't give any defensive stats and it doesn't boost your damage like it does for other characters. Don't forget that you scale with penetration REALLY well. Also you're a freaking jungler, this thing is outrageously expensive and only focuses on one stat. Even if fed, this item falls flat against other options

Will of the Ancients:

Just no, Spirit of the ancient wraith is 10 times better. It's just an overkill in spellvamp and AP. Spectral wraith gives you cooldown reduction which you need much more than just extra spellvamp and AP. If you ever find yourself wanting that extra spellvamp then tell your midlaner to get it. Other than that NEVER buy this item.

Nashor's Tooth:

The new nashor's tooth seems pretty interesting but the real problem is that you need a completely different build for it to work (You must be running ghost, you need to build bruiser items, etc) or else you'll be peeled away and kited to death before you make any use of it.
Overall not worth the price.

Highly situational:

Example builds:(Items in no specific order)

Full assassin build: (Recommended build)

This is probably the main build you should use, the best scenario build. If you're on par with your enemy on gold or ahead of them then don't hesitate to go for this.
It may seem beefier than the usual assassin builds but that's because you're Elise, you need a lot of magic penetration, decent amount of CDR, and a little bit of AP to become a nightmare for your enemies.
  • Wards can be enough for you to take a dump on the enemy jungler. Buy wards and either place them in your enemy's jungle if you're ahead or on par with the enemy jungler or place it in your own jungle if you're behind (to secure your buffs)
  • If you're against one of those 3 AP matchups feel free to replace Frozen Heart with a Spirit Visage.
  • If you're against a Vayne you're forced to rush a Randuin's once she hits the spot, because she hates your guts and all Vayne players are evil machete wielding psychopaths irl who want to murder your whole family, swim in their blood, and eat their dead corpses.
  • If you're ahead buy damage, apply pressure, force recalls, farm more, increase gold gap between your teams.
  • If you're behind and forced to farm lanes, drop wards to prevent yourself from getting killed even more.

Ganking and killing

First off I will just say that you can take out someone from full hp to zero as Elise starting from level 4.
If you happened to come by the enemy jungler - let's say Amumu - in the middle of the river, HE IS DEAD. Even flash may not be enough to save him from a double buff level 4 Elise.

There are two ways to gank midlane:

1: The kill-gank:

(Human form)->
Basically you're trying to get as much damage as possible on the enemy, you enter the lane in human form, cocoon the enemy, throw a W + Q combo fast enough so that the Q actually hits the enemy before the W, and instantly switch to spider form and start slapping the enemy with Q + W. Use your E if you're far enough but your allied laner will most likely have a CC spell to keep the enemy in your W + Q range long enough. If the enemy escaped with almost no health then you know the drill.. you have your E and your Q on spider form to steal their last breath.

2: The forced flash gank:
(Spider form)->
This gank can be done easily even if the enemy is not pushing, just don't take any turret shots while doing it. You'll just jump on him, poke him with this combo, and go back. The problem with this type of gank is that you're starting your damage with the % missing health and ending it with the % current health, so it's gonna rely more on the base damage than % health.
You'd know this gank went well if the enemy flashed.

Top lane is a bit more straightforward, you'll always use the kill combo because your forced flash combo wont do crap.
Why so? Top lane is bruiser lane, you're trying to gank the beefiest guy on the enemy team, you NEED to get as much damage as possible on him.
You'll either get help from your ally if the enemy is close enough, or you'll just harass the enemy for your ally (mostly without intentions to kill him unless he is half HP and derping in the lane).

Bottom lane gank is reliant on your ADC and support, basically the difference here is that you'll either engage in human form to get as much damage as possible or in spider form to get close to your enemy as fast as possible.
If engaging in human form try to do the kill combo, in spider form try to just E onto the ADC, quick Q and switch back to human form and slap him in the face with a cocoon. Most of the damage in this gank will be dealt by your ADC or support so don't worry.

When you're chasing someone at midgame/lategame, it's usually better to go in human form instead of spider form.
Also it's better to switch from spider back to human in the middle of fights to throw some more poke damage and CC before you lock on your next target, don't switch to human form when you're being targeted though.

Early game

First off these should be your primary jungle paths.

If you're planning to gank as soon as possible, this is the best option:
Blue buff (Smiteless) -> Red buff (Smite) -> Gank

If farming: (Not doing the blue-red-gank start and actually farming the jungle)

If you're against junglers like who mind their own business instead of counterjungling:
Blue buff (Smite) -> Wraiths -> Wolves -> Red buff (Smite) -> Wraiths.

If you're playing against a jungler who pop up in your jungle like try to go for a smiteless since you'll take your red before they reach it (hopefully)
Blue buff (Smiteless) -> Red buff (Smite) -> Golems -> Wraiths -> Wolves (Smite big wolf).


If he's heading towards top lane with only one buff, either go fuck him up at that buff when he tries to take it or kill him at it, or even go countergank him.
Once you become truly skilled at understanding the enemy jungler's movement, you'll notice a huge difference in your performance.

Levels 1 - 3 are your weakest points as a jungler. Avoid fighting the enemy jungler toe-to-toe at all costs, if you have to fight him then you must spam Q / W in human form and kite him, never change to spider form unless you know for sure you're about to kill him (He is pretty low on health).

If the enemy jungler ganks you at your red try to make him tank the damage instead of you by standing further away from the red buff.

Once you hit level 3 or 4 and you have your double buffs you should pick a lane to gank. Mid lane is usually the best lane to gank since most mid laners are pretty squishy, but if the enemy top laner is overextending and the enemy mid is playing it safe then you're better off ganking top.

Rush boots and spirit stone, boots make your ganks much easier and spirit stone gives you some extra sustain and faster jungle clear.
It doesn't matter if you're fed or not, you must get a haunting guise from that point as fast as you can.
If you're fed, you can rush Liandry's Torment or if you're on par with the enemy team you should get Giant's Belt.
Now if you're falling behind you have the option to buy either Negatron Cloak or Warden's Mail depending on the fed enemy's damage type.
Don't forget forget to buy that homeguard enchantment on your boots as fast as you can, it's your best friend as a jungler.
For just 475 gold you secure buffs and objectives so much easier.

Here are some good tips to remember early on while jungling:

  • If you see the enemy jungler with only one buff after your first clear (trying to gank a lane, not heading towards his second buff) ALWAYS either go to his second buff and take it or wait until he tries to take it and kill him there.
  • Before entering camps always be in human form, use your W and Q on the biggest monster.
  • Use your spiders to tank the jungle monsters.
  • Use your Q to execute the big monsters in spider form.
  • Your spider skills cost no mana, feel free to spam them all you want.
  • Do NOT use your spider E just to speed up your jungling by going through camps quickly.
  • If you find yourself ahead, try to steal camps from the enemy jungler and even kill him if you catch him, try not to get caught by the enemy laners though.
  • If being chased, it's usually worth it to give up the movement speed and armor/m-res bonus from spider form just to switch to human form and stun the enemy behind you.
  • Against beta junglers like Amumu ALWAYS ward their buff camps especially blue, always steal their blue by outsmiting it or just straight up killing it.
  • If you got caught in your jungle by a strong counterjungler, do the following:


You should try to be as annoying as humanly possible. You must get at least one ward every time you go back, your role here is to deny the hell out of the enemy jungler's farm.

You should counterjungle these guys

Worth mentioning, the king of counterjungling . Don't try to mess with him, he will your little :c.

To counterjungle you'll take this path:
Wolves -> Blue buff (Smiteless) -> Enemy red buff (Smite) -> Your wraiths -> (Check your red buff) -> Double golems -> Your red buff (Smite).
Always drop wards in the enemy's jungle and keep taking the big monsters in his jungle camps.
Try to use the wards to avoid getting spotted or engaged on by that jungler.
If he wards his buffs you can use a pink ward to remove their wards or just wait until you see them ganking a lane and steal their buffs.

If you want to steal the enemy's buffs, here are two ward spots that allow you to see the enemy jungler's movement:

Mid game

You should have or by now.

If both teams are almost on par in terms of gold and such, it's time to make some calculations..
Do they have 3 AD? Get Warden's Mail into an early Randuin's omen if necessary, or Frozen Heart if they scale well with attack speed or if you just need more CDR for poking.
Do they have double AP or did they rush a Runic Bulwark? Get Abyssal Scepter.
Balanced damage on the enemy team? get Warmog's armor, if they don't have % damage dealers like
Are you the most fed on your team and need more damage? Liandry's Torment is your friend.

At this point if you catch an enemy offguard he is probably dead, you're one of the best AP characters in the game at dueling.

Try to plan ahead how your build will end up looking at the end of the game, don't panic when you buy midgame items like Spirit Visage that usually require getting replaced by another item at lategame.. these tiny items can make you finish the match before lategame, and honestly it's pretty rare to get in 6-item lategame match so don't worry.

Buy items that would make you get a lead over your enemies, that's all you need.
Also when you're buying items try to cooperate with your teammates, for instance if your support has Frozen Heart there is no need to buy another.

Don't forget how fast you can kill Drake, and don't leave breathing space for the enemy jungler, keep warding his buffs and taking them if you can.

At this point in the game you should jungle only in spider form, clearing time is not important anymore and you are already insanely fast in spider form. Only switch to human and use skills if you have blue buff or if you REALLY need the little spiderlings.

This is your strongest point, your W's base damage is huge for an AoE short cooldown poke that can scout, your nuke combo can easily burst a squishy from full to zero.
Abuse your power when you have it, at this stage of the game you should apply as much pressure on the enemy ADC as possible, ruin their game before they get to their lategame and ruin yours.

Late game

You should have about 4 complete items by now, both teams are now focusing on the objectives like towers and Baron.
Don't be fooled by the enemy team's earlygame and midgame, some teamcomps tend to suck early on but suddenly became insanely strong. Be extremely cautious against champions like at this point. They may be pretty weak early on but this is the stage where they will blow teams up.

Be wise when the enemy team is trying to destroy a tower or such.
Sometimes the better option to defend a tower when you are alone is just to leave that tower and go push one of your other lanes, because sticking to that tower will probably get you killed and you would get nothing in return.

NEVER use smite on jungle camps now, if the enemy team notices you doing that, it's a free Baron for them.

If you catch an enemy offguard, just poke him and chase him for a bit. If he is running towards a place that you don't have vision on, then give up on the chase immediately.
These are some of the bruiser you absolutely destroy in 1vs1 fights:
Don't be fooled by their early/mid game, anything that stacks HP will be destroyed by you.

  • When fighting a bruiser who is slightly ahead of you in gold, you should kite them in human form and use your Q a couple of times before fully engaging. They love stacking HP and your % damage destroys them, so keep using it for as long as you can until you start engaging in spider form.
  • Be aware of Mundo, despite stacking health and defensive items he has a LOT of free damage in his kit, don't treat him like other bruisers. He is a huge threat to you in general, if you want to fight him you MUST use your spiderlings to dodge his cleavers, getting hit by the cleavers is basically guaranteed death. He can chase you from one fountain to the other.
  • Lategame sustained damage mages like Ryze/Cassiopeia/Vladimir are now nearly impossible to 1vs1 as Elise, just don't do it. You are meant to focus on the bruisers and ADCs anyways.

Your Q is an extremely short down insane damage execution spell, it easily does 700 magic damage to Drake at low health.
When securing objectives try to use an instant spider form Q + smite. If you pull it off correctly, the smite will do damage just an instant before the Q does, it is basically like Nunu's Consume + smite combo except with faster animation.

Your poke is still insanely strong, ABUSE your poke at every point possible, ever single time you see an enemy close use your E+W+Q human form combo. It widdles down the health of your opponents greatly and can make you win teamfights and games.

You should always have vision on Baron at this point, you don't need to ask your support to do it. ALWAYS drop a ward in there if you don't want to lose the game.
And when trying to steal baron, don't worry about your life, if you die you're worth about 300 gold (if you're neither fed or feeding). Baron gives 300 gold for every single member of your team (1500g) plus a buff on each member of your team that is worth about 2.3k gold (Holy sh*t 13k gold), not including the extra health and mana regen from that buff.

Team Fights

Despite being a great assassin, your role in teamfights is not necessarily assassination.
You're a godly peeler, not because you have CC but it's because you DESTROY bruisers.

When you see a chance to kill the enemy carry (especially ) even if it means guaranteed death for you, ALWAYS kill them. Keep in mind if they have flash or barrier though, it may end up badly for you.

When you DON'T have the chance to kill the enemy carry, just poke and peel all the time.
Your ADC easily does the most damage on your team and if you peel for him and make sure he is alive he is going to have a much bigger impact on the teamfight than you would have on your own.
Peeling is not weakness, peeling is strength. You're more than capable of doing it.

Also your ADC's life is more important than you, if you ever see an opening where you can bait them into killing you instead of him, it's the better option.

If you took the squishy path you must be patient in teamfights, don't start them right away.. use your insane poke to widdle down the health of the entire enemy team. Once the initial AoE/CC fest is blown and there is one or more dead bruisers on the enemy team or if you find the enemy carry isolated then instantly go all out on him, getting a clear cocoon on him guarantees his death basically.
Treat yourself as an AP caster and not a bruiser.

In human form you perform better in tight clustered up places since you can poke more before teamfights and it would hit more enemies as it's much harder to dodge, so is your cocoon.
If your teamcomp isn't as good at teamfighting as the enemy team, then always fight in these places unless the enemy has someone like .

If you're against a strong COUNTER initiator like Cho'Gath don't bother fighting in tight places. It just automatically means a lost teamfight

Don't forget to use active items like QSS or Randuin's, you paid a price to get these actives and you shouldn't waste them. They are extra tools at your disposal.

If you bought GA then you should be even more careful than you were before, if you jump in a lost teamfight and lose your GA passive then most likely the 5 enemies are going to stand over your body waiting for you to respawn just to kill you and get 4 assists. That's horrible, don't let that happen.

If you took the tanky path you have to either:
  • Counter-initiate your enemy team using a clutch E on their initiator and just slap their ADC with a quick human form Q right into spider form W+Q and finally if he makes enough distance between you and him E+Q. You're more than tanky enough to do that, and even if you die in the process you just probably wasted all of the enemy team's damage, your team will have a much easier time killing them.

  • Single target initiate with cocoon, keep poking with W until you find an enemy who poses a threat to your team in terms of damage (Don't stun and initiate on someone like Nautilus for example). Your target should be fairly squishy. Once you hit someone then go all out on him and instantly it's a 4vs5. Now you can poke the frontliners until one more of your teammates is close enough to the ADC then you can rappel onto the carry and slap his sh*t until he dies.

When you're building tanky against a poke champion like Nidalee then you better start the teamfights early and forget about poking the enemy. Nidalee's poke is so much better than yours if you're building tanky.

DO NOT engage if you see the enemy engaging too early with something like . If you have a chance just retreat for a while and make them waste it then jump right back in.

Finally, if you don't have vision on Baron and don't know how far they went into killing him, just don't bother.
You're most likely going to die and not do anything useful to your team.
If you want the buff then you should at least make sure that the enemies are inside the baron lair through a sight ward or even clairvoyance.

Final Comments

I am nowhere near done with this guide, I will be working on it for a while.
This is it for now, I will be updating the guide and adding more detail as soon as I can.
If you found any typo or error in the guide or if you have any suggestion please post it in the comments.
Thanks for reading.

Edit #1: Done with the initial basic guide, need to add some chapters.
Edit #2: Added more chapters, now to add pictures.
Edit #3: Added some pictures, working on more :c.
Edit #4: Agh added a lot of details to the older section, added a couple of extra sections, still more work to do.
Edit $5: More content.. yay.
Edit #6: Removed the unnecessary small images in the middle of the guide.
Edit #7: Beefed up item section, changed intro. I am soo damn sleepy right now, enough work for today.
Edit #8: Runes and masteries are now two different sections, beefed them up a bit too..
Edit #9: I'M BACK IN THE MIX AND I AM FINALLY MAKING THE MATCHUPS SECTION HELL YEAH, need to update some older sections after I finish matchups
Edit #10: Ok this was a disappointment. Had to remove the matchups section and make some important changes in the guide.
Currently I'm testing the boot + 4 potions start, and the magic penetration VS attack speed. (Although it's still leaning towards attack speed)


July 2, 2013 - 03:08 PM #1

Thanks for reminding me, AntaresHK. I completely forgot about this guide for some reason. I'll be working on it this week to finish the matchups section and update the outdated content in the guide.

June 30, 2013 - 11:31 AM #2

will it update recently? I followed this guide for long long time after the new patch released as a big change in the jungle .

May 24, 2013 - 05:21 AM #3

I feel a bit stupid for not seeing this coming, but then again I didn't play League of Legends for like three weeks.

You see, it's pretty easy to peel Elise in her spider form.

While indeed she melted anything that got in her range, it's pretty hard to get in a good position to make use of that damage in teamfights, and by the time you buy that item you're probably in the "teamfight stage" of the game.

May 23, 2013 - 04:53 AM #4


Great suggestion

It feels situational but it has lots of potential.

I mean it's pretty easy to kite Elise in her spider form but if you have someone like Nautilus on your team, I think it may work out pretty well.

An Elise with a 0.5 AP scaling on each basic attack is something to be afraid of, especially with all that attack speed from W and Nashor's, I think that would work perfectly in a high AP assassin build.

I'm going to try that out once they release that patch, but thanks for that suggestion.

May 22, 2013 - 04:20 PM #5

In S2 there was some bruiser builds using malady and building tank items like abyssal, frozen heart, zhonya and rylai.

In the last PBE (3.08) they removed malady and put the on-hit on nashor and mr shred on wit's.

Do you think it's viable a jungle/top build with items like: Spectral wraith, Runic Bulwark, nashor, Omen, abyssal, rylai.

May 15, 2013 - 07:48 AM #6

Good luck with your finals!

May 1, 2013 - 10:56 AM #7

You should at least mention Void Staff.

April 19, 2013 - 08:51 PM #8

Sorry for not clearing this up..

Before they changed flask I used to start machete + flask by dropping points in utility.

Also I used to buy madred's razors primarily back then (before they decreased spirit stone's price), so I didn't really have any form of sustain except for the flask.

April 19, 2013 - 06:12 PM #9

Hm ok. But the increased price on Crystalline Flask was actually a buff. You can read about that in several guides.

Well anyway good guide ;)

April 19, 2013 - 12:54 PM #10

I don't like Zhonya's at all.

Indeed it does give AP but Elise doesn't really scale that well, and you spend about 2k of the item's price on AP.

I prefer FH as you said, since the CDR of FH improves your sustained damage much more than Zhonya's does.

And while seeker's armoguard is a decent earlygame item, I'd say glacial shroud is still better on Elise.

Also I don't really find myself buying Crystalline Flask on Elise ever since they increased it's price. I don't find myself having much issues with sustain after spirit stone, and my actual issue on Elise is being squishy early on, not lacking sustain.

So when I have enough money to buy a flask I find myself buying a cloth armor instead.

Remember that you don't really "NEED" blue buff for your second clear and onwards, you'll already be fast enough thanks to your spider form.