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VOLIBEAR BUILD GUIDE: [Pre Season 5 Jungle (4.21)] Nibble Nibble - A Jungle Volibear Guide by timbits1o1

by timbits1o1 (last updated 4 days ago)

250,492 Views 2 Comments
9
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist(+12.06 magic resist)
3
Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed(+4.5% movement speed)
9
Greater Mark of Attack Speed(+15.3% attack speed)
9
Greater Seal of Health(+72 health)
View Rune Details
Summoner Spells
View Summoner Details

Starting

2

Full Item Build

View Item Details
9
21
0
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 4/4
mastery 3 0/4
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
9 Offense
mastery 1 0/2
mastery 2 2/2
mastery 3 2/2
mastery 4 2/2
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 3/3
mastery 1 3/3
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 0/4
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
21 Defense
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
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
Chosen of the Storm
QRolling Thunder
WFrenzy
EMajestic Roar
RThunder Claws
View Skill Order Details

Introduction

Hi I'm timbits1o1 (summoner name Licoco) and this is my Volibear guide. Volibear is an extremely tanky jungler capable of isolating targets to initiate and performs incredibly well in early level dive situations. Volibear's early game prowess is unmatched, with one of the highest damage outputs for a tanky jungler before level 6. Volibear's ganks are rightly feared, as he has both a displacement and a slow at his disposal, as well as an incredibly powerful execute. With red buff volibear becomes almost unstoppable and his passive allows for incredibly early tower dives with relative safety.

*UDATE*
It's preseason 5! and with it comes a whole new jungle, which Volibear is actually quite good it. He has the early clear needed with the tougher jungle and got a shiny new slow on his smite! Now that you can smite teemos in addition to jungle camps, flipping tables (and enemies) is easier than ever!

Pros

-Is a bear
-Execute which does huge damage in the early game
-Flip
-AoE slow
-Passive allows for towerdives/clutch escapes
-Great in the new jungle, can clear fast and healthy early on
-Good at "securing kills"

Cons

-Kited extremely easily
-Lategame initiation is unreliable unless flash is up
-No hard CC besides flip, which is used to initiate
-Unreliable ganks if opponent laners have mobility
-Good at "securing kills"

Runes


Attack speed marks are great runes for Voli, they synergize with his W very well, and help him to clear the jungle faster. MR glyphs are for earlygame ganking since you'll likely be against at least one AP on the other team. Scaling MR is another option for glyphs since MR doesn't help with jungle clears. HP seals got buffed in season 4, and though most junglers would take armor here to make the most out of their health potions, health seals scale very well on Voli due to passive and W. Movement speed quintessences are almost essential on Voli, as his only initiation is his flip, which does not give a lot of movement speed at early levels. Health quintessences are also acceptable, to increase Voli's diving potential and helping out his passive.

Masteries

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

As outlined above, the standard configuration is 9-21-0, increasing Voli's durability and early game damage output. Honestly the attack speed is more important here than the deeper masteries, so that you can stack up W faster. I do not take runic affinity as Volibear is not reliant on blue for mana and his early ganks already provide huge amounts of CC so red is not greatly needed, although appreciated. It is possible to run 0-21-9 taking runic affinity instead, you get slight movespeed increases and longer buffs in exchange for less attack speed and early attack damage. Second wind is a must, it synergizes so well with Voli's passive that it would be a huge mistake to pass up on. Some new preseason 5 setups have begun going deep into the utility tree for the extra biscuit, but I don't feel this is necessary on Volibear due to his already impressive early game clear. Second wind in the defense tree is of a higher priority, as outlined above.

Summoner Sets

Primary Set
OR

Smite is taken for obvious reasons, you're a jungler, buff control, blah blah blah.

Flash is the preferred summoner spell, although ghost works almost as well. Here's both sides of the argument for flash or ghost. Ghost enables Voli's ganks to be more successful, as flip is his only initiation. It has a lower cooldown than flash for this purpose and Voli doesn't have a lot of times where he just wants to "get out" of the fight, eliminating the need for flash. However, ghost is extremely predictable and doesn't have the surprise value of flash. Flash is great for towerdiving, as you can go in, pop your passive, and get out with flash. It's also possible to activate Q, run up to an enemy champion, and when they think they can just walk away flash to fling them back. Often times it results in a free kill.

In the end it comes down to personal preference mostly for flash/ghost, take whichever one you think will be most suited to your playstyle.

Item Builds

Starting Build(s)
Default Starting Build
2
Starting: hunters-machetehealth-potion2

First Back:

Core: OR (if enemy ADC relies on abilities instead of autoattacks and the enemy team's CC mostly consists of slows)

End Game Goals: randuins-omenspirit-visage

Situational: blade-of-the-ruined-kingfrozen-malletwits-endsunfire-capethornmailwarmogs-armorbanshees-veil
Final Build(s)
Standard Final Items
Starting Items



Standard jungle start. Nothing else is really possible now with the harder jungle.

First Back



Usually this is all you'll have money for when you back the first time. It's also possible to take trailblazer instead, but your ganks will be much weaker in exchange for better jungle farming. Skirmisher's isn't terribly bad either if you plan on splitpushing and dueling people in the lategame. If the enemy is a weak squishy jungler (and there are lots more of these due to new jungle), poacher's to invade and counterjungle is viable too. Volibear is one of those weird rare champions where every single jungle upgrade is viable.

Core Items

OR

These are your core items, get them before anything else. Juggernaut has priority over Ninja Tabi. If the enemy ADC relies on abilities instead of autoattacks and the enemy team's CC mostly consists of slows, consider Boots of Swiftness instead for running faster. Juggernaut is basically the perfect item for Volibear, it has health (which he scales with), CDR (because more slows in teamfight and less time between engage attempts = good), and tenacity (most valuable stat on tanks). If you're playing a farm heavy style devourer can also be considered, but keep in mind if you're going that route you aren't towerdiving anyone any time soon with your measly health pool.

End Game Goals



Randuin's helps you initiate with the slow from its active. It's the best item against enemy AD champions and heavy AD comps. Spirit Visage not only provides MR, it's also incredibly helpful for increased healing from your passive. Due to this I firmly believe that this is the first MR item you should get every single game. The order in which these two are built depends on if the enemy team is AD or AP heavy, although usually you'll get Spirit Visage first for the healing increase.

Situational



There's a lot here, but you probably won't ever use some of them. BotRK and Frozen Mallet makes it so that the enemy can't just ignore you lategame and provides sticking power. With the recent BotRK changes I actually think it becomes a better item on Voli, you're going to be able to stick to someone and auto a lot no matter what so the extra passive damage is great, and the nerfed lifesteal and active wasn't really a huge deal on Voli anyways. Banshee's and Wit's End are when you need a second MR item to fill your slot, depending on the type of magic damage. Get Banshee's against poke, otherwise get Wit's End for a slight increase in damage and against sustained magic damage. BotRK and Wit's End are especially good if you plan on dueling the enemy 1v1 in a splitpush situation. Sunfire Cape and Thornmail fall into the "Ha the other team is all AD" category. Sunfire cape is good because you're mostly in melee range for a long time in a teamfight. Warmog's is for when you just need to be tankier against both types of damage, but don't get it if the other team has someone with a BotRK, as it'll be mostly useless against them.
Build Order
2
The items are explained above, but we prefer Spirit Visage first for the passive synergy, but often we'll have to go Randuin's first because of bigger physical threats on the enemy team. Because we have Ninja Tabi you'll likely want more MR compared to armor here, so Banshee's is a great pick up. If you want armor here instead Sunfire is probably the best choice, although you can always consider Thornmail if you feel like you're being focused. BotRK is so you won't be ignored lategame. This is what your build usually looks like endgame unless you swapped out Banshee's for Sunfire, which happens pretty often.

Situational Items

Warmog's Armor
Sometimes you want this instead of Sunfire or Banshee's just because the enemy team has no % health damage. Be careful though as they can just build a BotRK and make this completely useless. If not for the existence of BotRK this would probably be one of the best items on Voli.
Wit's End
An alternate choice of MR that also provides damage. Don't get this if you're behind, because you need to tank for your team first and foremost. Consider this if you're going to splitpush, because it's great in 1v1 duels.

Skill Order

Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Chosen of the Storm
QRolling Thunder
WFrenzy
EMajestic Roar
RThunder Claws
Take W first for the attack speed and execute to clear your first jungle camp. Then take E for AoE jungle clearing, and Q at level 3 for ganking.

The order to max skills I recommend is:

R > W > E > Q

Although almost any order works, except for maxing Q first. Maxing W first gives you incredible early game ganking power, and is more of an all in all ganks no farm strategy, as this doesn't clear the jungle as fast as maxing E does. Furthermore, E gives increased slow at higher ranks, so it helps in ganks as well provided your lanes have high damage. It's also a viable option to max Q second instead E or W, as Q gives increased movement speed as it ranks up, if you think you'll need it. Take ult whenever possible of course.

Skills

Chosen of the Storm
When Volibear's health drops below 30% of his maximum health, he will heal for 30% of his maximum health over the next 6 seconds.

One of the best passives in the game, no, THE best passive in the game. Bait your enemies into committing, towerdive freely, gettting out of sticky situations. This passive does it all. It's like Mundo ultimate without the movement speed. Let me repeat that, it's basically the same as an ult. Yeah. Best of all, the cooldown is much shorter compared to other life saving passives like Zac or Aatrox.
Rolling Thunder
For the next 4 seconds, Volibear will gain 15% movement speed. This bonus increases to 45% movement speed when headed toward a nearby visible enemy champion. Additionally, Volibear's next autoattack during this time will deal bonus physical damage and will fling the target behind him.

This is your main initiation tool. Judging when to use this skill is what separates the good Volis from the true chosen of the storm. Remember that this flips champions BACKWARDS, so don't run in on the opposite side of your team and flip the enemy to safety. Most of the movement speed buff also only applies when running towards enemies, so it's not a great escape either. This also resets your autoattack if you're pushing a turret or something.
Frenzy
PASSIVE: Volibear temporarily gains bonus attack speed after an autoattack. This bonus stacks up to 3 times and lasts for 4 seconds.

ACTIVE: While Volibear has 3 stacks of Frenzy, he can activate this ability to bite a target enemy. The stacks won't be consumed. The bite will deal physical damage that scales with his own bonus health. This damage will in turn be increased by 1% for every 1% of the target's missing health.

This skill is why Volibear is such an early game menace. He gets free attack speed from this skill, which is huge in the earlygame where your autoattacks do a comparatively higher percent of the opponent's health compared to lategame. The execute does sometimes up to 20% of an enemy champion's health when timed correctly. Nibble nibble. The only drawback of this is its extremely long cooldown.
Majestic Roar
Volibear lets out a powerful roar that deals magic damage and slows nearby enemies for 2 seconds. Minions, monsters and pets are also feared for 3 seconds.

This skill is pretty straightforward, it's an AoE slow and helps clear the jungle. Remember that this fears minions and monsters, so if you're walking through a creep wave tanking damage use roar to get them off you. This also works on most champion pets including Tibbers and Shaco boxes.
Thunder Claws
For the next 12 seconds, Volibear's autoattacks will blast his target with lightning that will also bounce to up to 3 nearby enemies. Each bolt of lightning will deal magic damage and will only hit each target once.

This is the reason why Volibear isn't irrelevant in a teamfight after he flips someone. In the midgame this deals TONS of AoE damage, a lot of people underestimate the level 6 and 11 power spikes Voli has because of this ult. This is also why attackspeed scales so well with volibear. Use it in a teamfight and autoattack the enemy team to death. Due to its low cooldown at high levels it can also be used to farm large minion waves.

Champion Matchups

Amumu
Difficulty
Favors You
I'm going to do this a little differently. Since there are so many junglers and junglers don't really care about matchups greatly except "Can you 1v1 me?", I'm going to do this with a matchup against a jungler that CAN 1v1 you, and one that CAN'T.

And here on the other end of the spectrum we have the "amumu type" junglers, including but are not limited to Amumu, Warwick, Malphite, and Nasus. Honestly these guys aren't as common in the meta nowadays, but these are the ones you can counterjungle freely, because they tend to like to farm until level 6 and wait for lategame. Alternatively, just gank more than them and you'll snowball your team way more effectively.
Leesin
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
I'm going to do this a little differently. Since there are so many junglers and junglers don't really care about matchups greatly except "Can you 1v1 me?", I'm going to do this with a matchup against a jungler that CAN 1v1 you, and one that CAN'T.

This is for all "lee sin like" matchups. AKA junglers that stomp on your face. This list includes but is not limited to such fun opponents as Vi, Nocturne, Xin, and of course Lee Sin. Don't go into these guys' jungles unless you see them at the other side of the map. They will kill you and they will kill you before you can get help. Always be aware of the possibility of counterganks when ganking.

Don't Buy These Items

Don't buy these items. Don't do it.


I know, it has attack speed, but look, the crit chance is a wasted stat on Voli. The point of this item is actually the small amount of burst you get from the passive, and for waveclear. Voli shouldn't be the one depended upon to waveclear (otherwise your team comp has some serious problems), and he most definitely does not burst.


Let's count the stats that are wasted, shall we? Ability power, Mana, Crit, Attack damage does very little for Voli because he scales off attack speed better anyways. That's like 1500 wasted gold. Yes there is the movement speed buff, but what are you going to do with spellblade? What, proc it with your 20s cooldown W? No thanks.

Early Game

Gank. Gank lots. If your team is running 1v2 lane swaps with top and bot, go push the turret as 3 or 4, Voli is actually a great early turret pusher due to attack speed from W and Q auto resets that also do increased damage. Volibear also has the best level 3 turret dive, bar none, if the enemy top lane decides to stay. Whenever ganking bot or top lane, it's important to go from lane through the bushes if possible for a better angle to flip from. Between ganks you should take your small jungle camps, and always help hold lanes if you're asked to. It's great for you too since you get the exp from it.

Mid Game

You should now be looking to pressure Dragon. Ask your bottom lane to pink ward Dragon, and if you kill the opponent bot lane, immediately rotate to Dragon and take it. At this point in the game, you should be giving your mid lane the blue buff. When considering a turret dive, always go first and go if and only if you have your passive as well as flash up, unless extenuating circumstances are present. Don't hang around top at this phase of the game, and especially don't let the other team see that you're at the top portion of the map, because they will just take a free dragon. Of course this applies to you as well, if you see the enemy jungler top, go take dragon. Volibear can actually solo dragon in the midgame quite well, and you can do this if you sweep and no wards are there. Voli has immense midgame teamfight presence due to ult, so look to make plays around dragon at this point in the game.

Late Game

Look to teamfight and always keep an eye on Baron. You should never EVER show yourself at bot lane if the enemy team is in a position to rotate to Baron. Your job as a jungler is to ensure control of Baron by being in the top half of the map whenever the enemy can potentially take Baron. Conversely, if the opponent jungler shows him or herself bot when your team is near Baron, tell your team to take it immediately. Basically, same principal as midgame dragon control. Splitpushing is an alternate and less preferred playstyle to teamfighting, it is a last resort when you are fed and you know your team can't win 5v5s. When splitpushing, tell your team to take objectives while you are distracting the enemy, and remember to use Q to reset autos on turrets.

Jungling

The jungle paths you should take are

Smite Gromp > Blue > Smite Red > Gank

or

Smite Krugs > Red > Smite Blue > Gank

Level 2 ganks are not recommended, you'll only have 1 of your 2 CC abilities, and starting E to plan for a level 2 gank is much less viable in the new jungle, with your health and clear speed taking a huge hit.

When contesting Dragon or Baron, try to time Smite with your W, start using the W first when the objective's HP is a little too high for smite, as it has a cast animation, and then smite as W is casting for maximum security.

Counterjungling

Looks like counterjungling just got a lot more viable for our favourite bear in preseason 5. With the advent of harder jungle camps and aggressive earlygame junglers like Lee Sin and Kha Zix falling out of favour, Volibear suddenly seems like a great counterjungler against the right opponent. If you're going to focus on counterjungling, pick up poacher's for your jungle upgrade, or if you anticipate needing help to win duels against enemy junglers, skirmisher's is ok too, although if you're in doubt about being able to duel them you should probably just stick to your own jungle.

If the enemy jungler is someone without a good escape and someone who you know you can duel, counterjungling can be taken into consideration. Early routes are less predictable now, as mostly any jungler that isn't Fiddlesticks or Amumu (or *shivers* AD Malzahar) can start both red and blue side quite easily. Consider invading with your team just to get a ward down on Krugs/Gromp, and then after your first buff heading over to their second buff and wait for them. The toughness of the new jungle almost guarantees they'll be at 50% health or lower, perfect for W executes.

To prevent counterjungling from an enemy that you know will do so, ask your team to ward the buff you're not starting at and if they show up, collapse on them with mid and possibly other lanes if needed. After your first or second back try to pick up wards and keep either the entrances to your jungle from river or the buffs themselves warded. Do not attempt to 1v1 enemy Jarvans or Lee Sins. You will lose. and then cry.

Team Fights

If your team has a champion that can initiate from afar, or someone who has a safer initiation (I.E. Leona), then you don't have to do any of that work at all. Save your Q, relax, let them do the work. Then proceed to flip back a vulnerable target like the enemy ADC, roar in the enemy team's face, call on the power of the storm to infuse your claws with thunder, and wreck the enemy team.

After the priority target has gone down, you should peel back and try to focus on protecting your ADC/mid laner and letting them deal damage.

However, if your team doesn't have a better initiation, then you're going to have to do the work yourself. Charge at them on all fours with your Q and maybe flash to get in range if they run. Flip someone back and roar in their face. Pop ult and autoattack the guy you just flipped back. Remeber, DO NOT FLIP AN AMUMU INTO YOUR TEAM. That would result in an "I'm Volibear, I'm heeeeeelping" situation. Don't be that guy.

In both situations, save W to execute an enemy. Stick to your carries like glue and act like a shield to protect them.

Final Comments

Well that's the end of the guide, I hope it wasn't unBEARable for you to read. (come on, it's a Volibear guide, I have to include that somewhere) If you have any questions or comments, feel free to comment on the guide and I'll respond if possible. Don't forget to upvote if you enjoyed the guide, and have fun nibbling your opponents to death on the fields of justice!

Comments

July 27, 2014 - 09:52 AM #1

Five ranked games with a poor win rate is not nearly enough to write a featured guide, sorry. Get more experience and more content and we can talk.

May 20, 2014 - 08:56 PM #2

I'm not following your elder lizard > ancient golem argument.

A couple points:
- The true damage DoT doesn't stack. This means attack speed is irrelevant--all you do is refresh the duration, it still only does 5-17 true damage per second or so (depending on your level).
- 30 AD is decent. Early game this + the DoT probably adds 50-100 total (after reduction) damage to your gank.

On the other hand, with ancient golem, you get:
- 350 hp (and an extra 117 or so on your passive)
- tenacity--if you are ganking lanes that have cc, this helps a lot. Yeah you can build merc treads before finishing elder lizard to get tenacity, but then you don't have the elder lizard for dmg & gold generation. This also frees you up to get ninja tabi, which are quite good tanking boots, better than merc treads.

I'd gladly trade 30 AD & a small truedamage burn that you can't apply to more than 1 target at once (unlike, say, panth who has an aoe phys dmg ability) for ~467 health & ability to swap merc treads into ninja tabi.

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