Yes, Yorick. The champion that most agree is long overdue for a rework. Why would you want to play him? Here are the pros and cons of Yorick in his current state. (Note: This guide is heavily inspired by Inverted Composer)
- The fastest single target black cleaver stacker in the game, on par with Malzahar with two frenzied voidlings.
- His passive is one of the best dueling passives in the game. 20% auto attack dmg increase and dmg reduction is nothing to scoff at in a 1v1.
- His abilities are all potentially op. His Q is the only potential permahaste ability in the game. His W is a potential permaslow. His E has extremely high healing per second. His ult can allow someone to contribute after death, and his ult clone will amplify your damage so long as you remember to tell it to hit stuff.
- Extremely high DPS. He is basically 4-5 auto attackers in one.
- People will underestimate you.
- People slowing him.
- People dashing away from him.
- AOE burst that kill his ghouls.
- Running away from people.
- Catching up to people.
In the League of Assassins, League of Poke, and League of Dashes, his lack of mobility was crippling. However, since tank top laners and junglers have risen to prominence this season, as well as Runeglaive being gutted for laners, he can be very effective now.
Role in the team:
Damage dealing Bruiser/Peeler. He is not a frontline tank or a diver, so his main role in teamfights is to deal damage to the tanks and peel for his carry. However, he can destroy the enemy carries if they ever get in range of him.
Crystalline Flask + 1 HP pot + 2 MP pots: Start with this. Your E will make up for the 2 HP pots you gave up, you just need mana for it. Alternatively, if you’re afraid of AD snowballers, start Cloth Armor + 2 HP pots + 3 MP pots.
Muramana: Tear fixes his early mana issues, while Mura procs on his casting E and Q, and gives his auto attacks a ton of damage.
Maw of Malmortius: The best MR item on Yorick. Gives his ghouls more damage, which gives him more heals, damage, etc. The healing you get from the extra AD outweighs the extra healing you get from spirit visage.
Mercury’s Treads: Facetank CC and move fast.
Black Cleaver: Extremely good on Yorick. His ghouls will shred their armor (might proc the Phage effect as well, not sure) and it gives you CDR+HP.
Frozen Heart: Get more AD, a ton of armor. The CDR is a bit overkill with the new BC, so you can get thornmail if you don’t want to waste some of it.
Zzz’rot Portal: Aids in your pushing, as well as giving the most hybrid defenses in the game. Only get as 6th item.
Last Whisper: The most cost-efficient damage item. It helps you with squishies as well, contrary to popular belief. With BC, tanks won’t stand against you very long. Only get this last, and if you want to do more damage as opposed to tank it up.
Thornmail: Replaces Zzz’rot portal if they’re very AD heavy. Replaces Frozen Heart if you were too poor for it, or if their ADC is fed beyond god level.
Spirit Visage: Replaces Zzz’rot portal if they’re very AP heavy.
Tri-Force: Expensive as hell, without giving you enough stats for you to be worth it early game. That said, it still gives you tons of damage once you have some items to back it up with, so you can replace LW with this if you want.
Iceborn Gauntlet: Nah. If you’re in range to literally whack them in the face, chances are they’re already being slowed by your W ghoul and your Q ghoul is active. Either way, they’ll have to flash, and this item doesn’t give enough stats to be worth it.
Skill Max Order:
R -> E -> Q -> W
Your W lvl 1 is enough for you to get in range for the Q damage and haste. Your E is op af sustain in lane. Level ult whenever you can because it’s an ult.
Runes + Masteries:
AD marks and quints, scaling CDR blues, scaling armor yellows. 21/9/0 masteries.
Contrary to popular belief, your early game isn’t dominating until you get a few levels. Rush tear, but don’t immediately upgrade it into Manamune. Either build a Frozen Heart vs AD, Maw vs AP, or Black Cleaver vs hybrid/true damage before you finish Manamune.
Never cast your E while you’re full health, go in for a trade to lose some health before you do. Never cast your ghouls alone (unless you’re low mana), always combo them together so they can back each other up. Your harass combo is E -> A -> Q. Throw a W in there if you have the mana, can’t catch up, or they ran to a bush to try and juke your ghouls (cast it for vision).
If you get ganked, you probably can’t run away because you’re Yorick (If you can, though, go for it). Assuming you’ve harassed your lane opponent down sufficiently, you have 1v2 potential. If you have ult, you definitely can 1v2. Force them to fight in your minion wave and drop your ghouls down like mad while autoattacking. IF YOU DO CAST ULT, REMEMBER TO TELL THE CLONE TO AUTO ATTACK, IT IS EFFECTIVELY YOUR MOST POWERFUL SUMMON.
Split push with wards up. You can 1v1 anyone that’s not hyperfed on their team, possibly 1v2. Play like a Singed and get them to try to kill you so your team can get objectives. Your damage is very high in this stage of the game.
Split pushing is dangerous in this stage unless you know you’re 100% safe, and your team won’t get wiped out. Most of the time, it’s safer to just join your team. Your damage is still very high in this stage, contrary to popular belief, and people cling to that popular belief so they’ll try to ignore you. Show them why that’s a bad idea.
How to Teamfight as Yorick:
In the mid-game, ult yourself only unless you’re underfed or your ADC is hyperfed. You aren’t a tank/front liner, so position yourself in the middle line. Peel for your carries unless you can reach their carries easily.
It’s the same thing in the late-game, except you will always ult the ADC now unless their K/D is -9.
ALWAYS AUTO ATTACK IN TEAMFIGHTS, EVEN IF IT’S THE TANK. DON’T LET YOUR HIGH DPS GO TO WASTE.
Irelia: She has sustain, you have more. She has to auto attack you to trade effectively, and that means she has to basically stand still for your ghouls to go to town on her. Pretty easy lane matchup. Get Black Cleaver second so her true damage doesn’t hurt too bad.
Singed: If he proxies, yay. Your sustain beats his, and you can farm in front of your turret. If he lanes, though, that’s a bigger problem. You can harass him out as much as you want, but once he gets Rylai’s, you’re screwed. Your ghouls will also die extremely fast because they chase him through his poison trail, which mitigates your passive’s effectiveness as well as the slows, hastes, and heals. Get some ganks then go roam in the mid game, because being in lane against this guy is both annoying, and difficult. Get a Maw second so you’re slightly less screwed.
Renekton: This guy is underplayed, but he’s still the League’s king of lane bullying. Watch out for his levels 2 and 3. His Q will murder your ghouls and he’ll heal off it. He will dash to you, stun, then dash out before you can retaliate properly. Get ganks, try not to fight him until you have at least the glacial shroud portion of Frozen Heart. Build FH second here.
Nautilus: …wtf why is he top lane. And why does he hurt. Bait his E out before you cast your ghouls, because if he manages to E all three of your ghouls, you will lose the trade. Otherwise, you outsustain him, outdamage him, and you should have a good time in lane. Get Maw second. If he rushed Frozen Heart instead of ROA, get BC second.
Ryze: When he’s supercharged, he is god. Run the hell away until it wears off. Otherwise, harass him as much as possible and never let him abuse his range properly. He can’t really run away if you’re literally right on him, his tiny snare duration isn’t enough to get away from your slows and hastes. Get Maw second.
Riven: Bait her shield out before you E her. If you keep your distance and force her to use at least 2 of her Q casts to get to you, then you’re free to shit on her. She has no sustain, any harass you put on her will stick. Be careful of her infamous level 2 cheese. Get FH second.
Rumble: Be careful of his level 3 powerspike. Bait his shield out before you cast your harass on him, to make sure it sticks. If he ever wastes one of his abilities, you have a small window in which you can crap on him. If he ever silences himself, pounce as hard as you’re able to. Be careful of his level 6, his ult will cancel out your ghouls.
Hecarim: This guy hurts. His Q will kill your ghouls quickly, his W is stupid sustain, and he can run at you from across the lane to pound you. However, his Q harass won’t stick on you because you get health back from the initial cast. Your W will reduce his passive’s AD for a time as well. If he ever jumps on you, auto attack him with all your ghouls. If you started Cloth Armor, you will win the trade. get FH second.
Jax: Don’t let him get ahead. Harass him out of lane. If he ever uses his dodge/stun, cast all your ghouls and go to town on him, you will outtrade him. When he hits 6, you’re going to need to keep his HP at a manageable level, otherwise he can all in you.This guy deals heavy hybrid damage, so you need BC second.
Teemo: This little shitter would crap on every other melee, but you’re Yorick. Your E cast range is the same as his auto attack range, and he can’t kite you while permaslowed. If he blinds you, your ghouls can go to town and make his life miserable. You can use your ghouls to detonate his shrooms after level 6 to make sure you have a clear line to screw him over. Take out all your latent rage against this guy by picking Yorick. Maw second.
Kayle: Oh sweet jesus why is she top. She’s known as the best anti melee AD in the top lane, with her range, heal, speed up, and slow. Fortunately, you have all of those, but better. Kayles will usually keep their heal on lvl 1, so any harass you put on her will stick reasonably well. If you can get on top of her, you will win. Maw second.
Karma: OH GOD, WHY ARE YOU TOP. Remember what I said about Kayle? Karma is literally that * 3. She does everything you can do but better, and she’s ranged. Try to sustain through the laning phase. Get an earlier Mercury’s Treads to try and get on her, but otherwise plead and beg your jungler to help you. Maw second. (Thank god she’s not played top often.)
Swain: WHYYYYY-not too bad, actually. He has no HP sustain pre-6, so any harass you put on him will stick, and all he has to peel for himself is a slow and a snare. Harass him down, and if he ever wastes one of those two spells, all in him as hard as you can. Maw second.
Nasus: Don’t ever cast a lone ghoul on this guy, all he’ll do is stack off it. Drop all of your ghouls and charge at him like a maniac so stacking off a ghoul isn’t worth it for him. That will only delay him, though, he’ll still get ungodly powerful. I recommend a black cleaver second to counter the FH he WILL be rushing.
- You can cast W ghoul to block skillshots. Do it to the enemy blitzcrank so you can laugh at him.
- I think this merits a repeat: NEVER STOP AUTO ATTACKING IN A TEAMFIGHT. YOUR DPS IS VERY HIGH, DON’T LET IT GO TO WASTE.
- Use your ult at the beginning of fights and remember to micro the clone by recasting R. Sometimes people don’t want to kill the person with your ult on them because they think it works like a zilean ult or something. Low ELO only, though.
- W ghoul gives you vision. Cast it in a bush to screw over the people who try to juke your ghouls with a bush.
I hope this guide has made you reasonably interested in Yorick. Go give him a try, he’s very underestimated.