Some champions in League of Legends are just much stronger than others.
For junglers, there are multiple considerations when weighing which champions are better. The most important thing to look at, and the most obvious, is whether the champion would be good at ganking and either securing kills or aiding their teammates in doing so. Behind the scenes, though, is where things get complicated.
Clear speed, invasion pressure, and macro mobility are all factors that need to be evaluated for keeping up with the enemy jungler. The best jungle champions are the ones that can do it all.
This list of top-tier champions can change depending on a number of things. Sometimes the meta shifts for no apparent reason other than players’ tastes, but usually there’s some kind of balance update, small or large, that’s behind the sudden change. It can be difficult to keep up on the flavor-of-the-month champs, so let us do it for you.
Here’s our current tier list for the best jungle champions in League of Legends.
Here are our top five junglers for League’s Patch 11.4.
- Global ultimate
- Impactful even after death
- Good source of magic damage in AD composition
- Needs time to scale
- Cannot contest early objectives
Karthus is one of the best ability power junglers to round out a full AD composition. This is mostly thanks to the utility from his kit, as well as his slow and global ultimate. Karthus is a power farmer with barely any cooldown on Q, allowing for quick jungle clear. But he’s rather mana hungry and struggles with early ganks.
He’s contested in high elo due to his ability to turn fights around with his ultimate. Recent nerfs to other popular AP champions have made Karthus a great pick once again.
The Domination tree is important for Karthus. It grants access to additional damage from Dark Harvest, Cheap Shot, and Eyeball Collection, which synergizes well with Karthus’ ultimate, alongside additional sustain from Ravenous Hunter to make your clear healthier. The Precision secondary is great on Karthus since Coup de Grace increases your ultimate damage directly onto low health targets and Presence of Mind increases your mana regeneration to allow you to use E more often.
Karthus’s ability priority is R>Q>W>E. Your Q is your primary damaging tool in both the jungle and teamfights. Learn how to aim with it to maximize damage output on a single target to be able to zone out the important carries of a teamfight. Max W second since its width gets increased with level. While the damage from E is good, the utility from the slow is much more useful and it will allow you to get into range or escape much easier.
Karthus is a power farmer who needs to reach level six as soon as possible to be able to influence the game. While his early game isn’t the worst, he definitely needs items and levels to get going. Don’t look to contest objectives until level six since you’ll most likely end up dead and behind, while also giving an advantage to the enemy.
After you get level six, watch over the map and look for low health enemies to finish them off. Remember not to use it wastefully since it has a high cooldown early on. Use it for guaranteed kills only. Keep farming as the game goes on. Don’t focus on attempting to gank too much since it might be telegraphed. Try to farm up, get items, and use your ultimate on cooldown for kills.
In the later stages of the game, make sure to avoid casting ultimates unless you are sure that you won’t get interrupted. If you want to do as much damage as possible, you can go for a flash into the opposing team, then pop Zhonya and then after they kill you, activate your ultimate for a lot of area-of-effect damage.
- Spammable crowd-control
- Needs good sources of damage to be viable
- Telegraphed playstyle
Udyr has become one of the most popular junglers in recent weeks. He has a great well-rounded kit, which can keep up with the more popular junglers in the current meta. Udyr is very tanky, mobile, and has a spammable crowd control with his Bear Form, which can fit into any composition. His greatest weakness is his telegraphed playstyle since he needs to walk up to opponents to do his damage and stun them. As a result, opponents with some experience can kite you and stop you from doing your damage or crowd control.
There are a lot of viable builds for Udyr but the most-picked one is the kiting version with the Sorcery tree as the core tree due to Phase Rush. It grants you insane kiting potential and it’s easy to proc. Sorcery’s Celerity and Water Walking make you swift and much more difficult to catch. While some champions could not get away with such a rune style, Udyr has more than enough damage in his kit to compensate for the no-damage runes. The base damage of your kit is more than enough and the additional mobility is much more useful.
The secondary tree is Precision due to Legend: Alacrity, which grants you the much needed attack speed, and Triumph for those cheeky low-health plays from which you come unscathed and gain extra gold.
Udyr’s ability priority is R>E>W>Q. Picking up R is a priority since it’s your main area-of-effect damaging form. With it, you can farm and do a lot of damage during your gank attempts early on. It also scales really well into teamfights. E is maxed second for the additional movement speed and unit collision duration. W is maxed third for the additional tankiness, and Q is maxed last due to its lower utility compared to other forms.
Udyr is one of the most mobile junglers in League due to his spammable movement speed form. You can use this to move around the map quickly to counter jungle or secure early leads via the Scuttle Crabs. If enemies are overextending, you can punish them and increase your gold lead.
Use the Water Walking rune to your advantage and fight over in the river if someone comes to contest the Scuttle Crab. Your runes are perfect for such fights early on and you should win most of them with no issues. Your base damage is quite high without items and can allow you to take down the current popular junglers dominating the Rift.
Once you get going and get your Mythic item, you should aim to constantly gank opponents and secure the neutral objectives such as the Rift Herald or the dragons. To have successful attempts at any action, make sure to carry a sweeper ward and use it to clear vision to be able to gank from unexpected angles and secure objectives uncontested. In teamfights, try to use Bear form to stun opponents and be a good frontline for your team.
- Strong duelist
- Easy to play
- Has a basic ability with true damage
- Predictable playstyle
- No dash
Olaf has benefited significantly from the item rework, making him one of the best junglers in the current meta. You don’t need a lot of resources to be useful and once you get your Mythic item, you become a huge threat. As soon as people realised how strong Olaf was, his pickrate skyrocketed over a night and everyone has been finding more success with him compared to other junglers.
He is quite easy to play and can be picked up by any player, including non-junglers since his kit is straightforward and doesn’t require you to be mechanically gifted.
The best rune page is Precision primary with Inspiration as a secondary tree. Precision grants you access to Conqueror, one of the strongest keystones in the game, giving you a lot of attack damage and healing, on top of being easy to stack up. Other great runes are Triumph to help your low-health escapes, Legend: Alacrity to increase your attack speed, and Last Stand to make you deadlier the lower your health is.
Inspiration is taken mostly for the boots of speed with additional movement speed alongside Approach Velocity to help you reach the targets you’re chasing.
Olaf’s skill priority is R>Q>E>W. Maxing Q allows you to farm camps easily and do as much damage as often as possible. The cooldown is reduced when you pick up an axe, allowing you to spam it with no cooldown once it’s maxed and you have some ability haste. E is maxed second for the additional true damage, and W is maxed last since the utility of Q and E outweigh it.
Olaf is currently one of the best farmers in the jungle, allowing you to first clear without a leash while avoiding losing too much health. The in-built sustain alongside the attack speed boost the lower your health is allows you to demolish the jungle camps and grow in power. You can try to look for opportunities to gank lanes, but look for lanes who provide some crowd control. Without crowd control and items, landing kills early on is quite difficult.
If you see no such opportunities, focus on getting the crabs in the river for additional vision or the Rift Herald alongside the dragon. But remember to keep farming camps for the gold income to ensure you can get your core items as soon as possible.
Once you get a Mythic item such as Goredrinker, you’ll become an unkillable machine due to the sustain it has. You can then look to group up for fights and aim to get towers or other objectives to slowly build a lead to win the game.
As the game goes on, try to maintain good vision coverage for your team and act as either an initiator or a backline defender, one who peels with a spammable slow for the carries.
- Six abilities at level three
- Untargetability via spider form E ability
- Strong burst damage
- Hard to come back if behind
- Gets outscalled by other meta junglers
Elise is one of the most popular AP junglers who excels at snowballing the game early on. If you fail to snowball, however, you’re most likely going to become a crowd-control bot.
Elise can exploit enemies starting from level three where she gets access to three human-form abilities and three spider-form abilities.The ability to become untargetable allows for early dives on low-health opponents while minimizing the risk of dying to a tower.
Elise uses the Domination tree. It grants her access to additional damage from Electrocute, Cheap Shot, and Eyeball Collection, which synergizes well with Elise’s burst damage. Relentless Hunter makes you mobile and allows you to roam the map much faster.
The Sorcery secondary synergizes well with the aggressive playstyle of Elise. Nimbus Cloak allows you to close the gap with enemies faster by using smite on them and Waterwalking lets you move around in the river and contest Scuttle Crabs early on.
Elise’s ability priority is R>Q>W>E. Your Q is your primary direct damaging tool. It serves as a good initiation tool when ganking to deal maximum percent health damage and acts as an execute when you go into spider form. W is maxed second for the additional burst damage, while E is maxed last since the additional damage acts better than the lower cooldown on your CC. The best CC is death.
Elise is an aggressive jungler that should focus on roaming the map on a constant basis and invading the enemy jungler. You’re extremely strong early on due to having access to six abilities. Use that to your advantage and punish enemies who are out of position with swift ganks and dives under tower.
Contest the Scuttle Crabs early on with Waterwalking, which grants you additional movement speed and ability power while in the river. Focus on maintaining an aggressive playstyle and constant ganks. The moment you start focusing on farm is the moment you lose the game.
Elise doesn’t scale as well as other junglers and you should keep that in mind if you intend to go to the late game. Your goal is to build an advantage early on and allow your team to carry the game. If you aren’t able to build an early lead, however, look for creative flanks in the later stages of the game and avoid sticking around with your team since your utility won’t be as high compared to other junglers. By going for flanks and using your crowd control to surprise your enemies, you might be able to win teamfights and secure a path to victory.
- Invisibility on a short cooldown
- High burst damage
- Can splitpush to great effect
- Needs to gank constantly to maintain relevance in the game
- Weak teamfighter
Shaco has silently risen in popularity since Patch 11.2 while others meta junglers got nerfed. He’s a gank-heavy jungler who excels at ganking immobile champions and punishing their aggressive playstyle. While he’s strong right now with the new items, he does need to maintain a gank-oriented playstyle to be useful. In the later stages of the game, he can be an amazing splitpusher that takes down towers in the blink of an eye.
The most successful rune page for Shaco is the Domination primary with Precision as a secondary page. Domination gives you access to Hail of Blades, alongside Sudden Impact, which is a great source of damage early on to snowball. Eyeball Collection will empower your attack damage with every takedown and Ravenous Hunter acts as a good source of sustain in the jungle early on.
The secondary Precision tree gives you access to Legend: Alacrity for more fluid auto attacks and Coup de Grace for the additional damage against low-health targets.
Shaco’s skill priority is R>E>Q>W. You want to max your E first since it’s your main source of damage in the jungle and during ganks. Afterward, maxing Q is your priority for the lower cooldown on invisibility to allow you to sneak behind enemies more often. W is maxed last since with your AD oriented build, it won’t do that much damage.
Shaco is an assassin jungler who focuses on ganking as often as he can and punishes overextended enemies. You’ll want to take the combination of Smite and Ignite in most of your games to have kill pressure. Focus on building various lethality items to ignore the armor from squishy champions and delete them from the Rift in the blink of an eye. Early on, with some help from your laners, you can do multiple jungle camps while the enemy jungler is doing their buff and go for a direct level two gank on unaware laners or invade the enemy jungler.
With your Ignite, you should easily be able to pick early kills due to the huge damage you have while enemies are underleveled. If you don’t succeed but force a summoner spell, try to redo the gank and punish the flashless enemy. As the game goes by, look to maintain relevance by constantly ganking opponents. In the late game, look to split push and ambush your opponent’s carries. Don’t try to group up since you’re a mediocre teamfighter and don’t bring a lot to the table in that regard compared to other junglers.