Hey everyone. Mowzer here. I am a diamond jungle main on the Korean server. I am not the greatest jungler in the world but I have been playing since closed beta and I love theory crafting. Here is my third take at a tier list for junglers in Solo Q patch 5.1. These are the champions I feel are strong In Solo Q for climbing but that does not mean that everyone else is trash. I have spent a great deal of time thinking, playing games, testing champions, reading guides, and watching games to develop this list. This new patch has been a buff for us junglers. Junglers now are able to get more gold and are able to store a second smite. The following are listed from strongest to weakest, but none of these junglers are remotely under powered. Also, at the end of the list I have included what I feel are the 11-20 junglers, in no specific order. Attention! This is a top ten tier list, not a complete tier list.
Top 4 jungle bans: Fiddlesticks, Rek’sai, Lee Sin, Jarvan.
Top 5 – The big hitters: – note (5th to 1st) means that I ranked the champion on my list at 5th last time and now is placed 1st. Unlisted means they were not on the previous list.
- Jarvan (3rd to 1st) – Long live the king. My signature champion has claimed his throne, in my books. The tweaks to his ultimate recently have helped him a lot and he is seeing massive picks/bans in the pro scene. He has fantastic ganks, utility and damage to tank ratio. He can easily nab dragon and baron with his combo and dive a high priority target. He is weak his first clear and strong invades can dominate and counter gank him well, such as Lee Sin, Pantheon and Xin Zhao. Watch your ultimates because you can hinder your own team even more than the enemy if done wrong. Optimize your build to avoid falling off late game.
Pros – Ganks, team fight. Cons – early invades, mana
- Fiddlesticks (2nd to 2nd) – The surprise party never gets old. A top ban when it comes to jungling. He has no issue clearing the jungle with or without a jungle item. His build and skillset scales fantastically into the late game and shines in a team fight. He only needs his core-item, hourglass, to cut down the enemy. Watch out for invades and getting caught out. Upgrade to sweeper early because one enemy ward can turn you into nothing but cloth and straw.
Pros – CC, team fight. Cons – CC, getting caught out.
- Lee Sin (4th to 3rdh) – Blindly stumbling forward. He is the playmaker and decimator of the early-mid game. Put him in the hands of a skilled player and he will demolish the enemy team moral and secure an early lead. His mobility and playmaking is hard to match. He needs to be played and itemized properly. A poor skilled player and/or one that builds him unwisely will find himself near useless as the game shifts into the mid-late game. Watch where you kick the enemy because you could be their saving grace.
Pros – Utility, invading. Cons – Late game, skill cap.
- Pantheon (1st to 4th) – Fallen but not forgotten. His ability to snowball an early lead is superb and his capability to execute a low hp target is nothing to be messed with. His ultimate allows for him to gank easily and cut off the enemy or split push and join the fight later. Itemize carefully because you will fall off as the game goes on and don’t get caught out because you lack a good escape. Once you charge in, it’s victory or death. A passive player will find him to be a poor pick.
Pros – ganks, early-mid game. Cons – Late game, poor escape
- Rek’Sai (7th to 5th) – Weakened but not gone. The nerfs didn’t touch her real issues, cooldowns. Her ability to get around the map and splitpush have been untouched. She can build a network across the map that allows for her to get around easily. Her ultimate allows for her to gain an early level advantage and maintain it. Make sure you place your tunnels wisely or else you’ll end up in awkward situations or without a network to use. Manage your above and underground skills in a smart manner or you could make a fool of yourself.
Pros – damage to tank ratio, mobility. Cons – kiting, iffy CC.
Bottom 5 – The runners up:
- Vi (6th to 6th) – High five cupcake. She’s powerslamming the opposition out of the way. Her itemization is phenomenal and she has no trouble ripping through the enemy lines. Built as a tank her W still shred through the enemy health and built as a cannon she explodes her targets. She is easy to clear and gank with. Know when to build tank and when to build damage. Fall behind using a damage build in the wrong situation and you might find yourself in a shallow grave. Be careful ulting a target with the ability to cover long distances quickly because you could find yourself alone, fast.
Pros – CC, shred. Cons – mana issues, disengage
- Cho’gath (unlisted to 7th) – The rise of Cho’god. The behemoth has surfaced. He has no issues clearing the jungle and his kit comes packed with fun. He has everything you need to annihilate the enemy team. His Q has a double CC with a knock up and slow and his silence scales nicely. Build him tanky and abuse the enemy team while taking little punishment yourself or build him as a glass cannon and 100-0 combo them into the void. He can easily get 40% CD and pump out the CC/dmg. Be careful on how you use your skills because you will run out of mana quickly and missing skillshots will cost you greatly. Kiting is not kind to you.
Pros – cc, tanky, cons – mana, kiting
- Xin Zhao (unlisted to 8th) – Ghetto Jarvan dashes back up. He clears easily and isn’t afraid of being invaded. His steroid doubles as a mild heal/sustain and he has a solid damage to tank ratio. He lacks the ability to play make the plays that Jarvan can but he can stick to his target and split the team nicely. Don’t expect to escape once you go in. You lack a solid out and watch your ultimate because a poor execution of it can put your team out of position too.
Pros – stick, tanky. Cons – no escape, kiting.
- Rengar (unlisted to 9th) – Exclamation mark! He’s pouncing his way up the ranks. He melts face when built pure damage or shreds as a tanky dps. His ability to split push and assassinate targets allows him to happily carry. Manage your CDs and stacks to perfect his damage output and CC. Watch out for pink wards and don’t get caught out. Choose your build wisely or you could become useless as the game goes on. You lack a strong escape so make sure you know when to fight and when to run away. First clear you run low so watch out for invades from strong dualists such as Lee Sin, Xin Zhao, etc.
Pros – burst, manaless. Cons – item dependent, 1st clear.
- Hecarim (10th to 10th) – Mommy, I want to ride the pony. He’s diving past your wall to your back line. He got a few buffs this patch that greatly helped with his clearing. Lower mana on Q early on and his heal vs minions has been increased. He needs a few core items to get moving but once he does it’s hard to stop him. His kit is the biggest issue when falling behind. He has to all in targets and face check damage. When falling behind get tanky or else you will be nearly useless because you’ll be dancing in the graveyard. Snowball off the targets you feel will yield the greatest reward and make sure to rock the arcade skin for maximum swag.
Pros – initiate, mobility. Cons – item dependent, mana.
11-20 Junglers: Added by request but will not be explained in detail nor listed in any specific order. – Warwick, Master Yi, Elise, Olaf, Nunu, Shyvanna, Nautilus, Sejuani, Skarner, Kha’zix.
Honorable mentions – There are far more than 20 viable junglers in solo Q. These are junglers that are good/strone but either don’t stack up against the top 20 or require fair amount of skill or a good matchup to be placed higher. – Twisted Fate, Diana, Gragas, Udyr, Eve, Kayle, Noc, Shaco.
TL;DR – This patch was a huge buff to most junglers and opened the gates for other junglers to rise. You no longer are punished for swapping trinkets. There’s more gold and XP in the jungle now and the ability to swap jungle items out before upgrading to tier three will allow for easier comebacks for various junglers. The camp reset nerf hit ranged junglers this patch.