Hey everyone. Mowzer here. Things change and junglers rise and fall and that is what keeps this game fresh and fun. Every player has a different viewpoint on the game. This is where the diversity of picks, builds, and play styles comes from. Theory crafting keeps the game fresh and new. Below is my tier list for patch 5.5. Yes, I know not everyone will agree with me and I am fine with that. I really enjoy doing these lists and I hope I can help some of you out.
- There were a ton of changes this patch, so I have created an entire article dedicated to all the new/altered things. I call it “My Jungle Notes.”
The list below has the champions listed from 1st to 10th. I feel that 1st is the strongest and 10th is the weakest, of those listed. This does not mean that any of these champions are weak or not viable. I would like to point out that there are far more than 10 viable/good champions. There are, in fact, over 20 junglers I feel are good. Attention! This is a top ten tier list, not a complete tier list. I will say that again, this is NOT a complete tier list of every champion that can jungle.
Top jungle bans: Sejuani, Rek’sai, Vi, Nidalee, Lee Sin
The big 10: 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.
- Sejuani (7th to 1st) – The mighty Prince of Demacia has fallen, long live the Freljord Queen. She has been on the rise for a few patches now, but the age of the hulk has turned her into a monster. Her kit comes full of amazing things for solo Q. She has lots of CC and an ample amount of slows. Barriers pose no obstacle to her with her Q and she can easily engage a team fight.
Her weakness comes from her early game. Watch out for aggressive junglers such as Xin, Lee Sin, and Pantheon. The trend for Lee Sin is to invade you at your second buff. Use a ward to counter this. It’s not worth dying for red buff. She scales insanely well with hp. It makes her not only harder to kill, but it allows her to dish out more damage. Max W first for the maximum amount of damage output. Don’t worry about falling behind, because you have a fantastic teamfight and group comeback potential. Strike when you see someone fall out of position and skate your way to victory. A full tank build is great on her, but an offensive item can help dish out a little extra damage when needed.
Suggested jungle enchant: cinderhulk. Pros – lots of CC, solid team fight / Cons – no sustain, weak early game
- Rek’sai (6th to 2nd) – The queen of tunnels is near her crown. She has gone up and down in popularity in Solo Q, but her ability to traverse the map and her split push is unparalleled by any other jungler. Her passive sustain makes her innately tanky and her ability to build tank while still dishing out damage is phenomenal.
Place your tunnels early around your jungle to optimize clears or ganks or position them more offensively toward/in the enemy jungle. Avoid placing them in open/obvious places or else they will be removed quickly and the enemy will pocket the gold. Manage ganking and clearing to keep up in levels and use your ultimate to gank, secure objectives and farm. It is easy for her to maintain a level advantage on the enemy by using your ultimate often to secure for experience and gold. She does well getting one or two offensive items and then going tank.
Suggested jungle enchant: Warrior. Pros – high damage to tank ratio, high mobility / Cons – being kited, iffy CC
- Nautilus (unlisted to 3rd) – The king of CC. This gentle giant has been mia for the awhile now. This patch has brought him back into the mix. Changes to his cooldowns, a buff to gromp buff, and the introduction of cinderhulk have breathed life into him. He still has a slow start and is a poor duelist. He does scale amazingly with health, giving him a larger health pool and a greater shield.
You most likely won’t be carrying the game through damage, but your ability to pick a target and lock them down is stellar. He has one of the highest amounts of CC out of any other champion, Leona shares this title with him. Be wary of invades from aggressive junglers. Most junglers, Lee Sin for example, will make short work of you early. Clear camps when you can, but your main power comes from your ganks. Don’t worry about falling behind, you are great at team fighting.
Suggested jungle enchant: cinderhulk. Pros – tons of CC, great initiate / Cons – weak early game, poor dueling
- Vi (1st to 4th) – Gimped but not broken. She received an early game nerf, but her mid and late game are still amazing. She takes little skill to pull off and he W is even stronger now vs all these rising tank junglers. She fits into almost any team comp and has no trouble diving the target she wishes to murder.
Your clearing is pretty good, but avoid spamming Q without blue buff. You will run out of mana quickly and have none left to gank. After playing on the KR server for 3 years I am used to never getting a second blue, really. Take it and they will rage, quit, or afk. Don’t rush all damage when behind or you won’t last long enough to do any damage. The onslaught of oncoming juggernauts wielding cinderhulks will outlast you if you’re behind and built like paper.
Suggested jungle enchant: Warrior. Pros – Solid CC, shred. Cons – poor disengage, mana issues.
- Skarner (unlisted to 5th) – We missed your kind. I’m probably going to get flamed for this pick, but I think he’s in a great spot right now. He received a decent buff last patch and the new cinderhulk item works amazingly well on him. He clears pretty good and he has no issues sticking to targets with Q and E. His ultimate allows him to pick a target and pull them to their doom.
You won’t need much damage to be effective in games. You scale well into the mid and late game, but your ultimate will fall off as the game goes on due to items, such as QSS. Sadly, you don’t scale from health, but just not being able to kill you quickly is its own form of scaling damage. Snag Trinity force when snowballing or go straight tank. BORK is rather effective for dishing out damage and sustaining you, but I wouldn’t say it’s a core item.
Suggested jungle enchant: cinderhulk. Pros – good CC, great initiate / Cons – slow start, easily kited
- Sion (unlisted to 6th) – A troll that’s not trundle. His endless health scaling synergizes well with cinderhulk and turns him into a behemoth. He clears rather well, but his ganks can be hit or miss, literally. He has a rather high amount of CC and his ability to initiate and disengage can have hilarious outcomes.
His damage comes from his inability to die. He requires no offensive items to hurt his foes. Cinderhulk is key to the rise of his power in the jungle. Getting it early on will secure faster farm and more health stacking. Be careful ulting or you could end up making a fool of yourself and wrecking only your pride. Remember, Q doesn’t need to knock up a target to be effective. Sometimes just slowing them is all you need.
Suggested jungle enchant: cinderhulk. Pros – infinite health scaling, lots of CC / Cons – hit or miss CC, damage falls off
- Lee Sin (2nd to 7th) – The blind has slipped a little. He is still as good as ever, but the rise of tanky, easier to play junglers has hindered him. His power comes from his ability to make plays early and stomp the enemy before they can get going. Now there are many more viable/good junglers that scale well into the mid-late game and are fantastic at team fighting. This makes it harder for him to maintain his power. That and these junglers are just simply easier to play and to be killer on Lee Sin, you have to be good with him.
Crush the enemy jungler and their team before they can get going. Level 2 invade on the enemy buff can be a good strategy but not always. It’s very easy to counter that strategy with a ward or taking another route. That and if the lanes collapse, you’re dead. Pick the weakest target and obliterate their mentality. Remember, your power comes from your mobility and utility. Manage your cooldown and place your wards wisely to optimize your ability to use your kit.
Suggested jungle enchant: Warrior. Pros – Lots of utility, great invading / Cons – weak late game, player skill dependent
- Nidalee (3rd to 8th) – The cougar has aged but her taste for the weak is as strong as ever. She can’t shred tanks like she could before with the nerf to her W, but her ability to snowball and outplay the enemy is still insane. Her kit has everything needed to be strong in Solo Q. She can jump walls, speed up, chunk health, execute, provide vision, heal, auto attack (or attack speed) steroid, and just f### up your life.
The key to becoming useful with her is landing Qs and managing your skills. Learn which walls you can jump and how far your range is with skills. You are one of the softest targets on this list. If you get caught out, you will get destroyed. Your W no longer shreds percent health anymore, but your Q will scale against tankier targets. Use your traps to your advantage and don’t forget to use the bushes for more mobility and surprise attacks.
Suggested jungle enchant: Magus. Pros – high mobility, great damage / Cons – No CC, skillshot dependent
- Pantheon (5th to 9th) – Peter Pan-theon isn’t afraid to grow up. His ability to crush and snowball a Solo Q game is superb, as always. His shield and reset from W allow him to dive towers easily and his R allows him to control the map. He’s a very aggressive jungle and takes advantage of target with lower health. He is a great duelist, but he’ cannont solo everyone, such as Trundle and Shyvana.
You don’t have the best clearing, but you will have great ganks and it’s easy to finish off a target or KS with Q and your passive from E. Unlike the majority of the junglers on this list, you don’t scale very well. The key to carrying with Pantheon is to snowball early and crush the enemy before they are able to get going. Chose when to rush damage and when to go tank. You have almost no escape, so your build is key to surviving or being effective in fights. Getting 5 offensive items with no tank on your team is probably not the best idea.
Suggested jungle enchant: Warrior. Pros – strong ganks, powerful early-mid game / Cons – weak late game, poor escape
- Fiddlesticks (4th to 10th) – I like to party. Nerfs or not his kit is amazing for solo Q. He has fallen some after a few changes to his spells, but it won’t keep him down. The rise of the tank junglers with CC is not good for him either. He can still easily clear, gank, and solo dragon before he even has to back once. Also, he scales amazingly well into the late game and his teamfighting is fantastic. The sound of his ultimate is something of nightmares and not to be underestimated.
Positioning, warding, and clearing wards are key to Fiddlesticks. Your greatest weakness as Fiddle is being seen before you can do anything. Not many champions in the game become as weak as he does by the enemy just knowing of their existence. Getting hourglass is your main goal, because this is what will keep you alive during fights and allow you to get off your full ultimate. Don’t underestimate your ability to survive damage by draining. It can save your life.
Suggested jungle enchant: Magus. Pros – lots of CC, solid team fight / Cons – being CC’ed, vision of him
Contested champions: AD Fizz, Shaco, Rengar, Hecarim, Volibear, Nunu.
- AD Fizz explanation: I know I will get flamed by some for not having Fizz on my top 10. I wasn’t going to put him on it just to appeal to the masses. Yes, I have played and tested him. Yes, I feel he is strong and he’s even stronger than I expected. Pros – He has great dueling and clears rather fast. He can easily dive and get out. Cons – He needs to get his core dmg items of devourer and BORK early on to snowball and this leaves him rather squishy. Once he gets his tanky items he’s fine though. His late game isn’t the greatest and he falls off some. Devourer can be a very good item, but I typically see solo Q players getting it and just focus on getting stacks and they ignore everything else or they don’t try to manage camps and ganks to stack it and end up wasting money on going it over something else. I know he is strong, but I personally feel others are stronger. Commence the with the raging! Seriously, I love you guys. If you think a champion is good, play them. Just don’t play a champion you aren’t good with or don’t like because a popular streamer/pro said, “OMG! This is OP.”
Good/viable champions not listed: Fizz, Shaco, Rengar, Hecarim, Volibear, Nunu, Jarvan, Amumu, Mundo, Xin Zhao, Gragas, Trundle, Wu Kong, Evelynn, Zac, Master Yi, Kha’zix, Diana, Olaf, Shen, Elise, Ashe (so much fun), and every other champion ever added to League of Legends.
Flavor of the month champions: AD Fizz
My personal good/fun picks: Shyvanna, Cho’gath, Ashe (tons of fun)
Post any comments below or let me know what you think. Check out my champion cards and comic series. I hope everyone is enjoying these tier lists. Thank you for all the support, feedback, and criticism. I greatly appreciate it! My social sites are Facebook, Twitch, Youtube, and Twitter. Special thanks goes to my girlfriend and Nunire for checking my work, input, and helping me with various design projects. You guys are amazing. Have a wonderful day and best of luck you in your games.
TL;DR – The age of the hulk is here. Tank junglers are back and the jungl is easier to manage. Sejuani is the reigning queen. Remember, things change and junglers rise and fall. That is what keeps the game fresh.