[Patch 5.9] Mowzer's Top 10 Solo Q Jungle List
Hey everyone. Mowzer here. I am a diamond jungle main on KR and NA. I spend the majority of my time playing on the KR server. Diversity comes from people thinking outside the box and trying new things. This tier list is purely my opinion and is not being stated as fact.
My Jungle Notes – I've created a separate article where I break down all the changes to the jungle.
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. For suggested runes and masteries, click "runes & masteries" under the champion's card. There are only champion cards for those 1-5.
| ATTENTION | This is my opinion and lists only the top 10 champions. This is NOT a complete tier list of every champion that can jungle. My complete “climbing” tier list will be posted at a later date.
*5 ? 1: 5th last time, now 1st on my list. **New: not on the previous list.
She's weathered the past few patches and still remains a force to be reckoned with. She has maintained, roughly, an 87% ban rate. She is the longest reigning monarch of my jungle list, but that does not mean she doesn't have competition. There's a large threat looming, Gragas, in the distance with a casus belli to claim her throne. I just feel that her kit keep her a bit ahead of the Donut King.
The biggest issue with her comes from her early game. She's vulnerable and rather weak at the start of the game. She can't stand toe to toe against strong invaders, such as Lee Sin, Gragas, Pantheon, etc. She makes up for this with a great team fight, lots of CC, and a great mid-late game. Her comeback potential is superb and her W helps to deal with the health stackers. Her ultimate is a great initiate ability and Q + Flash can make for some great play making. Many carries will get a QSS (quick silver sash) to counter her ultimate, but you still pack a load of CC,. Remember to time your abilities to not waste your kill potential.
Suggested Runes and Masteries - jungle enchant(s): cinderhulk. Pros - lots of CC, solid team fight / Cons - no sustain, weak early game
The Donut King is prepared for the pastry putsch. He's been making plays on all servers. He's similar to Lee Sin in play style but with a lot more to love and better scaling. He can initiate and disengage with ease and has the ability to shred health and reduce incoming damage with the same skill.
Unlike most tank junglers, he doesn't have a weak early game. He can charge into a fight with his belly out and not fear exploding instantly. His kit is great for getting around the map and applying pressure. He clears well and his passive helps to keep him healthy. He has high damage output early-mid game, but be weary of using your ultimate. You can save the enemy as quickly as you can hurt the enemy. Throwing a hostile tank into your carry is, typically, not a good idea. Also, you won't scale as well as other top tier tank junglers. Your power comes from your early-mid game. You still have a solid late game, it's just not as amazing as a number of others.
Suggested Runes & Masteries - jungle enchant(s): cinderhulk. Pros – great engage/disengage, high base damage / Cons – skillshot dependent, outscaled by other tanks late game
Whoop, whoop, whoop, whoop. That's pretty much how I feel when I play Nunu. He does well at snowballing the team, well both. He's a fantastic pick for securing objectives quickly and easily. This forces the enemy team to ward dragon and baron constantly and his ability to counter jungle is almost unmatched. The buff to dragon did hinder his ability to dragon early on, but it's still doable.
He has a great early and mid game, but he does fall off late game. This is when he falls more into the support-tank role and that is why you pick him. He isn't a hard-carry jungler. He makes up for this by applying debuffs and buffs all around and forcing the team to focus him with CC when ulting. It's not hard for him to steal and secure dragon and baron too. A good Nunu player can maintain a strong dragon lead for the team with little effort. Pick him when you have a solid carry to buff and a decent amount of damage on the team. I was maxing E first for strong ganks, but I have since switched to maxing Q to capitalize on securing objectives and counter jungling.
Suggested Runes & Masteries - jungle enchant(s): cinderhulk. Pros – great utility, easy to secure dragon and baron / Cons – low damage, ultimate canceled easily
Skin made of iron, steel in her bones. This sensual creature has fallen a bit, but that isn't going to stop her. Her ability to apply pressure to the map is fantastic. She has withstood nerfs and changes before and she still keeps on digging her holes, diggy diggy hole.
She gets the game moving quickly and has amazing map control. Her kit allows for her to farm, gank, and split push with ease. The key to winning with Rek’sai comes from her ability to get around the map and maintain levels with the laners or pull ahead of them. You can maintain this level advantage by using your ult and tunnels to get to and clear camps faster or split push. Build her tanky to be viable in this meta. A damage based Rek'sai won't usually do very well. She can use either cinderhulk or warrior. Warrior is a more early-mid game based approach to using your power spike early on to dominate. Cinderhulk is more aimed at the mid-late game scaling to stay competitive.
Suggested Runes & Masteries - jungle enchant(s): cinderhulk/warrior. Pros - high damage to tank ratio, high mobility / Cons - being kited, iffy CC
She has replaced Nidalee at number 5 with her swift punches and classy style. Previous changes to her have knocked her down from the top 5, but is didn't take too long for her to slide right back. She does well against the tanky meta and she has amazing back line dive. Her passive scales nicely in the health stacking meta too.
She does well clearing, but spamming Q without blue is a bad idea. You'll run out of mana rather quickly doing so. She needs mana to be useful on ganks. Running OOM and not being able to Q a target for the kill can be embarrassing. There's nothing worse than pulling off a perfect Q + flash and not having enough mana to R the target. Yeah, I've done that before. She can cover gaps quickly. Remember, a target you ult can still flea a certain distance before you connect with them. Doing a Q + flash combo and ulting a target that takes a Thresh lantern, flashes, runs, etc. can leave you miles away from you team. That tends to not end well for you.
Suggested Runes & Masteries - jungle enchant(s): warrior/cinderhulk. Pros - Solid CC, shred (armor and health) / Cons - poor disengage, mana issues
Only you can prevent forest fires. Well, starting fires in the enemy jungle might be a good idea. He requires very little skill and scales nicely with health. Cinderhulk fits perfectly into his build and boosts his damage output. He manages to dish out a load of damage while stacking health and his execute isn't a little cub's bite either.
Activating Righteous Glory with Q makes him go, VROOM! He loves charging head on into the fight. His CC can be hit and miss. Q can get kited out with slows, displaces, stuns, etc. and E only slows champions. It can be pretty saddening being just a hair out of reach of flipping a target into their doom during Q. Nunu's snowballs do an amazing job at slowing Volibear down. He makes up for these flaws with well scaling tank kit that manages to pump out some damage in the process. His passive has a relatively low cooldown and can save your butt a number of times. W is an attack speed steroid and an execute, so using the activate on a full health target won’t do an insane amount of damage. Think of Garen's ult, but on a shorter cooldown and it scales with your own health too.
Suggested Runes & Masteries - jungle enchant(s): cinderhulk. Pros – great damage to tank ratio, scales well with health / Cons – easily kited / iffy initiate
Who wants to play? I've had mixed views on Amumu since patch 4.20. I have placed him rather high when looking at lower MMR games though. I have not been nearly as kind to him in the higher tiers. As a veteran of the Korean server, my stance on him hasn't been good in recent patches. He hasn't fared so well in platinum+ games here either, until recently. Last patch he even had a 48% win rate in diamond and he's only sitting at 50% now, according to op.gg. Why does he not do very well on the KR server? I think a lot of it has to deal with mana issues. Since 4.20 he doesn't have the mana replenishment he has with spirit items. Also, on KR the jungle will almost NEVER get post first blue buff, in any division. The only exception is when there is a manaless mid and even then they might want it. I've had Katarinas afk over second blue. That being said, I feel he is doing better now.
He fits well into the tank meta. He has a weak early game, even weaker than Sejuani, but he makes up for that with CC, health shred, AOE damage, and an amazing teamfight. He scales amazingly into the mid and late game. He can initiate easily with Q and he requires little skill to pull off. Even as pure tank he manages to dish out a load of damage. I am not a big fan of AP Amumu, but he is fun to play and can be viable in certain situations. Every single ability he has does scale with AP too. Practice landing Q, because this is key do initiating and locking down your targets. Remember, your R has a limited range and isn't exactly instant, there is a mild delay, so it can be dodged with flash or escape abilities. Some people run magus on him, but I prefer him built with cinderhulk.
Suggested Runes & Masteries - jungle enchant(s): cinderhulk. Pros - solid team fight, health shred / Cons - mana issues, weak early game
I haven't moved him this patch, but I have seen a lot more of him recently on the Korean server. He can either be a top tier or not even mentioned on this list. It all just depends on the person playing him. I ban him a lot. Why? I don't want an unskilled player on my team picking. I fear those out there that have never played him and then see a reply of a top tier player/pro playing him. They then think they can win the game with a single inSec play.
He has a fantastic level 2 invade and those playing against him should be weary of this. He can manipulate the battfield and his enemies. Sightstone allows him to control the map with vision control and get around more easily. Winning with Lee in Solo Q can be difficult though. There are a list of tanky champions out there that outscale him. You need to secure a solid lead early-mid game on Lee Sin to pull ahead. It is easy for you to steal dragon and baron though. Q with Smite can make life hell for an enemy jungler. I have noticed more cinderhulk Lee Sins around, but the majority I see still run warrior.
Suggested Runes & Masteries - jungle enchant(s): warrior/cinderhulk. Pros - Lots of utility, great invading / Cons - weak late game, player skill dependent
She hasn't moved on the list, but she is moving around quickly, even in those heels. She has been in and out of fashion lately, but her place on this list is strong. She does amazingly in Solo Q. The lack of consistent pink wards in the lower ranks make it a murderous playground for her. She can easily slip around the map and snatch what she wants.
Sight wards and sightstones mean little to her, unless placed directly on a camp. They just fill her pockets with extra gold here and there. She can be built a variety of different ways and use a couple enchants. She's rather strong with warrior or magus with an iceborn gauntlet. She’s relatively easy to pick up and takes advantage of the disarray of solo Q. Her clears take a little getting used to, but using Q to kite camps allows her to clear five or six camps. She’s not a safe pick that you can just dig in and hope to win in the late game though. She doesn’t have the best comeback potential either. Pick her if you like the aggressive playstyle and want to punish those that don’t ward and overextend past the point of hope. I have seen her with cinderhulk before, but I feel she does better with magus or warrior.
Suggested Runes & Masteries - jungle enchant(s): magus/warrior. Pros – invisible to sight wards, snowballs easily / Cons – lack of CC, item dependent
My little pwny has been missing from my list for a while now. He's been prancing around the top lane though. The nerfs to him mostly affected his top lane power, but it wasn't enough to smash him into the ground. His Q got the double edged sword treatment for us junglers. It will clear camps fast, but it will drain his mana pool a lot more quickly. Those used to getting more than the first blue buff won't be hurting as badly though.
His mobility allows for amazing map control and it's easy for him to roam between the jungle and the lanes. Homeguard gives him the ability move around quickly and even provides a brief power spike too. Snowball your lanes and gallop your way to an early lead. His kit allows for him to dive the backline, but make sure you build according to your situation. Don't rush damage when you're struggling to get gold. You won't last long enough to survive the fight and inflict further damage. He has no ranged abilities, so will be face checking your enemies. Don't spam your skills in the jungle without blue if you plan on ganking. Watch how you use E, because you can easily push your target out of harm's way. There's nothing more embarrassing than going in for a gank and ending up saving a free kill. I've seen him mostly with cinderhulk lately, but he is still strong using warrior.
Suggested Runes & Masteries - jungle enchant(s): cinderhulk/warrior. Pros - strong initiate, high mobility. Cons - item dependent, mana issues
- Rek'sai - She dropped from 3rd to 4th. She's a great pick, but an aggressive team can keep her tunnels clear and this limits her ability to get around and use her ultimate. Also, her CC can be hit and miss.
- Nidalee - I've removed her from the list. She's a good jungle, but her spears don't deal a ton of damage vs the tank meta and she needs to get a lead to do well, normally.
- Zac - He had a strong showing, but the changes to cinderhulk and skirmisher's affected him more than the other tanky junglers. I feel he depended on both to be a top ten jungler. The extra damage from cinderhulk and the added dueling potential/damage from skirmisher's made him more than he is now.
Contested champions: Nautilus, Udyr, Rengar, Nidalee, Wu Kong
My personal (not listed) good pick(s) – Cho'gath! I Love my Cho'god. He does amazingly well in solo Q and I like picking him against Nunu to to counter Nunu's Q + R combo with his own R + Smite. This is only post level 6, of course.
My fun pick(s) – Ashe! I love playing jungle Ashe and she's even more fun with her new rework. Q helps clear much more easily and faster now. I do miss the free 100% bit crit coming to gank a lane with, but her global hawkshots make her clearing less scary. Note: Please, don't dive into Solo Q playing jungle Ashe and say, "Mowzer said. . ." or "Mowzer did it." For starters, they are going to say, "Who?" Second, it's not the best idea. She's not a safe pick and countered easily. She's more of a fun pick that I do play in Solo Q from time to time, mid lane too.
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 meta remains, mostly, unchanged. The sunfire-like damage of cinderhulk was nerfed towards champions and minions. It still is good at helping to clear the jungle and its amazingly cost-efficient stats of it still remain unchanged. Challenging smite (Skirmisher's sabre) debuff doesn't last as long either, but is still good in certain situations. Sejuani remains at the top of my list.