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Graves – The Advanced Strategy Guide

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  • 28/09/2018
Hey everyone, my name is Avila! I work for Boosting Factory’s ELO boost team and I’ve been playing Graves since he got reworked, I have one tricked and mastered him to the highest level, I’m also a challenger player who loves to teach other players so, let me show you everything that I know and hopefully you’ll find something useful. This guide is not a starter guide for Graves, therefore being familiar with basics is a prerequisite, that being said let’s dive in…

This guide is not a starter guide for Graves, therefore being familiar with basics is a prerequisite, that being said let’s get into the guide!

What Is Graves Capable Of?

  • ⦁ With the appropriate hands, knowledge and a bit of luck, he can literally 1v9 an entire game.
  • ⦁ He can out jungle almost every champion with certain exceptions of course
  • ⦁ He can 1v1 every champion if he’s ahead
  • ⦁ He can invade and counterjungle any champion (with the proper setup obviously)
  • ⦁ He can solo dragon level 4 with only his red smite
  • ⦁ Graves can also solo Baron late game or duo it right when it spawns.
  • ⦁ His gank potential it’s huge due to his great amount of damage and his broken W (Smoke Screen).

Pros & Cons

Just like every champion, Graves has his pros where he can become a 1v9 beast and his cons where he struggles or become useless, I’m going to explain them.

PROS
  • ⦁ Fast and efficient jungle clear.
  • ⦁ Great invading capabilities.
  • ⦁ Good in every instance of the game such as early game, mid game and late game.
  • ⦁ Great at 1v1 and even 1v2 if played like one of our LoL boost pros.
  • ⦁ He can either power farm and get levels ahead, or gank a lot to get an advantage or a mix of both.
  • ⦁ His build is very adaptable for every situation.


CONS
  • ⦁ Your auto attacks need to reload and can’t go through minions
  • ⦁ If he gets behind early game the only thing he can do is power farm (kind of useless till late game).
  • ⦁ Has no real CC
  • ⦁ Short range to auto attack.
  • ⦁ Struggles against control mages.


How To Jungle As Graves

I’m going to explain a a bit about Graves jungle path, efficient clearing paths etc., also I’m going to divide clear paths per team (red and blue). Please know that these routes are just options or examples of what you can do. In a real game, you actually need to look at your map constantly to wisely choose about what to do, do not hesitate about not following a route if you can gank/invade successfully, but first some basics before you become as good as our ELO boost team…

  • ⦁ You can choose into deep warding enemy jungle so you see where is he starting, asking your teammates to place river wards so you know which scuttle crab is he going to do or just look at the minimap and wait to see which lane arrives later (this usually means that they leashed the jungler and he started that side)

  • ⦁ Always analyze your teammates’ matchups in order to realize who is gonna need help, where can you get a free kill on certain levels or who can you abandon to focus other lanes or invading.

  • ⦁ Learn about lane pressures, jungle matchups, lanes matchups and lane priority such as: which mid/top wins the push, are your laners responding first if you invade, does the enemy jungler clears the jungle faster or slower, etc.

  • ⦁ I always recommend to start red buff on Graves, no matter your team color it’s good for early invades or ganks (the ones that get you ahead).

  • ⦁ Always clear the jungle a way that you never waste time walking, this is efficient routing, do camps next to the other, never skip a camp unless you gonna invade or gank with a reward guaranteed.

Blue Team Strategy

When you are the blue team, always invade the red buff, you’ll realize that in 80% of the cases no one is defending it so you will be able to take it for free, then you can take their chickens, put a ward in chickens bush, go to top side scuttle crab and farm your jungle. If you see the enemy jungler going back to his blue side, you need to cover your red, after that, you can go back and farm.

Farm route 1 ‘’Top Lane’’ (Standard)
You start red, go to chickens, top scuttle crab, blue, wolves then gromp. From here you can choose between 3 options, gank mid, gank top or invade enemy jungler, after any of those you back then go to rocks and full clear again or gank bot/mid. All of this depends on how the game is going and your jungle path may change.

Farm route 2 ‘’Bot Lane’’ (Standard)
You start blue, go to gromp, top scuttle crab, wolfs, chickens then red. From here you can choose between 4 options, finishing your clear route going to rocks, ganking mid, ganking bot or invade enemy jungle.
Note: with this route, you can get invaded in your red, kind of a low chance to happen if you are under diamond but it can happen, if there’s a ward in the river you’ll see that coming.

Invade route ‘’Blue’’ (Situational)
If you start red, and also the enemy jungler does, you can go right into his blue and, depending on the situation, farm his entire blue side, gank bot lane after scuttle crab or just go back to your jungle and farm all of it. You do the same in the opposite case.

Red Team Strategy

For the red team you should always start in your red, do your chickens, scuttle crab and then invade the enemy blue buff or gank mid/top depends on the game.

Farm Route 1 ‘Top lane’’ (Standard)
Start at blue, go to gromp, bot side scuttle crab, your wolves, your chickens and then your red. Basically the same thing as blue team but on red.

Farm route 2 ‘’Bot Lane’’ (Standard):
You start red, go to chickens, top scuttle crab, blue, wolves then gromp. Again, same thing as blue team but on red. Invading Blue Level 1 1 (Situational)
You can go right to the enemy blue buff and just like the red buff invade (red team) you will see that 80% of the times no one is defending it, so you can take it. Next camp depends on enemy jungler, if enemy jungler can do chickens, you go to his wolfs then his gromp then top scuttle crab and you just farm your entire jungle or gank or w/e you can do, BUT if he can’t do his chickens, best thing to do is gromp then top scuttle or even go to your red without scuttle since he’s going to have red buff, so he can 1v1 you, decision depends on jungle matchup and lanes matchup (who responds first?). Choose wisely just our LoL boost team does in order to win over 90% of games.

Ganking

Ganking as graves can be pretty easy or really hard, it depends on 3 things, enemy vision, your teammate cc, and you landing your skills.

Enemy vision: In order to have a successful gank you should always know or at least have an idea of where did the enemy warded, you can know this by looking at the map, where are they moving, if they disappear how long does it take to them to come back to lane, etc. knowing that you should be able to know where are they warding and if you know where they ward you should be able to gank them properly without being seen earlier.

Your Teammates’ cc: If you have a teammate like a Lissandra, you should be ganking her a lot because it’s so easy to get a kill with her cc and her damage But if you have a teammate like a Zed or a Corki, you should think well about ganking that lane because yeah they can follow up and do damage but, if the enemy can dodge a skill shot or has mobility to run away you are just wasting your time. To successfully gank a lane like that is to wait till they use their mobility skill to trade or when they overextend a lot.

Landing you skills: As Graves, it’s pretty important to land your W properly in order to blind and slow them the necessary time to burst them and kill them or at least waste their flash. Also your Q it’s a lot important because yeah your auto attacks do an important amount of damage but if you don’t land your Q properly you are losing an insane amount of burst and probably your gank it’s going to fail.

Matchups

In this section, I just want to say that Graves it good against any jungler if he’s played properly, but I’m going to try to list and explain a few situations and champions where Graves struggles.

  • Jax (Top/Jungle): You can’t really 1v1 Jax, and he has a better gank than you do. But what you can do against him is out farm him and you can also try a cheese invade at lvl 2. You can also countergank him.

  • Camille (jungle): At lvl 2 Camille can destroy anyone if she lands her stun, and when she reaches her trinity force she’s able to kill you as well, she also has a better gank. What you can do its out farm her really hard, counter gank her, or abuse her and get ahead before she gets her items.

  • Heimerdinger (any lane): We all know how hard to gank Heimer is. But you can actually kill him if you dodge his E, smite a turret and burst him fast, but still, it’s really hard and I don’t recommend trying it.

  • Kha’zix (jungle): You can bully him before 6 and out farm him but, when he reaches his lvl 6 he will kill you if you miss any of your skills or if you face check him.

  • Any Control Mage (mid/support/adc): Since the Graves’ E doesn’t give him MR, he’s pretty bad against mages, but control mages are the worst because of graves short range. If they ahead they’ll be a pain in the ass.

  • Master Yi (any lane): You can’t fight him lvl 2 or 6 if he has red buff or if late game arrives. Other than that, you can bully him if you kite him properly.

  • Warwick (jungle): Warwick is a hard champion for Graves, he can always 1v1 you because of his E and R, don’t fight him if he has R or red buff, other than that you can 1v1 him if you kite him properly. Out farm Warwick, his counter gank and 2v2 its insane.

  • Kindred (jungle): This is a hard one because she’s a ranged jungler just like you, you farm faster and you have more burst damage, but she has a better gank and dps. She will kill you if you miss any of your skills. You can also counter gank her.

  • Master Yi (any lane): You can’t fight him lvl 2 or 6 if he has red buff or if late game arrives. Other than that, you can bully him if you kite him properly.

  • Garen (any lane): He can 1v1 you even if you kite properly, try to never get into his range unless you are really ahead of him.

  • Evelyn (jungle): You can abuse Evelyn until lvl 6, after that she can kill you if you don’t get MR.

  • Lee sin (jungle): He has a better early game than you, he can 1v1 you and gank a lot better and faster, you can out farm him and out scale him really hard.

  • Xin Zhao (jungle): He can all in you all the early game, you can escape if you don’t face check him but always be careful. He also has a better gank than you but you can counter gank him and you will out farm and out scale him.

  • Runes

    In my opinion, there are 2 main runes you can build Graves with, our LoL boost team prefers these the most as well, I will try to explain this better than the Graves Probuilds website.
    1. You can use Fleet footwork if you like to kite and play a crit build (standard build also works) works better for kiting rough enemies like a Yasuo, any tank or any champ that could chase you forever and it’s also the safest choice for any phase of the game.

    2. You can also go Dark Harvest if you like to farm up and kind of one-shot people, I recommend this one if enemy team is full of squishy targets, but it works against anything with the correct build. Any rune build depends on your play style.

    Graves Builds

    When it comes to builds it always depends on the game and who’s getting fed, or which champion does the enemy team have that you can counter with certain items or build. Firstly, I’m going to show you standard builds and then alternative items depending on game.

    Standard Build

    Get the Phantom Dancer instead of Cannon if enemy team has duelers.

    Against AP Build

    Build Death Dance instead of Scimitar if the enemy team doesn’t have any heavy CC.

    Against AD build

    Do not build Randiun if the enemy team doesn’t have crit champs, instead of it, get a Bloodthirster or an Infinity Edge.

    Situational Items


    Build this one if enemy has a lot of healing.


    Build a Hexdrinker if enemy AP has been fed or playing against Evelynn.


    You will need the QSS if you’re against Malzahar or Warwick.


    You can build the attack speed boots with an electrocute rune.

    Tips & Tricks

    • ⦁ Your W is a BROKEN spell, you can deny every ADC in the game with that skill, no matter if it’s a team fight or a 1v1 or a skirmish, if you land it on him he’s blinded and zoned. Same thing happens with an AP champion but not as effective as against an ADC.

    • ⦁ In order to finish a target with low HP or to surprisingly burst someone, you can Q then flash and auto attack. That gives you a very surprising burst, not many people expect that.

    • ⦁ You can also use your R then flash in order to surprise a low HP target that’s far away.

    • ⦁ Always try to use your E after you use 1 auto attack first, this allows you to get its cooldown faster and to cancel Q animation while using E.

    • ⦁ If a target its kind of low on health, you should always W him then R, instead of just R, this gives you the chance to avoid side steps, also that little extra damage of W could be the difference between life and death.

    • ⦁ Against Tryndamere, Kayle and Kindred, you can auto attack and then immediately use R to burst them if they are low on HP, this works most of the times to finish them off before they become immortal, most of players don’t expect that. This can also be used against any champion with barrier or heal or any escape skill.

    • ⦁ You can also use your Q flash to kill someone who survived after your gank with a decent amount of HP and wants to get damage on you, trick is that if you do a Q > flash > auto attack, they might flash behind for instinct and Q explosion will hit them anyway, unless they’re extremely good and flash to the right or left.

    • ⦁ You should always be patient with your skill shots (Q, W and R) and wait for the enemy side steps.

    • ⦁ Choose wisely where are you using your E to kite away or to offensively kite towards the enemy, both of them can cost you not killing someone or having yourself killed.

    • ⦁ Try to always tax minions, get gold from laners that aren’t in lane or take the most XP that you can from them, this will get you ahead and if Graves its ahead it’s a GG. PS: never steal minions that your laners can actually take, only the ones they’re going to lose.

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