Gangplank Guide - Season 7

Runes, Masteries, Items, Build-path and Match ups.


Welcome summoners to this mini Gangplank guide for top lane pre-season and season7, written by the OCE booster Otamot (Nickname on  Gangplank is one  of my favourite picked character to carry from top lane and I have played him against almost all of the match-ups in all the different elo ladders. With pre-season 7 and lots of changes happening, I will quickly provide you with basic build paths, runes, mastery tree points and different match ups (mainly focus on Gangplank top lane).

Gangplank, the Saltwater Scourge, is a mid and late game hyper-carry who excels at poking, pushing, peeling, providing crowd control, initiating and dishing out massive bursts in teamfights, also making cross-map plays with his global ultimate. Right now, in League of Legends, Gangplank’s E ability Explosive Keg deals the most of damage due to its 40% armor penetration. This makes his E the most reliable source of damage within the game and you always want to get max cooldown reduction whenever you are playing Gangplank to generate faster barrels. Due to the recent nerfs, early game Gangplank is not that strong anymore. Playing against a good player, they will most likely to abuse the early game laning phase to put Gangplank behind. However, to make up for the weak early game, you need certain runes to compensate his weakness. Gangplank is extremely strong in mid game and late game. Landing one barrels on the enemies’ carries will result in a win fight for you almost every single time.  Gangplank is easy to play and only mechanical stuff you need to practice is landing your barrels and doing triple barrels. He got high skill-ceiling which makes him very overpowered when mastered. In order to master him, you need to have lots of map awareness, wave controls, and match-ups understandings. Gangplank is a hyper-carry champion in solo queue and can win impossible games if being used by the right hands.


Gangplank runes - preseason / Season 7:

Playing against an AP top laner:

  • Marks: 9 flat attack damage runes
  • Seal: 9 health scaling per level
  • Glyph: 9 flat magic resist or 9 scaling magic resist runes
  • Quint: 3 flat attack damage runes


gangplank guide season 7 - runes vs ap


Playing against an AD top laner:

  • Marks: 9 flat attack damage runes
  • Seal: 9 flat armor runes
  • Glyph: 6 scaling cooldown reduction runes + 3 scaling magic resist runes
  • Quint: 3 attack damage runes

gangplank guide season 7 - runes vs ad


Playing against a Hybrid-damage top laner:

  • Marks: 9 attack damage runes
  • Seal: 9 flat armor runes
  • Glyph: 9 flat magic resist or 9 scaling magic resist runes
  • Quint: 3 attack damage runes

gangplank guide season 7 - runes vs hybrids

Note: These rune pages are extremely important towards Gangplank as they help to compensate his weak laning phase in the early game and increase his survivability for the first few levels in order to scale better mid and late game. Also taking cooldown reduction runes leave you an inventory slot for different build paths in your gameplay as well.



Gangplank Masteries:

gangplank guide season 7 - masteries


12/18/0 should always be used when playing Gangplank as this can buff his trading ability in laning phase and increase his burst damage from his ultimate and explosive keg with Thunderlords. For more in-depth details, I will go through the masteries comparison down below.


Fury vs Sorcery – Fury attack speed is pretty useless on champion like Gangplank since he is not an on-hit effect champion since they changed his passive and it has a cooldown now. Gangplank damages are all ability-based (Q, E, R) so taking Sorcery is the best option out of two options here.  

Fresh Blood vs Feast vs Expose Weakness – With the 6.22 patch new mastery Fresh Blood, this is the best option comparing to the other two masteries. 6 seconds is a very low cooldown and Gangplank is a champion can abuse this mastery since he relies on poking and trading by using his Q from a safe distance. Feast cooldown is also a very bad option for top laners at the moment since you will always end up fighting against top lane opponent. Expose Weakness is the worst option out of these three since you will always be by yourself in laning phase. The bonus damage will not be useful unless your jungler continuously ganks your lane in order to make it worth.

Vampirism vs Natural Talent – Both options are pretty good. Vampirism is good if you need more sustain instead of playing aggressively and trying to go for kills. Natural Talent is better if you want to get lots of kills since both the bonus AD and AP will buff damage of your abilities (AP damage scales on Ultimate).

Bounty Hunter vs Double-Edged Sword vs Battle Trance – Bounty Hunter bonus in pre-season has been increased up to 1.5% per stack for killing a unique champion (you will get 7.5% if you end up killing 5 enemy team members). This is the best choice for carries in patch 6.22 right now. Double Edged Sword is the second best option since this mastery can buff Gangplank early game trading against good matchups. However, in bad match-ups, this mastery can be a downside for Gangplank since taking 2.5% bonus damage in trading can zone you out from farming and slowly losing the lane presence which can turn into a losing map control overall in the game. It is advised that you need to be really careful when taking this mastery. Battle Trance is also a good option here as your passive last nearly 5 seconds in order to let the bonus 5% damage to kick in.


Wanderer vs Savagery – Wanderer bonus movement speed out of combat 3% can be really effective at moving around the map and getting back to lane faster. It also increases roaming and chasing potential on Gangplank in order to gain control of the map. Savagery is not a bad mastery either as it helps you last hitting better. This is what you should use if you believe that your last hitting is not good or consistent enough to run Wanderer.

Runic Affinity vs Secret Stash vs Assassin –Runic Affinity is a very bad mastery to run on top laners. In League of Legends, most of the time top laners will never receive buffs, unless your jungler gives it away to you however never take this mastery. Secret Stash transforms your health potions into biscuits and allows potions and flasks to last 10% longer. This mastery is extremely good when you are playing against bad matchups as Gangplank as this improves your sustainability and survivability throughout the laning phase. Assassin is also a really good choice here as extra bonus increases Gangplank damage really hard throughout the entire game. It is good if you are planning to assassinate people

Merciless vs Meditation – Increasing 5% damage when enemy champion below 40% hp is an insane bonus for top laners to finish off the low health enemy and secure lots of kills for the team. This works perfect with Gangplank ultimate. Merciless is a must-take mastery in my opinion. Meditation is a very bad option here as you should never be running out of mana playing as Gangplank. Try not to spam your Q and W too much

Greenfather’s Gift vs Bandit vs Dangerous Game – New Greenfather’s Gift gives you bonus 3% magic damage when walking through a bush is a nice bonus damage for harassing and ambushing enemies. During laning phase, this bonus can help a lot since most of the time, you will try to poke and walk in to bushes to avoid creep aggro. Bandit is the best mastery on Gangplank as your Q can proc 10 gold since you are a melee champion. Dangerous Game is kinda ok on Gangplank but I still favour Bandit more.

Precision vs Intelligence –  Extra Lethality is nice to have and the extra magic penetration can scale well with Gangplank ultimate as well. Precision is very nice to run if you want extra damage. However, my choice will be running Intelligence for that extra 5% cooldown reduction cap. This helps generating more barrels to use in teamfight, refreshing ultimate faster to make cross-map plays and constant harass with Q within laning phase. In addition, a low cooldown on a cleanse (Gangplank W) is such a good thing to have.

Stormraider Surge vs Thunderlord’s Decree vs Windspeaker –  Thunderlord should always be used whenever you play Gangplank. This mastery keystone adds bonus additional magic damage on Gangplank ultimate to help securing kills or deal extra damage in teamfight. It is also nice to proc it in Laning phase to show some lane dominance. Stormraider Surge is also a good a good keystone to run. As long as you can land the barrels that is. Windspeaker is useless and you don’t need it since your W scales with missing health %.

gangplank - league of legends



Gangplank Item Builds for season 7:

  1. There are lots of way to start as Gangplank: Doran’s ring + 2 potions or Corrupting potions if you need extra sustain on your mana pool. Otherwise start mana crystal + 3 potions or mana crystal + a refillable potion for that early sheen
  2. First back: you will always make sure you have enough gold to buy sheen. This is where you starting to dish out a lot of damage with your Q and your barrels. Buy a cull to if you can afford it and you are confident at last hitting
  3. Always try and max out the cooldown reduction cap. The sooner the better, right after finishing up the Trinity Force. Cooldown Reduction boots and Youmuu’s Ghostblade are recommend.
  4. Core items:
  • Lethality Build: Trinity Force, Duskblade of Drakktharr, Youmuu’s Ghostblade, Lord Dominik.
  • Crit build: Trinity Force, Youmuu’s Ghostblade, Infinity Edge, Statikk Shiv, a

    5. Situational Items
  • Mercurial Scimitar: Get this if you need extra cleanse against a heavy crowd control team and you want to stay alive longer
  • Guardian’s Angel if you’re constantly being jumped by assassins or get bursted down. It also creates a window to make ballsy plays and allows you to frontline
  • Death’s Dance: a good item if you need extra sustain in teamfight besides using your orange and makes yourself vulnerable to crowd control
  • Essence’s Reaver can be good as well if you want to max out 100% critical strike and max out your cooldown reduction
  • Sterak’s Gage: Pretty good item in my opinion, gives you extra health and extra damage for long fights.



Gangplank Matchups:

Easy Matchups:

Teemo: This little rat cannot do anything once you get sheen. Constantly harass him with your Q and show him who the real boss in the lane. If he blinds you, just press your W instantly. If you land a barrel, it means a dead Teemo go on the scoreboard. However, do not let him kite you down and always try to time your barrels perfectly in this lane as he can kill them from long range too since he’s a ranged champion

Nasus: Just constantly harass this guy and try to proc your passive on him. Most of the time he will ignore you and try to stack his Q. But if you play against a E max Nasus, do not stand near minions as his E will force you to farm near turret while taking additional poke from him. You outscale him late game so don’t be scared if you fucked up in the early game laning phase. He can’t use his slow on you as you just orange it and use your barrels to kite him.


gangplank guide season 7 - match ups: garen and nasus


Garen: Same with Nasus, Garen has a hard time to stick on to you since he is melee and has no gapclosers. Constantly harass him to get the Bandit proc and zone him out from farming with your barrels. You outscale this guy too, however a fed Garen can stupidly one shot you with just one spell rotation. Be careful not to feed him when he is building full AD.

Jax: Jax is a hybrid damage dealer. However his early game is pretty weak as he is a melee, this creates a window for you to constantly harass him. If he manages to get on top of you try to keep your orange for his E and use your barrels to burst him down. Once he gets to level 6, you need to be careful of his third auto proc. It does an insane amount of damage. Late game you both scale pretty well as he is more of a tanky bruiser and you are a hyper-carry.

Sion: He looks big and scary but he is actually pretty vulnerable to your harass from your Q. Always try to dodge his Q and E as they do an insane amount of damage. Make sure you got an orange when you do get hit. He is melee so do not be too afraid of zoning him with your barrels and Q. You scale better than him into late game.

Shen: Ninja man of the top lane. He can be quite scary when he hits level 3 or 4. His shield and W can neglect the poke from your Q. In this lane, it is advised to poke him with your barrels more when he hits level 3 or 4. Make sure to kite him and prepare your orange whenever you get taunted by him. He can dish out a lot of damage as well as you do. However, you outscale him early game since you push much faster and deal more damage in teamfight.

Maokai: Same with Shen, he can sustain your proc from his passive and dodge your Q with his W if he times it perfectly. However, he cannot cc you down with just his W and Q. He is also melee so harass with Q during laning phase and try to slash him with your passive to do true damage and resets it with barrels. This will always result you a kill. You outscale this guy late game but do not position yourself infront of him as he might lock you down for his teammates to kill you.

Singed: This guy will most likely proxy the wave to annoy the hell out of you and force you to farm under the turret. Tip to win this lane is to stop him from proxying early game and continuously harass him with your Q. Otherwise, just focus on farming and you will eventually outscale him.

Yasuo: He can be quite scary on the early levels but when you hit level 4 you should be able to zone him from minion wave with your barrels. He cannot block your barrels with his windwall so try and abuse that. His shield can be very annoying to poke with your Q but try and survive the early stage of the game and you will eventually outscale him.

Vladimir: just don’t even bother harass him to often and focus on farming. The only time you can kill him is when you have Executioner’s callings or he fucks it up in the lane somehow. Once you got enough damage, you can easily burst him down with your barrels. Just focus on farming since he sustains way too hard from your pokes.


Skill Matchups:

Irelia: She is really weak during the early stage of the game. But she becomes scarier when the game expanding out. Tip to win the lane is try to force early game all in as you will always 100% win. She can’t stun you if you have your W up. You both scales pretty well. This lane depends on whether she can get on top of you or not.

Kennen: This squirrel ninja does a lot of damage if you get hit by his spells. Dodge his Q while harassing him back with your Q will result you a winning lane. Be careful of his level 6, he can surprise you with his 100- 0 combo from his ultimate and 1 spell rotation. He can stun you twice so make sure to cleanse the first stun in order to avoid getting stunned twice in a row.


gangplank guide season 7 - match up: kennen


Tryndamere: He is scary if you do not know how to kite him. He is melee so always harass him and zone him from stacking his rage bar. Avoid fighting melee against him when you see a full red bar on Tryndamere. Otherwise, pray to the RNG Gods that he will not get a single critical strike when having 35% critical chance. Late game you outscale him as you can kite him pretty well. Always Orange when you get slowed to prevent harass from him.

Ekko: This guy is definition of annoying. He can constantly stay on top of you while slowing you down by a ton. Harass him early and zone him out from farming to shut him down with his stupid crowd control. Do not let him proc his passive on you too much in lane otherwise you will get pushed out. You will eventually outscale him so do not be afraid when losing lane or playing passive.

Illaoi: Ah yes, the tentacle lady of League of Legends. Once this bitch is picked, top lane turns into a mini game where you have to dodge her stupid tentacles and her E otherwise you will take a shit load of damage to the face. Once her spells are on cooldown, proceeds to trade with her or all in her. Be careful even when Illaoi in low health she can still dish out an insane amount of damage. Make sure you kite her well.

Darius: He is the evil twin of Garen. However, he is far scarier than Garen in the early game due to his passive and his hook E. Always try and kite him since he is melee. Make sure you will always have a barrel to slow him down when you get hook’d. Be careful of his all in at level 6. You outscale him so just farm it out and take it slow.

Akali: You beat her pre-6 but when she hits 6, be prepared because she will dumpster on you. Put a barrel on top of you so even if she jumps on you, she will take a bunch of damage from your barrels. Try not to stay in front of her with your barrels on cooldown. She dishes out surprising bursts so be careful. Late game do not try and 1v1 her unless you land a barrel first.

Fiora: Her early game is rather weak so punish her for that. Keep in mind she can constantly stay on top of you due to her dumb passive that does true damage as well. She can parry your E and Q so watch out for that since she can punish you if she manages to block both. You outscale her late game if you don’t let her get on top of you.

Riven: She will always start E to block your Q damage. Zone her out with your barrels and poke her when her E is on cooldown. You outscale her but don’t get combo’d by her as she can 100- 0 any squishies late game.


Bad Matchups:

Gnar: Nightmare. He can kite you perfectly and kill your barrels. Get hit once by his Q means you will lose a shit load of HP. This lane becomes even more aids when he completes his Frozen Mallet. Try and farm your best. You will outscale him.

gangplank guide season 7 - match up: gnar


Quinn: Same with Gnar, but she deals more burst damage and got more kill pressure. Don’t even bother trading and focus on farming. Once she hits 6, tell your team to be aware of her roaming since she got an insane movespeed with it.

Pantheon: He can block your Q with his passive making him impossible to be harassed with. A good pantheon will zone you out from coming close to the creep and constantly poke you with his Q. just get as many farm as you can and you will outscale him. Let your team know when he is missing as he can ult to other lane.

Wukong: Same with pantheon too much damage early game and got more all in potential due to his gap close on his E. Try your best to farm and put a barrel on top of you to kite him if he manages to E on you. You outscale this monkey.

Renekton: Can sustain poke with Q and constantly shove to your tower. He can deal an insane burst with full fury bar so be careful not to get too closed to him or you will suffer the roughest laning phase of all time. Focus on farming and outscale him in the late game.


gangplank guide season 7 - match up: renekton



This concludes my Gangplank mini-guide on, I hope you guys enjoy it and have fun playing Gangplank on the Summoner’s Rift in the top lane. Any feedback would be appreciated. Thanks for reading :)



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