Jungling With Efficiency
A guide on what you should be doing as a jungler so you get ahead and don't fall behind.
Every jungler has their own strengths and weaknesses and each reach a peak in what they are capable of doing at different stages of the game. Warwick players rarely gank until they reach level 6 because that is when he gets a major power spike along with incredible gank potential and because of that, he fits into a category that I call spike junglers.
There are going to be three different categories of junglers in which I will talk about their strengths, weaknesses and the most efficient ways to spend their time as a jungler. These are spike, pseudo-farm/gank, and gank junglers.
Spike Junglers: These junglers are classified as champions that reach incredible gank potential once they hit level 6. For the most part, pre-6 most spike junglers have terrible ganking potential and want to focus on farming the jungle and counter ganking in order to reach 6 as fast as possible. Examples of these types of junglers are Warwick (as previously mentioned), Nocturne, Fiddlesticks, Master Yi, and etc. As these junglers your job is to wa tch the other team's jungler, enemy laners, and more importantly farming to get gold and experience. Grab your spirit stone and spirit upgrade as fast as possible in order to clear the camps faster, get an early dragon, have good sustain, and to get more gold from the passive. There are times when you will need to stop farming in the jungle before you hit level 6 to go and help save a teammate or gank an overextended enemy. If your teammate goes back to base, go and hold the lane for them so their tower does not go down and you get gold and experience in the process from the creeps. Do not push their lane, freeze the lane. Once you hit level 6 spend most of your time looking for potential ganks and try to give the kills to your laner if they are a hyper carry, if you think that they cannot carry the game then take the kills yourself. If you are trying to give your laner the kill but it looks like the enemy is going to escape, secure the kill, it is always better to make sure that there was a kill instead of them getting away even if you do get flamed for it. Your early game is weak and you are liable to being counterjungled. Make sure that you are aware of the other jungler's movements as to avoid contact with them before level 6.
Pseudo-Farm/Gank Junglers: These junglers have good clearing and decent gank potential. For the most part, less popular junglers fills this role but there are a few that are commonly played like Shyvana, Pantheon, Udyr, Jax, and etc. These types of junglers should spend most of their time clearing the jungle as fast as possible while maintaining a presence on the map. Shyvana has fast clears and should spend time appearing in lane (not taking a lot of experience or any gold) just to let the enemy know that you are still a threat and could possibly be lurking. It is always a good idea to sneak into unwarded bushes in the lane and gank the enemy, but do not overstay and waste time. This is the biggest mistake that these types of junglers make. They wait for a gank opportunity for several minutes and do not get anything accomplished. Be efficient and farm the jungle, use your fast clearing to your advantage. Ward the enemy jungle and control their buffs, farm/gank junglers are able to clear and invade quickly causing the enemy jungler to fall behind and put you ahead. If you find the enemy jungler in your jungle, analyze the matchup and ping your team to respond, it should be a free kill, especially as a jungle type that normally is a great duelist. The main weakness of this jungle type though is that they are predictable in their gank routes, so make sure you keep track of enemy wards and use a red trinket to clear them out.
Gank Junglers: These junglers have poor clearing and should spend most of their time ganking pushed lanes and feeding your team. Jarvan and Shaco are two prime examples of these types of junglers. Shaco has exceptional ganks with his stealth and damage which fmakes warding a pain for the enemy team. Jarvan can pass through walls, knock up and slow champions along with a shield that makes him tanky. His E gives a passive buff to him and his team meaning more damage can be dealt and it is more likely for a kill to occur. His mobility is a key element to his strength since it allows ganks from unexpected places. Evelynn is another champion who causes the enemy to have ward issues. Her stealth makes it impossible to ward every little spot she can walk through and means flanking and ganking in lane is especially easy. Your creep score will be low since you will be spending most of your time setting up successful ganks and pushing down objectives but your gold should still be high from the assists. The main weaknesses of these kinds of junglers are that unsuccessful ganks will put them behind and clearing the jungle takes longer for them (there are some exceptions).
Credit to NibblesMeKibbles on Deviant Art for this picture.
General Tips and Tricks: During a successful gank you should always push the lane if you still have health (since their jungler can be lurking around and pick you off) because it denies gold and experience to the enemy laner and puts damage on the turret. Try to always get the turret as fast as possible after a gank because it gives your team global gold and allows your laner to roam with you and snowball other lanes. Also it gives your team more map control, you have more safe spots, they have less. League of Legends is a team based and objective game, if you do not help push down towers and leave right after a gank, the laning phase will drag on longer and allow the other team to turtle or even come back.
Another thing to note is that most top laners will not have their lane warded past the 4:00 minute mark since their trinkets will have most likely expired, if you are not sure whether or not their top warded, ask your teammate. If he/she doesn't know, use your red trinket to be safe and if you don't have it up, go for a lane gank or go around where you think it is most likely warded.
Top lane tends to be ganked around the 3:30 mark so it is always a good idea to hang around for a bit to countergank and possibly get two kills along with double buffs to your teammate.
If there's a successful gank bot or they killed their lane, ping your adc and support to come and do dragon with you. The other team cannot contest it since they will be down one or two people and if they try they'll die in the process. Make sure your mid laner either zones the other mid laner or have him come and help take dragon along with you. Depending on which trinket you started, if you have a red trinket, now is the time to use it, make sure it covers some of the inside of the dragon pit as well since there can be wards hidden in there as well.
Only do baron if your team has a number advantage greater than one and the enemy jungler is dead. If it's a 5v3 and their jungler is alive, do not do baron but go and get objectives like inhibitors. If their jungler is dead and it is 5v3 or 4v2, then it is an appropriate and safe time to get baron. Many games are thrown because people do baron when the other team can easily contest it and get aced and lose baron when they could have pushed instead.
Following these basic rules and guidelines will make you a more aware and smarter jungler which will result in more wins and less frustration.
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