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All Guides Kha'Zix Guides Official /r/KhaZixMains Complete Guide [Updated Every Patch]
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Kha'Zix Statistics for Kaostanza AoD

Author's performance with Kha'Zix compared to the ranked average.

Value
Average
Games Played
634
8
Win %
59
42
Kills
8.3
7.5
Assists
5.2
6.1
Deaths
4.1
6.5
KA:D Ratio
3.3
2.1
Gold Earned
11.9K
11.8K
Creep Score
56.2
56.7
Average
  • Author Champion Statistics
  • Guide Details

Summoner Spells Back to Top

Smite and Flash are the only two Summoner Spells you'd take on Jungle Kha'Zix.

I can't emphasize this enough, 

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and consider subscribing for updated information and discussions for everything Kha'Zix
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New Runes Back to Top

Runes


There's a lot of options to choose from when deciding on a suitable Kha'Zix rune page and a lot of it will depend on your playstyle, evolution paths, and sometimes items. We'll be going over the most common rune setups and branching into some strong alternatives choices as well as covering some niche options as well!


Standard Rune Page

Electrocute.png?width=32Sudden%20Impact.png?width=32Eyeball%20Collection.png?width=32Relentless%20Hunter.png?width=32Celerity.png?width=32Waterwalking.png?width=32
As referenced above, this rune page will give you a bit of everything you need on Kha'Zix without taking too many risks. We can go into why it's optimal and breakdown some alternative choices below. For more in-depth breakdown for all things Kha'Zix 

PLEASE CHECK OUT OUR SUBREDDIT 

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Rune Overview

I'll start with the more viable choices and cover the lesser used/niche runes later. The most viable Primary Tree is Domination. 
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Primary Trees

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Domination

Keystones

Electrocute.png?width=64

  • Electrocute has always been regarded as the safer and more consistent option when considering a keystone compared to it's counterparts. Electrocute not only gives consistent damage, but it's more reliable specifically at early stages in the game which we'll go over. It does have strengths and weaknesses and I'll try to go over them point by point. One of these strengths is the proc itself, as well as how simple it is to execute, as you'll be able to get it to proc almost instantly with your initial combo which plays a key factor in it's reliability.
  • Another strength is that compared to Dark Harvest where you'll have "stacking" on your mind, with Electrocute you can just play with less factors in mind and can instead focus on more important things such as positioning, targeting, cooldowns, etc. As previously mentioned a major strength is that its early-game reliability compared Dark Harvest, where you have 150 stacks and get the upgraded version, will gain you a lot more early leads. Before it's upgraded will have a 20 second window to use the Dark Harvest proc otherwise it will expire and you won't get a chance to use it at all. With Electrocute not only does this "damage window" not exist but you won't have to worry about getting the stack in the first place, you can simply walk into a lane and use your standard combo with your full damage. Another scenario early-game is during long invades you may be in a bush for an extended period of time, and while Dark Harvest might expire during that window, your electrocute will stay active. There are some other notable things like the damage scaling well into late-game due to it's bonus AD scaling, it won't truly "fall off" in terms of damage alone.179.png
  • Electrocute doesn't have many weaknesses but it does have 1 weakness in comparison to Dark Harvest which I will touch on more in that section. That weakness is the cooldown, the cooldown is over 30 seconds for a majority of the game which means it will only proc once during a skirmish or teamfight in most cases. This can limit your damage output a considerable amount because if you misuse that electrocute proc or you need an extended fight, the rest of the fight you'll be playing as if you have no keystone. In conclusion, Electrocute has a lot of consistent, reliable, upsides and not many downsides which makes it the go-to for beginner Kha'Zix players who don't want to take risks, and even pros who value a safer/consistent playstyle.
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Dark%20Harvest.png?width=64

Dark Harvest is a keystone with a very high upside as well as insane snowballing potential. There is a lot of negative stigma attached to this rune as it's not commonly used by "pros" or "high Elo Koreans" but it is commonly used by several high Elo Kha'Zix OTPs for months now for good reason. I'll try to clear up some misconceptions about the keystone before I go forward. 
  • Firstly is people saying you're losing out on a lot of damage early-game and it's not as relevant until you've stacked it, this is incorrect and people assume you're getting a much weaker early-game if you're not going Electrocute. To add some context to this, we can setup an example scenario where you're level 4 after a blue>gromp>wolves>raptors>red>scuttle. Let's also factor in the runes taken from OPGG's most popular (dom+sorc with celerity+waterwalking), so bonus AD is 12. DH: 47 (base) + (12 * 0.25) (bonus AD) + 12 (stacks) = 62 premitigation damage. Elec: 80 (base) + (12 * 0.5) (bonus AD) = 86 premitigation damage. 24 damage difference, going down to only around 15-18 damage after armor calculation. As you can see the difference in damage is not far between Electrocute and Dark Harvest. Another factor that's often brought up is that you're giving up all early/mid-game pressure because you're stuck farming Dark Harvest stacks. On the contrary, if you actually know how to path efficiently and have good awareness for cannon waves, gank opportunities, and collecting souls from skirmishes and invades, you'll have a pretty easy time stacking it. It's not a linear playstyle where you're forced into "farm mode" and then get a very small reward like some would imply.
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  • Now that we've gotten the misconceptions out of the way we can move onto it's biggest strength over Electrocute, which is the cooldown. While you might not massively outdamage Electrocute just looking at the proc damage alone in comparison, you have to factor in that Electrocute has an extremely long cooldown (over 30 seconds for a majority of the game) and you will proc it only once in 90% of fights. The upside of having Dark Harvest is you will consistently proc it multiple times in a fight. Around mid-game, as well as early skirmishes, your overall DPS will skyrocket because you'll be collecting stacks from kills, teammates dying, or even you're walking by a dead camp/cannon. There's so many possibilities to get at least 3-5 procs a fight allowing you to pop off and chain kills much easier. The choice is pretty clear when considering teamfight value, you can either get 1 big damage proc for 35 seconds, or the same or higher proc 3+ times just by playing out the teamfight normally. 
  • This also synergizes greatly with your E evolution mid/late as well because not only will you reset your leap, but you'll also reset your dark harvest with each stack. Assuming you've accumulated a decent amount of stacks (110-160+ by 20 minutes), you'll be making your targets disappear. Lastly an added benefit is that it procs instantly in conjunction with your passive auto, which is most of your damage alongside Duskblade, assuming the stack is up. With Electrocute you'll be forced to apply 3 attacks in 3 seconds. 
  • One weakness to be mindful of is pre-150 stacks you will have a 20 second window to get the damage off before it goes away. In most situations this is manageable as 20 seconds is a bit long in league terms but there are a few situations where you'll miss out on the damage altogether which can be a considerable downside in terms of it's reliability. With this information in mind, I'd actually recommend this over Electrocute for low elos even at higher elos depending on the player because of it's pure carry potential. As a side note I'd like to touch on the synergy between Q evolve and Dark Harvest, as evolving Q first allows you to farm camps more efficiently and have a faster time stacking with better dueling potential as well. With Q evolve and DH your 1v9 capabilities goes through the roof assuming you can adapt to that specific playstyle. If you ever want to see this playstyle in full power I'd recommend checking out someone like Damir or AutoLock Saber who utilize this to it's fullest. Overall I think Dark Harvest is a medium-risk high-reward keystone that has explosive potential if played correctly.
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Slot 1

Sudden%20Impact.png?width=64

  • There's not as much to say for this one, for the moment it's far and beyond the alternatives in this path because of the lethality it gives as well as how easily it is to proc due to Kha'Zix's leap. If nerfed (which was dropped in a previous PBE cycle), then the best alternative would be cheap shot due to the passive slow enabling you to deal true damage.

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Slot 2

Zombie%20Ward.png?width=64
  • This will be most useful if you value greater vision control as a jungler. This choice is mostly decided by your playstyle as a Jungler rather than specifically for Kha'Zix. Look at this rune only as an alternative to Eyeball Collection which is a more risky option. If you want to opt for a standard and safer rune than this is the one for you.


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Eyeball%20Collection.png?width=64
  • For this rune you'll have to make a decision based on playstyle for whichever suits yours better. If you're a player who previously valued the Bounty Hunter mastery, or Rengar's bonetooth necklace passive, then this is the rune for you. It emphasizes a more snowball oriented playstyle where you will rely on either a kill or assist to stack it. There is the obvious downside where if you're set behind and unable to get any takedowns for most or all of the game, it'll be as if you didn't have a rune at all. Collecting maximum stacks gives you 18 Flat AD. As a late note, Zombie ward takedowns count for the Eyeball Collection as well which can help you stack it.
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Slot 3

Ravenous%20Hunter.png?width=64
  • With this keystone it's similar to the above choice, but instead of utility/vision or high-risk-high-reward, you'll be choosing between healing from abilities (not classified as spellvamp), or movement speed depending on your unique takedowns much like Eyeball Collection. This is mostly playstyle oriented but you will notice more synergy when taking Ravenous Hunter in conjunction with a more dueling focused playstyle, such as Q evolve as well as synergy with Death's Dance/Maw compared to Relentless Hunter. You lose out on a lot of gank presence but you gain a lot more power in terms of dueling, teamfights, and better against teamfights against tanky opponents. It can definitely give you an added edge when taking out priority targets.

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Relentless%20Hunter.png?width=64
  • One of the biggest synergies with this rune is the synergy you will get with R evolve and mobility boots. While some can argue you'll already have enough movement speed with those alone, some will say that you can't go wrong with more so long as you don't reach the threshold where more movement speed will give diminishing returns. One playstyle that will make you particularly hard to catch could include Relentless Hunter + R evolve + Mobility Boots + Youmuus w/ active + Celerity + Waterwalking + Optional Cloud Dragons and you'll be the fastest bug on the rift! This will also feel great alongside Celerity and Waterwalking because of the mobility you'll have when traversing across the map enabling you to be permanently invisible with the same pressure as an Evelynn. While the mobility is nice, it can be less effective later on in the game, where in situations that you're against a team with tanks and peel, your rune wouldn't have as much impact as Ravenous.

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Traits

The Aether Blade (Domination + Sorcery Secondary)

  • Grants 10.8 bonus Attack Damage. It's more important to focus on the individual runes for your secondary trees but it is still worth noting what each trait will give you. With this you'll be getting purely offensive capabilities in raw damage rather than splitting between attack speed like you'd get with the precision secondary trait.

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The Twisted Surgeon (Domination + Precision Secondary)
  • Grants 5.5% bonus Attack Speed, as well as 7.8 bonus Attack Damage. Compared to Aether Blade you'll be getting less raw damage but in return you'd be making up for it with the bonus attack speed you otherwise wouldn't be able to get. Once again, it's more important to focus on the individual runes than traits, but it should still be noted what stats you'll passively be getting.

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Secondary Tree

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Sorcery

Slot 1

The%20Ultimate%20Hat.png?width=64
  • Since you'll most likely be getting Sorcery as a secondary tree rather than a primary one, you'll be skipping the first slot as the other 2 slots have much better options for Kha'Zix. With that said, the best of Slot 1 runes would be The Ultimate Hat since your ultimate cooldown, which is already low, can be reduced to insane numbers, close to 40 seconds along with max CDR. dot-pattern.png NOT RECOMMENDED dot-pattern.png
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Slot 2

Absolute%20Focus.png?width=64
  • Absolute focus is the best rune in the sorcery tree for Kha'Zix because of his burst-heavy nature. This overall helps you assassinate targets faster and more consistently. There's not too much to say besides it's a solid choice and a high priority if you've going into the sorcery tree.The Standard S2 Rune.
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Celerity.png?width=64
  • Celerity is a solid alternative to Absolute Focus, most notably in conjunction with your R evolution. With R evolve and Celerity you'll have greater focus on mobility and map movement which can allow you to pressure harder and be more of a factor around the map. This is often used along with mobility boots for better results, with Cloud Drakes, Youmuus, Waterwalking, and Relentless Hunter having great synergy as well. While not comparable in damage to Absolute Focus, with this option you'll be getting a lot more utility and mobility that may suit your playstyle better. Recommended with R evolve and Mobility Boots
785.jpg


Slot 3

Scorch.png?width=64
  • You'll want this rune if you plan on taking many skirmishes, especially early where you'll want to secure kills that you normally might not get. People often compare this to the old Deathfire Touch as it functions in a similar way, although it should be noted that it only affects one target at a time, meaning if you hit multiple targets with your void spikes, it will only affect the closest target. It's earlygame damage is also similar to the old Thunderlords Decree early-game but in a burn instead of a burst. This will be a good choice for you if you plan to invade and take fights earlygame, while it may seem rather underwhelming while scaling into lategame. This keystone is purely dependent on your playstyle. Use this if you intend to fight early and skirmish often.
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Waterwalking.png?width=64
  • This is a decent option that synergizes well with Celerity and R evolution. It's not inherently bad on it's own but it definitely benefits from having more movement speed aid from Celerity and other sources. It's a decent pick when you want to prioritize mobility and having more agency across the map. Take this if you value mobility.
179.png

Gathering%20Storm.png?width=64
  • This is the scaling rune choice, and will be invaluable if your games are typically extending into the lategame. This is personal preference and playstyle oriented as well but it does have good synergy with Dark Harvest, as it shares a scaling nature with the rune. Keep in mind this rune can scale exponentially, giving 4.8 bonus AD at 10 minutes, which already outscales scorch. The downside of this rune is that if your games are ending too quickly, it will fall much shorter in comparison to other options which will be relevant at earlier points in the game, making this more for insurance if you can't close the game out. Use this rune if you want to scale.
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Precision

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Slot 1

Triumph.png?width=64
  • If you loved Dangerous Game from the previous runes, then this will be a great pickup for you. Not only will you be able to chain together kills more easily but it is the best rune for Kha'Zix in the Slot 1 tree. This also adds a clutch factor which can give you an edge in skirmishes, as most enemies won't expect, or underestimate the amount of health/mana you'll be getting back. Pick this up if you highly value reset potential and taking multiple fights.

785.jpg

Slot 2


Legend%20Tenacity.png?width=64
  • This is for a very niche setup due to recent buffs, where you'll reach 35% tenacity at max rank which will work greatly into certain comps along with Merc Treads. Use this against heavy cc compositions otherwise ignore S2 runes.

785.jpg


Slot 3

Coup%20De%20Grace.png?width=64
  • This is your standard Slot 3 rune choice, you'll want this in majority of situations because it synergizes so well with assassins in general compared to the others. Not much needs to be said besides that it's great for assuring kills and giving you a bit more execute potential when dueling your enemies. Take this in most instances.
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Cut%20Down.png?width=64
  • I'd say only take this if you're going to be against a full tank comp and you'd value it higher than Coup. This is the better option if you're building little to no health items as you'll have more value from the enemies having higher HP with more opportunities to deal more damage to them. Take this against heavy tank comps.
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Example Pages
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The Carry Jungler

(Dark Harvest + Absolute Focus + Scorch/Gathering Storm)
  • I would recommend this rune page if you're running going the Q>E>W evolution path. With Dark Harvest you're going to be having more of an impact on skirmishes and fights, as well as more overall snowball potential throughout the game. This added carry potential will allow you to take more resources and do more with them. You'll be less team reliant and more of an individual threat compared to other setups. This can work especially well if you're in lower elos where you'll only be able to rely on yourself to carry games, and assuming you can make use of this playstyle, you'll have much more success climbing than relying on teammates to do so. This can also do wonders why smurfing or playing versus opponents who's skill levels are much lower than yours. A weakness to this setup would be it's often too carry oriented, and less reliable compared to some other builds. Often times if you can't build a strong solo lead, you can be left open to being set behind in stacks and levels. Without R evolution you'll also be giving up a lot of early ganking pressure but in return your dueling potential, clear speeds, and objective control will increase substantially. Another bonus is that, even if there's limited opportunities to snowball through a lane, you'll always have the option to farm up and play conservatively while gradually building a lead with your faster clear speeds and faster DH stacking, letting you become a massive threat if not stopped. Take this if you feel like you can solo carry games, and can utilize Dark Harvest to it's fullest.
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"Evelynn"


(Electrocute + Celerity + Waterwalking)
  •  With this page your focus will heavily be on mobility and be extremely reliable on your R evolution. The possible Evo paths you'll want to go are R>E>W/Q, R>W>Q/E, or R>Q>E/W. With this setup you'll have a lot of pressure and snowball potential through ganking lanes. Usually you'll want to be hovering in river waiting for the right moment to gank or countergank. The biggest strength you have with this build is your speed, the quicker you get around the map, the more kill participation and impact on the game you'll have as a jungler. Also with this build you'll be able to stealth permanently by chaining together bushes with your passive R evolution, much earlier on in the game. This page is also considered a standard by many and is one of the most popular rune pages as it takes very little risks, while having a consistent, gank-oriented playstyle. One weakness is that you'll be giving up a bit of individual carry potential in exchange for the mobility and ability to open up much more unique gank opportunities. Another strength is later on in the game, you'll have an advantage by being able to easily create picks on squishy targets by walking into the jungle regardless of enemy wards and assassinate your target. One tip you can use is that while in your stealth with R evolve, you can fully stealth from mid lane to the baron pit and have a great opportunity for a steal as you'll be invisible the whole time until you reach the pit. Take this if you value consistency, mobility, and snowballing through ganks.
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"THE BIG WAFF"

(Dark Harvest + Triumph + Coup De Grace)
  • Waffle Jr's standard rune page. This is used primarily with the Q>E>W evolution path, and emphasizes on resets, snowballing, and mechanical outplays. While somewhat similar to "The Carry Jungler" page, the key difference is the Precision Tree secondary over Sorcery. Waffle opts for more reset potential with Triumph and chaining together kills that he wouldn't normally be able to get away with using the Sorcery runes. Coup de Grace also plays a role in helping your burst, although nerfed to be a bit weaker than Absolute Focus. The last added note is the 5.5% bonus attack speed you get with the Twisted Surgeon trait instead of raw damage. Try this build if you want to carry through flashy double jumps, pentakills, resets, and incredible snowball potential. If you want to check out this page in action, I suggest some of Waffle's montages.
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The EUW D5 DDoSer

(Phase Rush + Sudden Impact + Ravenous Hunter)
  • Popularized by Messejajs, this is a rune page known for it's niche playstyle that comes from running Phase Rush, allowing you to stick to your targets easier and guarantee your kills. If you liked Stormraiders from previous Masteries then you'll feel nostalgic using this build. Use this setup if you're playing normal games, trolling, or Messejajs.

Abilities Back to Top

Q
W
E
Q
Q
R
Q
W
Q
W
R
W
W
E
E
R
E
E
Passive
Q
1
4
5
7
9
W
2
8
10
12
13
E
3
14
15
17
18
R
6
11
16

Nothing more needs to be said, self explanatory. khazixr.png > khazixq.png > khazixw.png > khazixe.png



Items Back to Top

Starting Items

    Starting Items

Core Items

    Mid-Core
    Strong Mid-Late Items
    Strong Mid-Late Items 2

Situational Items

    Explanations for each below

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Intro

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While there may be a lot of content, everything to do with Kha'Zix itemization should hopefully be covered. If after reading this guide you are unclear about each items strengths and how to apply each item and build to your own game, please leave suggestions on how I could improve this guide. Also check out this item set link to automatically import standard Kha'Zix builds. Item set link

A majority of the information will focus on how much damage each item can do compared to how much the item costs. Note: we do not always need to buy the most damage efficient item, but knowing the damage of each item is crucial to knowing which item best suits your needs.

Analysis is done by calculating Kha'Zix combo damage against various targets gathered from in-game data. A majority of damage information can be found here and here. The first link is a slightly outdated, but the general order of how items rank is unchanged as presented in the second link which highlights the changes from 8.6

Overall the purpose is to understand the underlying mathematics behind khazix itemization, so that khazix players can make informed decisions in game.

This section will primarily focus on which items do the most damage for Kha'Zix, or the extent of the damage trade-off between different item choices. Most of the information in this section can be found in the above post, but I will still provide a detailed overview here. The goal is to describe which items give Kha'Zix the most damage for the gold he spends. This is done by using the Riot Games API to collect data from recent Kha'Zix games and calculate the damage increase from each items at different points in the game vs different types of enemy targets. This type of analysis gives a more robust estimate by using actual in-game data while also accounting for the items direct benefit to Kha'Zix relative to the item cost.

Reading the graphs: The Y axis is the increase in combo damage from the item divided by the cost of the item, and the X axis from top to bottom is the enemy target level, base armor, and bonus armor, Kha'Zix's level, and HP difference (negative hp meaning the target has less hp than Kha'Zix, this is used for calculating giant slayer damage if applicable)

Note: each graph may have different line colors from the previous graph, please see the key for each graph individually


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First Item

179.png
The first example will focus on Kha's first purchase. The goal is to demonstrate which first item purchase gives Kha'Zix the most damage per gold in different scenarios. Since we are discussing the first item, the focus should be on the earlier sections of the graph

The first scenario is a typical ADC, and our combo is  khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixr.png.

WpqtNNOUxJKlSK9V8Ti8BPDOr5hgk-sJoEjRpkgE

For the same target, we can also look at a slightly shorter combo to get some idea of how the results vary relative to our combo choice.

jyTMJh-z-znXz-aM1XVjrv0dombj0q5TZkWe5BdJ

We see that the combo choice does not impact the item ranking much, except for Duskblade which makes sense since the item is very dependent on passive procs.

Finally, to get an idea of a more extreme case we can look at a longer combo on a more tanky target e.g. Illoai in this case we will be using a very long combo (khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixr.png dot-pattern.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixr.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixq.png  for demonstration purposes. 

O5g7lvltswZ_1xwHQHSQPDtE5OIUXgubJrPGV5ne

Since we don't have time to look at graphs all day, I provided the above 3 examples to hopefully cover a wide enough range of experiences to carry on the conversation, especially since we already do not see much variation in the above examples.

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3147.png  1400.png

Warrior vs Duskblade Rush


Looking at the presented scenarios, the main point is that Warrior is consistently on top, and at times by a very large margin. There is the scenario where, for the khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.png  dot-pattern.png khazixr.png , Combo, Duskblade passes warrior after level 6 on the squishy target. However for combos with less emphasis on passive procs, Duskblade falls off significantly compared to Warrior.

So in terms of damage Duskblade is only better for 2+ passive proc combos after level 6, i.e. Duskblade is only more damage in a specific situation and Warrior is actually better damage on average and more versatile.

However the conversation at this point is not solely about damage. For some additional context on the Warrior vs Duskblade rush conversation the topic was covered very briefly in the first Kha'Zix seminar and we can also see an emphasis on the clearing power of warrior in the 6th Seminar. The smite upgrade is obviously very powerful for Jungling through the clear benefits and the damage + utility of the smite active. The power of the smite upgrade alone should not be forgotten in this conversation.

For those that rush Duskblade, I've seen talisman into Duskblade and smite upgrade into Duskblade. I think its fair to say talisman start is objectively wrong in almost all situations due to machete being both faster and healthier. Smite upgrade into Duskblade has less disadvantages in the jungle since all of the clear/ganking benefits of the smite upgrade are maintained, however once the smite upgrade is purchased the Duskblade powerspike becomes significantly delayed compared to a cheap and easily accessible warrior powerspike that gives better damage on average. Lastly it should be noted that lethality scales with levels so getting it earlier is less valuale then it would be after warrior.

To summarize, the Duskblade rush scarifies clear power, powerspike timing, and even damage in many situations. So overall the Duskblade rush is not good to say the least and it's recommended to rush Warrior when ahead or behind.

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Second Item

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The next section will be very similar to the first, except we will analyse each scenario accounting for the fact that we already have warrior.

Note: the graphs in this section do not have HP values labeled (but the calculations do account for them). hopefully it is not disruptive to the discussion.

First, a squishy target and khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.png dot-pattern.png khazixr.png  combo

dKA3qrnxCU7rxtfRGPSDMCcRfBu7Jri1Qt2DeTpn

And the same target but a shorter combo: khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.png  dot-pattern.png   

wdRWpsxwlvTUo0rBVPRvygNzQr4ucnZWRfJ-itMn

Finally we will also have a look at a target on the tanky side with the khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.png dot-pattern.png khazixr.png   combo 

ftPDr1Ym_XQB5SMKLEBFiNR1Jw-lcmjg4b19hisT


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Finishing the build

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Introduction

While the first two items are very straightforward and nearly 100%, the rest of the build is much more situational. any of the following are viable in pretty much any order: Tiamat, Hydra, Ghostblade, Edge of Night, Death's Dance, Cleaver, Guardian Angel, Maw, Merc Scimitar. Any of the items mentioned in this section can theoretically be built in any order after Warrior and Duskblade. At this point its important to balance between how much damage you need and which utility functions you need, so naturally playstyle and situation are a large point. However it is still important to understand the trade-offs of the items in order to make decisions properly.

With an understanding of how much damage is required and which utilities will help accomplish your win conditions for the game, you can decide on a build that balances damage and utility optimally for the current game.

That said, the standard assassin build would be considered Warrior>Duskblade>Ghostblade/Cleaver>LDR,GA,Maw, other situational items.

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1400.png 1412.png

Red Smite vs Blue Smite

Firstly this is one of the commonly asked questions in the community but it really comes down to playstyle and some specific situations. For instance there will be some games you'd need better dueling potential and the damage reduction from Red smite would definitely be the better choice. This can be useful against champs like Warwick, Udyr or Shaco who can duel you relatively easy without Red Smite. On the other hand, Blue Smite will come in handy as well as it can help secure kills easier while ganking and enable you to snowball harder off of having an easier time sticking to targets.Also to be noted Blue smite will synergize nicely as it's instant, upfront burst which aligns perfect with his bursty nature, whereas Red Smite you'll need to commit more autos and Q's to out damage Blue's instant damage. Overall: Red is better for a fighter/bruiser playstyle or if you're struggling dueling the enemy jungler. Blue is typically better for ganking and Assassin Kha'Zix, allowing you to snowball easily.

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Understanding Damage Trade-offs

The key at this point is understanding what each item can provide and how well that item's abilities and stats will work for the current game. Generally making decisions based on how much damage you want to have is straightforward and consistent because tradeoffs are easy to measure.

If you are new to Kha'Zix, experiment with different levels of damage to find a good fit. Almost any range between Tiamat + Ghostblade (high damage) to cleaver + GA (lower damage) can work, and with practice you can comfortably decide how much damage is needed each game. Just be aware that there needs to be an understanding of the damage efficiency of each item purchase and an understanding of how much gold has already been spent on damage. For example, if you've purchased a medium amount of damage and feel that you need a different style, you can tweak your build to add or remove damage as long as you know the damage vs gold breakdowns of each item in different scenarios.

If you have awareness of each items damage, you can understand exactly how much damage you have and exactly how to add or remove damage from your builds from game to game based on your needs.

In order to assist with the decision making process, I'll include the damage per gold graphs for some common items, as well as some descriptions of each option.



x34bE_bH4pmYyqR6XVm4WUAWjxvgvN0VKmg3-aiP

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3077.png


Tiamat (and Hydra)


Clearly a top performer in terms of damage efficiency, but there is a lot more to the item. It can help with clearing your camps, added wave clear, isolating enemies, and extra mid-air jump resets. The down side of Tiamat is that the upgrade to hydra is relatively inefficient due to how much of the items power is concentrated in the Tiamat active, as well as it being awkward to fit into your build due to generally superior alternatives for your item slot. However Ravenous Hydra itself is still a top damage item for Kha'Zix. Hydra's damage/gold is comparable to Ghostblade and Hydra is top performer in this category in terms of total damage (see my first post for more info there are also some more up to date graphs showing hydra here). The downside of Hydra is the cost, but you do get what you pay for with the item. While the hydra upgrade can be cost prohibitive, staying with Tiamat is not always ideal either since Tiamat is a relatively cheap item to have occupying an item slot long term. However, depending on the game length, the restriction on item slots may not be felt at all, and depending on how much gold is available the hydra upgrade may or may not be problematic. Overall Tiamat is a multipurpose item and is again situational as well as preferential. 

In addition to the more well know benefits of wave clear and farming, Tiamat and Hydra excel at maximizing damage. Tiamat maximizes damage per gold and hydra maximizes damage per slot. In addition to damage on squishy targets, it is shown later in the guide that Tiamat/Hydra also perform exceptionally against armored targets as well, so Tiamat can improve damage on squishy and tankier targets. The benefit of maximizing damage comes with either an item slot occupied long term with an inexpensive item, or a highly expensive item purchase.

For more information, there was a Kha'Zix Academy Topic on our Subreddit here, discussing Tiamat further.

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3142.png

Ghostblade

A major goal of the item is damage, and we can see where its damage per gold value ranks: lower damage per gold compared to Tiamat, but higher damage per slot. Due to Ghostblade having higher damage per slot than Tiamat and lower cost compared to Hydra, Ghostblade often gives more flexibility in your build path than Tiamat/Hydra in exchange for damage. Additionally the item offers movement speed and cooldown reduction along with the obvious lethality. The out of combat movement speed can help with added mobility and proactivity with added map pressure as well as with entering fights, catching opponents, and more. The active movement speed burst can provide a significant edge in terms of out maneuvering opponents in and out of fights especially when used with active R movement speed to dodge skillshots or close larger distances.

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3814.png

Edge of Night

While having the same total damage as Ghostblade, naturally lower damage per gold due to paying extra for hp and the spell shield. The spell shield active is particularly effective against champions that have crucial CC abilities, although the spell shield can be useful in a variety of situations. To evaluate the value of the spell shield in each game, think about the exchange of abilities in each engagement. Consider what options your targets have to "waste" your spell shield with low value abilities. For example Xerath, ideally you will block his stun but even blocking his Q or W is equivalent to a valuable amount of health. So its important to not only think about blocking cc but also about blocking damage.

An important dynamic of edge of night is that the shield must be used proactively, so controlling which ability is blocked can be difficult. If you prefer to deal with cc reactively, QSS may be a better option. while QSS cannot directly block damage it does provide magic resist, and due to the reactive nature of the item you can 100% guarantee a cleanse of key cc. With QSS there is no opportunity for you to waste the active since you wont use it until youre cc'd, but that can also be more demanding mechanically.

Overall edge of night can provide, at worst, additional hp, and at best immunity from a key ability, so in that sense the item is very dependent on the current game. It can be seen as a nice preference item that suits specific situations but use at your own discretion.

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3078.png

Trinity Force

This item is extremely situational and rarely will be picked up in your build although it does have it's uses. For one the Sheen proc can easily be abused by Kha'Zix as well as the Phage for sticking onto targets. It's attack speed might seem overvalued on Kha'Zix but it can make a difference and definitely adds to your DPS overall. This is a great value item especially for situations where you'll want to push down towers faster, while you're massively ahead, or when the game extends to 70 minutes and you want to sell Warrior for this.


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Utility and Defense 

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It is important to have a solid damage base before purchasing utility items so that Kha'Zix can still do his job as an assassin. If Kha'Zix has enough damage, he can make use of items that increase his defensiveness and mobility in exchange for damage. Due to the items below having lower damage value than the above items, the items below are generally purchased for their utility and item abilities. Some small damage trade-offs exist between these utility items as shown in the graphs but the damage in this section is generally outweighed by the utility of the item. Naturally the utility items for Kha'Zix are relatively different from each other and succeed for different reasons.

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3071.png

The Black Cleaver

For cleaver, I believe it's a pretty big misconception that it's only useful when fighting tanks. It's important to understand that cleaver is by no means constricted to tank scenarios. You don't have to AFK spam Q on a tank to get the value out of this item. The flat AD and the armor shred even on a short combo on a squishy already make it more damage efficient than Maw and Guardian Angel, and all of these items are so much worse than the main damage items that you only buy them for the utility in the first place. So in the end it really all just comes down to utility preference, and I don't see any reasonable argument that survivability, in combat movement speed burst, and exrta damage for your team is worse than anything that other utility items have to offer for Kha'Zix. i.e. Cleaver provides relevant damage and utility, even if you're not killing tanks.

We can see cleavers damage in different scenarios, and the curve for cleaver does not change much. Tanks and squishes alike between short and long combos cleaver performs roughly the same relative to other options. The conclusion from this is that the cleaver purchase is nearly independent of your targets armor values so when purchasing cleaver, the focus should be on the value of the movespeed to stick onto targets and HP along with who on your team can use the armor shred.

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3812.png

Death's Dance

The unique strength of deaths dance is the healing and damage delay which make Kha'Zix more durable, acting as a pseudo-tank, so the value of Death's Dance depends on how much healing can be done in each engagement. Death's Dance becomes more valuable the longer you're in combat, so it can work well with durability and tank killing items like cleaver, last whisper, GA, QSS etc. Death's Dance can also be combined with other healing items like Maw and Hydra (along with Wrath elixer and Ravenous Hunter mastery) for even stronger healing. Since the healing and damage delay are percentage based, Death's Dance is naturally more valuable the later the game goes and everyone's doing more damage. It is a relatively common strategy to sell warrior for deaths dance at full build since deaths dance also provides 10% cooldown reduction and slightly more flat AD for one items lot. Although, this is definitely preference based since smites upgrades can still be valuable late game.

One downside to Death's dance is that the damage bleed can cause you to shimmer during your ult and give away your position, so its important to be aware of the deaths dance bleed before ulting. Death's Dance is also expensive as an item comparatively to others. Still Death's Dance provides relevant benefits through extensive sustain, so its up to the player to decide how to make use of the item. As a frame of reference you need to deal 2700 damage with deaths dance to heal as much HP as Black Cleaver gives naturally. This gives an idea of how Death's Dance healing converts into defensive stats. While Death's Dance is better later in the game, it can be purchased as early as a third item depending on situation and preference but not typically recommended until later.

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Maw of Malmortius

Essentially removes AP champs from the game. on a slightly more serious note: Maw is completely unrivaled in terms of dealing with AP champs between the MR, 300+ HP, and spell vamp + lifesteal. Something else to note is the calculations in this guide do not account for the 20 AD from lifeline, so with lifeline active Kha'Zix can become relatively unstoppable with maw in certain situations. Maw can also be coupled with Edge of Night in certain situations to nullify any response from AP burst champions such as Annie and Syndra. Generally this item can be purchased at any time to deal with AP champions.


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Guardian Angel

Guardian Angel was discussed briefly in Seminar 7 here.  I would like to additionally emphasize the psychological pressure of GA especially when you're in a position to carry. The enemy will want to focus you, but they will also feel hesitant to focus you because of your extra revive. As mentioned in the seminar, forcing that kind of attention and pressure on the enemy team can give you team a huge edge in teamfights. It's also a great item for the stats, as it has two crucial components, BF sword and stopwatch which can all have a large impact when picked up at later stages in the game.

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Mercurial Scimitar

Scimitar is a decent situational choice if you really need to deal with hard CC, especially surpressions of the point-and-click variety. It has a bit of an awkward build path that can be pricey but stat-wise it will give you decent base MR and Damage, while the lifesteal can be somewhat negligible.


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Armor Penetration

A sometimes difficult task for Kha'Zix players is deciding the proper items to respond to the enemy building armor and HP. In this section, a range of targets with bonus armor and HP will be examined to determine which armor penetration items give Kha'Zix the most damage for his gold.

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The Black Cleaver

As a reference, we will first examine long combos against large tanks at the third item point and fifth item point

Warrior + Duskblade khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.png dot-pattern.pngkhazixr.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixr.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixq.pngkhazixw.pngkhazixq.png

I1AAQkWKQ6WhUP9_57ktNmDjbZiMBmb3W-opo3gB

Warrior + Duskblade + Ghostblade +Guardian Angel khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixr.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixr.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixq.pngkhazixw.pngkhazixq.png

nV8AuAFdcugTw0ZyMyShZgn-Aqpt0AGrSqJF0XxO

Note: This does not mean cleaver is a bad item.

The main purpose of including these scenarios is to clear up any misconceptions about cleaver. Since the item has a stacking mechanic and percentage armor penetration, it may seem that cleaver outshines it's competitors in scenarios involving large tanks and long combos. However based on the above results, cleaver is out shined in terms of its damage value compared to its armor penetration competitors.

Although based on the shape of the damage multiplier curves these results are somewhat expected since the benefit of % armor penetration actually decreases in value as the targets armor is increased passed 110.

Because of these results, Black Cleaver is considered a utility and defense item. While the item lacks in damage vs armored targets, cleaver provides impressive benefits in terms of surviability and mobility. While the defensive traits of cleaver can help significantly vs tougher enemies. More details on cleaver will be provided in other sections, but for now it is only important to emphasize that if your goal is to do more damage to armored targets, cleaver is not the answer.

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Ghostblade, Tiamat, and LDR

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For a more practical combo, we can take a look at how much armor penetration is required for last whisper and LDR to become the best item choice relative to other high damage options.

Warrior + Duskblade khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixr.pngdot-pattern.png


M24ZAR1rYBvPg59wRrTRJlYCzlDWspwpWKrdn4c0

Warrior + Duskblade + Ghostblade + Guardian Angel khazixw.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixq.pngdot-pattern.pngkhazixr.pngdot-pattern.png

Rob46r_Zp7vSittS3pJElpeJlK3TDros7izFtA8B

From these examples we can look at line crossings to get an idea of which items are the best response to different armor and HP values. However, since the break even areas between these items depend heavily on at least three different values (bonus hp, base armor, and bonus armor) having a fully comprehensive answer can be difficult without looking at several cases. However through this example I hope to get a starting point, and most importantly get a relative idea of how each item responds to armor and HP stats.

From the above graphs, we can see that in both cases Tiamat does not pass LDR until 60+ base armor 90+ bonus armor and 800+ hp. Considering Tiamat does not have any explicit armor penetration, I found these results impressive. What this means is that, when the ADC builds Guardian Angel and Ninja Tabi, do not be so quick to think LDR is your best shot at maximizing your damage.

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Summary

While there is always more data to look through, I hope the general point has been sufficiently proven. If we're in a situation where a squishy target gets Tabis, we know the max damage response is still Tiamat and lethality. If there is a squishy with Tabis and GA, or a mage with Zhonya's Hourglass and an HP item like Rylai's or Protobelt, we can still use Tiamat against them but LDR should be considered over Ghostblade if the goal is to maximize damage.

127.jpgBuild Examples

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Standard Assassin Build

1400.png > 1001.png > 3147.png > 3142.png > 3026.png or 3036.png  


Bruiser/Fighter Build

1412.png > 3047.png > 3147.png > 3071.png > 3156.png > 3812.png or 3026.png

Anti-AP Build

1400.png > 3111.png > 3155.png > 3147.png > 3156.png > 3812.png or 3814.png or 3139.png 

Alternative Assassin Build

1400.png > 3117.png > 3077.png > 3142.png > 3071.png > 3033.png > 3026.png

Alternative Bruiser Build

1412.png > 3117.png > 3071.png > 3812.png > 3156.png > 3026.png

BUY PINK WARDS





Matchups Back to Top

Click on a champion below to see the author's notes on that particular matchup.

  • Camille
    Medium
  • Elise
    Medium
  • Evelynn
    Easy
  • Gragas
    Medium
  • Graves
    Medium
  • Hecarim
    Medium
  • Ivern
    Easy
  • Jarvan IV
    Easy
  • Jax
    Medium
  • Kai'Sa
    Medium
  • Kayn
    Easy
  • Kindred
    Easy
  • Lee Sin
    Medium
  • Master Yi
    Medium
  • Nidalee
    Medium
  • Nocturne
    Medium
  • Nunu
    Medium
  • Olaf
    Easy
  • Rammus
    Easy
  • Rek'Sai
    Easy
  • Rengar
    Medium
  • Sejuani
    Medium
  • Shaco
    Hard
  • Shyvana
    Medium
  • Skarner
    Medium
  • Udyr
    Hard
  • Volibear
    Medium
  • Warwick
    Hard
  • Xin Zhao
    Medium
  • Zac
    Medium

VS

Camille

Medium

Be very mindful of her ganking ability at level 2 and try to ping your laners to be cautious. She's relatively easy to duel early on and invading her should be no trouble. Be careful of her trinity force spike as she will be a much larger threat as the game goes on and she begins to get tankier. Take R evolve first if you need to match her gank pressure or Q evolve if you can shut her down by dueling her and outfarming her.

VS

Elise

Medium

Avoid her stun, and the fight will be relatively easy, however she still has more than enough damage to take you out in mere seconds. Play the fight very cautiously, or try not to fight her at all. Her spiderlings negate your isolation damage. Tiamat is a good purchase to create isolation by killing her spiders.

VS

Evelynn

Easy
She is relatively easy to deal with in the early game, but at level 6 you will lose fights if you get hit by her charm. Watch for her strong pressure at level 6 too. Abuse her pre 6 with invades.

VS

Gragas

Medium

You should be able to 1v1 him unless he has a level or item advantage in the early game. You destroy him later on if you have a tank shredding item such as Black Cleaver or a Last Whisper item.

VS

Graves

Medium

Very annoying to deal with, but Kha'Zix can handle him quite easily. Get the jump on him first and use Void Assault to stop him from auto attacking you. Just be wary when jumping on him, he can easily dash away which leaves you vulnerable without Void Assault. Be mindful of how tanky he can become while still dealing damage, as he may have True Grit (passive), Challenging Smite, Tabis, Phantom Dancer, Death's Dance, Maw, or more to negate your burst  Red smite and Q evolve will make a big difference in dueling him.

VS

Hecarim

Medium

He has the potential to faceroll you, but you should be able to fight him easily once you get evolved Q. Just make sure to avoid as much damage as possible with Void Assault. Be mindful of him snowballing lanes through early pressure. Go R evolution if you need to match his early pressure or Q evolve if you want to gain a farm lead and better dueling potential.

VS

Ivern

Easy

Hands down one of the easiest matchups in the game, outside of being cheesed early on, you should have no trouble winning 2v2s and straight up killing Ivern at every invade or duel. 

VS

Jarvan IV

Easy
The only problem that you will have with him is at level 3, where the matchup is based on skill. Anything after that is easy.

VS

Jax

Medium

Its a fairly easy matchup if you are able to use Void Assault and Leap correctly to get out of the way of his stun. If you can do that, you'll have no problem with him as long as you don't face tank the guy and take all of his hits. With titanic and steraks lategame he can provide to be difficult to kill later on. Suggested to go Q evolve if you want to stand a chance in terms of 1v1ing him, or R evolve if your priority is ignoring him and going for squishies.

VS

Kai'Sa

Medium

Relatively easy so long as you don't let her get an advantage over you. She will hit hard once she gets her Rageblade and PTA stacked, also a threat if she's running Dark Harvest. Don't try to fight her if you don't get your initial damage off early into the fight, as she can kite you very easily and snowball out of control if she forms a solid lead. It's suggested that you evolve Q if you need to duel her, or R if you want to catch her in the jungle before she has time to react. 

VS

Kayn

Easy

You need to abuse his weakness in the early game and snowball on him before he gets one of his forms. He can assassinate you with Shadow Assassin or just outright tank your damage as Rhaast, so you need to grab that lead and use it against him as soon as possible. Suggested to go Challenging Smite with Q evolution to ensure you'll win every duel, or R evolve if you want to snowball off of ganks while he's weak earlygame.

VS

Kindred

Easy

Jump on her first, and you should have no problem against her. Just make sure to make the first move. Be careful of her ult when she may have allies nearby to bait you.

VS

Lee Sin

Medium

Playing against Lee Sin can go either way, if you manage to get ahead of him then you'll have no problem dueling him. However, if you are evenly matched or behind him, be aware of his Sonic Wave/Resonating Strike. This is usually a skill match-up

VS

Master Yi

Medium

Master Yi is a tricky one. He can downright outplay you if he has his meditate up and it is very hard to 1v1 him late game unless it is a 1v1 with isolation. Even then, he will still shred you. Its a skill matchup most of the time. Extremely hard to duel without Q evolution and Challenging Smite.

VS

Nidalee

Medium

An easy matchup for Kha'Zix, however getting hit by a long range spear will cause problems for you. Getting hit by a spear also reveals you while in stealth, so keep that in mind.

VS

Nocturne

Medium

He can obliterate you if you aren't careful. He is able to spell shield your Q, which negates a lot of damage in the early game. However you should be able to 1v1 him later on even if he spell shields your Q simply because you should have a high amount of CDR. If he gets the jump on you, you will take a lot of damage and die quite quickly if you choose to fight. Q evolution is a must if you plan to duel him while not ahead. Suggested that you take R evolution and build mobility boots to match his pressure from ulting, in this matchup you'll need to prioritize mobility and pressure.

VS

Nunu

Medium

Potentially one of the more annoying matchups, what Ivern could be if he was still relevant in the meta. Nunu will not only win in objective control, but has a relatively easy time escaping and stealing camps. It's recommended that you keep objectives and your jungle warded and to prioritize his carries instead of him as his main purpose later on will just be enabling his carries while being a giant wall of tank stats. 

VS

Olaf

Easy

You can fight him easily at all stages of the game, and since he has no hard CC he poses no threat to you in any stage of the game. Just make sure not to face-tank his hard hitting auto attacks.

VS

Rammus

Easy

Relatively easy matchup as you have many tools in your kit to out maneuver him and be more impactful in teamfights and gank situations. He can be troublesome to kill but its rare that you'll want to focus him outside of 1v1 situations. If you need to deal with him frequently it's recommended to purchase Challenging Smite, Tank shredding items, and Evolve your Q early. 

VS

Rek'Sai

Easy

Quite easy to kill, but she can also put up a good fight. You should have no problem against her with evolved Q, but before that just make sure to fight in isolation.

VS

Rengar

Medium

The ultimate rivalry. This matchup is very dependent on who gets ahead first. Just kite around with your Ultimate and Leap, using Q and W as necessary and you'll be fine. At level 3-4 since the revert he can out-duel you so be mindful.

VS

Sejuani

Medium

Similar to Zac in that she poses quite a threat in teamfights but cannot kill you, although you will have a hard time killing her yourself. Difficult to burst down and hard to stay on her. You'll need a lot of anti-tank items such as Lord Dominiks Regard, Black Cleaver, stacking armor penetration, or a combination in order to kill her. 

VS

Shaco

Hard
WARNING - THIS CHAMPION IS EXTREMELY ANNOYING. 

The amount of times a Shaco has stolen my buffs is too many to count. He can stop your isolation damage with his ult and can assassinate you if he gets the jump on you. Ward your jungle often and try to know his position at all times. Take your buffs as soon as they come up, because you are likely to lose one of them on your first clear depending on where he starts

VS

Shyvana

Medium

ou're going to have a hard time once she gets her jungle item and her ultimate. She is able to tank a few of your isolated Qs with the right build and will destroy you in a few hits, especially in the mid game. Try and kite her with Void Assault as much as possible.

Abuse her earlygame when you can duel her, and try to snowball lanes while she's farming before she's powerful.

VS

Skarner

Medium

Skarner can be real trouble for you as he has one of the most efficient clear times for junglers and his early gank pressure can be insane. Add that to having a game-changing ultimate that can easily punish you or an ally who's mispositioned and you'll be regretting not shutting him down early. Skarner can be abused earlygame in 1v1 scenarios if he misses his stun on you but be mindful when fighting in his spire zones. It's suggested to build a QSS if you're being focused, or pick up an Edge of Night as a situational item as well.

VS

Udyr

Hard

Relatively hard to outplay but generally as long as you're not behind in kills you can duel him with duskblade and ult, or if you're ahead a level or two before six. You'll need Q evolve first to have a chance when it comes to dueling him otherwise try to not take many 1v1s. You also need to care for PTA, which means you need to ult before he gets that third auto off on you, otherwise you're going to take a lot more bleed damage. Don't be afraid to get both ult procs off when fighting him.


The only way he really counters you is through splitpushing and being able to build tanky earlier. Other than that he doesn't really counter you at all. If he tries to invade, spam ping where he is and collapse on him with laners. If he doesn't invade, try to track his movements. If you can't do this, invade and take two or so camps, while warding the entrance. Odds are he's going to either gank after seeing his camps are gone or take rift/drake, depending on where he is. Make sure you're their to counter gank, as aside from E udyrbearstance.png and some slight tankiness from udyrturtlestance.png, he doesn't have much in way of gank potential.

Becomes quite a splitpushing threat later that is difficult to deal with without team coordination.


VS

Volibear

Medium

A bit tricky, especially in the early game. He will out-sustain you in fights during the early game, and if you face-tank his ultimate you will die very fast. Try to play around with him as much as possible with Void Assault. That way you can avoid the majority of his ultimate.

VS

Warwick

Hard

From the help of Tinjus, he's allowing us to borrow his matchup information, check out his channel here: Tinjus


Very difficult for Kha'Zix. You have trouble fighting him at all stages of the game unless you get very ahead of him. Try not to fight him alone, even if he is isolated. He will heal a lot of your damage up and can kill you quickly.

VS

Xin Zhao

Medium

Can be one of the harder matchups depending on his build, but assuming he is going for Trinity Force + Steraks + Tank then you'll find this matchup to be one of the harder ones especially for dueling. You can abuse him at early levels as Kha'Zix will usually win but one of his key weaknesses is his one-dimensional playstyles where once he goes in, it's easily telegraphed. You can use this to your advantage by baiting him to going in on you and steathing out while teammates are nearby to assist, or simply ult passed him onto his backline. It's recommended to purchase red smite and evolve Q if you want any success dueling him, and R evolution if you simply want to snowball your lanes instead.

VS

Zac

Medium
You should be able to fight him with no problem, although it can be a bit harder if he gets the jump on you with E. He poses quite a threat in teamfights due to his disruption so try and stay away from him while he is using his ultimate.

Evolutions Back to Top


Evolutions

127.jpg

Introduction 

179.png
Let me start off by saying that Kha'Zix is an incredibly versatile champion in that he can adapt to what the game based on the state of it as well as what he needs. Yes, as with most things there will be several 'most optimal' builds and evolution orders are no exception, but the players that utilize his variety of different evolution orders will end up becoming more familiar with the champion and as a result will thrive as opposed to the ones that are stuck in the mindset which claims that theres only one or two good evolution orders. This section of the guide will be going over the evolutions and the situations in which they can be used, as well as how to tie them into practical effective evolution orders.

This section will be assuming that you know how Kha'Zix's abilities function, so if you're completely new to Kha'Zix and don't know how his kit works, take a look at his abilities first then come back to this section.

127.jpg

The Evolutions

179.png
khazixq.png

Evolved Q - Reaper Claws 


Kha'Zix gains increased range on his auto attacks and Taste Their Fear. It will also refund 45% of Taste Their Fear's cooldown if it is used on an isolated target. 

This is going to be the safest, most reliable evolution that you can possibly run. Kha'Zix's Taste Their Fear is one of the most important parts of his kit and being able to use it more does wonders for you. It'll allow you to increase your clearing speed so you're able to farm faster as well as duel isolated enemies easier and take objectives faster. Its also fantastic against tanks as you can shred them down quickly with very low cooldown reduction. Ideally, you want to evolve this if you need extra dueling power, clear speed and efficiency. When behind you will usually evolve this to help you catch up. Also take this early if you don't have the most reliable laners or winning lane matchups, as you'll be less team reliant and be able to play selfishly, farm more efficiently, and build a solid lead for yourself without relying solely on ganking or enabling a lane to carry (as you would with R evolve).

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Evolved W - Spike Racks

When evolved, Void Spike will fire 3 spikes in a cone while also slowing enemies hit by 40% and revealing them. If the target is isolated, they will be slowed by 80% instead.

This remarkable tool makes for a fantastic team-oriented evolution that will allow you to peel for your carries, disengage fights and enhance your pick potential with the strong slow. This evolution is fantastic for when you need to help out your team more in the game as it provides a lot of utility that can be used to support them. The slow is very reliable and useful in all situations but ideally you'd only be taking W if you want to work alongside your team (maybe your AD carry is fed and needs peel). Evolve this ability if you want to achieve the things said above and play a more team-oriented supportive playstyle. Best to take at level 11 or 16 when grouping and picks are more important.

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Evolved E - Wings

When evolved, Leap's range is increased and the cooldown is reset upon kill or assist.

This is the evolution that pretty much makes Kha'Zix what he is. The resets you get from kills and assists allow you to make incredible plays, get in and out of fights as well as clean up enemies. This is Kha'Zix's most important evolution if you are playing as an assassin, and will open up a lot of opportunities in the game for you. It is pretty much essential as it provides Kha'Zix with an escape tool to get in and out of fights after quickly assassinating an enemy. You would ideally evolve this at level 11 as that is when most teamfights and opportunities arise for you.

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Evolved R - Adaptive Cloaking

While out of combat, Kha'Zix gains Void Assault's stealth and movement speed for 3 seconds upon entering a bush. This effect persists for up to 1.5 seconds after exiting the bush, and has a 10 second cooldown per individual bush.

This evolution provides extreme map mobility and pressure through the passive stealth and movement speed that it provides. You are able to traverse 80% of the map undetected which allows you to create immense pressure, since the enemy will have a hard time tracking you and preparing for ganks. This evolution is usually evolved at level 6 in order to provide early game pressure which can then be used to create a lead and end the game early. However, it does have its place at level 11 and level 16 since it can also be used to create picks in the jungle and around the river. There may be better alternatives early as this Evolution can feel less impactful if you're set behind, or if you won't have many gank opportunities to snowball a lead, such as triple scaling laners.

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Evolution Orders

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There are a LOT of evolution orders for Kha'Zix and each one of them has their specific situation in which they thrive and are effective. I will not go into detail about every single evolution order possible but if you would like to get an idea of what a specific evolution order has to offer, then follow this simple method to judge your evolution order as you create it:

khazixq.png - Dueling power, DPS, efficiency

khazixw.png - Peel, Disengage, Utility, CC, Support, Team-oriented playstyle, Pick potential.

khazixe.png - Assassination, Resets, Skirmish and Teamfight potential.

khazixr.png - Map pressure, Mobility, Pick potential in the jungle.

As you evolve your abilities, use these descriptions of the evolutions to get an idea of what they are providing for you. For example: khazixq.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixw.png - Efficiency, DPS and dueling power with Q at level 6 to assist with getting a lead in the early game; transitions into resets, team fighting and assassination potential which allow you to use that lead with evolved E; ending with evolved W to provide utility for important teamfights and team-play later on into the game.

I.e. QEW = Dueling power, DPS, Efficiency | Assassination, Resets, Skirmish and Teamfight potential | Peel, Disengage, Utility, CC, Support, Team-orientation, Pick potential |

Ideally, you would evolve your abilities at level 6, 11 and 16 based on your personal preferences as well as the state of the game. It is important to remember that Kha'Zix is very flexible, so if you like a specific evolution order don't be afraid to stick with it if you enjoy it, as all of the evolutions cater to a specific playstyle and thus may appeal to different types of players.

However, there is no denying that some evolutions are better than others at the specific levels of 6, 11 and 16. For example, the majority of players take either Q or R at level 6 as they provide much more than W or E in the early game. Q at level 6 allows you to be efficient so you can build up a lead earlier, while R at level 6 allows you to create immense map pressure which can be used to create a lead for your team. At level 11, the choice is usually between W or E as it is the time of the game where teamfights and assassination opportunities arise. A player would most likely evolve E second if they are able to assassinate effectively, as it will allow them to clean up teamfights and further their lead through plenty of opportunities that the evolution provides. If not able to assassinate and you are required to play more team-oriented, the W evolve would be appropriate to support the team more in fights. At level 16 the choice is likely going to be which ever evolution the player didn't choose at level 11: W or E again, for essentially the same reasons.

Despite this, I cannot stress enough that you can choose whatever evolution order you want. You just have to make sure that you adapt to the specific playstyle that the evolution provides. Each evolution is unique and you can choose to evolve based off of your personal preferences as a player; or the state of the game and what would be most ideal for the current situation. The scenario above is just an example of how you would evolve based on the state of the game. You can evolve Q at 16 or Q at 11 or E at level 6 if the situations call for it or if you enjoy doing it. It really doesn't matter too much so long as you can adapt.

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Evolution Overview

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khazixq.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixw.png - More versatile and consistent, while giving up some early pressure and gank opportunities, you'll gain in better dueling potential, objective control, and clearing. More carry potential throughout, while gaining utility lategame.

khazixq.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixr.png - Functions similar to QEW except you have situational pick potential in the enemy jungle with R evolve at 16.

khazixq.pngkhazixw.pngkhazixe.png - Bruiser evolution order that provides high DPS and strong utility for the mid game which can help you play more forward in fights.

khazixq.pngkhazixr.pngkhazixe.png - Utilises high DPS and mobility mid game to catch out isolated targets with incontestable damage and stealth

khazixr.pngkhazixq.pngkhazixe.png - Similar concept to QRE, but focuses more on getting a lead through map pressure early game

khazixr.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixw.png or khazixq.png- R evo at level 6 helps gain a lead and transitions into E to use that lead. Followed up by Q at level 16 for higher DPS or W to help the team.

khazixr.pngkhazixw.pngkhazixe.png - Team oriented evolution order that focuses on getting your team ahead and assisting them with high map pressure (R evolve) and utility in the mid game (W evolve). E at 16 to provide higher presence in teamfights.

khazixe.pngkhazixq.pngkhazixw.png or khazixr.png - Prioritises early game skirmishes with evolved E to quickly gain a lead from kills and end the game early. Followed up with higher efficiency with Q and utility later on with W or situational pick potential with R.

khazixe.pngkhazixw.pngkhazixq.png - Teamfight oriented evolution order that enables you to act as an assassin in teamfights and skirmishes while also being able to peel for your team in the mid game.

Choose from these if you wish to try them out or try some other evolution orders if you want, each order has a specific situation in which they are effective however your most consistent and reliable one is almost always going to be QEW.

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Evolution Path Breakdowns

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khazixq.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixw.png

Without a doubt, the standard evolution order for Kha'Zix is QEW, and for a good reason. Evolved Q at level 6 will give you the dueling power and efficiency to gain a lead in the early game, evolved E at level 11 will transition that lead nicely into skirmishes, assassination opportunities and making riskier plays, and evolved W at level 16 will let you teamfight effectively as well as give you some more pick potential with the 80% isolated slow. Also to note that it synergizes better with the Dark Harvest, carry oriented setup compared to other paths. Overall it’s a great evolution order that’s consistent and reliable so if you're unsure what to evolve on Kha'Zix this will always be a classic, reliable choice for every kind of Kha'Zix player.

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khazixr.pngkhazixe.pngkhazixw.png or khazixq.png

One of the most popular evolution orders right now, and equally as viable is R>E>W/Q. You gain all the benefits from evolved R at level 6 in terms of added mobility, agency for earlygame, and much higher snowball potential through ganking lanes. With this evolution path it's going to enable you to have a much more impactful earlygame with added pressure letting you take control of the map from an early stage in the game. You'll gain the most from this if you have very volatile lane matchups that will benefit from more gank opportunities that you wouldn't normally be able to get without evolved R. Evolving E at level 11 is more beneficial for Solo Q, not including competitive, because you'll have much more scenarios where you'll be getting resets and having more overall impact in a skirmish or teamfight. For this reason, R at 6 and E at 11 will let you ambush most targets, gap close onto them, proceeding their flash or escape, finish them off and jump out with your reset. At level 16 you'll have the choice between W or Q, which will depend on your playstyle or the situation. If you prefer the utility that's offered with W for the reasons outlined above, then take that last, and if you value better dueling, extended range on auto attacks and your Q, or faster objectives (Baron/Elder) then take Q. Overall it's a well-rounded mix of early snowball potential, allowing your laners to also get ahead, whilst becoming an individual carry threat at later stages.

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khazixr.pngkhazixw.pngkhazixe.png or khazixq.png

R>W>E/Q is utilized best and popularized by competitive play rather than Solo queue. The reason for this is that it's very team reliant compared to other evolution paths, not only are you opting for R to secure a lead for your laners, but you're also giving up individual carry potential without E and Q evolutions at 11, and instead taking the more utility and team-oriented approach with your W. With this playstyle you're goal is to enable your team to get ahead and provide utility with peel, picks, kiting, and securing vision control. This evo path also opens up more build opportunities, synergizing more with bruiser builds such as Skirmishers Warrior>Duskblade>Black Cleaver>Maw/GA>Deaths Dance and more. Lastly the decision between E or Q is dependent on if you need to get onto the enemy carries with evolved E, or prefer a more fighter/bruiser style with more DPS from evolved Q. Overall it's a solid option if you value team play and utility over being an individual carry threat.

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khazixr.pngkhazixq.pngkhazixw.png or khazixe.png

One of the more up-and-coming evolution paths that is quickly gaining popularity among higher tiers of Solo queue, especially in Korea is R>Q>W/E. With this evolution path you get the full benefit from evolved R allowing you to go for an aggo, gank-oriented style that's perfect for securing early leads through lanes, as well as the benefits from evolved Q with better dueling potential and objective control mid-game. The focus for this evolution path is creating as large of a lead as you can early-game with the pressure of your R evolution, and then carrying that lead to level 11 where you'll be able to secure objectives uncontested. You can effectively get the best of both worlds without giving up much carry potential, but instead delaying it slightly. You will be giving up faster clearing, and become a lesser threat to the enemy jungle, in exchange for having more pressure and higher impact on the lanes until 11. At level 16 it's situational whether or not you want utility and pick potential in the form of evolving W, or higher presence in a fight with resets and more assassination opportunities. Overall you're getting the best of both worlds with this evolution setup in terms of ganking, dueling, and objective control while giving/delaying some utility or reset potential.

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khazixq.pngkhazixr.pngkhazixe.png

Most notably used by the Flex Challenger legend himself,  Robhockey146. With the Q>R>E evolution path, similar things from the R>Q>W/E path can also be applied here, but at different stages. The same strengths and weaknesses apply as outlined above, except you'd have made the decision to opt for faster clears, dueling the enemy jungler, and objective control at level 6 instead of at later stages in the game. You'll still get some benefits from R evo that you would with previous evo paths, but it should be noted that snowballing with the added pressure of evolved R at level 11 might prove to be less effective than at level 6 in some situations. With Q evolve sooner you can build a stronger lead for yourself through farm and become more of an individual threat without relying on laners, and then take that lead and extend it to the lanes with R evo. You'll also be more effective with shutting down the enemy jungler with this evolution path, as you'll be able to duel him much easier and clear camps faster which plays greatly into a counter jungling style. Overall you're getting some of the same benefits as the above evolution but at different times, with different spikes, and it will all be dependent on how you obtain these leads as well as how you'll extend them into a win.

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Summary


These are the most efficient and most common evolution paths that you would want to take for your Kha'Zix setup! While we've outlined the most optimal setups, there are some niche or less popular paths not explained, as they have been covered in the evolution overview so check there if yours isn't listed. Overall it's important to remember that Kha'Zix's identity is centered around evolving to suit the situation and your playstyle, as such you shouldn't limit yourself into one way of thinking or become close-minded towards all but one playstyle. Try some of these out and see what suits your playstyle more and see which are best used situationally.
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Mid Game & Snowballing Back to Top


Mid Game 

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It's hard to give a one-fits-all answer but there's several things you can do that function in a priority system which I will cover later. Generally that is a common problem that stems from the champion more-so than individual shortcomings with bad macro decisions, although they can both affect each other. Kha'Zix with his kit is designed to get early leads because of his strong early-game matchups to most junglers, he has one of the highest snowball potentials in the game. With that it's also very easy to fall off and throw your lead because of the assassin playstyle. Usually you avoid throwing by pressing your lead by setting the enemy jungler behind and enabling at least 1 lane to snowball with you, of course you'll have games where you have to play to perfection to carry despite 4 feeding teammates. Usually the goal is to enable 1 lane to snowball and carry while you extend pressure elsewhere on the map and trade objectives with them, or by extending their lead with yours through their lane and pushing the enemy into a gold deposit they can't recover from. One of the most important things to note is extending leads is not specific to Kha'Zix but your role as a Jungler. You need to focus on building upon your fundamentals and have a strong foundation when it comes to game-knowledge as well as jungle pathing in general. Having a mental flow chart of priorities across the map can be of great use as well if you get stuck. Most importantly avoid blaming your teammates, as much as possible. You have the tools to carry yourself out as a Kha'Zix main because of his carry-oriented playstyle regardless of bad teammates.

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How to push leads into bigger advantages

The most important thing in early game is how much of an early lead you can generate for yourself and your team. There's a few ways to snowball a lead and it comes down to a lot of factors that you have to consider. Things like, team comps and win conditions come to mind at first. Dragons, Herald, Towers, Baron, Splitpushing, securing vision for picks, starving the enemy jungler, camping a laner who you trust to perform well, and many other factors. When you're the biggest threat on your team, you'll want to become the focus of their attention.

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Shutting down the enemy jungler

Another general idea when you're snowballing is to be oppressive, spend more time in the enemy jungle, spend more time placing and buying pinks to place in their jungle at their camps. You want to make the enemy jungler scared to even walk into his jungle because you'll be waiting there. You want to watch the enemy laners so they don't roam onto you while you're doing this and catch you out (assuming you're aren't ahead enough to kill them all). You want to be as annoying as possible and starve the jungler. Have complete knowledge of the jungle timers, the plants, and minion waves. If you can only risk walking into the enemy jungle for a brief moment, just place a ward and leave instead of risking death by contesting a camp when your laners aren't reacting. By successfully nullifying the enemy jungler, this relieves a great amount of pressure off of your laners as well as putting pressure on the enemy laner because it's guaranteed that you'll win the 2v2/3v3. In a lot of situations, the enemy jungler may be forced to sit in a side wave and soak xp from laners, or catch crashing waves under tower, you can still use this to your advantage to pick them off and set them even more behind, or focus more on the enemy laners at this point.

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Forcing enemies to make decisions and being proactive

If you have the attention of the enemy jungler, you'll be pulling them around the map and forcing them to become reactive to your plays. Let's say for example if you're in the enemy red-side jungle, you can go top lane tier 1 turret and cut off the enemy top's escape route and/or proxy their wave. After that the enemy jungler will either be forced to come top or you dive the top laner and get the turret. If you're ahead you'll be able to force situations like this so much easier because you'll win on the 2v2, so they'll have to give up the turret or die for it. You should constantly be trying to make the enemy team make difficult decisions so that you're not only wearing down their mentality but slowly suffocating them until they've reached a gold deficit they can't recover from.

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Objective Control 

One one of the highest priorities you should have when ahead as Kha'Zix is objectives. Despite what people will say about Kha'Zix needing kills, forcing objectives will be a higher priority in most situations. With Kha'Zix you have the advantage of being able to solo most of the objectives yourself. Dragon is one of the easiest objectives you can take early-game, at level 6 you'll be able to solo Dragons without losing much health assuming you have Q evolve for even more efficiency along with the sustain from your W healing. You'll also be able to solo Herald fairly early on, while being able to dodge some of it's damage and take down with your bonus isolation damage. You can splitpush and be able to outduel a lot of champs and draw attention from the enemies with the ability to duel most squishies who'd come to stop you. With most of these you won't even need a team to set you up, you can get most of these by yourself. You should often ask yourself, "what is the best objective for me to be pushing right now?". You should create a checklist of objectives with their priority, if you don't have first blood tower, how can you push for it? Which lane is going to yield the best results if you try to push for first tower? With first blood tower gold you'll be giving a strong early lead across the entire team that can give you the momentum you need to carry through to late-game. Always be looking for what objective to take next, specially after a kill, and what you need to do to get that objective.

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Vision Control

After you have an advantage over the enemy jungler, or when counter jungling in general, you'll be able to communicate to your team where the enemy jungler will be around. For example if you go to the top side of their jungle, and you take the camps, and put down two wards near their camps, and you get vision there, then you'll know where the enemy jungler is until those wards expire. With that information you'll know he's in that side of the jungle or he's in the botside jungler. This can also help your laners because you'll be able to ping missing when you see the jungler is not there in the opposite side of the jungler, and then let your teammates know it's likely that he's botside, as well as telling them not to play too far forward or aggressively. Another use of vision would be to drop a pink near an allies lane if you know he's getting ganked frequently. Finally, picking up an earlier Oracle Alteration can do wonders when denying vision in their jungle, and setting up for ganks, so long as you're still buying control wards.

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Enabling laners to carry with you

In most cases, you won't be able to carry the game on your own unless the right conditions are met, and often times it's a lot safer to enable at least 1 laner to snowball with you. This can come by helping the laner shove out his wave when he needs to reset, providing vision control if they're the focus of the enemy jungler, and pushing towers when the enemy laner is gone to secure early tower. If you help them, they'll also be more inclined to help you, whether that's a call to do dragon, group with your team, or coordinate a dive that could potentially shut down the enemy there. Another thing to factor in is the lane matchups, for example if you have an Ezreal-Janna lane, they can mostly be left on their own to farm so ganking for them wouldn't give you much return, so it would be best to let them scale up. With a Draven Thresh lane, you'll have a lot more potential to dive and shut down their enemy laners because of the sheer playmaking capabilities of the champion's kits. Overall having successful lanes is generally more important than setting behind the enemy jungler. Another important note to make, is if you have a strong bot duo like Caitlyn and Zyra, you'll want them to snowball and take tower as much as possible, so hovering botside and insuring their lane is successful until you get their tower. After securing the tower, ping them to rotate mid or top and take the tier 1 tower there, and then repeat for the last tower until the map is opened. Don't be afraid to spam ping macro decisions that will help snowball the game for your team.

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What to avoid when snowballing leads

If you aren't doing anything with your kills you're simply taking resources away from your team and wasting them. A common problem that people will run into is they will get leads, and then continue to power farm and sit in their jungle when they could be spreading that lead across the map. You can do this by ganking, coordinating dives, getting vision in enemy jungle, controlling objectives, but just farming is only going to squander that lead and allow the enemy to catch up in tempo and gold. The biggest problem with low elo Kha'Zix mains is they will get a kill, and immediately go back to farming their camps when they should be looking for the next objective to take off of that while the enemy is down. When the enemy jungler is dead, it's basically an invitation to walk into their jungle and place wards and counter jungle their camps. Usually you'll also want to avoid ganking lanes that are behind as Kha'Zix, which is a general rule for many junglers, but especially for Kha'Zix. You're wasting a lot of time and resources on a lane that's already lost, for the chance to put them even again at best case scenario, when you could be ganking for a neutral or winning lane and enabling them to win even more, becoming an even bigger threat. Even if you're getting spam pinged by your 0-3 top laner, asking for help, you might invest the time to come and both of you end up dying, which basically results in a game loss. You have to ignore the pings and cries for help when a lane is already so far behind unless your team is collapsing on them together. Spend your time getting another lane ahead that can carry.

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What to do when you're behind as Kha'Zix

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When your team is ahead but you're behind


A key factor is to focus on enabling the person on your team who's the biggest threat to the enemy team and camp them. Whether it's a Renekton top on a large power spike, or a 4-0 botlane who are about to destroy tier 1 bot tower, you'll need to do everything in your ability to set them up for success and funnel as many resources you can into them. You'll also want to do your best to peel for them and stick around for when the enemies dive in to kill them, and isolate themselves doing so, which will let you and your teammate take them out with ease. Playing Kha'Zix isn't always about jumping onto their backline squishies and assassinating, he can also be great for counter dives and dealing with other assassins. Another strategy to play from behind is to just farm up and take some time to catch up in XP and gold before forcing any more plays. This becomes much easier with Q evolve as you can clear camps relatively quickly and have better uptime on your camps, whereas with R evolve, it'll be much harder to play from behind because of how focused the playstyle is on ganks. If there's not many gank opportunities or if your laners are losing for example, snowballing through a lane with R evolve can be almost impossible. If there's still not many opportunities you just have to farm up to relevancy and just be a clean-up for your team.

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Builds when behind

When you're behind you'll mostly want more survivability and utility to be able to do as much as you can to support your team. This can vary between players, as some would make the argument that you'd need even more damage to catch up, and should focus on doubling down on Kha'Zix otherwise you'll never have a chance to catch up again. While this often comes down to playstyle, opting for more survivability is the safer and most consistent choice, and there's several items you can get to help. Some would think of G.A, Cleaver, Maw, or Mortal Reminder to help as much as you can while still having some damage presence. You'll also want to evolve W at some point for the utility purposes, as it'll synergize greatly with mortal reminder and cleaver since the debuffs will apply to all targets hit. Evolving W will also give your team stronger kiting, and better pick potential. Despite this, your items shouldn't be the biggest factor to change when you're behind, it should still be your playstyle.

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Late Game

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The late game of Kha’Zix is unique among other assassins, as he doesn’t actually fall off. Instead, he shifts from an assassin to a poke champion that can make picks and assassinate just as well as a traditional assassin. The reason for this is the W evolution. After W is evolved(generally level sixteen or level eleven, depending on QEW or RWE), Kha’Zix can send anywhere from 500-600 damage into the enemy team on a consistent basis completely safely. The added spikes from W evolution means that Kha can almost always hit a target, and if this hits a squishy target or someone isolated, it often can lead to the death of the person who was hit. Squishies often die due to the large amount of a damage and 40% slow on a non isolated target(which can result on an easy follow up kill with EQ Auto from Kha, or in team follow up), while tankier targets who are isolated when hit can die as well due to the 2 second 80% slow(pretty much a root, but you can still flash/use escapes) that allows either your mid-laner or your adc to kill them or at least chunk them heavily/force a flash. Embracing the new playstyle at level 16 is essential to not throwing the game, as Kha’Zix will easy get bursted down if he tries to dive the enemy team like he would have at earlier levels when the gold difference was far more prevalent. By this time in the game, most CC abilities are at their max level, which means if Kha’Zix is clipped by a single CC, it often spells his doom. Waiting to engage is core on all assassins, and Kha’Zix is no difference. Just like Zed, who will throw out shadows and shurikens to poke in the late game, Kha’Zix must poke and wait for a target to be squishy enough to assassinate.

While a late game Kha’Zix does lose a large amount of damage in teamfights(lack of isolation for Q), E evolution allows him to turn small picks into devastating leads for his team as he picks off the backline one by one. However, this is not always the win condition for Kha’Zix. In certain team compositions, sometimes late game team fighting is absolutely impossible. Recognizing these team compositions is essential for a Kha’Zix player, as due to his mobility/slipperiness from his Ultimate ability and E, as well as incredible dueling potential with an evolved Q means that if teamfighting is impossible, splitting is quite often a very good way to alleviate pressure for your team. An evolved W also helps with escaping, as the hefty slow and low late game cooldown means self peeling is fantastically easy. Coordinate with your team and discuss how your team should pressure while you are splitpushing. Looking at the minimap and listening to pings is insanely important, and should be your number one focus while splitpushing. Communicate with your team when people are chasing or rotating to deal with you to force fights or to get picks on stragglers. There are very few team compositions in the late game that can actually 4v5 unless the team with the extra player screws up very hard. The ideal situation for a splitpusher is one where two or three people rotate to deal with you, which lets your team 4v3 or 4v2, or pick up an important neutral objective/tower.

If the enemy team starts rotating back, spam ping your team so that they make sure to back off and not die. This is called a 4-0-1 or a 1-0-4(4 top 1 bot, 1 top 4 bot). Normally 4-0-1s are much more popular because it allows for a baron call if enough people show up, but due to the buffs to elemental drake, a 1-0-4 is also sometimes good depending on the amount of drakes your team has. It is important to note that you, as the jungler with smite, will not be at these neutral objectives, so if the jungler shows up it is almost always a free objective for the enemy team. Because of this, vision denial is important. Even if the enemy jungler is not there, the call is still generally a risky one, so make sure that the risk is worth the reward. If you are behind, or they easily win teamfights, it can be very rewarding as an elemental drake can often win teamfights just on its own, while baron allows your team to siege towers easily, or increase the potency of a 4-0-1, 1-0-4, 3-0-2, or 2-0-3 splitpush.

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Understanding Wave Management & Lane priority

I won't go too indepth here but it is crucial to being a good jungler that you understand basic wave management and lane priority. This will allow you to move around the map accordingly and ensure the highest chance of success when executing on ganks or getting priority teammates ahead when they're strong.

I'll link some videos that I'd recommend for learning wave management 1 2 3

as well as Lane priority 1 2

Teamfighting Back to Top

Teamfighting

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you will have various factors to keep in mind when playing out a skirmish or late-game teamfight. Some of these include: tracking enemy summoner spells & ultimates, using your leap when it's a guaranteed kill or when they use their flash, and choosing between priority targets. If you learn best with visual examples, I highly recommend Tinjus' teamfighting breakdowns here 1 and 2 before reading this guide. 

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How to fight against tanky compositions


  • This is one of the most commonly asked questions, and there's no easy answer as you have very limited win conditions compared to if you were facing squishier enemies. As Tinjus said in his video above, THE GOLDEN RULE IS DON'T JUMP WHEN THERE IS CC. It will be difficult and you will be forced to make less mistakes than you normally would, because you'll be punished a lot harder for your mistakes when giving the enemies a lead or a shutdown. If you had the choice between giving an enemy Xayah a BF sword or an enemy malphite a Ninja Tabi + Cloth armor, the armor items will mitigate what effect you'll have against him. When facing heavy tank comps your best bet is to push a lead very early on and minimize the mistakes you're making, and the mistakes your team is making overall. The longer the game goes the less of a chance you'll have when they enemies start grouping so you should put emphasis into snowballing as hard as possible with as many objectives as you can obtain by around 30 minutes. If you've already fallen into the position where the game is going to extend longer, and their tanky team is scaling, you'll need to use a checklist of priorities to determine your next action. The first thing you should consider is, how ahead are you? What's your item advantage over the enemies, are you on a large powerspike? (Duskblade + E evolution at level 11), Do you have the damage needed to take out their team's threats? If you can answer these with confidence, you'll also have to consider your team composition, for example if your team composition isn't good at teamfights and theirs excels in it, then you should avoid fighting altogether and focus instead on splitting pressure. You can tell your top to split or if baron is a factor, to go bot and then you go top and split top, with the rest of your team mid lane, creating an effective 1-3-1 lane allocation while you guys split pressure across the map. Another factor is to look for picks, and coordinate around splitting when you know someone is going to catch a wave, waiting in a bush with a pink, or sweeper and catching them when they go for farm or when a buff is spawning you can wait around there for a pick. So long as you avoid fighting in these situations and have decent team coordination then you can keep repeating this until your team can successfully do baron or push for towers. Another method is waiting for the enemy team to force an objective and then punish it at the right moment. This can be tricky as you can easily go in too deep for vision and get engaged on prematurely, or get baited into getting aced and losing baron. Often times people will see the enemy rushing baron and immediately try to fight and force them off of it and get wiped. Instead of this, you can simply wait for the baron to apply it's debuff to their team, get them low, and have the patience for them to commit to baron before punishing them by forcing a fight. Also to note when going for a Baron steal is that Baron will also be isolated because he's a neutral monster, which means that the Q damage will be even higher, allowing for an easier steal if you time it properly.

  • You'll generally want to peel back until you have an opportunity to go in against tank comps. A lot of the time their tanks will dive your team and you'll have the opportunity to deal damage to them while they're isolating themselves or you can sneak passed them with your Void Assault, or jump over them and assassinate their backline while the frontline is distracted. When you go into a teamfight, assuming you have E evolve, you usually won't want to go into the teamfight unless you can guarantee a kill or assist so you can jump right out with your reset. You can wait until they flash out of combat, with low HP or low mana and then take your chance to jump onto them after they've exhausted their resources and cooldowns. Another useful tactic is to your use teammates as bait, have them act as sponges to absorb the enemies CC and cooldowns before going in yourself. Kha'Zix can be seen as a "Win-more" champion, where if you're team is winning a teamfight, you're 100% guaranteeing that they're all going to die because of how easily he can chain together kills off of resets, and how much distance he can close with his leap. Don't use the excuse "well they used 4 ultimates on me and that's why I died", if you weren't out of position in the first place, that situation could have been avoided altogether, of course they're gonna use their ultimates to pick you off when you're the fed assassin.

  • Another valuable tactic when playing out a teamfight is tracking enemy cooldowns. This goes hand in hand with having patience overall and knowing how to identify the right opportunity for you to go in. If you're just being patient but you're not aware of what summoner's are being used then how will you know when you go in if the enemy support used their exhaust, if the Malzahar mid ulted, if the ADC has flash and baits you, etc. So generally you'll have an exponentially higher chance at success in fights when you know what the enemy has available. Another valuable thing to mention is that, if a big teamfight ult such as Orianna ult is expended onto you, and you live, that's a massive disadvantage for their team because they were forced by you to blow ult on just 1 target and enables your team to win the fight, so forcing the enemies cooldowns isn't always bad either. It all depends on the situations.

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Target Priority


You'll need to be more mindful of items differences, team compositions, and other factors. For example, if you have to choose between committing to an Orianna or a Caitlyn, you'd need to first press tab to see if Orianna has a Zhonyas Hourglass so you don't get baited and die, in this situation, Caitlyn would be the better option. Another thing to consider is who is their main threat to your team? When you assess the enemy team you'll have to decide who the most valuable member of their team is, and wait for an opportunity if possible for them to overextend or expend their flash before you engage onto them, and once you've eliminated their main threat, your team's chances at winning a teamfight increases drastically. You need to be extremely mindful of items like GA/QSS/Zhonyas, and enemy abilities such as Kayle ult, Taric Ult, or Tahm Kench devour before you commit to an engage.

Mechanics Back to Top

Basic Mechanics

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Mid Air Q


This one is simple. You are essentially just using your Q while in the middle of your E. This is extremely important for the flow of Kha'Zix's combos and should always be used. The skill sequence is E > Q while mid air.


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Standard Assassin Combo

Another very simple mechanic, this is the standard combo in which you should use if you are going to assassinate a target. The skill sequence is khazixw.png > khazixe.png > khazixq.png> AA or khazixe.png > khazixq.png > AA > khazixw.png. If the enemy already sees you it is usually better to use the W last since it will be easier to land the skillshot.

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Resetting your Unseen Threat (Passive)


Kha'Zix's passive is one of the most important aspects of his kit. Inefficient usage of passive resetting can result in you dealing a much lower amount of damage. In order to maximise your damage with Kha'Zix you need to be using your passive whenever you can, that means resetting it using Void Assault while fighting.

Kha'Zix's R (Void Assault) resets his passive, meaning all you have to do to reset your passive auto attack is to cast Void Assault after you have used Unseen Threat on an enemy. This will maximise your damage in fights. Passive AA > khazixr.png

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Advanced Mechanics

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khazixe.png khazixe.png

Double Jumping

Probably one of the coolest mechanics around, this allows you to double the distance of your leap by jumping twice in a row. To do this, the target you are going to kill must die within the first leap time frame so you are able to get the reset and jump again. The skill sequence is khazixe.png > khazixq.pngkhazixe.png fast. This takes practice to pull off, and requires fast mouse movements on your part to make successful. You do not necessarily need to Q to kill the target. As long as the target dies within your first leap, you can get the reset and jump again. I can't emphasize enough how important this video, and then video are.


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khazixpassive.png - UNSEEN THREAT

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  • Refreshing passive multiple times during a fight can be done by walking into bushes or using your ultimate. Sometimes it's best to use your passive as much as possible, sometimes it's best to chain the slow from your passive for as long as possible.
  • Stacking your passive proc with other effects such as Sheen and Duskblade can do insane burst, rivaling the damage of your Q in the mid/late game.

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khazixq.png - TASTE THEIR FEAR

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  • Isolation: Damage is amplified if the target is 425 units away from allied units. The single most important factor to mastering Kha'Zix, is knowing exactly how to play around this mechanic in teamfights and ganks.
  • Evolution: Q and Autoattacks gain 50 range, Isolated Q's return 45% of the CDR.
  • Q will only be canceled if you lose vision of your target. In rare cases your Q will even be put on cooldown without actually casting.
  • You can flash at any point of the Q cast without the ability being canceled, as long as no other factors happen. Additionally, the enemy cannot escape Q via flash, unless they flash into unwarded bush or FoW. No amount of distance can cancel Q.
  • Q Isolation is dependent on the START of the cast, meaning that no matter where the enemy ends up when the cast ends, your Q WILL benefit if cast when isolated
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khazixw.png - VOID SPIKE

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  • Evolution: W now fires 3 spikes in a cone, which slow for 40%, or 80% on isolated targets.
  • Like Q, you can flash during the W casting animation. Your W will fire from the location you flash to, good for surprising low health targets, quick repositioning or getting a clutch heal to win a 1v1
  • Evolved W grants sight (not TRUE sight) enemy champions hit, good for ensuring vision is not lost of the target, and for scouting bushes and objectives

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khazixe.png - LEAP

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  • The Double Jump: Get a kill or assist in mid air to leap again. Can be chained into triple jumps etc.
  • Double Jumping has no downtime at all, if you leap at the exact same time as you get a reset, while spamming leap, you will use both leaps instantly which will be a waste. Therefore spamming E in some circumstances may waste a reset.
  • Q and Tiamat can be cast mid leap whereas W and R cannot be, but W and R can be buffered in mid air to cast (slightly before) you touch the ground.
  • With the previous tip in mind, we can use it to our advantage. Q can be cast at any point during a leap, meaning with a fast reaction time, you can leap away from a target next to you, hit them with a Q, killing them for the reset and then leap again.
  • W can be used in a similar fashion to the previous tip, except on a target further away. Fire your W at the target, use your first leap, and then leap once more upon W kill/assist.
  • If you autoattack and leap at the exact same moment the autoattack lands, you can actually refresh your leap if the autoattack kills the target. I have managed to pull this trick off once in game, very impractical to attempt for a variety of reasons.
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khazixr.png - VOID ASSAULT

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  • You can cast khazixq.png and then cast the SECOND charge of your ult, and you will be invisible while casting the spell. does not work for the first charge
  • Casting khazixr.png between auto attacking will put you in stealth for the briefest period, but has the advantage of refreshing your passive. Useful for 1v1 duels where the damage is needed more than the stealth (To burst the target before help arrives, for example).
  • Use R, and then run in another direction to juke opponents. You can also use this trick by running the opposite way JUST BEFORE activating R, and then running in your original direction for some sick mind games. This trick has insane potential with creative use. BE AWARE of true sight and sweeping effects that will render the trick pretty much useless.
  • Evolution: R Procs when walking into bushes. Lasts 3 seconds, exiting the bush will automatically drop stealth time to 1.5 seconds.
  • Evolved R can be used for insane juke potential. Stay out of combat for 5 seconds, tag a bush by walking into it, and continue chaining between bushes to make your escape, or book it for the enemy carry to blow them up. Remember, you have 3 seconds of stealth WHILE in a bush
  • Items like 3117.png and 3142.png can prove to have great synergy with R evolve as it adds to your overall mobility and agency on the map.

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Combo's and Video Tutorial

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I can't stress this enough, CHECK OUT WAFFLES MECHANICS GUIDE ABOVE AND HERE



Jungle Routes Back to Top

Jungle Routes


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Kha'Zix as a jungler is heavily focused on getting a lead and snowballing that lead into a victory. A consistent early clear that will leave you at level 3 with various opportunities is, 

Blue > Wolves > Red or Red > Wolves > Blue then look to invade to counter jungle or place wards, gank top/mid, kill Scuttle, or finish your remaining camps if there's no opportunities.

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Another popular route that will be safer but gives up some early pressure is a full clear. This will get you level 4, a consistent lead over the jungler if he opted for an early gank and didn't succeed and still give you an opportunity to gank at the end.

Blue > Gromp > Wolves > Red > Raptors> Scuttle / Gank / Invade / Krugs and recall
or 
Red > Wolves > Blue > Gromp > (finish clear) Raptors + Krugs and recall, (or stop after gromp to) Scuttle/Invade/Gank
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Alteratively, you can try this if there is no gank opportunities due to bad matchups/wave position

For Blue side: Blue > Gromp > Wolves > Raptors > Red > Scuttle > Gank mid/Bot or invade their botside jungle.
For Purple side: Red > Raptors > (scuttle if you don't wanna meet in their jungle optionally) Wolves > Blue > Gromp > Scuttle > Gank Bot/Mid or invade


Q&A Back to Top

Q & A


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Q: "My biggest struggle with Kha'Zix is the evolution order, I get that Kha'Zix is supposed to be adaptive and played different depending on the game, but 99% of the time I still find myself evolving R>E>Q.

R at 6 just seems infinitely better than Q, even considering the reasons you state in your guide. Typically when ganking a lane after 6, one full combo with the laners help will result in a kill, so the lower cooldown on Q isn't necessary.

My question to you, is what conditions would need to be present between level 1-5 for Q to be the better first evolution?"

  • Lanes winning on their own so I should invade and duel the jungler?
  • Lanes losing so I should focus on farming?
  • I'm behind and need to focus on farming?

A: Firstly I do agree that, while ideally he should evolve to suit the situation, it's not always realistic so you are correct. There's usually only a few evo paths that will be applicable to most games and deviating from these does come with a risk that's not always worth taking, that or they're pretty catered towards unique playstyles.

Judging from your specific playstyle for Kha'Zix and what you prioritize (ganking and creating leads through ganks for you and the laner), R evolve might suit you more in 99% of situations like you said, and same for many others because of how consistent it is  and how straightforward it can be compared to Q evolve which can have some more challenges and nuances (funneling more resources into yourself and emphasis on dueling and farming/objectives). 

To answer the first question I might paraphrase a bit from the guide but generally there's some other factors to consider aside from the game state at levels 1-5. Some of these include:

  • Rune setups for example Absolute Focus being better than Celerity for Q evolve if you know you'll be going Q evolve during champ select.
  • Lane Matchups where there might not be too many volatile matchups where you necessarily *need* to snowball them and they scale up safely (Nasus vs Sion, Maokai vs Singed, ally Anivia, Orianna, or Ryze, and Ezreal Janna/Nami etc). So going Q evo with these kinds of matchups being a majority, wouldn't be a bad idea alone and playing to become an individual carry threat and focus on farming, objectives, shutting down the enemy jungler, and having more impact in skirmishes. On the reverse, if you have a Jayce top for example vs Camille, or an ally Leblanc mid, you'd probably benefit a lot more from R evolve as they need the jungle pressure, and giving them a lot and enabling them to snowball would be much more beneficial compared to the examples above so you can already know before the game starts which evo path might be better for your team's win conditions. 
  • Team composition, while this might not be the biggest reason to preemptively decide on an evo path it should still be something to consider. What I mean by comp was kind of touched on with matchups but for example, you have a triple-threat comp (High Damage/Carry **Top, Mid, and ADC/Support like Brand or Zyra**), you can have a lot less emphasis on being an individual threat yourself and take R evolve to enable your laners instead and focusing on snowballing their lane and playing a utility role (taking evo W 2nd or 3rd) since you wouldn't need to opt for the selfish playstyle that comes with Q evo first. Again, on the reverse let's say you have a low damage comp with only 1 big DPS threat (*insert any generic tank here*, Orianna/Galio/Karma/Liss/Swain, with a Meta ADC + Utility Support such as Janna/Nami/Lulu/Soraka), Evolved Q would be much more optimal since your team could use the DPS and carry threat because 1. It will split the responsibility so all your team's damage isn't on one person, thus helping them not get instantly focused/shut down, and 2. Because your comp can support and enable **you** to carry and play more aggressively due to their heavy utility and ability to keep you alive. 

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I'm sure there's other non early-game-state factors but I can't think of any other major ones at the moment. So to address some of the lvl 1-5 conditions you have some good examples already. The first one "Lanes winning on their own so I should invade and duel the jungler?", you could make the argument that if your lanes are winning hard, R evolve would be even more beneficial because you want to extend that lead even harder and keep setting back the enemy lanes and push towers/objectives by pressuring the lane that's losing hardest (or the strongest carry allied laner).

The second and third examples are spot-on because one of the biggest benefits from Q evolve is if you ^^especially, or your laners are behind and there's really not many gank opportunities overall so all you can do is farm faster and be on the map longer. This is where Q will benefit you the most because your clear is significantly increased and you'll also have the opportunity to solo kill dragon/herald early and more efficiently without relying on lanes to help. It's especially useful for when you're behind because you'll catch up a lot faster with Q through farming than you would from spam ganking with R while you're underleveled or behind on items (or losing every 2v2/3v3).


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