All Guides Malzahar Guides [Patch 8.1] Best Malzahar NA's In-Depth Guide to Mid Lane Malzahar!
103
2
Updated
7 months ago
Views
718K
Comments
13

Malzahar Statistics for Best Malzahar NA

Author's performance with Malzahar compared to the ranked average.

Value
Average
Games Played
190
6
Win %
60
44
Kills
7.0
4.4
Assists
7.9
7.3
Deaths
3.3
5.7
KA:D Ratio
4.6
2.0
Gold Earned
13.2K
10.9K
Creep Score
217.5
178.9
Average
  • Author Champion Statistics
  • Guide Details

Summoner Spells Back to Top

Introduction

Hello, and welcome to my guide on Mid Lane Malzahar.

1. How many mastery points do you have on Malzahar? 

- Malzahar was my very first champion I chose to main and I have over one million mastery points on him.
- op.gg: http://na.op.gg/summoner/userName=Best%20MaIzahar%20NA

Screenshot 2017-08-26 12.54.21.png


2. What made you choose to main Malzahar?

- At the time I started playing League of Legends, Malzahar was labeled as a "bad" champion and was therefore not played very often. I thought that if I were to exclusively play someone, it would have to be someone unpopular, yet highly effective in the right hands. In other words, I wanted to play a sleeper OP champion, which turned out to be Malzahar.

3. When did you start playing League of Legends?

- I started playing League of Legends in mid-July, 2015 (about 3/5 into season 5). 

4. Pros and Cons of playing Malzahar:

Pros: 
- High damage.
- Tons of crowd control.
- Incredibly good punisher.
- Mechanically easy to play (Flash > R so much outplay).
- Insane late game scaling.
- Solid lane pusher with strong wave clear.
- Very high siege power with Voidlings assisting.

Cons:
- Extremely low mobility.
- Can be tricky to position with in team fights.
- Nether Grasp (R) is a single-target channel, which makes you very vulnerable if other enemies are around.
- Fairly steep learning curve (not to be confused with skill cap). Learning how to farm consistently as Malzahar is much more trickier to master than most other champions because you have to time your autos with Voidlings and Malefic Visions potentially interfering with last-hitting. 

5. What about Support or Jungle Malzahar? 

- The most recent major change to Malzahar (patch 7.11) tweaked his Voidlings so that they are more reliant on casting other abilities to gain stacks. This would require Malzahar to expend a large portion of his mana before he becomes a remote threat in the lane. 
- Jungle Malzahar is not viable because he is too reliant on his Voidlings for his jungle clears, as well as his sustain. Voidlings are extremely weak at early levels and early stages of the game, so Malzahar's early game pressure as a jungler is excruciatingly low. The top tier jungler pool is also very shallow, so he would be outclassed by numerous other champions by a longshot.

Summoner Spells

*Please note: The new rune keystone, Unsealed Spellbook, changes the game completely and is a very strong keystone on Malzahar. This changes the way you want to start off your laning phase with "x" summoner spell, which can be switched later. 

1. Flash

- Malzahar's biggest flaw as a champion is his insane lack of mobility. If you don't have Flash, you will get punished incredibly hard. 

2. Ignite

- Consider taking Ignite if: you are confident in hard carrying the game, if the enemy laner has self-healing abilities (examples include Vladimir, Swain), or if you want the extra kill pressure.

3. Ghost

- My bread and butter summoner spell. Ghost is the top choice for Malzahar in high elo and professional gameplay because the enemy will know how to abuse Malzahar's low mobility if Ghost isn't taken. With Ghost, Malzahar's roaming power is significantly increased and has much stronger kiting ability. 

4. Teleport 

- I rarely take Teleport, but you should be running Teleport if you are playing Top Lane. Teleport s useful if you believe that you're up against a moderately difficult matchup and can get poked down early. 

5. Cleanse

- A decent choice if your lane opponent's kill pressure is heavily reliant on landing some sort of crowd control (examples include Varus, Lux). Bonus: Cleanse does not remove Malzahar's Nether Grasp (R). Feel free to laugh at your opponent if he/she takes Cleanse against you.

New Runes Back to Top

1. Unsealed Spellbook/Sorcery

- This rune page is used by the majority of professional and high elo players. The reason why this is so strong on Malzahar is because you are able to opt for a safe laning phase with minimal farm wasted by taking Teleport as your starting summoner spell. By the time laning phase is over, you can use the keystone to change your summoner spell to Ghost, giving Malzahar much more mobility and flexibility in teamfights. 
- In the professional/high elo scene, maximizing gold efficiency plays a huge role in turning the tide in the game. With the Inspiration tree, you can save a ton of gold by essentially getting free boots with a discounted upgrade and a free Zhonyas Hourglass active, with a 600g discount on the full item if you keep the Stopwatch/Broken Stopwatch. 
- It is also important to note that using both Unsealed Spellbook and Cosmic Insight will grant you an insane 30% summoner spell cooldown reduction. With Malzahar being the only mid laner with a point-and-click suppress, his pick potential with Flash > R is insanely scary with this setup. 

2. Arcane Comet/Inspiration

- This is my personal favorite rune page for Malzahar, because of my playstyle. I like to maximize my damage output, which in turn increases my carry potential, which in turn yields wins. There isn't much science behind this page in contrast to using Unsealed Spellbook, other than the way that you deal the most possible DPS by taking Arcane Comet (higher AP scaling and low cooldown by using/landing your abilities). I also love taking Future's Market, because I like to maximize my map pressure after every recall. Missing 150 gold because you missed ~8 cs? Future's Market helps you get those vital item powerspikes. In addition, as a mid lane main that puts a lot of emphasis on vision control, Future's Market also ensures that I can always have a control ward available. For a game where games can be won by information, Future's Market seems to pay its dividends. 

3. Summon Aery/Inspiration

- This page is good against melee assassins, as you can maximize your poke potential with the lower cooldown of Summon Aery. Keep in mind, however, that your scaling won't be as good as taking Arcane Comet. But then again, most assassins (Zed, Talon, for example) rely on snowballing from the early game to win their games, so by stopping their snowball, their chances of winning become slimmer. Taking Stopwatch into assassins is also very useful. 

Abilities Back to Top

E
W
Q
E
E
R
E
Q
E
Q
R
Q
Q
W
W
R
W
W
Passive
Q
3
8
10
12
13
W
2
14
15
17
18
E
1
4
5
7
9
R
6
11
16
Source: http://leagueoflegends.wikia.com/wiki/Malzahar

malzaharpassive.png Void Shift (Passive)

INNATE: Malzahar receives Void Shift if he hasn't taken damage nor been affected by crowd control in the last 30 / 24 / 18 / 12 seconds. Damage from minions does not interact with Void Shift

Void Shift phases out Malzahar, making him immune to crowd control and taking 90% reduced damage, lingering for 0.25 seconds after taking damage or blocking a crowd control effect. 
  • Malzahar's Void Shift allows him to make blind trades in lane with small windows for the enemy to trade back. You should try to abuse this when your shield is up and play relatively passively when it's down because you are extremely vulnerable to all-ins and ganks without it. 

malzaharq.png Call of the Void (Q)

ACTIVE: After a 0.25-second delay, Malzahar summons two orbs at the target location perpendicular to where he is facing, dealing magic damage to all enemies caught between the orbs and silencing them. 

MAGIC DAMAGE: 70 / 105 / 140 / 175 / 210 (+65% AP)
SILENCE DURATION: 1 / 1.25 / 1.5 / 1.75 / 2

  • Should be maxed second. Be very mindful that this ability refreshes the spell duration of Malefic Visions if it hits the target(s) affected by it. This ability alone can also turn the tides of a team fight because the silence can disrupt a lot of spell rotations on enemies hit by it. It is tricky to aim if you're casting it on top of yourself, so that may require some practice.

malzaharw.png Void Swarm (W)

PASSIVE: Malzahar gains a stack of Gathering Swarm when he casts another spell, up to a maximum of 2. Stacks of Gathering Swarm can be gained during the summoning, but will not be consumed. 

ACTIVE: Malzahar spawns a Voidling after a 0.35 second delay at the target location plus an additional Voidling for each stack of Gathering Swarm consumed. Voidlings deal magic damage with its attacks. Voidlings deal 50% damage to epic monsters, and 300% damage against lane minions affected by Malefic Visions. 

MAGIC DAMAGE: 5 - 64.5 (based on level) (+ 12 / 14 / 16 / 18 / 20) (+40% bonus AD) (+20% AP)
VOIDLING DURATION: 8 / 8 / 9 / 9 / 10
  • Maxed last. Voidlings are a huge part of Malzahar's overall damage output, so don't expect to one shot someone without Voidlings helping you out. Voidlings can be used to block skillshots such as Thresh's hook, Blitzcrank's pull, Elise's cocoon, etc. 

malzahare.png Malefic Visions (E)

ACTIVE: Malzahar infects the target enemy's mind, dealing them magic damage every half second over 4 seconds. Damaging a target with Call of the Void or Nether Grasp will refresh the duration of Malefic Visions. 

If the target dies during this time, they pass Malefic Visions onto the closest enemy, refreshing the duration and restoring 2% of maximum mana. 

TOTAL MAGIC DAMAGE: 80 / 115 / 150 /185 / 220 (+80% AP)
  • Maxed first if playing Malzahar for the DPS. One of the hardest things to do when laning as Malzahar is being able to consistently make the Malefic Visions bounce from minion to minion, while last-hitting minions simultaneously. You will get pushed in and lose a ton of farm if you can't make your Malefic Visions spread efficiently. This will take a good amount of practice. 

malzaharr.png Nether Grasp (R)

ACTIVE: Malzahar knocks down an enemy champion. For the next 2.5 seconds Malzahar channels, during which the target is suppressed. 

A Null Zone is opened beneath the target that lasts 5 seconds, dealing magic damage every second to both Nether Grasp's target as well as all other enemies within it. 

MAGIC DAMAGE: 125 / 200 / 275 (+80% AP)
DAMAGE PER SECOND: 10 / 25 / 20% (+2.5% per 100 AP) of the target's maximum health
  • The #1 reason why people hate Malzahar: the point-and-click suppress that shows how high the skill ceiling is for Malzahar. Like his Q, Nether Grasp also refreshes the spell duration of Malefic Visions if casted on an enemy champion affected by it. Be very wary of what your enemies build, because if they have Quick Silver Sash 3140.png in their item slots, your 1v1 potential is significantly reduced. Despite being a low-skill spell, knowing who to suppress and when to suppress them in a team fight is very crucial in winning your team fights.

Items Back to Top

Starting Items

    Very self-explanatory. I would choose Doran's Ring over Dark Seal because Doran's Ring gives you mana per unit killed, which is a great compliment to your Malefic Visions.

Core Items

    Must-have items on Mid lane Malzahar.
    Boots options. If you're looking to hard carry, Go for Sorcerer's Shoes. Buy Ninja Tabis if you're against a full AD team, and Mercury's Treads if you're against a quad-AP team. Boots of Mobility if you're looking to roam to other lanes to help them snowball. Reach for Boots of Lucidity if your team is carrying. The extra CDR allows you to have your utility ready much sooner for the team.

Situational Items

    This item is particularly useful if the enemy team composition has extremely strong engage and you need to survive from being punished for your positioning. Strong engage compositions include teams with Alistar, Volibear, Malphite, etc. Also useful if the enemy team composition is heavily AD-based.
    Major late-game powerspike item. Should be Malzahar's fourth or fifth item.
    Malzahar's fourth or fifth item, depending on how much Magic Resist the enemy has built.
    Extra survivability. You are untouchable in the late game with this item. Should be bought as a fourth or fifth item if the enemy team has a hyper-carry mage that will most likely burst you down from a distance (prime example: Viktor). If you do choose to buy this item, I would ditch the Void Staff because you already have a lot of penetration from runes, Sorcerer's Shoes, and the % health shred from Liandry's Torment.

Matchups Back to Top

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

  • Ahri
    Medium
  • Akali
    Medium
  • Anivia
    Medium
  • Annie
    Easy
  • Aurelion Sol
    Medium
  • Azir
    Medium
  • Brand
    Hard
  • Cassiopeia
    Hard
  • Cho'Gath
    Medium
  • Corki
    Medium
  • Diana
    Easy
  • Ekko
    Medium
  • Ezreal
    Easy
  • Fizz
    Hard
  • Galio
    Medium
  • Gangplank
    Hard
  • Heimerdinger
    Easy
  • Karma
    Medium
  • Karthus
    Easy
  • Kassadin
    Easy
  • Katarina
    Medium
  • Kayle
    Easy
  • Kennen
    Medium
  • LeBlanc
    Hard
  • Lissandra
    Medium
  • Lulu
    Medium
  • Lux
    Hard
  • Morgana
    Medium
  • Orianna
    Medium
  • Ryze
    Medium
  • Swain
    Medium
  • Syndra
    Hard
  • Taliyah
    Medium
  • Talon
    Medium
  • Teemo
    Easy
  • Twisted Fate
    Easy
  • Varus
    Hard
  • Veigar
    Easy
  • Vel'Koz
    Medium
  • Viktor
    Medium
  • Vladimir
    Easy
  • Xerath
    Medium
  • Yasuo
    Medium
  • Zed
    Medium
  • Ziggs
    Medium
  • Zilean
    Easy
  • Zyra
    Easy

VS

Ahri

Medium

She has high mobility and very safe methods to poke your shield out. Play very aggressively if she misses her E (Charm). Shove the lane hard to her turret, since she struggles to farm under turret and will have to expend a lot of mana to farm consistently. Ahri has stronger pushing power than Malzahar at early levels, so be prepared to ask for a gank if she pushes early and is very immobile without her R. 

VS

Akali

Medium

Respect her level six powerspike. Respect her Hextech Gunblade powerspike, as well. Play aggressively or shove the lane as hard as possible before she hits level six. Be aware that you cannot see her when she enters her W (Twilight Shroud) because she's invisible (control wards will not detect her). 

VS

Anivia

Medium

Malzahar's pushing power is significantly superior to Anivia's at early levels. Pressure the lane by shoving as often and as hard as possible, because Anivia struggles at farming under turret. Using her abilities often to farm under turret also wastes a lot of her mana. Try to keep her in lane for as long as possible to stall her Tear of the Goddess buy on the first recall. 

VS

Annie

Easy

Be extremely careful when she has her stun up, as it will probably lead to a free kill for her and her team if the enemy jungler is near. Try to punish her when her passive's stacks are low. Other than that, you out-range her and have the far superior wave clear. Be careful though, as Annie is one of the best farmers in the game and can reach some surprising item powerspikes earlier. 

VS

Aurelion Sol

Medium

Be prepared to put a point in your W (Void Swarm) at level two if he shoves hard early. Your Q (Call of the Void) can be used to temporarily disable his passive (Center of the Universe). Rushing Sorcerer's Shoes will allow you to dodge his Q (Starsurge) easier. 

VS

Azir

Medium

A good Azir will begin shoving the wave early by having a soldier attack multiple minions in a line. be prepared to put a point in your W at level 2 to compensate for his early pushing. Azir has much superior mobility and can push you back with his ultimate (Emperor's Divide). One super neat trick I like to abuse when playing against an Azir is to cast my E on the caster minions and casting my Q on the backline to follow up. This will zone Azir away from and prevent him from harassing you with his soldiers. Keep in mind this trick works extremely well on a lot of other matchups, as well. 

VS

Brand

Hard

He has the range advantage and has a stun that can set up an easy gank for the enemy jungler. farm up, play passive and look to punish mistakes. 

VS

Cassiopeia

Hard

Cassiopeia is a very hard matchup for most mid-laners because of the way that she can bully you out of lane if she lands her Q. Rush Sapphire Crystal and Sorcerer's Shoes to give yourself mana sustain and more mobility to dodge her Q. One advantage you have over a Cassiopeia is your superior lane pushing. You can abuse this attribute and force her to farm under turret to make her waste mana and as much farm as possible. 

VS

Cho'Gath

Medium

Both his Q (Rupture) and W (Feral Scream) can set up decent ganks for the enemy jungler. Like the vast majority of my games as AP Mid Malzahar, farm and look to punish mistakes. 

VS

Corki

Medium

Corki pushes harder and deals significantly more damage than Malzahar at early levels, also has poke to keep Malzahar's Void Shift down very often. Your best bet is to safely farm in lane and scale. 

VS

Diana

Easy

A good Diana will abuse her W (Pale Cascade) and run up to Space Aids-infected minions to soak damage and deny your pushing ability and mana sustain. If she's doing this, cast Call of the Void on Diana to reset the duration of Malefic Visions. Consider taking exhaust, as she will have no way of escape after engaging on you. 

VS

Ekko

Medium

Very similar matchup to Ahri. He shoves the lane faster throughout the laning phase, and is very easy to gank pre-6. 

VS

Ezreal

Easy

Malzahar's easiest matchup in the world. You have the superior waveclear and he has no CC to set up ganks for his jungler. Consider shoving the lane and then punish his lack of waveclear by roaming Top or Bot. 

VS

Fizz

Hard

You have the range advantage, but if the Fizz knows how to trade and punish your long cooldowns, this can be a tough matchup. Void Shift does not prevent Fizz's shark from attaching to Malzahar, so unless you have Magic Resist, Fizz will one-shot you if he lands his R. 

VS

Galio

Medium

Galio got a rework. Matchup details pending. 

VS

Gangplank

Hard

Gangplank's super broken W (Remove Scurvy) can be used to escape Malzahar's Nether Grasp. His ultimate (Cannon Barrage) is also a super easy way to set up a gank for the enemy jungler.  

VS

Heimerdinger

Easy

His turrets give you both gold and mana! This should be a freelo lane. 

VS

Karma

Medium

Karma can set up ganks relatively well for her jungler. Avoid getting poked down, farm, and as always, punish mistakes. 

VS

Karthus

Easy

Easy matchup since Karthus wants a farm lane. Void Shift also can leave you unscathed if Karthus casts Requiem while it's active. 

VS

Kassadin

Easy

Should be a relatively easy matchup as long as you punish his Q (Null Sphere) cooldown when trying to all-in. Reason why you want to wait until is Q is on cooldown is because it disrupts channels, which is what Nether Grasp is. Kassadin is a heavy snowballer, however. If he gets an early kill, your lane becomes much harder. 

VS

Katarina

Medium

This matchup is extremely reliant on who starts snowballing first. Her endless poke with her Q (Bouncing Blades) can get very frustrating to deal with. Since she has very low kill potential on you at level six, she will very likely look to roam to other lanes to snowball. Make sure you keep track of her when she roams. She's almost useless in late-game 5v5's because she can't use her ult (Death Lotus) with you suppressing her. Keep in mind Call of the Void also stops her ultimate's channel. Stay away from wherever her daggers land. 

VS

Kayle

Easy

You can outpush Kayle and she can't cast her ultimate (Intervention) when suppressed by Nether grasp. 

VS

Kennen

Medium

Kennen has two stuns to help set up a gank for the jungler. be very cautious and back off when he has a stack of his passive on you. 

VS

LeBlanc

Hard

LeBlanc was one of the handful of assassins that received a rework and now has an even scarier laning phase. However, her stronger laning phase is compensated for a slightly weaker 5v5. Your job when laning against a LeBlanc is to survive. Rush Negatron Cloak so survive her burst and ward up so you can keep track of her when she roams. You should win the 5v5 against her as long as your R key isn't broken. 

VS

Lissandra

Medium

You outrange Lissandra, but need to be very careful because two of her abilities (Ring of Frost and Frozen Tomb) can result in your death if the jungler is ganking. 

VS

Lulu

Medium

Her E (Help, Pix!) can be used to absorb your Space Aids and she can set up ganks fairly easily with her Q (Glitterdance) slow, W (Whimsy), and ultimate (Wild Growth). 

VS

Lux

Hard

Lux's range is demoralizing and if she lands her Q (Light Binding) when her ultimate (Final Spark) is available, you are very likely to be dead. Her W (Prismatic Barrier) can also be used to absorb your Space Aids. Play aggressively whenever she misses her Q. 

VS

Morgana

Medium

Play aggressively when she misses her Q (Dark Binding). You should be able to push significantly harder than her when you have a few points in your E and have some AP. Use Call of the Void to reset the spell duration of Malefic Visions if she tries to soak its damage by using her E (Black Shield). 

VS

Orianna

Medium

She has a lot of range and zoning potential with her ball, as well as a shield to absorb Malefic Visions damage. Stay away from her ball and try to punish her when she misses her Q (Command: Attack). 

VS

Ryze

Medium

The reworked Ryze is no longer reliant on his level six powerspike to duel and therefore can kill you earlier if he knows how to combo correctly. You have to keep watch of minions that are affected by Ryze's E, Spell Flux. This is his long-range tool to pop your passive or set up high damage output. He can also teleport the enemy jungler right behind you, setting up an extremely powerful gank. Try your best to shove the wave in early so that he's forced to use his mana to farm under turret. The sooner he becomes out of mana, the sooner he'll be forced to recall, and this may prevent him from being able to buy Tear of the Goddess on his first recall. Depending on who has the better items, in a straight 1v1 at level six, Malzahar generally destroys Ryze. 

VS

Swain

Medium

Rushing Morellonomicon is a no-brainer to reduce his healing. Avoid getting snared by his W (Nevermove) at all costs. Punish him for missing it. 

VS

Syndra

Hard

Syndra outranges Malzahar and she can throw your Voidlings around like volleyballs. Take Teleport and look to farm with Malefic Visions and keep your distance. Play aggressively before she hits her level 3 powerspike. 

VS

Taliyah

Medium

Taliyah has the superior waveclear early and therefore can deny you a lot of farm under turret. Put a point in your W at level 2 if she does this. Play aggressively if she misses her W (Seismic Shove). 

VS

Talon

Medium

Talon's rework has made him even more nimble and he also can no longer be seen when he uses his R (Shadow Assault). Play aggressively when his W (Rake) is on cooldown and if your Void Shift is active. Consider taking Ignite for the extra lane pressure, as taking Ghost in attempt to match his roaming power is somewhat unrealistic. 

VS

Teemo

Easy

Destroy Satan please. 

VS

Twisted Fate

Easy

Easy matchup as long as you walk away when he's reaching for a gold card. Your duty when laning against a Twisted Fate is to push the lane to his turret as much as possible so that he doesn't roam to other lanes. Your teammates will love you for that. 

VS

Varus

Hard

Your lack of mobility can make it easier for him to land his skillshots, and his poke makes your passive nonexistent. Let your jungler know that he is an immobile marksman and coordinate ganks.

VS

Veigar

Easy

Use his early passive playstyle to your advantage by shoving the lane to his turret as often as possible to deny as much farm as possible. His combo is heavily reliant on landing a stun with his Stun Gate, and your passive (Void Shift) counters that. 

VS

Vel'Koz

Medium

His range can be devastating. Rush boots to avoid his skillshots. Keep in mind that his ultimate (Life Form Disintegration Ray) is a channel, meaning that both your Q (Call of the Void) and R (Nether Grasp) can stop his ultimate immediately. If you're running and he tries to finish you off with his ultimate, you can: Flash towards him > Q to stop his channel > W > E > R. 

VS

Viktor

Medium

Same concept as Vel'Koz and other matchups where your enemy laner is skililshot reliant and has greater range. Rush boots. 

VS

Vladimir

Easy

Taking Ignite is highly recommended for the extra lane pressure. Keep your distance when his bar below his health bar is high or red. Rush Morellonomicon to reduce his healing effects. Reach for Liandry's if he builds Spirit Visage as his first item. Do not bother wasting your abilities on him unless you: have enough mana trade with him and farm after, if you're setting up a gank, or if you're trying to kill him. 

VS

Xerath

Medium

A good Xerath can ruin your day. Move unpredictably so that it's harder for him to land his skillshots. Try to find a pattern in his Q's. A good Xerath will try to predict your sidestep. 

VS

Yasuo

Medium

An experienced Yasuo will punish you for your long cooldowns and harass you. Farm and trade back to your best ability and capitalize on his mistakes when you reach level six. A good Yasuo will come up to you to harass if you use Malefic Visions on minions. If so, refrain from using Malefic Visions on minions and use it to harass him enough so that he will hesitate to come up to you again. Keep in mind that the only lateral damage output you have is your auto attack, so he cannot use his W (Wind Wall) on any of your abilities. If you're looking to bully him/trade, auto once to break his shield > E and wait for damage to kick in > Q to reset Malefic Visions duration. Suppress him with Nether Grasp immediately if he dashes too far under turret range (and if he's taking aggro). 

VS

Zed

Medium

You can walk back to your turret and suppress him under it if he decides to cast his ultimate (Death Mark) on you while your Nether Grasp is up. Avoid getting poked by his Q (Razor Shuriken) and you will destroy him in lane. He also has no CC to set up ganks. Consider taking exhaust to reduce his damage when he ults you to build up a swarm of Voidlings before finishing him off. Be extremely careful if he rushes QSS. If the Zed is skilled, your first recall should be a second Doran's Ring and preferably two Cloth Armors, building it into a Seeker's Armguard later. 

VS

Ziggs

Medium

You should be fine as long as you rush boots to help dodge his Q (Bouncing Bomb). Farm and punish mistakes only. Play safe. 

VS

Zilean

Easy

Matchup is similar to that of Vladimir, only he has CC to set up ganks. He can't revive himself with his ultimate (Chronoshift) when suppressed by Nethergrasp. 

VS

Zyra

Easy

Her plants break your shield easily, however you can get 5 gold for every plant you successfully last-hit. You also gain mana if Malefic Visions were still on her plants when they died. She's very vulnerable when she misses her E (Grasping Roots). 

Why is AD Malzahar no longer viable? Back to Top

AD Malzahar is no longer viable mainly because AP Malzahar heavily outclasses his AD counterpart in terms of both raw and sustained damage. On one hand, AD Malzahar's reliable sources of damage come from his voidlings and auto attacks. On the other hand, AP Malzahar's reliable sources of damage come from all four of his abilities, while Call of the Void and Nether Grasp both reset the spell duration of Malefic Visions. 


On another note, Malzahar's voidlings scaled with a 100-150% of Malzahar's AD before the patch 6.9 rework. Now, Malzahar's voidlings scale with a pathetic 40% of Malzahar's AD.  

Laning Phase Back to Top

Introduction 

As a mid-laner, you are one of the highest influences in the tempo of the game. This is because you are within equal distance from both top and bot lane, as well as the jungle. If there was a skirmish taking place in the bot lane, you are just seconds away from making an impact and turning the fight into you and your team's favor. The same goes for top lane. Your duty as the mid-laner is to positively impact the entire game, so it's a high-pressure role with extremely high carry potential in solo queue (second to jungle, in my opinion). 

 

Early Laning Phase: The Level 2 Cheese

One of the most common ways of controlling pace of the game early is by out-snowballing your opponent. The "level two cheese" is a prime strategy that can help you gain a very early advantage in your lane, thus allowing you to start your snowball. The level two cheese is pulled off by reaching level two earlier than your laning opponent, and committing to a heavy trade as soon as you hit level two. For Malzahar, the level two cheese strategy is done by: Reach level 2 > E > wait a few seconds for E damage to tick in > Q for burst and E duration reset.

 

General: Last-Hitting as Malzahar

Last-hitting consistently as Malzahar is possibly one of the most challenging mechanics for Malzahar. Being able to time auto attacks with both minion damage and the DoT on Malzahar's E perfectly is tricky. Only practice will help you with this. 

 
Mid-Laning Phase: Snowballing

You've used a ton of physical and mental effort to press R on your opponent and are now winning the lane 1-0. Your laning opponent, on paper, should not look to trade with you because of your gold lead. Because the opposing laner should now play passively, you have two options as the mid-laner: (1) Maintain pressure on the Tier 1 mid turret, whether it be by constantly shoving the lane or killing the adversary, and (2) ROAM. If you have the summoner spell Ghost, your roams are extremely powerful, and almost always a guaranteed a kill for your team if your ultimate is off cooldown. You should often prioritize your bot lane for roams, because keeping your AD Carry relevant throughout the game is crucial for winning team fights. This is why there's always that infamous "bot lane party." If your top laner is getting destroyed, it is also important to help them because if the enemy top-laner is snowballing out of control, he or she will be able to split push and force 1v2's, therefore opening the map more (assuming the team knows how to trade). 

 

Ending Laning Phase

You've successfully taken down the first Tier 1 turret. Now what? You should now help your team take down the other Tier 1 turrets to open the map up, therefore gaining more control of the game.

 

Summary of Malzahar's Playstyle Back to Top

Malzahar is a control/battle mage that excels at locking down a single target that is vital for the enemy team's team fight or engage. He is extremely weak against teams that have multiple assassins or teams with heavy engage/back line divers, because he can't lock down everyone at once and has no reliable escapes to run away from them. 

You do not need to "destroy your laning opponent" to have a successful laning phase. Malzahar has one of the scariest late game scalings in the game and going even in lane means you've won lane. 

In a straight 5v5, you want to be hugging your AD Carry. Your duty is to peel for your AD Carry to the best of your ability, and use Nether Grasp on the highest priority target that is a remote threat to the AD Carry. 

Bonus: General Climbing Tips Back to Top

Introduction

Let's not kid ourselves here. League of Legends is not an easy game to learn. It is hard because there are so many factors and variables in the game. There are things like map awareness, consistent farming, lane matchup knowledge, champion knowledge, item knowledge, decision making... the list goes on. This section was made so that I could take some of what I learned from the game to you guys. 

1. Champion Pool

You see how in professional League of Legends, its players will have a gigantic champion pool. For example, players like Bjergsen and Faker can confidently play champions like Syndra, Zed, Zilean, Ahri, Lucian, Orianna, Azir, you name it. Professional players like these are required to be able to play a large number of champions because obviously, the enemy team will simply ban the single champion a player knows how to play when playing against him or her. Luckily for us, the solo queue players, this isn't the case (unless you're streaming in high elo, people will stream snipe and target ban champions like Annie from Annie Bot, Master Yi from Cowsep, Gangplank from Tobias Fate, etc.). 

So what's my point? My point is that an extremely good strategy for climbing in ranked is to minimize your champion pool down to your best 1-2 champions in the role(s) that you main (having a backup champion is always nice if your main champion gets picked or banned is nice). Doing this allows you to exclusively familiarize yourself with the champion's mechanics to the point where they become second nature to you. By doing this, you allow yourself to allocate more of your focus on what's going on in your current game rather than how your champion works and how you should build him or her. Take me, for example. I've played so much Malzahar to the point where I could comfortably farm in lane with him while peeking at my minimap every half second, while tracking the general location of the enemy jungler. If I were playing something like Azir, I would focus way too much on Azir's mechanics and therefore wouldn't be able to take into account of what my enemy is doing or is intending on doing. 


2. Mentality and Tilt

Another big thing to climbing is keeping your head straight. If you: failed a test, had your car break down, ended a relationship, or just finished a game where you were handed your fifth loss in a row, you should not queue up for another ranked match for the day. The mere potential distraction of what's happened in your day can make the difference between a win and a loss. You want to enter a game where you tell yourself that you're about to have a great game with decent teammates (although not very realistic).

Keeping your cool throughout the game is also a huge for climbing. Harassing or flaming your teammates does not make them play better. It is important to know that NOBODY is a perfect player. Not Faker, not Bjergsen, nobody. Faker also fails his flashes at times. You shouldn't expect to have perfect teammates every game. If someone makes a mistake, don't attack them or tell them what they should've done. Just deal with it. If they apologize for their mistake, tell them that it's not a big deal, and praise/encourage them for when they make a great play later in the game. If they end up going 0-10, don't attack them either. Just focus on your gameplay. Focusing on your own play rather than focusing on others' is what separates the hardstuck (50% win rate or lower) players from the climbers. Be a positive teammate. Being that nice guy on the team that is also decent at the game will only make your teammates respect you more and listen to you more. 

3. Lane Matchups

Knowing what your enemy laner is capable of doing to you is big. If you know what they are capable of doing, you can then realize how inexperienced your opponent is at their champion. This gives you two advantages. You will know when to respect the opponent, which leads to you not dying as much. This also allows you to abuse and punish your opponent for playing a champion they aren't familiar with.

4. The Importance of Farming

One of the most underrated mechanics for most players in League of Legends is the ability to keep up in farm. Although it seems like an incredibly simple mechanic, it is actually one of the most complex mechanics in the game. To save myself some energy, I will simply link this VERY GOOD and detailed video on farming, made by Dong Huap. 


5. Never Surrender!

Your top laner and bot lane got stomped and now your team is playing from behind. Someone on your team will bitch about the team playing poorly or what caused "x" situation and votes to forfeit the game. VOTE NO, especially if you're playing a late-game scaling champion like Malzahar. You want to keep in mind that the reason why solo queue games are so inconsistent is because of the lack of communication. Professional League of Legends teams manage to abuse and maintain their large gold leads because they have the luxury of precise coordination. In solo queue, every single player has a different playstyle, different mentality, and different perspectives on how ranked games are won. This means that the chances of a solo queue team "throwing" is always high, and even higher in lower elos. You just need to realize that the enemy team is making these mistakes and you should look to punish them for making such mistakes. Over time, these small punished mistakes can add up and eventually, your team can make that much desired comeback. 

Got Questions? Back to Top

Thanks for visiting and reading the guide! If you have any questions you'd like to have answered, the best place to go is probably the Malzahar mains' subreddit: 


https://www.reddit.com/r/MalzaharMains/

You can also add my IGN by copy/pasting and messaging me through the League client if you'd like. 
Best MaIzahar NA

Comments and Champion Matchups Back to Top

For some reason, Lolking won't allow me to save edits to champion matchups or reply to comments. If you have questions about any champion matchups or any of the sort, feel free to link your IGN in the comments and I can message you through the League of Legends client when I can!

Send Feedback