By : Celestiatem
Role – Hunter
Voluc can be played in lane, but this is not what this guide will be focusing on. Hunter will be the specific role we discuss in this guide. Hunter role is selected so you can remain high health and receive larger benefits from farming the jungle. This is something Voluc does incredibly well; the benefits will allow you to remain a potent threat in the early game allowing for greater chances of success.
Loadout – Power, Armor, Haste
This is the loadout of choice for Voluc. Since Voluc’s base clear speed is already insane there is no need to have Resonance’s bonus. The armor allows you to stay higher health since you generally take less damage in the jungle.
Another potential loadout option is Brawler; the reasoning for choosing Brawler would simply be to have more defense when entering into the team fight phases of the game.
Level 1 – Vanquish
Level 10 – Dispel
Level 20 – Blitz Or Bastion
Generally speaking, this is the order of spells I personally go with. Vanquish is non-negotiable for the early stages of the game, yet can arguably be swapped out if the game progresses long enough (Shapers at max builds).
Vanquish – You take this spell specifically to control your jungle buffs and Parasite. Without this spell early on, you’re basically asking to have things stolen away from you. You will also have a much slower clear time without it.
Dispel – This spell is extremely key to surviving kiting as Voluc. With slows and stuns being extremely detrimental to your approach, this spell can partially nullify that problem. Dispel has a relatively low cooldown; this will allow more opportunities for you to take an advantage on an enemy.
Bastion – I sometimes take Bastion at level 20 if the enemy CC isn’t overly high and I need to survive through high sustained damage. Bastion can be very handy since it blocks a rather large chunk of damage and offers free resists.
Blitz – What you can do with a Blitz against a high crowd control opposing team is: Pop Dispel and Blitz to get out of any crowd control and be immune for a time. This gives you free reign to do what Voluc does best; kill things.
For level 1, I would recommend starting Devour due to it’s haste buff allowing slightly faster clear of the first camp and guaranteeing damage on the entire camp. This is ideal because these mobs can take very erratic movement paths once initiated upon.
Q: Sentinel Strike
This is an auto attack reset capable of doing immense burst damage. The best part of this skill is that the cooldown reduces increasingly the more you auto attack. This sounds very strong and worth ranking first, yet if you look at numbers and opportunities this skill is far better off as a “1 point wonder”. The reasoning being Sentinel Strike’s requirement of being within melee range and offers little else other than raw damage. Sentinel Strike does not scale by rank any better than Voluc’s other skills. Remember to utilize the reset capability of Q at any available time; if you believe there’s any potential of being kited ready the spell so when you reach melee range you can use it. Take this skill by level 2 or 3, max it last.
W: Curse of Weakness
This skill is amazing due to its incredible burst power when you can connect with a melee follow up, which will unleash Curse of Weaknesses full damage potential. Having a slow apply to any bypassing enemy target, as well as the main target of Cure of Weakness allows Voluc to quickly and easily close on an enemy. The built in passive life drain on [w] will also allow for incredible free sustain; you will be taking this skill either level 2 or 3, and max it by level 14.
Probably the most important skill in Voluc’s repertoire. It is an area-of-effect cone-damage spell that also grants a haste buff based on the number of enemies hit, 1 stack per minion and 2 stacks per shaper, to a maximum of 4 stacks. This gives a variety of benefits from closing faster, shorter cooldowns and significant ranged burst damage. You’ll max this first to achieve the greatest benefit in clearing and ganking.
A very potent sustain ultimate ability, doing incredible area of effect damage and restoring health based on the damage dealt. Prioritize ranking this as it’s available. Proper use of Damnation in fights can help you live through a scenario you might otherwise have died during.
You will always start Hunger in the jungle with Voluc. It allows you to sustain for the earlier segments of the game and builds into your first core item; this will allow for a strong transition phase.
The double Vitality Potions are necessary for the early game since you won’t have the free life drain from Curse of Weakness; it is easy to fall low health in the early game, no matter who you jungle as.
The first item you should aim to finish is Voracity to enable quick farm and extremely high burst damage for ganks, or fights. This item is extremely strong on Voluc since his skills are very burst oriented and have decent base numbers. The extra life drain from Voracity means Voluc will have better sustain during fights.
Strife should follow shortly after provided you haven’t fallen behind.. The reason for getting this item in most scenarios, is how easily Voluc can stack the item. You don’t get this item first simply because the boost of damage and sustain from Voracity is far stronger and much more important. If for some reason you fall very far behind you may want to avoid Strife altogether and follow-up with a more defensive based item instead. Strife is strong and recommended as long as you aren’t extremely behind, for example if you are 1/6/0 by 15:00 Voluc can still farm the tiny camps very quickly. It may also be worth grabbing a Strife first and ignoring Voracity if you wish to have a heavier defense-driven build.
There are many arguable build paths to follow from here, mostly because durability will start to become a little more important, and depending on how well you’ve farmed through the game, you may be in dire need of some health, or resists.
If your team is lacking a Hostility and you’re on par with the enemy team this item can be a very strong choice. if you’re not being chewed apart by damage this item should be grabbed as early as possible, without deviating from the core items listed above.
Rage is a must in the later stages of the game since there will be plenty of resists floating around by late game, making Rage a solid 5th, or 6th item pickup.
Ambition doubles as a good durability and offense item allowing for further sustain and damage. Ambition also provides a decent amount of armor making it effective against physical heavy compositions. Grab Ambition 4th, or 5th if you need the extra armor/shield and want more damage.
Rampancy provides a large chunk of HP and when combined with a well stacked Strife provides a very sizable chunk of Power. This is something you might think of grabbing if the enemy does not have a Ruin, or if you simply have gone a more defense-oriented build. Rampancy is a good 4th, or 5th item pick up.
In terms of defensive item choices, you’re left with a lot of options:
Order can provide you with a high amount of durability vs. Physical Damage carries. Grab this 3rd, or 4th unless the enemy doesn’t have a basic-attack based Physical Damage carry; in that situation Order is unnecessary.
Subjugation is perfect as an all around balanced item providing a good chunk of both resist types, and as a bonus, a small amount of haste. The most powerful part of this item is how you can very easily apply the passive of the item which reduces enemy damage. A strong 3rd, 4th, or 5th item pick up.
Hope is the strongest double resist item you can get. Its passive is also fairly handy since it will reduce any incoming damage after using an ability. Hope is a strong 4th, or 5th item.
Progress can be a powerful option against magic based damage, while still providing some offense if you want to pack more punch. The passive on Progress is easily utilized with Voluc’s area of effect damage building up the magic resist stacks quickly. The damage passive is also easily activated by his Devour and Damnation abilities. Progress is slightly more situational than the above listed items.
There are only specific scenarios where you will want the following items, yet they are incredibly powerful when purchased at the right times.
Creation brings you further HP and haste, while boosting your natural life drain by a marginal percent. A great option if you go a more life drain/sustain oriented build path. Probably aim for this as a 4th item, as you’ll want some form of armor, or resist item before it.
Faith is a perfect item to lessen the damage of a more magic based enemy composition. Especially powerful to reduce burst and give you greater closing potential.
Unity and Stamina are both powerful options against specific compositions. These items are selected if your supports are either not getting them, or are lane based predators. You should prioritize these in the occasions that nobody else picks them up as a 3rd item. Choose the item that provides the best cover of the enemy team. If they are area damage based, always get Unity. If they are heavily physical based,choose Stamina.
Pain will be necessary if the enemy has a lot of healing potential, such as a Viyana and Fenmore. This will reduce the benefits they get from their natural life drain and allow you easier kill potential.
General Strategy and Counters/Synergy
Good to Combo with:
King of Masks
Countered By :
As a jungler Voluc can sustain almost infinitely and can farm incredibly fast. Your goal as Voluc should be to look for good opportunities to invade the enemy zones, since he can duel and counter gank incredibly well. This is typical unless your laners have really strong Crowd Control, then you can gank more readily. Wrap arounds from behind are significantly stronger initiation paths to gank for Voluc, provided you have the right chance. Evaluate the risk and reward as well as the timing of this. You should aim to capture/harass enemy Spirit Wells when you are reasonably sure it is safe, since Voluc can quickly clear them out with Devour; this will boost your experience and vim significantly.
When you start approaching the more team fight oriented phase of the game you should always aim to approach the enemy after an engage has started; you won’t realistically be the first to enter the fight. Stand as far forward as you can without being at risk, when you have the opportunity, get in the middle of the enemy team and throw as much damage out as possible. If you can’t hit everyone try to focus on the “squishier” targets, such as the mage, or physical carries.
Voluc is not a complex Shaper to play, yet offers a very powerful kit to utilize for your team, provided you are willing to learn how. He is a strong pick when you have enough reliable CC to fully utilize his damage potential.
Consume all in your path.