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Grandmaster Cernunnos ADC GUIDE

21 3 34,359
9.4
by TottiGR updated February 3, 2024

Smite God: Cernunnos

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Cernunnos Build

Cowl Build Starting Items

Notes Leather Cowl is one of the best starters for fighting and sustaining in lane, providing you with movement speed when you are alone, lifesteal, attack speed and power.

Spiked Gauntlet will evolve into Devourer's Gauntlet.

Golden Shard it is always the best choice because will provide you of Golden Gooseberries passive so you will have a really good early push!

Notes

Leather Cowl is one of the best starters for fighting and sustaining in lane, providing you with movement speed when you are alone, lifesteal, attack speed and power.

Spiked Gauntlet will evolve into Devourer's Gauntlet.

Golden Shard it is always the best choice because will provide you of Golden Gooseberries passive so you will have a really good early push!

Build Item Leather Cowl Leather Cowl
Build Item Spiked Gauntlet Spiked Gauntlet
Build Item Healing Potion Healing Potion
2
Build Item Multi Potion Multi Potion
2
Build Item Purification Beads Purification Beads
Build Item Golden Shard Golden Shard

Cowl Full Build

Notes Leader's Cowl is insane for team fights in late game because it gives you attack speed in area for your teammates and will provide you with lifesteal (sustain), 250 health that can make a difference between surviving or not, good amount of power and an incredible attack speed stat.

Devourer's Gauntlet is essential on an basic attack damage build because it gives you flat penetration, power and lifesteal (you always need sustain as a hunter).

Envenomed Executioner is a cheap item that enables you to decrease enemies' protections when you hit them with an auto attack and good attack speed stats. Later in lategame you should evolve it to the envenomed because it will decrease enemies healing and shields when they get hitted by an auto.

Demon Blade provides you good critical chance, power, attack speed and penetration. Always a good choice because of how many stadistics provides to yourself.

Dominance provides you with the essential stats that a hunter needs: attack speed, power, mana sustain and an incredible penetration percentage on basic attacks.

Devoted Deathbringer is a really good choice as last item. It fits perfectly on the crit build because will increase your crit damage and your critical chances. The glyph will also provide you of much power that will help you with the DPS into objectives or structures.

Temporal Beads provides you with immunity to CC and cooldown reduction.

Aegis of Judgement provides you with immunity to damage that will help you peeling yourself and avoid enemies' ultimate skills or big damages.

This build is meant for competitive because your enemies are supposed to be in communication and playing smart so you will be in most of the cases only hitting tanks or junglers that are trying to kill you. Most of them will have more than 200 hundred physical and magical protections and more than 3000 HP so you will need to have bought penetration items for being able to kill them as quick as possible.

Notes

Leader's Cowl is insane for team fights in late game because it gives you attack speed in area for your teammates and will provide you with lifesteal (sustain), 250 health that can make a difference between surviving or not, good amount of power and an incredible attack speed stat.

Devourer's Gauntlet is essential on an basic attack damage build because it gives you flat penetration, power and lifesteal (you always need sustain as a hunter).

Envenomed Executioner is a cheap item that enables you to decrease enemies' protections when you hit them with an auto attack and good attack speed stats. Later in lategame you should evolve it to the envenomed because it will decrease enemies healing and shields when they get hitted by an auto.

Demon Blade provides you good critical chance, power, attack speed and penetration. Always a good choice because of how many stadistics provides to yourself.

Dominance provides you with the essential stats that a hunter needs: attack speed, power, mana sustain and an incredible penetration percentage on basic attacks.

Devoted Deathbringer is a really good choice as last item. It fits perfectly on the crit build because will increase your crit damage and your critical chances. The glyph will also provide you of much power that will help you with the DPS into objectives or structures.

Temporal Beads provides you with immunity to CC and cooldown reduction.

Aegis of Judgement provides you with immunity to damage that will help you peeling yourself and avoid enemies' ultimate skills or big damages.

This build is meant for competitive because your enemies are supposed to be in communication and playing smart so you will be in most of the cases only hitting tanks or junglers that are trying to kill you. Most of them will have more than 200 hundred physical and magical protections and more than 3000 HP so you will need to have bought penetration items for being able to kill them as quick as possible.

Build Item Leader's Cowl Leader's Cowl
Build Item Devourer's Gauntlet Devourer's Gauntlet
Build Item Envenomed Executioner Envenomed Executioner
Build Item Demon Blade Demon Blade
Build Item Dominance Dominance
Build Item Devoted Deathbringer Devoted Deathbringer
Build Item Temporal Beads Temporal Beads
Build Item Aegis of Judgement Aegis of Judgement

Other items

Notes Atalanta's Bow provides you with physical penetration, good power and a lot of attack speed. If you want to buy it against gods with slow you should always buy it instead of Fail-Not.

Bladed Boomerang fits really good in the critical item build, it provides you with good power, attack speed and critical chance. Insane for dueling the other hunter during early game and wining trades. You should always look to buy it instead of Qin's Sais as a third item, always after Executioner.

Odysseus' Bow is pretty cool for farming damage and dealing high amount of damage during team fights in late game. The only problem that it has is that it doesn't provide of any power stat so you will have less DPS.

Titan's Bane it is always a good choice if you need more penetration in your build but I think it is enough if you have bought Executioner and Dominance.

Griffonwing Earrings is the best choice for dueling against the other ADC because it gives you a lot of power and attack speed.

Qin's Sais you should always buy this item because of its passive, it is really strong for killing supports and solo laners (tanky gods).

Fail-Not provides you with multiple insane stats like critical chance, penetration, CD and power. It is also good because having some critical chance will be essential for late game fights and more important, doing more DPS to objectives like Fire Gigant, Gold Fury or Pyromancer.

Notes

Atalanta's Bow provides you with physical penetration, good power and a lot of attack speed. If you want to buy it against gods with slow you should always buy it instead of Fail-Not.

Bladed Boomerang fits really good in the critical item build, it provides you with good power, attack speed and critical chance. Insane for dueling the other hunter during early game and wining trades. You should always look to buy it instead of Qin's Sais as a third item, always after Executioner.

Odysseus' Bow is pretty cool for farming damage and dealing high amount of damage during team fights in late game. The only problem that it has is that it doesn't provide of any power stat so you will have less DPS.

Titan's Bane it is always a good choice if you need more penetration in your build but I think it is enough if you have bought Executioner and Dominance.

Griffonwing Earrings is the best choice for dueling against the other ADC because it gives you a lot of power and attack speed.

Qin's Sais you should always buy this item because of its passive, it is really strong for killing supports and solo laners (tanky gods).

Fail-Not provides you with multiple insane stats like critical chance, penetration, CD and power. It is also good because having some critical chance will be essential for late game fights and more important, doing more DPS to objectives like Fire Gigant, Gold Fury or Pyromancer.

Build Item Atalanta's Bow Atalanta's Bow
Build Item Qin's Sais Qin's Sais
Build Item Bladed Boomerang Bladed Boomerang
Build Item Odysseus' Bow Odysseus' Bow
Build Item Titan's Bane Titan's Bane
Build Item Griffonwing Earrings Griffonwing Earrings
Build Item Fail-Not Fail-Not
Build Item Fortifying Shell Fortifying Shell

Cernunnos's Skill Order

Shifter of Seasons

1 X Y
Shifter of Seasons
3 15 16 18 19

Bramble Blast

2 A B
Bramble Blast
1 4 6 7 10

Horn Charge

3 B A
Horn Charge
2 8 11 12 14

The Wild Hunt

4 Y X
The Wild Hunt
5 9 13 17 20
Shifter of Seasons
3 15 16 18 19

Shifter of Seasons

1 X
Cernunnos imbues his glaive with the power of the 4 seasons. Activating this ability rotates him through 4 different bonuses to his basic attacks.

Spring Growth: Bonus Physical Lifesteal
Summer Heat: Bonus Damage
Autumn Decay: Debuff for 10s
Winter Chill: Slows for 1.4s

Ability Type: Buff
Spring Growth: 6 / 8.25 / 10.5 / 12.75 / 15% Physical Lifesteal
Summer Heat: 5 / 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 (+8% of your Physical Power)
Autumn Decay: 5 / 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 Reduced Physical Protections
Winter Chill: 9 / 10.5 / 12 / 13.5 / 15% Slow
Cost: None
Cooldown: 0s
Bramble Blast
1 4 6 7 10

Bramble Blast

2 A
Cernunnos fires a bramble forward in a line that roots and cripples a single enemy hit. Upon hitting an enemy, wall, or reaching max range it will explode dealing damage and spawning an area of brambles at the location. This area deals damage every .5s and persists for 5s.

Ability Type: Circle, Crowd Control, Damage
Damage: 55 / 90 / 125 / 160 / 195 (+75% of your Physical Power)
Root/Cripple Duration: 1s
Area Damage: 8 / 12 / 16 / 20 / 24 (+5% of your Physical Power)
Radius: 20
Cost: 60 / 65 / 70 / 75 / 80
Cooldown: 15s
Horn Charge
2 8 11 12 14

Horn Charge

3 B
Cernunnos charges forward, damaging and crashing through all types of enemies.

Ability Type: Dash, Damage
Damage: 70 / 125 / 180 / 235 / 290 (+80% of your Physical Power)
Range: 55
Cost: 70 / 75 / 80 / 85 / 90
Cooldown: 17 / 16 / 15 / 14 / 13s
The Wild Hunt
5 9 13 17 20

The Wild Hunt

4 Y
Cernunnos selects an area where The Wild Hunt will begin. After a 1s delay, enemies in the area will be damaged and Polymorphed into wild boars. Polymorphed targets are silenced, disarmed and slowed. Polymorph is not affected by diminishing returns.

Damage: 200 / 250 / 300 / 350 / 400 (+90% of your Physical Power)
Polymorph Duration: 1.5s
Slow: 20%
Radius: 25
Cost: 100
Cooldown: 90s

Cernunnos Threats

Tap each threat level to view Cernunnos’s threats

Max
2
Major
4
Even
0
Minor
0
Tiny
0

Cernunnos Synergies

Tap each synergy level to view Cernunnos’s synergies

Ideal
3
Strong
1
OK
0
Low
0
None
0

Introduction

Hey, this guide is brought to you by TottiGR! I started playing Smite on PC in February 2014. I have been playing competitive since 2016 and I have been a professional Smite player between March 2020 to July 2023. I have played in different teams like JustF6, Gilded Gladiators or Tartarus Titans this last year. I have peaked 3500 MMR GM/Masters in Ranked Conquest on PC every season since 2017. I also made Smite Masters (LAN) 4 times in 2022 so I really think I have the knowledge about guiding about the ADC role. I hope you find this guide as a useful learning resource for playing Cernunnos as an ADC.


Here are my socials:

Abilities

Cernunnos' Abilities


Passive - Heavy Glaive

Heavy Glaive provides additional damage to all enemies in melee range while
Cernunnos is throwing it.

You should always try to position yourself in melee range during 1vs1 against the other hunter or even against junglers/frontlane if they are committing on you, this additional damage can save your life and win you most of your duels.

Remember: positioning yourself at melee range doesn't mean you need to dash in, save your dash if you don't know where's the enemy jungler/enemies because can cost you an easy death.


Ability 1 - Shifter of Season

There are 4 situational stances on this skill, for changing one you just need to click the skill and it will change to the next.

Blue Stance (Winter) -> Slows enemy (This one is usually used to chase enemies)

Green Stance (Spring) -> Life steal (This one is not needed after buying Devourer's Gauntlet because you will have enough sustain that you won't need this stance)

Yellow Stance (Autumn) -> Kinda works as penetration/protection shred. (This stance is the most used on the god because it will make you have more DPS and damage during the entirely game)

Red Stance (Summer) -> Extra physical power boost (kinda complimented to crit builds)(You should use this one in situations where you are hitting supports or solo laners, in fact you will notice that their HP will go down really quick).

In Early/Mid Game you should always use the Yellow Stance and in Late Game you should change to Red Stance because in competitive mode, on teamfights you will be surely hitting tanks so this one fits perfectly in your objective of killing them.


Ability 2 - Bramble Blast

Cernunnos's main wave clear ability. But if you hit the skill in the center, roots enemy gods and cripple them so they won't be able to dash or escape from you.

It can be used offensively to do engage on them or defensively cutting enemy dashes or stopping them from chasing you.


Ability 3 - Horn Charge

Cernunnos's movement skill. In fact, it is a common dash that if hits an enemy, an objective or minions it does a lot of damage.

You should always use it for escaping from enemy ganks or situations where you might die (losing a trade, an enemy ultimate cast or an enemy engage on you).

If you have your lane warded and you know exactly where are the enemy jungler and support spotted on the map, you can use Horn Charge offensively to activate your passive Heavy Glaive and do more damage to the enemy hunter when you are dueling in laning phase or fighting a shield buff.


Ultimate - The Wild Hunt

Cernunnos's ultimate skill. I do recommend to use this skill when enemies are diving you and have used their dashes/movement skills so they will get always Polymorphed if they don't use Temporal Beads to return to their normal form.

While they are Polymorphed they can't cast any skill and they will be slowed so they will be easier to kill by your or your teammates in teamfights around objectives like Gold Fury, Pyromancer, Stygian Beacon or Fire Giant.


Example Combos:

Main Combos:

Shifter of Season (Autumn) > Bramble Bast > (If you have crippled and rooted the enemy with the skill before) Horn Charge > Basic Attacks > If you haven't killed the enemy you should use as your last opportunity to get a kill your ultimate The Wild Hunt

Shifter of Season (Autumn) > Bramble Bast > Horn Charge > Basic Attacks > Bramble Bast

Shifter of Season (Autumn) > Horn Charge > Bramble Bast > Basic Attacks > The Wild Hunt

How To Play

Gameplay Start / Early Game:
  • Start at the Gold Fury side Green buff. When it spawns, hit it with an auto attack to leash/aggro the camp and pull it towards the green camp, meanwhile the support deals damage to the camp, after doing both things, you two will go to the purple buff, do it and then come to lane to push the minions.

  • After these camps are cleared you will be level 2 so you will have to level up your Horn Charge so you will have an skill that can be used for escaping or for starting a duo lane fight, dashing offensively at get into mele stance so your passive will make you do more damage so definetively will increase your chances of killing the enemies during the first waves.

  • After pushing 3 wave, shield buff will spawn so your support and you will go for it depending of the pressure wave; if you have no wave pressure you will need to ask your jungler for coming to fight it or just leave it, but if you have hardly won the push of the wave you should use your attack speed shard to do it as quick as possible, for securing the buff you should always maintain your Bramble Blast available. If someone comes to contest, you should always try to fight them because you have a good early fighting god with CC and high damage in melee stance but in case you are low because you got poked, just do minis and go back to lane for winning pressure.

  • From here you will usually fight the enemy ADC and support during wave pushes in lane with your own support. Most of the fights you should take are around shield buff and depending on yours and their early pressure/clear around your own purple buff or theirs (remember you can pull the Purple buff wherever you want so if you have no pressure / you are low hp ask your support to be in the pit before it spawns and tell him to leash it as far as needed to not get invaded by the other duo lane)

  • An important advice as an ADC main is to be active in communication, always try to tell all the information you can to your team like your own purple, shield and their purple timer (if possible), if there is any one spotted in the wards you placed, if someone is trying to dive you, if they are doing Gold Fury... This type of information will make your jungler and support pathing to gank your lane easier and make you having bigger chances of getting a lead over the other hunter.

  • REMEMBER to always buy wards, warding correctly with aggressive Sentry Wards will determine half of the game around the Gold Fury objective and warding defensively will make you be more aware about possible ganks so you will be safer in lane.

Mid Game:

  • As the match goes towards the MID GAME, other than the usual farm opportunities you'll be looking to rotate over the Stygian Beacon for your team and try attempt, contest and steal (if the enemy is attempting to kill them) the Gold Fury.

  • Remember to rotate when there is no duo jungle remain like purple or shield buff and to have the wave pushed before rotating because you will fall much behind in farm compared to your enemy ADC. (DO NOT ROTATE IF YOU ARE 2 OR MORE LEVELS BEHIND THE OTHER HUNTER!)

  • When the Stygian Beacon spawns often both teams will try rotate over to control it, especially the mid, support and jungle. You will need to think about who is more likely to have their teammates to rotate over first to impact your decision if contesting the beacon will be worth it and if there is any kill potential around the objective.

  • As for Gold Fury opportunity they will vary on factors such as: your team's overall objective shred, your ADC's current objective shred / build, your team's map pressure, how strong each team's teamfight is, where on the map everyone is (i.e. if one team is doing Gold, the other may decide to do Pyro as a smaller trade), if any members of the enemy team are on a respawn timer, etc...

  • It is so important to have warded (with Sentry Wards if possible) the Gold Fury during the Mid Game because it is the principal objective between minute 10 to 20 with the Pyromancer.

  • Stay aware of rotations (jungle and support) during this minutes because your death as a hunter can be a really good reason for the enemies over pulling Gold Fury or even burst it. So your team won't have any chance of contesting it up.

  • Not dying over rotations, map awareness and warding are highly important over the games. You will always need to position yourself beside de midlaner for peeling each other over team fights (call who is doing engage on you, relics and this type of stuff that is going to make an easier way to make your team win the team fight)


Late Game:
  • As for LATE GAME teamfights, most often you will be positioned in the "backline" (behind your team's solo and support - who generally are the "frontline") and will play around your midlaner to deal with the enemy frontline and jungler, while making sure to put out as much damage as possible to the highest threats on the enemy team.
  • Remember as Cernunnos to use The Wild Hunt over the enemies that are engaging on you, if you hit your ultimate skill you will force them Temporal Beads or in case they don't have any inmunity, they will be Polyphormed an easier to kill for you and your teammates.
  • Make sure you have upgraded Temporal Beads and Aegis of Judgement before going into the Fire Giant. I really good advice is to use actives as soon as the solo laner, support or jungler engages on you to try to avoid as much damage and crowd control as possible, if you stay safe as an ADC on a late game teamfight, your team will have enough DPS to do Fire Giant or if you kill all your enemies, you can even finish the game.

  • When it comes to Fire Giant opportunities, often there can be stalemates where both teams will try to force a teamfight or look for lone picks in order to gain an advantage, sometimes involving one team going for a non fully committing attempt at doing the objective to bait the other team to step up.

  • BE CONSTANTLY CALLING ALL THE INFORMATION: WHEN THEY ARE ENGAGING ON YOU, IF YOU ARE ULTING SOMEONE, OR IF SOMEONE USE HIS ACTIVES. THIS INFORMATION CAN MAKE YOU AND YOUR TEAM WIN EASILY A Fire Giant TEAMFIGHT.

  • BE ALWAYS SURE ABOUT YOUR DECISION MAKING, IF YOU DOUBT YOURSELF OR EVEN YOUR TEAMMATES YOU WILL NEVER SUCCED!

Warding as ADC

Low Pressure Warding:

Here are warding spots for ADCs if you are behind with gold or experience compared to the other hunter. If the enemy team has your purple timer you should always try to Sentry Wards your purple buff and make sure to call your teammates at least 1 minute before spawning.


In case you have low pressure god but none is invading purple you can also ward like in the photo below. You will always know when someone is coming and you won't have to outposition yourself to ward so you will be safe.


Normal Pressure Warding:

Over here is shown the ideal normal pressure warding spots around duo lane, you should always look to Sentry Wards defensively and use a normal ward on the offensive position. Enemies could Sentry Wards your normal ward so you should call your support for warding there.


High Pressure Warding:

In case you have a high pressure duo set up (hunter with good clear and fighting capability and a support with crowd control, push and mobility) you should look to invade purple buffs. This type of wards will make an easier way for you and your teammates to come over purple pit before spawning and being ready for stealing it [you will always know who is coming to gank you so you must be prepared for getting ganked over duo] .


Late Game Warding:

When you start fighting around Fire Giant, you should always look to ward in the same places as a midlaner because you two (ADC and Mid) form what we call as "backliners" (the roles who are supposed to deal DPS and damage to enemies), you will be sharing the responsibility for this rather than handling it alone, especially when it's not safe for you to step up to place deeper wards. Any wards placed closer to the objective within the Fire Giant pit tend to get destroyed by Sentries more often than not, so they tend to not be reliable.

Remember, minions act as moving wards in the lanes, and are able to spot nearby gods. If your towers are down, keep your minions pushed up as much as possible to provide an extra set of eyes and pressure.


  • White Circles: These are all offensive locations that allow you to spot enemies near to or approaching objectives, and are helpful in covering multiple approaches. The closer you get to the Fire Giant, the more contested those spots will be and the more likely enemies will try to counter-ward. The ones closest to the enemy base can give you very early notice.

  • Red Circles: Fairly obvious, but it's always good to have vision on the main jungle objectives, especially the Fire Giant. Sentry Wards are key here, as they allow you to spot and remove enemy wards. You can place wards directly on top of the objectives, or put them slightly to one side to try to spot enemy wards or protect yours from being detected.
Counter-Warding: Enemies may drop wards on your defensive side in similar (opposite) spots to where you would place yours. If the Fire Giant is already covered and you have a spare Sentry Ward, place them in these spots to limit the enemy's vision on your team.

Defensive Warding: If you're pushed back to your phoenixes or inside your base, locate your wards in the nearby jungle and general approaches.

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League of Legends Build Guide Author TottiGR
Grandmaster Cernunnos ADC GUIDE
Table of Contents

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