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OP Merlin Build

14 6 23,317
7.6
by BrotherAshton updated June 17, 2022

Smite God: Merlin

Build Guide Discussion 4 More Guides
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Merlin Build

Starter

Notes If there is a Baron on your team, use his brew instead of the potions.

Notes

If there is a Baron on your team, use his brew instead of the potions.

Build Item Sands of Time Sands of Time
Build Item Spellbook Spellbook
Build Item Healing Potion Healing Potion
Build Item Mana Potion Mana Potion

OP Build

Notes With this build, fully stacked, no buffs, you will have 863 power, 39% life steal (Plus the extra 25% healing from life steal from Typhon's Fang passive), and 20% penetration. Book of Thoth will help you with the early game mana regen and also add a ton of power in the mid-late game with the extra mana from poly and fang as well. Polynomicon is a great item with Merlin because it synergizes with his passive and it has life steal, which is great on Merlin. Stacked build, with no buffs, after using an ability your next auto will hit for 934 before mitigations. That's more damage than a level 5 Kulkulkan ultimate with 0 power. Fang and Soul Gem are good life steal and healing items with some nice other base stats as a bonus. Then Nimble Rod of Tahuti is of course a great item on every mage pretty much. The passive is more effective with this build because of the really high power you will have. I think Nimble is better because it's better for taking out towers and it good to have the attack speed while you are waiting on your cooldowns. This build is absolutely insane and you can probably use this same build on plenty of other mages too.

Notes

With this build, fully stacked, no buffs, you will have 863 power, 39% life steal (Plus the extra 25% healing from life steal from Typhon's Fang passive), and 20% penetration. Book of Thoth will help you with the early game mana regen and also add a ton of power in the mid-late game with the extra mana from poly and fang as well. Polynomicon is a great item with Merlin because it synergizes with his passive and it has life steal, which is great on Merlin. Stacked build, with no buffs, after using an ability your next auto will hit for 934 before mitigations. That's more damage than a level 5 Kulkulkan ultimate with 0 power. Fang and Soul Gem are good life steal and healing items with some nice other base stats as a bonus. Then Nimble Rod of Tahuti is of course a great item on every mage pretty much. The passive is more effective with this build because of the really high power you will have. I think Nimble is better because it's better for taking out towers and it good to have the attack speed while you are waiting on your cooldowns. This build is absolutely insane and you can probably use this same build on plenty of other mages too.

Build Item Pendulum of Ages Pendulum of Ages
Build Item Book of Thoth Book of Thoth
Build Item Polynomicon Polynomicon
Build Item Typhon's Fang Typhon's Fang
Build Item Soul Gem Soul Gem
Build Item Nimble Rod of Tahuti Nimble Rod of Tahuti
Build Item Ward Ward
Build Item Sentry Ward Sentry Ward

Situational Items

Notes Swap out Polynomicon with Divine Ruin if you need the anti-heal. You could go Chronos Pendant if you really wanted to, but my thought is you will be buying a potion of power at some point anyways and that has an extra 10% CDR. Soul gem also has 10% CDR. The Chronos Pendant passive is not good either, you are better off sticking with this build.

Notes

Swap out Polynomicon with Divine Ruin if you need the anti-heal. You could go Chronos Pendant if you really wanted to, but my thought is you will be buying a potion of power at some point anyways and that has an extra 10% CDR. Soul gem also has 10% CDR. The Chronos Pendant passive is not good either, you are better off sticking with this build.

Build Item Divine Ruin Divine Ruin

Merlin's Skill Order Notes If you are good at using your ult/stance switch to do damage then you should level it when you can. If you are like me and just use it to switch stance then you should stick with this level order.

Notes

If you are good at using your ult/stance switch to do damage then you should level it when you can. If you are like me and just use it to switch stance then you should stick with this level order.

Eclipse / Radiate / Frostbolt

1 X Y
Eclipse / Radiate / Frostbolt
1 4 6 7 9

Vortex / Dragonfire / Blizzard

2 A B
Vortex / Dragonfire / Blizzard
2 8 10 11 12

Flicker

3 B A
Flicker
3 15 16 18 19

Elemental Mastery

4 Y X
Elemental Mastery
5 13 14 17 20
Eclipse / Radiate / Frostbolt
1 4 6 7 9

Eclipse / Radiate / Frostbolt

1 X
Arcane: Merlin conjures an orb of condensed celestial energy that grows in size as it travels, dealing damage every 0.4s and marking Enemies hit.

Enemies marked take additional damage if they stay within the outer range of Eclipse.

Fire: Merlin channels a beam of intense fire for 2s that deals damage every 0.25s. Each time Radiate hits an Enemy, it also applies a Burn, dealing additional damage over time.

Ice: Merlin hurls a Frostbolt that explodes if it hits an Enemy, dealing an additional 15% damage if they are slowed.

Ability Type: Line
Initial Arcane Damage: 40 / 60 / 80 / 100 / 120 (+55% of your Magical Power)
Arcane Damage Per Tick: 5 / 15 / 25 / 35 / 45 (+8% of your Magical Power)
Arcane Duration: 3s
Arcane Cooldown: 14s

Fire Damage Per Tick: 6 / 12 / 18 / 24 / 30 (+18% of your Magical Power)
Fire Burn Damage: 5 / 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 (+5% of your Magical Power)
Fire Duration: 2s
Fire Cooldown: 16 / 15 / 14 / 13 / 12s

Ice Damage: 60 / 95 / 130 / 165 / 200 (+55% of your Magical Power)
Ice Cooldown: 6s

Range: 60 / 45 / 70
Cost: 60
Vortex / Dragonfire / Blizzard
2 8 10 11 12

Vortex / Dragonfire / Blizzard

2 A
Vortex (Arcane): Merlin deploys a field of arcane energy at a location. After a delay, a Vortex deals damage and pulls Enemies towards the center.

Dragonfire (Fire): Merlin summons forth two ethereal dragons that spout flames towards each other, dealing damage to Enemies every 0.25s. If caught in the center of the area, enemy god's protections are reduced. The dragons last for 3s.

Blizzard (Ice): Merlin creates a Blizzard at a target location. After a brief delay, shards of ice start hurling down every 0.7s. Enemies hit take damage and progressively get more Slowed while they stay within the area.

Enemies hit take damage and progressively get more slowed while they stay within the area.

Ability Type: AoE
Arcane Damage: 50 / 80 / 110 / 140 / 170 (+60% of your Magical Power)
Fire Damage Per Tick: 8 / 11 / 14 / 17 / 20 (+20% of your Magical Power)
Fire Protection Reduction: 4%
Fire Max Stacks: 4
Fire Debuff Duration: 4s
Ice Damage Per Tick: 10 / 25 / 40 / 55 / 70 (+15% of your Magical Power)
Ice Slow Per Stack: 8%
Ice Max Stacks: 5
Ice Slow Duration: 2s
Range: 60 / 50 / 65
Radius: 20 / 30 / 20
Cost: 60 / 65 / 70 / 75 / 80
Cooldown (Vortex / Blizzard): 16 / 15 / 14 / 13 / 12s
Cooldown (Dragonfire): 18 / 17 / 16 / 15 / 14s
Flicker
3 15 16 18 19

Flicker

3 B
Merlin quickly teleports a short distance in front of him.

Ability Type: Teleport
Range: 30
Cost: 70
Cooldown: 24 / 23 / 22 / 21 / 20s
Elemental Mastery
5 13 14 17 20

Elemental Mastery

4 Y
Merlin taps into his inner potential, exploding with energy in the stance he is currently attuned to. During this time Merlin can choose which stance to enter into next.

After the explosion reaches its apex, it collapses in on itself. Enemies are dealt damage from the both the explosion and the implosion and suffer different effects depending on which stance's energy they are being hit by.

Ability Type: Buff and AoE
Damage: 100 / 140 / 180 / 220 / 260 (+15% of your Magical Power)
Arcane: Knockup
Fire Damage Per Tick: 5 / 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 (+5% of your Magical Power)
Ice Slow: 20%
Slow Duration: 1.5s
Radius: 25
Cost: 40 / 50 / 60 / 70 / 80
Cooldown: 30 / 27.5 / 25 / 22.5 / 20s

Merlin Threats

Tap each threat level to view Merlin’s threats

Max
0
Major
1
Even
0
Minor
0
Tiny
0

Merlin Synergies

Tap each synergy level to view Merlin’s synergies

Ideal
1
Strong
1
OK
0
Low
0
None
0

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Collapse All Comments

2
Branmuffin17 (394) | June 17, 2022 9:35am
Hey Ashton,

I'm not so sure Polynomicon is the way to go for Merlin, who relies quite a bit on either his extra-long-range poke or channeled abilities. Doesn't make a follow-up basic attack flow very well. I also don't think investing into 3 lifesteal items is very good, especially if you face enough anti-heal to make those items less functional.

You're building the Nimble Rod of Tahuti glyph also for some reason, when he again isn't a basic attacker.

And while Tahuti + Typhon's gives 20% penetration, you really should have either Charon's Coin or Obsidian Shard in the build. And finally, you're also missing a very strong overall damage item in Soul Reaver at bare minimum as an alternative item.

Overall, I think Thoth, Poly, and Typhon's shouldn't be in a strong general build, and Tahuti shouldn't be the Nimble form. Reaver and Charon's should be standard items, and Magus and Deso should be other alternative flat pen items. E-Staff and Myrddin can make an appearance as a situational items as well.

One final option would be to go into Conduit Gem -> Gem of Focus instead of Sands, and grab Chronos' Pendant early.
1
BrotherAshton | June 17, 2022 9:56am
Give the build a try. The life steal keeps you in the fight longer. The power is nuts so you'll do a lot of damage. I crunched the numbers and pen is not as effective as you think. You are better off going with more power. I think Calamitous Rod is overrated, it has a refresh of 30 seconds which is pretty much once a fight. I chose nimble for the downtime between cool downs. It's helpful for taking out towers too. This build has 30% cool down and if you get a potion of power you will have 40%. I hit squishies for half of their health with poly. You can use poly on objectives and towers too. I've tried normal builds and Merlin does not do enough damage on his own. With other builds, you need to rely on your team to peel for you which is really hard to do when you are getting targeted. This build gives you enough power and sustain to kill a jungler that's stuck to you.
1
Branmuffin17 (394) | June 17, 2022 12:40pm
Hey Ashton,

Thanks for the responses and explanations. Some further thoughts.
  • I do think Charon's Coin provides a lot of utility to Merlin. While in some cases certain items without pen may do more damage to certain enemies, % pen not only affects tanks more, but also objectives (structures, FG/GF).

  • I agree Calamitous at this point is sorta meh. I'm willing to give Nimble a shot as the basic attack speed is a viable point, but what I was sort of getting at here is what Kriega said, that Tahuti isn't even that necessary at all, especially when you're missing other items that I would consider more core e.g. Soul Reaver.

  • I can see the use of Poly with regard to the burst esp on enemies that are diving you (and since his escape is fairly weak). I'm also willing to give that a shot / pass from my original comment, situationally. That said, I still don't know that I would recommend 3 lifesteal items in a single build.
1
Kriega1 (143) | June 17, 2022 11:55am
Nimble isn' that bad, but honestly I wouldn't bother with Tahuti in general much on most burst mages right now. Coin + Shard, or Warlock's + Coin/Shard is ideal for your % pen imo.

Also Reaver is core on Merlin.
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League of Legends Build Guide Author BrotherAshton
OP Merlin Build
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