Jungle Initiative (Part 2: Smiting correctly once and for all)


This tutorial will teach you everything about smiting from scratch to advanced smiting techniques. You might want to consider passing over the first parts of the guide if you are already an experienced jungler. But I’m sure you’ll learn something from this guide even if you are a very good player  :)

1. Basics of smiting

Smite: a targeted summoner spell that deals damage to minions or neutral creeps. It deals 460 + (lvl x 30) true damage to an enemy minion, pet, or neutral monster.

It deals 490 damage at level 1, 520 at level 2, and 1000 at level 18. If you’re going to remember some smite values at least remember these ones.

So, it’s a summoner spell, and it deals true damage. It means the damage it says it does, it really does! No armor/magic resistance calculations or whatsoever. Also the damage increases with your level, this means that if the enemy jungler has a higher level than you, he has a stronger smite.

smitingcorrectWhen you click a monster, a box like this appears on the left top corner of your screen. This box indicates the monster’s stats (you can also do that with champions, pets, towers, anything!) The most important value here is the health bar. You can see exactly how much health a monster has left.

When you hover over your smite ability, you should see a box like the one below appear next to it. This box indicates your smite damage at your currently level. You can see exactly how much damage you can deal with smite.


When you are jungling you now have the exact health value of the monster you want to smite, and also the exact smite damage value that you will do. You should practice using smite only when the monster’s health value is just under your smite damage in order to use smite as a finisher.

Why? Because if you smite a full life monster and then auto attack it to death, at some point it will have something like 150 health and an enemy jungler passing by could do what we call a smite-steal, smiting your gold and experience away from you. Pretty embarrassing huh?

If you didn’t know anything about this I recommend you stop this tutorial for today and go for some games in the jungle using what you’ve learned about smite before doing part 2.

2. Combining smite with your auto attack

Now you probably already know everything that I said above, but a lot of people don’t and I wanted this guide to be accessible to anybody from starter to experienced player. So here’s part 2.

A lot of junglers repeatedly make the mistake of smiting a monster when its health is below their smite damage. An experienced jungler could easily smite steal that monster from over a wall or even from under your nose. (Yes I know that’s what I told you to do in part 1! But things have changed now, imagine yourself playing against stronger players with more experience)

Picture this situation, you are attacking red buff, it has 610 health left. Your auto attacks deal 50 damage to it, and your smite does 520 damage.
50 x 2 + 520 = 620 which means you still need two auto attacks and your smite to take him down because 620 > 610.

Here is the wrong way to do it step by step:
Auto attack red buff once
Auto attack red buff a second time
Realize red buff has 510 health
Smite it

The right way to do it step by step:
Auto attack red buff once
Realize that your next auto attack will take red buff below 520 health (which is your smite damage)
Auto attack red buff a second time
Wait for your auto attack animation to land and hit smite at that exact moment

What’s the difference? You don’t rely on your reaction time anymore, because you know when to smite the buff, you’re doing it at the same time as a completed auto attack. You’re not waiting after each hit to see if you can smite or not.
It’s called combining your auto attack with your smite, and technically it makes your smite “stronger” because you’re reinforcing it by adding your auto attack damage to it.

Remember: Auto attacks do not deal true damage, you’ll have to estimate their damage when you first start attacking a monster you want to smite.

3. Combining smite with a spell

But wait there’s more, sometimes you need more damage than your smite combined with an auto attack to secure a dragon or a baron kill. At some point your spells will deal more damage than your auto attacks anyway so why not reinforce your smite with your spell damage?

Choosing a spell to combine with smite is pretty easy, you want a spell that does not do damage over time (DoT). You want a spell that does a single chunk of damage your target.

Remember that just like your auto attacks most spells take time to apply their chunk of damage; most of them take less than a second, but one second is already an enormous amount of time. It’s called cast time. If you take a closer look when you cast spells you’ll notice a progression bar on some spells. Here is a screenshot of the progression bar.


Of course that progression bar isn’t reliable because it is way too fast. Instead, you’ll have to use your intuition considering how long the cast time of your spell is. This will take some practice and knowing roughly how long your spell cast times are (it’s usually pretty easy if you look at the champion animations since some of them are pretty straightforward)

Apart from that it’s exactly the same thing as 2. Combining smite with your auto attack.

Remember that combining a spell with your smite gives you the advantage over people that try to smite your buff away from over the wall, simply because it will be very hard for them to land a spell to combine with their smite from over there.

4. Smite-stealing buffs from over a wall

Now this is very hard to achieve when the jungler you want to steal from uses what I said in 2. or 3. There are two ways to do it, either have a very high level advantage over him (stronger smite) which is pretty unlikely, or try to guess what spell he will combine with smite and make sure you know that spell animation well.

What you want to do is smite the buff while he is doing his own spell + smite combo and try to land your smite in between his combo like this: Enemy spell > Your smite > His smite.

Basically the one with the higher reflexes and lower ping wins. Kinda unfair for some people you might say!

If you land your smite exactly at the correct moment he won’t even be able to smite it and will think for a split second that he already did. He then might not notice right away that he did not get his buff. Pretty cool!

5. Smite securing & Smite-stealing Dragon/Baron

Basically, keep an eye on Dragon/Baron’s health, see how fast it goes down and try to predict when its health will be under your total damage output (smite alone or combined smite). It’s very intuitive and takes a lot of practice. You can practice on this awesome mini smiting game with different levels of difficulty.

Your smite range does not allow you to smite from over the Dragon/Baron pit wall which means if you’re trying to steal Dragon/Baron it’s best to flash/dash in and try a smite steal, while you’re in there you can also try combine your smite with a spell.

I’ve seen some people do really creative stuff with smite-stealing instead of just flashing inside like a brute. Here’s a video you might want to check out.

Apparently fly-bys can also be achieved with any other dash champions, by dashing over a small part of the Dragon/Baron pit (cutting the arc) using a ward for Lee Sin, Jax, or simply dashing like Jarvan IV. Even though you don’t actually fly over the Dragon/Baron like Zac, it allows you to get just close enough during the dash to be in range for smite.

6. Bonus: Funny things that you can smite

  • Minions, Siege minions, Super minions
  • Malzahar’s voidlings
  • Annie’s Tibbers
  • Heimerdinger’s turrets
  • Elise’s spiderlings
  • Zac’s bloblets
  • Teemo (you wish don’t you ;) )

And I’ve probably missed a lot, you can comment here if you found any that I forgot!

12 thoughts on “Jungle Initiative (Part 2: Smiting correctly once and for all)

  1. Tropikk

    Bonus: Funny things that you can smite
    Everything that is targetable, has hp and isn’t a champion!

  2. Chris

    Another interesting fact is that spell vamp applies to smite. This isn’t useful for all champions but for the junglers who might use spellvamp (eg Fiddlesticks) it may just be an extra free heal.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>