Underrated but Overpowered: Joule guide 3.2! by Zerroc

Underrated but Overpowered: Joule guide 3.2!

By: Zerroc
Last Updated: Apr 23, 2018
23 Votes
Build 1 of 3

Joule

Build: Blue

Ability Path

Heavy Plating
Heroic Perk
Rocket Leap
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Thunder Strike
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Big Red Button
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12

Threat Meter

Threat
Low
High
Show all
Threat Hero Notes
1
SAW Piece of cake. If he builds shield, get your teammates to kill him.
1
Celeste Same as SAW. Not really mobile, so easy to snipe with a laser.
2
Petal Not much of a problem, unless you get out-early-gamed.
2
Skaarf Land your A on him to interrupt his ult.
3
  No Threat
4
Ringo Press that button! However, he can dodge your ult, so you might have to get your teammates to kill him.
5
Krul Less scary than he used to be. Keep your distance as you laser and thunderstrike him.
5
Vox Mobile but squishy. lock him down and avoid his silence.
5
Gwen Kind of a problem. She can skedaddle out of your laser without a problem because her B will cleanse the effects of your frost burn. Try to wait to laser her until she's used her B.
6
Baron Lock him down with a jump and then laser him when he tries to get away. Turn towards him when he attacks you to take less damage thanks to your heavy plating.
6
Koshka Obnoxious. Mobile, better early game than you, and a 2 second stun. Get a reflex block.
7
  No Threat
8
Skye Ugh. Super hard to hit with any of your abilities, but easy to take down if you can land a laser.
8
Taka Same as Skye.
8
Glaive Difficult. If he invades you early game, you'll have to get your laner to help. He's also naturally tanky, so a laser isn't quite as effective as on others.
8
Alpha She has two lives, which is not good for you. Get your teammates to kill her while you focus her laner.
9
Catherine If she ults you or your team, you literally have nothing, and if you laser her shield, bad things are coming your way. Good ones will always save their stun for when you ult. Buy a reflex block.
9
Tony Super tanky if he builds correctly, and his taunt will have you screwed. Try to bait out his perk before you laser him. Also try a dragon's eye instead of shatter.
10
Reim Your only chance is to incinerate him before he can get any fortified health. If he builds defense, there isn't much you can do. Try a dragon's eye against this guy.

Joule

Build: Red V1 (Crit)

Ability Path

Heavy Plating
Heroic Perk
Rocket Leap
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Thunder Strike
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Big Red Button
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12

Threat Meter

Threat
Low
High
Show all
Threat Hero Notes
1
  No Threat
2
Skaarf He's got no way to run. Make sure to interrupt his ult.
2
Blackfeather If he's in the jungle, starve him to death. If he's in the lane you're gonna have to be a little more careful.
3
Celeste She can probably stun you, but if you have your core you can finish her off quickly.
3
Samuel Don't let him kite you! Stun him and finish him off.
4
Ozo Get your core, then kill him.
4
Kestrel Don't get caught in her trap.
4
Koshka You've got a better late game. Get a reflex block.
4
Petal Early game threat. Don't let her starve you.
5
Alpha Don't try to 1v1 her.
5
SAW Difficult until you get your core. Land the jump!
5
Fortress A nightmare when paired with an early game hero. Farm carefully!
6
Krul Attack from a distance, then stun him. DO NOT 1v1!
7
  No Threat
8
Skye Same as taka.
9
Taka Too mobile. Get your core quickly!
10
Reim You don't have much of a chance against him, especially if he builds tanky. Try to get your core quick and maybe you can beat him.

Joule

Build: Red V2 (Brusier)

Ability Path

Heavy Plating
Heroic Perk
Rocket Leap
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Thunder Strike
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Big Red Button
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12

Threat Meter

Threat
Low
High
Show all
Threat Hero Notes
1
  No Threat
2
Celeste Don't get stunned.
3
Vox Not a big problem. Bait his dash out and then jump on him.
3
Reza You might get bullied early game when he has an aftershock, but when you buy defense later game you shouldn't have a problem with him.
3
Gwen Face her when she fires at you with her perk to soak some of the dmg.
4
Glaive Don't get out-early gamed, or you will lose. Try to keep him off your carry's backs.
4
Taka Mildly annoying, but falls off hard late game compared to you.
5
Reim Build a shiv and try to dodge his spires. Engage him with your team all at once, or not at all.
5
SAW This WP build is far worse against saw than the crit build. You'll need to try your best to poke from a distance and to land your stun.
5
Krul Build a shiv and poke him from a distance.
6
Tony Poke him, then face him head on when he engages you to reduce the damage from his A.
7
Alpha Eh, it really depends on your early/mid game. If you out-farm her and apply pressure, you shouldn't have a problem finishing strong. Buy defense against her.
8
Samuel Ugh, he'll just kite you forever if you miss your stun, and the enemy team will all swarm you if you touch him. Try not to miss your stun.
9
Idris Mobile and has a high dmg output, bad news for you. You will usually need to stay away from him until you can kill him quickly.
9
Lance The good ones are always the most annoying, he won't let you touch the enemy carries. Try to build your BP stacks on him and then jump in when he's distracted.
10
  No Threat

Intro Top

Hey there, and welcome to my Joule guide! This is a short guide on tactics, items, and general tips for everyone's favorite mech mechanic.
As a Joule main, I've been playing as her since I started VG, which was about three years ago. It's been really awesome to see all the changes she's gone through, and to adapt my strategies for everything SEMC has done in the game.
Joule is not an easy hero, and I hope this guide helps to lessen the difficulty.

Enjoy!

Crystal Joule Top



Crystal Joule is ridiculously good against squishy targets. Her ultimate has the most damage AND the most crystal ratio in the game! However, with great power comes great responsibility. You need to know the right time to Rocket Leap, and more importantly, use your Big Red Button.
One of the easiest ways to secure a good ultimate is to activate it in one of the many constricting parts of the Halcyon Fold or Sovereign's Rise. Find a "corridor" and force the teamfight, then laser the heck out of the entire enemy team.

A word on items


Frostburn is 100 Crystal power with a passive that slows enemies. I don't build it first, however, because I would only have a 10% slow. A Shatterglass increases the slow by 15%, for a total of 25%. It's just more effective to have 150 CP before the Frostburn.
I also put Broken Myth as the final item, but if the enemy team were to start building shield, you'll need it sooner. Start with your shatter, and then get Clockwork, broken myth, and frostburn respectively.
During the past few updates, I've been enjoying clockwork on CP Joule because thunder strike is a spammable ability, making it easy to lower the cooldown of your A and ult. However, if you want, you can switch clockwork out for an Echo, for an extra free ult. This is especially fun in a brawl mode with Joule's epic talent because then you get FOUR lasers on demand. One thing about an echo build, though, is that it isn't as flexible as a clockwork build because of your long cooldowns on everything, including the echo. With a clockwork, if you miss a laser, no problem; it'll be up again in 10-15 seconds by hitting thunder strike. With echo, if you miss your laser and use your echo to refresh the cooldown, then your echo won't be available for 40 seconds and you only have one laser left.
One more thing, I usually run a Reflex Block in some form or another, because nothing is worse than getting stunned out of your ult. You look silly and have just wasted your most important ability.

You might be asking: "What about Aftershock and Alternating Current? Don't those items work well on CP Joule?" The answer to this question is a flat NO in most circumstances. To use either, you're forfeiting a whole bunch of damage on your Big Red Button for a measly passive that doesn't synchronize well with Joule. Yes, Thunder Strike is a spammable ability, and those are usually good with aftershock. Not so with Joule, however, because she simply can't deal enough damage fast enough for it to mean anything. Same problem with Alternating Current. Have I actually used those items on Crystal Joule? Yep. A long time ago I was using a VGF guide that encouraged building Alternating Current and Aftershock. Back then, I lost more games than I won, so I switched to straight power on Joule, and went uphill from there.

CP Joule's best friends




Ardan is crazy good with Crystal Joule, and it's mostly because of his Gauntlet. There's nothing like a big wall of death to help line up an even deadlier laser. I often see enemies panic and run into the gauntlet, stunning themselves. This lines me up perfectly to use my ultimate and fry them all to crisps. Will they use a crucible and escape? Often, yes, but the crucible they use to escape the gauntlet is the crucible they won't be using when they're getting lasered.



A good Phinn on your team is fantastic for lining up your abilities. I enjoy waiting for his Forced Accord and using Rocket Leap right in front of him, stunning the entire enemy team. I'll then finish them off with a Big Red Button. His fortified health from Polite Company also does wonders combined with your Heavy Plating.

Lane or Jungle?


Joule is one of the most diverse heroes, in my opinion, because she can fill any role quite easily. Need a tanky frontline bruiser? Build WP and some defense. Need a backline mage? Thunder Strike from a distance until you can line up a devastating ult. Need a captain that can also be a formidable threat? Build a Shatterglass or a Frostburn alongside your utility and defensive items.
The big question, however, is: "Where should I play her?" Well, Joule is currently listed a Jungler, but that doesn't mean anything. Joule can play just as well in the lane, if not better, because the gold count is much higher. This means you can get your items earlier, and end the game quickly before your opponent has a chance to counter build you. On top of all this is the fact that Joule can carry just as well as any carry hero, WP or CP. She has the potential, and I think the Lane is where this potential actually shows.

5v5


I LOVE playing CP Joule in 5v5, for several reasons. The first is that because there are 5 people on your team, you don't need to worry about carrying as much as you do in 3v3, even if CP Joule is super situational. The second (and better) reason is the fact that 5v5 is FULL of squishy laners just begging for you to laser their entire health bar down to zero. I can blind pick CP Joule all the time in 5v5 and never have to worry about getting countered by a tanky comp.
In 5v5, you will need to focus less on trying to line up an ult on the entire enemy team, and more on getting rid of specific backline squishies. Go ahead and solo ult an enemy, as long as it means securing the kill.

Miscellaneous Comments


CP Joule is an excellent counter to squishy team comps such as Ringo and Kestrel, or SAW and Koshka, which is why I've always preferred Crystal on her. It's just a lot more fun, there are fewer joys greater than incinerating the entire team with one ability. Also, squishy CP mages seem like meta right now, and Joule is the direct counter to most of them.

Weapon Joule Top



Weapon Joule is a bit easier to play than CP Joule, and is also good against squishy targets, but her strong suits and playstyle are both quite different than CP. First of all, WP Joule has a much better early game, due to the higher ratio for Thunder Strike and the fact that your basic attacks actually deal damage. Sometimes, that early game boost is enough to take out heroes like Koshka or Petal, allowing you to shut them down from the get-go.

WP Joule V1: Crit




Crit Joule is excellent against squishy enemies, but it has a few flaws. For starters, your core: Sorrowblade, Tornado Trigger, and Tyrant's Monocle together are actually quite expensive, and crit Joule is quite weak mid game until she can buy the aforementioned monocle. The second flaw is the fact that if your game runs long enough, crit Joule usually falls off late game. If you've been oppressive at all early or mid game enemies with half a brain will buy a metal jacket, and then you're forced to buy a Bonesaw as soon as you can, robbing you of your core. Even if you manage to get your core and then the bonesaw, you can't build a second defensive item, which leaves you in a pickle if you're getting killed before you can kill the enemy team.
Crit Joule is by no means bad, but the fairly recent nerfs to critical percentages across the board have indirectly nerfed WP Joule. This all just goes to show why I prefer the build below over crit Joule.

WP Joule V2: Tanky Bruiser




As mentioned earlier, I currently prefer this build over the crit one because it is far more reliable. With a simple core of sorrowblade and breaking point, you have a free item to build whatever else you want (usually a bonesaw) and two spaces for defense. All this works together to form a build that I believe synergies much better with Joule's kit in the first place and establishes her WP path as more of a tanky bruiser than the sustained burst of the crit build. This build also works far better against healthier opponents without sacrificing too much effectiveness against enemy carries.

WP Joule's best friends




Lance is a decent pairing with WP Joule. His Impale is a good early game boost, and it's great for helping finish off fleeing enemies. He's also a big target, which is good for you, as Weapon Joule needs to get up close to deal consistent damage.



Catherine's stun and silence synchronize extremely well with WP Joule's kit, making it easy to land your Rocket Leap. Her ultimate is especially good to initiate late-game team fights, because the enemy can't fight back as you hit them with a couple Thunder Strikes.

Miscellaneous Comments


Weapon Joule is a solid choice against squishier heroes that might be trouble for the rest of your team. As of now, she plays better in the lane, where there's more gold, but can certainly be played in the jungle as well. Although not the strongest currently, she is definitely still a force to be reckoned with!

Final Remarks Top

Well, I hope I've helped expand your knowledge of how Joule can be played. As the name of the guide suggests, Joule seems like one of the most underplayed heroes next to Ozo, and I think she deserves a little more love.

Thanks for reading!

~Zerroc

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