Kled is a sticky, close range fighter who excels at dueling and assisting initiation. He can also jungle as long as he stays mounted. His playstyle and abilites revolve around aggressive engages and encourages him to fight rather than run away, even when dismounted.
Kled is extremely good at turning the tides by surprising enemies with a burst of health when he remounts Skaarl. Therefore, it's usually a better idea to stand and fight opponents.
Due to the temporary untargetability and invulnerability when dismounting, Kled can towerdive quite well which fits well with his playstyle.
Beartrap on a Rope (Q) makes Kled throw a narrow beartrap on a rope. It will hook on to the first monster or champion it hits and after a while pull and slow the target. It can be used to harass enemies or start a full combo if you land both parts of it. Due to the bonus 50% damage to minions, it can also be used to clear waves. It can be likened to a leash ability such as LeBlanc'sEthereal Chains.
His dismounted Q, Pocket Pistol, fires 5 pellets that give courage if they hit enemies while knocking Kled backwards, much like Caitlyn's90 Caliber Net or Graves'Collateral Damage. It is used mainly to regain courage or to escape over a wall. However, it's damage should not underestimated and can be used to kill enemies who are out of autoattack range.
Violent Tendencies (W) grants Kled a massive attack speed boost for 4 autoattacks, with the final one dealing % maximum health damage. The cooldown of this ability needs to be managed carefully as it constitutes a lot of Kled's damage, especially against tanky opponents, and greatly helps him to regain Skaarl's courage.
Violent Tendencies is a passive. You can't press W to start the empowered autos so engages should be timed around its cooldown.
It can be helpful in the early game to only put a point in Violent Tendencies when you really need it as learning the ability will ready it instantly.
Jousting (E) can only be used while mounted and makes Skaarl dash a fixed distance in the target direction. Striking a champion or monster will allow you to recast the ability toward their location (this dash can cross walls). Jousting can be used as an escape, a chasing tool or an engage/disengage in a similar vein to Renekton'sSlice and Dice.
Chaaaaaaaarge!!! is Kled's ult. It causes Skaarl to roll up in a ball and accelerate toward an area that can be selected by clicking on the map/minimap, while building up a shield. Upon reaching an enemy, Skaarl will lock on and ram into the target, dealing % maximum health damage. This ability also leaves a trail behind which speeds up allies.
Take note that after activation, you cannot manually cancel the charge. Therefore, one should never use this ability when you are unsure of or cannot predict your target's location, as it may lead to your demise or an embarrassing waste of your ult. You should coordinate with your team to storm the enemy like you would with Sivir'sOn the Hunt or Sion'sUnstoppable Onslaught.
This ability can also be used for running away since Kled moves very fast and is unstoppable during the charge. However, be careful as enemies can potentially "kill" Skaarl, which stops the charge and dismounts Kled, or simply intercept the ability to stop the duo from going any further.
Pocket Pistol and Violent Tendencies are the only abilities available to Kled when he dismounts. They both aid him in getting Skaarl's courage back quickly if used properly. This helps as an unmounted Kled is extremely easy to kill due to low base health and pathetic movement speed.
The best way to regain courage if both abilities are up is to run up to your opponent, attack them 4 times with Violent Tendencies (60 courage) and finish with a point-blank Pocket Pistol (25 courage). This will leave Kled with 85 courage. Attacking some time during or after the combo will get you to 100 and cause you to remount.
The extra movement speed from running toward enemies combined with your bonus range helps start the combo and the knockback from Pocket Pistol ensures a safe retreat.
Kled abilities are only limited by cooldowns so resource management isn't an issue for him. Use this advantage to bully heavy mana users.
Skaarl and Kled have separate health bars. Be wary of Kled's HP if dismounted a second time as health regen and lifesteal will apply to Skaarl's bonus HP before restoring Kled's own HP.
Courage is gained from killing minions and attacking/killing enemy champions and structures.
It is recommended to start with either Beartrap on a Rope (Q) or Violent Tendencies (W). Both abilities can be used for powerful early trades although the former is more reliable. Note that Violent Tendencies deals enough damage to kill a minion at level 1 if all 4 basic attacks hit the same minion. Kled can then max either Q or W first with, the other one second, and Jousting third.
Kled can do an early kill with Q, W and E.
Engage with Beartrap on a Rope and follow the target, because the rope length will get shorter and shorter.
After ripping the target, make the first basic attack of Violent Tendencies. Afterward, dash through the target with Jousting to stay close to target to deal the other 3 empowered basic attacks. Use Jousting again to chase them if they try to escape or back off if the trade seems unfavourable.
This trading pattern is reminiscent of Riven's and Renekton's combo where you go in, CC your enemy and beat them up before making a clean retreat. Kled has less CC then both of these champions though so trades may be a bit messier.
Kled's buildpaths are somewhat flexible but usually prioritise Attack Damage, Armor Pen/Shred for damage and Health, Resistances and to an extent, Lifesteal, for survivability. Cooldown Reduction helps in both departments and increases the frequency of his utility.
Less popular builds include high Crit Chance and Attack Speed, which in conjunction with Violent Tendencies, can four-hit squishy targets and tear tankier ones apart, akin to a Tryndamere or Master Yi.
The Black Cleaver is a must. The attack amage(AD), 20% CDR and health (H) is crucial for Kled not to mention the armor shred and extra movement speed. It also has a smooth buildpath which gives Kled the stats he needs easily if he needs to back early.
Mercurial Scimitar gives Kled AD, magic resist (MR) and lifesteal(LS). The Quicksilver active can get Kled out of dangerous CC which is important as his survivability depends heavily on his ability to attack enemies.
The Ravenous Hydra is a good item because it gives a lot of AD for high damage, more LS and base HR for a bit more sustain. It also gives Kled another active for burst and stronger waveclear.
Titanic Hydra should be considered as a tankier alternative to Ravenous Hydra. Despite granting less AD, the bonus damage from both the passive and active do wonders for him, as they both scale with the combined health bars of the duo, along with the active resetting his attack timer, which synergises with Violent Tendencies after consuming the buff to increase their DPS.
Trinity Force is decent for Kled even though the mana is wasted because it grants Tons of Damage. It has AD, AS, 20% CDR, a high damage Sheen effect for even more burst and movement speed for more stickiness.
As a fighter who goes really deep into fights, Guardian Angel's life saving passive along with constant remounting will make Kled annoyingly hard to kill. It can suffice as Kled's lone defensive item as the dual resistances will buffer his already high HP.
Zz'Rot Portal could also be viable if for the dual resistances. It also augments Kled's splitpushing capability and his high HP also gives the voidlings more damage.
Blade of the Ruined King can be a situational buy as it gives AS, LS and a bit of AD along with its health shredding active and passive. This item compliments Kled's % health damage on Violent Tendencies and Chaaaaaaaarge!!! and also gives even more sticking power with its active. However, the amount of AD it gives is rather low for Kled's high scalings on his kit's abilities.
Maw of Malmortius is a valuable item for staying alive. Along with mandatory AD, it has MR, armor penetration and a Lifeline passive which gives Kled a better chance to survive and remount against high burst.
Sterak's Gage is also good if seeking a Lifeline passive. It gives health and a boost to base AD which is helpful if you pick up a Spellblade item (bear in mind that since it is Base AD, it won't benefit Kled's bonus AD scalings). The shield it gives after taking a large amount of damage gives even more survivability on top of Skaarl's HP.
Youmuu's Ghostblade is a fantastic item if snowballing as it gives a tremendous amount of damage through AD, Armor Penetration and Cooldown Reduction on top of its active which provides Attack Speed. The movement speed from the active also works well with Kled's stickiness.
Kled can use all the boots fairly well with the exception of Sorcerer's Shoes as he has no magic damage in his kit.
Boots of Mobility is decent for roaming early on which Kled is quite good at. However, it should be sold later in the game for a more useful pair of boots.
Boots of Swiftness is probably the best choice for Kled if he doesn't need tanky boots. The extra movement speed combined with the slow resist makes him even harder to peel off than he normally would be with the insane stickiness in his kit.
Mercury's Treads gives MR but more importantly, tenacity, which is useful for the same reasons as Boots of Swiftness.
Ninja Tabi can greatly reduce the damage output of autoattackers like Marksmen which can allow Kled to kill them without risking death himself.
Ionian Boots of Lucidity grants CDR and summoner spell CDR. The latter is useful as it can help Kled with both roaming or killing depending on his summoner spells.
You can set up 20% CDR in runes, giving Kled 20% CDR right from start. When he gets The Black Cleaver, his CDR will be maximized, leaving you to choose alternative items.
Kled can't cancel his ultimate, using a knockback or knockup will allow you to push Kled's teammates back and isolate him from his team, thus making him easier to kill.
Kled has a couple of weaknesses when he is dismounted: His base movement speed is reduced to 285, his basic attacks deal 80% AD and he only has access to two of his abilities. When in this form, gap closing capabilities (for example, Fiora'sLunge) may hamper his only escape (the knockback from Pocket Pistol)
You can tell how much courage Kled has the more he glows.
When unmounted, Kled is poor at running away from fights and as such will usually fight back in hopes of getting Skaarl back. This is very hard for him to do if his Pocket Pistol and Violent Tendencies are down which makes it a prime time to engage on him.
Despite scalings of % health benefit them well for considering their combined health (e.g.: Grasp of the Undying and Titanic Hydra), it does hinder them as well, making any source of damage based on % health being more effective against them.