Nami Build Guide by Vynertje
This build has been archived and is for historical display only.
PLEASE NOTE: This build has been archived by the author. They are no longer supporting nor updating this build and it may have become outdated. As such, voting and commenting have been disabled and it no longer appears in regular search results.
Not Updated For Current Season
This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.
Standard starting items
Not Updated For Current Season
The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.
Threats to Nami with this build
A diamond guide to mastering the waves – support Nami
__ introduction __
Hello everyone and welcome to my Nami guide! I’m vynertje, a high elo player (Diamond 4 at the time I’m writing this guide) on EUW and a support main. I recently picked up Nami myself and have had great success with her. Right now she’s on the rise again as a very solid support pick and I hope this guide will help you to play her to great success as well!
An old Dutch saying goes, ‘god created the earth, but the Dutchies created Holland’: We mastered the waves and created new land. In that spirit I hope you’ll master Nami and get yourself some Elo!
This guide will include a couple of games directly taken from my stream which can help you. If you have the time, I’d definitely recommend you to have a look at them because I try to give a lot of advice while playing, and you might learn something from that. You can also follow my stream at www.twitch.tv/vynertje to get notified when I’m streaming live!
Before jumping into the guide itself, I’d like to quickly point out that (as you may have guessed) I’m not a native English speaker – I will most likely have made an error or two in my grammar from time to time. Please don’t give me a hard time for this, but if you notice something feel free to tell me (please do!).
__ pros / cons __
+ Very versatile pick with lots of good synergies
+ Can win pretty much every matchup if played well
+ One of the best peeling supports in game
+ Packs a ton of CC
- Very squishy and has no mobility to escape
- Can be mana hungry when playing aggressive
- CC is not reliable
- Very high skill cap: she’s quite hard to pick up as a new player
The main reason to pick Nami is her versatility. Whether you’re playing aggressively on lane with a Lucian or defensively with a kog’maw, she offers exactly what you need because Ebb and Flow can be used to poke and to heal. This also means she can deal with most matchups as long as you know how to play them and adapt your play accordingly. She also transitions extremely well into late-game because of her massive peel: she has all the tools you need to keep your oh-so-important AD carry alive. In teamfights she also brings a metric ton of crowd control which can easily turn the tables of a fight.
On the flipside, she is very squishy and hasn’t got a single way to escape at all. Once you get locked down with some crowd control, you’re pretty much done. You can kite around decently but you will always be vulnerable. She can also burn through mana like a madman if you’re playing too aggressively: decent mana management is prerequisite to playing her or you’ll end up being forced to base every minute. She’s also really hard to play because her wave is tediously slow and the bubble is quite an awkward skill shot to land – thus you need time to master her and even then; since your CC fully relies on skill shots which of course aren’t 100% reliable. This all requires extensive mastery of your champion.
__ Runes __
When going through the thought process while picking runes, you want to keep in mind what Nami benefits most of. For runes, she needs some tankyness to make up for her relatively weak base stats. That’s why I pick full defensive seals and quits, combined with some extra utility and magic resist in glyphs and a little bit of extra early game power in marks. This setup makes for a well-rounded approach to Nami in the early game. I’d never recommend to majorly change this setup because of that.
Greater mark of hybrid penetration
These marks are by far the best for Nami because they allow you to abuse your early power as much as possible; armor pen for your early game (ranged) auto attacks to punish melee / low ranged supports hard, and magic pen for all of your abilities. The difference in magic pen between these and magic pen marks isn’t that big which is why I’d always pick these.
Greater seal of health
After the rune changes these are by far the best seals for supports. In bot lane you’ll always be dealing with multiple damage types which is why you cannot just go full on armor anymore. Besides that, the combination of armor quints + health seals right now actually gives you a better total than health quints + armor seals, which was the old meta setup. I would definitely recommend to always take flat runes because otherwise you risk getting snowballed upon just because you’re waayyyyyy to squishy early game.
Greater glyph of mana regen
After the rune changes they slightly buffed mana regen glyphs, so I like to take slight advantage of that by going a few (max 3 or 4) mana regen glyphs to slightly make up for your mana problems. It’s completely up to you if you feel the need to get these or not, but I’d never get more than 4 just because you’ll otherwise be sacrificing way to much magic resist.
Greater glyph of magic resist
The reasoning behind this choice is quite simple. You’ll be facing a support and that support will very likely deal magic damage (pretty much every support primarily deals magic damage) which is why these are a mandatory pick. Never take scaling magic resist because you’ll always be getting some magic resist in your standard build and you’ll really need to get as much defensive stats as you possibly can for your early game.
Greater quintessence of armor
As mentioned: armor quints + health seals is a really effective combination because armor quints are unaffected by the changes – this will yield you as much defensive stats as you possibly can.
__ masteries __
I run two different mastery setups for Nami which only slightly differ based on matchup. I won’t explain every single point I take in-depth because that’s completely pointless but I’ll shortly explain why this setup is so good;
Firstly, 21 utility is absolutely great for Nami. It gives so much useful stats, ranging from slightly increased gold income to CDR on spells, actives and summoners. Pretty much every stat is useful for her which you should never pass out on it. Defense is nice but the only points worth taking past the first 9 points are those in Legendary Guardian – which in my opinion is not worth losing out on all the utility goodies.
The other 9 points can be assigned somewhat freely, but I’d usually recommend to put all 9 in defense just for the sake of making up for some of her weaknesses. However, I myself like to run a slightly modified 4/5/21 setup making use of all the cooldown reduction. This setup allows me to start with 10% CDR on spells, actives AND summoners which can be really nice if you can deal with being marginally less tanky. In the end it is up to you what you prefer using.
__ summoner spells __
Flash is 100% mandatory. It allows you to escape sticky situations or set up great plays. If you don’t take it, you’ll die. Period.
For your second slot you have a little bit more variety. What you go with purely depends on matchup and the summoners of your AD carry.
Standard pick. Cripples the enemy AD carry in a 1v1 fight and is especially useful against bruisers diving your carry in teamfights. Make sure you use it timely though – don’t be afraid to waste it because if you use it too late in a fight, you’ve essentially wasted it. It can also allow you to more easily hit bubbles if you need to.
Offensive pick. If you’re facing a very weak botlane combo (like Kog’Maw + Morgana) with an aggressive AD carry on your side, you can get this for some extra kill potential. Generally I would not recommend this because it falls off badly going into late game compared to exhaust. Also, Nami usually is not such a brawler but is mainly aimed at poking down the enemy which also reduces the use of this summoner.
If your AD carry doesn’t run heal (but Cleanse, for example – because you’re facing a Leona) this could be a very good pick. Having one heal at bot lane is really nice to have to pop in fights for the extra movement speed and health. However, make sure to never get more than one heal in your lane, because it’s a waste.
__ Skill sequence __
On Nami you generally want to start W first. Make sure not to level anything before you get in lane though, because in case of an invade you’ll want Q. The reason W is better to start with in lane is because it is a lot more reliable damage than Aqua Prison. The versatility it gives + the possible bounces make it a really strong spell to trade at level 1.
After level 1 you’ll want to skill Aqua Prison to make for effective combo’s. Not taking Q will also leave you very vulnerable. At level 3 you can both go for another point in Ebb and Flow or take tidecaller’s blessing. This generally depends on the matchup (do you want/need the slow or the extra heal/damage) but also on your mana conservation. An extra point in E means you’ll have one more spell to waste mana on, so keep this in mind. Generally you want to go with tidecaller’s blessing though.
You should max Ebb and Flow first (by level 9), again because it’s such a versatile spell. However, tidecaller’s blessing can be very strong in poke matchups if you have absolutely no need for the heal. The way lower mana costs will then allow you to keep playing more aggressively.
Finally, take your ultimate whenever you can (levels 6, 11 and 16) and max Aqua Prison last because you only use it for the crowd control.
__ skills __
Passive: Surging Tides
Quite straight forward passive but it’s really useful. every of your spells that hit an allied champ will speed them up. This does not only apply to your W and E, but also your Aqua Prison and Tidal Wave will speed up allies when you hit them. This is really useful when chasing someone. Also, keep in mind that this passive also means that in teamfights it’s often a lot better to W your AD than to hit your enemy.
Keep in mind however that you should not spam your spells on one target because of this, but instead always try to keep a 1.5 second delay between casting spells on your allies (if possible) – this way you can make optimal use of it.
Q: Aqua prison
This is one of the hardest skill shots in the game to hit but proper usage can yield great rewards. This makes the difference between a decent Nami and a great one. The circular hit box means you’ll need to use it really accurately.
First of all, you’ve got to be really careful when using this. Not only is it hard to it, if you do miss you’ll be really vulnerable to an enemy counter-engage, with it on cooldown you’ll have no way to retaliate for approximately 10-14 seconds.
Tips to make hitting Aqua Prison a lot eaiser:
* Make good use of your full skill set and actives. You can use your tidecaller’s blessing to slow down your enemy and make hitting this a lot easier. Later on in the game you can also use your frost queen’s claim’s active for the same purpose
* Try to hit it when the enemy carry steps forward to kill a creep. If they go for a CS their movement pattern will usually be very predictable (straight towards the creep they want to kill) – especially when they go for your mage minions.
* Combo it with other crowd control. For example, you can very easily chain CC if you first use your ultimate and then use the bubble. Of course, you cannot just use your Tidal Wave completely random but chaining these together makes a very effective combo. Make sure however that you chain the crowd control instead of stacking it.
* Make sure to learn the cast time and try to predict enemy movement speed if they are moving towards you.
W: Ebb and Flow
This is your bread and butter spell throughout the early game. As mentioned countless times throughout the guide already, the key lies in its versatility.
Generally you’ll not be using this to heal up your AD unless your lane is really turning out for the worst. If you do you’ll run out of mana in an instant so don’t keep topping off your AD with heals. If you use it more offensively you can often also get it to bounce back to you or your AD for the heal.
Thus, definitely keep the bounces in mind when using Ebb and Flow. If you walk a bit closer while casting you can trade really effectively by getting the heal back after the hit. In the same regard, if you are out of range but your AD is both in range to you and the enemy you’re trying to hit, you can cast the spell on him to have it bounce to your target.
E: Tidecaller’s blessing
Very straight forward spell – exactly does what it says on the tooltip and there’s not much else to it. Cast it on your AD carry most preferably to peel very effectively for him. However, do not fray to use it on yourself because the damage will always remain the same, just the speed at which you can get the 3 procs will differ.
You will need some synergy or communication with your AD carry to actually use it at the right moments, and I would not advice spamming this for every single attack. It does however work very well with something like Lucian’s double shot passive, which applies two stacks in no-time.
Finally, note that this doesn’t apply spellthief’s edge stacks.
R: Tidal Wave
Tidal wave is a game turning ultimate if used correctly, but it is also quite hard to use correctly. You’ve got to know the travel time (it’s REAAALLLLY slow, I bet Rammus could be faster than this) and width really well to use it correctly.
If you don’t use it correctly, it’s super easy to just side step it. Thus I’d not recommend using it as an engage tool, but rather in the middle of a fight as a means of peeling / counter-engaging.
Tips to have more destructive Tidal Waves:
* If possible, aim it at small, tight choke points where enemies can’t sidestep it. Good examples of tight corridors would be the jungle exits near dragon / baron leading towards the blue buff.
* Use it once the teamfight has actually begun! Usually people line up in a teamfight and care less about dodging skillshots than outside a fight, which means it’s a lot easier to hit that way.
* As with Aqua Prison: try to chain it with as much other crowd control. For example, you can stunlock someone for quite a long time by following up a bubble with a Tidal Wave
__ Items __
Spellthief’s Edge, 3 potions, 1 mana potion
This is your standard start. Spellthief has MASSIVE gold income and also adds some extra damage and mana regen which is really nice to have on Nami. If you look at all 3 gold income items, spellthief has unarguably the highest income during the laning phase unless your lane is really turning for the worst so unless you’re having a TERRIBLE matchup you should always start with this.
Besides spellthief, you’d want to get 3 potions and 1 mana potion. You don’t really need an extra ward while the extra hp / mana is really useful. Even if you don’t need it to sustain, it’s great to have potions because you can pop them in the middle of a fight and get some hp back over time + the Culinary Master boost.
Ancient Coin, 3 potions, 1 mana potion
This is a situational start for very hard matchups (where you can’t rely on getting gold from offensive moves through spellthief and its upgrades). In hard matchups all you want is sustain and safe gold income which this item offers. You can check matchups if you want to know what matchups I classify as hard.
On the plus side, the final upgrade of this item ( Talisman of Ascension is usually a lot better for a support like nami because the AP on frost queen’s caim is mainly a luxury and the active is a lot weaker. A 40% movement speed buff allows you to catch up to anyone fleeing away and force fights as you want them without having any possibility of escaping.
Core items and first purchases:
Core items are the items you should be getting in every game, no exceptions at all. These are such important items for Nami and for a support in general that they should never be replaced, not even in the very late game.
Frostfang / Nomad’s Medallion: Standard upgrade from your starting items. Gives a bit better stats and gold generation. Downside of upgrading this on your first base is that it doesn’t give a lot of combat effective stats (like flat health) meaning you can be a bit squishy early game. Get this if you have < 800 gold on first base.
Sightstone: The core behind any support build. Gives free vision which essentially is a gold generation item as well because of multiple reasons: you don’t have to buy wards anymore (saves money) and vision control can lead to objectives, or deny the enemy gold through ganks which you’d otherwise have died to. It also gives a decent amount of health which is why it’s important to get this super early in the game. Get this if you have > 800 gold on first base, otherwise get Frostfang.
Vision wards: If possible, grab one of these. Vision wards remain on the map forever if placed carefully or defended well which means they can be a really efficient purchase. It’s also really nice to have a way of sweeping wards if you happen to force the dragon without any risk of the enemy stealing it from your jungler.
Sweeping Lens / oracle’s lens: After finishing sightstone (or earlier), swap out your Warding Totem for this. You don’t need any extra wards since you’re limited to only having 3 wards out at the same time, so take that opportunity and sweep enemy wards with this. It’s also really good to upgrade this relatively soon because that allows you to clear more wards OR to have stealth detection in teamfights vs the likes of Akali, kha’zix, Twitch etc.
Boots of Mobility: dirt cheap and give a lot of movement speed. This is great because it allows you to get wards down a lot quicker and to stay out of harm’s range. You can even use this to roam around the map (like Korean supports do) and support your team at other places than only from bot lane.
Offensive situationals are the items you should get when you’re winning your lane, or when you’re winning as a team. They often give some AP and other useful stats meaning you can more effectively snowball a lead. When behind however you really want to focus on team oriented items and thus you shouldn’t get these items in such a situation. The items mentioned in this part will be ranked first to last in likelihood of getting in a standard game.
Frost Queen’s Claim: A very standard upgrade with quite useful stats when ahead. The gold income doesn’t increase which is why it isn’t core but you’ll be getting this in most of your games. The extra AP is nice and the active will allow you to peel or to hit Aqua Prison more easily. Sometimes you want to delay this a little bit for a defensive / utility item though.
Morellonomicon: A great (and super cheap!) AP item giving a lot of stats. If you’re far ahead as a support, wanting some AP, get this. It also gives a ton of cooldown reduction which is even great because it allows you to use all of your utility more frequently. However, mind the CDR cap at 40%! This can also be effective if you’re against a team with lots of heals ( Soraka, Dr. Mundo etc but keep in mind that nami doesn’t have a very effective way of applying the grievous wounds.
Twin Shadows: More of a fun item than a serious pick, it still has some uses. It allows you to estimate the enemies position (the ghosts move towards the nearest two enemies) which can be used to take objectives safely even when there are no wards around. It can also be used to chase down enemies because the slow rather strong. Overall though it’s a cheap item that gives decent stats (10% CDR and 80 AP!) for a nice price.
Defensive situationals are the typical support items that allow you to assist your team in winning fights. They usually give tanky stats and a very good active or passive. When getting these actives, make sure to USE THEM because otherwise you’re really wasting the item’s effectiveness. The items in this part will be ranked as usually, in likelihood (most likely – least likely) of you getting it in a game.
Mikael’s Crucible: Some people will argue that this should be a core item because it’s that good, but I don’t get this in every single game. It’s a great item to protect your carries from crowd control and to heal some damage and it’s VERY cheap but that also means it’s not that useful if you’re not fighting any crowd control. Don’t get me wrong, the heal is still good but that just doesn’t make it such a high priority purchase. Some people would argue that the mana regen is why it is core, but in my opinion you don’t need it that much if you can manage your mana well and not spam your abilities once they come up.
Locket of the Iron Solari: This is a great item but a very situational one as well. The old Aegis of the Legion used to give an armor and magic resist aura, but now it only gives magic resist which means it’s not that effective if you’re not facing a lot of magic damage. I’d get this if the enemy has 2 or more heavy magic damage dealers (at least 2/3 magic damage dealers in the roles mid, top, jungle). If not, you’re just spending a lot of gold on some unneeded extra magic resist cause the item is really expensive for a support to get.
Randuin’s Omen: This is the most versatile and standard armor item out there. It gives a great combination of health and armor which is all you need to counter heavy AD teams. The active can also help out peeling for your carries. However, it’s a very selfish item so if you do not need the extra tankyness yourself, you should skip this.
Banshee’s Veil: If you already have a locket but still need magic resist to prevent yourself from dying instantly in every teamfight, you should get this. The spell shield will save you from getting locked down and the extra health is great. This item should always be picked over Spirit Visage because the latter only increases self healing.
Frozen Heart: the non-selfish armor item. Gives a lot of good stats but is often very situational. This should only be picked when there are at least 3 major auto-attacking champions because otherwise it’s a waste. The CDR is great but often goes to waste because there already is a lot of CDR in your standard build, and randuin’s omen is often superior because it also grants health.
__ Support 101: How to lane? __
This chapter will explain you all you need to know about the laning phase, specifically for Nam but still applying to any support. Even if you are an experienced support player this is probably worth a read for you. I’m trying to write this in a comprehensive way so everyone can understand what I’m trying to say!
Video: an example of a good laning phase – Diamond 4 rating. Excuse me for the in game sound being too loud, I fixed this for all other footage.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k_jnXNgPn7kThis does not mean you should not help at all – just know when to back off so you’re back to lane in time to actually show some resistance. Again, the botlane pairing that wins the level 1 push war generally wins the first 3 levels if they play it out correctly.
Nami is a really effective support before the first base. Generally both sides will have little to no sustain which means you’ll easily be able to both outpoke and outsustain the enemy, as long as you manage your mana correctly. Early game you can trade really effectively by using W+AA (basic / auto attack) – usually you’ll get the second bounce back to you which will heal up all the damage the enemy did to you during the trade.
However, never go to deep to poke the enemy because you’ll get a lot of minion aggro that way (minion damage counts up quite quickly!). Only trade when the enemy minion wave is equally sized as yours, or smaller. If the enemy wave is bigger than yours, you’ll get more minion damage from attacking them than you’ll probably deal to them – that’s another reason why pushing the wave is important: it means the enemy won’t be able to engage on you or they’ll get a lot of minion aggro.
Another risk is that you’re really squishy so you’ll get punished really hard if you misposition, so never go too far ahead of your AD carry or you will die.
You should try to get a Sightstone on your first base (if not, get Frostfang) and get some deep wards down near dragon and possibly in the enemy jungle. It’s also really good to get a pink ward and place it somewhere in the river. I’ll cover warding in a later chapter.
Another good thing to keep in mind is to adapt your build correctly to your matchup. Against Thresh or Leona it’s often a very good thing to buy an extra Ruby Crystal to prevent yourself from dying too often.
In fights you should pretty much always prioritize hitting the enemy carry with your bubble. Their movement is usually very predictable (since they are attacking you they’ll also be moving in your way) and this often means you can counter their engage really effectively by hitting a bubble on the carry and from there on turning the fight. I mentioned before but I’ll do it again: NEVER forget to pop a potion in the middle of a fight. In an extended fight this can give you over 100 hp back which can really turn a low level fight around.
A great example of Nami’s massive protective abilities and ability to completely turn fights is the following clip from my stream:
__ Support 101: How and where to ward? __
This chapter will explain everything about warding. As warding is one of the most important aspects of supporting it is really important not to just throw down wards randomly but actually to think carefully about the spots you choose, and the type of wards you pick. I have included three warding maps, all from blue side’s perspective. If you’re playing purple side, pretty much just reverse all the positions. I’m too lazy to make 3 extra, sorry. Also, keep in mind that this is only a simplified version and doesn’t cover every single ward spot. It’s just to give you a general idea!
First of all, let’s have a look at important ward spots for bottom lane:
Usually you only have trinkets at level 1 which is why you only see two spots. The one ward is aimed at lanebush control (or to deny the enemy of control). Basically, knowing what’s happening in that brush can be really useful for dodging out skillshots and winning little fights / trades. It’s really important to get that ward down. The other ward is to spot ganks: since you only have one ward at your disposal you should put it there because it covers pretty much all gank paths. If you have more wards at your disposal you can place them a bit deeper towards dragon.
If you get pinks you should put them in brushes close to your own jungle because that’s where they usually won’t be taken down easily. You can also place them in the river brush and near dragon but that’s mainly good for objective control and they’ll be cleared quickly unless you have a lot of control around that area.
After getting sightstone you can get some more wards down deeper towards the enemy jungle and mid lane. It is risky to go there so only do so if you know the enemies’ position – however, if you do get those wards down you can really shut down all roams towards bot.
After laning phase there are two different scenario’s. Either you are (slightly) behind, or (slightly) ahead. If you’re equal (which only very scarcely happens) you should combine the two ward maps! The general rule of thumb is: if you’re ahead, you want to ward the enemy jungle and pink wards important objectives. If you’re behind, you want to normal ward important objectives and defensively ward your jungle with pinks.
In short, you just want to litter the parts of the jungle that are important to that specific phase in the game with green wards. If you’re behind, chances are the enemies will also swarm your jungle so you want to ward that up defensively. Put pink wards in the most important spots and make sure you don’t lose track of baron / dragon with green wards.
When ahead, you want to pink ward spots near dragon / baron and again, litter the enemy jungle brushes with green wards so you can see all their movement and react appropriately.
__ Support 101: How to Lategame? __
Late game is about two things: objectives and teamfights. The support plays a very major role in both of these through vision control and peeling. In this chapter I’ll cover both things individually.
First of all, in late game it is really important to have control over baron and dragon. Make sure to ward it and the surroundings so you’ll never lose a baron due to not having enough vision around. Another reason why such wards are important is because it also allows you to pick people off guard and rotate around quickly.
A rotation in league pretty much means you move from one lane to another quickly in order to take an objective. If you see an enemy is out of position (for example, taking blue buff) through wards, you can move around to the other side of the map (assuming you were grouped around middle) and take a free turret. The same goes with dragons and barons (even though they are a bit more risky).
Also make sure you keep timers of objectives. Dragon respawns in 6 minutes and baron in 7. Time the respawn and get all the vision control you possibly can around that area. Communicate well with your team so you can group around that objective and take it down before the enemy can react. I already explained how / where to ward effectively so I won’t go over that again.
In teamfights your main objective is to keep your carries alive, and nothing but that. You can try to create a pick with a bubble but besides that all you are going to do is stick with your AD carry and make sure no one can possibly get to him. You have a very wide range of skills to keep him safe: Aqua Prison, Ebb and Flow, Tidal Wave and probably one of the following actives mikael’s crucible, Locket of the Iron Solari and even frost queen’s claim.
Also, a very important thing to keep in mind is to use your oracle’s lens if you’re facing against a champion with stealth as this simply denies it.
__ Synergies __
For both this and the matchups section, I did skip some champions on purpose because I don’t have experience laning with or against them. These are often very rare champions to see in high Elo ranked games which is why I cannot write something down about these
Caitlyn: 5/5 synergy
Caitlyn synergizes really well with nami because of the long range poke and disengage. Nami basically allows Caitlyn to stay outside of harms range and just keep hitting autoattacks empowered with Tidecaller’s blessing. In this matchups you can definitely consider maxing this first but only do it if you feel confident in your synergy with your AD carry.
Corki: 3/5 synergy
Corki synergizes decently with Nami but it’s nothing exceptional either. Corki can poke decently but his short range is his downside and Nami generally doesn’t have enough kill potential to warrant a Corki pick – he just works a lot better with the likes of a Leona or Thresh. However, if you do match with him prepare to play really aggressively, especially from level 6 as pretty much no one can beat a level 6 Corki.
Draven: 3/5 synergy
Draven isn’t bad with Nami but there’s just no reason to pick this combo. Bubble into empowered Draven attacks are powerful but you’re not going to give Draven a lot of kills to cash on his passive. In terms of gameplay you’d most likely wait a few levels for Draven to get some levels in Q and items and then go all out when you both have your ultimates. Help Draven win extended trades by making good use of Tidecaller’s blessing and you should still do fine.
Ezreal: 4/5 synergy
Ezreal works quite well with Nami but the downside is that Ezreal doesn’t really fit into the AD carry meta. Regardless, you have a pretty devastating poke combo ( Aqua Prison into tidecaller’s blessing empowered Mystic Shot and Ebb and Flow is a very effective and safe short trade. At level 6 you also get a very devastating AoE ultimate combo. The early levels might be hard though because Ezreal is very weak at that stage.
Graves: 2/5 synergy
Graves is probably the worst AD carry to pair with Nami. He doesn’t have as much poke damage and relies on brawls to win lane which Nami doesn’t really excel at as she’s mostly oriented at trades and abusing hear heal. You do have a slight edge to win trades by hitting lots of bubbles and combining that with Graves’ burst but overall you’re a quite weak botlane duo.
Jinx: 4/5 synergy
Jinx works pretty well with Nami because Nami has the tools to keep her safe in teamfights (Jinx is very squishy and has no reliable escapes) and in a 2 versus 2 you can poke pretty well using her long range Q autoattacks. Overall it’s a quite standard lane with nothing special you need to do except just using everything you can to keep her alive as she’s super squishy.
Kog’Maw: 5/5 synergy
Nami offers pretty much everything Kog’Maw needs which is why the synergy between these two is so super good. In lane she has the tools to keep him safe and healthy but also retaliate attacks with long range auto-attacks on Bio-Arcane Barrage combined with tidecaller’s blessing. In late game she has a **** ton of peel by giving him extra movement speed and even more slows. You’ll have a hard lane if you decide to go for this combo but the rewards are absolutely massive!
Lucian: 5/5 synergy
Lucian is a very dominant laning champion and combined with Nami you have excellent potential in short trades. His double shot passive applies tidecaller’s blessing for 100% and if you hit a bubble you can pretty much take down 60-70% of your enemies health in one go once he gets some levels in his Q. In late game your synergy isn’t as good because he doesn’t really need such hard peel but your crowd control combined with The Culling can still make for a very strong combo.
Miss Fortune: 3/5 synergy
Even though you have a pretty strong ult combo, the synergy between the two champions isn’t as strong as it might seem to be. This is because your ultimate isn’t (nearly) instant like Crescendo or Solar Flare, but takes time to travel. Because of that, the combo isn’t nearly as effective as you’d like it to be. Besides that MF also has only very limited poke damage in lane. I’d not recommend this lane but it can work if you manage to execute the ult combo flawlessly.
Twitch: 4/5 synergy
Twitch and Nami have good synergy although your laning phase isn’t that strong. Twitch can use your heal pretty well but besides that the lane is weak as Twitch is very squishy. In teamfights your combo is absolutely insane because of the two ultimates combined. It means he’s very hard to kill because you have to very long ranged spells to keep him safe. In lane you should play carefully because you can’t win trades unless you hit a great bubble until you hit 6. At level 6 your best shot is a counter-engage by using both ultimates to disengage and turn back onto your enemy.
Varus: 4/5 synergy
Varus has great synergy with Nami because both excel at poking down an enemy and have a massive amount of crowd control at 6. Generally, you’ll be waiting till you hit a bubble and then follow up with a varus Piercing Arrow and your standard combo. At level 6 you can obliterate your enemies if you hit Aqua Prison into Chain of Corruption into Tidal Wave.
Vayne: 4/5 synergy
Nami has the tools to give Vayne a relatively safe lane which is why they have above average synergy. You cannot poke at all in this duo which is somewhat of a downside but in all-out fights you can pretty much allow Vayne to dish out all the damage she possibly can. You probably won’t be able to anything before level 6 but after that you can win fights if you can bubble into condemn. Add Tidecaller’s blessing and you’ll make sure no one can run from the Vayne.
__ Support Matchups __
Blitzcrank is relatively hard because he has the tools to abuse your squishiness from level 1 and absolutely obliterate you. He himself is very vulnerable to poke but he only needs to hit one hook to screw up your lane. Once you fall behind he can pretty much snowball your lane, so make sure you respect the hooks and never go too deep to try and poke him. However, once he misses a hook you can go really deep because he has no way of countering your attacks with it on cooldown.
Janna is relatively easy because you can outpoke and outtrade her, even with her shield. Try to abuse its cooldown (basically, when it goes on cooldown you attack her) so she cannot shield all your poke damage as you have lower cooldowns than she has. However, it’s next to impossible to kill her or the enemy AD carry so you shouldn’t focus on that. A good thing about the matchup is that she also brings very little support to ganks so usually you’re quite safe just pushing her into the turret.
The matchup against Karma is quite even because both of you have the tools to turn it into your favour. Basically you can heal up her poke damage but that costs a lot of mana. She can also speed up herself or the AD carry to dodge bubbles. On the flipside, she herself has no heals so the more you keep trading with her, the harder she’ll suffer. Just keep in mind that she will overall deal more damage than you in a short trade.
This matchup can go either way but I’d say Leona has the edge here. The summary of this matchup is poke vs engage, and usually that’s quite hard to play correctly for both sides. You should win pre-6 because Leona is relatively weak until she has her ultimate: she’s tanky but she only has one CC ability and no sustain. Your goal is to punish her as hard as possible in this state by constantly poking her down and shoving to the turret. After level 6 she has a massive edge because she can just stunlock and kill you (or your AD carry for that sake) without even being able to cast a single spell. You need to get extra HP in this matchup and mikael’s crucible is a MUST.
This is another matchup that can go either way but overall Lulu has the edge in this matchup. This is because Lulu overall has more poke damage, slightly lower mana costs and more pushing power. This in turn can force you to constantly heal up yourself or your AD carry instead of playing aggressively. You cannot really beat her in an all out fight because she’ll just throw down her ultimate and turn all the damage back towards you. My advice would be to try and get some jungle ganks because Lulu lanes are often sure to push up since you have a quite a lot of follow-up CC and damage as Nami. Also you’ll have to make good use of the heal so you can both poke her and sustain her damage up yourself.
Morgana is arguably the easiest matchups for Nami: Morgana is really weak and vulnerable against poke as she’s mainly a pick to counter heavy crowd control from the enemy with the likes of Leona. Also she’s quite weak when pushed against the turret because she has no way of dealing with pushes well. You can also pop her spell shield with Ebb and Flow. So basically you just want to push her down starting level 1 and keep the pressure up constantly. Always safe your bubble and only use it when you can pop the spell shield first.
Overall you have the edge versus Thresh but it’s a matchup you have to treat with care though. Thresh is very vulnerable to poke which is why you should win this matchup, however he has the tools to turn it around because you’re quite squishy. Basically, you are supposed to constantly keep poking him down without going too deep which can cause you to get hooked in a very bad position and killed. Another risk is the jungler coming over to help because lantern is a very deadly tool, so make sure to get Sightstone ASAP and ward well. You generally want to avoid 2v2 fights but if the Thresh hooks you or your AD carry, your best shot to turn it around is to bubble the enemy AD carry (his movement should be easily predictable because he’s trying to attack either of you) and then turn the damage around on him.
__ To Conclude __
Thank you for reading my guide! I hope you learned something new and enjoyed reading the guide. If you did, please leave a comment and tell me what I could do to perhaps improve the guide. I’m especially looking for suggestions to improve the Support 101 chapters even further!
If you’d like to see more of my gameplay, check out my stream and follow me if you like! I try to stream regularly and I’ll surely play Nami once in a while on stream!
As a final note I’d like to thank Janitsu for helping me out with all the coding and artwork, this guide wouldn’t have been possible without you so thanks!