Nidalee Build Guide by BAT gibsmirbaba
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.
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.
Welcome to my AD Nidalee Guide for Solo Top. I'm BAT gibsmirbaba and in this guide I try to show you the advantages Nidalee brings with her and why she is - in my opinion - the best solo top char.
This is a guide for Beginners and also for those who already play Nidalee. I started playing her AD for 2 month now and I can say, I just love her. So my ambition is, that I can show you a way of playing Nidalee, that will help you dominating Solo Top.
I hope you support me and I will recieve constructive comments helping me improving my guide. This is my first guide so be lenient with me, also for my English skills cause it's not my mother tounge.
If you have an account on League Replay, you can download my Replays I recorded playing Nidalee. If you are interested, you can PM me in LoL (BAT gibsmirbaba) and I can do a commentary on my playstyle.
- strong laner
- great movement/escaping skills
- awesome burst damage
- perfect baiter
- great harass and sustain
- no CC with her skills
- difficult in team fights
With the start of Season 2 there has been a change of the Masterie Tree. The new one is incredible for being flexible. The Masteries you see on top of this guide are just one example of how you can play Solo Top.
Playing Solo Top means yo have to react to the enemy your facing. To know what exact masteries you should take, I like to recommend aG Tyneic's guide. This is a very great in depth guide for Solo Top players. This guide is written in german so for my other viewers I like to recommend wildfire393's guide for the new Masteries in Season 2. He really explains the essence of the new Masteries and this will help you a lot.
With Runes it's quite the same like the Masteries. You have to decide which runes you take by knowing who your gonna face at Solo Top. Since I play Nidalee as an AD you have to possible outcomes. You face also an AD or an AP. Also it is important if you can assume if your enemy is stronger then your or you can harass him more.
Greater Mark of Attack Damage
Greater Seal of Armor
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
Greater Quintessence of Lethality
Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage
Against an AD
For Marks: I take 9x Greater Mark of Attack Damage
This helps your get a decent bonus on your harassment and your potential to farm better
For Seals: I take 9x Greater Seal of Armor
This is quite obvious and normal. This helps you get mroe sustain against creep attacks and your enemies auto hits + skills.
For Glyphs: I take 9x Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction or alternative 5x Greater Glyph of Cooldown Reduction and 4x Greater Glyph of Replenishment
The first option helps you spam your abilities when you are in cougar and your will destroy your enemy. The alternative is useful if you got mana problems in early laning.
For Quintessence: I take either 2x Greater Quintessence of Desolation and 1x Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage or 1x Greater Glyph of Desolation and 2x Greater Quintessence of Vigor
The first option helps your harass even more and the armorpen helps against tanky ad champs. The alternative is for situations where you are in the disadvantage and you need more sustain (you could also use 1x-2x Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed if you feel like it)
Against an AP
For Marks: Also 9x Greater Mark of Attack Damage
Almost the same reason like above.
For Seals: Also 9x Greater Seal of Armor
Same as above
For Glyphs: Of course you go 9x Greater Glyph of Magic Resist
Explains itself, doesn't it?
For Quintessence: This time you go for 2x Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed to escpae the spell combos even easier and 1x Greater Quintessence of Desolation or Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage
The armorpen or attack damage give you additonal strength to bite the enemy down.
- Flash: Even though it got nerved it's pretty nice helping your get out of clashs and escape even easier if you get ganked, you shold know what flash is about.
- Ignite: This is just awesome. If you face someone like nasus or gankplank or warwick this spell just helps you destroy them if it comes to a fight.
- Exhaust: If you have to play more defensivly and you face some1 really hard like akali or kennen pick exhaust, also good at teamfights slowing the enemy range carry or bruiser
- Teleport: This helps your push even nicer and help in teafights or dangerous situations on other lanes. I recommend this for arranged teamfights cause you have no offensive spell for your own and to dominate your lane, you have to choose
Prowl(passive): This is just awesome!! You get 15% movement bonus for 2 seconds. This is good for escaping through the bushes, either in the jungle or on your lane. The best thing about it: You come out of the Top Lane bush with the bonus and can harass your oponent really easy.
Javelin Toss: This is good to do some damage without getting in range of your enemy. It also can be used to finish off low enemies, that are out of your range.
Bushwhack: Nice for getting you safe on your toplane, this wardlike trap keeps you safe. Just place it in the river and your jungle to see if you get ganked.
Primal Surge: This is quite a nice skill. You have great sustain on top lane, cause you can heal yourself quite much and also gain a pretty nice attackspeed bonus. This can be used to push the lane or getting rid of the annoying turrets in no second. But also in teamfights in can be used to heal your Range Carry and granting him the additional attack speed to destroy your enemy.
Takedown: This is Nidalee's ultimate ability when your playing AD. When the enemy drops to low health you just activate it and he will have no chance against your Q.
Pounce: Great, great and great escape ability. You just jump off. This gives you on the one side great mobility to dodge skillshots and on the other side it can be good to push your lane, cause you do damage in front of you when you jump. Also nice to bait other players and shorten the range between you and your foe, if you want to engage.
Swipe: A decent push and farm ability, just jump on the creeps and pull your E off and the creeps are down.
Aspect of the cougar: This is the main part you should work on. The question is: when do I switch into cougar and when back? Time brings you the needed experience, you have to get used to it. The best way or effective way is to switch into cougar, when you want to push the lane, cause it really is fast with your Pounce and Swipe. Also when your going to attack your enemy, you switch into cougar cause your doing much more dmg. You also switch into cougar when your getting gankd because you get a decent movementspeed bonus and your Punce helps you get out of trouble really fast. When you chase someone and you don't have enough range, you switch back and try to autoattack kill him, or use your Javelin Toss to finish him off. Also, when your droping low, you switch back to heal yourself. But remember: you have a cooldwon on your ultimate, so be careful when you switch, always consider that!
I max Primal Surge first so I get great sustain and a push bonus on my lane to destroy the tower
Second I max Javelin Toss to get the needed damage on my Q to strike enemies down.
At lvl 4 you put one point on Pounce to keep you safe on your lane, and max it last.
Skilling the Ultimate Aspect Of The Cougar explains itself. When you can skill it, do it.
Against an AP you start with Boots of Speed and 3 Health Potion, if your against an AD you start with a Cloth Armor and 5 Health Potion
The first thing you buy will be Wriggle's Lantern. If you grab Wriggles you can't go down on your lane. Attack damage, lifesteal and armor, that brings you nice early sustain. You can sell it in lategame if you want.
After Wriggle's Lantern you go buy a The Brutalizer. This gives you additional armorpenetration, so you do more damage and can harass your enemy very easy. Can be upgraded to Youmuu's Ghostblade in lategame, but dont forget to activate it!!!
The last core item is Warmog's Armor. You get a great anmount of health and in combination with Atma's Impaler you are damn tanky and got a lot resistance + nice damage.
Trinity Force Very nice Item on Nidalee but very expensive. This gives you a decent movementspeed bonus and a 100% additional damag after casting a spell, used with your q it can be horrific.
Guardian Angel Good Item if you need additional magic resistance and armor and the passive is just epic. You go down in a teamfight, all the ultimates are blown out and you took down the ad carry, then you come back and just fight again. Can make the difference in a game.
Banshee's Veil If the enemy got great CC (Croud Control) this items is just perfect for everyone, also grant you good magic resistance and sustain.
I mentioned to sell Wriggle's Lantern. You can do that and what you buy instead depends on your enemy lineup. If they got lot of magic damage get some magic resistance, maybe Force of Nature or Abyssal Scepter. If they are heavy AD go grab a Frozen Heart or a Thornmail. You have to decide what you buy, always observe your enemy team and react, there should not be a problem.
Maybe you did realize that the core items are quite expensive, but don't worry you'll get a lot of farm and if you get 1-2 good ganks you will have enough money to buy them. Just farm, farm, and farm. League of Legends and - especially Solo Top - is all about farm.
Like I mentioned: your playstyle depends on your enemy. There are 3 possibilities.
You are stronger or you counterpicked: That means: you play aggressive, harass him. The best way to do this is to run in the bush, get the buff from your passive and then run out, auto attack him and instantly run back in the bush. He will be suprised and have almost no chance to react. Don't forget to farm and Sight Ward your lane. Warding is essential for Solo Top. If you spawn at Blue Team you ward here, if you start at Purple Team you ward here.
You can't predict if he's stronger or weaker. Then you just farm and keep yourself safe, wait until you get a gank from your mates, grab a kill and keep farming. When you notice you are better or you have an advantage, try to harass him and maybe pick off a kill. Don't push when you can't predict your enemy, espacially when you got no Sight Ward.
Your weaker than your enemy. Just play defensive, farm in your human form and most of all don't push. Never ever. Or you will have a problem with their jungler. Wait until your jungler comes, but do not towerdive, gank him safe. Dont risk too much.
All in all, early game is about farming an dominating your lane. As soon as you get lvl 6 YOU got the opportunity. Auto attack the enemy until he is near to 50% health switch to your cougar form and try to kill him. Your Takedown in cougar is freaking powerful, don't underestimate it. You'll get a kill. When you have to play defensively, wait for the jungler to grab the kill. You should have 2/0 or somehting after 15 mins. This gives you great domination on your lane. You should have Wriggle's Lantern and The Brutalizer by now. By chance you should do dragon with your team.
Farm, farm, farm, farm and farm. When you got the upper hand, try to destroy their tower and go help on other lanes. Dont forget to farm. Also you can spam your Pounce all over the map to ward additionally. You should complete your Warmog's Armor and Atma's Impaler and try to keep your tower safe on Top Lane. Once he falls, you have to be careful when you farm toplane. Don't forget to do the dragon!!
With Warmog's Armor and Atma's Impaler you are pretty tanky and can take out the enemy's carries and tank some damage, while your team destroys the others. Your job is still to get your toplane pushed. Also you can try for baron and push some lanes.
Your Role in Teamfights
Mid and Lategame are all about winning teamfights. So what is your role in teamfights? Nidalee is pretty hard to play in a clash. She got no real CC abilities and no slow, so try for redbuff or maybe you have Trinity Force, so you get the slow effect from Phage.
So when the teamfigh starts you don't Pounce in and try to do damage. You have to focus the enemy's AD or AP carry and get him down. Do not focus their bruiser or support, aim for the carries, thats important.
Also dont run in when the enemy's main CC (like Amumu's Curse of the Sad Mummy) isn't used yet. Try to Primal Surge your AD carry, when he will be attacked and switch to cougar to attack their carries. Don't waste your Pounce to engage, unless your sure you pick off the kill, cause you will be focused and you have to assume, that you get stunned or disabled.
Try to do damage on one carry and bring him down, your team will help you. If you recieve to heavy damage, Pounce or Flash out, switch into human form, Primal Surge yourself (or if someone is really low, then you heal him), auto attack, switch into cougar and try again to finish off someone, unless you can assume the fight wont be won.
There is a reason why Elementz put Nidalee on #1 in Tier 1 on his Solo-Q-List. She got so great sustain on toplane that she is able to farm like hell and can pretty easily dominate the enemy champion. Once your fed, or you dominate your enemy at toplane you have done a really good step for winning the game.
So I hope that you like my build and maybe try it out. You can freely comment on this and help me improving my build, im thankful for every critic (positiv and negativ) and hope you will play Nidalee the way I do.