Nocturne Build Guide by Tashe
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.
Well, To start off this is my guide to how I prefer how to play Nocturne (You probably knew that already though) Well anyways I plan on covering a lot of topics on the champion and I hope you like it.
Nocturne is a melee assassin that can be very useful to a team. He has some skills that can give amazing results if used correctly but can do harm to your team if used wrong. So now I'll begin to get more in depth.
What is so great about Nocturne?
This champion is overall great. His damage output is amazing and he can kill squishy champions in a second but tanky ones will take a while after he's done feasting on the squishy ones. He can jungle easily and gank lanes quickly. He's also not very difficult to play either! Another great thing is he can also be built very tanky and deal tons of damage(yay phreak). I could go on about what makes this champion such a top pick but seeing him in a game could describe it for me.
The role of Nocturne
When playing Nocturne your job is to make every single person on the opposing team be scared to leave turret range and if they are brave enough to leave the range of their turret PUNISH THEM!! Keep the enemies on their wits throughout the entire game. Every time they do something foolish or stupid like overextend you go in there and teach them why they shouldn't.
You need to get kills or at least assists. Nocturne without anything can't really help out his team. What's the point of just having dead weight on the team? You need to get a lot of kills and be able to destroy the enemies late game. If you don't get kills the enemy team will see you as an Evelyn.
You want to also be able to endure a lot of damage while you deal it too. Another thing for nocturne is that you want to disrupt the team and pull them apart. Your E and R are very great tools for this!
The jungle's nightmare ( Description and Skills)
Nocturne can be a very scary champion , when it comes to damage and what he can do to a team! His skill set should be used wisely and not just thrown around the place, Like i said before on it's use. Nocturne can do a lot of damage to most champions and can live for quite some time. I'll show you what i mean about his skills right now though
Q - Duskbringer - This skill is a perfect example on what I was saying earlier. Hitting it or missing it could be the difference between a kill and nothing. It helps you come close to your enemy AND gives you more attack damage. This skill is used mostly for going into the enemy quickly but it has other uses like harassing from far range.
W - Shroud of Darkness. Now this skill has to be used on instinct a lot and your sense of timing! It's also used when diving into the enemy so you don't get hit straight on by all the CC and it has a great bonus of attack speed (Passively and activated). It can really help against those far ranged mages or just stuns. This skill can also probably save your champions life too or another champ's by running in front of that Caitlyn Ultimate. But it has a sort of long cool down so beware on use!
E - Unspeakable Horror - Now i admit, this skill can be used freely , but i prefer to use it along with duskbringer. It's a great skill that has Damage over Time and fears the enemy for a nice duration. The damage isn't that much but still the fear is very useful. Use this more when you're in range of the enemy and have duskbringer on them
R - Paranoia - Now this skill gives enemies chills when they hear your champ hiss at them and they lose map awareness. This skill can be used to initiate an enemy or finish one off. Either way it has good use. It can also be used just to help your team gank even if they are not even close to you! It's cool down is long but it's an ultimate so not much you can do about that. This skill is very important to Nocturne's ganking ability.
+ Can easily punish enemies that push out too far
+ Can tank a lot of damage while dishing it out too
+ Very useful ultimate
+ Creeps out other team
- Timing and Choices effect your results throughout the game ( Missing your Q or using W at wrong times)
- If the other team has Stuns , Push-Backs , or Knock-Ups You won't do that well
- Desperate for mana! This is a big problem early game
- If your team can't coordinate a gank with you. It won't end well
The type of terror and fear you want to give them enemy team is all up to you ! I, however , choose to play him as a jungler. I will explain why but first I'll also tell you that you can play him as an off-tank , DPS , Tank , or however you please it's up to you!
Jungle Nocturne - Now this is how I play my nocturne. I find this very useful to the team mainly, It gives your team an extra solo lane and you can easily creep your way into lane when ganking them! This always ends up with AT LEAST someone raging at you saying that Nocturne is "broken" or "OP" because it's just that good. Now I'll explain my jungle route ( Sorry I don't have a picture to actually SHOW you )
Well your starting option is another choice up to you! I want you to have a lot of choices when play so you can get into your own comfort zone but I start off at blue usually because it's just more traditional to me as a jungler. You can start at double golems, wraiths, or red buff it doesn't matter really! But a reminder, I start off at blue because nocturne is VERY mana dependent in my opinion and it helps clear the jungle fast. Also always try to get a leash but remember you don't NEED it so try not to stress about it. FROM BLUE BUFF I go to the WOLF CAMP which is a fast clear. FROM WOLVES I go to WRAITHS which from here on the jungle just gets easier ( You barely notice that you lose health), Oh I almost forgot, Remember to use your health pots they're there for a reason! ( I usually use them on BLUE, WRAITHS, DOUBLE GOLEM , and RED BUFF ) FROM WRAITHS i go to DOUBLE GOLEM, These may be a little tough on you but still nothing you can't get through. FROM DOUBLE GOLEM I go to RED BUFF and it's the same as going against blue buff. FROM RED BUFF I try to repeat WRAITHS so i can get to level 4 for a gank. That's how i jungle from levels 1 to 4. Remember you can always mix it up or gank earlier if you please ( Just have red whenever you gank early )
My top picks
Smite - This spell is a MUST. You CAN jungle without it but it will be very slow and won't help your team. Without this spell you could easily get your buff stolen by other champions because it should be used to finish the last amount of health the minion has. But don't be tricked into thinking that with smite your buff can still NOT be stolen because any other jungler with skill can still do it. This spell helps clear the jungle out faster too and that's the goal of a jungler, to clear the jungle and gank lanes.
Flash - This spell is still one of the best ones in the game even after the nerf on it. It works on EVERY champion even if they already have blinks it can assure you a kill or escape. In many games you will probably see many, if not all, people use this spell. It's because it just has many uses. Initiating, Ganking , Stealing buffs/dragon , Running away , or tricking people(Juke)
Exhaust - This spell can be very powerful on a team to disable the enemies damage output. It works great for ganking , slowing the enemy(To finish him off of course). You don't need to get it yourself but if no one else wants to get it then it would be a good idea to pick it up. It could be the difference between a win or lose against the annoying champion . ONLY take it if no one else has it.
Ghost - This spell is used kind of in the same idea as flash. It speeds you up for running , ganking , catching up, and other stuff. I don't reccomend it because this build should give you enough movement speed (And don't forget your Q gives a movement speed bonus too). Flash is more useful than this to me but if you want to pick up ghost it's viable.
Main (CORE) Items, Nocturne can build very flexible so don't worry to change it up a bit!Cloth Armor - This is how usually every other jungler starts out and breaks off after wriggle's lantern so I don't need much explaining for these first few
Health Potions x5 - Pretty much self explainable
Madred's Razor - Self explainable really. If you don't have enough money for wriggle's buy this. If you do just buy wriggle's immediately
Wriggle's Lantern - This item is great for a jungler especially for its price and it's UNIQUE active. Sadly we will be selling it late game for another item because this item should not be kept through out the whole game.
Berserker's Greaves - These boots should be used if you are having no problem with CC or anything else. Buy tier 1 boots before finishing wriggle's and finish it later. There is one main alternative for boots but I'll explain that in a bit
Phage - This item is great for starting off your next item (Frozen Mallet)! It give health attack damage and a chance to slow. Just for ABOUT 1.3k! Worth the price if you ask me.
Frozen Mallet - Now this item is phage but upgraded big time. Gives you that extra health boost that keeps you in the fight longer and don't forget that 100% chance to slow the enemy with PHYSICAL ATTACKS so they won't be able to get away anymore.
Atma's Impaler - This item gives 18% crit chance , Armor , AND gives you attack damage equal to 2% of your health. Now let me help you with those calculations for a moment. By level 18 (With this full build) you should have 2660 Health total(based on mobafire chart). Now 2% of that is equal to 53.2 extra attack damage. That's almost equal to a B.F. Sword + A Long Sword. Overall GREAT ITEM TO BUY!
The Bloodthirster - This item is basically for that lifesteal that you need. It also gives you about 100 attack damage and 25% lifesteal if you have it FULLY(40 minions without dying) farmed. So it's a great choice for an item. Especially when you're starting to get that tanky dps effect settling in.
Phantom Dancer - Movement speed, GIANT attack speed boost , and Extra crit chance. Good item but it's not really a must have. It does help with damage though which is why I usually get it.
Infinity Edge - This item is kind of the core of nocturne's damage. More damage and makes crits deal way more.
Okay now that I showed you the Main items I'll give you alternatives.
Alternative Item Choices
I won't go into detail with this I'll just list the alternatives
Mercury's Treads - If you're getting focused or team has too much CC
Warmog's Armor - If you feel you don't need the slow and want more health. I recommend frozen mallet but some people like to choose this over it
Stark's Fervor - If you feel like you want more attack speed while keeping the life steal. I recommend you get another team mate to purchase this for you but it's your choice.
Madred's Bloodrazor - If their team is more tanky you'll probably want this and a Last Whisper so you don't feel a little bit useless
Banshee's Veil - This item, Like mercury's treads, should be purchased if the other team has a lot of CC. It also gives some magic resist and health so it is a good item to get if you find the other items to not be up to par.
That's all i can think of well if you have any more suggestions comment them please and thank you!
Well these are the runes I use and they get the job done. However if you have better choices feel free to use them.
Greater mark of strength x9 - These are just to start you off with a little extra damage because early game nocturne isn't very strong. I just find them very useful over all in my opinion. You can use these for any AD carry too.
Greater seal of Resilience x9 - I use these runes because they give you that extra boost of armor and Nocturne being a squishy champion early game can use these in the jungle and out. The early amounts of armor or magic resist for any champion boosts the % more higher amounts.
Greater glyph of Alacrity x5- These are to give you that edge of attack speed you lack early game too. If you haven't noticed the runes I use help give you that little push to do good early game which settles you into the late game. I don't like it when my champion is attacking really slow either.
Greater Glyphs of Celerity - These mixed with blue buff help lower your cool downs all together. It can be helpful if you don't want to you can switch these with other glyphs
Greater Quintessence of Desolation - These are kind of standard AD carry runes you can replace them with flat health quints if you please
I don't really know alternatives to these runes so feel free to help me out on this part.
Ganking , the most useful action a jungler could do for their own team. Remember to keep in mind Red buff is a key to ganking in the early game phase. Ganking is most useful when you are level 4 but due to the jungle changes clearing your side of the jungle gets you to level 3. If you want you can wait for wraiths to get to level 4. You would need to get all of your skills (except for ult obviously) when you gank. Also remember when you reach level 6 nocturne's ganking potential is amazing
Always remember to gank lanes that the enemies are pushing to much. Anybody pushed far enough can easily be punished. Wait for your teammates to be in place and ping your target ( THEY MUST KNOW YOU ARE GANKING OR ELSE YOU'LL DIE AND COMPLAIN ABOUT NO HELP!). Start your gank off by waiting in the bush and then throw your Q out when they get close enough. Run up to them and land one hit (IF YOU HAVE RED BUFF if not just continue to the next step). Now throw your E out and use your W if they have any cc spells so you don't get blocked off. Always check out their summoner spells out first! If they have exhaust, heal, or flash DO NOT enter tower range unless minions have aggro the whole time.
When you have your ultimate. Do the same thing but instead enter in with your ultimate or last hit him with it.
Also don't force yourself into getting a kill if it's too much of a risk. If you can't get the kill atleast you helped out your team mate by making him back off for a while. The main point of ganking is to give your teammates an advantage in the lane so they can farm , kill towers , and other things. When you're done ganking you can continue jungling or help out other lanes it's your choice.
I also STRESS that you need your buffs to gank in the early game phase!
Thanks for your time
Well this is how I like to play Nocturne. I find him to be a fun champ and very useful. If you have any CONSTRUCTIVE criticism or any suggestions, feel free to comment them! Don't forget to vote on how you feel about this guide. I hope you found this guide to be useful and if you don't like it please comment or message me or something on why you thought that. Thank you for reading this all!