Nasus Build Guide by sosanoo
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against Physical Damage
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 first guide.
I'm certainly not a high-elo player, but i got plenty of experience with Nasus.
Nasus makes a lot damage late game - item independant - through the stacking of his Siphoning Strike ability, so you can use your items to get tanky.
Going carry doesn't fit Nasus's abilities, because no ability scales with this. And you probably won't even survive the 15s of your ult.
I hope u enjoy it!
-Unexpected high crit. damage of SS fixed.
-SS costs 20 Mana on every level now.
Permanent damage bonus is now doubled to 6 when killing a champion, large minion or large monster
Trinity Force & Frozen Heart got cheaper! They were core items before. But still a nice buff to that built!
Trinity Force: Slow was replaced for an on-hit movement speed boost for 2 seconds.
PD - Physical Damage
MD - Magic damage
TD - True damage
ARpen - Armor penetration
AD - Attack damage
AS- atack speed
CSD - Critical strike damage
CSC - Critical strike chance
LS - Lifesteal
AR - Armor
H - Health
Hreg - Health reg
T - Tenacity
Mpen - Magic penetration
AP - Ability Power
M - Mana
Mreg - Manareg
SV - Spellvamp
MS - Movement Speed
mp5 - Manareg per 5 seconds
mps - Manareg per second
hp5 - Healthreg per 5 seconds
hps - Healthreg per second
Pros / Cons
-makes a lot potential limitless damage lategame with q
-still builts full tank
-can slow enemies 95%
-can reduce armor with his e-ability
-got much sustain through ult and passive
-not item reliant
-Ult and E debuff is very effective for early dragons and barons
-very poor laning presence and damage
-quite kiteable due to no escape mechanism
-has to farm with q to get strong, so mana reg is needed
-needs to farm slowly to stack his q. Minimum CD is 2,4s. So no helping team with counterjunglng or ganking, mostly farming all the time, during lanephase.
All in all, you loose early lane aggression for one the strongest slows in game, AoE-Armor-Debuff and strong late Siphoning-Strike damage, if stacked.
Marks: Greater Mark of Armor Penetration are my favourites, because armor penetration procks your Bonus Siphoning Strike Damage and you will need it just from the beginning and they make a big difference late game.
Greater Mark of Scaling Attack Damage will proc your passive, but the math suggests that they are weaker late game then armor penetration (when they actually provide full effect).
I think u don't need Greater Mark of Attack Damage at the beginning too much - you are just going to farm.
Seals: I prefer Greater Seal of Armor, because you need that survivabitity.
The problem is that with Nasus you can't just farm and reg mana - you have to use mana, in order to get your q stacked.
Glyphs: I prefer Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist.
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist is a good option if u know your solo top enemy does mainly magic damage.
Quintessences: Greater Quintessence of Life Steal Lifesteal ones are quite expensive I know, but it is worth it. Especially late game, but even at level 3-5 you gain ~ the same life back, then from Greater Quintessence of Health Regeneration.
"Hyfe" (link see below [slightly improved]) did the math:
"The primary reason I think lifesteal quints are great on Nasus is because of the damage growth and CDR on his Q. The Q gives you big burst damage and big lifesteal, scaling with both levels and farm. I will throw out some numbers, but the bottom line is this: if you are auto attacking an average amount for a top lane, and farming your Q as often as possible, lifesteal quints become stronger than hp5 quints by level 3 - 5, depending on a few variables, and scale absurdly well later into the game.
A very conservative average in the top lane is 10 regular hits on minions per minute + 5 Q hits on minions per minute at the very first level, with frequency of Qs going up slightly each additional level. Those auto attacks were for the purposes of a) last hitting when Q was down and b) regen/keeping wave in an optimal position. Assuming I'm hitting minions for true dmg because of their low armor values I then just added up the dmg and multiplied by .06 to find the % of additional lifesteal the quints would be giving me. I also used conservative static bonus dmg amounts on my Q at each level. These observations were made from watching 4 different replays and taking average attack amounts.
At Level 1
10 regular attacks (60 dmg each) = 600 * .06 = 36 lifesteal
5 Q attacks (60+30+0=90dmg each) = 450 *.06 = 27 lifesteal
total of ~ 63 lifesteal/min
10 regular attacks (67 dmg each) = 670 * .06 = 40.2 lifesteal
6 Q attacks (67+50+30=147dmg each) = 882 * .06 = 52.92 lifesteal
total of ~ 93.12 lifesteal/min
10 regular attacks (78 dmg each) = 780 * .06 = 46.8 lifesteal
7 Q attacks (78+90+75=243dmg each) = 1701 * .06 = 102.06 lifesteal
total of ~ 148.86 lifesteal/min
Hp/5 quints give you 97,2 flat regen/min. What these numbers tell me is that even with just completely normal minion attacking with no effort made to attack extra for additional regen, the quints are surpassing hp/5 in terms of regen per minute by level 4 or 5 at the latest. If you watch or play a top lane you will see that these numbers are actually pretty low in terms of auto attacking/min. In the case that you are attacking a bit extra to heal up and/or keep the wave balanced, these quints would surpass hp/5s in terms of regen benefits by as early as level 3. In one particular replay I observed myself playing against an AD Nidalee. She was harassing a good bit as well as auto attacking minions which pushed me to my tower. By level 3 I was at my tower trying to auto attack to regen HP and last hit. I auto attacked 15 times and Qed 5 times in a 1 minute period. Here are the numbers in this instance:
67 * 15 = 1005 * .06 = 60.3
67+50+24 = 141*5 = 705 * .06 = 42.3
~ 102.6 lifesteal in 1 minute
What is all this saying to me? Basically that HP/5 quints are better only at levels 1-3, and only if you are auto attacking very little. They are surpassed by lifesteal quints by level 4 or 5 at the latest because of your bonus Q damage. If you have to auto attack to keep the wave balanced, lifesteal is better pretty much right off the bat, as observed by my lvl 3 example. In regards to the scaling, which we all knew the lifesteal would take the cake in, by just the 15 minute mark I observed an average of 10 autos and 10 Qs per minute with a level 5 Q which in all provides 284 extra lifesteal per minute, literally 3 times as much as the hp regen quints.
Of course, you have to consider the fact that hp5 quints provide you guaranteed regen, while lifesteal quints mean that you must be attacking, which also means you must be in range of the minions, which means you are in range of harass. This skews things back in favor of hp5 quints if you are looking for the safest possible option. However, the lanes where this will come into play is against a ranged opponent such as GP or a caster. In this case, they are going to be actively trying to harass you and zone you even as you stand back from your minions, and you are probably screwed either way. Even in these cases, the creeps will eventually push to your tower where you can last hit and regen off of them to an extent.
TLDR: Lifesteal quints are not as safe levels 1 - 3 as HP5, but because of the nature of your increasing Q damage are just as strong in terms of the regen provided by level 3 - 5, and scale immensely better as the game goes on. "
Another option are Greater Quintessence of Armor Penetration ones, but Nasus is weak early game so he needs the survivability of the lifesteal ones.
There are a few tactics, that can help you to know, when playing Nasus.
1) Your Q resets your auto-attack-timer. So when you press Q just before you make a hit on a minion. You will make that one, and a quick Siphoning Strike after that. That often helps farming quicker.
2) Farming @ tower: The melee minions can be easily last hitted with one auto attack or Q after 2 towerhits. The ranged ones however can't be killed after one towerhit at the beginning. Eiter use Q or make one hit before the tower hits it and one after. The tower indicates, which minion it will attack, before it hits it - so you have time to react.
Nasus is, because of his Q, a good last hitter @ tower. Don't push your lane with e. And you'll see, that many enemies push & make them gankable and are save from ganks at your tower.
3) In order to get strong it is very important to get the last hits especially the ones with Q. In lane always wait for the Q, if you and prolong it. Only make the auto attack last hits, when you have to do it in order to not loose the gold.
A rough estimate on how much bonus damage on your Siphoning Strike you should get under normal pressure is:
9-10 minutes: + 100 bonus dmg
~ 15 minutes: + 200 bonus dmg
~ 20 minutes: + 300 bonus dmg
Of course there were games, in which I had 400 after 20 mins and 200 after 30 mins, but with decent harass these numbers are good.
4) Nasus is especially fast in destroying towers, because your Q is useable on towers. Against many beliefs destroying a tower with Q, does not give you bonus damage on your Q.
5) There are counters against him. The best for you, is when your lane partner choose to farm himself and doesn't harass you. His strongest counter - Teemo - however can blind you long enough to destroy your farm, he is very fast and is ranged - pretty hard to lane against him. Buy Mercury's Treads to reduce the time of the blind. His blind prevents auto attacks, but your Siphoning Strike won't be consumed. It will be used on the next auto attack for 10s.
The second strongest one is Kennen. Pretty much Teemo with more range and he can stay in lane forever with a Hextech Revolver. But luckily his stun is not as inhibiting to you, as Teemo's blind, because its lower duration.
How you beat him: Stay passive just like you are fighting Teemo and dodge his skill shot. Also always stay behind your minions.
Late game he won't be much of a problem, if you aren't destroyed in the laning phase.
Crystalline Flask + 3 Health Potion offers lots of sustain.
Cloth Armor + 5 Health Potion is good against PD heavy enemies.
Null-Magic Mantle + 2 Health Potion can be good against magic damage dealing enemies, but early AA and hits from minions make a big contribution.
Doran's Shield + Health Potion is a powerfull start against Autoattack-harassers.
Boots of Speed Needed early to get the cheap MS.
Berserker's Greaves AS has no good synergy on Nasus - not recommended.
Boots of Mobility You are not a ganker.
Boots of Swiftness Good for escaping and chasing - go for it maybe.
Ionian Boots of Lucidity Way to get the for Nasus important CDR, but with Spirit Vintage and Frozen Heart you already got the maximal CDR.
Mercury's Treads Best choice, if enemy has at least decent CC.
Ninja Tabi Good choice against PD heavy enemies. Still nearly every team has CC.
Sorcerer's Shoes AP Nasus is not possible anymore on a certain level. Your E reduces the enemies armor. Your R gives AD. Not recommended.
Furor - Dealing damage to a champion with a single target attack or spell grants you a movement speed boost that decays over 2 seconds.
Good for chasing, built it on ADC's not on Nasus.
Alacrity - Increases movement speed by 15.
Good boost, buy it when not defending.
Captain - Allied champions moving towards you gain a movement speed boost. Additionally, nearby allied minions gain a large movement speed bonus.
Good for initiating. But Nasus has no initiation ability.
Distortion - Your Ghost, Teleport and Flash cooldowns are reduced by 25%. And get an additional effect.
A viable option. With heavy split pushing it can be necessary to reduce tp's cd.
Homeguard - Being at fountain instantly restores your health and mana. Additionally, you gain a very large movement speed boost that decays over 8 seconds. This passive is disabled if you are in combat.
Best option, especially for defending.
Trinity Force is always in my full built, because you can use every single of it's stats.
Frozen Heart provides with your needed 20% CDR, armor and the AS debuff that is important for an offtank. The mana is not so usefull like manareg though, because you don't burst your mana away like some AP-Carry and then reg it and farm, without using mana, or go back, but use it continuously and farm with it, too.
Aegis of the Legion: 1925 gold. Cheap and provides are usefull aura for you and the team. You can use every stat of it, but there a better options, if you have plenty of gold. Interesting especially early, mid game, where you can switch it into my built.
Upgrade to Locket of the Iron Solari for CD and an active shield.
Atma's Impaler: Efficient with 2355 Gold. Your R, Trinity Force and Warmogs, if you have it, synergize well with this item. If you go for a lot health buy it. It's nerve to 1.5% is quite irritating, though. Would not recommend it.
Guardian Angel: 2600 Gold, but gives quite a bit of AR and MR. Its Passive is especially usefull on Nasus, because he can lifesteal back and he doesn't need to much mana. It's more usefull on carries, but still very interesting for Nasus.
Randuin's Omen: 3075 Gold, but the AR, HP and HPreg are quite usefull. The passive and active aren't this effective, because we already have Trinity Force & Frozen Heart though. So I would not recommend using the other 2 slowing items.
Thornmail: 2000 gold, makes it cost-efficient if you fight against a heavy AD team. Remember AD carries make the most damage late game. So I like this item very much. 100 AR are the most in the game, though its passive is not too good, if the enemy has MR. But against glass-cannon AD carry quite usefull. Recommendation for AA damage heavy teams.
Last Whisper: 2290 gold, makes it efficient late game, if the enemy team builts heavy on Armor. It doesn't make your Arpen and E less efficient in season 3, but it's not a tank item. Recommendation for maybe last item.
Youmuu's Ghostblade: 2687 gold, are hard to explain maybe, but the ARpen is quite raw. 30 AD and 15% CSC aren't too usefull on Nasus. 15% CDR and its passive are quite handy on him, though. Recommendation: Maybe if u don't essentially need any more tanky items.
Athene's Unholy Grail: 2950 gold, make it a very expensive item. The 40 MR are quite usefull on an offtank, the AP scales with your E and R, not too strong though. The 15% CDR are very helpfull. The passive ability will completely shut down all your mana problems. It kinda stays expensive and don't give so much that you really need. Recommendation: Shutting down your mana problems with 1 item is nice. But with Eleisa'a Miracle it's not needed so bad. Get a Chalice of Harmony early, if u like to use this item.
Banshee's Veil: 2715 gold is quite much for 50 MR, 375 HP and 375 mana. The passive is not too usefull on an offtank. Consider a Spirit Visage if playing against a heavy caster team. It's not too strong but cheap.
Maw of Malmortius: 3300 gold for 36 MR and 55 AD is too expensive. When they ignore you and focus the carries, the passives are useless. With maximum bonus AD on 2.5% Health the item gives a total of 94 AD. But like a said, they focus the carries and most of the time you cannot use this passive. The shield is not bad, but only blocks magic damage. It can be extended through MR though. A usefull item, if the enemy team relies really heavy on Magic Damage, but I prefer The Bloodthirster and heal trough lifesteal, with actually procs your Spirit Visage. League of Legends is a game of Synergies.
Quicksilver Sash: 1440 gold are not much. But it only gives 48 MR. They must heavy really much CC that this is worth it. This is maybe not best suited for an offtank. The upgrading is quite appealing for later.
Shurelya's Reverie: Only 1400 gold extra to your Philosopher's Stone. Every stat of it is especially usefull on Nasus, but it's not much. Since you already have Philo grade it up, maybe, but if you have enough gold at the end, sell it and buy something stronger. The passive is quite handy, I can understand why some people use it on their main built.
Zeke's Herald: Well the problem with items with aura's are that they are weaker for the one who builts, but give a bonus for the team. It doesn't goes along with egoistic spirit of many LoL players. 2145 gold are not too much, for 250 Health, 15% CDR and it's aura. If you have plenty of money, it's not the best item, though. Consider Runic Bulwark
Warmog's Armor: 3000 gold are pretty expensive, but it gives the most Health in the game. 1270 HP and 40 HRp5s are quite much. Consider that you benefit from it regardless if they magic, normal or true damage & that it is the most efficient way to get tankier with about 200 AR and MR. And it synergizes well, with Juggernaut , if u go for it. Still i don't recommend, because life steal is more efficient with lots of AR and MR & u have life through ult.
Infinity Edge: With Trinity Force you'll now have 40% CSC. So the passive gives 20% more damage through normal attacks. The 110 base damage of the Siphoning Strike ability and the bonus damage through kills with it, won't crit however. With 3830 gold it's more expensive then bloodthirster, which I would recommend, cause Siphoning Strike procks lifesteal.
The Bloodthirster: 3000 gold, make it worth buying if you have Defense and want to destroy the enemy.
Sunfire Cape: 2610 gold, is far too much for it's use for Nasus. Nasus just cannot walk through the enemies like Shen, he has to use his lifesteal and Siphoning Strike to be effective. The AR and HP are too less for its cost. Not recommended, but possible.
Passive: Soul Eater Soul Eater is a passive ability that grants Nasus bonus life steal.
It gives the sustain that Nasus desperately needs in lane. One of the reasons why Nasus is weak early, but strong late game. Lifesteal is much stronger than any other healing late game, once you stacked your q and make that Sheen procs. A nice passive overall.
Siphoning Strike Siphoning Strike is an autoattack modifier that causes Nasus' next autoattack within 10 seconds to deal additional physical damage. If the target dies to Siphoning Strike, all future activations will gain bonus damage.
This is the skill that defines Nasus, and allows him to do massive damage, while building full tank. This skill is the only skill in the game that scales directly with kills ( Veigar and Sion give stats, but not direct scaling), which gives Nasus his uniqueness. Use this skill for harass, taking towers, and most importantly, farming.
Remember, how well you're doing in a game depends directly on your Q farm amount. If you are 5/0 in lane but have 0 Q farm, then you have still become useless and lost. Consequently, this skill is why you should be farming as Nasus and not going for kills. "If it moves, q it" is age-old Nasus advice that may be exaggerated, but is actually not that far off.
Just remember to Q towers during pushes for massive damage. Also, Q resets autoattacks, so autoattack before Qing for maximum damage. This is especially useful early game when your Q does poor damage and you need a boost from autoattacks to ensure the last-hit.
- Siphoning Strike procs on-hit effects.
- Siphoning Strike does not pop spell shield.
- Siphoning Strike will not damage Black Shield.
- Siphoning Strike resets Nasus' autoattack timer on cast.
- Siphoning Strike's cooldown will not start until the buff is used or expires after 10 seconds.
- Siphoning Strike can affect enemy structures. Use it to destroy towers and inhibitors and the Nexus quickly.
- Only Siphoning Strike's attack damage portion is affected by critical strikes, not the bonus damage gained through killing a unit.
- Siphoning Strike will miss if Nasus is blinded, but the ability will not be expended.
- Siphoning Strike can gain bonus damage from last hitting most targetable enemy units, including wards, Yorick's ghouls, Shaco's Jack In The Box, Teemo's Noxious Trap, Malzahar's Summon Voidling, or Annie's Tibbers.
- Tiamat procs when using Siphoning Strike, but only the attacked unit's death will grant the permanent bonus damage. Its not a good item on Nasus.
Wither Wither is a targeted ability that slows a target enemy champion's movement speed and attack speed for 5 seconds. Wither's slowing effects increase up to 45% over the duration.
If Siphoning Strike defines Nasus, wither is what makes Nasus work. In lane, this skill will quickly give you an upper hand against auto-attackers or allow you to disengage from the enemy if he gets too aggressive. The intimidation factor on this skill is also pretty high with the visuals and sound effect, sometimes withered enemies will just give up fighting and try to run away from you at sub-50 movement speed. This skill is also your main way to help coordinate ganks and escape ganks. One disadvantage of wither is that its mana cost is rather high, so use this skill very sparingly until you have Frozen Heart. Often, I see people say "just wither [insert champion here] in lane and attack them to beat them", which admittedly sounds nice. In reality, you run out of mana while doing poor damage after doing that about 4 times, and will proceed to get crushed in lane. Generally, before Frozen Heart only use it during ganks from either jungler, to escape from an enemy laner who will potentially take out half your health/kill you, or to go for a very clear kill (which should almost never happen, but who knows.....)
In teamfights, you want to save wither for an autoattacker (usually the Ranged AD), which will shut them down for five seconds unless they burn Quicksilver Sash. It is very important to not be too trigger-happy with wither and initiate with it. If you do not use it to its full potential (on an autoattacker), your chances of winning the resulting fight will be much, much lower, especially lategame where AD carries will easily shred you. With lots of Cooldown Reduction, the duration of this ability will nearly be equal to its cooldown, meaning you can "permaslow" one enemy. This is part of the reason why you want to get lots of CDR on Nasus; perma-wither will do wonders in helping you not get kited. This skill is one of the most powerful single target slows in the game.
When ganked and unable to 1v2, wither the enemy with the most sustained CC potential (red buff, perma slow), then run.
When chasing an enemy, wither them, Q them, then run alongside/in front of them until Siphonhing Strike or wither are back up. If you trail behind them and attempt to auto-attack, it will be alot easier for them to escape with dashes.
Save your wither for the enemy AD Carry in teamfights to shut them down.
- Wither will not damage Black Shield but slow is negated.
- If Morgana's Black Shield is cast on a target with the debuff, the slow won't increase further, but will stay for it's duration.
- Wither pops spell shield.
- Only the initial cast is blocked; if the debuff was applied the slow is not blocked by spell shield.
Spirit Fire Spirit Fire is a ground targeted area of effect ability that deals magic damage to all enemy units in the target area on the initial cast, leaving behind a spirit flame for 5 seconds. Every second, enemy units in the area of effect take magic damage and have their armor reduced, the effect lasting up to 1 second after leaving the area of effect.
Unless you are going AP, which I don't recommend, the damage on this skill is a joke, so it is mostly used for the ARpen. This skill costs more, when leveled up. At level 2 more than Wither, but is much less effective. Therefore, pre- Frozen Heart, there is almost no reason to use this skill in lane. Even in ganks, the small AoE Arpen is often not worth laying down, and will hurt your mana management heavily, if the gank fails. In fact, I urge you to only get one point in this skill at level 4 and leave it there, since using it is usually counterproductive. Spamming this skill in lane is another reason Nasus is often considered weak. You will just go out of mana fast and make your laning experience more miserable.
Mid-game and later, this skill gains some purpose. 40 Armor Penetration is pretty respectable, and along your runes and masteries will allow you deal true damage to squishies who build no armor. A bonus on this skill is that it grants vision temporarily when cast. Overall, overshadowed by Siphoning Strike and Wither, but it has its uses.
- Late Game, when you have enough mana reg, E brushes before running inside them for vision.
- The edge of your E will catch baron if you cast it at max range over the baron wall. You can use this to temporarily check baron if there are no wards.
- Cast E on an enemy before Qing for maximum damage. So Wither, Spirit Fire, Siphoning Strike, when you run towards an enemy.
- Consider laying E on enemy bruisers diving your carry in teamfights to give them some nice extra armor penetration
- Spirit Fire procs spell vamp and Rylai's slow similarly with all area of effect spells and abilities with diminished effect.
- Spirit Fire does not pop spell shield.
- Spirit Fire will damage Black Shield.
- Spirit Fire grants vision of the targeted area for a short duration on cast, in a smaller area than the spell's area of effect.
Ult: Fury of the Sands Fury of the Sands is a point blank area of effect ability that buffs Nasus for 15 seconds. During this time, Nasus deals magic damage every second to all enemy units in an area around him. The damage each target receives is equal to a percentage of their maximum health and Nasus gains a percentage of this damage as bonus attack damage. Additionally, upon cast Nasus' current and maximum health are increased.
Most badass-looking ult ever. The intimidation factor on this ult is so high, entire teams will flee before your might while you are ulting. However, I would be lying if I said that this ult is anything other than mediocre. Nasus' ult does a lot, but doesn't do anything that well and is outclassed by the ults of most top laners in my opinion. Ironically one of the only ults it beats is Renekton's, an ult similiar to Nasus' but with inferior damage. Let's break it down:
% Health Damage Per Second - about 100 magic dps to squishies and 175 to tanky characters in teamfights. This is extremely powerful damage on paper, especially if you can get all the ticks off. However, usually you will be kited during your ult, and much of the damage will be reduced by MR because you have 0 MRpen. The damage is also mostly unnoticeable when the carry dies from 2-3 Q's anyway. All in all, the damage component can match up to the ult damage of other top laners, but usually this won't happen.
AD gain: 6 ad per second from squishies, 10 from tanks. A nice steroid if you can get the ult off, but again, you suffer from being kited, and by the time the bonus reaches a significant amount the teamfight will usually be over. Even though the AD bonus has a lot of potential, Nasus doesn't have any AD scaling anyway and your attack speed is nothing to brag about since you are building full tank. A large amount of AD, but with little use compared to most other bruisers. To be honest I rarely notice this either.
Health Gain: Basically a free built in heal bait. This very useful early game and is a redeeming point on this ult.
As a whole, this ult is definitely worthy of ult status, but it tries to go in too many directions at once, and in the end it isn't very useful by late game. It grants you significant potential damage, but suffers from being kited like the rest of your kit. Therefore, it is important to not pop your ult unless you are dying or the fight has clearly started. An easy way to waste your ult is to use it while the initiation is still happening, because you just beg the enemy to back off and waste your ult. The only thing this ult really has going for it is intimidation, so use that to your advantage. A running enemy is an enemy that is doing no damage.
Ult (especially if being towerdived) to heal bait-
- Ulting baron will do lots of damage and allows for quick early barons
- Do not be afraid to Ult if you need some lane sustain to get that last bit of gold for your next item, it will generally be up whenever you need it anyways.
- Do not ult before the teamfight has already begun
- Do not ult if you are already winning a 1v1 fight in lane. Despite the looks of it, Nasus' ult in a 1v1 situation provides hardly any damage and has a hefty mana cost.
- Fury of the Sands procs spell vamp and Rylai's slow similarly with all area of effect spells and abilities with diminished effect.
- Fury of the Sands does not pop spell shield.
- Fury of the Sands will damage Black Shield.
- Bonus attack damage from Fury of the Sands cannot exceed 300.
- Bonus health-gain is not affected by Grievous Wounds, and remains on Nasus after Fury of the Sands expires.
First of all, always make the point in your ulti, when you can. That point really helps you most. Remember you not only get up to 600 HP, but you'll make a percentage of the enemys maximum HP around you damage AND convert into bonus AD (up to 229.5 with one enemy).
Next priority is to make the point in q. Because lowering its CD is very important to stack it and become strong late game.
Next is your slow, it's very usefull in ganks and when you just need to escape your lane enemy.
Max your E at last. Using it in lane, will deny q stacks from you and costs too much mana.
I personally prefer Teleport and Ghost.
Teleport: Nasus is farm reliant & you need to farm slowly with him, in order to get your Siphoning Strike stacked. So it is extremely usefull to join a teamfight quickly or to get to dragon. At dragon someone should lay a ward down for you.
Ghost: Since you are tanky, you maybe think you don't need the Flash. But remember there is a soft cap. So it's a lot less effective late game, with all the MS you'll already have with Boots and Trinity Force.
Flash: Flash is either usefull to close a gap chasing enemies or to get away, especially by flashing over a wall. Very usefull spell, but high cooldown.
But, there are several other good options.
Exhaust: Exhaust is usefull despite Wither, because you then can fill the CD with this and slow the enemy a very long time.
Ignite: Is usefull especially early, too get some kills or against champions, which depend on regeneration like Dr. Mundo or Vladimir.
Heal: Always good to not give that first blood, but remember you have life steal and it's pretty lame late game. Not recommendeded.
Barrier: Is strong not to give first blood, but u are an offtank. So it's nearly useless late.
Smite Since he is also a good jungler, you can stick for Ghost or Flash and smite to farm your q at the jungle monsters. ;)
Again, I find it usefull to refer to Hyfe, who is better and has more experience with Nasus, then me. I added the link below & slightly fitted it to my opinions.
First of all this better be a blind pick normal, otherwise you deserve to lose for picking Nasus against double AP. That being said, this matchup is a prime example of how vastly different a lane can go depending on the competence of the player. A bad Akali when facing Nasus will play passively, farm safely until 6, and then try to start bursting you down. At that point it might be too late, you've farmed some defense and can sustain with lifesteal from your Q. A good Akali will harass the **** out of you with Q and keep your HP too low for you to farm safely. Akali beasts Nasus in lane and can really shut you out if you don't get some ganks. Grab early mercs, HP and MR (consider Spirit Visage), and a pink to hang on to for when your jungler comes to gank. Try to auto minions for sustain between her harass, but be wary of your HP and her stupid burst. She doesn't give a **** about your wither, and contrary to popular belief her shroud radius is big enough to be able to avoid your SF if you drop it on her while hiding. Teleport, MR, and ganks are the only things that may tide you through to mid game. Beg for jungle pressure. If they can come up and blow her summoners and zone her for a wave or two, you will be immensely better off. Fortunately, if you refrain from dying and feeding the Akali, all is not lost. She needs kills to snowball, and if she can't get them off you, she may start to roam and allow you the opportunity to try and catch back up on all the Q farm you missed. It's going to be a long painful journey.
Start: Regrowth+1 or boots+3/4
Items: Philo, Mercs
Consensus: Challenging/Get Wrecked
One of only a handful of match-ups in the game you should be glad to see in your lane as Nasus. A truly skilled Cho may give you some fits, but for the most part he doesn't have enough damage output to threaten you in lane. Avoid his rupture and watch out for ganks. If he lands Q + W on you as a Lee Sin is coming out of the brush with summoners and red buff, you are completely ****ed. Try to freeze the lane behind the river and farm farm farm. You should be able to build what you want and farm Q on CD. Cho is also pretty gankable early if you avoid his panic rupture. Don't underestimate the effectiveness of your % based ult against Cho either, you can actually take him on before he gets geared. However, if he is running flash ignite always be wary of his full combo... he can actually put out a scary amount of burst with QWR+ignite, so don't stand around like a dummy with low HP, always keep it up with lifesteal and pots.
Items: Philo, Mercs, Glacial
I haven't seen much of this champ in a while, but I really wouldn't mind if he made a comeback. This is another of the very few champs that can't do a great deal to Nasus in the lane. I don't have a whole lot to say considering I see him so little. Galio wants to sit and farm the lane just as much as you do, which is beautiful. His only harass is from Q and E, which isn't that strong, and he will typically just use them to farm. Don't stand in the middle of your minion wave and he has to choose between using his spells on you or on the minion wave. Build mercs and you should be OK with just a standard build. Add in some more MR if necessary.
Items: Philo, Mercs, Glacial
Similar situation to Akali. A bad gangplank might ignore you and farm minions with Q for the bonus gold. A good gangplank realizes how badly he can dump on you and will stand in the wave, Q you on CD, and auto attack you whenever you come up for last hits. GP is one of those champs that can firstblood you at level 1 or 2 if you play stupid and underestimate him, especially if he is running ignite. He can constantly harass you, out-damage you, cleanse your wither if you try to slow him, and generally bully you in the lane. Do not get baited into a hard engage or you will die. Run a big armor page against him and start cloth + 5 pots. Rush glacial. If you don't let him kill you early, after a trip or two back you should be OK. GP builds vary greatly, from gp/5 to double dorans to wriggles to TF rush. Just be wary of how he is building and how he is playing and gauge the lane accordingly. Hopefully he lacks the persistence to keep trying to harass you down and will eventually resort to just farming. I'm also not sure yet how much the mana cost change on his Q will affect him. While he is a real pain in the ***, if you run huge armor, play safe, and itemize properly, you can survive this lane.
Items: Tabi, Philo, Frozen Heart
Generally considered to be one of the hardest counters to Nasus in top, which is pretty accurate. His early damage output is enough to induce fits of rage the likes of which you have never before experienced. Have fun not being able to approach your minion wave for the majority of the early laning phase. Run a big armor page. You can start either boots 4 pots or cloth 5 pots. Dorans shield is actually OK as well. With boots you can try to just outrun his Q+E, but he's probably running boots as well, so good luck. All that being said, if you start with +60 or more armor, bait out some spins and let him push to your tower where you can farm a bit safer, and then rush tabi + glacial, this quickly becomes fairly manageable. After the big mastery changes I played this lane several times in a custom to test things out. While he could zone me for a while, he couldn't kill me, and I eventually got hold of the lane. Yeah, it sucks. No, it's not the worst match-up out there. Still, I would recommend avoiding it.
Start: Boots+3/4 or Cloth+5
Items: Tabi, Frozen Heart
Honestly, my favorite match-up for Nasus. I've heard Wickd insist Irelia should beat Nasus, and I have no doubt that he could shut me up real quick. However... against anyone that isn't Wickd, I just don't see it. I've played the match-up at least 30 times, and only struggled maybe once. On top of that... I don't know if this is sheer dumb luck or what, but every single time I play Nasus against an Irelia top we end up winning. This might make my opinion a bit biased, but at this point if I see an Irelia I get a huge *****, pick Nasus, and get a free win. She doesn't have the damage to push you out of lane and she will generally sit up there happy as can be AFK farming with you. Build straight to FH + shurelias for max CDR and enjoy free wins assuming your allies don't feed so hard they surrender at 20.
Items: Philo, Tabi, Frozen Heart
Similar to Irelia, Jarvan just doesn't have the damage to really zone you or force you out of lane. While is passive is powerful and he has some decent harass potential, it isn't so much that you can't sustain through it and largely ignore him. Try not to get in too close where he can shield slow you and set up for easy EQ combos. He can first blood you if running ignite, but only if you play poorly. Don't underestimate his early damage potential and don't try to trade with him. As always just stick to last hitting, healing off minions, and after a few levels you should be set. Try to avoid his EQ as it can set up some big damage output.
Start: regrowth+1 or boots+3/4 or cloth+5
Items: Philo, Tabi, Frozen Heart
Honestly, I haven't faced the tweaked Jax, so I'm not entirely sure about this. Prior to the changes I didn't have too much trouble with Jax. Obviously he hit extremely hard with WQ but he could only sustain his harass for so long due to mana restrictions, and if you could survive that he didn't have much else to offer. I think the changes made him a bit scarier, but I haven't played vs him with Nasus yet, so I can't be sure.
Items: Philo, Tabi, Frozen Heart
A ranged energy AP... what do you think? Kennen can dump on you, plain and simple. There's pretty much nothing you can do vs a good Kennen. He will harass you with autos, Q, and W, zone you, and force you into a non-optimal MR build to survive the lane. You can't go on him because he can just stun you and E away. Again, if you are facing Kennen its probably a double caster team and Nasus was a bad choice. He will also kite you and render you quite ineffective in team fights. Beg for ganks, stay back when you have 2 marks on you, try to dodge shurikens, and pray. You will lose your tower or your life or both unless you get heavy ganks or he plays extremely poorly.
Items: Mercs, Philo
Consensus: Get Wrecked
Lee Sin is one of those champions who's effectiveness in lane varies greatly due to a higher skill ceiling than most champs, as his skill set is a bit more intricate than most other champions. What this means for you is that this match-up can vary greatly, all the way from easy to rather challenging. I can't give a whole lot of insight into his intricacies, but I can at least lay out the obvious. His early damage potential is pretty high so if he is dead-set on zoning you, go ahead and let him until the wave pushes. I've found the best way to play vs a Singer is generally dance around just behind your ranged minions to avoid Q's and only move in for last hits. Try to bait out his tempests by moving in and out of range of minions erratically. If you get him to waste tempest you avoid the majority of his damage as well as his cripple and the follow-up autos. He will inevitably push the wave if he uses tempest often, where you can farm pretty well under tower. Once the lane is pushed to your tower, the majority of Lee Sin players will try to get fancy and keep trying to harass with their high mobility which allows them to juke in and out of tower range. They will inevitably start taking the occasional tower hit while trying pointlessly to keep your HP down, which you can easily regen by auto attacking under tower. Play the lane safe and move around erratically at first, and then after your first recall you should have the defense to sustain his harass.
Items: Philo, Mercs, Glacial
Malphite is considered to be a pretty good counter to many top lane bruisers that rely on auto-attacks, such as Tryndamere. Fortunately, Nasus isn't really a big auto attacker, he only relies on his Q. Malphite may try to bully you around a bit with his shard (Q) and groundslam, but it just isn't enough damage to push you out of lane. You can lifesteal through his harass and he will likely run OOM before doing enough to really threaten you. Realize that most of his harass is magic, and take a look at whether he appears to be building AD, AP, or full tank. This should be a relatively straight forward lane of him trying to harass you, and you simply regenerating more than he is able to dish out. Turns into a farm lane, which is what you want.
Items: Philo, Mercs, Glacial
I honestly haven't faced a Morde in quite some time, as he seems to just now be seeing a resurgence, and more commonly chooses to go mid. Morde poses the same problem as every other manaless caster: unlimited harass. Obviously you will need to build MR. I tend to stand off to the side of my minion waves vs a Morde so that he can't spam E on the wave and harass me at the same time. Morde's tend to push quite hard, so be sure to ask for ganks. Unfortunately, Morde is one of those champions that can harass you very effectively even when you are pushed to your tower and last hitting underneath it. You should be able to build MR and regen through his harass, but if you don't get ganks he will whittle you and your tower down pretty quickly. After 6, always ensure that you have enough mana to ult, which basically counters his when he tries to combo you.
Items: Philo, Mercs
I only just recently played this match-up and I was a little worried about what to expect. We ended up even in farm and neither of us died to each other or by ganks. To me this means I won. We ended up winning the game, so that reinforces my opinion. However, the lane wasn't exactly easy. For the first few levels Naut probably won't do much if anything to you. Once he gets points into all his skills though, he can start putting out some pretty serious harass, and it will chunk you for a lot. If he smacks you with his passive, riptides, and then hits you with dredge line as you are backing away, you take a pretty serious amount of damage. His shield is freaking huge and will absorb your Q if you try to retaliate. Play the lane as usual, keeping the lane frozen near your tower, and move around behind and between your ranged creeps. Try to dodge his Q and lifesteal off minions. He can chunk you pretty hard but it shouldn't be too much for you to sustain. I haven't played the champ so I can't really give insights to his CDs, mana costs, etc. Just play safe and build resists as needed. He will bully you around, but shouldn't be able to kill you.
Items: Philo, Mercs, Glacial or more MR if needed
Nid is such a ****. Her harass with auto attack is endless, and so is her sustain. This is an uphill battle. AD Nid is more common than AP top, but either way she builds you will want some armor early because her harass comes from her autos. Start cloth+5 and auto attack the minions a lot for lifesteal. She will be auto attack pushing the wave and harassing you as much as she can, so your autoing should help to keep the wave balanced and as well as give you some regen. Your lifesteal and pots are just enough to sustain you as she slowly whittles you down. After 6 watch out for the burst if she is building AP, otherwise its not a huge deal. More than likely she will take your tower relatively early because she pushes so hard. Fortunately none of this really stops you from farming Q, as she can't all in on you early, so just keep farming the Q until you have to back, and then return to the lane with more resists, rinse and repeat.
One of the hardest counters Nasus has ATM, Olaf will straight dunk on you. Avoid this lane at all costs. I don't really know what to say... Olaf can own you with undertow and true damage bursts. Build health and armor and hope that he is an idiot and doesn't realize he can zone you out and completely deny your Q farm. Try to dodge his Q and keep your distance, grabbing last hits where you can. Try to let him push to tower and try to last hit there, but if he's smart he will just keep the lane frozen. Consider asking for a lane swap if there is an AP mid that you can handle (eg. Kass, Morg).
Items: Tabi, Philo, Glacial,
Consensus: Get Wrecked
This is a pretty challenging lane and he can bully you pretty hard with spears. Fortunately, he has no sustain so if you play it smart it is actually possible to regen through his harass and harass back a bit. Just dont Q his shield, if you want to hit him be sure to double tap Q. The first hit will remove his shield and then is followed immediately by the Q. Build armor and you can sustain his periodic harass, but if he tries to go all in on you just wither and back off and heal up with pots, because his damage is too great for you to trade with him in a full on confrontation. Remember that his burst is pretty nasty especially if he's packing ignite, so don't let him get you too low, not even under tower. Pantheons are not afraid to dive you if you get low when they have their shield up. This is a pretty challenging lane and you will be taking a lot of damage, but you should be able to keep yourself alive and keep your farm respectable. Just like Akali, Panth needs to snowball to be effective, so even if you fall a bit behind on farm as long as you don't let him get kills on you early you will become much effective than him later in the game. He will also probably look to use his ult to pick up kills in other lanes, so be sure to alert your team when he wanders off and take that opportunity to farm as much as possible.
Renekton is another champ that can really beat up on Nasus in the lane, and should be able to shut you down pretty hard. Fortunately, most Renekton's don't play the lane right and will inevitably push, allowing you to farm under tower. What he should do is harass you with fury on his W and avoid hitting minions with his AoE. What he will probably do is slice to you, stun, Q, and either dice away or keep attacking. This will push the wave pretty quickly. Also, he does entirely physical damage, so if you start with my big armor page and cloth+5 you can negate a lot of his early game terror. As strong as Renekton is early, if you rush a chainvest he really can't kill you unless you are being dumb. Watch out for his summoners, because if he is running ignite he is definitely going to try to pick you off around level 3 or 4. I can't think of a whole lot of tips for this lane, as you really can't evade him since he has a gap closer and a stun. Just stack huge armor and try to regen off minions and don't let him get you low enough so that he can combo you down with ignite.
Items: Tabi, Frozen Heart
Similar to Lee Sin, the quality of Riven's you will face in lane varies a great deal. She is definitely annoying, but in my experience you can typically sustain through her harass. She also is full physical damage so run a big armor page and start cloth+5 into quick tabi. Armor, pots, and lifesteal. Sometimes Riven's will get cheeky and try to stun you to make you miss your Q last hits. Avoid being predictable and activating your Q and then walking towards a low HP minion. This makes it easy for her. Instead be sure you are always trying to double tap Q for the animation reset and make it more difficult to predict when you are going to Q. She is going to make it difficult for you by constantly jumping on your face with Q and shielding so you can't really retaliate, but like I said, stack armor and you should be OK. As always, don't let her get you too low because her burst after 6 is scary and her ult casts much faster than yours.
Items: Tabi, Philo, Frozen Heart
Manaless caster. You shouldn't be in this lane, and there's a good chance you are going to pay for it. Once again, some Rumbles are terrible and this lane won't be so bad. Other Rumbles will make you want to pull your hair out. They will repeatedly try to zone you with flamespitter and somehow ALWAYS seem to drill you with harpoons. However, this is another lane that will generally push pretty hard and leave themselves open to ganks. Ask for them early and often or you are probably in trouble. Rumble can't harass you very effectively under tower as long as you keep moving, so if they are content on zoning you in the lane just let them and the pick up hits under your tower. You can build MR, but it never seems to be enough if they are really set on messing with you. Keep moving and do your best to avoid harpoons, because 1 landing typically means you are taking another + the full force of flamespitter. Auto attack minions to regen, build MR, ask for ganks, stay mobile.
Items: Mercs, Philo
Consensus: Challenging/Get Wrecked
I fortunately have not had to face Shen post buff since he is always banned. Ironically, I did play Shen against a Nasus right after the patch. He was pretty smart and started null mantle into mercs and chalice and I only got 1 kill on him with a jungle gank. Nasus should actually fair better than most against Shen because he has such great sustain. You are going to get some swords thrown at you repeatedly. They do magic damage, dummies, so don't build armor. Get some HP and MR and try to lifesteal off minions. Keep an eye on his passive and don't make it easy for him to hit you when its up. I'd need more experience with the match-up to really say more, but just play it safe and you should be OK.
Items: Philo, Mercs
I've only played this match-up once, and it was right after the IEM where M5 popularized Shyvanna counter jungle. All the Shyv did in my lane was push as hard as possible, and then go pick up jungle camps. While this was annoying because she got ahead on farm and gimped our jungle, there was nothing I could do about it because she clears so fast. At least I got to farm as much as I wanted. How the lane plays out if the Shyvana is trying to harass you I really can't say. She puts out some pretty gnarly early damage, but has not natural sustain, so she shouldn't be able to harass you more than you can manage. As I said, however, I don't know this for sure. Don't stand in her W and don't let her get free hits on you. Keep your distance and farm under tower when it inevitably pushes, or if she leaves lane just tank the minions before they get to the tower and Q them all.
Items: Philo, Tabi, Glacial
Singed is always an annoying champ but is actually an OK matchup for you. It's not optimal since he does magic damage and you would rather rush glacial, but at least you can farm fairly easily. Let him push the wave and then either farm under tower or block them out of range. He may start doing gay **** a while into the game like running behind your tower to clear the wave before it even makes it to your outer turret. Whatever... block his wave in front of yours and Q them all. He is annoying and you can't really kill him or stop his farm, but neither can he kill or stop you. Don't do stupid stuff like give him free flings or walk around in his poison, just let him clear the wave and then clear in return. If he tries to really mess with you and does a corny AP build that is hurting you a ton you might have to build extra MR, otherwise just build normal.
Items: Philo, Mercs, SV if necessary
Talon puts out pretty good damage but doesn't have the mana pool or the sustain to really be a threat to you in lane. He can put out some pretty painful harass early, but you can regen through it and make him spend his mana pool pretty quick. Use your pots and keep your HP up because his burst is pretty strong with ignite if he's got the mana. Keep moving and don't stand in the middle of your minions so its harder for him to hit you with rake. I will admit he is pretty annoying early because he can jump on you, silence so you can't wither or Q, and then walk away + rake to keep you away. He will cut you down early but just use pots and auto minions during his CDs. Sustain through his harass, and counter attack if he is taking minion aggro or playing badly. After you back and get a philo and some armor he can't really mess with you anymore. You have to play it pretty safe early, but it should turn into a farm lane once he realizes he can't take you down.
Items: Tabi, Philo, Glacial
A well played Teemo is one of the best "common" top lane counters to Nasus. He can constantly harass, blind, poison, and destroy you. His damage is mixed so it is hard to build against, and he will punish you every time you come in range to last hit. You will probably only win this lane if the Teemo is just a terrible player in general. His blind will make your Q miss, but doesn't take up the charge, so if another minion is low you can still use it. Ask for ganks and try not to die. Consider asking for a lane swap if there is an AP mid that you can handle (eg. Kass, Morg).
Items: Philo, Mercs, Glacial
Consensus: Get Wrecked
Starts out very scary and stays pretty annoying. Tryndamere is considered a relatively weak laner, but even so he can still poop on Nasus. Run big armor page, get fast tabi into glacial. He can bully you early and it can be really bad if he gets lucky crits early on. The first few levels are the most risky, so don't let him all-in on you or you'll probably die. Once you stack armor he shouldn't really be able to do that much and will probably just repeatedly push to your tower. It's a frustrating lane because he will push and harass hard, maybe even chunk you a bit under your tower, and then spin out and heal up leaving you to try to regen and last hit off just a few minions. Definitely an annoying lane, but you can survive it and farm decently unless you get really unlucky or make silly mistakes.
Items: Tabi, Philo, Frozen Heart
This lane really sucks for Nasus. He can put out so much damage so quickly, and a great deal of it is magical, which sucks for you considering you want glacial. He has good sustain and great harass, the worst combination for you. I avoid this lane so I really don't have much advice for it. Ask for a swap if you can handle mid. Build mercs and a spirit visage or chalice. Honestly I can't think of a reliable way to win this match up so just swap or rage quit (jk).
Items: Mercs, Philo, idkman****
Consensus: Get Wrecked
He has infinitely spammable harass from range, sustain, and does magic damage. Can it get any worse? Not really. The only way you are winning this lane is if you are facing a complete downs babie that doesn't Q and E you pretty much on cooldown. You might be OK the first few levels since his spells do pretty little early on. After those first few levels though he is just going to start making your life suck, and there's nothing at all you can do about it. Obviously build MR, but really... swap, or get tons of ganks, or you are boned.
Items: Mercs, Negatron
Consensus: Get Wrecked
I have actually not played this match-up and don't really know anything about this champ. I'm pretty sure he is a very under-rated top lane pick, but I can't say all that much. I would think this could be a very challenging lane because he has great harass potential and it is a mix of physical and magic so it's hard to build against. Looking for insights into this matc-up.
Items: Mercs, Philo, Glacial
Warwick top has grown in popularity immensely, and for good reason. He has great sustain, good harass, and great team fight presence. Fortunately, in my experience at least, this isn't a terrible match-up for Nasus. Granted he deals magic damage, but it is moderate and predictable. You should be able to lifesteal through his harass and farm the lane somewhat safely. Perhaps I've only faced bad Warwick's top, but I tend to not really have much trouble with this lane, and it could even move to favorable if I continue to have the same experience. Build some MR if you need it. Looking for input from others than have played this lane, because I think it might actually be favorable and a decent counter pick to a new FOTM.
Items: Mercs, Philo
I've had wildly different results when facing Wukong's, but I think this is really only because they tend to be so aggressive it leaves them open to ganks. If it weren't for jungler intervention, I'd probably get dunked every time. He has stupid strong burst at very early levels and will abuse you with it as often as possible. He hits super hard on low CD, and is generally too much of a threat for you to safely farm early on. Run big armor page and get fast Tabi and Glacial. Let him push and ask for ganks. After you have stacked some armor you should be OK in the lane unless you are just getting outplayed. Don't do stupid stuff like waste mana withering his clone or extending super far for a ranged creep. Same old same old, try to survive, stack armor, lifesteal when you can.
This lane is challenging but honestly as Nasus you are one of the better options to be facing Yorick with. He is considered a very strong laner, but you can actually handle the lane because his harass is constant but moderate, while your sustain is the same. Your lifesteal almost counteracts with ghouls harass. This is without mentioning the fact that his ghouls give you bonus damage on your Q, so when he drops them on you, just auto+Q one instantly. If he is smart he will wait for you to use Q on a minion and then drop ghouls on you so you can't insta-kill them and they are much more punishing. Try to gauge the timing of his harass and have Q available for them, but at the same time don't sit there not Qing minions in anticipation. This lane is by no means easy, but if you are smart about it and stay busy with your lifesteal it's so-so. Bottom line is he may be able to whittle you down and force you out, but he shouldn't be able to kill you, and you are packing TP. Once you are geared a bit it's downhill for him, and you scale like 3x harder, so GG. Overall I'd say Nasus is probably a pretty good choice vs Yorick.
Items: Mercs, Philo, Glacial
After spawning buy your items quick and invade with team or protect jungle at the top lane.
During laning phase try to last hit with Siphoning Strike and make a hit on the enemy with he is near to get life back. With 6% through runes, you'll have 20% lifesteal at the beginning.
Ward your lane and help jungle if he ganks. When u have Philosopher's Stone u can use the q w e q combo to harrass enemy champion and still reg enough mana. You cannot use it too often though. Always remember to have enough mana to wither your enemy, when either your or the enemy jungler ganks.
Slow the enemy and try to spare flash, if you get ganked. You'll lifesteal up again or you go back and Teleport to lane.
Help your jungler with W and E and making as much Q on the enemy as possible, when he ganks. Always slow before the jungler reaches your enemy.
Late game your not the tank, because you don't have enough crowd control. Still your are, following this guide, very tanky and should wither the AD ranged carry, whenever possible.
If the enemy team is grouped up pop your Fury of the Sands and Spirit Fire to damage them all.
From time to time return to your lane to farm minions. This is the time your AP carry gets blue, AD carry red and bot farms their minions as well.
The lack of early fun and aggression is acceptable, when you just know how it feels to become very strong late game, if you can farm. Due to his ulti and passive you can find against a big amount of enemies and still survive and make a lot damage with your Siphoning Strike.
I'm not a native english speaker so I hope you'll forgive me my linguistic mistakes.
Concentrate on the built & write me a comment, if you think, there is something to improve, please.
I'm open for discussion and I'll change things, if I think there are better possibilities.
Hope you liked it!
Thanks to the other Nasus guides on mobafire. Got a lot of information from them.
Thanks to Deluth:
Hyfe, one of the best Nasus player's, guide.
And the very usefull