Nidalee Build Guide by Moarbad
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.
Hello this is my first build and guide so please leave a comment and rate the build so I can make it better as time goes on. Remember this build is focused around Middle or Solo laning.
I am by no means as great or HotShotGG or other high ELO Nidalee players but in normals and the ELO I am at I carry my team 90% of the time.
Build 1: AP Carry
Build 2: Tank vs AP Heavy
How to Play Nidalee
A few things, I will always either, solo top or go mid because usually I do not want to 2v2 with randoms. Nidalee is still a good duo laner but not as great as others.
When playing normal games and we have a jungler I will choose either bot or top to solo after seeing where their team is going. You always want to solo the lane where the squishier champions are. I will switch top lane to bot lane if there are 2 squishies down there and I have a Mordekaiser/Garen up top. (Note: that is for normals not ranked games.)
Alright let's get into how to play Nidalee, shall we?
For your rotation you pretty much just want to use your abilities whenever they're off CD, cougar form uses no mana so don't be afraid to farm with it. Your main damage dealing is done when in cougar form. Whenever you get low on health pop out and use your heal + javelin until Cougar CD wears off then rinse and repeat.
For 1v2 and 1v1 lanes it is generally the same. Before level 6 you want to play it somewhat safe, harrassing with Javelin Toss and or auto attack and last hitting of course. Around level 5 if they aren't already you want to let them push your lane so once you get cougar form you can get a kill. Summarized: Harrass, let them push, cougar form (flash if needed to get a shocking and quick kill), kill, push/buy.
After you buy for the first time and get your Boots hurry back to your lane and push the lane back a little more to buy you some time. If they are tower hugging go get blue quickly or gank another lane for more feed. Make sure to pay attention to your lane so your tower does not die when you leave.
Most of the time you should not follow a rotation unless you are a certain champion like LeBlanc or Annie, bursty champions, but as Nidalee you just want to spam your abilities as fast as you can and as accurate. Usually how 1v1 fights end up is with this rotation though.
By then they should be dead or running and it is up to you to decide what you want to use by then. If they are too far away for you to catch up throw a Javelin, if they are close enough chase with pounce and so forth.
How to Use "Javelin Toss" properly
There are many times you should use Javelin Toss. When in a fight and you pop out to heal you should cast this before you switch back in to Cougar form. Cougar form has a 4-5 second cooldown so you want to make use of that time while not in cougar.
1). Shooting escapees through walls to finish them off or do more damage.
2). Extra damage up close while in a fight.
Build 1: AP
This is the most basic build for Nidalee. It is explained throughout the whole guide as it is my main build so no need to explain anything here.
Build 2: Tank Nidalee
Refer to "LOL WAT NID TANK"
For this build you focus alot of Magic Resistance and health regen, mainly against AP heavy enemies, you want to build more armor first instead of FoN if they are AD heavy but make sure to get the FoN later in the game.
LOL WAT NID TANK
This actually works. Believe it or not it is amazing. Using that build you become practically invincible with your ability to kite and then you have all that health regen and healing power it's just amazing. With FoN and Spirit Visage you regen a lot of your health per second making it easy to run away for a few seconds then get back into the fight and do decent damage while being invincible.
Pros / Cons
Strong heals late game
Long range nuke
Can chase very well or escape any situation
Can farm very well
Can jump through thin walls
Can't do too much damage till level 6 (Very minor con)
Many glitches that Riot doesn't seem to want to fix
I can't think of many more :D
I haven't bought runes in a while but these are the ones that I am currently using and giving a little explanation.
Marks - Magic Penetration (You don't normally get much MP from items so taking these runes is a good idea)
Seals - Armor (You probably want to change these, like I said I haven't bothered with runes in quite some while but my guess would be just AP runes or CDR for an alternative)
Glyphs - Cooldown Reduction (CDR, always nice)
I use these masteries for all my caster champions. Typical set, take longer buff duration, little more exp, etc. You can read them for yourself and decide what you want to do with these, not much of an explanation to be given.
Alright, before I explain the item choice I'll address this first. Many times I am asked, "Why don't you get a Doran's Ring instead of an Amplifying Tome?" because then I can get a health pot for starters which I seem to always need if you want to get fed every game, plus you can build right into a Sheen or Mejai's after you recall for the first time. Okay, time for the actual build.
Start off with an Amplifying Tome and 1 health pot (I already explained so I won't go into it again)
After level 6 and you recall get your Boots, my choice always is Mobility but you can decide, and finish that Mejai's if it's looking like you are going to get some kills that game. If it looks like a bad game just build that Sheen.
Next items, get your Guinsoo's so you can push down those towers faster (keep stacks up with pounce if you can) and get your Spirit Visage if you can, Spirit Visage is great because since you will get focused all the time that survivability and stronger heals with save you alot.
The last two are pretty self explanatory, Lich Bane for obvious reasons and Deathcap just for more AP.
Quick little chapter here, it is very important how you decide your first skill. Sometimes if there is no level 1 fight I will get bushwack and trap around, or if you haven't picked your skill yet and you got ganked from bushes grab heal. Like many other things in this guide you can always decide for yourself.
I take Cleanse and Flash for everygame and I'll explain why and give some other possibilities.
Cleanse - Removes stuns, exhaust, slows, snares, practically everything and helps me escape or chase so many times.
Flash - Obvious reasons, flash through walls, to chase, escape, should always take this.
Ignite - I've seen others use this but I have not tried it so you can use it if you prefer it.
Ghost - Another one I see most Nidalees use but I found that Mobility + Cougar and Passive imitates ghost.
Exhaust - You could use this if you want but I don't see any need for it as Nidalee.
Clarity - Again you could take this but generally a bad idea because you don't need mana all that much especially since I usually get blue.
Clairvoyance - I've seen Nidalees take this but you should leave it for actualy support champs.
Heal + Revive - Both bad, you shouldn't be dieing and you have a heal already.
Smite - You're not jungling.
Rally - No. Just no.
Teleport - With your speed you don't need teleport.
Fortify - Leave it to tanks/supports.
Thanks for reading to the end, please rate and comment on the build so I can make it better and tell me if I should add more sections and what should they be about? Thanks again.