Build Guide by Drockvaen
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 and welcome to my Nocturne build. Before I get started on the "how's" and "why's" of my build, I would like to point out that all players should practice this build in a Custom vs. AI match or a Custom game before taking it to the big leagues. I will be providing an in-depth explanation of how I play Nocturne, so if my build does not suit your fancy, then by all means go find a more 'assassin-type' build. Outside of that, I pray everyone enjoys this build as it is my first COMPLETE published build. To all you summoners, welcome to the shadows...
I am sure you have noticed that I have straight up attack speed runes. According to the champion spotlights, I have only seen one that recommended a full attack speed rune build. Surprise, surprise: it is not Nocturne; it is Irelia. While Irelia makes a pretty hefty jungler with such runes, I have discovered through all champs (Tryndamere, Urgot, etc.) I play with that attack speed runes are crazy awesome for early game and continue to be helpful throughout. 38% at start of game. That's roughly a 1K gold boost at start of game considering that the recurve bow is 1050 and gives 40%. However, I digress.
Nocturne, played as a jungler, will thank you profusely for boosting his attack speed up, plus it will allow his passive to recharge more quickly when it counts early game jungling.
The offensive masteries I have chosen are fairly typical for this type of champion and I am sure all of you can read so I do not deem it necessary to explain further as to the reasons behind my choices.
As for the utilities, I bring as much mana regen possible with the few points left (as Nocturne is pretty mana-crippled early game) and finish off with the extra gold. Most builds I have reviewed for Nocturne say he is pretty hard to get money for, furthermore it is mainly habit for me to go with the gold.
Just as his Champion Spotlight suggests, grab Cloth Armor and Health Potions x5. If you cannot finish Madred's Razor on your first recall, then get the Long Sword and restock on Health Potions. If you did not already finish Madred's, the do it on your second recall and grab Boots of Speed.
Once you have Brutalizer, start keeping your eyes peeled for allies close to you that need assistance or that may be setting up a potential gank. Buy the Ruby Crystal for a slight HP boost and get back to jungling. At this point, or right after you complete Phage, you should hit level 6, so start causing some Paranoia amongst the enemey champions.
Next, you will want to build a Catalyst the Protector. I often build starting with the Ruby Crystal again, on account that by now you should be able to get the blue mana regen buff easily from the golem camp. Once you have the Catalyst, finish your Ionian Boots of Lucidity for the 15% cooldown reduction (mainly for your Shroud of Darkness).
*Finish Banshees' Veil as soon as possible to catch your magic resist up with your armor. I have come to realize that the Banshees' Veil passive blocks spells first before your Shroud does. So, use it's disappearance as an indicator for your natural spell shield. Using it immediately after Banshees' goes on cooldown can save you from getting killed. As I have played versing a champion with Banshees' Veil, I usually use the less useful skill for me (at the time) and follow through with my heavy-hitter. Assuming other summoners think along the same lines, such is the reason for using Shroud at that point in time. Furthermore, using the first ability of Paranoia also cancels out spell shields, leaving your teleport open to deal damage.
Finish Frozen Mallet next. Now chasing should be EASY. Buy the B.F. Sword selling the Brutalizer if need be, then complete the Black Cleaver as quickly as possible as to not leave for armor penetration lacking for too long. Now takedowns should come second-nature.
Buy a Pickaxe for Madred's Bloodrazor, seeing as your attack speed should NOT be lacking. Finish Bloodrazor and buy a Vampiric Scepter. Sell the Scepter as soon as you can afford another B.F. sword. Continue ganking/farming/jungling hard to get Bloodthirster quickly.
Once the build is completed, go farm up the 40 stacks for maximum damage and life steal. If the game is not over or in the process of ending by now, then the rest boils down to teamwork and outsmarting the other players.
If you are 100% positive there is no enemy ward on Baron, and if you have full stacks and health, have your team cause a diversion by pushing the bottom lane and go solo Baron. Your Shroud of Darkness works on Baron's abilities so use it as often as possible to double your attack speed passive. Spam your other skills as well to take him out. You should finish him off with roughly 1/4 of your HP left. Not bad for an assassin, right?
To start off, get Shroud of Darkness for roughly 60% attack speed at start of game. Next get Duskbringer, then Unspeakable Horror. Max Duskbringer first, getting Shroud of Darkness again at 8, and obviously Paranoia any time you can.
This skill sequence should maximize your damage output when chasing down enemies. A well timed Shroud of Darkness can make or break a takedown so go practice on Custom vs. AI. Remember the Banshees' Veil passive blocks first. Don't waste your Shroud!
I take Exhaust and Flash with me ALWAYS. Exhaust is invaluable for chasing prior to having Frozen Mallet. Flash is great for using Paranoia to get back into a 5v5 team fight and flashing back to your team after damage. However, this method requires quick keystrokes once your ultimate is activated, otherwise the enemy team may be able to time a stun/slow/silence retaliation as soon as you appear.
Other spells I would recommend (though have not tested) include:
P.S. I, personally, find ghost unnecessary for Nocturne. His Duskbringer makes him faster than all champions naturally and faster than most champions using Ghost.
Creeping / Jungling
This is the way I jungle with Nocturne.
(back now or...)
Lizard camp (Red Buff)
After this sequence, I usually play by necessity.
Teamwork is essential when playing with Nocturne. Whether laning or jungling, he is built to gank. Use Duskbringer as a movement speed boost to get within range of Paranoia's teleport when allies need assistance or to help with a gank. Nocturne is mana-crippled without Banshees' Veil or the blue mana regen buff so do not hesitate to go back for a recharge. Simply use your ultimate to jump back into the fray. With my build, I am often the one to initiate a gank/team fight because this build, in my opinion, makes him more well rounded than most others can make their champions (there are exceptionts, of course). With the right aid, this Nocturne build can easily tank a turret with 1 ally. Just do it smartly, do not try this unless you are certain you will take it down. Also, soloing an inhibitor takes a matter of roughly 8 seconds. Always, always, always be aware of your allies. Keep an eye out for uncalled MIAs and pick up the slack. Try to be as flexible as possible in terms of ganks across the map. Go for the sure-fire takedown over the half-baked turret dive. Save your teammates! If they are getting heavy harass on mid, then jump in and harass them back! They did not call it Paranoia for nothing. My brother and I agree it is a scary feeling to get jumped by his teleport.
Throughout my guide, I believe I have given a fair amount of how to farm. Save for one detail:
If the enemy champions are overleveling you and no longer fear you, then stop ganking (again unless it is 100% takedown) and go farm/jungle to catch up. As the Champion Spotlight stated, "Nocturne is a natural jungler."
Through and through, just follow my guide for a fun ride. In a nutshell, I have taken an assassin/melee champion and turned him into a nasty, tough, in-your-face ganker and chaser.
Constructive criticism is preferred.
See you on the battlefield, summoners.