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Nami Build Guide by ADDikt8

Support [12.14] The ULTIMATE IN DEPTH Nami Guide

Support [12.14] The ULTIMATE IN DEPTH Nami Guide

Updated on August 5, 2022
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League of Legends Build Guide Author ADDikt8 Build Guide By ADDikt8 17 0 7,988 Views 6 Comments
17 0 7,988 Views 6 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author ADDikt8 Nami Build Guide By ADDikt8 Updated on August 5, 2022
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ADDikt8's Featured Video

Runes: Standard

1 2 3 4
Summon Aery
Manaflow Band
Gathering Storm

Bone Plating

+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+6 Armor


1 2
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite


Threats & Synergies

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None Low Ok Strong Ideal
Extreme Threats
Ideal Synergies
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Champion Build Guide

[12.14] The ULTIMATE IN DEPTH Nami Guide

By ADDikt8
Table Of Contents
Guide Details
x About Me
x Champion Introduction
x Champion Skins
x Pros
x Cons
x Abilities
x Items
x Runes
x Summoner Spells
x General Playstyle
x Mana Management
x Bans/Threats
About Me
Hi there, my name is the ADDikt and I’m a 4x Diamond Support main and I recently challenged myself to play 100 games of Nami. I started this challenge at Platinum 3 and am sitting comfortably at Diamond 2! In this guide, I will explain everything you will need to know to play Nami at a high level. Please note there are several methods of playstyle when it comes to Nami. It’s important to understand how each style functions and choose the one that fits you the best.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss Nami at any point, feel free to drop by my stream @! Our community is super friendly and is welcoming of players of all elos!

My account names are BootsNo7 and ADDikt8!
Champion Introduction
Nami, The Tidecaller
Nami is one of the strongest support champions to play for a typical solo queue player. Nami is a champion who excels at everything as a support with the ability to engage, heal, and provide a damage buff to teammates. I honestly believe anyone can get Diamond by playing Nami if you understand the support role fundamentals.
Champion Skins
+ Good at everything, engage, utility, damage
+ Healing is easier to use than shielding
+ Easy to engage/disengage tool with ultimate
+ Increase teammate's movement speed with passive
+ Good mobility due to self cast ability

Nami is a champion who excels at everything as a support with the ability to engage, heal, and provide a damage buff to teammates. She is mechanically easy to play and a healing champ specifically means there really isn’t a “bad” time to trade your mana for your teammates health, especially after laning phase.
- Not the best at anything
- Hard to land bubble without additional set up
- Squishy and can easily be picked off
- Enchanters can be hard to carry with if ADC makes crucial mistake late game
- Mana hungry before Manaflow is stacked

However, she isn’t the BEST at anything. She gets outclassed by some engage champions like Leona or Nautilus and she gets outscaled by some enchanters like Yuumi and Sona. Additionally, she doesn’t have a super reliable CC in her basic abilities, as the bubble can be dodged fairly easily and is better used as a follow up CC ability. She is also prone to getting picked off quickly in teamfights if she is mispositioned.
Nami’s Abilities
SURGING TIDES (Passive): Nami’s passive is Surging Tides. This passive means that all of Nami’s abilities grants nearly 100 bonus movement speed to allies when accounting for the AP you will build in the game, which slowly decays over 1.5 seconds. Movement speed is arguably the most important stat in the game making it one of the strongest supportive passives in the game. Providing extra MS to your teammates helps them more easily engage onto key targets or retreat from a teamfight during disengage. The movement speed buff is doubled if the ability used is Tidal Wave.

AQUA PRISON (Q): Nami’s Q is Aqua Prison. This is the ability you want to use with most thought. If you miss a bubble, you will lose a lot of pressure in laning or teamfights and the enemy will know that they can capitalize. It is your only form of hard CC out of your 3 basic abilities. I generally use this ability only if I have previously slowed the enemy with my E ability or an ally has a point and click CC ability. It is a lot more useful to use as a follow up CC ability rather than a pure engage tool. The Q acts as a stun, but can also be used as knockup for ally’s ability like Yasuo’s Ultimate Last Breath. An important tip is that the travel time of Q is not related to the distance you throw a bubble. If you throw a bubble far, it will take the same time for the bubble to land as if you decide to bubble on top of you.

EBB AND FLOW (W): Nami’s W is Ebb and Flow. This is the ability you will want to max as it provides immediate healing for you and your allies. Before Level 6, you will want to use this ability strategically in scenarios where you can proc Manaflow Band. It is one of the highest mana abilities in the early game, and you can quickly drain your mana pool if you use this ability too frequently. Once you have completed at least 2 mana items, you can almost use this ability on cool down if you see an ally at low health.

Tidecaller's Blessing (E): Nami’s E is Tidecaller's Blessing. This is an ability you will max second. It provides you and your allies an extra damage buff as well as a slow proc. It is super useful to help you land skillshots, specifically your Aqua Prison bubble. Unless you are trying to throw a bubble from fog, you should almost always lead with an E auto or an E-W before throwing a bubble. Nami’s E is unique in that the slow ability has no cast time. You can use E in the middle of your abilities or auto attacks to gain its effect. It’s also a great ability to speed up your allies if they are getting chased for a low mana cost. You can use this ability to get back to lane or when roaming to increase your movement speed. You can be quite generous with the use of this ability in order to provide your teammates with a movement speed buff or a damage buff.

TIDAL WAVE (R): Nami’s R is Tidal Wave. Her ultimate is an amazing engage tool that not only knocks up and slows enemies in its path, but also doubles your passive movement speed buff for allies. As an engage tool, I try to use it when I know enemies are in a choke point and it is difficult for them to escape. Alternatively, I use this as a follow up engage tool when a priority target is locked up. Tidal Wave can also be used as a disengage tool if you have a hyper carry on your team, who is constantly being targeted by an assassin. Saving one ally can sometimes be more important than engaging on multiple enemies.
Early Items
Nami’s early items are fairly consistent with other enchanters where she benefits greatly from both health and mana sustain. I usually buy Spellthief's Edge and 2 Health Potions to begin the game unless I’m in a difficult lane matchup where it is unlikely for me to harass the all in threat of the enemy support ( Blitzcrank, Leona, Nautilus). Instead, if I’m not confident I can harass properly in lane, I will opt for a Relic Shield instead.

My next item I will work towards is Boots and a Kindlegem. Health is more important than mana sustain early since it denies the enemy from getting a lucky all in on you. If you manage your mana properly, you should be able to simply stack your Manaflow Band and have enough mana to either poke or sustain through early harass. If I ever have an additional 150 gold on my first back, buying a Refillable Potion could be useful against heavy poke lanes.

Work your way towards building either your first Mythic item or tier 2 CDR Ionian Boots of Lucidity if you plan on roaming heavily pre 14 mins.

If you do not have Manaflow Band in your runes OR you plan on going Locket of the Iron Solari, make sure you buy a Tear of the Goddess after your Kindlegem. Nami is a mana dependent champion, and you will the mana sustain from your Mythic item and Manaflow. Tear helps supplement your lack of mana if you opt for a tankier build. You can easily sit on Tear and convert into a Fimbulwinter or Seraph's Embrace later in the game.
Mythic Items
Nami has one primary Mythic item that you will almost always want to build, which is Imperial Mandate. This item provides a small damage buff for your teammates as it can proc off your E when applied to champions. The small movement buff every time the item's passive is activated is amazing for you and your teammates to kite in and out of teamfights. Overall, it provides everything an enchanter wants: ability haste, mana regen, and health.

Another mythic item that I sometimes build with Nami is Shurelya's Battlesong. Although the teamwide movement speed buff feels great, you do lose out on some damage for your teammates. I generally don’t buy this item since your ultimate and passive already provides your team with enough movement speed to engage on the enemy. Instead, I buy Shurelya in cases where our team needs additional disengage. For example, if a Vladimir decides to use his ultimate on your team, your team’s best option is to scatter away so that he can not continually deal damage over time by being near enemies. Running away from Vladimir is easy when you have Shurelya’s and he is easily gankable after the clock on his ultimate runs out. Another scenario is if Singed decides to press R and chase down your carry. Singed moves super quickly and tries to CC your carry and is difficult to peel him off your carry. However, if you and your teammates run faster than Singed can, your carry can easily kite him after his ultimate has worn out.

The next situational mythic item I like to buy is Locket of the Iron Solari. This item is useful versus AOE damage carries such as Katarina, Samira, Diana, or Karthus. Being able to block an AOE burst of damage with Locket is super valuable, because generally the enemy champion will be extremely squishy to re-engage once the burst of damage has been negated by your Locket. It provides Nami with tankiness and mitigates neighboring teammates health loss. It is important to note that you will be lacking mana regeneration if you choose to build Locket (even with Manaflow Band) so I make up for this by buying an early Tear of the Goddess after Kindlegem. Your build path will be slightly delayed, but it is well worth it if you can incorporate Locket.

Lastly, Moonstone Renewer is the last mythic item, that is somewhat viable to build. I usually don’t build this item because it is only useful in long extended fights. Nami’s healing isnt as frequent compared to typical enchanters such as Sona or Soraka, so the value you get is relatively lower than if you buy Imperial Mandate. However in extended fights versus tanks, you may as well buy Imperial Mandate for that extra damage and movement speed.

Lastly, I still need to test this mythic item out, but I have theorized that building an Everfrost is an alternative item you can build if your team is versus a fed enemy champion that can only be stopped with hard CC. For example, a fed Master Yi can easily alpha strike away from your bubble, but he can’t Alpha Strike away from a bubble AND an everfrost root if you time your abilities appropriately.

Legendary Items
The primary legendary item you will want to buy is Chemtech Putrifier. In Season 12 there is so much healing available that buying a Chemtech putrifier is rarely a poor item build. The extra mana regen is also useful to have in order ot continually buff up your allies health bars.

In some situations, you may want to buy a Mikael's Blessing as your first legendary item. This item provides you with magic resistance which can be super useful versus a fed AP carry. It also provides you with the ability to cleanse most forms of CC from your carry while also providing them with some instant health in tricky teamfights. I’d want to buy this versus enemy team comps that have guaranteed or almost guaranteed forms of CC, such as a Lux bind, Morgana bind, Leona stun, or Twisted Fate gold card.

Other situational legendary items include: Staff of Flowing Water for AP casters and Ardent Censer for AD auto attackers.

Occasionally you can consider buying an armor item versus all AD teams. I personally like building a Frozen Heart on Nami as it provides her with mana, cooldown reduction, and a ton of armor at an extremely efficient price.

If you decided you wanted to go the Locket build and you already have a fully stacked Tear, converting into a Fimbulwinter isn’t a bad choice to become even more tankier. Having that larger amount of health makes it considerably more difficult for AOE burst champions to 100 to 0 you. If you survive the burst, you avoid the worst! Alternatively, if you don't need that additional shield and expect to get multiple heals in a teamfight, a Seraph's Embrace will provide you additional AP to make your Ebb and Flow extra effective
Other Items

Lastly, because you are a support player, it’s important that you maintain vision control throughout the game. Your last item will generally want to buy a Vigilant Wardstone at around Level 13. This item is super efficient and counts as a Legendary item to help synergize your stats with your Mythic item. Keep buying pink wards and Elixirs in late game until you have enough for an 1100 wardstone.
Nami’s runes are fairly flexible and depends on the player’s playstyle as well as the enemy composition. Your standard rune page will consist of the following:
  • Summon Aery: Aery is an amazing rune that provides both a little bit of damage and a little bit of shielding. Although the values on this rune seem small compared to the big shield provided by Guardian or the damage spike from Arcane Comet, do not underestimate this primary keystone. Over time these small values will add up and if you check in a post game lobby, you will have both mitigated and dealt a fair amount of damage compared to other more apparent runes.
  • Manaflow Band: Nami does extremely well with a big mana pool. Once fully stacked the mana regen will allow you to take extended teamfights past the early game allowing you to fully heal your teammates. Trading mana for health is an easier decision to make versus other enchanters who may have to think an extra second as to whether or not they have to shield. Shielding effects dissipate while additional health remains.
  • Transcendence: This rune scales well with all enchanters as your primary objective is to be spamming healing and buffing spells throughout teamfights.
  • Gathering Storm: This rune scales well as you gain a considerable amount of AP especially after 30 minutes. Most games in League of Legends (especially in lower elos) will last at least 30 minutes. Bigger heals means your team has more effective health to play with. The reason I like this rune over Scorch is because I don’t believe I can reasonably trade well enough in lane to snowball with Nami. If you can survive the early game with enchanters, you will simply outscale most other supports and ultimately win the late game with Gathering Storm.

As for your secondary tree, I am a big fan of the Resolve tree as I value defensive options when playing enchanters. Remember the key thing to playing enchanter supports is NOT TO DIE. Therefore, either my primary or secondary tree will contain Resolve runes. Your standard secondary rune page will consist of the following:
  • Bone Plating: I take this rune if I think I can be easily all in’d early by the enemy bot laner. If their ADC or support has good all in potential this will mitigate close to 100 damage early game from a bad trade, which is nearly 20% of your level 1 health! Additionally, I may also take this rune if the enemy has an assassin on their team who likely requires 3 attacks to burst me such as a Khazix or Rengar
  • Conditioning: I take this rune if the enemy bot lane has a lot of early poke, which means Bone Plating can be proc’d too easily. You will be a bit squishier in the early game, but past 12 minutes, when conditioning comes online, this rune will make you significantly tankier allowing you to not as easily succumb to death.
  • Revitalize: Extra healing, extra shielding. Since Nami is all about healing and shielding, I take this rune 99% of the time. In rare scenarios, I will opt to take Unflinching, which I explain in detail below.

Lastly, I will provide an explanation of situational keystone and secondary runes you can tinker with based on lane matchups.
  • Electrocute: Electrocute should only be taken if you are confident you will snowball the lane. You can take this keystone if you are with a Lucian duo who you KNOW will snowball. You can also take this rune versus enchanter supports who are paired with a weak early ADC. As long as your bot lane partner can proc it 3 times, you can take a gamble and try to snowball early versus a weak early matchup bot lane. If you can get an extra 2 -3 kills with this rune, 1000 extra gold in early game can balloon to 2 or 3k gold lead into mid game. Do note that this rune does fall off as it is much more difficult to proc Electrocute in late game while losing the constant shielding throughout the game.

    When taking Electrocute, you will want to take to Cheap Shot as it procs off your E. The other standard Domination tree runes include Eyeball Collection and Relentless Hunter for faster roam speeds across the map.
  • Guardian: Guardian is the other situational keystone you can consider taking for Nami. I rarely take this rune unless I’m versus a tanky all in matchup where I have a strong feeling that we will lose our lane matchup. You give up a lot of early lane power to play defensively. If you proc your Guardian rune in lane, you must play extremely safe since you no longer have shielding capabilities in your kit.
  • Cosmic Insight: There are some games where you know you will take Exhaust and build a Locket of the Iron Solari. In these specific scenarios I would consider taking Inspiration as a secondary tree to unlock Cosmic Insight. The additional +18 summoner spell haste works very well with Exhaust and the +10 item haste will make sure you can have more rotations for your Locket!
  • Unflinching: If the enemy team has a lot of CC, this rune is a great addition to select. I personally like it a lot especially against ranged CCs like Morgana, Ashe or Lux. This is because you will have time to run away after the CC is applied. Versus all in lanes however, you will probably be dead anyways even with unflinching, so I’ll likely just opt into the standard Font of Life rune.
Summoner Spells

80% of the time I will take Ignite and Flash. Ignite provides great early lane pressure to help you potentially snowball the lane.

The other 20% of the time I will take Exhaust and Flash. Exhaust is used for certain ADC matchups such as Draven, Tristana, or Kalista, who either have great early all in and/or auto attack based champions. I also will consider taking Exhaust versus a hyper carry Jungler reliant on auto attacks such as Master Yi.
General Playstyle
My biggest tip to improve with Nami (or any enchanter support) is DON’T DIE! Although this tip is true for any champion, staying alive as an enchanter support is extremely important. You scale very well and if you can get multiple rotations of spells from your kit in teamfights, it can be very difficult for the enemy team to end the teamfight. This means don’t overextend for vision and don’t position too aggressively. Now obviously if it’s a decision between you and your carry living in teamfights, you’ll want to sacrifice your life, but in the other 9 out of 10 scenarios, you’ll want to stay alive for as long as possible.

What I love about Nami is that she is a jack of all trades type of support. She has the ability to engage and disengage. She is very forgiving in solo queue since she can mitigate poke from random abilities. It’s very easy to buff up teammates movement speed, the most underrated stat in the game. She also is decent in laning phase and scales decently against most other supports.
Mana Management
I’m dedicating this section of the guide to mana management since it is extremely important on Nami to understand how to make sure you have enough mana to be most effective. You will need 2 of the following mana items or runes heading into the mid game: For most games you will simply have Manaflow Band and Bandleglass Mirror in your build path, so you don’t have to think too much about mana. However, in games where you decide to run Electrocute OR build a Locket of the Iron Solari, I would highly recommend sitting on a Tear of the Goddess to ensure your mana levels don’t drop too quickly.

There should RARELY ever be scenarios where you run Electrocute with no Manaflow Band AND decide to build a Locket. You will be SEVERELY hampered in mana.
If I am first pick, I often ban Blitzcrank. This champion is difficult to deal with for Nami because you can dodge 90% of hooks, but if you mis dodge one hook you are dead. You also don’t have the ability to block for your AD carry since you are such a squishy target. What makes Blitzcrank more difficult to deal with than Nautilus or Leona, is that Nautlius and Leona reposition themselves towards you and your carry, while Blitzcrank pulls YOU into his carry. With Natuilus and Leona you can at least hope Guardian procs and your ally can return enough damage while you back away from their ADC, but in the case of Blitzcrank you are simply too far from your carry for him to return damage thus resulting in a loss lane.

If I am not first pick and I see the enemy team has chosen Blitzcrank, Leona, or Nautilus, I generally decide to choose a backup support pick such as Maokai or Taric.

If I am not first pick and Nami is still a viable choice, I will then ban out champions that can negate my R easily or make my life impossible to peel or land a bubble. For example, I can ban out Ekko since he has a 30 second cooldown on his R and has extreme mobility with several dashes. I can ban out Yasuo since he has a 15 second cooldown on his windwall which easily negates my R and has extreme mobility with several dashes.
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I also stream League of Legends on Twitch @, so feel free to come by and hang with our community! We do viewer games on Sundays at 8PM EST and ranked solo queue on Fridays at 8PM EST!

If you ever have a question, feel free to e-mail me @

Have a great day!

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