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Nasus Build Guide by Carnarius_v2

[13.14] Carnarius - best nasus eu guide

[13.14] Carnarius - best nasus eu guide

Updated on August 12, 2023
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League of Legends Build Guide Author Carnarius_v2 Build Guide By Carnarius_v2 1675 111 2,914,373 Views 99 Comments
1675 111 2,914,373 Views 99 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author Carnarius_v2 Nasus Build Guide By Carnarius_v2 Updated on August 12, 2023
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Runes: Lethal Tempo

1 2 3
Lethal Tempo
Legend: Tenacity
Last Stand

Second Wind

+8 ability haste
+6 Armor
+15-140 HP (lvls 1-18)

What's up bois, Carnarius here. Many people asked me for a build guide so there it is ^^ I'll try to carefully explain my thought process and decision making, as well as summoner spells, itemization and anything else that you would need as a main.

Just to prove that (i think) i know what i'm talking about :P

I peaked over 900 lp back in season 5 (eune), almost 600 lp in season 9 (euw) and 460 lp in season 10 (euw) playing only. I'm pretty sure i'm the highest ranked main in europe for years now, so yes, my build works.
In this section i will explain rune setup that i personally use, but also other viable options that are used by high elo mains.


Unsealed Spellbook - There are many reasons why this rune is such a good option for . First of all, mains for many years tried to find out how to fit into our builds (because it was impossible before, both and were irreplaceable), now we finally can. allows us to run + , which gives us immense powerboost in lane and teamfights, while being able to tp back to lane with 1 time use. But that's only the beggining of how atrociously good this rune is.

With you can have different summoner spells in pretty much every fight. Your is down and enemy katarina is 12/0? Swap it for and shut her down in next team fight. Your is down and you are sitting at low hp under your tower? Swap it for / and bait your lane opponent to dive you. You also will be able to go for some backdoor action later in the game with , which normally you couldn't. You can refill your mana with . Possibilities are endless and that's why it's such a great choice, you will only have to think which summoner spell is going to be useful at the moment.

Another great advantage of is that the whole inspiration tree is great for , check it out.

Magical Footwear - Free boots that provide additional 10 movement speed? Yes please. This rune has very high gold value and definitely outperforms other options by a mile, especially that movement speed is important on our beloved dawg.

Biscuit Delivery - Laning phase is one of the most important aspects of the game for . This rune is perfect for making your laning phase much stronger, as you will have another source of sustain and mana sustain at the same time. They also provide maximum mana, which is amazing with 's high mana costs.

Cosmic Insight - Reworked in season 11, but still very strong. 15 summoner spell haste provides around 30 and 40 seconds reduction on ghost/flash respectively, which for a champion like , who relies on summoner spells a lot, is absolutely massive. Then we have 10 ability haste, which will decrease long cooldown of , and also . Overall very solid rune which will enable you to teamfight or 1v1 more often.

Approach Velocity - This is something you could use instead of if you prefer to have a movement speed boost whenever you wither someone, also a strong rune.


Fleet Footwork - To begin with, i don't think that any of precision tree keystones are particularly amazing on nasus, but in my opinion this is the best one. It provides some sustain in laning phase, decent amount of extra sustain in teamfights, as well as movement speed buff which will be useful both in laning phase and fights. It's not crazy, but you mostly want to use precision tree for minor runes, which are very powerful.


Lethal Tempo - Say whatever you want, no other keystone provides as much damage in the game as this. It easily outscales when it comes to damage and on top of that you get extra range at full stacks which is extremely valuable for . The general idea is you can use into hard match ups or when you are not confident you will survive, into everything else use this beast.

Triumph - Arguably the strongest minor rune in the game. Provides stupid amount of healing after getting kills/assists in teamfights, it will often save you from dying in situations where you would die otherwise and if that wasn't enough, it provides extra gold on kills and assists. Don't even think about taking anything else in that row.

Legend: Tenacity - No brainer here, use it even against teams with mediocre amount of cc. We don't need because doesn't really need attack speed and is really weak.

Last Stand - Again, no brainer, provides very solid amount of damage as you drop low on hp, other options in that row will simply provide less damage so there is no reason to bother with them.


Overgrowth - Very nice boost to maximum hp, enough said. It will provide around 200-300 hp late game, depending on how long your game will last for. Extra amount of hp itself isn't crazy, but it will boost the value of your shields from other items.

Second Wind - After heavy nerfs on other options in resolve tree (namely ) and potions, this is a good option to improve your survivability in laning phase.

Let's talk about other options:

Conqueror - I don't think it is good at all. Throughout the game it will provide similar or less healing compared to and extra damage it provides is barely visible. just doesn't scale well with flat ad, if you really want a damage keystone, i'd say use .

Phase rush - Better than the option above, but suffers from 2 problems. Except for the keystone, sorcery tree sucks tremendously hard for . Secondly, many times you'll find yourself in a situation where it's going to be useless, because in order to proc it you need to have enemy champions nearby.

Grasp of the undying - It's an undying topic why this rune is so popular indeed. I could talk about it for a long time, but in summary: the most important aspect of laning phase for is wave manipulation. When you fight your opponents, not only you lose hp (which makes it harder to freeze) but you aggro enemy minions (which makes it harder to freeze), but also you take damage from enemy minions (which, you guessed it). I can understand why this rune might be beloved in lower divisions, where people do not know how to trade and play in the laning phase, which effectively lets you outtrade them and stack bonus HP for free, but the higher you climb, the more useless this rune becomes. I maybe could recommend it to new players or top lane players in general, but the faster you stop using it the better.


Divine Sunderer - Our new "sheen" item. In my opinion, the strongest mythic for us by far, except for AD every stat on this item is perfect for us. What makes this item especially powerful is its scaling - it provides powerful on hit proc that together with its mythic bonus (armor and m pen) will shred through tanks and bruisers, but will also destroy squishy champions. Also gives you huge amount of extra lifesteal on proc. This item provides massive boost as soon as you complete it and scales incredibly well as the game progresses.

Gargoyle Stoneplate - The strongest tank item in the game. Massive scaling, scales off of your bonus hp and resistances ( says hello), ridiculous shield that will block 1k to 1.5k damage if used in the right time and extra ability haste to top all of that. Crazy high gold value for us, makes us really tanky as soon as we finish it against virtually any teamcomp.


Sterak's Gage - Unfortunately got nerfed pretty hard recently. Not core anymore, but still pretty good as a last or second to last item. It's probably even better when used with , due to extra AD that you get.

Fimbulwinter - Item introduced in season 12 and turns out it's a pretty good addition for us. The most important aspect of this item is how smooth the progression is - you build early which will completely solve your mana problems and the moment you finish your you will be usually sitting at around 300 stacks, which means it's perfect time to finish at that point. Flexibility is key, you don't have to finish it at all if enemy team requires you to build different items, just sit on in that case. Talking about the item itself for a second, it provides very good amount of health, 15 ah, pretty much infinite mana and a decent shield pretty much every time you use . Keep in mind the shield has 8 second cooldown, but you can also proc it with a red buff. My recommendation - in most cases i build after and , but that depends, sometimes you need more combat stats first. Keep in mind, you don't have to (and probably shouldn't) build this item in every game, it excels in games where you want to split push a lot (due to how fast we run out of mana).

Anathema's Chains - I put this item in situational items because in theory it shouldn't be built in every game (it excels in games when enemies have only 1-2 damage dealers or when someone is fed, which is very often), but it provides A LOT of stats for it's price and the active is amazing (keep in mind it doesn't work against true damage). It loses some efficiency against teams with a lot of damage dealers, so will be better in such situations, very strong item nevertheless. I recommend building it after , to boost the shield value by a lot.

Spirit Visage - Very solid magic resistance option, boosts your shields and heals (including life steal) by 25%, good stats, definitely strong against ap champs.

Thornmail - To be honest stats on this item are kinda underwhelming, so it should be finished as your last item, but the reason why i included it is - tool absolutely necessary to deal with high healing champions. Unfortunately we don't have a way of procing 60% debuff, so you just need to sit on and finish last.

Force of nature - Buffed really hard, very strong option against heavy ap team comps. The most important thing about is that magic penetration will do nothing about its passive - it will always reduce magic damage by 25%.

Randuin's omen - Amazing item vs crit champions, must buy if enemy team has an adc and additional crit user somewhere else, good stats.

Serylda's Grudge - the best damage item for us in the game, could be used as a last/second to last item if enemy team stacks a lot of armor.

Frozen Heart - you can use it against teams that heavily rely on attack speed and pretty much only in such situation. Other than that it's really bad, doesn't provide health and tank items without health aren't good nowadays, we have too much armor penetration and true damage in the game.


Hullbreaker - As deceiving as it might be, that item is not good on . It doesn't really matter if we destroy a turret with 5 or 6 q's ( does it very fast anyway), but if we decide to build that means we basically can't teamfight, since we have a wasted item slot. I'd say avoid it.

Dead Man's Plate - Unfortunately pretty much dead after being nerfed over and over again.

Tank Mythic line - Sadly these items look decent on paper ( being the best one), but they lack what provides - massive damage and life steal and without damage you are not a threat in 1v1's and teamfights.

Goredrinker - It's really hard to use its active properly as , melee champion without gap closers, a lot of gold on this item is just wasted for us.

Trinity Force - After getting buffed over and over again it's still much worse than , so i don't recommend touching it at all.

Other than that, other mythic items are not that good for us and when it comes to legendaries we want to get as much tankiness as possible, so i only covered tank items.
Early Game
In this section i'll try to explain which items and rune shards to take in the laning phase, how to play in laning phase and tips and tricks how to make it easier.

Allright, first of all as we all probably know, laning phase is very important for . My idea of how to play in laning phase is to play as safe as possible, make it as difficult as possible for enemy jungler to dive you and farm, simple enough. But what items and rune shards would be the best?

My strategy is to take ability haste shard (the best option by far, extra haste from lvl 1), resistance shard (self explanatory, we don't need adaptive damage) and scaling HP shard (which scales nicely with out items and it's better than resistance shard later in the game. Note: you can use double resistance shards as well). Now there are 3 types of champions that you will face: ad champions, ap champions that will mostly poke you with auto attacks early on and pure ap champs.

Against ad champions you will simply go for +4 potions and armor shard. That will provide you 55 armor at level 1 and good sustain, in most cases you will be able to survive long enough to get your + / and back to lane.

Against ap champions that will aa you a lot, , arguably , etc.) you want to take +4 potions and magic resistance shard. That will protect you from magic damage they will deal after getting higher levels, but also from auto attacks. Again, sustain from and 4 potions should be enough to get crucial items after first back.

Against pure ap champions you want to go for +1 potion. Better than , provides higher regeneration and much higher resell value. The best part about is that when you are missing 100 gold for an item when you go back, you can just sell 1 bead and still benefit from other 2.

So how to play? Your goal in laning phase in pretty much every match up (there are exceptions like darius or olaf) is to avoid any unnecessary deaths, farm as well as you can and after 6 minutes back to lane with + , maybe . At this point(if you have level 7) you outscale almost everyone, so wait for their mistake (like walking up to you a bit or using gap closer for no reason), use + and coin your +12 while listening to your opponent whining that is not balanced. After that you want to just keep on killing your opponent (remember about vision, it's not nice to build advantage just to lose it after 1 minute), or you can focus on taking plates. If you can take at least 4 plates before they fell off, you are probably going to be a monster. But let me tell you how to reach this point.

1. Against easy opponents - Majority of tanks ( , ), champions that scale well but are rather useless early on ( , ) and champions that don't have too much damage or don't harass you properly - just let them push a little bit early on, never hit minions. Just try to last hit at the last possible moment. If you see that your enemy is (for some strange reason) pushing really hard, you have to push as well, try to balance it out so that enemy has always extra 2-4 minions on their side. This way you will be able to freeze under tower, so it's going to be extremely hard for enemy jungler to gank you, which is the best case scenario.

After that observe what your opponent is doing, if he is just last hitting - do the same, if he is pushing - do the same. You just want to keep enemy minions near your tower, but outside of tower range, this way you will be able to freeze almost forever. It requires good amount of experience, but you have to learn how to freeze properly, it's going to make your life much much easier and you will be much stronger with very good stacks in most games.

2. Against strong opponents - champions that can harass you hard, but it's still possible to deal with them ( , , , ) - it will be extremely hard to freeze against these champions (if they play well), because you won't be able to sustain their damage - wave will eventually hit the turret and then bounce back. In this case you will have to learn how to slow push the wave back to your opponent's turret.

When your wave is pushing towards enemy, try to sit in your minions and slowly push towards enemy turret. In most cases enemy will be afraid to fight you in your wave, which means that slowly but surely you will be able to push it to the turret and that's the goal, because that's going to reset the wave. Make sure you have trinket in the bush, because this is when you are vulnerable to ganks. If you don't - screw it, you have to slow push anyway, it's not like you have a choice. There is a very good chance that you will be able to escape with + But if they are going to fight you - they will push the wave and you have potions + biscuits so you can take some damage. It's easily worth it to take 50% of your hp if the wave is going to push towards you again.

3. Against hard counters/S tier champions - champions that will take from 40-80% of your hp or kill you if you walk close to minions ( , , , , , ) - playing against those opponents is super fun i guess. And we are not talking about e max build or something like that, we go for pure q max .
So basically every single one of those match ups is different, but rule is the same - try to go for minions that are "free" (you won't take much harass for taking them because your lane bully is too far away), try to last hit with (this is where are super good, you won't run out of mana easily) and try to get cannons. Of course before getting close to cannon your opponent. If cannon is too far away just to try get it with . If you can do all of that without dying once - congratulations, you played your lane perfectly. You are going to outscale ranged lane bullies with and level 7, this is when you can run them down if they make a small mistake i described before. For melee champions i would wait till at least level 9 and decent amount of stacks.
Remember, not dying is really important here, otherwise they are going to snowball out of control and you will be back in the game after 20 minutes - if the game is going to last this long.
Mid/Late Game
I will put mid and late game in 1 section because there isn't too much to talk about. I'll describe here how to play when ahead, how to play when behind and how to close out games.

So if you did a good job in the laning phase, took some, or maybe even every plate, you are fed and you don't know what to do with your lead, hear me out.

If you and your team are ahead, just try to group with your team and focus on objectives. Take dragons, take herald, try to destroy some turrets, in other words - try to increase your lead. Grouping with the rest of your team is the safest way, as they are not going to die randomly and throw the lead. With good enough lead you can just force baron, enemies won't be able to contest if they are that behind and after that you can finish the game. Rule of thumb is - if you don't know how to end the game - go baron. Baron gives amazing pushing power, so it's going to be rather easy to take inhibs with it. Although you always have to react to your enemies picks, if they have crazy good wave clear ( , , ), it's probably better to split at this point. If you are ahead, enemies will need to send at least 3 ppl to stop you, so it's going to be very easy for the rest of your team to do the job.

If you are behind, that's a completely different story. In most cases, even if behind, you should be able to 1v1 most of the enemies (not gonna lie, as soon as you finish you are going to be strong) so it's perfect time to split. Try to stay in side lane for next few or several minutes and farm up. If your lane opponent is staying with you - that's perfect, he is not doing anything on the map. If he decides to leave side lane, you have to push hard and take towers, hoping that your team can disengage or somehow win 4v5. If you lost your lane hard, there is not much else you can do, it's better to just farm up in the side lane rather than being useless in teamfights. Eventually you will get stronger (2 items and 400-500 stacks) and this is when you can group.

If everyone in your team is behind try to keep good mental, every game is winnable. Try to hug inhibitor towers with your team and clear the waves. The longer you can survive, the higher your chances are that you will come back and win the game. Try to avoid fights unless they hard engage on you, 1 stupid mistake can cost your enemies 4k gold from shutdowns and it's going to be much easier after that.

What to do as in teamfights - in general it's pretty simple, if you are ahead just run down enemy damage dealers (or most dangerous threats), even if you are going to get kited (which is not easy at all vs ) you will still be able to tank at least 2-3 opponents, while the rest of your team deals with enemies.

If you are behind - peel for your damage dealers, you have and massive amount of damage with so you are never going to be useless. Use your on targets currently being under fire, it will dramatically lower their armor. Peel and play as a frontliner, it's going to pay off, this is the reason why we go build full tank after 1st item, to be useful even when behind.
So that's it guys. I hope i can help some of you with this build guide and with my experience. If you have any questions, feel free to ask, i'll try to answer them whenever i can. I will update this build guide for sure, as well as i'll add more sections and edit them, but main content is ready so i decided to publish it.

Also if you are looking for some high elo nasus action, feel free to check my stream
and my youtube channel
Or if you want to join the discussion, here is my Discord

Enjoy :>
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[13.14] Carnarius - best nasus eu guide

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