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Nidalee Build Guide by SenSen_LoL

Top [14.4] CHALLENGER EUW - In-depth TOPLANE Nidalee

Top [14.4] CHALLENGER EUW - In-depth TOPLANE Nidalee

Updated on March 5, 2024
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11 0 12,424 Views 1 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author SenSen_LoL Nidalee Build Guide By SenSen_LoL Updated on March 5, 2024
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Runes: Grasp

1 2
Resolve
Grasp of the Undying
Demolish
Bone Plating
Overgrowth

Precision
Presence of Mind
Last Stand
Bonus:

+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+65 Base Health

Spells:

1 2 3
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash

Flash

LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite

Ignite

Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
Extreme Major Even Minor Tiny
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None Low Ok Strong Ideal
Extreme Threats
Ideal Synergies
Synergies
Ideal Strong Ok Low None

Champion Build Guide

[14.4] CHALLENGER EUW - In-depth TOPLANE Nidalee

By SenSen_LoL
About me
Hi, I'm SenSen, and welcome to my Nidalee guide. I've been playing Nidalee since seasons 5-6, playing in top lane and jungle, reaching Masters tier consistently and peaking at Challenger with over 1k LP. Check my skills at https://www.op.gg/summoners/euw/TTV%20SenSenLoL-NIDA.

In this guide, I'll share strategies and builds I've developed, from AP Offtank to more. I'll reveal tactics that helped me win and dominate the toplane with Nidalee.

Join me on Twitch at twitch.tv/sensen_Lol to see these strategies live. Let's learn together and hopefully you'll be able to see what a Nidalee on toplane looks like. Dive in and let's start winning!
Why Nidalee Top ?
Why Nidalee Top Lane?

Why not ? I mean, aren't you tired of playing her in the jungle, hearing your laners cry while they die for the 10th time before the 10 minute mark ? Just kidding (or am I ?), here's a list of all the reasons why Nidalee should be played on toplane.
  • Versatility: Nidalee excels in both ranged and melee combat. She can poke from a distance and engage up close, offering a dynamic playstyle for the top lane.
  • Lane Bully: Her strong harass tools allow her to dominate the lane, pressure opponents, and control minion waves, making her a very strong pick (especially into most melee toplane champs).
  • Pressure Absorption: Nidalee is effective at drawing enemy attention while safely farming, helping her team by freeing up pressure from other parts of the map.
  • 1v2 Potential: She thrives in outnumbered fights, using her mobility and burst damage to turn the tide in challenging situations.
  • Teamfight Presence: Beyond laning, Nidalee becomes a flexible teamfighter, able to deal damage from afar or support her team with utility skills (traps, heals).
In conclusion, Nidalee is a top choice for the top lane due to her mix of range, melee capabilities, and adaptability in various game phases.
Pros & Cons
PROS
- Versatile (AP/AD builds)
- Lane dominance
- Strong snowballing
- Good sustain
- Consistent performance
- High mobility
Nidalee's top lane presence offers multiple strengths. She's versatile, switching between ranged and melee, and dominates her lane by pressuring opponents and winning trades. Her sustain from Primal Surge helps her stay in fights longer. Her mobility in Aspect Of The Cougar makes her a threat across the map. When played well, Nidalee can snowball her lead and control the game.
CONS
- Skill reliant / Niche
- Vulnerable early game
- Item reliant
- Struggles when behind
- Relies on skillshots
- Lacks hard CC
Playing Nidalee top has its drawbacks. She requires skill and is less effective for new players. Vulnerable early on, she can be easily punished by ganks. Her reliance on items means falling behind can greatly reduce her effectiveness. Managing her mana-intensive skills is crucial, and her impact in teamfights can be inconsistent, needing precise positioning and skill execution.
Runes

RESOLVE
For Nidalee top, Grasp of the Undying is ideal. It suits her playstyle well, allowing her to switch between ranged and melee forms and maximize Grasp's melee damage for effective trading and lane sustain.
Demolish is the preferred rune for Nidalee, enhancing her tower destruction ability in lane. It boosts her map pressure and objective control, making her an efficient split-pusher.
Bone Plating is best for early laning, reducing damage from initial bursts and giving Nidalee a defensive advantage in trades.
Overgrowth is the best choice for Nidalee in this tier, offering superior scaling and utility compared to Revitalize and Unflinching.
This setup is based on preference. Attack speed and adaptive damage are often the best choices.

PRECISION
Presence of Mind is essential for Nidalee, addressing her mana needs and enabling sustained lane presence and effectiveness in teamfights.
Last Stand complements Nidalee's aggressive trading and low health playstyle, boosting her damage output in crucial moments. Coup de Grace is a good alternative, but since you already have bonus damage on execute, it might be a bit of an overkill.
Summoner Spells
FLASH: Best summoner to have, allows for easy engage, disengage, outplays, etc.
IGNITE: Ignite serves as a great tool to add even more kill pressure during the laning phase. It combines well with Nidalee's execute damage on Takedown. Ignite is particularly strong against champions that run Conqueror, or any champion that has antiheal in their kit ( Warwick, Aatrox, etc.)
TELEPORT: Teleport is a good alternative to ignite on toplane, as it allows you to move on the map to help your team, catch waves faster, and is globally a great tool for consistency and providing for your team. It is particularly useful if your gameplan is splitpush-centric.
BARRIER: Barrier can be a good summoner spell choice, as it allows you to resist all-ins from champions such as Camille. It also allows for easier dives and baits, and thus can be a powerful spell to have.
AP Glasscannon build

WHEN TO BUILD ?


This build excels if the following conditions are here :
- Not too much AP dmg dealer in the team
- Atleast one tank / frontline champion in the team
- Enough lock / CC spells in your team

Important : This build is a bit weaker during laning phase than the AD and Offtank alternatives, but it has a better scaling. In my eyes, the superior scaling makes it the best build for toplane Nidalee at the moment

STARTER ITEMS



As for the other builds, this build starts with a Doran's Blade and a Health Potion, running a Grasp of the Undying keystone rune. The idea is the same in all of the different build variants: you want to win a battle of attrition against your opponent, constantly harassing him with powerful auto attacks, proccing your Grasp of the Undying from afar, running in and out of the bushes and when the ennemy's healthbar is low enough, go for the execute.

FIRST BACK

On the first back, you usually aim to have 900g to buy a Sheen, which will synergize with your Grasp of the Undying and make your harass even more dangerous for the ennemies.
As for the boots, I usually go for Ionian Boots of Lucidity, as they provide a good amount of stats for the price, and they bring the ability haste that will be very useful to spam your Primal Surge and out sustain your opponent.


FIRST ITEM

The first item you want to get is Lich Bane. Same idea, you want to increase your harass potential, while smoothly preparing your transition as a support/assassin/poke damage provider.

SECOND ITEM

The second item you want to get in most cases is Rabadon's Deathcap. Even though it is quite expensive (3600g), it synergizes very well with Lich Bane, offering you crazy kill potential and boosting your heals (from Primal Surge) by quite a large margin. And also, by building it as a second item, every single item that you build after that will have increased value, so you might aswell want to get it when you're at your strongest.

THIRD ITEM


The third item that you'll buy in most cases is Cryptbloom, as the ennemies will likely have bought a good amount of Magic resist to sustain your poke damage. Cryptbloom is a very good item on Nidalee, the stats are all we need and the passive effect is very useful when going in for a kill in teamfights, as it allows to heal everyone in a radius, further pushing your role of an assassin/support. Also, unless the ennemy team has really high magic resist, Cryptbloom will almost always outvalue Void Staff

OPTIONAL ITEMS


Good items to complete this build are :

Zhonya's Hourglass to get some tempo in fights, resist all ins, etc.


Banshee's Veil to absorb a key ability that could result in your death (Blitz hook, Nautilus, etc.) while providing a decent amount of magic resist and ability power.

Horizon Focus to add even more value to your Javelin Toss (giving vision in a radius when you hit an ennemy)

Shadowflame for the bonus damage on execute, it synergizes very well with your Takedown
AD Bruiser build

WHEN TO BUILD ?


This build excels if the following conditions are here :
- Not too much AD dmg dealers in the team
- Your gameplan is to skirmish / split push a lot
- Lane opponent is melee

This build is a lane-bully build, but it falls off pretty hard after 2 / 3 items. You will need to end the game quickly or you will end up handicapping your team (unless really ahead).

As for the other builds, this build starts with a Doran's Blade and a Health Potion, running a Grasp of the Undying keystone rune. The idea is the same in all of the different build variants: you want to win a battle of attrition against your opponent, constantly harassing him with powerful auto attacks, proccing your Grasp of the Undying from afar, running in and out of the bushes and when the ennemy's healthbar is low enough, go for the execute.

FIRST BACK

On the first back, you usually aim to have 900g to buy a Sheen, which will synergize with your Grasp of the Undying and make your harass even more dangerous for the ennemies.
As for the boots, you can go either for Ionian Boots of Lucidity, Plated Steelcaps if you need armor / auto attack resist, or Mercury's Treads if you need tenacity / magic resist.
If you're confident in your ability to snowball the game and you've already managed to get a lead before your first back, you can opt to buy a Dark Seal, as it is a very good snowball item for the price.

FIRST ITEM

The first item you want to get is Trinity Force. This item is a bit pricey, but rewards you with a great powerspike once you complete it, especially when proccing the sheen effect in melee form. You will easily be able to take down your opponents, while staying relatively safe thanks to the bonus hp and the bonus movespeed it gives.

SECOND ITEM

Depending on the state of the game, you second item can vary. You usually want to go with Sundered Sky to push a lead and keep on snowballing, as the passive proc will deal a lot of damage, especially when combined with you lvl 11 powerspike.
Frozen Heart is a good option if you need armor, or you're facing a lot of auto attackers
Kaenic Rookern is currently the best magic resist item option that you have, so buy it if in need of magic resist.

OPTIONAL ITEMS


Good items to complete this build are :
Hullbreaker is a good item if you plan on splitpushing, but keep in mind that you will already melt towers with the sheen effect of Trinity Force and Demolish, so you might aswell want to accumulate other useful stats.


Thornmail is a relatively good item into AD heavy comps.


Wit's End is a good item for tower destruction, and it provides some good stats (magic resist, attack speed, tenacity). It's buildable in very specific matchups ( Maokai for example)

Jak'Sho, The Protean provides great overall tankiness and will help you last longer in the teamfights.
Force of Nature is the second best magic resist item to get, and I especially enjoy the bonus movement speed you get once it's stacked, it can really create a difference when dealing with mages.
AP Offtank build
[TBD]
Secret Jutsus
Tips and tricks with video & explanation
[TBD]


Animation resets
- Auto Q
- Auto Heal
- Q W
- W R

Invisible Spear Trick

Heal Bait

Tips to land the spear in lane

Playing with the alcove

Playing with the bushes

Proccing melee effects from a distance

Jump cooldown reset using traps

Sneaky sheen
Early game
[TBD]
Mid game
[TBD]
Late game
[TBD]
Conclusion
[TBD]
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