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Nami Build Guide by TenshiQwQ

Support Afraid to get your feet wet? A detailed Season 9 Nami guide

Support Afraid to get your feet wet? A detailed Season 9 Nami guide

Updated on March 10, 2019
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3,693 Views 1 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author TenshiQwQ Nami Build Guide By TenshiQwQ Updated on March 10, 2019
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1 2
Summon Aery
Manaflow Band

Bone Plating

+8 ability haste
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+6 Armor


LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite


Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
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Extreme Threats
Ideal Synergies
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Champion Build Guide

Afraid to get your feet wet? A detailed Season 9 Nami guide

By TenshiQwQ
Hey guys,

I'm Tenshi (IGN: Tenshi QwQ, EUW), I'm a Support/ADC main. I'm playing League of Legends since Season 3 and want to share some knowledge I gained since then in this guide. This is my first guide here so any feedback on how I can improve it is welcome.

Nami is currently my favourite support champ thanks to her nice sustain, abilites to engage and disengage and protecting your carries.


+ Has a lot of utility in her kit
+ Good engage and disengage tools with Aqua Prison and Tidal Wave
+ Good sustain thanks to Ebb and Flow
+ Strong peel for her carries


- Squishy
- Really immobile except her passive Surging Tides
- Easy target for Assassins


Nami's passive gives her and her allies movement speed if they are targeted by one of her abilities. This makes it easier to stick to targets in fights and initiate teamfights using Tidal Wave to gain movement speed and slowing down enemies.
You can use this passive to engage or disengage fights and also for chasing down enemies. One thing I never see someone doing is speeding up their allies with Aqua Prison by throwing the bubble right onto them if they're chasing a low health target while your other abilties are still on cooldown. Teammates getting hit by the bubble also gain the movespeed buff so it's a viable option to use it for speeding them up if you're sure you won't need it otherwise.


Nami sends a bubble to the targeted location and stuns every target hit for 1.5 seconds.
This ability is a basic stun to catch targets off guard or CC enemies engaging on your carries. It's important to not waste this ability if the enemy team has hard engage champions so you're always able to CC them when they threaten your carries or already engaged on them.


Nami unleashes a stream of water onto a targeted champion that bounces back and forth between allies and enemies for up to 3 targets, healing allies and damaging enemies.
This ability is your main trading and sustain tool. It gives you long range damage and quite strong heals and the fact that it bounces between allies and enemies makes it a great ability to widen your health gap with the enemy botlane.


Nami empowers the next 3 basic attacks of an allied champion to apply a slow and extra magic damage.
This ability gives you or your carry a nice way of improving your trades even further. Usually I use this ability on my carry to apply my passive movement speed to them but you can also selfcast this to make sure you can slow the target you want to focus and make it easier to land your Aqua Prison.


Nami summons a Tidal Wave from her current location into the cursor's location, knocking up enemies hit and slowing them depending on the distance the wave travelled.
This ability is really versatile and can be used to engage and disengage fights from a long range. It's great to apply your passive Surging Tides to your allies and a massive knockup and slow on every enemy you hit with it. You can also use it to cut off escape routes of enemies trying to run away or chasing your carries.
You always want to use Summon Aery because of two simple reasons.
It gives you more damage in early and late game trades and also applies a shield to allies you heal with your Ebb and Flow and also every ally affected by your passive Surging Tides. It gives you an awesome synergy with Ardent Censer since applying your passive automatically applies the Summon Aery shield to apply it's buff.
The only other keystone option which is kinda viable in my opinion is Guardian against high damage botlanes to have another way of surviving damage, but I wouldn't recommend using it.

I usually use Manaflow Band here because the extra mana is really good to increase your sustain and ability to trade. Ebb and Flow at rank five costs 130 mana, so having the extra mana from this rune is definitely worth going for.
Nullifying Orb is the other option and can be pretty good depending on the enemy team. It increases your survivability especially in AP heavy botlanes with supports like Brand or Zyra.
I wouldn't recommend using Nimbus Cloak since youre stationary while casting your Tidal Wave so you can't really use the rune to it's full potential.

I always use Transcendence here because it allows you to hit your CDR cap earlier. This is really important to improve trades in laning phase and also in teamfights. On top of that, you're also getting extra AP from overcapping CDR.
I wouldn't recommend using Celerity since they changes this rune. I can see why people would consider it being good on Nami because of your passive but it's not as valuable as 10% CDR. Absolute Focus isn't horrible since you can stay above it's 70% health limit but again, the 10% CDR are too important.

I use Scorch here most of the time to improve early game trades. It gives you extra burn damage on abilities you cast on enemy champions on a pretty low cooldown. I'm not a big fan of Waterwalking on Nami because of her low mobility making it kinda dangerous to roam through river and makes it easy for enemies to catch you there if they're close. Gathering Storm is another viable option if you want to further increase your AP in later stages of the game.

This is a choice where most Nami players will disagree with me and tell me to choose Inspiration over Resolve but I'll explain why I prefer using it. Nami is pretty squishy in lane, getting extra survivability against high damage botlanes is a viable option. You can also use Second Wind here against poke heavy lanes to gain extra sustain. Another viable option here is Font of Life to increase the healing your teammates receive and also gain another way to apply Ardent Censer.

This is my main reason to choose the Resolve tree. You have an already strong heal in your kit and you can further improve it with the increased healing and shielding from support items + this rune.

If you decide to use the Inspiration tree instead of Resolve, this is another great way of getting extra sustain in lane and increasing your mana pool even further.

This is your second choice if you went into the Inspiration tree. Gaining more CDR and increasing your CDR cap are great and getting the extra CDR on Summoner Spells and items is also really nice to have. You could also choose Approach Velocity here to faster help your team in sticky situations but I wouldn't recommend it since the CDR of Cosmic Insight is too good to not have it.

Rune stats

In the first row I usually take CDR over Adaptive Force to hit the CDR cap even earlier and gain extra AP thanks to Transcendence later in the game. Adaptive Force is still a viable option but I prefer the CDR, this one is personal preference.

In the second row I always take Adaptive Force to gain a little more damage and healing in early trades. Armor or Magic Resist are also viable options if you need more survivability but I usually dont take it.

In the third row I usually take Armor to take less damage from the enemy ADC but Magic Resist against an AP Support is also viable. I usually dont take the extra HP because I value resistance in early game more than having 15 extra HP, it's still worth considering if you need some more HP in lategame since it scales up to 90.
There is not really a way around taking Flash on most champions and Nami is no expectation. You're an immobile champion so gaining a free blink to escape sticky situations or closing a gap is a given.

Since Ignite has an even shorter cooldown since patch 9.2 and Exhaust lost it's Attack Speed and resistance reduction long ago I usually prefer it in most matchups. The damage it deals and the Grievous Wounds it applies are too valuable for early laning to not take it over Exhaust.

I said I usually wouldn't take this summoner spell over Ignite but in certain high damage match ups or against Assassins it's still viable to take Exhaust to reduce their damage.
I start the Item section with Control Ward to make it clear that this item is really important. You should always have 1 or 2 of these with you to provide vision on key locations or deny vision at objectives like Baron Nashor . Especially in low elo you should also tell your teammates to buy these if they have spare money since I constantly see laners not even using their trinkets properly and never think of spending money on Vision. Good Vision is key to winning games, so make sure to provide as much as you can.

Usually I take Spellthief's Edge over Ancient Coin because of the extra damage it gives and the mana regen in early game. Ancient Coin is a decent option in a matchup where you feel like you have barely any opportunities to go for poke damage because they picked an aggressive or hardcounter lane. Having a support item is necessary since it provides you with Gold and Wards after upgrading it, because of that you want to upgrade this item as soon as possible. You want to swap to Oracle Lens at the point your support item upgrades into a Ward item.

One of your core items, it increases your healing and shielding, gives you HP, mana and health regen, basically all stats you want and need. It's active effect is awesome to help teammates over longer ranges, get the extra bit of HP difference in trades or heal poke damage you took before teamfights. It's overall a really good item and there is no way around it. You want to buy this first in most cases, if you win lane you could also consider Ardent Censer first.

Your second core item. It further improves your healing and shielding, gives you CDR, AP and mana regen and gives you and your carries bonus onhit damage and attack speed. Since Nami has a lot of ways to apply this buff to your carries you usually buy this as second item.

Another item I really like on Nami is Athene's Unholy Grail because of the extra healing you gain from damaging enemy champions. You also get some AP, more CDR, mana regen and most importantly, magic resist. Your only other option to get magic resist is either Mikael's Blessing, which is a situational item or Locket of the Iron Solari which doesn't scale that well on squishy supports anymore. On top of that, you gain extra AP depending on your mana regen which is also very welcome.

These boots are your best choice because it gives you the most movement speed to be at the places where you're needed and makes it easier for you to build vision control on the map. You can also consider Boots of Swiftness for the extra slow reduction but most of the times you should take Mobility Boots.

You can swap Athene's Unholy Grail for this item if the enemy team has a high amount of CC or abilities which can catch your carries easily and get them killed in no time, for example Rammus Frenzying Taunt or Lux Light Binding

I rarely buy this because it's shield scales on bonus HP but it's still a viable choice against AOE heavy teams. Getting armor and magic resist is always welcome and the active of this item can save your team from big AOE combos like Vel'Koz or Brand.

This item is very situational but sometimes great to have. If you get caught by Assassins or Flankers a lot this item can save your life which prevents your team from losing their peel and heal.
Stopwatch is an affordable item which gives you Zhonya's Hourglass active effect for one time so you can already take it in your runes if you know you will need it later on.

This item is an alternative to Zhonya's Hourglass since you get armor and HP and also it's passive which allows you to chose a carry which then will heal you when he damages enemies and you take some of the damage they would take. I know this effect is reduced for ranged champions but it doesn't make the item completely useless.

Depending on your matchup decide your playstyle for early game.

Easy matchups

If you're up against an easy matchup like Janna or Soraka you can always go for trades with them or even their ADC if they don't have high damage early games like Lucian or Draven. Usually you won't get outtraded thanks to the bounces of your Ebb and Flow because you always get the heal when it returns from them. If you decide to trade together with your carry most of the time it's more useful to selfcast your Ebb and Flow to make it bounce to an enemy and then back to your carry or vice versa to make the most use out of it's bounces. You can set up early kills by slowing enemies with Tidecaller's Blessing and then follow up with an easier to land Aqua Prison. Providing Vision is key in all matchups so you should always use your wards in the areas that are marked on the map I linked below, these will help you being aware of ganks and helps your team with Dragon control.

Even matchups

In harder matchups like Brand or Zyra you should always be aware of the cooldowns of their CC abilities. Never walk up to go for a trade if you risk being hit by a CC, it usually ends in a bad trade for you. Instead try to sustain the lane with your heals from Ebb and Flow and go for trades with your ADC or when their CC abilities are on Cooldown. Even then you risk losing the trade because of their higher damage output and potential damage by their ADC. If you don't walk into every ability they throw at you you should be able to play a good lane and maybe even catch kills with your Tidal Wave or your Junglers help.
As I said in the section above, warding during laning phase is key in every matchup so make sure to do so.

Hard matchups

You should play really careful in hard matchups like Leona or Alistar. Most of these champs have a strong all in early on and you're really squishy so make sure to stay out of their engage range during laning phase. It's important to NOT waste your Aqua Prison in these matchups because it's your only way of CCing their hard engage, without it you basically can't peel for your carry or yourself. If you stay at safe range and let your lane get pushed in you prevent being killed early on and enable your jungler to help you more easily. Try to push level 1 to not lose the level 2 advantage against strong lanes, this can easily lose you your lane aswell if the enemies know how to abuse it. (Reminder: You reach level 2 after 9 minions on duo lanes)
Same as in both sections above, vision is key so try to go for wards while enemies are in base or further away to ward safely.

Warding Locations

Below are 2 maps showing Warding Locations for early game depending if you're on the Blue or Red side of the map. The locations marked in RED are almost always necessary to be warded. The locations marked in BLUE are optional. The small bush in the river should get warded from your mid or jungle but even in Platinum elo this doesn't happen every game. The lane bushes are optional and usually depending on how high of a threat the enemy support is. The Tri bush for Red side and the bush below Ancient Krug on Blue side should be warded when you are behind and risk getting ganked and killed under your turret.

Warding Locations for Blue Side

Warding Locations for Red Side

During mid game you adapt your playstyle depending on if you win or lose your lane

If you win your lane:

Make sure you extend your vision control into the enemy jungle and around Dragon . Try taking the enemies turret by forcing them to base or even kill them. After taking down the outer Tower on bot lane and securing Vision around Dragon you want to push the wave in and rotate to midlane to take down the next turret on the map.

If you lose your lane:

Move your vision further towards your side of the map, especially if you lost your outer Tower. Keep up Dragon Vision since it's really easy to lose this objective if you fall behind. Make sure to not push out too far and get caught by the enemy team, you don't want to make it even harder to contest objectives and there is no point in giving unecessary kills. If the enemy team is overextending on botlane you can always ask your jungler for help and try to catch them in a 3v2.
In later phases of the game it's important to keep up good vision depending if youre ahead or behind. That basically means, don't run into the enemy jungle to ward if you're behind and don't ward your jungle if you're only fighting in their half of the map.
Adapt your vision depending on the state the game is in and make sure to secure Vision around important objectives like Dragon and Baron Nashor . Again, don't run into unwarded areas around these objectives if you're behind, there is a high possibility you will get caught and make it impossible to contest against their attempts of taking down these Objectives. Your carries can always buy Farsight Alteration to gain some vision over these objectives.

Your job in teamfights:

+ Peel for your carries, use your Aqua Prison and Tidal Wave to keep enemies away from them, heal them up with your Ebb and Flow and provide them with buffs thanks to your Ardent Censer and Tidecaller's Blessing

+ Pay attention to your active items and Summoner Spell cooldowns and use them if needed.

+ Positioning is key, make sure to pay attention for Flankers and Assassins trying to get you and your carries killed.

+ Disengage unfavourable fights, your ult Tidal Wave is a great tool to get out of situation where you don't want to fight.

+ Help engaging favourable fights, your ult Tidal Wave is also great to use opportunities to engage on enemies because of it's high range and the CC it applies.
Thank you very much for making it this far into my guide! as I said in my introduction, this is my first guide on Mobafire and I would love to read your guys feedback and what I can improve on it. I put a lot of work into this guide and I really hope it helps you improving on Nami or just supporting in general :)

If you want you can follow my stream on Twitch, I'm not streaming frequently but maybe you'll be lucky and catch one :)

Thank you very much :)
- Tenshi
League of Legends Build Guide Author TenshiQwQ
TenshiQwQ Nami Guide
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