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Nami Build Guide by Prenora

gold

AP Nami the queen of the deep In depth guide

By Prenora | Updated on December 8, 2018
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Runes:

1 2
Domination
Hail of Blades
Cheap Shot
Eyeball Collection
Relentless Hunter

Sorcery
Celerity
Scorch
Bonus:

+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+8 Magic Resist

Spells:

Spells
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash

Flash

LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite

Ignite

LeagueSpy Logo
Support Role
Ranked #2 in
Support Role
Win 53%
Get More Stats

Threats & Synergies

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

Introduction

Welcome to the season 9 guys and gals, Lets start strong with the new and improved AP Nami guide.
Those who don't know me, I'm Prenora from NA. I'm here to bring you fantastic ways you can use to climb the ranked ladder with off meta picks such as this one. If you like what you see, feel free to check out my other guides. Without further ado, lets get into AP Nami.
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Why Nami

You might be wondering, Prenora, aren't there other choices for mid lane that would be better than Nami?
well you might think that's the case but if you're looking for the single best early game trades, constant CC, and a strong team-fight presence that constantly shells out damage, you're not going to find another champion quite like Nami. You wont be able to find a champion that can win almost every mid lane match-up, start a team-fight and finish one single handedly. one who can roam and support every lane, and even when behind, can turn the tides of a game.
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Pros and Cons

Pros
+ Best early game trades
+ Strong self Peel
+ High utility
+ Multi Use Ultimate
+ Self sustain
+ Can support if behind
+ very mobile in lane

Cons
- Squishy
- Item reliant
- average scaling
- horrible wave clear
- team mates will flame you
- reliant on CC, morg and olaf will ruin you
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Abilities


Nami's Passive is Surging Tides, anytime Nami uses an ability on an ally or herself they are granted 60 movement speed (+20% AP) for 1.5 seconds

Surging Tides is what makes Nami so fun, the movement speed at level one is like having a pair of boots and then some. while Nami doesn't have an actual gap closer, if used correctly this passive constantly keeps you ahead of your enemies, use Surging Tides in the early game to dodge skill shots or to rush enemies, you can also use it to roam between lanes but late game is the best because it also scales with 20% of your ap, you'll have a massive movement speed boost to chase down or escape any enemy.


Nami's Q is Aqua Prison Nami sends forth a bubble to a target location stunning and knocking up enemies for 1.5 seconds.

Aqua Prison is an amazingly versatile ability, it scales to a fairly decent 50% ap ratio which may be a little lower then some mid laners but it's also a stun and a knockup so it cant be cleansed or lowered by tenacity, and unlike other midlaner stuns, it can hit multiple enemies, it's wide enough to hit all 5 enemies, though it takes some practice to get used to, because of the slow missile speed, you have to lead the bubble in front of your enemy, if done correctly though can make for some amazing plays. In lane use Aqua Prison to zone your enemies away from their CS, try to make sure when you land the bubble you follow up with your other abilities.


Nami's W is Ebb and Flow Nami sends out a bouncing wave of water to either heal an ally or damage an enemy and if used correctly can do both

Ebb and Flow is a really fun ability with multiple uses. while this ability seems pretty complicated basically the first bounce deals the most damage or provides the biggest heal, then reduces for each bounce after....in the early game.
Because of the damage reduction modifier, the more AP you have the lower the reduction goes until it actually becomes a bonus damage modifier. with around 700 AP the second bounce actually does about 35-40% more damage or healing than the first bounce
Ebb and Flow is what makes Nami the trade queen, no other champion can deal damage while healing themselves this much at level 2.

Always make sure you're in range of the bounce when you cast this ability on an enemy that way you take advantage of the high mana cost
don't get used to spamming this ability, its not a great poking tool but its a great trading tool, and late game, the single best ksing spell


Nami's best ability by far is Tidecaller's Blessing Nami empowers the next 3 auto attacks of either herself or an ally to deal bonus damage and slow the target.

Tidecaller's Blessing is the first skill I take in any situation, The damage you do at level one with one attack from this ability is about 80-90 depending on your masteries which is about the same damage as a normal skill shot but only costs 55 mana. Then you get 2 more shots. at level if you hit all three empowered autos you have the potential to do about 200 damage. Because of the slow it provides and the movement speed you get from your passive by self casting it, you can almost 100% land 2 if not 3 of the attacks at lvl 1 especially if you started boots.

Tidal
Nami's un-creatably titled R Tidal Wave summons a giant Tidal wave from her location , all enemies hit by it are knocked up and slowed by up to 70%
Tidal Wave provides Nami with even more team fight potential than she already has, it can be used to speed up your allies as it doubles the passive effect from Surging Tides it can be used to peel for allies in danger, or chase down enemies who are just out of reach. you can even just add it to your normal combo as it scales to a very decent 60% AP. This ability can literally turn the tides of a team fight...pun kind of intended
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Animation canceling and the Sheen

Nami is very good at spell weaving because of something called animation cancelling. you see, nearly all of nami's spells are cast in the beginning of the spells animation which is what the character does while casting the spell. Because of this you can cancel her animations early with attack moves or even her other spells, for instance
if I cast Ebb and Flow normal nami stops moving for a brief moment but if I cast Ebb and Flow then instantly self cast Tidecaller's Blessing I can interrupt the first animation and cast two spells in the time it takes to cast one
all of nami's spells except for her ultimate benefit from this as with her Tidal Wave we don't see the effect until the end of the animation

for Aqua Prison issue an attack move as soon as the bubble is in the air to cancel the animation
for Ebb and Flow as soon as you see the staff begin to glow you can issue an attack move
the best part of Tidecallers Blessing is that you can self cast while casting your attack move to cancel your animation while granting yourself your Surging Tides passive


because of animation canceling Nami is exceptional at spell weaving, which makes the Sheen the best choice of an early game item
it provides much needed mana, 10% CDR and additional damage on your next autoattack after using an ability...and yes Tidecaller's Blessing counts as an ability
using animation cancelling you can autoattack between spell casts to maximize damage very easily on nami as
Tidecaller's Blessing>AA Ebb and Flow >AA Aqua Prison >AA
deals much more damage in a much shorter amount of time then
Aqua Prison > Ebb and Flow> Tidecaller's Blessing >AA>AA>AA
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Items


start with the Stealth Ward trinket as it provides you with much needed vision to avoid early ganks

health pots provide you the early sustain you'll need to survive your lane and recover from any damage you've take

Doran's Ring is the normal starting item you'll want to take as it provides 60 health, 15 ability power and while they changed it, to only grant mana regen rather than mana on hit, it's still the best starting item to balance out your high mana costs

this is a great starting option for enemies who use a lot of skill shots Ahri Zed Orianna and basically doubles the effect from your passive at level one

*in addition to the Hail of Blades rune boots are my new favorite starting item,
it allows you to land all 3 shots of Tidecaller's Blessing and still allows you to kite back without taking any return damage at lvl 1 meaning about 40% of their hp bar right out the gate.
if you get the boots of speed you can afford to purchase the Refillable Potion while providing less health than the Health Potion it automatically refills every time you return to shop meaning this item is way more cost efficient.
or you could get 4 potions and make the most of your lane if you're going to be there for a while


because of the recent rune changes most laners are able to start with extra magic resist making these shoes a must to keep your damage relevant


This item is just an upgraded sheen and should be the first item you buy, Nami doesn't benefit that much from purchasing raw AP very early, the stats this provides make a great first item that synergizes very well with her kit, from the bonus movement speed, and the on hit effect to boost Tidecaller's Blessing, to the 80 AP and bonus mana, this item is just perfect.


Because of Nami's higher mana costs i've started picking up the Ludens as my second item, it gives you a massive 600 mana, 20% CDR and 90 AP, nami basically relies on the CDR and mana to keep her rotation going, but the 90 ap is very useful for keeping her damage relevant as well but the splash damage should now solve any waveclear problem you previously had.


Since the celerity changes Ive found getting the spellbinder as the third item very effective, now that you have ludens,you can stack spellbinder pretty easily, and with the passive movement speed combining with lich banes MS you are already super fast, but using the active effect together, you become a missle, nothing can chase you or escape you.


The Nashor's Tooth item has pretty dang good synergy with nami because of the on hit damage and the increased attack speed. Not only will this helps nami last hit much easier and faster, you'll notice you become much stickier with it, and your damage will be more consistent It also allows you to proc all 3 hits of Tidecaller's Blessing much faster so you can chain the slow and guarantee the damage, while also scaling off of the rest of your items into late game.


To really hit that power spike pick up the Rabadon's Deathcap it gives a huge ap boost that no other item can compete with, completing this item will turn you into a a real damage dealer

Honorable mentions


This item provides 15 flat magic pen which is on the low side but combined with sorcerers shoes becomes 30 which is pretty decent, mainly though you buy this if your enemies have a lot of healing abilities, IE soraka, Vlad, or just anyone buying a lot of lifesteal
greivous wounds from your spells will cut their healing by 50% turning a fed illoi into a little useless green sea monkey


This item is actually not horrible on nami, the problem is it's just expensive, it provides healing from using your spells, which means your ebb and flow will heal you...more, its hybrid damage so it boosts your AA's and your tidecaller's damage and it has a very handy active to deal a nice burst to start or finish your combo. But the price tag makes it very situational, should you find yourself dueling with the enemy fighters a lot, this is a great buy, it will help you kite when your spells are on CD, it will slow them down if they try to run, but in most other situations, this item just ends up taking a valuable slot, in return for a good active and, mediocre stats.
defensive options


If you're just straight steamrolling the enemy team, this is actually a great cost effective, the stacking AP can result in the highest given from a single item and at less than half stacks (10) you gain 10% movement speed, its very situational though, if you die 2 times you lose all of the benefits, and bring this item back to being worthless


This is another movement speed item to make you even faster, granting you 7% and the active is great for peeling yourself or catching enemies, or even scouting an area for you. I dont normally work this into the build though, since it only offers 70 ap, which is on the low side for a full item slot


This item is another one that actually works pretty well, you get 8% MS 8% increased healing, and on hit damage and atk speed which is exactly what we're going for, but the issue is, you don't get those bonuses if you heal yourself, so if you're alone the cost effectiveness goes down, and also it only grants 60 AP, so what you trade for a little better team presence is a very diminished solo experience.

Defensive options

if you find yourself just getting focused or burst down instantly in teamfights go ahead and grab Zhonya's Hourglass it provides decent AP but the stasis effect can really save you from a zed or fizz ult

if their team is loaded with CC Banshee's Veil is a good buy to avoid getting locked down and deleted before you can help your team *ehem* (malphite ult)

Bad choices
rylais crystal sceptor
your E wont proc it your bubble is a stun and your ultimate slows more than rylais ever will, making this item worthless on nami

you don't need to be tanky you need to scale into your passives even if you get this item your CS will be so low it will probably be the only item you do get

Void Satff
figuring you only scale to about 50% ap if your enemies are stacking enough MR to need the void staff dont worry about dealing damage anymore, just sit back and buff your allies, this item isnt worth the slot, stay quick, stay moving, and stay useful.


This item would be so great if it worked with Tidecaller's Blessing
but it doesnt meaning your only way to proc the double burn from its passive is to land a bubble which even end game you only get every 5 seconds, everything else is great, the extra hp, the bonus damage from staying in fights, and the anti tank burn, too bad we cant use it.
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laning phase and ability combos

at level one put a point in E and try to poke the enemy with your empowered autos your main goal is to kill 7 minions to hit level 2 before your enemy
when you hit level two, you have two paths, if your enemy has harass on you you'll want to take Ebb and Flow at level two your combo would be
Tidecaller's Blessing>AA> Ebb and Flow> AA remember when you self cast Tidecaller's Blessing you get movement speed from your passive and when you cast Ebb and Flow the stay in range of the bounce so it hurts the enemy and heals you while also speeding you up again, allowing you to proc your 2nd and 3rd empowered hit

your other option at level 2 is Aqua Prison if against melee champions that need to walk up to last hit get the bubble, when they walk up to last hit, throw your bubble on that minion to guarantee a hit, then follow up with Tidecaller's Blessing this deals slightly less damage but causes enemies to miss lots of cs

at level 3 you have your full kit so you can zone your enemies and harass them
your combo should be
Tidecaller's Blessing> AA (use the slow to hit) > Aqua Prison> empowered AA> Ebb and Flow >empowered AA if you do it in that order you will be able to hit all 3 empowered auto's before they have a chance to run

a basic trade combo would be Aqua Prison > Ebb and Flow hurting them and healing yourself at the same time the heal provides you Surging Tides to run before they can even hit back

before level 6 you'll want to harass your enemy as much as possible, stay healthy with Ebb and Flow and keep them from as much CS as possible

at level 6 you can either look to all in your opponent or go roam the map but either way your combo will look something like this
Tidecaller's Blessing> empowered AA > Tidal Wave>[Aqua prison]]> empowered AA X2> Ebb and Flow
or without the spell weaving
Tidal Wave> Aqua Prison> Ebb and Flow
once you survive the early game you'll want to look to pressure other lanes, because of your utility and your ultimate you provide incredible ganks (maybe I'll do my jungle nami guide later) pressure the map help your team

Remember while other champions get weaker as the fight goes on, Nami Gets Stronger, constantly healing herself and buffing herself while whittling down her enemies.

Mid- late game
you'll want to start the snowball rolling, be present for teamfights, you're not a split pusher you never will be, farm as much as you can for gold but mostly you'll want to hunt down the enemy ad carry and kill them, you can and will be able to duel many champions with your ability to kite and lock them down
you do much more damage then people think
when teamfights start empower your adc with Tidecaller's Blessing heal your carry with Ebb and Flow and knock everyone up with Tidal Wave penetrate the back line, your goal is to hit their adc with as many abilities as you can, you will hurt

the best part about nami is if you fall behind you're still a support, I've had games where Ive fed non stop but still turned the game around because the CC I provide, if worst comes to worst sit behind your team and just heal them, or use Tidal Wave to peel

one v one
after team fights nami is perfect for chasing stragglers the massive speed boost from Surging Tides allows you to chase enemies to the end of the map and slow them down with Tidecaller's Blessing to keep chasing.

with 700 AP end game you come out of the jungle like a missle, if you see the enemy over extended bot lane and all alone feel free to chase them down, use your Surging Tides passive to constantly dodge their skill shots or kite, kiting with nami is extremely easy due to her passive, if they chase you slow them until they have no choice but to run, then chase them.
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Summoner spells

Flash is the best all around summoner spell, use it to chase, escape, dodge skill shots or even reposition always get flash
Ignite is the second best spell for any mid laner carry
add it into your all in combo to make sure than your enemy cant survive even if they get out of your reach

other options
if against a champion with a strong all in Zed, Talon, Yasuo then you could consider running Exhaust to significantly lower their burst damage
if you're pretty sure you wont be able to kill your opponent or you think they will push you to your tower nonstop... taliah, ekko then you could run Teleport so you don't miss too much CS
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Tips and tricks

Aqua Prison is first and foremost a stun, meaning unlike other bindings or roots this stops all enemies dead in their tracks, mid jump or mid dash, anything, you can catch that pesky nidalee as she hops at you, or that Tristana as she goes to jump away
it's easiest to cast the bubble at the end of their dash range (which takes practice) to guarantee landing it

when you know an enemy is going to jump at you for instance Jax, or Akali you (with good timing) cast Aqua Prison at your own feet, or in akali's case slightly behind you, this stuns the enemy while providing you with Surging Tides to escape

Ebb and Flow can bounce up to 3 times, try to position yourself to take advantage of that, it can hit enemy, ally, enemy but they have to be different champions
or it can be self cast to heal you, enemy, then another ally

Ebb and Flow's bounce can be used to extend the range to much farther than normal almost double, if your ally is chasing an enemy that you cant reach, cast this on your ally and it will jump to the enemy, you can steal many a kill with this trick or at the very least it will speed them up to secure the kill

Tidecaller's Blessing's slow scales with 5% AP on top of the 35% slow at max rank, with enough ability power you can get this slow to ridiculous percentage for instance if you had 1000 AP that's 50% slow plus the 35% base slow meaning you'd have 3 85% 1 second slows on a 4 second cooldown. with enough AP you can essentially permaslow your enemies by 85% if you space out your AA's
Tidal Wave when cast, automatically provides nami with her own passive's double effect but the animation uses about half of the time, after casting Tidal Wave self cast Tidecaller's Blessing to catch up to and essentially ride your wave
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Closing

Alright guys and gals, that about wraps up my guide for AP Nami
I'm 100% serious about my guides and I don't consider them troll in any way, they're what got me to gold after all. If I left anything out feel free to leave a comment, I'd also be happy to answer any questions as well. I do check up pretty frequently.
I hope you guys learned something new, and I hope you give it a try, I promise you'll be surprised how good it is. Keep an eye out for my future guides if you want to learn some more ways to break the meta.
See you on the Rift
-Prenora
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