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Nocturne Build Guide by Grayified

Top Lane Nocturne | Embrace the darkness

Top Lane Nocturne | Embrace the darkness

Updated on August 24, 2021
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League of Legends Build Guide Author Grayified Build Guide By Grayified 90 8 133,117 Views 6 Comments
90 8 133,117 Views 6 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author Grayified Nocturne Build Guide By Grayified Updated on August 24, 2021
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Runes: Bruiser

1 2 3 4 5
Presence of Mind
Legend: Alacrity
Last Stand

Taste of Blood
Ultimate Hunter

+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+6 Armor


1 2 3 4
Standard Mid/Alt Top
LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite



Early Game
After all-in and/or first 3 waves

Threats & Synergies

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

Champion Build Guide

Lane Nocturne | Embrace the darkness

By Grayified
Nocturne, the Eternal Nightmate
Nocturne is a very versatile champion who can use many runes, build many different items and play many different roles.
Using this guide, you will be able to play Nocturne in lanes with very high efficiency, and you will be winning lots of games.
30/04/2021 - Guide created (Patch 11.9)
02/05/2021 - Updated - Changed build examples
20/05/2021 - Guide updated for new patch (11.10)
05/06/2021 - Build examples updated to reflect current meta

26/06/2021 - Updated to 11.13, new section for thoughts on Stridebreaker, lots of minor tweaks to the build, removal of mentions of Sanguine Blade and new alt. bruiser rune page

24/08/2021 - Attempt to revive the guide, updated prepared for 11.17
Which build do I recommend?
I recommend in nearly all circumstances that you go Bruiser or crit. Lethality and on-hit are fun builds, sure, but they are far too squishy, and you will get eradicated immediately when you build those. The sustain from these other builds means you still do a lot of damage, as well as being able to make it out of fights alive, rather than being a suicide bomber.

Although, Lethality and on-hit can be viable as if you do get a big enough lead, you can be extremely good and these builds will enable you to 1v9, although the same effect can be achieved through building bruiser or on-hit.
Pros and Cons

Nocturne's Positives

Semi-global dash with Paranoia
Extremely high burst damage
Very strong laning phase
Able to adapt to many situations
Very high chance of level 3 kill with Ignite
Strong sustain with both build, Umbra Blades and Shroud of Darkness

Nocturne's Negatives

Lacks mobility apart from Paranoia (RIP Stridebreaker dash)
Falls off slightly in late game
RIP Sanguine Blade
Easy to make mistakes while learning
Can be counter-picked somewhat easily
Some matchups may force you to dodge
Ahead of time, I'd like to apologise for the lack of coding from this point onwards. I intend to fix this later but I am having trouble figuring out how to use BBCode so for now this will just display the information with very basic coding. Sorry for any inconveniences this may cause.

All mythic items are explained in the notes above the items in the build section. This area will only be covering the legendary items.

Bruiser Legendary Items

Sterak's Gage is an extremely important item for bruiser nocturne, as it is very strong right now, it gives you very good sustain and gives you a lot of damage, it also pairs very well with your last stand.

Ravenous Hydra is a useful item due to the sustain and damage it gives, although I do not usually build it, I do not recommend against it and I see it as a useful item on Nocturne.

Titanic Hydra is very useful, especially when you combine it with Goredrinker or Stridebreaker and when you have Sterak's Gage. This will make you incredibly tanky and give you a large amount of damage too.

Death's Dance is a very strong defensive item, giving you resistance to physical damage, as well as general sustain through the healing, while also contributing to your AD stat. This item is very good on Nocturne and I strongly recommend buying it. Keep in mind though this item is not as effective against heavy magic teams, and in that case I would recommend against buying it.

Black Cleaver is a very solid item, it gives you health, AD, armor pen, all the useful stats for Nocturne.

Last Whisper-based items are very useful on Nocturne as they provide you with AD and armor pen, and the upgraded items also give attack speed, and in the case of Mortal Reminder you also get Grievous Wounds.

Chempunk Chainsword is a great item to buy when you don't need the armor pen of Mortal Reminder, it's also extremely gold efficient at only 2600G

Serpent's Fang is a wonderful item to build against enemies who are going to have shields as part of their kits, or be building items that give Lifeline, or something like Gargoyle Stoneplate.

Assassin Items

Serpent's Fang is really strong for the same reasons as mentioned in the Bruiser section.

The Collector is a very good item for snowballing, but if you're not ahead then it's probably a smart idea to not buy it.

Youmuu's Ghostblade is a staple item for Nocturne, as it gives you more mobility and chase potential, while also having strong thats

Serylda's Grudge is similar to Youmuu's Ghostblade in the way that it lets you chase better. It slows the enemy, rather than giving you mobility though which I see as not ideal, but the stats are better.

Edge of Night is very useful, especially with the shield, as it allows you to shield unpredictable CC that applies instantly like Thresh's Flay or Tristana's Buster Shot for example.

Guardian Angel is very useful into comps with a lot of burst, or when you're dying very early in teamfights.

Umbral Glaive is useful due to the vision it provides, as well as the stats, although I'd recommend buying another item over this and just getting Oracle Lens if you need to sweep for vision.

Crit Nocturne

YOU MUST BUY Infinity Edge ON CRIT Nocturne!! EVERY GAME YOU BUY THIS TO COMPLETE 60% CRIT! The DPS multiplication on this is so strong and it's a staple of playing crit nocturne.

Essence Reaver used to be a very strong item for Nocturne, although the passive on it doesn't give as much mana regen anymore, so I don't strongly recommend it although it is very useful.

Bloodthirster has it all. Life steal, damage, crit, it's an amazing item to buy. If you buy this along side Immortal Shieldbow, it really accentuates the "immortal", as you will be healing so much you'll be near impossible to kill.

The Collector is an odd item for Crit Nocturne, but it can work. More details on the item in the Lethality Nocturne items section.

Mortal Reminder is a great item for Nocturne, especially crit, as it gives you AD, attack speed, crit chance, movement speed AND grievous wounds. What's not to like about this item?

Lord Dominik's Regards is a very strong item due to the fact that it gives you AD, continues you on with getting full crit, and it gives you a whopping 35% armor penetration. It's also very good when you know you are going to have a health difference in fihgts, as health differences mean you do more damage with this item.

Mercurial Scimitar is a good item into enemy teams with heavy magic damage and/or heavy CC, as it has a QSS in it, although this is not my favourite item to build on Nocturne, sometimes it is necessary.

Navori Quickblades is not the most viable item for Nocturne but it is quite strong if you buy it after infinity edge, as it is an all-rounder in terms of stats and the ability haste is very useful.

On-Hit Items

Blade of the Ruined King is very good for Nocturne, as it empowers your chase potential with the slow, as well as the high DPS and healing it provides you, as well as the 10% current HP damage.

Wit's End is a very strong item, although due to the changes in 11.17, it's only viable during late game, as the early power has been significantly weakened. I do, however, strongly recommend buying this in the late game as the on-hit damage is not insignificant, and the stats it gives you are incredible.

Death's Dance is a very strong item due to how it works, and it's strengths are explained in the bruiser section.

Mercurial Scimitar is a strong item, it's strengths are showed in the Lethality section of the build, although I'd argue that it is stronger on on-hit Nocturne.

Sterak's Gage is explained in detail in the bruiser portion of the guide, and is really strong on this build.

Guardian Angel is yet another item that has been previously explained, and is very useful for giving you mroe sustain.

Mortal Reminder is a very good anti-heal item for this build.

Lord Dominik's Regards is a lot stronger on on-hit nocturne than other builds, as you can make use of this % armor pen very well.

Serylda's Grudge is useful in a way similar to Lord Dominik's due to the armor penetration it gives.

Edge of Night has been previously explained, in the Lethality portion of the build.

Black Cleaver has been explained previously
Early Game Strategy
The early game strategy for Nocturne in laning, is you want to go for an all-in level 3, and make use of your ignite. What you need to do, is for the first 3 waves, you want to freeze the waves, meaning that you only last hit the minions, and you let your opponent push the wave into you. Then, at level 3 (after the 3rd wave), the enemy will be at your side of the lane, then you run in and try to get an all-in kill, feel free to use both your summoner spells to get this kill. This will set you up early.
Nocturne isn't a champion with specific or set combos, but I can give you some guidance on what you can do.

Long range Paranoia
During your flight, you want to Q right before you land, making it so you don't have to go through the animation after you land, so that you can E immediately on landing, them you just mow them down with basic attacks.


During your Paranoia, while you're flying, you want to Q to the target you are NOT using your dash to, so that you can try to go for them in quick succession.

Facecheck Punish

If someone tries to facecheck a bush you're in, lead with your E and chase with auto attacks, hold your Q until they are feared, then use it and run them down.
League of Legends Build Guide Author Grayified
Grayified Nocturne Guide
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Lane Nocturne | Embrace the darkness

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