Nasus Build Guide by Underark
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Hey there! I've played Nasus since I started playing in December 2010 and I really fell out of love with him but recently (past 100 games) I have played him more and I just want to share the build I use and some tips! Nasus can be a beast of an AD Carry when played right, you have an unlimited damage NON ultimate ability, a powerful slow that cripples most anyone but Master Yi and TWO AoE dots that can decimate a team when used in quick succession. In this build by end game you will be able to crit 1k+ and nuke down most squishy and semi tanky opponents who choose to engage you, not only this but you will have a solid 3k tank hp that carries you through the game...Now that I've explained who Nasus is and why he is so awesome (totally not the voice) I think we can move onto the build aspect!
Now let me explain my reasoning, you can get a solid 20% armor penetration right off the bat and at 30 Q stacks on anyone with less than 1.5k hp you will crush them. Crit yellows just gives you that nice bit of "luck damage" before you get any crit strike items; AD blues is fairly self explanatory to be truthful, get more damage for early game last hitting and harass. Crit damage quints is a weird one but this ties into the luck damage. If you do crit you WILL crit for a truck and that's no contest. I've had 1.6k crits without these runes late game so imagine what its like WITH the runes!? I'm no expert but when I see an opportunity to make Nasus, an already powerful character, more powerful for the first 10 levels. I take it. Just trust me.
Items is my favourite part! So by now I think you understand that Nasus is a beast and if you don't have sufficient armor and tank you will crumble pretty quickly. As Nasus your aim is not to be a super fast 2.500 attack speed crit machine that walks around just 3 shotting people because you can do 7 attacks in a matter of 3 seconds. You are a sustained damage with a nuke that will almost 1 shot carries and bruisers if you make sure you get the kills early and mid game.
I get Sheen then a Zeal for trinity force, boots of speed also if I have money on my first back after sheen (mana crystal first), then I take any item from Hexdrinker to build it, generally the highest AD one. BF Sword and I also take a Vampiric Scepter before if I can afford it, Frozen Mallet is just for the HP so get it last and get Phage from it. Trinity Force and Frozen mallet provide you with a good sustain alongside the Bloodthirster to add to your natural lifesteal, You can hit for over 1k crit with Trinity Force proc and Infinity Edge with a nice slow and heal from your Frozen Mallet and Bloodthirster to mean you can get maybe 3-5 (yes a penta) kills before you die late game.
Pros / Cons
Farming is in your blood and learning to last hit with Nasus leaves a good impression with ALL champions.
Very item dependent and requires a good team to carry him until he can stand up for himself in mid game.
Can solo top or duo on bot and usually without a support!
Monster tower pusher
No team = no win.
You will get shouted at for KSing, just ignore it and move on.
Low survivability and late game he turns to a suicide killer where you rush in, nuke down their team and leave only to die soon after.
Shut down if you kill him a lot early game
This skill sequence (not sure if it works) is designed to make use of your E's resist reduction but focus on making that slow so potent that even some Master Yi's and Olafs have trouble standing up to it efficiently. If the guide doesn't work its probably around the slow to 5 area. Make sure it gets to 5 before Spirit fire and its k. Adjust it if you could get a kill with the slow at level 3 but make sure to follow the rest well. Many games with Nasus proved to show the best results when I used this build.
Creeping / Jungling
Here I will introduce you to the order of priority and when it changes. The Order of Priority is a set of rules I follow when playing Nasus to ensure the doomball will become. It goes like this:
Kills > Tower pushing > Jungling > Laning
Kills is self explanatory and Tower pushing is so you can win (duh), Jungling is a weird one, early game you never jungle because the lack of minions to stack your Q on although mid - late game you will be seen laning meaning that you can be ganked or even worse...lose a tower...but jungling allows for you to move on a natural route, get farmed up and also have the luxury of buffs often enough to make your teams AD carry and jungler be VERY upset with you. Aim to follow that rule. If you can land someone else a kill that's good too but don't be afraid to join in a fight even if you know your team will win, the assists add up!
PS. Never jungle at the start of a game. Bad boy for you to think of this!
When you aren't doing anything you should be farming in the jungle or on a lane, the first is preferred. Use your Q to last hit and W to land kills on caster minions. It will get you to 20k + gold quickly. I can have games of up to 300 minion kills and more simply by farming when I am not doing anything, follow the order of priority though and disobeying it will be a bad idea. I spent a month thinking of the order and how to be most effective with it!
I take Cleanse and Ignite/Teleport for the simple reason of you can backdoor like a monster and in a fight you will often get stunned but cleansing out of it is a simple and easy way to remove it and get back into the fight and hopefully win some kills. Ignite is situational if I feel like we dont have enough DPS or we don't have it at all. You could also take Cleanse, Ghost or Flash, Ignite for the hit and run style gameplay but I only advise that if you can forsee fights becoming a retreating battle and engagements extending over a good period of time so that if your cooldowns are on you can always escape.
Your team should be helping you follow the order of priority by setting up ganks, letting you farm and hopefully the game should turn out fine. Treat yourself like an AD carry up to mid game when you are a ganker and roamer until late game where you are a tanky bruiser dps who has the power to assassinate anyone who is smaller than you. Your team comp should fit around you and the AP Carry in this situation taking Nasus + a Bruiser or light carry with an AP in Mid and bot with your Ashe/Caitlyn with Taric or Janna or something like that; the setup means that top gets a fair amount of kills and denys the opponent while you get a farm and so does the AP carry and hopefully if bot is decent then you can get a decent amount of farm done, just enough to help carry the game with your support and lovely AD Carry.
Playing Nasus in ranked is difficult to say the least with many people taking high dps, bruisers and high dps AP carries. Try to play it safe early game if your up against a long range with a good support or two bruisers with gap closers. Chances are that Siphoning Strike will do just enough to knock them back for like...a minute. Until you get tri ganked by an Olaf, Mundo and Sion. At which point you decide to choose more wisely. Play it offensively in the medium game and aim to get fed and farmed for the late game of which the real fun starts. You should be a wrecking ball by the time anyone can stop you if you play it right. Move in the jungle and constantly clear it finishing buffs and lesser camps with your Q for the stacks. Late game is where your power is and the ability to do 200+ damage to a tower is exceptionally useful in a push and fight alike. The moment you hit 250 minion kills you are pretty much saturate if over half of those are your stacks and anywhere above that should only be for the sake of minion clearing, pushing and or gold farming. Most of all enjoy playing!
This build is fairly cookie cutter for a lot of Nasus players but here's the catch, it has some nice runes, a new strategy and the order of priority which I think exemplifies the whole REASON I play Nasus. I hope it educates on efficient farming and doing something constantly which is a challenge for even the best of players regardless of skill level I have seen many good players just dwindle in lane when they can't farm yet if you were to have gone back you could be back in the action gaining double the exp without the risk of dying and get stacks of your Q! I promise you this guide is sufficiently different to be a useful addition to any Nasus players library of builds to try.
Overall Nasus is a beast that can crush teams if you get very fed and also have the ability to lash out some dps on the weakest targets. Just try to follow the order of priority and get as many kills and creeps as you can early game. You are super reliant on it and you do need to farm its not just an addition. Its mandatory. Remember that this is just a staple for my playstyle and if you enjoy the run in, nuke. Few kills and leave then you probably will enjoy this. Just practice and utilise all of Nasus' skills and you should be fine!