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Nasus Build Guide by CaioOP1985

Nasus, God of the Late Game

By CaioOP1985 | Updated on December 1, 2018
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Choose Champion Build:

  • LoL Champion: Nasus
    Full AD Tank
  • LoL Champion: Nasus
    AP Mid Nasus
  • LoL Champion: Nasus
    Nasus in the jungle
  • LoL Champion: Nasus
    Lifesteal Nasus
  • LoL Champion: Nasus
    Critical Chance Nasus

Runes:

Resolve
Grasp of the Undying
Demolish
Second Wind
Revitalize

Inspiration
Time Warp Tonic
Biscuit Delivery
Bonus:

+1-10% CDR (lvls 1-18)
+6 Armor
+6 Armor

Spells:

LoL Summoner Spell: Flash

Flash

LoL Summoner Spell: Teleport

Teleport

LeagueSpy Logo
Top Lane
Ranked #15 in
Top Lane
Win 52%
Get More Stats

Threats & Synergies

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

Some advice before you begin

If you are a complete beginner in League of Legends or is taking your first steps in playing the champion this guide was made for, please read this part before diving ahead.

One thing I noticed about online games in general, not just LoL, is that sometimes it can be quite hard for someone to get invested into playing when they start. Before I fully started playing, I gave up numerous times because I had no idea about lanes, which champions are better suited for each, how runes and talents worked, what AP and AD were and many other things. That wasn't the problem, however, but how toxic some people can be when playing and how that took away my liking for this game.

You'll find these people a lot and if that takes away your desire to play LoL, don't do it. It's an amazing game and thankfully, most of the people I encountered on the Brazilian server were amazing to play with. At first I lost a lot and played dreadfully (I once tried going with Ashe on Top lane, just to give you some idea) and being called names and treated like **** made me give up on this game, even MOBAs in general.

What to do when that happens? Well my dear readers, just remember this little thing:

IT'S JUST A GAME!!!

Yeah, that's right, LoL is just a game. It doesn't show your worth. It doesn't define how good you are as a person. Oh, you lost a game? That's fine, everyone does it. You keep feeding Master Yi or (God bless you soul) Katarina? Every single player did that before you. You keep missing skilshots? I did it, the troll swearing at you did it and even his mother did it.

When you lose a game, give some honor to anyone you think deserved it (never to that troll), learn what you did wrong and try to improve on that. Go play against bots to learn about positioning, combos and whatever you want. Keep playing and ignore the trolls, even mute them if they are that annoying. Report the people not for playing bad, but for being this kind of people who call others "trash" and whatnot. And never be that piece of ****, ever!

If someone doesn't know what he or she is doing, offer advice if you can. You were once clueless about things too. Be polite with your team and offer help to them however you can. If you are losing, keep you cool and try to lift the spirits of your team. You'll see how much that can affect the game.

And, obviously, win with dignity. Don't be a douche and make the other team feel like trash. When you lose, don't be salty at them for winning the game as well. The main reason you should be playing this great game is to have fun, not demean others.

If everyone did these basic things, the community would be a lot better. So just give it a try. You'll like it, I promise you.
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Introduction

Hello everyone, I'm Caio and this is my Nasus guide. Truth be told, I haven't been playing League for that long, started in S7 around April, but from the beginning, I've been using this champion as I absolutely adore him. Nasus is very weak at the beginning, but as time goes on he becomes a monstrosity capable of soloing anyone on the enemy team. He's like a time bomb, who needs to be defused fast before it explodes right onto your face.

So, why should you play Nasus? Well, he is actually a pretty simple champion to play, with no overly complicated mechanics like Fiora or Ivern, meaning he does really well in lower elos. And there's also the fact that there are few things in LoL more satisfying than seeing the HP of the enemy ADC disappearing from a single hit (trust me on that one). Without further ado, let's get started on the guide.
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Pros / Cons

Pros


+ Late-game monster
+ One of the strongest Slows of the game with Wither
+ Can go full tank and still deals tons of damage
+ Great sustain
+ Insane split-push
+ Recovers well if behind

As I said before, Nasus is weak at first but get's stronger and stronger the longer the match goes. It comes to a point where your passive together with your armor will keep you alive for most encounters and during team fights, Nasus can simply go to the carries and either slow them down to be executed or simply kill them by himself.
Cons


- Dependant on stacking his Q
- Weak champion during Early Game
- Weak to CC
- Can be countered hard
- No escapes
- Has no real teamfight potential

Now, while he is pretty strong after a while, you first have to get to that point and that can be a little difficult at first. Champions like Darius, Fiora and Renekton will give you one hell of a hard time to farm your Q. Also, anyone with a lot of CC, like Ornn will also make things harder for you. Add the fact he has no real way to escape or hard CC when focused and you will have a hard time.
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Abilities Description

Soul Eater

  • Range: None
  • Cooldown: None
  • Cost: None

Soul Eater is a very simple yet effective passive: Nasus receives 12/18/24% of lifesteal at level 1/7/13 respectively. This is your primary sustain in lane, allowing you to go without potions for a very long time, mostly minding your mana. The nice thing about this passive is the fact you can keep trading with your opponent and after a few Qs into minions, you'll be back to form. It's not so effective earlier, but after you get some stacks on your Q, like 300 or 400, you'll be healing large amounts with every Q. This passive can be the difference between life and death with Nasus, as many people seem to forget it exists (with those that do investing in early Grievous Wounds).


Siphoning Strike

  • Range: 150
  • Cooldown: 8/7/6/5/4
  • Cost: 20

This ability is the bread and butter, the knife, the plate where the bread rests, pretty much the reason why Nasus is played at all. It basically empowers your next AA, dealing 30/50/70/90/110(+100% AD)(+stacks) as physical damage. Now, the good thing about this is that every time you kill a small enemy like a normal minions and jungle monsters, you'll permanently get 3 stacks to it, meaning it deals 3 extra AD. If you kill a larger enemy, such as a champion, cannon minion, large monster or epic monster, you'll receive 6 stacks instead. Now, something that not many people know at first is that you receive those juicy stacks when you kill anything with your Q: enemy wards, summoned pets ( Yorick's ghouls for example) and so on. You can use that to your advantage, even if it seems unimportant.
Oh, and this ability also resets the AA timer, meaning you can AA and then immediately follow with a Q. Nasus is a champion about patience and self-control: keep stacking and safe and even if you got behind earlier you'll still be a monster, because Nasus is a ticking time bomb, one the enemy team don't want to see blow.
How to know if you are doing well at stacking? Well, if by the 10 minutes mark you have around 100-150 stacks, you are doing nicely, but it is possible to have more if you know your game well. By 20 mins you should have at least 250-300 stacks on it and you should never stop stacking, even after getting all six items. The day you see the 1000 stacks on your Q for the first time is a glorious one, trust me.


Wither

  • Range: 600
  • Cooldown: 15/14/13/12/11
  • Cost: 80

Oh boy, this is the second reason why Nasus is such a fun champion to play: Wither, or how I like to call it "you won't be getting away and you know it". It's a point and click ability that slows the enemy champion for 5 seconds by 35% at the start of it and scalating to 47/59/71/83/95% over the duration. It also happens to slow the attack speed of the target by half of its effect, meaning that they will have 23,5/29,5/35,5/41,5/47,5% less attack speed by the end of it, which seriously ****s with champions like Yasuo and ADCs. Another cool factor is that since you'll always look to get to 45% CDR to stack faster, Wither will end up with a 6 seconds CD and an effect of 5 seconds. In layman's terms: the target will have 1 second to get out of the very expressive reach of the ability before a new slow. And with all the extra MS and extra slows you are adviced to get on this dogo, well... let's just say they won't escape in 1 second from you. And before I forget, don't think of this only as an offensive tool, it can be used for defense as well, even more in the early game when you are extremely weak. In a gank, wait for the jungle to waste his engage and then use W on him while running away. If you have Flash it's even better, but the slow will allow you to cover some distance and often save your hide.


Spirit Fire

  • Range: 650
  • Cooldown: 12
  • Cost: 70/85/100/115/130

I always find funny that the other abilities have a fixed cost and variable CD (aside from the Ultimate in that one) while this one is the opposite. Well, let's now talk about the ability most forgotten while people play Nasus, shall we? This ability creates a generously large area, dealing 55/95/135/175/215(+60% Ability Power) magic damage when it appears to every single enemy inside. Then for the next 5 seconds it deals 11/19/27/35/43 (+12% Ability Power) magic damage every second enemies remain inside. It also happens to reduce their armor by 15/20/25/30/35% while on it, meaning your Q will hurt a hell of a lot more while they are there. This my friends is what makes AP Nasus a possibility, because not just it has a nice base damage, but it also has a pretty tasty AP scaling. Think of this: with 500 AP (not so hard to reach with the right build) every hit of Spirit Fire deals 515 magic damage and up to 515 extra damage if they remain inside for the full duration, not forgetting you'll probably be hammering their ***es with Qs. Add the fact that with 45% CDR, you can use it every 7 seconds. Even without no AP at all, it still hurts a bit and makes your Q hurt even more so never forget about it. The only real issue with it is that if you are not careful your mana will drain really fast by constantly spamming this thing, at least until you get yourself some mana. And lastly, despite technically being a skillshot, not just the range is pretty neat but the area of effect is pretty large as well, meaning it's actually harder not to hit enemy champions.


Fury of the Sands

  • Range: 20
  • Cooldown: 120
  • Cost: 100

Now this one, this Ultimate may be one of the simplest ones in the game, with no complicated mechanic behind it (I'm looking at you Yasuo) and you can learn how to use it fairly well from the first time you cast it. It lasts for 15 seconds and will increase your Health by 300/450/600 and your Armor and Magic Resistance by 15/35/55. While the extra health remains the same for the entire duration, each second grants 1/2/3 extra Armor and Magic Resistance, meaning you'll have a bonus of 30/65/100 by the end of it. Oh, and let's not forget the second most interesting part: it creates an area around you where enemies take 3/4/5(+1% Ability Power)% of their maximum health as magic damage (capped at 240, which is an insane amount of damage you can take EVERY SINGLE SECOND for 15 SECONDS), making that AP build even more interesting don't you think? Since this is Nasus we are talking about, of course this thing also benefits his Q: Siphoning Strike's CD is reduced by 50% and you get increased AA range for the entire duration of the ultimate. Translation: you can use your Q every 2 seconds while in Ultimate form, all while slowing them down, taking away their armor, dealing percentage magic damage and also getting harder and harder to kill. See why Nasus is such a late game monster yet?
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Ability Order

Honestly, it will highly depend on what you want to do with Nasus and what kind of build you want to have. Will you build tank, AP or bruiser? Who is your lane opponent? What kind of team composition you are facing and what is you team's? There are many variables involved here, so I don't think I can give you the perfect order to be used every single game. You are too weak for a good portion of the early and mid game, so you must know more or less what order to choose. Here are some general ideas for you.

> > >
So, always place the highest priority over your Ultimate and pick it every time it's possible, at levels 6/11/16. This is a valid advice for every single champion in the game, not just Nasus, and regardless of build since the Ult is often the difference between victory and defeat. Now, for the rest this is the most standard route you can take: Q, W, E because... well, this is a good path for a tank Nasus, because since you won't need much damage early on you won't be needing the one provided by your E that much. With Q picked first you'll get greater sustain in lane and stack faster (in theory at least) and W second so that you can have some defenses against ganks, with Nasus being pretty immobile and all.

> > >
This one is my personal favorite to use, as you get some nice poking from the E, with its great base damage and scaling, and is very nice to go with AP builds as you'll be dealing a ton of damage every time you hit. Q second because... well, stacks duh. On a side note, always pick Q at level 1, since you can do some stacking before getting E at level 2. Now, some may say this is less efficient to farm your stacks, but honestly? Until you get to 45% CDR and some items, farming your Q is pretty hard and you'll only do it really fast and well after 15-20 minutes. Before that I often found that I did very poorly when compared to the same period after the initial one. So, maxing your Q or E first is pretty much left to your preferences.
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Runes - Resolve

Grasp of the Undying

Dealing or receiving damage in the last 2 seconds generates one stack every second. At 4 stacks, your next basic attack, within 6 seconds, against an enemy champion deals 4% of your maximum health bonus magic damage, restores 2% of your maximum health, and permanently grants 5 bonus health. The empowered attack duration refreshes whenever you deal or receive damage. Of the three main runes of Resolve, this one is the most suited for Nasus since not just it empowers one AA with a nice chunk of damage, it also heals some or your health back, increasing the maximum after each proc. You can't Aftershock since you don't have anything that immobilizes enemies and Guardian is better suited to supports since you need to constantly have another allied champion near you for it to be effective.

Demolish

You generate stacks on enemy structures within 600 units, up to 6 after 3 seconds. Your next attack versus a structure with 6 stacks deals 100 (+ 30% of your maximum health) bonus physical damage. Demolish will only go on cooldown upon triggering the damage. As Nasus, your role isn't engaging in teamfights, despite you being not so bad at it, but rather melting down the enemy towers and no other rune allows you to do that job better than Demolish. With the buffs to it in patch 8.23, you'll be smacking the hell out of towers in seconds, even with the early plating on them. Both Font of Life and Shield Bash are pretty much useless on Nasus, since you can't create a shield by yourself or benefit from the extra healing.

Bone Plating

After taking damage from an enemy champion, for 1.5 seconds, the next 3 spells or attacks you receive from the same enemy champion deal 25 − 50 (based on level) less damage. The options here are all good, but overall Bone Plating is my favorite one, since it gives you some extra survivability at the earlier stages of the game by reducing the dameg you take during an engagement. Conditioning is also pretty decent if you want to have that little extra tankiness later on. Second Wind is also good for the early parts, but gets useless pretty fast and should be taken when facing a difficult laning phase, preferably with Doran's Shield, such as against Teemo or Riven.

Revitalize

Heals and shields are 5% stronger and increased by an additional 10% on low health targets. After patch 8.4, this one became slightly harder to decide, since Unflinching replaced Second Wind in this row. Overall I think Revitalize is a better option since it will make your already great healing from Soul Eater even greater, specially when you are getting low on health. Overgrowth is also powerful since it complements Nasus's late game strength and Unflinching grants extra tenacity, which is always useful at any part of the game, but should be picked when facing a heavy CC enemy team.
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Runes - Sorcery

Arcane Comet

Damaging an enemy champion with an ability hurls an Arcane Comet at their current location, dealing 30 − 100 (based on level) (+ 35% bonus AD) (+ 20% AP) Adaptive damage after a brief delay. If you want to go the Sorcery path with Nasus, I recommend picking this one to give you some extra damage when using your Spirit Fire and force the enemy to leave lane so you can farm in peace. Summon Aery is the second best, since every time it procs is a guaranteed hit, but you can't use it on allies, so it loses some of its efficiency. Phase Rush is also a viable option, since you can get away from bad trades or stick to your target a lot easier.

Nimbus Cloak

Casting your ultimate ability, after a 1.5-second delay, grants Ghost ghosting and 100 bonus movement speed for 2.5 seconds. The movement speed decays over the last 1 second. Cooldown: 60 seconds (without CDR). Even after the change in patch 8.7, Manaflow Band is still a very good rune on Nasus, specially AP Nasus, but out of the three options, Nimbus Cloak is now the best one. It grants you a generous boost to speed when using your Fury of the Sands, enabling you to catch up to enemies or run away more easily. Nullifying Orb is also a good option when going against a heavy AP team.

Transcendence

Gain 10% Cooldown reduction icon cooldown reduction at level 10. Additionally, you gain either 2 Ability Power or 1.2 bonus Attack Damage (Adaptive) for every 1% Cooldown reduction in excess of the cap. Having 10% free CDR at level 10 is great already, but giving you more AD or AP when you go over the maximum 45% Yeah, this one is neat, but Celerity is a strong contender, because we all love some extra MS. As for Absolute Focus... trust me, in a tf you'll be bellow 70% quite easily, making it really unstable.

Gathering Storm

Every 10 minutes, gain (1 per 10 Minutes) stacks of Gathering Storm. Each stack grants 8 ability power or 4.8 attack damage (Adaptive).
This stacks with no upper limit, for a total of 8 / 24 / 48 / 80 / 120 / ∞ AP or 5 / 14 / 29 / 48 / 72 / ∞ AD at 10 / 20 / 30 / 40 / 50 / ∞ minutes.
Some people say it's a bad rune. Some people are morons, because more damage the longer the game goes? On a late-game monster like Nasus? Sign me on! On an AP Nasus, maybe Scorch will be better for the extra early damage. Waterwalking is... situational at best. Only pick it if you are crossing the river a lot, like when playing jungle.
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Runes - Inspiration

Kleptomancy

After using an ability, your next two basic attacks within 10 seconds are enchanted. If the attack is used against a champion, you gain 5 Gold. Occasionally, you will gain a consumable item instead. If you gain a consumable item while your inventory is full, the consumable will instead be consumed.


Okay, so instead of using the same pattern for the other runes I'll be making a longer text, since not just Kleptomancy is somewhat complicated, but is possibly one of the best and strongest ways to play Nasus. In short, the next two hits on an enemy champion with an AA after using an ability, you get 5 gold and possibly a consumable item. that can also be sold (most of them). Now, why don't all champions use this rune? Well, because you need to AA a champion to have the extra gold and there are champions where that can be quite difficult. Now, some champions have something that gives them a massive advantage when using Kleptomancy: they empower an AA and get it by simply using the ability on a champion. Think of Parrrley, Mystic Shot and Steel Tempest to name just a few. Of course, Nasus also have such a great ability: Siphoning Strike. That makes it easier for him to proc the extra gold when compared to a champion that doesn't have such an ability.

There's another reason why not every champion should pick it up: taking this rune means you simply give up on laning phase and will focus on getting your items instead. This isn't an issue for champions that are weaker on the early game, like Nasus, Gangplank and Ezreal, and get power-spikes when buying a few items. In fact, getting more gold means getting that power-spike earlier and thus diminishing the gap between being unable to properly fight back to being a monstrosity. And that's exactly why this rune is so good with Nasus, who depends on items and can easily proc the rune.

As for the consumables, here are all of the possible ones you can get, plus their effects. I cannot inform you what are the chances of getting them or each item's separate numbers, since they weren't released. What I do know is that the drop rate is reduced in the first 15 minutes of the game. Also, if you have all item slots filled, the item will be consumed

Regenerates 3.33 mana every half-second for 15 seconds, restoring a total of 100 mana. 12 Gold

Restores 50 health over 5 seconds.
16 Gold

Grants between 40 to 110 gold. Averages at 75.
Now this one is neat. If you go to the shop and sell it, you get a fixed 65 gold. If you consume it, you can get 8 possible values: 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100, 110. That means you have a 62,5% chance of earning more gold by using it rather than selling.

Places a Warding Totem that reveals the surrounding area for 60 - 120 (based on level) seconds. 24 Gold

10 - 27 (based on level) ability power or 6 - 16.2 (based on level) attack damage (Adaptive) for 45 seconds. 32 Gold

Restores 15% of your missing health and 15% of your missing mana over 15 seconds. If you have Biscuit Delivery, it also permanently increases your mana by 40.

Reveals an area up to 2000 units away for 2 seconds. Enemy champions hit will be revealed for 5 seconds. This does not affect stealth champions. Also places a visible Farsight Ward at the target location that lasts indefinitely. 24 Gold

Grants True Sight as well as the ability to detect hidden units within a 500-unit detection radius for 15 - 40 (based on level) seconds. The detection will ignore terrain and brush. 24 Gold

Places a visible Control Ward icon Control Ward at the target location (600 range), which grants vision over the surrounding area as well as: Revealing and disabling enemy wards; Revealing enemy stealth traps; Revealing Camouflaged champions. 30 Gold

Grants 150 bonus health, 25% Tenacity, increased champion size, and PATH OF IRON for 45 - 90 (based on level) seconds. 32 Gold

Grants 25 ability power, 7.5 flat mana regeneration, and SORCERY for 45 - 90 (based on level) seconds. 32 Gold

Grants 15 bonus attack damage and BLOODLUST for 45 - 90 (based on level) seconds. 32 Gold

Grants +1 skill point. Cannot go past 18 Skill Points.

Magical Footwear

At 10 minutes (-30 seconds per Takedown), you gain Slightly Magical Boots for free. Slightly Magical Boots are identical and can be upgraded like Boots of Speed. If the inventory is full while receiving the boots, they will appear as soon as a place in the inventory is freed. Additionally, your boots gain 10 bonus movement speed. However, Boots of Speed are disabled and you cannot purchase tier-2 boots prior to obtaining Slightly Magical Boots. Finally finished Kleptomancy! Jesus, that was long. Anyway, this rune here will give you free boots, saving you 300 gold, at 10 minutes, with 30 sec decreased for each kill or assist you get before that. Only issue is that you won't be able to get boots before this thing, but the upgraded version will have the extra 10 MS, allowing you to catch enemies and flee from combat better. Perfect Timing is also good, but only worth if you plan on upgrading it and Hextec Flashtraption is more suited to jungles.

Biscuit Delivery

Gain a free Biscuit every 3 min, until 12 min. Consuming a biscuit permanently increases your max mana and restores health and mana. You can go two ways with Nasus for this set: either get some extra sustain and mana during the early stages with the biscuits, which can also be obtained with Kleptomancy and give the extra 40 permanent mana, or you go Future's Market and get your items a bit faster. Minion Dematerializer is not very good since you you'll one-shot anything after a while.

Time Warp Tonic

Consuming a potion or biscuit grants 50% of its health immediately, and mana if applicable, but prevents that consumable from being used again until the effect ends. Health/mana per tick is then reduced by half for the effect's regular duration. In addition, you gain 5% bonus movement speed while under the effect of a potion or biscuit. This is the hardest ones to choose from, as all of them are actually good. Approach Velocity let's you go faster after enemies you hit with Wither and Cosmic Insight gives you 5% extra CDR for the entire game, but having stronger sustain from your potions while also granting MS and a lot of instant health back? This is too good to let it pass.
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Runes - Domination

Dark Harvest

Damaging a champion below 50% of their maximum health by any mean deals 40 − 80 (based on level) (+ 5 per Soul) (+ 25% bonus AD) (+ 15% AP) bonus Adaptive damage and reaps 1 Soul. This cannot happen again for 45 seconds, resetting to 1.5 seconds on champion Damage rating takedown. So, you can put more stacks on top of the stacks you were already putting on Nasus. Do I even need to say why a stacking ability is good for Nasus? This guy is all about stacking damage, so getting yourself even more stacking damage will make you even stronger. Predator is also viable, since you get a massive boost to MS and can catch anyone when using it with Wither and other speed buffs and Electrocute is better suited to burst champions like Zed. And Hail of Blades is not that great since you'll be doing most of your damage by empowering AA with your Q, meaning it doesn't matter that much how fast your normal AA are hitting, unless you are going for a critical strike build.

Cheap Shot

Basic attacks and damaging abilities deal 12 - 30 (based on level) bonus true damage to slowed or immobilized enemy champions. Remember how Nasus has the best slow in the game? Well, what if you can also deal up to 60 extra true damage to the poor soul being slowed? That's what this rune does: you slow them, deal damage and proc the true damage, wait the 4 second CD and then do it again, dealing more true damage. It may sound too little, but true damage is always a win. Sudden Impact is useless in Nasus unless you use Teleport all the time and Taste of Blood is also viable, but I personally prefer Cheap Shot.

Zombie Ward

Scoring a takedown on an enemy ward summons a friendly Zombie Ward in its place (10 second assist timer). If the brush where you killed the enemy ward already contains an allied ward, you instead gain a Zombie Ward in your Trinket Slot that can be placed at any location within the next 30 seconds.
Zombie Wards grant Sight icon sight over 1100 units, are visible to the enemy team, have 1 health, last for 60 - 180 (based on level) seconds and don't count towards your ward limit. Additionally, your own wards will summon a Zombie Ward when they time-out. This does not occur if they are replaced due to the ward limit. Killing a Zombie Ward will grant 1 gold.
I'm thorn between this and Ghost Poro as both give you an extra bit of vision on the map, which is really important. But you can only have one creepy poro while several zombie wards can be placed at the same time, so it wins by default. Eyeball Collection isn't so nice since it is kind of hard to achieve all 20 stacks needed to finish it (10 kills or 20 assists or 20 ward takedowns).

Ultimate Hunter

Reduces the cooldown of your ultimate ability by 5% (+ 2% per Bounty Hunter stack). Earn a Bounty Hunter stack for champion takedowns, up to one per unique enemy champion. Using your ultimate is an enormous power spike during a fight, since it makes you harder to kill and deal even more damage, so having it on a lower CD is really useful.
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Runes - Precision

Conqueror

Entering combat generates one stack every second for the next 3 seconds. After reaching 4 stacks, your next basic attack within 3 seconds against an enemy champion grants 10 - 35 (based on level) bonus Attack Damage for 3 seconds and converts 20% of your damage to champions to true damage for the duration. Entering combat will refresh the triggering attack duration.
Melee champions refresh the bonus damage duration when going in combat by affecting enemy champions.
Now this is what I'm talking about! Nasus already deals a ton of damage by the later portions of the game, so imagine if that 1000 physical damage from your Q becomes 200 TRUE DAMAGE and 800 physical. Do I really need to say why this rune is so good on Nasus, or any bruiser in general? And since Nasus is a melee champion, he can refresh it constantly, with the rune being active pretty much during the whole fight. Fleet Footwork is also a viable option (the one I previously went with), but Conqueror is just plain better.

Triumph

Champion takedowns, after a 0.5-second delay, restore 12% of your missing health and grant an additional Gold 20. Not only you get extra gold for taking down enemy champions, you are also healed by a substancial amount of your missing health, sort of like a Soraka heal. This can save your hide from very dangerous situations and turn a tf around, even more if you are playing tank Nasus. Presence of Mind is also cool, but becomes less useful as the game goes on and Overheal is also nice, but loses its appeal as the game goes on despite being a nice addition to your early game for Nasus.

Legend: Bloodline

Gain (0.8% per Legend stack) life steal, up to 8% at 10 stacks. LEGEND: Gain Legend stacks for every 20 points earned, up to 10:
+ 20 points for champion takedowns
+ 20 points for epic monster takedowns
+ 5 points for large monster kills
+ 1 points for minion kills
This one is actually tough to decide and will depend on what you want to do as Nasus. Want more AS for a crit chance build, go Legend: Alacrity. Want more protection against CC, go with Legend: Tenacity. But if you want more sustain, pick Bloodline since it makes your passive even stronger and you can get up to 28% lifesteal once all 10 stacks are taken.

Coup de Grace

Deal 7% increased damage to champions below 40% maximum health. Additionally, you gain 9 bonus Attack Damage or 15 Ability Power (Adaptive) for 10 seconds whenever you score a champion Damage rating takedown. This bonus does not stack. Would be nice if the extra damage stacked, adding even more to our STACKCEPTION. Anyway, all options here are kind meh and situational, but this one is the best among them. Cut Down is only good if you are playing full damage Nasus and won't invest in health items, as Nasus is a very tanky champion after some time. Last Stand could be good if not for your passive constantly taking you above 40% health and making it useless.
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Summoner Spells

Flash

Teleports your champion a short distance toward your cursor's location. This one is, without a doubt, the best and most useful summoner spell for all champions in the game, which is why the vast majority of players take it. It can save you from certain death, get close to enemies to finish them off, masterfully avoid skillshots (or jump on them if you are not careful) and overall, is a great spell. Since Nasus lack any form of mobility aside from bought MS, this one is a must since you can survive a bit more by having it.
Problem with Flash is that it takes some practice to use it right and a lot of practice to master it: judging if you can flash over a wall, the exact maximum distance it covers, when is the best time to use it offensively and when it's best to save it are some of the skills you'll get over time playing the game.

Teleport

After channeling for 4.5 seconds, your champion teleports to target turret, minion or ward. You may reactivate Teleport to cancel it, placing it on a 200 second cooldown. The best friend of top laners, this spell will allow you to have a much greater map presence and help your team more often. Normally top laners are isolated in their lanes, not able to help secure objectives like drakes or quickly reach other lanes in case of need, so having a reliable source for that is a must. During the later portions of the game, it can help you split-push very effectively, something that Nasus is really good at. The thing most lower elo players don't get is that you shouldn't waste it just to return to lane quicker. Save it for times like when you can go somewhere on the map and help your team secure an objective or some kills, with a preference for objectives, always.
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Vision: Tips and Types

This is a crucial point that most low elo players don't understand how truly important and life-saving good vision is and many are constantly ganked by the enemy Lee Sin and keep blaming their poor jungles as if they are supposed to babysit them. And even when they do think they know how important it is, they only put a single lonely ward in the closest bush and take it for granted, still complaining when they are ganked with no warning. Here are some warding tips to make sure you are not caught unguarded again.

- The ward placements on the map in the next chapter can also be applied to the lower side of the map, as they mirror each other, so if you want to know where is a good place, just look at the position on the upper side.

- Vision isn't all powerful. Sure, it's extremely useful, but not if you don't constantly pay attention to the map and remain vigilant. This will come with practice, but always try to get a quick glance at the mini-map every few moments so that you are aware of what's happening.

- League is a team game, so always try to help your team. If you see the enemy jungle or any other champion on the map outside of their lanes, warn your teammates with pings or on the chat where they are. Get into the habit of constantly doing that.

- Always ward. It may sound obvious, but many players have the mentality that only the support should cover the map with wards and will blame them when something bad happens. Don't be that guy and keep warding.

- Don't waste your wards. You need to think about the benefits that a ward might give you if you place it, so don't just place it to simply increase your vision score. Yeah, you might get a good score but end up losing the game.

- Do not take unnecessary risks. As a rule of thumb, if you can't see 3 or more champions of the enemy team, do not stay too far from your own towers and base. If you have a good vision of the possible paths they may take to catch you, you can rest a little easier, but start to run away the second one appears coming in your general direction, because depending how far you are from your territory, chances are all the missing champions are coming for you, which is pretty common in lower elos.

Warding Totem

Consume a charge to place an invisible Totem Ward at the target location (600 range), which reveals the surrounding area for 90 - 180 (based on level) seconds. Stores one charge every 240 - 120 (based on level) seconds, up to 2 maximum charges. The most basic ward in the game, the yellow ward is often underestimated in how useful it is and sadly forgotten at times. What it does is pretty self-explanatory, so I won't get into that, but let's talk about a few things that aren't in its description. First, some players think they have to change it to another trinket, but that's not necessarily true. Having it during the whole game allows you to place invisible ward at key locations during the whole game, forcing the enemy team to waste resources to search for it to deny your vision. The downside of it is the fact you can only have up to 3 of them on the map at any given time, which honestly isn't a problem most times since you'll hardly be able to place 4 at once unless you have a support item.

Farsight Alteration

Reveals an area up to 4000 units away for 2 seconds (148 - 99 (based on level) second cooldown). Enemy champions hit will be revealed for 5 seconds. This does not affect stealth champions. Also places a visible Farsight Ward at the target location that lasts indefinitely. So, why should you change the yellow ward to the blue one? Well, firstly it's much safer to place it around the map, with the enormous range you you have for placing it, meaning you won't need to get near a bush only to be surprised by the entire enemy team waiting for your sorry ***. They also remain on the map without a time limit and there's also no limit on how many can remain on the map at onco. However, they are visible and grant less vision than the common totem, meaning they are easier to destroy.

Oracle Lens

Summons a Sweeper Drone that escorts you for the next 10 seconds (90 - 60 (based on level) second cooldown). The drone has a 750-unit detection radius. The last free trinket of the bunch, this one doesn't serve to grant vision, but rather to deny it. Not just it reveals all wards around you, it also disables them, immediately denying the enemy vision and letting you destroy their wards. It also reveals hidden champions when they use an ability ( Deceive, Guerrilla Warfare, etc), allowing you to hit them with non-targeted abilities (anything that isn't point-and-click like Blinding Dart).

Control Ward

Places a visible Control Ward at the target location (600 range), which grants vision over the surrounding area as well as revealing and disabling enemy wards, revealing enemy stealthed traps and camouflaged champions. Control wards are among the best and most important itens in the game. Always try to keep one in the map at all times, as not just it grants you vision, but denies it to the enemy and reveal pesky stuff such as that freaking Noxious Trap (I hate and love Teemo at the same time) and similar. It costs only 75 gold and you can only have a single one in the map, which means that when you place a new one, the older ward vanishes. Don't be afraid to place a new one even if you already have one, as the priorities for vision change across the game.
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Vision Placement


#1

Normally you would think warding the bush nearby would be a better idea, but not really. Warding here not just is a lot deeper into the river, giving you a longer time of reaction if the enemy comes from the river, but is also a great place to place a yellow ward to keep watch over Herald and Baron. You must be wondering why you don't just ward inside the pit or directly in front of it. Well, because when the enemy sweep for wards before doing the objectives, they normally don't go to that specific place because most people do it right on the pit, so your ward will remain undetected by a larger chance. However, placing a control ward in the bush nearby is also a good idea if your team is on the blue side of the map, while a simple yellow one will suffice when you are on red team.

#2

During the early game, this is the second best place to place a ward, specially if you are on the red team, so you should always get an early control ward and put it there if that's the case. The reason for that is when playing top for the red team, it's much easier for you to be ganked than when playing for the blue side, since the enemy has two easy openings to catch you (tri-brush and river), so it's really important to get that covered. Having vision here warns you of 3 possible paths the enemy may come from, which is very convenient.

#3-4

Positions #3 and #4 are great places to ward if the T1 of red side was destroyed and you are either advancing or defending the lane. These places will warn you of incoming enemies while you are near the T2, no matter in which team you are, as they will warn you of any danger coming your way. Try to have both places covered when that advanced/far back. Also, depending on which part of #4 you ward, you may also get some vision of the red buff nearby.

#4-5

So, T2 of red was destroyed and you are that advanced/retreated? Well, this is probably one of the most dangerous places to be if you are on the blue side, as it is quite easy for the enemy team to catch up to you, ao having vision is vital. These two positions give you some fair warning of incoming danger, allowing you to safely get away from it.

#2-4-7-6-9-12-13

So, when you are taking baron or herald, it greatly helps to know not just if the enemy has vision on them, but also if they are coming to contest them. With that in mind, these are the best places to pu wards when doing so, with #2, #7 and 6# if you are on blue team and #9, #12 and #13 if you are on red team.

#10-12-13

These positions mimic the ones from #3 and #4: if blue T1 is gone and you need to advance/defend the lane near T2.

#11-12

Same as with #4 and #5: blue T2 is gone and you are near blue T3 and need to destroy/defend it.
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Early Game - Freezing Lane

As Nasus, your goal at the early stages is to farm and empower your Q, not to kill your lane opponent. Yeah, killing him is quite nice and all, but it doesn't matter if you kill him ten times yet lose all your towers on the process, or die as many times yourself.
Avoid trades with your opponent and when you do, always make sure to stay on your minion wave, forcing him to draw aggro from your minions and take a generous amount of damage. You can also AA him and go to the bush, not drawing any aggro on yourself by doing so.
Don't waste a Siphoning Strike on the champion unless you are confident you can kill him, as you won't get stacks otherwise. Farm the minions, empower your Q and stay safe no matter what while you wait for your power spike.
Always start with a point in Q, but you can pick the second ability based in the enemies: champions that are agressive during the early periods such as Renekton and Riven should make you pick Wither as the second ability, while most other times Spirit Fire is ideal. Don't be afraid of using it, but also take care of your mana reserves.
Your priority is getting a Sheen, as it provides you the biggest advantage during this stage of the game. And remember: always farming.

Now let's talk about freezing the lane, an invaluable tool for any top laner. This is a very good strategy when playing Nasus, as not just gives you the rein over the way minions work, but also makes you much harder to have undesirable visitors such as the enemy jungler. So, how do you do it you might ask? Here's a short video to give you the basics
on how to do it(their channel also has some really good guides).

If you are too lazy to simply watch it, here's the rules of thumb: try to keep the minions, both your and the enemy's, close to your turret without letting said turret deal damage to them. Only AA the minions when they are low on health to kill them and only use your abilities to match the damage dealt to your minions by the opponent. And finally, make sure there are more minions of the enemy side than on your side, since your army will simply eliminate them too quickly and break the freezing. Here's a map on the best places to freeze when playing on both sides.


And also another really good video for top lane in general (check out his other videos as well, they are quite helpful).
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Mid Game - Objective Control and Split-Pushing

When entering the middle portion of the game, the word is "objectives". Herald, drakes and towers are the most important things you should aim for. Kills are important, but only as a means to achieve an objective, not the end.
The thing about Nasus is that he is not a team-friendly champion: no hard CC, no group CC either, is really weak to CC himself and can't really face multiple champions at this point (yet). If you prefer a similar champion to Nasus, but with more teamfight potential, I suggest you pick Trundle, since he has one of the strongest CCs in the entire game ( Pillar of Ice).
So, how does he make himself useful then? Well, by split-pushing and granting objective control. I'll put a short video on how to split-push below, but here's a quick summary: put pressure away from where the bulk of your team is, even more when they are doing an objective. Your team killing dragon? Take top tower. Taking Herald, go down bot. This basically forces the enemy team to commit resources into stopping you, because Nasus is possibly one of the best split-pushers of the game.


As for objective control, Nasus is tremendously good at taking objectives with his empowered AA, melting down turrets, dragons and all others with ease. If someone else on your team is distracting three or more enemy champions, go for a drake or a tower in the opposite direction. Don't over-extend yourself and play safe all the time and you'll end up dominating the game by yourself, even if your KDA doesn't show it.
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Late Game - Closing the Game

And now the time comes, the moment every Nasus player lives to see: you have 500 stacks on your Q, a Trinity Force and is extremely tanky. This is the time where you prove why Nasus is a Juggernaut, the "1V5" class of League of Legends.
What you want to do here is simple: pick a target on the enemy team, preferably someone like a marksman, assassin or mage, Wither it, pop whatever item helps you get to it ( Righteous Glory, Fury of the Sands, etc) and eliminate it from the face of the Earth, pounding on it so hard his grandchildren will feel it. And if necessary, simply walk away with little to no damage done to you.
Of course, don't be stupid: you are not immortal and if all five of them close in on you with no help around, you'll obviously die. However, sometimes you can sacrifice yourself in order for your team to do something good. If your death gives your team an objective or most of the enemies' lives. Try to always make sure that, if you are going to die, no question about it, you at least take something in return from them. Don't be stupid and die in vain. Also, keep split-pushing until the end, since by now you can probably destroy towers with two or three Siphoning Strike.
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Updates

03/01/2018: Updated it to Patch 8.4, added Abilities Description, Ability Order and the Resolve path to the Runes chapter.

03/04/2018: Added 3 new builds and the title of Sorcery Runes in the Runes section.

03/06/2018: Added all remaining rune chapters for the build as well as changing the overall organization of the runes to ease the search for them. Also added the Summoner Spells chapter.

04/02/2018: Added some builds and the new Runes, Conqueror and Chrysalis.

07/30/2018: Added the two vision chapters and tweaked a few things in the builds. Also added the Early, Mid and Late game chapters.

12/01/2018: Updated builds and runes to the Pre-Season. Added 60 champions that are a threat to Nasus onto the Threat section of the first build.