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Nocturne Build Guide by LeCuch

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League of Legends Build Guide Author LeCuch

Nocturne- Don't Fear The Darkness

LeCuch Last updated on July 14, 2013
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

Not Updated For Current Season

The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 9


Utility: 0

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Hello and welcome to my first Nocturne guide.

Nocturne is usually played one of two ways

* As an AD Offtank Jungler

* As an AD Carry/Jungler

In this guide i will show you how to build and play him as an AD Carry type Jungler with large lifesteal and killing power, and how to look good doing it.

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I go with a 21-9-0 mastery for Nocturne

The points in the defense tree block damage from minions and reflect some of it to make it much easier to easily clear the jungle early game (consider taking a few points out of Offence skill tree to put into Hardiness for the extra armor)

The 21 points in the Offensive tree go towards your, well, offense. Typical AD things, because you will be building for some critical strike late game so make sure to take Lethality

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Main rune set

Greater Mark Of Attack Damage

This is for some extra physical damage to speed up your clearing and make more effective early game ganks

Greater Seal Of Armor

Basic for junglers. Gives around 12.6 extra armor making killing golems, lizards, wolfs, wraiths, etc. much easier

Greater Glyph Of Scaling Magic Resist

Now this one is controversial. Many people start with the Greater Glyph Of Magic Resist (not scaling) which is personal preference. I suggest scaling because alot of casters are weak early-game and you can block spells with your W shield so it's not a big deal till you are trying to survive an Annie nuke or such later

Greater Quintessence Of Attack Damage

I would take these for the extra attack damage early game also, again, making clearing easier

Other runes worth considering

Greater Mark of Armor Penetration Greater Mark Of Armor Penetration

Good for later game if you want some extra armor piercing

Greater Seal Of Armor

There is really no substitute for this rune. Take it
_____ Greater Glyph Of Magic Resist

Good for early game with more magic resist off the start

Greater Quintessence of Armor Penetration Greater Quintessence Of Armor Penetration

Again good for later game builds with armor piercing

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Summoner Spells


Take flash to get better initiations, to chase, or to dodge that pesky Rocket Grab from Blitzcrank. Very situational spell used on near everyone


You are a jungler. 'Nuff said


Feel free to replace Flash with Ghost. While on the trail of Nocturne's Duskbringer, he gains movement speed. Combining that with Ghost allows for insane chases and very annoying (for the other team) getaways. This and Flash are both good, so pick whatever you like.

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Skilling Sequence

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

Max out your Q Duskbringer first (Being your initiate, closer, damage, poke)

Take W Shroud of Darkness at level 2 for the passive attack speed boost

Level 3 take your E Unspeakable Horror so you can do some more damage and fear things (the whole point of Nocturne)

And of course take your ult whenever possible

Max Q first, max E second, and W last
Some players perfer maxing W first but i perfer E for the longer fear duration and damage over the small attack speed increase.

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The How-To Of Abilities

Umbra Blades

Good ol Umbra Blades. What does it do? Adds a bit of lifesteal and AoE damage to everyone around every few seconds on swing. This goes well with the Ravenous Hydra, and items that proc on hit. Don't worry about it too much, it's not a game changer but if you have been out of combat for more then 10 seconds, your first hit has a bit of Oomph

Tips and tricks:
  • When you are jungling, try to get the small wraiths, lizards, whatever, weak so that when you are hitting the main creature (lizard or golem or big wraith) Umbra Blades will activate and kill off the small ones
  • Use in combo with Duskbringer to mop up small enemies. Throw your claw into a group, and basic attack the one in the middle and most will die
  • It negates 1 second of cooldown every basic attack, so the more attack speed you have, the more it will activate!


This is your main poke, and initiate.

When jungling, throw your Q Duskbringer in and hit as many minions as possible with it. This means when hitting the Wolves, throw from outside the camp through a wall through all three of them. When hitting wraiths, throw in from a side wall and go and stand on the trail.

This ability is your initiation to ganks also. Throw Q on your target (judge their walking speed to throw correctly) and chase! It does decent damage, has great range and travels through minions so don't be afraid to throw a few times at enemies if in a lane with the blue buff.

Tips and tricks:
  • Goes through stuff! Throw it into bushes, through walls, through minions, anything. If you throw it into a bush and follow it, and see a trail continuing out as you keep walking, it means you hit something. Kinda like fishing
  • Turret dive with it! If an enemy has very low health and stupid enough to stay in lane just run up to the turret and throw your claw at them. If the turret can hit you, your claw can travel a bit farther then the turret can aim. Therefore if the target is hiding right at the turret run in and throw a claw at him. I have gotten so many kills because people not realizing the range of Duskbringer

Shroud Of Darkness

Everyone underestimates this ability but in my opinion is what makes Nocturne a beast
Creates a 0 hp shield for 1.5 seconds that Blocks one spell and increases passive attack speed by double from the ability after blocking a spell

This allows you to easily block say, a Summon: Tibbers Stun, a Warwick Supress, whatever you like. It also gives a nice passive attack speed boost but i usually upgrade it to max last while taking it at level 2
Tips and tricks:
  • You have to know when something is coming to block. Usually, use this after you throw your claw for a gank. Go in and hit E Unspeakable Horror on the target, and your W Shroud of Darkness also. They will usually go "Oh no i am about to be feared, stun him!" this is where your W Shroud of Darkness blocks that potential stun and allows you to fear and end someone on the other team.
  • This is underestimated by alot of players not knowing Nocturne's skills. If you 1v1 someone, use this to start the fight and block their opening spell. Usually means the difference of Life and Death
  • Use it when running away! You have 10 health and see Ezreal flash into range for a Mystic Shot. Think fast! Click W and watch as he rages in chat "My spell didn't work! Fu Nocturne hacking" blah blah whatever.

    Unspeakable Horror

    This is your CC. Allows you to fear someone and does some magic damage. Use this while on the chase with your Q. The movement speed boost from Q allows you to stay in the range of them long enough for Unspeakable Horror to fear them.
    Tips and tricks:
    • This is very effective while fighting squishier characters because it allows you up to 2 seconds of just total slaughter on your part. It also is great for stopping people from running away.
    • Use it to help with jungling also. Hit it on the lizard at level 3 and you get a second of not being hit. That second can save you some health, and later levels helps kill the dragon much easier.
    • I am not quite sure the exact science on this but if you are fearing someone who goes invisible (Sorry Twitch Teemo Wukong Shaco) The fear beam will still follow the invisible player in most cases and reveal him for you.


    This is the move that defines Nocturne. Allows you to lunge up to nearly 1/3 map range late game at a target That you can see on the map. You can't use this on someone who left vision. Use it to save a team mate, initiate a fight, steal a buff, catch someone off guard, or slaughter someone passing to a different lane. The possibilities are endless!
    Tips and tricks:
    • The best use of this, is to turret dive. Ezreal got away with 100 hp? The last thing he will remember will be Paranoia. Ult in on him and Flash out or run away. It limits everyone's view on the other team so it allows for quick kills leaving the other team confused.
    • Another good use is to save a team mate. Riven is about to die to Jayce up top? Feel free to Paranoia on Jayce, have her back up, and teach Jayce a lesson for beating up on your lady.

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General Item Build

Item Sequence

Wriggle's Lantern

Berserker's Greaves

Blade of the Ruined King

Ravenous Hydra

Frozen Mallet

Infinity Edge

First off let me start by saying Nocturne can be built many ways but i despise tanky versions of him.

He is not a tank.

Typical order:

Start off with Hunter's Machete and 5 Health Potions. On go back, pick up a Vampiric Scepter (before the claws if you can afford) and some more Health Potions. Work towards the Wriggle's Lantern and Berserker's Greaves. After that get the Blade of the Ruined King for more lifesteal, damage, speed, and an active slow for more chase ability. Then a health steal item, i like the Ravenous Hydra. Onto 2 more slots of whatever you like, i choose the Frozen Mallet for the HP and the Infinity Edge for some more attack and some critical chance.

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Item Break Down


Starting Items

Hunter's Machete

Health Potion

Take both of these off the start, with 5 health potions (not just 1)


Core Items

Wriggle's Lantern

Take this as your main jungling item. It gives you a free ward every 90 seconds, life steal, some armor, and attack damage. All very good for Nocturne. Buy it

Berserker's Greaves

Boots! Everyone needs boots. These are cheaper, and give you more attack speed which help with your passive. My personal preference on Nocturne

Blade Of The Ruined King

This is your main offensive weapon. It gives you Lifesteal, Attack speed, and attack damage. It also has a nice passive, and the active allows you to easily chase down someone, or slow them down so YOU can escape. You always want this item every single game. Always

Ravenous Hydra

Another good item. Gives you lifesteal (which Nocturne is very reliant on to 1v1), alot of damage, and hits everyone near you with a nice active also.

NOTE: This is an item you only want when you are not doing bad (Example: 0-5 and lower level then everyone else). It allows you to go 2v1 or even 3v1 in some cases, and win with this and your passive, Umbra Blades, both dealing AoE damage. If you are losing badly, you may want to skip this item for a The Bloodthirster


Preferred Items

Frozen Mallet

This item is good for you, giving you extra health (needed late game to survive somewhat in teamfights) and some damage, with a great slow on your basic attacks. This makes ganking and chasing much easier.


A very damaging item with alot of lifesteal for Nocturne, can't go wrong with this item on an AD champion.

Statikk Shiv

This item is good for teamfights also, allowing your first strike to hit with Umbra Blades and Statikk Shiv at the same time. Another usefull snowballing item, or if you want less life steal and more critical hit damage.

Infinity Edge

Another good critical hit item. But this for damage and to up your critical hit damage and chance.


Other viable items

Phantom Dancer

This item works well if you are building critical hit or feel like hitting a bit faster, (my guide brings you to about 1.92 attack speed) so it's a viable item, but i never actually use it.

The Black Cleaver

A good item to take out someone 1v1. Does damage and gives you armor piercing which is nice. I never buy it because late game it is all team fights, but feel free to build it if you like

Last Whisper

This item is good for if the other team is very Armor heavy. If they have less then 3 people with armor i wouldn't buy it though.

Warmog's Armor

If you insist on buying more tank for Nocturne this is obviously a good item to do just that. I like to keep the damage going so I don't buy this item but again, it is up to you

Youmuu's Ghostblade

This is another item that is good but I never found a use for. It gives armor penetration which is good, a decent active, but the stats (I find anyways) are a bit lacking. If you are up against tanks and low on funds, you may need this.

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Here is where it gets tough for Nocturne

In a teamfight, what you are going to do is Herding.

By Herding, i mean you pick off anyone who goes outside the main group. Nocturne is lethal 1v1, but in this build he is somewhat squishy and can be burst down. Play it as if you are Aatrox or another lifesteal champ.

Another option is if you have a good tank ( Rammus!) then go in behind him and take out everyone in sight while he takes the hits.

If you are winning the fight, feel free to Paranoia in on someone running away and end their despair.

Many lesser Nocturnes make this mistake. I will hope you won't. Do not Paranoia right into the middle of them as an initiation. You will die.

Unless you are playing with a team with 0 CC at all, do not do this. Use it halfway through, or to chase down a runner.

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Everyone please before you dislike this guide because it is my first and quite different from most, play a few games solo queue as Nocturne following this guide. You can easily carry the game doing this.

The goal is to solo people out and destroy them, like Kha'Zix but with an Ultimate that is way more awesome

Thanks for reading guys!