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League of Legends Build Guide Author OverlordPein

[Nocturne] The Sanguine Death

OverlordPein Last updated on March 18, 2011
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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.


Brute Force
Improved Rally

Offense: 21

Strength of Spirit
Veteran's Scars

Defense: 9

Expanded Mind
Blink of an Eye
Mystical Vision
Presence of the Master

Utility: 0

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Nocturne is Riot's newest champion. He is a physical DPS assassin character, who is great for initiating ganks and sinking turrets. I've played Nocturne quite a bit since he was released before I made this guide, just to really get a feel for him. I build Nocturne as pure DPS, almost no defensive items whatsoever. When we get to items, I'll discuss other choices you can make for other items if you want survivability.

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Pros / Cons

- Great Ganker
- Crazy DPS
- Amazing Chaser
- Can work really well in teams if played right

- Mana hungry early game
- Squishy
- Can be useless to teams if played wrong

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Runes & Masteries & Summoner Spells


I grab all Armor Pen for Marks. For Seals I go with Attack Speed, and Glyphs I get Cooldown Reduction. Nocturne really benefits from Armor Pen, it makes him hit THAT much harder. The Attack Speed is a necessity for him. Cooldown Reduction is also important so you can spam his skills with blue buff that much quicker.


I go 21/9/0. I put 9 in defense just to give him a bit more survivability, but almost everything should go into Offense.

Summoner Spells

Exhaust and Flash are my favorite spells for Nocturne. You do not need ghost with him, as long as you pop your Q you should be fast enough to get away from most enemies. Flash is useful for jumping through a barrier, popping your Q, and ensuring that you get away. Exhaust is extremely useful in catching anyone that might get away. As said before, Nocturne is one of the best pursuing champions in this game. Along with Exhaust+Cripple, he is unstoppable when chasing down prey.

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Skill Sequence

Duskbringer should be the first ability that you get to 5. It really helps you to chase down opponents and deal some fierce damage to both enemy champions and turrets, especially early game. You never want to miss with Duskbringer when aiming at a champion, it can be the difference between snagging that kill, or them escaping. Shroud of Darkness should be the next ability you get to 5, the Attack Speed bonus it gives helps to dish out more damage over time. Unspeakable horror is the last ability to get to 5, but that doesn't mean it's useless. By level 3 you should have all 3 of your abilities, your R is obviously saved till later.

When wanting to pursue an enemy, the skill order should go like this.

Q them first, just so you can catch up faster and deal more damage with each hit.
W as soon as you are in range so that the fear will postpone their escaped and you can get a couple more hits in.
E should be used only if you think they are going to try to stun you with one of their abilities, or slow you (For Example Nunu's Ice Ball, or Lux's Stun)

I've seen a lot of Nocturne's initiate solo with their R. DO NOT DO THIS! It is a waste. The damage your R deals out won't be too heavy. You should only initiate with your R when the team is getting ready to charge in, or for a gank. The only other suitable time for your ult is if an enemy champ might get away. Pop it and grab that kill before they escape! Remember, if they are out of your sight range, and disappear into the fog of war you cannot use your R. Always use it when you can at least see an enemy. You can also use your R without having to jump, this will be repeated in Team Work.

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Since Nocturne is a physical DPS, I build him completely DPS! Barely any survivability for this guy! But if you play him correctly you won't need it!

The first thing I grab are Boots of Speed, and 2 Health Pots. The boots really give you the upper hand in pursuing early game, along with Duskbringer no one can get away from you. As soon as I have enough, I recall to get the Ionian Boots of Lucidity. Most people get Berserker's Greaves, but the improvement to your Attack Speed is better from your Shroud of Darkness once its 5, the Ionian boots help you to hit them much more.

After harassing, and by this point having at least a kill or two (MAYBE MORE ^_^) you should get the Brutalizer. This will build to Ghostblade later, but for now the attack and CD reduction are useful. As soon as you are done with the Brutalizer, begin building a Bloodthirster. The Attack Damage and Lifesteal help to keep you alive, even if you are squishy.

After the Bloodthirster, grab Ghostblade. Everything it does for you helps, including its Active. Make sure to use that you really dish out some damage! THEN ANOTHER BLOODTHIRSTER! Bloodthirster is my favorite item for almost every physical DPS champion. It just works so well with everything, and with 2, the damage and lifesteal can really keep you alive, along with his passive.

Then get a Phantom Dancer as soon as you can. It will not only help your Attack Speed, but your Movement speed. It will be as if you are riding a jet and they are sitting on a turtle when you try to catch them with Duskbringer.

Now the 6th item. This is entirely up to you.

- If you aren't getting enough kills, or are getting nuked pretty bad grab Banshee's Veil. It helps with survivability by blocking one ability, and along with Shroud of Darkness that's 2 abilities blocked!

- If you want to get even more kills, or if there's a tank that's causing trouble, grab Madred's. The Magic Damage will really inflict some pain, and overall it will help you deal some heavy hits.

- If you really want to stop them dead in their tracks, grab Frozen Mallet. The health buff will help you, but it will also prevent them from even getting away from you. Even with Flash and Ghost, as long as you slow them and have Phantom Dancer, Duskbringer, and now the slow from this it will certainly be hard to get away.

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Team Work

With Nocturne always make sure to communicate with your team. Tell them when your ult is up, and when to jump in on an unsuspecting target. You can pop your ult without even having to jump onto an enemy champ. Just the ability of destroying your enemies sight of each other is useful to your team, it can help a team mate get away from a gank, or it can help your team mates gank even if you are not there. When it comes to utilizing his ult, it is extremely important to have full map awareness. ALWAYS BE CHECKING YOUR MINIMAP!!!!

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Creeping / Jungling

This is going to be a small section. BLUE BUFF AND RED BUFF! Both of them really help Nocturne out. The blue buff allows him to harass like a mofo, and the red buff slows them down even more! That's all there really is to this section. If none of your teammates that need blue buff are not utilizing it, grab that sucka and harass like a mutha!

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These are just some examples of games with Nocturne. I will be updating this guide as time goes on. If Nocturne gets buffed, or nerfed I will be sure to include ways to help his game because of those changes. Thank you for reading this guide, and I hope it helps how you play Nocturne!