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Nautilus Build Guide by SawyerNelson

Support Season 9 Nautilus Support Guide - High Burst & Good Roam

Support Season 9 Nautilus Support Guide - High Burst & Good Roam

Updated on May 1, 2019
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League of Legends Build Guide Author SawyerNelson Build Guide By SawyerNelson 141 12 2,102,471 Views 40 Comments
141 12 2,102,471 Views 40 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author SawyerNelson Nautilus Build Guide By SawyerNelson Updated on May 1, 2019
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Bone Plating

Perfect Timing
Biscuit Delivery

+10% Attack Speed
+6 Armor
+6 Armor


LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


LoL Summoner Spell: Ignite


Threats & Synergies

Threats Synergies
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None Low Ok Strong Ideal
Extreme Threats
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Champion Build Guide

Season 9 Nautilus Support Guide - High Burst & Good Roam

By SawyerNelson

Sawyer Nelson

This guide was written by Sawyer Nelson for free, with the purpose of educating those interested. If you want to show your appreciation you can do so by Donating via [PayPal] or following Sawyer's Social Media:
  • Twitch - (Gameplay, Personality, Commentary, and Coaching League of Legends Live stream)
  • Twitter - A trash can for my stupid thoughts
  • Youtube
  • Instagram - Clips of my gameplay, maybe a picture of me once a year
Nautilus is a strange hybrid of Leona and Thresh he has very high burst damage, making him very strong in lane. Nautilus is tanky in burst based on Aftershock proc and Titan's Wrath. When both of those are down he is somewhat vulnerable compared to most tank supports that have more defensive options. Nautilus has more offensive options than those supports without putting himself on top of lots of enemy champions.


+ On Click Ult (Can't Miss)
+ Lots of CC
+ Dominate Laning & Early Damage
+ Long Range Hook


- Easily Ganked
- Hook can't go through Walls or Minions
- Needs follow up to his CC
- Low Mobility

Nautilus is a good mix of damage and CC from the support role. You can play to punish enemies with the long range hook, or to peel enemies off your carries with a short range hook, into an auto attack to root them. Nautilus also gets to single out 1 enemy with his ULT Depth Charge.He lacks the ability to run away, but when forward is the only option, it makes things pretty simple now doesn't it?
Summoner Spells


Ignite is great for Nautilus it adds a LOT of damage to Nautilus's already pretty high amount of burst damage, enables you to get kills early and snowball games. Currently Ignite is way stronger than Exhaust in the bot lane, it's synergy with all tank support's engages is way stronger than Exhaust in its current lack luster state.


Flash is standard on most champions, Nautilus is no exception. Nautilus can't do anything mega complicated with Flash beyond a simple Flash + Hook. Nothing mega complicated is required, in fights just Flash + ULT someone.

Basically theses Runes provide Nautilus with extra tankiness, and also empowers his engages because of Aftershock's affect giving Nautilus bonus Armor & Magic Resist for CC'ing a target. Running anything different such as damage runes don't give you a huge pay out, and will make you a lot less useful in the Mid - Late game if you can't actually tank the enemy.
Resolve Domination
Aftershock gives Nautilus more safety & a small amount of damage when engaging, when you CC a target you will temporarily gain bonus Armor & Magic Resist. Track the 35 seconds Cooldown on Aftershock especially during the laning phase so that you can make the best engage / trade decisions.

When you land a hook it will proc Aftershock and you can almost always get Aftershock's damage off by rooting the enemy with an auto attack, then moving past them, and casting E Riptide.
Shield Bash
Nautilus is one of the few champions that can make use of Shield Bash since he actually has a shield. A lot of what Nautilus does is engaging on the enemy and dealing a good amount of burst damage. Shield Bash simply gives you more damage on your combo.

Font of Life is good on Nautilus, you can run it if you have on hit AD's such as Kai'Sa, Varus, etc. In general you want to run Shield Bash though.
Bone Plating simply blocks damage for free, it's one of the simplest and best runes in the game. Bone Plating helps at all stages of the game, negages poke during the laning phase, helps you survive in fights, and lets you soak more damage in a late game team fight, and it happens automatically super good rune.
Overgrowth gives you more health pretty passively, building up throughout the match, is nice since Nautilus isn't the tankiest Support Mid - Late Game.
Cheap Shot
Cheap Shot deals true damage to slowed or movement impaired targets, so similar to Shield Bash simply gives you more damage, on a 4 second cooldown Cheap Shot can be proc'd multiple times during a fight.
Relentless Hunter
Relentless Hunter gives you bonus movement speed for each individual take down. In combination with Mobility Boots you can move around the map at a much faster pace than the enemy support.

Apative Runes:
+10 AP
+10 AP Gives you +20 AP level 1 giving you more damage on all abilities
+HP Per level generally useful

Nautilus unlike other tanks benefits from these combination of runes most Aftershock, Shield Bash, Cheap Shot, and +20 AP from adaptive runes which empower his strength that he has over other Engage Tank Supports which is his high amount of burst damage.

Passive: Staggering Blow
Nautilus' basic attacks deal bonus physical damage and immobilize his targets. This effect cannot happen more than once every few seconds on the same target.

You can micro manage this passive somewhat, naturally it adds more burst to what you are already doing. It can also be used as layed or initial CC. Say the combo Depth Charge + auto attack + Dredge Line OR Flash + auto attack w/ Staggering Blow + Dredge Line for a guaranteed hook
[Q] Dredge Line
Nautilus hurls his anchor forward. If it hits a champion, he drags both himself and the opponent close together. If it hits terrain, Nautilus instead pulls himself to the anchor, the cooldown of Dredge Line is reduced by half, and half the Mana cost is refunded.

This hook has the advantage of being very long range, but the disadvantage of not going through terrain. Use it to catch enemies out enemies, if you cast it to the very edge of a minion wave that the enemy is hugging than you may be able to hit them. You can also use Nautilus's ULT Depth Charge to set yourself up for an easy hook on the stunned target.
Titan's Wrath
Nautilus gains a Shield, and gains bonus damage on his auto attacks while Titan's Wrath's shield is up. The bonus damage dealt by auto attacks also deal damage around the target hit.

Use this shield to block incoming poke during the laning phase, use it to deal more damage when engaging on an enemy casting Titan's Wrath will reset your auto attack giving you quicker and more DPS. This effect can cause you to cancel your initial auto attack that would root the target if cast to early. It is a key part of dealing max damage on Nautilus so use it well and don't waste it.
Nautilus slams the ground, causing the earth to explode around him in a set of three explosions. Each explosion damages and slows enemies.

This is Nautilus's main damaging ability, it's on a fairly short cooldown and is AOE so it can damage anyone and everyone around him. After landing a hook + auto attack + W auto attack reset then you should cast E Riptide, then start moving past the target hit so that you can get a 2nd E Riptide off not only to deal more damage to them, but to slow them for your allies.

You can also use Riptide to control the minion wave, it's great for pushing or evening out large amounts of minion's health. The downside to this ability is that it is relatively short range since Nautilus has to be pretty much on top of the target he wants to hit with it.
Depth Charge
Depth Charge is a single target ability that can be cast from a medium range knocking up enemies on the way to it's target, and the selected target.

This is Nautilus's main engage ability, it singles and basically is a here comes the engage alarm. Expect enemies to flash away or use their peel abilities to get away from you before you can land an easy Dredge Line hook after the targeted enemy is knocked up. The cooldown on Depth Charge is very low, so don't be scared to use it especially early game, if you use it and get a Flash it's a win, leave it at that wait for the cooldown and cast it again once it's up.

The only way to incorrectly cast Depth Charge is to use it on the wrong target it, or not get it off during a fight, if you are using it to engage on a tank rather than an enemy carry it's probably not the best use, you can cast it on the enemy back line, and knock up the frontline champions in front of them with Depth Charge's path to the targeted carry.

Nautilus's abilities allow you to apply a lot of CC over a long period of time during fights if you layer it properly. Try out spacing ability timings out, say if you throw an ULT and hook at the same time you've wasted some time on the individual CC. The better you perfect this the long the enemies will actually be CC'd for, making it easier for your allies to follow up on.

Maxing E Riptide into Q Dredge Line gives you a lot of initial burst onto the target you engage onto, if you are losing you can consider maxing W Titan's Wrath 2nd, since it will give you a slightly bigger shield, but even maxing it doesn't give you a lot of defense, especially against lots of fed enemies.

Mechanics / Buffers
  • You can reset auto attack with W Titan's Wrath
  • After casting Q Dredge Line once it connects to a champion or a wall you can buffer another any ability immediately, you can make good use of this by Q'ing Dredge Line a wall then casting Riptide while running away to slow enemies chasing you.
  • Moving into / Flashing into the enemy carry then Auto Attacking them applying Staggering Blow and rooting them will set you up for an instant ULT Depth Charge into hook Dredge Line.
Starting Items

Starting items for Nautilus never changes, you will play out the early levels 1-4 every single game with Relic Shield, 2 Health Potions, and a Stealth Ward.

Relic shield gives Nautilus and his bot lane duo a good amount of sustain in lane, always use the Relic Shield on Cannon or Melee Minions since they will give you the most gold. Relic Shield's execute on minions lets you control the minion wave somewhat.

Early Build Path

> targon's brace >

Even if you haven't completed the 500g quest to gain wards for Remnant of the Aspect you can still upgrade it, for Nautilus the amount of health it gives is very useful along with the CDR. Since you will be running Magical Footwear you will get free boots which you can sit on until you complete Zeke's Convergence or if the game's tempo is speeding up you can purchase Mobility Boots. The later you go into the match with free boots the more valuable the defensive boot options in Ninja Tabi & Mercury's Treads become.

If you recalled around level 4-5, and have enough gold for targon's brace + Refillable Potion, than you should consider the purchase. Refillable Potion gives you a lot of sustain in lane, and through out the Early to Mid game, and can be sold later in the game.


Remnant of the Aspect it gives Nautilus a lot of health, and an extra ward for vision control, which is the entirety of Mid Game play. Nautilus doesn't have to rush other completed items either.

Gives lots of Armor and Magic resist, and adds extra damage to your binded ally (most likely your ADC) when you engage, and a small slow to all enemies around you after you ULT. Zeke's Convergence has a good amount of utility, and is very cheap.

Best 3rd item, during the Mid-Late game is the time you will likely be able to purchase Knight's Vow is the time in which the extra Armor it offers you and your binded ally will be most important, the healing / damage absorption it offers is whatever, it's mostly a good purchase for Nautilus because it's cheap and gives Armor + Cooldown Reduction during the Mid - Late Game.

Gives lot of Magic Resist and some armor, and active gives team a shield based on the casters bonus health & allies level. You want to purchase Locket of the Iron Solari later in the game because it gains more value later in the game. Nautilus doesn't benefit from early Magic Resist as much as he does early Armor in most matchups, and the shield from Locket is more impactful and bigger late game.

This is the only Magic resist item Nautilus needs, building items such as Spirit Visage or Adaptive Helm are to expensive and don't help your allies.

Gargoyle Stoneplate is a great last item, it makes Locket of the Iron Solari's shield massive if you make good use Gargoyle Stoneplate's active when around 3 champions you Nautilus will gain a lot of bonus health, armor, and magic resist temporarily. Casting Locket of the Iron Solari's active during that duration will give you and your allies a vastly bigger shield. Beyond that building an item late game that gives you Armor and Magic resist is nice, it's cheap, and it's active gives you the ability to temporarily tank all 5 enemy champions.

Early Game

Level 1 Nautilus's hook Dredge Line makes it very easy to invade Staggering Blow helps to single out 1 target, or is useful CC if a 5v5 was to break out during an invade. Invading into the side of the jungle in which the enemy jungler is going to start will increase your likelihood of running into an enemy champion and is also easier to coordinate your team to.

Give a good leash to your jungler (to about 300HP), a good read on when you should move to lane is by watching the minion wave on the Minimap and when the waves touch each other you can start moving to the Bot Lane, if you miss the first 3 melee minions dying you will be down on EXP, you don't want to miss minions.

Once you get to lane you can go for neutral hooks level 1, aggressive hooks level 1 will most likely have no follow up and put you off sides. The matchups change what you should or shouldn't do, so pay attention to what the enemy champions can do level 1 and make a decision on what you should or shouldn't do.

If you save both Relic Shield stacks for the 2nd minion wave than you can likely get better heals from it, but more importantly will get a quicker push for level 2, you get level 2 by killing all 3 Melee minions on the 2nd minion wave. If you get level 2 before the enemy you can get a good trade onto the enemy if you land hook.

Don't play the laning phase overly aggressive, you can't get a lot of value out of Nautilus by playing like this. Don't play completely passive either Nautilus isn't Braum. What Nautilus is good at doing during the laning phase is punishing the enemies mispositioning because he has the hook Dredge Line which allows you to immediately catch out an enemy to far forward or out of position. Play to Punish.

Nautilus is very bad at getting out of ganks especially early game you and your ADC won't have the damage to turn a fight most likely. So it's important to not be unsessarly to far forward, do you really need to stare at the enemy with the minion wave at their tower? Just stand in your bush in the Bot Lane, or full concede to your tower if you feel / know you are in danger.

Nautilus has a good trade into most lanes with a hook Dredge Line + auto attack trade level 1, and a good power spike level 4 with 2 points in Riptide look to capitalize on these during the laning phase, other than that you will likely just be playing idle.

When you land a hook Dredge Line or get onto an enemy than you should look to do as much damage as possible a basic combo ( Dredge Line > Riptide > Auto Attack > Titan's Wrath > Auto attack > move into the enemy > Auto Attack.

ADC's ability to follow up.

Different ADCs will be able to follow up on Nautilus's engage to different degrees, understanding which champions are good and not good at different stages of the lane with Nautilus will come with time.

What's more important for you to practice is not only watching the enemy bot laners and trying to punish their mispositioning with an engage, but also watch your Ally ADC to see if they will be near you to follow up on your CC.

With any CC champion, if you CC'd a target and got not follow up, you didn't CC them. If you got a 5 man Malphite ULT and your entire team was in another lane, what happens? Nobody dies and they all turn on you and you die.

The power of CC in League of Legends is that it enables your ally champions that otherwise don't have good options of dealing their damage to be given brief timing windows to deal their damage without any counter play / threat from the enemy.

Mid Game

Mid Game on Nautilus support plays you should continue laning with your ADC regardless if the lane you and your ADC are farming is Bot, Mid, or Top lane, even when the Mid Game starts you shouldn't perma roam on Nautilus even with Mobility Boots. Mobility Boots help you move around the map and start / respond to fights.

During the Mid Game you should look to ward wherever you are your ADC are going to be farming, if you are moving top side get a ward in the pixel bush left of Mid Lane, and in the enemy tri brush Top Lane. If you are farming Mid lane ward both sides of Mid Lane, and maybe get a ward into the enemies jungle where to spot out the jungler, or in your jungler to spot a Top Lane / Mid Lane roaming from a side lane to gank the Mid Lane. You have to recall to refresh the amount of wards on Remnant of the Aspect, you want to Reset when there is no minion wave and your allies are under no threat and when you aren't giving up objectives on the map.

Nautilus's ULT Depth Charge is on a very low cooldown, especially with 20% CDR from Remnant of the Aspect + Zeke's Convergence. So you have the ability to drop it a ton throughout the Mid Game. Again you should be looking to punish enemies, with Depth Charge you can somewhat force onto enemies without committing onto them. If you channel Depth Charge onto an enemy you can get a Flash from them without having to cast any other abilities or put yourself at risk. Flash cooldown is 5 Minutes. Depth Charge is a little under 2 minutes during the Mid Game.

Keep farming Relic Shield stacks, during the Mid Game Relic Shield is more so for gold and wave control rather than for the heal. If you have a feeling / know that a fight may start soon you could save 1-2 Relic stacks for the heal during a potential fight. You may be moving around the map a good amount and not be in a lane for a considerable amount of time, so just use all Relic stacks to get as much gold for the refreshed timer, and to get the gold while you can.
Late Game

When you enter the Late Game pay attention to itemization (who has good items and who doesn't) and levels on all champions. It will really sho in the Late Game if someone over roamed to didn't farm enough as they will be down in Gold & Experience there for making their champion weaker. Observing these factors will help you make decisions around taking / forcing fights, or which champions to focus / ignore.

As a Support your itemization beyond Remnant of the Aspect Zeke's Convergence and Knight's Vow, will be earned through winning team fights throughout the Mid - Late Game. When building items Late Game always save a slot for Control Wards. It's everyone's job late game to carry a Control Ward if they can, but more so the Support's job since you will be able to carry it without giving up a meaningful item slot. Would you rather your top lane sell their completed item for a control ward? Of course not. When you hit full build it's a different story, but that will rarely happen as a Support in solo queue.

Late Game things get more brutal, death timers are longer, and everyone deals more damage to structures, so when you and your team wins a fight you will be able to take more without the enemy being able to respond. So it's very important to take the 1 good fight late game rather than every fight possible that you might partake in the Early - Mid game to try and gain advantages.

In the same way that Nautilus is bad at avoiding ganks, he is bad at being to far forward, since he's only escape is Dredge Line which is easily canceled or you won't have a wall to escape too. So be mindful of your position in lanes.

You Win late game by catching the enemy out and punishing them with your CC Dredge Line Depth Charge

If you are not the only engage on your team, you can look to use your ability to peel for your ally carries, especially if the enemy has champions that will likely dive onto your carries.



Roaming on any support is pretty simple, it's when you take a timing window in which your ADC is safe to have an impact somewhere else on the map. Nautilus's roams are effective simply because he offers a lot of CC and damage that is hard to miss, but cost Nautilus's position.

So when should you roam is very, very easy don't over think it, and don't over do it.
  • When the Bot Lane wave is pushed into the enemy tower
  • When you have recalled and can move to any lane
  • When your ADC is dead / recalling and you would be alone bot lane
  • When the enemy laners are pushed up

These are all good times to roam, how effective that particular roam will be is affect by literally everything on the map, the minion wave positions in Bot lane & the lane you are ganking, the likelyhood of the gank, the HP, Mana, level values of your ally laner compared to the enemy laner. Moving with your Jungler also helps pull off a gank. Some ADC champions such as Ezreal have abilities to farm the minion wave from long range safely, others such as Kai'Sa will be zoned completely if you leave.

When you do get a roam off, look to either recall and reset bot, or to immediately walk back to the bot lane. Do NOT overstay doing pointless things or you will cost your ADC CS.

When you leave lane you will also be missing Relic stacks so gold, and experience from the minion wave. Basically the longer you stay in Bot Lane the more levels and gold you will have.

Defensive warding is warding on your side of the map
Neutral Warding is in the river / lane bushes.
Offensive warding is warding into the enemies side of the map (past the river).

When you should or shouldn't ward depends on your allies location and the enemies location / potential location. Look at the map and think.

Control Ward, Control wards are to deny the enemy vision, not to give yourself extra vision. Especially on a champion such as Nautilus you can abuse the fog of war to surprise the enemies and engage on them unexpectedly.

Throughout the Mid - Late game there will be moments of no action in which it is optimal for you to drop 3 wards around an objective, then recall to refresh the ward count on your Remnant of the Aspect and return to your team.
The Hook
Nautilus's Hook hitbox is very strange, since it interacts with Terrain as well as Champions, which can result in some w e i r d things happening.

First I would like to go over my estimated hook hitbox, since I haven't done exact pixel by pixel study on it, I just know how it feels here's some visuals that somewhat display how the hook will feel.

As you can see in this the Middle of the hook is in a "T" Shape and then has 2 blank spaces, then 1 line on each side. This is why it can look like your hook goes through someone but not hit cause it can, that being said it can also go slightly past someone, but be thrown at an angle so that one of the edges of the hooks it.

As the Hook animation twist you have to think of the hitbox being 2D, also notice how the hook is very long, this is a HUGE advantage that Nautilus has over Thresh / Blitzcrank, the balancing factor is that your hook can't go through terrain / Minions, but in an empty lane Mid / Late game you can hook the length of almost an entire lane.


Like I mentioned above you hook does connect with Terrain that can be used to your Advantage. It's pretty unnecessary to use it more than twice when getting back to lane faster, but always be considering if you should use it or not when getting to fights, also you can do this.
Also your hook's hitbox on terrain gets some getting used to.

Hooking Champions

Your hook works the same on minions and it does for champions, so as you can see even when you hit the hook with the outer lines it will center the hook on the enemy champion, so try to throw your hook so that the "T" and one of the outer lines potentially hit.

It's also important to note that the Hook channels inside of you, which makes it easier to aim compared to Blitz / Thresh where it channels on a side of you.

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Season 9 Nautilus Support Guide - High Burst & Good Roam

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