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Nilah Build Guide by LoLEnryu

ADC The ONLY Challenger Nilah in NA: In-depth guide on how to climb with Nilah

ADC The ONLY Challenger Nilah in NA: In-depth guide on how to climb with Nilah

Updated on August 3, 2023
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League of Legends Build Guide Author LoLEnryu Build Guide By LoLEnryu 111 6 148,677 Views 8 Comments
111 6 148,677 Views 8 Comments League of Legends Build Guide Author LoLEnryu Nilah Build Guide By LoLEnryu Updated on August 3, 2023
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Runes: Standard Page

Legend: Bloodline
Last Stand

Magical Footwear
Future's Market

+10% Attack Speed
+9 Adaptive (5.4 AD or 9 AP)
+6 Armor


1 2 3 4 5 6
vs. CC team comps
LoL Summoner Spell: Cleanse


LoL Summoner Spell: Flash


Threats & Synergies

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

Champion Build Guide

The ONLY Challenger Nilah in NA: In-depth guide on how to climb with Nilah

By LoLEnryu
About Me
Hey everyone! I'm Enryu and I am currently a Challenger Nilah main on the NA server.

I am currently 1100+LP on my main and 500LP on my smurf account playing mostly Nilah.

I make Youtube videos and try to stream as often as I can! Please check out my socials if you have the chance to.

General Game Advice

Early Game

Try to farm as many minions as you can without taking too much poke.
Just know that as long as you get a majority of the minions by minion wave 3, you will hit level 3. The enemy need to wait for wave 4 in order to hit level 3 so make use of that advantage if you can.

If you have an engage support, play off their engage (ex. Nautilus hook), if you have an enchanter support just try to play safe as you will be focused first if you engage on the enemy bot lane. If the enemies are focusing your support / if your support gets caught, you can go in as Nilah and burn summoner spells / kill the enemy. Make sure to use your W only for yourself when you are being focused.


Focus on catching as many minions / jungle camps as possible and play for your 3 item-spike, after 3 items Nilah should be able to carry any fights as long as you play well and avoid the most important CC abilities on the enemy team (ex. Qiyana R).

Late Game

Late game should be really easy as Nilah becomes a God in the late game with the ability to one-shot most champions and deal with tanks really easily while being able to sustain against burst.
Item Explanation
Nilah counts as a melee champion and therefore gets the full benefits of Eclipse. A shield + damage + movement speed every 6s makes Nilah a lot harder to kill and makes skirmishing a lot easier throughout the game, making it easier to snowball.

Good vs. long range threats that can escape Nilah's combo with a bit of health left, use Galeforce to finish them off.

The Collector:
Not much to say here, Riot gave collector 6 extra lethality for no reason
(18 total now) which makes the item even better on Nilah. Giving lethality + AD + Crit Chance to Nilah which is every stat that Nilah wants.

Lord Dominik's Regards:
Extremely powerful paired with Nilah's innate armor penetration bonuses + helps deal with tanks/bruisers in the mid-game. Alternative is :mortalreminder: if the enemy have an extreme amount of healing but honestly Nilah isn't the best champion for applying Grievous Wounds so only get this if your teammates refuse to buy it.

Riot removed the shield but it's even better now because Bloodthirster gives 18% flat lifesteal + bonus AD scaling with level (the scaling is a bit weird but mid-game you'll get around 20). 18% lifesteal is insane and will make Nilah tank more than 2x her HP in one fight guaranteed. It is the only lifesteal item that you need on Nilah (pls don't build shieldbow or raveonus, both items are horrible compared to Bloodthirster).

Death's Dance:
Not much to say, Nilah is a melee champion and Death's Dance helps her survive burst, combined with Bloodthirster it makes Nilah basically immortal.

Maw of Malmortius:
Still the most viable item against AP heavy team comps.

Spear of Shojin:
Very expensive luxury item but also VERY good for Nilah in the late game. Shojin will reduce Nilah's base ability cooldowns by 30ish% in the late game (minus 1s cd on Q and 3s cd on E) which makes Nilah do even more damage in fights and gives movement speed + AD + health which are decent stats in the late game.

Very good if you are playing for split push / your team is so behind that you can only get an advantage through splitting.

Statikk Shiv:
A decent first item that is good if you feel like the game won't be chaotic and you just want to farm as much as possible.

Serpent's Fang:
This is a very good item if you are against something like Seraphine + Sona bot lane or even Ivern in the jungle + enemy has a shield support. Nilah gets the full bonus of Serpent's fang (50% shieldbreak) compared to 35% for ranged so it's a value item on her.
Frequently Asked Questions
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Item doesn't scale on Nilah, there are much better options.
Ravenous Hydra gives a lot of AD if you have stacks yes but the lifesteal on it is horrible and the AOE is really bad for damage unless you're playing Howling Abyss.

Nilah already has a ton of waveclear in her kit and she does not need more help from Ravenous to clear waves. The lifesteal on the item is horrible and it has no crit scaling, just buy Bloodthirster it is a way better item than Ravenous Hydra is.

"But I do a lot of damage and the item is beginner friendly?"
No the damage is coming from other items it is not because of hydra and no the item isn't beginner friendly because it is just straight up not a good item on Nilah it's like you're pretending your playing Rock Lee in game but with the weights on.
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Nilah's Q cooldown stays the same regardless of ability rank, and it only gains 5 damage per rank up + deals more damage with more AD but we don't have too much of that early game anyways. However, If we max E first we get drastically shorter cooldown and more guaranteed damage per every E use.

"Don't you lose out on wave clear and scaling?"
No, Nilah E is very good for wave clearing actually, I don't think people realize that her Q + autos aren't the only tools for wave clear. Also you will not get a ton of crit until 2 items at least which is about time you start maxing Q after E is fully maxed out, so the timing checks out.
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Doran's Shield vs Doran's Blade -- WHAT ABOUT LONG SWORD / CULL?

Doran's Shield is good when enemy have 2 ranged bot laners (ex. Cait Lux), Nilah gets the full benefits of Doran's Shield because Nilah is a melee champion, it's gonna be much better than wasting 150g on refillable/3 health potions.

Cull is just... not an item Nilah should ever buy because even in a "free-scale" lane you will still be pressured by the enemy bot lane just because of pure range, and if there is a lane you can fight in (ex. you have a Blitzcrank), you can buy Doran's Blade for the all-in stats + some sustain. If you don't trust that your support can effectively start fights, just start Doran's Shield anyways.
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Best supports are any supports that can displacement enemy into Nilah(ex. hook supports), this makes it so Nilah can get onto the enemy without having to dash to a minion to get onto the enemy (which makes her lose damage in her combo). Nilah's support should also have the ability to tank damage / start fights without Nilah having to walk up first which allows the enemy to focus her.

Therefore with these criteria the best options are hook supports such as Pyke, Blitzcrank, Nautilus.

There are also other champions with really good synergy with Nilah in other ways without hooks such as Sejuani / Aurelion Sol.

Sejuani -- her e passive procs on every Nilah auto and Sej has insane engage / cc on every ability which makes Nilah's life extremely easy.

Aurelion Sol -- able to poke the enemy + help Nilah farm through his black hole ability which draws all minions together and both Nilah & ASol are able to scale together. Both champions also have great synergy with their ultimates, hitting one basically guarantees the other. Aurelion Sol tends to buy Rylai's first item which also helps Nilah a lot with sticking onto the enemy. No this is not troll.

Enchanters such as Soraka / Lulu are fine because they are really good enchanters, but other enchanters like Nami + Yuumi are just straight up useless honestly, you can get away with it if the enemy are bad or if the Nami player is really good or w/e but that's about it.

Counterpick champions like Braum & Taric are always fine but should never be blinded with Nilah because it just makes the lane extremely difficult if the enemy support has counter.
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You buy defensive items such as Death's Dance (for AD burst) or Maw (for AP burst).

Steelcaps is generally a good option in the early-mid game if the enemy are heavy AD and you feel like you need the extra survivability.

Death's Dance should always be a 4th or 5th item choice after core 3-item spike is achieved. Maw can be bought earlier (like right after collector or even before collector if there is urgency in the game). You can straight up buy a hexdrinker after finishing mythic if the enemy are HEAVY ap and magic resist is just extremely valuable. Otherwise, just prioritize damage.

Bloodthirster as 4th item is already a good option for defense because you will lifestealing a TON of HP back with the item, Nilah is basically a bruiser once you buy Bloodthirster.
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Dirk + Zeal is an extremely valuable combo item spike for Nilah in the early game due to the raw stats that Nilah get which boosts her damage by a lot.

Zeal is also more value on Nilah than any other ADC because Zeal's crit chance isn't just 15% RNG, it is converted into ACTUAL damage into Nilah's Q ability and gives armor penetration + healing on Nilah's R ability.

Zeal is also a replacement that lets us skip T2 boots and we can just use the inspiration tree's runes (Futures_Market + Magical_Footwear) to purchase offensive items earlier than other ADC champions.
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League of Legends Build Guide Author LoLEnryu
LoLEnryu Nilah Guide
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The ONLY Challenger Nilah in NA: In-depth guide on how to climb with Nilah

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