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Nidalee Build Guide by profet

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League of Legends Build Guide Author profet

The Ranked AD Nidalee

profet Last updated on November 10, 2012
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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: 0

Strength of Spirit

Utility: 9

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Nidalee Paths

Our beloved Nidalee is a very viable champion and she is playable in alot of styles, The most common is the AD/ Bruiser Nidalee, The AP Nidalee and the support Nidalee, Jungling nidalee is possible but it's not the greatest choice for ranked.

My guide is specializaed on the AD Nidalee which is perfect for solotop due to her insane mobility combined with the damage output nidalee can do, she is able to put big pressure on the enemys.

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You and your lane

Playing top as Nidalee in ranked games I want to feel control of where my opponents are, therefore I always make sure to keep the river below me secured with my traps, Depending on which side I am the locations of the traps is different, I will be going further into the locations of traps.

However now that our lane is secured we ony have to deal with the single player thats on our lane. A big advantage playing Nidalee is as I said in the chapter above your mobility is great, Since your passive gives you movement speed in brushes you mostly want to stay around the brushes at the top. Try to harass your opponent using the movement speed rushing out of the brush and throwing a spear or two then go back into the brush..

Its not suggested to get off a 1-2 shots harass if your missing out on about 3 last hits, Last hitting as Nidalee is overall pretty simple as AD since your normal spears hurt alot and at lvl 6 in Catform its as simple as breathing.

Pushing your lane with Nidalee is not such a big deal if you are lvl 6 and have a ward or a traps. You'll probably get away. Nidalee AD is though a great pusher, If you manage to get your opponent top lane very low by using your harass and healing you up with your E spell you will be able to force the enemy team's jungler to hold lane, which is a very positive thing for you and your team, It causes the mid and botlane to have no pressure from the jungler and theyre able to play 1v1 without having to worry about ganks.

If you cause your opponent to go back to base but the jungler doesn't show up I suggest pushing the tower and trying to take it down asap, Your E spell will give you attackspeed and as your AD you will easily burst the tower down in 1-3 pushes.

Some people might argue about your not able to lasthit if you take their tower since if they never push you will always have to be on the enemy side of the map, But my arguement is that as Nidalee you are able to place a few traps around the Enemy Red/Blue depending on what side your on and a ward around there or at the River, you wont have to worry about ganks since you will spot them in time, and even if you dont spot them the chances of escaping in pretty big if you reach some kind of brush.

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Summoner Spells

Three good summoner spells for the Top AD Nidalee I think is Flash,Ignite and Teleport.

I'd say FlashIs the one summoner spell I most likely always use when I play Nidalee because I get the opportunity to double jump over certain walls, I can use catform over one wall and then flash over the other if my enemies flash over one wall.

Ignite Is a really good spell against certain champs thats got heal for example Swain with his ult, Or Tryndamere with his heal, If you face a tryndamere top you could just use your Ignite when you see that his ulti as about to go down, He will probably try to spin away and then heal but the heal wont be enough to kill him because of the reduced healing.

Teleport is also great with Nidalee as she is able to push really hard without any1 able to stop her from pushing, So she can push toplane for example, and teleport down into a fight or to kill the dragon.

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Map Awareness

Map awareness is something you need to make sure you have even if your not playing the Support role. As mentioned earlier I always try to keep a track on where the enemy jungler might be, to do so without having to buy wards during early game I place my traps on the certain Locations I expect the enemy jungler to show up at. I will in this picture show you where about I prefer to have my traps if possible, If the jungle is defended Its not always the best option to enter enemy jungle and take a risk to place traps, But this is where I prefer to have my traps. Picture will be shown in next chapter.

Map awareness is not all about placing wards and traps, Its also keeping an eye on the other lanes and actually noticing if other players disappear from their lanes, If the mid champ has been gone for a while, be on your guard and dont play to offensive.

Another thing you want to keep track on is where the enemy jungler is, If you know where the jungler stars, or atleast have a guess on where he starts, you can estimate where he should be, for example if you either CV'ed the jungler or assume he starts at bluebuff, and he hasnt ganked after 2minutes into the game, you can assume that the jungler depending on side is at the top or bot jungle, and therefor adapt your playstyle.

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Trap Locations


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Mana Consumption

If you play Nidalee AD your Mp5 ( Mana per 5 seconds) Wont be very high, so you won't have that high mana regeneration, therefor I would suggest not to use your abilities too much, since you want to be able to heal in critical moments, I also strongely suggest to only use your mana mostly for heals, and once in a while a spear or place a new trap. Your spear won't deal that much of a damage and it will for sure not be one of your stronger damage outputs.

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When do I go catform? That's a pretty hot question.
It depends alot tbh, What youre facing, who your up against? Your facing a melee class like tryndamere for example, who has no range spells except for his slow, Id suggest you dont have to go catform that often, stay in your normal form and keep pumping out spears on him,if he would use his spin towards use quickly turn into cat and burst him then run away, If youre facing a meleeclass with range spells for example Kayle, Try to throw spears at him and if he closes up on you, jump him with catform use ur burst and then take a step back heal up, dont miss any last hits though!

Facing a range class like teemo? Try harassing him at first and then heal up , If hes close enough you can always use ur advantage by using the bush and then jump him with catform and burst him. Its alot dependant on what youre facing

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Juking is one great way to loose enemies, not only with Nidalee, even though she is great at it.
Juking your opponents for those who dont know it, is when you suddnely change direction while the enemy lose vision of you, most likely at a corner, or when you enter a brush, it may also occur with champions like graves who has a spell to lower enemies sight radius, or such ulties as nocturnes, however juking is really viable with Nidalee as she gains movement speed in brush, together with your movement speed from masteries and some boots, you will pretty much be juking the **** out of your enemies.

Nidalee also has a jump in catform, Her W the spell which casts traps in human form, is some sort of a smaller jump in catform, She is able to jump over certain small walls in catform, which makes juking and playing around with enemies, even more funnier.

Youre able to kite around your enemies using brushes and these walls making your team able to catch up the fight and your able to turn around and burst, Just keep them fools busy running.
This is not me in the picture. Cred to Xai. Picture taken from google.

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Why should I roam?
Because Nidalee has very nice mobility shes able to take herself thru jungle and therefor she is a pretty good roamer, If youre lane is pushed and next creep wave isnt coming very soon, make your way down to mid and try pulling off a gank, while moving downward the lake place one new trap on your way to the gank and one on the way back. If your mid champ has some kind of stun or lockdown you can easily nail all your spells in catform and deal a great deal of damage. Aswell as that you can always grab the golems on your way back to lane ( unless your jungler is near and wants them ) at lvl 6 killing the golems as nidalee is a piece of cake. before lvl 6 i dont suggest staying to kill the golems as it will take you too long time.

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Playing as top you need to keep an eye on drake, If you notice that botlane has control of what theyre doing, and your jungler is bot, you can call out for them to do dragon, all you do is pushing your lane and then as you have really nice mobility with Nidalee you can start moving down towards drake, as you have all 5 around drag at the time the other team has 1 top clearing the push, you can really fast just pick up the drake, especially as AD nidalee with Wriggler's Lantern which has a chance of dealing extra damage to minions. Keep an eye on such opportunities because its going to give your team a great advantage

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Its hard to counter Nidalee as she has a great harass with her normal attacks and she always has her heal, Aswell as that you cant really burst her either hence she will just run away into the bush and you'll never catch her. A good Nidalee is hard to counter but a gangplank nailing some q's with a few crits or so could probably take her down. If Nidalee is played correctly with harass every champ will a hard time.

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21/0/9 Why do I go for 21 offensive and 0 Defensive 9 Utility.
Im playing Nidalee AD why do I go for the Magicpen and reduced cooldowns?

Ill tell you why, I go for the reduced cooldown which I believe is really good once i get my catform, therefor I take the 10% magicpen that goes with it because it will add up abit with dmg to my spears, I usually hit a couple of spears during one game and the more they hurt the better for me. I choose to go offensive masteries because I believe that the early game is alot easier to win the more damage output youve got, and because Nidalee is a champion much reliable on your harass its good to actually deal some damage when your harassing. I went for my remaining 9 points in Utility instead of Defense even though I like to call myself playing Nidalee as a Bruiser. The 9 points in Utility I only spent because I wanted the 2% movement
speed and the prolong buff mastery, I believe that the movement speed is a really good match with Nidalee.

Other options to go with Nidalee? Ofcourse there is, but I would strongely recommend this one.
You can build Nidalee as more "Tanky" Bruiser with the 9/21/0 build but You will lose alot of your damage output and harass early game. I think your AD Nidalee will be as tanky as she needs to be with an atmog.

We also have the AP Nidalee which can be built in two directions 9/0/21 or 21/0/9 But thats another story if youre looking to play AP Nidalee.

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Why do I choose runes the way I do? I went for Attack damage quints and marks, armor seals and magic res glyphs. Well the runes for Ad/bruiser Nidalees varies alot from person to person, Since I am an offensive player I like to have that extra burst dmg and therefor I choose to take flat AD quints and marks, But since I lack the defensive both on my masteries and runes now I choose to grab magic resistance and armor just to be more sustain in lane, and not having a tryndamere 4 shotting me down.

Other setup of runes that might work is that you may go with Armorpen marks / quints or if you head for really defensive masteries you might want fully offensive runes. Its really just a players choice, Form your own playstyle, what you feel comfortable with. If you just have a balanced mix between offensive and defensive I know you will do just fine out there.

Another question about runes: Flat or Increase until lvl 18. This I believe is also a player's choice, but I prefer winning early game, so I mostly play with flat runes.

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The items showed above at the suggested items bought doesent always have to be the best items to be bought, What items you want to buy is alot game from game, If they have alot of magic damage you might want to consider a force of nature etc.

Or if your team has a pure tank like rammus for example going full tank, an atmog is enough health/defensive build and you can go for more damage

Another thing to be said about items is, That I never follow a certain pattern of what I buy when I play Nidalee, I am buying what I am in need of at that certain time or depending on how much gold I currenty got. Lets say I am planning on buying my atmas impaler before my warmog but I already have enough gold for one full warmog and just enough for one piece for the atma, I will probably go for that, The longer you play the game and the better maths and memory you have, You will recognize items and start planning what you will buy next.

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Early Game

Possible Early Game Items:The Boots, Together with 3 Hp pots, Or Doran's BladeI suggest trying out the Doran's blade if you dont like boots.

Another thing I usually do sometimes is going b when I get 450 gold and I am able to buy the Vampiric Scepter It is giving me the lifesteal I need to be sustain in lane and able to stay and lasthit.

Around 10 minutes into the game or even earlier I strongely suggest building the Wriggler's Lantern, though I have tried to build the Brutalizer before / Instead of Wrigglers Lantern , Its a really nice item for the damage but youre lacking the map awareness and you cannot play as aggresive. I also tried building the Giant's belt As I buy the Giant's belt im not so worried about the ganks since my health is high and my chance of escaping is pretty high but I.m still not able to push my opponent out of the lane.

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Mid Game

Mid game you have alot of choices, and its at this moment you can carry your team, you need to make the right decisions what to buy, Its alot gold dependant also.ยจ

You have alot of options early game and so you do mid game my suggestions and what I normally do is starting to build towards my Warmog and my Atma's Impaler, But there is exceptions, You can buy Sheenbefore you finish your atmog or you might finish your Youmuu for the extra damage. Also to be considered is items like Leviathan or Sword of the Occult Another item which isnt used or seen to often is Hexdrinker, I dont usually use it but I should have used it this one game when I faced a Swain, It would have been really helpful, And it probably is against any AP hero you face toplane, such as Swain, Kennen or other AP top.

Mid game domination isn't all about the items though, Even if you'll get far if you buy the right items. Its alot about ganking and such.

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Late Game

Late Game is alot depending game to game but If I'm not getting my regular build I would get Items such as Frozen Malletmay be useful against some teams if youre team have very little cc and slows. Force of Nature , Possible item if the enemy team is playing with a Double AP setup top and mid.

One item I've been experimenting with is the (Ie) Infinity edge You'll crit and for sure pump out alot of damage.

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Who am I?

Eyeraze // Eu WestManly Man