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Nasus Build Guide by TheNinjaRoid

Ultimate Nasus Guide from a Nasus OTP - Patch 9.9

By TheNinjaRoid | Updated on May 1, 2019
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Runes:

Resolve
Grasp of the Undying
Demolish
Conditioning
Overgrowth

Inspiration
Biscuit Delivery
Cosmic Insight
Bonus:

+1-10% CDR (lvls 1-18)
+6 Armor
+15-90 HP (lvls 1-18)

Spells:

1 2
Primary Summoners
LoL Summoner Spell: Ghost

Ghost

LoL Summoner Spell: Teleport

Teleport

LeagueSpy Logo
Top Lane
Ranked #15 in
Top Lane
Win 52%
Get More Stats

Threats & Synergies

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

Champion Build Guide

Ultimate Nasus Guide from a Nasus OTP - Patch 9.9

By TheNinjaRoid
Introduction
Hello, I'm iFetchStacks (changed my summoner name). Let me start off by saying that I will be making frequent changes to this guide, making it look nicer over time. Yes, I am aware that there is a TON of words at the moment. I just wanted to get everything on here. I'll get around to charts and stuff eventually. My goal is to make this the best Nasus guide on MobaFire, which will take some time, so if you have any suggestions/comments, feel free to let me know. I'm not very good with coding yet.

Anyway, if you couldn't already tell, I am a Nasus main. I have been playing this game consistently since Gnar was released in August 2014, and consistently playing Nasus since around the release of Kalista.

My rank? Between Bronze 1-3. I can play any position with fairly high confidence except for Mid, and trust me, you DO NOT want me to be your Mid Laner. I also don't really do much ranked, although I probably should start. As of writing this, I have approximately 750,000 mastery points on Nasus alone, with Shyvana coming in at around 437,000, and Leona coming in at about 183,000.

Why do I play Nasus so much?

Because I like his play style - sit back and farm until you can make an impact mid-late game. Plus, I think it's really satisfying to last hit things with his Siphoning Strike. He also has a very high win rate when you've played more than 50 games, sitting in at around 55%.
Pros/Cons of Nasus Back to Top
Pros
+ Simple kit.
+ Late game is disgusting to deal with. If allowed to split push and farm, he can easily get enough damage to two shot your carries.
+ His Siphoning Strike damage works on towers. If allowed to farm, he can take out a tower with just two. Demolish also procs with it.
+ Really tanky and can easily deal a ton of damage with zero damage items.
+ His Wither is super strong. It slows movement speed AND attack speed.
+ If you don't have a game plan, he's almost impossible to deal with.

Cons
- Extremely weak early game.
- Easily kited.
- If kept off minions, or falls behind, he is pretty much useless.
- Bad team fighting if enemy team is super mobile or has tons of crowd control.
- Early game, he is countered by almost everyone in the game, due to his lack of damage/hard crowd control (stun, silence, polymorph, etc).
Team Composition Back to Top
What team compositions does Nasus fit well in?

Honestly, he fits well in almost any team composition, but he is best in any of the following team compositions. (This includes Ally and Enemy team compositions):
1. A team that has high CC.
2. A team that is capable of 4v5 if he wants to split push most of the game.
3. A team that is capable of rotating if he needs help getting out of a sticky situation if the need arises.
4. A team that is capable of applying pressure in the other lanes to pull the enemy jungler away from his lane so he doesn't fall behind due to being camped.
5. A squishy enemy team.
6. An enemy team with a lack of hard CC.
7. A team that has enough long range wave clear. So you can split push if your team is behind, and get pressure in side lanes.

What team compositions should you avoid picking Nasus?

There's not many team compositions he is bad into, but here's some examples. (This includes Ally and Enemy team compositions):
1. A team with a lack of hard CC.
2. An enemy team that can block your Siphoning Strike.
3. A team composition where you need to peel for your carries, Nasus doesn't really have much peel.
4. An extremely tanky team. Nasus can't melt tanks very easily.
5. A team without any ranged champions, although this should never happen. If it does, PLEASE DODGE CHAMPION SELECT!

Any really good synergies with other champions?

Nasus doesn't have any synergies that give him a clear advantage, but generally goes well with anyone that can lock a team down, or a jungler that can either camp you and get you ahead, or pressure objectives or another lane to force the enemy jungler away from your lane.
Runes Back to Top
Which runes do I usually take?

This can and will vary depending on the matchup, but this is the rune set you will use in a majority of your games.

Grasp of the Undying: This is the keystone you will use in almost every game, because the % Max HP damage, healing and health increase is needed to help you survive lane and win duels.

Demolish: Why would you not take this rune? Nasus is very tanky, and Demolish scales with your Siphoning Strike damage and deals an extra 100 + 30% of your Max HP as damage on top of it.

Conditioning: If you wait 10 minutes, this one outscales the other options by a ridiculous amount, which makes this one just an obvious choice.

Overgrowth: Starts to pay off mid and late game, when you're strongest, and it'll amplify the effectiveness of your health items.

Biscuit Delivery: You can switch this one out for Magical Footwear, which will put you 300g ahead by getting free boots by 10 minutes. But if you're in a harder matchup, this sometimes helps you survive lane as well. 4 extra free potions throughout laning phase. Each restores 15% of your missing health AND mana. Consuming or selling each one permanently increases your mana cap by 40 mana. Especially useful if you find yourself using a lot of mana early game.

Cosmic Insight: The more cooldown reduction you have, the more you can farm up you Siphoning Strike damage.

Bonus: Depends on the matchup, but I typically go with:

1. +1-10% Cooldown Reduction (based on level)
2. +6 Armor
3. +15-90 HP (based on level)

Can other runes work on Nasus?

Honestly, almost any combination of runes can work, with the exception of Aftershock, due to his lack of hard CC. And no, death is not a form of hard CC...
Summoner Spells Back to Top
Teleport: I always take this spell when I am Top, because it can change the outcome of a fight dramatically. Sure, Flash is a big deal and can change a team fight, but Teleport determines everything from which objectives you can take, to whether or not you can fight, to where each individual player can and should be standing on the map.

Until 8.23, even just starting a Teleport then cancelling it could be enough to turn or stop a fight, or save your team’s bot lane. But, after the last preseason, Teleport can no longer be cancelled. And that’s probably a good thing.

Now, when you want to impact the map with a Teleport, you have to be absolutely sure it’s a good idea. No more faking a Teleport to get enemy teams to back off of a fight, or to bait Teleport out of your opponent, if you start a Teleport in season 9, you’re going to be teleporting to the target you clicked, unless the enemy uses hard CC on you.

This is the kind of change that, rather than making one play-style weaker, actually impacts the entire game itself. At the highest levels of the game, map movements will have to be more purposeful, while things like tower dives can be done with a little more confidence, knowing that the enemy team will have to either decide not to help the target of the dive, or commit everything to help them.

Ghost: Most of the time I take Ghost, because, not only does it have a shorter cooldown than Flash, but it allows you to catch someone easier, and it goes much farther than Flash. I also found that it helps you to kite a bit better when the enemy team is attempting to dive you (as long as it isn't 4-5 people), because it increases your movement speed. This doesn't mean Flash is a bad option, I just prefer Ghost.
Items Back to Top
Items:

While I will not go into depth on every item I listed at the beginning of this guide (don't have the patience to do that), I will go into the items you will get the most frequently. Did I miss an item you think I should add? Let me know!

Doran's Shield: Best for rough matchups, where the enemy is fairly pokey. (Teemo, Fiora, Jayce, Kennen, Kayle, Quinn, Urgot, Vayne, Gnar, etc.)

Mercury's Treads: These are generally the best boots for Nasus since you'll want minimal CC on yourself so you can get on their damage or get out of a sticky situation easier.

Ninja Tabi: Sometimes the enemy's AA damage is so high however that Ninja Tabi become the optimal choice; especially if you're against a full AD team.

Trinity Force: This is the best 1st item option for Nasus, since it gives so much CDR (and other things) and the Sheen passive synergizes so well with Siphoning Strike. Build in order of Sheen -> Phage -> Stinger for best results! Buy every game.

Spirit Visage: You should build this as your second item if you're either in a tank matchup, an AP matchup or vs a high AP comp. Otherwise you should usually build it as a 3rd item. If you're against a full AD comp you'll still want to build it at some point, but you should just build Kindlegem and delay upgrading it until you have enough armor. Also works with his passive.

Righteous Glory: This should be your second item vs AD matchups or vs high AD teams, or your 3rd item if you're going Spirit Visage before it. It's very good on Nasus as it helps you close the gap onto the enemy backline, something Nasus usually struggles with due to his lack of mobility and hard CC. Once you initially reach the backline your Wither and Righteous Glory slow should help you stick onto the carries with ease. If you still can't stick onto the carries, just get a [[randuin's omen], and use all 3 of them at the same time. They'll never move if you do. (insert winking face here)

Thornmail: Build this item when you want a way to deal with the enemy ADC's lifesteal, or the lifesteal/healing of the enemy you're split pushing against.

Randuin's Omen: This is an alternative to Thornmail for when the enemy ADC doesn't have much sustain, but deals a lot of damage through critical strikes. I also get this for the slow, and I sometimes even get Randuin's Omen AND Thornmail if the enemy ADC has both lifesteal and is doing damage through critical strikes.

Dead Man's Plate: This should usually be your final item against teams where you want to build even more armor. It makes you decently tanky while also increasing your mobility.

Adaptive Helm: An alternative final item, which you can optionally build even sooner, when you're against heavy magic damage. It helps especially vs champions like Cassiopeia, Ryze or Karthus who deal heavy magic damage DPS. Also great counter to Teemo.

Sterak's Gage: Get this if you're getting bursted or just want the extra damage from the item. Gives you an additional 50% of your base AD as bonus AD. Will give you more Tenacity when the Lifeline passive activates.
Abilities Back to Top
Soul Eater: Nasus drains his foe's spiritual energy, giving him a natural 12 / 18 / 24% lifesteal. This amount increases every 6 levels.

Siphoning Strike: Nasus's next attack will deal an additional 30 / 50 / 70 / 90 / 110 damage plus the extra permanently gained damage. Siphoning Strike permanently gains 3 damage whenever it kills a unit. This bonus is increased to 12 for champions, large monsters or large minions.

Wither: Nasus ages his target, slowing their movement speed by 35% and reducing it further to reach 47 / 59 / 71 / 83 / 95 % slow at the end of 5 seconds. The target's attack speed is also slowed by half the amount, initially slowed by 17.5% and increasing to 23.5 / 29.5 / 35.5 / 41.5 / 47.5 % over the duration. If the duration of the slow is reduced, the extra slow will be applied faster for it to reach its maximum at the end of the duration.

Spirit Fire: After a brief delay, a target area becomes desecrated for 5 seconds. Enemies caught in the area when the desecration occurs are dealt an initial burst of 55 / 95 / 135 / 175 / 215 (+60% of ability power) magic damage. Additionally, enemies in the area are dealt 11 / 19 / 27 / 35 / 43 (+12% of ability power) magic damage each second and have their armor reduced by 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 / 35% while in the area and for 1 extra second.

Fury of the Sands: Nasus empowers himself for 15 seconds, gaining 300 / 450 / 600 bonus health, 15 / 35 / 55 armor and magic resistance, increased size, and 175 range on his basic attacks for the duration.

While Nasus is empowered, he deals 3 / 4 / 5% (+ 1% per 100 AP) of target's maximum health as magic damage to all enemies around him each second, capped at 240, gains 1 / 2 / 3 bonus armor and magic resistance each second, and reduces Siphoning Strike's cooldown by 50%.

The following is very difficult to do consistently. If you're fast enough with it, you can blend your Siphoning Strike and Spirit Fire animations together, to make it look like a single ability which looks pretty cool IMO. You can also blend your Wither animation into your full Wither -> Spirit Fire -> Siphoning Strike combo for some serious awesomeness. Remember, your Spirit Fire mana cost is fairly high, so use it sparingly in lane, or you will never have mana when you need it.
Gameplay Back to Top
Early game:
At level 1 you'll be taking Siphoning Strike to begin stacking it up on minions. Remember: You get 3 stacks for melee/ranged minions and the smaller creatures in the jungle camps. You get 12 stacks for large monsters in the jungle camps, Baron/Dragon, and each time you kill a champion. Play extremely safe and avoid trading unless your enemy can't retaliate because they're busy last-hitting a minion; even then just poke them with a single AA and walk away. Avoid using Siphoning Strike for anything other than farming stacks early on, since its fairly weak at that stage and your focus is on becoming as big of a mid-late game threat as possible.

At level 2 you will want to take Spirit Fire. You'll continue laning the same, but you have the option of trading back hard with Spirit Fire -> Auto-Attack -> Siphoning Strike if you the enemy goes too ham trying to bully you to stop you farming your Siphoning Strike stacks.

At level 3, depending on the matchup you'll either put another point in Siphoning Strike to more effectively stack it, or take Wither to help defend yourself against aggressive enemy all-ins.


After you reach level 6, and get Fury of the Sands and have Sheen you can actually turn a lot of matchups around and get solo kills if the enemy underestimates you, since you become so tanky and Siphoning Strike gets such a low cooldown. For the most part you'll keep laning the same, focusing on farming, but you do always have that option of turning on your enemy if they go too aggressive, and you can even start to trade more aggressively yourself if the enemy laner is weak enough that you can start to bully them.

Mid/Late Game:
At around 300 stacks, and when you have a Sheen you're a turret eating machine. You excel in 1v1 situations and 1v2 depending on who the 2 are if you play it right. The best way to pressure the map as Nasus mid to late game, is splitpushing with your Teleport up to stop any Baron/Dragon plays from going on or to stop the other team from engaging onto your team. Just be aware if whomever is matching your splitpush can cancel your Teleport or not.

Nasus gets knocked around in teamfights, but with Fury of the Sands and your lifesteal you can tank an enemy team for a good chunk of time, which allows your back line to pop off. The later the game goes the harder teamfights get for Nasus, since you spike in power around the 2-4 item threshold. Nasus can teamfight and dive with the right team composition, but he's best played as a splitpusher.

In a majority of your games you'll still usually want to stay in a side lane and just split push, since it allows you to keep effectively stacking up your Siphoning Strike, you take towers so quickly, and if you're not already stronger at 1v1s than your enemy laner then it's only a matter of time until you will be. Split pushing is all about playing around Baron and Dragon's respawn timers.

You'll want to split push TOP if:

a) Baron is up but your TP is down.
b) Your TP is up, but baron is down and dragon is up/respawning soon.

You'll want to split push BOT if:

a) Baron is up/will be respawning soon and your TP is up.
b) Your TP is down but Baron is down as well and dragon is up/respawning soon.

Basically you want to be split pushing as far away from the most important neutral objective as possible, that way the enemy team can't collapse on you without giving up a free Dragon/Baron (make sure your team is aware of this and spam ping them to do the neutral objective as soon as you see the enemy team collapsing on you); and the enemy team can't just take it themselves or freely engage 4v4/5v4 because you have Teleport.

When you notice a fight breaking out, you'll want to Teleport onto the nearest ward/minion to join in. Unless your team can win it relatively easily. In team-fights, you'll want to immediately pop Fury of the Sands and Righteous Glory, run towards the enemy ADC, Wither them, and make them go bye-bye. Remember that if it looks like you won't be able to take anyone down before they take you down, it's smarter to retreat so you can survive. The faster you make the call to retreat, the higher your chances of surviving. And if you realize so late that you're still going to die no matter what, then just do as much damage as you can before you die.

Sometimes you can also use Teleport to flank the enemy team if there's a really good ward set up behind them where you can surprise them, giving their carries no place to run; they either walk into you or your team. These flanks can be game-winning, especially if the enemy top laner is on a side lane defending your split push and aren't able to match your Teleport in time to make it an even fight.
Conclusion Back to Top
Nasus has a very forgiving learning curve. If you can learn to farm well under pressure/tower, you'll be fine getting into the mid to late game. He's a fun champion to play, especially when you start to out scale your opponents and are capable of one shotting their ADC after they've been beating on you the entire game.

I hope this guide gave you insight to how I play Nasus and helped those wishing to play him. If you think I missed something, or want to see something get added to this guide, let me know! If you liked this guide, consider upvoting. +12!
Links and Stuff Back to Top
Feel free to add me on the following:

Discord: iFetchStacks#0924
League IGN: iFetchStacks
League of Legends Build Guide Author TheNinjaRoid
TheNinjaRoid Nasus Guide
Ultimate Nasus Guide from a Nasus OTP - Patch 9.9