Ultimate Nasus Guide from a Nasus OTP - Season 2022
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+8 ability haste
+8 Magic Resist
+8 ability haste
+8 Magic Resist
Threats & Synergies
Hard matchup if you don't know the champ. If you can avoid his harrass, you likely won't die to him alone. Ask for ganks if you think you can 2v1 him. You win lane if you get ahead.
Not a threat. Get your Sheen and you can fight her after level 6, if you're stacking well. You should win lane, if you don't get camped.
Hard lane, avoid fighting him as much as possible. Ask for ganks from Jungle and/or Mid. His passive does magic damage, so get Mercury Treads. Can't really stop you from farming, outside of killing you. You should win late game, if you haven't fed him to oblivion.
Just annoying. You can't kill him easily, and he can't kill you easily after you both have ult. He wins pre-6, if you can't dodge his Q poke. He can't stop you from farming in any way other than straight up killing you, so you win late game, even if you can't 1v1 him in lane.
Hard matchup, she's mobile, and does a ton of damage, ask for ganks if you want to kill her. If you manage to get ahead, you should win lane fairly easily. Can't keep you from farming too much. You should win late game, even if you do end up losing lane.
Avoid his Q and you win lane. He can't reliably stop you from farming. Once you have Sheen you win lane fairly easily. Beware of his ult as it does true damage and is an execute.
Avoid his Q and don't get stuck in his W and you won't die to him. Get Mercury Treads, and get your Sheen and you should be fine if you've been farming. Feel free to get some extra Magic Resist if he gives you some trouble. Ask for ganks if he's too mobile for you to 1v1.
Don't let her Parry your Q. She can't really stop you from farming, outside of killing you. Careful when she has ult, especially if you're low and don't have your ult to counteract hers. You win lane if you get a lead.
Another annoying lane, his passive procs off his Q and AAs. His Remove Scurvy ability removes crowd control, so use your W when this is on cooldown. You win lane after you have Sheen, as long as you aren't behind, as he can't stop you from farming, outside of zoning you off. You win late if you've got stacks and armor.
You can't really kill him, but he can kill you, especially if he gets ahead. Just farm up, and go for late game. Ask for ganks if you can kill him 2v1. Can't stop you from farming, outside of his Q or by killing you. You win late if you didn't get too far behind or feed him.
Pokey lane. If you manage to get ahead, you can win lane. Get Sheen and Mercury Treads. He can kite you really hard, so ask for ganks if you can kill him 2v1. Can't really stop you from farming too much, outside of killing you or poking you out of lane.
Can't kill her easily and can't gank her easily. She's really hard to beat, unless she's bad. Just farm up, and try not to die. Best of luck. Oh yeah, avoid her Q, E, and R. She heals off her kit. If you manage to get ahead, you can still win lane. Can't really stop you from farming, outside of killing you. You can stack off her tentacles.
Can't really stop you from farming. Once you get Sheen, you should be fine. If you get ahead, you win lane pretty easily.
If you get ahead you win lane. Get a Sheen and you win after you get your ult, as long as he is not fed already.
Can bully you out of lane if you let him. Avoid his W at all costs in a duel. Look to go in on him when this is on cooldown. Do not fight him until at least level 6, he will win every time. Get a Sheen and you'll win lane if you're able to farm. Not a big threat if you play the lane right.
Pokey lane. You'll win as long as you avoid his long range Q, that's where his poke comes from. Get a Sheen and a bit of armor early on. You'll win lane if you can farm relatively easily. Ask for ganks if you think you can 2v1 him.
If she's good, you'll get bullied out of lane constantly. If you can farm at all, you'll obliterate her. Get Mercury Treads and a Sheen and you should be fine. She wins late if she is not shut down hard early and allowed to snowball out of control.
Sort of an annoying lane. If you get ahead, you win easily. If you fall behind, you get destroyed. Get Mercury Treads, and a Sheen and you should be okay, as long as you can farm.
Don't attempt to fight him alone, unless you are super far ahead. He's stronger without his Skaarl. Ask for ganks if you want to kill him.
Can't stop you from farming. If he ults you out of nowhere, he's probably got a teammate nearby. You can win if you're able to farm and have a Sheen, just be careful of ganks and dives by his team.
Can't really kill him early, unless you get ahead. He's fairly tanky, and he has good sustain. Ask for ganks to get kills. Mercury Treads and Sheen and you'll be fine.
Shouldn't be a problem, unless fed. Get a Sheen and maybe Plated Steelcaps, and you'll be fine. Can't stop you from farming and probably won't be able to dive you at all.
A good Mordekaiser will destroy you. Ask for ganks if you need help. Get a Sheen and Magic Resist and you'll be fine, as long as he isn't fed. QSS cancels Mordekaiser's ult completely.
He's tanky, and you can't really do much early. Just farm up and you'll win late. Can't kill you alone most of the time.
Annoying, but he's not usually much of a threat. Get some farm, and a Sheen and you'll be fine. His R removes your W.
Can't really kill him. Farm and get built and you win late. Usually won't kill you alone.
You'll probably always lose this matchup, unless he's bad or you're far ahead. Ask for ganks if you want to have a chance to win lane. His Q crits if you have low HP and his E makes him invincible for a short amount of time. Beware of dives in this matchup.
A good Poppy will destroy you. You can't really kill her, but don't underestimate her burst. Just farm up and you can win late. Stay away from the lane walls.
Farm up and you'll win late. Can't 1v1 her early, due to her significantly higher damage. You win late as long as you can farm.
Can't really stop you from farming if she's behind. Just farm and you'll win late.
You get ahead, you win. You fall behind at all, you lose hard. Ask for ganks. Bramble will help with his sustain.
Stay away from bushes, and get armor. You win late if you can farm and don't fall behind. Can't stop you from farming too much outside of killing you.
You get ahead, you win. You fall behind at all, you lose. Ask for ganks and farm up. You outscale her fairly quickly.
You get ahead, you win. You fall behind at all, you lose. Ask for ganks if you think you can win the 2v1. Do not fight him alone early, he will win every time. Do not take extended trades with him alone. Watch out for his ult.
If you can survive his poke, you'll win. Farm up for late game, you should win if you're even or ahead.
Can't really stop you from doing anything, unless he's good or you don't know the champ's kit.
Can't 1v1 you most of the time. You can't kill him. You win late if you don't fall behind. Just farm up, he can't stop you too much.
Can't do much against you if you get ahead of her. Just farm up. She does mostly Magic Damage, so Spirit Visage and Mercury Treads will help tons. Can't stop you from farming.
Annoying to deal with. Magic Resist and Sheen and you can win if you're able to farm, and don't fall far behind. He will likely try to proxy farm you, if you can sustain the minions it's typically okay for him to do this early on. Ask for jungler help if this occurs.
Can't kill him and his W gives him HP if he kills an enemy. Careful early, he can't fight you late if you don't fall behind and can farm.
Fall behind, you lose. Get ahead, you win. Oppressive early, once you get an item or two you can fight him if you're even or ahead.
You can fight him if even or ahead after you get some items, and can farm. Just be careful of his W, he heals for a fair amount of health.
Can't kill him in most cases, but as long as you can farm, you will be fine. You outscale him. Ask for ganks if you want to kill him.
Careful of his early game damage. Farm up and you'll outscale him fairly quickly.
Probably the most annoying lane. Sit under your tower. Rush Magic Resist and a Sheen, then you should be able to delete him as long as you're not super far behind already. Ask for ganks if needed. I rarely lose this lane, unless I get camped.
Fall behind, you'll lose. Get ahead, you'll win. Get Divine Sunderer and you'll be fine if you're even or ahead. Watch out for his ult.
Fairly easy lane. You outscale him fairly hard, as long as you aren't behind.
You get ahead, you win. You fall behind at all, you lose hard. Ask for ganks and farm up. You outscale him fairly hard, just don't feed him or fall behind.
Get a Sheen and Mercury Treads and you can 1v1 fairly easy if you're farming well. Ask for ganks.
A Vayne that knows what they are doing will obliterate you. Get a Randuin's or another Armor + HP item and Sheen and you can fight her if you've been farming and aren't super far behind. Ask for ganks whenever possible.
Like Vayne, but not quite as annoying, because he is not as mobile, and doesn't do true damage with every 3rd AA. Ask for ganks. Can 1v1 him with Sheen if farming well and not behind.
Can 1v1 with ult, if farming well with just a Sheen. If you fall behind lane might be more difficult due to her burst early game. You outscale her.
Super pokey. Just sit back and try to farm. You'll eventually be able to 1v1 if you aren't far behind. Ask for ganks.
Annoying. Can't always fight alone, especially early. Ask for ganks and farm up. You'll be able to fight him early if you aren't behind.
Not a problem if you get a lead. Dodge his E as much as possible, as it does % max hp damage. Can't really stop you from farming too much.
Not a problem if you get ahead. Ask for ganks if you need them. Can't stop you from farming too much.
Not a problem if you get ahead. Ask for ganks. can't stop you.
Not a problem if you get ahead. Can't stop you. If you allow him to get ahead you lose lane.
If Yorick is good, you'll lose lane quickly. He can't stop you from farming outside of straight up bullying you out of lane. You'll outscale him hard as long as you don't feed early.
You'll outscale him hard. Can't really stop you. Hard to kill due to passive and tankiness.
Easy after you get some armor and Sheen. Can't really stop you, outside of killing you. Be careful of his ult. You outscale him pretty hard if you aren't behind.
Very hard matchup. Play like Illaoi, ask for ganks to kill ONLY if you think you can 2v1 him.
Big threat early game just like Vayne. If you can farm well enough to get a sheen early you punish him pretty hard 6+.
Champion Build Guide
My rank? Currently Bronze 3. I am Top Nasus OTP but I do play Support fairly regularly, and can play multiple Supports with consistency.
Why do I play Nasus so much?
Because I like his play style - Sit back and farm until you can make a (hopefully) huge impact mid-late game. Plus, I just 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.
+ 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 an ADC.
+ 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. Currently the second strongest slow in the game at 95% when maxed!
+ If you don't have a game plan, he's almost impossible to deal with.
- Extremely weak early game.
- Extremely 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).
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 4v5s 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.
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 or mobility.
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 with more than 1 champion.
3. A team composition where you need to peel for your carries, Nasus doesn't really have much peel to offer other than his Wither.
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.
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: This just scales too well with your Q to not use.
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. But if you're in a harder matchup, this sometimes helps you survive lane as well. 4 extra free potions throughout laning phase. Consuming or selling each one permanently increases your mana cap. 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 your Siphoning Strike damage.
Bonus: Depends on the matchup, but I typically go with:
1. Cooldown Reduction (based on level)
3. Magic Resist
Can other runes work on Nasus?
Honestly, almost any combination of runes can technically work on Nasus, with the exception of Aftershock, due to his lack of hard CC. I do not recommend you use most of them though.
After the recent changes to Teleport you can only TP to towers until 14 minutes. This doesn't really affect [[nasus because of how bad his early game is.
Now, when you want to impact the map with a Teleport, you have to be absolutely sure it’s a good idea. You cannot fake 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, you’re going to be teleporting to the target you clicked, unless the enemy uses hard CC on you while channeling it.
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 with your weakness of being extremely easy to kite, 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 3-5 people), because it increases your movement speed and allows you to walk through minions. This doesn't mean Flash is a bad option, I just personally prefer Ghost over Flash.
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 or has heavy harrass. (Teemo, 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.
Plated Steelcaps: Sometimes the enemy's AA damage is so high however that Plated Steelcaps become the optimal choice; especially if you're against a full AD team.
Frozen Heart: I get this item for the armor value, ability haste, and the passives. Very useful against AA based champs like most ADCs. Can get Randuin's Omen as well if the enemy team is doing a lot of damage with crits.
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. This same section also applies to Divine Sunderer.
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. Increases his passive healing.
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.
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. Force of Nature is an alternative to this item.
Sterak's Gage: Get this if you're getting bursted in fights. It gives you a pretty strong shield.
Siphoning Strike: Nasus's next basic attack within 10 seconds has an uncancelable windup, gains 25 bonus range, and deals bonus physical damage.
Damage: 30/50/70/90/110 + Siphoning Strike stacks
Cost: 20 Mana
Cooldown: 7.5/6.5/5.5/4.5/3.5 sec
If Siphoning Strike kills its target, Nasus permanently gains 3 stacks, increased to 12 if its target is a champion, large minion, or large monster. Jungle plants and structures that are not turrets (e.g. inhibitors) will not grant stacks. Siphoning Strike will not generate stacks from secondary units killed by other effects (e.g. Tiamat). Siphoning Strike will trigger Tear of the Goddess Mana Charge. Siphoning Strike resets Nasus's basic attack timer.
Wither: Nasus ages the target enemy champion for 5 seconds, slowing them by 35% and crippling them by half that amount, both increasing over the duration. Sivir's Spell Shield can block this ability.
Maximum Slow: 47/59/71/83/95%
Maximum Cripple: 23.5/29.5/35.5/41.5/47.5%
Cast Time: 0.25 sec
Cost: 80 Mana
Cooldown: 15/14/13/12/11 sec
Spirit Fire: Nasus unleashes a spirit flame at the target location, revealing its center for 2.5 seconds and, after a 0.264 seconds delay, dealing magic damage to all enemies within the area.
The flame then remains for 5 seconds, dealing magic damage each second to all enemies within the area and Armor penetration reducing their armor while they are inside, lingering for 1 second.
Magic Damage: 55/95/135/175/215 (+60% AP)
Magic Damage Per Tick: 11/19/27/35/43 (+12% AP)
Armor Reduction: 25/30/35/40/45% of target's armor
Cast Time: 0.25 sec
Cost: 70/85/100/115/130 Mana
Cooldown: 12 sec
Fury of the Sands: Nasus empowers himself for 15 seconds, gaining bonus health, bonus armor, bonus magic resistance, 30% increased size, and 50 bonus attack range for the duration.
While Nasus is empowered, he deals magic damage to nearby enemies each second, capped at 240 per second, and Siphoning Strike's Siphoning Strike's cooldown is halved.
Fury of the Sands bonus health is not affected by Grievous Wounds and Nasus retains it once the duration ends.
Effect Radius: 400
Bonus Health: 300/450/600
Bonus Resistances: 40/55/70
Magic Damage Per Tick: 3/4/5% (+1% per 100 AP) of target's maximum health
Cast Time: 0.2 sec
Cost: 100 Mana
Cooldown: 120 sec
The following is very difficult to do consistently, but looks cool. 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. 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.
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 very weak early on 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 (or Wither if your jungler wants to gank you). You'll continue laning the same, but you will now have the option of trading back hard with Spirit Fire -> Auto-Attack -> Siphoning Strike if the enemy goes too ham trying to bully you to stop you farming your Siphoning Strike stacks. Do not attempt this against a difficult matchup, they will likely just all in you.
At level 3, depending on the matchup you'll either put another point in Siphoning Strike to more effectively stack it, or take Wither or Spirit Fire depending on what ability you took at level 2, 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.
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 split pushing 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 split push 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 split pusher.
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 continue to effectively stack up your Siphoning Strike damage, 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 Ghost, run towards the enemy ADC or other high priority target, 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.
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!
League IGN: iFetchStacks